tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC October 23, 2017 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT
picture one more time. she worked for you. taxpayers pay her salary. she's a representative of the united states government, which is voted in by the citizens and the people, she's not working for a campaign. just keep that in mind. the rachel maddow show starts right now. good evening. >> thanks, chris. prfrtd it. thanks for joining us at home this hour, we have a live interview, former attorney general eric holder is here with me in studio tonight. this will be his first live tv interview since the election. eric holder has a role in history as the the tenure of the nation's first african-american attorney general. now that he has been succeeded in office by a man who, let's be honest, is the human an toe
anymore of eric holder, eric holder has been outspoken in private life about defending his and president obama's legacy on justice issues. he's also been outspoken against president trump and the trump administration from time to time, when the spirit moves him. for example this picture was posted on twitter by former attorney general eric holder last week after president trump made false public statements about how president obama handled his responsibilities as president when it came to fallen service members and their families. the former attorney general posted that picture and then stated on twitter stop the damn lying. you're the president pip went to dover air base with 44 and saw him comfort the families of fallen military. he has been willing to speak his
peace when he is motivated to do so, but he's been a very interesting sort of question mark in terms of the ongoing legacy of the obama administration, moving forward to the trump era. i mean that in one specific way. going back to the early january when president obama was still president. when president trump had been elected but not yet sworn in. president obama and eric holder, who are fast friends. they have a close personal relationship. they let it be known in early january, even before the trump inauguration they had a project they were going to do together during the trump administration. and that joint work, that project. the two of them together, that work has now started. on the one-year anniversary of the election, which is coming up a couple weeks from now on november 8th, barack obama and eric holder are going to be together on that anniversary
working on this new plan that they think is the most important thing they can be doing in politics. so eric holder is here tonight to talk about that plan he was working on with former president obama. plu i'm going to get him to talk about all sorts of things going on in the news. so excited, former attorney general eric holder in the studio with me for his first live interview since the election. before we bring on the former attorney general. we do have breaking news, part of it was by nbc news part of it by voice of america. we have nbc national security and military reporters standing by. b what this is about is the deadliest combat incident since president trump has been in office, the loss of four u.s. army special operation soldiers in niger, october 4th. our understanding of the story and the loss of these soldiers has evolved on sort of two
parallel tracks since we first learned about the ambush that claimed their lives. domestically it has been strange to the point of perplexing and is now a major story of the trump presidency that the president spent 12 days after these casualties occurred, 12 days after we know a national security council statement was drafted for him to issue about those deaths, it took him 12 days to even answer questions about why he hasn't acknowledged publically in any way that those deaths had had happened. the president's refusal to discuss the loss of these soldiers or the circumstances which they were killed has now stretched to almost three weeks as he continues to refuse direct questions on the subject. >> did you authorize the incident in niger? >> thank you all very much. >> can you tell the public what
happened in niger? >> mr. president any questions on the ambush? >> is there anything more you'd like to say -- >> those last questions that the president walked away from, those where the reporter mentionmentio mentioned mrs. johnson those reflected where the president has steered the conversation too rather than talking about what happened in niger. he's not just refusing to discuss the ambush and the four soldiers that were lost. he's chosen instead to volunteer false information how he and other presidents have contacted families of fallen soldiers. today the widow of sergeant johnson appeared on the news and
gave remarkable testimony of what she and her family has been through. but not incidentally she also this morning became the third person to corroborate, consistently, the nature of the condolence phone call that president trump made to her and her family last week after he faced almost two weeks of questions about why he hasn't said anything about those military deaths. she confirmed that what had previously been described by congresswoman wilson, who has now become a major target for her roll in this matter. sergeant johnson's widow confirmed today that what the congresswoman said is true. the president did make remarks in his condolence call that were perceived to be hurtful by sergeant johnson's family and by mrs. johnson herself, including what she described as the
