tv MSNBC Live With Hallie Jackson MSNBC July 26, 2017 7:00am-8:00am PDT
as the gop looks to avoid a final fail on whatever bill they end up with tomorrow. the president today turning up the heat on one defecting republican and keeping up the heat on his own a.g. even with new signs that won't fly with his party or his base. it comes as the president now makes that new move that could be aimed at his base. just last hour, reversing the military's policy on transgender soldiers, banning them all together. we are headed live to the pentagon where we are also watching what you are seeing on your screen. north korea with military officials telling nbc news the country may be getting ready to launch a new missile test any minute. think we got enough going on? our team is here ready for all of it. i want to get right now to hans nichols and that new policy announced via twitter. just last month, the pentagon was saying no review of this transgender soldier policy which seemed like a signal of no changes. what happened? >> reporter: well, the president decided to change his mind is what happened. the pentagon is scrambling to figure this out. the secretary of defense is on vacation but all the other staff
here was proceeding apace this transgender policy would go into effect, they would figure out some way to make it work. as you mentioned, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff just last month said there are transgender personnel, americans, serving honorably, already in the services. now, the estimates from the pentagon based on a study is about 7,000 current in the armed services on the upper end of the estimates, 7,000 transgendered individuals. last year, they were told they can serve openly and the pentagon would figure out some sort of way to accommodate them to be more closely identified with the gender with which they identify. there's another separate part of that, and that's the ones that are serving. the other side of the equation is new recruits. the pentagon has struggled on how to implement that, and that's something secretary mattis last month announced a delay on. here's the north star, though, for mattis.
here's what he said on new recruits. this is a quote from a memo sent internally. since becoming secretary of defense, i have emphasized that the department of defense must measure each policy decision against one critical standard. will the decision affect the readiness and lethality of the force. so the big question the pentagon will try to figure out, what to do with the estimated 7,000 americans who have identified as transgender, come forward because there's a change in policy, and now the president, who is the commander in chief, has reversed that. the other question is what do you do with new recruits but that seems like a much less difficult problem to sort through right now. >> to that first question, timeline? is there any sense at all of when the pentagon might get a handle on how to handle as you are putting it, 7,000 roughly transgender soldiers currently serving? >> reporter: no. i don't have a timeline on that. they are still figuring out the policy here. i don't know whether or not secretary mattis who has been on vacation, received a heads-up
from the president that he was going to tweet this. it seems at least the officials we talked to here every day at the pentagon were completely blindsided about this. they are beginning to figure out what the president's intent is, what the plan going forward is, and critically, how they are going to implement that and not affect readiness. if the 7,000 estimate is correct, that likely means you have transgendered americans serving in difficult parts of the world where the country is at war and as mattis is saying, readiness and lethality are his north stars. >> hans, stand by to talk about another major headline in just a couple minutes. i want to get to nbc's peter alexander on the north lawn of the white house. you are listening to hans talking about the scramble over at the pentagon. this clearly was a move the president decided to make this morning after talking as you know all campaign about being a friend to the lgbtq community. his daughter talked about that as well. the pentagon says or at least the guidance from hans says they want to make sure this is military readiness, that that's what it's focused on.
