tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC September 11, 2018 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT
i'm sorry i ran through all the commercials. that does it for us tonight. we will see you again tomorrow. now it's time for the last word with lawrence o'donnell while i go talk to people who are supposed to have this company making money. >> rachel, it was really a great interview with bob woodward. we discovered things -- you talk about things no one else has been talking about in this book. there are so many things to go through. but i want to get your reaction. what do you think were the highlights, what were some of the surprises in your conversation in >> well, it's interesting. on that issue of the national security advisor, h.r. mcmaster
and the security council apparently concluding that the president had obtained russian propaganda -- >> yes. >> -- and was distributing it from the white house via his twitter account, that as of last summer, them determining that, that really is hanging out there with us having no idea where that went. we've got woodward's bullet proof reporting that mcmaster discovered that. he verified it. it wasn't something that just looked like russian propaganda. the national security council determined that it was. if we had a functioning congress, that is the sort of thing that you would expect there to be congressional investigations about. also there does seem to be, as i was talking with mr. woodward about just a moment ago, there does seem to be real sensitivity within the white house to the questions raised about jared kushner's finances and business dealings, with all sorts of people close to the president raising the prospect that that might have been the real reason behind lots of his behavior, everything from firing james comey to picking fights with
jeff sessions, a lot of people in the white house attributed freak-outs from the president and outbursts from the president as efforts to try to distract specifically from concerns about jared's finances. so there's all sorts ofly little threads like that. there's personality staff and people calling people crazy. there are investigative threads to pull and this book is going to be a start of that reporting. >> what i'm intrigued by and hasn't gotten a lot of concentration until your conversation with bob woodward tonight is the way the governing actually works in this white house. in that sense, that part -- those parts of the book you can compare them to previous woodward books inside previous presidencies and he made a reference to the book he wrote about the first book he wrote about the clinton administration and nafta and the way nafta worked its weights throuay thro legislative process. you can see in the story titled
agenda, it is an extremely careful process, and every decision being made about nafta in its implementation and what the government would have to do to implement it, is done with extreme care, both inside the clinton white house and in the congress when they're doing it. and then you cut to the 21st century version of this in the trump white house where we heard bob woodward tonight describe to you how he just wants to throw it all away and people are surrounding him telling him all of the things that nafta has done that he does not know about. he clearly does not know about. and it has -- and then new information has no effect. >> yes, that's -- that last point. that's the key part of it, because there is a difference between a president having suspect ideas -- at one point woodward uses the phrase dangerous ideas to talk about how even trump's top advisors advise -- think about the way that he thinks about the world. but it's another thing to be
unwilling or unable to engage with the implications of what you're about to do because you're so caught up in the idea of the excitement that you're about to do something big. if you actually can't weigh the consequence of that because you're incapable of seeing that far down the road or incapable of absorbing that complexity, i mean that's the reason we don't let dogs drive cars. it doesn't mean dogs are bad. it just means just because you can reach the pedal doesn't mean you should be able to propel this hunk of iron. so it's disturbing. i think it's insightful in terms of the president's psychology, but i think it also shows us why he called the book "fear." there's reasons to worry. >> rachel, i think that's the missed possible subtitle of this book. i think in the paper back version, let me get it in the frame. paper back version is going to be "fear: why we don't let dogs drive cars" by bob woodward. that should be the paper back title of this book.
