tv MSNBC Live MSNBC September 24, 2017 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
i'm just telling you from my standpoint, i think it's very disrespectful to our country. thank you all very much. >> [ indiscernible ]. >> all right. so there we hear the president fielding some questions about the nfl controversy that he started by calling players that would protest during the national anthem an s.o.b. that needs to be fired. he is saying that the flag needs to be respected. also about a player's first amendment rights he feels that they deserve the right -- let's listen in. >> but i understand he never took that -- >> flying from new york back to d.c. -- >> you have to ask him about that. now as far as secretary price is concerned, that's different. we're looking into its. >> do you respect the investigation -- >> always. always. thank you very much. >> all right. so the president coming back to take questions on the matter of
his health and human as much as secretary tom price who has been using private jets to get around the country to different events. costing the american taxpayer hundreds of thousands of dollars in contrast to bookings on either a train or commercial flights that would have cost a lot less. the secretary has said that he will not be using private jet travel any further while this matter is further investigated. we know it's going to be a big week for the president when its comes to health -- it comes to health care especially for the graham/cassidy bill that most on the left are against. 48 senators and many on the right are uncommitted to. so it has a very weak chance of going through. we know that john mccain came out against it and his good friend, lindsey graham on friday. which doesn't bode so well for other senators like a rand paul or susan collins or lisa murkowski to follow. also, the other question that the president walked away from there, not answering, was about
the new headline reporting that jared kushner had been using a private e-mail account. his son-in-law doing this to communicate with other top administration officials in the white house. and this latest news is coming days after the president resurrected calls that the russia investigation is a hoax. >> by the way, folks, just in case you're curious. no, russia did not help me. okay? russia. i call it the russian hoax. >> the russian hoax. so kushner's lawyer has downplayed this latest news saying to politico fewer than a hundred e-mails from january through august were either sent to or returned by mr. kushner to colleagues in the white house from his personal e-mail account. joining me now is the author of that piece, political white house reporter josh dawsey and with me, ken dilanian and malcolm nance and a cultural reporter for "the new york times."
i don't any he's here anymore. is he here? no. all right. josh, let's begin with you though. this was the head line that got our attention. how did you tipped off to this and what do we know about the e-mail account? >> sure. mr. kushner started it in december, to family -- it's a family e-mail account. his wife, ivanka, is on the server as well. he's used it periodically to correspond with officials like reince priebus, steve bannon. others in the white house. and he's used it kind of simultaneously with his official white house account which he also uses. >> so josh, are you saying that it's a private server as well as a private e-mail account? >> right. we're saying he set up the account in december. we have not been able to get a lot of answers from his people on what the security is of the account, why he set up the account, and, you know, kind of a situation surrounding it. but it could be that there was a secure server, we don't know
that. >> because of the security clearances, josh, which kushner has received, obviously the content of these e-mails, whether they are high level would be of great interest. if they're benign just forwarding link, there's a big difference of how that e-mail and the intent of it was being used. what are you reporting via politico? >> that's the thing, we don't know what is in the e-mails. we know there are more than a thousand e-mails on the server, some to friends, to family. to other associates. white house officials. we can acknowledge there's interest from others in finding out what's in the accounts but right now the details of exactly what he sent are a little vague. >> ken, how big of a deal is this for jared kushner knowing that bob mueller has such an autonomous reach into this administration? >> i think it depends, thomas. there are a couple of laws that are implicated here. the president's record act, the
federal records act and there are penalties for misavoiding the use of a government e-mail account to sort of prevent the records from becoming a public record. you know, as long as people have used official e-mail accounts there are attempts to evade having their e-mail become official records going back to the bush administration. there was an issue about several bush officials using rnc accounts and communicating that way so i guess it depends on if there was an intent to deceive here. kushner's lawyer said it was mainly news accounts exchanged. he sort of portrayed it as inact news. >> and ivanka trump as we know she has a role inside the white house was also someone listed with this e-mail account or the same type of domain. explain that. >> sure. so she has an account on the family domain as well. just like he does. we know she's corresponded with
