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tv   The 11th Hour With Brian Williams  MSNBC  September 2, 2017 1:00am-2:00am PDT

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you never know on friday night. >> you do not want to leave your seat for that. stay right there. thank you, lawrence. that is all in for this evening. tonight, what robert mueller has his hands on. the special counsel now has the draft letter explaining why the president originally wanted to fire james comey. a letter written by revised before it went public. tonight the legal and political implications for donald trump and in white house. plus john mccain calls trump poorly informed and impulse oef and tells his colleagues we are not his subordinates. we don't answer to him. the 11th hour on a friday nine begins now. good evening. once again from our nbc news headquarters here in new york. i'm ali velshi for brian williams. day 225 of the trump dprgs and
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bringing new insight into how the president decided to fire former fbi director james comey. "the new york times" was first to report special counsel robert mueller has an early draft of a trump letter detailing his reasons for firing comey. the report says, quote, the letter drafted in may was met with opposition from donald mcgahn, the white house counsel who believed the angry tone was problematic, according to interviews with a dozen administration officials and others briefed on the matter. the letter was reportedly drafted while the president was on a long weekend at his golf club in new jersey. it was never sent but it was apparently saved. and now robert mueller has a copy. when james comey was fired a few days later. the white house had an official line on why. they said the president made the decision based on deputy attorney general rod rosenstein's recommendation. rosenstein you'll recall was comey's boss.
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and the man running the russia investigation because attorney general jeff sessions recused himself. the white house based the letter the president actually sent to comey on rosenstein's memo. but "the new york times" reports they made one significant revision adding a point personally important to mr. trump. and that was a line in the middle of the four paragraph that the president sent to let him know why he was being canned. >> while i greatly appreciate you informing me three separate occasions i was not under investigation. i nevertheless concur with the department of justice that you are not able to effectively lead the bureau. it's a point that's been important to the president. he stressed it again the next week in an interview with nbc's lester holt. >> we had a very nice dinner. and at that time he told me you are not under investigation which i knew anyway then during the phone call he said it. and then during another phone call he said it.
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he said it once at dinner and then he said it twice during phone calls. >> did you call him? >> in one case i called him in one case he called me. >> did you ask am i under investigation. >> i actually asked him, yes. i said if it's possible would you let me know, am i under investigation. and he said you are not under investigation. >> now, while we do not know exactly what was in this draft letter, new reporting from the "wall street journal" gives us an idea. they write par phrasing the letter an administration official said mr. trump wanted in message sent. you told me three times i'm not under investigation but you won't tell the world it's hampering the country. why was trump so upset with comey in that moment in may. several reports indicate it was something comey said a few days before while he testified before the senate judiciary committee about the clinton email investigation. >> this was terrible. it makes me mildly gnashes to think we might have had some impact on the election.
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but honestly it wouldn't change the decision. >> politico reports once trump returned from the trip to new jersey it was career he was not changing his mind. then the white house began frants from aicly searching for how to explain the firing. press secretary sarah huckabee sanders was asked about the draft letter in the briefing room today. >> first of all can you confirm the existence of that letter? secondly, can that letter be made public? and thirdly, you report that don mcgahn thought it was appropriate. can you discuss whether or not you or the president believe trafting such a letter was appropriate. >> i'm not getting into any of that. i think we covered those things extensively during that time as ty cob said earlier today to the extent the special prosecutor is interested in these matters we will be fully transparent with his investigation. and frankly i don't have anything to add beyond that. >> and with that we bring in our leadoff panel. former u.s. attorney joyce
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vancep former chief of staff to vice president biden and gore. ron clan, national reporter for axios jonathan swan and boston globe columnist. indira. welcome to all of you. jonathan, take us back to the weekend in may. a rainy weekend at bed minister at the golf club. what ended up happening? >> the president was supposed to play golf with the australian golfer great norman. he went down by helicopter thursday. it was a wrar rare weekend where he did not have his chief of staff reince priebus. it was donald trump, jared, ivanka, steven miller. rainy weekend. he was stewing indoors over the weekend, venting with o about comey. now we learn that he worked with
