tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC April 18, 2018 12:00am-1:00am PDT
looking at the blessings in her life in a way that can sound bracingly quaint, if that's still a thing in 2018. barbara bush will be buried alongside her daughter, robin, at the bush library in college >> barbara bush has died at the age of 92. first lady of the united states from 1989 to 1993. she was the wife of one president george herbert walker bush, the mother of the second president bush. one of the most remarkable lives in american political history. andrea mitchell, your thoughts at this moment. >> great sadness, great appreciation for all she did for the grace, for the courage, her loyalty to her family. for the way she chose to die
because she went through this passage with tremendous faith. and also sending a message about individual choice. she did not want more treatment. she had been in and out of the hospital. any of us who know what it's been like to nurse your own parents or be with your own parents as they go through these stages now how complicated it is. so she made -- she made these choices for herself and her family supported her. her husband was with her as she was going into her final sleep. her children had been in and out of houston, neal bush was very emotion in an interview this morning and others in the family deeply ached. our own jenna bush hager expressed her thoughts about the woman that she called affectionately the enforcer the "today" show yesterday morning. they knew she had been very ill for a long time. although threw have been so much
focus, of course, on the former president bush, he suffering from parkinson's and in a wheelchair and frail, it was she with congestive heart failure and with the pulmonary disease that really brought her down that was more gravely ill. her health had been failing for quite some time. in these last few days, friends and family members were reading from her mem barpz she deeply appreciated that. one reader was susan baker, wife of the former secretary of state treasury secretary and chief of staff. so. >> very close friends. people who were deeply religious. she was very religious and increasingly so in recent years. so her faith sustained her. her love for this man that she fell in love with 73 years ago. they were the longest married coup in american presidential history and also she was the first woman since abigail adams, only the second woman in american hust to be the wife of
one president and the mother of another. >> you know, in a accounts of barbara bush that i've read through the years and talking to people that were around the bushes, in every account, she emerges as such a formidable presence. jenna calls her the enforcer. this was someone who loomed very large in the world of what would become essentially the most powerful political family in america. >> indeed. she was more than just the matriarch, the mother, the spouse. she in fact according to nicolle wallace whom i interviewed about her yesterday who knows the family so well, she was the best politician of the whole bunch and jon meacham shared his thoughts, there would in he ever about been a president bush 41 if there had not been a barbara bush. barbara went to texas. she was the debutante from rye who fell in love at first sight with the connecticut yankee at a
dance when she was still -- it was i believe before pearl harbor. and he went off to become the youngest unable aviator of his generation and she as a member of the greatest generation was at home. they married during a leave. and then in 1948 when he was out of the service and had gone back to school, and finished his college education, at yale, she moved to odessa, texas and if she had not moved to odessa, texas and then to midland, texas and given in particular her sons those roots, there wasn't have been either president bush. she understood the feelings, the, was empathetic to the needs and feelings and strivings of more ordinary americans than what the patrician elder bush family had been used to and even in her own upraising. that was certainly what gave them the ability to embrace
american culture, the american west in a way they never would have been. if she had not been willing to move 27 times in 73 years of marriage whether it was going to china as envoy before we had diplomatic relations with china to the cia as well as to the united nations when he was the ambassador there. then watching her son become president and then watching of course, the disappointments politically of her son jeb and now campaigning, as well in recent years for george p bush. jeb's son. so many generations of bushes owe her so much. the love, loyalty. and the fierce pride she had and devotion to her family. >> i want you to stay with us if that's all right. i want to bring in now by phone michael beschloss, presidential historian. michael, this is a historic figure in american life and at the center of a family that will be written about for generations
to come in the american political project. >> that's for sure, chris. oftentimes it's hard to know what he the place in history will be of an iconic figure like barbara bush. but in this case it's easy. there were only two women in american history who had a husband who was president and a son who was president. one was abigail adams and the other was barbara bush. >> and, of course, she played those dual roles alongside many other roles she played at a time of far more focus and intense spotlight than in the era before the modern media. >> that is for sure. and you know, she already was a political wife at a time changing in two particular ways. obviously, the role of women in american life and particularly american political life, look how different it was at the time
that george h.w. bush went into politics in 1964 when he ran for the senate from texas. you know, versus the way it is now. the other thing is that the republican. >> narrator: both bushes got into in the early 1960s, that was still a party where there was a big northeastern wing. they had both come out of the northeast, new york and new england in a way they sort of symbolized the movement of the center of gravity from new england and the northeast in the republican party all the way down to the southwest. and in a way whether he george and barbara bush went to texas as this adventurous young couple in the late 1940s, they were preceding the movement of power within the republican power. >> andrea, i wonder where her sort of political center is in terms of the trajectory of the party that michael describing.