a lot of folks from her account. we don't know the extent of her white house contacts from that account. when they set up the domain back in december, she was not a white house official at the time. he was planning to take a role in the administration. she was not. she later decided to do it several months down the line. so it's unclear if she has done the same thing he has here. no evidence to prove she has. >> all right. so that's a big distinction right there. malcolm, talk about the implications of the senior adviser to the president that would conduct business through a private e-mail account? is that very serious or kind of innocuous? >> no, this is very serious. and let's put it in context with hillary clinton. hillary clinton at the time was secretary of state and they had a compromised communications network at the state department. validated, compromised by foreign hackers. she had it in a skiff within a residence under the control of the secret service. now we're talking about is a
person with a top secret clearance, with access to the president and with his briefings and with his own private account. we know that mueller investigation at some point is going to look at that story about jared kushner going to the russians and asking for secure communications channel using the russian embassy's crypto graphic systems to communicate in the back channel. but the first thing that anybody is going to want to know, they want to know do we have a person who may have inadvertently leaked information out on this unclassified network who had access to the highest level of secrets in the united states? and they're going to want to see is there a tie-in between the two stories? so i think the mueller investigation will handle part of this. >> okay. so i apologize for messing up your name and my dyslexia kicking in a minute ago. >> not at all. >> but you cover culture at "the
times." i know you're a sports fan and i want your take away about the president and the fact he's talking about the nfl and the fact he believes this is an issue of respect for players that would take a knee or somehow protest during the anthem and he's sticking by his guns on this. >> here's what's so interesting about donald trump. there's been no president in history who has had such a pop culture crossover not even ronald reagan. donald trump has been involved with a lot of -- he has a star on the hollywood walk of fame. while in office, he was an executive producer of a primetime show. he's been in numerous television shows and movie shows and crossover to sports. he was involved in the usfl. he tried to buy the bills a couple of years ago. so there's always been this crossover with donald trump. but on top of that what makes donald trump interesting is that he's also willing to comment on everything. i remember i covered the trump campaign as one of the campaign embeds for another network and we'd be at a press conference,
he's taking questions on tom brady, kanye west, who he invited to the trump tower with steve harvey. he's a product of pop culture and a consumer of pop culture and that also involves sports. to your point something you said earlier in the last hour was that donald trump is everywhere. and politics is everywhere. politics and sports -- this is not the first time they have mixed. bill russell, jim brown, muhammad ali. in the '90s you had craig hodges so sports and politics have gone hand in hand in some way shape or form. and you saw jimmy kimmel last week and health care but it seems more than ever that norm is being broken in that it seems more prevalent than ever before. >> it really does. and the contrasts that are happening from this administration and from this president, the kind of insert politics into all avenues of what you say, you know, it's happened before. but it seems like we can't
escape it at any turn. we'll continue to follow this, josh. great work over at politico. thank you so much. great to see you as always. so we'll take a look at the legal side of all of this. i want to bring in alan dershowitz, harvard law school professor emeritus and an author. great to have you with me. so we've got jared kushner and through his lawyer confirming the fact of using a private e-mail that was set up after they won. right? the trump team winning and they did this in december. how problematic is it? >> i think it's an exampl of hypocrisy on both sides. the democrats are saying, oh, what he did is worse. the republicans are going to is a say no no, what hillary did is worse. neither is criminal. both are worthy of discussion.
let's see where the evidence leads. what we have to have is a single standard and we have not criminalize everything that we disagree with. we have to put it in the political context. if you don't like what he did, don't vote for his candidate. but don't try to use the criminal justice system to settle political grievances. >> when it comes to that and there's incremental truth telling from members of this team that now occupy the white house, is this a sign of any type of intent to evade what investigators may have already been on to in terms of e-mails that were of regular use as a way to create a way of communication around regular norms? >> i can't imagine anything more foolish than trying to evade mueller by using a personal e-mail. obviously the fbi and the investigators are going to get every e-mail that's relevant. in fact, more likely you can claim executive privilege if you use the white house e-mail than if you're using a private
e-mail. so it doesn't sound to me like it was done for evasive purposes. probably if it was done for the same reason that hillary clinton did it, for convenience. >> so how different is this though? as you're saying if it was done for convenience, if they ran on a lock her up message, and you mentioned the hypocrisy, wouldn't they have come up with a better way? >> you would think so. but both sides are into the lock them up mentality. if we disagree with you, lock you up. people think i'm a trump supporter because i don't think what he's done is a crime. i would be doing the same thing if hillary clinton were president and they were going after her for her e-mails. we have to have a single standard and that must be criminal justice is the last resort. do everything political you only get to the criminal part of it if there's clear evidence of an intent to commit a statutory felony that exists today under the law. i don't see any evidence of that on either side. >> when it comes to bob mueller and the investigation that's