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steven miller on what has been described variously as a screed or a rant justifying his decision to fire james comey. >> joyce, let's talk a little bit about what happened in this letter that don mcgahn, the white house counsel ended up something and thought was problematic. what stands out to you about this. >> well the devil will be in the details with the letter. we don't know the precise language in the letter. it's sort of interesting that we have the reports. but we have only characterization. if the letter was limited to president trump having great difficulty with director comey because he wouldn't reveal publicly what he had assured trump about privately, the fact that he wasn't under investigation, then we have a situation that's a little bit more difficult to convey knowledge to the participants. but if this letter comes out and says, you know, the russian
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investigation is a madeup sort of bol ox needs to be ended. you won't i'm firing you. then everyone touching the letter or saw the letter has a real problem. >> there is another piece of complexity to this ron, "the new york times" had something else interesting i want to highlight here. it said during the may 8 oval office meeting with mr. trump, mr. rosenstein was given a copy of the original letter and agreed to write a separate memo for mr. trump about why mr. comey should be fired. now this becomes hard to start connecting the dots. but on the face of it this seems unusual. rod rosenstein, james comey's boss head of the russia investigation for all intents and purposes because the attorney general stepped aside. cease the screed or letter whatever it is and takes it and says i'm doing something with this. >> i think it calls into question what rod rosenstein was doing here. he saw the letter, knew the letter was written. drafted a different letter. the administration put it out
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and said this is why we're firing james comey. the cover letter says based on this recommendation i'm firing james comey. naes a lie. we know it's a lie. we know he made the decision to fire director comey at the golf weekend. he drafted some crazy explanation for it it. rod rosenstein knew it. the question is was rod rosenstein providing political cover for president trump and how does that affect his role in this investigation on an ongoing basis. >> because, indira subsequent to that we heard from a number of people, the president himself, sarah huckabee sanders this was large largely done on the advice and counsel of rod rosenstein. but it gives you a sense -- or at least gets you into the president's head a little bit about the idea that he was obsessed with james comey telling the country that he was not under investigation. what does this make you think? right, i mean it's not just rod rosenstein we have to wonder about his rationale, but also steven miller, the aide who if
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the reports are correct might be caught up in a potential obstruction of justice investigation. because let's face it. there is the ever-changing rationale given by the president and his team about why james comey was fired. the first rationale given is it's because he mishandled hillary clinton's email investigation. then the second is because he lost the confidence of the fbi rank and file. the third rationale given is, remember when he -- when donald trump was in the oval office with the russian foreign minister and the lavrov and said james comey was a nut job. and the fourth rationale was the public letter from rod rosenstein and the fifth rationale was lester holt telling him i had to get rid of him because of the russia thing. it's an ever-changing constantly moving target. i think it definitely -- i think mueller's team is investigating it. but i think there are numerous
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aides at this point we have to wonder what were they thinking, the fact that don mcgahn, the white house counsel was feeling uncomfortable with this. in the end the president put back in the things the white house counsel wanted taken out like the references to i'm not under investigation and the references, personal references put back in. >> indira i think you win panelist of the night just for being able to recite the five rationales that's amazing. joyce this does put rod rosenstein into a different light for many people. now again this is reporting. we don't have confirmations. we don't know what else rod rosenstein had to say about any of this. but if the idea as presented is that the president had written miller, rod rosenstein takes it and returns with a different memo which gives the president some cover to get rid of james comey, in has got to give some people some pause about the fact that rod rosenstein is the guy
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in charge of anything to do with russia at the department of justice.ore detail here. we know that rosenstein pushed back when the president tried to hang the firing of jim comey on him. he developmentally objected to that. the letter he wrote, the memo he wrote to the president didn't actually take -- reach the conclusion that comey should be fired. he talked about actions he had taken. he disagreed with the way comey conducted the public part of the clinton email investigation. but rosenstein never called for the firing. spo i think we have the next step that occurs when there is an outcry from the white house they don't want to see a special counsel onboard. it's rosenstein who makes the decision since attorney general sessions is recused to put a special counsel in place. and he doesn't hire just any special counsel he brings back bob mueller, the storied legendary fbi director.
