tv The Daily Briefing With Dana Perino FOX News March 9, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PST
>> harris: as we look to next week, we'll keep you informed on fox news on all the big stories and breaking news. stay tuned. i'm harris. i look forward to talking with you on social media. have a great weekend. >> dana: the white house briefing about to get underway after president trump agrees to meet with north korea's kim jong-un. the stunning development marks a potential turning point after decades of hostility between the u.s. and the hermit regime. hello. i'm dana perino. this is "the daily briefing." a bomb shell announcement catching everybody by surprise. the president raising hopes for a new direction with north korea. he's not dropping his guard maintaining maximum pressure on the rogue nuclear state. john roberts is live in the white house briefing room. john? >> good afternoon to you, dana. sarah huckabee sanders should be here soon. there's been some developments in another story that we'll get to in a moment that may delay
her arrival. we'll get a chance to ask her for the first time in public questions about where we go from here with this announcement last night that the president has agreed to meet with kim jong-un, a time and place yet to be determined. one of the big questions arising out of this, is kim jong-un really serious about ending his nuclear program, denuclearizing the korean peninsula or is he making a play for time to get his program completed. the president at least on the surface cautiously optimistic. he said last night kim jong-un talked about denuclearizing, not just a freeze. also no missile testing by north korea during this time. great progress being made but sanctions will be made until an agreement is reached. meeting being planned. the south korean national security adviser crediting the president's program of maximum pressure for bringing kim
jong-un to this point. let's listen to michael anton and what he said earlier on fox. >> he certainly learned from the mistake of the past. he brings to bear a deal-making sen sensibility but he knows you have to have the stronger hand. the way to achieve that stronger hand is to increase the pressure, build an international coalition, show no weakness but also show no daylight or difference between the united states and our international partners to present a united front. the united states and our partners have done that. >> in the president's tweet from last night, he said the sanctions will stay on and they will stay on. he won't let up on pressure on north korea because kim jong-un said he wants to talk. there was a very interesting warning from senator lindsey graham from south carolina last night toward kim jong-un who said in a statement "a word of warning to kim jong-un. worst possible thing you can do is meet with president trump in person and try to play him.
if you do that, it will be the end of you and your regime." dana? >> dana: john, you mentioned -- i was looking at lindsey graham. he probably knows what he's talking about. you mentioned that there's another story. that could be delaying the briefing a couple minutes while sarah sanders just gets her ducks in a row. she's probably going to get questions about some new details regarding the litigation with stormy daniels. >> she will, yes. another twist in the stormy daniels story. this one that michael cohen, the president's personal attorney used a trump organization, not a trump campaign, a trump organization e-mail to negotiate the terms of a nondisclosure agreement with stormy daniels whose real name is stephanie clifford. also to make a bank transfer in order that he could pay her $130,000 for her silence. the reason why this is important is because michael cohen has
maintained that the president did not know about this. the trump organization didn't know about this. michael abanatti who is stormy daniels's attorney is telling anybody that will listen is the president did know about it and michael cohen used trump e-mails to negotiate this agreement. the president had to know about it. we have no proof of that, but he's saying in a statement, once again the idea that mr. cohen was doing it for his client and mr. trump knew nothing about it is unbelievable and preposter s preposterous. it was a trump business e-mail and michael cohen has maintained that he did this alone in a statement that was given to us a few weeks ago. you can bet that this latest revelation in this case will prompt a few weeks to sarah
sanders this afternoon. most likely along the lines are you insisting again that the president knew nothing about this. we'll see what she has to say. >> thanks, john. >> thank you. >> dana: back to north korea. the state department saying north korea have to demonstrate a genuine willingness to dismantle their nuclear program. rex tillerson said this will not be a negotiation. >> with respect to talks with north korea versus negotiations, and i think this seems to be something that people continue to struggle with the difference. my comments have been that the conditions are not ripe for negotiations. the president has said for some time that he was open to talks, that he would willingly meet with kim jong-un when conditions were right and the time was right. i think in the president's judgment that that time has arrived now. >> dana: dennis wilder is from georgetown university and a former senior director at the national security council. dennis, baseon your experience,