>> my dog is not going to say hello to me, he's going to turn his back to me. i am in trouble with the dog community. i can tell you. >> the dog will get over it, rachel. >> thank you, lawrence. >> thank you, rachel. we have solve to discuss with our panel tonight on rachel's interview with bob woodward in this last hour. and this new book "fear" which has rocked the white house by revealing an uninformed and unfit president trump in more detail than any previous reporting. this book is on sale today and americans will now be able to read this, judge it for themselves. politico is reporting that the president is absolutely livid at the former members of his administration, especially gary cohn and rob porter, who he believes leaked to bob woodward. they are both obvious direct sources of the book. both men appear frequently in the book, including in a section that describes kohn stealing a letter from the president's desk before he could sign it to terminate the united states trade deal with south korea.
and so today, those two former members of the trump administration released written statements about bob woodward's book and they do not, they do not take back a single quote that either one of them gave to the book. gary cohn, the former chief economic advisor, said, in part, that the book does not accurately portray my experience at the white house. and rob porter, the former staff secretary, referred to the book as having selective and often misleading presentations. their statements were very, very similar, but neither statement denied being a source for the book and both of them obviously are. and they did not deny any, any of the claims made in their name in the book. and so neither statement actually in any way contradicts anything in bob woodward's reporting in this book. but the president again tried to claim today that these new statements actually have meaning
and that the book is not a reliable account of his presidency. >> do you believe rob porter and gary cohn -- >> you shouldn't be talking about that right now because it doesn't matter. but i appreciate their statement. their statement was excellent. they both set out beautiful which shows the book is just a piece of fiction. >> and the president has tweeted that the woodward book is a scam and bob woodward is a liar. but there is an obvious contradiction in the president's statements on bob woodward's book. politico said, this book does not accurately portray my experience, former top stewards of the administration who shards with the famed journalist alarming details of how the white house functions. joining our discussion now leading us off tonight, tim o'brien, he is the executive editor of bloomberg view. he's the author of trump nation, the art of being the donald. and an msnbc contributor.
david corn is with us, washington bureau chief, coauthor of the book russian roulette and msnbc political analyst. and washington post and best selling author who has written biographies on presidents clinton and obama. let me go to david marinas on this. you have read books about presidencies. you have written books about presidencies. you have read bob woodward books about presidencies before. >> yes. >> the president tonight trying just the most lame white house reaction to a bob woodward book ever, and where do you think this stands at the moment in the bob woodward versus the credibility of the trump white house? >> so many paths, bob said, right? >> so many paths. that's what he just told rachel in the last hour. >> yes. you know, in one way it's sort of watergate redux with non-denial denials. people who spent hours and hours with bob woodward and gave him
documents denying things that they said to him when he has them on tape. and has the documents. in the war on truth, i can't think of a better general on the side of truth than bob woodward. and that's where we stand right now. >> i wanted -- here's a quote from rob porter in the book. let's remember, rob porter and gary cohn their written statements -- they don't attempt to contradict a single word in the book. porter says, it felt like we were walking along the edge of the cliff perpetually. other times we would fall over the edge. and an action would be taken. and tim o'brien, it's very clear, i mean, anyone who knows how to read these books can tell that rob porter is a direct source, speaking directly to bob woodward as is gary cohn. these statements they've issued today are things that have happened with woodward books before and bob woodward has said in the past that sometimes people will actually tell him.
