tv This Week With George Stephanopoulos ABC March 3, 2019 8:00am-9:01am PST
st, reliable internet and add wifi pro for a low price. comcast business. beyond fast. >> announcer: "this week" with george stephanopoulos starts right now. i know what mr. trump did. >> explosive testimony. >> he's a racist. he's a con man, and he is a cheat. >> michael cohen rocks congress with a scathing takedown of president trump. >> every day most of us knew we were coming in and we were going to lie for him. s sgh. >> cohen's revelations riveted the country, enraged trump and his allies and laid out a road map for more hearings in congress. was it a turning point for the trump presidency? and -- >> sometimes you have to walk. >> no deal in north korea. backlash for trump after he sides with kim jong-un on otto warmbier. >> he tells me he didn't know about it and i'll take him at his word. >> those topics and more with a
democrat responsible for possible impeachable proceedings, jerry nadler, and the top ranking ally in the house. kevin mccarthy. trump caps the week with two hours unplugged. >> i'm totally off script. >> new attacks. >> i saw little shifty shift. i should have saved the pocahontas thing for another year. >> red meat for his base. >> delusion, collusion. democrat lawmakers are now embracing socialism. we have people in congress that hate our country. >> our powerhouse round table weighs in. and -- >> we can all be heroes joining in a grand mission. >> washington governor jay inslee joins the white house race. can his grand mission be a winning message? we'll break down the politics, smoke out the spin. the facts that matter this week. good morning, and welcome to "this week." another week, another first. even john dean's testimony
against richard nixon didn't have the raw venom michael cohen hurled at donald trump. or the vitriol hurled right back at cohen, and even as washington braces for robert mueller's final verdict, more revelations from prosecutors in new york. it is now clear that congress is ushering in a new phase for the trump presidency. for now, party lines holding fast, but six house committees armed with subpoena power are now poised to examine every facet of president trump's life. his campaign, his white house, his foundation and the business that made him famous. one big question, will what they uncover be cause for impeachment? and the man who may have the most to say about that, our first guest, the chairman of the judiciary committee, jerry nadler. welcome back to "this week." >> morning. >> so did you learn anything from the michael cohen hearing this week that would lead you to open an impeachment investigation? >> what we learned from the cohen testimony is he implicated the president in various crimes
both while seeking the office of president and while in the white house. >> you're talking about the campaign finance. >> campaign finance, yes. that was the major one. impeachment is a long way down the road. we don't have the facts yet, but we're going to initiate the proper investigations. the republicans -- >> impeachment investigations? >> no. the republicans spent two years shielding the president from any proper accountability. they have threatened to impeach people in the justice department. they have threatened the investigation -- the mueller investigation. it's our job to protect the rule of law. that's our core function and to do that, we are going to initiate investigations into abuses of power, into corruption of justice -- into corruption and into obstruction of justice. >> let's dig down to that. you said in the past there can be crimes that are in the impeachable offenses. is a campaign finance felony like the one outlined against president trump one of those?
>> a violation of -- seeking to sabotage a fair election would be an impeachable offense. >> is that what you saw? well, we'll see. i mean -- that -- we'll see about that, but we are far from making decisions on that because we have to look into -- our core job is to protect the rule of law, and there have been no investigations. we have seen real threats to the rule of law in this white house, whether personal enrichment where the white house seems to use his power for personal enrichment, the violation of the emoluments clause of the constitution. we have seen abuses of power in obstruction of justice, threats to the mueller investigation, threats to witnesses. all of these have to be -- all of these have to be investigated and laid out to the american people. >> let me pick up on that. the abuse of power that you lay out. there is one school of thought that a sitting president can't
be indicted. especially for actions he takes in office, but some of your fellow democrats already say that the evidence the president has obstructed justice in the russia investigation is an abuse of power that justifies impeachment. can there be impeachable offenses like that that are not crimes? >> oh, sure. crimes and impeachable offenses are two different things. there can be crimes that are impeachable offenses and they are two different tests. we have to lay out for the american people and we can't depend on the mueller investigation for this. the mueller investigation number one, we don't know when it's ending despite lots of rumors. number two, it's focused on specific crimes and we have to focus much more broadly on abuses of power and what i said a moment ago. >> well, the question -- >> and the justice department has made clear in the last few weeks that it may hide from the american people the conclusions of the mueller investigation. we will fight to make that public, but the justice
department has said that the normal -- the normal policy that you don't comment on the conduct of people who are not indicted will prevail, and that should normally prevail, but not when you say the president cannot be indicted because he's the president. that turns it into a coverup. >> let's pick up on that because the deputy attorney general rod rosenstein spoke out on that this week. let's take a look. >> when we charge somebody with a violation, we need to be prepared to prove it by evidence beyond any reasonable doubt. if we aren't prepared to prove our case beyond a reasonable doubt in court, we have no business making allegations against american citizens. >> so if the report comes back and says we can't indict a sitting president, or we found no evidence of a crime committed by the president there, or you're not going to see the underlying evidence, what can you do? >> those are two different things. if they say we have seen no evidence of a crime, they ought to say that, and say why. and that's fine.
