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tv   MSNBC Live With Katy Tur  MSNBC  November 29, 2017 11:00am-12:00pm PST

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that is going to wrap up this hour. my colleague katy tur is standing by to pick things up right now. >> hey there, craig. it's 2:00 p.m. here at nbc headquarters in new york where longtime "today" show anchor matt lauer has been fired. nbc news chairman andy lack said the decision was made after they received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior by lauer. his co-anchors reacted to the news this morning. >> we are heartbroken. i am heartbroken. matt is my dear friend and partner and he is loved by many people here. and i am heartbroken for the brave colleague who came forward to tell her story and any other women who have their own stories to tell. and we are grappling with a dilemma that so many people have faced these past few weeks. how do you reconcile your love for someone with the revelation
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that they have behaved badly. and i don't know the answer to that. but i do know that this reckoning that so many organizations have been going through is important. it's long overdue. and it must result in workplaces where all women, all people, feel safe and respected. as painful as it is this moment in our culture and this change, had to happen. >> yeah, it did. this is a very tough morning for both of us. i have known matt for 15 years and i have loved him as a friend and as a colleague and, again, like you were saying, savannah, it's hard to reconcile what we are hearing with the man who we know who walks in that building every single day. we are bowere both woken up wit news predawn and we're trying to process it and make sense of it. >> lauer has been an anchor with "today" for 20 years. he has not responded publicly to his termination. someone who has is president
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trump. the president who will land in missouri to sell tax reform in a little bit, quickly took the opportunity to slam nbc news and msnbc suggesting certain executives and hosts should be fired and investigated as well. let's get right to the reporters covering this in the newsroom with me. stephanie gosk has been reporting on the story and stephanie ruhle, claire atkinson, senior media editor for nbc news digital and gabe sherman, "vanity fair" special correspondent and msnbc contributor. this is a very difficult day for all of us. >> it's extremely tough. >> for you in particular because you are tasked with trying to sort this out. what do we know right now? >> we don't know much about the accusation. what we know is that it stems from the olympic games in sochi in 2014 and that the alleged misconduct continued after that. that's really at this point all we know. but also in andy lack's
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statement that came out early today, just before the "today" show went live this morning, there was a reference to other possible similar allegations that were out there. we know that there are a couple of publications that are working on stories including the "new york times." the "new york times" first to publish a statement from the accuser's attorney which we now have ourselves. he writes in part, my client and i met with representatives from nbc's human resources and legal departments at 6:00 p.m. on monday for an interview lasting several hours. our impression at this point is that nbc acted quickly as all companies should when confronted with credible allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace. he goes on to say that his client has great courage. he is not coming forward with her name. what you get a sense of there, katy is how quickly this happened. monday night at 6:00 they sat down with human resources and the legal department here at nbc
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news, and roughly 24 hours later matt lauer was out of his job. >> there are meetings that are happening all over this building today, trying to keep all of the employees, all of our colleagues up to date on this, to try and give us as much information as our executives can give us at this moment without revealing the identity or hurting the privacy of this woman who has come forward. what is nbc doing now, though, to make sure that this is not something that is allowed to continue to happen? >> i think we saw this at cbs as well, the first and foremost is just the firing itself sends a very strong message that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated, and it doesn't matter who is responsible, who is behind it or what their status is within the network. that's the first message. the second message that we hear here and we also heard it at cbs is that people need to feel free to come forward. if you have something that's happened to you, feel free to
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come forward and have somewhere to report it. >> we all know matt lauer. we know he is a powerful person in this industry, powerful person at this company, as somebody who has been living inside the homes of millions of americans now for 20 years, this woman was extraordinarily brave. >> she is our colleague too. >> today is an overwhelming day for all of us grappling with this. our relationship with matt. we looked up to him as a viewer and a colleague. but this woman, we is brave. she is also on our team. we don't know who she is, but this is a moment for all companies, for all industries to reboot. ana navarro said this morning, matt lauer fired, charlie rose, mark halperin. yet ray moore is still running
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for office. john conyers is in office and donald trump is going after nbc and matt lauer after the "access hollywood" tape that he admitted to a year ago. this is time to look at what appropriate behavior is in the workplace, what assault means and the relationship between senior members of management and subordinates. we all know that consensual sex happens in the workplace. relationships are born at work. we need to redefine what is acceptable so people truly understand the boundaries. >> gabe, you report on media companies in general. you have done a lot of reporting as to specifically on fox news. they fired bill o'reilly earlier this year, made a number of sexual harassment allegations and a number of settlements that that man made for millions of dollars with a number of women who accused him. matt lauer interviewed him about it back in september. let's listen to that.
