tv MSNBC Live With Katy Tur MSNBC January 16, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PST
emotional and in some ways stunning day on capitol hill, katy. >> every day seems more remarkable than the last. >> you think that you've seen everything, and then something else happens. and i think that that hearing and the back and forth between republicans and democrats is a truly sad commentary on where we are on capitol hill, electing a president who was supposed to change the way things worked in washington. >> i think lyindsaey graham mig agree with you, considering what he said in that hearing. yeah, everybody d every day jus take us to a new low. and this is getting us one step closer to a potential government shutdown. >> friday, three more days. >> chris jansing, thank you so much. >> thank you. it is 11:00 a.m. out west and 2:00 p.m. in washington, where "the new york times" is reporting, steve bannon is now the first in the president's inner circle to receive a subpoena from the special counsel. robert mueller is compelling trump's former chief strategist and campaign chief executive to answer questions about the russia investigation before a
grand jury. is this an act of intimidation? is mueller trying to send a message to president trump or does bannon have his own story to tell? donald trump was asked about it right before -- excuse me, right after the news broke. >> steve bannon talking to the special counsel, sir. >> everyone, please exit. thank you. >> no answer there. now, we can't help but consider, though, the timing. this subpoena comes less than two weeks after the release of "fire and fury," where bannon said the campaign meeting between don jr., paul manafort, jared kushner, and a russian lawyer offering, quote, dirt on hillary clinton, was, quote treasonous. bannon wasn't on the campaign when that meeting happened and he wasn't on air force one when trump and team drafted the initial statement, saying the meeting was only about adoptions. but that -- that right there may just be the opening salvo. bannon could potentially offer a lot on the firing of mike flynn or james comey, among other inner white house workings. whatever he does say, we imagine the president or at least his lawyers will be wondering if going so hard on, quote, sloppy
steve, after "fire and fury's" release was a good idea in retrospect. again, timing is everything. right now steve bannon is in front of the house intel committee. let's get right to our reporters to talk about this. nbc news intelligence and national security reporter ken dilanian is following this from our washington bureau. nbc's gatrrett haake is on capitol hill. eli stokols is an msnbc political analyst. natasha bertrand is a political correspondent for "business insider." guys, welcome. ken, let's start with you. big question. why was bannon suspected a subpoenaed and not just asked by the special counsel? >> katy, it's true that robert mueller is not known to have subpoenaed any other member of the white house inner circle, but steve bannon is not in the white house inner circle anymore. there had been a brokered agreement between the white house and mueller to offer voluntary interviews. we've seen jared kushner, people like hope hicks, submit themselves to interviews. bannon is no longer a part of that. now, it may be true that this is
all a negotiating tactic, leading to a voluntary interview of bannon, but it's also very possible thal mueller wants to get steve bannon in front of the grand jury. because as you just said, there are crucial questions he wants to get answers to under oath, including, did you talk to the president about the trump tower meeting or about the comey firing and why did you say in this wolff book that you believed the president and his family were subject to money laundering? there's a lot of reasons to think that the end game for robert mueller is to get bannon in front of a grand jury, katy. >> eli, you were there on the campaign, you've been covering this white house, you know when bannon came, you know what he's been privy too. what do you think robert mueller is going to want to ask him about? >> i think the last few months of the campaign are really interesting. bannon was basically running the campaign and certainly the main person of impacting what trump was saying, day in and day out, on the campaign trail. and this was a time when donald trump was out there, talking about wikileaks. every day, he was celebrating a new release coming from wikileaks. that's information that intelligence officials now
believe was unearthed by the russians and given to wikileaks that way. so they're going to want to know about that. and steve bannon may not have been one of the decision makers when it came to firing comey in this white house. he's obviously really criticized jared kushner for influencing his father-in-law to do that. wasn't on air force one, coming back from europe when the president helped draft the misleading statement about don junior and the russia meeting at trump tower. but he was still in the white house. he was still privy to other conversations. and he can help corroborate a lot of what mueller already knows and perhaps open up new leads. >> and natasha, what do you think the key is here with steve bannon? is it flynn, is it comey km >> i think it's important to remember that bannon has very little to lose right now. he recently was ousted at breitbart, so there is a lot of speculation that perhaps he was the one who asked mueller to do the subpoenas, because he saw over the last two weeks that by distancing himself from trump, by criticizing trump's kids, you know, he was labeled as a
traitor, he was stabbed in the back, essentially. i think the key here will be donald trump jr. and jared kushner. he has a story to tell. with regards to the trump tower meeting, he seems to feel very, very strongly about that. he may not have been on the campaign when that meeting actually happened, but he was there directly after. he came on to the campaign in august. he was still advising the trump campaign in a very informal role in june when that meeting happened. and also, he was there during the transition period. and he was copied on many of the e-mails during the transition period where they were discussing the sanctions, the response to the russian sanctions that obama had put in place. so i think that with regard to michael flynn, especially, donald trump jr., and jared kushner, he's going to have a lot to tell mueller during this hearing. >> ken, the timing of. we talked about it in the opening. this comes a couple of weeks after "fire and fury" is out. could a book prompt a subpoena? >> well, look, bannon was always going to be on robert mueller's witness list, but there's every reason to think that some of the explosive comments he made in this book and the resulting fallout did lead mueller to