sorry, but i'm coming out today and i'm going to say something negative about the book, even though, of course, i did give you all this interview material. >> the most famous -- this has happened before -- mark felt, who was deep throat for both bob woodward and carl bernstein. mark felt spent 30 years after that book came out denying that he was the source for the book because everyone in washington needs to insulate themselves from the fallout of a bob woodward book. there is a good chance that a number of the people in the white house who have stepped up and have said, this is an inaccurate account, or i never said what i said, are simply covering themselves because they're aware that they're with a president who is going to be vindictive and is going to try to take them off the stage. and i think the other issue here that comes out in full spades in this with what all of them are contending with is they've got a president who is profoundly ignorant. he's not only intemperate, he's
ignorant and they're trying to protect him from his own i ignorance. >> when you were writing about donald trump and his businesses is this what you noted with the businesses, the frustrated advisory group around him? >> the trump that's portrayed in bob's book is the same trump who ran for president. he is the same trump who ran the trump organization. he is the same donald trump that everyone in new york has known for the last 50 years. this is exactly who this guy is. >> let's listen what bob woodward told rachel about the need to create a process in the white house. john kelly at a certain point, chief of staff realizing that they had to do something so that when donald trump simply tweets something or says something, it doesn't automatically become the next action of the white house. let's listen to this. >> presidents can do wonderful things and they can do disastrous things. the process really matters. it finally gets to a point in the book where general kelly,
who is the chief of staff, sits down with rob porter who is the staff secretary and says, we need to write up rules and we need to tell the president that if he makes one of these seat of the pants decisions, it's not final. we have to sit down and have a process where the president will actually literally sign a document, a decision memo. it's not final. you can't run around and do these things. there's got to be a process. you've got to hear arguments. and time and time again -- sometimes he does, but time and time again he doesn't. >> david koran, doesn't sound like the process is working. >> you know, donald trump's love affair with chaos is well known. we saw it in the campaign. we've seen it in how the books and a lot of reporting that's come out in the last year and a half. to me the most frightening thing
here -- and this -- i think the lack of process is reflected in this. in bob's book, he talked about it with rachel. there are examples throughout the book. the president seems incapable of thinking. i know that sounds hyperbolic, but thinking entails absorbing information, considering the information, processing the information, and coming to some conclusion or output at the end. and instance after instance, he refuses to absorb information. maybe he can't even do so. and there is no process internally to match any bureaucratic or organizational process. and to me that's the mostly frightening thing. a guy with his finger on the nuclear button who is impulsive, egotistical and narcissistic doesn't seem to be able to engage in basic cognitive activity. >> and the world trade organization is a very good example of that. we heard bob woodward -- >> yes.
>> -- describing this to rachel in the last hour, the president's inability to understand how things actually work in the world trade organization and why it generally works so much to the united states' advantage. let's listen to that. >> when confronted with evidence -- for instance, there is a scene in the book where he starts talking about the world trade organization, which is an organization that actually gives us great leverage if there is unfair trade practice in the world. and he said, this is the worst organization in the world and the advisors who are experts in there say, no. and trump says, well, we lose our cases there and they bring out the document. no, we win 85.7% of the cases, not just 85%, but 85.7. and trump says, no, that's not true. they said, bring in your trade representative.
call him. ask him. trump, i don't want to. i won't do that. he closes his mind to the information that makes it possible for the president to weigh arguments and data. >> and, david marinas, the president seems incapable of being embarrassed at the exposure of his own ignorance in those scenes. >> you know, that was so classic bob woodward, the 85.7%. you know, he's relentless -- he's very cautious, never getting ahead of the facts, but releaptless in t relentless in the pursuit of them. but yes, there have been a few politicians in the modern age who seem incapable of embarrassment or guilt, and donald trump in this book time and time again comes through in that fashion. >> and, tim, the donald trump that you've seen, as we've said, seems to be -- this seems to be just the government version of
the donald trump -- >> exactly. >> the way he operated in business, the way he did everything. when he gets these paper statements today from rob porter and gary cohn, does he fall for those? >> i think all he cares about is the show. you know, he has this very reptilian, core strengths. even if it contradicts what he believes it happening. it's also juan of his core flaws. because he only lives in this world, this fiction that he creates around himself. i think he knows full well that those are possibly cover documents for both gary cohn and rob porter. but what he cares more about is that his assemblage of voices out there saying, bob woodward is a liar and the president of the united states is telling the truth. and that's why it's worth remembering in a moment like this that trump is 72 years old and he spent the last five decades anonymously leaking
