tv MSNBC Live MSNBC November 10, 2019 1:00pm-2:01pm PST
that will do it for me on this sunday here in washington, d.c. ahead of what will be a very, very busy week. i'll be back next saturday morning at 7:00 a.m. you can follow me on twitter and instagram. the news continues right now with my colleague richard lui in new york. >> and a very lonely studio back here in new york. we'll see you next weekend. thank you all for being with us here on this sunday. i'm richard lui, live at msnbc headquarters here in new york city. three days to go. the impeachment inquiry's next major step is about to start. the house returns from recess to hold their first public hearings wednesday. for the very first time americans will get to see and hear for themselves testimony from key witnesses. bill taylor, jorge kent, marie yovanovitch. those are the names you'll hear a lot. what you need to know to watch
from each. as gop lawmakers prepare their defense of president trump, some possible lessons from the past. could republicans turn on president trump as they did on richard nixon during watergate? we'll talk to someone who had a front-row seat to the fall of a presidency. on this veteran's day weekend, we'll talk to one vet who is working to convince republicans to put country over party as the impeachment inquiry ramps up and the 2020 election looms. we'll start off this show, though, with our brain trust with the latest on phase two of the impeachment inquiry. these are the faces we'll talk to this hour. super bowl of politics starting wednesday and only the fourth time in history we'll experience this. the first public hearings feature a doubleheader at 10:00 a.m. eastern. the top u.s. envoy to ukraine, bill taylor and top u.s. state department official george kent will appear in front of the house intelligence committee. on friday we'll hear from former ukraine ambassador marie yovanovitch. here's what's to watch out for. first up, acting ambassador to
ukraine, bill taylor. he's expected to detail rudy giuliani's involvement in ukraine, then to define the established quid pro quo and then explain how the president's request was tied to ukraine's military aid or not. we'll also hear from deputy assistant secretary of state george kent on wednesday. he's expected to outline giuliani's role in the administration's ukraine policy. then outline red flags that may have been raised concerning the push to probe the bidens. kent's testimony will most likely include what he considered a, quote, irregular, informal back channel to ukraine. what were the details on that? then we take you to friday. former u.s. ambassador to ukraine, marie yovanovitch. her testimony is expected to focus on the president's ukraine policy. she will most likely testify that the president's phone call with ukraine's leader set off alarm bells in the state department and how the department failed to back her
up. that's what to look out for as this week gets started. democrats, though, in advance trying to soften the ground. >> ambassador taylor was an infantry officer with 101st airborne division in vietnam, west point graduate. lieutenant colonel vindman earned the purple heart in iraq. these are veterans and credible w witnesses. i hope people read the transcripts, by all means. they're all coming out in public. >> joining us now, as you saw at the top of the show, nbc news white house correspondent, kelly o'donnell, dwhchuck rosenberg a natalie andrews. let's start with you right now, kelly. how is the white house, if at all, reacting to what, as we've been saying all this weekend, just days away from the first public hearing? >> well, the president is reacting on twitter. the president is new york city tonight.
he'll be staying over and taking part in some of the veterans day events in new york. he's warning fellow republicans not to buy in what he calls a fool's error in thinking, you can criticize the president's conduct as inappropriate or unwise but not impeachable. the president says that's not good enough. he wants republicans united. also saying he's frustrated by the committee, that's chairman adam schiff, the intelligence committee chairman, who ultimately gets to decide which witnesses will be seen publicly. the president frustrated that republican witnesses offered to the committee for appearing this -- either this week or at some point in the public phase. we don't yet expect that any of those will be agreed to. now, it is possible that some of those included on the republican list who have already given depositions may be agreeable to the democratic side. but the big names, including hunter biden, former vice president's son, and the unidentified whistle-blower, republicans want to hear from
both of those individuals and president trump is saying he's frustrated that that is unlikely and that had adam schiff and democrats would not let that happen. so, one of the divides that is going into this critically important week is over who should be called publicly to testify and who should not be included. republicans say they want to tell their story about concerns about ukraine, corruption, the bidens. that's not the story democrats want to say. they say it's all about the president's conduct, what he did and is that rising to the level of impeachment. that's what american voters and the public as well as the lawmakers who will be hearing all this this week should consider and not being dragged into some of the other issues that the white house would like to see litigated. richard? >> great summary to start this hour. white house correspondent kelly o'donnell watching that for us at white house. thank you, kelly. let's start off with you on this, joyce. who should they include and who should they not? let's get straight to what kelly was saying.
