tv Anderson Cooper 360 CNN December 1, 2017 10:00pm-11:00pm PST
corker will opposite this bill but it will not sink it. the deals they may with other senators put them in position to get this passed. the real question now is when and perhaps what's actually going to be in that final piece of legislation, anderson. >> phil mattingly, thank you so much. thanks for watching "360." time to hand things over to jake tapper, in washington. the "lead" starts now. good evening and welcome to the special prime time edition of the lead. i'm jake tapper. we're going to start with today's breaking news. tonight a source close to the white house tells cnn that the president and the white house are in a bubble when they should be in a state of red alert. this after a bombshell in the russia investigation today. michael flynn, the president's fired national security advisor and influential official in both the trump white house and the trump campaign today pleaded guilty in federal court for lying to the fbi about conversations he had
with russia's ambassador during the presidential transition. flynn is also cooperating with the special counsel investigation. he is talking. he has flipped in a move widely interpreted as his only play in order to guarantee he and his son, michael flynn jr. avoid jail time for a series of questionable, and potential illegal, activities. this also means this is just the beginning and likely to go only higher. not long after this news brokers sources told cnn a very senior member of president donald trump's transition team, mentioned in the court documents, the person who directed flynn, that official is the president's son-in-law, jared kushner. we also learned that another senior member described in this is former trump advisor kt mcfarland. the charge against flynn is the first against someone in the trump white house for a crime that occurred while he was
employed in the white house as national security adviser. flynn is now the fourth member connected to the trump campaign to be charged as part of the special counsel investigation, and these questions loom large today. why you did flynn lie to the fbi? what was the then-national security adviser so afraid of? our own federal investigators finding out about that would be worth such a risk of lying to them with so many serious consequence. what was michael flynn hiding? i want to bring in my panel to discuss. a source close to the white house, michael, described the president and his team in a state of denial on the russia investigation. telling our own jim acosta that they're in a bubble, they should be taking this news seriously. you were a former trump campaign adviser. what's your take on how important today's news is and how the white house should be handling it? >> i think the white house is taking this very seriously. but it's also, by the way, nothing we didn't know for already, what, 11 months ago.
"the new york times," by the way, through a felony leak told us that general flynn had lied to the fbi. the other shoe on that was going to drop, and we've been expecting it for quite some time. i'm really happy, in fact, it dropped now instead of let's say, for example, march, because it drags it on more and more. in my opinion since this is a crime that's on michael flynn and only michael flynn, at this time i'm glad we're going to be able to get to the bottom of this now so we're not dragging this on a lot more. it appears mueller is moving through this resolutely. >> you say, and the administration today, also saying that this is all on flynn, but now cnn is being told from sources that flynn was directed from jared kushner, by jared kushner. so how is it just flynn if we're also being told that kushner is the one who told him to have these conversations during the transition? >> right. but what flynn pled guilty to
was lying to the fbi about meetings that he had or discussion that is he had with the russian ambassador, which were completely in line with the duties of his job description in a transition. what we didn't find out here was anything at all about russian collusion. in fact, they're not talking about anything that happened before election day. so why people think this is about collusion with russia, and i don't know -- and let me tell you something. if you put kt mcfarland out there as someone who might conspire against the united states, that's the most laughable thing i've heard. she's the most loyal to this country as anyone else. >> kushner met with robert mueller's team earlier this month, what might this mean for kushner or is michael right the crime here is just lying to the fbi? others speculate and they're trying to get flynn to flip for a bigger fish?
>> i do think there's a lot of republicans who wish the flynn plea deal was happening in a vacuum in the complex of this huge time line where they set up the trump tower meeting, donald trump called on russia to hack into hillary's e-mail, made a big deal about wikileaks. jared kushner tried to set up a back channel. this is the a huge time hein. we have to get out of the process and revisit what the big question is here, and it's -- the stakes are really high. did a u.s. president compromise national security interests to get assistance from a russian foreign agent to become president. my second question, if that's true, what will he be willing to do to stay president? this is where we have to hook at congress and start asking republicans, if there is any attempt to impede this investigation, will they resist that. and if there is an attempt to impede this investigation, would
that in itself be grounds for impeachment? these are questions i have and thinking about looking forward to the spring when the manafort trial begins. >> that is a question the people are asking, what might president trump do. we already know he has thought about firing the attorney general jeff sessions for recusing himself from the investigation. he's also mad at the deputy attorney general, rod rosenstein, for recommending mueller, et cetera. it is possible that given this mueller news, which i'm sure the president doesn't like and given the fact that he blames a will the of it on jeff sessions for recusing himself and thus not having a tighter control on what's going on, that he might take it out on jeff sessions. >> he could or even on mr. mueller. he would have to jump through some hoops. he'd have to get a bunch of people at the justice department fired before they would be willing in return to fire flynn.