but for -- >> would you want underlying evidence there? >> we want underlying evidence. the american people are entitled to know it and congress is entitled to know it because it's our job to hold the president accountable. it's our job to hold any president accountable, but rosenstein went much further, and barr did too because they said a president cannot be indicted and if you then say because the president cannot be indicted, you're not going to give the evidence of his crimes, if any, to the public, you're saying the president cannot be held accountable. >> you will sue in that case? >> we will subpoena and do whatever we have to do. >> back in 1974, the house committees were able to get access to the grand jury evidence against richard nixon. can you get that evidence in this case? >> maybe. our lawyers are -- we will do everything we can to get that evidence. we'll do everything we can to get whatever evidence. we are starting this investigation. tomorrow we will be issuing document requests to over 60
different people and individuals from the white house to the department of justice, donald trump jr., alan weiselberg, to begin investigations to present the case to the american people about obstruction of justice, corruption and abuse of power. >> that would include john kelly, the former chief of staff, don mcgahn, the former white house counsel? >> i would imagine. i don't have the list in front of me, but we will be releasing the list tomorrow of over 60 entities, people, et cetera. >> how about if robert mueller comes back and says definitively, we found no collusion? is that a conclusion you will accept? >> we have to see the evidence behind that, and see the validity of that, and we could agree or disagree, but this investigation goes far beyond collusion. we have seen all the democratic norms that we depend on for democratic government attacked
by the administration. we have seen attacks on the the freedom of the press, the enemy -- the press called the enemy of the people, attacks on sdwr justice, attacks on the fbi, attacks on judges. these are all corrosive to government and our constitutional system. all of this has to be looked at, and the facts laid out for the american people. >> do you think the president obstructed justice? >> yes, i do. it's very clear that the president obstructed justice. it's very clear. 1,100 times he referred to the mueller investigation as a witch hunt. he tried to -- he fired -- he tried to protect flynn from being investigated by the fbi. he fired comey in order to stop the russia thing as he told nbc news. he -- he has dangled part -- he has intimidated witnesses in public. >> if that's the case, then is the decision not to pursue impeachment right now simply political? if you believe he obstructed justice? >> no. we have to -- we have to -- we have to do the investigations and get all this.
we do not now have the evidence all sorted out and everything to do an impeachment. before you impeach somebody, you have to persuade the american public that it ought to happen. you have to persuade enough of the opposition party voters and trump voters that you are not just trying -- >> that's a very high bar. >> it is. you're not just trying to steal or reverse the results of the last election. we may not get there, but what we have to do is protect the rule of law. >> this week, "the new york times" reported that the president overruled his white house counsel and the intelligence agencies wanted to deny a top secret security clearance to jared kushner. in your viewing even though the president has the right to give the security clearance to anyone he wants to give it to, was that an abuse of power? >> yes, i think it was an abuse of power. look. the president has the right to do a lot of things, but he can abuse his power in doing that. members of congress have the right to vote for or against a bill, but if they do so because someone paid them $50,000 to do so, that's abuse of power and
also a crime. so you can do things that are within your power that are abuses of power and that are crimes. >> one final question. the president put out a tweet early yesterday morning. i want to show it up on the screen. very proud of perhaps the greatest golf course anywhere in the world. also furthers uk relationships. that of course, is a trump golf course in scotland. many ethics experts came out and said that's a violation of the emoluments clause. do you agree? >> seems to be. that's one thing we should be investigating under the abuses of power. let me say this. congress has to do its job, and congress has to do its job whether investigating the administration, holding the administration accountable which the republicans in congress absolutely refuse to do, and dealing with other problems. we passed last week for the first time in the house, for the first time i think in 20 years, some real gun control legislation. the american people by margins of 90%.
