tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC May 15, 2018 12:00am-1:00am PDT
here with us as always, and good night from nbc news headquarters in new york. tonight on "all in" -- >> sir, we're building an embassy in jerusalem, sir. i said how much? >> president trump moves the embassy. >> i said david, you can do that from a billion to 150. >> tonight uproar in the middle east as the trumps open a jerusalem embassy and the white house blames the protesters for mass casualties. >> we believe that hamas is responsible. then, what we're learning about the scope and scale of the mueller investigation. as the lawyer for stormy daniels stays in attack mode. >> so what is michael cohen doing on that elevate were two qataris? plus, how the president is now explaining his odd reversal on chinese jobs. >> so what's the president
thinking with that tweet over the weekend about wanting to rescue zte? >> when "all in" starts right now. >> china is ripping us. >> good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. if there is one rule that donald trump seems to be following as president, it is this. if barack obama did it, then i'm doing the opposite. and this is where that led today, an opulent celebration in jerusalem to celebrate trump's decision to move the u.s. embassy from tel aviv while just 40 miles away israeli soldiers shot and killed dozens of palestinians as they protested the embassy move and israel. trump's decision to move the embassy and recognize jerusalem as israel's capital reverses decades of american foreign policy designed to maintain the fragile prospects for middle east peace. it is a major victory for israel's right wing prime minister benjamin netanyahu who triumphantly hailed what he called a glorious day as israeli forces opened fire on tens of thousands of palestinian
protesters, leaving at least 58 people dead, several of them teenagers, as well as more than 2700 wounded, according to gaza's health ministry. among those celebrating the embassy in jerusalem were gop mega donor sheldon adelson, who just donated $30,000 to re-elect house republicans and well as ivanka trump and her husband jared kushner who despite lacking any security clearance or any significant expertise or experience is ostensibly at least leading the united states' efforts to reach middle east peace. today kushner blamed the palestinians for, quote, provoking violence. >> as we have seen from the protests of the last month and even today, those provoking violence are part of the problem and not part of the solution. >> white house went even further today, absolving israel of any blame for the deaths of palestinians at the hands of israeli defense forces. >> we believe that hamas is responsible for what is going on. >> so there is no responsibility beyond that on israeli authorities? kill at will?
>> what i'm saying is we believe that hamas as an organization is engaged in cynical action leading to these deaths. >> trump hasn't exactly been laser focused on the massive geopolitical and security as well as moral issues that play in his decision to move the embassy, at least in public, opting instead to focus on building costs. >> he said sir, we're building an embassy in jerusalem, sir. i said how much? something other presidents don't ask, but that's okay. they said, i kid you not, they said, sir, $1 billion. i said a billion? you know what a billion dollars is? >> the embassy move comes on the heels of trump's decision to pull out of the iran nuclear deal and the head of a high stakes summit with north korean leader kim jong-un. yesterday's trump's adviser john bolton said when it comes to that summit in singapore with the north korean leader, the president will be trusting his gut.
>> i think one vacation of having this meeting between president trump and kim jong-un so soon in effect without months and months and months of preparation is that president trump will be able to size kim jong-un up and see whether the commitment is real. >> for more now on the consequences of trump's recent foreign policy decisions, steve schmidt. do you trust, steve, that the president and his staff have thought through what they're doing as they're now juggling three incredibly difficult issues -- north korea, iran, and israel, as we saw today? >> of course not, chris. it's all about u.s. domestic politics. everything we will see donald trump do from now until the mid terms to try to stave off a disastrous midterm election defeat is trying to intensify support in his base through policies of incitement. so when we saw the two
theocratic nut job preachers at the crossroads of civilization and religion be able to antagonize judaism, catholicism, islam, and mormonism, all in the same day because of their previous bigoted pronouncements, their extreme ideology, this is not about making the middle east more secure. it's not about making the united states more secure. it's not about making sure that we don't have yet another generation of american kids dying in middle eastern wars, it's all about donald trump being able to score a point, ephemeral though it may be in the news cycle, and to position himself for the midterm elections. it's clear as day that he has no sense of history. he's completely ignorant of the religions in the region. do you think that he could tell you the origins of the sunni/shia schism? i suspect not.
