surpassed germany as having the most asylum seekers of any nation on earth. can you imagine that? can you imagine? and germany, we talk about germany. they allowed millions of people in. by the way, their crime from the time they started is up more than 10%. that's one of the reasons it's at that level, is because they don't like reporting that kind of crime, so they put it down as a different kind of crime. but their crime is up more than 10% since they started taking them in. i heard someone say that crooked hillary clinton was questioning that statistic. she said, that's not true, it's not true. didn't she already have her chance? [ cheers and applause ] >> i'll tell you what, when you read the ig report with these really dishonest people -- and i was never a deep state guy. let me tell you, we got some bad
people that are doing bad things, but when you read that ig report about how she got away with what she got away with, it's a disgrace. it's a total disgrace. [ applause ] >> you ought to see the hearings that are right now on television but that folks are being -- you know, they're going onto the mainstream fake news media. they want to focus on immigration because they want to keep the cameras away from the hearings. because those hearings are not good for them. in fact, they're a disaster for them. the whole thing is a scam. it's a scam. and what's happened is a disgrace. so we have a house that's getting ready to finalize an immigration package that they're going to brief me on later and that i'm going to make changes to. we have one chance to get it right. we might as well get it right or
let's just keep it going. but let's do it right. we have a chance. we want to solve this problem, we want to solve family separation. i don't want children taken away from parents. and when you prosecute the parents for coming in illegally, which should happen, you have to take the children away. now, we don't have to prosecute them, but then we're not prosecuting them for coming in illegally. that's not good. we want to end the border crisis by finally giving us the legal authorities and the resources to detain and remove illegal immigrant families altogether and bring them back to their country. we have to bring them back to their country. now, think of all that aid that we give some of these countries. hundreds of millions of dollars we give to some of these countries, and they send them up. well, i'm going to go very
shortly for authorization that when countries abuse us by sending their people up -- not their best -- we're not going to give any more aid to those countries. why the hell should we? why should we? [ cheers and applause ] >> so this is the responsible commonsense approach that all lawmakers should embrace. democrats and republicans. remember, we need the democrats. people say, oh, you have the majority. well, in the senate we have one, but you need 60. so we'll be at -- if we get 100%, we'll be at 51. 100%. we'll be at 51. so we need nine votes. we need 10, 12, 13 votes. we have to have democrat support. because we need to go not just the majority, unfortunately, which we could get. we need to go to 60. 60 out of 100.
we need democrat support. they don't want to give it because democrats love open borders. let the whole world come in. let the whole world, ms-13 gang members from all over the place, come on in. we have open borders. and they view that possibly intelligently except that it's destroying our country. they view that as potential voters. someday they're going to vote for democrats. because they can't win on their policies, which are horrible. they found that out in the last presidential election. [ applause ] >> in fact, their only policy was that donald trump is a bad guy, he's a bad person. vote against trump. hundreds of millions of dollars of negative ads. nobody has ever been hit like that. i used to go home, i started disliking myself.
it's true. i said, man, am i that bad? the problem is they never told anybody what they're doing! they didn't talk about tax cuts. by the way, they want to take away your tax cuts and they want to substantially increase your taxes. they didn't talk about crime. all they talked about was trump. so when people got to the booth, they said, ah, we're going to vote democrat. but then they get a vision. but what do they stand for? they just say trump. no, i'm going with trump, and that's what happened. we got tremendous democrat support. it's a beautiful thing. that was a beautiful night. do you agree? that was a beautiful night. [ cheers and applause ] >> that was some night. that was some night. but you have to stand for something and you have to stand for safety and security of our country. we can't let people pour in.
