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tv   MSNBC Live With Steve Kornacki  MSNBC  March 20, 2017 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT

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that's just one of the big headlines out of fbi director james comey's testimony before the senate intelligence committee. another one, the confirmation of an investigation. >> the fbi as part of our counterintelligence mission is investigating the russian governments efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential
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election. comey confirming his bureau is investigating russian interference in last year's presidential election. and that includes potential connections between the trump campaign and russia. also on the agenda, going nuclear. >> something is seriously wrong with the confirmation process for a supreme court justice resembles an election campaign for office. >> hearings now under way. judge neil gorsuch. will democrats filibuster the nomination and if they do, will republicans get rid of the filibuster altogether? we begin with the top story long awaited public testimony of fbi director james comey before committee of the house of representatives. for weeks we have been waiting for his official comments on president trump's twitter allegations that president obama illegally wiretapped trump tower. in his first public comments on the issue, comey did not mince
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words. >> the answer is the same for the department of justice and all it's components. the department has no information that supports those tweets. >> comey confirmed that investigation and the trump campaign had any contest and what kind of context they had with russian intelligence. there is now as a result of this testimony from james comey a cloud over this administration. some big news coming out of this today. >> reporter: it was a remarkable ending, steve, to this hearing that i was trying to calculate in my head how many hours with handful of minute of break that
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the fbi director asked for midway through. and at the end, nunes, the republican chairman acknowledging that this is a cloud. and i think, you know, the things that have built up to what we saw this morning remarkable admissions. going into this hearing, we had two major questions. one, obviously about the status of this investigation. james comey had been reluctant to even tell members of congress about it, but he came under incredible pressure clearly had told them about it behind closed doors, and then, today, right off the top of this hearing, dropping that bomb shell, acknowledging in public that he was conducting, not just an investigation, but a counterintelligence investigation into people who had associated with the trump campaign. now the second piece, of course, that we were looking at, wiretapping. the thing that frankly brought all of this attention that kind of helped the momentum for these public hearings and for these lines of questioning, the president himself accusing
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president obama of ordering wiretaps at trump tower. you've had increasing numbers of members of congress who had heard about this behind the scenes come out and say look, this is just not the case. and you had comey, the fbi director essentially say the same today, take a look. >> please don't draw any conclusions from the fact that i may not be able to comment on certain topics. i know speculating is part of human nature. but it really isn't fair to draw conclusions simply because i say that i can't comment. some folks may want to make comparisons, to past instances where the department of justice and the fbi have spoken about the details of some investigations. but please keep in mind that those involve the details of completed investigations. our ability to share details with the congress and the american people is limited when those investigations are still open. which i hope make sense.
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>> reporter: now forgive me there, steve, that's a slightly different sound byte than what we talked about. that was comey talking about why exactly he couldn't offer more details about this investigation one thing he didn't do was outline the names of any people in the trump campaign and the soerkts who were involved in the investigation. we're going to have other hearings next week and likely to see public testimony in front of the senate intelligence committee where you potentially will find more testimony from james comey potentially and there's going to be a lot of digging around on exactly who is involved. there are some question about
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whether or not the gang of eight is aware of the americans that are being investigated in this counterintelligence investigation, i asked adam schiff after the hearing today. he refused to say whether he was aware of the names of the americans involved, steve. >> kasie hunt on capitol hill. while that marathon testimony was taking place today with the fbi director also playing out on capitol hill, the first of four days of hearings for judge neil gorsuch. he is awaiting a confirmation vote to head to the supreme court today. the first day of hearings reserved for opening statements. each member of the senate judiciary committee taking turns delivering their remarks, then when that was through, gorsuch was sworn in and able to deliver a statement of his own, here's what he said. >> my mom was one of the first woman graduates of the university graduates of colorado law school, as the first female assistant district attorney in denver, she helped a program to pursued deadbeat dads. and her idea of day care sometimes meant i got to spend a day wandering the halls or