he knows nothing about anything. he is bumbling around. and he destabilized with his rash move the middle east. and as i said, when he announced the move to the embassy, i said there will be blood on his hands not because he pulled the trigger, but because he destabilized the region with not having any clue about what he was doing. and that goes for jared kushner as well. >> i want to just -- you mentioned robert jeffress, who is one of the pastors who gave an invocation today. this is what mitt romney said. robert jeffress says you can't be saved by being a jew and mormonism is heresy from the pit of hell. he's said the same about islam. he should not be giving the prayer that opens the united states embassy in jerusalem. >> of course it is. it is an appalling disgrace that these two were allowed to open
in prayer under the flag of the united states an official u.s. government event given their mountains of bigotry, their anti-catholicism, anti-judaism, anti-muslim, anti-mormonism. we don't talk about these people enough. so let's do it for a moment. jerry falwell, franklin graham, mike huckabee, all of them, they dress up as man of god, but they are not. they are in business and they are in politics. and the type of politics that they advocate is an extreme and theocratically tinged politics. you see that they thirst for the nectar of political power, the gospel is secondary. when you look at their ex-vocations of donald trump from all sorts of behavior that they previously condemned, it's for expedient partisan political purposes. one of the things that is
certainly true about this movement, wherever you look around the world and you see the fusion of the state with religion, whether it is putin and the orthodox church, complicit in his power or other places around the world, the ideology advanced and represented by hege at all always veers towards the autocratic. it's always less free. it's always dominated by an extreme animus towards gays. there are people who would much rather tell you how to live and what birth control that you're allowed to take, for example, if you're a young woman than would ever dare to say what is so obviously true about conduct by this president that is so obviously wrong. these are the modern-day fairsies in the temple. one of the blessings of roy moore's candidacy is we know who they are, and no one in this
country ever has to pretend again when they hold up a cloak and say you're attacking my religion to do anything but laugh out loud. their politicians and extreme ones at that. >> all right. steve schmidt, thank you so much for coming out tonight. i appreciate it. >> thank you, chris. >> for more on the move and the chaos in gaza, ambassador wendy sherman, nbc global affairs analyst and former undersecretary of state for the obama administration. when asked about the death toll in gaza, there has been six weeks of the great return march there has been a very high body count. there has been instances of hamas using live fire, molotov cocktails, armed fire, but by in large armed israeli soldiers, by and large unarmed protesters. the white house today saying this is all in hamas' hands. does it surprise you? >> it doesn't surprise me.
organizations that really don't believe in the tolerance that ostensibly all of us in america are for. i question the president sometimes, but i think most americans believe in tolerance and openness, and that has not been true of hamas and hezbollah. but today's deaths, one can only mourn what has occurred here. and i think you're a split screen of the celebration in jerusalem. and look, it's been a bipartisan orthodoxy so to speak that both democrats and republicans and independents believe that jerusalem is the capital of israel. what has happened here is that the president took this step without any preparation, without creating any hope for the palestinian people that there would be a two-state solution. so we have the celebration over here of really a freight train coming down the road. and we have the deaths over here with no hope and only despair. >> james, what do you say to people -- wendy mentioned this. it has been a bipartisan position.