especially from the list the republicans put out, as you saw she listed some of those who were on that list, joyce. >> you know, it's also a discretionary call, richard, but it's important to remember this is still the investigative stage of proceedings. democrats are working towards a decision as to whether or not there will be articles of impeachment at some point. this is not the impeachment equivalent of a trial which occurs in the senate. so, at this point it's really up to investigators to speak to witnesses, who they believe will help them establish the facts and learn all of the important evidence that's available. it's not incumbent upon them to go upon wild fishing expeditions like ones the republicans appear to be calling for here, trying to insert their hunter biden defense, which has been proven to be meritless time and time again, and also trying to expose the whistle-blower, which is a very despicable sort of an app to take. democrats here really get to
make the decisions. they appear to be staying focused and making the right calls. >> the person making the decision here, natalie, chairman adam schiff, folks are asking, why not? go ahead and put one or two from that list in there if they are meritless. if there's been zero proof, and there has been zero proof to this theory so far, why not put that to bed? >> democrats are looking at a calendar, too, so they don't want this to stretch forever. they definitely -- adam schiff put out a statement yesterday after republicans put out their letter and they said they want to keep it narrow and consistent. now, republicans wanted to hear from mr. morrison, who has testified behind closed doors. so, something like that could happen as, hey h you want to hear from this guy, we can put this guy out in public. democrats definitely do not want to relitigate a server from the 2016 election or hunter biden and almost feed into some of these things, which have been
conspiracy theories and they are trying to make a case to the public about impeachment on this very narrow thing. also trying to explain why they want to impeach the president. i imagine chairman schiff will keep this very narrow as he tries to make a case and tries to make it as simple as possible. >> chuck, i guess if you're sitting at home on wednesday or you're at work and watching this, two ways to look at it. for an everyday person, i myself included, i might look at it legally and then i have to look at it constitutionally. that's pretty dishlgs i imagine, for many democrats, as they do ask questions of those giving testimony. how do they lay that out? >> right now i think there's a third dimension to complicate it further. legally, constitutionally and politically. what i would urge people to do is simply listen to the facts. these people testifying on wednesday and friday have given
depositions. they're logical, lynnial and, frankly, compelling and candid. if you just listen, you may have heard, but now you'll hear the story unfold. joyce and natalie are right. this is an investigative stage so we ought not be overly concerned about hearing all witnesses in the next two or three days. but i'm sure joyce has had this experience, too. we were both federal prosecutors. we both saw defendants put on cases at trial and, in my experiences, usually the defendant's case got weaker not stronger when they called witnesses that had absolutely nothing to do with the underlying set of operative facts. >> david, as democrats try to lay out the story, and let's say there's three phases to this, and we're seeing the first phase this week, where we have three witnesses coming to the front -- coming to the front of the cameras and the lights. what must democrats do here to lay out the beginning of the story they would like to tell
americans, to tell those who might be swingable in the house of representatives, and those who might be swingable in the senate? >> i think democrats will frame this as tightly as possible. what the country will hear on wednesday from bill taylor, without question there was a quid pro quo. that the aid to ukraine would only be released upon an investigation into the bidens and no oval office meeting would happen until that occurred as well. bill taylor will also introduce to the country that rudy giuliani was acting as a personal representative of donald trump. not in coordination with state department policy, but as a personal representative of the president when he was trying to extract these concessions from ukraine. george kent will affirm the quid pro quo but will also detail for the american people a direct line of communication all the way to the oval office. george kent has testified that ambassador sondland dealt directly with mick mulvaney. we know ambassador sondland
spoke dwriirectly to the. president. the american public will be introduced to witnesses who say there was a direct quid pro quo with the president. republicans will have to face that. the reason they don't have an argument is they can't discount that. republicans will be making a case about 2020. it will be a political case that the president's under attack. they will be speaking to a base of 2020 voters because that's the only currency republicans will have in response. >> that's a lot to get done there. joyce, quickly here, if you're trying to flip somebody and you laid out the first three witnesses, who might be you trying to flip? is it a mick mulvaney trying to get the legal cover, the federal legal cover of saying, yes, i can, answer yes to the subpoena that's been administered to me? >> we've already seen this process happen with ambassador sondland who, once compelling facts came out, that he could not respond to. he was faced with either being singled out for perjury or finally revealing at least a
