tv MSNBC Live With Katy Tur MSNBC May 16, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PDT
coverage. >> craig, it is always so great to see you. miss you a lot when you're not around. >> you're sweet. you say that to everybody. i'm going to come back more often then. >> craig melvin, thank you very much. 11:00 a.m. out west, 2:00 p.m. in the east. a lot to get to this hour db including those newly released transcripts of witness testimony about that trump tower might be between members of the trump campaign and a russian lawyer. but first we have breaking news. president trump's most recent financial disclosure is out and in that 92-page document it is right there in black and white, that infamous -- now-infamous 2016 payment by the president's personal attorney, michael cohen. here is what the financial disclosure says specifically. i'm sorry you are looking at this picture. it is not the financial disclosure but we're going to keep going. in the interest of transparency while not required to be exposed as part of liabilities, expenses were incurred by mr. cohen.
mr. cohen sought reimbursement of those expenses and mr. trump fully reimbursed mr. cohen in 2017. the category of value would be $101,000 and $250,000, and the interest rate would be zero. we're going to explain all this in a moment. remember, michael cohen paid a $130,000 settlement to the adult film star, stormy daniels, who claims she had an affair with donald trump. the president has denied those allegations. joining me now, the senior director of the campaign legal center. he previously worked in the office of general counsel for the federal election commission. we had you on yesterday. we were wondering if this disclosure was going to show up in this -- or this payment was going to show up in this disclosure. it did. what questions do you have now? >> well, we were saying that the president's decision of whether to disclose this payment in this report put him in a really tough spot because in he did disclose it, it would raise the question of why he didn't disclose it
last year. and if he didn't disclose it, it could only be because he considered it a campaign debt and that would raise the question of why he didn't disclose it on his campaign reports. so the weird thing is that he filed the report yesterday and it was made public now. but he hasn't resolved either of those problems. because all he did was saying with we weren't required to disclose this. but if we had been required to, here is what we would have disclosed. that doesn't in any way resolve the question of why it wasn't disclosed last year. it appears that the office of government ethics which oversees these reports has flagged that for the department of justice saying this debt has now been reported and it looks like it should have been reported last year. >> so they flagged it to the doj. what happens next? >> well, it's up to the department of justice. the standard for bringing a criminal prosecution in a situation like this is whether the omission of the information from the disclosure report was knowing and willful.
the way that this payment was structured being routeded, broken up into different payments, and then routed through a law firm, certainly would be read to suggest some intent to conceal it. that might factor into decision of whether to bring criminal charges. >> did we learn anything else in this financial disclosure of interest? >> well, i mean we learned that the president's lawyer is continuing to have this inability to get him out of trouble without getting him into more trouble. it is incredible that they could have resolved one of the two problems that the president faced here. they could have taken off the table the campaign finance violation or they could have taken off the table the personal financial disclosure violation, and they did neither. >> adav noti, thank you for breaking this down for us. back to the other breaking news we're following this hour, newly released documents are shedding more light on that controversial trump tower meeting between trump campaign officials and a kremlin-connected lawyer. the senate judiciary committee
released more than 2,500 pages, all related to the june 9th, 2016 meeting, and what's immediately clear is the panic that set in as news of the secret meeting, a a secr ining more. lawyers and aides for the president tried desperately to manage the story and put together a unified message. it is no surprise that much of donald trump jr.'s testimony absolves his father. the president -- the president, that is. when trump's eldest son is asked if if he told his dad about the meeting, he responds, no, i wouldn't have wasted his time with it. he denies the trump organization has business interests in russia, insists none of his father's policy decisions on russia would be suede by business deals. and says he doesn't know if his father was the one who drafted that july 8th statement aboard air force one. when asked, to the best of your knowledge, did the president provide any ed ditz to the statement or other input? donald trump jr. responds -- he may have commented through hope
hicks. in a statement issued this morning, donald trump jr. seemed pleased with the release saying the public can now see that for over five hours i answered every question asked and was candid and forthright with the committee. the fallout on capitol hill regarding the document dump is split along party lines. to republicans the testimony is consistent with what we've heard, but to democrat they say the interviews raise more questions than answers. >> do you still have questions about the extent to which the trump organization was communicating with the russians? >> the answer to your question would be question. >> are you satisfied that you know the whole story now? >> i'm satisfied that we got a lot of collaboration by different people that were there and they seemed to draw the same conclusions. >> we have a piece of the picture, a part of the puzzle. but the full mosaic will require further investigation. the american people deserve to know the truth.