they've got to go through the process. and maybe it's politically correct or maybe it's not. we've got to stop separation of the families, but politically correct or not, we have a country that needs security, that needs safety, that has to be protected. [ applause ] >> so we're here today to talk about small business and the incredible progress we're making as a country. >> all right, so there's the president of the united states, donald trump, doubling down on the very controversial policy that he has put forward over the past several weeks that will separate, continue to separate children from their parents as they cross into the united states illegally. we want to welcome our viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer reporting from washington. i quickly want to go to our white house correspondent kaitlan collins. kaitlan, as you know, house republicans are working on a
plan to try to keep these families from being separated. that could be part of broader immigration legislation or a separate piece of legislation. what do we expect from the president? he's going to be meeting with these republicans fairly soon. >> well, wolf, you just heard from the president right there. he's speaking to small business owners, may i remind you, but clearly he was wanting to speak about immigration, something that has been in the headlines in recent days, especially the growing outrage over the separation of those families at the border. the president is scheduled to go to capitol hill today where they will discuss with republicans these two immigration bills already on the table as well as family separation there. the white house has said the president supports both of the bills that are up for votes in the house for republicans, and they're going to try to speak to the president about them tonight. he just said right there he's going to look at this bill and he's going to make changes to it. that is not what the white house has been saying, but we essentially saw that coming after, on friday, the president surprised a lot of people when
he said he wouldn't support the more moderate of those two bills. then the white house came out later and said he misheard the question, that he did support both of them. but we just heard from the president himself, and clearly he does not seem to be a fan of that. now, related specifically to the separation of families at the border, of course, wolf, you know that senator cruz has floated the idea of increasing the number of judges to help clear the immigration backlogs which they say is contributing to the problem of people crossing the border illegally because it takes too long to get in illegally. the president made it clear there. he said, i do not want judges. he wanted a wall, he wanted border security. so there, wolf, he seemed to be talking less about policy changes and he said he wanted fewer people to come into the country so they wouldn't even have to deal with that issue. several astonishing statements from the president there. he said he didn't want children to be separated from their parent but noted that was the policy of his administration. that is what's really going to be something that has roiled
capitol hill in recent weeks, and that is going to be on the agenda when the president goes up the street, up pennsylvania avenue, to discuss that tonight. it was supposed to be just immigration, wolf, something that is already a divisive problem in the conservative party. but now with this policy from the trump administration and the way that the administration has essentially botched this by not being clear, not having one communication strategy about this and contradicting other officials, now they are going to have to deal with that. that is something the president is going to have to talk about tonight. but we heard a lot of his thoughts there, wolf. he does not seem to be open to the idea from senator cruz. he just wants less people to come into the country in general. he doesn't want to have more judges for that. also he did not give a vote of confidence to either of those bills that house republicans were hoping they could get some support for from the president. that really, wolf, speaks to the larger issue they've had. they don't know where the white house's mind on all of this is. they haven't gotten a clear strategy from the president
broadly or specifically about that problem of separating families, separating children on the border. that really sums it all up there in that speech, wolf. >> he has to show some daylight, a willingness to move away from that zero tolerance policy and let kids stay with their moms and dads. he was doubling down, even tripling down on that policy, not budging at all. kaitlan, we're going to get back to you. right now i want to go to capitol hill, susan jackson lee of texas is joining us. congresswoman, thank you for joining us. i know you personally have seen a lot of these gut-wrenching moments of these kids being separated from their parents. you just heard the president doubling and tripling down, not budging at all on this, at least not now. what's your message to the president? >> wolf, i think everyone has awakened with the cries and screams and pain of these little ones that i actually saw for the two daiy days i spent on the bo
with my colleagues. we got up in the morning, went to bed at night with these horrific cries. the real question, wolf, is whether the republican leadership and members tonight will have the courage to stand up against the deadly and disastrous comments of this president and to be able to insist that he cease and desist with the zero tolerance policy. he has immersed himself with it. he is anti-immigration, as he's indicated. he doesn't want a migrant camp. he's been called cruel about the policies by the former first lady of the united states. he's been called disgraceful by franklin graham, the policies are disgraceful. he and his attorney general have wrapped themselves with ms-13 that all governors have spoken towards, the idea of mercy, and he used a verse that was used in
slavery and naziism according to the "washington post" and the "sun times." i want courage. we'll be introducing legislation to stop the criminalizing of these families and children. >> in a tweet today, congresswoman, when the president falsely blamed the democrats for the crisis along the u.s.-mexican border, and he used the term "infest" to describe many undocumented immigrants. let me read precisely what the president tweeted this morning. democrats are the problem. they don't care about crime and want illegal i mmigrantimmigran battery matter how bad they may be, to pour into our country, like ms-13. they can't win on their terrible policies, so they view them as potential voters. what's your reaction? >> first of all, it's typical of the president's inhumane policies and his belief that these are not human beings. frankly, my question to the president of the united states -- and i don't want to take this as a one on one to the
