tv Deadline White House MSNBC September 8, 2017 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT
hand what's going on with our fellow countrymen. stacey plaskett, thank you for being with us. so before we go, we want to share with you a heart felt gesture. pam breck headed to a lowe's to buy a generator only to find the last one sold. just as she walked up to the counter. queue ramone santiago who offered her the generator he is just bought. >> i don't know him at all. he's a stranger. he's an angel from god is what he is. >> that brings this busy hour to a close for me. "deadline: white house" with nicolle wallace starts right now. hi, everyone. it's 4:00. hurricane irma is tearing through the bahamas as a category 4 storm the size of texas. after battering turns and caicos overnight and soaking the
dominican republican and -- republic and haiti. and it's packing 155 miles per hour winds has left a trail of destruction since thursday. at least 17 people dead, over 100 wounded. florida now bracing for impact with over half a million people scrambling to evacuate. clogged highways, crowded gas stations, empty store shelves. this is the scene as the window to escape rapidly closes. the governor of florida urging his citizens to heed those evacuation orders. >> if you're told to evacuate, leave and get out quickly. the roads will fill up quickly so you need to go. i'm a dad and i'm a grandfather. i love my family. i can't imagine life without them. do not put yourself or your family's life at risk. we are running out of time. the storm is almost here. if you are in an evacuation zone you need to go now.
this is a catastrophic storm that our state has never seen. >> and white house homeland security adviser tom bossert this afternoon pledging to serve the leaders of all states in the path of hurricane irma. >> governor matt, governor row sell low and scott of florida, you're all on our minds, you're our clients. we'll meet the requirements and as americans we'll get through this. >> we'll go straight to al roker who joins us from miami. al, i'm married to a miami native. i know that folks in miami are thinking about hurricane andrew, the other big one and are nervous about the human toll and the damage that this storm could wreak on that state. >> well, nicolle, well they should be. as you mentioned 25 years ago last month, andrew came on shore. that's the one that really is kind of the benchmark and this has that potential. we're not trying to scare
people. we just want to give them the facts. because when you think about it, the peninsula of florida is about 150 miles wide. not counting the panhandle. this storm is about 400 miles wide so as it approaches it has the potential to cause massive problems both on the east coast of florida, the west coast and the center. difference with andrew also, andrew came from east to west, and spent about four hours crossing the state. this irma looks like it will come up if not the center of the state, certainly west of center and traverse the state. and it will take 24 hours or more to get through the state. so let's go to our graphics and show you exactly where irma is. right now a category 4 storm. we know it was a 5 and now it's a 4 and we're talking a few miles per hour difference. 155 miles per hour right now
with winds. 157 plus makes it a category 5. so you see we're right on the hairy edge of that. right now, 225 miles east of parts of cuba. it is moving west at 14 miles per hour. so it's slowed down. in the last few hours, it had been going west-northwest at about 17 miles per hour. so here's the track. here's what we see. tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m., it's running parallel to cuba, may even brush the northern border of cuba. by sunday morning, 8:00 a.m., late saturday night, sunday morning it starts to make landfall in southern florida and now the track has been -- to the west of miami. just west of here. but now the latest tracks have brought it a little west of that. perhaps over the everglades as 145 miles per hour winds. it continues to slowly move up through florida by monday morning, 8:00 a.m., it's around daytona beach.
and tuesday it's crossing in georgia as a tropical depression and then wednesday, western kentucky and western tennessee. the big problem -- rain isn't going to be the issue. maybe five to ten inches of rain. sandy soil it will absorb that. but the biggest issue storm surge. storm surge warnings are now up. stretching from venice all the way down to southwest florida. and jupiter inlet and on into the ponce inlet. this is a wall of water on top of what's already there. high tide is at midnight tomorrow night. then again, 12 noon on sunday. south -- the more south you go the stronger those surges are going to be, nicolle. southwestern florida, 6 to 12 feet. then in southeastern florida, five to ten feet and north, it's a little about half of that. but most people are killed and the most damage is done in the
surge, nicolle. so that's what we are most concerned about. that's what's so crazy about this storm that it could actually cause storm surge on both coasts, almost simultaneously. >> al, what you were describing about the change in the storm's path suggests that anyone that had an east-west evacuation plan probably needs to switch to the northward -- they probably need to head up to the center or the northern part of the state. is that something that they've spent a good deal of time and effort getting that message out? >> i think they have. i think they have been telling people go north. that, you know, really just going -- even folks who have been heading up to orlando, orlando is going to be involved in this. now, the good news is storm surge isn't going to come in that far inland. but there is going to be tremendous wind and there could be substantial wind damage. you're not going to start to see this lessen until you get up to really the florida/georgia
border. so it is one of these systems that is going to be a long lived system. unlike harvey which kind of just parked and dumped 50 inches of rain. this going to be a storm surge and a wind event. rain will be part of it. it will be a wind driven rain, but boy, the wind damage is going to be substantial. and the storm surge damage is going to be substantial. >> all right. al, my last question for you, i talked to someone who's been in the field with you for a lot of these and they said that even you are struck by the size and power of this storm. can you put it into some sort of historical context for us? the miami city mayor called it a nuclear storm because of the devastation it could result for the citizens in the state. can you just put this storm in some sort of historical context? >> well, again, you look at andrew. this is bigger than andrew by about a third bigger in size and circumference of andrew.
