of "msnbc live." stay where you are. "am joy" is headed your way right now. at some point the president of the united states needs to answer the very basic questions relating his relationship with ms. daniels. he needs to do so like bill clinton did. he needs to do so like gary hart did. he needs to do so like countless other politicians have done over the last 30 years. >> good morning. welcome to "am joy." the story that no one has wanted to touch with a ten-foot pole is
quickly becoming the story we can no longer ignore. it's time to take stormy daniels seriously. new developments have begun to reveal what went on between the porn star and the president. while raising new questions about that $130,000 payment to daniels whose legal name is stephanie clifford in the days before the presidential election. money she said was meant to buy her silence about her alleged 11-month affair with trump. the question, what did trump know about the payment. on friday it was revealed that trump's private attorney used the same e-mail account of the campaign. in an interview on friday cohen said he used his trump organization e-mails for everything, and dismissed the story as a witch hunt, concocted
by the liberal mainstream media. the e-mails appear to close the distance that cohen has tried to put between trump and the hush money. cohen previously claimed he used his personal funds to facilitate a payment and neither the trump organization or the trump campaign was a party to the transaction. the white house denied any sexual relationship between clifford and trump. the latest news is on the heels of a new civil suit in which clifford claims that trump knew about the hush money and that his failure to sign the agreement frees her to tell all about their alleged relationship. among those taking clifford seriously are the watchdog groups whose complaints with the federal election commission allege that trump violated campaign finance laws with a payoff meant to influence the election. donald trump himself, according to abc news has beefed up his legal team with the addition of
another attorney described as a pit bull to fight what could be the one scandal to stick to teflon don. joining me now are paul butler, lisa bloom, jill weinbanks and katie phang. paul, i'm reading through the lawsuit this morning, the settlement agreement. what stands out is the argument by ms. clifford's attorneys that three parties were supposed to sign the agreement. the original hush agreement. this llc created by michael cohen, ms. clifford, aka stormy daniels and donald trump, but trump deliberately did not sign it so he can claim he did not know ms. clifford. trump did not sign it. does that mean the original agreement is null and void? >> it's possible. this is a matter of california contract law. so a judge will determine that.
on the one hand, there's a line for his signature, he should sign. on the other hand, she accepted the money. she may have executed the contract. that's for a judge to determine. what's most important is the president's lawyer, michael cohen is lying and skirting the rules of legal ethics in order to protect the president's own lie. >> what do you mean by that? >> you cannot settle a case and not tell your client. that's against the rules of legal ethics. you're also not allowed to spend your own $130,000 to settle a matter for your client. that's not an issue for most lawyers. most lawyers wouldn't want to spend their own money. most lawyers wouldn't do it. it's extremely difficult to believe that that is michael cohen's own money. so the question is why is he lying? why is he sponsors a campaign
contribution, something to get donald trump elected and then not telling the truth about that? that's kind of the subject of the special counsel investigation. >> let's go to lisa bloom, member of the california bar. stormy daniels/lisa clifford is saying that cohen es septembsen freed her to talk about trump by disclosing information about her and in his own words deciding on his own to gift her with $130,000 to supposedly make her not talk, but then trying to enforce an agreement not to talk about donald trump. does any of this make sense? have you ever heard of a case like this where a lawyer supposedly on their own decided to use their own money to pay for a hush agreement? >> there's a couple different issues here. i have a lot of women coming to me right now as part of the me too movement who signed mda's and want to get out of it. when the other side talked, i made the same argument. it's not fair, it's not right, it's not just for one side to
talk, especially about a woman's life and her own experience and she can't talk. if the other side is talking, michael cohen is speaking out on her behalf. had her sign a letter eventually denying the whole thing, i think the whole thing should be null and void. of course michael cohen did not pay money out of his own pocket. i looked carefully at what he said. he said the trump organization and the trump campaign did not reimburse me. he did not say dump did not reimburse me or any of his entities. >> lisa, is it unusual that in this agreement that i'm reading through, that they used aliases? according to the agreement by design of mr. cohen, the hush agreement used aliases to refer to ms. clifford and mr. trump. ms. clifford was referred to by peggy peterson and trump, david
dennison. do they have to prove they're the same person? >> some lawyers do this in high profile cases. i do not. i refew use on behalf of my clients. this is messy they did it this way. if you look at the restraining order that trump's attorney and got this week, peggy peterson is the one restrained. peggy peterson f you're out there, you can't talk about donald trump. everybody else, as far as i'm concerned, you're legally free to speak. >> exactly. katie, there's a lot of salacious claims in the document. some that have gotten a lot of attention that this agreement mentions that all confidential information must be turned over to the cohen side, to the trump side, and that the stormy daniels side has to disclose to whom they may have shared this confidential information. they include in that any
information on paternity information, not limited to trump's children, allegedly trump's children or alleged children or alleged sexual partnersment are ment partners. are we overreading that to mean that ms. daniels may have issue to paternity? >> any great lawyer will want to draft an agreement with broad language. but it's peculiar to include the phrase paternity information. why would that be a relevantment in to a settlement agreement unless it was an issue. if you follow the settlement agreement and talk about disclosure issues there are four people identified to whom stan ye stormy daniels has disclosed this information to, and one of those names is angel ryan, gloria allread d is her lawyer.
those four are allowed to disclose the information that was received from stormy daniels, and daniels will not be penalized if they do so as long as daniels did not inspire them provoke them or make them say what they have to say. there's not as much of a muzzle on them as donald trump would like to have. there's two phrases, follow the money and timing is everything. really, if i'm nervous, if i'm donald trump, i'm nervous. i'm nervous because there's so many opportunities for the discovery process through investigations and litigation to bring out the truth and expose all the correspondence, documents and evidence in this case. >> including pictures, photographic evidence. >> jill, the other reason that donald trump may be nervous, he's mad at sarah huckabee sanders for saying too much maybe. this is sarah huckabee sanders
talking about the attorney for stormy daniels, and using the word arbitration. take a listen. >> look, the president has addressed these directly and made very well clear that none of these allegations are true. this case has already been won in arbitration. >> i like ms. sanders, i think she has a near impossible job. any claim by the administration that donald trump won in arbitration is no different than me claiming that i won the super bowl a few weeks ago. it's complete hooey. >> even if it's complete hooey, why is sarah huckabee sanders proactively talking about arbitration with somebody that donald trump is claiming he never had sexual relationship with. >> clearly she made a very big mistake. if he says he's not part of this at all, if his lawyers are lying and saying he's not part of it, why was he the beneficiary of a resolution in an arbitration?