>> so our big question today is, have we learned anything new from the transcripts? let's get right to it with the team of reporters and analysts. ken dilanian. jonathan lemire. and eli stokols is an msnbc analyst. ken, you've been combing through all this testimony with your colleagues. what do you think has stood out? >> good afternoon, katy. the big thing that stood out is that donald trump jr. is locked into a story now. he's saying definitively that he never discussed this meeting with his father, either before or after, despite a call to a blocked number both before and after that democrats suspect was then candidate donald trump. and potentially robert mueller will get to find the answer to that question. but for right now donald trump jr. saying his dad had no prior knowledge of this meeting and only learned about it through the news media. i think the other pictures that's being filled in is just how brazen this was, just how directly donald trump jr. thought he was getting
incriminating information from these russians about hillary clinton. according to one participant, he by gan t began the meeting saying simply, i understand you have some information for us. at another point when the meeting was rambling along, he got right to the point and said what do you have on hillary? the testimony was he was really disappointed there wasn't any derogatory information about hillary clinton. the third take-away, this russian oligarch, was really pushing this meeting even when some of his employees were telling him it might be a bad idea. he really wanted this to happen. we also learned he tried to broke of two meetings between donald trump and vladimir putin, one in 2013 at the miss universe pageant and again in 2015. those meetings didn't happen but it is curious this man who is a billionaire and so close to vladimir putin is pushing this relationship between russia and donald trump. >> what issue do you see being raised by the special counsel
after we learned this from this senate testimony? do you think that they have all this information? do they potentially have more? >> oh, absolutely. it is one of the great mysteries, what does mueller have. clearly, for example, he's got the ability to find out if there is a blocked number who controlled that number. i mean he's also going to get into the big question that this meet being raised, it showed the trump team was willing to accept help from the russian government. they thought it was coming from the russian government, incriminating information about hillary clinton. the question of the whole investigation is what else -- what other meetings did they have, what other potential help did they accept. we know that a campaign aide named george papadopoulos was approached with an offer of e-mails, hacked e-mails. what we don't know is who did papadopoulos communicate that over to, what other contacts there were with russians. we don't know it but robert mueller is developing a picture of that evidence, katy. >> don jr. was also asked do you know if any of the following people made any efforts to obtain clinton e-mails. a number of people were listed in the campaign. did you ever have a conversation with mr. stone about e-mails or
other information obtained as part of a cyber attack? was there any discussion that you were involved in within the campaign or anyone else about potential use of the information that had been obtained through the cyber attacks? don jr.'s answer was always -- i don't know, or i don't recall. eli, what do you make of that? >> well, as donald trump himself has said, you don't plead the fifth if you actually are innocent. when you don't go in front of people and say, you can't recall all these things over and over again, if you're actually telling the truth, you do not go and scramble and call other attorneys who were involved of the meeting and people who were involved to try to get your story straight before you go and testify. there are a lot of damaging things that came out in these document from the senate committee here. we were all on the campaign. we can all recall just how frenetic it was. how they were just kind of going from one moment to the next, triaging the situation. not really thinking about the repercussions. not thinking long term and certainly in this situation when
this information, overture was made to them, they said we may have some information for you that could be helpful for hillary, even when they believed that this was coming from the russian government, they did not step back and think, maybe we should call the fbi and let them know that a foreign government could be attempting to interfere in this election. >> when you had this meeting and they were offering dirt on hillary clinton, did you at any point think that maybe you should go to the federal norts and alert them to it? don jr. said i would have if something had come out of it but nothing came out of it, so i didn't think it was a very big deal. >> so many records of phone calls and conversations and e-mails, communications from the 26th floor of trump tower, that one call was never made. the call to alert the authorities. this is an outside influence. it is a foreign power. attempting to influence this election, attempting to give dirt, campaign dirt, incriminating materials, about your opponent. that call never gets made. yes, the excuse from the
