tv Morning Joe MSNBC August 20, 2019 3:00am-6:00am PDT
pulitzer prize winning columnist and associate editor of "the washington post," eugene robinson. great to have you all this morning. >> mika -- >> willie, great to see you again. >> i wasn't here yesterday and i wanted to congratulate mika for summiting mt. kilimanjaro. i walked up 57th street and i was totally out of breath. i stopped and had myself a cold drink so i can't believe you did that that's so cool. >> well -- >> it was nutty. i'm going to post some pictures. it was hard. i'm not going to say, wow, i'm so cool. you really ought to -- no, i think that one must train before one does such things. and it was -- it was hard. but thank you so much. >> they don't train. willie, they just -- and in fact, she tells me they got to the base camp and they said oh, we want to do it in 5 1/2 days and they were like, well, --
>> they tried to say, seven or nine. >> you need seven or eight days. >> no, i have to get back on the air. >> most people do it in nine. but no. that's very dangerous and -- no. we want to get to the top, let's go. >> that's very mika. i'm going to be jogging to the top of mt. kilimanjaro, yes. >> exactly. >> well, you know, willie, go to times square and there's a mcdonald's there and you have to walk upstairs to eat it. >> why do they do that? they need a people mover to get us up to the seating area. >> yeah, i need to be able to recline. big mac in your hand. >> okay. we'll get to the news. >> we have our crosses to bear. but the world awaits -- >> i'm going to put it on instagram. it was my daughter and me. it was our time together so i'm -- i'm going to post a few pictures on instagram and leave it at that. it was a great experience for us. >> well, i'm impressed.
really cool. >> to the news. thank you. it's good for all three of us to be together again. we haven't seen you in so long, willie. >> it's august. >> it's good to have -- all right. to the news. >> see you in a couple of months. >> after 11 consecutive weeks of mass protests, hundreds of security officers from a chinese paramilitary force are staged across the water from hong kong. "the new york times" reports that by amassing the troops within view of hong kong, china's communist party is delivering a strong warning that the use of force remains an option for beijing. "the times" notes that xi jinping has ruled with an iron fist. we'll follow that and meanwhile twitter and facebook are
suspending accounts that are tied to the anti-campaign against those in hong kong. those in china amplified the messages and images that portrayed hong kong's protesters as violent and extreme. "the times" notes that although both facebook and twitter are blocked in china, recent activity over the hong kong protests suggests that beijing will use those services to spread its messaging outside its firewall when it deems necessary. also this morning, guys, says that trump's policies are directly to blame for a new and ongoing resurgence of isis in iraq and syria. the u.s. defense department's report says that president trump's partial troop withdrawal has emboldened isis and the report notes that the troop drawdown has forced the united states to rely on third party monitoring in some areas include agent the 70,000 person refugee
camp. that according to "the new york times." quote, it's evolving into the hot bed of isis ideology and a huge breeding ground for future terrorists. the report states that isis currently has an estimated 14 to 18,000 combatants, continues to conduct guerrilla attacks across iraq and syria and can tap into the reported $400 million war chest. joe? >> so, katty kay, this is something that the trump administration was warned about. it was something that people inside the pentagon warned donald trump about as did people across the foreign policy community. so now people inside his own administration and the pentagon are saying that yes, his actions have led to the resurgence of isis. it's obviously something we have seen before. and you just wonder whether he's
going to double down or whether he's going to actually do what barack obama started and keep isis on the run. >> so a multiple fronts the administration is facing the prospect of isis resurging. syria, iraq, but also in afghanistan. we had a story -- a series of ten coordinated attacks in afghanistan on monday in an area where we know that i.s. is present just at the time that the americans are trying to negotiate some kind of peace deal or effectively withdrawal agreement for american forces from afghanistan. and it has to be a reminder of this report and what we have seen happening in afghanistan in the last few days that it's very complicate. if you pull back american forces in a way that's too precipitous or is not coordinated, is not thought out, does not leave behind some kind of political solution then this is an organization that re-emerges,
whether it's in the form of al qaeda in some areas or in the form of islamic state in other areas and it risks jeopardizing exactly what donald trump wants to do. this is why barack obama when he pulled back from iraq, that created the space for islamic state to emerge in syria. if you pull back, there is definitely this risk. it's something that the president has wanted to do but now he's seeing -- you know, in all three of these countries there's the prospect for them re-emerging. >> and mika, you know, you have the same concerns in afghanistan. we saw what happened in iraq. everybody rightfully became impatient and wanted troops to come home from iraq. i certainly understand that. and i wanted it as well but that created a void that led to isis. barack obama dismissed it as a regional threat before having to start this process that eventually led to the destruction of isis in iraq and syria. donald trump followed through on that, but now donald trump seems to be repeating the same
mistake. and not only talking about repeating the same mistake there, he's talking about repeating that mistake in afghanistan. lindsey graham, other republicans, some democrats, are sounding the warning that if you do this, our troops are going to just have to go back over there and fight isis again. there are no short cuts in a war against terrorists. >> the federal election commission is pushing back against the president's claims of voter fraud in the 2016 election. trump tweeted yesterday, quote, wow, reports just out. google manipulated from 2.6 million to 16 million votes for hillary clinton in the 2016 election. this was put out by a clinton supporter, not a trump supporter. google should be sued. my victory was even bigger than thought. >> oh, my goodness. >> nothing is bigger than thought. according to a "washington post" analyst trump appears to be references a study by
psychologist robert epstein whose testimony before the senate judiciary committee last month was featured in a segment on fox business moments before the president fired off his tweet. while epstein identifies himself as a democrat who backed clinton, that's a convenient figure since clinton won by about 2.9 million votes nationally. but "the post" points out that's not what epstein said in his testimony. he estimated a range of 2.6 to 10.4 million votes with 15 million votes being the possible shift in 2020. that's 2.6 million estimate he said was the rock bottom estimate. it's unclear what mythology was being used. ellen weintraub yesterday disputed trump's claims. >> there is no evidence of rampant voter fraud in 2016 or really in any previous election. people have studied this.
academics have studied this. lawyers have studied this. the democrats have studied this. republicans have studied this. and no one can find any evidence of rampant voter fraud either historically or particularly in the 2016 elections. >> and fec chair ellen weintraub joins the conversation ahead on "morning joe." willie, you now expect donald trump to start talking about crowd size. for many people yesterday suggested that this was once again the president looping, not a good look for him and still ridiculous that he is still claiming that there was massive voter fraud when he has absolutely no evidence of it. >> yeah. the author of the study ron -- robert epstein said yesterday he didn't say that google manipulated the votes and that the president twisted his words. gene robinson, it started with the inauguration numbers, you
know, the crowd size at his inauguration. he is obsessed with the idea that america is not celebrating his victory that he didn't win by as much as he thinks he did, he lost the popular votes. that somehow the questions around russia call into question how he won the election. this is a thorn in his side since the day he was elected. >> size always matters to this president and he's completely obsessed with this idea because it's true that he -- that he won a very narrow electoral victory and lost the popular vote by nearly 3 million votes. and this drives him crazy and will continue to drive him crazy. but, you know, so if he's focused on these numbers, you know that first segment we talked about these incredible problems of the rise of isis d and, you know, hong kong's streets are full of demonstrators and all this stuff going on in the world. the president is obsessed with
his crowd size at the new hampshire rally last week where he insists that people mention that his crowd was bigger than elton john's. very, very big on that. and instead of -- and instead of thinking about -- you know, hong kong and afghanistan and these places where there's all this turmoil, he's focused on greenland. we're doing to buy greenland apparently. it's just a real estate deal and that's what he's obsessed about. it's just insane, but here we are. 2019, welcome. have a nice summer. >> well, yeah. ellen weintraub will be on our show and she's consistently -- dating back a few months ago saying there was not voter fraud in the 2016 election. meanwhile the nypd reached a decision to fire officer daniel pantaleo for using the chokehold
during eric garner's deadly arrest five years ago. an issue that was brought up at the most recent democratic debate. >> officer pantaleo used a chokehold that was prohibited by nypd. he did that for seven seconds. 11 different times garner said he couldn't breathe. he knew he was killing eric garner and yet he has not been brought to justice. that police officer should be off the street. >> he should be fired. he should be fired now. >> civil rights division of the united states department of justice said charges should have been filed but this united states department of justice usurped and it's because that president did not want those charges to go forward. and they overrode a decision by the civil rights division. >> garner was selling the loose cigarettes when pantaleo placed him in the chokehold and garner
said i can't breathe 11 times in that video. so the police commissioner made that announcement, james o'neill, that the officer has been fired and the police union is disputing that and it will put a claim in to have pantaleo reinstated so he can get his benefits and remain on the job. this has been a simmering issue in this city and this country that helped in part to inspire the black lives matter movement. >> it really has. and gene, you know, we have the video evidence. >> yeah. >> you know, there were a few members -- a few members of the u.s. senate that tweeted some things about ferguson that were not borne out by video evidence or by eric holder. here we saw on camera eric garner being murdered and i guess the question is what took so long?
>> what took so long? i mean, this was -- this was ruled a homicide eventually. this is a process that ground on. there was a question of, you know, whether -- whether criminal charges would be file and, you know, local level. at the federal level filing. that whole thing had to drag on and then after all this was over and i do agree with the democratic candidates that the possibility of a federal prosecution does seem to have been foreclosed by the administration. one wonders how high up that went. but there was this whole administrative process that had to go on and of course there are union rules and everything in new york. so it took five years. it took all of this time to get to the point of acknowledging what we see clearly on the video. and what we knew at the
beginning and it is just obvious that this is an officer who should have been off the street. there will be appeals, by the way. and there's an appeals process that the officer can go through. so unfortunately, this is not really over yet. >> and it's just gone on far too long, mika, for the grieving family and also for new yorkers to know that they have a reason to believe that if somebody is murdered on the streets of new york, that there's going to be justice even if it's the police officer who is guilty. and, you know, again, it's for me -- it's disappointing that it took a democratic presidential debate to finally get people moving on this. i'm glad it finally happened, but you would hope that it could happen without that having -- a
democratic presidential debate finally pushing people to move on this. >> as gene said you can see and hear it on videotape. >> yeah. >> just -- we'll revisit this and finally, amid increasing concerns about a possible recession, the trump administration is reportedly weighing steps to help strengthen the economy. according to "the washington post," several senior white house officials have started talks about whether to push for a temporary payroll tax cut in an effort to put more money into americans' pockets. "the post" said the potential move comes amid growing concerns about the economy among president's top economic aides and discussions about the idea are still in the early statements and could include other types of tax breaks. "the new york times" adds that in addition to a potential payroll tax cut, the administration is mulling possibly reversing some of
president trump's tariffs. "the times" said that the president has not been briefed on the tax cut idea which would need to be approved by congress and it isn't clear if he would support the cuts. the white house is disputing these reports telling nbc news that cuts are not being considered. the administration continues to push back over concerns about the state of the economy. however, nearly three quarters of economists surveyed by the national association for business economics believes the u.s. will tip into recession by the end of 2021. according to the poll almost 40% predict a recession as early as the end of next year. joe, it feels like the president's foreign policy mirrors his economic policy which is basically chaos. >> well, the tweet about green land, tweet about stolen elections never stolen, again, not focussing on the big issues out there.