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tagging along behind the police officers. she taught me that headlines are fleeting, courage lasts. when i put on the robe i'm also reminded that under our constitutions for this body, the people's representatives, to make new laws. for the executive to ensure those laws are faithfully executed. and for neutral and independent judges to apply the law and people's disputes. alexander hamilton said, liberty can have nothing to fear from judges who apply the law. but liberty has everything to fear. if judges try to legitimate too. >> chris jansing has been covering the hearings all afternoon. she joins us from capitol hill. in the comey hearings earlier, the partisan divide was very clear among members of that committee, democrats had one set of questions they wanted to focus on. republicans a completely different area, did that same partisan divide rear it's head in the hearing today? >> reporter: the battle lines are drawn. it is like they were talking
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about two different things, but of course, this is about the nomination for the next justice of the supreme court. you look at the polls, 22% of voters said it was their most important issue in 2016. 12 does -- democrats have said he's warm, he's smart, he obviously has a long judicial record about 2,000 cases, that's what we heard from the republicans today. the democrats clearly still seething about the fact that president obama's nominee after the death of antonin scalia, 401 days ago, merck garland never got a hearing. we heard his name today, almost as much from the democrats as we
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heard the name of the actual nominee himself. and then in addition to that was clear that they were also listening on what was going on in the comey hearing. and richard bloomen that will who has been one of the most vocal people about all of this had this to say about what was going on over on the house side. >> we meet this week in the midst of a looming constitutional crisis. just hours ago, not far from here, the director of the fbi revealed that his agency is investigating potential ties between president trump's associates and russian med national league our election, and the possibility of the supreme court needing to enforce a subpoena against the president is no longer idle speculation. >> reporter: so absolutely no doubt about where richard
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blooming that will stood on what was going on on the other side of the hill here. he has said that he not only will vote to block this nomination, but he will go as far if he these to to a filibuster as you know. then we've had mitch mcconnell who said they could invoke the nuclear option, but tomorrow is going to be absolutely fascinating, steve. you may have, maybe one of the most prepared justice nominees that we've seen. their staffs have been preparing as well. it's going to be interesting in here behind me tomorrow. >> a little taste there today of the big show to come tomorrow, chris jansing, thanks for that. senate democrats as chris was
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just telling us, they are holding up the example of president obama, his pick for the supreme court when antonin scalia passed away. last year, judge merck garland, garland never even getting a hearing. senator pat l leahy, he called that a stain on the 200-year history of the senate judiciary committee. >> today marks the first time the senate judiciary committee has met publicly to take action on a supreme court vacancy that resulted from justice scalia's death 134 months ago. this is one of the greatest stains on the 200 year history of this committee. >> pat leahy, thanks for taking a few minutes. you say this unprecedented obstruction as you call it, merck garland not even getting a hearing, donald trump winning the election putting his own nominee up. you say that's a stain on the committee's history. does that mean there is no
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chance you could be persuaded to vote for this nomination? >> i have a lot of questions i'm going to ask judge gorsuch. i'll make up my mind based on that. i wanted to state a fact though that the republican leadership decided to ignore the constitution which says that we must advise and consent. we can always vote no. advise and consent a presidential nominee. any time there's been a nominee to the supreme court in the election year, we've always had a vote. in fact, the last time the democrats were in control was a republican president and we had to vote and confirm the nominee. the nominee of the republican president. i compared this to when the senate judiciary committee had the courage to stand up against franklin roosevelt in the court packing. in the court packing plan.
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we saved the integrity of the court by doing that and what they did in refusing to even follow the constitutional requirements. >> the indications from republicans that if democrats choose to go down that road, republicans with a simple majority in the senate might then just do away with the filibuster altogether. the nuclear option they call this and confirm the know knnom. is a filibuster something you would consider joining? >> i think the first thing we should do is have the hearing and ask the question. there's a lot of questions that can be asked. does this judge favor the bans of president trump where he would ban people because of their religion. how does he feel about separating one religion from another in the united states.