president clearly not being family with her husband's name. president trump still will not discuss the soldiers who were lost or talk about their deaths or what happened to them in niger. but after those remarks in that abc interview this morning, the president did take time on twitter to angrily tweet his denial of the grieving widow's account of their conversation. so it is still emotionally inconceivable that we are now having more than a week-long discussion about the president mishandling his communications with gold star families and making untrue remarks about those interactions and how other presidents handled those interactions. it's still impossible to get your head around they are still screwing that up, too. but while that came into today, stretching to a second week. we were given information about
what happened to these four soldiers in niger. between his detailed remarks and the questions by the press corp., general dunnford did advance our understanding of what happened. at the time even the the senior senators didn't know we had troops in niger. general dunn ford confirmed there are troops in niger and more than anywhere else in africa. if lindsay graham and chuck schumer didn't know we had troop there is, you can guess the american public had no idea of that either. but general dunford made that
clear today. he gave a painful but considerate and careful response to a particularly troubling issue that has been raised personally sergeant la david johnson's woid width doe. we've seen these images of her embracing his casket. she explained today to abc that part of her has doubts that her husband is even in that casket. because she says she was denied permission, not just to see his face but to see any part of his body. >> i want to know why it took them 48 hours to find my husband. why couldn't i see my husband? every time i asked to see my husband they wouldn't let me. they wouldn't show me a finger, hand. i know my husband's body from head to toe and they won't let
me see anything. >> she was not only married to sergeant johnson, and the mother of his children, they were childhood sweet hearts, she met him at 6 years old. general dunford was asked why she was not able to see her husband's body if he want shesh. he tried to answer it with as much sensitivity as you can have around this issue. it said sometimes protocol would be they be cautioned not to look at remains in a situation like this it's up to the family so the implications is if his widow wants to see, she should be ail allowed to see. general dunford also explained
the time line includes the soldiers that were ambushed on october 4th, they don't appear to have placed a call for help, a call for backup, until an hour after the attack started. we don't exactly know what that means but we know it's the subject of investigation. he also explained today that an american remotely piloted vehicle, an american drone, hadn't been assigned as surveillance overwatch that day, but once the u.s. military was aware this fire fight was underway, an american drone that was overhead and nearby for some other purpose was retasked to fly over the scene of the fire fight. according to him it was there within minutes. that was all new information from the chairman of the joint chief of staffs tods who spent an hour with the press corp. taking lots and lots of
questions. even a lot of his responses were patience until the investigation can get further along in terms of flushing out the facts of what happened. there's this continuing drama and consternation about the president's continued ret since to talk about this and his distressing and false remarks around the issue of condolences to american families. that is happening domestically. at the pentagon we have the general explaining what can happen until the investigation goes further along. and then there's the third track, reporting. as the general was fin irk his remarks at the pentagon. the story started to break in a whole new direction. the first came from voice of america news and later on from nbc news. what voice of america was able to break was thanks to their
french language broadcasting service, they were able to interview the mayor of the town where the ambush took place where these american soldiers died. they interviewed the major of tongo, which is the town where it happened. the mayor has now given voa an explanation as to how this attack happened. he says his village set up these u.s. soldiers. quote, the attackers, the the bandits, terrorists have never lacked accomplices among the local populations. he described a scenario in which residents of his village delayed the soldiers while the ambush was set up. the mayor said the tribal chief has been arrested on investigation of having set up the soldiers, that was confirmed
in the national assembly in niger today, when they debated extending a state of emergency in the part of niger where it happened. they also interviewed someone in the capitol still. it puturns out this village was contaminated by hostile sources. people were aware something was going on. meaning the american forces were purposefully delayed in order to give the attackers time to set up the ambush. according to the newspaper source and other local sources, while the soldiers were still in the village a fake terror attack was staged nearby. the soldiers rushed to the scene whereupon 50 or more assail yanyanants and opened fire. so that account based on the mayor where the attack happened.
