tv Newsmakers Rep Jerrold Nadler CSPAN June 17, 2018 10:00am-10:32am EDT
live coverage of the justice department inspecter general report. michael hor wits testifying before the committee along with christopher wray. that gets under way 2:00 p.m. eastern time on c-span. also on c-span radio. we hope you tune in for that. newsmakers is coming up next. to fathers, grandfathers, godfathers and uncles, enjoy your weekend. have a great weekend ahead. >> of next, newsmakers with new york congressman jerrold nadler.
froma look at highlights the u.s. north korea summit in singapore. after that president trump's closing news conference in singapore followed by a from members of the senate and house. > welcome to c-span's newsmakers. our guest is congressman jerrold nadler of new york. he is in his 14th term of the house of representatives and he is the lead democrat on the house judiciary committee. let me introduce the reporters who will be asking questions this week. kate irving covers congress for mcclatchy newspapers. stephen dina is in his 14th tere house of representatives and he isheead democrat on the house judiciary committee. and covers politics washingtons for the times. you are up first. go ahead with your question please. >> we have had a lot of discussion on immigration this week. do you support this bill? what is keeping you from supporting it? >> i certainly don't support the bill. it does very little in return
for a lot of restrictions. it does grant permanent status to the dreamers, they will have to wait 23 years to get on a path to citizenship. because it establishes 78,000 slots per year, about 1.8 million eligible people over 23 years. that is not very much. number two, in return for this, it eliminates the ability to sponsor married children and mothers and sisters. even after the 23 years, that
would be fewer spots per year. it eliminates the diversity visa program. it was used in several parts of the world. almost no immigrants from africa to the country. it cuts immigration by a huge number area it also makes it harder for people to get asylum by raising the bar to establish credible theory of persecution. it does not even stop there with separation. the family separation is decreed by the trump administration. the bill makes things worse by saying that families that come to the border who are not separated will be kept in detention. we sell several cases of women who came to the country because two of their kids were murdered by gangs. and they said if you are still here by next week, we will murder your third kid.
they asked for political asylum here and our tradition is that someone who establishes a credible fear at the interview is released on their own reconnaissance and eventually goes before a judge for asylum. under the new policy, everybody claims asylum and is put in jail. the kids are removed. it is an inhuman policy. the bill makes it worse by saying we will put the whole family in jail if we do not separate them. >> first, the president blamed
democrats for the philly separation issue. i am curious as to your reaction. are democrats to blame for that policy? >> that is another of his egregious lies. everybody who comes to the border will be arrested. for the crime of the illegal entry. illegal entry is a misdemeanor. until now, somebody would be held for a day or two and then released, pending a trial, released on their own cognizance. now, they are arresting everybody and everybody goes to jail and all the kids are taken away.
that is a new policy. this is a brand-new policy decreed by the president of the attorney general. they could stop it immediately if they wanted to. senator feinstein has introduced a bill to stop it. democrats have nothing to do with this. we do not control the house or the senate. republicans, the administration controlled the presidency and as we see, the senate. they can do what they want. i do not understand the logic and how they are bringing the democrats into this. >> you talked about things that you would not accept. i am wondering. there is obviously some issue with the time it takes to go through proceedings.
the fact that the numbers very, a large number of them never bothered to show up for their removal proceedings at all. what enforcement measures are you prepared to support? >> it is not terribly difficult. to make sure that people released because -- especially because they will be charged with a misdemeanor. it is not terribly difficult to keep track and make sure that they show up. instead, everybody is being thrownn jail and kids get taken away. this is abuse. this is human abuse on a large level. someone who has a credible claim of political asylum should not be incarcerated or detained at all. >> let me press you on specifics.
what would that look like? i think we are talking about the criminal system but also the immigration detention system, where the president asked for more detention beds to keep folks. what are you willing to accept on that immigration detention side? >> i don't see why we should be detaining. i do not see why someone who claims political asylum should have a credible fear interview within a day. if they establish credible fear, it's the credible fear -- they should be released. if they say you have not established credible fear, then they can be detained pending a full asylum interview. i would support that.
let me say one other thing on immigration. they are brought here by their parents and their kids. many of them have grown up in this country and they do not realize. they finally cannot go to college or get a job. they are americans and everything but the paperwork. everybody by you a margin, they should have a path to citizenship to staying here. they are establishing conditions on legislation to do that. let's have a clean bill that
will allow people to have a path to citizenship and be able to go to school and college, serve in the military. i do not know why that should be linked to eliminating diversity, citizenship or changing the loss of that you cannot bring your brothers, sisters and children into the country. it is the president who is putting conditions and acceptable on to what we supposedly agree upon. notice that the republicans try to prevent a reasonable bill to come to the floor.