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he was involved in the torture programs of the bush administration, illegal justification for them. >> in general, do you like the idea of having a potentially, at least the ability to filibuster either party, democrats right now with the republican nominee or maybe in the future republicans with a democratic nominee. the ability to block a nomination by filibuster. do you think that's something that tradition that should continue in the senate or do you think going forward, long-term, that's something that should be a simple majority vote no matter who the nominee is? >> i think we're going to talk
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about lifetime nominations to the supreme court. we ought to have the traditional rules of the senate which requires a filibuster. you've got somebody that people feel comfortable with, you're going to get 60 votes. we've had a lot more than 60 votes. democrats when they're in the majority, a lot more than 60 votes for a lot of republican nominees. it could be done. but also puts the pressure on whoever's president to say we'll pick who is best for the country. judge gorsuch has to answer the fact that his name was presented to the white house by a far right group who said to donald trump here's the names, pick a anymore which he did. that i've never seen happen before. you are at least theoretically open to giving judge gorsuch a hearing. you're not made up in your mind right now to oppose him. if the democrat had the position
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citing everything you said about merck garland and the way that process played out. if a democrat said hey because that's how republicans handled the merck garland nomination, i am going to vote no on this, do you think that would be a reasonable position for a democrat to take? >> i think it was outrageous what they did to merck garland. i think it is a stain on the united states senate. it's certainly turned their back on the constitution. i said in my opening statement today, i went down to merck garland's ycredentials and judg gorsuch's credentials, they're very, very similar. he got turned down by the
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republicans, but judge gorsuch was somewhat similar credentials were okayed by the republicans. and the supreme court has to be nonpartisan. >> all right. patrick leahy, democratic senator from vermont. thank you for the time. >> thank you very much. >> okay, and on the other side of the aisle now, we are joined by the attorney general of texas, ken paxton. thank you for the time. we appreciate it. he say that was a stain on the senate. to leave that seat open in anticipation of the election nearly a full year later. do you think he has a point there? >> well first of all, thanks for having me on, second, i would
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say that the american people, i believe, spoke in this election. had they elected hillary clinton, i think it would be very likely you'd see garland as the next supreme court justice. given that they spoke in a different direction and we ended up with donald trump, this is we're going to end up with a different result. and that's just the -- as president obama often said, elections have consequences, and this election proved that. >> is it a healthy precedent though? going forward. i'm just imagining the shoe on the other foot. you're a republican, the republican gets elected president, you get a republican nominee right now, it works out well for your party from this occasion, but if in the future, if the roles were reversed, is this a precedent that says maybe we shouldn't have gone down the road as a party? >> we all want what we want. we all want our nominee. i think if the shoe was reversed, i think you'd find the same result. i think the democrats would have held out hoping that they're nominee had the opportunity to appoint. we all know these people are there for a lifetime. it's an important decision, and i think it's not surprising that
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the result came out the way it did. >> senator leahy talked to us about this issue of a filibuster. you already have some democrats talking about trying to filibuster this, which would require republicans to come up with 60 votes, supermajority to confirm the nominee. republicans now already some talking about just doing away with the fill buster in democrats do that senator hailey said the filibuster's important for the nominations because for the nation's highest court and the standards should be higher. do you agree with that? >> well, look, i'd say this, i'm not sure i've seen a fill buster in my lifetime without going down that process. because obviously that ends up being a very difficult, challenging process for both sides. so you know, i'm optimistic just like in the past while we've had the talks in the past. i don't think we've had one at least in recent memory, maybe never. hopefully we can get beyond that. >> do you agree with the point he was making that for a
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lifetime appointment that you should demonstrate more than simple majority support? there should be a breath of support there among senators that a 60-vote threshold would demonstra demonstrate? >> look, that's just a matter of policy for the senate. it's not a right or wrong answer. i don't have a particular view on it, other than to say that it's just a matter of policy, it's a matter of what the senate decides and if they decide they want to go down that route, just as harry reid did packing the court on the d.c. court of appeals. they made that decision and made it as a matter of a senate policy, and that's what happened. we ended up with a different court. this may also result in that happening in this case. it's no different. it's easy for them to clean that, but they've already done it and so they've sort of opened the door. i guess -- a little bit ironic that they're complaining about this now. >> all right. ken px axton, the attorney general of texas. thank you for joining us. >> thanks for having me on, appreciate it. quick break here. ahead though, much more on today's dual hearings. new reaction, live from the white house. we will get to that with you.