villagers suspected of luring green beret into ambush. then this evening courtny cube bee along with carol lee breaks the pentagon side. they're sourcing to three u.s. officials. they report this, quote, an emerging theory among u.s. military investigators is the army special forces soldiers were set up by terrorists who were tipped off in advance about a meeting sympathetic to local isis affiliates. the group of soldiers had requested a meeting with elders of a village that were supportive of the islamic state. they're using the meeting to launch a sneak attack. villagers sought to delay the troops. once they did depart they
attacked them with small arms and machine gun fire. the soldiers then got back in their trucks and retreated about a mile before they were ambushed begin. the attackers had trapped the the americans in a kill zone where they could envelope them in fire. the two separate ambush sites could explain why sergeant la david's body were found more than a mile from where the other dead and injured troops were evacuated by hospital. so we had early reporting this ambush was a result of a massive intelligence failure. that is being investigated by the military and fbi. these new reports suggest some of the specifics about where that failure might have turned fatal. there is a lot that is hard to get our heads around about the
ambush and the loss of these soldiers. regardless of the oddities of this particular administration. it's strange that leading senators don't know about u.s. troops serving in danger in a particular country. 800 u.s. troops in niger. more than any other nation in western africa. it also remains a weird thing that the pentagon's africa command is headquartered in germany. regardless of this administration, preceding anything specific about this presidency, there are hard things to get your head around in terms of american responsibilities and expectations here. it remains hard to get your head around the thing that this deployment technically is probably legally justified by the 9/11 attacks. already, the 9/11 attacks that had more to do with germany than
niger in terms of where they were planned and launched from. so there's a lot that has nothing to do with the trump administration that is hard to get your head around around this deployment and attack and this grievous loss. then you look at the administration that hasn't bothered to appoint an assistant secretary of state for africa, which just last month infuriated a neighbor, chad, by adding them to the travel ban. and, of course, at the apex of responsibility here we have a commander in chief who will not discuss this incident. even today. will not talk about it. and thanks to this new reporting
from "voice of america" and nbc news we have our first disturbing key insight as to how that day unfolded and why. joining me is courtney cuebe. thank you for being here. >> thank you for having me. >> can you tell us where the story came from. you're not naming sources obviously. when you tell us the theory that investigators are leading toward, how hard are they leaning on that? >> it's been a rumor, candidly, since a couple of days after the attack and after sergeant johnson's was found. there were rumors that there was something fishy here and whether it was they were lured to the meeting and it was a setup or the elders or villagers, whoever it was, the sticking point of the officials i spoke with, the
sticking point was always how is it possible that this large number of militants were able to mass without the u.s. knowing. so i think they started from there and moved on and in the past two or three days, officials who we've spoken with started calling this the more prevailing theory. there was something more these soldiers were set up for. we don't know the extent yet, if it was villagers or elders or exactly what. that is something still under investigation. >> soldier gs in far-flung parts of the world, particularly when they're far from search and rescue and resources and things like that. we know their lives in many ways depend on both intelligence but working relationships with support services. we've heard this described as a massive intelligence failure on the part of the u.s. it seems like they walked into
something blind, there ought to have been some way to have some foresight about it. do we know anything about the way the pentagon and the fbi are pursuing the investigation into that part of it? >> right now they still believe this was some sort of an isis affiliate. one they're looking at is isis gs. they are trying to make a name for themselves and become an actual isis affiliate. it's -- that, of course, is still under investigation, who was behind this. one thing clear, is this was an isis sympathetic area. that means there were fighters there, villagers there who whether they believed in the isis ideology or doing what they have to do to survive -- remember, this is a very tribal area. so much of what these villagers may have been doing, it could have been nothing more than an all allegiance to the area and a
sense of how to survive. that's something we don't know. the fbi, we forget that, you know, this is a u.s. military mission, but the fbi often does help with investigations like this. think of what they're good at? they're good at getting the bad guy. finding out who the bad guy is. that's one of the reasons they're involved in this. they also have a role in forensics -- i don't know the extent of it. but that's two of the areas the fbi is helping with. >> courtney kube lead reporter for this, thank you for helping us. >> thank you. >> former attorney general eric holder joins us live. stay with us. >>i don't know. there's so many opinions out there, it's hard to make sense of it all. well, victor, do you have something for him? >>check this out. td ameritrade aggregates thousands of earnings estimates into a single data point. that way you can keep your eyes on the big picture. >>huh. feel better? >>much better. yeah, me too. wow, you really did a number on this thing.