speed up the process of getting bannon to talk. if he believes that bannon has more o of f an interest in talk and telling the truth now because he's on the outs of the trump administration, because he's been ousted from the website he used to leave, breitbart, mueller has every reason to think that this is a time to strike and secure his testimony again, what does he know about the trump tower meeting. why does he think that jared kushner and the trump family have exposure on money laundering? you've got to believe that mueller wants to lock that story in, katy. >> talk about cracking like an egg, natasha. in the book, steve bannon says, don jr. will crack like an egg when he's questioned about russia. how will steve bannon fare? >> you know, steve bannon has very little to lose here. he was always very critical of the trump campaign's contacts with russia. so if anything, he was probably not privy to all of the conversations that they did have at the time that they had them. but he learned about them later. assuming that this is something that he never approved of and that he really kept his distance from, because he thought that it was, you know, treasonous or unpatriotic, which is what he
told michael wolff for the book, then it seems like perhaps he was not directly involved in any of the -- in any of the russia contacts, but he was a witness to them. and that in itself is going to be very valuable for mueller. >> garrett, he's on capitol hill right now, at house intel. what do we know about how it's going? >> well, katy, frustratingly little, to be honest. he arrived here early, before 9:00, even before most of the reporters that stake out that room got here. and he's been in the secure suite of rooms where the house intel committee meets since he arrived here this morning. we can't get in there. not much information gets in or out while he's in there. it's interesting to consider, when steve bannon walked into that room this morning, he was probably the only person in the room who knew that he had been subpoenaed by the special counsel. that's no longer the case. the committee broke for a lunch break, several of the members came out, nobody was talking about the specifics of what they've learned so far, but it's clear that as they go back in for what could be a lengthy session this afternoon, there's no votes or anything else to
break up the process over the next few hours, everyone on that committee now knows what the stakes are for steve bannon. and i suspect they're going to be going back over some of these things with a fine tooth comb so they can get whatever they believe the special counsel wants to get at if and when that grand jury testimony takes place. >> and what sort of bearing is this testimony today going to have on the special counsel's questioning at a later date? >> it's impossible to know. there's usually a transcript made of these things. that's something that the special counsel could presumably get his hands on if he wanted to compare the two things back and forth. i think the other thing to keep in mind, bannon is not only person from the trump inner circle who's going to be here this week. we're expected to hear from corey lewandowski, the former campaign manager for then candidate trump and hope hicks, the current communications director. the two of them have taken very different tacts as to how they have handled this russia issue. hope hicks has never spoken in public, doesn't say anything about any of this.
has no previous statements she would have to correct. corey lewandowski's gone the other way. he talked about this and his strategy would be on fox news earlier today. take a listen. >> i'm going to answer every question. i'm going to make sure that they understand if somebody hasn't already told them, as the person who was the campaign manager to the presidential candidate for almost two years, that there was no collusion. >> strong words from corey lewandowski, pretty plain and simply spoken there. but he has a long list of comments that he has made about every other player in this drama that i suspect he will be asked about and compared and contrasted against when he takes his turn in that secure room a few floors down from where i'm standing right now. >> and it's important to remember that a lot of these folks that were in the campaign and also in the white house don't like each other. >> sure. >> so there's a lot of vendettas out there. steve bannon and corey lewandowski, they don't necessarily get along. corey lewandowski does not like
paul manafort and vice versa, the manafort team versus the lewandowski team. and the bannon team versus the jared kushner team, or the bannon team versus the ivanka trump team. or the bannon team versus the don junior team. there's so many conflicting personalities not just in the campaign, but in the white house. eli, that seems like it's going to set mueller up for at the very least some interesting testimony, potentially some conflicting testimony. >> right. but i think he's going to do everything he can to put that puzzle together, sort of the way journalists do in trying to report out the different and kaleidoscopic narratives coming from people inside the west wing every day. it is a challenge, but bob mueller has a lot of lawyers working on this. and i think you're right to point out that steve bannon, he may try to spare the president, but there's no love lost between steve bannon, jared kushner, and really the entire jared and ivanka wing of that white house, which includes hope hicks. she may not say anything on the record publicly as garrett pointed out, but she's certainly
probably on a lot of e-mails. bob mueller has hired a lot of white collar crime attorneys here. so there's a lot of things that he may already have that bannon would be highly motivated to help with. and i think even though you're not hearing a lot of immediate concern coming out of the white house publicly, there are parts of that west wing, specifically the jared and ivanka part of the west wing, that has to be concerned with steve bannon going in -- >> what has the white house said in response to this? i know trump was asked about it, but he didn't give an answer. >> nothing yet. and there's a briefing later this morning. this is a white house that since the wolff book has been pretty strong in denouncing steve bannon and distancing the president from him, diminishing his role on the campaign and inside the white house, but clearly, steve bannon was pretty close. he was a member of that inner circle for several months and as natasha and others have pointed out, he knows about the transition. he knows about what went down with mike flynn. and so he's just another person for bob mueller to get information out of and to try to
