tv Morning Joe MSNBC October 30, 2017 3:00am-6:00am PDT
monday morning. have a good week, everybody. "morning joe" starts right now. i think bob mueller has a really distinguished career of stofrs our country and i don't think any of your viewers can think of a single thing he did as the fbi director that caused them to have a lack of confidence in him. i would encourage my republican friends give the guy a chance to do his job. the result will be known by the facts, by what he uncovers. the personalities involved are much less important to me than the underlying facts. so i would say give the guy a chance to do his job. >> here here. >> tell that to the president and "wall street journal" editorial board by the way. bob mueller set to make an announcement today, and it's not about him stepping down. any moment the first criminal charges are expected in the sweeping investigation of russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election. good morning, everyone. welcome to "morning joe." it's monday, october 30th.
with us we have washington anchor for bbc world news america katty kay, former fbi special agent and msnbc contributor clint wattses, msnbc political analyst and professor at the university of michigan school of public policy, former democratic congressman harold ford jr. and pulitzer prize winning historian jon meacham. >> on this day that mika, obviously, it's going to be an extraordinarily important day, not only in the history of this presidency, young presidency, but also could be in the recent history of this country, and -- >> yeah. >> because of that, i just think, harold, we have to start with what, perhaps, historians will have to judge this, but what could be called one of the greatest games in the world series history last night, the houston astros and the dodgers. the dodgers go up big at the beginning, you think it's over, the top of the first, man.
it's like i'm going to bed, right. then, just one home run after another home run after another home run. what a game. i'm dead serious. >> i'm writing a note that says shut up. >> already being called this morning one of the great games in world series history and that's saying something. >> look i had to go to sleep at about 11:45. i thought when they won up 7-4 it was over, wake up 7-7, check the score, 13-12. i mean, the winners of the networks, these kids are playing their hearts out and i can't wait for tonight. i'm going to take a nap this afternoon to stay up for what could be another -- >> not falling for it. >> it's got to be -- and by the way do we have a picture of w. throwing the ball. ryan couldn't do this. look at this. look at that. certain. thes. i'm going to say -- i won't say their name, bounced the ball to the plate four or five times. w., he smokes it. >> threw it out 9/11. >> will be what jeter told him
when you go out. >> don't screw it up. this is new york, don't screw it pup. >> okay. >> as we turn now from historic baseball to, of course, i don't know -- >> future of our country. >> a constitutional crisis, jon meacham. >> that. >> i don't know how we put this right now because this could just be the beginning. maybe they get manafort. maybe they get manafort and podesta, you don't know, maybe they get manafort -- tony podesta, of course, maybe they get manafort on a lesser charge and get him to start talking. i mean well, don't know what's going to happen, but we do know, it begins today. >> you know, churchhill once said it's not the beginning of the end, but it's the end of the beginning. and i think that's probably applicable here. clearly if this reporting is accurate, the special counsel has found sufficient cause and some americans on grand jury to say that there's a reasonable suspicion that there was significant wrongdoing,
presumably involving president trump's circle, at least, and whether this is a chess move to flip someone lower on the chain or whether it's a very interesting other way we'll find out soon. >> one thing we do know, katty, the frantic tweets and the inexplicable op-eds from last week, the inexplicable editorials, the inexplicable attacks on hillary clinton, somebody who lost a year ago, right, it's because they all knew this was coming. everybody is frantic inside the white house. they've been trying to figure out for some time. the republicans all last week were trying to go after a man of the utmost integrity and try to soil his name. >> kind of plumes of smoke coming from donald trump's phone yesterday morning as he was, you know -- two fold, one, seemed to reflect a certain amount of
disquiet in the white house and second, going back to the old tactic that he has of deflection. i'm under attack on russia so i will attack out on russia which what is he was doing on hillary clinton trying to change the subject. i think the issue will be, when the indictment comes, who they are and what they might know that might get closer to the white house. so whether it's, you know, if it's paul manafort, someone close to paul manafort, how much do they know that donald trump might have known. >> and what's interesting, mika, if it is manafort, you know, a lot of people have said, well they'll pardon -- donald trump will pardon whomever at some point. that's, of course, that starts the not so long march to impeachment one way or the other whether it's now or a year from now, but if it's manafort, new york is going after him now. so donald trump's pardons won't touch -- >> won't apply. >> any charges against manafort which will, obviously, be brought in the state of new york. >> so before we get clint in here, go through the details, at
any moment one or more people could be taken into custody after a federal grand jury approved its first charges in bob mueller's investigation into any links or coordination between the russian government and those tied to president trump. key figures in mueller's probe include former white house national security adviser michael flynn, who left the white house after controversy over his discussions with the russian ambassador, and later, registered as a foreign agent for his work for turkey during the campaign, which was undisclosed on his financial disclosure report. and former trump campaign strategist and chairman paul manafort, in june, manafort retroactively registered as a foreign agent for his work with a pro-russian ukrainian political party and mueller's team raided manafort's virginia home in the early morning hours last july. politico reports that mueller's prosecutors brought the realtor who helped manafort buy the
alexandria apartment before a grand jury last week. in an interview with "the new york times" on thursday before news of an impending indictment white house special counsel ty cobb said of manafort and flynn, the president has no concerns in terms of any impact as to what happens to them on his campaign or on the white house. i think he would be sad for them as a friend and a former colleague if the process results in punishment or indictments, but to the extent that that happens, that's beyond his control. >> clint -- >> wow. >> so, what are your thoughts on this monday morning as we move towards an indictment of at least one of the president's men? >> yeah. you know, i think the case that's gone on the longest is the one you suspect now, manafort. this is going back over a year. >> yeah. >> think about it, we've seen the most aggressive action in that case. you can look at manafort's team. he made a switch in his legal team a while back focusing on
taxes. there could be lots of charges that come through that. money laundering kind of charge, tax evasion. so all of it would make me think that. but you also look at flynn, i mean, flynn has been around for many months now in this investigation, this goes right after the inauguration, so if it was making false official statement or not disclosing something on your sf-86, your security clearance form, that could be a big part of it as well. i think as we look forward what people should remember is they don't always go out and do a high-profile arrest in these cases, particularly if it's white collar. it's very common to notify the lawyer of the person and say would you turn yourself in, at a previous disclosed time. that may be going on today. we may not see the typical fbi spectacular arrest scene people think of in television. it doesn't always happen that way. >> yeah. the question for you, clint, it could be not necessarily manafort or flynn, but somebody associated with them. >> it's super important for us to know in a lot of big investigations you start with very, you know, people that are
lower on the totem pole and march your way up. this could be somebody we've never heard of that has not made the news. >> the white house has no clue, it appears, from what we know even personally the phone lines were burning at the white house with last-minute attempts to try to figure out what's going on. >> that's right. >> as we mentioned -- go ahead. >> this is a huge test of bob mueller's too. we focus on his integrity for the last several months, we focus on how serious he is, well reason hptsed he is and i think there's something that's been said on this show and others if you're not able to find a link to the president in some of this right away, i hear everything you're saying, clint, it may be someone low level, this is a politicized conversation as well, so i'm going to be curious, i think this is as much a test of mueller today, whether it's fair or not, as anything else. joe, i don't know if you have an opinion on that, but so much you and mika, so much politization around this, this is a big moment, if it's not someone you can directly link to the white
house or around the president's family or someone, i think some people will lose some interest and may see more editorials like in "the wall street journal." i have no clue, but i do think again be this is a test for mr. mueller as well. >> and, you know, he's not going to start by indicting the president of the united states. >> no doubt about it. but you have to be able to draw something. because the interest here is about the president and the white house. that's what we've been talking about. >> at the same time if somebody broke the law somebody broke the law. if flynn broke the law when he was in a position where he was about to be our national security adviser, possibly the most important position around a president in keeping this country safe -- >> that touches the president. >> then that is connected to the president. if it's paul manafort, a guy the president selected even though he had a questionable background and this guy is running the president's campaign dogo to the rnc like wait a second why are we changing the platform. weren't we republicans supposed to be tough on russia, tough on the soviet union, tough on putin. wait a second now suddenly we're
going to change the platform and then we find out it's paul manafort and you have don jr., manafort, jared, you've got everybody else in that meeting and this meeting we keep learning more and more about the meeting and john jr.'s office which they're trying to pass off, actually, as what are they call it again, opposition research. let me tell you something, you know, i didn't have any former soviet leaders or russians or chinese in my office. >> are you sure? >> by the way, not only did we not have any russians, not only we, but nobody we ever knew in politics ever took a meeting with an enbe my which russia considers itself, an enemy of the united states of america. a little congressional campaign, let alone in the middle of a presidential campaign. there is smoke there, there is fire there. we have more information on the russian lawyer who was there who actually went back, gave her information to a russian agent. they were all part of something much bigger. and we still don't know what's
happening, but i suspect bob mueller very careful guy, mueller is not going to swing for the fences. he's going to -- in baseball words he's going for a single, and he's going to get it. >> one of the challenges we have to remember and i agree with harold on this, the mueller investigation does have some boundaries on time. so he -- >> right. >> normal -- >> only point i make. >> a normal investigation, you know, two, three years long in a white collar case or something like this, he's really got a very short time to advance the ball on this case. so i would not be surprised like harold said if he is making deliberate steps to show progress. >> from what mika and i heard yesterday, john, this is going to get close to the president, an indictment will get close to the president based on all the reporting we did yesterday. it may not be today, but it's getting close to the president. >> yeah. >> and one of the great questions and the last nine months, ten months show us that
i think there is a lot of reason to worry, is how does the president politically and constitutionally react to a legal provocation. and i think we saw yesterday morning in that series of tweets that, you know, nixon spoke to the portraits, trump was tweeting at them yesterday. >> yes. >> and i think there's a significant question here of, does he have the capacity to restrain himself. >> no. >> or will he -- >> no? >> in a fit of fury -- >> let me answer that for you. >> the viewer decide with the tweets. >> no, he does not. >> joe can answer. >> politically the damaging part of this, may not come with the indictments today. >> no. it's going to be his response. >> the most politically damaging part of this will be his reaction to what happens today. >> exactly. >> here are trump's tweets given the gravity of the situation that we have just laid out here.
on friday, tweeting, quote, this, it is now commonly agreed after many months of costly looking, that there was no collusion between russia and trump. >> no. that's a lie. >> was collusion with h.c. >> that's a lie. >> and then the next one, multiple tweets on sunday morning, here we go. a tweet storm. never seen such republican anger and unity as i have concerning the lack of investigation on clinton made fake dossier. >> that's not true. >> the uranium to russia deal. the 33,000 plus deleted e-mails, the comey fix, and so much more. instead they look at phony trump/russia -- >> wait a second. >> collusion which doesn't exist. >> did somebody -- >> i'm not done. so many tweets. >> did i get here in a de lor yan with michael j. fox sitting next to me because i do feel like -- i do feel like this is the summer of 2016. right? >> that was a heck of an
analysis. >> did you like that? >> that's the car that goes like this with the doors. >> the wings. >> yes. i like that. >> that was so -- that was so back in time. >> i know. right there. >> back to the future. >> one of the better ones. >> top gun a couple weeks ago. >> do you want to hear more of this tweets or do you get the point? >> no. i want to hear more. >> okay. back to the tweets. the dems are using this terrible and bad for our country witch hunt for evil politics but the republicans are now fighting back like never before. >> yeah. >> there is so much guilt by -- this is our president, by the way, people. >> yeah. >> by democrats/clinton and now the facts are pouring out. do something. underlined exclamation, our president, people. >> freaking out. >> all of this russia talk right when the republicans are making their big push for historic tax cuts and reform. is this coincidental? not. this is our president. >> actually, what's so funny about this, he said oh, my gosh they're just talking about russia now because we want to
pass tax reform. >> i'm cringing. >> for us, we started talking about russia in december of 2015 when we had him on here. >> yeah. >> we could not get him to condemn vladimir putin and he actually compared soldiers in iraq unfavorably to vladimir putin saying we killed a lot of people in iraq so how dare we attack vladimir putin. yeah, this is -- >> by the way, donald trump -- >> this guy -- >> donald trump is talking about russia. >> and tell me, what -- >> voluntarily. >> was this the morning after the crazy guy in south florida got kicked off twitter? >> roger stone. >> yeah. >> he had some sort of -- i think he was under the influence or something. he went off. he went crazy. >> melted down in unison across multiple twitter platforms. >> multiple. i didn't know there were more than one. >> mad libs. i didn't do it, they did it. look at this, it's a big witch hunt. every year, every couple months.