you know a lot about the north koreans and this region. why are things different this time and i know that you seem encouraged by this news? >> i think it's the best news we've had on the korean peninsula in awhile, dana. the reason that it's happened in my view is a successful maximum pressure campaign. the key to the maximum pressure campaign is the chinese. the president has played well with the chinese, found a way to get the chinese to move on sanctions. there's reports that kim in north korea may be out of foreign exchange reserves by the end of the year because of the kind of pressure we've put on him. he's coming to the table now because he knows that he's in trouble economically and that could lead to instability in north korea. >> dana: i wanted to ask you about that. what more do we know, if you know? what kind of trouble is the regime in? is he doing this because he realizes that he need more help
from the outside world and this isolation is not sustainable? >> absolutely. because what the chinese have done is taken away his sources of foreign currency earning. if you look at the trade statistics from china, he's still importing things he needs from china, but he doesn't have the money to pay the chinese companies back. at some point toward the end of the year according to one think tank in south korea, he's going to run out of foreign exchange. when that happens a lot of stability will run out. the elites want him to give them the goodies. that's how the kim family has been in charge on the korean peninsula. if he can't give them the things they like, they may turn in a different direction. >> dana: there's a question also about what kim is thinking as he heads into this. is he wanting to be seen as an equal now? that he's also a nuclear power, if indeed he does have those weapons? take a look to what john bolton
said an hour ago on the show with harris. watch. >> i think president trump has foreshortened this very dramatically and i think he's made it clear that we're not going to let this drag out, that north korea is not going to get the time. and so i would say, you know, why wait till the end of may? let's do this by the end of march. if kim jong-un isn't really seriously prepared to talk about the logistics of denuclearization, i think it could be a very short meeting. >> dana: dennis, you think that is reasonable? let's get this show on the road in no need to wait? >> well, i think there needs to be some preparation on the u.s. side. i agree, the sooner the better. one of the things that you have to understand here is that what the president is doing is testing the sincerity of the north korean leader by having to leader. yes, he's giving him something but an opening that we should
take. >> dana: where do you think that this meeting should take place? because like -- i don't think president trump should go to pyongyang. that's a disgusting place of totalianism. but would kim jong-un leave north korea and would he be welcomed in south korea? >> i have my doubts that he will leave north korea for this meeting. i'm not sure i want the meeting in south korea either. the ideal location is right over the border and they can meet at the place where americans and north koreans have negotiated in the past. i think it's the perfect negotiation spot for a meeting like this where you're trying to test sincerity. later if he's sincere, of course, there could be a meeting in pyongyang. >> i had two last questions. one is at the state department. i guess there's some sort of establishment or elitist view that the state department is not
staffed well enough in order to handle this level of diplomacy. i think you have a different point of view. >> i do. i know those people. there's plenty of very strong experts on north korea. we've been dealing with the north koreans a long time. we've got a lot of veterans. susan thornton can handle this job. mark lambert at state department, chris kline. there's a number of people that may not be household words to your viewers but who are very expert. >> dana: they want me to wrap. i want to ask you, to me, this should not be that the united states only asks for the denuclearization. the humanitarian concerns in north korea are so astronomical. what do you think the president should ask for in that regard? >> well, the first thing, of course, is there are three poor americans still stuck in north korea. i would hope that those people will be released as a sign, a
good gesture from the north korean side. there's also, as you said, this massive goolog in north korea. kim has to show positive signs that he's going to ease up on people in north korea. >> dana: thanks, dennis. glad you were available. >> thank you. >> dana: the white house set to brief at any moment. we'll have that live coming up. what will make the meeting different after decades of failed diplomacy? daniel henninger will be with us next. patrick woke up with a sore back.