the president is making this move rather suddenly. walk us through it. >> reporter: as i understand it, it's a topic that's been raised with the president in recent days in private. the president tweeting about this specifically early this morning. while so much of the focus and frankly the need for presidential capital right now should be directed to the health care effort by republicans, this is where his focus was within the last hour. let's show you the tweets. three of them, where he said the following. after consultation with my generals and military experts, please be advised that the united states government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the u.s. military. our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. he punctuates his thoughts by simply saying thank you. now, this raises the topic of the promises the press had made to voters and specifically to the lgbt community. this tweet is from june of 2016,
when he said the following. he said thank you to the lgbt community. i will fight for you while hillary brings in more people that will threaten your freedoms and beliefs. it's a point he made again during the republican convention last summer. his own daughter, this has been an issue that she has said she will stand in support of as well. the rights of the lgbtq community. she tweeted not long ago, i think this was actually just a month ago in june, i'm proud to support my lgbtq friends and lgbtq americans who have made immense contributions to our society and economy. clearly on this topic, if she did weigh in, it didn't have any influence on her father. >> peter alexander, i'm also going to ask you to hang out for a couple minutes to hit yet another big headline coming up here on this program. i want to get first over to kasie hunt, hanging out on capitol hill, with what any other day would normally be probably our lead story. this health care battle that's going on. the only thing predictable is the unpredictability. mitch mcconnell is working
through these steps before getting down to brass tacks ahead of tomorrow's vote. walk us through this. >> reporter: mitch mcconnell on the floor already this morning saying that they took the first steps in this process. we have already seen basically the first of these major policy proposals to repeal obamacare go down pretty quietly, almost with a whimper on the senate floor last night. that was repeal and replace that. would have needed 60 votes due to some technicalities of the senate rules. it didn't get 60. it didn't even get 50. they lost nine republicans. so all of that negotiating and back-and-forth put by the wayside. that brings us to today, where we are now expecting around the noon hour to see a vote on repeal only, or repeal and delay, depending on how you want to frame it. this has been rand paul's demand on the conservative side. that's going to be that 2015 bill that is just a straight repeal of obamacare and says republicans have to replace it within two years. we expect that to fail.
that of course is why they were going through this whole repeal and replace debate in the first place. so where is that going to leave them? it's going to loeave them potentially with skinny repeal, essentially trying to figure out a few narrower components they can stack together and that will ultimately be able to get those 50 votes. it's still not clear that they can get that deal. let me walk you through a little of what we will see over the next two days. i mentioned we will see that straight repeal vote. we may see some other amendment votes today. there's going to be continuing debate, watch for democrats to stay up pretty late into the night and try to push back as best they can. there's not a lot they can do. but they are certainly going to make a lot of noise. then tomorrow, thursday, we are anticipating it's called vote-a-rama in senate speak. it essentially means because this is technically a budget bill, that's what lets it pass with 50 votes instead of 60, there's a very open amendment process and democrats can force
as many votes as they want, and they can do it late into the night. you will notice democrats keep saying on the air this morning, republicans are going to pass this bill in the middle of the night. to a certain extent, that may end up being the case, but democrats can force that to be the case by essentially keeping this process open until they say they are willing to stop it and we anticipate that that will happen potentially thursday night or into friday. republican leaders are telling their rank and file senators they do want to try to wrap this up by friday. i got to tell you, everybody here is pretty sick of debating health care. no pun intended. i think people are pretty worn out and trying to figure out just how to find a way forward here. >> right. i'm sure people across the country are a little frustrated hearing that, since their health care is hanging in the balance is what is happening on the hill. kasie, no sleep until saturday, obviously. we are thinking of you running around the hill. i want to bring in senior white house correspondent for bloomberg news, margaret tallov and msnbc contributor yamish
alcindore. i want to get your thoughts on this. margaret, skinny repeal is this bizarre sort of language that's now introduced into the lexicon here. bottom line is, what is the plan going to look like that mitch mcconnell can actually get 50 republicans to support? >> the plan right now is anything that gets them to conference. president trump -- well, but skinny -- >> it lacks a lot of specifics. though it may be true. >> there was no -- there's no mystery about this anymore. yesterday, all of the language, all of the predicate to reopen the debate was all toward that end. you have a situation now where president trump is both trying to exert pressure on individual lawmakers and on republicans in general to just move forward and get something done, but also, it continues to distance himself from the republicans. you see in his public language about this, talking about them instead of us, when he talks about republicans. it's a difficult balancing act. for the president, i think he feels he will be able to say no matter what that he did everything he could to prod this
from going forward. but for the republicans, it is an issue heading into the midterms. >> prodding people including lisa murkowski, one of the no votes on that motion to start debate. he's out this morning with a tweet going after her essentially, saying she really let the republicans and our country down yesterday. too bad,. put aside the fact she might be a crucial vote somewhere down the road. she won a write-in campaign in alaska which is not exactly an easy feat. is this the right strategy? >> i think probably not, because exerting power and attacking individual senators for really voting for their constituents' needs is probably not going to get them to somehow have loyalty to this white house. a lot of these senators understand that when they put their necks out there, the president isn't going to back them up if this bill turns into something that everyone hates and their constituents are mad about. but going back to the idea what kind of bill will they get through, the president wants to