>> it has been fascinating party that obviously her husband was a name in the republican politics. he comes from a long line of politicians. prescott bush and business holders and sort of stalwart pillars of the northeastern republican establishment into the party that it has become and she's an interesting sort of person to observe that trajectory up close. >> traditional conservative republican, certainly not a trump populist. certainly now the someone who would be anti-immigrant. i think on freedom of choice, on the whole issue of abortion, that's been a complicated decision for a lot of the bush women. and i think that privately certainly i think she would lean toward being much more liberal than the conservative policies that her husband and her son had
to follow given the influence of the conservative right and the evangelical right within the party. this is not the republican party of donald trump. this is the republican party of traditional middle america and also wall street, the east coast certainly prescott bush, the senator who was the father of george herbert walker bush. so there's a long line of very strong people in their family and very devoted to public service. i mean, think about someone who had been not only the cia director, the u.n. ambassador, the envoy to china, the republican national chairman when nixon was going through watergate. loyal to a fault. but also vice president for two terms under ronald reagan and president for one term. the huge disappointment in 1992 when he failed to win presidency. it was clearly the passing to a new generation. i was covering the clinton-gore campaign.
you could see the baby boomers as we traveled across america. replacing george bush who never was the retail politician certainly that his son became. >> joining us now by phone is andy card, former chief of staff to president bush. your recollections of barbara bush. >> barbara bush is a force. she's even a force when she's not with us. her conscious will last for a generation or two or three. there's not a doubt in my mind. but she was someone who was unvarnished in her telling it the truth and she would hold you to that unvarnished truth. so she was -- she was a force and the truth is, i consider her continue to be a force because she was a true deep conscience to her husband to her sons, to her daughter. she was a conscience for anyone
close to her environment and i think about her all the time and i'm not with her all the time. and i continue to think about her. >> it's interesting you said that, andy. she was obviously, she was the mother of the president when you were working as the chief of staff for george w. bush. as the chief of staff, and this relates to something was saying before, she was a presence in that white house, someone you would interact with and who had opinions and views how the country and presidency should go. >> it's funny. she never put her thumb on the scale of policy. it was always on the scale of do the right thing. so it was less about the policy and more just do the right thing. she had great understanding of the role the tough decisions are for a president. she knew that. and she would -- she would frequently talk to me and she wanted to know how her son was doing.
she cared about her son. and yes, he could almost as you tell if i had heard from his mother. so but she was a presence and she'll continue to be a presence. but more than that, there was a tremendous love story that barbara bush and george h.w. bush defined for the world. and it's a love story that i got to witness back in the 1970s. and all the way through the unbelievable successes they had and the frustrations they had, the disappointments they had. but their love was so rock solid. and even within the last few weeks, i was down in houston and i was having lunch with the president and he had come from the hospital where he had been with his wife and after lunch he was going to go back to the hospital. and he said to me, she still likes to hold my hand.
and i was weeping as he said it. theirs is a love story. and she knew how to give tough love and she knew how to give soft love but it was always love. that's great thing that i got to witness. >> i want to average andy card, michael beschloss and andrea mitchell. thank you for joining us for this breaking news covering the passing away of barbara bush, first lady, mother of president george w. bush at the age of 92. joining me from west palm beach, peter alexander who traveled with the current president toe florida where he is for the week. white house has issued a statement i understand? >> yeah, we did hear from the president, first lady within the last few minutes posting a statement moments ago celebrating the life of the former first lady barbara bush, speaking about her devotion to family. anton country. the president with a lot of words of praise. the first family sending their thoughts and prayers to the friends and family of mrs. bush,
as well. you are struck on this night about the sort of fact that can this is a president, as a candidate who ran against what the bush family represented. you remember some of the fierce attacks that president trump and candidate trump lashed out against jeb bush, of course. frankly, he said that her mom had swooped in to try to help save her son. he was biting in his criticism which is what's striking as you hear the kind words from donald trump tonight. of course, as president. the bottom line this president tonight continues with his efforts, he's focused on other topics hosting shinzo abe and his wife alongside the first lady. their focus on north korea and trade talks. it will be interesting to see who represents this administration for the funeral in the days ahead. i wouldn't be surprise fundamental we either see the vice president or first lady attend. that information hasn't been provided. >> you don't think the president's going to go. is that right? >> we don't know. it's possible.