been triggered do you think he has standing to be in the position in which he sits? >> no. i don't think that investigating the russian influence on presidential election should have been a matter of a special counsel. it should have been a 9/11 type commission, nonpartisan. in which the american public sees everything. having a special counsel means everything is done behind closed door, grand jury -- >> what if it's done by the fbi like it was and then the fbi director is fired? >> that's the question. you have to also ask the question, why didn't the fbi -- why did the fbi director selectively leak that there's an investigation of hillary clinton and not an investigation of the trump campaign? a single standard of justice is the key. you cannot have justice if there are different standards for republicans and democrats and that's what i insist on every time i speak. >> got to ask you about the freedom of speech versus patriotism issue because that's what the president has delivered
to us since friday night on alabama. how do you think he's handled it? >> not very well. i don't like sitting down for the national anthem. i would don't it. i don't think it -- i think it backfires. i think it would have been so much better in the players had put their right hand up, maybe worn a black glove like at the olympics. that says we're protesting racial injustice. sitting out for the national anthem says we're protesting united states of america. and that does offend soldiers and other people reasonably, holding up the right hand or the left hand with a black glove would have been a specific focused protest. i don't think anybody could complain about that. >> they have to learn their history. alan dershowitz, thousand. we have the president going toe to toe with the members of the sports world and he's calling out nfl players who take a knee during the playing of the national anthem before a sports game. so a short time ago the president reacted to the uproar he's created before boarding air force one, now safely back in
washington, d.c. take a listen. we don't have it but he feels it's disable for players that would stand up to honor the national anthem. we have watched the president not only through his words via the interviews but also tweets that have triggered league wide response by nfl stars, players and interlocking their arms and others kneeling in a show of solidarity against what the president had to say. they have offered up individual first amendment rights for all to see. some like the steelers though and the seahawks and the titans they chose to stay in the locker rooms and avoid the political parlor games and not have to pick a side. the display is a real direct response to the president's friday night comments. here's what he said. >> get that son of a -- off the field right now, out. he's fired. he's fired!
>> all right that was before a friday night rally in alabama. but the treasury secretary, steve mnuchin was on the morning shows today and backing the president and the owners' rights to fire players. >> the owners should have a rule that players should have to stand in respect for the national anthem. this isn't about democrats or republicans, it's not about race. it's not about free speech. they can do free speech on their own time. >> and nfl commissioner roger goodell tweeted out this morning we will air this unity spot in tonight's game. it reflects the unifying force of our great game, our players and clubs. this was an original spot that aired during the super bowl. that was in february of 2017. so they're bringing it back now. for more reaction on this, and what's taking place out at game day around the country for fans of the nfl, the raiders are scheduled to play the redskins in a bit. so mike, what are you hearing from folks and players especially have taken the stand today around the country, around
the world. but fans, are they inspired by this or do they want to see football? >> i think it's a mixed bag. right now, what they want to do is tailgate and drink some beer or whatever else they're drinking. the party is in full swing, no question about it. and a lot of people would rather just focus on football frankly. those -- many of the people i spoke with. many ambivalent. some people are reluctant to talk about it. others coming down foursquare on one side or the other. you alluded to president trump. he was in bedminster from his vacation, coming back to washington on the tarmac. he said there's nothing -- his remarks on friday night -- his remarks on friday night had nothing to do with race, but respect for our country. now, a lot of people here are behind the president. although some of those i spoke with did not like the tone that he used and in particular calling colin kaepernick an s.o.b. although obviously he elucidated
that point a little bit more fully. others say they're behind these -- the kneeling -- take a knee, the #foursquare. i talked to some raider fans who are here for the game. this is the washington redskins and oakland raiders in primetime on nbc news who said they planned to stay in their seats as a show of solidarity. others say that they -- the redskin fans i talked to some of whom their family has had season tickets here for the redskins when they were at rfk stadium, since 1962, say they're considering boycotting the game because they are tired of politics intruding on sports. they're out here. they simply want to have a good time. and when you consider some of the sports owners including nfl owners like robert kraft of the new england patriots, consider the fact that kraft has given donald trump money for his inauguration and political purposes, and yet, out today with a strong statement backing the players and their first amendment right to kneel before games. so a mixed bag here.
