tv Morning Joe MSNBC July 17, 2017 3:00am-6:00am PDT
this weekend. >> nothing to see here it's all a fake hoax. the news that tumbled out starting on friday and continued through the weekend is pretty remarkable and you also look at the denial its, they continue to come from the trump white house, the president himself calling this a phony story and yet you're starting to hear a lot more conservative commentators suggest that there actually is something to this, that it's no scandal. this is very real. if you look at some of the polls that came out this weekend more and more americans are starting to believe that themselves. >> yes, it's absolutely stunning. we'll start there with president donald trump's approval ratings which have plummeted in one poll to the lowest ever recorded in a president in his first six months of office, a bloomberg national poll out this morning has president trump's job approval rating at 40%, while
gallup puts the president rating at 38%, and "the washington post," abc news poll finds 36% of americans approve of the job trump is doing. 58% disapprove. now 48% saying they disapprove strongly, a level never reached by former presidents bill clinton and barack obama, and reached only in the second term of george w. bush in this poll. the partisan breakdown of "the washington post" poll shows 82% of republicans approve, down just slightly from april, while the president dropped six points to 32% among independents and is at just 11% with democrats. new nbc news/"wall street journal" poll of counties of his victory and of the ones he flipped from obama in 2010 12 his approval rests at 44% and health care "the washington post"/abc poll shows half of all
americans prefer the current health care law, about one-quarter want the republican option being pushed right now. 17% would prefer something else all together. joe? >> yeah, bob costa, let me bring you in there. so much to unpack. i want to get to health care in a second, that's what republicans waking up in the senate have to be most concerned about but first let's talk about everything that has happened this weekend. the president awakens to 36% approval rating, he's forced to say well, abc is a fake poll and actually around 40% is pretty good. it's historically low actually. what is the state of the white house this weekend after being pounded by another flurry of allegations about that don jr. meeting, and having a lot of conservative commentators come out saying wait a second, there's something there. >> inside the white house, joe, my sources tell me that they never thought they had a honeymoon in terms of the national poll, in terms of most
americans. they knew they were going to run a base-centric presidency, but they did believe they had a honeymoon with that republican trump base and they're starting to see some of that erode, in part it's because of this russia delude continues over the administration, in part because of the promises that remain unchecked, like repealing and replacing the affordable care act and the don jr. story hovers. they don't see it as something that's alarming the base, but it's a distraction to every other agenda item. they're trying to push, they think could maybe rouse their own base like trade, like immigration. >> but let's talk about the issue right now that obviously senate republicans are the most concerned about, that has to do with health care. these numbers from "the washington post"/abc news poll unbelievable, 50% of americans when it comes to health care prefer obamacare. absence really does make the heart grow fonder. that's the highest approval
rating obamacare has ever had. only 24% support the republican plan. there's no way republican senators in ohio, pennsylvania, wisconsin, and maine aren't looking at those numbers and asking themselves, do i really want to jump off that cliff? how much trouble is the republican health care reform plan in? >> it's in deep trouble right now, and if you think back to the primary race in 2016, joe, governor huckabee, then candidate donald trump they both ran different kinds of republicans in this way, they did not want to tackle meld i care and social security and medicaid in the way most republicans like house speaker paul ryan have traditionally gone after those kind of federal programs. now trump is in the position with an ideological republican congress trying to go after something that in the view of many americans if you look at these polls is settle law, an uncomfortable position for this white house to be in. they know they made this promiless to the base, but they also know politically the base
and most americans don't want to get rid of benefits, including medicaid funding, that's already been put in place. that's just not smart politics. they know it. they still want to get this promise through. >> nick, you look at the numbers from all of these polls and yes, eight out of ten republicans still sticking with the president, but independents have completely fallen off a cliff. you look at the people that swung from barack obama to donald trump. they're starting to bleed off that support, and it can all be summed up in this don jr. story you can't call it fake news. all the emails, all the lies came from don jr. and the white house, all the leaks are coming from inside the white house. you even have conservative commentators saying that, and writing about that, and you have a white house that as you so eloquently put in your 140 characters or less i think on friday, they changed the story every day, and --
>> it's incredible. >> the most hard core trump supporters may believe they can shout out fake news, but these are the president's own men and women who are leaking and it's don jr.'s own words, and it looks like a lot of americans just aren't buying their old story anymore. >> well joe, i think seeing it in black and white, seeing it in donald jr.'s emails is a huge difference, to see him write that, to see potential evidence of collusion right there in front of you in his words, it's hard to brush that away. you can spin it but you can even see the white house moving to a new line which is to say it wasn't illegal, that laws were not broken, there are no laws against this kind of thing. so i'm not a lawyer. i'm just going to point out that if you're moving towards what's legal as opposed to what's right or proper you're backing yourself into a bit of a corner. i think who we're seeing lost for trump, joe and mika, are the
trump curious supporters. the core trump voter is always core trump voter, he's delivering what they asked for, to break up washington and go to war in washington. but the trump curious voter was curious to see if his style would make a difference, if it changed how washington worked for the best if it would be a new way of doing things fort the better and i think what we're seeing here is some loss of faith and perhaps a kind of throwing in of the towel and saying oh, it's the usual thing in washington, trump is no different from the other guys. >> yes, and mika, obviously, you have all the lies that are being told, but you look at the policies, and the medicaid cuts will of course ravage the poor. >> yes. >> but will also ravage working class americans in rural communities that went for donald trump. i talked to one hospital consultant this past weekend, it was a big trump supporter who actually said that communities
across middle america that went for trump will see the economies damaged. these massive cuts to medicaid will actually hit the top employers in their communities the biggest, and that's the rural hospitals. >> that's when they'll really feel it. alyse jordan, i wonder on the face of it, for the core trump supporter if they're watching trump or don jr. for example on sean hannity's show, which is arguably a host to his in the tank for president trump arguably, i would say he probably is completely but that's just my opinion. when they see him saying point blank that's all there is, it was just me, jared, paul manafort, which you would think is bad enough, with this russian lawyer, and then you find out there's another person and you find out there's six people and you might find out there's eight people. i mean, how are you not at that
point wavering on whether or not this presidency is telling america the truth? >> well i think the problem with having donald trump jr. as your front man is that he doesn't exactly bring confidence of his basic competency, given how this whole email scenario and what he actually did, these unsavory meetings with russia affiliated individuals. that isn't confidence building. and you look at the policies that donald trump is trying to enact and you look at the members of the cabinet that he's brought in, and how dominated it is by crony capitalism essentially and donald trump was brought in to destroy special interests. he was brought in to disrupt the system, and you just see more of the same old same old. so i wonder how long it's going to take, without any traction on any actual policy for some of donald trump, for donald trump's
numbers among his hard core supporters to drop, but i do think that it's almost psychological at this point, if you supported trump, you do want to dig in to your support just because for so long, everyone in the media was telling you that it was a terrible decision, and there was, this was a lot, with a lot of the polling that we did, they, the support for trump wasn't necessarily reflected in polls. so i'll be interested to see how that resolves. >> and there are a lot of people that did digwere told they were foolish for voting for trump out of the media and elites out of washington, d.c., and they'll be more reluctant to admit to a pollster they're no longer supporting this guy that they stuck with for a year and a half. david ignatius i want to talk about alyse was talking about more of the same. there is one thing that donald trump is saying that is more of the same, and that his lawyers are saying and that the administration's now saying. now that they've just been
busted lying time and time and time again about meeting with the russians about this specific meeting, donald trump, the president of the united states saying hey, there's nothing new about opposition research. us meeting with the former kgb agent, us meeting with a series of russians, us lying about the people who were in attendance there, us lying about manafort and jared kushner being notified by it. jared kushner not putting even more people -- this is just more of the same. everybody engages in opposition research. everybody does this. david, i know i've talked to republican and democratic consultants who have worked on hundreds of campaigns. i've yet to meet one that would talk to the russians for opposition research, or iran or other people who were hostile to the united states of america. what about you? have you found anyone telling you that this is just more of the same, or is this as serious
as it seems? >> joe i think you put your f g finger on the common sense heart of this. you get an email in which a meet something proposed with someone prescribed as a representative of the russian government which wants to give you information that's going to help your campaign and hurt your opponent, and i think the natural response of a law-abiding citizen in a situation where russia is regarded as an adversary is you pick up the phone and you call the fbi and say the russians are trying to set up a meeting with me. what should i do? what's appropriate here? >> david, this isn't even a close call, is it? i can't imagine somebody coming to my office when i was in congress saying hey, we have opposition research on the democrat. it's from the russian government. would you like to take the meeting? i i'd say go to hell, you're fired and go to the person over my shoulder and say get me the fbi. this is not a close call. >> this is not a close call for
anyone i know and talked to who serves in government and deals with sensitive issues. it's astonishing that jared kushner still has his security clearances when he has disclosed that contrary to initial disclosure forms, he had meetings like this. the president has the authority to decide who gets these clearances and who doesn't, but joe, i'm struck as i watch this unfold it's a little bit like an army retreating. there's a strong position that's set, and then it's overrun, and then you retreat to another position, and then you are asserting something different and then that one gets overrun and you pull back a little further and i think that's part of the trump team's problem is that they just don't have firm lines that they can hold as each new revelation comes, there's a scramble. they'd love to have something hard to give back to their base. i think that's why health care is so important. they have to deliver something
that shows we're governoring. it's not just this cloud of phony scandal, we're governoring, and they don't have that yet. >> i don't get that. when they show they're governing they're going to give their base something that hurts them but whatever. so we originally thought there were four people in that june 2016 meeting at trump tower. that number grew to six by the time "morning joe" signed off on friday and then continued to metasthetize to seven. along with trump jr., paul man afford an jared kushner, there was the russian lawyer, british columnist rob goldstone who told the ap he was present, a translator, there is also rinat akhmetshin who lobbied on issues important to the kremlin and a possible eighth person attended as well. the "new york times" wrote this
weekend about akhmetshin, a soviet vettian who also told the app that veselnitskaya brought with her a plastic folder with printed-out documents that detailed what she believed was the flow of illicit russian funds to the democrats. according to akhmetshin, veselnitskaya presented the contents of the documents to the trump associates and suggested that making the information public could help the campaign. also this weekend, veselnitskaya told the "wall street journal" that she had spoken with the office of russia's top prosecutor and was in regular contact with russian authorities about her u.s. lobbying efforts but jay sekulow, a member of president trump's legal team insists absolutely nothing happened. >> do you know for sure everyone who was at that meeting with
donald trump jr.? >> no, i don't represent donald trump jr. and i do not know everyone for sure that was at that meeting and the president was not there. the president wasn't aware of the meeting and did not attend it. >> doesn't it show intent and willingness on the part of don jr. and jared and paul manafort to collude with the russians and veselnitskaya was not just some russian off the street. she had close ties to people in the kremlin. >> number one, if there was, the discussion was going to be about, if it was going to be about russian opposition research that a russian lawyer had, the fact is, those go on, you know that goes on in campaigns all the time. opposition research is a big part of campaigning. >> it doesn't go on with the russians all the time, jay. >> but look, here's what happened. first of all nothing happened. >> isn't it also important whether or not it's legal, whether or not it's wrong, whether or not it's ethical? >> you're conflating, jake, three perspectives here.