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also i'm going to speak to one of the lawmakers who questioned fbi director james comey. that's congresswoman jackie spear. she said this last night on our network. >> i can underscore for you that this is as big, if not bigger, than watergate. >> we will get her reaction to what she heard from the fbi director. that's coming up. grown man now. i don't want to pry... dad. but have you made a decision? i'm going with the $1000 in cash back. my son... ...a cash man. dad, are you crying? nah, just something in my eye. the volkswagen 3 and easy event... ...where you can choose one of three easy ways to get a $1000 offer. hurry in to your volkswagen dealer now and you can get $1000 as an apr bonus, a lease bonus, or cash back. cohigher!ad! higher! parents aren't perfect, but then they make us kraft mac & cheese
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so you can see how x1 is changing the way you experience tv with features like voice remote, making it easier and more fun than ever. there's more in store than you imagine. visit an xfinity store today and see for yourself. xfinity, the future of awesome. if you look at the final three months of the campaign where none of the individuals in question that democrats brought up over and over again today were affiliated with the campaign to suggest that that somehow shows some high level conclusion is a bit of a stretch
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to say the least. >> extraordinarily busy day in washington today. that was white house press secretary sean spicer. he held his daily briefing as james comey was testifying before the house intelligence committee just before neil gorsuch gave his opening statement to the senate judiciary committee. hans nichols joins us now from the white house. he was in the room for that briefing, so hans, really saying it's extraordinary here, comey in a sense rebuking donald trump for his claims about wiretapping that he made on twitter, then just after that, sean spicer faces the press. what did he have to say to that? >> i'm not hearing him. >> i don't think -- i don't think he's hearing me. we're going to work to get hans nichols to you. do we have him? no. we are going to go to congresswoman jackie spear right now. she's a member of the house intelligence committee. she had a chance to question james comey at that hearing today. congresswoman, several headlines coming out of this one, the fbi
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director saying he has no evidence to support what donald trump said on twitter about former president obama ordering a wiretap of trump tower. also that there is an investigation into russian interference in the 2016 election. that that investigation is looking at whether there was communication contact between members of the trump team and russian intelligence what did you learn today? >> well, those were two power packed announcements today first of all we know that the fake news was coming out of the tweet from the president. not that any of us doubted it, but it was really very good to hear the director make that statement. it hasn't prevented sean spicer from continuing to say the same things. it's important for the president to apologize, to retract the statement, but to apologize to president obama.
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it was including the trump orbit and those engaged in the trump campaign and whether or not they were engaged with the russians in collusion or aiding and abething in their efforts to undermine hillary clinton's campaign. >> the chairman of your committee, devin nunes and he said that there is now a cloud over this administration, over some very important people in the federal government right now. he seemed frustrated that there was no timetable from kony in terms of how long the investigation will take, updates, the ability to provide during that investigation. i guess my question is, what is the future like in washington, in the capital, with this investigation now announced and no more clarify beyond that? >> well chairman nunes should look back at benghazi hearings that went on for over two years,
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over 32 hearings, and a cost of over $7 million. somehow, they weren't complaining about the length of the benghazi investigation. oftentimes they don't have the results that either side wants. or a special prosecutor. >> you had an exchange here with the fbi director. let's take a listen and talk to you about that. >> is russia our adversary, mr. comey? >> yes. >> mr. rogers. >> yes. do they intend to do us harm? >> they intend to ensure, i believe, that they gain advantage at our expense. >> director comey. >> yes. i want to be -- harm can have meanings. they're an adversary, they want
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to undermine us in lots of different ways. >> congresswoman, i think listening to that exchange and thought back to the 2012 when it was mitt romney who said during that campaign he considered russia or top geopolitical faux, and the response from democrats was ridicule, quite frankly to the notion it seemed even of an adversarial relationship with russia. obviously a lot has happened since then, there was the russian invasion of ukraine all of the issues with rooumpb interference there. looking back, were democrats guilty of being naive four or five years ago when they ridiculed mitt romney for saying that? >> well i think there's always been an interest in in resetting the relationship with russia in administration after administration. i think we finally have recognized there's no way to reset that relationship. under president putin, he is a kgb operative and he is out to
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maximize his position in the world, oftentimes using hybrid warfare. and i think the influence is an act of war. it may be hybrid war, but it is in fact what we're dealing with. and we should be so outraged by it as opposed to in some cases some people yawning about it. and the hearing today was really important for the american people to hear all of the relationships, connect the dots, see why having russian people or those who have done business with russia or have relationships with russia in the administration, in the cabinet is not necessarily in our best interest. >> used a very loaded term there describing russian interference in the election. an act of war. an act of war typically then requires retaliation, what would you say the retaliation should be for an act of war? >> well, it is an effort to
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undermine our country and while there weren't bombs being used, there were many efforts in terms of data that were weapon newsed. and in that kind of a setting, i think we should look at that with the eye that they need to be slapped down for that kind of conduct, that's why we're working with many of our allies in europe right now making sure that they're aware of the kind of techniques that putin and data gurus were using and stop it in it's track. >> is it the kind of retaliation in your mind, is it sanctions? is it cyber retaliation? is it something else? >> it could be all of the above, steve. >> congresswoman jackie spear. democrat member of that committee that heard from the fbi director. thank you for joining us. another quick break here. on the other side, the political panel is going to join me, more reaction to the dual hearings playing out on capitol hill today. fbi director james comey
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confirming his agency is investigating russia's involvement in the election. what about the questions he didn't answer? stay with us. (singsong) budget meeting. sweet. if you compare last quarter... it's no wonder everything seems a little better with the creamy taste of philly, made with no artificial preservatives, flavours or dyes.