a lot of mixed messages. this however is an issue that has exploded and that fuse was lit by president trump on friday night in alabama. thomas? >> mike viqueira, we hear the tailgating going on behind you. take a break. you can go and enjoy yourself for a moment. we'll talk to you shortly is. joining us is marvin washington and eugene monroe. guys, great to have you with me. marvin, the reaction to the president's comments, and the fact that he wants to stick by the fact that he feels it's disrespectful. what do you say? >> 45 is never going to apologize for anything. and this, you know, ray charles saw this coming. could have seen this coming because when i heard about the comments friday night, i knew this would happen. i said it would permeate through the college, pro and high school level. but it didn't saturday, but sunday we have seen it today. i don't understand why he poured fire -- i mean, poured gasoline on this fire like this because he's reignited this whole deal,
man. and it's push back and it should be. >> eugene, the president talked about seeing solidarity today. the solidarity is definitely in contradiction, a defiance of what he had to say on friday night. the president has also been on twitter though criticizing the game for being boring. saying they have driven fans away because of colin kaepernick's style protests. how do you think that is really kind of down playing the importance of a player's platform to stand up, whether they believe in hurricane relief or racial injustice? >> well, athletes have always enjoyed this platform. and again, you know, these are people, right, these are real people with families and with mothers who are not bitches, our president is out of line here. it's time for us to be even more vocal about this and i'm glad at to see the solidarity on the field.
to see owners like shaq khan holding hands with his players. this is important to demonstrate this. these players are speaking it ofor a reason. their families are affected. they're affected personally. we see stories like this with michael ben net earlier this year. i hope there's a continued effort to speak out about it. people are upset about the methods by which they tend to protest, but these are all peaceful demonstrations so, you know, we have the freedom of speech, the freedom to speak out about the issues. again, these are people, while fans might want the players to be quiet on this thing, again, you know, these athletes that are going on the field are dealing with some heavy issues. so, you know, let's get this out in the open. let's talk about it. let's demonstrate that unity amongst the players. amongst the fans. amongst our country and again, the president is out of line with those statements. you know? it's -- he's continually
disrespecting women. calling you know players mothers -- out of their names. again we can't have that kind of behavior from the person at the top of the food chain. >> well, when we think about how say the seahawks or the titans, marvin, got out of the line of fire here, like the steelers did first they decided not to come out of the locker room. they wouldn't get into this political mess. do you think they did a favor to themselves? >> no, i think they made their statement by not coming out. and, you know, everybody's protesting in different ways whether you're holding hands or taking the knee or not coming out at all, this is solidarity. this is first time i have seen nfl owners, players, roger goodell all united behind the cause. so you're going to see more of this. wait until the nba starts. you will see more of this. because trump brings out such a strong reaction on both sides. but, you know, what he did friday like eugene said is
disconcerting and it's -- he crossed the line. >> well, we'll add, you know, this crossing over into baseball with the first player -- >> bruce maxwell, yeah. i saw that. >> and the fact that colin kaepernick remains a free agent. eugene, what do you think this does for his potential to come back to the nfl? do you ever see that happening or is he on a different path now? >> at this point, you know, it doesn't look like he's going to have that opportunity and it's unfortunate. but you know he might be on a path to have a much bigger impact than he had on the field. what happened to him is horrendous. and the players understand this and continue to stand, you know, in support of him. as well as i do. so you know, it's unfortunate but i hope that people will see, you know, how egregious this is. see the need to understand our differences and find a solution.
and come together in unity, like the nfl players are trying to demonstrate on the field today. >> marvin, do you think though if they thought that colin kaepernick could win games, right, complete faith in him he could win games that he'd be employable? >> you know what, i thought that narrative was before the season. and during training camp because i always have been taught that winning is the most important thing in the nfl. but i see it's not. because you can't tell me there's 99 quarterbacks that are better than colin kaepernick. you have guys who haven't played in the league for four or five years and they're getting signed and he's still on the sideline. but like eugene said he might have a bigger platform and it's not all about winning if you have one unemployed because of his political believes. >> do you think it's hypocritical to see different owners, general managers coming out in solidarity with their players and the freedom of speech issue and knowing that the guy that basically started it all and drew a lot of
condemnation is still out of work? >> it's very hypocritical. again, unfortunately, you have to expect this type of response from the nfl ownership. mine -- i mean, how could you not stand with your athletes at a time like this? it was a predictable response. hopefully it was genuine but there's you know a cause to think that this could, you know, have some hypocrisy. >> i would like to see solidarity. if they want real solidarity, sign colin kaepernick to a team. it's beyond belief he is not signed. >> yeah. thank you very much. next time you're here, we need a bigger desk, marvin. >> i'm not that big. >> i don't know. i don't know. it's a big place here at 30 rock. thank you, i appreciate your time. we also want to give you an update about this news out of tennessee. the breaking news, a gunman opening fire at a church killing
one woman, injuring seven others. we have the latest on the ground straight ahead. managing blood sugar is a series of smart choices. and when you replace one meal... ...or snack a day with glucerna... ...made with carbsteady... ...to help minimize blood sugar spikes... ...you can really feel it. now with 30% less carbs and sugars. glucerna.
