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tv   CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin  CNN  June 27, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PDT

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let's see who delivers more. comcast business gives you gig-speed in more places. the others don't. we offer up to 6 hours of 4g wireless network backup. everyone else, no way. we let calls from any of your devices come from your business number. them, not so much. we let you keep an eye on your business from anywhere. the others? nope! get internet on our gig-speed network and add voice and tv for $34.90 more per month. call or go on line today. i'm brooke baldwin. you're watching cnn. thank you for being with me. let start with this extraordinary upset sending shockwaves through the democratic party today. alexandria a cost ocasio cortez
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former bartender, born in the south bronx, she upset joe crowley. and she told voters in this viral video where she promised a new generation of leadership. >> this race is about people versus money. we've got people. they have got money. it is time we acknowledge that not all democrats are the same. a democrat takes corporate money, profits off foreclosure, didn't live here, doesn't send his kids to our schools, doesn drink our water or breathe our air cannot possibly represent us. >> crowley spent ten times as much money as owe cost yoe cortez, but you she mobilized 50% of the vote. her reaction as she took the lead last night says it all. >> she's right here. she is looking at herself on vision right now.
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how are you feeling? can you put it into words? >> nope. i cannot put this into words. >> nope, not in that moment she couldn't. if she wins in november, she will become the youngest woman to ever be elected to congress. and she told poppy harlow this morning that last night's victory is just the beginning for women in 2018. >> women are feeling emboldened. justice, we have to fight for it, we have to earn it, we have to fight for every vote, every scrap. and not only is that necessary, but that women are ready to do that this year now more than ever. >> ocasio-cortez one of the 394 women running for house seats this year. 56 women running in governors'
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races. in the senate a record high number of female candidates, 49 to 54 depending on which third party candidates you include. the senate record for women still -- okay. i'll stop what i'm talking about because we're getting urgent news. we'll go to jessica schneider who covers all things supreme court with us. what are you learning? >> reporter: some news just coming across right n from the supreme court. after the final day of the term, a few hours after some of the final decisions, we've just learned that justice anthony kennedy will be retiring. in my hands, i have a letter from justice kennedy to the president as well as a press release from the supreme court. this retirement of justice kennedy will be effective july 31 of this year. so just about one month from now. of course we all stood outside the supreme court today after the supreme court issued two of
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its last opinions of the term. and the big swirling speculation was would he or won't he. and what is interesting about this, we were expecting potentially some sort of notification or announcement from the bench. of course all the justices were there this morning except for justice he was so a pre-planned trip that she couldn't reschedule. and chief justice john roberts, he was up at the bench this morning. and as everyone was anxiously a waiting whether or not justice kennedy would retire, the chief justice says i do have some retirements to announce this morning but then he went on to talk about some of the court employees who were retiring. so sort of keeping some of us on edge there. we thought if it was going to happen, we weren't expecting it today. but yes in fact anthony kennedy will be retiring effective july 31. brooke, i can read a sho portion of this letter that he did write to the president. s dait is dated today.
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he says this letter is a respectful and formal notification of my decision. he said -- he continued to say for a member of the legal profession, it is the highest of honors to serve on this court. please permit me by this letter to express my profound gratitude for having had the privilege to seek in each case how best to know, interpret and defend the constitution and the laws that must always conform to its mandates and promises. this is huge. this is significant, brooke. we've seen justice kennedy throughout all of these years ever of service, this centrist moderating force. and with president trump in office and his recent appointment of justice neil gorsuch, that has taken the court in that conservative realm, president trump will get the chance to appoint a new justice here. and just in the past -- in this past term, we have seen i think about 19 cases that were 5-4
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decisions. justice kennedy serving as the swing vote in many of them. but this will really solidify once president trump gets the chance to nominate another justice if he is successful in nominating an extremely conservative justice as he did with neil gorsuch, this will give the court a real tilt 5-4 for the conservatives. so justice kennedy, he served as this moderating voice, this swing vote. he didn't like to be known as the swing vote, but he was. and now he is retiring. one other interesting thing, yesterday the travel ban decision came done. justice kennedy, he did side with the conservatives in upholding the president's right to enact this third version of the travel ban. however, what is notable, he wrote a concurring opinion here. it was only whabout a page and half long, but in it he not so directly but indirectly scolded the president essentially saying mr. president, words matter. a lot of people looked at that
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concurrence and that sort of warning to the president thinking, umm, what will he do here. he obviously wasn't pleased with what the president said regarding the travel ban and the m muslim ban, if you will. and now we know that justin anthony kennedy will be retiring effective july 31. big news that will send ripple effects throughout congress, throughout the administration, throughout the supreme court and this country. >> so well reported out. just his profile on the court and i think just underscoring we you saw the travel ban 5-4, the young decision 5-4. and now this would be number two as far as nominations under this administration which is huge obviously for this administration. let's go to gloria borger on that point and we'll keep bringing different voices in as we cover this news that justice anthony kennedy will be retiring. you heard jessica point out the letter to the president. this will be effective july 31.