he's scheduled to be here through the end of this week. no, there are no indications at this time what the white house's plans are, whether the president himself will travel. at this point, it's frankly too early to tell. obviously, there is a great fraternity among past presidents. all the former presidents haven't been in one place together before. remember, the bushes didn't make it to president trump's inauguration. a lot due to the failing health of the senior bush at the time back then. it would be a remarkable scene to see all the presidents gathered together. at this time, we don't know the answer to that. >> with me now, david jolly from florida. barbara boxer former democratic senator from california. david, your thoughts about barbara bush and the bush family and how it intersected with the republican party. >> barbara bush was a remarkable woman. there was a certain grace, dignity, a quiet power, if will
you, to her presence. she was -- she and george bush were the first couple i ever met as a young campaign volunteer in atlanta. they had thrown in from their last debate in michigan, that 1992 presidential race. the race had largely gotten away from them but they arrived and spent the next 24 hours as though win or lose, they were doing what they felt was right for the country and they were going to win or lose with great dignity. to your point, we can't overlook the contrast between the bush legacy and state of the republican party today. the reality is, there is not in up room for the dignity of the bush family in today's republican party. that's a political conversation that continues to be had within the gop. but tonight we celebrate a truly wonderful and remarkable woman. >> senator boxer what, are yourrections? >> well, i have great memories because i was in the house of representatives when barbara bush was first lady and george herbert walker bush was president.
they were very gracious. she was always gracious. but what i loved about her, what i'll always remember is that she was fiercely independent. you could tell, she was always by her husband's side. she would do anything for her family but she had her own views and with a twink in her eye as and with a twinkle in her eye as her husband had to move to the right on issues such as a woman's right to choose, she sent out a lot of signals that don't worry about it. she was still there for women. and she did it in a way i can't even describe it. it was charming. >> you know, it is the course of the republican party and the family dynasty she has now overseen for these. years, david. and to peter's point about the donald trump running against it. donald trump spent months beak calling her son jeb a simpering dufus over and over and over again. and a lot of that was animated by a certain kind you have
anti-dynastic feel among the republican base. >> sure, no, that's absolutely true. listen, i admit to taking jeb bush's side of that argument and not donald trump's. the bush legacy is one of rich experience and qualifications, frankly that contrast existed between donald trump and hillary clinton, as well. the bush family and the clones each brought rich government experience that as we saw in the last election was largely rejected because of this nativist tribal populism that donald trump has sold. listen, there are many reasons to condemn donald trump's populism. it is worth taking a pause to celebrate barbara bush personally for her contribution to our nation. >> senator boxer, how do you think about the women in the republican party and the republican party that barbara bush was part of for so long and where it is right now?