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president trump said he will do something no other american president has done. meet face-to-face with the north korean leader. this comes after three generations of the kim family to give up their nuclear weapons. daniel henninger is a fox news contributor. dan, if i could have you take a look at this collection of quotes that we picked up. this is a few of them. watch. >> let me talk about north korea. it is naive and dangerous to take a policy that he she guested the other day, bilateral relations with north korea. >> the notion to not talking to countries is punishment to them, which has been the guiding depp pillowmatic principle of this administration is ridiculous. >> i don't want to be used for propaganda purposes. i don't want to make a situation worse. >> madeline albright said in "the new york times," i held two days of talks in which kim
jung il appeared to accept more restraints on the missile program. obviously if this were easy to resolved, it would have been settled long ago. north korea thinks they need nuclear weapons to continue their survival. now he has those weapons. if the talks go through, it would be different. what is your take on it? >> to tell you the truth, dana, my take is your take. you just put your finger on it. we went through all of these negotiations. we reached the point where he not only has a nuclear weapon, he has an intercontinental ballistic missile that can reach the mainland of the united states. the goal for the north koreans now is to fasten that nuclear device on to a missile so they can reenter the atmosphere. most of our experts think that could be 12 and 24 months. they're getting very close. i'm afraid that this gambet from kim is to get the president to
talk to him, stall for time no matter how many financial pressure is being put on them because day by day they're getting to the point that they will reach nuclear breakout. >> it's hard to know what brought him to the table. could be the president, the sanctions that he's been tough on and also that kim jong-un hasn't had to deal with a president that might be considered this unpredictable. is that a benefit? >> you know, i think you just said dennis wilder of georgetown on suggesting the north koreans are running out of foreign exchange. it's an intriguing thought. i'm not sure the basis of that but that could be a problem for them. we have to keep one thing in mind about the north koreans. kim's legitimacy is based on an ideology going back to his grandfather in the 50s that is absorbing south korean, gaining nuclear capability and pushing the united states out of the pacific. if that ideology falls away for
kim, he's finished in north korea. so it's a little difficult to see him going into a negotiation and committing to anything that could undermine the regime's legitimacy. >> dana: dan, if you could hold that thought. sarah sanders has just taken the podium. >> served out his 12-month sentence. he's been recognized by his fellow service members for dedication, skill and patriotic spirit. he mentored younger sailors and was somebody to look up to for recruits. he has a commendable military service. the president is appreciative of his service to the country. with that, i will take your questions. john? >> sarah, what are the considerations that are under discussion for the location of this meeting between the president and kim jong-un? >> yeah, as we said last night, a time and place have not been determined. we'll make those announcements when more decisions and more information is available. >> what is under consideration
for where this could take place? you wouldn't want it in downtown pyongyang. >> yeah, we won't have those conversations between me and you and the press. those will be conversations that take place at a higher level and certainly outside of this room. john? >> the south korean national security adviser said the u.s. responded positively to a south korean request for a waiver on steel tariffs. can you tell where you are there? >> the president's proclamation said yesterday there were two countries that were specifically excluded. there would be the opportunity for us to negotiate on matters of national security with other countries. we'll be doing that with a number of different countries. >> does the president think that kim jong-un is sincere about talking about denuclearization? >> the president is hopeful that we can make some continued progress. with what we know is that the maximum pressure campaign is clearly been effective.