president of the united states, to take it as republicans and democrats. frankly this should be nonpartisan. but mr. president, have you been to the border? have you held in your arms little roger, who is nine months old, whose mother was basically killed but his sister who is his mother, a 19-year-old, was criminalized? do you actually know that ms-13 is in this country and that the people who are fleeing are fleeing ms-13? have you actually talked to your border patrol agents as i have to determine whether or not these mothers coming with these young babies, 2,000 of them, have been separated from these mothers and fathers because they've been criminalized by a policy by this president. have you asked your border patrol agents in vetting these individuals. have they found in the babies little roger? in little one-year-old leah? have they found ms-13? this, wolf, is a falsehood. it is internal terrorizing of
the american people by scaring them that they're being undersieged by these poor immigrants, migrants who are coming, who are fleeing by themselves. like the mother gabby who i met, who was told by the cartel -- she was eight and a half months pregnant, minding her own business in her country of honduras. they said, you owe us money. we will wait until you have this baby and then we will kill you at eigyou. at eight and a half months, she fled the country, had the baby on the road. and when we saw her, she had had no medical treatment postpartum. thank god i spoke to one of the border patrol agents who was going to take her to the hospital along with the baby. has the president asked the question? no. he is attempting to scare us with fear. wolf, this should be placed squarely at his feet. he can handle this. this is not a question of passing a law. the republicans are trying to put a straw man up to act like
they're doing something. the democrats have a single bill. nadler and lucille groman, which i am joining. that's who the democrats are. the question is, who is he? >> representative sheila jackson lee. thank you for joining us. >> thank you, wolf. a senior political analyst, white house reporter for the "washington post." also with us senior media correspondent brian stelter here in washington, and our chief political analyst gloria borger. gloria, what's your reaction to the president clearly not budging on this issue, this zero tolerance policy that his administration enacted in april that will separate children from their parents if they illegally cross into the united states? >> i think what we heard is trump digging in. that he made a few points, is that he is accusing the media of focusing on immigration because we want to get the cameras away from the testimony of the
inspector general which he says clears him of collusion, et cetera, which is not true. he indicated that whatever congress gives to him, he's going to make changes because he wants what he wants. and he said, and we might as well get it right or keep it going, meaning that this detention at the border of children will continue until the president gets what he wants, which is, i think, funding for the border wall to the tune of $25 million which, as you know, is not in the senate bill. he doesn't want judges. ted cruz wants to add judges. does that mean he wants to deny due process at the border? we don't know. and he said, whether it's politically correct or not, we have a country that needs to be protected. and if these people still come in through our border, which he claims is porous, he is going to stop aid to these countries. so all-in-one speech clearly off
script, the president has let the country know how angry he is about this and he is not backing down. >> let me get josh into this. josh, oouyou've been doing some really strong reporting over there at the "washington post." you heard what the president just said. he's also ready to ask congress for some sort of option, he says, to keep families as a unit. as you know, he could do that if he wanted to, just reverse the policy his administration enacted, starting in april. >> right. i was at the white house last night and today talking to a number of his advisers, and what i picked up is the president in the last few months has gotten frustrated where he didn't get all the money he wanted for the wall and the omnibus spending bill. he sees these numbers rising to over 50,000 a month of folks coming across the border, and he thinks he's weak on immigration. he wants immigration to be the centerpoint of the 2018 midterm elections. i picked up from folks that the
president is willing to make this fight go on for a while. he thinks it will bring him leverage to bring democrats and lawmakers to the table. he thinks more people in the country support him than maybe we see on television. he seems suspicious of them because his aides have shown him more pictures of people playing video games. he has been told to hold the line on this, and if he doesn't give up, maybe he'll have a more concrete and monumental fix later on of what he wants. the president is kind of bearing in for a fight. obviously tonight he speaks to the house republicans and i'll be really interested to see what strikes there and whether he can get any of the conservative members to go along with him. >> and quickly, josh, did you hear that his wife and daughter are trying to influence him on
this? the pictures are so awful. >> you saw the muted statement from melania trump where she seemed to disagree with the policy but also did not call on him explicitly to end it, saying both sides needed to end it. that was an interesting move, i thought, on her behalf. we haven't really seen anything from ivanka trump here. i haven't seen any comments from her publicly. no tweets. if she wanted to say something, she obviously could. she may be influencing behind the scenes. one thing that's interesting to me, wolf, there is not as much dissent on this policy in the white house as you might thing. the conversations i have with people, they think the media is misreporting it and they think the president is taking a bold stand because there's a crisis on the border. if anything, they think we just haven't told the story well yet. they're trying to put it in pretty stark terms. either we have free borders or we do this. it's not a democratic policy, we know this, but there doesn't
seem to be the dissent in the white house that you might think on this. >> what about that, brian? in a speech just now he said awful things about the news media involving smugglers. when you hear this, and obviously the president will be going after what he calls fake news, but it seems to be escalating all the time. >> actions speak louder than wort words, but the words are getting more extreme. when the president was speaking, he was saying the media was helping smugglers and traffickers through the framing of this coverage. that's hogwash, but that's pretty extreme rhetoric. it's similar to what he said last week about the press being his biggest enemy. there was also a comment he made on twitter today. we're talking about the comment about immigrants are infesting america. i checked the president's speeches and twitter comments. he's never used the word "infest" to refer to people before. that is a new line of thinking or a new line of rhetoric from the president, to refer to people having an infestation. again, pretty extreme rhetoric.