square that with what he already has. >> let's talk about wikileaks. steve bannon wasn't there for that meeting. he hadn't signed on to the campaign yet. and he might not have been on the campaign, trying to draft the misleading statement about that meeting on air force one. but wikileaks. the timing of that as got to, i'm sure, raise -- has raised some flags within the special counsel's team. >> absolutely. and of course, steve bannon was the one who brought on cam bridge analytica to join the trump campaign team. and the ceo of cambridge analytica reached out to julian assange, the head of wikileaks, and said, let me help you find hillary clinton's missing e-mails. so there's this weird nexus between wikileaks, cambridge analytica, julian assange, and i guess russia, too, because russia hacked the e-mails that mueller's going to want to ask him about. and of course, donald trump jr. messaged wikileaks in september of 2016 and then he forwarded those e-mails that he exchanged
with wikileaks to steve bannon and others. so he's going to be asked about that, for sure. all of this kind of, you know, is more fodder for mueller to hone in on. and in terms of how high the stakes are for the grand jury testimony. it's not necessarily anymore high stakes than an informal interview. you lie to an informal interview to federal investigators, you can still be charged for it. the same thing goes for a grand jury investigation. >> you can't lie to federal investigators. >> period. the real question here about why he's testifying before a grand jury is, well, does mueller want to catch him, you know, maybe making false statements because he won't have a lawyer there and he'll be a little bit more nervous. so all of these have to be considered when you're considering -- >> or does the special counsel think that they know something that steve bannon does not know that they know. >> because michael flynn has been talking to mueller -- >> absolutely. >> right. >> and there's all sorts of variables that i'm sure we don't even have a handle on, because ultimately we are not a part of the investigation. nbc's ken dilanian, garrett
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breaking news. the justice department wants the u.s. supreme court to hear an appeal on daca immediately. justice correspondent pete williams is standing by in our washington newsroom. pete, what is the argument the administration is making? >> well, we haven't seen it yet in the supreme court. and we haven't seen the filing yet in the ninth circuit, because they haven't made it, but unsurprisingly, the government says it's going to appeal last week's decision by a federal judge in california that blocked the administration from taking any further steps to shut down daca, the deferred immigration status for people who were born here in the u.s., of immigrant parents who came here illegally. so we knew the government was going to appeal that. they say they're going to do it to the ninth circuit court of
appeals, but they say, as soon as that paper lands on the court, they're going to use that as a stepping stone to go immediately to the supreme court and ask the court to hear it before the appeals court even rules on it. now, that sometimes happens, but it's very rare. the supreme court, as a rule, doesn't like to get into these cases before the appeals courts have had a chance to bite at them. what is urgent here, of course, is that the daca program expires in early march. and just today, the secretary of homeland security says the president believes and she believes that it can't be renewed, because the attorney general has argued that it shouldn't be in effect in the first place. so the administration has no intention, obviously, of extending it beyond march 6th. now, for now, daca remains in place, because of this court ruling, but what the administration is saying here is they want the supreme court to step in and take this injunction away. what the attorney general says in a brief statement that was released by the justice department, he's attacking the
fact that the injunction issued by the judge out in san francisco was nationwide. and i have to say, katy, that over the last several years, this technique by federal judges to issue nationwide injunctions has been somewhat controversial, but it's also been used by opponents of both republican and democratic administrations. remember, it was a nationwide injunction issued by a single judge in texas that put the president's immigration plan on hold, that never went into effect and ended up in a tie vote before the supreme court. so a little bit that's unsurprising, appealing it, but surprising in the sense that they intend to go right to the supreme court. whether the court will take it or not, normally i would say the odds are against it. >> pete williams, pete, thank you very much. >> you bet. and today on capitol hill, the secretary of homeland security was pressed under oath about what the president did and did not say in that now-infamous oval office conversation on immigration. >> what do you remember the president saying about immigration from african
countries to the united states? >> what i heard him saying was that he would like to move away from a country-based quota system to a merit-based system. so it shouldn't married where you' you're from, it should matter what you contribute to the united states. >> how did he characterize those countries in africa? >> in -- i don't specifically remember. >> you said on fox news that the president used strong language. what was that strong language? >> uh, let's see, strong language, there was, uh -- i, apologies, i don't remember a specific word. >> the senator who was questioning kirstjen nielsen during that exchange was dick durbin. he was also at that meeting and was the first to confirm the president had made the disparaging comments about africa and haiti. also at that meeting was senator lindsey graham, who despite it all, is still optimistic about future negotiations on daca. >> now, where do we go? i think there's a chance to reconstruct this, to find a way
to get phase one done. to the 700,000 plus daca kids, we're not going to leave you behind. we're not going to let this in like it is, and to those who have been desirous of a more secure border, you're going to get -- you're going to get your something, too, because it has to be done together. >> a reminder of what's at stake. it's the fate of about 800,000 young people, the d.r.e.a.m.ers, who could face deportation. not to mention a government shutdown, which could also be just days away. joining me now from capitol hill, nbc's kasie hunt. also with me, ashley parker of "the washington post" and jake sherman of politico. kasie, it was fascinating to watch that hearing today and to watch kerstin nielskne kir stin explain what words were spoken. it seems like everybody knew what words were spoken and she was dancing around them. >> reporter: she was, yes, put into a difficult position, repeatedly, by those senators.