he has vast opportunities to obstruct this investigation. it is not in his interest politically or legally to do so. i think the reason he has special counsel is because he fired comey. think of the timeline. we know on january 24th, general flynn four days into his job as national security advisor, lied to the fbi about contacts with russia. two days later, sally yates then the number two at justice department, tells the white house, hey, flynn is compromised here by the russians. and the white house doesn't do anything at first, but what they dodo, the next day the president has a private dinner with james comey, the head of the fbi right after comey's men and women have interviewed general flynn. he reaches out to the fbi, why? at that dinner, according to comey, he says, i want your loyalty. on february 14th,
then he tells mr. comey i hope you'll go easy on flynn, he's a good guy. >> this is all according to comey. >> sworn testimony by mr. comey. he keeps coming back to it each time. each time. and we're going to find out why now because now general flynn is cooperating. he's not cooperating for nothing. he's gotten a very sweet plea deal, if you ask me, given the alleged crimes he may have committed. he's going to have to roll big time. >> michael, let me ask you the question which i started the show with, which is why would flynn lie? what is worth lying to the fbi about worth to conceal? if these conversations were no big deal, as i've heard some people speculate they're not because no one has ever used the logan act, this obscure law that says people shouldn't interfere with a sitting president, this theoretically might be, this is not a seriously prosecutable charge, why would he lie about
it? >> i don't know. let me tell you straight off the bat, i'm extremely disappointed in general flynn. i gave him the benefit of the doubt because he's a flag officer who earned valor in battle. but when a man says he's guilty, i got to believe the guy's guilty. and if he lied about normal actions that happen in transition and have from transitions from president to party to president to party for many, many years, it doesn't make sense to me. now he's put ostensibly, i'm in the media's vision, the president in harm's way. i'm disappointed in general flynn. i'm glad he's going to get what he's going to get. i got to believe right now that the president is concerned. but not because he's implicated for anything. he's concerned because flynn is his friend and he doesn't want anything to happen to him. >> the president was asked in february about the conversations
michael flynn had with the russian ambassador after the "washington post" reported on it. take a listen to his response. [ inaudible question ] >> no, i didn't. >> for anybody who had trouble hearing that, did you tell flynn to discuss sanctions with the russian ambassador and the president said no, i didn't. no, i didn't. it's still possible no he didn't, but jared kushner or kt mcfarland did tell him to or knew about it. >> that seems to be what propels the conversations that started, with the meeting at the trump tower, adoptions, which was code for sanctions. the russians didn't like when obama imposed more sanctions for cyber warfare. here's the smoking gun for me. donald trump still does not accept the findings from the intelligence community that the russians meddled in the election. why not? why has there been no action
taken to prevent further meddling in 2018? the fact that this happened and he doesn't accept it again and again and again, that to me is damning in itself. >> in court today, paul, prosecutors detailed calls made when i flynn in december 2016 to the senior trump transition team at mar-a-lago to discuss conversations with sergey kislyak. we know that the transition members at mar-a-lago that day were, reince priebus, steve miller, kellyanne conway, and kt mcfarland. cnn has learned that mcfarland met with mueller's investigations to answer questions. what does that tell you? >> mueller's going to know everything. this is the problem. i have been in the white house that was under fall investigation. here's the big thing. asymmetrical information. the investigative team knows more than you do. even a guy like michael flynn, a three-star general that ran the intelligence agency, he doesn't know what mueller has. he does now because he's cooperating. each one of these people is going to be called, and i've said this before and i'll say it get up.