as we know, he's been using the term witch hunt a lot more often with regards to mueller. this is a bunch more examples of how his rhetoric is getting worse. whether that's because he's desperate or he feels more emboldened, i suppose we could debate that all morning long. >> i think this is also about motivating his base. we saw a quote, i believe it was in the "washington post" piece or the "times" piece, i'm not sure, but corwin lewandowski saying you have to give your leaders a reason to get out there. and for a lot of republicans who supported donald trump, this is a way to fire him up again, quite honestly. >> hold off for one second because the president's reelection campaign manager, brett parsquel, tweeted this. time to fire sessions. end the mueller investigation. you can't obstruct something
that was phony against you. the ig report gives donald trump the truth to end it all. the question i want to know is, is brad just doing this on his own, or is this something authorized by the president of the united states? >> i can't answer that, i don't know, but i'll tell you, we're talking about motivating the base. this is one way to motivate the base, to get out there and have an enemy to run against. the enemy is sessions and the enemy is mueller, and the enemy is the democrats on immigration. so as you gear up to 2018, you know, you have to have a rallying cry, and this firing sessions, which the president could well do after the midterms, who knows, is a rallying cry. >> let me get josh to weigh in on this as well. what do you think, josh? >> yesterday, an example, wolf. the president's gallup poll numbers are 25%. you see among the cacophony in
washington, chatting about whether we actually got anything out of north korea last week, the border is deleterious and inhumane. the numbers of the president, while not as great as other presidents in the past, are actually going up. and the president wants to make midterms about immigration. one of the republicans on the hill particularly would love to be talking about tax cuts, the economy, the unemployment rate beneath 4%, other things -- you know, kind of a stable world with peace in a lot of areas, no new big wars. there are a lot of things other presidents would want to talk about. the president likes to talk about immigration. he thinks it brings the voters out. immigration and trade are the two things that animate this president unlike anything else. it's what we're seeing time and time again. putting tariffs on china, going back to the well repeatedly on immigration. unlike other republicans, that's what he wants the message to be about. whether it's a winner or not, we
don't know. but what we do know is his numbers have actually increased in the last couple weeks. >> it's incumbent on us to talk about racism and how much of this is fueled by racism. >> the one thing you don't want if you're donald trump is having complacent supporters who feel like they don't have to go out and vote. so with the use of this issue, he feels like he's going to get them out there, and so he said today, well, so what if it goes on longer. i'm going to stick, i'm going to stick, and it carries this issue for him extensively, and he feels like that obviously is an issue that helps him, as josh was just talking about. it is cynical politics, but these days all politics seem to be cynical. >> and we all just heard the president not only blast china but also blast close allies of the united states like mexico and canada, going after both of those neighbors as well. gloria, brian, josh, guys, thank
you very much. fox news host, meanwhile, they're comparing the detention centers -- at least one fox host called summer camps and suggesting that critics like, quote, foreigners more than they like americans. plus, a live look at wall street right now, the dow plunging through the president's trade war against china. the dow down more than 340 points as we speak. this new rhetoric all comes as this meeting is occurring. kim jong-un and the chinese president, they're meeting in beijing. you're going to hear that story. stay with us. hi.