pass if it would pass with bill mostly democratic and republican votes. only a bill with republican votes can pass. i do not think any bill can get althpublican votes just from the republicans. >> you signed on to the discharge petition. you have bills go to a vote, killing the petition, would you sign another or have you lost faith in your colleagues? >> there is always hope while you live. the fact that they are unwilling. remember what the discharge does. it would set up a procedure under which they come to the floor. it is a very restrictive bill, written by the leadership.
two versions of the dreamer bill, more liberal bill that without thing in the used rouhani and quid pro quos were take care of the dreamer m.ob they know. whatever bill gets the most votes prevails. they do not want to risk that because they know that possibly all the democrats and republicans would vote for the more liberal bill without putting the community restrictions on immigration. they do not want the democracy to work in the house. >> expressing your reaction to it on friday morning, the president held a press conference on the grounds of the white house and said two things. that the report exonerates him and he called comey's actions terminal.
>> the report does not exonerate him. it does not have anything to do with him. anything that the special prosecutor is presumably investigating. it has nothing to do with trump. there is a report on the conduct in 2016, most of which was related to the investigation of hillary clinton. they are not in favor of the president. the report says that the
decision not to charge hillary clinton was made without any bias. that there was no bias in the investigation at all. it says there were three improper things that were done. two of them were done by james comey. after announcing that no charges be brought against hillary clinton, it violated the rule that you do not comment and give your opinion on the conduct of someone you are not charging with a crime area this certainly hurt hillary's campaign. trump repeated that many times during the summer. in october, comey announced that they were reopening the investigation because they found emails on a laptop. two days before the election,
they announced they found nothing. for a week, it was all about hillary's emails. that violates the department of justice rules that says you do not make any announcements with regards to the investigation that might affect an election 90 days before the election. both breaches helps trump, not hillary. no one disputes that. the third, i do not know if it is a violation, but peter struck her was an agent involved in the investigation. in emails and text messages to his then lover, he expressed his opinion that trump was terrible and he did not like hillary either. the conclusion of the report is
that he and lisa page did nothing in terms of the investigation. they did not take action. yes, he did not like trump. he expressed tto his girlfriend, another fbi agent. the only thing he did wrong was using his fbi cell phone to do so. but the investigation was painted was completely wrong. the inspector general said they left their personal opinions behind when they went to the office. they did nothing wrong in the investigation. the investigation was not biased in any way. there are lots of fbi agents who do not like trump. there are agents that do not like hillary. the fbi is prohibited by law to
ask people if they are republican or democrat. they are not allowed to ask those questions. was the investigation tainted in any way? the answer of the inspector general came up with was no. cummings announcements help trump and hurt hillary. >> the report and agent you mentioned, it didn't say that the inspector general could not rule out that it did in fact the investigation. the report said there was no evidence that it did. and said there was no evidence that his opinion were bias or
that it affected the investigation. a couple crucial things, like should witnesses -- should some of hillary's associates be suecd to subpoenas. the decision was no. they said there was no evidence that his opinions affected the investigation. that all of the decisions made were reasonable and well within scope of what we would expect. >> i believe you released a statement yesterday saying that the report showed that the announcements affected the outcome of the election. >> it certainly did. >> you would not say that makes his election questionable?
>> may intervene twice, highly improper ways. they were against guidelines and practices. for reasons of comey's arrogance. he thought he knew better. the proof of that is that trump kept quoting him that hillary is going to get locked up. that is very clear. >> can i pursue one other tangent from that? if the democrats win a majority in the house, you will be chairman of the committee. when you one that spot, there were a number of stories written with the headline that this is the man who would oversee
impeachment. what are you telling them heading into the election and parent for next year with your stance on impeachment and any plans on this point. >> i think it is much too early to determine whether there should be impeachment procedures. wait for the mueller investigation and see what he finds. was there active -- did the president participate in a crinal conspiracy or did he not? that is one of the key questions. what about obstruction of
justice? much too early for those questions. we will see what the council finds. i said this 20 years ago during the clinton administration and i will repeat it now. it will be very harmful to the country to pursue an impeachment if the case were not so overwhelming and the evidence so overwhelming that by the end of the impeachment procedure -- a fraction of the people voted for the president would agree that you had to do it. if you did it on a partisan basis, beside the fact that arithmetic is working, you would tear the country apart. you have 20 years of incrimination of people saying it is not good for the country. you only avoid it if the case is so overwhelming that you get an appreciable fraction of the people who voted for trump to agree that you really have to do that. >> do you think the administration was right to fire the occasion?
