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tv   Erin Burnett Out Front  CNN  October 31, 2018 4:00pm-5:00pm PDT

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once again, a big concern for america and its allies, wolf. >> major concern indeed, reminding me of the bad old days of the cold war. all right, fred, thank you very much. fred pleitgen reporting live from mouse could yscow. to our viewers, thanks for watching. i'm wolf blitzer in the situation room. "erin burnett outfront" starts right now. outfront next, the president is threatening to send up to 15,000 troops to the southern border. that's more than the u.s. has in afghanistan, and it's all to halt a caravan 1,000 miles away. is this all about scaring the voters? plus my reporting on who the president blames for robert mueller's investigation. hint, not himself. and our outfront race of the day, nancy pelosi is not on the ballot in kansas, but why is a race there all about her? let's go outfront. good evening, i'm pamela brown in for erin burnett.
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outfront tonight, president trump seizing on the politics of fear. the president is about to kick off a rally in florida where republicans are locked in tight races for governor and a u.s. senate seat. this is the first of 11 rallies he'll be holding across the country in a six-day span. the president is doing all he can to push his supporters to the polls, seizing on the group of migrants moving through mexico and telling reporters he is considering greatly increas increasing the number of troops headed to the boarder. >> as far as the caravan is concerned, our military is out. we'll go up to between 10,000 or 15,000 military personnel on top of border patrol, i.c.e. and everybody else at the border. nobody is coming in. we're not allowing people to come in. >> up to 15,000 u.s. troops going to the border, just to put that number into perspective for you, that would be more than the number of u.s. troops in
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afghanistan, more than the number of u.s. troops in iraq, more than the number of u.s. troops in syria. well, the president is determined to stoke fear it appears over immigration and make it a top issue in this election. and not even the republican speaker of the house can talk him out of it. paul ryan, who shot down the president's claim that he can end birthright citizenship with an executive order is now being targeted by the president. trump today tweeting paul ryan should be focusing on holding the majority rather than giving his opinions on birthright citizenship, something he knows nothing about. most legal scholars agree with speaker ryan. so why exactly is the president doing this six days before the election? let's bring in our kaitlin collins, who is outfront for us live right outside the white house tonight. the president is not backing down on this claim to end birthright citizenship and is now lashing out to the republican leader as he kicks off this campaign rally tour.
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will we hear more of the same tonight? >> reporter: probably so, pamela. that's exactly what the president's has been for the last few days. some people in washington think the president is taking this throw everything, including the kitchen sink, at the midterms trying to save this for republicans. that's why the president is kicking off this campaign swing starting in florida tonight, ending in missouri on monday. but the question is, is he actually helping republicans with the comments he's been making lately? not only is he getting into a feud with the house speaker paul ryan, he's threatening to send up to 15,000 troops to the border, even though he's already deployed over 5,000. that's raising questions from skeptics as well. but also he's trying to justify his claim that he believes, and he's quoting legal scholars here though he's not naming which ones, that he can end birthright citizenship with an executive order. what he said on the south lawn as you just showed that video, he said that he could liken it to what barack obama did with daca. that was an executive action as well from president obama that many conservatives and critics
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of obama said defied federal law, including the president, who railed against it repeatly throughout his 2016 presidential campaign but now he's using it to justify what he's saying about ending birthright citizenship. after he put this out yesterday, a lot of people came out, including members of the pesident's own party, starting with house speaker paul ryan, saying he simply can't do this unilaterally. but in the president's eyes and as he said today, if barack obama can do daca, then i can do this. we saw what happened to daca. we saw the fight this administration tried to take with that so it's raising a lot of questions about whether or not this campaign swing the president is going to do, 11 stops in six days, is actually going to heparilp republicans o maybe they just wish he would stay at the white house. >> we shall say. great reporting from the white house. thanks so much. outfront tonight, van jones, former special advisor to president obama and host of "the van jones show." mark lauder, former special assistant to president trump and david gergen, former advisor for
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four presidents. gentlemen, great to see you. david gergen, i want to start with you. is this a good use of our military, sending 15,000 troops to the border. >> pamela, first of all, welcome back. >> thank you. >> good to see you. >> thank you very much. >> well, strikingly, secretary of defense james mattis thought it was a bad idea. he opposed it originally. he's going along with it because the president is the commander in chief. but i think most americans are smart enough to see this is a stunt coming just a few days before. it's not apparent why troops are needed this weekend when this caravan is a thousand miles away. it's going to be two or three weeks, why do they need to go now. it's not a coincidence just the weekend before the elections. so the president needs to define what are these people for, why do we need so many, how long are they going to be here, what's the purpose of all of this? you don't accepted troops in unless what your purpose is and what your getting out strategy is.