katty, so most economists believe this recession is coming and of course we can see a slowdown coming in germany, a slowdown obviously some economic problems in china in part because of trade wars that are now impacting the u.s. economy. the president has a $16 billion socialist scheme to pay off big agricultural interests who are impacted by his hoover like protectionism and now we're talking about even more tax cuts for a nation pushing up on $23 trillion in debt. again, to help push along an economy that is being hurt by donald trump's protectionism. >> yeah. so much for the wonderful conservative economic ideas of no deficits and free trade, right? that all seems to have gone out the window. i mean, in some ways the white house has an economy that it can celebrate. the market -- the dow is at 26,000. it was at 19,000 on the day
donald trump got elected. unemployment is low in the country, growth has been high and wages have been picking up in some sectors. the problem is what's coming around the corner and that is what is making the white house nervous because whether it is in 2019 or in 2020 or in 2021, the majority of economists do seem to agree that we're headed for a downturn. we have been on a boom rise since 2008, since after the crash. things have been growing pretty consistently. it would not be unexpected in the cyclical nature of the economics that we do have a downturn at this point. we had a sugar high from the tax cuts that the president passed and you look at a range of factors around the world or warning signs here in the united states. and it's hard to believe that some kind of a downturn isn't coming. of course that's going to cause a lot of headaches for a president who unlike previous presidents has tied his own fortunes to the stock market. you know, that's a problem for
him. you tie your for chu on the economic growth and the stock market and then turns down, you can blame other things you can blame the press. you can blame google. you can blame the federal reserve chair but at some point the voters are going to look at his record. well, nbc news has learned that jeffrey epstein signed a new will just days before his death. we'll explain what that means for the accusers who are suing his estate. plus some new brand poll numbers are just crossing on the democratic race for the presidency. two of the big takeaways involve joe biden and kamala harris. that's just ahead. but first, here is bill karins with a check on the forecast. >> where does bill karins, where does he land? is he in the top three yet? >> i'm working on it. i give people entertainment and that can give me a little boost. i'm going to try to give you a little bit here. you have never seen this before. out of stapleton, colorado.
we have shown you bounce houses blowing around. >> what in the world, pill? >> this was going to be like a movie night where they set the air mattresses up -- yeah. that didn't work out so well. >> i hate when that happens. >> yeah. >> that's so funny. >> it is kind of funny because nobody gets hurt. >> oh, my gosh. like domino's. >> i know. >> thank you, bill. >> no problem, guys. i'll work on my poll numbers too. we're watching early morning wake-up call in iowa. we have had lightning, hard to sleep with the storms in the des moines area and this is going to head into st. louis and into peoria. we have enhanced risk of severe storms with winds up to 75 miles an hour. it's kind of rare we get severe storms like that it will be another hot day in the middle of the country. not as bad as in the north east. it will be a little less humid,
but still hot. it's the time of the year that everybody is over it. everyone will feel like 100 degrees and the relief comes into wednesday, thursday, friday from the great lakes, ohio valley and this weekend in the northeast is going to be picturesque beautiful. you have to wait there to get there. new york city looking down on top from the world trade center that's governor's island on the left. beautiful shot of lower manhattan. it will be a nice summer day. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. every day, visionaries are creating the future.
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to be that we have to beat trump. >> former second lady jill biden in new hampshire yesterday telling voters they should support her husband for president. not necessarily because he's the best candidate, but because he's the one who can beat donald trump. >> certainly, i mean, what -- obviously what she's saying maybe you like the candidate's health care plan better. maybe you like your candidate's plan on education better. maybe -- but let's look at the bigger picture. >> and the bigger fight. >> figure out who can best beat donald trump. and of course, you have a long way to go. there's no way to predict that. nobody would have predicted that donald trump would ever get elected president of the united states at this stage. back in 2015. but as they move closer and closer, that certainly -- from every poll i have seen, mika, that is going to be what democrats -- most democrats are going to be focusing on, who can win. >> so cnn has new national polling out this morning on the democratic race for president.
and joe biden is out in front with 29% support of democratic and democratic leaning voters. that's up seven points compared with the late survey. bernie sanders is at 15% and senator elizabeth warren is at 14%. their support is largely unchanged since earlier this summer. kamala harris meanwhile has dropped significantly. she stood at 17% support in the june poll, but now has the backing of 5% of potential democratic voters. >> so willie, obviously, that first cnn poll had the impact of the first debate. >> right. >> many people believe senator harris did very well. this second debate didn't go quite as well for her. that is a bit of a precipitous drop, but again, the first may have been more of a flashbulb, but joe biden is still holding strong right there and bernie sanders and elizabeth warren in
second or third place. some polls had been released lately, you have actually got elizabeth warren in second place, but it's a three-person race right now, no doubt about. >> i yeah. that poll shows us again what we have seen in most polls there are three tiers. you have joe biden, come down to elizabeth warren and bernie sanders in many ways fighting for the same vote and then a drop-off from there. kamala harris had been leading the third tier and nipping at the heels of sanders and warren and tied with them in some polls so that's a significant drop for her. gene robinson, it's something of an enigma. she is so impressive in many ways and she hasn't -- we'll stipulate how early it is in this process has and been able with the exception of the first high she got off of the first debase performance in miami hasn't been able to climb up to where people thought she would be at this point.
>> yeah. she seemed to on the way. she seemed to have established herself and seemed to have made this at least for a while a four-person race because she was very close to harris and warren and we have to see -- maybe her number in this poll could be kind of an outlier. i haven't seen that low in some time. but, you know, she never did sort of consolidate that bounce from the first debate where s she -- people -- i think democrats are looking for who can beat donald trump in that first debate people saw somebody who could be on a general election debate stage with donald trump going toe to toe and slicing him to ribbons basically with her sort of prosecutorial chops. i mean, she's very, very good at that. and she hasn't built on that.
and even the polls that have her higher than 5% don't see her really gaining ground. and so i'm not quite sure what that is. it is early as you say. we'll see what happens in the next debates. i think she's got a lot of eggs in the basket of south carolina and so we'll see if her numbers in that state begin to move up as well. >> well, katty, mika said there were two big takeaways from this poll. one involved kamala harris. we certainly see what that is. the other, joe biden. joe biden up seven points in this poll from the last cnn poll despite the fact that there have been several gaffes. many people have said he's too old. he's making one mistake after another on the campaign trail. of course the defenders of joe biden said well, he's making the gaffes since he was 29 years old. so it may not -- >> he's a nice guy. >> it may not have anything to
do with age, but be that it as it may, you may hear them talking about teflon joe because nothing is sticking to this candidate. >> yeah. if being old and white was a problem in the democratic primaries, then we wouldn't have the top three where we are. because they're all three of them, all white people, they're in their 70s. joe biden was seen by the commentary not to have two good debates, the second not as bad as the first, but not stunning and many of us came out of the second debate thinking can we see that person up against donald trump on a debate stage holding his own? being able to give as good as he got as you asked him mika, in your interview with him, how would you perform better than you did when kamala harris attacked you, because you have to, and he came back with that rather strange reply about doing
push-ups. that seemed to signal a problem for many people watching it from the outside, from the kind of -- those of us who follow these things. but for the voters you're right, joe. there doesn't seem to be very much that joe biden does or does not do that shifts his rankings. he's still convincingly out ahead. it's tempting at this stage to say, perhaps a big part of that is still just name recognition. the ads are only going up -- the paid ads going up now in iowa and in new hampshire. but there have been two rounds of debates. and others have been out there pretty consistently now for six months so i don't think you can be name recognition. there's something about joe biden that people like and there's something about him that they believe is the right person as jill was just saying to take on donald trump. >> yeah. jill biden's message may not have been entirely inspiring for a bumper sticker, hold your nose and vote for my husband. but she is on to something.
if you look at poll after poll, anecdotically, they want to win. democrats just want to win and that shows up in polling in places like south carolina where voters by a vast majority say i'm willing to compromise someone who doesn't agree with me on all of my policies to win. i want somebody who can beat joe biden. now, the argument against that, elizabeth warren and others are saying wait a minute. every poll head to head shows me beating donald trump too so that electability question for joe biden isn't right because when you go down the list, fox news poll had it the other day. almost all of these top tier candidates beat donald trump head to head right now. >> yeah. you know, mika, before people become outraged by what jill biden said maybe you don't like joe biden's health care plan as much as your candidate's health care plan, come on. just look back at these presidential elections especially these primaries. what people promise in the
primaries are very rarely followed through on. they get churned up between the campaign and when they get into the white house. and then good luck getting half of it through the house and good luck getting a tenth of it through the senate. it's just the way it is. so if somebody is promising you whatever you want, like donald trump promised universal health care. donald trump promised lower premiums. donald trump promised lower co-pays. he promised more expansive coverage. >> yeah. >> before of course deciding no, i don't want to do any of that. you look at the difference between barack obama and hillary clinton. on health care, and the 2008 campaign, completely. what was a huge issue in a campaign completely got churned up and spit out by the time barack obama was actually president of the united states. so you have to look, just generally at these candidates and say who's going to be the best leader, who can take on
donald trump? >> who can beat him, again, nowhere if you can't beat him. coming up on "morning joe" -- >> i think we can get something really good done. i think we can have some really meaningful background checks. >> that was the president just a week and a half ago. now it appears he's backing away from background checks. what a surprise. we'll have new reporting on his recent interactions with the nra just ahead on "morning joe." don't miss your golden opportunity to experience thrilling performance. now at the lexus golden opportunity sales event. get 0.9% apr for 60 months on all 2019 models.
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joining us now for the must read opinion pages, politics editor for the daily beast sam stein. >> this must be a special issue. >> let's start with -- >> okay. let's retire the prep school thing. >> really? >> even for me. >> sam's kind of grown up. >> somebody that runs it into the ground. lock at sam. he's looking kind of old now. >> yeah.
actually. >> aging -- yeah, he's haggard. >> like washed up. like andy gibb after his prime. >> yeah. to now he's sort of aging teen sensation. >> what does that make us, joe? >> hey, willie, don't you think -- we have kasie d.c., i'm looking better by the day. i'm benjamin button. do we put aging teen sensation -- >> no. aged. >> leif garrett. >> he was cute. >> i want to see if you remember, guys, do you have that special graphic we had for mike barnicle? >> oh, right. >> a button you can push. >> alex? >> what was it -- >> hot story. >> hot take. >> remember that? >> hot take. >> mike's hot take. >> nice. >> we need something like that for sam. >> sam's washed up worries.