now, when this was a category 5 its maximum winds were at 185 miles per hour. andrew's were only 165 miles per hour. again, the duration that it was really affecting the land mass for andrew was only about four hours, maybe five hours and this thing is a 24 hour event. that's really for a state, a single state, that's pretty amazing. >> yeah. while you were talking we got that picture up showing what they looked like from space. remarkable that anyone from miami knows this a storm bigger than andrew is something to be afraid of. al roker, i know how busy you are and i appreciate that you spent some time with us. thank you. please stay safe out there, okay? >> thank you, nicolle. >> all right, gabe gutierrez is at miami international airport where travelers are trying to leave ahead of this storm. we have been watching pictures from the airport all day long and this is certainly the emptiest we have seen it. please tell us what's happening at this hour and what you have seen throughout the day.
>> hi, there, nicolle. i must tell you growing up in miami to hear al describe this storm in comparison to andrew, just incredible. so i'm standing right here where a few hours ago i was talking to craig melvin. they were evacuating these stranded travelers. buses were taking them out to shelters. can give you some good news as we walk inside. aaron, walk with me here. the airport here is much, much quieter than it was just a few hours ago. and the reason for that is throughout the day, authorities here had been really packing these stranded travelers into these buses and taking them to the newly opened emergency shelters. this is what we're looking at right now. the chaotic scenes that we saw overnight and into this morning thankfully, nicolle, seem to be wrapping up. it is very quiet here. we're seeing the last few flights. the very last few flights wrap up here right before the storm. now, i just spoke with some --
someone from the public information office here here at the airport. this is what they're telling people. they're stressing again that m.i.a. is not a shelter. they don't want people spending the storm here. but at the same time, if there are a few stranded travelers if they do end up here, they're not going to kick them out. they're going to find some spot for them. last night they brought in some cots, put them up in the auditorium but again they do not want people spending their time here at the airport. as we look around, we are told that some restaurants, a few of them will be operating during hurricane hours here at the airport. but again, they don't want people to come here and just spend some time here. we have seen some harrowing stories. heard some harrowing stories from some of these travelers throughout the day. some of them international travelers. tourists that had been expecting to go back to their home countries and all of a sudden they are stuck here in miami with no place to go. they're now headed to emergency
shelters and trying to figure out where to ride out the storm. a few have been told that their luggage -- they had been separated from their luggage and it will be locked away for several days, possibly until monday or tuesday, and many have medicine in there. one woman had a chemotherapy medicine inside the luggage and she was in tears as she tried to figure out how to navigate this. another passenger was trying to help her out. but it was a very desperate situation for some of these families. and cruise ship passengers too. thousands of cruise ship passengers were brought here -- brought to miami suddenly they say and given really very little warning to be able to find their way back home. so that's something that a lot of people are trying to figure out tonight some families are very uncertain how to get back home. but we can report thankfully that most of the travelers here at miami international have cleared out. there's still a few waiting to
get it on the last few flights. >> please stay safe and protect yourself. thank you so much. nbc's jacob soboroff is in miami beach where the area's 91,000 residents have been under a mandatory evacuation order since thursday. by the look of things that city looks pretty emptied out all day long. how are things going? >> it's very emptied out here and lieutenant paul johnson from the miami beach fire department can tell you i think it's fair to say you don't have to respond to calls and that people have evacuated. >> definitely the call volume has gone way down. because a lot of people left the beach. >> first of all, we went and sea what are called evacuation buses. the only transportation coming in and out of here. since we were on last you talked to the driver of one of the buses and what did they tell you? >> definitely not many people getting on the buses now. that pretty much the people that decided to go, it seems like they have gone and the people
that are going to try to ride it out are here, you know? >> so is that a good or a bad sign? >> well, i mean, i would -- if it was most of the population that's already left, then great. but the thing is i don't know how many people are hunkering down. >> still out here. who is here? other than the elderly, a large homeless population? >> i think the homeless population, they have some code compliance, i think they have done a good job of getting them accounted for. and to proper shelters. >> it's not just the idea of the storm surge coming from the atlantic ocean, a couple of football fields away in here, but the waterways. you were talking about indian creek. why is that a challenge for you guys ultimately if and when the storm hits with the impact we think it will? >> well, indian creek cuts through miami beach because miami beach is a barrier island to the main land of miami. so we have a few different