>> lots of red herrings with the uranium thing. just checking out yesterday morning. howard got to something on the politics, i do think now this has been going on for a while, so much coverage of it, that you wonder what it would take in terms of an indictment or action from mueller at any stage for people in the trump camp or republicans who are leaning to the trump camp to come around and say there is something serious here. i think it would have to almost go straight to the president himself. pp at this stage the goal posts have been moved so much, there couldn't have possibly be collusion and then there was the june meeting which by definition was a form of collusion, they were looking for dirt on hillary clinton from the russians, that et a form of collusion. >> yeah. >> but the things have shifted so much and goal posts have shifted so much and, you know, bars and standards have been raised so much, that you almost wonder is there anything mueller could come up with that trump supporters would say you know what, something bad was done. >> jon meacham, we've talked about this a good bit before you can give us more perspective, i
know my father was a nixon man up until the final week. >> yeah. >> and at that point, he had -- he always thought it was a conspiracy, it was always "washington post" and the media elite going after richard nixon because they hated nixon from the second he got in, and they did, they all hated nixon, so there was 40 years of hate going both ways there, but that last week, my dad picked up the paper and saw it and just shook his head and said if one tenth of what they say about this guy is true, he is a disgrace and doesn't belong in the office. but you can -- i mean that's just my story. i know that happened with a lot of republicans who felt under siege by the vietnam protesters, campus protesters, nixon was their guy to protect them from that. but the polls even showed that republicans did not think watergate was a big deal until the very end.
this is not that far out of the realm of what we've seen historically, is it? it may take a little while for republicans to go, you know what, mike pence is just fine with us and besides, he's a real conservative. >> absolutely. and the watergate experience, i've been thinking a lot about this, can you imagine if watergate had unfolded in our media universe. and i do wonder would it have taken the same amount of time. you know, the break-in was june 17th, 1972. nixon left august 9th, 1974. the -- i bet your dad picked up the paper the last week of july, first couple days of august, in '74 after the supreme court ruled that nixon had to hand over the tapes. >> right. >> a small detail in that, nixon handed over the tapes and i don't know that -- i don't know that we're with a president now who will follow the rule of law as even richard nixon did in the end, which led to that resolution of the crisis.
>> that is no small detail. historians looking back and looking at richard nixon and what he did, will say, of all the things he did, he still understood that he worked for the people of the united states of america and that the constitution actually is what ruled all of his actions and richard nixon knew he had to turn over the tapes and john, he, of course, knew when he turned over the tapes his presidency was over. but what did he do? he turned over the tapes because the united states supreme court told him he had to and he respected checks and balances, no small deal at all, right? >> absolutely. and, you know, he said, joked kind of bitterly that he might go to jail, but as he put it, so the best political writing has been done from jail. nixon is not exactly a literary genre but he did understand. 30% of the country was with him. i would advise people in the
center and toward the left as the day up folds, you know, realize if watergate had unfolded in this media environment you would have exaggerated nixon's support because that 30% would have had access to these mega phones. >> that's what we're going to be showing polls in a little bit, mika, donald trump's numbers and nbc news/"wall street journal" poloer than they've been. >> yeah. >> and that is one thing in this media environment, 38%, 37%, some polls have had him at 32%, that support is so exaggerated because a lot of times just like on the far left, those, that one third of america, on social media, on cable news, on talk radio, may be the most vocal, that's, you know -- that's 60 plus percent, not being with the guy. >> still ahead on "morning joe," there is brand new polling on multiple fronts as joe mentioned
including president trump's sinking approval numbers and how he stacks up against recent predecessors. we'll go live to the white house for the first reaction this morning to the impending charges in bob mueller's investigation. nbc's andrea mitchell and justice correspondent pete williams among our many guests with new reporting this morning. you're watching "morning joe," we'll be right back. this is electricity. ♪ this is a power plant. this is tim barckholtz. that's me! this is something he is researching at exxonmobil: using fuel cells to capture carbon emissions at power plants. this is the potential. reducing co2 emissions by up to 90%... while also producing more power. this could be big. energy lives here. the updates you made to your plan strengthened your retirement score.
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>> the clinton administration, the clinton administration, hillary clinton, and hillary. there is such an obsession on hillary clinton and we always have to go back to jon meacham, i'm serious, have -- i cannot remember even reading about a presidency that nine months, ten months into the white house are still obsessed with a candidate who lost, who was never president of the united states. >> no, i really can't. what it reminded me of, there's a line in faulkner you may remember exactly where, where he writes that for every little southern white boy, it's always the afternoon at chancellor'sville right before the battle. >> right. >> if only things had broken left instead of rights the world would be different. >> but the only difference here is, they won the war. >> they won. >> they won the war. >> i mean, and -- >> he's fighting -- yeah, he's fighting a lost cause when he won the cause. >> he's -- >> a deflection.
>> he's refighting a war that he won. >> that he won. >> that would be like if a little boy -- like -- that would be as if they won the battle. it's just -- >> right. >> harold, i remember, this has been going on so long, i remember when the obama administration was coming in, right, and a lot of people talking about we've got to try george w. bush for war crimes. and i said you got to put it behind because guess what, eight years from now, they will be coming after you. the obama administration, of course, on their own decided we're not going to obsess on what happened with george w. bush, no war crimes, that's not what we do in america. the obama administration -- -- >> move forward. >> they moved forward and they didn't sdploos. >> didn't make it personal. >> didn't talk about criminal charges against bush. that's what the obama -- that's what the trump administration and all of his cronies are doing now. it's just laughable.
and i do wonder, who is stupid enough in the united states of america, to actually buy into this. >> the core weakness of their argument is they may have some problems with some of the legal issueses that are being raised. john raised the point at the outset of the show about how the president will respond politically and constitutionally about the legal challenges that come his way. i only made the point that mueller, there has to be something there. >> right. >> i think there probably is and i don't know. if there is it will make it harder for republicans and for that matter trump surrogates to do what cory did. to hear cory be as aggressive as he did this morning, suggests in the strongest of ways they are anticipating a harsher set of facts that will come their way this morning and you do what you do in politics, you blame the other guy. mrs. clinton, secretary clinton, and bill clinton, their names remain probably as toxic among republican core base supporters. this is an effort to rile them up and do what he talk about on the show, hold 30, 35%.
she will see polling numbers that may reinforce this. cory didn't say we have to get taxes. we believe there is nothing there, the president knows there's nothing there, we're going on to taxes. we're going to iran and north korea. he's focused on hillary clinton which you and i both know is a strategy amongst republicans to keep that base riled up. >> of course, clint, i mean, meacham, quoting intruder in the dust, i think one of mika's favorite, faulkner, 48, 49. >> i'm trying to remember. >> i think it's 1948. intruder in the sdmoodust. >> joe, remember williams banned faulkner. >> oh, god. >> oh. that's right. >> remember. >> yeah. >> they were afraid of southern men of letters up there. >> yes. exactly. okay. so no faulkner no intruder in the december, none of that. >> no robert pen warren, nothing. williams was tough on them. >> i love meacham. >> wow. >> contribution has been noted today.
>> all john and robert frost. that was it, the only two literary types. that said you look at what's going on with hillary clinton. . this was all litigated last year. >> yeah. >> this was all litigated, even -- i mean we talked about it on this show last year. all the connections between bill clinton and -- i mean that's one of the reasons hillary clinton won. and yet they're coming back to it. >> yeah. what i don't understand is, doesn't this also constantly remind the audience that there was an alternative that was not chosen and might behave a little more responsibly than the president and i also -- these -- these investigations are complete so if you want to go look into the facts of it and look into the inquiries you can do that. there's nothing preventing you to. whereas this looming russia investigation is wide open right now and just getting started. >> as we said last week as i said last week a thousand times, pretty easy to figure out who approved the uranium deal. go figure it out. that's fine.
and, you know, last year, it's not like we haven't said all of this is very disturbing, we said it all last year. okay. get back into your de lor yan, punch 2017, right, october. >> close the door. >> october 30th. close the door. and come on back in time. all right. very good. >> president trump's approval rating is down to a new low. in the latest nbc news/"wall street journal" poll 38% approve of trump's job performance, down 5 points from last month. 58% disapprove. trump's approval is the worst of his presidency in the nbc poll. and is also well below where other modern presidents have ranked in the fall of their first terms. the same poll had george w. bush at 88%. barack obama at 51%. and bill clinton at 47%. trump's approval rating remains strong among republicans at 81%. but he's dropped seven points
among independents to 34%. his disapproval rating in that key group, up 9 points to 57%. >> i saw something else interesting, harold, last week, i think a poll last week showing his approval rating among evangelicals had dropped pretty significantly down to about 65, 66%. which, considering they gave him historic numbers in the fall, 66% is pretty low. >> there's no doubt about it. chris jansing on this network a few weeks back went and polled a group of people in indiana and people who had supported him and although there's still residual hope he can change, there's a lot of disappointment. people felt like more and more people independents, democrat leaning independents feel like they were sold a bad case of goods. this morning is important for the reasons that have been enumerated. ifs those numbers continue to drop there amongst evangelicals and independents, don't think they're going anywhere with
republicans p if they drop and and hold democrats who hope that '18 is a good year for us and looking out 2020, there is reason to have more hope that people don't trust them which means you have to offer alternatives. that's another conversation. his polling, he has to be concerned amongst those groups that put him over in wisconsin, ohio, michigan and pennsylvania, and evangelicals and independents, democratic leaning independents who may not have won the vote for hillary clinton that's the group leaving him according to these numbers. >> jon meacham, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> coming up president trump prepares to head to asia this week as the escalating tensions with north korea are reportedly spurring japan and south korea to consider their own nuclear arsenals. richard haass and ambassador wendy sherman join the conversation next. hi.