don't lie. don't lie. don't lie. think about general flynn, this is what blows my mind. he ran the dia. he knew when he was on the phone with sergey kislyak, the ambassador but also reported to be a soviet spy that the guys were taping that. we followed the bad guys. that's the job of like the dia and the nsa and cia. he knows that. >> why did he lie about the content? >> they always lie about russia. that's where all the roads go. >> everyone, stick around. we're going to keep the conversation going. coming up next the russia investigations on capitol hill. president trump reportedly asking republican senators to bring an end to one of those investigations. is that obstruction? we'll ask a key senator next. stay with us.
if you bundle them both with progressive. i'd like that. great. whoo. you've got soft hands. he uses my moisturizer. see you, dale. bye, rob. we're back with a double shot of breaking news for you right now. any minute now the senate, you see the floor live right there on the right side of your screen, the senate could vote on the plan for historic change to this nation's tax code. tonight republicans in the senate say they do have the votes. they say this will mean more money in the pockets of the middle class. democrats are calling it a corporate sellout. joining me now to discuss this is democratic senator chris coons of delaware. senator, thanks for joining us. i want to get your reactions to today's news about michael flynn and his plea agreement. pleading guilty to the charge of lying to the fbi. >> thanks, jake for the chance to be on this evening. it's been a very long day as we have fought against this tax bill in the senate.
this morning's development was really striking that general mike flynn, the former national security advisor to president trump has pleaded guilty to lying to the fbi and is fully cooperating with robert mueller's ongoing investigation. it's just a few days ago that many in trump world were saying this investigation ought to be wrapping up soon. i'll remind you just a few weeks ago paul manafort, the former campaign manager for president trump was indicted on a dozen counts and campaign aide, mr. papadopoulos pled guilty as well. my hunch is that this is the latest signal that robert mueller's ongoing investigation is picking up steam and getting closer to the white house. my concern today more than ever is that we need to work in a bipartisan way in the senate to make sure that the special counsel is protected and is able to carry this investigation through to its conclusion no matter what conclusion he reaches. >> what happened to the legislation that was being
offered by i believe you and the senator from north carolina to have some measure of protection for the special counsel just in case president trump tries to fire him or tries to fire the attorney general to put somebody else in there that would try to wield more control over the special counsel? >> jake, we had a hearing on the judiciary committee a month ago and a competing bill that's only slightly different. that another republican and democrat have, senator graham and senator booker. we've met to resolve the slight differences. we will be working on that in the coming days. it's my hope we will get a markup of the judiciary committee. i think it's more important than ever we move forward on these bills. >> where do you see the investigation going from here for mueller, and where do you see the senate investigation going? >> i think it's critical now that the senate intelligence committee and the senate judiciary committee continue their important work to make sure that we're doing our job of oversight of the department of
justice and continuing to look into obstruction of justice. i also expect that the investigation being led by robert mueller will continue to get closer to the core team on the trump campaign. the documents that were released today, the plea agreement in which much general flynn pled guilty, he made a reference to a senior transition official having directed him to have contact with the russians. i think there's more details to be worked out, more investigation to be done, and i think it's important that robert mueller be able to make that progress without interference. >> that senior transition official we have reported -- cnn has reported and others have as well, is according to our sources, jared kushner. in addition to all this, of course, "the new york times" reporting today that president trump has been for months lobbying officials to either stop or wrap up their russia probes or try to announce that he and his team are clear. you get this list of people who the president has pressed to
varying degrees on this. you have senator richard burr, the head of the senate intelligence committee. senator mitch mcconnell, roy blunt, the director of national intelligence, dan coates, james comey who the president fired, the cia director, mike pompeo, this is just a partial list. do you think the president doesn't know any better or is there something more sinister going on? >> jake, it certainly is part of a long pattern in which the president has engaged in really disturbing behavior, whether it was many months ago now, calling the fbi director into his office to try to extract a pledge of personal loyalty or by these recent actions, reaching out to republican senators like richard burr, who i think by the way, has ably let the senate intelligence committee in this
regard. but to try and inappropriately pressure him to wrap up the investigation. i think you might have been able to say months and months ago that the president new to this role, someone who hasn't served before might not understand the contras of the job, but after lots of public krit criticism and pushback for his inappropriate behavior, it's clear that he knows that he should not be trying to endear in this investigation. this is exactly why robert mueller's ongoing investigation can and should and must be looking at obstruction of justice because this sort of ongoing behavior by the president to try and pressure folks to step back or to lighten up on this investigation is completely inappropriate. >> translator: senat >> senator, let's turn to tax reform now. it appears that republicans are going to be able to pass this bill, unlike the effort that killed obamacare. how come democrats were able to stop the previous effort, the health care effort to repeal obamacare and you weren't able to do so this time? we didn't see a ground swell of opposition to this that we saw during the health care fight.