>> well, there's just hardly any moderates there. david will tell you what happens if you're moderate, if you even talk to a democrat and what trump did to the bush family when he went after jeb the way he did, so cynically and brutally, was to take a wrecking ball to the history of the republican party and you fellow, you might say barbara, what are your dee credentials for speaking about republicans. i'm a lifelong democrat. but my first big campaign i supported a republican named peter bear for the state senate because he was a great environmentalist. we had a different republican party. of course, the bushes were part of that. and it was a big tent. barbara was in one side of the tent, her husband was kind of moving toward the right. but it was very different then. the republican party has changed so dramatically. it saddens me. >> former congressman david jolly and former senator barbara boxer, thank you so much. kelly o'donnell joins from us
houston where barbara bush died tonight. what's the latest? >> reporter: good evening, chris. this is the mix of a beautiful evening and a city she loved and the sadness of this news. barbara bush passed away peacefully today and this city will now play host in days to dignitaries from around the world, around the country, and from the pages of our own recent american history. the stature of a first lady passing is always particularly notable because they remain among the most popular people in the political sphere. that was certainly true of barbara bush and true of first ladies since that time. it is part of where the american family has the opportunity to acknowledge what first families mean to us. those who serve in the office of president are about the days in and out of the difficulties of politics, the first ladies typically give us some themes that matter. tonight, we're already seeing responses from lawmakers,
senator cornyn from texas, talking about the blessing she was to this country. the president and first lady also acknowledging her contribution to the american family and her quest to try to help many more enjoy the real possibilities of literacy, one of her important works in office as the first lady and an influence in the time since. one of the things i can tell you having not covered them in the white house but often in the years since is that toughness of barbara bush. president george w. bush who i covered extensively always talked about his mother as the enforcer. and perhaps the most recent time among those recent times where i saw her was at kennebunkport and president george h.w. bush 41 wanted to take a smooul smooul wanted to take a small group of us around for a tour.
mrs. bush was there and i see the idea of taking reporters around for a tour was not what she had in mind. that enforcer quality whereas president bush 41 was in a mood to show off their family estate there at walker point which is such a treasured part of the family history. more recently i saw her whether he she was in new hampshire a little over a year ago with jeb bush at a type when his campaign was flagging. you remember the history where after having a husband and a son in the white house, she publicly expressed concerns about another bush running, another american family maybe their time. she did come out for jeb bush. that was a night where he talked about any mistakes had he made were his own, not his mother's. it was a time when new hampshire voters were called back to past campaigns for the other george bushes and then trying to translate that you to jeb bush. we know where that went. on that night, she was a mother try to help her son. we also saw her helping p. bush. when you look at the mef
contributions, she was in some ways a traditional first lady and the backbone of a family that had so much success. the country will come here to houston to remember her. >> still ahead, a lot of news to bring you after this break. former attorney eric holder joins me on set in just two minutes. you know what's awesome? gig-speed internet.
you know what's not awesome? when only certain people can get it. let's fix that. let's give this guy gig- really? and these kids, and these guys, him, ah. oh hello. that lady, these houses! yes, yes and yes. and don't forget about them. uh huh, sure. still yes! xfinity delivers gig speed to more homes than anyone. now you can get it, too. welcome to the party. all right. the brank of government charged with maintaining and enforcing the rule of law in this country, the department of justice, has been facing potentially transformative attacks on its legitimacy. many coming often directly from the president of the united states. there's no one better to discuss the attacks on it than the man who leads the justice department from 2009 to 2015, former attorney general eric holder.
great to have you here. i want to ask for your recollections of barbara bush. >> she was a formidable woman and exhibited a quality that i think is so lacking in our lives now. class. she was a woman of class. i have to say that is true of her husband, as well. i would not say that they were ideological soul mates and yet, had i great respect for them. i've gotten to know george w. bush a little bit. and he exhibits i think that same characteristic, class. >> you hear at a time when the republic feels we're in peril. do you feel that way. >> i've said this. i think our democracy is under attack. if you look at the question of gerrymandering, the question of voter suppression, if you look at the way in which the intoes
norms the way the government interacts a lot of these things are falling by the waysided. >> people say it's held so far. the country hums along. unemployment is low. robert mueller -- look, you talking about independence of the justice department. sdny raided the president's lawyer the other day. it looks like everything's functioning. >> our systems are holding. but they are certainly being pressure tested. and that's not necessarily a good thing. the fact that we have the ability to say that a lot of this pressure is being placed on these systems than they are standing in place, it's not necessary in a normal situation that pressure should not be applied to the situations, the institutions in the way that they have been. >> does the president have the authority to fire rod rosenstein? >> i don't think he has the ability to do it directly. on the other hand, i don't want
to give them ideas. if they were to rescind account regulation that. >> you're talking about mueller. i mean rosenstein. >> rosenstein, yeah, yeah. could do that. >> would that constitute in your mind more evidence of obstruction were he to do that? >> i'm not sure it would by itself constitute obstruction. the question would be, what was his intent in doing so. but it would play into a narrative that i think leads one to conclude that the president probably has engaged in some obstructive behavior. >> james comey obviously making the rounds this week and someone that you worked with, had interactions with in government. what is your assessment of his character and his truthfulness? >> i think he is a truthful person. i think he's a man of honor, a person of integrity. he's also a person who made some really serious mistakes.