sign something. he's not someone, surprise, surprise, super into policy. he's not someone super into i need to have this in the bill, this individual mandate needs to stay, i need to have essential care covered. he's not that in the weeds about this. mitch mcconnell can piecemeal his party to pack something to get to conference, president trump will be happy with that. >> talking about tweets from president trump regarding health care. in the last couple minutes he's also tweeted about his attorney general, jeff sessions, writing, asking why the attorney general did not replace the acting fbi director, andrew mccabe. it's all happening at we are being told the attorney general is at the white house right now for what's being described as a routine principals meeting. let's just say it's all going down. peter alexander is still hanging out on the north lawn. peter, this is yet another day where the president has come out and gone after the guy who leads his own department of justice. do we expect to see any kind of resolution here? >> reporter: bottom line first of all, we don't know if these two men will see each other, this principals meeting, routine
meeting as it's described by a white house official, is not on the president's public schedule. doesn't mean he wouldn't be there or couldn't just show up. this could be an interesting interaction behind the scenes if the two men do see each other face-to-face given this very public feud, this unusual feud that's been playing out largely as some of our colleagues have described it, cyberbullying on behalf of the president against one of his own cabinet members here. but the bottom line is it appears that at least for the moment, this is a pretty decent game of chicken right now. the president said only time will tell about the future of jeff sessions. jeff sessions' aides and those close to him, his allies, standing behind him saying he's not going anywhere, that he has his dream job, that he's proud of what he's done so far on behalf of the president, on behalf of this administration. just yesterday speaking out even as he was being attacked in recent days as beleaguered and weak by president trump, coming out with tough actions in terms of sanctuary cities. for the moment, it's status quo but status quo does not seem
sustainable between these two men. the president who has been privately fuming about this issue becoming increasingly public about it in recent days. >> peter alexander on the white house north lawn, thank you very much. lindsay graham is talking about all of this. he was just out making pretty interesting comments related to what he thinks the president should do. listen. >> i would fire somebody i did not believe could serve me well rather than trying to humiliate them in public which is a sign of weakness. i would just go ahead and say i appreciate your service. >> so joining the conversation now, msnbc justice and security analyst and former justice department spokesman, matt miller. matt, you heard lindsey graham there. essentially using one of the president's oft-used adjectives, weak against the president, saying he should rip the band-aid at this point. do you agree? >> probably. lindsey graham is right, the president is humiliating jeff sessions but it's only working
because jeff sessions isn't standing up for himself and for the justice department. sessions is a little bit in no man's land. he can't seem to decide whether he wants to be the president that does whatever -- or the attorney general that does whatever the president wants as he did when he signed off on jim comey's firing, then refused to answer questions about that after the fact, or if he wants to be an independent a.g. who follows the rules and follows the law as de whhe did when he recused himself. he should stand up and say these attacks on the department, not so much on me, personalities are one thing, but attacks on the department's independence are inappropriate and need to stop. >> if session wants to stay, and all sources are saying he does want to stay, how does he actually and effectively do his job when you have the president coming out giving real strong hints that he should fire the acting fbi director? >> he has to stand up and follow what a.g.s have done in the past when presidents tried to meddle in the department and say publicly, this is not appropriate there. are rules that govern conduct of the white house and attorney general. you are violating them. i'm not going to stand for that.
>> one of the things playing into sessions' decision making is him keeping an eye what is going on with the president's conservative base, specifically conservative media. there was a moment on fox news overnight we want to play for you, tucker carlson taking a little aim at the president. listen. >> the president continued a protracted rhetorical assault on his own attorney general, the one guy in washington who actually believes in trumpism is being forced out of his job by trump himself. the president should remember the ideas he ran on are bigger than he is. >> conservative base, breitbart, the same kind of thing. >> sessions has a broad mandate because he has republicans in both chambers of congress who are behind him. he's got democrats who are weirdly behind him as the counterpoint to president trump and he's got this really important segment of the base. the thing that is most interesting here is that jeff sessions doesn't want to leave because he's getting so much done. unlike in other parts of the government. jeff sessions is changing sentencing guidelines, taking on sanctuary cities, changing voter
i.d. laws, looking into those policies, he's doing all these things. that's essentially why he's so convicted about staying. >> matt, last word? >> if you are thinking about politics as attorney general you are doing it wrong and will ultimately fail. you have one job. adhere to the rule of law. if you do anything else, you will leave disgraced and humiliated. >> thank you very much for joining us on this set this morning. i appreciate it. i will ask the ladies to hang out for the next 45 minutes or so. we are gearing up for a lot of action today. this so-called skinny repeal is getting a ton of coverage. if it passes this whole thing ends up kicked back to the house to figure it all out. rodney davis is standing by to talk about that next. whoooo.