that was a big mistake. i think we have to look at a few other things, why is donald trump treating stormy daniels differently than the 18 other women who brought nonconsensual claims against him? he has not said anything as negative about her and has not attacked her, which suggests to me she does have something serious in terms of evidence against him. that's what we should be looking at, as well as remembering that this is hush money. hush money is part of a coverup. that's what an obstruction of justice is. that's what gets presidents in trouble. it's one of the major things that brought down president nixon, paying hush money to keep the defendants from telling the truth about who had hired them. i think there's a lot here to be uncovered yet. >> on that point, lisa, you represented many women who made these claims against powerful
men. donald trump openly trashed a lot of the women who made allegations against him. does it make you wonder why he has not attacked stormy daniels? >> do not underestimate stormy daniels and what she has. i am convinced that there are more women, there may be many more. michael wolff says in "fire and fury" that there are many more. i hope the case continues. i like that stormy has an aggressive attorney who seems committed to the case, especially to discovery. i don't think we necessarily have a right to know who donald trump has had consensual relationships with, but we have the right to know who he paid hush money to. how many secret proceedings has he sent his lawyers into to silence women and prevented them from speaking about stories and their own lives?
this is the president of the united states. in that arbitration, his lawyer went in by himself, stormy wasn't given notice. her attorney wasn't given notice. they didn't have an opportunity to be heard. is this the kind of legal proceeding we want in america when we talk about a prior restraint on speech against the president of the united states? i don't think so. i hope the case continues. i hope they find out a lot more information. >> the other thing that's intriguing is creating an llc, creating a company in order to pay the money and doing so less than a couple weeks before the election. what do you make of that? >> this llc, essential consultants llc was created in delaware. in delaware, that's one of the best places, if you wanted to create secrecy behind the corporate structure of an llc, llcs can mask the owners and directors of companies. the timing is everything. why do that and then again the campaign finance violation issues. you're not supposed to give
corporate contributions to a campaign. if you do, you have to know what's going on. we don't know this information. i find it hard to believe that michael cohen took out $130,000 home equity line of credit -- who will do that to pay off a porn star? that doesn't happen. michael cohen, he needs to learn the concept of no comment. he keeps on opening his mouth. he's violating the terms of the nondisclosure agreement and creating more of an alleged paper trail that somebody like mueller, who has been tasked with investigating the 2016 campaign issues, perhaps he will be interested in what michael cohen has to say about this particular payoff. >> maybe michael cohen is generous with his money and likes to give it out. >> giving lawyers a bad name. >> paul butler, we'll be back. this is a great panel. thank you very much. up next, new details about donald trump's trip to russia for the miss universe pageant and his epic thirst for vladimir putin's friendship.
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making a cameo appearance in a music video by russian pop singer in 2013 in russia. yes, it was the same pop star whose promoter, rob gold stone set up that 2016 trump tower meeting with donald jr. et al. according to a soon to be released book called russian roulette, in a bid to try to go from tv star to the pageant. they provided something else to trump during the weekend of the 2013 miss universe pageant, access to their oligarch friends, one phone call away.
that access helped trump inch closer to his white whale, a trump to ywer in moscow. and now that's on the radar of bob mueller. joining us right now is tar tara dowdell and tim o'brien. donald trump has had an obsession with russia since the 1980s when there were all these op sed -eds in the newspapers s he should be the negotiator for the nukes. then he goes on "the apprentice," becomes famous and is attractive to russian oligarchs. he goes to the miss universe pageant and this happens. according to the "washington post," trump writes a letter to vladimir putin who was a kgb agent when he was so thirsty for
him in the '80s. trump's letter shows how interested he was in attracting the russian president. he wrote the note at a time when he was looking to expand his brand to russia. just knowing trump what is with this thirst for putin and russia? >> there's a couple of things. what trump discovered was he was not good at being a developer and a property manager. not very good at it. so what he discovered he was good at is licensing his name and collecting money, having his name on the buildings, continuing to collect the money after the up-front fee as part of a licensing deal, he also gets a piece of the back end based on square footage and gets say over what the buildings look like. so what he discovered was he could pretend as if he is the developer, the manager of these properties, collect these massive fees, and then promote
himself and have these monuments to himself. while trump is not good at managing or operations, he's shrewd in many ways. i discount people who say he's stupid, he doesn't know what he's doing. no, he's slick. slick is something he benefited from. he discovered like any government, even here in our country, putin controls a lot. you couldn't do that kind of project in russia without putin. that was his initial motivation, but also trump likes strong men. he wants to be a strong man. he wants to be like vladimir putin. let's not forget while his admiration for putin goes back to the '80s and russia goes back to the 80s, his aspiration to be president go back to the '80s. >> they do. i get it. when you put it together, they're builders, his dad is putin's builder. he can get it close to putin to get it done. the other thing trump is good at
is lying. making up stories, one of which is he claimed he had met a new putin. according to the new book that is coming out soon, trump's comments about a relationship with putin were wishful thinking. the word had spread through the miss universe staff has trump craved putin's attendance at the pageant, several of the judges were taught russian phrases. by late afternoon trump's anxiety was palatable. there was no word. he kept asking if anyone heard from putin. he desperately wanted to personally meet putin. why did he want that? he just needs his approval, not friendship. >> part of it is he's all been fascinated with dictators and thugs. the other part is he knew it was good for his business. the first part you can trace
back to the citizen kane effect. he grew up with a domineering, powerful father. there are winners, there are losers. he proceeded during his career to align himself with strong man figures, roy cohen, steve bannon, advising him to take no prisoners, overwhelm your opposition, weaponize the legal system, on and on. his relationship and fascination with putin comports with what he did in the fill teenphilippines azerbaijan, where he aligned himself with people who claimed to have connections with people in power so he could slap his name on a project. his value to these people wasn't as a developer even for money, it was for marketing purposes. having trump's name on your building meant people would pay attention to it.
trump brought marketing mojo. >> let's listen to him talking to thomas roberts in 2013 when thomas roberts was a part of the miss universe pageant. the book talks about this. >> do you have a relationship with vladimir putin, conversational relationship or anything that you feel you have sway or influence over his government? >> i do have a relationship. he's interested in what we're doing here today. he's probably interested in what you and i are saying today. he's done a brilliant job in terms of what he represents and who he's representing. if you look at what he's done with syria, if you look at so many different things, he has really eaten our president's lunch. let's not kid ourselves. he's done an amazing job. he put himself really as a lot of people would say at the forefront of the world as a leader in a short period of
time. >> we know from the korn book that part of what trump was doing is flattering putin to get him alogoing along with the dea. he stays at the ritz-carlton, there's an allegation that he did done something to the bed, and there's also a brief meeting with miss universe executives, and then keith shiller tells congressional investigators that a russian approached trump's guards with an offer that he wanted to send five women to trump's hotel room that night. >> i think keith kchiller who handled e-mails from her about
things happening in hollywood when they're in vegas. it's not a new phenomenon that keith schiller would be acting as the president's matchmakerment. >> is there anyone in the trump or bbit who would lie for him a go to prison? >> i think so, if they would receive a pardon or remuneration after the fact. >> 130,00$130,000s. >> people have had their reputations destroyed store sticking up for donald trump. coming up, donald trump thinks that he can dictate terms to robert mueller. we will discuss next. that's my girl!