horrendous gossip and damaging information about friends, business partners and his own family members. >> david corn, on one of the mysteries bob woodward could not penetrate is what he calls the michael flynn mystery, the mysteries of michael flynn and what went on in those days at the white house before he was fired. and so that seems like that's up to special prosecutor to explain that one. >> well, it's something that, you know, a congressional investigation could explain, too. we don't seem to be having that on the house side. remember, we're waiting for the senate intelligence committee's investigation which may or may not be better than the house intelligence. there still are dozens of questions, particularly in the trump-russia scandal that bob's book doesn't address, doesn't get to, and the public deserves answers to. and trump, of course, is trying to distract mightily from that. >> david marinas, before we go,
future historians when they come to bob woodward's book and they come to what we now know about this presidency, what would be the historian's take on bob woodward's book, reading it 50 years from now? >> i think they'll find it largely reliable, as historians have found when they've gone over the notes of his books on nixon. john farrell who wrote a great biography of nixon went through all of the notes woodward had down at the university of texas and found it accurately portrayed what he was finding. i think the largest point, best point i've seen lately is david ige nash us, my colleague at the post, who described the fear of donald trump in a different way. it wasn't that he ruled by fear or we should be feared, but that donald trump was afraid, and that made him small. and everything he does is a fear of showing vulnerability and humanity. >> david marinas, tim corn, thank you for starting our discussion tonight. and when we come back, what will
we know about the president's legal defense? what bob woodward's book reveals about that. and later, donald trump had to do something today that's very difficult for him. he had to speak about 9/11 without lying. your insurance rates skyrocket after a scratch so small you could fix it with a pen. how about using that pen to sign up for new insurance instead? for drivers with accident forgiveness, liberty mutual won't raise their rates because of their first accident. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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paths. he said, i've done this for 47 years. i've never seen so many paths, and i've never seen so much as -- and he said, there is a war on the truth. one of the paths that bob woodward is talking about is a path to donald trump through his former campaign chairman paul manafort. the special prosecutor is exploring that path. and tonight the washington post is reporting that former trump campaign chairman paul manafort is in talks with special prosecutor robert mueller's office about a possible plea deal. the washington post notes that the judge in the case today delayed a scheduled pretrial hearing, but there was no reason given for that delay. the washington post notes that president trump has praised paul manafort for not pleading guilty. the post quotes the president saying, prosecutors applied tremendous pressure on him and he refused to break, make up stories in order to get a deal. the president tweeted that last month. such respect for a brave man.
that is the president's expressed respect for a convicted felon. bob woodward's book reveals that president trump's criminal defense lawyer john dowd decided to quit the trump defense team, not because he believed president trump was guilty of conspiring with russians during the presidential campaign or because he believed president trump was guilty of obstruction of justice, but because donald trump simply could not tell the truth. the book reports conversations between the president and his lawyer that could only have come from the president or his lawyer, which means john dowd appears to be the source of this material in the book, especially since the book includes things that john dowd thought but never said. john dowd's own interior dialogue with himself is in this book, and there's only one place to get that. and that is -- that actually is what the last line of the book is. the book ends with, in the
man and his presidency, dowd had seen the tragic flaw. in the political back and forth, the evasions, the denial, the tweeting, the obscuring, crying fake news, the indignation, trump had one problem dowd knew but could not bring himself to say to the president. you're a f-ing liar. joining our discussion now, mimi roper, politics editor at the root.com, both msnbc contributors and, mimi, what do you make of this report of plea negotiations with paul manafort tonight, one of the paths as bob woodward would call it? >> that would be significant no matter what kind of plea it turns out to be, but it is worth noting that there are two different kinds of pleas that manafort could take. one would be a plea where in exchange for the plea he gets some kind of benefit to his sentence. you automatically get credit for accepting responsibility and that can help you in your sentence. the other would be a plea where you give information to the
government and then you get an even bigger break in your sentence. right now as far as i know, we don't know which one, and that can make a huge difference in the sort of path of the investigation and where it goes from here. obviously if manafort did decide to cooperate, that would break open all sorts of new information, i would assume, for mueller. but even if he doesn't, it would be very significant just if he took a plea. this is a man who has been fighting these charges tooth and nail. it would i think be really something to see him stand up and under oath admit to guilt. and i'm sure part of what is going on -- and there was some reporting of this -- mueller, even if he doesn't cooperate, mueller is going to want manafort to admit to certain things that, you know, have been heavily disputed by the president, i think. >> and, jason johnson, if paul manafort does that, if paul manafort decides the truth is that he is guilty and he gets up and admits that he's guilty, he will no longer be considered a brave man by this president of the united states.