>> jake, i think that's for two simple reasons. one is that republican leadership learned some lessons from why they were unsuccessful in repealing the affordable care act. and they have rushed this bill through. we still don't have a final version of this bill. there were markups being made on it, revisions being made on it by hand just in the last couple of hours. so the time from introduction to markup to final vote on the floor of the senate is very tight. so there wasn't a lot of opportunity to mobilize groups nationally. i'll also just suggest that taxes and tax policy are very complex. the language that we're using is all about jct scores and cbo scores and pass-throughs and expatriot or repatriation of profits. it is harder for folks, i think, to grasp. in the health care conversation, it was about what americans currently have that might be taken away from them. this is mostly discussion about you might get a tax break and it
might be too big for some other guy but maybe it's good for you. in the end the consequences of this enormous bill will almost certainly be add ing $1.5 trillion in america's debt and that will result in important things being taken away, particularly for middle class americans because there will be cuts to medicare and medicaid if this plays out the way it's expected to. there are temporary middle class tax cuts, but permanent and big corporate tax cuts. this isn't the balance that i think we should have pursued. >> chris coons of delaware. thank you for your time. >> thank you. a source saying the president expects to be exonerated soon, but what about everyone around him? who might be the next domino to fall? the cnn reporters who have those answers will join me after the break. stay with us.
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welcome back to the special edition of "the lead". given his guilty plea today, the big question, of course, will michael flynn help the mueller investigation take others down with him as he cooperates with the special counsel? let's bring in the team that's been digging into this story. pamela brown, jim sciutto, evan perez, and gloria borger. >> pamela, let me start with you. with flynn's guilty plea, what direction might mueller's investigation be heading next? >> court documents reveal that robert mueller's team are using a logan act as a stepping-stone to perhaps a broader investigation here. the law means you can't interfere with a sitting president's foreign policy conduct. and so it does raise the question of whether they may use that as part of the broader investigation and what will happen to some of the other people that they're looking at in this investigation. we know that there's the obstruction of justice probe that's ongoing, and then we
learned today that jared kushner was one of the people who talked to flynn and, according to the court documents, told him to call russia and other countries about the israeli settlement u.n. security council resolution. so it does raise questions of where this goes from here. we know interviews are ongoing. and flynn is cooperating. he's providing information to special counsel. >> jim, let me ask you because as pam had a just referenced, jared kushner is one of the sources, one of the people, senior officials named as directing mike flynn what to say and who to call. kt mcfarland, another senior official also having conversations with flynn about reaching out to the russians. the charge against flynn today is lying to the fbi, not a charge of the logan act or interfering with president obama's foreign policy. might kt mcfarland and jared kushner find themselves in trouble or is the question only whether they tell the truth to the fbi? >> it's trouble for the administration because the
administration defense we saw in statement today, but we've also heard it before, is that flynn was a liar, everybody knew he was a liar, he was acting on his own. the information contained in the statement of defense belies that defense because flynn was not only keeping members of the small trump transition team aware of his conversations, that's kt mcfarland, it's right there in the statement of offense. he called them multiple times. on the day he was having conversations with the russian ambassador. but also he was being directed by a very senior member of that team which we reported earlier in the day, as you mentioned, was jared kushner. so he was keeping them informed and following directions from them. so this undermine it is argument that the white house -- or rather that the the transition had no knowledge of this. and that raises a very important question, because we know we reported this, we talked about it many times. there weren't many layers in the
team. so if jared kushner knew and kt mcfarland knew and michael flynn, the national security advisor knew, what was the chances that the president was kept entirely in the dark about these conversations. >> publicly the white house is putting on this face. this all has to do with michael flynn, people in washington, d.c., lie, this is not that new, saying michael flynn was an obama administration official o admitting the part about obama firing him. privately, how rattled is president's inner circle? >> rattled. i spoke with someone today who was called by thee people in the trump inner circle who said that they were worried and then were asking how worried should we be? because what they're all doing right now, since flynn is now somebody who reports to mueller for all intents and purposes, they're all wondering what did i say to flynn, what's my liability here,