and i wrote an article after he held that after he released that material. in which i said that good men can make mistakes. i think that's what happened to jim in 2016. but in terms of his credibility, i think that that is a touchstone for him. he tells the truth. >> he had something to say but i wanted to get your response to for a specific case which was the david petraeus case. this is hip saying i thought david should have been prosecute the not just nor the mishandling of confidential information but lying and in the end, the attorney general decided he would be charged only with a misdemeanor mishandling of classified information. did you go too easy on david petraeus, do you sthep into the petraeus, do you step into the chain of authority to reduce the penalties he faces? >> no, i followed the recommendations of all the lawyers involved in the case include kooth united states attorney and taking into account all the facts in that case and taking into account the recommendation that cape from
jim. from jim comey. i thought that that the resolution we ultimately decided was appropriate into it was not a political determination that david petraeus, his political capital meant that charging him with a felony would be politically toxic? >> no, that never entered my calculation at all. i knew general petraeus for a very limited amount of time. in terms of politics that, never entered my mind. >> one of the things about watching mueller go to work right now, it sometimes feels like is it true there's a bunch of really an greedious jus white collar crime hanging out there that is not prosecuted? paul manafort's pattern of doing what he was doing with his various accounts and real estate dealings, it was out there in the public. and comes mueller puts out an indictment that tracks the reporting on it. should i think there's a lot of stuff like this that isn't being
prosecuted or is there something special happening with the people around the president's circle? >> there's a lot of crime that happens generally that doesn't get rorred. people are stealing things out of grocery stores. there are people doing things in banks they shunting doing. > a lot of the drugs moving around that never get busted. >> yeah. but when it comes to the things that are truly important, i think that law enforcement generally, generally, not all the time but generally focuses its attention on those kinds of matters and generally holds people to account. >> what is mueller's strategy here as you watch it develop? >> i think this is a clack case. he's building from the bottom up. you know? and people have to understand that this is going to take time. this is -- we're only about a year or so into this. from my view of this, i always thought this was about a two-year case. >> really. >> yeah. but they've been moving almost at light speed what they've done in the first year.
but this is -- you're building from the bottom up. you build the cases you can and try to flip people till you work your way up to the top. >> it's a classic public corruption case. >> i want to play you something mitch mcconnell said about protecting mueller. and i thought it was interesting whether there would be legislation introduces. there's been some movement and interest from thom tillis, chuck grassley, republican, as well. this is what mitch mcconnell had to say about it today. take a listen. >> there's a move afoot among some of your colleagues just to make sure the president doesn't rid of mueller to institutionally shield mueller from being fired. how do you feel about that? >> that's not necessary. there's no indication that mueller's going to be fired. i don't think the president's going to do that. just as a practical matter, why would he sign it? i'm the one who decides what we take to the floor. that's my responsibility as the majority leader. we'll not be having this on the floor of the senate.
>> what do you think about that? >> you don't build a hurricane wall when you see katrina five miles out from the shore. there's a basis to conclude that bob mueller potentially could be fired by this president. let's put in place a mechanism that would prevent that from happening. think about the chaos that would be unleashed in there country, the constitutional crisis that this nation would go have to face and undoubtedly then have to try to endure. you can take this preventive measure that would stop all of that in its tracks. >> why do you think they won't do it? >> i think that they are afraid of angering the trump base which is the republican base. and we can't make that distinction anymore. this notion there is a trump base which is different from the republican base is inconsistent with all the polling we've seen. they are concerned about making sure their base comes out, their base votes in november, that their base is behind them. people who have to deal with the primaries.