>> aged teen sensation. >> an article would say something completely obvious for everyone and here comes the fire. >> well, remember the first year we had -- we had -- look at that. that's just right. the first year we had to put underneath mike's wife works for bank of america any time he came on the air? >> sam's wife works for -- >> facebook. >> just say. >> sam, how are you doing? >> i'm miserable. this is the worst -- >> this is the question we ask, sam. >> this is the worst segment i have been a part of. it hasn't even started. >> he's got a lot of negativity. he's always negative. >> why is it that every time he comes on, he says this is the worst segment i have ever been on? >> it keeps getting worse. >> really? >> kind of like the -- like the trump presidency. you keep saying this is the
worst "morning joe" can become. towards sam stein and it keeps getting worse. >> all right, sam, let's see what insights you have. >> we'll turn the page. >> since you have such opinions. let's start with andrew sullivan's latest column the limits of my conservatism in which he writes a conservative who becomes fixated on the contemporary left's attempt to transform traditional society and who views its zeal and remaking america as an existential crisis can decide that in this war, there can be no neutrality or passivity or compromise. it is not enough to resist slow, query or even mock the know strums of the left and they should be attacked and forcefully. in the left is engaged in the project of social engineering, the right should do the same. abandon the liberal democratic moderation and join the fray.
the left is correct. that americans are racist and sexist, but so are all humans. the question is whether at this point in time america has adequately managed to contain, ameliorate and discourage the deeply human strait traits. moderate change wins and creates conservatives willing to defend incremental liberal advances. radical change bent on transforming human nature generates resistance and creates reactionaries. >> it has been, sam, quite -- i won't say a transformation by andrew sullivan but the trump era has brought out -- well, actually i think he's done some his greatest work during the trump administration trying to explain the likes of let's say stephen miller and trying to explain some of the radicals and what pushed them where they were because as andrew explained and
of course for those that aren't familiar, you should be with andrew sullivan's work, he was one of the most steadfast defenders of barack obama for eight years but it is fascinating. he just keeps trying to explain even though he's disappointed in everything that he's seeing in the conservative movement. he is not seeking out heretics. he is still seeking converts and that sounds a lot like what joe biden is saying on the campaign trail. >> yeah, i mean, i appreciate the piece for its attempt to try to take what is -- so many people complex problem, why did this happen, why did trumpism happen, and to explain it. and to try to apply various thesis to what is going on. i don't necessarily agree with them and i think the excerpt you just read to be honest about it
seems like something someone who is the beneficiary of privilege would write which is you know we need moderation in our social change. well, that's easy if you're not someone who is suffering right now from some societal ills. but i do appreciate that andrew sullivan took time -- in this case to talk and to figure out michael antoine, former national security issue in the trump administration and someone as he described as brilliant would join forces with a president who some people would say is not brilliant. what is it about someone like trump to michael antoine? to a degree what biden is representing politically is an attempt to try to understand the other side. to say you know, we have more commonality than differences. and maybe moderation and steadfast leadership is not a bad thing in a time of trump. the extent of the appeal of that is what really will determine biden's success but as you noted in these polls, it seems to be doing pretty well for him right now. >> yeah, you know, gene, we live
in a country that you're either for trump or against trump it seems. there's not a lot of willingness from the extremes on either side to accept someone on the other side of the fence and i think what andrew is getting another a little bit here it may be time for both of the sides to look at some of the people in the middle, not as extremists or to call everyone who voted for donald trump a racist and never accept them back into your side. maybe to have a conversation rather than a fight which is what we seem to be having every day. >> yeah. actually i don't think a lot of people who are opponents of donald trump take that position. that everybody who voted for him is a racist or is -- will never be accepted back into the polite society again. that's the way trump and his most fervent supporters portray the opposition. >> right. >> and this is really donald trump's genius is for driving wedges. and for exasperating the divides
that already exist in the society. and for increasing anxieties rather than soothing them. so he tells people, you know, be afraid of demographic change. be afraid of immigration. be afraid of all the change that is happening organically around you because it threatens you. whether it does or not he tells people that it does. and so this sort of split that andrew is writing about and t the -- it isn't happening in a vacuum. it is all being encouraged by a president whose talent for driving wedges is really unique. we haven't seen anything like this in american politics in a long, long time and certainly not from a president. this is just -- it's an extraordinary time and i use extraordinary in the -- you
know, in its -- in the sense not a good sense. but in -- it's something that we just really haven't seen before. >> right. well, i think what makes andrew's work so important to the trump administration is that he is bending over backwards. he is bending over backwards to try not only understand what is happening, but explain to readers what may not want to actually read about this. explain to readers why it's happening. and actually what he's doing is actually the antithesis is what donald trump is doing and perhaps -- i start with myself, do a better job with. and try to explain what's happening, why it's happening. and, you know, i always think, mika, i thought from the
beginning of the trump administration about how donald trump is temporary. and every president -- anybody who occupies the white house only rents. they don't buy. and donald trump is the same and we have to worry even now about what happens after trump -- how we bring the country back together. i'm reminded of what i think is one of the most extraordinary speeches in history, abraham lincoln's second inaugural address where he talks about how americans have to come back together with malice toward none. this is a man who personally suffered through the civil war. he saw because of the south, he saw 700,000 americans slaughtered on battlefields and yet his job was to bring america back together. i think if abraham lincoln can
talk about with malice toward none, that's great challenge for all of us on all sides to figure out how we stitch this country back together again. even when we have a president who has very openly shown us that he thinks his pathway to re-election is division. >> through hate. we'll have more must read opinion pages ahead. also ahead -- there are changes at the top of the agency that oversees u.s. prisons in the wake of jeffrey epstein's death. plus, buckingham palace releases a statement acknowledging epstein and denying the sexual misconduct allegations against prince andrew. "morning joe" is back in a moment. you're out there,
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mika, you know, we kid as crusty the clown says because we love. and i think -- >> or we just say what we think. >> no. no. we kid because we love. right, willie? i mean, we joke around with sam stein but there is no doubt he is the brock holt of "morning joe." he's that utility guy that really is the heart beat of the team and up dare i say the heart beat of america. >> i think you're making fun of him again. >> no, i'm not. >> yes. he is. >> because his mom -- no. willie, his mom is so wonderful. she might see this and -- >> might get mad. i love his mom. >> she's great. we love you, sam. >> willie -- >> i'm like rafael devers not like brock holt. >> having a good year. >> go with brock holt, i guess we'll do with brock holt,
thanks, joe. >> i was the aging teen sensation on this show and i have aged out of it. so i have passed the torch to you, my friend. >> thank you. such an honor. >> well, i don't feel so bad in you're comparing yourself to the best young hitter for the red sox since ted williams. then i guess we don't need to build you up. that said, t.j., were we able to get the song queued up? no, we were not. >> that's never going to happen. >> asking him to do his job, like forget it. >> seriously. coming up -- the president and the allies are dismissing any thought of a possible recession but new reporting that the administration is eyeing ways to bolster the economy. you know, they already did that socialist $16 billion scheme where they paid off the biggest agricultural interests in america. yeah, that socialist scheme. now they're trying to found new ways. and new poll positions in
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paid for by physicians for fair coverage. we know in our bones this election is different. the stakes are higher. the threat more serious. we have to beat donald trump. and all the polls agree joe biden is the strongest democrat to do the job. no one is more qualified. for eight years president obama and vice president biden were an administration america could be
proud of. our allies could trust and our kids could look up to. together, they worked to save the american economy, to pass the historic affordable care act, protecting over 100 million americans with pre-existing conditions. now, joe biden is running for president with the plan for america's future. to build on obamacare, not scrap it. to make a record investment in america's schools, to lead the world on climate. to rebuild our alliances. most of all, to restore the soul of the nation. battered by a bullying president, strong, stable, steady leadership. joe biden for president. >> i'm joe biden and i approve this message. >> nice. joe biden with his first ad out in iowa. purchasing nearly $500,000 worth of cable and broadcast ads that will air across iowa during the next three weeks according to "the des moines register." welcome back to "morning joe."