we know that it has put a tremendous amount of pressure on north korea. they have made some major promises. they made promises to denuclearization. they made promises to stop nuclear testing and they recognize that regular military exercises between the u.s. and its ally, south korea, will continue. the maximum pressure campaign we're not letting up. we're not going to step back or make any changes. we're going to continue in that effort. we're not going to have this meeting take place until we see concrete actions that match the words and the rhetoric of north korea. >> you think kim jong-un can be trusted as a negotiating partner? >> look, we're not in the negotiation right now. we've accepted the invitation to talk. based on them following through the concrete actions on the promises that they have made. >> if i could ask you one other question. lindsey graham said about the -- this news, he said a word of warning to north korean
president kim jong-un. the worst possible thing you can do with donald trump in person is to meet with him in person and try to play him. if you do that, it will be the end of you and your regime. is lindsey graham reading the president correct on that? >> i think that lindsey graham knows that president trump is one of the best negotiators and certainly i think that he has great confidence in his ability and is glad that he's the one at the table for the united states. i think senator graham has been on the other side of that and knows the capabilities and the determination of president trump. jeff? >> why did the president accept this invitation without any preconditions? for example, without demanding that the north koreans release the three americans being held there? >> that's something that we'll continue advocating for and pushing for. let's not forget that the north koreans did promise something. they promised to denuclearizing, they stopped to missile test and they realize we're continuing with our missile exercises.
the united states haas made zero concessions. north korea has made some promises. again, this meeting won't take place without concrete actions that match the promises that have been made by north korea. >> i want to follow up on that. you think that two months time period is enough time to make sure that they will actually fulfill those promises? he said he wants to do it by may. >> we're working on the determination of the time. let's not be lost in the fact that this didn't happen overnight. this maximum pressure campaign and this process has been ongoing since the president first took office. for the first time in a long time, the united states is actually having conversations from a position of strength, not weaknesses and the one that north korea finds itself in due to the maximum pressure campaign. >> does that mean it might not be made? >> we haven't said a time or a location. though things have yet to be determined. >> they promised to
denuclearize. have they promised to talk about it or talk about it? >> the promise is that they would denuclearize. that is what our ultimate goal has always been and that will have to be a part of the action that's we see them take. >> before or after -- >> we have to see concrete and verifiable actions take place. >> isn't the president giving kim jong-un exactly what he wants, which is respect and stature on the international stage? >> not at all. i think the president is getting exactly what he wants. he is getting the opportunity to have the north koreans actually denuclearize. nothing is changing from the united states' position. we're going to continue the maximum pressure campaign, we're continuing to work with our allies and partners to do that and we're going to continue to ask them to step up and do more. nothing is changing from our side when it comes to this conversation. >> there's no guarantee this
will be any more than a photo open, kim jong-un gets his equal footing on the world stage with the leader of the free world and the president gets nothing. >> i definitely don't think the everybody is getting nothing when we've seen and i've said it many times since walking in here in the last ten minutes, the president will not have the meeting without seeing concrete steps and concrete actions take place by north korea. the president would get something. frankly the world would get something if we can get to a place where north korea is denuclearizing. it's a massive step and make the entire globe much safer. even president moon has said this is because of the leadership of president trump. >> and one other questions. i apologize for that. given the economic news in the north korean news, what words would you use to describe the president's mood right now?
>> he's in a great mood. he's been in a great mood. we've had not just a successful couple days, we've had a successful year and we're very focused on making sure we have seven more. >> thank you. top officials at the white house and pentagon seem to be taken by surprise by the announcement. was this done in a haphazard way? >> not at all. as i said, this is part of an ongoing campaign that's been going over a year. just because some of the individuals that they regularly league to the press weren't involved doesn't mean the appropriate parties that lead those agencies weren't in the room and part of the discussion. >> is it appropriate for the president to reach out to his international partners first? >> the president said there would be an announcement. he had several conversations with world leaders last night and today. >> did he have conversations --