cabe?.c >> the inspector general denies it, i think. certainly, the russians, to fire him 40 hours before his pension would have invested, that was unseemly. it certainly looks suspicious. this was vengeance by the administration. it certainly looks that way. it is hard to say whether it was or not. they should have let him retire. >> mr. comey keeps weighing in on this issue. do you think that's helpful to it or not?
he weighed in yesterday on multiple developments. do you think it is helpful? >> one thing is notable from the report. james comey is criticized harshly and validly for substituting his judgment for the guidelines and procedures of the department of justice, giving his opinion of the conduct of someone he was not charged with a crime and making an announcement about that investigation within 90 days. i would add he is subject to criticism for the fact that although he was talking publicly about the investigation with hillary, we now know there was investigation in the trump campaign going on at the time. they kept it totally secret. he would not admit it. the other thing is, nothing in this report sheds any doubt whatsoever on the honesty or candor of mr. comey.
everything he said was apparently truthful. the criticism is that he was arrogant and made arrogant decisions to overall department policy because he thought it was the right thing to do. he was honest about it, but he was arrogant and he should not have done it. that is what will be important, should he be a witness in any proceedings. >> rod rosenstein has been reportedly looking into investigating some of your republican colleagues. what is your take on that?
>> i'm not familiar with him investigating some of my republican colleagues. i think an fbi informant was outed. his identification was made known. it is very dangerous for the american people. whoever did that should be subject to prosecution. >> the inspector general specifically accused him of being insubordinate. is that not a firing offense in your opinion? >> the key thing is that he was not fired for that reason. he was not fired for being too harsh on hillary and two nice to trump. he was fired because of the russian investigation. we know there is comes the president told lester holt and nbc. whether it is a firing offense or not is not terribly relevant.
what is relevant is that he was fired for the russian investigation and not what the ig report was talking about. >> thank you for being our guest on newsmakers this week. kate, start with immigration. it has been a legislative process to say the least. president trump said he would not find the moderate will. the republicans are no longer with the legislation. things are at a standstill. >> the president has tweeted that he supports parts of the immigration bill but did not say specifically that he supports
this particular bill, which is an issue for people pushing it. to get them, you need president trump saying i want you to sign this bill. it is highly confusing. members are waiting to hear more specific -- from president trump. i suspect we will see a lot more lobbying. they are actually wondering if next week is good and if it should be pushed back even further as they consider where this goes from here. >> it is very complicated. there is a possibility for discharge later down the road. >> representative told me that he is open to starting another
petition. it is very wonky. if the bill goes to a vote on the floor, it kills the other because it uses the bill. if that rule is approved on the floor, they would have to start from scratch. the only other date they could do before the election would be july 23. they have to get all those signatures before july 23. it gives them a very limited window. if they fail that window, they cannot bring it back up until december. if it does not get past their, i've been told it probably would not go anywhere for a long time. >> you has to number of questions about the family policies that the administration is pursuing. the president says it is the democrats fault, the democrats say it is the policy that needs
to be changed. a lot of emotion around this separation of children and the creation of tents for them. >> you are starting to see republicans break with the administration and weighing we should not be separating children from families. there is a provision in the new compromise bill that some whites get -- give that this issue. it does not actually solve it. it is too complicated to explain. there is a large backlash to this. the administration is still standing by it. they need to do something to change the incentive that has led to the surge of illegal
immigration. we saw a record drops in the record -- amount of people being arrested. it has returned to obama era levels. the administration needs to figure out something to get the numbers back down again. if they lose the, all tickets back. >> the emotion on capitol hill, what do you think is going to happen? will there be enough pressure to change the policy? >> you will have to wait and see. you are talking about a 30 or 45 day journey. since the zero tolerance policy, where you would actually pursue criminal charges. bill nelson in the next month or
so whether it was successful. i suspect the administration will use it as an argument to stiffen fines. >> about 30 seconds. his reaction to the ig report. it doesn't call the results into question. what did you think? >> the democrats see this as an indication of congress truthfulness, so a very important point from the congressman there. >> that is it for our time. thank you for being a first timer on our program.
>> tonight on q&a. joked repair and skins is a discuss their documentary, hit and stay. the catonsville nine and other catholic activists who protested the vietnam war. of as scruffyght haired college-age protesters. .ere were middle-aged clergy it made the public think if they are against this war maybe i should reconsider it myself. that was a turning point for the antiwar movement. >> their action clearly didn't end the vietnam war. you could say it didn't help end the draft. the head of the selective service said publicly that they felt they were under attack. linrly you can draw a