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so if i was a betting person which i typically try not to be in investigative matters i would say there is another story here. there are some pieces of the puzzle about rod rosenstein's involvement that we haven't heard yet. >> i was saying to ron, jonathan swan in the break that what i would give to be five years hence looking back and saying here is what you guys didn't know about this. but jonathan, this has been a difficult week for the white house with respect to nightly revelations about russia. while most of us have been watching that -- the developments of hurricane harvey and its aftermath in texas, in russia stuff has been trickling out. what does this do to a white house especially a white house with a busy september ahead? >> well, they already had very damaged credibility with regards to russia. and they're shifting explanations for the comey firing. and whatever remains of that credibility has just been shredded with the stories today. and people inside know that.
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they know that. i mean, like it is a damning chronology. you have a president of the united states sitting at home in his golf club with his son-in-law and daughter, and a 31-year-old aide drafting this letter, presenting it to his team, including the vice president on the monday, and then they all come out with this phoney line about they were acting on rosenstein's recommendation. this chronology is just being completely blown up. trump had blown it up with his interview with restore holt and other things he said. you but the fact that pence was in the room in the oval that is what we call a bad fact. i don't know about the legality about this and the shifting because no one does because it's been quiet. we can see who mueller is hiring, the caliber of investigators that he is hiring. we can now see that the white house is on the back foot. the credibility has been shot.
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>> indira, let's talk about it's an unduly busy september because we have a budget resolution that has to occur otherwise the government shuts down. we have the aftermath of harvey which is going to be expensive. we have a president who until harvey hit was talking about allowing the government to shut down so he can get funding for the budget wall. that's urgent stuff to get done. the president started touring around the country discussing tax reform which there isn't any meat on those bones either. tell me how you see the next few weeks proceeding. >> i think it's going to be difficult for the president because he has his list of things, his want to dos and must dos. for the the president knows are personal. about fulfilling the age for the american people. and that of course means the base and the wall. pan he osk threatened to shut down the government over the wall. don't forget. he said that mexico was going to pay for it. now it seems the american people
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are supposed to pay for it. i think donald trump is not going to tie hurricane spending to the wall. i think that congress feels that -- i don't think the ship is going to sail that way. we now know that the president has requested over $7 billion in hurricane relief funds. i think that's going through probably. but i don't think he is going to be able to tie the wall to it. tax reform, that's a whole other conversation how much time have you got ali. >> you know it's a topic i love indira we can talk about this a lot. en ron, let's talk about the fact gnat russia stuff has been twrikling out it hasn't caused congress to break with the president on his own. the president has gone out of his way to break with congress. and then the charlottesville stuff happened. we have talk from members of congress that in a lot of ways they need to go it alone even on the issue of daca we'll be talking about later in the show. a lot of members of congress are saying we need to to get work done.
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>> with russia there is a lot of smoke here it's not just documents burned at the russian consulate in san francisco. the pile gets higher and higher. at some point in time the republicans on the hill won't be able to peer over and ignore it. but i grow the other problem he has a fundamentally broken relationship with the republicans in congress. at war with mitch mcconnell. at occasional war on and off with paul ryan. john mccain one of the senior republicans of the senate published an op-ed this woke calling the president reckless and unreliable. and that's not the basis -- he has a huge september ahead, daca potentially in congress, debt, the details on the spending bill. disaster relief, four big ds to deal with in september and a broken replace with republican leadership. >> you just teased something we're talking about. the panel thank you for joining us. the some of you stick around. ron just alluded to black spoke
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smoke we saw coming out of the russian consulate in san francisco. we'll talk about that when we come back. and john mccain talks to the op-ed pages. ron talked about that. the fake news "washington post" with some blistering words for colleagues on the hill and for president trump. all of that and more when "the 11th hour" continues. our phones are little internet machines.
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that's why xfinity mobile comes with your internet. you get up to 5 lines of talk and text at no extra cost. so all you pay for is data. see how much you can save. choose by the gig or unlimited. and ask how to get $200 off the latest devices. xfinity mobile. a new kind of network designed to save you money. call, visit, or go to welcome back to the 11th hour rgs. in san francisco today black smoke poured out of a building. but firefighters were turned away. an associated press reporter heard people come out and tell them nothing was wrong. it was coming from a fireplace.