this certainly won't be easy. hardly anything in this process has been. but we know that moving beyond the failures of obamacare is the right thing to do. we have put a lot of hard work already into this. >> that was senate majority leader mitch mcconnell just in the last little bit kicking off debate in a bill to repeal obamacare and only repeal it, delaying any kind of replacement for a couple years. that vote could start next hour in the senate. on the house side, you know they are watching it closely including, i'm sure, congressman rodney davis, republican from illinois, who is joining us now. congressman, thank you for being here. let me just get your overall sense on how this process is unfolding. are you happy with it?
>> well, we are never happy with the legislative process until it's complete but that's what being a legislator is all about. it's coming up with ideas, putting those ideas on to paper and getting enough consensus to pass a bill just like we did in the house a few months ago. >> so let me ask you this, because there doesn't appear to be a ton of consensus in the senate, at least not yet, as we take a look at what's happening over there. but the skinny repeal seems to have a lot of discussion around it. it seems to be getting momentum. that would repeal some pieces of obamacare as you know, individual mandates, maybe some taxes. the ultimate goal is to go back to conference committee where both the senate and house would basically rewrite it. do you support that? do you think that is how this should move forward? >> before i offer any support for a hypothetical lets see what the senate actually does. they are really in no different position than we were a few months ago when we had a bill we thought was going to pass, had to be pulled from a vote on the floor before we cast that vote and we as republicans without any democrat support, without any democrat offers of
assistance, we put together what we thought was a good plan. now, i hope the senate is going to be able to do the same. but i would urge the democrats both in the senate and in the house that once we get to a conference committee, once we get together, let's recognize the system that many of the folks i serve with helped to create is failing millions of americans and we have to fix it. >> so congressman, you talk about the democrat participation in this process. i want to play for you what connecticut senator chris murphy had to say this morning on this net york about the point you are making. >> what's unimaginable to me is allowing the capability to allow a nuclear weapon to land in denver, colorado. that's unimaginable to me. so my job will be to develop military options to make sure that doesn't happen. >> okay. that is obviously not chris murphy. >> i don't think that was chris. >> i don't know where that one came from. let me just tell you what chris murphy had to say. he said that democrats have been shut out of this process because it's all happened behind closed doors. he says with no committee
process, no hearings and the only thing they have, the only recourse they have is amendments essentially. does chris murphy have a point in that? >> i'm not aware of what happened or didn't happen in the senate processes. what i can tell you is in the house, we had numerous hearings through our committees of jurisdiction. we have talked about fixing obamacare for years, since i have been here, four and a half years, we have been talking about many of the problems. i actually passed bills that are signed into law that provided fixes to the affordable care act so we had an open process. the problem you see, though, is that a narrative wants to be built by the opposition that we are not allowing open access, we are not allowing opportunities to discuss. frankly, what i haven't seen from the other side in the house is a willingness to actually fix the broken system that leaves millions of americans without health insurance or with insurance they can't afford to use. >> congressman, do you realistically see the house voting on a brand new bill if that's what the senate sends back and goes to conference?