waterways that come through. the storm surge will be coming from the atlantic, but it's going to flow into the creek and during the high tides indian creek swells sometimes to overflow the banks anyhow. so that's going to contribute to even more water getting pushed from the atlantic to the bay. >> so it's something you're familiar with, and the scale we may see is something we have never seen. >> exactly. >> that's a challenge for the men and women at the miami beach fire department it's unprecedented. it's a word we use a lot, especially in the times of president trump on this network, but an unprecedented storm. something that people are taking very, very seriously. especially first responders like these guys who have been kind enough to drive us around all afternoon. >> they don't know what they're going to be dealing with because they don't get the calls until the storm hits. please send our prayers for safety to all the first responders that you encounter. thank you, jacob soboroff.
we'll be monitoring this storm throughout our entire hour. we have some breaking news to bring you in the russia investigation. just in the last half hour, "the washington post" breaking this story that special counsel mueller has expressed interest in in speaking to sean spicer and hope hicks. ashley parker, thank you so much for jumping in front of a camera. i thought we'd be and the clock hurricane coverage but this is a significant development that i understand that special counsel mueller has contacted the white house to express interest in interviewing six aides. tell us about -- it seems to be around two separate events. if you could break that down for us and tell us what you know at this hour. >> sure. that's exactly right. mueller's team has contacted the white house asking for documents as well and also to interview the six aides but as of now, no interviews are currently scheduled. and the two issues based on the documents requested and the aides who are being asked to
come before mueller are two. the first one is the white house's handling of flynn and sort of how they were pretty passive for a while when they found out that he was misleading the public and even the vice president about his interactions with the russian ambassador. then the second issue is the key issue about comey's firing as the fbi director and all of the events leading up to that. and that feels more like it falls into the part of the probe that deals with possible efforts to obstruct justice. >> let me read from your piece, because this seems to involve the period of time from which sally yates the acting attorney general went to the white house lawyers and told them that mike flynn was a risk for blackmail from the russians. let me read from your piece. mcgann and berman who is the white house counsel, two of the six aides that mueller would like to speak with were briefed by yates on january 26th, days
after trump's inauguration about the department and fbi concerns that flynn could be compromised by the russians. the fbi knew he wasn't telling the whole truth to pence and the public about his december conversations about u.s. sanctions with russian ambassador sergey kislyak. now, yates became concerned when she saw public comments from flynn not matching up with what she knew was true, but talk about what the white house did after they knew, after they were aware that the sitting national security adviser might be at risk for being blackmailed by the russians. >> sure. well as you'll recall they actually did nothing for i believe it was a period of about two weeks. what prompted them to finally take action was a "washington post" story that reported that vice president pence who had gone out there and said, you know, basically said flynn didn't talk about sanctions with the russian ambassador that he had been misled by flynn. once it became public that he had been misled, that sort of
forced the white house's hand to fire flynn. >> and ashley, the other aids are a combination of former white house chief of staff and mostly press aides and it sounds from your reporting that they may be of interest to mueller because of the cover story, the initial story that was given to the press to explain don jr. -- the explanation or the revelation that he had had a meeting with russians. can you talk about that part of your reporting? >> sure. so you'll remember when news emerged that don jr. had had this meeting the first statement he released was a very incomplete and quite misleading version which basically said yes, i had the meeting. i met with the russian operative but it was to talk about up adoptions. the whole truth sort of dripped out over several days in the course of several statements that became increasingly more transparent from the white house each team their hand was forced and the key issue here i think is there was basically when
president trump was -- was on air force one, there was kind of a broad discussion where the president ultimately we reported dictated the statement that initial misleading statement he wanted his son and he son's lawyer to put out. in a number of communication advisers were involved in this in various capacities. some of them because jared kushner the son-in-law was also at the meeting and he was being asked to respond and they were pulled in that way. we think that's what the aides are being called to be interviewed about. >> and the headline is spicer, hicks interested in being interviewed for the russian probe. thank you for jumping in front of a camera. we'll have more on that later on in the hour. but up next, back to florida where much of the state is bracing for hurricane irma. we'll talk to the former governor of the state, jeb bush, who's managed his more than fair share of hurricanes.