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but flgloria, this has to be a n for the president. >> well, look. this could potentially transform the court for generations. and when you think of justice kennedy, you do think of someone who is a moderate. but his vote was crucial in a few areas. and let me just tick them off. same-sex marriage, access to abortion and affirmative action. so those are three areas which he was a very key and deciding vote. and now with his retirement of course the president is going to get an opportunity to name another conservative to the bench. it will cause an uproar i can tell you on capitol hill because if you will recall last time the rules were changed a bit to confirm gorsuch. and you're heading in to the midterm elections here, brooke. and so once again the supreme
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court will become a huge issue you for both democrats and republicans. >> gloria, stand by with me. i want to bring in another voice who has been covering the supreme court for years. and just if you can, do we know -- she's nodding yes, i have -- the significance of this retirement and the further tilt to the right of this court? >> i cannot overstate the significance, brooke. back in 2005 when sandra day o'connor announced her retirement on july 1, it was a big deal because she was the center of that court. this is even bigger frankly given the political situation. i was in that courtroom this morning. i actually wonder if his colleagues knew when they took the bench because there was a certain casualness to them. but justice kennedy's wife mary was in the room. some family members seemed to be there. and he must have told them at lunch. but this was one heck of a well kept secret despite all the
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rumors we've been hearing. so it is really a blockbuster. and exactly what flor i canglor others said, it really makes a difference that donald trump is getting this nomination because -- well, okay, you've been through the gay rights, affirmative action, death penalty issues. justice kennedy has been key. and what is different this time around is that the senate has both the majority and the filibuster rules have been changed. it will be an easier time frankly for the republicans to get their appointee in place. >> i'm curious, when you say the justices were more casual and you saw justice kennedy he's wi there, when you say casual, how do you mean? do you think they knew? >> i'll tell you what i saw and we can just take it from there. so i'm sitting there, they come
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in, while justice alito was reading that labor union case that we've been talking about, justices breyer and clarence thomas were kind of chatting quietly on the side, laughing agent bit. justice breyer when he read his decision in a separate case, he was very ease going. i'm telling you, the liberals' life has really changed as of this moment because anytime that they were able to win, it was because of justice anthony kennedy. now, you know, maybe i should have said why is that man smiling. his life is about to be changed. but that is why i thought, well, maybe he knew, maybe he didn't know. anyway, it is like the kremlin, we're always reading little signs. >> the tea leaves, exactly. any little joke, any little side bar conversation is noteworthy. joan, thank you and stand by. i have joshua on the phone, a
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former clerk for justice kennedy. and i suppose the rumors were swirling, but is this a total shock to you, did you have any idea? >> i personally had no idea. frankly i'd be surprised if anyone did. there is huge speculation. justice kennedy is older, he's been on the court a long time. he is quite conservative. it may not be surprising that he would prefer that his successor be appointed by a republican president. but, no, he hadn't publicly signaled this in any clear way. and obviously it will massively disrupt the entire landscape. >> so clearly the timing, you mentioned he is 81 years of age, he's been on the court for years. but the timing, knowing that this is a republican administration under which he would be retiring has to have factored in. obviously we can't climb into his heart and mind, but that had
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to have factored in as far as the timing to bow out. >> and he would certainly have been aware of it. what i actually do find kind of amazing is that justice kennedy is someone who carri cares a gr deal about the institutional legitimacy of the supreme court. and we're coming up on a midterm election that otherwise would have been a referendum on the extraordinary and might be deeply disturbing developments of the first two years of the trump administration. and he just dropped a supreme court size nuclear bomb into the middle of that electoral landscape. and instead of waiting a year, he made the decision to retire at a moment where i think many people will remark could serve to the advantage to republicans who will now either have the chance to confirm a justice right before the midterms or to go into the midterms with an open seat which has historically motivated their base a great deal. so i don't know. i think the timing of the
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decision -- i don't think that was his intent, but i do think it is a likely consequence and in that respect i think it was extraordinarily prudent and it will have lasting consequences far beyond the court itself. >> it certainly -- we talked about the decisions of the supreme court in the last 24 hours and how it even shaped people when they went to the polls in 2016 know battleground state vacancy on tsay kancans -e court knowing who was in that white house would be predicated upon who would be selected in that seat. knowing the man as you do, joshua, what do you think justice kennedy has actually thought about president trump behind the scenes? do you know? >> you know, it would be impossible to speculate about that. justice kennedy is a profoundly decent person. he is committed to civility and desechcency and dignity. not only in jurisprudence, but the democracy to move forward
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and co-exist and organize our politics. i'd be surprised if the justice were enthusiastic about some of the ways in which the president has conducted himself. there may be other policies that he has adopted or things that he's done that the justice likes. it would be very difficult to know that. but i do think that when you see his concurring opinion in the travel ban case yesterday, what he essentially says -- >> words matter. he was saying words matter, right? >> words matter. and more importantly, he was saying look, even if we the supreme court are not going to hold you to account on this one, there is an anxious world watching. and you have a constitutional duty of your own to act responsibly and with civility in the way that you speak. and i do think that was an unsubtle message, a message of disapproval, but clearly to the extent he felt that way, it wasn't enough to keep him on the court at a time where the president can now seek to capitalize on his decision. >> an excellent point.