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actually. here's the story. there's been no collusion whatsoever. there's no obstruction whatsoever. i'm looking forward to it. >> the day donald trump talks to special counsel robert mueller may be drawing closer but it may be with strings attached. trump's lawyers may try to make a deal with mueller, commit to a deadline to wrap up parts of the russia probe that relate to trump in exchange for a sit-down interview with the president. they may also ask mule tore limit the scope of the questioning. paul butler is back with me. nick akerman is also joining us. nick, would such a deal fly? >> not even close. not in a million years. there's no way a prosecutor would ever agree to say, okay, you come in and ten days later we'll drop this whole thing. >> yeah. >> that's not going to happen.
evidence comes out as the investigation continues. most significantly you have manafort under indictment in two cases where they're hoping to get him a good 15, 20-year sentence and then force him to testify. nothing will happen any too soon. >> you've been a prosecutor and a defense lawyer. i can see them making the request, but it's not going to happen. >> it's not going to happen but everyone has to understand what are they supposed to do. trump's team has to delay the interview of trump and put as many obstacles in the path that are legally justifiable. >> sure. >> this being one of them. at least make the motion. >> the reason they got to be afraid is donald trump is in a sticky situation. he's known to lie. he also apparently has said some things that they could ask other people about that could put him in jeopardy of potential obstruction. the "new york times" reporting that mr. porter, rob porter, eventually let go because he was abusing his former wives told
don mcgahn, white house counsel, that the president wanted him to release a statement that mcgahn asked to fire mueller was not true. mr. porter told mr. mcgahn that the president suggested he might get rid of mcgahn if he chose not to challenge the article. problems. >> not only would mueller not agree to a meeting with the president under those terms, the president's lawyers would never let him go in, he would be walking into a path of self destruction, among other things he could be asked about why did you try to shave the testimony of the white house counsel. why did you try to create a false narrative about what happened? if you look, technically that's not witness intimidation. what it is is more evidence of obstruction of justice. >> or the consciousness of guilt. >> witness tampering is an extremely serious crime. it carries 15 years in prison. >> you don't think we're there
yet. >> we're not at witness tampering yet. >> i'll give you this one. according to the "new york times" the president had said that he never ordered don mcgahn to fire the special counsel. mr. mcgahn replied to trump that he was wrong and he had, in fact, asked mr. mcgahn in june to call the deputy attorney general to tell him the special counsel had a series of special conflicts that disqualified him from oversees the investigation and he had to be dismissed. if mcgahn is admitting that trump was trying to get him to make up a fake story and trying to pressure him to fire the special counsel, are we not at obstruction? >> we're close to consciousness of guilt or witness tampering, but the catch-all savior phrase is i don't recall. if you have mcgahn saying he ordered mae to do this, trump saying i don't recall, we're not at witness tampering yet. >> i don't recall is a word that was used throughout watergate.
there were at least a half dozen people convicted of perjury based on that phrase. >> let's talk about collusion. let's go back to collusion. we'll go to sam nunberg. it's getting closer. we want to see if you agree. the idea of collusion, sam nunberg who has known donald trump a long time. he was fired from the campaign, and now he's talking all kinds of talk. this is nunberg on cnn talking about what investigators -- he's been out to talk to the investigators and what they think about collusion. >> they think roger colluded with julian assange. i can tell you that roger did not collude with julian assange. >> so they think -- why do you believe they think he colluded can julian assange? because he was communicating? >> they flat out asked me about
it. >> gloria? >> i watched that. here's the deal. if roger stone was including with julian assange and interfered in the election, that's one issue. there needs to be the both connected between donald trump knowing, having that corrupt intent and also being connected to julian assange who interfered in the election process. we know the russians interfered. we know wikileaks did. roger stone distanced himself. >> roger stone is president trump's boy. so the question is trump was involved in the strategic release of the e-mails, stone is talking to wikileaks about the e-mails. >> roger stone would protect him. if they're both pretending they're not friends with each other and he was fired together, roger stone would protect donald trump. >> wouldn't he be purgering himself? >> of course. >> the crime is a conspiracy to
all he had to say was, yeah, we met with the russians. the russians offered us something, and we thought they had something, and that was it. i don't know why he went around trying to hide. >> if he knew about the trump tower meeting, sam nunberg says he knew. >> the point is everybody is being smart to protect donald trump from being connected to the evidence. that's what it looks like is happening now, whether it's roger stone or paul manafort. >> you don't try to protect innocent people. >> there would be an indictment, if he would be connected there would be an indictment. >> i think mueller is still putting this together. you have trump saying after the new jersey primary he was going to release all of this dirt. >> would you really say that if it was true? >> trump might. roger, by the way, roger stone -- >> because he wasn't involved. >> roger stone responded to the tv interviews.
he said i did confirm through a source that wikileaks had material on hillary and would publish it after assange said so in an interview. it would be a coincidence if roger stone who had full page ads in 1987 saying trum shoop ta trump should take over negotiations on nukes, trump says dump this dirt, i will make an announcement. >> trump sends 145 shout-outs to wikileaks the week of the campaign. >> a lot of circumstantial evidence. >> then indict somebody. it hasn't happened yet. >> that's when all this comes out. it comes out in that first june time period when june 4th when they first learn about bringing the dirt to trump tower, june 9th meeting, and then right through to mid-june when these e-mails started to be released.
>> lightning round. everybody put on their prosecutor has the now. who would be the next person you would indict in order to get to the truth? >> don jr. >> kushner. he has the keys to the castle. >> sorry, jared. this is one of my favorite panels. thank you guys so much. coming up in the next hour, marion hammer is defeated in florida and the latest on trump's trade war. flonase relieves your worst symptoms including nasal congestion, which most pills don't. flonase helps block 6 key inflammatory substances. most pills only block one. flonase.
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california, we have a problem. how dare you, how dare you needlessly endanger the lives of our law enforcement officers to promote a radical open borders agenda. i.c.e. agents do incredible work every day, they're not backing down, they won't be deterred and we won't stop enforcing the law in alabama or california either for that matter. >> california is ready for a legal battle with the department of justice after the oakland mayor warned residents of upcoming immigration raids. the department of justice filed suit against the state saying
local law enforcement is interfering with law enforcement. this lawsuit is the doj's latest weapon to force blue states like california to participate in the trump administration's mass deportation policy. >> we are doing everything we can to continue to provide public continuing to work with our immigration enforcement partners but we're not going to have them forced into doing things that they want us to do simply because they don't want to do them themselves. >> joining me is the mayor of stockton, california, michael tubs. thank you for being here. what has upset the justice department is there's sb 54 which restricts cooperation between police and immigration agents, a law that limits private employer cooperation with immigration agents and a third that detuers detection.