the republicans refused to hold hearings. >> among democrats in that vote. >> not much. we got 240 votes or something like that. we -- we held hearings on the trump administration policy of tearing children away from the arms of their mothers. these are things congress ought to be looking at, that the last congress -- the republicans in congress acted as hand maidens and shields to the administration to shield them from any kind of accountability. we must give accountability to the american people and hold the administration's feet to the fire, and we must show if there are abuses of power, if there are obstructions of justice, if there is a threat to the rule of law, we must protect the rule of law so that the democracy that was handed down to us is just as intact after this president leaves as it was before he came in. >> congressman nadler, thank you for your time this morning. >>
you're welcome. >> and now one of the president's closest allies, house republican leader, kevin mccarthy. thank you for joining us this morning.
you heard a lot from congressman nadler. he says the president obstructed justice. he sees abuses of power in the granting of security clearance to jared kushner. he sees violations of the emoluments clause. your response? >> i think congressman nadler decided to impeach the president the day the president won the election. >> he says he's not there yet. >> listen to exactly what he said. he talks about impeachment before he even became chairman and he said, you have to persuade people to get there. there is nothing the president did wrong. >> nothing? >> to be impeached? show me where he did anything to be impeached. the other thing you have to find is listen to what nadler said. nadler is setting the framework now that the democrats not believe the mueller report. they're now saying we have to do our own investigation. after you had hundreds of interviews, millions of dollars spent in the senate and the house and they find no collusion. even if you listen to cohen's own hearing last week, what did he say? he never went to prague? which is the basis for mueller.
>> whatever mueller comes back with, you will accept that? >> i want to see his report, yes. i'm not setting a framework right now that i'm not going to support it. they're setting a whole new course because there is no collusion so they want to build something else. they want to persuade to go some other place. listen. nadler says he wants the impeachment. listen. he had proof ahead of time. you have schiff who said he had evidence long before the investigation happened. he has never produced that, and now listen to what we find about schiff in the cohen hearing. he talked to cohen. he met with glenn simpson we found out even when the own committee had problems with the truth in his own hearing. schiff actually tried to stop us from finding out who paid for the dossier, the democrats. schiff has now met schiff's own standard of why devin had to recuse himself. adam schiff needs to recuse himself for any new investigations. >> you mentioned devin nunes. he says the entire mueller report should be public. do you agree with that? >> yes. >> he said he didn't see any evidence of impeachable
defenses. let's talking about some of the evidence that congressman nadler said for example, the campaign finance violations may be an impeachable offense. i want to put up the check michael cohen showed. this was from the hearing on wednesday, a $35,000 check signed by president trump in the oval office. now that check is part of a campaign finance felony that federal prosecutors believe was directed by president trump. doesn't that concern you? >> listen. you know what concerns me? if you hire an attorney. if i hire an attorney to make sure i carry out the law, the attorney has a responsibility to tell me what's right and wrong in the process. if it's a campaign finance, those are fines. those aren't impeachable in the process. listen to what else they did. this is what's so concerning to me. last week, we just hit 2.6 in gdp. did we talk about that? the president sitting in vietnam talking with north korea. the history that's always been in the past with america that politics ends at the
water's edge. no. they are having this hearing right then. they're discrediting america and they dislike this president so much they won't give him an opportunity to try to denuclearize north korea that they would have a hearing on that day? george, you know this as well as i do. nobody else in any history would do this to a president when they are overseas, to try to discredit him just because they dislike him, and put -- put their dislike ahead of their country? they're picking circus over a solution. >> you say you're not concerned about the check. if there is no problem with the checks or the reimbursement, then why did the president lie about it for so long? >> you know,you could ask that president to the president, but this is a personal issue and why would most people not go to the american public about this? you have seen politicians do this exact same thing in the past. so to me, they're trying to find a case for a problem that doesn't exist. >> you also saw the congressman say it was an abuse of power for the president to grant the security clearance to jared kushner over the objections of
the cia, his white house counsel and perhaps his white house chief of staff. no one disputes that president trump has the right to grant his son-in-law that security clearance, but was it the right thing to do? >> the president -- as you just said, the president has the legal authority to do it. the president has a right to pick his national security team around him. who is going to work with him? and you know what? this week, gallop just came out with a new poll looking at how does america think they are viewed around the world? we are now at the highest level we have been. 58% since 2003. the president is doing a very good job. the president has the legal authority to do it. the president has to trust the people around him. you have been in those offices. you know what the president has to have. the trust of the individuals. if you are going to work on middle east peace, if you are going to work around the world, you want to have trust in those individuals. >> that's absolutely true,s and one thing i have never seen before is a case like this. you had the cia concerned about jared kushner. you have had reports that foreign nations believed he was vulnerable to being compromised.