throughout history, the one meal when we come together, break bread, share our day and connect as a family. [ bloop, clicking ] and connect, as a family. just, uh one second voice guy. [ bloop ] huh? hey? i paused it. bam, family time. so how is everyone? find your awesome with xfinity xfi and change the way you wifi.
so breaking news we have been following out of tennessee. that's where at least one person is dead after a gunman opened fire at a church outside of nashville. this happened in the town of antioch 20 miles south of the city and it remains active. here's what one said as the shots rang out. >> the guy came from the right side of the church and he was just shooting. just shooting. he came out to shoot more. >> could you see his face? >> he had a mask. >> joining us now, nbc news justice correspondent pete williams has more information about the alleged gunman and where the investigation stands now. >> reporter: thomas, the sunday morning service had just ended at burnette chapel church of
christ, when a man jumped out with the engine of his car still running. investigators said he was armed with a handgun and he shot and killed a woman who was coming out of the church. then they say he went inside and opened fire. the church usher tackled the gunman who beat him with a pistol and then the gunman shot himself. probably not intentionally in the chest. police say that injured usher, 22-year-old robert engle ran to his car, got a gun and went back inside to make sure no further shots were fired while waiting for the police to arrive. the nashville police chief anderson said that engel is a hero. six others were shot inside the church. all of them adults. four in their 40s. two in their 80s. they have been taken to the nearby hospital and tonight the
gunman is a man from nearby murfreesboro. he will face murder and attempted murder charges and the nashville police haven't said why think think this happened, but the fbi will soon open a separate civil rights investigation looking at whether race was the motive. thomas? >> pete williams, thank you very much. straight ahead for you we'll have more about the president versus the nfl. fresh tweet from the president pushing back on the attacks of what he thinks nfl players should do as proper protests and what they should feel is access to their own free rights. you know, freedom of speech and their first amendment rights -- there it is, sports fans should never condone players that do not stand proud for their national anthem or their country. nfl should change the policy. meanwhile, we just watched him walk into the white house where he was asked by reporters, is he going to ask his supporters to boycott the nfl and he said no. then we just got this tweet. okay. we're back in a moment. we may be one of the world's most familiar companies,
but we make more than our name suggests. we're an organic tea company. a premium juice company. a coconut water company. we've got drinks for long days. for birthdays. for turning over new leaves. and we make them for every moment in every corner of the country. we are the coca-cola company, and we're proud to offer so much more. if you have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis,... ...isn't it time to let the real you shine through? maybe it's time for otezla (apremilast). otezla is not an injection or a cream. it's a pill that treats plaque psoriasis differently. with otezla, 75% clearer skin is achievable after just 4 months,...
...with reduced redness,... ...thickness, and scaliness of plaques. and the otezla prescribing information has... ...no requirement for routine lab monitoring. don't use if you're allergic to otezla. otezla may cause severe diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting. tell your doctor if these occur. otezla is associated with an increased... ...risk of depression. tell your doctor if you have... ...a history of depression... ...or suicidal thoughts,... ...or if these feelings develop. some people taking otezla... ...reported weight loss. your doctor should monitor your weight and may stop treatment. other side effects include upper... ...respiratory tract infection and headache. tell your doctor about all the medicines you take... ...and if you're pregnant or planning to be. ask your dermatologist about otezla today. otezla. show more of you. and life's beautiful moments.ns get between you flonase outperforms the #1 non-drowsy allergy pill. it helps block 6 key inflammatory substances that cause symptoms. pills block one and 6 is greater than 1. flonase changes everything.