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joining us now, the president of the council on foreign relations, richard haass. >> richard, you were on a plane in disarray last night. >> i was on a -- >> what happened? >> lost a little bit of altitude sort of like a political metaphor. >> okay. >> and returned back to heathrow. >> that's awful. >> we could have been having a -- >> stop, stop, stop. >> what happened. so it was climbing and it just
stopped climbing and you lost altitude. >> then we went back. >> it's good to go back if the plane can't fly. >> it's a wonderful place. >> glad he's here this morning. >> that's awful. >> a little more time in england. >> i bet london looked better landing the second time than the first. >> under secretary of state and ambassador wendy sherman, good to have you on board this morning. >> good to be here. >> richard, were you on business? in london on business? >> let's talk about -- >> yes. >> let's talk about -- >> i love deet briefing. so what were you doing over there? >> had meetings with the people at the foreign office and ministry of defendanse, did a t, they're as consumed as we are with what you're talking about this morning, consumed by brexit. every conversation beginning, middle, end, every political thing. >> you're hearing the same thing, business people going over there, wendy, maybe you've heard the same thing, we were over there this summer and every meeting i was in, i started to do -- i know it looks crazy in the united states.
we're going to be back. they always cut you off and go, no, no, no. you don't get it. that's just about one man. >> yeah. >> you're -- donald trump will be gone and you all will be fine. we, our problem is systemic and it's saying with us. are you hearing that? >> absolutely. >> from the british? >> you're right. >> okay. >> analysis 100% right. they made a historical structural decision by simple majority in a referendum -- >> nondemocratic. >> ridiculous. but the problem there's no major political figure who is active in politics saying let's revisit this. >> wendy, that's what i'm hearing as well. they're not just saying, the leaders in britain not just saying this is a brexit problem, they're saying it's a systemic problem. our parties, our leaders are not up to the task and we're going into the climb, not just -- decline not just because of brexit but because we don't work anymore. it does not work here anymore. >> joe, this is happening all over the world.
here as well, where people feel rage and grievance their wage has stagnated, that social change is happening so fast, technology is happening so fast, they don't know where they are. i was in moscow about a week ago, with north koreans, iranians, russians, europeans and everyone is feeling a little unmore except for the russians. >> wow. >> they will feel -- >> it's right in front of us. >> spring? st. petersburg. >> what mr. putin has not done is created a foundation for russia's future. this is not a country with a future. >> let me asking also, while going across europe and i'm sure we've blown completely through what we're supposed to talk about. >> yep. >> but it's fascinating. i don't think americans understand enough the disarray your world in disarray, even among our closest allies. the french, macron, having a horrible time and now pushing a tax plan that helps the richest of the rich and is running into
even more problem with the populist. >> i was in paris meepgts with people there. i think there is a lot of political momentum in france. macron seems to have bounced back from his low point. >> is he out of the 30s? >> i can't remember his latest numbers but his reforms seem to have traction and interesting dynamic in europe, cat ta lon, that issue, in spain, and brexit, but the relationship between paris and berlin, for the first time you're seeing a real positive vision talked about for europe. i think you almost have competing futures and some optimism in germany and france the more positive future can win out. >> isn't it interesting how just ten years ago, we never really said that's much, but you would have people writing for the economist talking about the angelo-american axis, the americans and british knew how to work, we were driven by hard work and industry and the world was ours. meanwhile, in the continent,
well, you know, they have 35 hour work weeks. it's reversed. now if you look where the dynamism is, it's between berlin and paris. >> well the irony is that brexit created a more united european union and they have created strength and they've actually pivoted towards asia. i know we were going to talk about the president's trip, about north korea and, in fact, people believe this is, in fact, the asian century and the president's trip is quite consequential. this is one heck of a trip, five countries over 12 days. it is a very long trip. very challenging for any president and particularly challenging -- >> i think for this president. >> i don't think he will enjoy the length of this trip. >> no. >> what are the potential consequences? >> the biggest stop is china. the middle kingdom and the middle stop of the trip, stop number three. north korea, though, is the issue that will basically pervade it all. there's real confusion. you have secretary of defense the other day say we will not
accept a nuclear north korea. first of all we have a nuclear north korea. does that mean we won't live with one. if we're not going to live with one how do we propose to get rid of it. not acknowledge it like we do under the nonproliferation strategic treaty. >> as far as china goes, we've seen china, let's say, liberalize with a small "l" over the past -- >> they think they are the leading power now. >> over the last let's say decade. that's changed. you've seen over the past year or two, the state really start to seize control of power again, like they did. and again, for americans that don't follow this closely, there was a liberalization towards more market driven forces in china. that's changing. why? >> well, look, xi gin ping just had the most extraordinary 19 party congress, put himself up with ma, written into the constitution, he has a very clear track going forward. i think this will be the most
interesting piece of the trip. i think the president will have a perfect time in japan, meet with the em porer, play golf with abe with whom he has a strong relationship. south korea will be rockier because they wonder whether we're going to trade off our security for theirs around north korea. but china is where this all comes together. >> why is that happening in china, though, right now? >> it's happening in china right now because they want power, they want to make sure they have a secure future and xi jinping has given them a future. they've reduced poverty by probably 30% which is quite extraordinary over a short period of time. and they are really in the seat, they are the largest growing economy in the world. >> i am much more skeptical about it and the reason they're cracking down the economy is slowing and the party has to find a source of legitimacy. if you don't have double digit economic growth how does the party keep in power? they are cracking down because they are nervous. >> i have to ask both of you, when donald trump and american
representatives go to japan and go to south korea, are we going to hear -- are we going to hear the japanese talking about the need for nuclear weapon? are we going to hear the south koreans asking the same thing? wait a second, north korea will have a nuclear weapon, why can't we have a nuclear weapon. >> voices in both countries and both countries can get nuclear weapons quickly. japan in particular. probably could do so in about a month or two because they have the capacity and the south koreans are not far behind. so yes, i think we'll have that conversation even though both leaders have tried to tamp down that talk. >> thank you very much for being on this morning. richard, stay with us. still ahead when it came to the investigation -- >> by the way, richard, we're glad you're here. >> we are. >> into michael flynn, president trump reportedly told jim comey, quote, i hope you can let this go. he didn't. >> no. >> and neither has bob mueller. we will bring in "new york times" reporter robert smith who has traced the russia investigation every step of the
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one of the country's most high profile federal prosecuters has submitted his resignation after being asked to step down by the trump administration. dana boente announced his decision after being told the day before that he should submit his letter of resignation so that a successor could be named. ben d boente is the u.s. attorney for the eastern district of virginia which handled many high profile espionage and leak cases. sal
sally yates was fired after she refused to uphold the president's travel ban. boente said he will never until a replacement is named. >> is this just what happens? >> it's a little different. a lot of these prosecuters would stay on between administrations. if you look back to comey, mueller, a lot of these guys worked for both republicans and democrats. it wasn't always necessarily we need to clean the entire house. what's interesting for the trump administration, the sessions agenda, is no one can work for us unless they're on our team. and that is a different mentality. a doj and the fbi, you work for the country, and that was always the mantra i heard when i was there. the sessions agenda is very different from the obama. they're focussed on nationalist sort of agenda, crime, drugs, the war on drugs. we're starting to hear about that for the first time again. that was not the case before that. so when you look forward, i
think it set acetone about the direction when they want to go in terms of national security. this is one of the two most important districts. southern district of new york and the eastern district of virginia are power house districts. there's a lot of national security cases happening. >> and also new york, of course, he asked preek to stay and then fired him. richard, this is happening, though, and you're hearing it all over the world. this is also -- it's not just justice. it's also state. the president had ambassadors booted out before the replacements were put in place. so you have leaders of countries having no idea where to go when they want to make contact with the united states. >> no. just, for example, the president is going to seoul this week. one of the five stops on his trip. and guess where we don't have an ambassador? in south korea where one or two things are percolating, and you still don't have rex tillerson doesn't have 90% of the senior
level of the state department at a time when our diplomatic inbox is overflowing. >> harold, it's instanity. an ambassador on the ground, even if it was a holdover from the obama administration, we'd be working for the united states of america and talking to the trump white house and making sure they didn't go over there and make fools of themselves. again, getting a read on the ground. and yet, they have kicked out the best and the brightest, and i -- i can't imagine that we're trying to handle the most dangerous nuclear crisis since the cuban missile crisis -- >> short-handed. >> we're not only short-handed. we're completely gutted with state department and ambassadors across the nation. >> south korea and japan, i heard about the nuclearization to your question and how quickly they could have that. this could be a catalyst for
that which i don't think is being talked about quite as much. it changes the dynamics in that region. you have bill haggerty in japan, huntsman in china. but you don't have a full team there. and the worst thing is -- >> and russia. >> and russia. >> was in china. >> forgive me. >> we're reaching such a terrible -- we've always had politics with the cabinet positions here in america, but in foreign policy, it's always been a little different. and this president has introduced this. he's not alone. it's been building, but the fact that we're dealing with all we are and you would rather be short-handed with professionals than have your own people there, which i don't know what own people means. your own people -- you work for the country. >> you work for the united states of america. >> richard haas could do either side. his point would be we have to look at america's interests. i'm not worried about you campaigned in iowa or nevada or texas. this is about america.
>> and katty is the president of the united states so insecure that he doesn't want a professional in the ground in south korea in the middle of a nuclear crisis? does he really think this person is going to be doing anything in the interest of anybody besides the united states of america. >> the biggest risk in the korean peninsula seems to be from experts i speak to because of a mistake, that something could happen because of mistake. somebody does something and there's a miscalculation. having someone on the ground might help from leading from someone you don't want it to go. that's why at the moment, i think having that point person there to say they didn't mean that or this is what they meant, i think that would be helpful. >> who are bob mueller's top targets? we'll bring in our chief legal correspondent to preview the looming charges in the russia probe. plus "the washington post" bob
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jury. key figures include former white house national security adviser michael flynn who left the white house after controversy over his discussions with the russian ambassador. also former trump campaign strategist and chairman paul manafort in june manafort retroactively registered as a foreign agent for work with a pro russian ukrainian political party. welcome back to "morning joe." it's monday, october 30th. with us, we have former fbi special agent and contributor clint watts. washington anchor for bbc world news america, katty kay, richard haas, and joining the conversation chief legal correspondent and host of "the beat" ari melber, and robert costa. >> bob, a lot of panic this past week from republicans. also some conservative news outlets trying to whip a frenzy
up against mueller, against hillary, talking about uranium, talking about just about everything but this pending russia investigation. now we seem to know why. set the scene for us in washington right now. what have you heard over the past week? what have you been hearing this weekend out of the white house? >> joe, here on capitol hill, many republican lawmakers are watching the president's flurry of tweets over the weekend ahead of the possible indictments. but they're not retweeting the president in many respects. what they're doing is hoping this investigation moves forward and they're also concerned about 2018. if the president moves forward with some kind of action to get rid of personnel, or to do something with the special doub counsel out of frustration. they believe it could hurt their chances if they can't cut through on taxes. >> what happens if donald trump fires bob mueller?
what republicans speak out? >> i think senator portman's comments were revealing this weekend. he really echoes a lot of what i have continued to hear. this will be a rebellion in the gop ranks if the president moves forward. we don't like to speculate about something that hasn't happened. we haven't seen what's coming forward from mueller. but the republican party on capitol hill, they want this investigation to move forward without obstruction. >> and that's certainly something yesterday that they said, let the guy do his job. and i do think that is the feeling among almost every republican i talk to. >> but i think that given the track record, the pattern we've seen with this president, it is totally within the realm of okay to speculate that he would fire bob mueller. >> the reason he has bob mueller is because he fired james comey. >> right. can't do it again.