i think at some basic level, they're afraid of him. >> do you understand that base is motivated primarily or in large part by racial animus? >> i'm not sure about that. i think there's a lot of fear that this president has certainly stoked and he has certainly used race as a mechanism to engender that fear. but i don't think that is a primary motivator of the trump base. >> what about jeff sessions? >> you know, he is an interesting are case. he's a person i think who is kind of stuck in the 1980s. you know, in the failed policies of that era. the notion that we want to get as many people as we can, put them in jail for as long as we can and think that that in and of itself is the way to keep the american people safe without looking at all the things that have happened since then. >> does it strike you there's a contradiction to the way the president talks about the rule
of law when it's people like rob porter accuse confidential domestic violence by two i different women and talks about there's no due process for him and knob attorney/client privilege? he's a real bleeding heart liberal public defender minded person when he talks about due process and people in his inner circle and when he talks about drug dealers he says we should execute them and deport all the immigrants. how do you make sense of those two different ways the president talks about law and order? >> believes in situational law and order. there is no way that i think you can resolve the tension that you have you just described. he is not a believer in the rule of law. he wants to make sure that those people who he likes, the people who support him are treated in one way and those other whoever those other people are treated in a different way. >> we're going to now do something slightly strange which is play a game of eric holder, this is your life with an individual that you worked with at the justice department who is
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play [music plays]his". when everything's connected, it's simple. easy. awesome. we are back with apply guest eric holder. also joining me justice analyst matt miller, chief spokesman at the department of justice when holder was the attorney general. >> we talk a lot in this news cycle about the independence of the justice department. it's a word that has a lot of force and meaning. for people outside it, what does that mean? day to day reality how you think about it. >> gimp the power of the
>> keeping the power of the attorney general, the ability to deprive people of liberty, to execute people, that power has to be used in a way independent of any political influence. and so on a day-to-day basis, we were -- we made sure that we made our decisions on the basis of the law and the facts without any consideration of what the white house wanted us to do. sometimes to the detriment of the relationship that we had with the white house. not anything that was necessarily expressed directly to me but things that i heard maybe sometime thereafter because i think in the obama administration, the president realized that an independent justice department was something that was important. >> did it mean to you when you were there, matt? >> i came to the justice department from politics and learned early you had to look at this job differently than any job you had had because there is this culture inside the department.
you learn it on day one. everyone understands it that you don't talk to the white house about criminal cases. you can talk to them about some things, policy matters, communications matters but you don't talk to them about criminal cases and never in a million years would talk about a criminal case that involved someone at the white house or someone close to the white house which is what has made watching this white house so hard is that the white house intervenes all the time about the things that affect the president, things that affect the president's friends. and the other side, too. trying to affect the president's political opponents trying to get them to prosecute hillary clinton. >> these are some tweets from the president. everybody is asking why the justice department isn't looking into au account dishonesty going on with hillary clinton and the demes. why is ag jeff sessions asking the ig to investigate potentially fisa use will take forever. isn't the ig an obama guy? it's disgraceful. this amounts to the president ordering his ag publicly to
prosecute political enemies. >> that's a frightening thing. our institutions have held. i think our institutions will probably hold. but these are tests of our institutions and we have seen these kinds of things in other countries in earlier times. and i think we have to be cognizant of that. there are things that are at risk here by that kind of conduct confident president. >> but here's the thing. go ahead. >> so the institutions have held. you haven't seen hillary clinton be indicted and them trying to prosecute. but you see the justice department trying to do little things to make the president happy. appoint a u.s. attorney to document review, meeting with the president to turn over documents about the clinton investigation. you see them freeing up a so-called whistleblower on the uranium one thing because the president was angry and had the counsel call over. >> chipping away. >> all the little lines being crossed. they can't prosecute hillary and fire mueller. so they will doll little things.