tuesday, august 20th. still with joe, willie and me we have politics editor for the daily beast -- ♪ sam stein. wow. >> let's -- >> yeah. ♪ ♪ have i told you lately i love you ♪ >> this is as depressed as i have ever been. >> but we played this song for you, sammy. >> just for you. >> i mean, it's a timeless classic, don't get me wrong. still kind of -- ♪ >> washington anchor for bbc world news america, katty kay is with us. pulitzer prize winning columnist and associate editor of "the washington post," eugene robinson. joining the conversation nbc news capitol hill correspondent and host of "kasie d.c." on msnbc, days away from baby d.c.,
kasie hunt. this is so exciting. i can't wait. >> i'm excited too. i would have felt very left out because of that and also -- i mean, i feel like sam should get the backstreet boys. but i love that song. >> kasie, you're not helping matters. >> so -- thank you. >> i'm just excited about the baby. all right. also with us, host of msnbc's "politicsnation" and president of the action network, reverend al sharpton. great group. joe biden's ad, what did you think? >> well, if politics is all about contrast and it usually is when you're going up against an incumbent, then there's a great contrast there. you have a very hopeful, almost reaganesque vision of where this country can be. you see a lot of smiles. you see a lot of hugs. you see joe biden talking about
expanding education. also something that is so important, while everybody else is talking about scrapping obamacare. scrapping the affordable care act, joe biden is embracing it and saying, hey, you know what? >> let's move forward. >> we did great things with that, but let's make it even better that's strong message. and it's quite a contrast with donald trump, mika. what did you think? >> i liked it a lot. i think it harkened back to some of the positives of the obama era but it didn't depend on them and he stood up for administration in the ad. his experience speaks for itself. when you're making a decision in the democratic field, it's hard not to look at joe biden's experience not just professionally with decades serving in washington and then wanting to go back again. which is saying a lot about who he is. but also personally and you look at what this nation is looking
for. kind of a reaffirmation of who we are. >> yeah. >> it feels like he's the perfect vessel for that. that's my opinion. that's how i personally feel. >> you know, but before we actually go to the rest of the panel, let's -- alex, can we play the ad one more time? and i want to have everybody look at it one more time and then going to go around the table really quickly, get thoughts. >> we know in our bones this election is different. the stakes are higher. the threat more serious. we have to beat donald trump and all the polls agree joe biden is the strongest democrat to do the job. no one is more qualified. for eight years president obama and vice president biden were an administration america could be proud of. our allies could trust and our kids could look up to. together they worked to save the american economy, to pass the historic affordable care act, protecting over 100 million americans with pre-existing conditions. now joe biden is running for
president with the plan for america's future. to build on obamacare, not scrap it. to make a record investment in america's schools. to lead the world on climate, to rebuild our alliances. most of all, to restore the soul of the nation. battered by an erratic vicious bullying president, strong, steady, stable leadership, biden for president. >> i'm joe biden and i approve this message. >> so reverend al, first of all, i want to know your thoughts on the ad but also isn't it something you see in charlottesville and you see the white supremacists with the torches. the neo-nazis with the torches. and separated from that now a few years it's obvious that is the defining moment so far of the trump presidency that tells you everything you need to know about the divides between how
donald trump wants to govern and how his opponents are going to try to explain to americans they want to govern. what are your thoughts? >> i couldn't agree with you more. i think, first of all, about the ad, i think it was well done. because it does set joe biden in the whole legacy of the obama years and at the same time it deals with the contemporary scene that we're dealing with like a defining moment with charlottesville and this whole rank and acrimony we have come to almost see as normal under the trump years. one of the things that i think that was superintendental here is he answers the question of how he's going to project himself because they keep saying the age question. well, joe biden is in his 70s. he's eight or ten years older than me. how do you try to campaign as a new thing rather than being the continuity of what you felt was
best and stable? i think that ad does that. he promotes himself as the continuity of good years this country saw. and as someone that can deal with the contemporary scene. i think it was done well and i think it is the way he can try to sell his candidacy without trying to act like a man in his mid 70s as all of a sudden becoming a new rock star. >> right. and willie, he -- the ad's very powerful, very strong. it is obviously going to help him. the question of course is how does he do in the next debate? how does he do in all of the debates? he's been spotty up to now, but certainly he survived the first two despite i would say subpar performances at times. and yet, he's still doing well. ads like that aren't going to hurt him, are they? >> remember the conventional wisdom going into the second debate was he was so poor in the first debate he better have a great second debate or else. well, he didn't have a great
second debate, he had a fine second debate and he's still doing well. holding his position at the top of the polls. i took away what you took away, which was let's build on obamacare. that was a line in the sand with elizabeth warren and bernie sanders who said again and again, they want to get rid of private insurance and have a medicare for all plan. he was reminding people he think that's a bad idea. i would be careful with him on this electability question though. who's the person who can beat donald trump? it's me. something joe biden said something as well. we have that fox news poll from last week that shows not only joe biden beating donald trump, but bernie sanders able to make that case. elizabeth warren able to make that case and kamala harris able to make that case and democrats can raise their hand and can say, i'm the one as well who can beat donald trump. we have some new cnn national polling out just this morning on this democratic race for president. joe biden out front 29% support
of democratic leaning democratic voters. and bernie sanders at 15%. and elizabeth warren, 14%. their support is largely unchanged and kamala harris has dropped significantly. she stood at 17% support in the june poll. now has the backing of 5% of potential democratic voters. meanwhile, castro at 2% has now met both the polling and fund-raising thresholds to make the third democratic debate stage next month. so far, ten candidates have met the qualifications for the september debate in houston. kasie, if we go back to that poll, kamala harris got a bump from first debate when she confronted joe biden and she moved way up, but way down 12 points at least in this cnn poll. >> i think the key test for her is -- and always has been quite frankly, you know, she's had a number of very strong moments, but they haven't necessarily
translated into a sustained, you know, visible support in polls that last over time. we saw this when she announced that campaign, she had the great crowd. she came out of the gate very strong and then there were some questions about where she stood on important policy issues. whether she was ready to answer the tougher questions about where she stood in that period. then of course she had the breakout moment against joe biden in the first debate. and didn't necessarily repeat that performance in the second debate. so i think the same question that has -- you know, we have been asking about her all the way along is still there and that's a question of durability. you know, i think for joe biden it's a similar thing but, you know, these polls are showing that he does have that quality that we were all wondering if he could actually hold on to. when he first got into this race. i mean, the polling has consistently showed people seem willing to stick by him and, you know, i think you really see that in the ad that they laid out. i mean, they're making as the
reverend pointed out a case f for -- it's the return to normalcy case, right? you know, the democratic party has been split the last two years really of trump's administration on, you know, how do we beat him? do we throw out this system, do we essentially make the same type of argument that trump made in 2016 and say we have to start all over, or do we argue hey, you know what people want is stability, continuity. make america boring again. i think you're seeing obviously joe biden stake that territory out in an eloquent way. >> yeah. so speaking at a native american presidential forum in iowa yesterday, senator elizabeth warren apologized for her past claims of native american ancestry. >> i want to say this. like anyone who is being honest with themselves i know that i have made mistakes. i am sorry for harm i have caused.
i have listened and i have learned a lot and i am grateful for the many conversations that we have had together. and it is a great honor to be able to partner with indian country and that's what i have tried to do as a senator and that's what i promise i will do as president of the united states of america. >> interesting. meanwhile, at warren's town hall last night in st. paul, minnesota, organizers said they had to move the event outside. the campaign estimated that 12,000 people attended the event. you know, elizabeth warren, joe, kind of want your thought on the apology. my personal take is that if, you know, a certain group feels the need for one, then you give one. so at first i was like oh, did she really do that? then i thought, maybe she had to. and i have been in that position
on a much smaller level before. if an apology is needed that's the right thing to do and to show you have that self-reflection is important. but that crowd -- this is the elizabeth warren i predicted years ago. this woman is the little engine that could. >> yeah. it's remarkable. and first of all, as far as the apology goes, how many apologies? >> well, she was speaking at a native american forum. >> well, she's given that apology, she should not continue to apologize her way to the democratic nomination. that said, you never know what -- you know what's the room? what room are you speaking to? and at this point, sam, nobody's really in a position to judge elizabeth warren's political decisions because she has made all the right calls over the
past several months. she was down at 4, 5%. she was mocked roundly when she went back to oklahoma and talked about her dna test. most people thought she would have never -- a lot of political experts said she'd be out by the end of august. she has just kept doing everything right. pushing forward and in minnesota yesterday, my gosh, 12,000 people there. that sets her apart from the field she's running against. >> i mean, i don't think it's appreciated the sense of despair that was surrounding her candidacy early on right after that dna snafu. the fund-raising had dried up. associates of her were talking about going bare bones with respect to campaigning because the money wasn't there. doing something like john mccain did in 2008, just taking coach flights everywhere. and what she's done is she's -- you know, she's essentially foresworn any high dollar
fund-raisers and just gone really selfie to selfie in this case. although they're not technically selfies and built up this momentum in real tortoise versus hare like way. she's the second best democratic candidate next to joe biden surpassing bernie sanders although bernie sanders has a grass roots fund-raising juggernaut. i want to jump back to biden because i think it's an important contrast with warren. what struck me about that biden ad was the first phrase. you know in your bones. i don't think that was accidental that they talked about bones. the reason is because they want to make the case that he is firm. that structurally you understand what you're getting. that he's sound versus an erratic president an that you should go with a person that you trust and the administration that you know. and that is a formula that's worked really well for him. what warren is gambling on is
that people are willing to try something new. and what she's essentially build her candidacy on is a vision of a new democratic party that isn't tied to barack obama necessarily. i don't know how well that plays for her. clearly it's good and it's helpful and it's drawing a huge amount of crowds and supporting momentum but in the modern democratic party with donald trump as president, it seems to me at least at this juncture, it changes when people start voting, that voters want a sense of stability. and biden's ad makers understood that. or at least they seemed to understand it. and they're going for this great imagery which is structural soundness versus an erratic bully. and so far it's worked pretty well for him. >> she's obviously fighting with senator sanders in that same lane. we'll see if she can continue to push past him. rev, i want to ask you about the big news here that you were directly involved in in new york city. officer pantaleo of the new york police department fired yesterday by commissioner
o'neill. five years, july of 2014 after he put eric garner in a chokehold that ultimately killed eric garner as he was selling untaxed loose cigarettes on a street corner in staten island. what's your reaction to the news yesterday? >> i think it was the right decision. i just think it was very late in the process to take five years to fire a policeman who in fact on tape killed someone with a chokehold which was against the training and against the policies of the police department. it shouldn't take five years to fire him. i understand the process but i think the process is wrong. so i was involved from day one. i talked to the -- the mother called action network and spoke to me the first day we started the rallies and then throughout the years worked with others so we were glad to see him fired. he should have been prosecuted in my case and let a jury decide the criminality. but when the judge of the
departmental trial said not only did he cause the death, but he misled the investigators, you have to now wonder what other policemen in a local grand jury might have misled in a guilt or perjury. this is not over. we want to see a law against chokeholds. we ironically yesterday had a law that i was involved in in california, where the unarmed young man was killed in 2018. they passed the stefan clark law about police should only use deadly force when absolutely there's no other options. we want an eric garner law in new york. the struggle continues. it was good but it was late. very late. >> the police union is not happy about the decision. they're going to appeal, they want the officer reinstated. garner said i can't breathe 11 times. >> 11 times on tape. >> what is your read on why it took so long to get here? >> they were told by the federal
government, the police department, that they were investigating, don't interfere with their investigation. then we had two attorney generals under the obama administration investigating and then it went to the trump administration who immediately began back tracking on what the civil rights division was. trying to do. i think the local police department now must have a law saying we will only regard outside investigations for a year. and then we've got to move on. because who's the loser is the city of new york. if you have policemen being paid that broke your policies, broke your training, then why should the citizens and the taxpayers have to pay for that? so i think that the whole outcome of this will change how you deal with the timetable but we need a law. chokeholds not only be against police policy but against the state law. >> see where the appeal goes. attorney general william barr removed the acting director of the federal bureau of prisons
in the wake of accused sex trafficker jeffrey epstein's suicide. barr announced yesterday the acting director hugh hurwitz will be demoted to assistant director of the re-entry services division. dr. kathleen hawk sawyer who led the prison bureau from 1992 to 2003 will become the new director. the move comes nine days after epstein was found dead in his cell at the metropolitan correctional center in manhattan. the facility's warden has been temporarily re-assigned and the two guards tasked with watching epstein have been placed on leave while the fbi and doj investigate the conditions that led to epstein's suicide. meanwhile, nbc news has obtained new documents that show epstein signed a new will just days before he was found dead in his cell. the documents were filed in the u.s. virgin islands. they show an estate worth more than half a billion dollars, but the final amount has yet to be determined. the will states epstein's fortune will go into a trust which according to documents was created the same day the will
was signed. also this. buckingham palace now trying to put distance between prince andrew and jeffrey epstein. this follows video obtained by the british tabloid the mail on sunday that it says shows the prince inside epstein's new york city mansion waving good-bye to a young boy. nbc has not determined when the video has been shot or if it's in fact the prince. the mail said it was shot two years after epstein served time for a sex crime against a minor. the duke of york has been appalled by the recent reports of the alleged crimes. he deplores the exploitation of any human being and the suggestion he could condone any such behavior is abhor rent. let's bring in legal analyst danny cevallos. good morning. let's go back to the will a few days before jeffrey epstein died in his cell, before he's
believed to have killed himself in his cell, the will is signed. what do you read into that? >> the bureau of prisons policy actually recognizes revising a will of one of the factors that made lead to the inference that someone has suicidal tendencies but the challenges of preparing the will is something that's very confidential and done with your lawyers. so it's something that the bop or the prisons may not have known about. the correctional facility may not have been aware that he was revising his will. and then for attorneys you can't have a rule that says any time an inmate or a detainee wants to revise his or her will it's a sign of suicide because then we would disincentivize preparing wills in general. taken under the totality, he might have suicidal tendencies. >> so epstein's attorney can't say, why are we doing this now? >> you can't hold the attorneys
liable because someone wants to prepare a will, but remember, they fought to take him off suicide watch and they had to say he's not a suicide risk. otherwise, they would have kept him on suicide watch. >> what about prince andrew here, buckingham palace is denying that he knew anything about any of this. his name has been sort of floating around and circling around this story. do you see any evidence of his direct role or direct participation in anything that epstein has been accused of? >> nothing yet. but here's the fascinating thing. is he subject to civil jurisdiction in american courts? there's a long standing rule that sovereigns, even when they're visiting the united states have immunity. but that's usually reserved for heads of state so the queen would be a good example. so the question arises is is does prince andrew qualify for this immunity? guess who gets to make that decision and it's not reviewable by the courts is the head of the executive branch and that would be president trump. so interesting enough, whether or not prince andrew is up
against the civil -- in the united states, it's into trump. >> we heard that men were breathing a sigh of relief when epstein died, so can they be exposed at some point? >> yes and no, in the sense that epstein can't cooperate with the government but at the same time now that epstein is gone the attorney general said in so many words we're still looking to hold someone liable. so maybe when epstein was alive as a high profile defendant, the government was primarily interested in him. now that he's gone, the government says someone has to pay. so even those in his periphery, his circle may still be concerned and the government seized a lot of evidence from his mansion on the upper east side. who knows who that implicates? that evidence lives on even if the creator of that evidence epstein is no longer with us. >> all right, danny cevallos, thanks so much. good to see you. mika?