can you? can you do it again? >> i think even he knows that he would not be dealing with mueller if he had not fired comey. >> deep down, he must know that. there are people in the white house who have intimated that to him. although, he, as you know, can be a difficult person to reckon with when you're trying to discuss his own goal in creating negative events. >> but things are changing so rapidly. he knows there's a problem. and if based on the reports that we've heard about what's been happening in the white house over the last week or two, and some people he's been telling to leave the white house, voluntarily, so he doesn't have to push them out. he knows the problem is very close to him. >> literally close. there are people in the white house offices being interviewed by mueller's team. that would be the biggest headline of the week if there weren't bigger ones, but that's confirmed on the record. the interview schedule showing white house aides being
interviewed. you have the reports of an indictment which can lead to arrests in short order. if the indictment is unsealed today, we could be reading through a narrative about one or more individuals of allegations. the other point, they're not retweeting on the republican side at capitol hill. in politics, you could say just about anything and this president has been politically rewarded for that approach. in the courtroom, there are rules of testimony. there are rules of evidence. and so we are going to move away from the political track which will still exist to have a concurrent legal track with fact finding that's good for anyone who will benefit from the facts. it might be bad for some who are worried about what the facts show in court. >> there may be a lot of people not retweeting in congress, because there are a lot of lawyers that get elected who understand what ari just said. the arena of politics is far different from the legal arena. and what may work in politics
actually may get you in trouble in the court. >> well, the fbi academy rationalize, object, minimize. three things they do, and if you watch this, what i did wasn't that bad, everyone is doing it, you'll hear that. those sorts of things are indicators for investigators. i think it's indications for other politicians who see this happening that something isn't right. that the way to handle the situations is either to be overt and come out and provide a statement with evidence, which i would say jared kushner did, if you remember a few months back, or to not talk about it and focus on the agenda. instead, he's bringing the scrutiny back. >> and this couldn't come at the worst time. you have the political track, the legal track as a backdrop to the most important foreign policy of his presidency up against the most important national crisis of his
presidency, north korea. it's going to come together and be a distraction. it can't help but weaken him as he heads abroad. >> they said this could be the beginning of the end. there doesn't seem to be much indication of the beginning of the end. there are so many key interviews in the white house who hasn't been interviewed yet. we're still waiting for hope hix. she was in the meetings, on the plane, she is clearly a critical figure when it comes to piecing together what happened in the trump tower meet we can't predict anything about bob mueller. i can read the case law in other investigations that involved white house conduct including potential obstruction, the president sooner or later is interviewed in some form. either in an fbi style interview, or more, a grand jury interview in the case of hillary clinton. as of this date, this morning, this president has not been
interviewed. >> but he has been active on twitter this morning. >> even by his standards. >> oh, on friday he tweeted, quote, now commonly agreed after many months of costly looking, that there was no collusion between russia and trump. was collusion with hc? apparently that's standing for hillary clinton. and multiple tweets sunday morning. quote, never seen such republican anger and unity as i have concerning the lack of investigation on clinton made fake dossier. the uranium to russia deal, the 33,000 plus deleted e-mails, the comey fix and so much more. instead they look at phony trump/russia collusion which doesn't exist and the dems are using this terrible and bad for our country witch hunt for evil politics but -- >> this is a mess. do you want me to keep reading? >> are now fighting back like never before -- >> not really. >> first, it's inar tick you
lat, and it seems hysterical. >> we've read enough. it's false. it's just -- it's all false, and again, it's got to cause concern among republicans on the hill. bob costa, we saw a meltdown by several trump loyalists this past weekend. one getting banned from twitter. and all about the same time. it's almost as if they got the word that maybe who knows? maybe one of the news outlets that reported it tipped them off. but it's almost like they got the word the indictments were coming. >> well, that has been reported in several use outlets and what we're seeing with the dossier, s it's been funded by both democrats and republican groups. and so -- but it has kicked off a fire storm on the right. i make a point to try to monitor how they're picking up speed on some of the articles on both sides of the political aisle, and the conservative allies of president trump are grabbing
onto this story about the dossier and democratic funding of it at some point in the 2016 election as a way of saying the story's secretary clinton and this comes, of course, at the time when this special counsel is reportedly moving forward. >> isn't it, though, i mean, the funding. what was -- after the bay of pi pigs, what was kennedy's famous quote? success has many fathers, failures and orphan. this dossier appears to be an orphan despite the fact there are hundreds of fathers running around funding the baby's clothing. bob costa, it started with -- >> whoa. >> this was a republican dossier, a paid for dossier. then it was a democratic dossier this past week. and then we heard that it was a conservative website that first paid for the baby's bills at the hospitals to get it home. >> that's all right, joe.
that's all correct. >> thank you. >> nice metaphor. >> thank you. >> the metaphor is making my head ache. >> again, though, it appears that this website that's funded by somebody who supported marco rubio early in the campaign, which may give us a clue as to which republican was funding the dossier first. we're not saying it was marco's team did. we're saying it's a clue. it started with this website, and then it went to republicans during the primary. then it went to democrats after donald trump won the primary. >> we're focussed on the dossier. i wonder what else was done in terms of the research. this is an uncorroborated. we don't know. it's raw intelligence from one source. is this the only russia lead that was in that opposition research? because i would imagine that
whether it was republicans or democrats that started this out, this is one piece of data, and there's a lot more of this. >> what i think is fascinating over the weekend, what you've just been referring to as well as the obsession with a dossier, we're not seeing a legal political strategy to cordon off a few bad actors that may have gotten caught up in the campaign. this person has a history and maybe this other thing happened. that's what you would expect in a pure innocent strategy. as you allude to, the type of strategy we're seeing is much more everybody does it. maybe everyone in washington is a criminal and let's talk about that. and i think that's an ominous sign for allies of the president who are hoping to lean into a legal strategy that involved cordoning off maybe cambridge, maybe manafort and a few individuals to extend the metaphor, throw the bath water out, but keep the presidential
baby. >> you like the baby part? >> bob didn't take you up? >> bob wasn't going there. >> the problem is you can't limit this, and you can't limit it, because there were so many contacts with russia. there were so many sort of bizarre connections. you have national security adviser going over sitting next to vladimir putin. you had a guy that ran your campaign that was running pro russian -- >> a president who will not criticize russia, in no, way, shape, or form. >> a president who has been trying to get into russia and build the largest tower in russia for some time now. his two sons saying at different times going all the way back to maybe 2009 that most of the money the trump organization gets they get from russians. you can't cordon this off. it didn't just start during the campaign. this goes way back. >> right. i think that's the biggest problem. and you lay it out there, and
that's just in the public. >> i was just going to say. that's just what we all know off the top of our heads. we're not even talking about the reports of money laundering from the russians through the trump organization, the loans. we're not -- i'm not even bringing up jarod's meeting with the russian banker at the guidance of vladimir putin. we're not bringing up -- they're, again, just in the public do mamain, if you can imagine what we know, and we haven't been able to look at all of trump's financial records. >> last week a report said the cambridge analytica reached out to wikileaks for information stolen from americans. that would be me reaching out to someone disclosing national secrets and harming the u.s. government for almost a decade and going to them and saying would you help me talk --
>> i would love for us, and maybe this is something we can do, one of our famous six-minute montages, but we never cut. i would love a six minute montage of republicans, myself included, whacking wikileaks, maybe we start with sean hannity. maybe we get six minutes of sean hannity calling them traitors. >> that would do it. >> you can get every one of them on the capitol hill talking about what wikileaks did. i didn't talk to a person in the pentagon or at the state department or at the white house that didn't say they damaged u.s. national security. now suddenly they're heros. >> and it's much what ari said. everyone does this. you're starting to hear the talk, hey, it was in a campaign. you've got to do what it takes to win. if you use that, you're lowering a standard which becomes dangerous for national security.
you're essentially saying it's okay for any hacker or any person to go steal information from private citizens which is then disclosed on the internet and we use to attack each other. it's a dangerous precedent we're heading toward and not putting america first. >> the nixon political and legal team's position was not everybody's a particular. >> right. >> their position was this is a third rate burglary. we don't know a lot about it. >> that didn't work out so well for them. >> no, it didn't. >> the fact this goes back for so long, that manafort has had these relationships for so long, i think it makes his position so difficult. he can't say he didn't know that there was relationships with the -- it's not plausible he didn't know that. in a way, that's a weakness for them. he goes back so far. gave him a huge bedrock of knowledge of who was who and who had links to the kremlin. >> and when asked who his national security team members were, he picked carter page who appears on the stage in moscow
spouting a pro kremlin position. >> right. in the midst of all this fun, the republicans are fighting for their lives trying to get tax reform through, and yet, now "the washington post" reporting this morning that they are under attack by one of the most pro republican groups out there, the national home builders who i'll be the first to admit, i wouldn't want them against me in a political campaign, but we're starting to see interest groups coming out against this tax plan. >> and that's why the ways and means committee chairman has been so secretive about the legislation. we haven't seen it. everyone is trying to get a copy. the republicans on capitol hill are trying to protect the document because they know all these interest groups are trying to protect their slice of the tax code. and at the end of the day, joe, you were in congress. you know this. these republicans want to get a corporate tax cut, but they really don't want to have wholesale tax reform. that's where this probably ends
up, a more limited legislative package. >> and bob, when you go in and you have to close loopholes, $4 trillion worth of loopholes, i've been through a process where we've had to cut spending. that's tough. and i've been through a process where we tried to close tax loopholes. you know what you do when you start doing that? you duck. because the traffic from k street over to the hill is jammed. that's when it gets really ugly. because at the end of the day, you have all those lobbyists on k street to protect their tax loopholes in the irs code. >> and if you want to get any kind of democrat to sign onto a tax reform plan or tax cut plan, getting rid of deductions that were created for the middle class is no-go. what republicans are really thinking act is could you get a tax cut through and swallow what it takes with the deficit, and it's not conservative to add more than a trillion dollars to the deficit, just do it for
economic growth. try to get democrats vulnerable in 2018 to sign up for the bill and move forward and say that bill and gorsuch are what you run on in 2018. >> you've been around washington long enough to know, richard, it is hard enough to close one loophole, took loophole on the hill, but $4 trillion worth? and you get the national home builders, and you get all of these other, i'm sure at some point the nfiv, if they go after things that give loopholes were certain small businesses, this is going to get really rough. >> all sorts of senators and congressmen are involved. it's tax expenditure. it's a form of spending. that's why it's so tough. >> and you close it. guess what that is in the national home builders? a tax increase. >> exactly. >> suddenly you're running maybe in primaries, i certainly would do it if i wanted to run against somebody, i'd do the list of
so-called closed tax loopholes and say the congressman raised your taxes here, here, here, here, here, also he could give the biggest corporations in the world a big tax cut. >> you're talking about state and local taxes. you're talking about mortgage payments, and you're talking about charitable donations. each one of those has enormous, powerful constituencies. it's going to be politically almost impossible. >> as you go into 2018, bob costa, if the democrats want to take control of congress, they have to look at states like california and new york where you have some republicans that continue to hold on out there. there's no way they can hold on to the house of representatives and have all of these people in these districts voting to increase state taxes in places like new york, california, new jersey, illinois, wherever there are republicans. >> and connecticut. >> oh, my god, and connecticut. i mean, i thought they already
took 100% of our income. bob -- >> you're right. those are the lawmakers. you have to pay attention to the lawmakers in california, up state new york. those are the kind of lawmakers who if you're speaker ryan, those are the rebels who say that can bring this whole thing down if they don't sign up for the bill. >> robert costa, thank you for being on this morning. richard haas and a ri, thank you as well. coming up, manhattan's u.s. attorney's office is pursuing an investigation into possible money laundering by the former trump campaign manager. we'll talk to former u.s. attorney joyce vance who was confirmed unanimously by the senate and stepped down hours after president trump took office. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back.
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joining us now from alabama, former u.s. attorney for the northern district of alabama, joyce white vance. and in washington law professor at george washington university, jonathan turly. great day to have you both on. thank you very much. joyce vance, can we talk about the -- is it -- is it correct to discuss the possibility of mueller being fired given the pattern of this president? and what would the potential consequences of that be? >> i think we have to discuss it based on the pattern of conduct that we've seen over time. and other than perhaps some editorial writing being done in one news outlet, i haven't seen anyone who thinks it's a good idea to bring this investigation to a premature end. so one hopes that people are preparing to support bob mueller if this president decides that the time comes to fire him. >> jonathan turly, do you agree?