the legality, was the meeting and what took place legal or not. we of course, and as almost every legal expert said it's not illegal and then you're trying to put a moral ethical aspect to it, and it's easy to do that in 20/20 hindsight but not when you're in the middle of a campaign. >> that's just not true. it's hard to really, i've known jay for a long time and liked jay for a long time but there are so many false statements there, talk about conflating things, it's staggering, and jeremy peters, if you look at what jake sekuen low was forced to go out and say last weekend on the sunday shows, if you look at the statement that the president of the united states signed off on with all the president's men around him on air force one, coming back from europe, lying, lying to the "new york times," lying to the american people, saying this meeting was just about adoption, and then the next day lying
about the people that were in it. then going on a tv show that basically a state-run television and being asked at the end of that tv show, is there anything else that we don't know about? and don jr. saying that's it. and the next day we find out another person attended the meeting and the next day we find out that somebody connected with the kgb that basically was an intel officer at the meeting and the next day finding out there are two other people at the meeting. these people keep getting caught in their lies, day after day after day, and jay sekuen low and the president of the united states keep saying nothing to see here, move along, move along. it's like actually a character out of the simpsons. there is something to see here, and even their own base know that. >> that's right, and i think, joe, as you said over the weekend, that's why you start to hear more and more republicans saying okay, this just doesn't pass the sniff test. yes, opposition research is a
fundamental part of any campaign, but not from a russian operative, not from a hostile foreign power, and the lack of acknowledgment by trump or any of the people around trump that maybe this was not the best decision, that maybe this didn't show the best judgment, this total lack of any ability to have introspection and contrition on this is consistent with a pattern of what we've seen from donald trump and his people for a long time. it's always someone else's fault. it's the fault of the fake news media for not explaining this properly, for conflating a bunch of things as jake sekulow tried to say yesterday. it's loretta lynch's fault, it's the dnc's fault. if donald trump is on the outs and down and something bad is happening to him, it's always because someone else is cheating or lying and they have never ever been able to accept responsibility and say maybe we shouldn't have handled things this way. >> well you know, donald trump in a tweet this weekend tries to
blame it on the fake news media, but of course action , an overw number of americans believe it was inappropriate. 26% think appropriate, 63% think that meeting was not appropriate. david ignatius you have jay sekulow saying the overwhelming majority of legal scholars say there's nothing illegal about that meeting. that's not what i've been hearing. it's not what i've been hearing out of the white house. it's not what i've been hearing from capitol hill. there are a lot of people inside the white house and a lot of republicans on capitol hill afraid that at least one member in that meeting put themselves in grave legal jeopardy by even being there, and not reporting it. >> well, and maybe most important of all, it's not jay sekulow's call whether it's legal or not. we have a criminal investigation under way conducted by one of the best prosecutors in america,
and this is what happens when a criminal investigation begins to accelerate. new facts emerge. people begin to worry about their positions. they disclose things that were not disclosed earlier. i've heard people in the white house say, well, you know, these emails with don jr., that's really the toughest stuff that we've got to deal with. well, we'll see, if that's true, if that's really the worst that there is, we'll see, but in an investigation like that, new material keeps churning to the top and that's part of what we're seeing. >> yes, mika, i have yet to find a person who thinks the worst days are ahead. go ahead. >> that's okay. the senate puts health care on hold, passage of the republican's plan was already uncertain, and now a planned vote this week is postponed until after senator john mccain recovers from surgery. will that help or hurt the changes of the bill passing? also this morning, we'll bring in democratic senator
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introducing america's largest, most reliable 4g lte combined with the most wifi hotspots. it's a new kind of network. xfinity mobile. welcome back to "morning joe." senate republicans delayed their vote on a bill to repeal and replace obamacare as senator john mccain recovers from surgery. mccain underwent a procedure to remove a blood clot from above his left eye on friday and will spend the week recovering at his home in arizona. according to the mayo clinic the senator's in good condition and the surgery went very well. on saturday, majority leader mitch mcconnell announced the senate would defer consideration of the gop health care bill while mccain recovers. majority whip john cornyn said yesterday he expects a vote to take place once mccain returns. >> we all wish john mccain a
speedy recovery and we need him in more ways than one but yes i believe as soon as we have a full contingent of senators that we'll have that vote. eight important we do so. >> there are about eight to ten republican senators who have serious concerns about this bill, and so at the end of the day, i don't know whether it will pass, but i do know this. we should not be making fundamental changes in vital safety net program that's been on the books for 50 years, the medicaid program, without having a single hearing to evaluate what the consequences are going to be. >> i think the longer the bill is out there, the more conservative republicans are going to discover that it's not repeal, and the more that everybody's going to discover that it keeps the fundamental flaw of obamacare. for all republicans complaints about the despot of obamacare they don't fix it.
they subsidize with taxpayer money which i don't agree with at all. >> meanwhile, many had expected the congressional budget office to release a score on the revised bill today but that, too, has been delayed. it's unclear right now when that score will be released. joe? bob costa, so what are the hurdles mitch mcconnell has to get over to get the 50 votes he needs? >> many hurdles ahead, joe. you have to start off with the math. 52 republicans in the senate, senator collins represents the moderate wing, she's probably not going to support the bill because of the medicaid provisions and senator paul represents the conservative right, he thinks the bill doesn't go far enough to gut at fordable care act that leaves you at 50, plus vice president pence, you could get it passed with 51 sloets but i think the most important thing to remember over the last few days is not what happened in washington but what happened when all the
nations governors met at their retreat. you saw governors, republicans like governor kasich of ohio, governor sandoval of nevada they say they don't want this bill or at least very concerned about it because of what it does to the medicaid expansion. that puts real pressure on people like senator heller, and if you're already losing collins, and you're already losing paul, that doesn't give you the option if you're leader mcconnell to lose a heller or to lose a portman, so that puts him in a difficult position this week just in terms of the math. >> nick, that's what i don't understand. how do you get dean heller's vote in nevada when you have brian sandoval who the guy has approval ratings up in the 70s, he's telling his constituents he's telling the press, he's telling americans that if you pass these medicaid cuts you will absolutely ravage health care in the state of nevada. i don't see how dean heller actually fights that, and john kasich in ohio saying the same
thing. rob portman is in a purple state at best, usually a blue state. how do people like rob port lma and dean heller vote for the affordable care act -- vote for the gop substitution of the affordable care act when it will ravage health care in rural communities across america that actually supported them in their runs for the senate and also supported donald trump in his run for the white house. >> here's how, joe. first of all, i think the argument that the senate republicans are making internally is that a failure to pass the repeal is more dangerous than the contents of this bill. i'm not sure that's right or wrong. i think what they're saying to their members is if we fail to deliver this thing we campaigned on for almost a decade now it seems like, it is worse for our majority t is more perilous than whatever the contents of this bill are, and second, they have
designed this bill so that the consequences are backloaded so that the bad news in this bill comes later on, presumably after some group of them have already been reelected, and i think they're frankly banking on the idea that the consequences will be diffuse and by the time the consequences arrive it will be harder to pin the blame on them but the real problem they're having here, joe, this bill is not popular and nobody ever campaigned on the central premise of the bill, which was to cut a really important government program. in fact the president campaigned against that idea for president and he won. so there's a basic problem and disjuncture between the aims and the stated goals and what they campaigned on. >> i think nick's point is the most important, that too many republicans see this as doing something, that there's more electoral consequence if they do nothing than to do something that's actually destructive and
doesn't make health care better for anyone. so they would rather just do something, you know, the consequences be damned, instead of actually looking at the bill and figuring out what they need to do to make health care better and to satisfy some of the reasons that constituents are so dissatisfied with obamacare. >> jeremy peters, the first thing that david dreier told me when i went on the house floor is basically, son, remember this. you can always justify a no vote, always when in doubt vote no. of course, david then tried to force all of to us start voting yes on all the republican bills over the next six years, i reminded him of that wisdom, but here alyse is right. if you're dean heller, how do you vote for a bill that is this unpopular, not only across america, but also in the state of nevada, also unpopular with brian sandoval, also unpopular with the legislature, also unpopular with every hospital
and medical provider in the state of nevada. i'm not just picking on senator heller. you could say this for a lot of senators across america, republican senators that are up for re-election. it's an extraordinarily unpopular bill, and for mitch mcconnell or anybody else to say hey, do me a favor, could you walk off the plank with a blindfold on for the sake of the republican party? i can tell you how that always ends. that ends in a defeat for the party. i don't see how he votes for this. i don't see how heller or collins votes for it, and i really don't see how rob portman votes for it. >> and those are just the more centrist republicans. on the other side you have the conservatives who think that the bill doesn't go far enough because it doesn't act on the central promise that republicans have been making for years now, which is to fully repeal obamacare but the thing is they're probably only about 20 votes for a full out repeal in
the senate anyway so how they get anywhere on this is really beyond me at this point. mitch mcconnell i will say and donald trump are pulling out all the stops, someone at the white house told me last night that they think they can get this done with good old-fashioned arm twisting and horse trading but it's not clear to me what horses they have to trade and whose arms they can twist enough. because this bill is so toxic, so unpopular and there's just really no political incentive for them to get this through, when it harms the people that donald trump has reached out to, has kind of connected with the most. so i think what you're going to see here is they're going to move on to tax reform pretty quickly which actually they have working oen in a much more efficient and effective manner quietly over the last few weeks. >> and remember this number, in that new "washington post"/abc news poll, half of all americans prefer the current health care law, about one-quarter want the
republican option being pushed now just to give you a little perspective there. and also ahead this morning, nbc's kasie hunt joins us live from capitol hill with the latest on this health care battle and from the white house, peter alexander with his later reporting. "morning joe" is coming right back 37 david. what's going on? oh hey! ♪ that's it? yeah. ♪ everybody two seconds! ♪ "dear sebastian, after careful consideration of your application, it is with great pleasure that we offer our congratulations on your acceptance..." through the tuition assistance program, every day mcdonald's helps more people go to college.