and cory booker, i talked to him after the hearing. he stopped short of saying that he thought that she was lying to the committee, but suffice it to say, it strain eed believabilit to think that she didn't or couldn't remember what was happen. and that was the sentiment that many senators conveyed to me after the meeting. i think the question now is, where does this go from here? lindsey graham referred to this entire -- the events of the last few days as an s-show. and he questioned what exactly happened to paycheck the president change his mind. he compared the way the president was in that open meeting that we saw last tuesday, to the way that he approached this private meeting, and graham actually says that something critical changed between 10:00 a.m. on thursday morning and noon on that same day. take a look. >> what i heard tuesday was a president who seemed to understand that it had to be bipartisan, phase one is just a down payment. it needs to be comprehensive. we need to go to merit-based
immigration. we need to secure our border, and we need to be fair to the illegal immigrants and we need to emphasize security, but he said "love." so what happened between 10:00 and 12:00? >> i don't know, since i didn't -- >> i don't know either. and i'm going to find out. and i'm not going to ask you. because between 10:00 and 12:00, we went from having conversations between senator durbin, which i believe every word, and the president that was very hopeful and by the time we got there, something had happened. >> reporter: so, you can hear him relating again, that phone call from between senator durbin and the president at 10:00 on thursday morning. and then, of course, the president's tenor and tone and language in the noon meeting that they actually had at the white house. now, lyindsaey graham came out that hearing and spoke to reporters afterwards and he essentially blamed the white house staff. he said, there's some staffer in the white house that is telling president trump something that is unhelpful.
now, he was initially asked, was that john kelly? and graham said, well, look, i like and respect john kelly, but he is a member of the white house staff. now, he would not answer a question about stephen miller, the young immigration hardliner who, of course, has been given credit or blame for the president's stances on immigration. so i think that is kind of the way that we are looking to see how this is going to play out over the next week or so. >> well, i think ashley parker might have an idea of what happened between 10:00 and 12:00. she has a new "washington post" article that outlines it. and ashley, in the article, you guys write, "kelly, who had already been briefed on the deal, talked to trump to tell him that the proposal would probably not be good for his agenda. kelly, a former secretary of homeland security, has taken an increasingly aggressive and influential role in the immigration negotiations, calling lawmakers and meeting with white house aides daily more than he has on other topics." expand on that, ashley. >> that's exactly right.
and stephen miller gets a lot of the blame or credit, depending on where you are, ideologically, for pushing trump to the right on immigration. but someone who has talked about less, but our understanding is, is just as important with the president's ear on immigration in this white house is general kelly. and he comes to it sort of earnestly and naturally. it's something he was obviously acutely aware of as secretary of the department of homeland security. also, before that, he was running a southern command and dealing with those nations again. and so, it's something he feels very strongly. my understanding was that in that 55-minute meeting that the cameras were there for or when the cameras left, general kelly actually stood up and made a very impassioned pitch about the importance of the wall, the importance of the tools to handle border security, the money needed for funding. stephen miller was there and he was quiet. that doesn't, again, mean he's not also wielding clout behind the scenes. but this is something that general kelly cares about.