chuck schumer today celebrating the move of the embassy to jerusalem. president has actually had to issue national security waivers to stop the moving because it is a bipartisan move. donald trump called the bluff. donald trump has done what was tacit american policy anyway. >> look, when newt gingrich and bob dole pushed through the jerusalem legislation back in 1995, bill clinton didn't sign it. the white house didn't want it. and yitzhak rabin didn't want it. it was intended to kill the peace process. rabin knew it, clinton knew i, and all of us knew it. that's why presidents have waived the provision. what donald trump has just done is swallowed the poison pill and pounded a nail, the final nail in the coffin of the prospects for middle east peace, and for america being able to provide leadership in this peace process. i understand that a whole lot of folks have a view of jerusalem,
but understand that when partition occurred, the world community said it should be an international zone because of its importance to the three great abrahamic faiths, because of the enormous sensitivity involved. that's why nobody had a capital in west jerusalem, precisely because it was to be resolved between the parties so that you would not have a conflagration. you now have the conflagration. and frankly, the israelis have now been emboldens to take additional measures in east jerusalem that have made the lives of palestinians even more precarious. and i think we're going to see more dangerous things in the weeks and months to come. >> wendy, as someone who spent your life serving the united states government in international affairs, what is it like to see jared kushner, the son-in-law of the president and his daughter, the daughter of the president, who have no real reason to be at this event other than their bloodlines and marriage? >> their blood lines, their marriage, and the fact that they are jewish, and i think the president holds that up as a
card that he plays as necessary. i certainly respect their religious choice. i'm a jewish-american myself. but nonetheless, one should come to this with the gravity that the situation calls for. and this is really sending them makes it a ceremonial occasion, not one that really speaks to a solution being found, a process in place. whether it is getting out of the iran deal or the celebration today, there is no plan b there is no plan b for peace in the middle east. there is no plan b for the iran nuclear agreement there is no plan b for american lives lost in the middle east and trying to help find peace. we're really at a very desperate place where people in the region don't see hope ahead. >> you know, chris, when i saw the visuals of that crowd, largely white, i think almost all white, sitting in those bleachers, and then i saw the
scene of these young men in gaza, 70% youth unemployment for three decades now, no job, no prospect of a job, absolutely dying in despair, and therefore willing to lose their lives, i thought this enormous contrast that looked to me like british colonial india. it looked like where you had the folks being served tea and crumpets while people were dying in the streets. it also looked to me like bonfire of the vanities. it was two folks you mentioned really have no reason to believe there other than the fact that they're people of privilege, sitting over a situation unable to open their eyes to the reality that's happening all around them. >> jared kushner as far as we know doesn't have security clearance as he works on these incredibly weighty issues. james zogby and wendy sherman, thanks for being with me. >> thank you. >> thank you. next, a mysterious professor at the center of the case for collusion has gone missing. today we learned robert mueller is tracking him down.
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xfinity. the future of awesome. if there is a patient zero, it is a mysterious maltese professor named joseph misud. the first person we knew of who knew the russians had a trove of thousand clinton-related e-mails, and crucially, the first person to mention that knowledge and the e-mails to the trump campaign. you remember, it wiz misud who told george papadopoulos that they had dirt on her. the russians had dirt on clinton. they had thousands of e-mails. it was that exchange in april 2016, months before the dnc e-mail hack became public that eventually helped trigger the fbi probe, the original one back in 2016 into the trump campaign. here is the thing, missud has been missing since last october, which would be around the same time that robert mueller revealed that papadopoulos was
cooperating with investigators after getting caught lying about his contacts with missud. after a new report in the atlantic, there are indications that mueller has been hot on missoud's trail. natasha bertrand is a staff writer for the atlantic who broke that story and matt miller is a former spokesperson for the justice department department. natasha, i'll start with you. what do we know about robert mueller tracking down this missoud character? >> we know he detained his best friend and business partner for all intents and purposes last october some time at jfk when this german multimillionaire, his name is steven rowe, he was vacationing in new york with his family, and he was fished out of the passport line at jfk and interrogated for hours. this is all according to steven rowe, a lawyer who is best friends with joseph missoud. the entire premise is the entire russia investigation is a big hoax.
and he describes why he thinks that his best friend, joseph mifsud is actually asian and not of western intelligence there very little known about him and is there are conflict theories on the right and the left about whether or not he is an asset of the russian intelligence services or the western intelligence services. >> matt, what strikes me here you have this example of mifsud. a lebanese fixer and arms dealer who was detained when he landed at kennedy. you a ukrainian oligarch viktor vekselberg who is detained when he gets off a private jet. the scope of what mueller is tracking down and who he is talking to is really remarkable. >> yeah, that's exactly right. and i think you just described some of the known unknowns, things that we know a little bit about, but don't know the full details. there are a whole category of secretary rumsfeld's phrase known unknowns.