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. it's time now at 38 past the hour for the must read opinion pages and one from a "washington post" opinion -- oh joe scarborough, "trump is killing the republican party" and joe in part you write this, "political historian also one day view donald trump as a historical anomaly, but the wreckage visited of this man will break the republican party into pieces, and lead to the election of independent thinkers no longer tethered to the tired dogmas of the polarized past. when that day mercifully arifds, the two-party duopoly that has strangled american politics for almost two centuries will finally come to an end and washington just may begin to work again."
now this from maureen dowd, who writes in the "new york times" about the game of trump, in part she writes this, "wicked siblings to do anything for power, secret deals with swarn enemies, back-stabbing, betrayal and charges of treason a maniacal mad king and his court of scheming self-absorbed princesses and princelings swathed in the finest silk and the most brazen immorality, ruling with total disregard for the good of their people. the night in washington is dark and full of terrors. the game of trump has brought a pagan lawlessness never before seen in the capital but is the rampant deception and corruption in his gaudy, jangly realm about to engulf the emperor of chaos in? in the words of ram say bolton in "game of throne" "if you think this has a happy ending you haven't been paying attention." ""my question for you, joe or
david ignatius is the happy ending for washington and america or for the presidency dawning that she thinks possibly might not come to be? >> let me lead off the fear many of us have is that our country is being fundamentally weakened in this period. we don't want to just harp on the president's troubles but we do see evidence of declining american power. >> absolutely. >> i think the question i have this morning is how many republicans feel the way that joe scarborough feels. how many republicans now look at this chaos in their party, scandals engulfing the white house, inability to frame, let alone pass good legislation and say there's something fundamentally wrong here, i thought joe's piece, joe's a colleague in this respect, we're both "washington post" opinion writers, i thought joe said something really important. my question is, how many others are beginning to say that same
thing? >> yes, and bob costa, you're on the hill a good bit. we talked to kasie hunt about it. lot of republican lawmakers may be saying it behind the scenes but just aren't ready to come out publicly and talk about how concerned they are about donald trump. it really is, you hear the same person in front of cameras say something completely different, when the cameras go off, i guess, because of fear of the base. what have you found on the hill? >> it's a complicated story, because it's not just fear of the base in terms of why they're not speaking out. it's also a recognition that what they have represented since president reagan, this orthodoxy, has in many respects faded away withity political power, with its residents with working class voters and they think in spite of all of president trump's flaws his controversies that seem to be unending they do not believe
that their base, but also independent voters working class voters who they're all trying to compete against in 2018 and 2024 are really going to be swayed by the traditional republican way and so look at alaska, governor bill walker up there, he's an independent. there are inklings of independents starting to rise but for the moment most republicans look at polls and say the base is not moving away from president trump and they wonder if they have the public concerns about the president and russia, who is really listening to them beside a medias that has lost much of its capital with people because the way it's been constantly attacked and who is the audience if they do flip. >> paul ryan's version of conservatism and mike pence's version of conservatism and my version of small government
conservatism is a 38% proposition. if you want to get to 50% or get to 48%, or get to 46%, you're going to have to mix traditional reagan conservatism in with populism, and i think so many people in the house of representatives and a lot of people in the senate are still stuck in a mode straight out of 1980 and ronald reagan's campaign. they're not exactly sure how to get there yet, so they just keep their heads down and they keep supporting a guy that won wisconsin, michigan, ohio and pennsylvania. >> look at senator portman of ohio. i always go back to ohio as how you really contract the country. what is he doing right now? he's really focused on this opioid crisis that's devastated a lot of these republican states and democratic states. you don't see him engaging in the day-to-day trump wars, because he knows for a republican like him in ohio, trump is a factor but not the factor. what matters is the medicaid
funding, what matters is the economy and what matters is the opioid crisis and you see a lot of republicans operating in this fashion. trump is important when they're in washington, but he's really not the issue that's dominating the states like he is in d.c. >> all right, still to come this morning, we're going to keep it in "the washington post" realm, "the post" ruth marcus joins us with her new piece on president trump's lawyer, jay sekulow. she says the better question why is he shouting is what he is shouting and she says to understand that, you have to turn down the volume a little bit. we'll get her to explain that next on "morning joe." (vo) dogs have evolved,
there's news breaking at this moment. fox news can confirm new, more, donald trump jr., jared kushner, paul manafort, the lawyer from russia, the interpreter, this new guy we found found out about today, and a mystery person. john roberts confirms there was an eighth person in that meeting. we don't know. there may have been more but there was an eighth. jared kushner filled out his form, i think it's an f-86 saying who he met with and what he'd done. important stuff. you can go to prison for messing it up intentionally. we went back and added 100 napes and places. none of these people made it. we're still not cleeb on this, chris. if there's nothing there, and that's what they tell us. they tell us there's nothing, it wasn't memorable. didn't write it down because it wasn't anything so i didn't remember it with a russian interpreter in the room at trump tower. if all of that, why all these
lies? why is it lie after lie after lie? if you clean, come on clean. you know? my grandmother used to say when first we practice -- oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. there are people believing we're making it up, and one they realize we're not and they'll wake up and go where are we and why are we getting told all these lies? >> i don't know what to say. i think there's a lot of truth to everything that you've said. >> there was shepard smith on fire. that was his reaction. shep and also chris wallace on friday afternoon to the revelations there were more people in donald trump's meeting with the russian lawyer than they originally disclosed. and their reaction and shep smith's reaction, actually, was
called a walter kronkite. there's a famous saying when you lose kroncite, you lose america. when people like shep smith are talking about the lies, there are a lot of people who are going so sit up and ask what's going on, but there are a small subset. i think it's bizarre, but you're reporting in the new york times that you have a piece reference for putin on the right buys trump cover. i've never been able to understand why anybody on the american right would admire vladimir putin, a man that assassinates journalists and politicians and business people that he opposes, but they do. tell us what you're seeing. >> years before we ever heard the words collusion or hacking,
with regard to russia, there were some on the right to had venerated putin. a lot of this is wrapped up in putin's perceived immasklation and humiliation of barack obama on the world stage. a lot of conservatives love the fact that he made barack obama look weak and so, any other transgression it seemed would be forgiven, including hacking into our election, and i think that helps explain why you're saying a reluctance among some conservatives to condemn what russia has done to -- to even acknowledge they played much of a role, and you go back and look at who the people were speaking out in 2013, 2014, 2015 who were saying admiring things about putin, it was people like rudy jewgiulian giuliani, his deputy national
security advisor, and donald trump himself saying things he hoped that putin would be his best friend. that he admired putin's ability to get things done. >> is vladimir putin was a guy who was invaded not only ukraine but also invaded georgia when george w. bush was president out united states. he's invaded two countries in less than a decade. that's a bit of a record since the end of world war ii. and yet you're saying rudy giuliani and newt gingrich were admiring putin even before donald trump? >> absolutely. i think it goes back to the fact there were a lot of americans who believed putin by comparison made barack obama look weak. so therefore, he could do no wrong even though he was committing -- he was breaking international law, oppressing human rights a at home, and doing all sorts of other uncon
chenable things. >> it's incredible. that really paid off for rudy giuliani and mcfarland. i'm glad they threw themselves under the bus for that. look at people like sarah palin saying people are looking at putin as one who wrestles bears and drills for oil and pat buchanan, putin is a natural ally. a fox news host who wished mr. putin could be president of the united states for just 48 hours that way americans don't have to worry and wake up in the morning fearful of a group that's murderous and horrific like isis. are you serious? >> right. and that was kimberly gillfoil who trump considered for a position in his press shop. there's this consistency of belief there among a certain strain of conservatives who felt
putin could do no wrong so long he made barack obama look weak. >> or felt they needed to say whatever they needed to say to suck up to trump. i mean, i don't know. either one. that's unbelievable. jeremy, thank you very much. coming up, who is responsible for that meeting with the russians inside trump tower? according to president's lawyer, the secret service is somehow to blame. we'll show you that and how the service is responding next on "morning joe." a daily struggle,
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book now at choicehotels.com >> isn't it important whether or not it's legal, whether or not it's wrong, whether or not it's ethical? >> well, you're conflating three perspectives here. the legality was the meeting and what took place legal or not. we, of course, and as almost every legal expert says it's not illegal. then you're trying to put a moral ethical look at it. that's easy but not when you're in the middle of a campaign. >> welcome back to "morning joe." it's monday, july 17th. with us we have alise jordan, nicholas konfasori, david ignati ignatius, robert costa, and
joining the conversation capitol hill correspondent kasie hunt. joe, taking it all in after this first hour, when you have the president himself, his attorneys, his staff calling this a russia hoax, when there's clearly been multiple lies about a meeting with not just the campaign manager but the son and the son-in-law, it's mind boggling how to character rise this and put it into words. it's hard to keep a straight face, actually. >> well, i think they're good at that. keeping a straight face and not telling the truth. i think last week was an extraordinarily important week in the development not only of this story but also of the trump presidency. this weekend we saw more of the same. you had a lot of conservative writers that had been saying for some time, a lot of opinion leaders that had been saying for some time this this russian
story was much adieu about nothing. that began to change on friday. we talked about not only what david french wrote at the national review, talking about the importance of this investigation as we move forward in the country, but also respected voices on the right like erik erickson saying that the russian investigation the not much adieu about nothing, that they keep lying, they keep getting in their way, and they keep actually playing into the worst suspicions of their political enemies. you're hearing that not only from commentators on the right. you're hearing that a lot more from republicans on capitol hill who say we don't know where this is going to end, but we suspect it's not going to be good. it's not going to be good for republicans, it's not going to be good for conservatism, and it's certainly not going to be good for the country. >> no, and with that we're going to begin this hour with
president donald trump's approval ratings which have plummeted. in one poll to the lowest ever recorded for a president in his first six months in office. a bloomberg national poll out this morning has president trump's job approval rating at 40%. while gallop puts the president's rating at 38%. and "the washington post" abc news poll finds 36% of americans approve of the job trump is doing. 58% disapprove. with 48% saying they disapprove strongly. the partisan breakdown of the washington post poll shows 82% of republicans approve. that's down from april. while the president dropped six points to 32% among independents, and is at just 11%