>> again, the president had conversations with world leaders last night and today. this is something that the world leaders have been working together on and something that we're going to continue to work with our allies and partners on. >> was the secretary of state aware that he was going to make that decision? >> the secretary of state's deputy was in the room at the time these conversations went on. it's absurd to pro tend like they're not part of the process and haven't been part of them all along. >> how was the president and the united states be able to verify this before the meeting? how will they be able to verify the denuclearization? >> this is something that will be determine there the national security and intelligence community. certainly not something that i would read out from here. >> the president has said that the previous presidents has mishandled this. in october he told his own
secretary of state that would be a waste of time to talk directly. >> i think it's clear they misplayed it or we wouldn't be in the position we're in. the president wouldn't be having to clean up the mistakes of the previous three administrations. the president is getting promises out of north korea that haven't been made in any recent years. again, we are going to continue the maximum pressure campaign to make sure that they follow-through on these commitments. john? >> who would he like to have with him at the meet something the secretary of state. there's not an ambassador in south korea. does he plan to step up more before this meet something. >> the president has an incredible team surrounding him both from national security advisers, secretary of defense, secretary of state, the intelligence community. at the end of the day, the ultimate person to leave that conversation at the table will be the president. john? >> the north korean government has made promises before. they reneged on those promises
to prior administrations what is different now? why should we trust kim jong-un now? >> again, because the united states is going to continue that maximum pressure campaign. we're making no concessions. we're not going to move forward until we see concrete and verified actions taking place by north korea. we're also operating from a position of strength that we haven't had in previous administrations due to the maximum pressure campaign, not just by the united states. let's not forget that china, south korea, japan, have stepped up and down infinitely more over the past year due to the president's leadership than they have in the previous administrations. so this is a collective effort to put that pressure on north korea and it's going to continue. north korea is in a place of weakness. that is certainly recognized by the promises that they have made through this conversation. >> kim jong-un has starved him
own people, murdered his own people. he's responsible for the death of otto warmbier. >> i'm glad you're acknowledging a lot of the problems of north korea because a couple weeks ago, a lot of members of the press were elevating north korea and some of the members of the regime and comparing them to people in the united states and in this administration. i think that is actually what put north korea on a similar stage, no action by this administration has even remotely demonstrated a level of rise that the media did during the olympics and through some of those stories. >> thank you, sarah. yesterday south korean official came out and said that this meeting would take place by may. but you did not say that in your original statement. that's not what you said today. a place and time has not been set. was there a miscommunication by that?
definitely what has been said by mr. chung yesterday evening. >> no. a time and place have not been set. >> so moving on from that point. can you explain to us how this came about last night? we have the president here roughly close of business. there were reporters -- >> maybe that's your close of business. our close of business is later than ya'll's. i'm sure you were still here. >> but there was supposed to be an announcement from the 7:00 p.m. and then the wait house said it would be here. then not until an hour after that that you sent out a statement affirming the details about this announcement that president trump would be meeting with kim jong-un. can you walk us through how that happened from the president popping in here to the fact that a south korean official, not the white house briefed us on our own property outside? >> again, this was the result of the south korean delegation who
had met with the north koreans earlier in the week, coming here to give us an update on their conversations and relaying that information and us responding to that. the reason for the south koreans -- i believe that was the end of your question -- addressing is because those were the individuals that had directly spoken with the north koreans. they were the ones that were making that response. >> was it the president's idea to come in here and make that statement? >> yes, absolutely it was the president's idea to come into the briefing room and alert you all of an announcement coming a couple hours later. april? >> going back to peter and jeff, there's a black hole when it comes to intelligence as to what is really happening in north korea. what is going to be put in place specifically to qualify and quantify? what is there? when you talk about denuclearization, what are your
denuclearizing? we don't know. what are you going to employ what you already have? what do you plan on doing? >> that will be determined by the national security team and not something that i would relay from the podium to you. >> when you have something, some kind of meeting of this nature, if you could say, i'm denuclearizing and that could mean denuclearizing everything. >> it's important for our national security community to understand that and they do. that is going to be a major part of any conversation and something that i'm not going to relay at this point certainly ahead of any conversations. >> one more subject, last question. did president trump -- when did president trump after that photo see stormy daniel? text, e-mail? do you have any information? >> i don't. we've addressed this extensively. i don't have anything else to add. >> i have a california question.