it's been six and a half months since george papadopoulos plead guilty, and mueller put in open court filings, really the most tantalizing piece of evidence we've seen so far today and that's that he had been told there were thousands of e-mails the russians had stolen. in the six months he plead guilty, we dote know anything about that piece of investigation. for all the other threads in the campaign, the trump tower meeting, the president's trip to moscow in july or in 2013, this is the one where mueller has tipped his hand a little bit. and it's the one where there is the most evidence of potential collusion, but not really told us much more. but here we find out if he is not close to mifsud himself, we don't know where he is, he is circling and getting all his friends and associates and bringing them in for questioning. >> buzzfeed reported back in february that mifsud has a ukrainian fiancee who says he flat-out disappeared she was seven months pregnant and engaged.
shortly thereafter he dropped from sight. natasha, this speaks to the fact that we're sort of getting things six months later generally about what mueller has been up to. but the idea that he is not looking into collusion anymore seems belied by the information we do learn. >> right. it seems like every week we're learning a new piece of this investigation that does have to do with collusion. of course, the collusion aspect of this investigation, and that's not even a good word for it, the conspiracy aspect of this investigation is of course much more complex than the obstruction aspect of this probe. >> right there. >> are so many more players. a lot of them are foreign nationals. you're dealing with a hostile foreign government, the kremlin, and it's just a much more -- there are so many more moving parts. now, of course, as we said we are learning about six months later what mueller is actually investigating which makes it really difficult i think for the president to credibly undermine the investigation, because we just don't know. and neither does he what pieces
are going to come out, say, next week. a week after the president says no collusion. just the fact that mueller is hot on the trail of this guy mifsud, who we really know nothing about style stihl shows that he mys mifsud is a pivotal piece and a pivotal player in this investigation, handy is. because of course he was the first person allegedly to tell the campaign about russian dirt. so did he have russian connections, and was he relaying something from the kremlin on to the trump campaign to see what their reaction would be? that is one of the biggest remaining questions in this investigation. >> matt, are you confident the fbi and the special counsel's office have the capacity they need to be running all this down? because it seems like a lot. >> yeah, absolutely. look, if you look at the team of prosecutors, we know how many prosecutors are on the team, and they're system of the best prosecutors in the business. and we also can tell by court filings what some are working on, although a few, very interesting undercover nugget there are a few prosecutors whose names haven't surfaced so
we don't know what they're doing. i think we'll wait and see further indictments down the road, we'll get a clue to that. we've never got a good sense of how many fbi agents are working on, but one of the things the fbi has the ability to do is kind of farm pieces out, is have someone approach and detain the witness, have someone work overseas. one of the things when you look at mueller's reach internationally, we know that agents have travelled to london to interview witnesses. and if you think about something like joseph mifsud, who might be somewhere in europe, one of the things the fbi has a very good ability to do is work through legal assistance treaties that we have with other countries. >> right. >> to use agents from other countries and to kind of come in and drop in and tag team on investigations to bring people in for questioning and gather evidence. >> there also seems, natasha, that part of what is at issue here is these sort of origins of the information mifsud passed to papadopoulos. there is this kremlin connected think tank conference in april 2016, april 19th. that's where papadopoulos and
mifsud -- or mifsud is there and later goes and tells papadopoulos about the e-mails, right? >> right. so they met at some point in the spring of 2016, and papadopoulos at first, if mifsud was not interested in papadopoulos at all. he thought he was some low level energy consultant. and upon learning he was actually associated with the trump campaign, that's when mifsud started to take interest in papadopoulos, according to special counsel robert mueller's court filings. now we don't know where mifsud himself got the information. that of course is the biggest question. there are a bunch of conspiracy theorys on the right now that says along with the book just released by his best friend that actually mifsud was a plant by western intelligence, of course that doesn't make much sense. >> no. >> because papadopoulos was indicted essentially for lying to the fbi about his conversations with mifsud, because at first he did not reveal the full extent of those conversations. he did not reveal the fact that mifsud did offer this dirt on the trump campaign.