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so do you have any reason to disagree with the conclusion of general clapper that there's no evidence of collusion between the russians and the trump campaign? >> mr. king, it's not something i can comment on. >> like wise, i'm not going to comment on ongoing investigation's conclusions. >> that's more from the intelligence committee hearing today. joining us now, sam stein, senior politics editor at the huffington post, jonathan swan national political reporter. sam, that exchange we just played right there, that is perhaps the best demonstration of why devin nunes says there's now a cloud over this administration. the confirmation of an investigation, no further details. not swatting down the idea that
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could be collusions there, no comment. what does that mean, practically there's a cloud. what is that going to mean for our politics. >> it's not a little cloud, but it's there. and it suggests -- i mean the suggestion is now out there. that the fbi is looking into the possible collusion between russia and the trump campaign. russian officials and trump campaign officials. we've seen enough circumstantial evidence to gather this by this point in time. what this does is it gives it sort of a formality that it lacked. i suppose. and i think you know you end up having to go back well before the campaign. james comey famously speaking out about the ongoing hillary clinton investigation in order to spell a cloud of uncertainty hanging over her campaign ended up being that the causing more confusi confusion, more chaos. a lot of democrats say he dos her the election. he put himself on a tough spot.
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and that ends up going into today where you have the most perfunctory admissions that yes, they are looking into this, but wouldn't go beyond there. now we're waiting to see where the next shoe is. >> there was a clear divide on the house intelligence committee today when it came to the nature. republicans, they were pressing in their questions the issue of leaks, leaks of classified information, secret information that had been appearing in the press. take a listen to some of them. >> i think those programs are vital and leaks collected pursuant to court order under the programs are terrible. as i said in my opening statement, very, very seriously. what i don't ever want to do is compound what bad people have done and confirm something that's in the newspaper. sometimes newspaper gets it right, there's a whole lot of wrong information about allegedly about classified activities that's in the newspaper, we don't call them and correct them either. that's another big challenge, but we just don't go anywhere near it because we don't to want
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help and compound the offense that was committed. >> the focus of republicans on the issues of leaks. headlines of the confirmation of an investigation. is that a strategy for how they want to address these issues? >> i think it reflects the instincts of every republican i've spoken to on the hill. with a few exceptions they know how sensitive he is to naturally they focus the leaks and what all of them and frankly what democrats believe was an outrageous unmasking of general flynn. >> also we had the response today coming from some response from the white house today.