wednesday governor brown said that donald trump is declaring war on california. now, i know the president has given brown money before for his campaigns. when the president goes to california next week, will it be war or will it be peace? >> i couldn't hear the last part. >> when the president goes to california, will it be war or peace? >> if anybody is stepping out of bounds here, it would be someone who is refusing to follow federal law, which is certainly not the president. and wire -- we're going for an incredibly positive trip. the president is going to look at prototypes along the boarder and meet with and speak to the members of our armed services. he will be speaking with members of all five branches of the military. i don't think that could be anything but a positive thing. john? >> thank you.
two brief questions. stating the date coming off and who might accompany the president or who is expected to accompany them, could we assume then that general mcmaster will remain national security adviser throughout the duration of the negotiations? >> i have no reason to believe otherwise. >> and that means so it could be in the fall of this year, could be later, but he will still be on there to -- >> i don't have a crystal ball. the president's national security adviser is general mcmaster. he's an important part of this process. >> he's not leaving any time son? >> not that i'm aware of, no. >> different policy question for you. three weeks ago the president came out in a speech and said we're going to have the largest nuclear force ever, hopefully never have to use it. we'll be so far ahead of everybody nuclear-like like
nothing you have ever seen before. he said we won't lead the way. we'll go with them. a day after that, omb director mulvaney said that you would spent close to $50 billion to up great and enhance the nuclear arsenal. week after that, the president ahead of russia came out and said he has a first strike weapon. now whether or not you believe that he has a first strike weapon, isn't it inherently dangerous for the owners of the two largest nuclear arsenals to engage in bringmanship and why are we abandoning our role as a peace makener disarmorment? >> the president wants to make sure that we have the most robust and modern military. he's been in constant conversations with the secretary of defense and acting in large part on the recommendations of the secretary. i think everybody can certainly rest assured knowing that secretary mattis is making good
decisions when it comes to how best to rebuild and modernize the military. >> global thermal nuclear war we're talking about. you don't come back from that. isn't it dangerous -- >> it's dangerous to push something that is a narrative that is not at all what this administration is pushing. we're talking -- i'm talking. we're talking about the safety and security of this country. we're talking about making sure we have the strongest military in the world so that we can operate from a place of strength. that's what we're doing. i'm going to keep moving. one last question. >> two questions, sarah. clarifying what you said from the podium. is there a possibility that these talks with north korea with kim jong-un may not happen? >> we have to follow-through on the promises that they made. we want to see concrete and verifying action on that front. >> it's possible it could not happen? >> a lot of things are possible. i won't sit here and walk through every hypothetical that
could interest. i can tell you the president accepted that invitation on the basis that you have concrete and verifiable steps. >> and are you acknowledging that the president knows about the ashevilrbitration involvingy daniels? >> i did talk about this before. one last question. >> what steps is the president taking to prepare for this major summit with kim jong-un? >> the president has been preparing for this for quite some time. in his regular briefings with the intelligence community, his national security team and he will continue to do that with other subject matter experts. the president is i think the ultimate negotiator and deal maker when it comes to any type of conversation as i think is reflected in senator graham's
statement. we feel very confident where we are. thanks so much, guys. have a great weekend. >> dana: all right. that was sarah sanders at the white house briefing room on a friday, the end of a very busy week and a lot of news today. mostly the briefing talking about north korea. joining me now is ethan epstein from the weekly standard who has been here before. we appreciate your expertise on this matter. you wrote a piece today with three questions about the trump kim meeting. i want to play for you something. do we have the sound from sarah sanders? we don't. so i'll just basically paraphrase. you can tell me what you think. a lot of reporters picked up on this question of the meeting with preconditions or not preconditions. what she seemed to say is that the president will keep the maximum pressure campaign going, but they're going to expect concrete actions from kim jong-un. what do you think kim jong-un hears when he listens to that briefing? >> well, i think the fact that
they have even agreed to, you know, suspend missile tests during this period before the meeting happens or doesn't happen is significant of itself. it is a precondition. i think also that the trump administration has made it clear that's a red line will probably at least keep kim kind of within those lanes. they like to probe for weaknesses and be a provocateur. so they could push those limits. but i think it's wrong to say there weren't preconditions. the pledge to freeze missile test isn't a precondition. >> dana: that's probably right. when the white house gets additional questions on that today, they should listen to you and have that answer ready for them. i want to read to you something from "vanity fair." it's been interesting to watch. a lot of republicans are very condescending and ridiculing president obama for suggesting one-on-one talks with iran or north korea. the left is not necessarily