campaign is, they were so ad hoc, things were flying day by day, we didn't have the resources to do that. or, we didn't get anything incriminating, so no harm, no foul. but that's a pretty low bar to clear to say, look, we didn't accept anything. but this happened. this is a national security threat potentially and they never did that. the perception there, the appearance is there. it is very troubling. >> it makes you wonder if anything else happened after that in order to get information that was dangled in front of them. the other thing i found interesting was don jr. said he had no idea whether or not his father was involved in crafting the statement, jon. bring us back to that moment in time and tell us what we know from our reporting about whether the president was involved in crafting that statement aboard air force one? >> right. so the moment came as sort of this meeting was uncovered and unveiled and. don jr.'s participation was revealed in news reports. the president was actually in europe at the time. coming back on air force one as this story was about to blow up. and as "the new york times"
contacted the white house to try to get a response, there's communication between some without aides and the airplane as to what should we say. donald trump, according to our reporting, had hand in that. other people around the white house have said, no, of course not, he did not. but in the revelations today, in this testimony, don jr. acknowledged that, yes, he may have played some role perhaps through hope hicks at the time who was communicating director. >> ken, does that pass the smell test? >> that may well have happened, katy. but it is also of great interest to robert mueller who's trying to understand why did donald trump, the candidate, then the president, craft this misleading statement and say that this was about russian adoptions when in fact it was about much more than that. >> nbc's ken dilanian, jonathan and eli, you guys are going to stay around. we have a really interesting discussion later in the show that i am looking forward to so don't go anywhere too far. joining me now, a former u.s. attorney and former deputy assistant attorney general under
the clinton administration. and also, editor in chief of government studies at brookings institute and an msnbc legal analy analyst. harry, does it pass the smell test that don jr. would not have known about his father crafting that statement on air force one about don jr.'s meeting and jared kushner and paul manafort with a russian lawyer offering dirt on hillary clinton? >> well, actually, as jon pointed out, he later in his -- it's not testimony, by the way. this is the first important point. it is just an interview. he's not under oath. but he hedges on this very point and said maybe he did it through hope hicks. i think in this kind of setting, what that means is, if i'm pushed to the wall, i'm going to cover my bases and say, well, maybe he did know. but your general point is really important. he's got 22 "i don't recalls" in there. some of them are understandable, but others are on details that strain credulity.
he doesn't recall who he spoke to for 11 minutes just before and after he set up this meeting. he doesn't recall if his father even has a blocked number. that's going to be something that -- >> i can tell you right now i've gotten phone calls from president trump and it comes from a blocked number. >> yeah. so that's the sort of stuff that mueller would zero in on. of course, indications to date are that trump jr. has shied away from talking to mueller and may indeed be saying that he's going to invoke the fifth amendment. which would mean that we won't get his answers under oath in front of mueller. but some of these things i think don't pass the smell test and bespeak his just trying to cover his bets. >> ben, with a stood out to you? >> well, so i agree that the more important the question, the less likely donald trump jr. was to remember the answer to it. i also think it's really
important to note that when people say, it wasn't a big deal because we didn't get anything out of it, that's not actually quite true because what the trump campaign in fact got out of it was the release starting relatively soon after this meeting of massive quantities of purloined e-mails. and releases that continued throughout the duration of the campaign. and so it isn't -- it is true that they didn't get disparaging information at this meeting. but it is not true that they didn't get disparaging meeting about their campaign opponent. so i think it is -- i think the meeting remains a terribly damaging episode for them, and at bare minimum, what it shows is that if there was no collusion, all caps, exclamation mark, exclamation mark,
exclamation mark, it certainly wasn't for lack of trying. >> there's also a really interesting report out by "the new york times," michael schmidt and another reporter, about an e-mails, a missing e-mail that investigators are looking for. the article says that john k. mashburn, a trump advisor, said he remembered an e-mail coming from george papadopoulos who was approached by a russian agent some time before the party conventions talking about whether there were -- talking about e-mails that the russians had on hillary clinton. the senate judiciary committee was unable to locate the e-mail that mashburn claims having received. he -- they are confident in his honesty in his testimony. they believe he is telling the truth. they've pored through millions of documents. still, they have not found this one e-mail. harry, if they cannot find this e-mail, if mueller's team cannot find this e-mail, how damaging
is that to the investigation, or how damaging could it be? >> i mean i don't think it is very damaging. it's another very interesting tidbit if they don't find it, they move on. but mashburn is sure he got it and he's sure he went to other people. and papadopoulos is not the easiest last name to spell. so they've now gone back to the campaign and asked them to try to look at different iterations of his spelling. but that final little link between papadopoulos and when he passed things along about the overtures from russia, to sessions, to manafort, to anyone on the committee, has yet be to filled in, at least based on publicly available information. so something like that would be really key to make a final link joining europe and russia to the united states. >> it's not that easy to spell if you're not greek. let's put it that way. i'm greek so i feel like i got a