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joshua, thank you so much for hopping on the phone with me and talking about justice kennedy. again, if you are just tuning in, we have now learned and i have a letter now in high hand that justice kennedy has written to president trump as of today, announcing his retirement from the u.s. supreme court effective july 31 of this year. so kaitlan collins, she is our white house reporter with a little bit of news from that end of washington. what do you have? >> reporter: it turns out the white house is just as surprised as the rest of us by this news that kennedy is coming in to retire. they digesting it. but president trump who just greeted the president of portugal says he will speak more on this in a few minutes. the reporters who go in for that spray to see the two leaders sitting down next to each other in the oval office are in the oval right now. the president is likely he speaking about it. so we will hear from him. but this is certainly going to be seen as good news inside of the west wing.
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of course just yesterday we saw the power of what that last nominee, neal fwor suil gorsuch the vote to uphold the travel ban. so certainly they will look forward to getting someone else on the supreme court. we'll likely hear from the president in a little bit. but yeah, the white house was caught off guard by this, but we will hear from president trump on what they have to say about this huge breaking news here any moment now. >> all right. we'll say tuned for that. thank yyou very much. so surprise at the white house and from a number of people here. steve lattic is with me now. so why now, why under this administration, why months before this key midterm election do you think justice kennedy is saying i'm done? >> you know, it is a great question. i think we can only on speculate. but i suspect justice kennedy took a look at the calendar and
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realized that if he pushes this off until next year, perhaps even 2020, we're back into the possibility that his seat might be held open until there is a democratic president perhaps even a democratic senate. this is justice kennedy being faithful first and foremost to his republican politics. and to ensuring that his successor will be nominated by a republican president and if things go according to plan confirmed by a republican senate. >> talk to me a bit more about how he has been -- he is a conservative centrist, considered the court's swing votes. he was appointed by president reagan back in 1987. when we talk about how he had this swing vote with the travel ban decision just yesterday, can you run through a couple of other major decisions of the supreme court where he played that key role? >> yeah, it is hard to think of major decisions in the last decade where he didn't. ever since justice son dwra day
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o sandra day o'connor retired, we've had these two pretty solid four justice blocks of conservatives on the one side, progressives on the other. and justice can endy the clkenn closest to either side. sometimes he would side with the progressives. that is how we got the decision that held that there was a constitutional right to same-sex marria marriage. oftentimes he would side with the conservatives especially not just yesterday, but this term. i mean of the court's 19 5-4 decisions this term, 14 of them were the conservative majority and justice kennedy didn't join the left in a single one of those. so i think from his perspective, he had done his work. he had accomplished what he set out to do and it was time to clear the way for a younger perhaps more energetic successor. >> steve, stay with me. i want to pivot back to kaitlan collins at the white house. what do you have now? >> reporter: we don't have the tape yet of president trump speaking, but we do have
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comments from what he said from those reporters who are inside the oval office right now as he is meeting with the president of portugal. he is talking about the news that anthony kennedy is going to retire. he called him someone a respectful man, someone ceahe's known for a long time and has a lot of respect for, but he did say that the search for the new supreme court justice will begin immediately. he is saying that it will be someone outstanding. he thanked kennedy for his years of service. and also he was asked who are you going to pick to replace him and he said he is considering numerous people and you'll remember that list he had when he was considering who to nominate when he did eventually nominate neil gorsuch. he had a list of people. it sounds like from this note that the president will be picking off of that list. it was a list of 25 people that the president says are highly educated, highly intelligent people and he does say this isn't exact quote, but he does say it will be someone from that list. so we are hearing the first
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reaction from president trump on the news that an thon any kennedy will retire. certainly news that the west wing will be happy about. we also noted that the white house canceled don mcgahn shepherding this process before last year when the white house was going through that process. and my colleague did spot don mcgahn leaving the press secretary office just as the news was breaking. so we are seeing the white house react in real time. but according to president trump, the search for someone to replace anthony kennedy will begin immediately. >> all right. thank you. i want to take that reporting straight back to john. and you heard -- first of all, she's saying that the president was surprised by the news which is noteworthy. obviously the president thanking justice kennedy and saying the search will begin immediately. we remember the huge list that he had before gorsuch became the next justice.