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to the tune of 200 billi$200 bi. joining us is stephen moore. he's a senior economic analyst for cnn, former economic adviser to donald trump. stephen, thanks for coming in. i know you don't like a trade war whether it china or mexico or canada, but that's clearly where the u.s. is heading. >> you're getting this tit for tat situation. we don't like to use the term trade war, but it certainly seems to be heading in that direction. trump ran for president saying he was going to get tough on china, so this shouldn't be a great surprise that he's fulfilling that promise. by the way, i think it was a popular issue with americans. they do worry about losing factories jobs to china. >> but they like what they pay at walmart, when they go to supermarkets, when they buy cars. this is like a hidden tax. if it's going to be $250 billion on tariffs of chinese products
coming into the united states. people will be going back to supermarkets and stores over the summer to buy books for their kids, clothes for their kids. this is a hidden tax on the middle class and poor americans, right? >> i think trump is using this as a negotiating tactic to try to bring down -- >> but the midterm is going to end up costing americans a lot more money for products they can't get here in the united states. >> fair enough. but china can't live with $200 billion of tariffs on their goods and services. china needs access to the american market. if we get into this trade situation where we're raising tariffs, it will hurt china a lot more. you're right, if americans go to walma walmart, they might have to pay more for toothpaste and other things. china needs to be able to sell things to the united states. >> why is the dow plummetting so much today? >> wall street like free trade. they don't want this confrontation. the question i would ask people to think about -- because i'm
still formulating my own opinion about this -- we can't live the status quo with china anymore. it is true. they are cheating, they are stealing, they are taking our technologies and our patents and software, not paying for it. and trump is the first president -- bush didn't do anything about this, clinton didn't do anything about it, obama didn't do anything about it -- >> very quickly, because we're running out of time. do you think the president understands that he's raising taxes on american families, that he's hurting american farmers, agriculture is going to go down? does he understand what he's doing to the american public? >> i think donald trump believes what he's doing, and i think in the end he might be vindicated, is helping -- >> the question is does he understand. you studied economics in graduate school. you appreciate the ramifications of the potential of what's going on in the trade war. >> i understand that, but i also understand the ramifications if this works which in the end i think it will work. i think china will back down,
they will end the tariffs and it will be a victory for americans. you talk about middle class people maybe having to pay more at walmart, what about middle class americans losing their jobs because of imported products from china? >> right now the employment rate is at 3.8%. the americans need others to fill jobs. >> you go to the midwest, pennsylvania, rockford, illinois, and places like michigan. >> i grew up in buffalo, new york. unfortunately, those steel plants probably aren't coming back any time. they may on a moderate level, but they're not going to be able to compete on costs in various other countries. >> if american workers are productive -- we've created 600,000 manufacturing jobs since trump was elected, so manufacturing is coming back in america. >> let's hope it does. >> look, it's a dangerous game, no question about it, but i'm going to hope for the best here. >> we'll all hope for the best. >> good. >> stephen moore, thank you very
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people. >> since more illegal immigrants are rushing the border, more kids are being separated from their parents and temporarily housed in what are essentially summer camps. >> summer camps. no. i think what's important here, wolf, you have to remember that for the conservative audience, for donald trump voters, it's fox news and that's it. so that's the story they are hearing. the reality is this. this was a policy change. we know that. jeff sessions, the attorney general, announced it. he said, we are going to a zero tolerance policy. they knew given the fact they then did not ramp up the amount of homeland security analysts tasked with this, there would be more family separations. this is not terribly surprising, nor is it simply the law as it was written. this is simply a policy change. now, there are voices affiliated in the broad box world that are speaking out. seth mcfarland, who many people
know as the guy who created "family guy," the cartoon, did a lot of voices on that. he's also created other shows. he essentially said, if you're only listening to fox news, he urged his viewers not to believe anything anyone else other than him and his network said. if you are doing that, you are willfully blinding yourself. you are being an irresponsible citizen. so fox probably not speaking as one voice. but this gets to something we have talked about many times, the danger of only listening to a single version of reality that candidly is not fact-based. >> he's with fox entertainment, not fox news, so there is a difference there. and there are anchors at fox news that are certainly much more objective than many of the prime time opinion hosts that we're talking about. >> correct, and i think it's important, just quickly, to remember, truth is not a partisan position. the facts are not a partisan position. it is not partisan to say what
donald trump is arguing as it relates to, this is a democratic law and only congress can change it. that is factually inaccurate. that is not a partisan statement, that is a fact. >> chris cillizza, thank you very much. details on that previously talked about meeting with roger stone and the russian offering dirt on clinton. now roger stone is scathingly saying he was set up. you might take something for your heart... or joints. but do you take something for your brain. with an ingredient originally found in jellyfish, prevagen is the number one selling brain-health supplement in drug stores nationwide. prevagen. the name to remember. you might be missing something.y healthy. your eyes. that's why there's ocuvite.