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i think this looks completely political. it's inappropriate for the president, frankly. we commit to him the forces of the united states as commander in chief, but it's almost like a sacred duty to use those troops only for real national security. not for some fake national security reason. >> what do you think, mark, is this a political stunt as david says? >> absolutely not. i think it's the fundamental goal of the united states military is to protect our country and its borders. for those who think it's a stunt or just some sort of strategy, i disagree. when we send our american servicemen or women to defend other countries' borders, yet they somehow have a problem with them defending our own borders. in this case we have anywhere from 4,000 to 11,000, the number i know constantly varies, people who are planning to come into this country and stated to do so illegally. they are going to violate the sovereignty of our nation and the president is saying no. this overwhelming use of troops can support customs and border patrol, but it also sends a very
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strong signal to the people in that caravan that you have 15,000 american troops, along with the customs and border patrol, the walls, the drones and everything else that we have at our border, that are prepared to stop you. >> so on that note, you say they're there to support. rear admiral john kirby, who is a cnn analyst, former spokesman for the defense department, says they're going to be there as cooks, as pilots, mechanics. they're not there to combat the migrants from coming in or stop them from coming in, they're there to be in support roles. is it misleading for the president to paint this picture that they're there with their guns and they're going to battle it out with the migrants in the caravan? >> i think they're still going to define the specific terms of the engagement and what they'll be doing, but there will be a support role. every person from customs and border patrol that can be reassigned from doing those support operations to front line operations -- >> but front line operations,
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what does that mean? >> stopping people from coming across our border illegally. >> there's the law. you have the border, you have the point of entry. they have due process rights as soon as they cross the border. so what exactly will the troops be doing? >> you can stop them from going between the points of entry and direct them to a point of entry. >> i want to bring in van. david gergen hold that point, but, van, i want to bring you into this conversation. what's your take? >> well, i think it's unfortunate we basically have what i think was 5,000, now maybe it's as low as 3,000 scared people, women, children, elderly people, fleeing violence thousands of miles away. and our response, rather than saying come here, let's see if you've got a valid claim. if you do, we'll process you. if not, we'll send you back. we're going to send more troops to stop this caravan than we have fighting isis. so somehow the president of the united states has decided that a couple thousand scared, sick people fleeing violence are a bigger threat to the united
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states than isis. it makes no sense. then you said something i think is really unfortunate. you said they have declared that they're going to come here and violate our laws. they actually are coming here to invoke our laws. we have, as the greatest nation in the world, insisted that not only ourselves but people around the world, when people are fleeing violence, after world war ii, when people are afraid and running for their lives, that they are supposed to be met and examined and heard. now, that doesn't mean they have to come in. but everybody gets to be heard. for you to say that they are coming here to violate our laws is not true. they are coming to invoke our laws and we should receive them, the ones who have a valid claim to come in. the rest should go home. but you don't need more troops to stop them than you have fighting isis. >> mark, i'll let you respond and, then, david, you. >> the moment they step across the border not at a legal entry, they have violated our laws. you cannot claim asylum once
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you've done that. you can claim asylum at the point of entry. many of them have said that they are planning to come into the country illegally. and this entire narrative that this is nothing but women, children and the elderly is false. it is mostly filled with men who have told reporters that they are coming here for a job. they are not fleeing violence, they are not fleeing persecution. >> and those will be sent back because they don't have valid claims. those people don't have valid claims, they'll be sent back. go ahead, mr. gergen. >> nobody can prove or show that this is a threat to the country. calling them invaders has led to one thing so far. it's led to the shootings in pittsburgh. and the people who engage in this stunt ought to step back and understand if you keep -- if you keep scapegoating immigrants, you're going to create a real problem in this country that's going to go very deep. this is not a national security emergency. >> i want to also talk to you, david, about the president insisting that you can -- that he can stop birthright