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>> you were probably the last guy in the world that they wanted to fire, because you were the guy that the ratings and the r revenues were built on. you carried that network on your shoulders for a lot of years. >> it was a business decision that they made. but there isn't any -- >> but you don't let your number one guy go unless you have information that you think makes him -- >> that's not true. >> he had a point. you know. you don't let your main guy go unless it's -- unless it's pretty serious. how are media companies across the board now looking at allegations? is just one allegation enough to send you packing? >> well, of course it depends on the nature of the allegation. i think, without question, we have seen an increase in the speed in which media companies are addressing credible allegations of sexual misbehavior and misconduct between their powerful on-air
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talent and the accusers. again, rewind. roger ailes. it took two weeks for him to lose his job in the summer of 2016 after dozens of women had come forward in the wake of gretchen carlson's lawsuit. and then fast forward to the last couple of weeks we saw cbs and nbc news move very swiftly when they came to the attention of allegations. i think we should point out, though, that a lot of these stories have been pushed and the media companies have been pushed by outside journalists and publications who have aggressively dug into these allegations. i think part of this is now companies know that there is accountability and journalists are aggressively covering the story. >> we have roger ailes, bill o'reilly, matt lauer and charlie rose. at a time when the president is
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waging a war on our credibility in the media. what does this do to our credibility. >> someone is stepping down from radio news after allegations of inappropriate behavior. he is saying the story is more interesting than is currently being presented. another kind of news industry hero. people tune in to him every week. they look up to him, as they have charlie rose, matt lauer, many other folks. and so, i mean, to go back to what -- the point stephanie made. it doesn't matter how powerful you are. nbc has decided the accusations against matt lauer were credible enough to let him go. the show is a hugely profitable show. it makes, i believe. anywhere between $400 million, $500 million. to let the co-anchor go after 20 years is a big risk and speaks to whatever knowledge
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they have. as a journalist, i am asking myself, it's incredibly frustrating when you hear the phrases "inappropriate sexual behavior." what is it? >> what does it mean? >> is matt admitting it? we don't know. we haven't heard from him yet. i suspect there will be a statement at some point, perhaps when the "times" story comes out. >> juxtapose that with the president's tape. he said, if you are a star, you can do whatever you want. >> exactly. >> we thought when the tape came out -- i remember sitting around with other women in media worried the floodgates will open. president trump has given license to any powerful force out there, do whatever you want if you are a star. fast forward nine months later. unh-unh. the biggest stars there are, the sun is setting on them. >> the president is still the president, though. why is there a different standard between what we see in the media, the swift removals, the swift firings and what we
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see in politics. can we chalk it up to the voters have a right to decide as to whomever represents them? >> there shouldn't be. that's why the president is somewhat stepping in it with his tweets going after others. took a long look in the mirror, president trump. think about the women who accused donald trump how they feel today and how they've felt for months. president trump said i'm going to sue you, but he hasn't. even before he decided to support roy moore he said we'll let the people of alabama decide. how about the companies out there who are taking swift action and they've found a moral compass when our government leaders have not. >> if the voters decide to put roy moore in office, what does it say -- to the table. what does it say about our culture? are we still living in a bubble in our world where these things are taken very seriously and there is consequences immediately but maybe in other parts of the country it's kind of looked at with not the same
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degree of horror? >> it seems that there are certainly people who have said, through elections, recent elections, that they don't care. that actually at the end of the day they either don't believe the accusers or, even if it's true, they don't care. however, you do see a really important shift. and there are people and power voices coming out and saying, actually, we do care. and it does matter. and it matters in large part because we are talking about equality in the workforce. we're talking about men and women being able to work on equal playing fields. >> i worry we are not all on the same page, and maybe things have changed in the last nine months. i keep going back and thinking about this one woman in particular who after the "access hollywood" tape came out and after donald trump said he can grab women by their pee. she showed up at a rally a few days later with a home-made