does congress -- does the american public have a right to know what the cia was concerned about with jared kushner? >> i think the president has the right to pick just as you said, whoever he wants. >> that's not what i asked. does the congress have the right to know the concerns about jared kushner and why the president overruled? >> i think the president looked at concerns, and he decided those weren't concerns to him. if we went through every person who had this authority before, other people have had concerns raised with them. the president gets to make that decision. it could be the pluses or the minuses, whatever the concerns are. the president made the choice and he's doing a good job at it. >> you talked about north korea, and the president took some flak for saying he takes kim jong-un at his word for not knowing anything about otto warmbier and not taking responsibility for it. do you take him for his word? >> look. i think the president clarified that. look. north korea murdered otto. >> right. but kim. >> kim? i think kim had all authority to
do that. i think kim knew what happened which was wrong. that's why when we passed sanctions, we named it after otto warmbier and that's why the president kept those in place. the sanctions did not lift on north korea are named after otto, and he clarified that. >> he said north korea, and not kim. >> i think kim knew. >> talking about the national emergency a little bit. you held a line in the house. only 13 republicans voted against the president, but it looks like it will be a little bit dicier in the senate, and here's what lamar alexander has said about the president's declaration. >> there has never been an instance where a president of the united states has asked for funding. congress has refused it and the president has then used the national emergency act to justify spending the money anyway. >> aren't you concerned this could come back and bite republicans if a democrat gets to the white house again? >> look. the president has the authority
to do this. in 1976, we actually kind of shrunk the power, and he has the power to go forward. think about what has happened in the past, the drugs that are coming across, the number of people who have died, the human trafficking. in 2005, because the federal government didn't act along the border, two governors did take their own emergency. the dhs secretary, she took it along the border in arizona because she said what was happening in the smuggling and others. you had bill richardson in new mexico do the same exact thing. there is a national emergency along the border. the president has the authority to do it. congress acted and this goes beyond. the president will be upheld in this action as well. the president made this promise. >> you're not concerned the president will be overtaken there. >> i think it will be fine. >> you think the senate will pass it? >> if the senate does, it will get -- >> vetoed? >> i don't think it's why they move forward with trying to override it to me. >> michael cohen warned republicans they're doing now
what he did for years in defending the president and they are going to pay the same consequences. does that concern you at all? >> you know what concerns me? had this hearing when the president went to vietnam negotiating to denuclearize north korea. this man is going to jail for lying. this man sat before us and simply said, yeah. he'll take a book deal. he'll take a movie deal. no one believes this man and what he has been able to say in the past and what he will be able to say in the future. why are we giving him so much attention? it concerns me we're doing nothing what he did. he led his life trying to sell influence, trying to sell lies and others. this is what the democrats are trying to build. >> no concerns with what he laid out about the president? >> no. you know what concerns me? the meeting he said he talked with schiff. how many times did schiff meet with him? did staff meet with him? what did he say? what did schiff talk about with glenn simpson? fusion gps.
how about -- how about adam schiff, that he met this new threshold that he said devin nunes had to recuse himself because it was the standard that schiff set? he has met this. shouldn't he
recuse himself going forward with anything new that we do? >> we'll ask him next time he's on. thank you very much. >> thank you. round table is up next. we'll be right back. >> announcer: "this week" with george stephanopoulos sponsored by bp. >> announcer: "this week" with george stephanopoulos sponsored by bp. one of the windiest places in america. and home to three bp wind farms. in the off-chance the wind ever stops blowing here... the lights can keep on shining. thanks to our natural gas. a smart partner to renewable energy. it's always ready when needed. or... not. at bp, we see possibilities everywhere. to help the world keep advancing. 98% of us don't get enough omega-3s. which is why megared advanced 4in1 packs more omega-3 power into one small softgel.