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and that don mcgahn will shepherd this whole process. tell me moving forward what this selection process even looks like. >> and one other loosened there. i think it really comes down to he is you wereis turning 82. he was starting to look a little weary. and one other note about this term. i don't want to mislead you to think that i saw this coming because i really didn't think he was going to go. but here is one thing i thought about. this was a term when john roberts the chief justice seemed to own the cases more than usual. typically anthony kennedy is not just the swing vote, he has been the man who wrote up the legal reasoning. and in case after case this term, roberts had a little bit more control. i'll just mention the partisan gerrymandering one that roberts kept for positihimself and kenn
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didn't even write in. and so i just want to mention that kennedy in some ways seemed to be withdrawing from the court during this term in terms of aggressive approach. now, going forward, we know several names on the list. they have been on for a while. and there are two right away that i'll mention who happen to be former law clerks of justice kennedy's. a breck cavanaugh, ray ketlidge on the u.s. court of appeals. some of the names that we've seen come up to lower court appointments since president trump came into office for example a woman by the name of barrett, she was a notre dame law professor who is now on the 7th circuit based in the midwest. so they have names that they have vetted in certain ways.
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and i think that just what caitlin said, don mcgahn who played such a role in the selection of neil gorsuch, and it will come down again to outside advocates for example from the federalest society w e. they have been a real partner with the trump white house here for lower court nominees and i'm sure that the federalist society and perhaps the heritage foundation also will put in their very significant two cents on who the president's choice is. >> so those are potentials. let me ask the same question to steve. you heard joan rattle off three potentials on a short list that have been vetted. who is on your short list? >> yeah, i mean i would start with joan's list. i think the one -- there are two actually big differences between this upcoming confirmation fight and the one we had with justice gorsuch's ultimate confirmation. the first is president trump now
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has his own bench of smart young federal appellate judges who he has nominated to the federal appeals court. joan mentioned barrett. i would add parr from kentucky who is very close to mitch mcconnell who would be the first supreme court justice of south asian descent. but it is important not to lose sight that it was understood that the president was going to have just about a free hand when it came to filling justice scalia's seat because almost no one he would have nominated would have changed the court's ideological balance. replacing justice kennedy is a completely different conversation. and so i think one of the really big questions is going to be whether any of the moderate republicans, someone like senator jeff flake or senator bob corker, or even john mccain, will exert some preference for
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another centrist or whether there will be a lot of pressure on the president and senate republicans to use this as an opportunity to move the court firmly to the right by replacing justice kennedy with someone quite to his right ideologically of the model of a neal ghil gor. >> and i think that is an interesting point whether you do hear from the more moderate republicans or if it does go farther to the right. but to the white house, let's go back over there as we know the president has been reacting to this news of this retirement. what do you have? >> reporter: that's right. so the president of course the white house still digesting all of this new, but we have sources telling the cnn that the president will push to have a new supreme court justice before the midterm elections this november. now, that is a pretty quick time line and that would mean that they would have to have someone nominated within weeks and that would include capitol hill staying here essentially over the summer as that process plays out. all of that coming as the
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president is saying that he will pick someone from his already existing list of supreme court potential nominees. now, i'll also remind you last fall i believe it was november, the white house published this list seemingly out of nowhere at the time of potential supreme court nominees. that is a little bit different from that list that was published before he nominated neil gorsuch, but then they published essentially an updated list. but it came at a time when it raised eyebrows because there was a question of who was the white house expecting to replace on the supreme court. now that kennedy has said that he will retire, this list is coming into play. there are dozens of names on thist does mean the president will try to pick someone before the midterm and have then confirmed. that is a pretty quick time line, but something that the president will push for a swift confirmation of whoever it is he does nominate to the supreme court. >> all right. thank you. so gloria borger back to you.