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notably in san francisco ht hit an all-time today of 106 degrees. what a day for a fire? and the building? it's the russian consulate ordered to close within 48 hours by the u.s. state department yesterday. that move in retaliation for putin's july decision to reduce personnel from the u.s. mission in russia. our panel is back with us. i've got jonathan swan, indira and ron. ron let me start with you there was a headline from "the new york times." glenn and maggie haberman penned a story saying forceful chief of staff grates on trump. and the feeling is mutual. mr. kelly quickly brought some order he is fully aware of the president's volcanic resentment being managed and he treaded carefully through the minefield of the president psychee. but the president bridles at
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what he is feels is being told what to do. in the presidential campaign, mr. kelly has gradually diminished in his appeal to his restless boss. what is different this time is that mr. trump meider in self-destructive controversies and record low approval ratings needs mr. kelly more than kelly needs him. unlike the men and women over the years for trump. the chief of staff signed on a sense of duty more than personal leonard richment or fame. you and i had a conversation just as john kelly when he was coming on to take the job and the role he would have to play. i don't know that he was going to relish the role. it sounds like he is having difficulty. >> the fact of the trump presidency is donald trumps first and foremost. kelly won't change that. the discipline he imposed isn't minor.
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he is just trying to control some of the information flow to the ppt by the standards of the two white houses i worked in this would be baby stuff. the fact that trump recents that tells us about trump. the fact that john kelly, though says he isn't taking it. in the piece "new york times" trumped to him in ways he has never been talked to before. he won't take that again. earlier at the arizona rally. john kelly was there and wouldn't come up on stage. we'll satisfy how the cultures mesh if at all. >> indira one of the things that people say about this white house is that, okay, maybe john kelly has what it takes to organize the white house or as ron says the information flow to the president and impose some discipline with the staffing and the number of people coming into his office how they call him making appointments all of these things it seems he is able to manage. but as ron says that's baby stuff. and given the agenda and the things that have to be done and
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the failure of the repeal and obamacare and tax reform does all of this matter? >> i've said it before you cannot clees house for someone who the president thrives on ch and disorder. that's how he likes to run things. we see the apprentice as the external manifestation of the way he runs the business empire. he likes to have rivals ghting, attention. you know his loyalty. this is just the way he likes c reporting today that staffers who are annoyed by john kelly's efforts to rein in the president are culling him behind his become church lady. one person actually trying to impose order is seen as annoying and ruining the party. if the president himself is by all accounts secretly using his cell phone to call steve bannon when john kelly is trying to not allow the calls through, i think
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it kind of tells what you you need to know. ultimately the president is in charge, not the chief of staff. and the president will get to do what he wants to do. >> jonathan what's your take on this. >> it's inevitable that -- it's already happening to some extent that trump is going to rebel against in new order around him. something pretty interesting happened today. it might seem minor to a lot of people but it's a big deal. keith schiller donald trump's personal security guard but really like a brother to him is leaving the white house. and that's a big deal. he is someone who has been with trump for almost two decades. trump confides in him. he is the first person that trump sees in the morning. walks him from the residence an night. he is old friends, often feeding him information from people on the outside.
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trump asks him advice, policy advice. he is one of the last few people from the world world cutout. and frankly, donald trump, yes everyone recognizes that the oval office needed order and that this couldn't continue. but i don't believe that donald trump is going to sort of put up with this for much longer. i think he is going to lash out, call the old people -- i mean he still talks to cory lewandowski. i don't see it as sustainable course of action. >> jonathan thank you for that jonathan swan, ronald, indira stick around with me if you will indulge me. is the trump white house preparing to end protections for dreamers? the white house faced questions on that. more when the loafth hour continues. 11th hour continues. hey allergy muddlers are you one sneeze away from being voted out of the carpool? try zyrtec® it's starts working hard at hour one and works twice as hard when you take it again the next day.
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they talk about dreamers, right? dreamers. they want the dreamers. everybody wants to be a dreamer. but the dreamers don't refer to our children. they refer to other children coming into our country. >> you're going to have to we have to make a whole new set of standards and when people come in they have. >> you're going to split up families. >> chuck, no, no we're keeping the families together we have to keep the families together but they have to go.