with draemocrats. a new poll of counties pivotal in trump's 2016 victory and of the ones of flipped of obama, his approval is 44%. and on health care. half of all americans prefer the current health care law, about one quarter want the republican option being pushed now. 17% would prefer something else altogether. joe, i mean, politically, this doesn't look that great for this presidency. >> no. it's awfully early, but bob costa, even republican donors i've been talking to over the past month, republican leaders are skeptical of their chances in 2018 in holding on to the house. you look at these numbers, independent support down to 32 % for the president. he has historically high disapproval numbers. his numbers are higher
disapproval numbers are higher than bill clinton or barack obama obama ever experienced in 16 years in the white house. and again, the number we keep going back to, 50% of americans want to keep the affordable care act in place. only 24% want to replace it. we want the republicans are pushing in the house right now, and yet, you still have that core, that base, 82% of republicans supporting donald trump. what does it all mean as we're sorting through not only health care reform but tax reform and the supporting of this president by the republican base as we move forward? >> republicans have been able to hold in these special congressional elections because of the eight and ten republican voters that you see in the washington post abc poll. most of the gop still remains with president trump, with the gop. it's the independents that should be alarming for
republicans. perhaps it's because of the russia controversy. perhaps it's because of a pursuit of repealing and replacing the affordable care act. republicans are wavering. the populous has had a rocky first six months. that's a cost at the polls. >> yes. and kasie hunt, americans appear to be highly disapproving of president trump's twitter habits, and on him in personal terms. trump cares about his image of himself. 70% say he's acting in an unpresidential manner since taking office. 68% don't see him as a positive role model, 67% disapprove of his use of twitter. i wonder if his lawyers can stop him from tweeting. maybe the fact that it's hurting his brand might. >> maybe they can. i feel like there have been a lot of people who have tried to convince the president to change
his habits. we'll see if his new lawyer can effect that change. look, i think that we are at the point where these numbers may start to effect how the president interacts are congress and how vocal some members are congress are willing to be in stepping out in opposition to the president in small ways or potentially big ways, but it is going to be, i think, a split geographically. there's a special election in alabama where essentially you have four people falling all over each other to try to figure out how close they can possibly be to donald trump. there's an attack ad that mitch mcconnell is running that accuses one of them of being against donald trump. i think bob costa touched on the dynamics here we'll see going forward in the midterms. i think you are going to continue to see a split because the numbers among republicans are just so high. it seems like this reflects the polarization of the country more
than anything. >> and david ignatius, let's talk about foreign policy. we talked at great length last week about how foreign leaders were actually trying to figure out how to work around donald trump. how do 36% approval ratings impact him as he tries to work the world stage? what sort of message does that send to our allies and our enemies alike? >> even at 36% for the foreseeable future, he's president, and what we saw with france's new dynamic, president macr macron, his desire to figure out a way to connect with this white house and with the america it represents for the remainder of trump's term, i found the trump visit to france to see macron just a fascinating mutually
opportunistic bridge. taking a role that's been held by the uk to a lesser extent germany, now france, is bidding to play that role. trump needed a good visit. seemed relaxed on the way. chatted sometimes in too familiar ways, but it was just a little drama. i think it told you that out in the world life continues. people have to deal with this administration. i find more foreign diplomats asking me what's the address to talk to this administration? there's so few people in key jobs at the state department still. not giving up on the administration, trying to find the key to open the door. >> and nick, obviously there are a lot of americans who believe that our leadership if you look at the number, 48% of americans think we are weaker than we were
before donald trump entered office. only 27% say we're stronger. 23 % say about the same. it seems here, do you trust donald trump to negotiate with world leaders? almost half of americans say not at all. 34% say great or good amount. 19% just some. obviously he's not doing well on domestic matters. he's not doing well as far as americans are concerned with the foreign policy either. so how does he get congress to do his bidding on issues involving our allies or even adversaries, especially with him trying to weaken sanctions with russia? >> well, look, joe, i think the important number back there is the 85% support among republicans. i think what we're seeing here is a once in a lifetime shift in what it means to be a conservative or a republican. i think president trump is leading that shift for better or
worse. just think about the pillars of conservatism back no your days, taxes, free trade, it was a hawkish foreign policy with the u.s. at the center of the world as the guarantor of security around the world. it was anti-communism and patriotism. he replaces it with hatred of the media, blood and soil, and supporters of faith with being christian or faithful. i think he has shifted that ground. i think members in congress see that 85% and ask themselves what does trump know that we don't? i think half of congress are kind of chugging along at a older version of being a republican, and everybody is trying to figure out exactly what it means and who is a part of it, and what it means for policy, foreign policy, and domestic policy. there's a flux. i'm not sure we get a clear
answer until trump is reelected or not reelected. >> in my washington post column out today, that's what i talked about, why i left the republican party and said this party would be unrecognizable to william buckley, or ronald reagan, or so many other republicans. the conservatives are supposed to be for smaller and more responsible government. they're supposed to be for a rational foreign policy, and bob costa, if you go back, forget about donald trump for one second. you go back when george w. bush was president. he promised to be a small government conservative and talked about a very restrained foreign policy. we actually got record setting deficits, record setting debts, a foreign policy that was so utopian it would make woodrow wilson blush, and now you look at donald trump and the budgets he's proposed. you're looking at a president
that's going to take a $20 trillion national debt to a $30 trillion national debt. there is nothing conservative about donald trump. nothing. he's been a democrat for most of his life. he discovered birtherism in 2011, and republicans are literally following him over an ideological cliff. the question is why isn't there more of a resistance against this guy who's been a democrat most of his life? who now is not even remotely conservative at home or abroad, and instead of resisting russia is actually embracing russia with both arms? >> because, joe, he's not a traditional republican, but at the same time, there has not been this monolith since president reagan and the republican party all following in lock step when it comes to conservati conservati conservatism. is it about trump or what he
represents? to me trump is a character we've seen for many years. he sees an trade and immigration, blood and soil issues. this is something the republican party has been dealing with since the 50s, the 60s. go back to the people buckley fought against. go to the different primary challenges. this populism nationalism has always been there, mostly on the fringe. it's something the republican party knows has always been there. it's about this style of politics that they have really never fully grappled with within their own party. >> very different style, and i'm going to go to kasie hunt. bob costa and joe, kasie was telling me you guys are in great physical shape really, beautiful. just mentioning that. thank you for telling me about that. that's what you say in normal conversations just like president trump said to the wife of the french president. this guy is very, very
different. and very out of step with modern normal sense of appropriateness, is he not? >> well, look, i think that it's pretty clear there are a lot of people who have thought that. that's been true all the way along. go back to the campaign. you remember the reaction in the wake of the tape that came out, the "access hollywood" tape. where he said things that i don't think of us at the time thought you could survive in american politics. now he's president of the united states, and it turns out what the habits that he developed before he came into office are holding. one thing that a lot of people talked about when trump took office was look, this is an office that really changes people, and it is conceivable that even somebody who is so set in their ways is the age he is, could still come into this office and be changed by it. i think every single time we have an incident like this or
conversation like this we're learning the president has not really been dramatically changed by the office. i agree, bob, do you have a workout plan? you're looking great over there. >> mika, you got to give context for this. president trump told the french president's wife that she was in shape. is that correct? >> great physical shape. beautiful. >> yeah, president trump really, when he's talking to a woman, it always comes back to what she looks like. that's his go-to measure of the estimation of a woman. >> i'm not in great physical shape, personally. >> that is just incredible. >> i'm going to jump in right here. we have a 47-second delay. so this is really not the time to have awkward silences and add 47 seconds on top of awkward
silences because bob and you look even more awkward than usual, but bob, you're a hunk. keep up whatever you're doing. it's beautiful. >> kasie hunt, thank you. i'm landing this plane. still ahead, a democratic smart here onset who says republicans have had a lot to say about their health care bill, but only behind closed doors. also tom brokaw, julie and the political round table coming up on "morning joe." it's not a quick fix.
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stepping on his own message already. what can you tell us? >> reporter: i'll keep the conversations about one's looks for another time. let's focus on the white house's desired theme, made in america. this is part of a three-week stretch. they'll focus on american heros next week and the american dream the next week. this week is about the american worker, the chance to talk about the rolling back of regulations while they highlight products built in state over the course of the next several days. broadly as you look at the first six months, it's clear the theme central to the coverage and to the administration's own handling of this, the president's mind set, is the theme of russia, the president, again, so focussed on it. tweeting about hillary clinton, his son and the fake news. he wrote hillary clinton can illegally get the questions to the debate and delete 33,000 e-mails but my son don is being
scorned by the fake news media. he wrote with all the phony unnamed sources and fraudulent reporting, fake news is distorting democracy. note the all caps, in our country right now. the guy who is getting the biggest workout, at least in the course of the last several days remaining his personal attorney. he's been the chief defender of the president, while the white house said there's no evidence of any collusion, there wasn't any collusion, it appears the bar is being pushed back. the argument now nothing illegal took place. here's part of what his attorney raised as an issue this weekend. >> i wondered why the secret service if this was innefarious why they let them in. >> they posted a statement that says in part, donald trump junior was not a protected person of the united states secret service in june 2016.
thus, we would not have screened anyone he was meeting with at that time. to be clear on that june 9th date, the date of the meeting with a russian including the lobbyist and the russian lawyer, donald trump may not being a protected person, but his father was, and he was in the buildings. it's not clear they could have been separately screened in terms of their background. as the white house tries to focus on made in the measuring week after unsuccessful attempts focusing on energy and infrastructure in the past, they're going to try to give it another shot today. >> nbc's peter alexander, thank you. joining us now, nbc news senior correspondent tom brokaw, and julia yaffi.
julia profiles natalia veselnitskaya, the russian attorney at the center for the trump junior scandal. we'll get to that in a moment. tom, as we look at even some of trump's tweets about distorting democracy and fake news as he appears to be trying to protect his son from his own lies, weir missing out on some bigger, more, i would say, grave stories, and happenings around the world that are really -- they don't appear to be getting a lot of attention. you wonder if the president is giving them enough attention including north korea. >> i've been talking to people in the national security and foreign policy field. they're concerned about north korea which is suddenly off the map, it appears, and the chinese don't know who they should be talking to in the administration. there has always been a relationship between china and the united states that centered around one or two designated spokesman for an administration.