what did we discuss? what did i do wrong? what does he know? and i am sure, by the way, that the president's probably asking himself the same questions. when you talk to people who are talking about the president, i spoke with one today who said he's calm, not anxious, went to his christmas party today for the media, et cetera, and his head was not exploding. but i guarantee you over the weekend as the president makes phone calls and starts talking to his friends and outside advisers he's going to get much more anxious about flynn. and so you saw in their statement today, we wish flynn well, we're concerned for him and his family. you know, they don't want to alienate flynn. and the president quite frankly liked the guy very much and wanted to keep him. >> evan, he's been very focused, the president, behind the scenes in trying to get people to drop the investigation into flynn.
>> right. look, repeatedly, not only with jim comey, but according to "the new york times," talking to gop members on the hill. looking at what gloria was just talking about, the anxiety, one of the things that i think that he should be anxious about is reading this document, these three pages, it's clear robert mueller has set forth a version of events that occurred in that period in december that he believes to be the truth. based on what we heard from the white house -- people around the white house, they also have presented their version of the truth which is that jared kushner did not direct flynn. and so the question is when jared kushner testified or gave an interview to the special counsel last month in november, did he say he did not direct flynn, because if that's what he said, that is in contradiction to what is in these papers. which we know is the version of the truth that they believe. >> and the timing makes more sense. we reported a couple days ago
that earlier this month, mueller's team sat down with jared kushner, and finding out what we know today that he was playing a role in the december 22nd call, that mueller's team also wanted to get kushner's version of events before this information came out today. >> they knew that when they brought him in. >> exactly. they knew this when they brought him in. they wanted to see what he would say. >> we should underline the special counsel/fbi version of what happened is also partially based on intercepts, transcripts of the conversations. >> the other point i was going to make is mueller -- the special counsel left a lot of years on the table here. one count of lying for four cases of lying, right? up to five years, but he's brought that down. based on flynn's cooperation. there are other things cited in the statement of offense, other misleading statements by michael flynn, including regarding his foreign agent filing, whatever. each lie to the fbi carries up
to five years' penalty. as it stands now he's charged with one count. robert mueller had the goods to give many more counts. we know he was not fully forthcoming on his security clearance form. there are other things he could have had the goods to. >> registering as a foreign agent. >> exactly. an indication, i was speaking to michael about this a short time ago, it shows you the value of the kind of cooperation that flynn is offering here based on the number of years that mueller is not thrown on him right from the start. to take those years off the table, flynn would have to be offering something significant. >> so the question is, was what mueller know that he's not saying and we don't know from these documents. >> and what is flynn giving up? >> who has he given up. >> and why was it worth it to mueller. >> the lawyers would have to give a proffer, they would have to tell him exactly what flynn is prepared to say. so they know all of this before the document is prepared. >> what special counsels do is they look for the biggest pelt they can get, the biggest trophy they can mount on their wall. flynn would theoretically be a
huge one, right? >> a flip up. >> but he's not taking it. >> and so the question we all are asking, obviously, is, you know, the old watergate question, what did the president know and when did he know it? during iran-contra, reagan was disengaged, didn't know. you cannot make that case with donald trump. donald trump, particularly during this period, knew a lot. >> thanks all for the great reporting. this programming note, join pamela and jim later for a cnn special report, the russia investigation. that's coming up tonight at 11:00 p.m. eastern. stay with us. coming up next, insight on the investigation from someone who has worked with robert mueller. mueller's former chief of staff when he was the fbi director. she'll join me next. stay with me. nick is a logistical mastermind.