stoking of this controversy recreated friday night in alabama. attacking nfl players who would kneel during the playing of the national an they want. -- anthem. so the latest tweet, sports fans should never condone players that do not stand proud for their national anthem of their country. the nfl should change policy. this is major pushback though from athletes of how we witnessed their performances today during the national anthem. on the sidelines whether they have locked arms or taken a knee. owners are speaking out and in buffalo, several players on the bills and the broncos, they all took a knee as well. the high level donors of the president is fighting back and one specific statement from bob kraft, the owner of the patriots saying there's no greater unifier in this country than sports and unfortunately nothing more divisive than politics. i support the right to peacefully affect social change and raise awareness in a manner
they feel is more impactful. we know that kraft gave 1 million bucks to the inaugural celebrations of president trump. here he is talking about bob kraft earlier. >> i like bob very much, he's my friend. but he gave me a super bowl ring a month ago. so he's a good friend of mine. when you get on your knee and you don't respect the american flag or the anthem, that's not being treated with respect. >> joining me now are christina grier, associate professor of political science at fordham science and robert traynham, msnbc analyst. christina, let me start with you. the president has said that, you know, when talking about john mccain that he prefers you know heroes that aren't captured, prefers people that aren't captured. and now he's going after sports players who are trying to use their platform to raise awareness to certain issues within our country in a peaceful manner without calling people out. what do you say to how the
president has kind of poked a stick in a bee hive where he doesn't have a lot of business being? >> well, i mean, we know that this president refuses to prioritize and actually focus on what's happening in areas of the american public that he should be concentrating on. i mean, keep in mind, right now we have 3.5 million american citizens in the u.s. virgin islands and puerto rico who don't have electricity. we haven't heard anything from donald trump in the past four days about that at all. here he is now, where he can't not talk about things. you know, he's still sore about not being able to take over the buffalo bill 2014 and he lost. it was an embarrassing move for him. we know that he is a white supremacist and i think that is evidenced by several things he has done in the past 50 years and what he's definitely done in the past eight months. so he sees the nfl with black players and white owners and he doesn't understand why his friends, these owners, aren't
taking charge and making sure that these boys or s.o.b.s aren't put in line. you know, to be really honest, really it's frustrating that the media and so many people who are discussing this issue keep saying it's about the flag. it's not about the flag. colin kaepernick and so many other members of the nfl, the wnba and all the other sports teams have knelt to protest anti-black racism and police brutality. it is not about the flag or the national anthem. it is during that moment as quiet reflection as citizens and if the president had read the constitution which we are guaranteed he has not, he would know the first amendment right gives them the very right to do this. this is why people go to war to fight for our freedoms so he's trying to make it about military personnel. they're men and women, people of color, african-americans, latinos, asians, whites. not just white men who served in the military so when he's trying to set up this racialized
dichotomy of good versus bad, kneelers versus the military personnel who served the country it's a false narrative, a lie and needs to be called out. >> when we think of the percentage of minority members of sports teams, to the -- you know, caucasian ratio it's about 80% to 20% of the minority athletes that make up the teams and the power that they have in terms of unifying their voice. we have seen that team, robert and a lot of people were not sticking up for colin kaepernick and we know that the owners decided that he was unemployable because of the fact that he did want to protest. do you think that this situation of drawing attention to colin kaepernick and his cause is really going to work in the favor of people having a better conversation where it needs to be, on racial injustice and police brutality. things that have fallen by the wayside. >> i agree with you. a lot of this has fall on the wayside, but can i back up for a
second. the president is very unpredictab unpredictable. but he's very predictable. he's stoking the fire, he does that when he knows he's going to lose on a particular topic. we know 48 hours from he's going to lose the health care vote. what the president does very well and predictable is going to his base and stoking that base and to your point, thomas, this is probably group number 20 that he's offended whether it's john mccain, whether it's lindsey graham, gold star families. it doesn't matter. what the president is doing is very predictable. he's kind of like crazy like a fox and this is not really -- i mean it's about race in many ways because i think he's clearly trying to stoke the flames here a little bit. but i think he's extremely manipulative. and i think he knows exactly what he's doing by doing these tweets the way he's doing them and sitting obviously on the tarmac of air force one. >> all right. thank you all very much.
yes, crazy like a fox for sure. also in 48 hours the alabama special election. you know he's betting on luther strange and most people think judge roy moore will take it. thank you very much. joining us now is the actor jesse williams. maybe best known to you as one of the doctors on the hit show "grey's anatomy" but his acceptance speech last year where he spoke out on racial inequality shows his advocacy in real life is no act. >> the burden of the brutalized is not to comfort the bystander. that's not our job. all right. stop with that. if you have a critique for the resistance, then you better have an established record of critique of our oppression. if you have no interest, if you have no interest in equal rights for black people do not make suggestions to those who do. sit down. >> all right. so as we have been showing you athletes across the nation are taking a stand against president trump's attack about players using free speech to protest
racism in this country especially when they are at their most prominent. on the field, about to play a football game. so jesse williams is here to discuss the growing number of public figures standing up for what they believe in. great to have you with us. a we saw -- as we saw from the speech at the b.e.t. awards, you said it's not the role of people trying to draw attention, but to comfort the bystander. do you think enough people are exposing themselves and i mean that by if they aren't going to speak out on this that their silence is deafening when it comes to roll call basically. >> well, thanks for having me. i think that we need to be sure to not let trump do what he often does which is distract us from what's actually happening. this all began with a player who decided to protest in the most nonconfrontational way possible. it was essentially -- he was essentially white balled from the league. not based on skill, but because
he decided to kneel. what so often happens those who are oppressed are forced to identify the oppression and then protest about it. we know that owners are blocking colin kaepernick from playing football. he was essentially not allowed to be employed because of his political views. so we'd like them to speak out about it. that's who i'd like to hear talk not players who also have, you know, their own agenda. there are so many of them. yes, i think -- obviously i'm for, you know, speaking truth to power whenever possible. but i want us not to lose sight there's an entire league of people, owners, blocking this man and others from being able to fulfill their dreams and do what they have been able to do. this league is rife with mediocre white quarterbacks that are not as good as colin kaepernick. >> isn't that the odd part of this, because so many owners are forced to come out, even bob kraft who is friends with the president to say how disappointed they are in the tone of the president.