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shirt she had done herself, donald trump can grab me by my -- with an arrow pointed down. >> we saw that all over at these rallies afterwards. all these women coming up and justifying the president's own words, saying it is just locker room talk. dismissing his accusers immediately. i keep thinking that maybe we live in a different reality than other people do. and i don't know if there is a connection. tell me i am wrong. >> the reality of that base of you're talking about might find this morally reprehensible but what they find more reprehensible is being a forgotten american. suffering and not being able to get a good job. they felt they were willing to look past the behavior of president trump -- >> maybe, maybe. >> what about the woman with the shirt? >> she might be a whole other level. if you are a single issue christian conservative voter,
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you would say neil gorsuch and the 58 predominantly white male conservative judges who are now in those positions for generations to come, that matters to those people. pro-life, anti lgbtq issues are more important to the voters than something like this. i am not saying it's right. for those voters it's true. >> katy, whether you are talking about the murdochs, cbs, nbc. it's a message that resonates. it's a message women will hear and i think it will make a difference. >> gabe, you are not at the table. you are the only man in the group. i'll give you the last word here. >> i think that's right. clearly nbc news made a decision that could materially affect the bottom line and this was we can't underestimate the seismic effect that removing matt lauer may have on the "today" show. i think it sends a loud message that, when presented with credible allegations, that's the bottom line that matters, not
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just the profit. >> guys, thank you very much for joining us. later this hour we'll turn to some of the allegations of misconduct on capitol hill. we were just talking about, in particular, the pressure mounting on congressman john conjures to step down. up next, president trump heads to missouri as republicans in congress rush to pass the most sweeping tax overhaul in decades. can the president sell this bill? which frankly hardly anyone has seen, to the american people.
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the president is taking his tax pitch to the very people who helped get him elected. donald trump boarded a plane to missouri a state he won with over 54% of the vote. in an hour he is expected to deliver a speech in the suburbs of st. louis where he'll try to pitch the gop's sweeping plan to overhaul the u.s. tax system over the finish line by touting its alleged benefits for middle
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income families. the trip comes one day after the fundrai president clashed with nancy pelosi and chuck schumer over spending talks to end a government shut down. nbc's kristen welker is at the white house and garrett haake is on capitol hill. kristen, let's focus on what's exactly in the bill. let's remind folks of what it has right now. the president has promised huge tax cuts for christmas. what he doesn't want to say is that it ends in some very popular deductions. it ends popular deductions on moving expenses. alimony, student loan interest tuition and fees. while republicans have been claiming this is a relief for middle class americans, this chart shows that the poorer you are, the more you have to lose under the plan. for example, by 2021, a family making between $10,000 and $20,000 will lose nearly $440
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compared to a family making between $500,000 and a million, gaining -- gaining -- $20,000. republicans say it will all trickle down to average americans, but in a recent survey 65% of ceos said they would take those tax deductions and pay off debt. 45%, they would use capital on stock buybacks and 35% say they'd use it to hire more people. the cuts will also, the gop claims, will help out main street, but they are not even permanent. the cuts they're giving to corporate america, in the meanwhile, are. the middle class tax cuts expire in eight years. the corporate tax cuts are permanent. kristen welker. how is the president selling his plan? >> well, katy, i think you hit at the challenge for not only the president but republicans, which is that all of those numbers counter the messaging, which is they have promised this
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will be a middle class tax cut. the president has called it the biggest middle class tax cut in history. that will be his focus today, that this is going to help the middle class. but all of those numbers raise questions about that, particularly within the long term. so that while a number of people may see their taxes go down in the short term, how long will that last and will they ultimately wind up paying more. president trump tweeting about this -- >> garrett haake has lindsey graham right now. let's go to garrett. >> yeah, the president is probably, from his point of view, this is a vicious war, i want to let people know the kind of war we are in. that may be his motives and they may be genuine but the effect is not that. to me the effect is that you are taking a fringe element in british society and giving it the presidential seal. and david duke was happy with it. anything that makes david duke happy is a bad day. >> are you suggesting we're running out of options on north