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when roger stone, the long hifr time long-time unofficial adviser said he met with president trth he became the 14th adviser to meet with russians. he said he set that meeting up. both of them now maintain the russian they met with was an fbi informant and was part of a scheme to set up the trump campaign. in a statement released just a little while ago, stone said in part, and i'm quoting now, the special counsel seems determined to frame me for some bogus offense, both to silence me as a critic of their investigation and for political moefstives ano
induce me to testify against the president in some way. this i will not do, closed quote. james clapper, the former director of national intelligence, says he's having trouble buying the president's story that he didn't know anything about these meetings. >> with each subsequent revelation of yet another meeting between someone from the trump camp and russians, it gets harder and harder to believe that he didn't know about at least some of them. >> michael zelden is joining us now. he's a former special assistant to robert mueller and is legal analyst. do you believe what clapper believes, that it's hard to believe the president didn't know about these meeting? >> it seems hard to believe, but we don't know. and there is one easy way for us to find out, which is for the president to sit down with mueller and answer his questions about it. the president during this time period has no executive privilege. it's pre his inauguration. if he wants to settle this ultimately as a legal matter, sit down, talk to mueller, tell
him what you knew and didn't know, ask thnd then we can get report. >> if you were his lawyer, would you let him do that? >> i don't think as his lawyer i would have a choice at this point in time. there may not be a basis to inquire of him on obstruction, but on this, i don't think he has the opportunity to avoid it, so the question is how doum yo you mitigate the damage an interview could cause. >> caputo says they were both set up by this fbi informant who apparently had been working years earlier with the fbi, and they think they were set up as some part of a deep state moefsh moefsh moefsh motive to get the
president. >> they're not being sent in as an undercover former agent to elicit information. that was a made-up accusation by stone. this was made up the first time in spygate. it's made up again. >> michael zelden, thank you for coming in. coming up, a strong reaction to the trump administration, quoting the bible to defend its immigration policies. one priest is comparing those comments to nazis in the second world war. why donald trump just pulled out of a fundraiser for a member of the bush family. hi, i'm joan lunden with a place for mom,
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religious leaders are con du condemning the practice of separating children from parents at the border. some including cia and fbi director michael hayden and former cia director michael maiden amad hayden and dianne feinstein have made comparisons to nazis. jeff sessions rejects those comparisons. >> it's a real exaggeration. in nazi germany, they were keep jews from leaving the country. this is a serious matter. we need to be rational and thoughtful about it. >> strange answer indeed. father james martin joins us from new york. thank you so much for joining us. you also drew comparisons to the
nazis. what's your reaction to what we just heard from the attorney general? >> i think it's nonsense calica. it seems like what the nazis would do, creating unjust laws and accusing the jews of breaking them. the other thing that smacks of nazism is just following orders, which was the defense used by the nazis at nuremberg. i think the comparisons are very apt. >> you tweeted "like many i resists using this word but it's time. the deliberate separation of children from their parents is pure evil. it does not come from god. it is cruel and targets the most vulnerable." so you see this as pure evil?