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citizenship with an executive order despite the 14th amendment in the constitution. the president compared it, as we heard kaitlin say, to president obama's executive order on daca. let's take a listen to that. >> if he can do daca, we can do this by executive order. with that being said, i think congress will ultimately act, but i may very well do it by executive order. >> president trump has railed against president obama for doing exactly that. >> president obama signed daca. when he signed it, he said i'm not allowed to do this but i'm going to sign it anyway. >> president obama actually said he doesn't have the right to do this. >> so president obama didn't actually say he didn't have the right to do that, but that aside, david, is that hypocritical of the president to say that? >> yes. but let me say this. the president has every right to question the policy, the underlying policy. here he is the president. if he can form a consensus in
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the congress or in the country for a constitutional amendment, go at it. that's his right. but there's a huge difference between daca, which you can say argued obama exceeded his authority. daca was a law. birthright citizenship is part of the constitution. if you do it unilaterally, you're rewriting the constitution of the united states. that is totally inappropriate. >> but there's one key difference. the constitution has never been ruled on by the supreme court or by a law of congress or precedent to apply to illegal immigrants in our country. >> it says all u.s. citizens. >> but there is -- there is an open area for interpretation. there's a difference between what president obama did when he rewrote federal law. this is seeking clarification. it will go to the supreme court. >> van jones. >> what you're saying isn't true. a couple of things here. the reason that you have the 14th amendment in the first place is because after slavery, after the enslavement of
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millions of african people, there was a question are these people citizens or not. we don't care who you are, if you're born here, you are a citizen. now you have people saying, well, we don't like the ones who came here illegally. i'm sorry, sir, the pilgrims did not have passports either. we've had generations of people who came here without proper paperwork but the babies aren't punished. if you're born here, we figure it out. you want to pretend that the president of the united states can sign a piece of paper to undo that and it's just not true. and part of the thing is you have a president that doesn't know the difference between the law, which can be changed or can be reinterpreted, and the constitution, which requires a massive effort to change. and he's misleading the people. i don't think that we should fool around with the constitution. conservatives used to be the constitutional people. we are constitutional conservatives. now you pretend that the president of the united states can take out liquid paper and start erasing and writing?
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that's not the way that the constitution should be addressed or dealt with in this country. >> van, you go back to the original 14th amendment. the author of that amendment in 1866 said on the floor of the united states senate, it didn't apply to foreigners or aliens. this was the original legislative intent. it has never been ruled on. whether it happens via executive order or congressional action, because harry reid proposed a law to change it and so is lindsey graham currently. the supreme court will ultimately make that decision. >> van? >> okay. first of all, harry reid -- i'm glad you mentioned harry reid. he said today, yeah, when he was young and ignorant, he was young and ignorant and it was the worst mistake he ever made and took it back. so if harry reid is more important to you than the constitution of the united states, harry reid will take you out of the message you are now in. but the second thing i want to point out is very simple. you continue to say the supreme court has never ruled on this particular issue. the only time this issue has come before the supreme court
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had to do with chinese people who were born here. the supreme court ruled in a single line they were born here, they belong here, period. there has not been the slightest indication from the supreme court that this is something they want to revisit or that could be revisited. so what happened is in the fevered swamps of the internet, some of the worst people ever born came up with this idea and they have been letting it cook and cook and cook. now it spilled over into the oval office and now onto our good air waves. this is one of the worst ideas in the country. it's only because the people who are here, who are coming here in the minds of these people are brown people from below the border, they're not sending troops to airports. most people who are here illegally didn't come through the border, sir, they came in airports and overstayed their visa. what you're doing is sending troops to the border, demonizing brown people and you don't want their babies to count. i'm sorry, but our constitution says their babies count too. >> final word quickly, mark. >> we'll let the supreme court
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decide that. it's pretty clear and i think either way, whether it's congressional or presidential action, the supreme court will ultimately have this say. the intent of the framers of this amendment were clear. >> all right, thank you so much, mark, david, van. thank you for that interesting discussion and sharing your perspectives. outfront next, new details emerging about trump's relationship with his former white house counsel, and why he blames don mcgahn for robert mueller's probe. plus, an apparent effort to smear robert mueller, including e-mails offering women money in exchange for fabricating sexual misconduct claims against him. who's behind the scheme? and trump's new pre-election talking point. >> the midterms for some reason don't do so well for republicans. i think you are going to lose a lot of money. let's clear a path. let's put down roots. let's build something.