good handle on spelling it. but that's just me. rex tillerson has something to say now that he's out of the administration. you'll want to hear it. it's next. and we got to know the friends of our friends. then our old friends from middle school, our mom, our ex and our boss joined forces to wish us happy birthday. then we discovered our uncle use to play in a band. and realized he was young once too. and we found others just like us. and just like that we felt a little less alone. but then something happened. we had to deal with spam, clickbait, fake news, and data misuse. that's going to change. from now on, facebook will do more to keep you safe and protect your privacy. so we can all get back to what made facebook good in the first place. friends. because when this place does what it was built for,
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grounded in facts, then we as american citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom. >> that's rex tillerson seemingly taking jabs at the president behind closed doors. that was rex tillerson who reportedly took jabs behind closed doors at the president as he served as secretary of state. nbc news reported that he called the president a moron. he didn't exactly deny it either. now though he is taking some of that criticism public. latest on what tillerson called the growing crisis in ethics and integrity that i'm in a speech to graduates at the military institute today. elise jordan, former advisor to senator rand paul's campaign. she's also an msnbc political analyst. obviously the relationship between rex tillerson and donald trump was not a good one. we know from the way that he was fired through twitter. we know from the way john kelly first alerted it to him and all those sordid details about that.
we also know that rex tillerson according to our reporting called the president a moron after talk of nuclear warheads and nuclear capabilities. for him to come out and make this commencement address and bring some of it public, why do you think he would do that? >> i think that for rex tillerson the level of truth that the trump administration and the president himself presents to the american public was always problematic. you look at how when he reportedly said the moron comments, which a [ bleep ]ing moron in front of it, actually, he never denied it. he didn't dig down into it but he didn't outright deny it. you look at other trump surrogates such as dina powell and h.r. mcmaster. they would deny things on behalf of the white house such as, on this day just a year ago, in 2017, "the washington post" reported that president trump had disclosed information to the russian ambassador in the oval
office. tillerson essentially confirmed it. powell and mcmaster denied it. so i do think that the element of truth within the administration always was a problem for rex tillerson. >> do you think tillerson is going to want to talk more about his time and maybe what the president said to vladimir putin during the meetings? do you think we'll ever hear about that? >> frex wrex tillerson was the male at the top of the most powerful corporation in the world, exxon-mobil. then he goes into the trump administration and is treated pretty terribly, the way john kelly noted him while he was suffering from -- >> if you need to, look it up. >> that was just disgraceful. he was treated pretty terribly by the administration and by the president himself getting fired by tweet. i think if donald trump didn't want him to talk about what he really thought, then maybe he should have treated him a little bit better. >> what is this going to mean for other people who might leave this administration, other
senior officials? i am looking at h.r. mcmaster who might know things -- i'm no the saying reveal classified information but might know things of the way this white house operates. do you expect anybody else to come out and raise some red flags? >> i would think that h.r. mcmaster would be up there in the list. h.r. mcmaster had his moments where he would seemingly back up the trump administration, such as the russia ambassador meeting, for example. and it didn't seem to be exactly truthful and he would seem to be compromised. overall he managed to navigate the waters fairly well and come out with his reputation intact. rex tillerson came out with his personal reputation, his integrity not necessarily
bismirnb bismirnlgb smurn besmirc besmirced. >> i wonder if you're really concerned, vaguely addressing it at a commencement speech is the way to go. >> commencement speech is a fairly good platform. >> it is high-profile. >> for going out there with a boom. you've been silent. you never really gave very many interviews. i do think it is pretty disingenuous for rex tillerson to act like he's all about truth and transparency in government when he was pretty notorious for closing off access to the state department press corps. >> very true. very true. >> but, at the same time i would like to hear his side of the story and i think it would be important for everyone to understand how the president's temperament in particular influences the foreign policy decisions that donald trump makes. >> rex tillerson, you have an open invitation to join us here at 2:00 on msnbc. please take it. elise jordan, thank you very much. north korea's threatening to scrap a high-stakes summit with president trump over its nukes. but haven't we been here before? stay with us.