all right, we have a lot more politics to get to with our panel. and as we go to break -- >> you know, donald trump the other day said that quote if he tells a soldier to commit a war crime the soldier will go do it. he said they'll do as i tell them to do. we have spent 7 1/2 years with an authoritarian president who ignored our constitution. we don't need four more years of that. >> wow. >> that was mike pompeo back in 2016 while campaigning on behalf of marco rubio's presidential bid. concluding with quote, it's time to turn down the lights on the circus. susan glasser has a sweeping new piece in the new yorker examining how the former congressman went from a sharp critic of donald trump to the future secretary of state. it's worth the read. "morning joe" is coming right back. unpredictable crohn's symptoms following you?
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joining us now, democratic presidential candidate, former congressman, john delaney of maryland. great to have you on the show this morning. look forward to hearing what you have to say. >> good morning. >> katty kay has the first question for you. >> so mr. delaney, you have not managed to qualify for the next round of debates. what are you going to do to change that? you have only a few days left before the end of august. is there any way you can get on to that debate stage? >> yes. we do think there's a way to get on the debate stage, either for third or the fourth debate. that's what we're focussed on. >> but not necessarily the third debate? you think it doesn't matter if you don't get on the debate stage? >> maybe not about the third debate, but we feel confident we'll get on the fourth debate stage. >> there's some reporting that
people in your campaign, people close to you, have suggested this is the time for you to pull out. you spent over $20 million of your own money. you are not breaking through in the polls. what do you bring to the democratic race at this point other than playing some kind of role of spoiler? isn't it time for the party to have fewer people on the debate stage so they can rally around a candidate in order to take on donald trump? >> well, first of all, that reporting as we said very clearly wasn't accurate. including the amount of money we have spent on the campaign. the campaign has only spent 9 or $10 million. so that whole report was inaccurate. my team never suggested i leave the race. so everything about that reporting was factually inaccurate including the amount of money we spent which is the most obvious thing is inaccurate. listen, we have an economic vision for what this country needs. i'm the only person running who is both a successful business leader and served in the
congress of the united states. and we need a new economic vision for this country. trump's economic model isn't working. what my democratic opponents are running on doesn't make any sense. it's a bunch of impossible fairy tale economics. we need solutions that hard working americans are dealing with and we need to get our economy on the right track for the world that we're going into. which includes ending this trade war that the president has gotten us into and quite changely all the candidates i'm running against effectively follow trump's policies on trade. i'm the only candidate running for president who actually supports president obama's effort to get us up to the transpacific partnership. we would be in an entirely different place if we had entered that trade agreement. so what is unique about my candidacy is my economic vision about how we make capitalism more just and inclusive for the
future and that i have real solutions to health care, to climate change, to infrastructure to the problems that workers are dealing with, which is their wages are too low. and half the country can't afford their basic necessities. these are things that it takes someone who has been a leader in the private sector and a leader in government and i'm the only one running who has that kind of experience. >> hi, congressman, this is kasie hunt, good morning. you just talked about impossible promises and fairy tale economics. i want to set aside the tpp for a second because it became very clear even in the democratic race the last time that's something that's become anathema to democratic voters. but i'm curious, how do you think joe biden is making impossible promises and engaging in fairy tale economics? >> so let's just go back to the tpp for a second because i don't think it's true -- >> let's set it aside though. i would to move on past that
conversation. what you and were talking on the debate stage, you and joe biden and michael bennet have stood apart from the many of the other progressives in the field and i understand why. >> right. >> i'm curious what are your other contrasts with joe biden because i think people who look at this wide field maybe say, hey, you know, this -- the reason, you know, we have all of the extra candidates in the field. and it may be hurting what would otherwise be a stronger front-runner. so i'd like to know why you're still running against mr. biden. >> well, you know, the difference between myself and vice president biden is i have new ideas. so what we need in this country right now is we need new ideas to deal with structural inequality, to deal with how we deal with the global economy. to deal with the kind of things to make capitalism more just and inclusive and we need new ideas but the ideas needed to be grounded in the facts. they need to be real solutions an we need to tell the american people how to pay for it and how
we've get them done. i think where i'm different than a lot of people running there's a whole bunch of people running on impossible promises, fairy tale economics and then the vice president is in this category, everything is fine, business as usual. we just need to continue what we're doing. i don't necessarily subscribe to that. we need some new ideas as to how to reshape this economy to help workers. so that's where i think i'm different. i have new ideas but the ideas work. i tell people i'm going to pay for them. i had the only bipartisan climate bill in the whole congress, it was a completely new idea. so those are the kind of things where i think i'm different. by the way, i don't think most democratic voters actually think the field is too big. i think most democratic primary voters think this thing is just getting started. the dnc may think it's too big, they may want to shrink the field and, you know, commentators may think it's too big. but if you talk to most voters
if you actually go outside of washington and new york and talk to voters they're just dialing in at this point. is the sense that i get. and no one has talked to more democratic primary voters than i have. i have been to over 99 counties and they're looking for new ideas but they want real solutions. >> by the way, joe scarborough here. by the way, we have still half a year before iowa. >> right. >> a very long way to go before people start to vote. so you talked about new ideas. let's bring up an issue which of course you won't be able to answer in 60 seconds or so. but it's really an issue that's been at the heart of american unrest, american unrest now for years. i remember living in upstate new york in the early 1970s and for the first time seeing plants close down. some of them moving overseas to japan. i remember visiting a friend in pittsburgh in the early 1980s
and watching that city -- the infrastructure of that city collapse. we have seen it now for almost 50 years and of course some cities have recovered. others have not. but there have been large segments of american society gutted from industrialization and the fact that machines, robots, automation, can now do the work of 200 people that used to fill up an assembly line. how do we get past that? because the pace is not slowing down. it's only quickening. >> right. and that's why we need new ideas, joe. what you just described is the central issue facing this country. how do we create an economy for everyone everywhere. that's why i found that the artificial intelligence caucus in the congress to actually have a plan for how artificial intelligence and machine learning play out. what we have to do is we have to create real incentives for people to invest in communities left behind. i'm calling for one-quarter of
the government contracts in this country to go to firms that have half of their employees in distressed communities. i'm calling for a $2 trillion national infrastructure program, the biggest since the creation of the federal highway system with a disproportionate allocation of the dollars to communities left behind. i led the opportunities zone in the congress to invest in the communities and i think we need to think about how we'll deal with climate change from a technology standpoint, things like direct air capture machines. those need to be left -- located in the communities. so those four things that i just described there is a huge agenda for ensuring that both the private sector and the public sector is investing in communities that have been hollowed out, just absolutely hollowed out, across the last several years. they're shrinking, they're aging. that's huge pressure on the health systems and the educational systems. i'm the only candidate that actually has an agenda to create
millions of jobs in these communities. but it's in part because i understand how the private sector works because i started two businesses from scratch. created thousands of jobs. and i have been in the congress and i know how to actually create the incentives to get the private sector to invest in the communities. but what you're talking about in many ways is a central issue. you know, last year, joe, 80% of the venture capital in the united states of america was invested in 50 counties out of 3,100 counties. that's not a country of opportunity. that's a country of birth right where you have to be born in the right city to have a shot. we have to change that and that's got to be central to this economic debate that the democratic party has in 2020. >> all right, john delaney, thank you very much for being on the show this morning. and still ahead, the highest ranked democrat yet comes out in favor of president trump's impeachment. plus, we'll read from gene's new op-ed entitled trump in melting
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live look at capitol hill in washington, d.c. congressman ben ray lujan of new mexico has become the highest ranking house democrat to call for president trump's impeachment. lujan the fourth ranking democrat in the house issued a statement yesterday writing quote, i support moving forward with an impeachment inquiry which will continue to uncover the facts for the american people and hold this president accountable. this is not a position i have reached lightly. he cited the mueller report and trump's inaction on election security for his decision. lujan who is running for the u.s. senate in 2020 becomes the 125th house democrat to call for president trump's impeachment according to an nbc news tally. >> so gene, your latest piece is titled "trump is meting down again." you write in it, evidence suggests that trump is meting
down again and for good reason. fears of a global recession greatly exasperated his self-destructive trade policies have sent the financial markets tumbling. he berates jerome powell for not cutting interest rates fast enough to goose the economy. he has grand owe thoughts like imposing a naval blockade to enforce regime change in venezuela and he can't stop railing against the recent fox news poll that shows him losing to four of the leading democratic contenders. the astonishing thing is this that the president of the united states is raving like a lunatic and everyone just shrugs. the truth is, we don't have an actual presidency right now. we have a tiresome reality show whose ratings are starting to
slide and the star sees the cancellation on the way. one of the most jarring is his ability to continue to go lower as far as in the breaching of constitutional and political norms and also his successful ability to continue shocking an increasing -- and increasing the chaos around his oval office. >> you know, there is no bottom. i mean, you know, you have to stop looking for the bottom a long time ago. we'll keep spiraling down down down down down. and this is crazy. i mean, listen to what the administration has been saying about the economy over the last few days. last few weeks really. on the one hand it is saying oh, everything's fine. it's great. it's terrific. no worry, no problem. on the other hand, the president is berating poor jay powell, you know, cut interest rates, we
have to cut them now, you have to do quantitative easing, do this and that. and there's no recognition that the instability and the craziness that's driving the market down -- and prompting the fears of a recession are largely caused by his own wrong headed trade policies and all the trade wars that he's started. the trade war with china, the trade war with our allies. it is just insane. you don't have to stand back very far to say this is lunacy. it's all self-defeating. it is all a mess. no telling where and how it goes, but if you're a big institutional investor what are you going to do? you're going to run to safety because, you know, and duck -- you know, try to find some cover until this storm is over. and that's kind of where we are. we're just waiting for this --
trying to ride the storm out. >> and of course, reverend al, you have the highest ranking democrat so impeachment. most americans aren't there. but at the same time, americans can't be even republicans have to be concerned about a president who in the same week he's attacking fox news and the fed chair and everybody in sight is talking about how google stole the popular vote election from 12 million votes. here then with all the chaos going on around him and also across the world, what's he talking about after new hampshire rally? he talks about how he broke the attendance record previously set by elton john. what's a good democrat and more importantly, what's a good
republican to do in times such as these? >> maia angelou said if somebody tells you who they are, believe them. i think what many of us into whatever we ultimately do by who we were more successful in our coming up, the only thing donald trump was successful at in his life was the apprentice. he was not successful in real estate. his father did it early. he basically kept things going, put his name on buildings he really didn't own. but "the apprentice" was hot. he's ane entertainer. he is seeing the ratings are fading so he's looking for the next shock value. the next what will keep the crowd going. he's not trying to make sense. he's trying to make the show more contemporary and more appetizing to this thing he is playing to like he did in the apprentice. he once called me and begged me
to go on "the apprentice." i'm saying you to, we're looking at a man trying to make a statesman out of a showman and he doesn't know the difference. that's why he's causing the trade wars which lead to a recession. that's why he's threatening fox that you may not get one of the big debates when the democrat chooses -- the democrat is chosen to run against me because you dare to have a bad poll against me? i mean this is not someone serious. he's a showman in the dressing room trying to figure out how do i go out on that stage. i'm too fat now, the act is too old now. i don't know if they love me anymore. so he's looking for a new act. unfortunately has serious ramifications for the rest of us. >> wow, well put. >> he is also trying to shock people who previously thought they could no longer be shocked by his act.