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let's do the thing that you do. let's do the thing that changes the shape of everything... that pushes us forward and keeps us going. let's do the work. i'm thomas carrasco with the department of defense. you were employed at the homecoming center? years ago. what is this about? what were your duties there? i don't know. a staff member reported that your son was being held there against his will. i need to go. everybody i speak to obstructs or deflects... what did you do to these men? ♪ vo: costs are rising.e squeeze. it's hard to keep up. in washington, one party is calling the shots and the middle class isn't being heard. we need a new congress that will cut taxes for the middle class,
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new tonight, blame game. president trump blaming former white house counsel don mcgahn for special counsel robert mueller's russia investigation. sources close to mcgahn say trump brought it up during their last face-to-face meeting in the oval office. trump complaining to mcgahn that mueller was named special counsel on mcgahn's watch and that the investigation remains a cloud over his presidency. mcgahn has long been a target of trump's ire. he refused to fire him last year and unsuccessfully tried to stop attorney general jeff sessions from recusing him from the russia probe. outfront now, john dean and cnn
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supreme court reporter arian devoge. what is your take on this reporting, this last face-to-face meeting, trump complaining to mcgahn that the special counsel was appointed on his watch? >> look, these two men have been through a lot together, right? it was no secret that mcgahn wanted to leave. we knew that last summer, at one point he was going. out of nowhere at the end of august the president tweeted mcgahn will leave this fall. that took mcgahn by surprise and took other people by surprise. he kept his head low, he went through and did that brett kavanaugh confirmation which wasn't easy. after that was done, he took that meeting and it was 20 minutes, our sources have told us, and the president did tick off the good things that he felt like mcgahn had done, had accomplished, but then he brought up mueller again and laid the blame, as he is prone
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to do. it's interesting that that's how they ended this last meeting. keep in mind there is no love lost. they have had this long tortured relationship. >> for many years. let's not forget mcgahn was involved with the trump campaign before he was white house counsel. >> he was one of the earliest people. when he left, his replacement hasn't even gotten his background check. one source told me the president was tired of mcgahn, mcgahn was tired of the president and that's how they ended it in that meeting. >> and you mentioned that the whole blaming scenario, john, it's not just mcgahn that trump has blamed for mueller's probe, he's regularly slammed attorney general jeff sessions for recusing himself from the russia investigation. here's what he said just two weeks ago. >> it's a witch hunt. it's nothing more than a witch hunt, jeff sessions should have never let it happen, should never have recused himself. and then in june he tweeted the
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russia hoax continues because jeff sessions didn't tell me he was going to recuse himself. he blames everyone but himself for special counsel robert mueller's probe when it was his firing of then fbi director james comey that started it all. right, john? am i right? >> he seems to forget the source of the problem was his own action. but this is typical trump. we've now watched him in office for quite a while. we watched him during the campaign. and this is standard operating procedure, a man who will not accept responibility for any of his own actions. >> and let's remember that mcgahn has cooperated extensively with mueller's probe. i think it was 30 hours he spent in the room with mueller's prosecutors. sources told cnn when that reporting first came out that trump was none too pleased to find out about that. now you have this reporting that their last face-to-face meeting he brings up mueller to mcgahn. do you think it had anything to do with him being bitter that mcgahn spent all this time with
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mueller's team? >> well, our sources do say that the president was unnerved by those meetings. he didn't know that it went on as long as it did. but keep in mind, it's sort of how he processes things. look at attorney general jeff sessions. he's been ripped apart in these tweets and he's been ripped apart in his statements and it just seems to be how the president chooses to go after him. but he does owe a lot to mcgahn. russia aside, it was mcgahn was eme court confirmations, neil gorsuch, brett kavanaugh, he changed the landscape by bringing in all these judges. >> and deregulation as well. >> exactly. so he may have had their fights on russia and they went for months really not talking, but he did deliver on those crucial issues of the judiciary and deregulation. >> john, i want to just switch gears a little bit and ask you about what the national archives released today, this so-called watergate road map.