portion of the truth. we saw him get on board. i think this is the process democrats are looking for as the truth comes forward, will other of these witnesses, whether it's a mick mulvaney or someone else, decide that the risk to them personally, if they continue to lie to support this president, is too great and decide to bring the truth to the american people. that's the democrats' goal this week. >> that's the democrats' goal. as we remember from the last time we went through this in history, which republican representative might shift gears? in fact, we're going to do that in the upcoming segment. thank you, natalie, chuck, david, stick around. coming up, as the impeachment inquiry enters a new phase, we take a deeper look -- rather, one deeper look, not two, at one of the most important lessons of watergate. what it took for republican lawmakers to abandon their president. that's next. a quick programming note. tonight on msnbc, ar melber
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the american people want fairness. i don't think they're going to judge fairness when they're accusing president trump of the same thing joe biden did, threatening the aid if some kind of corruption is not investigated. >> the president of the united states demanding, extorting a vulnerable country to do his political bidding, to go after his opponent, has nothing to do
with joe biden executing the foreign policy of the united states or hillary clinton, who is a private citizen. >> all this in advance of what's happening wednesday, day 51 of this impeachment inquiry, is when it goes public. by comparison for richard nixon, it was 93 days before they had public hearings. we're starting to get a clearer picture on the way of how republicans intend to fight back against allegations the president attempted to use foreign aid as a bargaining chip to get a foreign power to investigate his political rivals. they include denying the allegation, downplaying its seriousness, attacking the whistle-blower and other witnesses and turning the focus on democrats, especially the bidens. now, the further that lawmakers proceed along the path of impeachment, the more the proceedings look back to watergate, when republicans stood by their president until they did not in the end, at least some. republicans stood by richard nixon, as you might remember, at the start of the impeachment
inquiry, february 1974. it was not until maryland congressman lawrence hogan sr., a republican on the house judiciary committee, he announced on july 23rd that he would vote to impeach. two weeks later, president richard nixon announced his resignation, having lost the support of his party in congress. joining us now, former assistant watergate special prosecutor and msnbc contributor jill weinbanks, nbc.com think contributor kurt, and back with joyce vance. jill, i know you would look at that and say, there's a lot of details you're missing, richard, but we can't go through them all. but was that the key moment? what might lead up to the key moment this time around, where we have the one republican who said, i'm going to vote to impeach? >> i think the key moment for watergate was the final release
of a smoking gun tape in which the president was heard discussing committing a crime. using the cia to stop the fbi from investigating the original break-in. but here we have a lot of smoking guns. i would equate the conversation between zelensky and trump has another smoking gun. in obvious, plain sight, you have a commission of a request from a foreign power to help in his own personal benefit for his political gain. that, to me, is a crime. and then you have in addition to that pulling troops out of protecting the kurds. that's another danger to our national security and to our allies. so, there's a lot of things i say equal the smoking gun. and it is a question of now we're in a different the environment and gerrymandering
have led to no compromise. the republicans are not cooperating. during watergate they had the cooperation of the republicans. they drafted the language of the impeachment articles. all three, by the way, would apply today to the same acts by donald trump. the contempt of congress is very important in refusing to cooperate with any investigation as well as the obstruction, as well as the abuse of power. all three apply to donald trump. that's what we should be looking at. we can focus on the ukraine phone call because america understands that. it's important to bring the public into this conversation and to have them understand what's going on. but to allow the republicans to divert attention to things that have no factual basis would be a mistake. we have to focus on what the evidence is. particularly at this stage. this is not the trial. in the trial you can have much more evidence. this is still the investigation.