>> the idea is that we are a's not trying to stop i.c.e. but we're saying that our local law enforcement resources have to be focused on crime, on making our community safer and given the work that our officers do each and every day and building trust with the community, it makes our communities not safe. i would also argue that these laws are about family values. in california and stockton throughout, we care about keeping families together and we care about violent crime and want to make sure violent people are removed from our community. but in the last year there's been 117% increase in the number of noncriminal folks who have been deported and targeted by this administration. >> so when the mayor -- when the mayor of oakland warnings people that the immigration raids are coming, in your view, is she warning people who are criminals, or is she warning people, for instance, who are daca recipients or nonviolent people who are just being targeted? >> since the public
announcement, there's probably a warning of both but i understand the sentiment. as a mayor, public safety is your top priority and keeping families together. i understand the sentiment in terms of keeping your community safe and that's why in stockton and throughout the state we're doing a lot of work in creating rapid response teams and educating people on their rights and ensuring people especially in cities like stockton where 35% of our population is foreign born, that our local law enforcement are not immigration officers and we're focused on keeping our community safe. >> you've gotten headlines, native sun, stockton's first black mayor vows to renew his city. you put up a facebook post directly calling out jeff sessions. you said attorney general jeff sessions is either unaware or unconcerned about the damage the rift is created when you attack our immigrant community. in stockton our public safety officials have spent years developing a trusting relationship with our immigrant community and hope that everyone feels safe reporting criminal activity. actions taken by this administration will only weaken our efforts at the local level
to keep our streets safe. have you seen a reduction in the number of immigrants willing to go forward and talk to law enforcement if they themselves are victims of crime or if they're victims of domestic violence, et cetera? >> oh absolutely. every day i'm taking calls in my office or on twitter or facebook from people who are literally living in fear. people have been part of our communities for many years who go to church with us, go to school with us, work with us, who all of a sudden are terrified. especially if you look at how crime operates, oftentimes the most marginal and most vulnerable are targeted and even more so now that folks are scared to report. we're still doing all we can to assure the community that we care and that we want the community to be safe and that we need the immigrant community especially to be part of our civic life. again, stockton, 35% of our entire population is foreign born and another 20% has parents that are foreign born, so we're not talking about a small part of our community. we're talking about the very fabric of our community. >> yourself and the mayor of
oakland and other californians that are fighting the trump administration have gotten some support from your junior senator, kamala harris. this is what she said oftn capil hill regarding what sessions is doing in california. >> the attorney general is playing policy with a very important issue and has clearly put a target on california's back. the department of justice has limited resources and it would be a much better use of those resources to focus on issues that really impact the public safety and well-being of the american public, including people in california and including local law enforcement in california. >> are california's state and federal elected officials united in being willing to keep up this fight with the federal government and how far are you willing to go? >> it's not a fight against the federal government but a fight for our community and our values. again, when we're talking to folks back home, it's really about family values, that our communities and families are stronger when they're together. it's about keeping folks in our
community who are contributing to our community and it's also about safety. from mayors to safety assembly members to state senators to our u.s. senators, we're all united in fighting for values that aren't just california values but are inherently american ones. >> mayor michael tubs, great to meet you over the tv and thank you for being here. >> great to meet you. come to stockton soon. >> i will accept that invitation. thank you very much. more "am joy" after the break. , my parents made love. and i screamed into life. together, they were unstoppable. and i came along for the ride. did mom give me too much freedom? did dad make me lust for too great an adventure? my scars and bruises tell their own story. so here's to you, mom and dad. freedom and adventure.
i still think a law enforcement officer should be the ones to protect our schools. i've heard all the arguments for teachers to be armed and while this bill was significantly changed, i'm still not persuaded. i know many think this bill has too much gun control. i respect the validity of both these viewpoints. >> florida governor rick scott who has had an a-plus rating for the nra for his obedience on guns, including urging no legislative action after 49 people were doned down in orlan 2016 and after five people were killed in another rampage at the ft. lauderdale hollywood airport last year, an action that benefitted no one except the nra and it's lobbyist marian hammer that that same rick scott in the republican-dominated florida legislature on friday finally stood up to hammer and the nra after initially refusing to say how he would respond to the bill
and three weeks after a gunman opened fire at a high school in parkland, florida on valentine's day killing 17 students and teachers, governor scott signed the first gun restrictions in florida in more than 20 years. the new law named for marjory stoneman douglas high school requires a three-day waiting period for gun purchases, bans the sale of bump fire stocks, raises the minimum age for purchasing firearms to 21 and gives law enforcement the authority to temporarily confiscate firearms from those deemed mentally unstable. the nra naturally is suing the state of florida over that common sense gun legislation. by the way, the bill is far from perfect. it also opens the door to surf staffers but not teachers, other than rotc instructors voluntarily carrying concealed weapons in school. a tallahassee democrat says that the bill fails the mandate that every school have an armed school resource officer. and yet the new law fought for
by the parkland students and their parents is a rare victory for advocates of gun reform and was unimaginable just three weeks ago when the legislature coward before marian hammer and the nra and refused to even take up an assault weapons ban. it's a victory described by parkland survivor david hog as a small step in a huge movement and only the beginning. joining me now, mark caputo, nadine smith, former republican congressman david jolly, and brandon wolf, a survivor of the pulse nightclub shooting in orlando. brandon, i'm going to go to you first to get your reaction to the signing of this bill. >> yeah, thanks, joy. listen, first of all, i think it's really important not to lose sight of who actually got this legislation passed. and that is the parkland students. that's their parents, that's their passion. they made it clear that the nra's power has left the building, that we are done having a conversation, we're done negotiating with them.