it didn't really add up to be some kind of bern intel. this is something where mifsud met papadopoulos, realized he was a member of the trump campaign and then kind of lamped on to him. >> all right, natasha bertrand and matt miller, thank you both. coming up, president trump's lawyer accused of approaching another company with access to the president. the latest on michael cohen's sales job and his fears about being cut off by donald trump, after this. what if your skin could light up the room? new aveeno® positively radiant sheer daily moisturizer. lightweight hydration for positively radiant skin that lasts. aveeno®. naturally beautiful results®
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president. according to one source, cohen would tell perspective clients he didn't know who was advising them, but the companies should fire them all. quote, have i the best relationship with the president the outside and you should hire me. not everyone bought the pitch. ford and uber turned him down. for more on the misadventures of michael cohen and other legal equipments, i'm joined by jill wine-banks, jed shugerman and david cay johnston, author of "it's even worse than you think: what the president trump administration is doing to america." david, we talked about this last week. i still don't know what the real truth is here. but the picture that is painted by "the wall street journal" is of cohen sort of desperately trying to market his proximity to the president, even as he drifts sort of out of the president's inner circle. cohen became frustrated by lack of access and calls his associates of the president have you heard from the boss.
one mr. cohen who saw him over the winter voiced his unhappiness with the state of his relationship with mr. trump saying the president was not calling him and not helping him. what do you think? >> well, let's just step back a little bit, chris. it's very clear that michael cohen saw an opportunity to make a lot of money for himself, and there is no reason to think that the companies that we've heard of so far, plus the russian entity are the only companies he was out there pitching. we know, for example, he called mark cuban. but cohen's ability to monetize his relationship to the president depends on the president calling him as frequently as he does sean hannity. and if he doesn't have that relationship and can't demonstrate to people that they are tight, then he's useless to people. he may be useless anyway. but he is certainly useless for the capacity of monetizing his relationship. >> you know, jill, i've been wanting to ask you about this since the cohens started to
break about consultants. i think people forget the structure of watergate had to do with essentially off-book donations ending up in a kind of slush fund that was then used to pay for off-book activities like the break-in. that is exactly true. there was so much cash in the safes of the committee to re-elect the president, known as creep, and the white house, that they didn't have to make choices about how to spend money for campaign. so if they had had to make a choice, they wouldn't have ever spent money on a break-in at the dnc headquarters. they would have spent it for television advertising. but they had too much money. and it was all undecided, or undisclosed who the money came from. so they could do anything they wanted with it. and it was a really bad situation that was helped by legislation that has been undone by citizens united. >> right. >> one of the worst decisions in the history of the supreme court.
>> it's a great point, right? this sort of unaccountable money sloshing around was one of the big post-watergate reforms which has since been revoked which brings us to this point. jed, do you think that michael cohen represents the single biggest legal liability to the president at this point? >> well, there is good reason to think that there are significant connections with michael cohen and a key allegation in this steele dossier. so what we learned on sunday is an allegation that michael cohen met with ahmed al rumahi, a qatari diplomat in charge of a $1 billion qatari fund. the steele dossier suggests that there was a plan for russia to sell its massive oil company, rosneft. and lo and behold, what happens after the election, on december 7 or 8th of 2016, russia sells 19.5% to an undisclosed buyer.