>> no, he will be considered a very dangerous man by this president of the united states, because what does paul manafort have to offer? brilliant insight, some suggestions for suits, maybe some information about ukrainians. no, he primarily has information to offer about this presidency, about this campaign, about communications, about finances. that's the only thing that paul manafort can really come to the table and offer this investigation. so he becomes a very dangerous man for this administration. i think it's important to note that the fact that he's considering these negotiations means he either doesn't believe that a presidential pardon is coming or doesn't believe that a presidential pardon can cover him from all the crimes he is potentially guilty of. that's the other layer of this that sends a message to everybody else out there. maybe pardons won't be enough and working with mueller might be your safer option. >> mimi, there are so many stunning things in bob woodward's book. but one of them is john dowd's obvious cooperation with bob woodward on this book, which seems to be a violation of the attorney/client privilege.
>> well, it's a violation if he's revealing, yes, conversations he had directly with trump, which it seems like -- >> he is. >> he is. although some of it, as you say, is also his internal dialogue, the things he wish he had said to trump. that seems to be -- >> he's in there with phone calls to his client telling bob woodward the words in quotation marks that were said on phone calls. >> there's no question. he should not be doing that. it's a violation of the attorney/client privilege and a number of ethical rules. i don't know if he just doesn't care or it seems like what dowd wants to do is sort of get his story out there about why it is that he left the team. it wasn't because, you know, as you said, he thinks he's guilty of collusion, but because he thinks trump can't tell the truth. and i think the important thing about that statement, which plays such a big part in dowd's book -- sorry, woodward's book is that, you know, dowd knows that trump could go in there and lie about the weather.
he could lie about things that don't matter and that's not going to get trump prosecuted for perjury. >> because it's not a material -- >> exactly. it needs to be material. so dowd, by saying that, by saying you're going to end up in an orange jump suit or some version of that, he's saying trump is going to lie about things that have a real impact on the investigation. and what that tells me is that he thinks trump knows things that would have an effect on the investigation. so this whole claim of trump knows nothing about collusion, no conversations with russians, that just doesn't ring true with what dowd is saying here about the back story. >> we're going to have to squeeze in a break here. mimi rocca and jason johnson, jason is going to come back, thank you both for joining us. coming up, the president who can never find fault with vladimir putin now faces a new test. we have an nbc news exclusive report tonight that russia may have been behind an attack against u.s. diplomats in cuba.
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here is more of bob woodward's interview with rachel maddow tonight where bob woodward quotes defense secretary mattis telling the president we're trying to prevent world war 3. >> trump is concerned about all the expense of deploying troops in south korea or in europe. and secretary of defense mattis is saying to him, you know, this is the best bargain we have. these troops are here to protect us, not south koreans or
europeans. and then trump persists and finally mattis -- i think one of the most bracing lines in the book is, he says, we're doing this to prevent world war iii. >> bob woodward's new book is among other things a warning about how president trump jeopardizes real security. offending vladimir putin faces a new test. nbc news reported exclusively news agencies consider russia to be the main suspect in mysterious attacks on our diplomatic missions in cuba and in china that have led to brain injuries among u.s. personnel working there. though they currently do not have enough evidence to formally accuse russia, their suspicions are backed up by communications collected as part of an ongoing investigation. joining our discussion now is ned price, former senior director and spokesperson for the national security council
and the obama administration. he's also a former cia analyst and is a msnbc national security contributor. and david corn is back with us. and, ned, i want to get two things. your reaction to bob woodward's description of the national security tensions within this administration and they're trying to prevent world war iii and donald trump souzaant sedoeo understand it. and this nbc news report about the possibility russians were behind what's happened to the diplomatic personnel in cuba. >> well, lawrence, the tensions that we see in this administration to my mind at least are unlike any tensions we've seen in previous administrations. in previous administrations you have natural and sometimes logical cleavages between different factions and administrations, state department versus defense department, the intelligence community versus another element. in this case you have president trump versus the world. you have president trump versus