>> absolutely. many of us who were skeptical about the need of a special counsel changed our mind when he fired james comey, and this would play into the narrative of his critics, and it would fuel efforts toward impeachment. >> jonathan, you've been level-headed about this whole investigation all along, so today's clearly a big day. is it a mountain or mole hill day? >> we'll have to say. the prosecuters will often bring early indictments against targets they want to cooperate, but that can backfire. people expect a lion to come out of his gates. if it's a chihuahua, it has the opposite effect. if these are violations, like registration of foreign agents, those type of charges are almost never prosecuted. it's a difficult needle to thread for a prosecuter. early charges can help you work on witnesses, but they can also undermine you have it's an
anemic start to a major investigation. >> what would surprise you on the mountain side here? we've been discussing this morning some of the politics around this and maybe mr. mueller's in a little more of a clock than other prosecuters might be. what would surprise you this morning? >> the key for the most substantive indictment would be any indictment that has a clear path to the trump campaign or trump himself. as opposed to collateral vie violations. manafort is viewed as a target rich environment. there's a lot of transactions there unrelated to the campaign that he might be subject to investigation or even charged. but it's really those charges that deal specifically with a campaign that would have a seismic impact in washington. also we're looking at a lot of those other players. you have carter page and others who haven't been talked about as much. but what you really have to look
for the indictment and the attached after david. that's what most of us want to see. it's probably even more important than the charge itself. that's where you'll see the fbi referring to what they already know, and that can implicate others and indicate a far more serious problem for the white house. >> clinton watts. >> joyce, i was wondering what you thought in terms of the white house seeming to have almost like a dual track strategy. you have the president out tweeting a lot. you have a lot of the republicans talking about how this is a nothing investigation. and the other point, you have ty cobb, almost like we're willing to work with the investigation. how do you think this comes out moving forward and whether the president is with ty cobb as his counsel? >> well, the strategy seems to be many t more traditional approach that a defense lawyer would take interacting especially with the prosecution
team like this one which starts with bob mueller, a legendary prosecuter, and works its way on into some extraordinarily skillful people. i'm sure that every time he reads a tweet from the president that touches on the investigation, he is thinking, and i feel equally sure that bob mueller has someone on his team assigned specifically on this point, that they're looking at those tweets and other comments that are made to see if they become additional evidence in this investigation. whether obstruction of guilty knowledge or of anything else. but safe to say that that is not helping the president's case in this situation. >> yeah. one of this country's most high profile federal prosecuters submitted his resignation after being asked to step down. dana boente announced his decision after being told the day before by jeff sessions that he should submit his letter of resignation so a successor could be named.
boente, one of the new remaining holdovers from the obama administration is a representative for the eastern district of virginia. joyce, your thoughts on this bit of news? >> so it's maybe a little bit less critical than it looked at first blush, because reports are that dana boente, a career prosecuter, been in the office for decades, that he'll stay on until his replacement is named. but clearly this resignation caught people by surprise. the expectation was that mr. boente would return to his office when his successor at the national security division was concerned. he served under obama. he was not the original obama u.s. attorney in the eastern district of virginia. came on in the last couple of years during the administration. served with the obama prosecuters. certainly has ties there, but
also was widely perceived as just being a prosecuter's prosecuter. a career prosecuter without a political ax to grind. of course, he played a key role in firing all of his colleagues early on in the trump administration. >> hard to know when all of this was going to go down. so great to have a conversation with both of you this morning. but i hate to do what ifs. what if it's this person or that person. we're going to need you to come back tomorrow when we know. having said that, jonathan, prognosticate as best you can, final thoughts this morning. >> well, all the money in washington has been on manafort. his attorneys have said they were not contacted about the indictment. usually if you have an indictment on a friday, you'll get word to the attorneys that you can surrender your client on monday. that doesn't mean it always happens, but his attorney said they weren't informed, and that's led to a lot of speculation. >> didn't -- i just remember hillary clinton meeting on a saturday with -- i don't know. anything goes at this, but that
is fascinating. >> it could be somebody -- jonathan, are we write in thinking it could be somebody close to manafort, his accountant for example? >> usually prosecuters start with the low hanging fruit, and they then can become useful to going up the chain. but once again, given the anticipation, they have to sort of wonder about the optics if what comes out of the gate is a chihuahua, is that going to have the impact on other people that you want to -- >> chihuahuas and babies in baths. >> thank you both very much. please come on tomorrow. coming up, harvard law professor lays out 21 examples of actions that may or may not be impeachab impeachable. among, quote, a president is elected as a result of a secret plan with a nation that's unfriendly with the united states.
we'll see where that falls in the spectrum. and tonight gold star father khan sits down with a message to the trump administration. >> i have two words to say to the white house, and to this president. dignity, most dignity and restraint. he's void of both. his advisers should have written that on a piece of paper, put it in front of him, most dignity and restrain. there are moments in -- >> right. >> this nation's life where restraint and dignity is called for. eryday. when i look in the mirror everyday. everyday, i think how fortunate i am. i think is today going to be the day, that we find a cure? i think how much i can do to help change people's lives. i may not benefit from those breakthroughs, but i'm sure going to...
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well, this isn't a real surprise. there's a new poll out that says americans have very little faith in the federal government and tech companies like facebook, google, and twitter so stop foreign governments from using social platforms to rig our elections. according to latest survey monkey poll 43% of americans don't trust the tech companies or the federal government to stop foreign influence on social sites. the number increases almost half
of republicans and 51% of republicans and independents 49 %. this comes adds americans are split on whether they find allegations russia targeted advertisers as a serious issue. in the poll 54% of americans say the allegations of russia using targeted ads is serious. 42% say it's more of a distraction. when it comes down to break down of party, no surprise here. 83% of democrats and 50% of independents think it is a serious issue. only 25% of republicans think that it's a serious issue that russia tried to rig america's election. i'm going to say that again. three out of four republicans surveyed don't care that russia tried to rig america's election. said another way, one in four republicans do care that russia and vladimir putin and the kremlin tried to rig our
presidential election. perhaps we could look at it this way. 75% of republicans, let me say that again. i will underline it. let it sink in here. hold on a second. let it breathe. 75% of republicans in this poll say they do not care that the kremlin tried to rig america's presidential election. okay. you know, i just -- i kind of wonder what we fought for. what we republicans -- when we were fighting for -- my entire life, you know, the cold war. telling some democrats that thought that ronald reagan was he was a warmonger, and all the
fights in the 1980s, all the debates about getting -- standing up to gorbachev and deploying the cruise missiles into western germany, and all of western germany and all of europe exploding. exploding. but reagan did that. i mean, what rond reagan refusing to give up sdi and ultimately gorbachev having to back down. what was all of that for? so republicans now, 75% of republicans now could say oh, it's okay if russia tries to rig our elections. i want to say that again. 75% of republicans think it's cool that the kremlin tried to rig america's elections. >> okay. the question was not exactly phrased like that. you have to -- >> let me say this also. so you have a legalistic, but i
could find you more polls that say a lot of russians approval of vladimir putin have skyrocketed of late. >> yeah. >> go ahead. >> you can ask, 2 t question was really about how serious did they think it was they used targeted ads on social media. if you had said how serious do you think it is that vladimir putin tried to rig the american election, i suspect you may have got a slightly higher number than 24 %. no? i mean, come on. give your former colleagues -- >> do me a favor -- >> some benefit of the doubt. >> let's get vladimir putin's approval ratings. >> it's over 80%. >> in the united states, among republicans. and how much putin's approval ratings have skyrocketed, by what percentage since donald trump became president of the united states? then we'll see how much people really care about what's in the best interest of the united states of america, and what's in the best interest of their
political clan. >> greatest victory in american warfare was what the russian regime has done over the last few years. putin's -- >> catalonia. >> scotland is now up there. they're doing it in the middle east as we are moving back from the world stage, the russians are moving in. they are having their way with the world right now. >> way cheaper than an arms race. >> and the greatest victory is getting an audience that now not only support his belief system but support his foreign policies. >> and this comes, of course, at republicans suddenly feeling warm and fuzzy about vladimir putin after they invaded cry memia and eastern ukraine, and after they shot down forces attached to them shot down a passenger
airliner. i mean, it's not like -- it's not like there have been positive developments in the last two or three years that make republicans decide they have a warm and fuzzy feeling about vladimir putin suddenly. >> it reminds us why the president is so serious about riling up his base when you see numbers like this, whatever the question may be about. it's russia. they may have been involved, how do you feel if three quarters of republicans say it was just a distraction. i think that was revealing. i doubt they thought it was cool, but i know -- >> no. they're cool with it. >> they're cool with it the. >> they're cool with it because they know that russia bought facebook ads and targeted. they're cool with it. >> but what has changed? i would imagine that you would find democrat and republican alike ten years ago, 15 years ago would have found this objectionable at the least. something that has changed. >> it switches party to party. i mean, it just -- it's -- >> but i don't think -- i don't
think democrat or republican alike would say yes, we want the russians being involved in our election. >> it's not a big deal. it's a -- >> what has changed? >> why is it impossible to ever bring them back together? >> i don't understand what's changed? you listed all these things that russia has done over the last few years so upset the global balance in their favor and against us. i don't care your party background. it seems irrelevant. how could anyone not find this, but you see more of this, not as many people as i thought in the republican party would find this problematic as -- >> because the republican party has turned itself over to someone who is creating a personality cult. i mean, i was conservative way back when being conservative meant you were conservative. that changed. i mean, now you have radicals. >> but i don't know of any republican in washington, in congress, the senate, any serious thinker on foreign policy and republican party who
agrees with the president. you still have 75% -- something has happened. i just don't know what it is. i don't think any of us know. it's just numbing to say the least. >> something is happening but don't know what it is, do you, mrs. jones. when we return, i'll have the answer to that poll, the rising popularity of vladimir putin among republicans when "morning joe" comes back.
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37%. among republicans. so it's doubled. >> during the course of 2016, that's a lot. >> during the course of 2016, that's. well, because you look. with us now, former governor of mississippi. also with us, political writer. nick. i'm going to bounce all over the place, first. come on, man. i grew up on rt when i lived in mississippi. sad day. >> sad day. >> three point lead and got beat up. 38-37 with four seconds left. >> how long. >> how long till old miss comes back. >> maybe next year. we have a very good quarterback. hurt knee.
great receivers, but we got since bill car michael passed away. he was a giant when we lived in meridian. >> we have no way of knowing, but he was the first serious republican for the governor in the modern era. never got elected. paved the way. got cochran in the congress. really created the republican party along with gill. >> he really did. >> we heard all weekend there might be some indictments coming up today. how should republicans respond. >> i think what we need to do is what cobb said. have a thorough investigation. let's get to the bottom of everything. we had the big news last week was the clinton campaign and the dnc were involved in paying for
some of the stuff. that was. >> that was the big news. >> that was really news. we had been studying this for months and months and months. first time anything like that came out. i would consider that news. >> that was news, but you consider that the big news. >> well, wasn't the moment of the last half hour. >> we talked about it. we also -- you also had what, washington free beacon also hired them early on. seems like everybody, but you and me hired them last campaign cycle. it's hard to point at hillary clinton when everybody is paying these guys. >> it's a newspaper, isn't it. >> it's a conservative news site. funded by paul singer. the money trail leads from rory mcilroy world to democratic world at a time when most of the world was against his nomination. >> paul singer is not the trump campaign. not the clinton campaign. not the democratic national committee. they might not have done anything that turns out to be.
i don't think we ought to prejudge. >> everybody. >> everyone else has been prejudged for more than a year. we're in the wrong react. these people got put their hat out. everybody was putting money in there. anybody in your firm think about getting to this business because it it's. >> let's talk about tax. taxes. let's talk about the tax. i've been talking and bob corker and others have said correctly, and, you know, when you try to close a tax loophole, that's one of the toughest things in washington to do. trying to close $4 trillion worth. home builders out. every republican wants on their side this morning saying we're against the package. >> i was in the white house in 1985 and 86. the last time the country
successfully did a tax reform. tax reform is hard because there's winners and losers. that's why russell long used to say the chairman of the question, don't tax you, don't tax me, tax that guy behind the tree. >> i heat's a pretty good line. >> it's the truth. it's complex. it's contentious. there are winners and losers. how they're able to get to finish line, we'll see. >> how do you get to $4 trillion. >> it's over ten years. if you get sufficiently poll closing matched with rate reduction, a lot of people say okay i'm going to lose my deductions, but on the lower right. i'll be better off. i'll change my way of doing business. i won't try to get all these tax
deductions. i'll just let it be assessful as we can be and that's what we want to happen. the real news of last week was not just about the russian stuff. >> the coming. the indictments is coming soon. go ahead. >> the real news was 3% economic growth the last quarter. that's what the american people want. what they want is growth. organic growth. tax reform will help boost that. before he and trump started going after. he said. if you think health reform is hard. try tax reform. you're right.
we had to go back. it's also. that's safe to get ignored when the republicans are asking light they're going to get it done. >> we have breaking news. your news paper is reporting who it is. what can you tell us? it's paul manafort and his long time associate rick gates what who have been ordered to surrender. it's what everyone expected. it's interesting to find out what they're being indicted for. on investigation before trump by the feds. he and fascinating that it's rick. rick was also highly involved in the campaign.