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>> they have to go. >> we'll show great heart. daca is a very, very difficult subject for me. i will tell. >> you we are going to deal with daca with heart. the daca situation is a very, very -- it's a very difficult thing for me. because you know i love these kids. i love kids. i have kids. and grand kids. >> president trump is always maintained a hard line on illegal immigration. but as you heard just there, he sometimes has taken a softer stance on the so-called dreamers, those who came to america as young children, raised in america. the president is deciding if he will end an obama era program known as daca. deferred action for childhood arrivals, a program temp aerial protecting undocumented immigrants who were brought to the united states when they were very young. this was president trump today when asked about the dreamers. >> should dreamers be worried. >> we love the dreamers. we love everybody. thank you very much thank you. >> do you think daca is illegal do you think. >> thank you very much. >> we'll be releasing on daca
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sometime over the weekend, probably sunday, saturday. latest will be monday. great feeling for daca. >> latest will be monday. of course just a short time later white house press secretary sarah huckabee sanders told reporters the announcement will come tuesday np joining me is franco eodena. >> >> inaira you stayed thank you. >> franco let's start with you. this is we love the dreamers was what president trump said today. what are the options here? is it yes we're keeping daca? is it no we're getting rid of daca? is there something in the middle he struggles with in. >> this is something that the president has been wrestling with for months if -- if not longer. he -- you know the options are, does he allow -- does he terminate the program as looks
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to be reported? what the advisers are telling us reporters? he could also end the program but allow those are existing status to continue until those expire. that would still be ending the program or he could try to defend the program in the courts. though both sides of the argument see a tough chance for this to surviving a court challenge. >> indira, there -- there's been a lot of activity -- in fact mostly in the manner of tweets from members of congress, senate moua say let us handle it don't end it but let's do it the right way. one of the criticisms of daca like president trump enjoyed president obama enjoyed the executive orders and things done by executive decree. congress chafes at this. they feel matters of immigration are its territory.
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is there a solution where congress takes it over and handles it? >> in a sense that would be easier for donald trump. he wouldn't have to make a decision on something that obviously is you know a humanitarian issue. he has said i love the dreamers. he doesn't want to be seen as hard hearted. at the same time it's a base issue for him let's get back to that. the fact is being tough on immigration is one of the things he won with his base on. that and the wall were key issues for him. although it's a shrinking base it's 31% of the people are very much with him. we have to put in context there are other factors hurricane harvey and texas which is the state that has the second largest number of dreamers in america. there are 800,000 daca people. and the second largest number are in texas. it would look incredibly hard hearted for the administration to say on tuesday okay we're sending everybody home now at the same time that you know parts of texas are under water. i just want to point out that other republican governors, although greg abbott is very
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much against daca and wants it ended has made a hard stand in texas. other republican governors like rick scott in florida where there are a lot of dreamers says this is harsh, too harsh, not the fault of the children. and i think you should defer it and leave that program alone. >> and tom bossert of homeland security adviser yesterday franco did not say -- if there are illegal immigrants in shelters once any get pout they're on their own. but to her point many of the people many been here since kids. many of whom have gotten an education if any commit a federal crime they cannot renew the two-year cycle. there are a lot of people who say this is not a bad plan. senator tom tillis tweeted tonight immigration policy should be set through
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legislation. it's the responsibility of congress to determine the undocumented minors. i'll be conserving the the rack act. the rack act requires undocumented adults to came to u.s. as minors to be employed pursue higher education or serve in the military. now, franco there are a lot of people who will say that's unfair, unduly rig rouse but at least it sounds like a solution as opposed to the elimination of daca. in fairness the president is facing deadlines after which some states are going to be sue him if he doesn't rescind daca. >> essentially what tillis is doing and other republican members of congress are trying to do is essentially give trump a bit of a life raft for daca. as we mentioned before this has been very difficult for trump. he is torn between trying to serve his base but also a larger electorate, not only that kind of his own moral feelings. obviously this is something that hurt him, impacted him personally. the legislation that tillis is
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offering is something that would make it a lot more palatable. essentially providing him some cover so that trump could say you know it's kind of a two-win he gets the win for ending the program serving the base. but he gets to tell dreamers he has been working on it like he did before and this is an opportunity to say that. now, look, dwres it's hard to get anything passed in congress. there is a lot of sympathy for these group of immigrants. more than any other group of undocumented immigrants. you saw that with paul ryan's you know talk earlier today on the radio. but getting anything through this congress has been difficult. >> getting them to agree on what the actual weather is is difficult. franco stay with us please. indira thank you for staying with us and it's always a pleasure. one senator calls the president poorly informed and reminds his colleagues we answer to the american people. that senator, republican john mccain.