his entire national security establishment in some cases. we learn this both from the woodward book and, of course, we saw a very vivid depiction of this in the anonymous op-ed that "the new york times" wrote. it is one man standing in many cases against the people who are most knowledgeable and experienced about our national security and unfortunately that one man is donald trump. when it comes to what we learned today from nbc news about current suspicions of russian involvement in these attacks in cuba, what has struck me is the administration's silence on this. we have heard absolutely nothing from the administration about culpability for these attacks. and we have every reason to believe that if the cuban government were in any way responsible for these, the trump administration would go out of its way to point the finger at havana. the trump administration, of course, has done everything it can to try and roll back some of the -- the obama administration
pursued with cuba and russia being responsible for this would make perfect sense. it would make perfect sense that the administration once again is trying to protect its ally in moscow, vladimir putin. its ally in moscow that has an intelligence presence in cuba, that has this technology, that has agents, and that has reason to do this. the russians, of course, have reason to divide us from the cubans, our neighbor in the western hemisphere, and it's my strong suspicion that the trump administration knows a lot more than what they've told the american people. >> and, david corn, the scenes of frustration in bob woodward's book about national security issues are some of the most extreme. there is a confirmation in this book about one word that was in dispute many months ago when stephanie ruhle here at msnbc was the first to report that rex tillerson called the president a moron at the end of a meeting in the pentagon about national security issues. that meeting is described in great detail in bob woodward's
book in the way stephanie originally reported the quote, tillerson ended the meeting by calling donald trump an f-ing moron. bob woodward confirms it was f-ing moron, not just moron. and rex tillerson said it in a way deliberately so that everyone in the room could hear him, and this was after the president was saying things like why don't we just pull all of our troops out of south korea and rambled around the map of the world of where u.s. defense assets were in a way that frightened everyone in that room. >> i think this scene is the most chilling scene in the entire book. it takes place in the tank, the sort of highly secure conference room in the pentagon. and basically this was kind of a bit of an intervention, you can call it. mattis and tillerson and other big wigs wanted to get trump out of the white house, sit him down in front of that map, and say, here we have troops, here we
have trade deals. here we have listening posts, here we have an interest in this country, and that country. and basically show trump that we're interconnected with allies around the world, and we have to keep that in mind. and if you start a trade war with an ally, it might have a national security implication. and trump is just highly resistant to this. he's saying, these guys aren't allies, they don't care about us, they're not going to back me when i rip up the iran deal. they're not friends of mine and they keep trying, trying and many different directions to show him that the america has a place in ray global structure that's to the advantage of america. and all he can do is stick to this basic idea that he, america and him, are getting screwed by everybody else in the world and it's time to shove it to everybody. and that's when he walks out and that's when, you know, tillerson says, the man is an f-ing moron. >> ned price, i think you can
confirm for us that's not the laadrian waj of these meetings normally, especially the part in that same meeting where the most ridiculous person ever allowed in such a meeting, steve bannon, is the one who the president turns to to argue with the defense secretary and the generals and others and gary cohn and others in that room. steve bannon throwing around a lot of profanity on his part in his direct address with those generals. >> lawrence, i think one of the many absurdities we have long forgotten about this administration, steve bannon was actually placed on the national security council in january of 2017. and one of the first orders that president trump promulgated as president of the united states. i can confirm you are in fact correct, i did not routinely hear that language in the situation room. it is not the language you expect to hear when you are debating and sometimes speaking about matters of life and death. everything from the iran deal to cuba, to matters of nuclear contingency. so it is not certainly par for the course in those settings.