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korea? supposedly the white house will announce new sanctions today. are there sanctions left? >> we'll let senator graham answer his phone. >> that was cold. >> we're live senator. you have to make it up to me now. tell me -- you said yesterday we're basically running out of options on north korea. the president said he will unveil new sanctions. are there sanctions left that could make a different? >> if china cut off buying coal or oil, basically, given the north koreans -- giving the north koreans oil. >> that's a chinese action, nothing we could force. >> it's a sanction that would make a difference that hasn't been done. the question is are there things we can do on the economic side that haven't been done. the answer is yes. and they all lie with china. they are not surviving because of american business interest. >> sure. >> russia is hiring a bunch of
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north korean workers in eastern siberia to help with their labor problems. if russia stopped doing that, that would be some cash flow going to the regime that would stop. if you really want to put pressure on the chinese economy, if the chinese stop selling -- i mean the north korean economy, the chinese stop selling north korea oil, it would bring them to their knees. >> can i ask you to clarify the point you were making about the tweets this morning from the president, his videos of muslim violence. how problematic is that for you as a party, for us as a country that that's what the president of the united states is doing? >> well, i am assuming the president is trying to highlight the threat we face from radical islam. i think embracing these videos are not helpful. i think it doesn't help highlight the threat. i think it empowers fringe elements on the right who have been associated with religious bigotry. and the last thing you want to do in this war is make it about
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the religion itself. radical islam is the enemy. most people in the faith are the key to winning this war. we need allies in the faith. the overwhelming majority of muslims reject the radical islamic view of their religion. and when you send out content like this, it's more about the faith. >> we're about to run out of hallway here, so do you guys have enough votes to get the tax bill passed out of the senate this week? sdm >> i think so. i think the legitimate concerns about debt are being addressed. senator collins has got a commitment from the president that we'll continue the stabilization payments if we repeal the individual mandate. that we will do a $10,000 property tax deduction for people which helps in the northeast. she is not there yet, but that's a big step forward. >> are senators johnson and danes going to get what they want on pass-throughs?
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>> they're going to get some changes that will be announced pretty soon that i think will be substantial. nobody gets what they want. but as i worry about the tweets today, the president was masterful yesterday. that's the best performance i have ever seen. >> in the senate lunch yesterday. >> yes. he was very informed about the content, the friction points. he had a sense of humor. the meeting with senator collins. it was a very good meeting. so you see a president who is trying to close the deal and, you know, i just wish that guy shows up more. >> thank you, senator. >> garrett haake. >> you heard it there. >> i thought he was going to give you the cold shoulder with the phone call. >> nah! >> walking a fine line right now with taxes, clearly. >> lindsey graham is interesting to talk to on all these things. he is someone who has been a
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strong opponent of president trump. he ran against him, as you remember, in the primary. he has really cultivated a relationship with him over the last few months. they've become golfing buddies. they are natural allies on some issues. i have been very interested all day to hear what he would say about the tweets of the muslim videos this morning which so many people found so disturbing. and before i think you took that interview live i had asked him if this is a message -- the same thing he said there about how disturbing and up helpful they were. if this is something he had taken to the president himself based on their relationship. and he said no, but i am talking to you about it. implying what we all know which is that the president takes a lot of his advice or a lot of his counsel from what he reads in the newspaper. >> or on twitter. >> or what he sees on television. >> obviously lindsey graham and the republicans want to get their agenda done. they want to get tax reform passed but they also have to deal with a president who constantly makes it more difficult for them to do
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anything because he is stepping in it day in and day out. it seems like he has no adviser who can pull him back. look at what we just heard from the deputy press secretary. he was asked, does donald trump think muslims are a threat to the u.s., after the videos that he posted this morning would suggest. the deputy press secretary told the press on air force one just now, they are on their way to missouri, to sell taxes, told them, the president has addressed these issues with the travel order. here is why that is problematic. the travel order was not meant to target muslims, according to the department of justice and according to the white house. they're arguing that this is not a ban on muslims, it is not a muslim ban. but raj shah, the deputy press secretary, says, in response to does donald trump think muslims are a threat to the u.s., the president has addressed these issues with the travel order.