exactly which piece of this this indictments are about. >> when paul manafort came onto the campaign, a lot of people were asking. knew he had been around for a ronald reagan long time. hadn't been active because he did. he shifted his business to washington, d.c. to. >> and, of course, we all remember the orange revolution. we remember prorussian reaction to that. things got ugly and manafort chose the prorussian side. >> manafort was working for the former president of ukraine. ousted by the revolutionary forces. wanted to get rid of the puppet and they wanted to get rid of him and he left. that is the guy that manafort
chose to work with. he has a very common history going back working on ukrainian issues always with a prorussian side. that's why he is going to be so interesting to mueller. there's no way i can think, i don't know what nick thinks about this. he didn't know who the players were in this. he must have known. how the kremlin oempgs woperatid and that nothing was done. >> that really is. that's what the problem expands. there's no way paul manafort sitting in the meeting with don junior could plead ignorance. surprising michael schmit. it's not like paul manafort's background wasn't known. if people like hillary basher would have jumped on the campaign at that point, if other republicans who had stayed in washington and done their business in between the lines
for so long would have worked on the campaign, question is, why would donald trump go out looking for trouble? which selection of paul manafort seemed to be just that. >> this was an atypical campaign that looked at things much differently than others. they didn't have a normal structure. they didn't have long time republican hands that were part of it. manafort was someone that was -- that hadn't been part of the republican establishment for zefrlg yea several years because he had gone abroad and done these types of things. not someone a lot of candidates were looking to have work for them. the interesting thing that we'll see have to see here today is that what is in the charging papers. and what i think the white house will do if the white house will look at those things and see is the word russia in there. and if not, they will lean very hard into this. seeing look, there's no russia here. they look, do they look at manafort. looked at all these things and there's no russia here. if there is russia here, muslim
larger problem on their hands. that will be the key how they try to spin forward coming out of today. chairman being indicted which is very significant. charlie black, long time kind of republican here. paul was in the middle. my belief he was in the reagan white house. >> i think the ford white house too. >> if i'm not mistaken. he ran the national for doe in 96. he's been around. he kind of changed careers a few
years ago and i'm talking about 10-15 years ago if i remember right. >> i think it was a decade he worked for the people. >> you'll regard it. i mean, consider confident, bright guy. >> paul really pioneered. paul manafort pioneered a style of business export american style consulting to politicians abroad and try to do business around their government. with businessmen and interest around those governments so in the ukraine did it for a long time. he got extremely rich doing. this what's interesting about the indictment. there are so many ways it could be going. under investigation for not registering as a foreign agent for paying interest. under investigation for money flows and potential laundering of funds. under investigation as part of the trump russia probe. it's possible some of this is
going to go away from the trump russia probe per se. >> could be to do with manafort's own financial dealings with the other organizations. >> it could. we haven't seen the indictment. told to surrender to authorities. had an unwelcome series of guests at his home earlier this year. in a early morning raid. it led to this. andrea mitchell with us. go to her in one minute. michael schmit in louisiana. covering this from the start. what can you tell us about rick gaits. >> rick had been close to manafort for a long time. he had been in that circle that the feds were looking at. we knew far less about gates than we did about manafort. this summer we learned about the whole search warrant.
that point pretty clear the government was coming for manafort. gates that has been more off to the side and less a focus. he was part of the campaign, but not as chairman as manafort was in the time he was very public being out there during the convention. speaking with the press a lot. someone that the press turned to understand what was going on in trump world. first of all, this is going to be a setback for the white house. as much they've tried to distance themselves from manafort and you heard the president in recent months saying he was there for a short while. he was the campaign manager.
he was a major player. this is not a minor person being charged. we don't know what the charges are. could very well be for things he did that were very separate or prior to any engagement with the trump campaign. could be financial. obviously his records were gone through and the fact that they had raided his house in that predawn raid was such an aggressive step this was the speculation over the weekend. once we knew that indictments were in fact coming today, the speculation was focused on manafort because it was clear he was not cooperating. clear the predawn raid meant they did not believe that he would voluntarily give up any of his records. medical record they were looking at his finances and the fbi has been on this case for more than a year. starting inhis finances and the
been on this case for more than a year. starting in july of 2016. the fbi is the best at the world in looking at financial entan e entangleme entanglements. following the money, if you will. this really proceeds the russia probe. it also could be something which is not normally prosecuted, which is failing to file as a foreign agent. this is something that mike flynn is also under suspicion of. the fact it is manafort and his colleague yates sort of denies and undercuts the president's argument this is minor. the president will most likely point out he was only campaign manager for a couple of months and not up until election day. one other thing. manafort has been under discretion. it does tie him to russia, if if not to collusion involving russia in the campaign. >> can we expect to hear a statement from mr. mueller this morning now that an indictment has come about.
would that be appropriate. is that something the public can look to get more information from him about this. >> he could leave it at the indictment. he could make a statement. mueller has been so circumspect and without any leaks we know of. he has been really following the letter of the law and following procedure so precisely that i'm not sure you'll hear from him. it's not necessary for him to be heard from. as joe knows as an attorney. white water and the impeachment.
now this. what is the best move for the white house. ty cobb, lawyer kept his head down and said we're staying out of the way. it will be sad if these people are indicted, but it doesn't involve us. is that the course they shouldary let me say first i haven't tried a lawsuit since 1988. i'm talking about political advice. >> it's not just about this, but my advice is be quiet. let's find out what the indictment is about. what's going on here? don't feel like you got to go jump in the middle of everything. it may -- it may require an answer. it may not require an answer, but my view would be unless an answer is required, let's let nature take its course until we get to a point where we see more
about where we're going. >> especially when you're talking about criminal proceedings, less is more. >> right. you want to be fair to people. >> when i say less is more, the less you say, better. >> because you want to be fair to people who recuse. i don't know rick gaitstes. >> exactly. i think usually you put it a good way. less is more. you don't have to just talk about everything. sometimes it's inappropriate. >> yes. let's go to clint right now. clint, we know right now that it is paul manafort and it is also deputy trump campaign chair and paul manafort right wing man rick gates. here's a shot of paul manafort this morning. what can you tell us?
president or to the rest of his campaign? >> we're working on sources regarding them being told to surrender. so we will be eyeing t ining th indictment for anything that explains the time period and kind of crimes that are alleged. since had role publically reduced according to the white house. >> let's talk for a second. right now, first blush. people would think the indictment pertains to things that manafort did before he came on the trump campaign. then that gives trump and the administration more of a clean bill of health, but that's actually not the case. i'm not bidding against the trump administration when i say this. i'm just speaking as a lawyer, manafort sitting in those meetings knew who don junior and
knew who jarred and the rest of the gang were talking to. this guy had working knowledge. intimate knowledge of everybody that came into the orbit that had any contacts with russia. he knew all the players. >> he had significant working knowledge and back story. the more the theory of the case may be that not only was russia intending to metal as u.s. intel says, but was intending to collude and sweeten and meet. today is bad news for paul manafort and other individuals who said we didn't know that or understand that. clear clearly. a lot of the work relating to russia went to a moscow more than once to do business. rick gates was at the white house as recently as march. while trump has been president, has been a part of the scene. been in meetings. now as other folks have said, as
we always say when we cover this. all of them are presumed innocent. this is an early stage. what we will get today is one side of the story that government prosecutors view of the facts to substantiate the climbs committed. later get a lot more detail. you have two individuals who are not just accused potentially of these older activities. >> let's also talk about again the connection with trump's campaign. we underline and highlight, excloo medication points afterwards, they are innocent. until proven guilty in this country. they are presumed innocent. paul manafort. he was a former chair of the trump 2016 campaign.
everybody knows that. >> managed the convention. >> was there and was there spokesperson on our show and every other show. during the 2016 campaign. for trump to pretend he doesn't know who he is. >> on the russia platd form. >> we talked about earlier today. significant change in helping profreedom forces in the ukraine. that got scrubbed and got scrubbed a lot of people believe because of paul manafort. rix gates, deputy trump campaign chairman. paul manafort right man for part of 2016 campaign and he worked largely on day-to-day operations in the trump campaign. and after manafort left the trump campaign, rick gates remained on the trump campaign and he was the liaison to republican national committee for team trump. rick gates also worked on the inaugural committee and then
joined donald trump's supporting america's first outside super pac until he was forced out and he was forced out because of the cloud over this investigation. >> your newspaper has been outfront on this. where in light just building and not to be redundant. you got to see the affidavit and see the indictment. where does your paper go next in terms of the political questions as you think about ties to the trump campaign, the trump white house, and today's indictment. >> you know, it's really nating. the fact this includes rick gates is a little bit of a tell. that perhaps the indictment is going to look for at some of those business activities. as joe just pointed out, rick was closely involved with the trump campaign for a long time. he was about to be the guy kind of running the outside super pac day-to-day until news of his tanglement in this probe had him pushed out. the implications for the white house are look, if you're a former campaign chairman and de
facto campaign manager indicted by the feds, it's never a good day. it is a very bad day. regardless of how it gets spun or what exactly the indictment details are going to be. >> again, they worked on the inaugural committee. one of them did. then was going to run your super pac until it became obvious they were in legal trouble. with us now, let's go to new york times reporter who actually broke the story. we know that manafort has agreed to self surrender. there will be no more repeat of the no knock raid on the house. fbi is not going crash his house this morning. agreed to self surrender. that's going to happen at some point this morning.
this is a big step. predates mueller's involvement in the case. the shoe we have been expecting to drop since over the summer when they raided his home and put him on notice that they planned to indict him. >> we had a report this weekend that the white house phones were buzzing, donald trump and his allies were calling everybody trying to figure out who was going to be indicted. this is much of a surprise though? once we knew somebody was going to be indicted. wasn't manafort at the top of the list of those suspected. >> yes he was on the top of the list. it was a little surprising because our understanding and reading grand juries is there are still more witnesses under subpoena to go and testify for a grand jury which sort of signals they weren't quite done. so it was a little surprising, but yes when you hear indictments looming we'll, dooumts have been looming since
the summer. manafort was at the top of the list. what's important to remember is a lot of what he had been under investigation for is stuff that predates the trump campaign. you can expect to hear a lot from the white house and president surrogates about that fact today. >> all right. thank you so much. the first charges in the special counsel investigation have been named. and andrea mitchell, want to go back to a point that nick was making. nick was making. if your campaign chairman is indicted and the person who ran your convention is indicted and the person who is your spokesman during the republican convention is indicted as well as his deputy, trump campaign chair and the person who was working on day-to-day operations is
indicted. as well as the person who worked orthopedic surgeon your inauguration and was going to run your super pac, there's very little the white house can say today to distance themselves from paul manafort and rick gates and the closeness of their operations during the critical times of their president. >> you would think so. i would bet you anything what they would say is look at the real culprit here who is hillary clinton. you saw korly lewandowski referring to the clinton administration. all of the misdirection and the deflection towards hillary clinton in the last week. fed chairman. they've got the big trip. they've got the tax bill to come out this week.