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than we could ever go alone. sofi. get there sooner. it's just my eczema again,t. but it's fine. yeah, it's fine. you ok? eczema. it's fine. hey! hi! aren't you hot? eczema again? it's fine. i saw something the other day. eczema exposed. your eczema could be something called atopic dermatitis, which can be caused by inflammation under your skin. maybe you should ask your doctor? go to eczemaexposed.com to learn more. we're back with more breaking news coverage of michael flynn's plea deal with special counsel robert mueller. let's get to cnn national security analyst. she was a mueller's chief of
staff and she was also a former assistant to president obama for homeland security and counterterrorism. that's, thanks for being here. let me start with one of the claims we're hearing from the white house today. specifically that the obama white house authorized michael flynn to have these conversations with the russian ambassador that we now see are completely contrary to obama foreign policy, principles and goals. is that true? >> no. and it really makes no sense, as you said. and it goes against the long-standing principle of having one president at a time. so you don't have an incoming transition official trying to undermine the existing and sitting president's foreign policy. so it defies logic to think the obama administration would authorize flynn to undermine the type of punitive actions that at the time the obama administration was trying to levee against the russian government.
>> let me ask you about that, because specifically these documents from the special counsel say michael flynn was reaching out to the russian ambassador to tell him don't overreact to the obama administration's sanctions for interfering in the 2016 election, don't overreact because we're coming in. and then also reaching out as directed by jared kushner, we're told, to the russian ambassador to try to get him to either delay or vote against a u.n. security council resolution that the obama administration quite controversially abstained from having to do with punishing or penalizing or condemning israel for its settlements. these are clear reactions against what the white house wanted at the time, whether or not you agree with the individual policies, does that bother you? >> look, it is contrary to long-standing principles, that you have one president at a time. there's good reason for that, one is -- >> this is cnn breaking news.
>> we interrupt our regular programming at this hour, the u.s. senate is voting on the republican tax reform bill. the vote is expected to split down party lines, changes were still being written into the bill until a short time ago. republicans say the lower corporate tax rate will get businesses to add jobs and booth growth and economy. the democrats respond that that strategy has never worked and the bill is nothing more than a tax break for the rich. the bill also has an impact on health care. one of the democrats' many complaints about this bill, they were given the 500 page final draft just hours before the vote. phil mattingly is following it life from capitol. what's going on live at the
senate? >> this is it. the final vote right now. the final tally will determine whether or not the senate passes their tax overhaul. it's expected to go down party lines. as it currently stands we know one republican, senator bob corker will vote against, his issue was the $1.5 trillion price tag. the growth sproigss in this bill should make up that deficit is the argument. the reality when you look at nonpartisan independent analysis is it will fall short. for senator bob corker that was a bridge too far. for senate leaders, they came to the conclusion they no longer needed senator bob corker's vote. they had the votes they needed. they control 52 of the 100 seats in the senate. that means as long as they have 50 they're good to go.
as it stands they believe they have 51. we're seeing the vote play out on the senate floor. this has been a fore gone conclusion over the last couple hours, the issue what's in the bill. it's a remarkable moment when you realize the republicans are h the votes senate majority leader mitch mcconnell saying they had the votes you what they didn't have was a vote. they've been working on it since 9:00 p.m. time, they've been working on it to change it, modify it, trying to synci all together. if republicans pass this bill all they need to do is reconcile what the house did with what the senate did, and then it goes to the president's desk and it's important to know it's been 31 years since a tax overhaul has been passed.
there's no doubt about it, republicans are closer than any better has been to accomplish that goal. >> you said a second ago at the moment the republican leadership believes it has the votes by one senator. they have 51 votes. could there be a surprise? >> it's extremely unlikely. you have a good sense of things when the senate majority leader, mitch mcconnell who rarely talks in the hallways came out and said today, quote, we have the votes. republicans generally don't talk about where the votes are until they know where they are, and mitch mcconnell never talks about where the votes are until they know where they are. they wouldn't have gotten to this point, put the members and the democrats through this process if they didn't have a good idea where the end game is. that's not always the case. think back a couple months to the health care with john mccain sank the process with a thumbs down.