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if they are hoping to get this done before the mid terms, and chalk that up to another reason why members of congress will not be taking their summer recess because they have to get this thing together, they only need 51 votes. democrats have little leverage. >> right. they changed the filibuster rule for judges. so democrats don't have a lot of leverage right now. what they can do is try and stretch this out. i mean they are still smarting from what happened to mayerrick garland what which was put off indefinitely if you'll recall by mitch mcconnell and of course neil gorsuch is the reason why. and now the democrats are probably gathering and i've been trying to get will touch with some about what they can do to delay, delay, delay. perhaps until after the midterms. but they don't control the floor in the senate. mitch mcconnell controls the floor. and they don't have the benefit of the bill filibuster anymore. so it is very likely that the
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person that donald trump picks is the person that would wind up on the supreme court unless the democrats can figure out some way to slow down that train if they believe, and i think it is a long shot, that perhaps they could take back control of the senate this people are really not predicting right now. >> so what about steve's point, though, that you have this conservative centrist in justice kennedy. and when he is gone, how much input would be taken from more moderate republicans on capitol hill to replace him with someone who is more centrist, or would they go farther right as perhaps president trump would like. >> i think president trump makes up his own mind on these things. and he is really concerned about the base. you saw that in the immigration debate. you saw that on the travel ban. you see that in almost every decision that he makes. and i think that he is going to
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be thinking about his base and his legacy when he looks at the direction of the supreme court. any president would think about his legacy by the way, not just donald trump. but donald trump pays an awful lot of attention to the people who got him elected. and so those who were thinking like you might want a more moderate swing vote on the supreme court, you know, donald trump can surprise us all, but i wouldn't think that he would actually do that. i think he would want more of a sure thing and less of an anthony kennedy. >> all right. more reaction coming in. daniel epps is we me, another former clerk. and so daniel, how surprised are you and why do you think he's retiring now just months before the midterm election? >> you know, i'm somewhat surprised. when i was clerking for him, i
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always thought that he would stay on the court as long as he was physically able to do so because he really has a wonderful role. he gets to decide all the important cases. he's been right at the middle of the court. he gets to write the biggest cases. and whoever replaces him is likely to diverge significantly from his views on a bunch of cases. he is conservative, no doubt about that. and he is certainly more conservative but has diverged in some big areas most significantly gay rights. and at some level i would imagine he has to know that his replacement is like to are more of a conservative. >> let me stop you on that thought. i think you're right. my last guest was making the point. ultimately at the end of the day, this is up to congress, but up to the administration as to who they put forward. and the notion of it being a more moderate justice versus someone on the far right, i mean, i don't know what he thinks about president trump mind closed doors. maybe you know.
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but we maybe know how this is going to go, right? >> i wish i knew. i read with a lot of interest his concurring opinion in the travel ban case just a couple days ago where he seemed to be expressing some hand wringing saying the world has to know that we care about the constitution. but then feeling like there is nothing that he can do about it. and maybe he feels like he is tired. he moved up his law clerk reunion last year. a lot of us thought that was a signal that he was retiring last year. that doesn't happen. but i think a lot in his network started getting the impression that he was tired and didn't want to keep doing it. i don't know how much he is thinking about the election. justices tend to not do that as much as maybe they should. justin ginsburg didn't do that when obama was president because she wanted to keep doing the job. and so it is very hard job to give up.
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it is one of the best jobs in the world. especially if you are middle of the court. >> you mentioned that he has been a key swing vote in a number of cases. you mentioned same-sex marriage. remind us of the role he played. >> sure. so he wrote a number of important gha rigay rights deci. ultimately -- >> forgive me, let's go to the speaker -- majority leader mitch mcconnell. >> -- effective july 31. first and foremost, i want to pause and express our gratitude for the extraordinary service that justice kennedy has offered our nation. he served on the federal bench for a for 43 years. in particular we owe him a debt of thanks for his ardent defense of the first amendment and first amendment's right to political
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speech. as justice kennedy concludes his continue you're on the court, we wish him, his wife and their family every happiness in the years ahead. the senate stands ready to fulfill its constitutional role by offering advice and consent on president trump's nominee to fill this vacancy. we will vote to confirm justice kennedy's successor this fall. as in the case of justice gorsuch, senators will have the opportunity to meet with president trump's nominee, examine his or her qualification and debate the nomination. i have every confidence in chairman grassley's conduct in the upcoming confirmation process. it is imperative that the president's nominee be considered fairly and not subjected to personal attacks.
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thus far president trump's judicial nominations have reflected a keen understanding of the vital role the judges play in our constitutional order. judges must interpret the law fairly and apply it evenhandedly. judicial decisions must not flow from judge's personal philosophies or preferences, but from an honest assessment of the words and actual meaning of the law. this bedrock principal is clearly defined in the president's excellent choices to date. so we'll look forward to yet another outstanding selection, but today the senate and the nation thank justice kennedy for his years of service on the bench and for his many contributions to jurisprudence and to our nation. >> all right.