that buyer we later find out is qatar. and four days later, none other than michael cohen, as well as michael flynn are seeing and are allegedly meeting with this qatari diplomat. and then lo and behold later cut tar is backing a loan of $184 million to jared kushner. so michael cohen is at the center of i think the most -- one of the most explosive allegations in this russian quid pro quo scheme, and then the question is with all of this criminal liability, what does michael cohen know and when did he know it? and will he tell robert mueller? >> you know, jed, david, you're shaking your head. i continue to think as we learn more about mueller and we look to those pictures of cohen on that elevator that the transition really feels like a real key moment in all this, because, you know, these were people that didn't think they were going to win necessarily. and all of the sudden they had the opportunity of their lives
with not a lot of professionals or guardrails around them. david? >> oh, to me, i'm sorry. well, yes. one of the stunning things you have to keep in mind about trump and the people around him is whenever there is money, that's what their thoughts turn to. >> right. >> i tweeted the other day that rudy giuliani when he made his "i wouldn't debate michael avenatti for $10 million" it tells you these are people lucre is central to their lives. they're not thinking about public service. they're thinking what's in it for me. >> and jed, just to follow up on what you said. the pictures of cohen sort of floated around this weekend. that rosneft detail, the 19.5%, there is something striking about that detail because it shows up in the dossier. it's part of the sale affirm with precisely that number which then does end up happening. >> that's exactly right. i asked colleagues why 19.5%.
and what they told me is there are international regulations about what has to be disclosed about a financial transaction. by keeping that number under 20%, it allowed them to move money around. so when qatar makes that purchase along with the swiss company, they immediately divide it up, spread it around, and they can create the commissions. it wasn't that they gave 19.5% to trump people like kushner, it's that they were able to under the radar create commissions that those millions of dollars could go undetected. it just turns out that there are other ways of finding out that information that got all the way back. it was done in a way to avoid detection. it looks like it got detected anyway. and so the allegation was that these commissions could be produced. and here is another weird fact. it turns out russia bought back a lot of that 19.5%. >> right. >> this was a paper transaction created to generate millions of dollars that would go undetected and could move around that seems to have been in the works for a
while. >> it is harder, jill, you think now to trace these sort of -- the flows of dark money than it was back when you were investigating watergate? >> no. i actually think it's easier, because we have computers. back then, computers were a very new thing, and it wasn't that easy to do the kind of searching. so i think it will be easier to do it, and i -- going back to something david said early on, there is going to be a lot more companies that cohen approached that we're going to be looking at. and we're going to find a lot more evidence against him. and it's a good thing it's in the southern district because that investigation can go on no matter what threats are made to mueller because they're looking at all of these kinds of financial trails and have the resources to do it. so i think it will be a very, very good thing to have happen. >> the folks at uber and ford and whoever else we find out are
probably patting themselves on the back and wiping the sweat from their brow. >> right. i also think shareholders could be very angry, and that there should be a shareholder lawsuit to make the executives who allowed this to happen to pay a man $1.2 million in one case, 600,000 for absolutely no value. there could never have been any intended value in his relationship. and whatever he had is certainly now gone because everybody knows he no longer has the ear of the president, which was what he was selling to begin with. so i think there should be some actions taken to say why would you ever have agreed to this contract? and when he saw you had no value, why did you not try to break the contract? because he made a false promise of what he couldn't deliver. >> it's a great point. novartis' current ceo has thrown the previous ceo under the busson this precise point. jill wine-banks, jed shugerman and david banks, thank you for joining me.
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it. i hope i'm riling you adequately. according to new reporting, the hate watching with the president however caused serious problems for the president's senior staff. in the early months of the administration, trump would spend hours every morning watching shows that angered him. and by the time his day was formally under way, usually 11:00, the whole world was thrown off course. the white house needed to get the president back on track, so they came up with a plan to convince him to forget trump watching and just stick to the friendly trump tv programing of the fox news channel. then chief of staff reince priebus and sean spicer worked talking points about his basis of conversation until eventually it stuck to solve that the president's television consumption is today what a current white house official called mainly a complete dosage of fox. how that plan backfired not only for trump staff, but for the presidency, and, well, maybe even the world is thing 2 in 60 seconds. from the very beginning ... it was always our singular focus,
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convinced him to limit his media diet toental ofox news that. >> thought he would be soothed by all the positive coverage and stay better focused on his administration's agenda. but of course that's not really how it turned out. former white house official called the president's limited viewing habits, quote, an f-ed up feedback loop adding what ends up happening is judge janine or hasn't any fills him up with a bunch of crazy stuff and everyone on staff has to go and knock down all the f-ing fires they started. apparently it's worst than now as "new york" magazine reports hannity and trump talk on the phone most nights and sundays talk multiple times. the feeling among staffers is that hannity is the leader of the outside kitchen cabinet. >> and hannity, how good is hannity? how good is hannity? and he is a great guy, and he is an honest guy. and "fox & friends" in the morning is the best show.