that's why he resorted to, well msh many would say facist comments. his crowds chanting send them back and, of course, donald trump condemned it the next day. >> took it back. >> and then backed down, just like he backs down all the time and said they were good people. you know, they could do whatever they wanted to do. he wasn't going to criticize them. >> sam, what does your reporting tell you and what can you pass along to us about the give and take on impeachment between nancy pelosi and chairman jerry nadler. where does nancy pelosi stand today? what is likely as it pertains to starting an inquiry to impeachment in the house? >> some things are a little up in the air because everyone is out on recess right now. but where we were right before then was that the party
essentially was trying to have it two ways. jerry nadler is saying we're now investigating donald trump for the possibility of impeaching him. i don't think that they're going to be able to thread this needle rhetorically. you know, most people can see through it. this is just an attempt to pacify some louder voices in the party. but it's where nancy pelosi seems most comfortable being which is she still wants to have a vote. some of the members in the moderate districts have not come out in favorite of it. some freshman members have not come out in favor of it. she doesn't want to put them in
a place of vulnerability. then there is this fear even if the house were to proceed on this, of course, the senate would do nothing. that guess gets you to a place where trump can say they tried to impeach me and couldn't. that's where we stand right now. of course, all this changes as his erratic behavior continues. they say they support an inquiry and proponents can say it doesn't matter what the senate says, we have a moral obligation to proceed on this path. let's see what happens the first couple weeks of september when people are back. they'll have heard from people in the districts and maybe the momentum will have shifted. >> as you know better than anybody here because you covered the speaker so closely, nancy pelosi never wanted to pursue
impeachment really. she's respectfully listened to the arguments for it. will she come home from this recess or come back to washington from this recess and see now this majority of democrats who do want to pursue and reconsider or will she able to put it off as we head into the 2020 election which has been her hope all along? >> it's been an evolution. she is willing to be the one to take the incoming fire for that. i think this thing about lujan, he is high ranking and running in a senate primary against a progressive. this is becoming an issue in situations like that. so i'm hesitant to read too much into this and, again, i think she is really willing to do what she thinks is necessary and that's likely to stand in the way of this impeachment inquiry. >> all right.
kasie hunt, next time we see you, we'll see baby. >> thank you so much. thank you for the support. >> absolutely. sam stein, thank you as well. still ahead, the president regularly claims that the u.s. steel industry is coming back. but hundreds of steel workers who are about to lose their jobs in michigan may disagree with that. plus, president trump has claimed that isis has been defeated but defense officials may not agree. a new report by the defense department's inspector general says the terror group is still very much a threat. also ahead, at his rally in new hampshire, president trump claimed he would have won the state in 2016 had it not been for thousands and thousands of people coming from unknown locations. now the chairwoman of the federal election commission is hitting back saying that is simply not true.
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our economy, i think, still fundamentals of our economy are strong. >> wow. okay. the fundamentals of our economy are strong. an infamous phrase used by then presidential nominee john mccain just hours before the u.s. financial system went into total meltdown. remember that? well, the trump white house obviously learned a thing or two from that, right? >> the fact is the fundamentals of our economy are very strong and you know it. >> okay. wow. good morning, welcome to "morning joe," everyone. i guess maybe they didn't learn. it is tuesday, august 20th. along with joe, willie and me, we have washington anchor for
bbc world news america. associate editor of "the washington post" and msnbc political analyst eugene robinson. great to you have all this morning. >> great to have everyone. willie, great to see you again. >> i wasn't here yesterday. i want to congratulate mika summiting kilimanjaro. i can't wait to see the pictures. i walked up 57 th street and totally out of breath. i stopped and had myself a cold drink. i can't believe did you that. so cool. >> it was nutty. i'll post pictures. it was hard. i'm not going to say like oh, wow i'm so cool. you really have to know -- no, i think that one must train before one does such things. and it was hard. thank you. >> they don't train, willie, they just -- in fact, she tells me they got to the base camp and
they said we're going to do this. we want to do it in 5 1/2 days. and they were like well -- >> they tried to say can you do seven or nine? >> she needs seven or eight days. i'm like, no, i have to get back on the air. most people do it in nine. but that's very dangerous. no, no, we want to get to the top. >> it's very mika. i'm jogging to the top. yes. >> yeah. >> exactly. >> well, you know, willie, you go times square and there is that mcdonald's and you have to walk upstairs to eat it. >> why do they do that? people movers to get us to the seating area where we can enjoy our number 6. >> i need to be able -- yeah, i need to be able to recline. okay, we're going to get to the news. >> the world awaits photos. >> i'm going to go to instagram. it was my daughter and me. it was our time together. i'm going to post a few pictures on instagram and leave it at
that. it was grate experience for us. >> impressed. >> but let's get to the news. thank you. and it's good for all three of us to be together again. i feel like we haven't seen new so long, willie. >> it's august. >> good to have -- all right. so let's get to the news. after 11 consecutive weeks of mass protests, hundreds of security officers from a chinese parra military force are staged across the water from hong kong. "the new york times" reports that bypassing the troops within view of hong kong, china's communist party is delivering a strong warning that the use of force remains an option for beijing. they note that china's leader has governed with an iron fist and few analysts doubt that china would act if he believed the country's sovereignty over the territory was jeopardized. we'll follow that. twitter and facebook are suspending numerous accounts they claim are tied to a chinese
disinformation campaign against hong kong's pro-democracy protesters. they said yesterday in recent weeks accounts that owe ridge nalted in china "acted in a coordinated fashion to amplify messages and images that portrayed hong kong's protesters as violent and extreme." the times notes that although both facebook and at which time rer blocked in china, recent activity over the hong kong protests suggests that beijing will use the services to spread the messages outside the fire wall when they deem necessary. >> also this morning, a new report by the pentagon's inspector general says president trump's policies are directly to blame for a new and on going resurgence of isis in iraq and sear yachlt the report says president trump's spontaneous partial troop withdrawal earlier this year emboldened isis.
the troop draw down forced the united states to rely on third party monitoring in some areas including at a 70,000 person refugee camp set up by u.s. backed forces that according to the "new york times." "it's evolving into a hot bed of isis ideology and a huge breeding ground for future terrorists." the reports states that isis currently has an estimated 14,000 to 18,000 combatants, continue to conduct gorilla attacks and can tap into a reported $400 million war chest. joe? >> so this is something that the trump administration was warned about. it was something that people inside the pentagon warned donald trump about. so now people inside his own administration and pentagon are saying that, yes, his actions have led to the resurgence of isis.
it's obviously something we've seen before. and you just wonder whether he's going to double down or whether he's going to actually do what obama started and keep isis on the run. >> on multiple fronts now the administration is facing isis resurging. sear yashg syria, iraq, and also in afghanistan. there were ten coordinated attacks on monday in an area that is is present just at the time that the americans are trying to negotiate some kind of peace deal or effectively withdraw agreement for american forces from afghanistan. and it has to be a reminder of this report and what we've seen happen in afghanistan in the last few days. it's very complicated. if you pull back american forces in a way that is too precipitous or is not coordinated or not thought out, does not leave behind some kind of political
solution, then this is an organization that re-emerges whether it's in the form of al qaeda in some areas or in the form of islamic state in other areas. and it risks jeopardizing exactly what donald trump wants to do. this is why barack obama when he pulled back from iraq that created this space for islamic state to emerge in syria. if you pull back, there is definitely this risk is something the president wanted to do. now he is seeing it in all three of the countries there is a prospect for them re-emerging. >> everybody rightfully became impatient and wanted troops to come home from iraq. they wanted it as well. but that created a void that led to isis. barack obama dismissed it as a regional threat before having to start this process and eventually led to the destruction of isis in iraq and
syria. donald trump followed through on that. but now donald trump seems to be repeating the same mistake. it's not only talking about repeating the same mistake there, he's talking about repeating that mistake in afghanistan. there are no short cuts in a war against terrorists. >> the federal election commission is pushing back against the president's claims of voter fraud in the 2016 election. trump tweeted yesterday, "wow, report just out. google, manipulated from 2.6 million votes for hillary clinton in the 2016 election. this was put out by a clinton supporter, not a trump supporter. google should be sued. my victory was bigger than thought.