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more on that when "the 11th hour" continues.
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let's trust each other. let's return to regular order. we have been spinning our wheel on too many important issues because we keep trying to find a way to win without help from across the aisle. what have we to lose by trying to work together to find those solutions? we're not getting done much apart. >> that was senator john mccain, an impassioned plea to fwres the day he returned to washington following brain surgery in july. he is renewing that call today ahead of the busy september session. in a "washington post" op-ed mccain wrote it's time for members of congress to respect each other and to respect that they need each other to get anything done. he writes, quote, that has never been truer than today. when congress must govern with a president who has no experience
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of public office, is often poorly informed, and can be impulse every in speech and conduct. we must respect his authority and constitutional responsibilities. we must where we can cooperate with him but we are not his subordinates. we don't answer to him. we answer to the american people. back with us is franco and we're joined by the contributing wrierg writer for the daley beast. i think the strangest continuing about this i'm checking my phone to make hur sure i'm not wrong. to make smur the president hasn't tweeted back to mccain. but john mccain has proved to be a steady reliable and thorn in the side of the president. he has been at donald trump's side as a thorn since the beginning of this administration. >> well, i mean the column is nice but it's late. look, john mccain showed a lot of integrity by casting the vote to essentially kill the
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obamacare replacement. that said he is also the same guy who introduced sarah pal ton america and helped grease the wheel culturely for a man like trump to rise politic cli. also frankly this column doesn't say anything that liberals haven't been saying for two years. we know he was impulsive. we know he makes bad decisions. we know he is poorly informed. i'm not sure why we need to congratulate john mccain for coming around. we need to to see him back up with action. >> you had to bring up sarah palin. franco what is john mccain hoping to accomplish with in? it's not just that he come out and decided that he thinks congress isn't working. this is as much an admonishment of congress as it is the president. >> i would agree that liberals have been saying these things. but john mccain is a republican and what he is trying to do is
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do is encourage his republican colleagues to do what they have not done, and that is stand up to this president, stand up to the president's rhetoric and encourage his own party that they do not work for this president as he said they're not his password knit. they are in -- they're working together for the american people. and it's kind of like the old maverick john mccain. conservatives are they going back to what they believe to be shared values and that the president has taken them off this track? in this desire to fulfill the president president's agenda they've gone down this unusual road and that they should be brought back. this hasn't been fully embraced by conservatives including republicans in the senate. but do you think there is likely to be more of that in this session than there has been, the idea that the republicans in the
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senate have to be their own body. >> they are faced now with the urgency of actual governance. a lot of them have been elected to obstruct obama. now they are in a position where they have to do the work of the government. they have to pass budgets, have to make sure of the government stays you know paying the bills and whatnot. they have to make sure that the people who are suffering from hurricane harvey get relief. now let's see if they can actually do this. let's see if they can back up, all the sound and fury about president trump, with some actual action. let's see them stand up to to him if he decides to get rid of daca. let's see him stand up to him against the livingston priorities that are nativist candy for the rab i had base rather than priorities for the nation. we don't need a wall we need walls around houston so make sure the climate change doesn't swamp it. >> you got to the shut down. coming up, the shutdown threat is looming.
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there is a lot on the break after the daca war backup but after the war of words between mcconnell and trump? remember that? can they do what we were talking about, get down to the business of governing? we're back after this.