>> well, we always -- when we see conference committees, when we get to conference committees on any piece of legislation, there will be changes made. but there will also be -- >> these are some big changes, potentially, right? >> what's that? >> it sounds like these will be really big changes. this isn't just tweaking around the edges like you might typically see. >> let's see what the bill looks like before it gets to conference committee. what i can tell you on the house side is we made some major changes that we think are going to provide many americans who don't have access to affordable and accessible health care coverage the opportunity to get that in a very affordable way. >> congressman, i want to hit you on the other big headline of the day here, which is what the president tweeted out just last housh hour, reversing military policy when it comes to transgendered members of the military, banning them, essentially. do you agree with that policy move? >> i haven't seen that tweet. let me take a look at that. what i can tell you -- >> that's what it says. it says the president is now reversing the standing defense department policy allowing members of the military who are
transgender, he is now banning that. the pentagon is working to figure out what that means and how that is implemented. given that, i'm wondering if you support the president's move to ban transgender members of the military. >> i want to see more information about how many are serving in the military right now -- >> roughly 7,000 based on our estimates. >> 7,000 based on your estimates? >> 7,000 people. >> let's see what the statistics actually bring forth for us when we start to see what the military's going to develop for the new policy. but in the end, the military in this country, we ought to be thinking about one thing and that's readiness. every debate we have about whether or not somebody can serve because they are transgender or not takes away from the debate that our military has taken so much of a financial hit over the last few years that, they may not be at a readiness level we need in a very insecure world. that clip you played earlier was not chris murphy but it was somebody talking about north
korea developing a nuclear weapon to attack us in denver, colorado, i thought i heard him say. these are the things that we have to have our military worried about. any policy changes related to social issues in this country ought to be secondary. >> you talk about readiness, congressman, rightfully. there is some reporting out this morning from axios that perhaps the president might have made this decision with maybe an eye on the political. is that appropriate, in your view? >> well, again, i want our military to focus on readiness. i don't want us to focus on policies that take our eye off the ball when it comes to dealing with crazed dictators like kim jong-un in north korea. we have issues with some of the other countries throughout the world that don't look at the u.s. as ready militarily and i think that should be the president's focus. >> congressman rodney davis, thank you for that. we will be following up with you guys on your position on the new policy when you get a chance to take a look at it. appreciate it. we are also talking about
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we are back now with a look at your morning's headlines. more of them coming out of the senate where the judiciary committee today is looking into moscow's attempts to influence the presidential election in 2016. the deputy assistant attorney general and assistant fbi director are testifying. you are taking a look inside that hearing room. donald trump jr., paul manafort not there. they were originally on the witness list but are making other arrangements. have you heard this startling new study on former football players? that found evidence of brain disease in 99% of the 111 nfl football players' brains examined. 99% of them had chronic traumatic encephalopathy, cte. that's a brain disease linked with repeated blows to the head. the report doesn't confirm the condition is common in all football players. the cause of the disease has not been established. the nfl has pledged to work with experts to try to improve the health of current and former
athletes. george pell, the most senior vatican official ever charged in a catholic church sex abuse crisis, is making his first court appearance today. he was charged last month in a scandal police described as historic. given a leave of absence from his vatican role as top financial adviser to pope francis, pell has not put in a plea yet but his lawyer says he plans to plead not guilty to all charges. we have been following more breaking news out of the white house. president trump in a tweet saying he will not allow transgender individuals to serve in the military. i want to go to hans nichols over at the pentagon. hans, we talked about this a couple minutes ago and in that time period, we are getting a new statement from the pentagon. hans nickel k nichols is with u. what are we hearing? >> reporter: the first reaction was refer everything to the white house. captain jeff davis, head spokesperson here, repeated that several times, please call the white house, please call the white house. just a few minutes ago, we got a statement from them and they are pledging to work with the white house on implementing this new policy. i want to make sure i get it
right. we will continue to work closely with the white house to address the new guidance provided by the commander in chief on transgender individuals serving the military. the estimates that are out there is this rand study the pentagon itself has cited so it has quite a bit of credence, anywhere from 2500 to 7,000 current individuals. they have been working away on how to make sure those people can serve and if their commanding officers so determine how they might go through gender reassignment surgery. that's one half of the equation. the other one is on new recruits. it's on the new recruits that there's been the six-month delay and the pause on. but there are transgender americans serving in the military and they are part of the military and they will have to figure that out here. the pentagon, not today, but in the coming days, this is going to be a difficult policy to translate into action. >> a lot of reaction already. the aclu out with a statement calling this move outrageous and desperate. there will be an opportunity to ask the press secretary,