we are back and on the phone is former florida governor jeb bush who "the miami herald" named the hurricane governor because nine slammed in his tenure, eight of them between 2004 and 2005. thank you so much for getting on the phone with us. i know this is your beloved state and your beloved hometown. talk to us about what the city knows how to do that no other american city is necessarily
prepared for because of its experience with storms like this. >> well, first of all, nicolle, i hope you're doing well. good talking to you. >> thank you. >> miami is unique. south florida is unique because our storms come four or five days, six days in advance. this storm has been a cat 5 storm now cat 4 for almost a week. and so we have since monday or sunday of last week residents of this region have been preparing. people take it very seriously. there's not any hurricane amnesia best i can tell. the governor has been all in on this. so have the mayors of the municipalities and mayor jimenez and others in the tri-county area. so it's been an inkrezable effort -- incredible effort to watch and it brings back real emotions for me to have a chance to serve the 19 million people of the state when we had eight hurricanes during a two-year period. but this storm is bigger and
meaner in all likelihood than the storms we dealt with that created massive destruction. so, you know, we're going to have -- we've got serious problems post storm that we have to deal with. thankfully it looks like there's an understanding of that in washington. and that the support that fema provides and other agencies will likely be there. >> governor, since you took it to the clean-up let me stay with you there. after houston where your parents have a home, you had some nice things to say about a president that you haven't been afraid to criticize when you have disagreed with him, but talk a little bit more about -- i mean, i thought it was striking that tom bossert, the white house homeland security adviser felt the need in the walk-up to hurricane harvey to say he recognized this was a time in american life that people don't have a lot of trust in government institutions but a hurricane is nothing to play politics with. you certainly never did as governor but i wonder if you can
give me your evaluation of how the white house and fema have responded to harvey and how they have supported your state and others in the preparations for irma. >> i think they have done well. i think the president has had the right balance just in terms of his going without creating any kind of distractions from the -- you know, from the recovery efforts. fema has done its job. fema has gotten -- under craig fugates' leadership who was our emergency response director i think has built up really good capabilities. ultimately though this is a bottom up process. you have to have the city of houston and other cities and the city of miami and the county here in the states have to be well resourced, well trained and coordinate and then washington looks pretty good. if the city isn't working well or the county and the state's not working well, no amount of activities by washington's going
to solve the problem. >> obviously i worked for your brother when hurricane katrina hit. i worked for you and was in the emergency management center with you in tallahassee for a couple of the hurricanes in the very beginning of your governorship. but i want to know what keeps people like you up at night. are you most worried about the first responders who may end up in harm's way because of someone who either didn't heed an evacuation order or wasn't able to evacuate, are you most worried about hospitals where obviously there were extreme tragedies that took place in the wake of katrina in new orleans? as someone who has seen sort of the pieces of storm preparation and response that normal civilians will never see, what are you worried about on a day like today? >> i worry about a hundred things. it's incredible just the memories of this. special need shelters need to have generators. so that frail elders that need to have power to be able to have their medicine or to breathe can
be safely taken care of. you need to make sure that when the power goes down that the -- a chlorine necessary to keep the water potable and clean can get to the places that otherwise they won't be able to get to. search and rescue has to be done almost immediately after the storm. there are literally scores of things that you have to focus on and because people here in florida have done this and they're well trained and they're proud of the -- of their efforts it won't be done, you know, by flipping a switch. but there is -- there's a lot of progress. to recover, you need to get the power back on and you need to have gas stations open and schools need to be open and moms and dads need to get back to work. but right now the focus is on preparing for search and rescue and making sure that people understand the severity of this