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we haven't seen anything. we haven't hard anything. we will see what happens. >> confirming he's still insisting on denuclearization. pyongyang said earlier it could walk away from the summit if the united states tries to force the country to give up all of its nuclear weapons up front. north korea has already called off scheduled talks with south korea to protest joint military drills with the u.s. those exercises happen every year. this is not the first time that north korea has cast doubt on pledges related to its nuclear program. time and again the kim dynasty has made promises to rein in the country's nuclear activities only to brake those promises later on. the big question now is who will blink first in the nuclear showdown with north korea. let's bring in nbc news pentagon correspondent hans nichols and jeffrey lewis from the nonproliferation program at the middlebury institute of international studies. hans, what is the latest? >> the latest from this building
is that you have strategic ambiguity on what the approach to north korea is going to be. we've heard from south korea that these military exercises will go on. they've been very clear about it. here at the pentagon though, there is a slightly different approach. they're saying that these are long-standing exercises. they are stressing they are defensive in nature. but if you listen to people carefully here, no one has said on the record that these military exercises will continue. they are preserving strategic space. they are preserving the ability for the president to make the decision on these exercises. >> wouldn't that be groundbreaking though, hans, to cancel these exercises? we've never done that before. >> they've toned them down in the past. you could have a way where the south koreans could potentially announce this and the u.s. wouldn't do it. they have a fair amount of space here though, at least on this stage of the military exercises, because they never really fully articulated just what kind of assets would be used. so there is a lot of back-and-forth right now. will they pull the b-52s? the u.s. never said b-52s would
be in the offing. they've been very careful. the biggest change from the pentagon in terms of their public posturing is about two months ago they turned off all attention toward these military exercises. normally if you want to fly out to korea, ride along in a tank, they'll let you do that. not this year because they wanted diplomats to have the space to negotiate. that's still what they're trying to do at the pentagon. strategic ambiguity. >> jeffrey, if we do tamp on on military exercises or allow them to be canceled, what sort of message will that be sending to kim jong-un? >> well, i think this is really a battle of framing. the north koreans have been saying that they're not planning to give up their nuclear weapons and that this is really a conversation between two nuclear powered equals. the trump administration has been saying quite the opposite, that this is about north korea giving up their nuclear weapons. i think some of the things that john bolton was saying about a libya-style deal, which didn't really end all that well for
libya, got to the north koreans. so what i think the north koreans are doing is trying to demonstrate that they are actually the ones in charge and they are the ones who can force concessions. so it is actually very unclear, as hans said, whether there were going to be any b-52s involved. i think the north koreans will count it as a win if there are no b-52s. i think the north koreans are probably pretty happy with sarah sanders statement this morning when she seemed to throw john bolton under the bus when saying there was not a libya style deal. only a trump style deal. >> broader context. do you think kim jong-un is going to want to open up north korea to more western business? open up its economy. is that something that a dictator like kim is going to welcome in that country? >> you know, i don't think it is that kind of opening. i think that the north koreans want foreign investment. they wan chinese and south korean money flowing in. but i think they are going to try to keep a pretty tight
control on it. in the past when we've seen foreign investments in north korea, they're very tightly circumscribed. the regime wants to whet its beak. they certainly want to get the benefits of that, but i don't anticipate a kind of political or economic opening of the kind that for example we saw in china in the 1980s. >> from 1 to 10, 1 being no 10, 10 being every chance, what are the chances north korea gives up its nukes in exchange for that, jeffrey? >> you didn't give me the chance of zero. >> zero. there you go. jeffrey lewis, it is not a funny story but the answer was amu amusing. jeffrey lewis, i appreciate it. hans nichols, i appreciate it as well. things are looking good for women democrats in the mid-terms. about last night with steve kornacki. don't even go there -- no, no. we're talking about the primaries. coming up right after the break. this is your wake-up call. if you have moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis,
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this congressional district donald trump only carried by two points in 2016. democrats recruited a former congressman, brad ashford. he represented his district, lost narrowly 2016. a big surprise last night. a candidate challenging him from the left, running on single payer health care, kara eastman beat brad ashford. the conventional thinking of the political establishment is you got to nominate somebody like ashford to win in a district like this? does that matter as much as the establishment thinks it does? can a grassroots candidate running more to the left actually have broader appeal than anybody the establishment ninks? this will be a fascinating test in the fall. much more of the story though last night. more broadly it was pennsylvania. democrats trying to get back the house. they need to pick up 23 total seats. they could potentially get a bunch of those out of pennsylvania. here's one.