so i think it's important not to forget that piece. second of all, i don't know if anybody else on this show is here for this but i'm not here to give rick scott and girl scout cookie for showing up to work. he is 22 years late on this issue. he still got an a-plus rating from the nra and to me it's pathetic that two years ago after the pulse nightclub shooting took my two best friends and 47 others he didn't care enough. but now that he wants another job and wants people to think he's doing something in tallahassee he's decided to pass legislation. so i'm sorry but he's just doing exactly what he should have done a long time ago. >> i think that's a fair criticism because rick scott had some power here to make alterations to the bill. he himself is on record being opposed to the arming of teachers in schools. he even said it in his bill-signing announcement. he was not for banning assault weapo weapons, and the bill also
doesn't suspend ar-15 sales. a lot of people are thinking it's pretty minor. rick scott didn't use his line item veto to reject the funding of a $67 million guardian program that would allow some teachers to volunteer to carry guns after undergoing 132 hours of firearms and 12 hours of diversity training. earlier this week florida senators tweaked the bill and scott added that he talked to legislators about rediverting funds to employ more law enforcement officers and said if he vetoed the bill, that would not be possible. do you buy that explanation? >> well, i guess there's a few ways to look at it. technically he's correct. there's something called the legislative budget commission which is a joint commission of state house and state senate leaders who get together periodically to meet to readjust
money in the budget. if the money was vetoed completely out of this bill and this legislation, it could have made it more difficult to shift money within the budget there. he is right and you are right. $67 millionings not going to be spent on this program. it is a voluntary program and all of the big urban counties in large part because of the outcry from the lawmakers in those counties are not going to opt into this program. they don't want to see more guns in schools. as for scott, why didn't he do more to get lawmakers to take out as we're calling it the armed teachers provision, it's a good question. on one hand, scott's been around long enough that he knows that you don't want to get too far involved sometimes in legislative fights because you wind up just losing. the other thing is there's a delicate balance here for gun control advocates. this bill doesn't go far enough but gun rights folks really hate it. so as a result of having to kind of appease both the right and the left, this armed teachers thing was left in there.
the bill ultimately did pass. it was dramatic in the florida senate and only passed by one vote. it gives you an idea of the delicate nature of it. in the end, the big thing, for someone like me, i'm not just a reporter, i'm the husband of a teacher who teaches in a rough neighborhood in miami. in that school they get gunfire that comes from the neighborhood toward the school. in some cases they've had bullets come through the classroom. me as the husband of a teacher would really like to see her windows at least be bulletproof and her doors be safe and this bill does do that. >> it does do that. >> better said, hopefully the lawmakers and the school board will use the money appropriately and spend it like that because right now the school and classroom is not safe. >> it is interesting how, nadine, the politics on this, having lived in florida for a really long time, the politics are actually different. it seems to be that the pressure on lawmakers was not to oppose the bill to appease marian hammer but to pass something with the name marjory stoneman
douglas on it, that they had to pass something for the teachers like mark's wife because they were getting dmanlds fremands f teachers, the students and the parents. you had house democrats bitterly divided on the bill. the democrat caucus voted 21-9 against the bill because of what they consider a poison pill about the carrying of weapons in school. how do you see this changing? you're backing the no nra money hashtag that has already signed up hundreds of people that say they won't take the nra's money. do you think the politics really has begun to shift in the other direction? >> i do, and again i think it's the students backed by their parents that have opened this door but we can't ignore the fact that of course it's an election year and the polling is overwhelming that people want to see a ban on assault weapons. they want to see the end of these high capacity magazines and they want to see much better background checks and that the nra positions are out of sync.
what we have in florida is 67% of florida legislators have an a rating from the nra so this is a little bit of a loosening of the grip but at the end of the day this is perhaps the least you could do to distance yourself a bit from the nra at a moment of intense pressure coming -- the difference between what happened in the wake of pulse when 49 people were killed and every single promise that rick scott made has been broken or forgotten. this is a contrast. this is obviously progress, but it is so far from what they had a golden opportunity to do. marian hammer's grip on the florida legislature may have loosened a bit, but it's still there. i don't think -- i think if you check the records probably one of the first phone calls that rick scott made was to marian hammer. i don't think the lawsuit is a surprise, and we really have to treat this as the beginning. the last thing i want to say
about the teachers -- arming staff, they stress the fact that it's voluntary. i grew up in the panhandle of florida. the people that you really don't want having guns in school are the people who really, really want to have guns in school. >> i want to amplify that point by playing cynthia stafford, state representative from miami, furthering the point about why it is so dangerous, the idea of arming people in the classroom. >> i believe this is dangerous because there is an implicit bias that exists against boys and girls of color. i'm afraid that in an emergency situation a black or brown student who may be running down the hall to get away like everyone else who reaches for his or her cell phone to call their parent may be seen not as a student but as the shooter. >> and i want to amplify that point that that is not why the
nra opposed the bill. they're suing because they're upset that teenagers can't buy ar-15s. that's what they say is wrong with the bill. they don't care about that, they just care about the fact that they think in their view teenage girls to be able to buy. david, i want to go to you on this. the point that the people who want guns the most and really extremist about this tend to be people who you think, yeah, that is a person i'd like to see restricted. you were threatened, according to the tampa bay times by a man who went on twitter and called for you to be shot, a 55-year-old clearwater man has been arrested, anchored by the fact that you have strayed from the orthodoxy of the republican party. do you see that now whip sawing on the nra and hurting them because they're associating with people that crazy? >> it should and it's a fact of 20 years of absolutism by the nra. without going too far into that case, joy, it is a perfect case study of what we're having this national debate over.
look, in this situation, i don't know if the penal system is the best route for this gentleman or if the mental health system is the best route. what i do know is he should not have access to firearms and i'm now involved in litigation to try to ensure that. i think what we've heard from a lot of guests today is the struggle between optimism and realism. it is mildly historic that we saw republican legislature in tallahassee do something but there really isn't a lot of history in what's actually in the bill, this realism that it harmonizes the age and waiting period, when it comes to people in need of mental health is important but it doesn't approach the magazine issue. so is it enough to release a little bit of the anger within the state, yes. but i'd say watch out for march 24th because there are pats on the back right now to the florida legislature but across the country on march 24th this issue gets real again. >> it gets real, brandon, but you're also seeing -- i guess
just being a very cynical former caribbean, any legislation -- in 20 years there hasn't been any legislation that goes in this direction on gun reform. now you have the nra seemingly hysterical, they're suing, and you now have the department of justice, the jefferson sessions department of justice preparing to ban regulations on bump stock. it does feel incremental but there is movement. >> we have to acknowledge that, celebrate the small wins while keeping the long-term goal active. the nra feels hysterical because they've lost their grip on this conversation. the fact that we have 17 and 18-year-old students using hashtag no nra money tells you exactly where this conversation is going because we have a generation of students who grew up thinking that mass shootings are normal in this country and they're sick and tired of it. they're not afraid of the nra like former generations are. they're not under their thumb like everybody has been.