according to a "washington post" analyst, trump appears to be referencing a study by psychologist robert epstein whose testimony before the senate judiciary committee last month was featured in a segment on fox business moments before the president fired off his tweet. and while epstein identifies himself as a democrat who backed clinton, that's a convenient figure since clinton won by about 2.9 million votes nationally. but the post points out that's not what epstein said in his testimony. he estimated a range of 2.6 to 10.4 million votes. that's 2.6 million estimate, he said, was the rock bottom estimate. it's also unclear what mythology was being used. fec chair yesterday disputed trump's claims. >> there is no evidence of rampant voter froud in 2016 or
really any really in any previous election. lawyers studied this. the government studied. this democrats studied. this republicans studied this. and no one can find any evidence of ram pant voter fraud historically or in the 2016 elections. >> and the chair ellen weintraub joins the conversation ahead on "morning joe." you expect donald trump to start talking about crowd size. for many people yesterday,ed that this is once again the president looping not a good look for him and still ridiculous that he is still claiming that there was massive voter fraud when he has absolutely no evidence of it. >> yeah. and the author of the study actually came out yesterday and said he didn't say google manipulated the votes and the president was twisting words. gene robinson, here we are again. the president of the united states disputing the numbers around the election.
it started with the inauguration numbers, you know, the crowd size that is inauguration. he is obsessed with the idea that america is not celebrating his victory that he didn't win by as much as he thinks he d he lost the popular vote. that somehow the questions around russia call into question how he won the election. this has been a thorn in his side. >> size is always a matter to the president. he is obsessed with this idea because it's true that he is -- he won a very narrow electoral victory and lost the popular vote by three million votes. and this drives him crazy. and will continue to drive him crazy. so he is focused on these numbers, you know, that first segment we talked about these incredible problems of rise of isis and hong kong streets are full of demonstrators. there is all this stuff going on in the world.
the president is obsessed with his crowd size at the new hampshire rally last week where he insists that people mention that his crowd was bigger than elton john's. he's very big on that. instead of thinking of hong kong and afghanistan where there is all this turmoil, he is focused on greenland. we're going buy greenland, parentally. it's a real estate deal and that's what he's obsessed about. it's just in sane. here we are, 2019. welcome. >> still ahead on "morning joe" -- >> it's clear that daniel pantaleo can no longer serve as a new york city police officer. carrying out the court's verdict in this case i take no pleasure. i know many will disagree with this decisionment that is their
right. there are absolutely no victors here today, not the garner family, not the community at large and certainly not the core ageous men and women of the police department. they put their own lives on the line every single day in service and to the people of this great city. today is a day of reckonning but can be a day of reconciliation. we must move forward together as one city. >> the nypd fires the officer seen on video using a chokehold during eric garner's deadly arrest five years ago. that story is next on "morning joe." every day, visionaries are creating the future.
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nypd. he did that for seven seconds, 11 different times eric garner said he couldn't breathe. he knew what he was doing. he was killing eric garner and yet he has not been brought to justice. that police officer should be off the streets. >> he should be fired. he should be fired now. >> the civil rights division of the united states department of justice said charges should have been filed but this united states department of justice failed and it is because that president did not want those charges to go forward and they overrode a decision by the civil rights division of the united states and department of justice. >> eric garner was arrested on staten island five years nag 2014 for selling loose untaxed cigarettes when officer pantaleo placed him in that deadly chokehold. garner said i can't breathe 11 times in that video. so, joe, the police commissioner here yesterday made that announcement, james o'neill.
it's going to put a claim in to have pantaleo reinstated so he can get his benefits and remain on the job. but this has been a simmering issue in the city and country for five years that helped to inspire the black lives movement. black lives matter, excuse me. >> and it really has. gene, you know, we have the video evidence. >> yeah. >> there were a few members of the u.s. senate that tweeted some things good ferguson that were not by video evidence or by eric holder. here we saw on camera eric garner being murdered. and i guess the question is what took so long? >> what took so long? this was ruled a homicide eventually. and this is a process that ground tlon was a question of,
you know, whether criminal charges would be filed at the local level, federal level that, whole thing had to drag on. and then after all that was over and i do agree with the democratic candidates that the possibility of a federal prosecution does seem to have been foreclosed by the administration. there was this whole administrative process that had to go on and, of course, there are union rules and everything in new york. so it took five years. it took all this time to get to the point of acknowledging what we see clearly on the video. and what we knew at the beginning. and it is just obvious this is an officer who should have been offer the street. there will be appeals, by the way.
there's an appeals process that the officer can go through. so unfortunately, this is not really over yet. >> coming up, president trump says the economy is booming. so why is the white house scrambling to shore it up? that's next on "morning joe." chair is just a chair. that a handle is just a handle. or... that you can't be both inside and outside. most people haven't driven a lincoln. it's the final days of the lincoln summer invitation event. right now get 0% apr on all lincoln vehicles
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anchts m . the trump administration is weighing steps to help strengthen the economy. according to "the washington post," several senior white house officials started talks about whether to push for a temporary payroll tax cut in an effort to put more money into americans' pockets. the post says the potential move comes amid growing concerns about the economy among president trump's top economic aides. the paper adds that discussions about the idea are still in the early stages and could include other types of tax breaks. the administration is mulling possibly reversing some of donald trump's tariffs.
the times says that president has not been briefed on the tax cut idea which would need to be approved by congress and it isn't clear if he would support the cuts. the white house is disputing the reports telling nbc news that the cuts are not considered. the administration also continues to push back over concerns about the state of the economy. however, nearly three quarters of economists surveyed by the national association for business economics believes the u.s. will tip into recession by the end of 2021. according to the poll, almost 40% predict a recession as early as the end of next year. >> the tweet about greenland and the stolen elections that were never stolen, again, not focusing on the big issues that are out there. >> some believe this recession
is coming. we can see a slowdown in germany. a slowdown and obviously economic problems in china. in part because of trade wars that are now impacting the u.s. economy. the president has a $16 billion socialist scheme to pay off big agricultural interests impacted by his hoover like protectionism. and now we're talking about even more tax cuts for a nation pushing up on $23 trillion in debt again to help push along an economy who is being hurt. >> so much for the wonderful conservative economic ideas of no deficits and free trade. in some ways the white house has an economy they can celebrate. the market -- the dow is at $26,000. it was at 19,000 on the day donald trump got elected. unemployment is low in the country. growth has been high.
and wages have been picking up in some sectors. the problem is what's coming around the corner and that is what is making the white house nervous because whether it is in 2019 or in 2020 or in 2021, the majority of economists do seem to agree that we're heading for a down turn. we've been on a boom rise since 2008 since after the crash. things have been growing pretty consistently. it's not unexpected in the cyclical nature of economics that we do have a down turn at this point. we had a sugar high from the big tax cuts that president passed. those now seem to be filtering out of the system. you look at range of factors whether it's around the world or warning signs in the united states and it's hard to believe that some kind of a down turn isn't coming. of course, that's going to cause a lot of headaches for a president who unlike previous presidents has tied his own fortunes to the stock market. and that, you know, that's a problem for him. you tie your fortunes to the
economic growth and stock market and then that turns down, can you blame other things. you can blame the press, google, federal reserve chair. but at some point the voters are going to look at his record. >> coming up on "morning joe," trump blames google for manipulating the 2016 election in favor of hillary clinton. chairwoman of the federal election commission will address the president's latest claim of voter fraud. that's next on "morning joe." that's next on "morning joe. ♪
spending time together, sometimes means doing nothing at all. holiday inn. we're there. so you can be too. he borrowed billions donald trump failed as a businessman. and left a trail of bankruptcy and broken promises. he hasn't changed. i started a tiny investment business, and over 27 years, grew it successfully to 36 billion dollars. i'm tom steyer and i approve this message.
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this is xfinity x1. featuring the emmy award-winning voice remote. streaming services without changing passwords and input. live sports - with real-time stats and scores. access to the most 4k content. and your movies and shows to go. the best tv experience is the best tv value. xfinity x1. simple. easy. awesome. xfinity. the future of awesome. we should have won new hampshire. that was taken away. new hampshire was taken away. it was taken away from us. but we should have. we did great in new hampshire. we should have won new hampshire. but that's okay. i'm not holding it against you because it was no the your fault. you have a lot of voter fraud. many, many people voted that shouldn't have been voted. some people voted many times. what i'm saying is we need voter
identification. we need voter id. >> wow. president trump speaking to reporters on sunday and before that at his rally in new hampshire last week telling supporters that voter fraud cost him the states four electoral votes. wow, report just out. google manipulated from 2.6 million to 16 million votes for hillary clinton in 2016 election. in was put out by a clinton supporter, not a trump supporter. google should be sued. my victory was even bigger than thought. hillary clinton responded. storty you're referring to is based on 21 undecided voters for context. that's about half the number of people associated with your campaign who have been indicted. >> that's context.
>> joining us now, chairman ellen weintraub. also with us editor at large and msnbc contributor kara swisher. great to have you on the show. ellen, i'd like to start with you. you put out a letter to president trump asking him to clarify his information. what struck you as untrue or factually questionable? >> this is not the same claim. i asked the president if he has proof this actually happened and he needs to turn that over to law enforcement authorities because that is a serious problem. but no proof was forthcoming then. i didn't anticipate any proof coming forth now.
facts matter, mika. they matter because the american people deserve the truth from their leaders but they also matter because they have policy consequences. there are real threats to our democracy from abroad. from align foreign actors and there are bipartisan bills in congress that are teed up and ready for votes that are not happening. there are bills to make sure that the state and local officials have the sources and cybersecurity tools to protect themselves against real foreign attacks. there are bills to ensure we have better disclosure so people understand where they're getting their information from on line. bill to crack down on shell corporation that's are hiding foreign money. bills to make sure there are actors that are trying to intervene in our elections. that's where we have to focus our attention. and when we're distracted from that and looking for measures to protect against problems that are existing and we're not
addressing the real and serious threats to our democracy. >> the president as we just saw in that clip said that some people voted many times in the 2016 election. have you seen any evidence of that? >> no evidence. >> no evidence that anyone voted multiple times? >> no. >> i think "the washington post" looked and found four instances of voter froud aftaud after the election. scholars have looked into the claims of voter fraud over the years and have not been able to document them. one scholar looked at every election from 2000 to 2014 over a billion votes and found about 31 instances of possible voter fraud. these are not changing results. that's not where we need to be focusing our attention. >> let me ask you about the specific claim that brought you out yesterday and brought you on the show this morning. the president tweeted this. we'll get kara to weigh in afterward as well.