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gloria, back over to you. that is the first now we've gotten reaction up on capitol hill with the senate majority leader. just to recap, apparently with surprise over at the white house, although i was just handed a piece of paper saying president trump says justice kennedy visited the white house before that retirement announcement. so there is that. but back to mitch mcconnell, and we were talking about this just yesterday on this whole travel ban decision and the kneneil gorsuch factor. the leader talked about the vital role supreme court justices play. how about the vital role that the majority leader has played in a sense shaping of this court. because he is the one under the obama administration that held up anyone ever hearing from merrick garland. and we saw then came justice gorsuch. and now this. >> well, you know, mitch mcconnell clearly sees this as his legacy. and some of the most important things he's done for conservatives. democrats consider him the enemy
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because they believe that, you know, he held up mayor where i can garland for a year for no reason. and i think there is a lot of merit to that quite frankly. and now the president has a lot more leeway here. he needs 51 votes. democrats can try to slow it down, but this kind of a decision by the president really energy fwiizes his base. and if he gets the person he wants on the court, if this person is a conservative, the president can go out and campaign in the midterm elections and say look what i've done. this is one more thing that i've done for you. you know, the court upheld his travel ban this week. he's passed tax reform, et cetera, eithet cetera. so he can say i i've kept my promises and the court is the most important promise that i've
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been able to keep. and you can see with mitch mcconnell clearly he wants to get this done quickly. the president is now facing questions of whether he testifies in the russia investigation. so all of this sort of coming to a head together, but it seems -- >> hang on. here is the president. >> -- great respect for justice anthony, you know who i'm talking about, justice kennedy will be retiring. and he is a man that i've known for a long time and a man that i've respected for a long time. he's been a great justice of the supreme court. he is a man who has displayed tremendous vision. and tremendous heart. and he will be missed. but he will be retiring. and we will begin our search for a new justice of the united
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states supreme court that will begin immediately. and hopefully we're going to pick somebody who will be as outstanding. so i just want to thank justice kennedy for the years of tremendous service. he is a very spectacular man. really is a spectacular man. and i know that he will be around hopefully for a long time to advise and i believe he will be teaching and doing other things. so thank you to justice kennedy. thank you. [ inaudible question ] >> we have obviously numerous people. we have a list of 25 people that i actually had during my election. i had the 20 and i added five a little while ago. we have a very excellent list of great talented, highly educated, highly intelligent hopefully
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tremendous people. i think the list is very outstanding. when i was running, i put down a list of 20 people because not being a politician, i think people wanted to hear what some of my choices may be. and it was pretty effective. and i think you see the kind of quality that we're look at when you look at that list. but i did add, i added five additional people to the list. so it will be somebody from that list. so we have now whittled it down to about 25 people. [ inaudible question ] >> i will tell you we fought very hard to get it here. i think that they are doing a fantastic job with the world cup right now. it is in russia. and i will tell you that it is exciting. my son loves soccer and he loves watching the world cup. and they have really done a fantastic job with the world
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cup. it is exciting. even if you are a nonsoccer fan, i'm a soccer fan a little bit, but i don't have much time. >> who are you rooting for? >> well, i'm rooting for everybody to do well. but i thinks venue has been fantastic. they really have shown something very special. i fought very hard to get it for the united states, mexico and canada as you probably have heard. and we were honored to be chosen. and this is a great gentleman and a great soccer fan, too. but we were very honored to be chosen for the world cup. so we look forward to that. [ inaudible question ] >> most likely. john bolton is over there now. he is over in russia right now. i just saw watching media that he's met with president putin. i haven't got the full report yet. but it would look like that we will probably be meeting sometime in the not too distant future. and i've said from day one, getting along with russia and
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with china and with everybody is a very good thing. it is good for the world, it is good for us, it is good for everybody. so we'll probably be meeting sometime around my trip to europe. >> do you know where? >> it hasn't been determined yet. probably i will though withknow hour. >> and will you fight the ruling on immigration? >> we'll see. but we believe families should be together also. so there is not a lot to fight. but we believe families have to be together. but what we really do is we believe in very strong borders. no crime. and the democrats believe in open borders and plenty of crime. because that is what you get with the open borders. i would like to introduce however the president of portugal. i'm sorry to bother you, but in our country, the selection of a justice of the united states supreme court is considered -- i think we can all say -- one of the most important events, one of the most important things for our country.