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it was 2010, i was in alaska, lisa murkowski was an incumbent senator who lost her seat and then went in to win it anyway as a write in. and in the middle of that nuttiness i went up to alaska to cover that race. and there unexpectedly, on the street in a anchorage. that's where i learned a talk with anyone on the street could lead to nonsense. >> she voted to confirm eric holder. >> why is that. >> he's the most anti-gun attorney general this country has had. >> what has he done against
guns? >> at this point what hasn't he done. let's look at his voting record beforehand. >> eric holder wasn't an elected official. >> all i'm asking is look at what his record is with obama then. >> what's he done on gun that is you're upset about, though? >> i honestly -- i don't know enough about him to answer that truthfully. >> why are you upset about eric holder. >> because he's anti-gun. >> what has he done? >> i don't know the facts. >> there's no specific thing he's done? >> look at his press releases. that's what i say. look at his press releases. >> i will, but press release about what? >> anything -- >> that was in alaska in 2010. eric holder, the nation's first african-american attorney general had only been serving in that roll by the previous year but by 2010 he was the object of or nate fantasies by people
investigated in hating him. he served as attorney general from 2009 to 2015 whereupon the republican controlled senate finally agree today swear in loretta lynch. he served in the integrity unit before coming a superior court judge and then deputy attorney general and attorney general. he has returned to private practice since leaving d.c. tonight he is here for his first live interview. thank you for being here. >> good to be here. >> have you seen that clip before. >> i have seen it. i saved it. i saw it in you tube, i watch it every now and again. >> i wonder if now that you are no longer the lightning rod you once were, do you miss that? do you get any satisfaction from the hatred you attracted?
>> not really. it baffled me. i never understood, like that piece you showed, what was the nature and the depth of the negative feelings that i generated in people on the other side. i never understood that. >> in your time as attorney general it didn't become more clear? >> no. no. never really did. i said things in support of the program of the president, but there seemed to be a special animus that washington and people like that had for me, i'm not totally sure what that was about. >> by the time you were sworn in, there had been 82 attorneys general -- >> 81. i was the 82nd. >> so 80 of them, 79 of them, had been white men. alberto gonzalez had a term that
hadn't end well. janet reno served before you, and you were the only african-american man to serve. the only have vi tral that i sa towards a man was towards janet reno. my theory has been the nation's top law enforcement officer evokes a different reaction, and therefore it's hard to be first to break any barrier. >> the attorney general sits at the conjunction of law and policy and the justice department is in so many parlts of people's lives, from national security to civil rights, voting. that you are a presence in a way that other cabinet members are not. i thought 1/2 one of the reasons why perhaps i could engender those kind of negative feelings. most people saw me as a
representative of the obama administration. and for some, i'm not saying all, there were probably some racial issues. >> in terms of the justice department as a national security agency, which in many ways it is, i've always wondered if it fit it is line of national security policy making. in the sense that it's less partisan than other types of domestic policy. what i mean, in my job i'm often looking back into some time in the last couple of generations looking for historical context for things that are happening now. and officials that i'm talking to are national security advisors, i have to look up what their party affiliation is, because it's often not that important and there's a certain continuity in national security. is that also true in justice. >> yes, justice department officials have gotten in trouble
attorney generals have gotten in trouble when they have forgotten that they're different than other cabinet agencies. senator leahey said to me, you are not the secretary of justice, you are the duepartmen of justice. put up kind of an interesting thing between me and a president who i was a friend with. there were certain things we couldn't discuss, certain things we didn't discuss. but i think that's an appropriate way for an attorney general general to think of himself or herself and it's an appropriate way for the justice department to be run. >> is there more discontinuity between the justice department under jeff sessions and the justice department under president obama than there has been be under previous administrations? >> i'm looking from outside but it sure seems that way to me. there have been statements this attorney general has made, attorney general sessions has made, the interactions he's had
with the white house, that are inconsistent in the way i conducted myself as attorney general and the way many of my predecessors presented themselves. certainly the berating he reportedly took by the president is totally inconsistent with my experience. again, i think inconsistent with all the previous attorneys general that i'm aware of. >> is that a matter of personality and washington personal drama or do you think there is national consequence or risk associated with that strange thing that we saw unfold with the president berating his attorney general. >> that actually worries me because i think it betrays a lack of understanding on the part of the president about what the role of the attorney general has to be. you can't go at the ag in that way. if you truly understand the independent role that he should play within the administration there are going to be things