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so they don't have anything with russia. there is no collusion. so now they go and morph into, let's inspect every deal he has ever done. we're going to go into his finances. we're going to check his deals. we're going to check -- these people are sick. unfortunately, you put the wrong people in a couple of positions and they leave people for a long time that shouldn't be there, and all of a sudden, they're trying to take you out with [ bleep ]. >> there's a beep there for president trump. two hours plus yesterday that his longest speech ever, perhaps the longest speech ever by an american president. caps a tumultuous week for the president. we want to bring in our round table. chief political analyst matthew dowd, sara fagen who was a director in the george w. bush white house. we have tom llamas, maggie haberman from "the new york times," who broke that story on jared kushner's security clearance, and author of the new
book "if we can keep it." real study of how we got to our polarized politics today. great book, michael. let's begin with the week. matthew, you look at the week. you look at the cohen hearing. seven hours on capitol hill, the collapse of the north korea talks. maggie's story about the security clearance which we saw congressman nadler call an abuse of power, but one thing this screams out is president trump emerges this week with his republican base completely intact. >> i mean, what we're seeing now is because we have been operating in this sort of chaotic environment for two plus years or three years if you include the campaign and everything that happened in that, i think people at this point in time, the people that are opposed to donald trump are solidly opposed to donald trump. the people that are for donald trump are basically solidly for donald trump, and all these pieces of information don't seem to change that equilibrium. i think the country is waiting to tell us and give us the story. give us the mueller report. find something in an investigation that they find
incredibly credible which wouldn't be michael cohen even though he raised dramatic concerns that i think the congress should investigate. but i think we're in this equilibrium place that's fundamentally not going to change until something the american public is presented with, where they have a conclusion. >> it was pretty remarkable on wednesday, and we saw with congressman mccarthy today, complete focus on michael cohen and his credibility and no concern or even defense of the president. against the charges against the president. are there any risks for republicans in -- in walking in lock step behind president trump? >> the only risk to matt's point is if there is some real there there. and right now, we don't have evidence of collusion. >> we have manafort's evidence of collusion. >> you have manafort's crimes, but that doesn't necessarily extend to the president. we'll see what the mueller report says, but one would think after, you know, a year plus, 18 months, we would see something
if it was directly connected to the president by this point. but i think, you know, ultimately about cohen, you can look around the investigation labyrinth between the southern district and mueller and the congress. of all the things the trump white house needs to be concerned about -- and there are real concerns out there, the cohen testimony wasn't one of them. he's just not a credible figure, and only base democrats found him credible and they would find him credible no matter what he said at this point if he was criticizing donald trump. >> i guess the question what happens in the follow up. one of the things i wanted to bring to you is, you know, a lot of us have been hearing these reports and didn't know how much credence to give them. the mueller report will be coming out soon and anti-climactic. one of the mysteries, the president doesn't act like a guy expecting welcome news from robert mueller. >> no, although it's hard for me to do such tea leaf reading out of donald trump's behavior because he forecasts negatives that aren't there either, but he absolutely is pre-spinning something. that's what that speech was
largely about. it's discrediting whatever is going to be coming down the pike. whether that's going to relate to russia directly or some other aspect of his business, but no. he is not saying there is nothing here and there's nothing to worry about and moving on like a happy warrior. psychically, it's hard for me to divorce that from the week he has. it may not have anything to do with what he knows is there. >> it might be habit too. >> it might be habit and this is one of the worst weeks, if not, the worst of his presidency. you had on the same day with michael cohen's testimony, the summit in vietnam with the north korean leader and that did not go well. he feels like he's fighting this two-prong front and yesterday was an attempt to get back. >> you covered president trump all through the campaign and a lot of what you saw this week must have been familiar to you, particularly that fuming against michael cohen, and for so long, they had a, you know, contentious at times relationship, but very close as well. >> i agree with maggie, but i think any time president trump gives a long speech, and this was the longest of his presidency, two hours, he clearly is trying to make a point.
so i agree with maggie, but he was trying to wrestle back the headlines. remember. he was in vietnam on the cover front pages across the world, but so was michael cohen, and he had that failed summit in north korea, and he was talking to his crowd. he was trying to camp them up, and by the end of it, he had turned that into a campaign speech. i agree with maggie. he may possibly be worried about something, but he's trying to wrestle back those headlines. >> your book explains the polarization, and talk about the risk i brought up with sara fagen, and reaching impeachment which congressman nadler seemed at times to be sensitive to in the interview today. >> he was quite sensitive to it, and i think he said the right thing. i think he said that, you know, they can't get too far out in front of public opinion when it comes to the issue of impeachment. they can't see two republicans like they are trying to nullify the results of the last election.