remember they redrew the maps recently out there. this is one of the districts there. democratic primary. this district changed so much in the redistricting, this is as good as being the general election here. mary scanlon winning this primary. that would be a democratic pick-up if they wins that district. it was pat meehan, a republican. another district where the map really moved in the democrats' favor, christy houlihan winning that primary. she faces off against a republican opponent, greg macaulay. but this district a very, very promising target for democrats. first district for scott wallace goes after ryan fitzpatrick. we'll talk a lot about that race in the fall. susan wild emerging on charlie dent's seat. democrats on the left breathing a sigh of relief. in the tenth district, basically could, if everything broke their way, get 5 of those 23 right there in the yellow in that part
i give him credit for -- >> the economy. >> i give him credit for -- >> north korea. >> the economy. >> the economy. >> the new tax changes. >> sticking to his promises. >> the economy and taxes. >> his guts. just being the president. >> tax changes. the divide in america. >> conservative judges. >> he's been a disappointment when it comes to -- >> his tweets. >> mueller. >> his mouth. his tweets. being kind. >> he's standing with the rest of the world. >> tweeting on petty issues. >> his action as president. >> unity. >> mimicking people. >> his actions. >> can donald trump win again? i'm sure a lot of you out there will declare, no, absolutely not, how could he? just look at x, y and z.
but are those really the best indicators or your indicators of how well or poorly donald trump is doing? what if those who are looking at him are actually looking at a, b and c? that focus group of six trump voters and six clinton voters near milwaukee, wisconsin, gives trump credit for the economy and ding him for how he behaves. dan balls from "the washington post" went a little deeper. he repeatedly visited minnesota, iowa, wisconsin and illinois doing repeated and extended interviews with voters in counties that flipped from democrat to republican in 2016. counties that helped trump win the electoral college. he writes, this is a region of small towns an rural attitudes populated by communities that have felt the devastating effects of deindustrialization. adding what follows is not a scientific survey of the country. instead, it is a story of how
attitudes toward the president have changed gradually over time, told through the voices of a selection of people in a unique ecosystem of trump nation. among the president's true loyalists, his grip remains strong. among others who supported him, that has weakened. even his most ardent supporters don't appreciate the president's tweets. though for some it is rnot the content but hs inability to control impulses. dan balls, chief "washington post" and also the writer of that piece. and also white house reporter for the associated press and msnbc political animal lialysna jonathan lemire, and eli stokols. i suggest anybody out there to read it. you live and work in washington. going out there talking to people. what do you think the big thing you learned was? >> well, what i learned really is that people see donald trump
in three dimensions and that whether they're trump supporters or trump opponents, they have a variety of views about him. and so as the piece says, there are some -- i would say many trump supporters who are still very much with him. and any time you suggest that there is anything other than that, they take issue and take umbrage with that. there are a few -- don't know how to quantify it -- but some have given up on him who voted for him, but they've had enough. they just don't like the way he's separating. then there is another group which i think is in the sense the key to his future who are still with him, who voted for him. who like some of the policies but they find the conduct not just unbecoming but quite unpresidential. and in talking to some of these people over a long period of time, many, many months, what i sensed was a gradual movement away from him. as i say, they haven't broken
with him yet, but they're much less comfortable with him and we'll have to see what he's able to do between now and 2020 to reassure them he's going to be able to do 2020 to reassure them. >> you write this the piece about one of the men relayed a story why people voted the way they did in 2016, voted for donald trump. the american dream of a highways, of driving a car down the road that doesn't have something falling off of it and going out with a family to eat for a reasonable price is disappearing. at first i thought it was a casual thing, and then it became a flood. that is the sentiment we heard a lot on the campaign trail, this feeling of this lack of hope, looking around their towns and not seeing mom and pop stores, not seeing kids growing up, riding their bikes around town. not seeing any opportunity going forward. do you think that that stuff in
the atmosphere that still economists in a strong enough way to where people that voted for donald trump in 2016 might overlook all of the negatives they see now and decide hey i am going to take another chance in 2020. >> yeah. i think that's clearly possible. i think if you talk to democrats, they are really concerned about this. i talked to a high up stroot gist about this yesterday. their concern is that democrats are overplaying the russia hand and the impeachment hand and that that's not going to meet the voters where they are. they are worried they don't have anybody speaking to the people and countering trump's message saying we understand that economically things have been difficult for you. but here's the truth. it's not going to take education. it's not other people's fault. it's going to take the social safety net that this president is gutting. er going to need that at some point. they are not making the argument to the people how this president's policies are actually hurting them. that's an argument strategists