incoming press secretary sarah huckabee sanders about this this afternoon. we are just learning there will be an on-camera briefing at the white house. is it typical that the pentagon would refer to the white house on defense department policy matters like this? >> reporter: yes and no. sometimes the pentagon punts, especially on north korea, if they want to make sure diplomacy is the preferred course of action. we get a lot of check with the state department. what was unique about this one was just how flat-footed the pentagon appeared to be when this announcement with these tweets came out from the president. for example, the d.o.d. official website still has up the policy, the timeline on transgender individuals, what the military is going to do to make sure they are going to be able to serve. yes, especially on conversations between the president and secretary, it's not uncommon to be referred back to the white house, especially if they want to avoid a question here at the pentagon. i think the unique aspect of this is just how blindsided the pentagon, the building that doesn't like to be blindsided appeared to be. >> listen, you mentioned north korea. we have to talk about that,
because there are some potentially significant developments coming out of the pentagon as though you didn't have enough on your plate, a couple military officials telling nbc north korea might be test launching another icbm really soon? what are we hearing? what is the timeline? >> reporter: well, what officials have been seeing for several days is activity on the ground indicative of an intercontinental ballistic missile launch similar to the july 4th one. the significance and importance of why it might come in the next 12, 24 or 48 hours, is that on july 27th which will in a few hours be the day, on the other side of the dateline in north korea, it's an important national holiday. what intelligence officials here are doing, they are mixing sort of what they are seeing with the raw intelligence satellite rarity imagery and twinning that with the psychological profile of kim jong-un, this is someone who likes big events, likes to celebrate and mark milestones and tomorrow is a milestone. just for the past, a lot of launches we have seen since the
trump administration and there have been 10, 11, depending how you count, they appear to take place in the evening u.s. time. i would watch out for the south korean press which tends to get this first on any sort of launch happening overnight or this evening. >> hans, i appreciate you coming back for us in this show. i will let you get back to some reporting at the pentagon. i want to bring in marrigaret a yamiche. this has been a crucial diplomatic flash point for the president during his administration so far. how do you see this playing out? >> it's really hard to see how it plays out. he obviously needs to make a decision and needs to understand that he's dealing with someone who is very erratic, dealing with a country that really wants to strike fear into south korea and we are so close with our allies that essentially if north korea decides to do something that somehow impacts south korea, we will be now thrown into yet another military intervention. i think that the president has been in some ways while he's been unclear on other foreign policy issues, on this issue he's been somewhat clear in that
he wants to take a strong stance against this country. >> i mean, this has been a major focus for the defense secretary, for the secretary of state and also h.r. mcmaster at the national security council -- >> defense secretary as well as secretary of state both on vacation currently. >> it's summertime. but look, if there were a silver lining to the way this revelations, it is the theoretical possibility it prods china, perhaps russia, to consider taking a more collective action on pressuring north korea. there is nobody outside of north korea really wants this to develop as far as it has. >> still unclear whether this new sanctions bill the house passed that involved sanctions against north korea will actually end up, looks like it will end up in law. we don't know if the president will support it given the russian ties. >> lot of signs from the white house he's inclined to do so. they reached a greater comfort level. >> is that going to do anything?
>> the real question on north korea is can the president count on china and to some extent on russia if he really needs to and what difference will it make. what will it matter at this point. there are a couple other things that the sort of defense and national security council are focused on now, the afghanistan policy, the isis policy, but north korea continues to be right up there. >> the thing that's interesting to me while he's wavered on policy whit comen it comes to r and china, on north korea, from what i have seen in reporting, he's been steadfast in the idea he needs to take a strong stance against this country, he sees this country as a threat. he's even in some ways played with the idea this is a powerful leader and he admires his stance in the world. in reality, he understands this is a threat. this is not anywhere near, when it comes to russia, people are always wondering whether or not he sees russia as enemy or ally. obviously because of all the things going on and all the russia investigations going on. with north korea, there really isn't that gray area. that's why you will see more action on that. >> we will continue the
conversation regarding this sanctions bill that passed the house with somebody who voted for that sanctions bill joining us live after the break. we are talking north korea, iran and russia. the ball in the white house court. so, your new prescription does have a few side effects. oh, like what? ♪ you're gonna have dizziness, nausea, and sweaty eyelids. ♪ ♪ and in certain cases chronic flatulence. ♪ no ♪ sooooo gassy girl. so gassy. if you're boyz ii men, you make anything sound good. it's what you do. if you want to save 15% percent or more on car insurance, you switch to geico. it's what you do. next! ♪ next! let's take a look at some numbers: 4 out of 5 people who have a stroke, their first symptom... is a stroke. 80 percent of all strokes and heart disease? preventable. and 149 dollars is all it takes to get screened and help take control of your health. we're life line screening...