he denied to you that it was political, but there is nothing wrong with being a little bit political about this. this is politics. it's okay to be a little bit political. yes, they have to follow the rule of law, and they have to do the right thing according to the law, and if the president obstructed justice merely obstructing justice, forget about obstruction of justice sometimes when we talk about collusion. obstruction of justice is a real thing and an impeachable offense. he's right, and they can't get too far out in front of public opinion on this. they have to bring public opinion on this along if that's where they are going to go. >> it was stunning to me to listen to the congressman say that he has absolutely obstructed justice when congress has had but a few hearings. he has made up his mind already, and the democrats are going to look for as long as they are able, until they find something that they -- that they view as obstruction of justice. that is not -- that is not the honest way to approach it. >> it's already under way. >> one could make that argument, but you could make that argument
that the majority of the country has made up their mind about the president, and you could make the point that republicans have made up their mind. i think the problem for the republicans in this is we ran a test case of what it's like to be running with this president in 2018. at the same level of approval ratings he has today, and that test case -- >> it's kind of climbing a little bit. 46% in the new poll. >> which is where he was -- which is where he was right before the midterms which is where he was on inauguration day, and when the elections were held in november, 2018, democrats had an historic election advantage. they won by 10 million votes and so if we run this out, the problem for the president isn't what his number is. the problem is he is un -- he has not convinced the majority of the country to support him. >> and we learn the investigations. you had this piece about the security clearances this week in jared kushner, and it's remarkable, this video of the president during your interview
saying i didn't get involved. bring us inside within that. do you think he knows what you are talking about, and exactly what he's saying and all the details and knowing how much vulnerability he could have in the future? >> it's always hard to know exactly how aware he is of sort of future dangers, right? i mean, he tends to sort of exist in increments of time and says what he has to say. i asked him the question because we had been pursuing this tip that there was a memo, a kelly memo -- >> chief of staff? >> correct. that he was directed or ordered to give this clearance to jared kushner by the president. again, within the president's authority, and so when i asked the question, i thought he was going to say yes, and i thought i was going to go back and write a story about how this clearance had come about. >> they have the right to do it. >> instead, he said no, and i don't think i have the authority to do that, and i was surprised and i'm not usually surprised in these discussions with him, but i was there because i thought he was just going to lean into what he could do. i don't know what the language
was between him and john kelly. i don't know what the specifics of the conversation were. i think only the two of them do. could it be a situation where he said, just deal with it? and john kelly took that as an order or did john kelly press him and say, is this an order and he said, yes? i don't know. >> it seems to be he followed through on the documented requests starting tomorrow. a lot of this information is either going to get locked up in the courts or we'll see it trickling out over the next year. >> over the next few years possibly. what i got from the nadler interview is what is the north star? if it's no longer the mueller report or obstruction of justice, is anything big enough to take down the president? >> i don't know about that, but when you lay out everything they had there, the emoluments violations, looking at his tax returns, and potential abuse of power, obstruction of justice, it seems like we have quite a year ahead. >> i don't think it's benefit --
it doesn't necessarily benefit democrats to impeach the president politically. >> i think that's one of the questions i wanted to get to. we're running over time now, but is it possible we're seeing an emerging democratic strategy that you simply keep on doing the investigations and never reach the actual question of whether to open up the proceedings? >> that depends on the evidence, but i think it's much better for the democrats, if they don't get to the final stage. >> what is the point of that? the point is just politics and, you know, if they have direct evidence to implicate the president or someone around him, they should -- they should go there, but for them to go down a road where they have no end game, it seems like it's very disruptive to the country. >> i think if you have a president who has broken the law as michael cohen alleges -- we don't know that, but he says that, and a president who has obstructed justice, which it seems he has done on national television, in front of our faces and on twitter, there is a point to bringing all that out. >> we'll take a break and you'll
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vicks sinex. breathe on. our country's next mission must be to rise up to the most urgent challenge of our time, defeating climate change. this crisis isn't just a chart or graph anymore. the impacts are being felt everywhere. i'm jay inslee and i'm running for president because i'm the only candidate who will make defeating climate change our nation's number one priority. we can do this. >> governor inslee joining the presidential race on friday. he's here with us live this morning. thank you for coming back to "this week." >> good morning. >> you caught the president's attention right away. he was railing against the green new deal, and taking action against climate change yesterday. i want to show a bit of it right here. i wanted to show a bit of it, but the president was saying, >> no planes, no energy. when the wind stops blowing, that's the end of your electric. let's hurry up. darling. darling, is the wind blowing
today? i would like to watch television, darling. >> he's obviously mocking the idea of taking on climate change and the green new deal. >> well, look. he's so pessimistic. we're the optimists in this debate and we know we can invent and create and build clean energy economy. we know we can do that because we're doing it in my state where we built the wind turbine industry from $0 to $ in 12 years. my legislature passed by 100% clean bill. we're making progress like crazy in my state, but what we need is a president to do what presidents do, which is to blow the bugle and really call the country to a higher mission. >> don't you have to level with people? there is an optimistic view and there is no question that taking on the issue of climate change and all the science has reached a consensus on this, and it's critical, but who is going to bear the burden? who kind of sacrifices will you require from americans? >> you know, if you net this
out, what's going to require sacrifices is the course of inaction. you have to understand there is enormous cost of doing nothing here. it means we're going to have more paradise, californias where i visited -- >> the fires. >> there was an hour of darkness and it looked like an apocalypse set from a movie theater. people will bear this burden, particularly front line communities and marginalized communities and they will be flooded. in my state, our kids could not go outside because they had the worst air quality in the world. there is a huge cost to our economy, our health and national security if we do not act. there is an enormous economic advantage for embracing clean energy. we're doing it today by spinning carbon fiber for electric cars in my state or making biofuels. wo we're getting jobs. clean energy jobs in the clean energy sector today, before we take action, are growing twice as fast as the rest of the united states economy.