>> the erosion on the margins have an impact. there is not a huge line between having a system that works correctly and one that works incorrectly and the more of the little stuff that you do, that line disappears. >> that to me is the most profound take away from this moment. as i sit here every day analyst it on the news. we think about the constitution, everyone talks about the constitution. all this stuff we're talking about, none of is it in the constitution. the justice department didn't take place till during reconstruction. president shouldn't direct people to go after his enemies. that's not in the constitution. i guess at the end of the day, what holds it back? >> into there are norms that have -- we've always had. >> god, does that sound insufficient to the tack. >> insufficient to the task and yet it is part of i think the
american dna, the american governmental dna. we're being tested now. the question is whether or not we have sufficient amounts of that dna in our system. >> but there's got to be -- what does that look like? there's got to be something -- that means people -- when you said dna that means people make decisions. people in the sdny make the decision we're going to be a search warrant on the president's lawyer because that is what our job in the law demands. >> right now it's embedded in people at all level of the department. if you had an attorney general who decided he wanted to take a different approach and said the president wants this done, i'm going to do it, you would see people resign and walk away. but the attorney general could probably do some of it. trump is going to go away some day i hope. one of the questions we'll look back and say kind of like after watergate, are norms enough or do we need to codify some of these structures that prevent interference? >> do you have faith fundamentally in the judgment and integrity of jeff sessions to uphold the norms we're
discussing? >> i worry a great deal. >> that's not a yes. >> it's not a yes. this is a very difficult thing for me to say. a very, very difficult thing for me to say. i'm not a person who likes to criticize my predecessors or successors because i know how tough the job can be. yet the actions he has taken in response to criticisms that he's received from the president, his desire it appears to me to curry favor with the president who views him disfavorably worries me a great deal. i'm not certain that he has got the steel that an attorney general has to have. in my conference room as matt will note, you get to pick four attorneys general that you display. i had elliott richardson, left to remind me at some point an attorney jen has to say no to a president. maybe you're going to lose your job as a result of that. i don't have faith in jeff sessions that he would look at elliott richardson in the same way i do.
>> i'm not sure i'll get the most honest answer from you. is he running for president. is eric holder running? >> i want to know if i have to quit my job and move to iowa. >> if he will promise to be my press secretary, i might consider it. >> you are considering it. >> i'm thinking about did but i'm focusing on the work dealing with gerrymandering. >> which successfully got scott walker to call a special election he was trying to get out of. >> we elected a wisconsin supreme court justice there, campaigned there and got into a bit of a twitter war with governor walker. >> dude, stay out of twitter wars if there's one piece of life advice i can offer you, eric holder, there's one thing i know about really deeply, stay out of twitter wars. >> native new yorker, born in the bronx. >> born in the bronx, as well. eric holder, you are invited anytime you're in new york city. and former chief spokesman matt miller who recently had a child
tonight, two of the closest allies to the president of the united states are caught in a tightening legal vice. michael cohen the president's personal attorney and fixer and sean hannity, informal adviser and on air water carrier whose show the president promoted as recently as last week. a day after being expoesds as cohen's mysterious client number three, hannity is blaming the controversy on the president's political foes. >> i did have attorney/client conversations mostly over real estate. you know, it just is so corrupt, it is such a double standard and it is so obnoxious on so many different levels but it's never going to go away because the
mission when you really look at it is bannon has been to never get trump get elect and from the get trump get elected and from the day he was elected to undermine donald trump. >> hannity at this time failed to disclose his relationship to cohen when he on air blasted the raids on cohen last week can exposing him as his sort of client maybe. he failed to inform bosses as the trump tv saying in a statement while fox news was unaware of the formal relationship with michael cohen and surprised yesterday, join the club, we have spoken to sean and he continues to have our full support. it's nice when bosses stand behind you. the same can't be said for frequent trump tv guest allan dershowitz who scolded hannity last night during and you related segment. >> first of all, sean, i do want to say i really think that you should have discloses your relationship with cohen when you talked about him on the show.
could you have said just that you had asked him for advise or whatever. but i think it would have been much, much better had you disclosed that relationship. you were in a difficult situation. >> if you were to understand the nature of it, it was minimal. >> i understand. you should have said that. >> yeah, alan dershowitz speaks the it goes way beyond michael cohen. he conserved a lawyer who came comes on the show quite frequently. last year a radio station in oklahoma received a cease and desist for those what were currently the only attorney representing the president. he was reportedly september before he joined the president's
team. it kind of makes you wonder wales hannity may be sharing with the president. in court yesterday they losz for the president to look at the materials. prosecutors say they took ten boxes plus countless files. it is one sign of the serious legal jeopardy that cohen now faces and crucially the increasing pressure he is likely to come under. according to stormy daniels and in the courtroom yesterday cohen's time may be running out. >> from what i have heard and
what i have seen there's no question michael cohen will be charged. i think it will happen within the next 90 days based on my experience and prosecutions. the likelihood of him not rolling over is very very slim. >> new yorker staff writer adam davidson. rosie, let me start with you. what's the story there? he uses the lawyers that he has on his show? >> i'm not sure how the relationship first came about. we do know that their names were on the cease and desist letter.