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blocks president trump from waiving any penalties against russia without getting permission from congress first. here's one congressman on our network this morning talking about it. >> i think the white house will sign this bill and if they don't, i'm going to raise holy hell and frankly, we will override that veto but i tell you, i think they will sign it. indications we have are they are on board with this. >> joined by congressman bradley burn, republican from alabama and member of the house armed services committee. thank you for joining us. much appreciated. you heard one of your colleagues there in the house talking about raising as he put it, holy hell if the president does decide to oppose this bill, a bill you supported. so would you agree, would you override if the president does happen to veto this bill? >> first, i think the president's going to sign the bill so i don't want to start speculating about what's going to happen if he doesn't. >> have you been given guidance from the white house on that? >> i haven't gotten any guidance from the white house. but there was a huge vote on this. it was over 400 members of the
house voted for it. that's more than a veto-proof majority. i would be very surprised to see the white house veto this. >> yeah. 419-3 was that final tally. senator bob corker, who chairs obviously the foreign relations committee says his panel may strip out some of the language imposing sanctions on north korea. do you support that? or do you believe that's a concern? >> it's a very big concern for me. i think the news that's out over the last several weeks about what's happening in north korea, i think we need to put maximum sanctions on them to get them diplomatically to change their behavior with regard to these missiles and with regard to nuclear weapons. i would be very disappointed to see that considered and hope the senator will reconsider that statement. >> okay. i got to get your reaction to some other headlines that have been developing out here including one on somebody that you have known for i think four decades, jeff sessions. he's come under some real fire, obviously, from the president including just today. what is your message to the president on this? >> i think jeff sessions is doing a great job.
he is a professional at this. he was a u.s. attorney in mobile, where i'm from, for 12 years, attorney general of the state of alabama. and he's a straight arrow. there's nothing but oodles of integrity with jeff sessions. hopefully the president will keep him on the job so he can do the job we want him to do to enforce the laws of the united states of america. >> the president is keeping him on the job. the president hasn't fired him yet. that seems to be part of the issue. there's no clarity regarding the future of jeff sessions. what to you advise the president to do, lay off, essentially? >> i think he needs to and the rest of us need to let the attorney general do his job. i think the attorney general is doing his job. i don't think he's distracted by this at all. i have known him for a long time. he knows what his job is. he will continue to do it. >> we mentioned you served on the house armed services committee so i have to ask about this news in the last hour or so, president trump is announcing he will ban transgender people from serving in the military anyway. do you support that? >> well, the president is commander in chief of the armed
forces of the united states. he gets to make that decision and only he gets to make that decision. let me say this. over the last several weeks we have had testimony in our committee, we have had hearings just in the rules committee this week about some of the complications of trying to care for transgender people after they have had or gone through gender reassignment surgery, and the attendant hormone therapy they need afterwards. there are questions about how we can do that with somebody that's actually in a combat position. so there are legitimate questions here. i'm glad the president is at least pausing it so we can take a hard look and make a decision that makes sense for the fighting men and women of mae g america. >> congressman, it sounds pretty definitive that he's not allowing these folks to serve in the military. so when you look at this, you talk about readiness, but there are potentially some indications from some reporting this morning from axios that the president is making this based on a political calculation at least in part. is that appropriate? >> i don't know what he's basing it on other than the concerns
that i just said and a lot of us have been having for some time now, which is practically how do we do this. because there are some real practical issues here that have not been resolved. i know general mattis was looking at that prior to today. i assume he will continue to look at that. but it's the president's decision, not the decision of the congress, not the decision of the people that serve under him in the department of defense. it's his decision. >> okay. congressman, thank you very much for being with us on this program. thank you. while president trump is unloading on his attorney general on twitter, jeff sessions was getting a little bit of work done. he quietly unveiled this new strategy cracking down on sanctuary cities, one that could affect federal cash used for fighting crime. we talk about what that means for local governments next. for your heart... your joints... or your digestion... so why wouldn't you take something for the most important part of you... your brain. with an ingredient originally found in jellyfish,