yet, they know right from wrong. they know what they have done is to exclude somebody who was trying to use their platform in as you say and point out, you know, peaceful nonconfrontational way to draw some highlight to an issue that they felt was important. do you think this is going to put the onus squarely on the owners to bring back colin kaepernick or do you think he's too hot to handle? >> well, that to me -- in the eye of the beholder whether he's too hot to handle. i think there's a level of cowardice in the ownership class on this particular topic. but i would like us to stay focused on that, on the owners. i think we have a perception that athletics is entirely a meritocracy and the nfl proves and the positions that are more cerebral that we not. we know what seven or eight owners gave donald trump $1 million each and are friends with a horrible guy who thinks
he's a dictator, who treats america like it's a game show. we need to stand and pledge for the allegiance and this anthem thing is a scam. this is not part of football. this was invented in 2009 from the government paying the nfl to market military recruitment. to get more people to fight wars to die. this is not -- nothing to do with the nfl or the american pastime or tradition. this is to get boys and girls to go fly overseas and go kill people. >> right. >> they're marketing and pumping millions of dollars into the nfl to get us to put on a pageant in front of the nfl football games to get you to go off and fight. >> it's not totally steeped in our nation's history or a long format of patriotism when it comes to fans showing up at sporting events certainly for nfl games. but we were listening to the president earlier, jesse, being asked because he's gone out on twitter and asking people to boycott and then confronted by
reporters asking whether or not fans should boycott the game. if they feel that players aren't standing up for the anthem. take a listen to this. this was moments ago. >> -- calling on your supporters -- >> the nfl has to work out their own problems. their numbers are way down and this is a big reason. >> are you calling on your supporters to boycott -- >> not at all. they can do whatever they want. >> they can do whatever they want and then he goes inside the white house and we get a tweet, saying sports fans should never condone players who do not stand proud for their country or anthem. the nfl should change policy. so it's kind of this gas lighting of reversal of statements. so you're so confused you don't know your up from down on this. >> that's the hope. >> the president has take up on a powerful community in terms of pro athletes that are role
models that are being asked to pick a side right now. do you think that that's fair for say just regular -- they're not regular, i mean, they're let's athletes. but do you feel that people need to be more vocal at a time like this or can people get by just doing their jobs? >> well, i think, you know, those are two questions and two important ones. i think it's comical to me this is the same thing that happens with the so-called blue lives matter crowd where you're saying not to protest and the thing they're protesting doesn't exist but if you're going to protest this is how i would prefer you to protest even though you have done those preferable forms of protest we've objected. we're silent. and then they protest our protest with the protest protesting the fact that we can't protest. it's a joke. it's petulant children that are just kind of cloaking themselves
jesse, great to have you on. i appreciate you making time for us here. >> my pleasure. we'll have you back, too. it was fascinating conversation, and i know we'll have more opportunities to talk about this. >> yeah, no kidding. under this current administration. we have to get to the other big topic this week, with another health care showdown, coming down to one vote. we had ted cruz delivering a major blow to the graham/cassidy bill, as saying he plans to oppose this bill. they're down a number of critical votes, and it remains to be seen. i want to bring in political report vivian and ron insana. he joins mccain, rand paul, and we know that collins and
murkowski aren't there yet. do they have the votes to get this through? >> a the this point it remains to be seen. we're all waiting to hear whether senator mike lee of utah might be on board with this bill or if he's a no. ted cruz's people suggested that mike lee is a no vote. his staffers are not committing to any answer either way. they take the issue with the bill as it is right now.
potentially that she could be bought. and that was with the skinny -- than the tub substance of the policies. this is not health care reform. you talk about goos lighting with respect to the nfl, this is a gas lighting on a policy that affects one sixth. this is not reform. i'm going to be as honest and candid as i can possibly be, after 33 years of financial reporting, this is a craven effort to cut craven expenditures, nothing more, nothing less. there's no reform in either health care reform or tax reform. that's all this is.