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watergate special prosecutor leon jaworski sent it to the house judiciary committee where it outlined the case to indict president nixon to obstruction of justice and obstruction of a criminal investigation. jaworski was concerned there was no legal precedent to indict a sitting president. so how does this guide mueller in your view? >> what this is, is the result of a lawsuit filed by protect democracy, an organization that thought they need transparency. historically some of the watergate materials, grand jury, which is typically secret material, had been released prior so they went in to try to get this plan, this road map released which was a result of the special counsel during watergate, getting the grand jury to not indict nixon but rather name him as an unindicted co-conspirator and send this road map, this plan of how they
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had proceeded, the evidence they collected against nixon, to the congress and the house judiciary committee which needed help. i was aware of it at the time, and historically it turned out to be a very important document. >> and now it has been released for all to see. thank you so much to all of you, john dean and ariane, appreciate it. coming up, the fbi now being asked to investigate as we learn new details about who is accused of orchestrating it. and the blame game, the president blaming democrats and the fed for tumbles in the stock market, but what about his tariffs? we'll be back. alexa, play weekend mix. the new lincoln mkc.
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well, tonight special counsel robert mueller's office is asking the fbi to investigate what appears to be a coordinated effort to smear him. several women have received e-mails offering money in exchange for telling lies that mueller behaved inappropriately towards them decades ago. one woman, a professor at vermont law school, received an e-mail on october 22nd. here's what she told cnn about that scheme. >> well, i don't know robert
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mueller, never met him. it seemed like they were trying to cast a wide net to speak with anyone who may have ever known him to see if he had done something wrong. they were just basically digging dirt up on him to try to smear him. >> i want to bring in kara scanell. this has prompted a very rare statement from the special counsel's spokesman. >> thaeft's right, pam. as you know, robert mueller's team rarely makes a statement. they're often known more for not commenting. yesterday in fact they issued a statement because reporters started getting calls or e-mails about two weeks ago. it's interesting, the taub e-mail was targeting her asking if she would receive money in exchange for making up an allegation. reporters two weeks ago had received an e-mail purporting to be from a woman who said that she was contacted by working for a republican lobbyist, jack
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burkman, in d.c., who was offering her cash to pay off her credit card debt in order to make up a false allegation about robert mueller. because reporters have been calling robert mueller's office, they issued this rare statement in which they said when we learned last week of allegations that women were offered money to make false claims about the special counsel, we immediately referred the matter to the fbi for investigation. now, it's interesting because one of those letters was, of course, looking to target women to see if any would accept money for an allegation. the other one was targeting the media in a way to see if they would end up writing a story about this without checking it out, pam. so this was sort of a double-edged attempt. once these allegations became known publicly when the first story dropped about robert mueller's statement, you started to see reporters coming out of the woodwork, putting forward the reporting that they did that linked both of these attempts to companies that were associated
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with this 20-year-old's sort of right-wing political character on the internet who often is on twitter, linked it to him and then he had told the "daily beast" that he was working for burkman. burkman told us he has never offered women money for their stories. he also declined to tell us if he was working with the company. >> okay, kara, thank you for brae breaking it down for us. outfront now, democratic congressman from california, eric swalwell. he hits on the house intelligence and judiciary committees. congressman, thanks for coming on. >> of course. >> what is your reaction, first off, to this apparent effort to smear the special counsel. >> this lobbyist is discredited in the past. in criminal law we would say he's got a prior, so his credibility isn't that high. but what concerns me, though, is whether the president's rhetoric around the special counsel and all the names he's called him, the description of it being an illegal investigation, himself
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saying that he's got concerns about robert mueller's credibility, that it's created a per missive sand box where people feel like they can do this. this is all more the reason we should cement his role and pass the bipartisan legislation that's come out of the senate that would preserve the special counsel so no effort on the outside or from the president would remove him from this investigation. >> so this matter, as we know, has been referred to the fbi. do you think that the fbi should investigate? >> yes. i think the potential crimes here are mail fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, also perhaps extortion and obstruction of justice, that they would try to put themselves into this investigation and delay its course. yes, it's a serious crime. >> even if this is a hoax, you think that the fbi should investigate? >> well, they're talking -- in these e-mails, they're talking about payments. so now you're talking about possibly invoking rico, racketeering. they're talking about perhaps