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i mean you see the decisions that just came down, how big they are, how vital they are. and they can swing different ways depending on who there might be in the court. so it has always been considered a tremendously important thing. some people think outside of obviously war and peace, it is the most important thing that you could have. but another very important thing is introducing the president, highly respected i must say president of portugal. thank you. >> thank you, president. as constitutional law professor, i know you how important it is when a justice in your supreme court retires. because it is a key for the country. so i just heard the news. and i imagine how important it is for you and for any united states president. anyway, i'd like to tell you
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that we have a very long lasting friendship and partnership that started the moment we recognize you. we were the first neutral country to recognize the united states of america's independence. as our oldest ally, england. and i don't know if you know it, but your former fathers celebrated independence with our wine. they made a toast with our wine. it is a long, long story this one of our friendship, our partnership, based on common values, democracy and freedom and rule of law and human rights. but also of a very strong community. citizens that are both american, portuguese, and we love america,
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they love pore ntugal. there are many living here. they are important. so it is not just a military, political or economic alliance. it is more than that. it is something very human. because we're speaking of 1,400,000 people that live their love for two countries at the same time. and as you spoke of soccer, let me ask you something -- make you a suggestion. if you are going to meet mr. putin, i was with him last week, and he asked me to greet you. so of course he was expecting your visit. but any way, don't forget that portugal has the best player in the world. that is called cristiano ronaldo. i'm sure your son knows it. >> he knows all about it. >> and so don't forget if you ever go to russia during the championship, don't forget portugal is still there and want
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them to win. >> they are doing very well. they say he is the best. >> doing very, very well. >> and so tell me, how good a player is he, are you impressed? >> i'm very much impressed. he is the best player in the world. so in a sense, well, i think has been a success the championship. >> yeah. >> no doubt about it for the world. >> so will ronaldcristiano rona ever run for president against you? >> you know something i must tell you, a little different than the united states. >> that's right. >> mr. president, when did you learn about justice kennedy? >> about a half hour ago. he came to the white house and we had a wonderful discussion just prior to meeting the president. and really had a very deep discussion. his ideas on things including i asked him if he had certain people that he had great respect for that potentially could take
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his seat, which is a very hard seat to fill. so we talked about different things. and he was hooer for aboere for an hour. i don't think you folks saw him come in and out, did you? i'm shocked. that is a shocker. that is a shocker. but yeah, we had a -- he just left a little while ago just prior to meeting the president. >> can you tell us who he recommended? >> no, i won't do that. but he has -- you know, there are certain names that are just outstanding. names that you already know to be honest with you. names that you know that are highly respected, names that you would know, president. and we'll be looking at them, we'll be looking at some others. but they will come from the list of 25 people. >> mr. president, it is an election year. would you have consider to holding that spot open until the makeup of congress is determined come november? >> haven't really thought about that. i think you want to go as quickly as possible. it is a process.
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but haven't really thought about that. but we had a big day yesterday. we had great decision today in terms of what was just released by the supreme court yesterday obviously with the travel ban was extremely big. and we had some tremendous elections in south carolina from my own stand point, the governor mcmaster, its of a big win. and as you know, i was very much involved in new york with the congressman donovan. so we're very happy. this was a good few days and now i get to cap it off by meeting with the president of portugal. and portugal has been very important to our nation. you're right, we have when a million and a half people from portugal here. so that is very important. [ inaudible question ] >> i told them this morning, i want them to do what they want. we have a big immigration bill like everybody does, like you are talking and everybody talks about immigration you now i
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think more than ever before. i told them a few hours ago, i said look, pass something or come back with something that would be a dreary vags, but get something that you want. but we need democratic votes in the senate and that is why i don't get overly excited with the house vote because it won't pass in the senate. if we gave them 100% of what they wanted, and then doubled it, they still wouldn't pass it. because they think it is a good election point. i think it is good for us because i think strong borders, i don't even know how you feel about that, but i think strong borders and no crime is a great election point for us. so i told them two hours ago, i said do what you want. and ultimately we'll come to something. and perhaps it will be after the election, maybe it will be before. but as of this moment, democrats are not going to vote for anything because they really are resisting or obstructing. okay? thank you very much.
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[ inaudible question ] >> i think we'll be talking about syria. i think we'll be talking about ukraine. i think we'll be talking about many other subjects. and we'll see what happens. you never know about meetings what happens, right? but i think a lot of good things can come with meetings with people. we had great meetings with president xi. every place i've been, we have had great meetings. so maybe something positive will come out of it. >> what about defeating joe crowl crowley? >> that was a shocker for crowley to lose that election, that was a shocker. i was surprised. everybody was surprised. we had somebody that had been in there for many years and i think he took it for granted. and i can't say that i'm disappointed because i was never a big fan. but he lost his election. probably shouldn't have lost his election.
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maybe you get a little complace complacent. in a that does happen. that was a shocking loss. but it is what it is. thank you all very much. thank you. [ inaudible question ] >> they are doing great. by the way the steel industry is doing great. the tariffs have been incredible and the steel industry is doing great and our country is doing great. you're seeing the results. the numbers coming from the companies are far beyond what anybody ever thought possible. we're doing really good. but we have to have fair trade deals and we're working on really fair trade deals. we're working with your representatives on fair trade deals. >> that is good news. >> thank you, everybody. it will be very good.