that's all it's about. it's political. it's not policy. i think that ultimately rather than the scoreboard about who's up, who's down on this is the single-most important part. poor people will pay for a rich person's tax cut. >> we heard that from the you want from the tarmac. and they have the house, the senate and the white house. vivian, thanks so much. ron, great to see you. president trump has no shortage of those that he's kind of made his enemies since he took office. he doesn't old back if he thinking he doesn't like you, including republicans. are they safe from the president's verbal attacks. more on that, next.
don't let dust and allergens get between you and life's beautiful moments. flonase outperforms the #1 non-drowsy allergy pill. it helps block 6 key inflammatory substances that cause symptoms. pills block one and 6 is greater than 1. flonase changes everything. you don't let anything lkeep you sidelined. come on! that's why you drink ensure. with 9 grams of protein, and 26 vitamins and minerals... for the strength and energy, to get back to doing what you love. ensure, always be you. hi..and i know that we have phonaccident forgiveness.gent, so the incredibly minor accident that i had tonight-
four weeks without the car. okay, yup. good night. with accident forgiveness your rates won't go up just because of an accident. switching to allstate is worth it. stay with me, mr. parker. when a critical patient is far from the hospital, the hospital must come to the patient. stay with me, mr. parker. the at&t network is helping first responders connect with medical teams in near real time... stay with me, mr. parker. ...saving time when it matters most. stay with me, mrs. parker. that's the power of and.
from his friday night rally in alabama. he criticized players for not being tough -- chris sited the nfl for not being tough enough on nfl players who take a knee or sit out during the national anthem during a peaceful protest. that led many to sit out today and others to lock arms in unity of other players and their right to free speech. congressman adriano espaent joins me from new york. your take on the president going after the nfl, do you think this is a losing battle? or just right down thinks alley in terms of going to the base, the people to support him, saying hess's doing it in -- >> i think he's trying to detract public opinion from the failure that's expected to come this week and his effort to repeal and replace obamacare, and obviously now he's taking on the nfl. he takes on an issue that's so
critical and so important for our democracy, our right to protest, our right to dissent. he trying to equate dissent with being unpatriotic, when dissent is actually patriotism. >> when we think about the type of language that the president used on friday night, not only to express a simple frustration with players that would do this, but to refer to them as s.o.b.s, saying they should be fired. is there any type of line that you think -- from what you have seen of this administration, that the president is not willing to cross when it comes to being inappropriate or using this office in a way that is so unconventional, we have just never seen it before. >> clearly he crossed the line. the s.o.b. comment is unacceptable. it's really something that a president -- a sitting president of the united states saying that to the nation, unheard of, unbelievable. had he not been the president of
the united states in a new york city street, that probably would have ended a different way, but horrible, horrible way to address players or any human being. imagine if you as a commentator or moderator said that word about anybody, it would send shockwaves. he continues to cross the line, continue toss feed the flames of division, and it's really we're facing one of the most critical times in our nation, where we're deeply divided. even sports, which seems to be a level playing field with people of different races, ethnic group, different ethnic backgrounds would be able to come together and cheer for the same team. he's even permeated that area. now it's not just the players that came together, the owners came together as well today. >> there will be people who say, yeah, this president is speaking to me, yeah, he gets me, i agree with him, i think this is a disgrace, players should stand. they look at it at a very mettle
level, and maybe don't understand the nuance or the issue that a colin kaepernick is trying to draw light to. what do you say to those people that would defend this president? >> whether or not you feel that this is right on you wrong, i think we could all agree that everyone, every american has the ability and should have the right to express themselves, to protest in peace, peacefully protest, to dissent. you know, even the supreme court has dissenting opinions that often become, as time moves forward, the majority opinion. the history of this country has been a history of dissearch, of protest. women would have never gotten their right to vote had they not protested. african-americans would never have been ability to get to the ballot place had it -- not only probest, but blood shed in our country. for him to dismiss this as something un-american, i think it's un-american on our part. >> pretty vital to our fabric.
thank you at home. that's going to wrap this up for me. stick with us for updates and breaking news as it happens throughout the night. "meet the press" is coming your way next. have a great night. this sunday, race, free speech and patriotism. president trump takes on nfl players who you take a knee during the national anthem. >> wouldn't you love to see one of these owners that disrespects our flag say get that son of a bitch off of the field right now? he's fired. he's fired! >> dozens of proathletes and teams respond with anger and disappointment. >> this guy that we put in charge has tried to divide us once again. >> and the golden state warriors cancel their white house trip. i'll take to mike tirico of nbc sports. plus, repeal and replace or rinse and repeat?