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defrauding a bank to get money to pay off these people. these are serious crimes. the stakes are high. one of the individuals is a 20-year-old, may be in way over his head. but you're messing with one of the most important investigations in the history of the united states. >> do you think it could open the fbi up to the fact that they are investigating political critics? >> well, this is beyond being a critic. this is trying to disrupt through false statements a serious investigation. if there's no crimes there, of course they shouldn't go any farther. but it certainly looks like there's a lot more to be known. >> and so based on kara's reporting, burkman was behind this. do you think that he acted alone? >> i don't know. again, this reminds me of what david gergen was saying earlier about pittsburgh. no one believes that the president was responsible for what that shooter did in that synagogue, but a lot of people believe the president has created this permissive environment. and the way he categorizes and characterizes the special
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counsel makes people believe, well, i'm going to be on the president's side just seven days before the election and take out the special counsel myself. i'd like to see the president and his team disavow this effort. >> and you mentioned pittsburgh. i want to turn to the pittsburgh synagogue shooting. a federal grand jury has returned a 44-count indictment against the alleged gunman, robert bowers. do you think that he should get the death penalty? >> i think he should rot in prison and then rot in hell. >> so no death penalty? >> i'd rather see him sit in a very uncomfortable prison and then let him meet his maker. i think we know where he'll go. >> congressman, thanks so much for coming on. >> my pleasure. and today, three more funerals were held for the victims killed in saturday's mass shooting at the tree of life synagogue. 75-year-old joyce fienberg, her husband passed away two years ago after a battle with cancer. students say she always treated them like family, sending cards to them long after they
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graduated. also 69-year-old irvin younger was a greeter at the tree of life synagogue. he was known for his infectious smile and handshake. also 87-year-old melvin wax. his greatest passions were his grandson, his judaism and the pittsburgh pirates. according to officials, three people remain hospitalized, including one police officer. well, outfront up next, the president's warning to people who are voting for democrats. >> i think you're all going to lose a lot of money. i hate to say that. >> so is this another scare tactic? plus, one democrat's strategy to win, run as far away from nancy pelosi as possible. so will it work? ♪ when the moon hits your eye ♪
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four years ago, we rejected marshall tuck and his billionaire backers for superintendent of public instruction. but they're back. the corporate billionaires and their handpicked candidate, former wall street banker marshall tuck.
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tuck's billionaires have spent over $25 million distorting tony thurmond's outstanding record on education. all because they know tuck shares their agenda: diverting funds from our public schools into their corporate charter schools. the same agenda as trump and betsy devos. protect our public schools. say no, again, to marshall tuck. well, tonight president trump warning that people will lose money if they vote for democrats. >> the midterms for some reason, if they don't do well for republicans, i think you're all going to lose a lot of money. i hate to say that, i think
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you're going to lose a lot of money. >> this comes a day after this tweet from the president. quote, if you want your stocks to go down, i strongly suggest voting democrat. outfront now, katherine rampell and steven moore, an informal white house advisor. so is the president, steven, just throwing things at the wall to see what sticks before the midterms? what's going on here? >> no. the strongest card that republicans have to play in these midterms is the economy, this booming economy. we saw yesterday the highest level of consumer confidence in 18 years. that's a sign that people feel good about where things are and republicans haven't done a very good job of running on that and trump is trying to steer these republican candidates, talk about the economy. >> but to say if you want to lose money, vote democrat. >> i think what he meant there is, look, we did a study at the heritage foundation and the
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average american family is saving about $2,000 a year as a result of this tax cut. most democrats are running on repealing the tax cut, so that's $2,000 they would lose right there. >> catherine, during the campaign, you'll recall trump's critics all said that he would be terrible for the economy. here are just a few of those that we pulled. >> economists on the right and the left and the center all agree, trump would throw us back into recession. >> i can say with 100% certainty that there's a really good chance we could see a huge, huge correction. >> his domestic policies would lead to recession. >> so far, those predictions haven't come true, as stephen said, consumer confidence is at an all-time high in 18 years. so are these just -- these political type attacks that, you know, just kind of get recycled each midterm? >> no, no. look, trump passed -- or trump oversaw a $2 trillion fiscal stimulus at a time of an