embracing donald trump to say the least. this is what vanity fair wrote this week. that president trump, who has established a credible threat of war and appears just impulsive enough to follow-through may have convinced kim that he has no other option but to bet on peace. the prospect of a cataclysm that could decimate north and south with trump may have convinced both sides to take some action. so seems like the president is getting credit to get to this point. >> right. that's deservedly so. what has happened here is the status quo has changed. the past few years, the kim regime has been disdainful of international overtures. it literally didn't pick up the phone for several years when south korea tried to contact them. now they invited the south korean delegation to north korea. they extended this invitation to donald trump, which suggested to me that the internal calculus being made in pyongyang has changed and i think that is clearly true both because of the
maximum pressure that the u.s. has been putting on the regime and also because of what we think of as loose talk but perhaps strategic talk. intimating that we might have be contemplating military action. >> dana: and they want the united states to remove its troops from the peninsula. is that just something we should not even entertain? >> yeah, one of the sort of foundational structures that keeps the peace in northeast asia is the tight alliance between the u.s. and japan and between the u.s. and south cree and the big part of that is to nearly 30,000 troops in south korea. we need to keep them as long as the north is a threatening regime. but you know, i also think trump should get credit here, too. this meeting that might happen with north korea was worked out in tandem with south korea. even though the south korean government has a left wing
president, they don't see eye to eye. there's been remarkable coordination. >> and no daylight so far. >> exactly. that's a good thing. >> thanks, ethic. >> thank you. >> dana: several major developments out of the white house and overseas this week from tariffs to u.n. action in syria. we'll break it down after a busy week next.
>> dana: a top u.n. official says that syria has entered a new offensive. it's not the only foreign policy initiative. monday, the president met with benjamin netanyahu doubling down moving the embassy to jerusalem. this as european leaders pushed the president to sign a successor deal to halt iran's ballistic missile program instead of pulling out of the nuclear deal altogether. the president authorizing tariffs yesterday before announcing he will meet with north korean leader kim jong-un
to discuss getting rid of his nuclear program. here to crank it down in three minutes, the host of the ben shapiro show, my friend, ben shapiro. there's a lot on the president's plate. i wanted to talk about how you think they're managing that. in some ways, it does help, i think, to have the united states seem a little bit unpredictable when you have all of these different things happening around the world. >> i do think that if you're enemies, you want to be unpredictable. but for allies, you want them to know you have their back. and with israel, that's the situation. with the korean peninsula, it's been more troubling. the real question with the president meeting with kim jong-un and the president, will there be preconditions and what will they be and what will the president get out of it? if he believes that they will disarm without the united states pulling out the troops, which would be disastrous, he's sorely
mistaken. again, this is a president that operates by his own rules. sometimes that is a good thing, when he bucks the conventional wisdom like on jerusalem. sometimes it's not so good like with the tariff policy. >> dana: speaking of tariffs, i wanted to bring up one thing. mario dragi, the european central bank leader had something to say about the tariffs. if you put tariffs against your allies, one wonders who the enemies are. brazil purchase as lot of coal from the united states to make steel that it wants to export. so it's not in the carve out yesterday. they have already said well, maybe we won't buy so much coal from the united states. these decisions are not without consequences. >> this is a big problem with some of the issues. the president feels passionately about trade and america is being screwed. but the evidence is not there as a general matter, this
particular announcement seems, you know, off the cuff. seems like there wasn't a policy written to support it as of yesterday and everybody is scrambling to deal with it. that is not good for markets and international trade and could lead to the depression of the economy that is really booming right now. the president had a good month in february. 330,000 jobs added. that doesn't seem like a good move to put a damper on markets. >> i ask you to talk about syria for a moment. the president acted very decisively early on and showed assad where the red line was with chemical weapons. that situation is desperate for the civilians, including children. do you think the president needs to re-visit and maybe make a concrete policy in that area? >> i mean, obviously we need something that more resembles a policy. this is not on president trump. this was a mess thanks to the obama administration.