they've got a lot of things they can point to and simply say they're not guilty going to discuss this. if they followed what most lawyers would tell them to do, what ty cobb i'm sure is telling them to do, simply say this is under investigation. matter for the courts. we cannot discuss it. we are not privy to robert mueller's investigation. whether the president will do that remains to be seen. not what he was doing over the last couple of days in talking about the russia investigation where ty cobb had to come out and say the president's tweets calling the russian investigation a hoax had nothing to do with the reports of a pending indictment. >> michael schmit, the tweets continued this morning. 7:37. tweeted about report out that the obama campaign paid $972,000 to fusion gps. the firm also got money from dnc. even in the midst of indictments against his campaign chairman and indictments against the
deputy campaign chairman and two people intimately involved in his campaign, donald trump still trying to distract. >> last week it raefl kicked into high gear. it's certainly coordinated since the president took office. you have to remember here is why mueller exists. mueller exists because it came out that trump had said to comey. can you move past flynn and there wasn't enough trust that the president could allow the justice department on its own to do this investigation. mueller had to be created to basically build a mote around him. not necessarily to look at just russia, but to look at people connected to the campaign. and that there wasn't enough of a perception of independence at
the justice department that mueller had to do this. you may not see russia in the documents in the sense of questions of collusion and questions of the election. because mueller has been looking at all of these larger issues related to the president. related to folks around him. and that's why he was created and that's why he's moving ford today and may not see anything related to russia and to larger questions. >> harold also what's interesting is you go back to the day that jeff sessions recused himself, right? and then you go back to extraordinary press conference. extraordinary day, rosenstein appointed bob mueller. those two guys in doing something that enraged the president of the united states, they actually actually set in
motion, actually, all of this that allows justice to be served. justice includes, we said before, assuming that these two gentleman are innocent until proven guilty. this is what donald trump is so angry at sessions and rosenstein and why i think americans despite the fact they may not like both of those gentlemen have to look at the decision, you know, democrats or whoever dunts like sessions and rosenstein, have to look at those moments and say they took a cstand. we're going to get to the bottom of this. >> reminds you of what steve bannon said. maybe this was the dumbest decision the president made, firing comey. >> when he fired -- this is happening today because he fired comey. >> the question i have is this. i listened to you closely your last two segments on your own. you talked about the rules in a
courthouse very different than the rules in the public steering space. speak to us if you can about 30,000 feet up. what does this mean for the white house, president and interactions that can take place now that we actually have an indictment. we haven't seen it. dwoe we don't know what names or time frames are mentioned. we heard haley say it should be quiet. less is more. give us a legal sense of what that meanings. >> call your lawyer and talk to your lawyer before you talk or type about anything regarding this. this president has been in office only nine months. big picture, we have never seen a criminal investigation result in indictments of senior officials tied to a president this fast in the first year in office. ever full stop. that is very bad news. also suggests for a variety of reasons both the public evidence and trail of underlying material
that suggests enough evidence to charge a crime in our court system and there are rules of evidence requiring that, combined with a president who has done things on their face amount to potential tampering or destruction. including public behavior and telling lester holt he fired the fbi director with russia on his mind. with this investigation and this indictment today. >> he also told the russians. >> and he allegedly according to james comey's memo which he discussed under oath told the russians about that. >> just one more question. >> yes. with us now. bring in nbc news justice
correspondent pete williams. pete, obviously. always worth pointing out. we've seen white houses have to face indictments or sources through the years. not so early in a president's terms. nine, 10 months in. already have two indictments of two of the key members of the president's campaign last year. what can you tell us this morning. >> we know that paul manafort has vend surrendered himself to the fbi going to the field office here in washington, d.c. and downtown washington. not far from the u.s. courthouse where he will then go later today for an initial appearance before a federal magistrate. very short hearings. be told of the charges, advised of his rights. presumably rick gates will do the same. and we don't know yet what the charges are. the big question is how peripheral are these charges. try to use testimony to get more
at the higher ups in the campaign or people more simply involved. we have to remember that robert mueller's was brought in to look at whether americans were helping the russians metal in the election. that's the key question. the initial question here is how peripheral are these charges. how central are they to mueller's basic assignment. >> andrea with and has a question for you pete. >> one of the things that has been asked. we've seen that he has arrived at the fbi field office. can you take us through, pete, the process today. it's a short hearing that will take place down at the courthouse. it used to be if you were charged with a nonviolent crime. there would be what's issued by the court something called a summons. basically a command for you to show up at the courthouse. certain time for a hearing. then there was criticism that well, you're treating white
color defendants with kid gloves, but people facing drug charges or something else get arrested. that isn't fair so prosecutors in recent years have been arresting white color defendants. this is different. i think it's interesting because remember earlier this summer, manafort had pretty heavy handed treatment when the investigators basically sort of barged into his house early in the morning for a search and if they wanted to do it the polite way, they could have said, here's what we're looking for, why don't you bring it to us. clearly indicated there was a lack of trust for the search. now they're doing it a gentler way. telling him what time he needs to show up at the field office where he may face some additional questioning and then at some point today he'll be brought to the courthouse for a hearing. something of an evolution. perhaps the beginning of trying what you might call a charm offensive for paul manafort to see if he can give them more testimony.
>> all right. pete williams. thank you so much. greatly appreciated. a lot of salespeople speculate mueller was trying to send a message to him. perhaps this is message number two. work with us. we've got you at the center. of course, new york state is now talking about investigating paul manafort and also it's important and i know you can tell us more about this. important also to note that mueller has been thinking about donald trump's part of some of the suspect for sometime. we may not see russia in these
indictments. doesn't mean the white house should breathe easy today. can you unpack that a little more for us. >> the biggest question out of all this has been was there collusion with russia. what the white house will do today is pick up charging documents. look at them and say okay. where is russia. they'll go through it and say where is the collusion and if there isn't collusion there they'll say see, look, there is no collusion. there is they don't have really great cards to play, but that would be my guess as how they will play them. they'll say look, at the end of the day, the campaign chairman will have beeen dieted and depuy will be indicted. they will try to put their difference and say this is a businessman who had bad dealings and has nothing to do with la e larger questions. mueller's has spent x amount of months and dollars. >> you seem to be suggesting that was erroneous thinking. >> who really -- i mean, who
knows. we haven't seen the documents yet. we don't have a sense of what, you know, where this could go. could be the beginning of something larger. first charges and try to put pressure on manafort to give up something to them. the body posture on this is he has nothing to give up and he will fight it. that has been -- i think we'll begin to see that today. his side is constantly said there's nothing to give up to the government. >> nbc news white house correspondent kristen welker at the white house. what's the reaction you're hearing from inside. >> joe, i just got off of the phone with a senior official here at the white house. let me read you so far the reaction and then do some analysis on the other side. this official says the white house has been saying for weeks the special counsel is moving far more quickly and deliberatively than people have been reporting. the fact the special counsel is actively performing its duties do not come as a surprise for
the white house. really the key message here. i think no surprise here, but behind the scenes i can tell you they were bracing for today. the president airing his frustrations over the weekend on twitter trying to put the focus back on his former rival. hillary clinton. saying that she's the one who should be under investigation for paying for some of that research that of course led to that now famous dossier. part of his frustration comes republicans turning sites towards tax reform. unveiling the specifics on wednesday. and the biggest trip of his presidency. president trump about to head to asia at the end of this week. i anticipate we're going to see strong push back. in terms of what we see from the president sood, series today, s meetings. at this point in time, the press not allowed into any of those meetings. we're certainly pushing for that so we can felt reaction from the president himself. >> so kristen, the statement is
it's the sort of statement that somebody like haley ba would re white house put out. sounds like a a disciplined statement for us. can you read that one more time. >> absolutely. this was again just moments ago from a senior white house official, joe, i'll walk you through it one more time. the white house has been saying for weeks the special counsel is movers far more quickly and dlis deliberately than people have been reporting. the fact the special counsel is actively performing duties does not come as surprise to the white house. i think that is sort of the discipline message that you're going to be hearing and one more point about that joe, remember, the president's lawyers ty cobb john dowd have really been encouraging him to be more disciplined on twitter. we'll have to see what his reaction is. of course as you point out over the weekend, we saw some
angriest tweets we've seen from him in a long time. >> certainly, nick, far more disciplined than many would expect saying that special counsel is acting deliberately. also performing actively performing its duties. see if the president can stick to that line. as you looked at manafort. there are a lot of favors that this man owes certain russians and a lot of debts. no doubt have compromised through the years or because of the fbi say compromising. >> look, if you're looking for a line that connects the trump campaign and his work for these oligarchs over the years, one possible answer "the washington post" reported in september that as trump was nearing the nomination, manafort had offered to give private briefings to a putin aligned billionaire in
russian on the campaign. that's a window, but it tells you perhaps he was looking for ways to repay some obligations to this man he had been in legal fights with. >> didn't he also send a text to somebody or an e-mail saying did you get the information to our friend? >> correct: there's a lot that we don't know, but this may reveal about how he's been having contact with them. over the period when he was activelily involved in the campaign. as you pointed out earlier, beyond that, he has a working knowledge of the world. he was a part of it. he was working for these guys. he sought business with them over the years. he would have been in the room for those meetings earlier or been aware of them and known who the players were to some extent. >> there's that connection. a connection back to putin. there's obviously the connection we found out later that when jared kushner met with the russian bank that was close
allied vladimir putin. also found out of course the don junior meeting that was obviously raised a lot of suspicions when that came out that the president lied about in a statement on air force one. we find out that she was reporting back, the lawyer was reporting back to close allies of vladimir putin. so again, it seems that so many of these players are one step away from putin. >> that's right. we digest this. according to public record, i'll give you six points based on nbc news and reporting one is -- >> by the way, that's harold ford's square. >> double the trouble. >> number one. ukrainie who talked to manafort 7 million to investment fund as we discussed and also offered
allegedly briefings according to e-mails that have leaked and putin oligarch. number three of course putin ally in ukraine. a lot of money and off the book payments there. number four, rnc platform did not have a lot of policy changes. one change made went counter to republican orthodoxy was softening language towards putin's goals in ukraine and who was brought in specifically for campaign convention expertise, paul manafort. i was down there at the convention. he was a force there. certainly involved. number five, sergey who you mentioned, a russian banker who literally went to kgb school and met with jared kushner and the kremlin and administration under trump disagree what the meeting was about. six, the crown prosecutor there of russia who was offering dirt
on clinton allegedly. the russian lawyer at that meeting was in contact with putin ally. this was a meeting again that manafort was at. it does not mean this man who is presumed innocent will have all of this thrown at him, but prosecutors can add more. >> so many directions that prosecutors could go. and you talk about the meeting and don junior's office. you still have in any possible obstruction charge you still there the president of the united states dead if the center on lying about what that meeting was about when he's the one that called everybody together. and drafted a press relief that was falls. >> that's something that mueller is looking at as part of this. why was the white house trying to lie and mislead about that meeting? that's the 2016 meeting at trump
tower. it was this summer we went to the white house and said we're going to be writing about this. took them some time to getting around and telling us about it. their initial statements were not true. portrayed the meeting about being about adoption. coordinated message amongst everyone including folks in and outside the white house about how they were going to portray this. didn't come out to be truthful and mueller is triefing to f ii trying to figure out in the course of that why they didn't want to come clean with it. not against the law to lie to it will "new york times." it is against the law to try to send investigators in the wrong direction or send them in, you know, send them off the scent of the trail. manafort was part of that meeting. manafort was in that meeting. briefly his side has said, but he was there. it was his side that disclosed
it to capitol hill first this year. when you lie about a meeting, it suggests intent and obstruction and any possible charges that come down the road. >> you'll have to answer that question later. quick question. when will we see the indictment? we'll get more answers. 9:30 when they go in court just so the public knows. >> we would expect under normal course to see it today pursuant to the arrangement. >> the arrangement. perfect. andrea, really quick. has there been any democratic response this morning and more importantly, the congressional committees looking into this, how does this impact their work if at all? >> well, in fact, i've been speaking to people involved in the congressional investigations for the last few days. we've all been trying to figure out what is going on. they are acknowledging, the democrats are acknowledging they are at a dead stop. they have not been able and
judiciary or house intelligence certainly not to work out bipartisan agreements and they were not going to be able to do anything. they're really relying on mueller. still some hope in senate intelligence, but fading hope. they have not been able to get subpoena power. without joint agreements for subpoena power. they have not been able to get the witnesses in that they want. we saw it most dramatically last week with house intelligence with the misdirection by both eunice and gowdy going after hillary clinton on separate investigations. exactly what happens happening a year ago today: p.