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economic expansion. we are nine years into one of the longest expansions on record and yet we are pumping more money into the economy. in the near term you're going to see a sugar high but if you look at the long-term impact of his policies on deficits as well as on the economy, it's not good. i think that's part of what was being reflected in those comments. i would also add that a number of other bonkers things that trump had proposed during the campaign fortunately did not happen, including he wanted to bring us back to the gold standard. he wanted to default on our debt or at least threatened to default on our debt saying he should negotiate it down if times got hard. those were some of the more crisis-prone statements that he made that if he had actually acted on them, yes, they probably would have caused a worldwide financial crisis. as it stands right now, instead we have policies like a trade war, which is not good either for the near term or the long term health of the economy. and of course these fiscal
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policies that will weigh very much on the long-term health of the economy. so just because things are good now does not necessarily mean that what he's doing is a great investment in our long-term future. >> and she mentions trade. i mean we've seen the dow kind of yo-yo up and down. >> i'm getting seasick this week. >> because of the what the president does when it comes to trade. >> i think catherine is right on the trade front. i'm a free trade guy. in our book we talk about this. when larry kudlow and i were meeting with trump, we said we're for free trade. trump always said i want a fair deal, a level playing field. i want to use these kind of trade tariffs as a -- as a negotiating tactic to bring these tariffs down. so far it seems to be working pretty well. he got the canada/mexico deal done. the big deal right now and the big cloud that's hanging over the economy is whether he can score a victory with china. and i think, look, i think most americans are with trump on china. china is cheating, they're stealing, they're building up their military in a very
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aggressive way. now seems like a pretty good time to be standing up to china. >> the way to have stood up to china would have been through tpp, which you supported. >> i'm fine with tpp. >> in fact this was a strategy for basically isolating china by banding together with all of the other countries. >> the transpacific partnership. >> but he's had these trade deals now -- i was much more nervous nine months ago in terms of trump antagonizing some of our allies than i am now. he's got the trade deal done with canada, with mexico, with europe. >> it's not done, what are you talking about. >> we've got the deal with canada and mexico. >> it hasn't passed any of our legislatures. >> that's true. it has to pass through congress. >> so quickly, i want your take on the fed because the president not only blaming democrats, also the fed. he said i think the fed is making a mistake. they are so tight. i think the fed has gone crazy. he's talking about raising the rates. is he right to blame the fed? >> i think that the big issue right now is we kind of, as conservative economists, believe
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the economy can grow a lot faster. we want higher wages and we want more people working. and the fed is still under this belief that when you have high levels of growth that that's going to cause inflation. >> you can't have it both ways. either you argue that the economy is going gang busters and, therefore, it is perfectly appropriate for monetary policy to be normalized after about a decade of historically very low rates, or you say the economy is actually still quite weak and, therefore, we need more accommodative monetary policy. you can't have it both ways. >> what i'm saying is we want the fed to fight inflation. we want to keep the prices stable. but the prices are stable. i mean over the last six months, the inflation rate has been less than 2%. so what is the fed -- why is the fed raising rates right now? >> because we've just put -- we've just announced a $2 trillion fiscal stimulus during a major expansion. >> what trump is saying is that's going to pull back the economy. he says it's going to slow the economy down, and he might be right. why do we want to slow the economy down? >> because you don't want it to
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overheat. because the fed's job is to take the punch bowl away. to do the thing that might feel not so popular in the moment, that's why we shield them from any sort of political influence because you want them to be a little bit more forward looking and not to say, hey, an election is coming up, let's boost the economy as high as we can. >> every time we have higher wages, the fed pulls back on the economy. >> that's not what you were saying when we were facing the great recession. >> you guys made my job easy. i can just sit here and let you talk. thank you so much. do appreciate it, catherine and steve. >> happy halloween. >> happy halloween to you as well. up next, should nancy pelosi really be counting her chickens before they hatch? >> what now i'm saying is we will win. >> so will she regret saying those words? and a washington power couple at odds over the president. is that what they meant by for better or worse? checs at four. enjoy your ride. (bicycle bell sound) ♪ ♪ explore more with a guaranteed 4pm checkout
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said if the election were held today, we would win. >> what happened today that changed that? >> what now i'm saying is we will win. >> please don't say that. do you want to say that on hillary's fireworks barge that she cancelled? please, please, please don't say that. >> we will win. we own the ground. we're not yielding one grain of sound. >> but pelosi is a lightning rod in many races across the country, including one in deep red kansas. manu raju is outfront with the race of the day. >> reporter: it has been a decade since a democrat won a house seat in this eastern kansas district that overwhelmingly supported donald trump in 2016. but in yet another major warning sign for republicans ahead of next week's midterms, a democrat, paul davis, could pick up this seat as he pitches himself as a middle of the road candidate. if democrats like paul davis do