he was handed a mess, chaos and handled things well with regard to isis. but if the humanitarian crisis is of concern to the administration, they need a better policy than letting russia do whatever they want. so nobody really seems to know what's going on there. i'm not sure there's a great solution. the administration isn't providing a lot of guidance. >> dana: in foreign policy, never any great solutions. there's ones better than the alternative. ben shapiro, you can find him on his podcast and twitter, too. >> thank you. >> dana: more with chris stirewalt. that's next.
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wire. the race between republican rick saccone and connor lamb, considered a toss-up in a district that president trump won by 20 points. a recent poll showing 63% of lamb supporters are very excited to cast their votes compared to 53% of saccone backers. let's bring in chris stirewalt. is this a good measure of what turnout will be if your voters are excited? >> god help the man that tries to poll a special election? a single congressional district. god help them. you get down to the end in a race like this, there's so many variables here. the biggest one is the president's coming to town on saturday. though he's doing the modified limited hang you'd where it's not a campaign event and not technically in the district, that will have an effect. the north korea jazz there have an effect. this makes for a fascinating race and tell us where voter's
heads are. i'm stoked. >> dana: kellyanne conway take a vacation day to do an event for rick saccone. she said we've proven that unified republican party when you're? the majority, you can get things done. you look at the economic numbers. there's no doubt the economy is on a roll. is that going to be a persuasive message? don't do anything to stop this momentum. >> the whole thing about trumpism is that focused on the results, not the chaos. focus on the outcomes. people in the southwestern corner of pennsylvania up into the pittsburgh suburbs ought to like what the president is doing. but this is true. suburbanites are not comfortable and americans like divided government. unified government is popular
among only the members of that party. all the moderates, all the independents and the piece of the opposing party always want divided government because people hate the government. >> dana: we'll see what happens. the president is headed there tomorrow. terry mccullough is not shy saying democrats will never defeat trump by sounding more protectionist than he is. they say he will compete because of new investments for workers and research and modernized infrastructure. he sounds like a republican. >> he sure does. and by the way, just there on if other side, he's from plain, virginia. joe manchin in west virginia would say oh, contraire, friend. we have a very different point of view as it relateds to all of that stuff because those rust belt voters in west virginia look at things differently.
the key things with mcauliffe, it's getting late early in the democratic nomination. we have him out, tim stire out. i don't know if they can keep their powder dry till november. >> dana: i saw joe biden, some of his people said that if we were to get into the race, maybe he would bypass new hampshire ail together and go straight to south carolina. is that a strategy that they should be thinking about already? >> i think my eye roll should speak for all of the 25 seconds. everybody would like to cut to the front of line running for president. nobody gets to. sorry, folks. >> dana: you think they're jumping the gun? >> that's bar talk as my mother would say. that's just bar talk. >> dana: i'm looking forward to some bar talk this weekend. it's been a week, as they say. chris, thanks. thanks for joining us. i'm dana perino. trace is up after the break for shep.
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across new york state, we're building the new new york. to grow your business with us in new york state, visit esd.ny.gov. the plan for president trump's unprecedented meeting with the north korean dictator kim jong-un. last night, we heard the dramatic announcement caught a lot of people off guard. the secretary says the captain was in the loop and kim jong-un did recently show some signs of softening his tone. >> what changed his posture in a very dramatic way that in all honesty. >> ahead, everything we know about this planned sitdown. why the trump administration says this is about talking, not negotiating. the risks and potential rewards of the