that's ewhen her campaign stalled. with all the other mistakes that made along the way. the moment hit a dead a brick wall. on that day opened again exactly a year ago in iowa. in cedar rapids. president trump candidate trump was saying the hillary clinton investigation was the worst since watergate. >> andrea. let's talk about the cloud this is going to cast over. most important. foreign policy trip so far of his young presidency. so you recollect trying to figure out whether they're going to be going to war. a war that could cost hundreds of thousands of lives. you've got japan with of course abe re-elected in a strong position, but a lot of people wanting him to start talking
about the possibility of development of nuclear weapons in japan. business leader. region we have been ignoring for too long now. and we're in the middle of a possible nuclear crisis. how does the news today does that impact donald trump on that trip. >> certainly will have a big impact. it will minimize his ability to hold news conferences. remember the first foreign trip. did not have any meetings with reporters separately from joint appearances with other foreign leaders. and this certainly would mean he will not be talking to reporters on this trip, but also he got so many clouds in terms of the challenges that he's facing. president xi suggests his power
in extraordinary way. he might have been prepared. now to exercise some this does cloud it. the best analogy i can think of from my personal experience was covering clint in 1994 and first trip to russia. this was a huge turmoil back home over whether -- into white water and the first lady. actually landing in moscow. directly led to ken stark down the road. he wasn't the first. so these events do cloud foreign trips and it wouldn't be the first time. this would be very significant for donald trump. >> yes. i think the video is just going
to come out very soon of mueller walking into the fbi field office in d.c. apparently walked in through the front door by himself. we should be getting video of that soon. i was going to ask nick. what the process is now. he goes in there. the indictment is he's already got the indictment presumably. his lawyers have been given that. he knows what he's going to be asked about or does he get that now. >> that's a great question. i'm going to pass it over. >> they don't have to give him much of anything in advance other than when you're on a flight risk information to come and negotiate him coming in. may be verbal discussions which we are not privy to about the nature of the charges or not. i think it's safe to assume given the amount of time that there was an effort to seek some kind of cooperation, which manafort did not agree to. now we're in arraignment phase. he is going to as a matter of every citizen entitled to hear the charges made in public and then have a plea and move
forward from there. >> so what can you add to that and how significant would it be what he told in terms of future cooperation with the special prosecutor. >> usually in terms he'll hear the charges. work with the legal team to decide what action they might want to take. some legal teams would say don't do anything. you know, we think you got a strong case. let's just take it to court. take it to trial. take it to process. i would think in this case it will probably get together and try to develop some sort of agreement about where the investigation, what the investigation wants to know. maybe what they think manafort wasn't disclosing up front and part of the reason they did that search warrant back a few months ago and try to advance it that way. with some sort of negotiation between the two parties. >> if today is all about the business dealings, there's nothing to do with russia. it's to do with 12 wierl transfwire transfers and what it was about and what was behind it.
could you see this indictment, how unusual would it be for the indictment to grow and be added to. >> i would not be surprised if it grows at all. we should remember, this is coming as other people are allegedly still coming to grand jury. by bringing in manafort with an indictment like this, trickle down effect. everyone else showing up to testify. we might look -- witness stand or be asked in terms of questioning. you better cooperate with us. if not, we'll bring you in the hard way through an indictment. >> it's customary for particularly if they plead not guilty. we can expect to hear from manafort and mr. gates lawyers
as soon as the hearing ends. we get detail on paper depending how detailed the indictments are. that could be a treasure-trove of information. or it could be spared. it's up to the prosecutors. then there are the exfactors. what does the white house want to say on behalf of the president on behalf of the president of the united states or potential individual under scrutiny in the related probe and that's the whole process we all cover every day here and as you mentioned thirdly, whether the lawyers want to start making case aggressively in public on behalf of clients. goes to something joe alluded to earlier and understands. i think people forget. the interest of these individuals when they are all preindictment on a campaign or as former members of an organization. the interest start to diverge more as people have individual
legal bills and individual problems so part of what experienced prosecutors do is try to take advantage of that major time. again, he has been as a matter of interest or scrutiny under in investigation like manafort for some time has gotten less attention. that doesn't mean in the view of where the prosecutors are leading that he's less important. >> obviously, there are other people in the white house who have if you talk all of your sources and we talk to all of our sources, a lot of names that keep popping up. a lot of interest still obviously in other players here like michael flynn. you certainly hear jarred curb's name coming up over and over
again. again, this focus is, this fo s focuses the minds of those who are on that short list and perhaps said and everybody else said, they understand they need to cooperate or face what paul manafort and rick gates are facing this morning. >> what you have to remember about the russia story is that there's so many different tentac tentacles. there's the manafort stuff. there's the flynn stuff. there's the questions of obstruction. questions of collusion. questions of what happened with online advertising and stuff. this is only one part of it. we will see if some day they all connect together or if they're all sort of off on their own. that is the thing from the beginning that has made this so complex, that there's so many different parts of it. the thing i'll look for today is see what mueller does. mueller is a very different
person than comey, he's much more reserved, much more head down. and it will be interesting to see whether mueller even puts out a statement or he simply releases documents. i find it hard to believe mueller would stand there and have a press conference to announce this. i think that would certainly, you know, be very surprising here. but it will be interesting to see how much he wants to lean in publicly on this and sort of put his face out there as this is going forward. mueller has said nothing since he began investigating in may. >> andrea, chances are good for those who know bob mueller, he's going to continue to say nothing, he's going to keep his head down. he doesn't really care what people tweet about him. he doesn't care what people say about him on television. he keeps his head down. he does his job, and he follows the law. >> and, you know, when we compare mueller to former special prosecutors, he has been the most silent, the most careful. >> lawrence walsh he is not,
andrea. >> let me just say, i was just thinking about lawrence walsh. on october 30th back in 1992, only days before the clinton/george herbert walker bush election, okay, bill clinton, on that day, former defense secretary casper weinberger was indicted. by lawrence walsh, the special prosecutor, on iran/contra, and charged with lying to congress about iran, about arm sales to iran. on christmas, 1992, outgoing president george herbert walker bush pardoned cap weinberger before his trial could take place and five others involved in the iran/contra investigation. so there's precedent here. good, bad and indifferent. but plenty of legal precedent here about special prosecutors, outgoing presidents, presidential pardons and indictments such as this. >> all right, and let's go right now to capitol hill.
we've got nbc news chief white house correspondent hallie jackson with us. this may not shock anybody in that building behind you but certainly there will be republicans unsettled by the news. >> undoubtedly. the other part, there will be republicans who, today, tomorrow, all week long, are going to be asked about this news, asked to respond, asked what happens if, if donald trump were to make moves to try to fire special counsel robert mueller now. this is not a day when a lot of republicans would want to show up this week, would want to be in the hallways roaming around with roberters. i'm thinking about the time on the campaign trail covering manafort and rick gates. it's significant to note here and i think it's important to remember everybody knows manafort, a name that is extremely high profile. regular folks across america have a sense of who manafort is given his appearances on the campaign trail. he was out there as sort of a
talker when he was the de facto campaign manager. rick gates, less so, less high profile. he was critical in the day-to-day operations. he was manafort's right-hand man essentially. did a lot of the logistics. was very involved during the convention and the delegate drama and then he stayed on the campaign even after manafort left. he was, in essence, taken down a peg and was working as a liaison to the republican national committee. but after the election, he was part of the inaugural committee. he worked on the america first pro-trump superpac. for months up until this past spring basically. while the name rick gates may not be as well known to people, he has a lot of ties to the campaign. he has a lot of ties to the gop sort of apparatus here in washington and i do think that is sort of a critical point. i also think, yes, in this building behind me, they are going to get a lot of questions. house speaker paul ryan, senate majority leader mitch mcconnell are going to be pressed about this by reporters. and they might have something to
say. >> and they may indeed. you know, catty, again, following up on how active these two gentlemen were in the trump campaign, we saw this last week. the trump campaign trying to distance themselves from cambridge. an annalitica. to donors and also to the press. because they were using cambridge. that was going to be the secret. it's the same thing with paul manafort. donald trump a couple months ago. paul mon that for the, i don't know, right, who's paul mon t t manafort. >> you heard time and time again from donald trump, from jared kushner, when asked why lewandowski was fired, because paul manafort knows how to count delegates and he's the guy who is going to put us over the top in delegates. heard it time and time again that manafort was critical to donald trump converting votes into delegates. >> so i guess the question for
the white house, it's interesting hallie raised this, the issue of mueller getting fired or potentially getting fired. we know there's been pressure from around donald trump from some people in the white house not to go down that route. nick, do you think that these indictments today make it more or less likely that there will be any discussion in the white house near the oval office about the prospect of bob mueller getting fired. does it make it harder for them to even think -- to even contemplate that path? >> i think there's always been a battle between the people in the white house who understand whether a catastrophic idea that would be and the people in the white house who want to please the president who have the urges. we have seen, you've seen it in the last couple of day, a full-court press. "the wall street journath"the w arguing they should fire mueller and preemptively pardon everybody. you've seen a real press to get behind that idea. and i do think this indictment probably takes a bit of that pressure back. because, man, if there was a
live investigation -- if there was a live investigation -- >> it looks very bad. >> it was shocking last week. hold on, one second, harold. because we've got more breaking news. multiple law enforcement sources are telling nbc news that paul manafort's charges are likely tax related and that there was a statute of limitations issue in play that may actually have helped to drive today's action. all of the sources speaking to nbc news say that today's indictment does not preclude other charges being filed against paul manafort in the future. but, hallie, actually because there were tax issues involved, a statute of limitations involved. they had to move now. >> right. >> on these specific charges. >> that this was essentially going to run out in the coming day, which is why you see the movement here. remember what we're talking about when we look at these business dealings. i think in listening to the conversation on your show this morning, several of the folks you had on hit on this, that this is potentially not -- and this is the indication we're
getting, having to do necessarily with the dealings with russia but about this tax evasion issue as we are reporting out. remember that paul manafort and rick gates worked together at this firm. manafort was gates' boss over the last several years prior to them joining trump campaign. they were business partners. sort of partners in politics as well. when you look at the sort of stretch of their relationships together. when you have the conversation about what's happening at the white house right now, i'll tell you that i got off the phone with a source at the white house in the last couple of minutes here and was talking about it. nothing, you know, on the record at this point. but as they're watching this unfold, the perspective at which they're coming at it is that this special counsel investigation, they've long said they believe it is accelerating. that is what they want to see. because they want to get this over with. i will tell you donald trump today has several closed press events. we don't expect to see the president publicly until a quarter to 6:00 tonight when he
hands out halloween candy. donald trump is likely watching this unfold on tv right now. he has already been tweeting this morning. we will -- i would be surprised if we did not continue to see that as the president made very clear over the weekend on his tweets at least that he was concerned about other issues as well. it seemed to be getting under his skin. >> all right, thank you so much, andrea mitchell, you did great considering what you tweeted this morning. dear at morning joe producers, please forgive me if i am groggy this morning. watched the greatest world series game since 1996. let me assure you, there was no great world series game in 1996. >> yes, it was i was a mets fan in those days. >> yeah, last night's game, extraordinary. >> it was amazing. more than five hours. i mean, i think i may have tweeted that at 1:30 this morning or 1:45. it was incredible. the home run derby. five home runs, each side. just in the last three innings. >> yeah, turning into one of the
best world series in a very long time. the worst world series ever, 1986. catty day, thank you so much for being with us. harold ford. >> that was the year the mets won, just so everybody knows what we're talking about. >> yeah, the red sox. anyway, i don't want to talk about it. nick, thank you as well. michael schmidt, we greatly appreciate you getting up early in los angeles. thank you for being with us. clint watts, we thank you as well. stick around. a lot of news today. obviously around the paul manafort indictments. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage. i'm stephanie ruhle, we begin today with breaking news surrounding the first indictments in robert mueller's investigation into russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign. the president's former campaign chief paul manafort has already surrendered himself to the fbi and his former deputy rick gates has been told