other people who had a connection to china. at this point, i'm told, the chinese are looking at the administration and not knowing who to talk to or connect with. we've not heard anything about the president again from north korea. as for his latest statement, the fact of the matter is that we know based on our intelligence agencies that russia tried to interfere with the election. we also have had a succession of stories none of which held up about the relationship between his son and the russians who wanted to meet with him because they had something that would be helpful to his campaign. this thing has dribbled out point by point, and it seems to me the american people are probably beginning to wonder who they can believe in this case, because there have been so many versions of it, and we now have a wider cast of characters who plainly were trying to get information to the trump campaign and they were not turned away.
that's the important thing. >> all right. julia, you're looking into the russian attorney at the center of the trump junior scandal, and she's described by folks that you quote in your piece as probably the most aggressive person i've ever encountered in all of my conflicts with russians. she is vindictive and unrelenting. fill in the belong blanks for he. >> well, natalia veselnitskaya is actually -- it would be analogous to a real estate attorney showing up at a massive international scandal. she's from moscow which is corrupt and full of organized crime but also is provincial. she has dealt with some really complicated, very sketchy cases involving mobsters, involving extortion, involving racketeering. she's a very on one hand a complicated, on the other hand,
a provincial figure. she's very connected. in the feirst e-mail sent where they said the crown prosecutor of russia wants to pass this information, that crown prosecutor, not a real title, is the prosecutor general of the russian federation with whom natalia veselnitskaya is very close and both of them are close with the agalara family. she has on one hand the connections in the capital. on the other hand, she's a provincial real estate attorney. >> tom, if i could just ask a question of you. we reviewed the latest evidence about donald trump. it makes our head spins sometimes. tom, you've covered so many administrations. i'm curious what you think about the kind of leadership that the country is looking for now that might breakthrough this terrible sense of impasse that seems to
be out there in the country. could you put that in a few words for folks? >> well, i want to say a couple of things. i've been in the west, i was on the main street of montana in big timber montana. it was the state that backed him. almost in fact no one asked me about what was going on now. they have other concerns in trump country like big drought in the midwest. but at the same time there is an expectation that the president of the united states ought to be spending more time being presidential and less time tweeting about his family. he seems to be mono focussed on what he perceives as slights against him. and there's a whole wrath of issues that we ought to be dealing with. we know that a number, we know there are a number of important state department positions that have not yet been filled. he seems not to have a sense of a scope of being the chief
executive of the united states and all that that entails. we're hearing almost nothing from him, for example, about the debate that's going on in the senate, about health care in america. you'll remember during the campaign he said you elect me, i'll give you a better health care bill. it will be a lot less expensive than what we're going through now. when he got there he said to major health care officials, this is a lot harder than i thought it was going to be, and now we've not heard his voice at all. we should expect the very least of is that as the chief executive of the united states, the president should have a wider range of interests, a bigger vision of where he wants to get this country, and how he's going to get them there realistically, not in the campaign mode. >> and julia, just looking more through what you've done here and some of the cases that this russian attorney has worked on. in what you found is there any
possibility that the conversation could have been about adoption which is what donald trump junior initially had said? >> well, the thing is it's on neither side is it about adoption. and it's certainly not about adoption for the russians. that is a total red herring. for the hurussians it's about t sanctions and bans for russians entering the u.s. it hits at the core of the putin regime which is all about stealing resources from russia and squirrelling them outside of the country. so this, the sanctions attack this channel, essentially. they get at their reason for being. that's why she wanted the -- she and the russian state wanted the act repealed. day don't care about doopadopti.
>> mika, they used to say when he walked by a bank, the alarms went off, about a politician. if you're running a campaign and the russians call and say we've got information that will be helpful to you, we no greater enemy in the world than russia and putin at this moment, you would think the alarms would go off based on that call alone, but in fact, young donald trump said, i love it, and they encouraged the meeting to happen. that was the case we're dealing with, whether it was about adoption or another issue. you ought to have an alert system when the russians say we want to help you. >> tom brokaw, thank you very much. julia yaffi, thank you as well. coming up, donald trump junior says in retrospect, he probably would have done things differently, but not his father, the president of the united states who is only doubling down
saying most people would have met with the russians. i don't think most people would have done that, but okay. washington post ruth mark us is here with her latest piece on that straight ahead on "morning joe." we, the people, are tired of being surprised with extra monthly fees. we want hd. and every box and dvr. all included. because we don't like surprises. yeah. like changing up the celebrity at the end to someone more handsome. and talented. really. and british. switch from cable to directv. get 4 rooms with hd, dvr, and every box included for $25 a month.
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we have two passings from the movie world to report this morning. george a.romero known for directing "not of living dead" died yesterday. a pioneer in the zombie era. he created the cult classic in 1968 for a mere $100,000. the v also passing away yesterday martin landow the actor known for his role in the television series "mission impossible" as well as for his oscar winning performance. he rose to fame in a 1958
classic played roll and hand on "mission possible". he was a master of disguise. he turned down the role of mr. spok for star trek. he went onto earn an academy award nomination for "tucker can man and his dreams" then in 1994 he played the broken down legosi earning him both the oscar and golden globe for best supporting actor. and in a tie-in to the "morning joe" family, he was our executive producer's great uncle. he was 89 years old. and still ahead on "morning joe," democratic senator standing by to discuss how the policy fights in washington are impacting next year's midterm races including her own.
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let's talk about tempers flaring when comments were posted an a nation's state run media site. at the time qatar officials said they were fake and posted by hackers. that claim was rejected by foreign nations. and they cut ties, but now u.s. intelligence officers are saying the uae said orchestrate the hacking. david ignatius, obviously, the uae ambassador of the united states denied that, but my gosh, this is a tangled web, and it's not made any easier to follow when you have our secretary of state saying one thing and the president of the united states
saying another. where do we stand right now as we sort through the debris of relationship with two allies? >> joe, this may seem like sort of a family feud and a rich guy's club with these very wealthy persian gulf nations, but it is getting to a level of seriousness that i hear is really worrying u.s. officials. the latest revelation that you mentioned in the washington post runs a story this morning saying that the uae may have been responsible for the initial hack that led to comments that were used as the reason for breaking off relations between the uae, saudi arabia and qatar. on the other hand, there is a real split in the trump administration about what to do over this. rex tillerson has been trying to mediate, trying to find common ground, trying to find a way to negotiate a resolution thinking that if this goes further, it only hurts the iranians, only hurts the common enemy of the
u.s., qatar, saudi arainbiaarab trump white house is reluctant to intervene. got to stand with our friends the saudis is what i'm hearing. what began as something that probably seemed small and ib consequential to most dealers to most viewers. it's going to cause problems but certainly for rex tillerson. >> it seems that the trump white house and donald trump himself may have sided with the saudis? they've sided with uae, both countries who continue to attack qatar for being supporters of terrorism, or at least for supporting terror organizations. is there no middle ground? are there no demands that the saudis and uae can make on qatar
that they can comply with on good faith to bring the countries together. >> two of the countries made 13 specific demands of qatar to resolve this. some of them probably cannot be met. one of them was to cheelose al jazee jazeera. tillerson has been the man trying to find the middle ground. he traveled in the gulf last week. visiting each of the capitals. he came up basically with nothing, and so we're not settling into a kind of era of cold war with these countries just so angry to each other, and for this administration which has hoped that its diplomacy with saudi arabia would be one of bright spots, remember the trips and the dancing and the swords, it's become a much more
difficult situation. >> can you explain to americans also why saudi arabia, the uae might have such hard feelings against qatar. the fact that they have actually pushed out a lot of propaganda that has been anti-saudi arabia, anti-uae? they've supported the muslim brotherhood. they actually you heard saudi officials and uae officials when osama bin laden was alive complaining that qatar and al jazeera throughout the middle east seemed to glorify osama bin laden. they saw that as a real threat not only to their own governments, but also thought that it was infecting the minds of their own citizens. >> joe, the saudis say if you watch was on al jazeera
carefully, you'll hear a lot of extremist views being spread in a part of a world where there's dry tinder, and it's too easy to enflame rage. more generally, there's a fundamental disagreement in the arab world about the role of political islam, parties like the muslim brotherhood which took power in egypt which saudi arabia, the uae, say led to more oppressive regimes. they've given a platform to the muslim brotherhood. the muslim brotherhood is not leading our part of the world in a good way. the issues are deep. it's not going to go away soon and it's beginning to split the
administration. let's move onto our next guest. senate republicans delayed their vote to repeal and replace obama care has senator mccain recovers from surgery. he will spend the week recovering at his home in arizona. according to may owe clinic the senator is in good condition and the surgery went very well. on saturday mitch mcconnell announced the senate would defer consideration of the gop health care bill while mccain recovers. john cornyn said yesterday he expects a vote to take place once mccain returns. many expected the congressional budget office to release a scored budget. it's been delayed. joining us now, ranking member of the agriculture committee and member of the budget finance and
know, out of the health care system that funds seniors in nursing homes, children, families and transfer it into a big tax cut for drug companies, insurance companies, wealthy people. they're having difficulty because, as you saw at the governors conference, the fact is that when you cover more people, you actually save money. in michigan we're going to save about $450 million in taxpayer money because fewer people walk into the emergency room that can't pay. 97% of our children now can see a doctor. what we're seeing is that costs go down for uncompensated care, which means people with private insurance, like you and i, or the taxpayers pay less so medicaid saves money. in ohio people can now go to the doctor and not use the insurance -- not use the emergency room.
what they're saying is it doesn't connect. >> senator, the bill was drafted in secret on a very short time frame. it's being pushed out quickly right now. >> it's amading to me. i mean, the numbers are 12%, 15 %, and the public that thinks this is a good idea, and what they're doing is a political exercise. that's what they don't understand. health insurance is personal. if my mom has alzheimer's, we want to make sure she has the nursing home care that she needs. they're doing a political exercise on something that affects every single one of us. when three out of five michigan seniors in nursing homes get their medical care from medicaid, i mean, this is real.