that an attorney general is going to do that the president doesn't agree with, but they have to suck it uf up saying they have to enforce the laws. and he is an independent actor in ways other cabinet officials are not. >> unless the president doesn't treat him that way. >> unless the president doesn't treat him that way. and history has shown us when that wall is too low, that's when people in trouble, during the nixon and bush years. >> what's the corrective for that when it goes bad? >> resignations, investigations, public outcries. there are really no formal things that -- ultimately, i suppose, impeachment of an attorney general, something along those lines but it's really a question of having a vibrant press focus odd these issues and the american people keeping track of what's going on between doj and the white house.
>> stay right there. we'll be right back with former attorney general eric holder. co, like paperless, multi-car, and safe driver, that help them save on their car insurance. any questions? -yeah. -how do you go to the bathroom? great. any insurance-related questions? -mm-hmm. -do you have a girlfriend? uh, i'm actually focusing on my career right now, saving people nearly $600 when they switch, so... where's your belly button? [ sighs ] i've got to start booking better gigs.
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to raise our voices together and demand that elected officials take a stand on impeachment. a republican congress once impeached a president for far less. yet, today, people in congress and his own administration know this president is a clear and present danger who is mentally unstable and armed with nuclear weapons. and they do nothing. join us and tell your member of congress that they have a moral responsibility to stop doing what's political and start doing what's right. our country depends on it. interview is former attorney general eric holder. thank you again for doing this. you mentioned a moment ago that there were boundaries between you and the president of things you ought not talk about. where were those boundaries tested the most between you and president obama? where was it most difficult to
keep the appropriate amount of distance. >> it wasn't difficult with barack obama. he's a lot of things and among them he's a good lawyer who understands the value of having an independent justice department. there were things that i would want to share with him because i knew he was going to be reading about them in the newspapers the next day, monday or something like that. the doma decision, the decision not to defend doma i made. i thought this was one he can't read about in the newspapers. so on the sunday of the super bowl party i told him this is the decision i made. he said to me, i'm glad pip didn't know how to approach you. this is where i wanted my justice department to be. but i'm glad you made that decision. >> you presented it to him as a fait accompli and he said i wanted to suggest it to you but i didn't think that's appropriate. >> exactly. that's the relationship that
should exist between anent. there were a long range of issues i never shared with him. where an indictment was going to be brought and he would read about it in the newspaper the next day. >> when president trump has repeatedly expressed anger toward his attorney general, specifically for having recused himself on matters related to the campaign, including the russia investigation. those expressions of the president to me seem unprecedented because anybody facing investigation expressing regret over somebody not being in a position to move the investigation one way or the other seems strange. how did that seem to you? >> unprus deecedented, unwise at helpful to the president. it might be said to e vince some consciousness of guilt or
concern that those who are acting independently might do something to him that is negative in nature and if his appointed attorney general was still in charge, he might not be in as bad a position. i'm sure his lawyers would have been a pe plep ik about that interaction between the president and the attorney general. >> what about the president has been meeting with nominees for attorney general positions? you were the d.c. attorneys, what about the report the president met with her before he nominated her. >> unprecedented her. the way it was done in the obama administration and the clinton administration and i think the bush administration. the highest level of someone you spoke to as an incoming u.s. attorney was the attorney general. nobody went to talk to the white house -- >> why was it structured that way? >> to again ensure that
independence so a u.s. attorney would understand that your boss is the attorney general of the united states. you're not supposed to have any contact -- a u.s. attorney is not supposed to have any contacts with the white house, except through the justice department. the choices have been interesting, two u.s. attorneys in new york, a u.s. attorney in washington d.c. and the u.s. attorney general in florida where mar-a-lago is. that gives me the idea he's having these interactions with attorneys who could get at him. >> what's the correction? >> to hopefully have good people in these positions who in spite of the fact they had these meetings with the president will understand what the nature of the job is -- >> that's the correction? the hope they're good people? >> yeah.