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kristen welker, that's not going to be easy for them to have to, i guess, walk back later today. >> in addition to everything you just said, katy, it is not clear that the videos show what they purport to show. >> yeah. >> for example, one of the videos that he tweeted out shows one person attacking another person. it seems like this is a fight between two dutch people. it's not been verified by nbc but it's something reported in the dutch media. so it's a little baffling about why it was tweeted out without being first authenticated. we shouted questions to the president about this as well as his chief of staff after they left. they didn't answer the questions. >> guys, we were intending to talk about taxes, unfortunately we got a little bit derailed. we'll get into the videos kristen was mentioned and talk about where they came from in a moment. back to taxes. colorado democratic senator
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michael bennett joins me. >> hold on. i am on my phone. just kidding. thanks for having me. >> that was good. i didn't realize you were a jokester. >> i had time to think about it. >> hold on. my phone is ringing. i am kidding. >> gotta go. >> let's get to taxes, senator. the republicans think that they have enough to get this passed. who are you, as the democrats, lobbying right now on the republican side of the aisle to get them to think twice? >> well, i think anybody who has ever said they were committed to fiscal responsibility in dealing with our deficit should be somebody who is vulnerable to voting the other way because this bill blows a huge hole in the deficit. katy, you did a great job laying out the facts in this bill. let me add one more to what you said. there are 572,000 americans who are lucky enough to make more than $1 million a year. 572,000. they are getting $34 billion in
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this tax bill. there are 90 million americans that make $50,000 and below, and in 2019 the best year, because as you pointed out over time things get worse and worse. in 2019 they're getting collectively $14 billion, which is equivalent to $160 a person. or $7.50 a paycheck. it is a joke that these guys are saying this is a middle class tax cut, and we need to make sure the american people understand it so we can defeat it. so i don't know precisely who it is going to be, but surely there are two republicans who can see through the rhetoric and vote against this bill so that we can actually get to a bipartisan solution that works for the middle class and doesn't blow a huge hole in our deficit. >> what about those in your caucus who hail from states that donald trump won by a landslide? i am looking at democratic
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senator joe manchin from west virginia. >> i have a lot of rural counties in my state where donald trump won 80% of the vote. i am pleased to have the chance to go back there and tell them why i didn't vote for a tax bill that gave massive tax breaks to the wealthiest people in america and financed it by borrowing the money from the children of people living in those districts who will have no benefit of the taxes that they paid. people that voted for donald trump thought he was going to help what donald trump called the forgotten person, not that he was go to bestow, you know, these gifts on the very wealthiest people in america. but that's what this bill does. >> senator, the democrats did not show up to a meeting with the president yesterday. chuck and nancy didn't show up to that after-lunch meeting. the white house made a show of it. they left the chairs empty. do you think that that's the right thing to do for -- no matter how you feel about the president, to not show up to try and negotiate a deal that would keep the government open?
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>> well, i think that, no matter how people feel about anybody, we've all got a job to do here, and i think they did what they thought they had to do to get leverage in the negotiation. but where people in colorado have become incredibly impatient with politicians in washington is that we don't ever seem to actually get a deal done. get a transaction closed. that's what we have to do. in this context, by the way, this is one more -- we are not even talking about a real budget. we are talking about a ridiculous, temporary budget called a continuing resolution, 30 of which have been passed in the nine years that i have been in the senate. i have never seen a real budget passed here. i have never seen real appropriations process followed. as long as this is the way we're going to do things, congress will continue to have a 9% approval rating. >> that's my question. if the democrats -- if donald trump is calling the democrats obstructionist and the democrats don't show up to a meeting, are you risking feeding into that
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perception and only alienating more of the moderate or the independent minded people in the electorate who are not tied to any one party to make them feel like congress is really just not out there for them? >> look, i think it is really important for us to somehow figure out a way to commit in a bipartisan way to making these institutions work again for america. they don't work. i mean, we are in the middle of dismantling these really elegant institutions that the founders built for us to resolve our disputes because we are not resolving disputes. all we are doing is having disputes. and that -- that's not good for the american people. it's not good for the next generation of americans and it's not good for america's standing in the world. my hope is that we will get this very small budget issue dealt with and, at the same time, do some very important work like around daca and the d.r.e.a.m.ers that has to be done before the end of the year. we should be working on that
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right now instead of claiming a tax bill that has nothing to do with the middle class benefits the middle class or to claim the crumbs will magically trickle down. >> michael bennett, mixed metaphor purveyor and comic. thank you. who is the controversial political leader and why did donald trump's retweets of videos she posted lead britain's prime minister to condemn the president of the united states? (avo) when you have type 2 diabetes, you manage your a1c,