storm. >> governor, because we cover a president who in president trump who as you predicted is chaotic and he on this day did both prepare for and ensure his administration was prepared and do you have any i told you so efforts that he blindsided republicans and did a deal with the democrats on the debt ceiling? >> i'm not surprised about anything the president says or does. i'm thankful that fema funding was not politicized. but look, we've got -- we have a fiscal crisis in this country that we can keep denying exists, but it exists. we have $20 trillion of debt, $60 trillion of contingent debt with these unfunded programs. no interest in reforming the big things that are necessary. and an inability at least to create pro growth strategies so far. so i would hope the president
would focus on those things and if he can do it in a bipartisan way great. but i think he's going to have to rely on conservatives and republicans to carry out that agenda. that's what he got elected for and i hope he does it. >> all right. we'll have you back on another day to talk mow -- more about those things. thank you for jumping on the phone and please you and your family stay safe. we are joined now by lester holt, anchor of "nbc nightly news" who's in miami beach. lester, what are you seeing in the spirit of cooperation? we have seen stories all day long of people giving the last generator to another customer who was a stranger, people at airports trying to help those who were alone and far away from home. what have you seen since you got on the ground there in miami? >> well, i haven't seen a lot of it here in miami beach, i haven't seen a lot of people. many people have responded to the mandatory evacuation order or those who planned to are still boarding up and making some hard decisions. we have talked to some people who have decided to stay and,
you know, sometimes we tend to hold the folks out as -- you know, making unwise decisions but they have had issues like you know pets they need to take care of. and some other -- you know, items that are personal to them and people tend to go based on history. well, i rode out hurricane x, y or z. i think this is my seventh or eighth hurricane i have covered and they're all different. so it's hard to get into the comparison game. we do it among ourselves as we decide where to position our equipment and the truth is they're unpredictable. that's why this is all so scary. >> lester, you are in a city, in a county, and in a state that's dealt with this before. have you picked up any sort of mood or vibe from the folks that you have encountered that this one might be different? >> sure. i spoke to the fire chief here in miami beach today. we spent some time at one of the firehouses. they're doing something they never had to do which is essentially they're taking fire
equipment off of the seven square mile island, relocate it at a stadium in miami city. and kind of ride this out. the -- officially this city says once the winds get to 40 miles per hour we can't help you anymore in terms of an emergency response. they will not allow the first responders to go out in winds in excess of that speed because of the danger. they're relocating equipment so that they can get back in here quickly when the storm passes. they will leave one station open, it will have two engines, two rescue units and a couple of the guys with a chain saw to be the immediate task force once the winds begin to die down. but during the heart of the storm folks who haven't heeded the mandatory evacuation order risk getting no help at all if they get in trouble. >> lester, this is a hot time of the year in miami, florida, and the power is likely to go out before the storm even makes landfall if the winds are strong enough. are the first responders in a
position to sort of lean on reenforcements? have they set up plans to rest the people on the front line, give them a spell and bring in others from other parts of the state? >> yeah, there's a cooperative agreement. i think the fire chief and four other members of the fire department just returned from texas. they were helping in the recovery from hurricane harvey. then they come home and suddenly they're preparing to defend and do a recovery operation in their own community. and i said do you now expect to see some of those from texas, he said, absolutely. that's the spirit of cooperation. they have done it before. they trained for it. they are there to help each other. i think you will see a massive response here in florida once this blows past. >> we are so lucky to have the first responders who have that spirit of cooperation. lester holt, thank you so much. we'll be watching you on "nbc nightly news." we'll get back to politics on the other side, the breaking
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my fellow americans, as hurricane irma approaches my administration is working closely with our state and local partners to help save lives, protect families and assist those in need. this is a storm of absolutely historic destructive potential. i ask everyone in the storm's path to be vigilant and to heed all recommendations from government officials and law enforcement. when the time comes, we will restore, recover and rebuild together as americans. we will endure and come back stronger than ever before. >> that was an interestingly edited message from president trump to all americans in the path of hurricane irma. the massive cat 4 storm headed for miami as we speak.