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here's the deal, the president may be personally peeved as his attorney general but on policy jeff sessions is among the cabinet members making a very big impact on policy. in line with his boss specifically on new steps on so-called sanctuary cities, putting local governments on notice basically saying if they don't help federal agents deport undocumented immigrants the cities could lose millions of
dollars in federal grant money. to help us break this down, pete williams. walk us through the new rules and what they mean more cities and the issue of jeff sessions pushing president's policies even as he has come under serious fire from his boss. >> this goes to a dispute about sanctuary cities. one people served sentences, we want you to hold them for 48 hours and cities that can't do that, it's unconstitutional or illegal, the justice department has come up with a new way to get them to try to cooperate. here's what they want the cities to do. they have to agree to let dhs give dhs, the department of homeland security, i.c.e., two days' notice before releasing inmates and they have to allow dhs agents to come into the jails and inmates suspected of being in the country illegally. this avoids the problem of
detainer issue which has led to court fights and if the cities don't do this, they can't get this grant money which last year was about $250 million. >> and walk us in. obviously they are focusing on issues here over at the doj. all of this discussion from the president is being watched inside the building. what is the mood like over with sources that you talked to with folks in the building? >> of course you're right. they watch everything the president has said, every tweet, every statement, it's not been more rale building for attorney general. he's been somewhat -- feels hurt by this criticism because he's trying to be loyal to the president. but think the feeling there, they are going to stay with it, he's going to remain on the job. no intention of stepping down, hallie. >> pete williams joining us from our washington bureau. thank you very much. i want to get final thoughts here from margaret and we've had a real rocking 55 minutes, a lot
of news has come out. walk me through what you're looking ahead to and the significant developments of the day. >> what comes after this week, is august, the time when lawmakers and president were expecting to go on vacation for some period of time and august has proved a witching month for presidents on health care, i was referring to president obama but maybe for president trump. however things get settled is going to create the atmosphere under which august will be defined when a lot of people are not in town. >> all about august for you. what about you? >> i came back from a reporting trip in galveston, texas and talked to so many who don't have health care waiting for the government both trump supporters and people who didn't vote at all in the election and people who voted for hillary clinton, americans essentially, they are waiting for country to really figure out health care. they are people with sick kids. we can't talk about this enough, how personal health care is to people. it's an issue so understood by americans because it can bankrupt people and ruins lives.
i'm loogiking to see what they on policy side. >> appreciate having you onset. loved it. we'll be back with today's big picture. thank you so much. thank you! so we're a go? yes! we got a yes! what does that mean for purchasing? purchase. let's do this. got it. book the flights! hai! si! si! ya! ya! ya! what does that mean for us? we can get stuff. what's it mean for shipping? ship the goods. you're a go! you got the green light. that means go! oh, yeah. start saying yes to your company's best ideas.
deadliest attacks in the city recently. more than 1700 afghan civilians have died in increased violence there. the photographer of this photo for the associated press. we'd love to hear your thoughts on today's big picture. i'm responding to comments on all of it after the show. that does it for us here on a very busy hour of msnbc live, i'm hallie jackson and i'll toss it to stephanie ruhle and ali velshi. >> busy? what are you talking about, hallie? just kidding. good morning, i'm stephanie ruhle. >> and i'm ali velshi. it is wednesday, july 26th, let's get started. >> american heroes week and the president has defined who he now believes are heroes. >> please be advised that the united states government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the u.s. military. >> they are about 250 individuals that are currently serving that are transgender. >> it's a sad day that he's taking us backwards on this issue after so many years of
making progress. >> any senator who votes against repeal and replace is telling america that they are fine with the obamacare nightmare and i'll predict they have a lot of problems. >> we have two republicans that wednesday against us which is very sad, it's very, very sad for them. >> it's time for democrats to stop resisting. that's their term, resisting. resist. >> i'm very disappointed with the attorney general but we will see what happens. time will tell. time will tell. >> you can fire him. >> i could but we'll see what happens. >> i can't imagine recess, appointing an attorney general to oversee the russia investigation, it would be political suicide. >> i'm a wall street guy and more of a front stabbing person and rather tell people directly how i feel about them. i got rid of somebody inside the staff because somebody above my rank suggested that that person