he's often in the oval with the president and has had a lot of influence on this past weak. >> it's more fuel for that argument that donald trump agrees with the last person he spoke to, as well. but let's look forward to today and what this means going forward for the d.r.e.a.m.ers. what this means for a potential government shutdown. jake, with this on the table, still, with the deal not yet there on d.r.e.a.m.ers, what are the chances that the government is going to get funded again on friday? >> i actually am coming around based on a bunch of conversations i had this morning to the idea that it's an actual real possibility that there's a government shutdown. i'll explain why. democrats -- doesn't look like they're getting a daca deal this week, that's almost certain. and a lot of democrats don't trust this white house and this republican leadership to get something done, for good reason. there's a pocket of conservatives who are with kelly and say, if he does some sort of deal like this, this won't be good for his agenda. and then already conservatives in the house, the house freedom caucus, which -- whose members say, we're not voting for
another short-term government spending plan. there are about 40 members of the house freedom caucus, republican leadership would have to get 30 or so of them to vote for a government funding plan without any democrats to avoid a shutdown. so i'm coming around to the feeling here that this is going to be a long week and it could go to the brink and for the first time, really, since 2013, i'm getting the feeling that a shutdown is -- there are even chances, i would say, for a shutdown. >> wow, kasie, what are you hearing? >> i agree with that assessment, actually, katy. i talked to senator chris coons this morning. i asked him, do you think a government shutdown is more likely than not? and he says, yes, he does. and there are a few reasons for this. i mean, one of them simply is we're not up against a christmas deadline or something else that has lawmakers wanting to get out of town, but the sources of pressure are so different on each side, as jake mentioned, there are conservatives in the house who don't want to vote for this, so if republicans want to try to go it alone and keep the government open by themselves,
in the house, that's a difficult road. on the senate side, they're going to need democratic votes to keep the government running. i do think that the central question that will ultimately determine what happens here could be whether or not chuck schumer lets, you know, nine of his democrats vote to keep the government open. he's got a lot of democrats who are facing re-election in red states, who might view this as a democratic shutdown over the issue of undocumented immigrants, which a lot of -- there are some who believe that that would not play well for people like claire mccaskill or joe manchin. but, obviously, that set of problems is the opposite from what you're facing on the house side. so right now, i think there's no way to know how this plays out, but each time we seem to be getting closer and closer to the brink. and this time, it's very hard to see how they pull back from the edge, from essentially this sword fight, if you will, falling over that looming cliff in the corner. >> you're going to have a ton of
government workers, who will be furloughed if that happens. we saw it in 2013. but there's also, there's still the d.r.e.a.m.ers that are hanging in the balance of this. yesterday, i'm sure you saw this, there was this really emotional separation between this detroit father, who was brought here when he was 10 years old by his parents. he didn't qualify to be a d.r.e.a.m.er. didn't have a choice to come here, but he was brought here, regardless. and he is being deported, forced to say good-bye to his wife and to his two children right here. because he cannot stay. and we're talking about the politics of this. and we're talking about the broad brushstrokes why the republicans might want something and why the republicans might not want something and who has leverage over the other and whether the president wants funding for his wall. and oftentimes lost in that is this, what we're seeing right here. these people who are getting their families literally torn apart in front of our eyes, emotional, emotional moments that will ruin a family.
who knows when they're going to see their father again? cory booker asked kersten nielson about this during the hearing. here's what cory booker said. >> there are all of these folks right now who are living in anguished anxiety, watching themselves being used, citizens who have proven themselves to this country, served this country, sacrificed this country, and first responders, military people. they're now being used as political pawns to achieve things that even people who kdel in homeland security know when he don't need, which is a massive continuous wall. we have a lot of shared goals and we wall want to make sure that our borders are safe and secure. we all want to make sure we find ways out for serious criminals from this country. but to use d.r.e.a.m.ers as a pawn. to use them as a bargaining chip, while i've sat with them, while lives are being shaken, undermined, while people's
experiences at their jobs and in schools is deteriorating, that's unacceptable to me. >> that was cory booker after the hearing. here's donald trump right now, guys. hold on for a second. he's speaking at a women's event. >> thank you, leslie. appreciate it. chairwoman of the republican national committee and judge of our campaign in michigan, and when we won michigan, i said, i got to keep her going, because michigan hadn't been won in decades. and to ronna mcdaniels. where's ronna? great job. you're representing everyone very well on television. i love your experiences. but women represent half of the population, but they care about 100% of the issues that face the nation. that's for sure. we're making incredible progress. the women's unemployment rate hit the lowest level that it's been in 17 years.
well, that's something. and women in the workforce reached a record high. more women in the workforce today than ever before. that's really terrific. and especially since it's on my watch. i feel very proud of that. i have to tell you a statistic that just came out recently, as you saw that the black unemployment rate, the african-american unemployment rate is the lowest it's ever been in the history of the report, so we're very honored by that. it's really a great thing. we've enacted massive tax cuts. you've seen it, you've seen what's happening. i have to tell you that far beyond our expectations, we thought on february, people would start to see their paycheck have a little more money in it. and you know, you pick up that extra $200 or $300 all of a sudden on a monthly basis and sometimes on a weekly basis, that has a big impact. so we thought it would be february and little did we know,
when the companies started -- at&t started it, but these companies started giving out $1,000 to everybody. all of a sudden, it was one after another. now the few that haven't, they're all saying, the employees are saying, what about us? so, you know that's going to happen. so it kicked in a lot faster than we thought. but the stock market is way up again today. and we're setting a record literally all the time. and i'm telling you, we have a long way to go. and had the other side gotten n in, the market would have gone 50% from where it was. 50% from where it was. remember that. it was stagnant and it was going down. and all you have to do is look at the gnp from the beginning. take a look at that gnp. if you look at it -- look at any way you want -- look at any statistic. you can look at gdp, you can look at any statistic, and take a look at where they were.