>> go ahead, david. >> one quick thing. you know, it's time for rex tillerson, gary cohn, and rob porter to say these things out in the open. this is how the president behaves. the public has a right to know, particularly before the mid terms. and they're cowards if they're sitting on these experience ands not sharing them with us. >> ned price, david corn, thank you both for joining our discussion tonight. and when we come back, september 11th is always a challenge for donald trump because it's very hard for him to not tell lies about september 11th. ways to lose stubborn belly fat.
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and it's going to make us a much, much better service. today on the 17th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the president did something that is difficult for him. he talked about 9/11 without lying. the president read a speech in teleprompters written for him by white house speech writers so it did not include any of the president's lies about 9/11. in the past the president has lied about what he saw on 9/11. he said he saw thousands of people in new jersey celebrating the attack on the world trade center on the day that it happened. that was a lie. he didn't see any people doing that, none. the president lied about what he did after 9/11. he lied about having contributed to charitable funds for the victims of 9/11. that was a lie. he had not contributed anything until he became a presidential candidate. and donald trump's worst lie
about 9/11 is the lie that got the least attention. most of the news media completely ignored donald trump's worst lie about 9/11. it is the lie that he told about what he personally lost on 9/11. >> how did he keep us safe when the world trade center -- the world -- excuse me. i lost hundreds of friends. >> as soon as donald trump said that in the campaign debate in south carolina, i said he was lying. i didn't know how many friends he lost, i knew it wasn't hundreds. the next day on "meet the press," donald trump changed that to many, many friends. he said he lost many, many friends on 9/11. once again, i immediately tweeted that that was a lie and i still didn't know how many friends donald trump might have lost on 9/11. knowing the way donald trump lies as i do, i suspected then
that the real number was zero, and then i checked and the real number was zero. donald trump did not attend a single 9/11 funeral, not one. there has been much debate in the news media about how do you know when a trump lie is a lie and not just a falsehood that he believes? one way of knowing that a trump lie is a lie is that he stops saying it. and when i held that lie up to donald trump's face, even he could see how evil that lie was. and even donald trump knew he could never try to tell that lie again. and so he never did. in a political debate on a saturday night he said he lost hundreds of friends. and the next morning on "meet the press," he said he lost many, many friends on 9/11. and then he never, ever said it again, never. in a political debate to score points, donald trump tried to steal the grief of 9/11 families
and then use that grief as his own. use it as a weapon in a political debate. and the one thing we know donald trump has never felt about 9/11 is grief. in his lifelong quest for attention, donald trump managed to get himself on local television in new york city on 9/11 after both of the world trade center towers fell, and he had no idea how to even begin to express grief because, of course, he couldn't feel any. instead the feeling that he had that day on 9/11, the thing he found within himself, was pride, pride, that he believed he now had the tallest building in lower manhattan now that the world trade center had collapsed. >> 40 wall street was the second tallest building in downtown
manhattan and it was actually before the world trade center was the tallest. and then when they built the world trade center, became known as the second tallest and now it's the tallest. >> did you hear any grief there? that was on 9/11. and it wasn't grief that the president felt today when he got off air force one in pennsylvania to attend the 9/11 commemoration of flight 93 that takes place there every year. there is only one president in our history who could arrive at such a solemn and tragic -- donald trump has attended 9/11 commemoration services only once in 2016 when he was running for president. every year, family members who lost loved ones on 9/11 shared the difficult duty of reading the names of everyone who was killed at ground zero.
it takes hours, and local television still covers every minute of it as they did today. and that's when you see the real pain of 9/11, the real grief. and on this day, none of that grief seems diminished by the passage of time. on this day, you see the faces and you hear the voices of the living victims of 9/11, the people who lost husbands and wives, sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, grandmothers and grandfathers. >> richard michael caproni. jose manuel cardona. >> dennis m. kerry, senior. >> edward carleno. >> michael scott carlo. >> and my father and guardian
ang angel, we love you and miss you always. >> and my grandfather joseph pisc piscatalo. even though i never met you, i'll never forget you. i love you. >> we'll be right back. forget . i love you. >> we'll be right back. if you listen real hard you can hear the whales. oop. you hear that? (vo) our subaru outback lets us see the world. sometimes in ways we never imagined.