nra tv isn't reaching them because nobody cares to listen. i think people like dana loesch and the nra are terrified of what's possible coming from these teens. i think the nra money campaign has reached over 80 million people on twitter. i don't know if dana loesch has ever seen the number 80 million people ever in her life, and that's what has the nra the most afraid, is that this generation is not scared of them. they're not scared of taking them on and they're not scared of having that conversation. i think it's important to celebrate those small wins but i don't think they're done yet. >> and nadine, to the point of whether politicians are becoming afraid of their association with the nra, are you seeing that? >> absolutely. we've got over 300 lawmakers and candidates that have signed the no nra money.org pledge. it's also open to voters, people who are saying i will not vote for a candidate that takes money from the nra. we've seen since the beginning of this campaign businesses
fleeing as quickly as they can from the nra brand. people are asking questions. you see the polling overwhelmingly supporting the common sense measures that david was just talking about. we cannot continue down the path that the nra -- the answer to every problem with the nra is more guns and more guns and more guns. one of the students asks, okay, so we harden our schools and we arm our teachers. are we going to have armored school buses? in night clubs do we have armed bartenders? at veterans homes do we have armed nurses? at a certain point we have to address the fact that fundamentally being able to fire up to 180 bullets in about a minute is a problem that begins with removing that possibility of killing that many people that quickly off of our streets. >> mark, are you seeing in your reporting, are republicans starting to get that message that they cannot stand for the nra and survive politically?
>> i think what you saw the past few weeks is the conservative lawmakers who are a rated by the nra, they just shut up. they didn't say anything. in fact, on the house floor when this bill was debated, only one republican member who voted against it spoke up and he incidentally is running for attorney general and has been running on a pro-gun platform. but i think the jury is pretty out on whether this change is going to be followed up by more change and whether these lawmakers really perceive having an nra rating, a rating, as truly a negative. so far in florida it hasn't been and one of the reasons for that is not the nra money but more of the nra culture. they've been able to make guns and firearms a part of an american cultural experience, especially for white people, white voters. now, we're starting to see a rise of anti-gun voters, and if they start to get activated, then we're going to see something we haven't seen. but i haven't yet seen that rise
of true anti-gun voters yet. it could be happening right now. i think the jury's out. we just have to wait until the elections to see what happens. >> david, last word to you on this. the nra has aligned itself with the so-called alt-right. they've made it a cultural issue and sent signals that it is the scary brown people you need to arm yourself against. it's crazy messaging. that next generation, very multi-racial, very multi-cultural. they're not interested in that message. does your party understand that this utter alignment with the nra is actually long-term dangerous? dick's sporting goods doing pretty well having walked away from them and walmart doing pretty well. >> no, they don't understand. the nra has indoctrinated the next generation in congress. what we don't know, joy, is what side deals were struck. when i say about that is we know going into november the nra and rick scott will still be buddy-buddy. the nra yesterday did not hit
rick scott hard. they hit the bill hard but they didn't lay a hard glove on rick scott because they know they need him long run. the very encouraging thing, the lessons out of florida right now is first states can lead where washington fails to. second, citizens can lead. i think we'll see an assault weapons ban on the ballot in florida in 2020. if you are a republican today not speaking about more reasonable gun control, you're out of step with the heart of the country. >> absolutely. marks, nadine, david, brandon, thank you all. just a quick note, one of the leaders of the student movement, emma gonzalez, will be speaking tonight at the equality florida gala. the organization is honoring student leaders of the stoneman douglas high school gay/straight alliance of which emma is the president. for more information head to equality florida.org/miami gala. coming up, after being okay with donald trump calling nazis good people, calling mexicans
nation were betrayed, but that betrayal is now over. >> this week donald trump sparked a potential trade war by officially imposing new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. all countries with the exception of mexico and canada are subject to the tariff set to take effect in less than two weeks. although trump left the door open to countries to try and negotiate carveouts, that hasn't stopped several of america's long-time allies from swiftly threatening retaliation. the sort of orthodoxy among republicans has been that tariffs are a bad idea and bad policy, they cost jobs. the estimates on the net loss of u.s. jobs as a result of this trade war trump is starting is 146,000 jobs.
in the individual states that would be impacted because they have the biggest share of aluminum imports, pretty important states to donald trump. why would he do such a thing? he did promise he was going to do it during the campaign, but what are republicans going to do about it? >> first of all, i hear you're coming to austin tonight so we look forward to having you here tonight, joy. >> yes. >> the alt-right interest in economic policy is driven by this idea that, well, having goods and services from people who don't look like us or talk like us is bad. that's not what all protectionists believe but that is a strain that's part of the trump base. now, what's going to happen to those factories? those of us who believe in free trailed, what we've failed to do over the last several decades, those towns, steel towns and other manufacturing towns which have had the concentrated losses from a free trade, we haven't to know -- done a good enough job
of finding solutions. having said that, there are going to be a lot of factories that are going to be worse off because of these steel tariffs because those factories that need competitive steel prices to build cars, build other products, they're going to be less competitive because their costs are going to be higher because of tariffs. >> it's interesting, john, i think for a lot of trump's base and there are some democrats who very much opposed tpp who were actually opposed to the idea of free trade, their perception is one thing but the reality is another. i think many would be surprised to find out that the number one supplier of steel to the u.s. is canada and then brazil, not countries that you would normally think, and then south korea and mexico. in terms of aluminum, the number one suppliers are again canada and then russia, united arab emirates and china. is this a misperception by a lot of american workers as to what is really causing factory closures? >> that's part of it, joy, and
it's part of the paradox of trade or the conundrum of trade, which is to say economic change as industries thrive, industries wind down, as we find more efficient ways of acquiring goods from other places, it hurts some specific numbers of people while helping the entire society. it's sort of like if you crack down on all these cheap chinese imports, you may help certain workers in certain sectors, but you hurt all the consumers who buy those inexpensive goods. this is a classic example of donald trump making symbolic policy moves that are looking to the past and not the future. i was just, joy, in pittsburgh this week for the special house election that's going to occur next tuesday. remember, pittsburgh was the steel city. the football team is the pittsburgh steelers. but pittsburgh has moved forward. it's now a high tech center. it's now a medicine and health care center, higher education,
all the things that economies do as they adjust. president trump is looking at the consequences, smaller number of people, and saying, oh, i'm going to help you. president obama's top economic adviser said there will be two jobs lost in steel-using industries for every job saved in a steel fabrication industry. that's what president trump is doing, but you could tell that he senses some of this because he's talking about giving exemptions to all sorts of countries, whether it's australia or mexico or canada. if you do that, then you're left with symbolism because you carve out the effect of the actual policy. >> right. doesn't that indicate that donald trump lied to his voters. he claimed that he could refire up all of the old steel plants, bring back american steel, something he himself never used in the buildings that he's presided over having built. he used chinese steel. and essentially claimed that