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thank you everybody. thank you very much. >> let's go. keep going. let's go. all right. jeffrey toobin, i'm coming straight to you. put those glasses on. we'll talk about this piece of news here. you are the go-to go on on all things supreme court. the president making some comments on justice kennedy of course the big you news. he will be retiring effect differeneffectimpve 3137 did you s3 31. did you sthee coming? >> well, he is 81 and there was speculation that he would retire ever since president trump was elected. anthony kennedy made his name, became involved in politics through republican politics when he worked for governor ronald
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reagan in california. so he had some decisions that were not consistent with contemporary republican politics, but he has always been a republican. no doubt about that. so the fact that a republican was finally in office at a time that he was nearing the usual time for retirement age for supreme court justices, it certainly led to a lot of speculation. i didn't think it would be this year. i thought it would be next year. but i wouldn't characterize this as a shock, but when the news happens, i guess like so much we've had during the trump presidency, i guess i'd call this a shock but not a surprise. >> so i was talking to two guys who who had clerked for justice kennedy. obviously they had respect for the man, but they were wondering why this year and specifically just several months out of the midterm election. now, the word we get from the white house, they are hoping to
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get this thing sealed up and have the next justice before november. but why do you think now? >> there is never an apolitical time for a supreme court justice to retire.stakes are so enormous that it is always going to be a deeply polarizing and important issue. this year it is a midterm election. next year by the time he might have retired you would have had presidential candidates already declared. i mean there was never a perfect time. and he is would on. loo old. look, he is 81. most people who are 81 are not working at demanding full-time jobs which is what being a supreme court justice is. donald trump is a republican president. he appointed neal gore su sucsu was a clerk of anthony kennedy. i think that the fact that
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donald trump nominated someone that kennedy thinks is an appropriate choice for the supreme court is something that argued in his mind in favor of retiring. if donald trump had nominated jeanine pirro or some pre-positipre-po pre-posturerous choice, i think kennedy might have thought twice. but neil gorsuch is conservative and a very qualified supreme court justice. so awful these fall of these f d combined. and also justice kennedy's wife mary has had some health issues. i went to austria with justice kennedy more than a decade ago. he loves to traveled. he is very interested in international law, judges around the world. this is something that i'm sure he will continue his interest in. i think he just thought it was time. however, i mean the very important alternative
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consideration is some of the issues that justice kennedy is most closely associated with, the protection of roe v. wade, everybody g especially gay rights. no justice has dominated one area of law the way justice kennedy has dominated gay rights. all of that is very much in jeopardy now that donald trump will name his replacement. >> and he has been this key vote. same-sex marriage, access to abortion. and you hear the president say i listened 20 juto justice can ekt what is the likelihood that someone of the justice kennedy ilk is nominated versus someone much farther right? >> i think zero. i think the chance that there is someone in the mold of justice
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kennedy nominated is zero. there will be -- this will be a much more conservative justice. i think we saw that with neil gorsuch. gore such oig is gorsuch is alley lied with justice thomas on the most right ward part of the supreme court. and that's what we'll get. you look at the 25 names on his list, that's what we'll get. you know, there is sort of this mythology that has arisen around justice kennedy that he is a moderate. he is not really a moderate. i mean he has been a conservative in almost every area. remember, he was one of the votes in bush v gore that made george bush president. he is the author of citizens united which is the decision that has basically opened the door too deregulating all of american politics. it is true he has been a stalwart defender of gay rights. he has voted in favor of roe v.
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wade. he has defended affirmative action for african-americans in certain circumstances. but if you take those three areas away, and to a certain extent the death penalty, he is a conservative justice. and i think he saw that elections have consequences. donald trump will be president for quite a while longer. it was time to go. >> jeff toobin, don't go too far. i want to bring in one are more voice, legal analyst, former republican attorney general for the state of virginia. ken, what say you. >> first of all, i agree with almost everything that jeffrey just said. but let me drive one point home. and that is that justice kennedy has sat on the bench for some time now with one of his former clerks who he saw fit to hire in the person of neil gorsuch.
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and just yesterday in the travel ban case, we saw justice kennedy did a bit of a judicial finger wag at the president for some of his harsh language. but he joined the majority in upholding the presidency's statutory authority to take very strong action under the immigration natural saifization. and i think justice kennedy is confident even with his occasional disagreements with the president, which he voiced in that concurrence, that the president is going to nominate someone of justice gorsuch's quality. and i think when you think of the institutional reputation of the court which is so important to justice kennedy, that is a big factor in his willingness to retire now. and i think that can't be overstated. and i also agree with jeffrey that you will see somebody off
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that list who is jew additionally very similar to neil gorsuch and it will add an element to the fall elections that is going to now dominate, dominate with vast swathes of the electorate. >> let's talk about that. we were just hearing from the white house, they are hoping to have this next supreme court justice go through and be in place by the midterms. but, you know, do you think either way, the notion of not having that person maybe in place would be the catalyst to get more and more folks to turn out in november? how do you see that playing in terms of turnout for the midterms? >> it would increase turnout, but it will do it on both sides either way. so i don't know that there is any competitive advantage. but let's start by looking back one appointment. so the