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hurricanes in puerto rico. and he obviously did not feel a bit of grief for the 3,000 people killed by those hurricanes. >> the job that fema and law enforcement and everybody did working along with the governor in puerto rico, i think, was tremendous. i think puerto rico was an incredible, unsung success. >> jason johnson is back with us, and jason, sociopath is a word used to describe people who cannot feel the suffering of other people. >> kwayeah, i think that's a fa description. also liar, incompetent, unhinged. we have a whole string of words we can use to describe this president. it's amazing he talks about a weather tragedy as being a heck of a good job, but what's worse is his administration lied about it. his administration tried to tell the rest of the american public
that less than 100 people died. his administration is full of republicans who tried to take money from fema and put it into i.c.e. it's not that he just does not care, but he's actively engaged in policies that will not mitigate the tragedy puerto rico has experienced, and in fact makes the situation worse. >> jason, the staff got an appropriate speech forum in a teleprompter in pennsylvania today, but every other moment when he's getting off the plane, it's like he's going to a rally. even when he's at the location, at this sacred location, he does this horrible thumbs up moment that is so disconnected to the event that he's at, at the place that he's visiting. and this is just a recurring phenomenon with him. >> yeah. i remember, lawrence, the first time the president went and visited puerto rico, for example, do you remember him tossing paper towels at people? he's tossing paper towels. every single opportunity this president has to heal the country or bring us together, if
it's not about him, if it's not an opportunity for him to brag about himself, for him to bring the attention to himself, he doesn't care. and when you think of something like 9/11, which is 17 years of people suffering and tragedy, the cancer cases, all the things that have happened since and this president has nothing to say about those things, if only he had an opportunity to bring it to himself, that's the only time he's going to care. >> well, he brought it to himself once and he lied about it. he said he lost hundreds of friends on 9/11, and at least he has stopped telling that lie. jason johnson, thank you very much for joining us tonight. tonight's "last word" is next. (burke) that's what we call a huge drag. seriously, that's what we call it. officially. and we covered it. talk to farmers. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪
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other cancers have happened. don't start xeljanz xr if you have an infection. tears in the stomach or intestines, low blood cell counts and higher liver tests, and cholesterol levels have happened. your doctor should perform blood tests before you start and while taking xeljanz xr, and monitor certain liver tests. tell your doctor if you were in a region where fungal infections are common and if you have had tb, hepatitis b or c, or are prone to infections. don't let another morning go by without talking to your rheumatologist about xeljanz xr.
don't let another what ar[ explosion ]ay when you get o♪ o the moon? you're down here and you look up, and you don't think about it too much. but space exploration changes your perception. it allows us to see things that we should've seen a long time ago. rated pg-13. time for tonight's last word. >> gary cohn and general mattis are portrayed in the book as fully aware that trump doesn't understand the importance of allies overseas, the value of diplomacy or the relationship between america, the economy and intelligence partnerships with foreign governments. something they referred to as the big problem.
which, coincidentally, is also trump's secret service code name. >> big problem. we got a big problem. big problem incoming. >> stephen colbert gets tonight's "last word." "the 11th hour" with brian williams starts now. breaking news tonight, the president declares his administration totally prepared for a giant storm churning west toward landfall in the carolinas while calling his own response to puerto rican unsung success. tonight bob woodward on trump's war on truth and what he says people are calling the mike flynn mystery. and donald trump jr. says he's not afraid of jail time that may result from the russia case while he laments that his father can't trust that many people on the inside anymore. all of it as "the 11th hour" gets underway on a tuesday night.