google manipula nip late many i 2.6 to 16 million in the election. what do you make of that? >> the author of that stud yan the study itself is disputed. the author himself has said that what the president said is not what he meant and not what the study means. >> kara, you studied google closely. you're critical of google when you feel it needs criticism. what do you make of the president's claim here? >> it's a lie. it's a flat out lie. i think ellen is even understating the situation. this is using twitter again, using a tech thing to spread lies. that's all that is. google has a lot of issues. there are a lot of issues with google and the tech companies but this is not one of them. i don't even understand it. i don't understand how can you repeat such a lie by the president and by anybody on these platforms. it is spreading false
information. it's also getting in the way of passing real laws that are the real threats which was talking about which is foreign influence which is severe. election tampering, voting machine tampering, all kinds of things we do have to deal with which has been stopped by this administration. and these bills should be passing. and it's really disturbing to then attack a tech company for something that is not their fault. and again, i would blame google for a lot of things but not this at all. >> so i wonder whether the president is referring back to the 2016 election and specifically the case of new hampshire where in a sense what is really happening here is setting up the next election because if you use this argument that there was voter froud, of course fraud, you can apply that to any close race s there a risk if there is a close state that is critical to his re-election campaign, that then gets disputed on the grounds of voter fraud? >> well, i'm very concerned on two fronts about that.
one is that when you have close races that the voters who support one candidate if their guy doesn't win, they might not accept the results. we have a long history of well run elections that people trust and voter integrity destroying that trust is really damaging to our democracy and very hard to build up again. and the other problem is that the kind of measures that people are suggesting to address the voter fraud that doesn't actually exist will, in fact, have the possibility of deterring real american citizens from exercising their vote. i want to see every american citizen exercising their right to vote and not be deterred by measures that are being thrown up for false reasons. >> yeah. i'm not going to ask ellen why she thinks this might be happening. i appreciate her just focusing on the facts.
what should going doll? what does a tech company do? >> they can't do anything. you know, on one hand they can engage with the administration, i suppose and say this is not true and release a statement or they just stay away from it. i think a lot of people trust google more than they trust president trump in this way. you know? in some cases they have fallen down on the job like at youtube and other places in terms of hate speech and video that's shouldn't be there and things like that. but in general, people do trust google for the information they provide. you know, they -- one thing they were talking about was this vote button that they had on the screens which i think would influence an election. it gets people to vote. that's what should be happening. people should be voting. and people should not have things in their way to vote. if i were google, i would say nothing. that's how a lot of companies that are attacked by president trump, i just move along and
keep going. i don't know if there is any way to fight this. >> i mean, i guess ignoring him somehow diminishes him possibly. we still value our facts. kara swisher, always an honor to have you on. great to see you. ellen weintraub, my here roechlt thank you both for being on this morning. >> thanks. >> take care. >> and time now for business before the bell. u.s. steel announced they plan to temporarily lay off 200 workers as it haults production at one of the michigan facilities in the coming weeks. joining us now, cnbc's dominick chu. >> this is the great lakes facility in michigan. the job reductions will affect less than 200 people. but u.s. steel says the layoffs could last longer than six months. the company has been dealing with lower steel prices and less demand from the bigger customers like automakers and also farm equipment makers as well. it has been a big turn since president trump first put on the taxes for imported steel.
it did help though boost the price of american made steel but then the shares of many of these american steel makers are steady declines over the course of the past few months and years here because of worries about falling demand. the on going trade war already taking its toll on american consumers as well. president trump acknowledged that possibility which is why he delayed the tariffs on certain items until december. but now america's biggest home improvement retailer echoing the concerns about the u.s.-china trade war. they're saying it could hurt consumer spending down the line. home depot reported sales that missed analyst projections earlier this morning. they say in part because of the rest of the year could see a potential pullback by consumers over that consumer spending picture with the u.s.-china trade war. and we're going to end thing onz a lighter note, folks. americans not only continue to spend on their homes but they do on dining out as well. and three fast food chains in particular are turning up the heat in the kitchen so to speak when it comes to has the best
chick sandwich. it started with pop eyes tweeting about the new sandwich and then chick-fil-a tweets about how good their sandwich is. popeyes tweets back. and wendy's mocks both of them about how they're fighting about who has the second best chicken sandwich next to wendy's. it goes on for a couple more rounds. you get the picture. and now shake shack is getting involved. anybody who makes a chicken sandwich mainly with pickles, i don't know about you. i've been here early this morning and i think i'm going to get a chicken sandwich. >> sounds great. >> all right, dominick chu, thank you. senator jeff mushgly joins us next and a look at what is making headlines in a few of the early voting states. in iowa, the des moines register leads with presidential hopefuls work for union votes. in massachusetts, one of the super tuesday states, the "boston globe" goes with warren apologies for missteps on
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joe." a live picture of the white house on a beautiful august morning. white house aides, congressional leaders, and gun advocates now tell "the washington post" president trump appears to be backing away from potentially supporting background check legislation on guns. capitol hill aides say behind the scenes trump's communication with key lawmakers has gone cold in part because congress has left town for its summer recess. people familiar with the conversations tell "the post" trump's campaign commissioned a poll on guns after the month's mass shootings in el paso and dayton and his political advisers warned him there is little support for significant action among republican voters and even some democrats. "the post" report continues, quote, since the shootings nra officials have repeatedly told the president and senior white house officials that universal background checks won't do much to prevent mass shootings. white house aides and nra officials pointed out to trump that many of the states he needs to win next year have strong contingents of nra members who
might be frustrated if he made any drastic moves on gun control. joining us in new york a member of the appropriations, environment, and public works and foreign relations committees democratic senator jeff merkley of oregon. he has a new book out today entitled "america is better than this, trump's war against migrant families." senator, good morning. >> good morning. >> want to dig deep into your book but you've also been an outspoken advocate for gun reform. >> absolutely. >> perhaps this was a predictable arc of the story where president trump came out last week and said we've got to do something on universal background checks. i'm for that. the nra gets in his ear and he is now backing away from it. do you see any movement on guns when you come back to town next month? >> what was surprising to me was how quickly the president faded away. i thought it would take a couple more weeks. he ended up about what i anticipated which is let's not act. it's very difficult in this senate. we had a bipartisan bill that
had more than 50 votes that joe manchin and pat toomey put together. they led very well on it. we had a foundation for moving forward but it's going to take presidential leadership and that's missing. >> joe, i don't know what polls the white house aides are showing president trump but the public polling on universal background checks is something like 90 or 97% support including a majority of republicans and a majority of gun owners. >> it's overwhelming. 9 out of 10 americans support a universal background check and want background checks expanded. the overwhelming majority of republicans do. the number of gun owners do as well. senator, if you have an issue that 9 out of 10 americans support, yet you have a president and mitch mcconnell trying to get in the way of americans getting what they feel they deserve on gun safety, what
can you do? what can like minded democrats and republicans do to push for universal background checks to keep guns out of the hands of terrorists and domestic abusers? >> the key is absolutely to get it on the senate floor but we can't do that without mitch mcconnell supporting it. that is the challenge of the way the senate is structured. the privilege given to the majority leader is now being abused continuously in terms of preventing the senate from addressing issues america wants addressed. what really strikes me about the numbers of american support is there is not that much difference between democrats and republicans on this issue. what is different is you have a very powerful lobby, the nra, that provides a lot of money and a lot of megaphone if you will for candidates and that shows their influence and also shows the corruption that is inhabiting congress with the amount of money that has -- the
door is open to in campaigns. >> whoever showed the president the numbers inside the white house on background checks were cooking the books. 9 out of 10 republicans support expanding background checks. let's move on to your book. obviously, it brings up one of the critical challenges in the trump administration. talk about why you wrote the book. >> well, i wrote this book because 14 months ago i went down to the border to find out what this zero tolerance was all about and what i found was child separation, children being ripped out of their parents' arms and put into cages and then up the road an hour in brownsville found a former walmart stuffed with what turned out to be 1500 boys inside there. there are so many ways this administration is deliberately mistreating migrant children and
migrant families. this is not america. we have to shine a bright light on this. so i wrote the book to shine the bright light and to put together the many pieces of the puzzle at the border, at the internment camps, at the for profit child prisons so people could understand the big picture and then to call people to action. we're going to need outside force to push and say, this is not acceptable. this human rights abuse is done by our government on our territory with our tax money. only we can stop it and we have to. >> senator, when you talk to your republican colleagues and when you've come back from your trips to the border and talk to them about what you have found down there, how much disquiet do you hear from them privately when you're talking to them one-on-one? >> i would say they squirm. because they feel they are locked into president trump's aggressive mistreatment and they haven't spoken out before and they feel, well now if they do they have to explain why they didn't previously.
and besides, when the president is emphasizing if you will some myths like this is an issue not of dignified and respectful treatment but open borders, they are fearful of the president's megaphone and fearful of their base. >> senator, you've been shining a light on this for more than a year and has been front and center now for sometime. do you see any change since you first went down there, is there any movement from the administration or some willingness to move? >> we have seen change but mostly driven by the courts. the court shut down the bulk of the child separation but the front door has been closed but the administration has been using a back door for hundreds more children separated from their parents without acceptable cause. they still have the system of a for profit prison they plan to reopen called homestead.
they still have the megacenters like casa padre that has more than a thousand boys in it. they still have the mistreatment at the border. the border blockade leaving children trapped in very hostile, dangerous cities across the border. none of this is acceptable. americans don't want to see children treated as pawns in a political power play. this is not who we are. we've seen essentially the statue of liberty and her torch extinguished. that is not okay. we have to relight that torch. >> you've been shining that light for sometime now, senator. thank you so much. the book is "america is better than this, trump's war against migrant families." senator jeff merkley of oregon, thanks for your time. >> thank you so much. >> joe, final thoughts this morning? >> well, you know, i go back to gene robinson's column about how donald trump is getting worse. it's something we've also read recently in "the atlantic."
jonathan lamire at the associated press reported a few weeks back that people around the president continue to be shocked that he's, in fact, becoming more of a chaos president than before. so expectations continue to drop and the president keeps going past those already low expectations. what about you? >> well, i think the president, we've seen reporting this morning from "the washington post" and the "new york times" that they are focusing in the white house on the economy and perhaps putting in new policies to bolster the economy, the signal, the sign, the tell katty from the president of what he is actually concerned about is the thing he ensures us on twitter he is not worried at all about that the economy is fine and everything is fine then turns the corner and starts tweeting about anthony scaramucci. what are your final thoughts this morning? >> yes. i think it is about the economy. we're in this era of being told we just have to think positively. i'm hearing exactly the same thing out of downing street and prime minister boris johnson as
out of the white house. if only people thought positively everything would be okay. the tariffs and brexit, do they respond to positive thinking? i'm not sure. >> not so sure. that does it for us this morning. thanks so much as always for watching. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage right now. thanks, joe. hi there. i am stephanie ruhle. it is tuesday, august 20th. here's what's happening now. the white house insists the economy is very strong but their actions may tell a very different story. after spending the weekend telling the american people there is no reason to worry, the president's economic team is reportedly exploring options to boost the economy in case things get worse. i have to bring in jeff bennett at the white house. help us understand the message and the mission. because the administration is pushing back on one of the ideas reported that they're looking into a payroll tax. the white house is saying everything is a-okay. what's really happening?