the president and first lady have now just arrived at camp david where they'll be joined by members of his cabinet and their spouses as the nation braces for impact. i'd like to bring in my team of reporters on all things president trump. hallie jackson at the white house, with jonathan lemire from the a.p. and now an msnbc reporter. and glenn thrush, white house reporter for "the new york times" and an msnbc contributor. hallie, start us off with how the president is multitasking on this day of a really scary storm bearing down toward the main land. >> no kidding to say the least, nicolle, scary indeed. so let me start with the video that you just showed, the president getting on marine one and heading off to camp david for what you accurately described as this cabinet meeting along with spouses also invited to camp david. the president stopped and took some questions on irma as the reports -- as we were shouting about different things,
including the hurricane. he said we are prepared, he got several briefings about it and his homeland security adviser, and tom bossert did not call it tough love but it was an honest message to floridians that you have to do your part now. the government is doing what it can but at this point the onus is on actual people, the people to get ready and get out if need be and be as prepared as much as possible. he was as focused on the hurricane as much as when harvey hit. when he went down to visit, i had one -- yeah, he got a little bit -- you know, felt for the people. he got the energy out of the people. not that he was happy at all but he really emotionally connects to people in these situations. so i think he has a high interest personally in -- in addition to his job and what's happening with irma barrelling toward florida. and you mentioned that cabinet
meeting and spouses are invited. but do you know who is not going? >> let me guess. mitch m. >> he's going to be in kentucky. >> not free. not available. it's an interesting point about politics because obviously that's the normal instinct. this is no normal president and these are not normal times. let me read you the tweets he sent out as people -- trying to do as he said, which was to heed those evacuation warnings. sorry i have been hearing about repeal and replace for seven years and didn't happen and the filibuster rule will not allow them to pass great legislation. it's a repub death wish. republicans must start the tax reform asap. needed now more than ever, hurry. so the president woke up with a lot of politics on his mind. >> yeah, partly because politics
has been dominating the discussion for the beginning part of the week after he sided with democrats. even though that the nation is focused and rightfully so on what's happening in florida people here in d.c. were talking about the briefing that happened over on capitol hill with the treasury secretary mnuchin and the budget director mulvaney going in and making a pitch to house republicans to vote for this big deal. harvey relief money, raising the debt limit and then keeping the government open. it was not well received at all. which is raising some questions about now the administration sort of point people when it comes to interactions with conservatives on the hill, not just mnuchin who is involved in this, but he's involved in tax reform which is the president's priority. >> hallie jackson, thank you for decoding all things white house for us today. we appreciate it. glenn thrush, i have been dying to is you about the new washington romance between chuck and donnie. tell me what you think. >> chuck and donnie, i like that a lot.
by the way, i love the way that trump pronounces irma. as irmer. which is exactly how chuck schumer pronounces irma. >> interesting. look at you right there on the love connection. right there with me. >> that's it. but look, schumer and donald trump have a better relationship than they have portrayed. it's behooved both of them to do the kabuki thing where they say they're not talking or communicating but the truth of the matter is they have known each for three decades and they have a perfectly fine cordial relationship. they speak the same language. like home cooking to trump. >> let me cut you have. it's like all stormy passionate relationships. it's had its ups and downs. let's look at what the president said about him when he called him crying chuck. >> i noticed chuck schumer yesterday with fake tears. i'm going to ask him who was his acting coach because i know him very well. i don't see him as a crier.
if he is, he's a different man. 5% chance that it was real but i think they were fake tears. >> so not afraid to trash talk. >> but look, there was a 5% chance, nicolle. so apparently that 5% really paid off. these guys just -- the funny thing about it is, trump is allied to those he has nothing in common with. remember the famous line that obama said why he didn't have a beer with mitch mcconnell and he said, would you have a beer with mitch mcconnell? trump has the same issues with mcconnell. they totally don't get along and there's no smarter -- as you know there's no smarter, more clever leveraging operator in washington, d.c. than chuck schumer. once he's in the room, it's hard to get him out of the room. >> ileana, you had incredible