there would be no cost. europe is already imposing a cost. there's retaliation being promised for these tariffs that includes kentucky bourbon, blue jeans, american products from florida, oranges, et cetera. so the retaliation is already coming. didn't donald trump just straight-up lie to his base? . >> i don't know if he lied. i think he genuinely believes that protectionism works. he's wrong about that. remember, these carveouts, he didn't want those carveouts. it was some of his advisers who pushed to carve out mexico and canada because of the relationship with nafta. it's hard to see how any of these protectionist measures survive litigation, whether it's in the world trade organization or domestic legislation. i'm not sure what this is going to accomplish. again, for those of us who believe in free trade, i think the thing that we failed to do is we failed to find better solutions for those communities that have been disrupted by free
trade, and that's created a volume that's allowed protectionism to flourish. for those of us who oppose protection, disagree with what trump is doing, it's incumbent on us to come up with a better solution. >> it's been rich watching republicans who tolerated everything from nazi cuddling to saying mexicans were rapists, et cetera, suddenly find religion because it has to do with their money, right, has to do with trade. one of the more ob seek weeous republicans when it comes to donald trump has been oren hatch. here he is along with ben sasse suddenly deciding that there's something donald trump has done, one thing that they don't like. >> there's a big fight happening inside the stwrgs rigadministran because most people in the white house know this is a really dumb policy. the american people, the forgotten workers of the rust belt states, they don't want to be drafted and be casualties in a stupid trade war. >> these tariffs are going to be a tax on the american citizens and that's after we passed the
tax bill that was a blessing to them removing a lot of the taxes that they were hit with. so i'm very upset about it and frankly, i love the president and i just think he's been misled by some of the people down at the white house. >> at this point what standing do these republicans have to go back to their own voters who are completely in the thrall of donald trump and argue that his america first policy is wrong? >> hypocrisy is en democratdemi circumstanc -- politics. but it's no accident that ben sasse is out there sharply criticizing these tariffs. why? we export a lot of agricultural products and that's going to be target number one for retaliation. that is simply a situation where once you start hurting people's constituents like ben sasse's constituents in the pocketbook, they're then going to speak out. the president is not going to restore the 1950s steel industry
any more than he's going to restore the 1950s coal industry which is something else he's promised to do. but once he starts taking steps that appear to try to go in that direction and they provoke retaliation, people are going to stick up when their people get hurt. this is also reminiscent by the way, joy, of what he's just done on south korea. he does this grand gesture, says he's going to have a meeting and they come out and friday and say, well, we'll only have a meeting if they take certain actions. the point is he's big for big symbolic things, but when you get pushback from people who say this isn't a good idea, he tends to back off. i suspect that's what's happening on these tariffs. >> promises, promises. thank you both very much. >> thanks, joy. next up, trump's favorite mercenary is back in the news. don't go away.
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during the celebrity cruises sail beyond event. and now an update on steve bannon's continuing quest for relevance. now out of both breitbart news and the white house, bannon has taken his ultra nationalist so-called alt-right agenda to europe. he's scheduled to speak in france right now at a conference for the far right national front
party. he's being introduced by that party's leader, marin le pen who was defeated in france's election last year by emmanuel macron. he met with leaders of germany's far right party, some of whose members have been accused of promoting -- wait for it -- neo nazi ideas. will bannon's european mission have success? we here at a."am joy" will keep you posted. we'll be right back. and rewardn prescriptions. so no matter where you're going or who you are, it's worth the trip. we'll help you find low cost prescriptions including zero dollar copays on select medicare part d plans. walgreens. trusted since 1901.
the seychelles, an east african arc pell co consisting of 115 islands in the indian ocean is known for its pristine beaches and species of black parrot, and now as a place of interest to bob mueller and his investigation of donald trump's ties to russia. we already knew that last april unnamed sources told "the washington post" that the seychelles was the location of a mysterious january 2017 meeting brokered by the united arab emirates between a russian close to vladimir putin and blackwater founder and trump adviser, eric prince. according to those sources, the meeting was an attempt to establish a secret back channel between trump and moscow. but now mueller has confirmation directly from someone who was there. george nader, an american businessman who is also on adviser to the uae and organized the seychelles meeting.
he testified last week before mueller's grand jury. he's telling mueller everything he knows, including confirmation that, yes, the purpose of the meeting was to covertly connect the kremlin and the incoming trump administration. joining me are malcolm nance, navid jamali. we have confirmation from mr. nader who was there that he did arrange this back channel meeting. an intriguing bit from "the new york times" march 6 story, mr. nader was first served with searched warrants and a grand jury subpoena on january 17 shortly after landing at washington dulles airport. he had intent to travel to mar-a-lago, mr. trump's florida estate, to celebrate the president's first year in office but the fbi had other plans, questioning him for more than two years and seizing his electronics. what, in your view, could mr. nader be giving up on donald
trump? >> well, you noo know, i think particular story and george nader's role in it is going to be one of the bridges where russia was not just directly communicating -- you don't establish a back channel through the crown prince of united emirates and meet down in the seychelles with an oligarch just to shake hands and have a beer for 30 minutes like eric prince said. this has to be something much deeper than communications. more than likely, it's going to involve money, whether it was an illicit money transfer or some other form of remuneration that was going to happen, it had to be coordinated through a third party to the campaign. interesting point, this is also something that sort of gets around u.s. intelligence. the united arab emirates is an ally. eric prince, even though he's involved in the uae, he lives there, i know, i lived near him when i lived there, but i think that they thought that they
could get a methodology where money could flow through allies and would not be identified through the traditional banking routes. it has to be money. >> it's interesting -- and by the way, eric prince is the brother of betsy devos who was rewarded with the job of secretary of education under donald trump, not saying that those two things are connected but some information that you should know. navid, the other question that this all begs is why would you need to establish a back channel if the administration was incoming shortly? they would be the administration. you could establish a front channel, so why would they do it? it doesn't seem that there's an innocent explanation for that. >> that's exactly right. it's important to remember the context in which this january meeting occurred. it occurred almost a month after the infamous meeting between flynn, kushner and kislyak and the ceo of this russian bank that's been sanctioned in new york with the purported reason to set up a back channel also
which then of course becomes the motive for the january meeting with prince. it seems to me, joy, if i'm the russians and looking at this starting back in june with the trump tower meeting and with the dangle of hillary clinton opposition research which kushner walked out of and then to come back to this back channel with this meeting, i think malcolm is absolutely right. the russians realized very quickly that this is a team, a circle of people that's motivated by money and money is going to be the key to get into the circle. i think that's exactly what was happening. malcolm hit this completely straight on the head here. this was clearly a meeting to set up a covert line of communications with the auspices of potentially giving money of some sort to prince or to someone else. but that seems to be the common denominator of all these meetings. >> need and greed, we've talked about this for 18, 19 months, that these are the things that allegedly motivate people to do business and dark deals with people like the kremlin. sarah, you have, we've now mentioned kushner and he is said