but gdp in particular, it was stuck and heading down. we took off restrictions, we took off regulations, and we still have plenty of regulations. although we're cutting a lot of them, too. but you don't need nine different regulations. we're looking at dodd/frank, the banks can loan money to great people. because the banks haven't been able to do that. they were restricted. a person came up to me at a recent stop and said, all my life, i did business with a certain bank and now all of a sudden they can't do business with me. i've always paid my debts, always paid my loans, the bank loves me, but they're prohibited from doing. now they're going to be able to do business with that person again. so we're doing a real job on it. but the regulations had a lot to do with the success. don't let anyone kid you. without taking off those regulations, look at what we've
done just in terms of pipelines. 48,000 jobs from almost day one. 48,000 jobs, on really things that were never going to get built. they weren't -- we have plants all over the country that are getting built. toyota's now moving back. mexico, it's very interesting, chrysler is leaving mexico and moving back to michigan. you haven't heard that one -- you haven't heard that one in a while. and one of the important things we're doing, as you know, doubling the child tax credit. and that's something so important to all of us. so women own small businesses and america will now be able to deduct 20% of their business income, which is something that people didn't suspect that they would be seeing. my presidential budget was the first in history to include a nationwide program for paid family leave. andwe we're partnering with
communities to end the scourge of drug addiction that has plagued our country. i mean, you talk about a problem, that is a problem we're working very hard on. pam has worked very hard. everybody here -- everybody here, even if they're not totally involved with that, they're all working hard on it. and some people within the family themselves, unfortunately, they're really working, because they have people within the family that are in trouble. so that's number one on our list. if you look at what's gone on, there's never been a time like this. and it's a worldwide problem. some areas take care of it through very, very tough mr measures. we don't. we're not prepared to do that, i guess, they say, as a country. but we have a tremendous massive drug problem. and drug population. and we have dealers all over the country and we are hitting them hard. the dealers. the dealers are being hit hard. but what they've done to families and what they're doing to the country and it's something that we are very focused on. whether it's the opioids, whether it's drugs, as you hear
in the traditional sense, much comes through the southern border, you know that? people don't like to talk about it. they say, oh, why do you mention that? because it happens to be true. but they come in through many different places and means and they come in many different ways. but we are on the drug problem as much as you can possibly be on it. and we're going to get it taken care of one way or the other. and frankly, the tougher we get, the better it's going to be, the faster it's going to go away. we have got to get really tough on that problem. because it's eating away at the heart of our country. so with that being said, i just really appreciate you all being here, it's an honor. again, when i heard, i ran across the street, now i'll run back. now i'm going to run back to the oval office. [ cheers and applause ] but -- but we really have. we've made a tremendous amount of progress and it's now 11 1/2
months and we've made a tremendous amount of progress in a very, very short period of time. when you look at what's gone on with the employment, when you look at what's gone on with the stock market. we've created now almost $8 trillion worth of value, just in the stock market. that's not mentioning all of the other things that there are. so we have a country that's on the right track. we're working on immigration and immigration reform. and hopefully at some point, we'll be able to solve that problem. if the democrats really wanted to, they could, but they really, sometimes, don't want to. but we're working on it and we'll get it done one way or the other, i'll hope. so thank you for being here, it's an honor. and i'll see you again soon. so many friends. thank you. >> just a reminder, this is a women's panel. women of america panel, a three-part panel that is supposed to be focusing on the women in the highest levels of government. hope hicks is there, sarah sanders, kellyanne conway, ivanka trump, et cetera, et cetera. the president just came out and
referenced women unemployment briefly, but then went to black unemployment, then talked about the stock market and how it's rising higher than ever before and it was lagging before. we don't always want to come out and have to fact check the president, but we're going to have to fact check the president. because that's just patently not true. "the new york times" reports that performance in the stock market actually falls short -- lags behind the record performance during the obama years. first year, few years of the obama white house, and the first few years of the bush white house, despite the fact that the market's are doing quite well right now. they have been on the rise, according to the "washington post," since march of 2009. quick fact check. let's go back to ashley parker. we were talking about immigration there for a second. the president right there getting political again, saying the democrats don't really want to make a deal. >> yes. >> i know, there's a lot, and we'll bring it right back to where we started. >> so it's certainly disingenuous of the president to
say democrats don't want a deal on immigration. senator durbin, d.r.e.a.m.ers has been his passion project for decades. it's also just as disingenuous for democrats to say, you know, republicans don't want a deal on immigration. this is a really tough problem and both sides want a deal. they just had very different priorities. and one thing we were talking about before that makes it so tricky for the president and you were talking about the human cost of all of this, which is, you're right, so often lost in who said what bad word and who leaked it to the president and who is to blame, that the president has been all over daca. my understanding is that those pictures and those stories of d.r.e.a.m.ers, at the end of the day, the president would like to help them. he has said that privately and publicly, but often when he gets pulled in a deal or pulled away from his conservative base, to that end, to try to help the