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i don't even think our leaders know that china is ripping us off, okay? i don't think they know. >> america has lost -- hard to believe this -- 70,000 factories since china entered the world trade organization. >> look at china. we have rebuilt china. they have taken so much money out of our country.
>> i beat the people from china. i win against china. >> president trump talked often on the trail about losing jobs to china. so imagine surprise when he tweeted this weekend, "president xi of china and i are working together to give massive chinese phone company zte a way to get back into business fast. too many jobs in china lost. the commerce department has been instructed to get it done." the tweet sent many people, including yours truly, to be honest, googling zika virus te. it's the largest telecommunications company in china and as last month eastbound only department banned selling to it because it violated an agreement shipping to north korea and iran. democrats pounced. >> here on china, the president seems to be backing off and his policy seems to be designed for a goal that americans are not very supportive of. his policy seems designed for a new goal, make china great again.
>> he really geared himself up for that one. trump himself tweeted again this afternoon, quote, zte, the large chinese phone company, bias big percentage of individual parts from u.s. companies. man, significant parts from u.s. company." this is also reflective of the larger trade deal we are negotiating with china and my personal relationship with president xi. the swampiness starts in the white house but it doesn't end there. we've got that coming up next.
take away the mounting scandals and there is one thing donald trump's cabinet members seem especially well equipped for. dismantling consumer health and safety protections in the agencies they run. education secretary betsy devos according to the "new york times" has lifted regulation that would investigate fraud at for profit colleges like for instance devry or, i don't know, the now defunct trump university. epa administrator scott pruitt who's come under fire for a series of seemingly unending ethical scandals and is now facing at least ten separate investigations, has rolled back
nearly two dozen regulations over the past year. and then there's mick mulvaney, who temporarily heads up the consumer financial protection bureau, an agency he once said he wanted to, quote, get rid of. since taking the job last november, his second job in the administration, he was working two at the time, mulvaney has tried to do just that. with me now the only other person to ever have that job. richard cordray. he is now running for governor of ohio. the consumer finance protection bureau was i think envisioned as a kind of frankly progressive agency, but what happens if you make an agency of the government and you hand it over to the other party, they have a different vision of it. what do you think of your successor's job? >> it's been true throughout the federal government. the epa, hhs, cfpb, they've been against the missions of the agencies they're heading. i think it's distressing what's happened to cfpb. they're not standing on the side of consumers as we did, not looking out for people, protecting them from being cheated and mistreated. that's what we did. we put $12 billion back in the
pockets of 30 million americans that was wrongly taken from them. >> what do you mean by that? >> we took enforcement actions against the big banks and big financial companies to make sure people who were wronged got their money back. for example, we went after two of the for-profit college chains that were failing, defruding taxpayers, cheating the students, cheating veterans out of their gi bill money. and we got them shut down and we dot money back for people. $750 million. >> they actually -- that's one of the things mick mulvaney has shuttered, as i understand it, that entire division that would investigate student loan abuses and these kinds of things has been shut down. do you think that's a bad idea? >> some combination of he and betsy devos at department of education have reversed -- they don't want to be monitoring the for-profit colleges because they like the for-profit colleges. we found that many of them abused taxpayers, abused students. same thing's happening in ohio. we have for-profit charter schools in high mine one of them wenty up this year, 13,000 students thrown back into the system, $80 million missing,
lots of criminal referrals now being made. nobody was minding the store. that's part of the reason why i'm running for governor of ohio. >> are there systematic reasons to be worried about -- there's banks sort of abusing their customers, but one of the things i think we saw in 2007 is -- or 2006 and then 2008 is banks sort of getting over can lead to bigger problems. do you worry about that? >> i do worry about it. we saw all kinds of difficulties and problems and people being taken advantage of, which nobody can think is right. as i said, we put back money in people's pockets, gave them a voice, we solved problems. i know that the powerful interests i fought on wall street and the special interests in washington will now come after me in this governor's race and they will be loaded up with money. and if people want to take on this fight and join us they can go to cordrayforohio.com. >> do you think that mulvaney -- mulvaney has two jobs. he's the head of the omb and he's running your agency. are you offended he's working both jobs at the same time when that was your full job?