>> it makes it seem like it's not a one-time thing. >> you see a small group of people that go around -- there's jay who has been representing by the pr guy who represented many of the characters involved in this crisis. you start to get a picture of a sort of new york that these people have access to that trump was a part of and now is at the center of. >> if you a lawyer ton show that's doing legal work for me i'll let you know that. joyce, my sense is that michael cohen, when you take a step back and sort of process the raid
yesterday he is facing very very serious exposure and many years in prison. >> he absolutely is. one of the charges prosecutors identified, you know, the bank fraud charges face a 30 year mandatory -- rather a 30 year maximum sentence. when defendants are actually charged it's usually less than that maximum. even with that accounted for cohen is look at a lot of time in prison. that will give him a significant incentive to cooperate. cohen says he would vie lit haze fifth amendment right if he had
to testify in the civil case. so that's really stunning. the president's lawyer is saying my testimony in a civil case would tepid to intimidate me in would tepid to intimidate me in a criminal one. >> someone that covers sean hannity, do you think of them as being associates? >> i wouldn't have been the first thing that sprung to mind. i believe cohen has been on hannity's program before. it's not much of a surprise that they know each other. i think i was as surprised as anyone else when that was mystery client number three. >> this piece was very very sharp.
you said michael cohen and the end stage here. president have been predicting that it's all going to be done in three days. >> right. >> we are still here. what did you mean in that piece? >> i talk about where the facts on the ground, the things i was confronted with were very different. on the day and a year after it was very clear at that moment this thing's a disaster. it only became clearer and presidential approval was sky high. i saw the world catch up. the same thing happened with the financial crisis. it was late to it for insiders
but much earlier than most of my friends in the national conversation. once it became clear there was no question. like many people who have covered the trump organization i think the full -- the two things we have not yet fully embraced as a country, how evil some of the people they did business with are. >> the worst of the worst. >> and it was not some investigation uncovered. and what a small sad pathetic business it was taking crazy risks. michael cohen for the last decade, he was not to top guy at the company but he was along with ivanka and don jr. the main people interfacing with other
parts of the world. he knows what trump himself knew. he is the one that would have told them. >> you know, he says this is one of my favorite snapshots. michael cohen said i would rather jump out of a building. i think it was like the day after the raid. the white house has to be hoping that's true. >> well, right. the big risk here is michael cohen would choose to cooperate with the investigator and potentially say things that would be incriminating for people even closer to donald trump or donald trump himself. i think it's obviously what they are worried about. you know, you could sort of take the recent pardon that donald trump is trying to send a signal he is willing to make certain kinds of pardons.
obviously the thing that is a concern here is how much michael cohen knows and how much he would be willing to say. >> what do you expect happens next in this? >> well, one thing that prosecutors know is that it's always dangerous. you don't know how the evidence will shape up. prosecutors the one thing i'll predict is they will methodically go through the ed. they will determine whether it matches up to any of the crimes. there will be an indictment if and only if after of a thorough consideration they can prover beyond all reasonable doubt crimes can be committed. >> and we should also note it was revealed in one of the findings the government has been reading his e-mails for months. >> and then raided him. >> and then raided him.
thank you for joining me. tonight sean hannity and donald trump, the fox news host outed as a client of michael cohen operating as a shadow chief of staff according to a new story out tonight. one of the reporters who broke it is standing by. also alongside the japanese prime minister, donald trump admits to highest level talks with north korea. "the washington post" breaks the story tonight, cia director mike pompeo has apparently met with kim jong-un. plus larry kudlow crosses nikki haley and probably won't do that again. the bigger question is what happened to those new russia sanctions she announced? and remembering the wife of one president and the mother of another. the formidable former first lady barbara bush has died at the age of 92. "the 11th hour" on a tuesday night begins now.