let's focus on what the evidence is. >> the in fact, there is a piece of sound i'd like to play from senator rand paul, who is discussing what needs to be part of this public inquiry phase. let's play a little bit of that from "meet the press" this morning. >> one of our traditions about justice, about finding justice is defense should be able to present their witnesses. if you can't call hunter biden and you can't call the whistle-blower, that's not -- that's sort of a sham. >> you know, chuck, there is that, which the republicans would like to see during this phase. and there is that which is the smoking gun. has the definition of what a smoking gun changed from the time of nixon to the time of trump? >> actually, let me pick at that question a little bit, richard. having tried lots of cases as a federal prosecutor, we don't always have smoking guns. i don't know that we need to have one here either. many cases are built brick by brick, piece by piece and circumstantially.
i agree with jill. you have very compelling evidence in that phone call. if you want to call it a smoking gun, great. if you want to call it a big piece of evidence, great. i don't think the terminology matters all that much. what you're requesting going to though, are witnesses who corroborate the phone call, what they heard, what they heard from others and the things they saw, including the back channel foreign policy that's deeply disturbing. so, i wouldn't be too focused on whether or not you have a smoking gun. i would look for credible, corroborative witness who is are thoughtful and honest. i think that's what the american public is going to see the lat either part of this week. >> which includes kurt bardella. you changed parties. that's part of the question. after the years on the hill, as a republican, you said i'm going to become a democrat. not that they need to change parties on the hill. but what will be the leadup to at least one member saying, i'm going to vote to impeach? >> i think it comes down to how these hearings play out. for all the legal talk we have
day in and day out here, at the end of the day, this is a television show. these hearings, as we've seen with the mueller, as we saw wit. the republicans made it clear, they're going to continue to obstruct. they'll do procedural shenanigans and make it challenging for democrats at these hearings and try to distract them. it's up to the democrats to see if they can control the hearing, control the narrative. if the witnesses allowed to tell the stories they told in the depositions will be incredibly damaging. a big tipping point will be if they can get pompeo, mulvaney, rudy giuliani, central characters in the extortion scheme to testimony under oath in public. how those people perform will ultimately tell you if republicans are comfortable moving away from trump or not. >> as we listen to what kurt, chuck as well as jill have said so far, what will be needed to be heard from these testimonies that might change minsds today
during what we heard during the richard nixon time and during his impeachment? >> so, kurt makes this great point about how this needs to be packaged for television. and the question will be whether or not our justice system and the truth-finding process that we go through in this sort of an investigation into an elected official's conduct, whether that can come across in the format of television. chuck likes to point out this is a political process. not just a legal and constitutional one. that means we'll have congress people cross-examining witnesses on television, and the strategy so far that we've seen from republicans has been one of distract, point the finger at others, whether it's hunter biden, hillary clinton or any other sort of nonsense that has very little to do with the president's conduct of this back channel foreign policy in ukraine. so the total strategy this week
for democrats has tos be some way to get the truth-telling function to the american people through the lens of television. that's an awesome challenge given all of the dynamics here. >> jill, quickly here, what is going to be the democrat strategy as they have process versus content? >> i would go back to what chuck said. this is a question of building the case and it is brick by brick. i agree with him on that. and so you have -- taylor will start the testimony. he lays out a pretty compelling case. he has a full view of it. then you start corroborating each of the pieces he says. at the end of it, i think that americans, if they're paying attention, if fox news, for example, will play the entire testimony, not just the bits and pieces that the republicans are trying to divert attention, then people will be able to see how all the pieces of the puzzle fit
together. how it really compels them to conclude. as the juror in the manafort trial who supported trump said, i think this whole thing is a hoax and a witch hunt, but i saw the evidence and i voted to convict him on all 18 counts. i think the american people will listen to this evidence and they will come to the conclusion that something bad has happened, it's risked our national security and the president must be held accountable. >> jill, joyce, chuck and kurt, thank you for a great segment there. coming up, a major 2020 shakeup. we'll show you the battleground numbers that could be driving former new york city mayor michael bloomberg's potential entry into the presidential race. ♪ do you recall, not long ago ♪ we would walk on the sidewalk ♪
i certainly welcome mayor bloomberg to the race, but i don't think you just waltz in and say, instead of, well, i'm good enough to be president, your argument is the other people aren't good enough. >> i have no problem with him getting in the race. in terms he's running -- last polls i looked at, i'm pretty far ahead. >> tonight we say to michael bloomberg and other
billionaires, sorry, you ain't going to buy this election. >> nice good new york accent on top of that. democratic presidential candidates reacting to the possibility that former new york city mayor michael bloomberg might jump into the 2020 race. one of the several major developments in a pivotal week. democrats got encouraging signs on what was considered slid republican states. they took the governorships in kentucky -- rather, one governorship there and flipped control of virginia's government for the first time in decades. it was not all good news. polling from "the new york times" shows exactly why a candidate like bloomberg might see an opportunity, a sli sliver of light there. president trump continues to poll competitively in battleground states among registered voters against all the top-tier democrats. joe biden, bernie sanders and elizabeth warren, when you look at those single digit numbers.