reporting over the last couple of days. take us inside this new reality in washington. >> well, let's see how long it lasts. it's something i have hinted at in my reporting because the president's ability to go from calling him crying chuck with the acting coach and fake tears one day to paling around with him the next day is quintessential trump. deep down, he does feel an affinity for chuck schumer that he doesn't feel for mitch mcconnell. he has exhibited absolutely no interest in leading the republican party in protecting its congressional majorities or serving as its, you know, ideological backbone in any way that's why you see him insulting incumbent republicans who would help firm up republican majorities in the house and in the senate. and he behaves the way he does simply based on who he likes and doesn't like. the fact is he doesn't like mitch mcconnell and paul ryan and they haven't made much of a
secret that they feel similarly about him. what i wonder is he acted the way he did because his interests happened to align with chuck schumer this time. he wanted the debt ceiling lifted and he wanted harvey relief to texas very quickly and he wanted to clear those things away so that republicans can focus over the next three months on tax reform. the question that was left in my mind is has he weakened his negotiating position with republicans by making himself an untrustworthy and unreliable negotiating partner with them at a time when he may need it most because i think he wants to be in a strong negotiating position with his fellow republicans going into these tax negotiations. >> let me bring in my table here. jonathan lemire and bret stevens. first, where does this leave paul ryan? yesterday the image of a paul
ryan who had a previously scheduled event where he sort of came out with his tail between his leagues and conceded that his statement calling the deal that ultimately passed i think ridiculous or disgraceful i think was the word he used was the deal that the president did. how does he now -- i mean, he had dinner with him last night. tell us what you know about the state of play between paul ryan and donald trump. >> the contrast between paul ryan grimacing through the answers yesterday, contrast that with nancy pelosi who was jubilant saying -- >> well, she was literally pulling the strings and getting donald trump to tweet. >> i asked him to tweet something and he did it. >> paul ryan -- >> i don't think general kelly -- >> she seems to have the magic touch. >> takes a woman. >> that's right. the relationship between paul ryan and donald trump not very good. the speaker withdrew his support after the "access hollywood" tape. they started to work better early on in the trump administration. but trump has told people around him that he remains furious at
the speaker for having him go with health care first. that he would promised him an easy win, that initial house bill, that this would be a way to get some momentum and it fell apart and he's blamed him ever since, and especially since the release of reince priebus, they speak far less. and these days, they speak far less frequently. >> bret? >> look, i think donald trump is doing one of his classic moves which is sort of brilliant stupid. it's brilliant in the sense that it gives him this short term political advantage. it puts the republicans in congress off balance. it makes them worried about his loyalties. it gives trump the appearance of being sort of above politics. but it's stupid because can you imagine the democratic party in any way swinging behind the
trump administration? so the net result for the president politically is he loses conservatives especially on the right, the freedom caucus conservatives, but he's not going to gain the democrats. it's a worst of both world situation for him. so this is a classic trump play and it's going to end in tears for him. >> we have reporting that the president has told people close to him he's been thrilled with the coverage of the media coverage of this week. that he likes the idea of being the bipartisan deal maker. that he was able to sort of be unconventional and make a deal across the aisle and they felt comfortable doing that and he's told people around him, and told chuck schumer and nancy pelosi that he was thrilled with that. >> i talked to someone who saw him yesterday. he was practically singing zippy doo dah around the white house. >> look, president trump had an opportunity to be something more than just classic republican and he's right in complaining that paul ryan's insistence on doing health care first was a disaster
for him. if he had led with a big infrastructure bill you would have seen many democrats, especially sharrod brown -- >> like the highway bill. >> and the democrats talk about infrastructure all the time and there's a genuine need for this country and i don't see the elizabeth warrens or the sharrod browns saying he's not so bad. >> exactly. stay put. we're simply hitting pause. when we come back we'll talk about steve bannon's little black book.
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billy bush saturday to me is a litmus test. and i said it the other day to general kelly during the charlottesville thing afterwards. it's a line i remember from the movie the wild bunch. william hold enuses it right before the human gun fight at the end. when you side with a man, you side with him. okay? the good and the bad. you can criticize him behind, but when you side with him, you have to side with him. and that's what billy bush weekend showed me. billy bush saturday showed me who really had donald trump's back to play to his better angles. all you had to do and what he did was go out and continue to talk to the american people. people didn't care. they knew donald trump was just doing locker room talk with a guy and they dismissed it. it had no lasting impact on the campaign, yet it you see the mainstream media that day, it was literally he was falling into dan take's inferno.