think will be critical to being able to one over those voters. >> a lot of people in the balls points point over to the social media there is a feeling that no matter what donald trump does there is going to be negative coverage of it. they are willing to look at what is out there and say listen i'm not going to believe it or i'm going to justify it because i like this. is it the truth to say that folks who don't like donald trump may be looking at xy and z, while folks who like him are looking at ab and r. >> there are different interests here than in other parts of the country. the president has done a good job of politicizing the media so that he is playing a role in it. part of it is a deliberate act. it is a not just to score a pill point at a rally, but to cast doubt on some of our reporting shows. therefore, if people don't trust us they may not believe the
negative stories or the factual stories because they don't like them because they are unkind in their estimation to the president. but there is no question that there are people out there -- the piece is terrific -- in the upper midwest noting in the 100 counties or so that had gone democrat for five straight election cycles, those that trump flipped, whether it's iowa, illinois, wisconsin, minnesota, trump won two of those. almost won minnesota. add pennsylvania. that's where he won the election. he could win it again if those phoenix are delivering change. if they don't feel the results yet who do they blame, him or democrats or us? >> to yourpoint, bashing the media is striking a bond with these people about what they are against. if he hasn't done anything for them at least they are together against the media, the elites, et cetera.
>> the margin of error is very small. if he loses a vote or two or a thousand votes in one district he could definitely lose the electoral college again. one more question to you, dan. this is what a lot of folks out there might say, hey listen i think donald trump voters voted for him because they are racist or i think they voted for him because they are sexist or xenophobic. i think that's a broad brush to pain but i want to read from one gentleman what you interviewed. a man whose last name is brunning in clayton county. he sasic i think one of the reasons is that it is exhausting to have to edit yourself all the time and trump was completely opposite of that. he said trump allowed people not the feel bad about holding say anti-immigrant views or something. that's one thing i notice is people are able to say how they feel about a host of different
things. he went on the say that hillary clinton didn't pay enough attention to this county, that she wasn't speaking to voters directly, wasn't hearing from them and wasn't connecting with them. what do you think of those charge was race and sexism and immigration? >> we should note he is the county democratic chair in that county. and he was trying to give a kind of what i think was a pretty even-handed view both crediting trump with his ability to reach people without being politically correct, and you know, crediting clinton with failure to come out there. i think that there is no question that race and gender and national identity were factors in this election. i think it's too easy to say all of trump's supporters are rac t racist. but i think we know that this country is divided racially and continues to be show. and that trump has helped to
feed that in some ways. but i think that's too easy an answer for democrats to think that that's the only thing that caused trump to win. >> dan, i hope you are going to continue doing this reporting and if you do that you will come on this show and share with us. >> will do. >> dan balls, and eli stokels. we'll be right back. starts in outer space. where satellites feed infrared images of his land into a system built with ai. he uses watson to analyze his data with millions of weather forecasts from the cloud, and iot sensors down here, for precise monitoring of irrigation. it's a smart way to help increase yields, all before the rest of us get out of bed. your digestive system has billions of bacteria, but life can throw them off balance. try align, the #1 doctor recommended probiotic. with a unique strain that re-aligns your system. re-align yourself, with align.
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chris jansen picks things up right now. >> another mind bending day in the msnbc newsroom. katy katy, thank you. i am chris jansing in for ali velshi. this hour, president trump is expected to hold a round table on sanctuary cities. and we are waiting to find out if he comments on two huge stories breaking. once again, stories overshadowing the administration's message. first up, a detailed look at the president's finances and businesses, his disclosure form is out. and this time it includes that payment to his personal attorney, michael cohen, for a third party. could that be stormy daniels? if so, is it proof that the president lied about it? here's what stormy's lawyer said this afternoon on msnbc. >> it's remarkable now that the president has come forward and is now admitting that he paid these monies when he denied it. >> all right. that's just the first story. also breaking