i don't think tlhere's anything legally inappropriate with the president. but just with so many things he's done thi. >> do those norms and to certain extent rules that were previously seen as being inviolent, which we can tell because they weren't violated before this, this president is testing the bounds of what's acceptable behavior and changing the rules by his behavior. >> i think that might be one of the inevident able and perhaps positive things that comes out of this, to put on paper certain things that in the past we just did by tradition, by good practice. we have seen that if you have a president who has made the determination that he is not going to be beholden to
tradition and tried and true practices maybe we have to put on paper -- the u.s. attorney candidates meet only with the attorney general general aand y that in some form or fashion or rules within the justice department. >> the guidelines that used to be well understood have to be hard fences. we'll be right back. [bell rings] every year we take a girl's trip. remember nashville? kimchi bbq. amazing honky tonk? i can't believe you got us tickets. i did. i didn't pay for anything.
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office? >> i don't know. you know, i'm focussed on this national democratic redisstricting committee, that's the focus of my political activities that the point. i want to make sure we repel these attacks on our democracy, try to end political gerrymandering to the extent we can. we'll see. i'm not saying no. but that's not the focus of what i'm concentrating on. >> you're not working on the redistricting project because it's for you to get back into political life? >> no. i think our democracy is under attack. if you look at gerrymandering in the way we have a system where politicians are picking their voters as opposed to citizens picking their representatives. if you look at the way in which these voter suppression laws have been passed, we're coming to be a country that's inconsistent with our founding ideals in the notion of one man
one vote is under attack. i'm determined on do what i can to ensure that doesn't happen. >> i think you and president obama surprised a lot of people in early january when you announced you were going to be working on this project together on redistricting. in part because redisstricting and jergerrymandering is an old problem, and each party has used it to their advantage in different times and people have been better at it in different parts of the country. are you working on this because you want democrats to compete better at this project of gerrymandering or are you trying to eliminate it altogether? >> prince ton did a study that said when republicans drew the lines in 2011 that said it was the worst gerrymandering in years. we're attempting at a part of
good government. what i want to have is a sense that the lines be drawn in a fair way and make it a battle between republican ideas,have, democrats will do just fine. but what i do not want to have happen is for this to be a successful effort and then democrats in 2021 do what republicans did in 2011. that is not what this project is all about. >> you feel like republicans kind of ran the table on this during the obama administration when they did their red map project in 2010 and set them up in a way -- >> right. >> tilted the playing field and then want to tilt it back and get it back. >> not to favor democrats. just to get it to a place where the lines are drawn in such a way that people truly have a choice, have more competitive districts at the congressional level,to have representation at the state level that's consistent with theish withes of the voters. if you look at wisconsin it is a
50/50 state. republicans control two thirds of the state assembly and when you control for everything else, it is really a function of the way in which the lines were drawn in 2011. >> so, i know that in this project you're working on ballot initiatives in some places to try to do nonpartisan redistricting, working on public consciousness and awareness around these things, litigation strategy and also working on supporting individual democratic candidates in state legislatures whose election would be key in terms of what control over redistricting looks over there. that's a strategy i feel like gets at the elements that make this sort of make or break this as a strategy. what i don't get is why this effort is going to succeed. i feel like i've heard so much democratic hot air on we got to work in the states, work in redistricting and i feel like so many projects launched that were going to do this and then never really seemed to.