>> you took names, didn't you. >> you know i'm irish. i've got to get my black book and i've got them. christy was not looked at for a cabinet position. >> he wasn't there for you on billy bush weekend so therefore he doesn't get a cabinet position. >> i told him the plane leaves at 11:00 in the mortgage. if you're on the plane, you're on the team. didn't make the plane. >> well, and ultimately steve bannon didn't make the cut. he's out. so i think when you side with the man, u the no know what's to tell him when he's being a pig. this is a crazy talk for a guy -- >> the ego mania is impressive. >> and people who are really smart don't talk like that. >> also steve bannon hasn't been entirely loyal to the president either especially since he left the white house and there was a talk of breitbart carrying on the trump message even if the president was going to deviate from it. but even if he's trying to help, how does a comment like that
actually help the president get his agenda, other than to remind us of who donald trump surrounded himself with in -- during his campaign for six months of office. >> how did you mean does he look if chris christee at some point entds up in the administration. >> it's possible. >> it's trump. anything is possible. chuck schumer could do, i guess. >> make ago a definitive statement about this president is a fool's errand. you just never know. he and christee have a personal rapport. it is a truism in the trump world that you're out but you're never really out. he still talks to his former advisers. he still talks to chris christee sometimes. >> he fired corey lewandowski -- >> they talk all the time. these are people who may leave the white house but they don't leave his orbit. >> he just could not quit his advisers which means he won't quit steve bannon either. i wonder with talk like that with reporting that he set up sort of a breitbart embassy and is advising the kind of republicans that would like to oust paul ryan and mitch
mcconnell. how that squares with the new relationship with schumer and pelosi, who must be more offensive to sort of trump nationalists than even sustainment republicans. >> well, yeah. and, you know, bannon in his previous, previous, previous in-car nation predicted that that was going to happen. you know, the last time i checked no one won a congressional medal of honor for defending a man for committing sexual harassment. i've checked -- >> bar is a little higher. >> i think i've read profiles in courage and there isn't a chapter on the "access hollywood" thing. >> does it surprise you -- i mean, i remember and you both have extraordinary reporters. you both covered that crisis, but i was talking to folks in the room that weekend, and i mean, reince priebus was the one that wanted -- that thought that trump might have to pull off the ticket. he i think out lasted or i guess he didn't out last steve bannon, but he certainly made it pretty high up in trump world, became the white house chief of staff. so i mean, this idea that bannon
kept a list and checked is it twice and no one got it, it's just ludicrous. >> i'll tell you what bannon didn't keep a list of, how to implement an executive order on a travel ban. because when steve bannon actually had the controls, you know, he crashed the plane on this stuff. so, you know, the thing about him is look how long are we going to continue to pretend that this guy is ras putin when he is kind of sitting up there in the mansion, the breitbart mansion. and let us not forget, steve bannon is indeed a self made man. he's been extraordinarily successful and he's a great positively elm cyst. but he's also essentially an agent of the mercer family. so steve bannon is a go who always has a patron. donald trump used to be his patron. and now the mercer family, you know, are his patrons. so if it bhoofs the mercer family and steve bannon to attack donald trump, they will. so the notion that he's sitting up there, outside of the white house, sometimes taking shots at the president, sometimes
defending him and then portraying himself as this great external wing man just doesn't make any sense at all. >> and he also has a bit of a cofend ens. if you look at figures who have endured in sort of conservative media, they haven't been codependent on a single politician. and i don't know who steve bannon is without trump to sort of as the canvas on which he paints. >> well, and before trump it was sarah palin and then it was the tea party and ted cruz, rand paul. >> i remember. >> so, look, i have to roll my eyes a little bit at "60 minutes" devoting air time to this guy. >> me too. >> people who are powerful don't talk about how powerful they are all the time. but i have to say, nicolle, i think steve bannon in the clip you've shown dances around something important, which is there are far too many trump cabinet members or senior advisers who go out and publicly criticize this president without actually resigning from the administration. the way it's done, i think, in previous times is you do those things privately and if you really have a problem that you can't stomach with, you resign.
and i think that that's what we should see more of from these guys rather than have this president tolerate these guys going public with their criticisms and keeping their jobs. >> that's so interesting because after charlottesville i heard from aides who said, listen, i could have been a hero, walked out, submitted my resignation, life would have been better but i kept my head down and did my job. none of them agreed with his response to charlottesville. none of them agreed with the "access hollywood" tape. let me come back to you on this question of where we go from here. donald trump now sort of basking in the glow of his bipartisanship iness with chuck and nancy. what happens next? >> well, next, of course, is going to be the response to the team. he largely got high marks for the hurricane in texas, how he handled that, we should see what happens in the coming days. he'll be watching it from camp david. i would fully expect he'll make a trip to florida a few days from now once this storm passes.
as always, the russia probe is the dark cloud on the horizon. in the past we know this about the trump. when these bad about russia start kicking up. he tends to start lashing out. what we're seeing today could very well are provoke another response from them in the coming days. >> it just reminds me there's a caught of inspector could you sew here. he's the only one that takes himself seriously. >> thank you. that does it for hour hour. i'm nicolle wallace. our thoughts and prayers with the folks in florida. "mtp daily" starts right now. hi, katy. >> nicolle, thank you very much. good evening. i'm katy tur in new york in for chuck todd. welcome to "mtp daily" where we are keeping track of a monster hurricane just miles off the florida coast.