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the british government strongly rebuked president trump after he retweeted three anti-muslim videos posted by a leader of a far-right fringe party. prime minister theresa may's official spokesman said, britain first seeks to divide communities, britain first seeks to divide communities in their use of hateful narratives which pedal lies and stoke tensions. this causes anxiety to law abiding people. british people overwhelming reject the prejudice rhetoric of the far right, which is the antithesis of the values that this country represents. decency, tolerance and respect. it is wrong for the president to have done this. the president retweeted the inflammatory videos posted by jada franzen. the deputy leader of the anti-muslim, anti-immigrant
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party. franzen thanked him for sharing the videos and here was white house press secretary sarah huckabee sanders' defense of the president. >> it's -- it's a real video. the threat is real. and that is what the president is talking about. that's what the president is focused on is dealing with those real threats. and those are real no matter how you look at it. >> joining us now. phil rucker, "washington post" white house bureau chief and msnbc political analyst and susan page, washington bureau chief for "usa today." phil, how does the president come across these sorts of things? >> that is a wonderful question, katy. as you know, this is not the first time he has tweeted sort of indiscriminately. he has done this for years, tweeting things from white nationalists and neo nazis and what have you. he finds them on twitter. in this case ann coulter, the conservative commentator retweeted one of the videos before donald trump. we know he follows her on
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twitter. so perhaps he found it through her. i don't know. i have been asking sources in the white house and not been given answers about how the president found the videos or what inspired him to share them with the followers. >> besides sarah huckabee sanders, who exactly is defending the tweets? >> jada franzen is delighted because she has never gotten the reach and attention that her tweets have gotten with donald trump's huge following on social media. you know, there could be real consequences for the president's decision to retweet them. the courts are once again considering his proposed immigration ban and his harsh rhetoric against muslims is one of the factors the courts have looked at in deciding whether the immigration ban is unconstitutional. so there are consequences both in terms of his own agenda and also in terms of his relationship with our ally great britain. do we have any ally closer than great britain? this is not the head of north korea issuing this fierce rebuke
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of the president. >> it's not just sarah huckabee sanders, though, or the woman who initially posted these videos. david duke is applauding the president for this. david duke, the white supremacist, is applauding the president over these tweets, saying -- i am not going to read the tweet but saying this is what the media is not going to report. this is what happens. dana bash, our friend at cnn, said the only people who are supporting what the president did today are racists and fascists and bigots. phil, is that fair? >> well, i have not heard other people supporting from the president did today. i talked to a number of advisers both inside the white house and outside, and nobody quite understands what the president did. this was not part of any sort of strategy. >> he is questioning whether or not -- he is trying to throw doubt into the "access hollywood" tape, something he has already -- he has already admitted to and apologized for. according to the "new york
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times" he is once again trying to question the legitimacy of president obama's birth certificate, something that he, again, had to fess up to during the campaign, saying that president obama was born here. i mean, is it okay to ask the question, is the president losing a step? what's exactly going on, phil? >> a number of people are asking that question. his critics are saying, look, he is creating an alternate reality. he is taking facts that are already very clear, which is the "access hollywood" video, it is on tape. he has already admitted it was him. billy bush was fired for it. sort of recreating in his mind, maybe it's not me. maybe it doesn't sound like me. does it sound like me? he has been asking other people whether it sounds like him. we've reported that too. his defenders say he is a savvy marketer trying to paint a rosy picture. >> that's the last way i would describe it. just so we're clear he retweeted
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a video of a man pushed off a rooftop from the overthrow of an egyptian president. one man hanged after being found guilty of the crime according to buzzfeed. the video went viral after being posted to a video sharing website in may. the video led to the arrest of a 16-year-old boy over there and the video was removed from the website at the request of the police. the sister website had since posted a debunk of the video claiming that no migrants were involved and calling trump's retweet fake news. so the guy who likes to tout fake news retweeting fake news himself. susan, i will give you the last word. we have very little time. >> extraordinary that sarah huckabee sanders would make the argument that whether or not they're real it doesn't matter. of course it matters. it is at the core of this story.
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>> susan page, phil rucker. guys, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> we'll head back to capitol hill after the break where congressm congressman john conyers faces questions that he should step down. ♪ give ancestrydna, the only dna test that can trace your origins to over 150 ethnic regions- and open up a world of possibilities. ♪ save 30% for the holidays at
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so do the calls for his resignation. yet another woman came forward with the claim that the law enforcement subjected her to inappropriate behavior while she worked in his congressional office. here is what dina marr told nbc news about the alleged abuse she experienced as an aide for conyers. >> i think he is depraved. i think he is evil. i think he is despicable. he is dishonest. it was outrageous. but i think he loved to do outrageous things because, what are you going to do about it? it's sort of a game. >> the latest allegation is similar to three others leveled last week. one of the complaints was settled with the accuser for $27,000. still, a spokesman for the lawmaker tries to normalize his proclivity for stripping down to his underwear in front of staff. >> his closet is right in his office. right here.