this -- if you are bullish and you want to have a growth-oriented economy, this is the message. i have believed this a long time. i co-authored a book about this over ten years ago. so we have to be optimistic about this. >> you mentioned your experience in washington state, but you failed to pass a carbon tax, and you had a ballot initiative that you campaigned hard for. it went down in november. if you couldn't succeed in your own state, how can you succeed with the whole country? >> we are succeeding in our state. there are multiple tools in our toolbox and this is good news, right? we don't have to depend on just one tool. so we're exercising multiple tools that are working. our renewable portfolio standard as i said, developed a $6 billion wind industry in 12 years. we're growing jobs in all kinds of sectors because of my clean energy development fund, a $100 million fund that we have. we are putting people to work in software, dealing with the integration of batteries, new battery technology.
in fact, my neighbor's kid just went to work making batteries to integrate in renewable energy. so we are working. two days, in fact, it was kind of lucky the day i announced for president. my senate passed a bill to provide 100% clean electricity, and that ought to be a goal we give all americans as the same day they banned that. >> how do you convince voters? i want to show our latest poll ranked the issues at the top of voters' minds. we had improving health care, reducing economic inequality, reducing discrimination, and global warning, fourth on the list. half of those concerned about health care. how do you convince voters this should be the overriding issue? can you win if you don't? >> several things. number one, this is no longer a chart or graph. as people experiencing it with
their own lives. it's people in seattle, washington, waking up with ash on the hoods of their cars because their forests are burning down. it's people of houston being flooded and miami beach where they had to raise their streets a foot and a half and you look down at the shops in miami beach. it's personal experience number one, and it's changing dramatically. a poll released showed that among democrat primary voters, in the first four states, defeating climate change is actually number one priority, now tied with health care. now the other thing you make this -- the way this works is you talk about this from a character issue rather than just science. i really believe that the way to win this is to talk about the basic character of who we are. we think big. we go to the moon. we invent. we create, we build. we lead the world. we don't follow it, and we don't fear the world, you know, we lead it and i think we have got to argue this from a character standpoint, and an optimistic standpoint because that's what wins in america, and i truly believe that. >> thanks for coming in today. >> you bet. thank you. round table takes on 2020 when we come back. >> you bet. thank you. round table takes on 2020 when we come back.
so you need people that it iyou're close to...r footing, to help guide you. i think about how important it was for me to have the role models that i've had. oh, look at that! i wasn't able to get there alone. he essentially plucked me out of obscurity. he's the one who said, "hey, man, this is your life, this is what you need to do." nobody can do it alone. the more help you can get along the way, the faster you can achieve your goals. i'm in it to fly. ...to help people achieve their dreams. ...to speak for those who can not. whatever you're in it for... ...we're in it together.
we just had a family meeting with all the grandkids too, and -- and there is a consensus that i should -- they want -- they, the most important people in my life, want me to run. >> i'm going to be making an announcement soon. i'm going to be making the same announcement to everyone at the same time. that's all -- that's all i can say at this time. >> are you running for president? >> that's all i'm going to say. >> when will you make that announcement? >> soon. >> joe biden and beto o'rourke looking like they're about to get into the democratic race. michael bloomberg hanging out as well. and let's begin with you. this is so clear this will be the largest democratic field in a generation, and diverse in so many ways. >> it's very impressive in that sense. there are a lot of very smart people, very capable people. they all, though, have achilles heels to me.