to have discussed a secret back channel to talk to russia. you also have in "the washington post" that the russian ambassador told his bosses back at the kremlin that kushner wanted a secret communications channel with the kremlin. this again as was just mentioned was a meeting also attended by michael flynn, who's also talking. your thoughts, sarah? >> i'm very frustrated, that as you mentioned earlier, we've known about this for a year. the story was broken by "the washington post" by eric prince. we've known about kushner and his security violations for a long time. while it's good that mueller is clamping down on the investigation and that there are witnesses coming forward, i'm wondering what's going on for the last year. these are people, kushner, eric prince who's not officially in the administration, obviously flynn who are not acting on behalf of the interest of the american public. they're acting in their self-interest or on the behalf of the kremlin. they've been doing this not just back in 2016, not just before
trump came into office but while he's been in office. i feel like as this story breaks, there's going to be more and more details that are going to horrify us about the depths that this goes. i do agree that the primary motive is financial. but that doesn't stop it from being an assault on our democracy. the problem with an autocratic administration like this is the longer that they stay in, the more they're able to manipulate the law, the more they're able to rewrite the law and to lie about it with impunity and fire investigators. so i'm concerned. i hope it's not too late. i'm glad they're doing what they're doing but we should think not just about 2016 but about the whole last 15 months. >> indeed. i did a lightning round earlier with our legal panel about who they would, if they were the prosecutor, indict next in order to crack open this russia-gate case. i'll ask each of you as an intelligence matter. who would be the next person that you would want to put in a room and question, malcolm
nance? >> that's an excellent question. if i had to put anybody in a room, i mean, you know, with the full power of the special prosecutor, it would be eric prince. it's not just that he does nefarious deals all around but he wants to be a power player throughout the world. i've seen eric do these things, you know. he moves and shakes along with the high level people. the reason he is so accepted in the united arab emirates, they like the blackwater bad boy image there. one quick point here, joy. you know the crown prince flew to the united states in december 2015, and that was one of the reasons that the obama administration got cued in on this. these people are doing face-to-face meetings because they don't want u.s. intelligence to find out. >> wow. okay, very quickly, navid, who would you want to put in a room?
>> jared kushner just because i can't stand the dude. >> sarah, can you top that? >> yeah. i'd put trump in the room because trump can't keep his mouth shut. that's why he's not having press conferences because he blurts out the whole plot. >> that's an excellent point. thank you, our all-star russia-gate panel. thank you very much. coming up at the top of the hour, new details about donald trump's surprise decision to meet with the leader of north korea. up next on "am joy," the fight to turn the reddest state blue.
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see how much you could save with usaa by bundling your auto and home insurance. get a quote today. every two years, every four years, texas is always fixin' to turn blue. but the nice value of it is, in texas at least, there are a lot more conservatives than there are liberals. congressman o'rourke is running hard to the left, grazing advocacy of gun control and undermining our second amendment. now, those are wonderfully popular positions if you're running for the senate in new york or massachusetts or california. but this is texas. and those are not the views of the vast majority of texans.
>> gun reform could be a defining issue in the u.s. senate race in texas where democrats are hoping for a blue wave this november. republican incumbent ted cruz will face democratic candidate beto o'rourke. joining me now, jim moore and sarah slayman. thank you both for being here. jim, i want to talk to you about old ted cruz. ted cruz, a lot of people may forget, came to the country's attention when he was the solicitor general of texas, a position he held for five years, and was constantly weighing in on issues that had nothing to do with texas but were matters of national import, including the heller decision which changed precedent on the right to bear arms of an individual. in 2008, cruz was wading into a case that had no immediate connection to texas. he clearly saw the heller case
as a watershed to gun rights. the supreme court shot down the washington, d.c. handgun ban and ruled for the first time in the history of this country that the amendment ensures an individual person's right to have a gun for self-defense. the nra recognized cruz's role with a resolution. do ted cruz's fortunes rise and fall with heller? >> i don't know if that's the case, joy, but he's made a big issue out of this throughout his career. when he was solicitor general, you had to sort of calculate whether he was calculating himself the issues that he could exploit. he does stand out in front of any attempt to regulate guns, whether it's the ar-15 or a personal handgun or anything
else. and let's face it, texas is a very conservative state. that's a winning issue for him. congressman o'rourke has made some progress with this notion of where do we draw the line, shouldn't we stop people of a certain age and background from getting access to these guns. he's done very well with that. with almost no paid media, by personally driving around the state and visiting most of the counties, he has a 40% name i.d. without spending a dollar yet. we don't know exactly how he's going to do. the "x" factor is whether what's happened in the trump administration has come down to this state in a way that it impacts conservative interests in the administration and is going to force some of these d moderate suburban republicans to vote for a moderate democrat.
>> ted cruz is not known for having a winning personality or being well-liked among his colleagues. >> that's an understatement. >> he has a certain nebbishy quality to him when he speaks. a way ted cruz is trying to be cool and the interesting challenges that beto o'rourke is presenting to him. ♪ ♪ he wants those open borders and wants to take those guns ♪ ♪ not a chance he'll get a vote from millions of texans ♪ >> he rhymed "guns" with "texuns," that's a problem. >> if only that were the only problem. >> ted cruz's name is rafael but
he pretends his name is ted. your thoughts, sarah? >> yeah, joy, call him felito. no, i don't think that ted cruz at this point can argue he's not worried about beto o'rourke. you don't run a statewide radio ad about your opponent unless you're worried. everything that's happening in that ad, he's throwing meat to his base but he's obviously nervous, very nervous about this young congressman who has traveled to 261 counties so far. >> ted cruz is up only 45-37 over o'rourke. this is winnable by the democrats. >> you have to believe the koch brothers will come in for cruz, when we get to the general election he'll have a lot more money. democrats haven't had anything to be encouraged about in this
state since bush beat richards in 1994. this guy has come along with a grassroots campaign that people are responding to. on primary day, there are now probably two latina democratic congre congresswomen going to washington as a result of primary day. >> and you saw that 61% unknown for o'rourke, he has a lot of room to grow. can democrats get the latino vote to turn out in proportion to its numbers and get beto over the finish line? >> i think that entirely depends on congressman o'rourke and his campaign strategy. it's not surprising to me that a congressman from the other end of the state is having some trouble introducing himself. he has eight more months to do that. i think if he goes into those communities and continues to elevate leaders from those communities, which he's doing in the african-american community around the state, i do think he has a chance. >> he's cooler than ted cruz, but then again, who isn't? thank you very much, appreciate
that's our show for today. up next, alex witt. >> all i can say is i wish we didn't have to end our conversation just because we got on air. we were having the best conversation during the commercial break. good day to all of you, i'm alex witt at msnbc world headquarters in new york. follow the money. new questions