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he changes clothes in his office. most of us have walked in on him accidentally without knocking and have seen him in his underwear. >> nbc's kasie hunt joins me from capitol hill. a third democrat has come forward saying conyers needs to resign. where are the rest of the democrats on this? >> it's been, frankly, a slow process for democrats to call for conyers' resignation. there are a lot of reasons for that. it is, in some ways, difficult for a lot of these members of congress to call on one of their own to step aside. there has been a lot of pressure inside the congressional black caucus and a split about what to do. conyers is somebody who, nancy pelosi called him an icon. she has, of course, tried to push back on that behind the scenes. and now there is incredible pressure from democratic leaders on conyers to step down. but he has kind of retreated to
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michigan, his home state. and has not made a decision. and the congressional black caucus leadership did a press conference after their regular lunch and said it should be up to him and his family about wha. this is raising a lot of questions, i think. it's certainly been part of the conversation today here on capitol hill amid all of the other sexual harassment news, matt lauer here at nbc, garrison keillor, about why is it different in politics? what makes it different that there are so many people who stand accused of these things in politics who keep their jobs? our house producer alex moe caught up with leaders from the cbc, jim clyburn, number three democrat here in the house and this is how they characterized it. take a look. >> you guys can appreciate that other men in other industries have faced similar accusations, and -- gotten out of the way. resigned, stepped down far
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faster than he has. right? >> i think you would have to give examples. >> harvey weinstein. charlie rose. matt lauer. >> i don't think -- who elected them? >> reporter: and in case you didn't catch that, katy, clyburn said, who elected them? the suggestion, these politicians are answerable to the voters, and that is, of course, the case. they are also answerable to the house ethics committee which could find reason for conyers to step down, but either way, it's becoming a very difficult environment and, of course, the policies and procedures here in the congress have not been updated since 1995. the house is going to take the first step towards trying to fix that today when they pass by voice vote. basically unanimously, new mandatory harassment training but the speaker said they'll try to make bigger changes to the law. a hearing on that next week. >> thank you very much. and with me now, who elected
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them? >> remarkably callous comment. >> a little insensitive given the gravity of the allegations. multiple women coming out saying what conyers did to them. a cultural shift is happening now, rapidly and in all sectors. when it come fos to elected officials in congress, there are few mechanisms to remove a senator or congressperson. that's one thing that needs to change. i think more support, bipartisan support needs to come out in favor of representative gillibrand's bill. and we are in a moment which donald trump is the president. people vote ford him knowing what he said on the tape. so voters are making a moral judgment when voting for people given these allegations against them. >> talking about voting for a new mandatory sexual harassment
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training. i'm not sure that training -- i mean, what world do you live in where you think it's okay to strip down in your underwear in front of a female colleague or anything colleague, really? in what world is it okay to -- to touch a 14-year-old? i mean, this sexual harassment training. does that really get into the root of this? >> it's not about training but there needs to be some kind of mechanism for policing these congressionalen members who commit these crimes. harassing and/or assaulting subordinates and right now we're seeing a real lack of political will on the part of the democrats to address what's happened within their own ranks and to self-police. >> what does leadership look like? >> leadership looks like forcing out the members within your own caucus -- members of your own tribe, your own team who have done the wrong thing and who have credible allegations against them. you see the dnc chair today, tom perez, saying that he wants full
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investigations. he would make any commentary of resignations and this san iis a issue hurting democrats. they had the opportunity to have moral high ground in the way they responded to donald trump's sexual assault allegations. instead, they're blowing them up. >> do we need to be clear what can be forgiven and what can be ultimately seen as acceptable? down the line? after an apology? after penance is done? and what is just -- over the line? do we need to make a distinction betweening a franken and john conyers or john conyers and roy moore? >> yes, there is a spectrum. we talked about this previously. a spectrum on behavior. one hand, people like harvey, bill cosby committing multiple rapes. an exorbitant amount of women. ridiculous in terms of harvey weinstein. talking about someone like franken or conyers, that falls on a different part of the spectrum in terms of severity of