d.r.e.a.m.ers, there are people in the white house, people in the base, people on cable tv and political pundits and commentators who always drive him back to this other side. this is something that the human cost of this is something that the president is awful grappling with just like everyone else. >> ashley parker, white house reporter with "the washington post." ashley, thanks for sticking around with us. we appreciate it. >> thank you. and former republican presidential candidate mitt romney did not address the elephant in the room today, as he gave a speech in utah. that elephant being, will he run for senate? and if he does run for orrin hatch's seat, which romney should we expect to see? the one who tried to get along with the president after the election or the one who tried to be a truth teller before trump won? >> people that give great speeches would look great in the u.s. senate. have you ever thought about that? >> i have nothing for you on that topic, natalie. >> what was your relationship with the president be like if you were elected, sir? >> you know, too many hypotheticals in there for me to be able to address, sorry. but he and i have had a couple
of very cordial conversations over the past couple of months. >> joining me here in the newsroom is rich lowry, editor of the conservative "national review" magazine. thank you very much for being here. romney is not saying yes or no, those close to him say, yes, he's definitely running. >> it seems very likely that he's in. very likely that he would basically have a coronation in that primary and that senate race and then he would be in. that's what he wants. he wants to have a voice in our national debate. he is at the top of our politics briefly, until obama beat him. and when every word you've said has married for some period of time, for a year, that's hard to give up and go away and he wants to be back in it. >> he was a big figure in the 2016 election, too. he gave a lot of -- he often fought with the president or rebuked him on twitter, but he also gave that speech where he just took the president down for
lying. and for not doing a moral leader for this country. so what is mitt romney going to look like in the senate? >> well, i don't think he'll be quite jeff flake, while who is still voting for republican things, has really gone in opposition and really destroyed his political career over it, but he's not going to be lindsey graham either. and lindsey until this latest episode had really invested a massive amount of time and energy into wooing president trump and trying to sway him on an issue like immigration. i don't think we'll see that from romney. but he has much more running room payobecause of his stature nature of utah republicans to characterize -- sorry, to criticize trump on character and ethics-type issues. >> i'm just struck, because what we saw in 2016 and what we saw right after, when he was maybe being considered for secretary of state, whether donald trump was just trying to make a
mockery of him, that's up for debate, depending on how you want to see it, but the way the two interacted together during 2016 makes it hard to believe that there will be warm feelings if he does get into senate. let's give a reminder to our viewers what it was like during 2016. >> think of donald trump's personal qualities. the bullying, the greed. the showing off, the misogyny, the absurd third grade theatrics. he creates scapegoats of muslims and mexican immigrants. he calls for the use of torture, he calls for killing the innocent children and family members of terrorists. this is the very brand of anger that has led other nations into the abyss. donald trump is a phony, a fraud. his promises are as worthless as a degree from trump university. >> poor mitt romney. poor mitt. he choked like a dog. you ever see him in athletics?
he's a choker! and he walks like a penguin on to the stage. you ever seen? like a penguin! >> insults aside, and the insults did elicit a lot of laughs, whether you liked mitt romney or liked donald trump donald trump or hated either one of them, but there were serious charges from mitt romney, that this man is not fit to lead. that he was calling for the killing of families of terrorists. so donald trump really believed these things when he said it and he defended it when he said it and now he's president of the united states. and now there are serious questions about his judgment. about whether or not he thinks white people deserve more than african-americans or than lat o latinos or do people from white european countries deserve to be here more than haiti. these are very serious issues the country is debating? which side of the fence is mitt romney going to fall? is he going to come out and be the moral leader that we saw him be in that clip right there? or is he going to rye to cozy up
to the president to get his agenda den? >> i think he's privately still appalled by the way president trump conducts himself. he did come out and ding him on this latest immigration controversy. but it is a different situation where you're trying to stop someone in a primary and then he's elected president of the united states. he's not going to stop being president instantly, because mitt romney criticizes him. so i think he'll have more running room than other republicans representing really red states, because utah's a mormon state, mormons have never been onboard with donald trump personally. so i think he'll have that freedom to criticize his character. but a lot of the agenda he just frankly supports, because it's a pretty conventional republican agenda. >> that's my question. what will he not vote for that's been on the table so far? >> maybe if there's a $1 trillion infrastructure program, he maybe not be on board with that. on trade, romney was quite critical of china. it's possible that he would be