this is personal. they're talking about taking away nursing home care. taking away care for children. it's shocking. when the public looks at this, they go, wait a minute, wait a minute, this is -- this is not about politics. this is about my family. >> well, this could be delayed another week or two. as senator mccain recovers just because the vote is so close that there's no way that senator mcconnell wants to lose a guaranteed yes vote. do you think it gets worse for republicans as time goes on and people actually start to understand the contents of the bill? >> well, that's a really good point. i think it does get worse. i think even over the weekend we saw blue cross/blue shield, the insurance industry come out and say that what they added to the bill, the cruz amendment doesn't work. it basically reinstitutes junk insurance plans. there would be one plan, really expensive, if you wanted to actually get coverage, and if you had preexisting conditions, everything else would be junk, and i remember in my office when
i used to get called before the affordable care act some would say i've had insurance. i've paid in for ten years or 15 years, and now when i have to use it, i found out it doesn't even cover one day in the hospital. well, that's a junk plan. they were -- they felt confident they had insurance because they were paying $45 or $50 a month, but it didn't cover anything. we changed it and said, you know, if you are going to buy insurance and put that money out of your pocket, it really ought to cover something. now they want to go back to junk plans. >> senator, joe scarborough. >> hi, joe. >> i wanted to ask you about the bill. most importantly, i wanted to ask you what would the republican bill that's being looked at right now do to rural hospitals, do to nursing homes, do to actually middle class americans because there's this belief among many of the republican base that medicaid just deals with the poor.
actually, it does act as an important safety net for the poor, but it also keeps rural hospitals open. it also keeps 80% of americans who go to nursing homes in nursing homes. >> right. >> can you explain how this impacts not just the truly disadvantaged but also middle class and working class americans? >> joe, you are so right. i grew up in a little town of northern michigan in claire. that hospital could likely close. up in the upper peninsula in michigan, i had a hospital director tell me that if this happens, they're going to have to close. their nursing home will have to close. women will have to drive hours and hours to deliver babies. usually these hospitals are the biggest employer in the community. jobs go away. doctors go away. nurses go away. it's stunning to me that my colleagues that represent large rural states wouldn't understand
that this is basically the foundation of health care for everybody in their states, and so that's why you see rural hospitals as well as urban and suburban hospitals -- doctors, nurses, health advocates, parents. i don't know any group that thinks this is a good idea. >> senator debbie stabenow, thank you for being on the show this morning. >> thank you. still ahead, new polling puts president trump's approval marks at an all-time low. for this point of any administration. we're going to break down the numbers and what it means for an already stalled agenda. more "morning joe" just around the corner.
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♪ ♪ good morning. it's monday, july 17th. welcome to "morning joe." with us we have contributor to "time magazine," msnbc political analyst, and former aide to the george w. bush white house and statealice jordan. nicolas. columnist and associate editor for the washington post, david ignacious. political reporter for the washington post and msnbc political analyst robert costa, and "new york times" reporter jeremy peters. joe, another quiet weekend for the trump presidency. absolutely nothing to see here. >> nothing to see here. it's all a fake hoax. all funny. actually, the news that tumbled out starting on friday and
continued through the weekend is pretty remarkable. you also -- you look at the denials. they continue to come through the trump white house. the president himself calling this a phony story. yet, you are starting to hear a lot more conservative commentators saying there is something to this. that it's not a phony story. it's not a fake scandal. this is very real. if you look at some of the polls that came out this weekend, i think more and more americans are starting to believe that themselves. >> we'll start there with trump's approval ratings, and it's plummeted to the lowest ever recorded in a president in his first six months of office. a bloomberg national poll out this morning has president trump's job approval rating at 40%.
58% disapprove. now, with 48% saying they disapprove strongly, a level never reached by former presidents bill clinton and barack obama, and reached only in the second term of george w. bush in this poll. the partisan breakdown of the washington post poll shows 82% of republicans approve. that's down just slightly from april. while the president dropped six points to 32% among independents and is at just 11% with democrats. a new nbc news-wall street journal poll of counties that were pivotal in trump's 2016 victory and of the ones that he flipped from obama in 2012, his approval rests at 44%. on health care that washington post-abc poll shows half of all americans prefer the current health care law. about one-quarter want the republican option being pushed right now. 17% would prefer something else
altogether. >> there's so much to unpack. that's what republicans waking up this morning in the senate have to be most concerned about. first, let's talk about everything that has happened this weekend. the president awakens to 36% approval rating. he is forced to say, well, abc is a fake poll, and actually around 40% is pretty good. actually, it's historically low. what's the state of the white house this weekend after being pounded by another flurry of allegations about that don jr. meeting? having a lot of conservative commentators coming out saying, wait a second, there's something there. >> inside the white house, joe, my sources tell me that they never thought they had a honeymoon in terms of the national poll, in terms of most americans. they knew they were going to run a base-centric presidency, but they did believe they had a honeymoon with that republican
trump base. they're starting to see some of that erode. in part, it's because of this russia cloud that continues over the administration. in part, it's because of the promises that remain unchecked, like repeeling and replacing the affordable care act. and the don jr. story hovers. they don't see it as something that's alarming the base. but it's a distraction to every other agenda item. they're trying to push what they think could rouz their own base like trade, like immigration. >> let's talk about the issue right now that obviously senate republicans are the most concerned about. that has to do with health care. these numbers from the washington post-abc news poll unbelievable. 50% of americans when it comes to health care prefer obama care. nothing -- absence really does make the heart grow fonder. that's the highest approval rating obama care has ever had. 24%. only 24% support the republican plan. there is no way that senators,
republican senators, in ohio, pennsylvania, wisconsin, and maine aren't looking at those numbers and asking themselves do i really want to jump off that cliff? how much trouble is the republican health care refortunately plan in? >> it's in deep trouble right now. if you think back to the primary race in 2016, joe, governor huckabee, then candidate donald trump, they both ran as different kinds of republicans in this way. they did not want to tackle medicare and social security and medicaid in the way most republicans like house speaker paul ryan have traditionally gone after those kind of federal programs. now trump is in the position with an idealogical republican congress trying to go after something that in the view of many americans if you look at these polls, is settled law. that's an uncomfortable position for this white house to be in. they know they made this promise to the base. they also note politically the base and most americans don't want to get rid of benefits, including medicaid funding, that's already been put in place. that's just not smart politics.
they know it. they still want to get this promise through. >> nick, you look at the numbers from all of these polls, and, yes, eight out of ten republicans still sticking with the president, but independents have completely fallen off a cliff. you look at the people that have swung from barack obama to donald trump. they're starting to bleed off that support. it can all be summed up, i think, in this don jr. story. you can't call it fake news because all the emails, all the lies came from don jr. and the white house. all the leaks are coming from inside the white house. you even have conservative commentators saying that and writing about that. and you have a white house that as you so eloquently put in your 140 characters or less, i think, on friday, they change the story every day. you know, maybe the most hard core trump supporters may believe they can shut out fake news, but these are the
president's own men and women who are leaking, and it's don jr.'s own words, and it looks like a lot of americans just aren't buying their old story anymore. >> well, joe, i think, you know, seeing it in black and white, seeing it in donald jr.'s emails is a huge difference. seeing him write that, to see potential evidence of collusion in front of you in his words, it's hard to brush that away. you can spin it, but you can even see now the white house moving to a new line, which is to say it wasn't illegal. laws were not broken. there are no laws against this kind of thing. i'm not a lawyer. i'm just going to point out that if you are moving towards what's legal as opposed to what's right and proper, you're backing yourself into a bit of a corner. i think we're kind of seeing what's lost here for trump is the trump curious voters. the core trump voters are always going to be the core trump voter. he is delivering what they asked for, which is to break up washington and go to war in
washington. the trump curious voter was kind of curious to see if his style would make a difference. if it would change how washington worked for the best, if it would be a new style, a new way of doing things for the better. i think what we're seeing here is some loss of faith and perhaps a kind of a throwing in of the towel saying it's the usual thing in washington. trump is no different from the other guys. >> obviously, you have all the lies that are being told. you look at the policies. >> i talked to one hospital consultant this past weekend. it was a big trump supporter who actually said across america and middle america that went for trump. these massive cuts to medicaid
will actually hit the top employers in their communities and that's to rural hospitals. >> that's when they're really feel it. i'm wondering for the core trump supporter, if they're watching trump or don jr., for example, the other day on sean hannity's show, which is arguably a host who is in the tank for president trump. i would say he probably is completely, but that's just my opinion. when they see him saying point-blank that's all there is, it was just me, jared, paul manafort, which you would think is bad enough, with this russian lawyer, and then you find out there's another person, and then you find out there are six people, and then you might find out there's eight people. i mean, how are you not at that point waivering on whether or not this presidency is telling america the truth? >> well, i think the problem
with having donald trump jr. as your front man is that, you know, he doesn't exactly bring confidence of, you know, his basic competency given how this whole e-mail scenario and what he actually did, you know, these unsavory meetings with russian affiliated individuals. i think that that isn't exactly confidence-building. you look at the policies that donald trump is trying to enact. you look at the members of the cabinet that he has brought in and how dominated it is by krony capitalism, essentially, and donald trump is brought in to destroy special interests. he was brought in to disrupt the system, and you just see more of the same old-same old. i wonder how long it's going to take without any traction on any actual policy for some of donald trump -- for donald trump's numbers among his hard core supporters to drop, but i do think that it's almost psychological at this point. if you supported trump, you do want to dig in to your support
just because for so long everyone in the media was telling you that it was a terrible decision, and there was -- this was a lot of the polling that we did. is he insisting nothing happened inside that trump tower. as the explanation first provided by the president's son continues to collapse. first, here's bill kar ips with a check on the forecast. bill. >> good morning to you. tragic news out of arizona over the weekend. flash flooding took the lives of nine people. wait until you see what it looked like. this was outside of arizona near paceon. this is outside the tonto national forest. this was near a burn area. look at the water. it was muddy and murky. there was a swimming hole there. there was a family. about half of the people that
perished were under the age of 5. they're still certaining for one more person, and, again, nine fatalities in that flash flood. the threat still continues. they had more bad weather last night. those thunderstorms have sense died off. that's good. six million people at risk. it only takes about a half inch to an inch of rain in arizona to get these flash floods. the water really rushes down. especially any rocky areas. other stories today, severe storms. isolated in areas of upstate new york. also pennsylvania. we'll watch this front coming through. shouldn't affect too many of the big airports from d.c. to philly and new york. there thereby hit and miss showers through the peak heating of the day. it's scattered. begins in syracuse, utica, most everywhere. the other story throughout this week, it's going to get hot, very hot, from texas to st. louis. enjoy the 91, st. louis. you're going to be near 100 from about wednesdays all the way through friday. we'll have more on that in the days ahead. new york city, a pretty nice
weekend. looking at just a beautiful summer morning. we'll be right back. what's the story behind green mountain coffee and fair trade? let's take a flight to colombia. this is boris calvo. boris grows mind-blowing coffee. and because we pay him a fair price, he improves his farm and invest in his community to make even better coffee. all for a smoother tasting cup. green mountain coffee.