back with us, former florida congressman, david jolly, kurt bardella and axios white house reporter alaina treen. i got a little ak is sent because of sanders. when we look at these numbers, and they are close, according to the latest polling, there was more light between these theet ret c theatrical match-ups. >> i think that could be part of it. it is still really early and i think that if you look at this time ahead of the 2016 election, the polls and the numbers in some of these battleground states didn't really reflect what did happen in november of 2016. i say that with a caveat. the president is doing well in the battleground, purple, swing
states. that's where the democrats are putting in their energy, and rightfully so. looking back to 2016, i've ta talked to a lot of democratic strategists are worried some kaemz are going to make the same mistake ahead of 2020, not give president trump enough credit in these areas and understand the voters in rural america. >> there is institutional memory, certainly. kurt, you can't litigate michael bloomberg, but if you don't litigate michael bloomberg, what is his potential entry into the field say about the field and where they're at today? >> i think more than anything, his entry tells you the campaign of vice president biden has won has not met expectation. bloomberg, in large part, stayed out with the assumption that biden would be running away with it. >> he'd peak, right? >> his debate performances would propel him forward to the nomination. instead, he's gone nowhere but down since his campaign began. that's why bloomberg sees this opening. i personally think will are shortfalls with this.
as we saw in 2016 with the republican primary, if you have this endless primary where everybody attacks each other, people like dthd trump will walk into the office at a time where there needs to be unison, cohesion, some kind of unity and uniting the democratic party. putting forward someone whose message is completely the opposite of the base of the party right now and with the warren and sanders waning, demotivating your base is not the way to beat donald trump. >> part of that here, i was looking at the numbers from some of the swing states that are also in "the new york times" poll, you look at north carolina, michigan, florida, wisconsin. you know, joe biden is doing quite well still. the thing is, as kurt was alluding to, it's been up and down as opposed to up or just maintaining up. >> sure. this is going to get more and more competitive. this race will be decided by probably within five points in those swing states. there's not a democratic candidate that's going to rahn way with this race.
and, frankly, donald trump will remain competitive in the swing states. i think the challenge for michael bloomberg is this. the democratic party is not a moderate party. that's not the case he can successfully make. it is a progressive party. even joe biden, mayor pete are making progressive arguments. there's also not an elect ability gap michael bloomberg can address. what we're seeing is all the leading democrats are competitive with donald trump. it doesn't matter if you take the elizabeth warren medicare for all or the more practical joe biden, each of the democratic candidates can beat donald trump going into 2020. bloomberg is a man without a case to be made right now. the one thing we've not seen, and tom steyer has not delivered this, is a billionaire who floods the air waves every single day. if michael bloomberg intends to spend $5 billion of his $52 billion net worth, we haven't seen that in american politics. we don't know what could come of
a campaign like that run strictly on tv. >> one of the discussions that i had on air about three or four months ago in terms of what will be this new democrat, right, during this election. and one of the standard bearers to watch because she is a practitioner of having to handle the base as well as the moderate part of the democratic party is nancy pelosi. as you've watched nancy pelosi, how has she been able to balance both sides? >> it's definitely democrat. anyone on the hill, republicans or democrats alike, whether they disagree with her politics, they do recognize she's an incredibly talented politician for juggling this. we've seen it play out with this impeachment fight she had held off for a really long time because she recognized there is still -- i actually would push against the former congressman's point that the party across the board in america is actually
fairly ten stris. within d.c. and among politicians and definitely on the debate stage among the 2020 field. we do see a lot more of the progressive wings of the party. again, people -- if you look at especially in the house, democrats, a very small portion of them are the super leftist, activist type of members. the majority of the party does play to the is iter. i think it is hard to juggle but pelosi has to deal with that. >> david jolly, 15 seconds. >> look -- >> might as well warm up, right? >> no, look, it is a diverse party but it's continuing to push the arc of progressivism. each parties do that over the course of time. michael bloomberg making the case the party needs to return to a traditional moderate path, i don't think is an electorally winning strategy within the democratic primary today. >> thank you. coming up, veterans make the