>> i think it's wrong. the agency's supposed to be independent of the politics and the administration. they're putting a political person who reports directly to the president in charge of the agency. that's just wrong. >> and the design from the beginning, right? was that it wasn't like that. >> that is correct. it's supposed to be independent of politics. it's supposed to be looking out for the consumer. it's supposed to be like the federal reserve. it's independent is politics. but that's not the way they're running it, and it's just wrong. >> you're running for governor in ohio, and it's an interesting political time. ohio's a state that donald trump won by quite a bit. you've been elected there statewide before. it's also a time when unemployment is quite low in historical terms. we've started to see a bit of wage growth. the economy is growing. what do you say to people saying look, whatever you say about donald trump and i may not like things he tweets, things are going okay right now? >> well, look, we've had a nine-year recovery that started under many years under president obama. it happens to be continuing. but in a ohio there's lots of communities that still left out and left behind. and they are.
and we need economic opportunity to spread throughout the state. that's one of the things i'm running on. kitchen table issues like better education and training for people in their families and access to affordable health care. my opponent wants to take away health care from 700,000 ohioans by ending the medicaid expansion. that is wrong, and i will fight it. >> is that a central fight in your campaign, medicaid expansion? >> it is a central fight in our xhan. >> is your opponent running on rescinding that? >> he has said that it will not exist if it is governor. and this is 700,000 people who get health care. 200,000 getting mental health and opiate treatment while we had an opioid crisis in ohio. it is the wrong move for ohio. it's bad for people. and i will stand and fight for that. >> how much can the state do about opioids in a state like ohio, which has been particularly hard hit and is a massive state and i know has really struggled to deal with the epidemic? >> i think we can do a lot. i think we can spread economic opportunity out because part of this is hopelessness in certain communities. we can restrict the overprescription of painkillers that are very addictive.
we can use law enforcement to help get cocaine and fentanyl and heroin off the streets, which are the further addictive drugs that are so dangerous. and we can do a lot to use the med kaids expansion and local government funding to make services available to people who need them so they can get treatment, get out of addiction, rather than being stuck in law enforcement, stuck in jail, stuck in prison. >> are banking interests going to play big in this ohio -- >> i think they're going to -- we need to fight back with regular people all over the country, and that's why i mentioned you can go to cordrayforohio.com. >> all right. richard cordray, thanks for making some time. >> thank you, chris. this is my last chance to tell you that our new podcast why -- did i just say podcrast? podcast "why is this happening" launches tomorrow. we're going to drop the first three episodes all at once for some binge listening. three amazing guests, three different topics, all on your phone, tomorrow morning. so go to apple podcasts or whatever you use, subscribe now so you can know when they go up. that is "all in" for this
evening. investigation as robert mueller enters year two as special counsel. ashley parker of the "washington post" standing by with details of her story based on 22 sources. plus five days and no white house apology to john mccain after mocking his fight with terminal cancer. instead, the president calls the leakers of the comment traitors and cowards. that's all in the west wing. but in the east wing, total secrecy. zero leaks as the first lady goes in for a medical procedure about which little is known. "the 11th hour" on a monday night begins now. another monday, and good evening once again from our nbc news headquarters here in new york. day 480 of the trump administration, and we have some of the most revealing reporting yet on special counsel robert mueller's investigation. what it's like behind the scenes