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win, that could flip the house and effectively make nancy pelosi the next speaker. there's just one problem. >> there isn't a circumstance in which i'm going to support pelosi. there are times when you just need some new blood. i think this is the time. >> reporter: democrats could face their own leadership struggle as 30 democrats, who stand a real chance of winning next week, say they won't support her for the job. >> that's why i won't support nancy pelosi. >> i won't support nancy pelosi. >> reporter: yet pelosi is still the heavy favorite to become speaker and has no viable opponent. >> i think i'm worth the trouble quite frankly. >> reporter: she's raised more than $121 million for her colleagues this cycle and has the power to give members key spots on committees. if they take the house, pelosi's allies will make this argument. >> i think that will have taken away the argument that she's a drag or affecting candidates. if we won then that really
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wasn't effective and i don't understand what the case against her would be. >> reporter: here in kansas, republican steve watkins, an army veteran and first-time candidate, was also vying for the open seat and is trying to link davis to pelosi. >> he's saying what he thenhe ts he has to say in order to get elected. >> reporter: but a recent cnn poll shows that pelosi is not a major factor for most voters nationally. >> i don't think it's having much of an impact. i said on day one of the campaign i'm not going to support her and there's nothing to change that. whatever the republicans are going to say i think is just trying to muddy the waters, which they do time in and time again. >> we've seen this movie before. >> reporter: it's been a strategy republicans have tried throughout the country this election season, dropping nearly $90 million in ads demonizing pelosi. but as they go door to door in chanute, kansas -- >> hi, how's it going? >> reporter: watkins' aides
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acknowledge that pelosi is not the only issue motivating voters. >> i'd say one out of every four people who bring up control of congress, out of those people, one out of four bring up pelosi. >> reporter: now, the race may ultimately come down to character. watkins has faced questions about whether he inflated his resume, while davis has faced gop attacks about a 1998 incident where he was at a strip club that was raided at the police. he wasn't charged with a crime but he did tell me i was at the wrong place at the wrong time. he said voters are tired of sleazy ads to the tune of $12 million on both sides in that key house district. pamela. >> all right, our thanks to manu raju. up next, kellyanne and george conway married for better or worse, but that was before president trump came along. [music playing]
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well, kellyanne conway and her husband on opposite sides over president trump. here's jeannie moos. >> reporter: some families feud against other families. >> welcome back to celebrity family feud. >> reporter: but this is an internal family feud. she is the president's pit bull. >> how dare you. >> no, how dare you. >> reporter: while her husband, the guy holding her coat, is also holding president trump's feet to the fire, writing critical op-eds and essays and especially tweets, describing the president's positions using words like absurd, flabbergasting, ceaseless, shameless and witless pro varcation on virtually all topics. >> what is up with your husband's tweets? >> it's fascinating to me that cnn would go there. it's now fair game what
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people's -- how people's spouses and significant others may differ. it was meant to harass and embarrass. >> absolutely not. >> in a "washington post" article head lined "she works for trump, he can't stand him" kellyanne said of her husband's anti-trump tweeting, i think it's disrespectful. i think it disrespects his wife. >> i see my kellyanne. oh, kellyanne. >> reporter: no disrespect from her boss, who sends her out to fight the lions. >> there is no den she will not go into. >> reporter: imagine the den at home when she gets back from work. george conway is a respected lawyer and conservative who once represented paula jones. >> all right, girls. >> reporter: in her case against bill clinton. sometimes george's tweets inspire uninvited relationship advice. suggestions like divorce her, george. and you and melania should start a chat room for useless spouses. maybe someway the conways can do what mary madeline and james
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carvel did. this couple turned their marriage into a cottage industry of commentary and books. >> james and i needed space, mostly from each other. >> reporter: at least george probably hasn't stopped holding kellyanne's coat, even if the fur is flying. jeanne moos, cnn, new york. >> thank you for joining us. "ac 360" starts now. good evening. the president of the united states today doubled down on the notion that he can redefine who's an american citizen, which is enshrined in the constitution with just a stroke of the pen. before we go any further, we should point out he cannot. more on that in a second. he also said he may order as many as 15,000 active duty troops to the border with mexico. that's 1,000 more than are deployed in afghanistan. the reason, he says, is the threat from a group of poor central american migrants, now about 1,000 miles away and coming on foot to seek asylum. >> it's a


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