why does yours have traction? >> i think ours is organized, first off. only thing that's within the democratic party that has at its sole responsibility this whole notion of redistricting and then in the trump era and i think people have seen over the past decade what partisan gerrymandering on the republican side has meant where you have state legislatures that passed the crazy gun laws, these anti-choice laws, these voter suppression laws that are not necessarily supported by the people in those states. we have seen a dysfunctional congress where people come to congress, especially on the republican side and because of gerrymandering, you are in a safe seat and more worried about being challenged by a person on the right, worried about being primaried opposed to general election. and that means that you have dysfunction in washington because people don't necessarily have to talk to one another and compromise. that's a bad thing for somebody who is in a gerrymandered district so i think that dissatisfaction with the
dysfunction, the concern about what trump, the trump administration has been doing, and the way in which this thing is constructed within the party and the support, frankly, that we have gotten and having -- >> raised more than $10 million the first half of the year on this. >> the former president of the united states support this. i think this can be successful. >> i have one last question for you. will you stay right there? >> sure. >> we'll be right back with eric hoel holder, f holder, former attorney general. that's why i rent from national. where i get the control to choose any car in the aisle i want, not some car they choose for me. which makes me one smooth operator. ah! still a little tender. (vo) go national. go like a pro.
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again, general holder, thank you for being here. last question for you. you have known robert mueller for a long time. you knew james comey for a very long time. you know a lot of people who have become prime movers and central characters in the russia invest going forward. do you have confidence that the russia investigation will end conclusively with us knowing what happened and with some sort of jus us the being done? >> i have confidence that there will be a condition collusive investigation done by bob mueller. the question ultimately becomes what does he do with the investigation he completes? does he bring indictments? does he do a report like ken starr did and send it to the house? i'm not sure what happens there. and how much of what he does will be able to be shared using a grand jury and rules that prevent the sharing of what happens in front of a grand jury to the general public though you can get a court to say that that's okay. my hope would be that he will do a thorough investigation, decide on whatever avenue is appropriate and at the end of
the day share that information with the american people. the american people deserve to know what happened with regard to russia, collusion, what was involved, we i think deserve this. >> are you confident that, a, he has the resources he needs to get the job done? and, b, that he's proceeding in a way that is actually digging up what there is to dig up? i asked that because it's unclear to me whether or not, for example, the cia is being fullsome with the investigators, whether the justice department under attorney general sessions is being ask cooperative as they can be. do you think he has all the resources he needs, the tools he needs? >> based on the hiring decisions, i know a number of those people. top-notch people. a-team surrounding him and i know bob mueller a. ex-marine. guy who focuses on, you know, what the aim of a project is and doesn't get deterred, he's
resistant to pressure. i'm confident that they're going to do a thorough, complete investigation. and a fair investigation. people should understand that. this is a guy who was a republican appointee in the first bush administration, assistant attorney general and so this can't be characterized as a partisan witch hunt. he'll do a job and find -- make a determination based on the facts and the law. >> having been on the sharp end of the congressional investigations, do you have faith in the congressional investigations that are happening now on russia? >> i have to tell you my faith in the congressional investigations is waning. i think i had some degree of hope about what they were doing, especially on the senate side. i still have some degree of hope that warren and burr might do a good i don't know there. the house is a mishmash. you have nunez recused and not recused. i think to the extent congress does anything meaningful probably comes out of the snth. >> former attorney general eric holder, now back in private life, but working on this very
public campaign with president obama on democratic redistricting, which sounds very tech kl and you make a good case for its centrality. >> i'll make it sexy. >> let the record show. mr. attorney general, thank you very much for your time. >> good to be here. >> we'll see you again tomorrow. let the headlines say that when i asked him if he was running for anything he didn't say now. now it's time for "the last word with lawrence o'donnell." good evening, lawrence. >> good evening, rachel. isn't the headline to say we'll make it sexy? >> the word sexy was used but you know me, i blotted it out as soon as it happened and couldn't hear anything else. >> i noticed that. thank you, rachel. >> thank you, lawrence. well, this morning the widow spoke. and an interview flawlessly by george steph nop louse, mmeyish johnson spoke about her