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xfinity gives you more to stream to more screens. we originally thought there were four people in that june 2016 meeting at trump tower. that numbers grew to six by the time "morning joe" signed off on friday. then it continued to seven. we now know that along with donald trump jr., paul manafort and jared kushner, there was russian lawyer natalia, british publicist rob goldstone, who told the a.p. he was present, a translator. there was also a russian-born american citizen who served in the soviet military and has lobbied on issues important to the kremlin. and other news outlets are reporting that a possible eighth
person attended as well. the "new york times" wrote this weekend about him as a skilled practitioner in the muscular russian version of what is american politics known as opposition research. he also told the associated press that natalia brought with her a plastic folder with printed out documents that detailed what she believed was the flow of illicit russian funds to the democrats. according to him, natalia presented the contents of the documents to the trump associates and suggested that making the information public could help the campaign. also this weekend natalia told the "wall street journal" that she had spoken with the office of russia's top prosecutor and was in regular contact with russian authorities about her u.s. lobbying efforts. jay, a member of trump's legal team insists, absolutely nothing
happened. >> do you know for sure everyone who was at that meeting with donald trump jr.? >> no, i don't represent donald trump jr. and i do not know everyone for sure that was at that meeting, and the president was not at the meeting. i can tell you who was not there. the president was not aware of the meeting and did not attend it. >> doesn't it show intent and willingness on the part of don jr. and jared and paul manafort to collude with the russians and let me just point out, natalia was not just some russian off the street. she had close ties to people in the kremlin. >> well, number one, if there was -- the discussion was going to be about -- if it was going to be about russian opposition research that a russian lawyer had, the fact is those -- you know that goes on in campaigns all the team. opposition research is a big part of campaigning. i just gave you an example. >> it doesn't happen with russians all the time, jay. >> look, here's what happened. first of all, nothing happened. >> isn't it also important whether or not it's legal? whether or not it's wrong? whether or not it's ethical?
>> you are conflating, jake, three perspectives here. the legality, was the meeting and what took place legal or not? of course, as almost every legal expert says, it's not illegal. then you are tying to put a moral, ethical aspect to it, and it's easy to do that in 20/20 hindsight, but not when you are in the middle of a campaign. >> that's just not true. i mean, it's hard -- it's hard to really -- i've known jay for a long time, and i've liked jay for a long time, but there are so many false statements there. jay was forced to go out and say last weekend on the sunday shows. if you look at the statement that the president of the united states signed off on with all the president's men around him on air force one, coming back from europe, lying, lying to the "new york times", lying to the american people saying this meeting was just about adoption
and then the next day lying about the people that were in it. then going on a tv show that basically a state-run television and being asked at the end of that tv show is there anything else that we don't know about? don jr. saying that's it. and then the next day we find out another person attended the meeting, and then the next day we find out that somebody connected with the kgb that basically was an intel officer, was at the meeting, and then the next day finding out that there are two other people at the meeting. these people keep getting caught in their lies. day after day after day. jay and the president of the united states keeps saying nothing to see here. move along, move along. it's like actually a character out of the simpsons. there is something to see here, and even their own base know that. >> that's right. i think, joe, as you said over the weekend, that's why you start to hear more and more
republicans saying this doesn't pass the sniff test. yes, opposition research is a fundamental part of any campaign. not from a russian operative. not from a hostile foreign power. the lack of acknowledgment around trump or the people around trump that maybe this was not the best decision, that maybe this didn't show the best judgment, this total lack of any ability to have introspection and contradition on this is consistent with a pattern that we've seen from donald trump and is had people for a long time. it's always someone else's fault. it's the fault of the fake news media for not explaining this properly, for conflating a bunch of things, as jay tried to say yesterday. it's loretta lynch's fault. it's the dnc's fault. if donald trump is on the outs, if donald trump is down and something bad is happening to him, it's always because someone else is cheating or lying. they have never ever been able to accept responsibility and say, you know what, maybe we shouldn't have handled things this way. >> coming up on "morning joe" a
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snalt republicans have delayed their vote on a bill to repeal and replace obama care as senator john mccain recovers from surgery. mccain underwent a procedure to remove a blood clot from above his left eye on friday and will spend the week recovering at his home in arizona. according to the mamayo clinic, senator is in good condition and the surgery went very well. on saturday majority leader mitch mcconnell announced the senate would defer consideration of the gop health care bill while mccain recovers. majority whip john cornyn yesterday said he expects a vote to take place once mccain returns. >> we all wish john mccain a speedy recovery, and we need him in more ways than one, but, yes, i believe as soon as we have -- we have a full contingent of senators that will have that vote, it's important we do so. >> there are about eight to ten
republican senators who have serious concerns about this bill, and so at the end of the day i don't know whether it will pass, but i do know this. we should not be making fundamental changes in a vital safety net program that's been on the books for 50 years, the medicaid program, without having a single hearing to evaluate what the consequences are going to be. >> i think the longer the bill is out there, the more conservative republicans are going to discover that it's not repeal, and the more that everybody is going to discover that it keeps the fundamental flaw of obama care. for all republicans' complaints about the death spiral of obama care, they don't fix it, they simply subsidyize it with taxpayer moanney money, which i just don't agree with at all. >> meanwhile, many had expected the congressional budget office to release a score on the revised bill today, but that too has been delayed. it's unclear right now when that
score will be released. joe. >> bob costa, what are the hurdles that mitch mcconnell has to get over to get the 50 votes he needs? >> many hurdles ahead, joe. >> you have to start off with the math. 52 republicans in the senate, senator kol rins represents the moderate wing. she really is not probably going to support this bill because of the medicaid provisions, and senator paul represents the conservative right. he thinks the bill doesn't go far enough to gut the affordable care act. that leaves you at 50. plus vice president pence. you could get it passed with 51 votes. i think the most important thing to remember over the last few days is not what happened in washington, but what happened when all the nation's governors met at their retreat. you saw governors, republicans, like governor kasich of ohio, governor sandoval of nevada, they say they don't want this bill or they're at least very concerned about it because of what it does to the medicaid expansion.
that puts real pressure on people like senator heller, and if you are already losing kol linz, and you are already losing paul, that doesn't give you the option if you are leader mcconnell to lose a heller or a portman. that puts them in a difficult position just in terms of the math. >> nick, that's what i don't understand. how do you get dean heller's vote in nevada when you have brian sandoval, which he has approval ratings up in the 70s. he is telling his constituents, he is telling the press, he is telling americans that if you pass these medicaid cuts, you will absolutely ravage health care in the state of nevada. i don't see how dean heller actually fights that and john kasich in ohio saying the same thing. well, rob portman, he is in a purple state at best. usually a blue state. how do people like rob portman, how do empooh like dean heller go ahead and vote for the
affordable care act or vote for the gop substitution of the affordable care act when it will ravage health care in rural communities across america that actually supported them in their runs for the senate and also supported donald trump in his run for the white house? >> here's how, joe. first of all, i think the argument that the senate republicans are making internally is that a failure to pass the repeal is more dangerous than the contents of this bill. i'm not sure that's right or wrong. i think what they're saying to their members is if we can whiff on this, if we fail to deliver this thing we've campaigned on for almost a decade now, it seems like, it is worse for our majority, it is more perilous than whatever the contents of this bill are. second, they have designed this bill so that the consequences are backloaded, so that the bad news in this bill comes later on, presumably after some group of them have already been re-elected, and i think they're frankly banking on the idea that
the consequences will be diffuse, and by the team that the consequences arrive, it will be harder to pin the blame on them. the problem they're having here, joe, is this bill is not popular. another ever campaigned on the central parch the bill, which was to cut a government program. the president campaigned against that and he won. there is a basic problem and disjuncture between the aims and stated goals and what they campaigned on. >> coming up on "morning joe" two top reporters covering the white house. "new york times" correspondent glen thrush and ruth marcus are with us. we'll be back with more "morning joe." it's not a quick fix.