i think a lot of the front runners, you know, they have been elected basically in blue states as well as cory booker. >> bernie sanders. >> yep. about as blue as you can get, and kamala harris. they haven't shown getting the vote getting ability in a red state or a purple state or obviously on a national basis. i think brown is an interesting candidate. >> ohio. >> in that sense she's from ohio and won a red state by seven points while the man at the top of his ticket was losing by five. i think that's impressive, but we'll see if he gets in. >> and it raises a question, one of the questions for democrats. are they going to try to win, first of all, by bringing back the rust belt states or reaching out to the sun belt states in the south? >> i think the first strategy is how do they win the nomination, right? long before they even get to, like, who can win a blue state, a red state or a purple state in this, i think this process is going to be very fascinating. it won't be a straight line. there will be ebbs and flows in all of this. candidates are going to get in and candidates will get out and
it will fundamentally adjust the field. i think the way to look at this, and i want to add one other thing. there is no longer a superdelegate laid over this, which means the likelihood of this going to a second ballot is high. very high, and the proportionality that they have, and when you look at this, if biden gets in, biden and bernie have two spots in the top five. that's what you need to aim for. how do you get in the top five? the question is who is going to fight over those other two or three spots? that's why i think jay inslee is smart because if you have a singular issue you're talking about and you can get 10% or 12% or 13% of the vote, your goal is get in the top five. >> in addition to no superdelegates, there is no winner take all states and so one year from today, super tuesday, california, virginia, massachusetts, north carolina, you know -- >> texas. >> big states. texas is right. texas. a lot of delegates being decided and there are potentially as
many as 20 candidates in the race, it's hard to imagine one person. this is likely to go on very long. >> it reminds me of 2016. you have all these candidates and so the question i think is who has that banked in 20%? is that biden or bernie sanders like president trump did when he ran? he started at 20 and started to build from there because there were so many candidates fracturing the party. the other big problem i think democrats have right now, the most talked about democrat in this country right now is not running, a.o.c. is that where the party is right now, and how important will that be? >> that's -- bringing up the 2016 comparison, i think one of the questions is you look at michael bloomberg with an awful lot of money, and trump didn't have to spend too much of his own money, but clearly michael bloomberg prepared to spend an awful lot in order to try to do what donald trump did, take over the democratic party. is it a viable path? >> i think it's a -- it's a theoretically viable path. i can't divorce the fact i covered new york city for many, many years and i was one of the reporters on his original campaign in 2001 and that was
the last real campaign he ran. so a lot of these things sound great on paper and yes, he has a lot of money and because he has a lot of money, i don't understand why he's out there right now the way he is because he does have some time, which other people don't, but he is a pretty flawed candidate for this moment in the democratic party which is very centered around -- among other things, the stop and frisk issue, around black lives matter. he has a record in new york that i think would make that pretty hard. >> the democratic party not where the republican party was in 2016. >> no. i don't think so, and i don't think michael bloomberg is where democratic rank and voters are particularly on economic questions where rank and file democrats have moved to the left of where they were eight or ten years ago. you know, i think inslee is an interesting figure. he's probably going to have trouble breaking through, you know -- >> isn't that the question for 80% of the field? >> for a lot of them, but here's the interesting thing about inslee, george. i think he could beat donald trump very easily. generic democrat who fox news
has been instructed it's an america to hate and despise for the last several years. >> most people will not beat donald trump very easily. that's an important point about the general election. look. if the election were tomorrow, he would more likely than not lose, but the election is not tomorrow. >> he's different from other democrats. >> and the argument can't be, well, the president isn't a decent person. that can't be the argument. republicans tried that in the primaries. it did not work against donald trump. they have to have an argument. >> the democratic party has moved farther to the left and will move farther to the left by the end of the process than the republican party moved to the right over the last decade, and the most important and arguably influential democrat isn't able to run. congresswoman ocasio-cortez and she's the intellectual drive now on the democratic party and we see these candidates falling over themselves to adapt her positions and it's going to be very costly. >> and for democratic voters. >> where most voters are, are much closer to where the democrats are.
they deal with supporting climate change. >> health care. >> most don't support the wall at the border. most voters support increasing taxes on the wealthy. all of these things, the democrats are much closer to where the country is than where the republicans are. >> that's true in a polling context. it's not true when you lay out this policy. >> and that has it got to be the last word today. thank you for sharing part of your sunday with us. check out "world news tonight" and i'll see you tomorrow on "gma." world news tonight" and i'll see you tomorrow on "gma."