>> yes. it's unnecessary, it's tearing kids from their parents and it's just cruel. i don't see how you can come to any other conclusion than this is an evil and it is causing great misery. >> as you know, the attorney general, jeff sessions, he also at one point said he's upholding this part of the law as the bible commands. and the press secretary sarah sanders echoed that. what would you say to that? >> they're quoting romans 13, which says christians should follow civic authorities. god's laws supersedes unjust laws. jesus himself says if you don't welcome the stranger, you don't welcome me. so using the bible to justify sin and cruelty and what amnesty international calls cruelty and
torture is obscene. >> do you this could erode his support among evangelicals. >> i would certainly hope evangelicals with a conscience will see pictures like this and rethink their support. to me it's a question of what are we doing morally and immorally and how do we prevent ourselves from going down this dark path we've taken. >> father james martin, editor at large of "america" magazine. when the house speaker paul ryan was asked if he thought scott pruitt should step aside over ethics concerns, here's what he said. >> are you confident given all the ethics violations -- >> frankly, i haven't paid that much attention to it. i'm glad with the regulatory position they've taken. i don't know enough about what pruitt has or has not done to
give you a good comment. >> dana milbank argues this is a pattern by ryan and other republicans acting ignorant to save face and in some cases, maybe even their seat in congress. dana is joining us right now. i want you to elaborate to this charge you're delivering directly against the retiring speaker of the house. >> you look at when he says something about that. like he's not really aware what's going on with scott pruitt. you don't have to be second in line to the presidency to have some awareness of this major scandal. just tune in to cnn for a couple of minutes a day and you'll get a pretty good fill on what's been going on with scott pruitt. i went back and they transcribed his press briefings, went back to the beginning of the trump era and there were 99 instances of the speaker of the house saying i'm just not informed, i don't know. whether this is about the "access hollywood" videos, access of the trump's tax cuts,
the conflicts of interest. in fairness, the speaker is in a bit of a box here. he can come out and criticize trump and say he's wrong and he's going to get hammered and perhaps lose his gavel before he gives it away or he can come out there and attempt to defend trump and look like he's being dishonest or unprincipled. >> do you think this is one of the reasons he decided to retire as speaker and not seek reelection? because he was uncomfortable, supposedly, working with this president? >> it's certainly difficult working with the president and with this caucus. the president has made it so paul ryan is in a lot of trouble with the conservative base, not a lot of love loss there. very hard to hold things together, with immigration and the agriculture bill. it's a thankless job and this is one of the reasons. >> you've seen a similar situation with other republicans, pretending they're
not paying attention. >> i did a search with mitch mcconnell. he's a little more deft about it and uses other phrases. it is something you see to a large extent. it's a common tactic, saying, well, i'm just not informed enough to comment on it and indeed can you get away with that if it's some fast-breaking news story. but if you're doing it every week, that's another story. >> we learned that the president's son donald trump jr. was supposed to be at a fund-raiser in new york for george p. bush who is running in texas. all of a sudden given what the first lady said yesterday the discomfort between the bush family and trump family, donald trump jr. is no longer going to participate. >> we're going back to the original trump versus bush war.
apparently if your last name is bush now because of the former first lady's criticism and jeb bush's criticism, you're out of luck. >> i want you to listen to congressman elijah cummings on the whole border separation of families issue. he was very passionate. listen to this. >> we all should be able to agree that in the united states of america we will not intentionally separate children from their parents. we will not do that. we are better than that! we are so much better! we should be able to agree that we will not keep kids in child internment camps indefinitely and hidden away from public view. what country is that! >> where is this? >> i was there in the room. it was quite powerful. you had jerry nadler, another
democrat, basically do a little bit of a filibuster on this. you had women with infants standing up and protesting. >> this is coloring everything in our politics right now. it did look particularly absurd to be having another hearing about hillary clinton's e-mails and inspector general report while the country is going wild with this situation on the border. you don't see the trump side backing down and you see the other side, a significant amount of the country just absolutely up in arms. >> we just saw the president in his speech a little while ago, we had it live on cnn doubling and tripling down on this change in policy in april when the attorney general announced there would be zero tolerance. >> right. he's going back to an old play book, which worked before with daca, with the dreamers and saying essentially we'll have this group that will be held hostage and we'll say the democrats have to do something. i think it not really working and that's because you see the images, you hear the voices of those children, the photos are getting out, people are taking tours of those places. it's very vivid for people.
as your previous guest demonstrated, there is a real backlash from people who might otherwise be supportive of trump. >> we'll see where this is heading. there are new developments unfolding. that's it for me. i'll be back 5:00 eastern in the "situation room." for those here in america, "newsroom" with brooke baldwin starts right now. >> hi there. i'm brooke baldwin. we begin this afternoon with the wales of children, frightened, confused and alone, separated from their parents at the nation's southern border. [ children crying ] >> while many lawmakers can