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>> so i read those reports as billion, and the president was not -- did not draft the response. the response was -- came from donald trump jr., and i'm sure in consultation with his lawyer. >> you were very careful to say the president didn't draft this statement. that isn't what i asked. did the president gets a heads-up on this statement? did he sign off on the statement? was he asked to read the statement before it was given to the "new york times" on air force one? >> i can't say whether the president was told the statement was going to be coming from his son on that. i didn't have that conversation. let me say this. the president -- i do want to be clear, the president was not involved in the drafting of the statement and did not issue the statement. >> president trump's attorney with an indirect answer to the president's role in his son's statement on the russia meeting. joining us from washington, we have "new york times" white house correspondent glen thrush and columnist and deputy editorial page editor at the washington post ruth marcus, whose latest piece on the president's legal team is
posting today. david ignacius and alice jordan with us as well. we'll start with you. the legal team is expanding with who and why? >> well, they are -- they have hired as a special counsel ty cobb. not the baseball player. i guess wagner was not available. essentially because i think the determination from the conversations that i had last week and the white house was that mark kaz owi tz just simply isn't capable of handing all of the material that he needs to handle, and there's been some dissatisfaction with his performance. the sense is that kaz owi z has been splitting his team ip time between new york and washington. that's not good enough. the white house counsel don mcgann has been asking for help for some time, and finally it was granted to him. >> and, of course, you also have kasowitz, responding to e-mail
late at night. you talk about jay and the legal team in your column today, in the washington post. tell us about it. >> well, i was just mesmerized by watching jay perform what we've come to know as the full ginsberg. you think why is this man shouting? he is shouting, i think, because that's what donald trump likes. he wants somebody who isn't going to really answer the question, is going to deflect about ukraine, is going to make these crazy aerssertions if the was something wrong with the meeting, where why the secret service let the russians in anyway? this is just deflection. what i think is really important to pay attention to with what jay said on sunday is not why is he shouting, but what's he shouting? you hear the hoof beats of this attack on mueller that because the argument goes because james
comey leaked this information in order to get a special counsel, that's somehow kind of tainting the mueller investigation, taints mueller as special counsel, and so jay suggests at one point, so i don't know how anything can proceed from there. well, you know, just because somebody leaks information that a prosecutor then uses as a basis for doing the prosecution doesn't mean the prosecution can't go forward. this is a crazy argument, but it's an argument that you could completely imagine the president and his legal team using as an excuse either to fire mueller or to grant pardons to everybody involved. that really alarms me. >> david, of course, there have been a lot of people around donald trump saying there's no way that he can fire mueller. you look at -- you listen to what jay it is. obviously he has to change his story every week. yesterday he couldn't answer the
question. he refused to refute the reporting that all the president's men on air force one drafted the statement the week before that was a lie about the meeting on adoptions and that the president signed off on it. he could not -- he would not say that the president did not sign off on that false statement. >> that was a very carefully worded statement by jay. i want to come back to ruth on this question of robert mueller. ruth, do you have a sense that the white house is still thinking of firing mueller, and what's your sense of what the reaction would be both on the hill to that and within the administration? >> well, i think that the white house is increasingly concerned about where this is heading and i had thought -- we had seen the sort of get rid of mueller or
pardon issue kind of quiet down in the previous couple of weeks, but the reason i decided to spend my time writing is because he raised it yesterday. i pay a lot of attention to these arguments as the kind of leading indicator of where things were going. i would have thought that especially after -- and i wrote this the other day -- that these disclosures in the e-mails are so alarming that it would make mueller more bulletproof and from being fired that republicans on the hill would just erupt, but i have to say that the silence that joe has not noted. >> the president has not enjoyed
it when his attorney has counselled him to cut out the tweet. do you think that kas owi tz is on the rocks or that he would be stepping down or fired in the near future as this legal team continues to evolve? >>. >> i any he is joining sean spicer and reince priebus in that netherland of aides that are still very much involved in decision making, but are also not particularly in favor. now, kas owi tz is in a much different category. he has been privy to all of these discussions with trump, but i think what's really interesting about jay and kas owi tz and everybody else, they're doing less legal stuff than they are pr. we talked about what jay was saying. obviously, he didn't deny that trump had seen the statement, and, you know, the notion that donald trump is going to not -- is going to see a statement and not be involved in the drafting when this is a guy who is
incredibly hands on as his own press secretary fundamentally, so what strikes me as being really interesting is trump is still viewing this largely as a public relations problem as opposed to a legal problem. i think as the mueller investigation moves up the road, ruth was asked, david asked ruth, is this fire mueller movement still afoot? you know, trump moves from day to day on this stuff. as mueller gets closer to the investigation, as he calls more people in, as trump becomes aware of mueller's activities, i think it's going to be very hard for this president who likes to fire people, you know, not necessarily on his staff, but fire people on the outside he views as hostile to him to keep his finger off the trigger. >> i'm looking at this report here op ed piece in the washington post, i guess, by two white house officials who talk about the cbo score. that it's going to be little
more than fake news. using the president's language. i know there's an investigation on one hand looking for breaking of the law, corruption. what about this sort of growing use of language that really chips away at the foundations of our reality and certainly of democracy. not to sound extreme or to exaggerate, but these are comments that do that. do they not? >> i agree with you. i think this assault on the cbo is ridiculous. i think anyone who covers this stuff knows that the cbo scores are sometimes flawed. they're sometimes off by a lot. it's totally appropriate to criticize them. to attack sort of the foundation of what they do, they're nonpartisan. they go about this in a rationale way, they attempt to give conference as much information as possible. i really do think that -- i
completely agree. i think this is an alarming trend. the other thing that's interesting about this is how many more tweets have we read from the president about golf tournaments and medicaid. he does not seem for all of his yelling and screaming about this topic, he seems way less interested in what's going on in terms of specifics of his health care debate than any of these other issues. >> that's certainly something that republicans on the hill and the senate need to pay attention to. the president just wanted the house to pass whatever they could pass, david. they passed it, and now he is calling that a mean bill. he is disengaged once again in the senate process. now his staff members are attacking the congressional budget office. you and i have been in washington long enough to know that's the last refuge of the desperate, but to attack them this way and to attack a cbo run
by a director that they personally put in place is doubly offensive. >> joe, i think the more time passes, the clearer it is that the republican slogan repeal and replace is a place holder because they don't have a clear idea about what kind of health care reform they want. now they're hearing from governors, from health care professionals in every major state saying please, please do not go off this cliff with this ill-considered bill. as we've noted, the president just has not put his own attention into this, and he has not been able to mobilize resources within his own administration. you know, we're heading towards a decisive vote over the next couple of weeks, but this bill -- any expert i talk to says this is not a well
considered bill. >> hmm. all right, david. glen thrush and ruth marcus, thank you both. now to business before the bell, and cnbc's dominik chu. what are you looking at this morning? >> good morning. we're watching consumer products giant proctor & gamble. now he wants a seat on the board of directors after being turned down for a board seat earlier this year. now, peltz is known as an activist investor. the stock to levels higher than where it is right now. proctor & gamble has taken steps to try to unlock some of that value. they've sold a number of their beauty brands that aren't central to their business, but p & g still has big brands like tide detergent, pampers deepers and gillette razors. we're watching that. on the bigger picture front, have you china reporting second quarter gross domestic product
that beat expectations. growth did come in at 6.9% over the same time last year. many investors care about this because it's all in the context of that once in every five years of the communist party that happens ron this fall. a lot of comments happening about jf morgan and its ceo jamie diment after comments he made back on friday with regard to what it's like being an american abroad. let's take a look at what he said with analysts on a call. >> this administration made break tloois in regular dahtory reform and taxes, and we have become one of the most bureaucratic, litigous societies on the plan et. it's almost embarrassing listening to the stupid [ bleep ] we have to deal with in this country. at one point we all have to get our act together or we won't do what we're supposed to do for the average americans. >> jamie diment is getting a lot of flack about this for perhaps being unpatriotic about his comments, but he was talking about the context of the overall
infrastructure plans, the overall tax scheme, and the divide in washington right now. the gridlock overall. he also did, guys, direct some of his attention towards reporters in the media saying we are focussing on focusing on some of the wrong things in our coverage overall, guys. back over to you. >> all right. cnbc's dominic chu, thank you so much. >> sure. >> and we can say this about jamie dimon, barack obama put him on a couple of committees, and they didn't like jamie dimon in the obama white house any more than they probably like jamie dimon in the trump white house either because jamie speaks his mind. coming up next, nepotism often ends badly, that's the conclusion that law professor jonathan turley arrived at after the controversy surrounding jared and don junior. the good professor joins us next.
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entitled the decline and fall of jared and don junior, nepotism often ends badly. in it jonathan writes in part this, the perils of nepotism have been captured in president trump's responses to his son and son-in-law, eagerly attending a meeting that they believed was a russian government lawyer bringing dirt on hillary clinton directly from the russian government. with his comments to date, trump has assumed the costs directly for their actions, and that is the real cost of nepotism. it reduces the range of motion in dealing with scandals. there is no option for political triage when family is on the line. and, jonathan turley, how far do you think this goes? this meeting has changed, its e
metasiticized. >> it is amazing to watch the damage deepen, often that is as we've seen in the past because the white house has never gotten ahead of this. they always seem to be three steps behind in dealing with this type of scandal, but that actually goes to the nepotism issue. the real cost of nepotism is that you really can't maneuver. you have to double down. if you look at what happened with flynn and manafort, they were shown the door the minute they became liabilities. but you can't do that if it's your son-in-law or your son. and so you have to double down. and the result is as you say this scandal deepens. you can't get any space between you and these people who are becoming more and more controversial. i mean, the fact is that taking this meeting was really very dumb. i mean, very few people in washington would have taken a meeting like this. they would have used surrogates or i would hope they would actually call the fbi. and so if this was an average
staff member, it's very likely they would put light between them and the president. they'd separate them from the administration. but you can't do that because of nepotism. the funny thing is that if trump had really looked in history, he would have seen about ten presidents have engaged in nepotism. he's not the first one, but it almost always turned out badly. and the last one was bill clinton when he put hillary clinton as the head of the health care reform effort. federal court basically said, look, that was an act of nepotism, but it was also politically dumb because she at that point was still very polarizing. and the republicans saw the opportunity that if she failed it was the president's failure. and so he basically gave away any real chance at reform. >> jonathan, a lot of conservative commentators sorting on friday after it became obvious that the trump white house had been lying including the statement that the president reportedly signed off on, they've been lying time and time again about this meeting
and about details of this meeting, most even conservative republicans lawmakers have decided this was wrong, they should have never taken the meeting, it was horrific judgment. let's go to the legal side of things. who put themselves in legal jeopardy by going to this meeting? did anybody outside of possibly jared kushner? >> well, in terms of actual crimes you do have a question of a foreign agent registration act violation that runs through this, or fara, that tends not to be a particular serious crime in terms of past prosecutions. it's often handled administratively. but for people like manafort and others, they have some serious questions under that law. the biggest issues are going to come with any false statements. you know, this is a white house that is going to have to maintain a single coherent narrative. and that has alluded them thus far. but it becomes much, much more dangerous at this point in the aftermath of a scandal can
become the pri leelude of a prosecution if you have people saying different things. >> right. >> so now you get into very precarious territory. >> david ignatius, final thoughts? >> well, just a brief snapshot. i spent last week at a conference with some of the smartest scientists, technologists, business people in the country hearing about what the future looks like from their eyes in terms of what they're doing, thinking, inventing, and then you come back and the discussion we've had this morning illustrates what you wrote in your op-ed piece this morning, joe. we have a broken political system. and the contrast between the dynamism of our country outside of our politics and our political feebleness really worries me. and that's my takeaway this morning. >> all right. jonathan turley, thank you very much and that does it for all of us this morning. joe, once again, looking absolutely beautiful, really.
>> thank you so much. very much. for my age especially. yeah. >> yeah, you look beautiful. really. it's amazing. chris jansing picks up the coverage right now. >> owe is a beautiful man, what can i tell you? thank you, mika. hello, i'm chris jansing in for stephanie rule this morning. the timeline, new details about that donald trump jr. meeting. the trump campaign hiring a lawyer for him weeks before the story broke. and the president's legal team now on offense. >> the meeting and what took place is not a violation of any law, statute or code. >> as the president hits a record low, new polling just out and the president is reacting. health care on hold, emergency surgery for senator john mccain means that vote is delayed. resistance in the meantime may be growing. >> there are about eight to ten republican senators who have serious concerns about this bill. >> we begin today with the president losing ground in those new