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the allegations. everything is horrible. everything unacceptable. but i do agree that democrats need to speak out more forcefully about this, and i think in some ways, some of these elected officials are thinking about some of the things that they have done and perhaps don't want to call for someone else's message nation because it might come back on them if they behaved in this manner as well. >> hmm. >> i want to point that out as well. i think it's more complicated than we might be talking about. >> thank you both, ladies. the president's plane just landed in missouri. he's out there to sell tax reform. remember? we'll keep an eye on this. turning now to the other crisis. the u.s. senate's allies are looking what to do next after north korea's latest missile test. the u.n. security council will discuss the issue during an emergency meeting this afternoon. president trump tweeted after talking with chinese president xi jinping the u.s. will impose more sanctions. north korean the cheered after the government announced it tested a missile that could reach large parts of the u.s.,
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and carry a nuclear warhead. joining us now to talk about this further is gordon chang, a columnist for the "daily beast" and expert in north korean affairs and author of "nuclear showdown: north korea takes on the world." there are some out there who are arguing that if north korea gets to the point that they have nuclear capability, their program is finished that opens the door for them to come to the table to negotiate a freeze? >> well, the north koreans say that, but i actually don't think they're going to negotiate in good faith, because they haven't over the course of decades. i do believe, though, that there is a diplomatic solution, and that is, if the united states is willing to put enough pressure on north korea, and its backers like russia and china and some other countries, then the u.s. can really go to kim jong-un and say you have no choice but give up your weapons. if kim doesn't agree, then the people around kim very well may decide it's not in their issue
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to support kim's weapons programs. there is a diplomatic solution here and when lindsey graham yesterday said we're just drifting to war. i think that's wrong. there are so many things the united states can do. a i don't like the fatalism coming out of washington. >> what will more sanctions do, gordon? >> what it could do, first of all, deny kim jong-un money to have, to detonate nukes, to launch missiles. even more important, to engage in this gift politics. kim jong-un showering subordinates with mercedes, rolexes, other luxury items to keep their loyalty. it's a kim family tradition going back decades that's have worked and if kim doesn't have the money to do that you'll see the people around him who really run this regime could scatter for the exits, if enough pressure on them, put on them by, for instance, beijing and washington. >> is it rare for them to conduct a missile test this time of year? >> certainly is. i was surprised. because at this point in the year, first of all, it's cold
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weather. it's not really good for fueling missiles and all the rest of it. also, because the north korean military now is making preparations for its winter training cycle. which is this massive event. so normally north korea doesn't launch missiled at this time. it only starts to do that in the spring. i was taken by surprise. >> "daily beast" columnist gordon chang. thank you very much. >> thanks, katy. and one more thing before we go. it's about the story we brought you at the top of the hour. as a journalist, you're trained not to use the word "i" but in my book i wrote about the experience of being bullied, belittled and taunted by a man who would become this country's president. a man who himself was accused by more than a dozen women of sexual harassment or assault. he denied the allegations. on the air i've called out the discrepancies and standards for men in the media versus men in politics, like roy moore, and donald trump. today, though, i want to take a moment and respond to the news about matt lauer. speak not as a journalist or nbc
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employee, but as a human being. and i want to say this -- we focus on the salacious headlines. the next star to fall, because it is shocking, and it makes for news. but bad behavior happens at all levels across all industries. quinnipiac research shows 60% of women say they've been sexually harassed. most women say it happened at work. a lot of them don't come forward and don't speak up because they're scared of the consequence, and understandably so. we can talk about the sea change or reckoning until we are all blue in the face. but the real question right now is, what's next? what concrete measures can be put in place by organizations large and small to prevent harassment in the workplace? what can we do? i don't have a good answer. but i do know it's the right question to ask.
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progress is painful. but sometimes that's good. that wraps things up for me. ali velshi picks things up. >> powerful and looking for the answer. good news, if the future looks better than the past has looked for women who have experienced this harassment in the workplace. >> we'll see. >> that -- we will see. in that moment now. thanks, katy. good afternoon. i'm ali velshi. right now the president just arrived in missouri, set to give a speech on a subject that affects every single american. taxes. the president is going to be touting the republican tax plan as tax cuts for the middle class. harsh reality, the tax plan is really just relief for corporations and the wealthy. we're going to get to that in a few minutes. first begin with the news katy was talking about, hit particularly close to home here in msnbc. our colleague matt lauer co-host of the "today" show on nbc has been fired following a complaint of inappropriate sexual behavior by a woman who worked with him. a memo


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