this is not the case. they believe tax reform is different they believe they're more aligned on tax reform than they were on health care. and as it currently stands, they've believed now for hours they have the vote. that's why they're at the point and at the edge of passing it. >> throughout the presidential campaign, donald trump promised a tax cut for the middle class. is this what he promised? >> not for everyone. there's no question about it. if you go through the analysis, the independent analysis, the joint committee on taxation, in the near term on the individual side, there are, on average, tax cuts across every single bracket. but that does not mean every individual gets a tax cut and it does not mean every individual in the middle class gets a tax cut. in fact, when you look at the analysis, millions of americans would see no change in their taxes whatsoever or receive a tax increase in 2019. that's in the near term. now spread this out over the long term, you talk about what the democrats call the disparity
between the corporate side and individual side. the corporate dropping down to 20%, that is made permanent in the bill. on the individual side, those sunset at the end of 2025 meaning they leave altogether. they snap back to where they are today. because of that fact, the further you go along over the years, the more individuals across income bracts but including in the middle class start to see tax increasing, but 2027 that number is in the millions of people. republicans say they'll never let these sunset, a future congress will extend them they say, but that's a bold statement. >> how can this pass muster for fiscal conservatives of which there are many among republican senators. their big thing on taxes and
finances and even just their general philosophy how government should be run is you shouldn't be spending more money than you're earning. you told us earlier this is going to create more deficit to the tune of 1.5 trillion, just over that mark over ten years. >> yes. it goes back to conservative economic thought, conservative economic ideology, the idea if you put growth provision in the bill, if you put emphasis on the corporate side that will lead to increased growth, which will lead to increased wages and that will have a dynamic effect on the economy that will try and make up for the $1.5 trillion that this bill costs. you have to ask one republican senator if he thinks that true, senator bob corker, the answer for him is no, that's why he posed to the bill. if you look at the analysis of the bill, they scored it for the dynamic growth and found only
$458 billion would be created in revenue, that's far short of $1.4 trillion. the interesting analysis is the conservativism in the republican party, republican senate that we've heard that people are undershooting the growth projections. that in tend with everything combined in this bill, the growth will in fact make up for the revenue decreases over the course of ten years. only time will tell. it's the most interesting element about this. this is something that you can't prove, something that no analysis is showing, but something republicans are pinning this bill on, their belief that the growth will be provided based on what they're doing. it's something that we're going to have to wait and see if it happens here. >> phil, so many fascinating angles to this. you've been following this work and the congressional work to get this to the floor. before we get back to the substance, though, help us
understand -- let's listen in, phil. >> the nays are 49. the tax cuts and jobs act, as amended, is passed. [ applause ] >> all right, phil, we just heard it. republican senators still clapping. 51 yeas, 49 nays. there were no surprises. >> yeah. again, i just want to underscore, this is a momentous occasion for the republican party. this is a momentous occasion for people that have tried to change the tax code for three decades. both parties have tried since that 1986 tax reform plan. nobody has succeeded.
republicans have moved a tax reform bill through the house, have now moved a tax reform bill through the senate and are now a conference away, and then one vote in the house and one vote in the senate away from send thing to the president's desk. this is hugely important from that side of things and important from the fact that the republican senate, up to this point, at least legislatively, hasn't had a lot of major victories. health care failed, that's been a major priority for republicans now for seven years. the repeal and replacement of obamacare. they couldn't figure out a way forward on that. there was some question with president trump that they could ever figure out a major legislative agenda item. well, they just did. that creates a needed wind for republicans on capitol hill, who spent a lot of this year very frustrated that they haven't been able to get the number of votes to move forward on their legislative priorities. >> i think you're right.
we do need to underscore for our viewers how significant that is. but also, and perhaps more importantly, for this presidency, for the trump presidency, for a president who campaigned on we're going to win, win, win, that you're going to be tired of winning. there hasn't been that much winning, and now this happens. this hasn't happened in u.s. politics in three decades. phil, has involved was the president in get thing done? >> it's an interesting element. clearly his white house team was very involved from the very beginning. you didn't see a major public presence from the president on this issue. he was often talking about other things. there are a lot of other things going on if you want to talk about foreign policy. but the president was active, making phone calls, particularly to republican senators.