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the president has said that if we have to close down our government we're billeding that wall. is he backing down from that threat now. >> no the president is still very much committed to building the wall. >> there is a report in the "washington post" that basically -- you have a smile on your face. there is a back. >> you know how i feel about using other outlines as your source. >> is it wrong. >> i think the president has been clear what his position is. i would take that as the president's position over a report on what it is. >> welcome back to the 11th >> white house press secretary reaffirmed president trump's
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threat to shut down the government if congress doesn't provide funds for the border wall. the washington post article disputed the president's immediate commitment to the wall, quote, the white house has told republicans they will not shut down the government, potentially clearing a path for lawmakers to pass a budget. passing a budget is only one item on a busy september agenda, may not be the most important. the nbc first read team laid out the to do list for the month. including providing hurricane harvey relief money, raising the debt limit, keeping the government open, crafting a tax reform bill and maybe giving health care one more shot in the senate. frank oe, by any measure, that is a aggressive agenda. for a congress that actually gets things done, that would be
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a tough agenda. and as you know from covering washington for a long time, budgets are something that even a congress that gets other things done struggles to get things done. what does that agenda look like to you. >> it looks tough. i will say harvey has kind of broad people together. you talked about the wall and the possibility of a government shutdown. you know, trump has backed down a little bit about that in private and harvey's a big reason for that because it's brought people together. they know they need to get this done. a government shutdown during such a huge rebuilding effort would not look good. so, i think this is a place where they can come together. what's going -- interesting is going to happen is what will it look like, a short term spending bill? that's what it sounds like.
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we're already seeing bickering between different sides. we all know about the battle over sandy and how some members of congress in texas didn't support. are we going to see that kind of thing. >> and a lot of republicans from the north east said while they remember how badly sandy went in terms of congressional help they're not going to repeat that. >> i think giving health care one more shot in the senate, the reason they have to do that is because they're time limited. there's something that causes the senate to have to address this by the end of september or they lose their window for doing so and they have to introduce a entire lie new bill. what do you think of that? do you think president trump will take another kick at the obama repeal plan. >> not if he wants to score a win. that seems to be his priority, make sure i win something. if he's going to try to win something, right now keeping the government open the this point is a win. making sure the government pace its bills on time is a win.
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someone with donald trump's track record, i don't expect that to be a priority. i think raise ng the debt limit, making harvey fund, i think that's the only things americans are concerned about. tax reform is a nice name for giving tax cuts to the wegty, that's not something we need around this time when people need more help than ever. >> franko the idea of a tax reform bill, like the administration would like something to take place before the end of 2017, the treasure secretary said they'd have tax reform done by the august recess, now he says by the end of the year. in a hard to get done congress, i don't know how it gets done even though the president is out giving speeches to support it. >> trump with almost every new president you have kind a money moon period that happens, you
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know, decade after decade usually you've been able to get something through. obviously trump didn't get anything through with health care. now he's looking at tax reform which will be just as big of a battle. it is interesting that you're seeing some democratic senators saying they'll work with trump on that because they see the power he has among the republican power and trumpland, but it will get difficult to get tax reform because there's a lot of opposition to it. >> i would have lost a bet if somebody asked me who the next person that john kelly chief of staff would be going after in the white house. i would have guessed stephen miller. he's trying to side line omea rosa saying, and there's a quote from a source close to the trump administration saying when general kelly is talking about clamping down on access to the oval, she is patient zero, the idea she gets trump riled up, gives him a lot of articles to
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read, something kelly's trying to put a lid on. what do you think about that. >> i think it's somebody asks a good question from omarosa. what is she doing in the white house, what is she doing other than providing a reminder of his television sell ebb writty days or serving as a fire brand or at least the african americans who certainly disagree with his agenda. i just don't understand what exactly she's doing in the white house. she has no qualifications to be there. she has no experience in government. all she is, frankly, is a reality star. her exit would be welcomed certainly amongst a lot of african americans in this country who don't particularly care for her. >> i need you to come out of your shell the next time we have you on show. thank you for being with us. coming up, one week after harvey first hit, a look at where we've been and the work still to be
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done. we'll be right back.
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last thing before we go tonight. at this time exactly one week ago today a category 4 hurricane by the name of harvey had just made land fall for the first time along coastal texas over the past week we've seen two more land falls and devastation and sorrow on a scale that's difficult to understand. 41 people have died, that number is expected to rise, and 42,000 people remain in shelters. officials are concerned about the environmental impact like fires like this one. houston's mayor warned parts of city could be remain fluided for two weeks. the search and rescue efforts are still concerning. president trump who who visited in texas on tuesday will return
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to houston. if you want to help find out how to help go to nbc that is our broadcast. thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. touch's letter to comey. let's play "hardball." and good evening, i'm steve kornacki in for chris matthews in what has turned out to be a busy friday night. the white house announced president trump will give us his decision about young people brought here illegally as children to remain in the united states. there is also new reporting on the russia investigation. special counsel robert mueller obtaining


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