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i do solemnly swear. >> i will support. >> and defend. >> the constitution of the united states. >> against all the enemies. >> foreign and domestic. >> tell your member of congress to keep their oath. support impeachment. >> ahead of this veterans day, there's an appeal, as you see, from lawmakers to men and women in uniform across the country, both current and former. some are -- and retired. some, as we look at this right now in the impeachment inquiry, are wondering what is happening. some are calling on congress to gut the country over party in the impeachment inquiry into the -- related to the commander in chief. here with us, captain kyle, retired marine corps captain who served in afghanistan, lead
organizer of defend american democracy. also jill wine-banks, former general counsel of the army of one of the many titles she has held in her esteemed career. captain, the purpose of this push that you're a lead organizer of is defend american democracy. what is it about? >> first, really quick, i'm not a captain anymore and i didn't retire from the marine corps. thank you for having me on your show. so, defend american democracy is about a number of different organizing groups, whether they be veterans based or national security based focus on pressuring congress to do their job and hold the president accountable for his actions. it's that simple. >> why do you think you have a unique voice as a group of veterans asking for this? >> well, you know, i can remember may 2007 when i personally took my oath as an officer in the marine corps. it's a very similar oelt members of congress take, it's a very similar oath the president takes.
we lived up to our oath. and it was not easy. you know, i've slept in a hole in the ground, i went to afghanistan, it's a lot of stuff. its not easy to serve your community and we're demanding that members of congress do their part in serving their community. >> so, when we see both retired as well as serving members of our military now involved in what's happening in the fweltway, in washington, d.c., in this impeachment inquiry, as well as many other headlines, what is it that voice you as a group of veterans are trying to tell them they should do as former and current military? >> well, you know, we organize veterans across the country, not just in d.c., but our main message is that donald trump is not above the law. no one is above the law. and, you know, when we served, it's important that we -- you know, that we're doing so to maintain rule of law in this country. you know, when we go to d.c., we're meeting with members of congress to hammer home that message. when we're out in the district, we're talking to their constituents so they can hold
their representatives accountable for their actions as well. >> jill wine-banks you're also a member of retired military. as we look forward to veterans day tomorrow and we have kyle here who's saying, let's look at the country, let's not look at politics, is that something that resonates from the conversations you have had from your class, if you will, of those who are former military? or retired military? >> yes. i was actually a presidential appointment civilian. i did have a four-star rank equivalent but i wasn't an active duty military. i was a civilian. but from all the brave men and women i served with in the pentagon, this would be a message i think that would resonate, is putting country above party. and it's time that the republicans in congress did exactly that. so, the message really resonates with me. and i hope that it will in the same way, remember, that one of
the things that led to the democrats finally saying they would support impeachment was a message from, i think it was seven members of congress who had either served in the military or in the cia or other national security agencies, saying that they felt that we were at a point. if i can go back just a minute to watergate, it was the republicans who went to president nixon and said, we've seen the evidence ever and we can no longer support you. and it was a quick turn-around. he was one of the most popular presidents. he won 49 states. he won an overwhelming landslide in the popular vote. and then all of a sudden the evidence came out and americans and members of congress said, we see the evidence and we can no longer support you. so i think that's what i'm hoping the public hearings that are starting this week will help the american people to see, is what are the facts and pay attention to what the truth is.
not what you're hearing as the defense. listen to what the witnesses who saw the conversation and witnesses who saw the shadow foreign policy, witnesses who say, our national security has been endangered by the actions of president trump. >> thank you as we are on this veterans day weekend. kyle, thank you, sir. jill wine-banks, thank you, ma'am, both for your service as we recognize veterans day. thank you. coming up, president trump's favorite method of engaging with the press, an impromptu chat right next to marine one. is there a method into this process method into this proces they never stray from their predetermined path. but this season, a more thrilling journey is calling.