onboard with some of the trade stuff. but the first year, with the exceptions of trade and immigration, it's really been a paul ryan/mitch mcconnell type agenda, and mitt romney is fully onboard with that. >> rich lowry, thanks for being here. >> thanks for having me. >> appreciate your time. next up wit, what would rob mueller want to hear from steve bannon? ben wittis joins me next. this time, it's his turn. you have 4.3 minutes to yourself. this calls for a taste of cheesecake. philadelphia cheesecake cups. rich, creamy cheesecake
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turning now to our top stories. taking a closer look is a senior fellow at the brookings institution. also co-author of the future of violence, robots, germs, hackers, geconfronting a new ag of threat. i'm curious why would robert mueller subpoena bannon? >> there are two possible reasons for that that i can think of off of the top of my ahead. one is that bannon was, for some reason not being cooperative about sitting for an interview. so the subpoena is a way to compel it. the second possibility, that is related, is that bannon wanted the subpoena because it forces him to testify so it doesn't
look like he is cooperating against the president. those are flip sides of the same coin. the basic reason, one way or the other, is that you can't simply invite him over for a chat. >> one -- when he sees him, what he is hoping to learn from bannon. for more wild allegations, it is a secondary source. he wasn't there, he wasn't on air force one when the president drafted that respond about that meeting that was misleading, could a secondary role be helpful for mueller? >> so a few possibilities, one of the interesting things about steve bannon, despite what the president is saying now about him, he was quite central to the trump white house. and yet he does seem to have
been not involved in a direct sense in a lot of the matters that mueller is investigating. that said, you know the white house is a relatively self contained community and people talk to each other, and so they're trying to figure out whether or not people are lying about something, what they may have said to other people at the time which is what you describe as being a secondary witness, can always be away of evaluating people's credibility. in addition, bannon made some extraordinary remarks to michael wolff about, you know, the supposedly -- he used the word treasonous to describe the behavior of the president's son. he also described how he was going to -- how don jr. would have trouble in front of a
senate committee or a congressional committee, and the special council may want to know what basis does he have for confidence in statements like that and does he know things that you know, that may support them that the special council needs to know about? >> wikileaks, steve ban non wno there at the end of the meeting. when donald trump would go out and tout wikileaks and say how much he loved them and talk about the latest revelations. what would that mean if you're robert mueller? >> you want to know as a general matter what interactions, if any, did the campaign has such, right, or the people associated with the campaign have with wiki leaks.
we know there were some. including some weirdly direct ones. and -- but you do want to know what the relationship was, how much of it was people saying nice things about nice things about people in public, how much of it was twitter dm relationships, how much was something else. steve bannon and whether or not he is the right person so ask those questions, i don't know, but he did express discomfort with the way the campaign interacted with russian officials or russian cutouts. so you might feel like he is an appropriate push to have a conversation with about that subject. >> the other thing that caught our eye is steve bannon's attorney, the daily beast reports that he also represents white house council don mcgann,
and reince prebiebus, and a turkitur turkish iranian businessman. it seemed that they were representing a lot of folks that were involved in this. could that potential i will be a conflict? >> most conflicts, and i'm not a legal ethics expert. i don't want to hold myself out at particularly knowledgeable about this. but yes there could be conflicts that arise, but most conflicts are potentially waveble if the clients in question are both willing to wave them and don't perceive the conflict as procolluding the layer being involved on both of their behalves. >> ben, good to see you. >> good to see you. >> one more thing before we go.
this afternoon, new jersey has a new governor who is phil murphy. governor chris christie got the distinction of the lowest approval rating for a governor in decades. approve or disapprove, you can't deny he made things interesting. he said "you're going to miss me when i'm gone." >> get the hell off of the beach and get out. you're done, it's 4:30, you've maximized your tan. >> i'm more than happy to have a debate with you any time, you don't know a damn thing about what you're talking about. >> you think that is a confrontational tone, then you should really see me when i'm pissed. >> you have numb nuts -- >> you conduct yourself like
that in the courtroom and your rear end will get thrown in jail. >> why are you campaigning in new hampshire when you're not back there? >> i don't apologize for it, i don't back away for it. and i think my poll numbers so -- i think he is not lying when he says he doesn't care about political optics. he was so tough on donald trump in 2016, and there was one day after the debate in texas, and we got a note from the trump campaign saying you have to be at this press conference, something business is going to happen, and we drive through the night to get there, we show up,
and out comes chris krchristie. and my jaw dropped to the ground. my jaw dropped to the ground. my producer's jaw dropped, chris christie, a supporter of donald trump. >> he kept it interesting all of the way. >> you want to stick around? a white house press briefing coming up. >> need my help? i can help fact check it? >> are you back today? >> no. >> then get out of the building. >> we're expecting sarah huckabee-sanders to take the podium in the next half hour or so. sanders is also likely going to face questions about the looming government shut down. and protects dreamers. and they drilled the homeland security tech tear. she wain