the president was very important in locking in senator ron johnson, helped move that process forward. where they fell short on health care, there's policy reasons, a lot of reasons health care didn't work. but one of them is that the president's efforts on health care were much maligned. not just by outside observers but by the republicans in the u.s. senate, republicans in the house who were frustrated by his efforts. that wasn't the case on tax reform. was he as focused as they would have preferred? no, i don't think anybody would say that. but he was helpful. when he needed to make phone calls, he did. he made public speeches to draw attention to this proposal. there's people who can take credit for this, and the president is in that group, no question about it. >> phil mattingly, such a pleasure speaking with you. the vote has just happened on the floor of the u.s. senate, and so for our viewers just
joining us, potentially a turning point in the trump presidency. arguably one of the best days of the trump presidency so far. >> the senate will be in order. >> let's listen in. >> i move to proceed to ex executive session. >> question is on the motion. all those in favor say aye. >> aye. >> opposed, say no. the ayes have it. the motion is agreed to. the clerk will report the nomination. >> nomination department of homeland security kirsten neilson of virginia to be secretary. >> i send a cloture motion to the desk. >> let's get some perspective on the tax bill. we're going keep an eye on the floor of the u.s. senate and those live pictures, mitch mcconnell may or may not be speaking live in a moment. if so, we'll bring you that. we're joined by john thomas and
dave jacobson. john is a republican consultant, dave, a democratic strategist. john, is this a turning point in the trump presidency? >> this is a massive win. first of all, it's a big win we believe for the american people. because of these tax cuts and tax reform, my side believes that we might get 3.3% gdp all the way to 4%, but it's also a much-needed win for both donald trump and the republicans, as we start to go into the midterm election. look, i think the economy is doing better under trump's watch. i think he's had some good accomplishments. i will concede until tonight, he did not have any major legislative wins. he needed this. he delivered this to the american people. it's a big deal. >> let's listen again to that moment, just minutes ago only the floor of the u.s. senate when that moment came.
all right. 51 yeas, 49 noes. dave jacobson, democratic strategist, how do you feel about this? >> look, at the end of the day, republicans passed a bill that has, according to quinnipiac, 25% approval. that is a lower approval rating than donald trump's lackluster 30-ish percent approval rating. so i think the gop has officialofficial ly glued themselves to an enormously untpopular bill. this is a loss for the american people and a measure that democrats are going to capitalize on come 2018. the fact of the matter is, trickle down economics didn't work in the 1980s, it didn't
work in the early 2000s, and it's not going to work in 2017. >> but, i mean, can you deny the fact that donald trump promised this during the campaign, and then delivered? >> look, donald trump promised tax cuts during the campaign, but he also promised to help the little guy. this is a tax cut for the wealthiest americans. it raises taxes on hardworking families across the country from california to new jersey to pennsylvania to new york. because it doesn't allow those individuals -- [ inaudible ] -- so the reality is, this is a massive windfall for millionaires and billionaires and corporations. this is a tax cut, a permanent tax cut for corporations. it goes from 35% to 20% for
corporations. but that's a sunset for americans all across the country. after ten years, their taxes -- >> let's listen in to mitch mcconnell. >> this is the opposite of what donald trump campaigned on. >> provide substantial reheef to the middle class. there are a lot of people that chairman hatch, all the folks you see behind us, have all worked together as a team. as you notice, at the end, there was not a single democrat who thought this was a good idea. and so we're going to take this message to the american people also a year from now. with that, i want to turn it over to chairman hatch. he was here the last time this was done years ago. got a chance to do it one more time. oren, come on up. >> thank you. i wish you hadn't mentioned i was here for the last time. well, this is a great achievement. it's something that literally will help millions and millions
of young people in our society. and our society as a whole. i'm just grateful to all these folks who worked so hard to make sure we pass this bill. it's a great agreement, and i'm grateful to everybody here. >> lisa? >> well, mr. chairman, orrin, thank you for your leadership on finance and in tackling title one. incredibly important for our country when we think about the growth opportunities that now stand before us. i was proud to be able to shepherd title two, five pages of your provisions, sir. but a measure that has been an issue now for even longer than the last