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and lower your ability to fight them. before treatment your doctor should check you for infections and tuberculosis. tell your doctor if you have an infection or symptoms such as fevers, sweats, chills, muscle aches or coughs, or if you plan to or recently received a vaccine. ♪ nothing is everything ask your dermatologist about skyrizi. ♪ . it's been eight months since the white house held a daily press briefing. the new normal are chopper talks, as they've been called. they're impromptu, many compses or gaggles held by president trump as impromptu conferences or gaggles held by president trump as he walks by towards the marine one helicopter or towards the white house, this all in front of a whirring helicopter lies.
>> let me just tell you, i hardly know the gentleman. but this is the man who said there was no quid pro quo. and he still says that. >> that was inaccurate, or more. sondland, who he was alluding to, changed his testimony to house investigators last week, effectively admitting there was indeed a ukraine quid pro quo. back with us, a congressional reporter for "the wall street journal" and msnbc political contributor and former florida congressman david jolly. it certainly has been a change of process when you're at the white house. elena, how has that affected your ability to report? because it is kind of following a moving car, a moving vehicle here. >> it is difficult. i've been there several times when the president has emerged from the white house heading on to marine one. there's a lot of noise. it's very chaotic. there's not any organized process to it.
one thing that a lot of my colleagues and other white house reporters remark on is, because it's so hard to hear, there is a lot of misinterpretation especially in the 24-hour news cycle. you have reporters sometimes tweeting but not totally hearing what the president said correctly. the president answering to something that he didn't actually hear correctly. and so it does lend to a lot of chaos. i will say that early on in the administration, in the trump administration, people within the white house definitely were uneasy about his frequent chats with the media outside the chopper. i would say that now they kind of shrug them off a bit. of course on certain occasions when he does maybe misspeak, it stresses them out a bit. but now they've just accepted it as part of his style and strategy and they think it does lend a better defense to him when people say that he doesn't speak with the media. he says, look, we're more accessible than any other president. it's not really the access that many reporters including myself
would like to get. >> natalie, you're there on the hill across the way. you're in the halls, you're in the basement. you are everywhere. and the members are there and they come and talk to you. it's much different than this environment of, okay, you got five minutes as the president is moving from the white house to marine one. >> yeah, as a reporter, i mean, i want to be able to ask a followup question. you want to make sure you have clarity when you're asking a lawmaker their side on a position and then you want to go deeper and be able to really understand and report accurately. and it does seem that these helicopter drive-by press conferences, you don't get those followups. we're left over on the hill watching them and wondering just exactly how we should report and interpret the president's comments. so on one hand, yes, you do get to hear the president speak more often than in the past. but on the other hand, it's hard to understand and interpret it
when you've got these helicopter noise than you're trying to hear from. >> david jolly, if you're a strategist and you're watching president trump, you're going, this might be brilliant from the president's perspective because he really does control the narrative. he's able to portray the white house press corps potentially as being feverish about getting these answers. >> it's stagecraft. every president in the past has had their image makers. mike deaver had ronald reagan sitting in the oval office with books behind him. donald trump wrote, the final element of self-promotion is bravado. what conveys more bravado than
the president walking back and forth like a caged lion past the rope line? he american people want to think that people are perfect, are great, are grandiose, and that's the vocabulary you hear in this moment. the test for the president and for the american people is how to contextualize that. we see the president on those rope lines doing a remarkable job pushing the president of the united states when he's lying. at the end of the day it's up to us, the american people, on how to judge the president in those moments. >> we'll have a year or two more of this, as we continue. thank you all, go out and have a good sunday. coming up, colorado senator and presidential democratic president mike bennet joins us live, minutes away on msnbc.
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in just three days, three witnesses who testified behind closed doors in the impeachment inquiry will come before the house intelligence committee for public hearings. on wednesday, the world will hear from the top u.s. envoy to ukraine, and also a state department official. on friday, we'll all listen to testimony from the former u.s. ambassador to ukraine who was fired just six months ago. based on the transcripts of their depositions, the president will certainly be cast in a negative light to say the least. and more importantly, it should become clear and there was quid pro quo with ukraine. and as we ramp up to open hearings, republicans are pulling out all the stops to defend the president.