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the issue now is the confirmation of this investigation, the fbi director saying people in trump's orbit. the name paul manafort came up, here's how sean spicer addressed that. >> i heard some names thrown around before that were hangers on around the campaign. general flynn was a volunteer of the campaign. then there's obviously been discussion of paul manafort who played a limited role for a limited amount of time. >> sam stein, you can explain this, but the role paul manafort played in the campaign may be a little bit more than limited. and also paul manafort in terms of his broader portfolio, this is someone whose done extensive work in ukraine on behalf of the pro-russian leader former leader of that country and the white house wanting to distance itself, clearly. >> yeah. i think it's important to step back and, you know, detail what
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paul manafort was doing on the campaign. he was the chairman. that's not a big role. he literally was running the thing. and he did so for a period of time, up and through the convention. the convention of course was the time in which a sort of questionable adjustment was made to the republican party platform that called for -- or took out language in the platform that called for heavy assistance to the ukrainians vis-a-vis what was happening with russia and crimea. that dove tailed into the paul manafort's other portfolio. so it's tough to understand where sean's going with this except to possibly conclude or guess they see what's coming around the bend and trying to create some form of distance between themselves and paul manafort. let's not put aside general flynn who he called sort of a hanger on and a consultant to the campaign. keep in mind, general flynn was for the duration of the campaign the preeminent and maybe foreign policy voice associated with a campaign. this wasn't some minor figure,
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this was donald trump's general. the guy that he turned to and, maybe i think was the first person he announced would have an appointment in his administration. these were not minor players. suggested the white house was trying to get ahead of this by basically shutting them to the side, throwing them under the bus. >> i don't knowthan swran, i'm curious, we don't know where the fbi investigation is going to land. i've heard democrats who have some belief, some hope it's going to land at a certain place. republicans hope that many republicans hope it doesn't return too many in terms of information about this administration. when you talk to republicans privately up there on capitol hill, i wonder, do you get a sense, do they perceive there's a high level of political danger here. >> oh yes, yeah, yeah, when you talk to republicans, they see -- i might phrase this badly, but it's kind of the essential truth which is that the intelligence community in some ways is the greatest expo ten shl threat to the trump administration. i'm not saying that they're
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hostile to the intelligence community and some are concerned about the leaking, but they see this as probably the thing above all others that could bring down donald trump. so absolutely, yeah. >> can i just add one thing. we can't dismiss the role that trump himself is playing in this, right? had he not two saturdays ago decided to roll out of bed and send a tweet accusing president barack obama of wiretapping trump tower, a lot of the mess -- half of the story is about that allegation, we wouldn't be talking about it. it wouldn't did distracting or taking up the time of the intel communities. the intel community is serving as sort of a i don't know whatever you want to say with respect to the trump administration, but trump is creating his own problems as well. >> that's absolutely right. and i think there was quite a stunning moment today which has sort of been buried under a lot of the other news. the director of the national security agency called out the president for complicating two key relationships, germany and britain. that was an amazing moment. >> yep. and as sam mentions, it was the
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aspect of the wire top tapping allegation that was the result of a tweet from donald trump on a saturday morning. we will see if that at all changes his twitter strategy going forward giving it his lid to this. sam stein, jonathan, thank you both for joining us. . quick back here on the other side, amid what is shaping up to be his most consequential week yet. president trump trying to bring the focus back to health care. big vote looming this week in the house. and in the next hour, the president will be on his way to kentucky. he is going to be making his pitch to that republican health care overhaul plan. why we're going to talk about why that reliably red state could become ground zero in the fight to repeal and replace obamacare. that's next.
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another big issue on washington this week. health care. president trump is going to be heading to kentucky tonight. he's going to be pushing there for that republican bill to replace the affordable care act. obamacare. now kentucky battleground in
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this health care debate. it's u.s. senators are seemingly split on the bill. majority leader in the senate, he supports it, rand paul the other senator from the state he says he opposes it. now kentucky has been ground zero for a lot of the political battle over obamacare. it has seen since the enactment of obamacare, the uninsured rate drop in that state from nearly 14% in 2012 to just over 6% in 2015. all of this the backdrop for a big night on thursday. the house, the u.s. house scheduled to vote on that republican replacement bill then. this as the anniversary approaches of president obama's signing the bill into law. joining us now to talk about this, former health care adviser to mitt romney's presidential campaign, forbes opinion editor, thanks for joining us. let me ask you, i've been hearing at least objections, criticisms, concerns from republicans that are seemingly coming from every id logical angle. some from the right, more from sort of the moderate wing of the party. on the republican side, it's going to be republican votes that pass this if it does pass.
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what is the strongest criticism that's out there? what's the one that has the most hold on republicans do you think of this legislation? >> good to be with you, not exactly a slow news day. yeah, there's basically the two groups of critics of the bill interrepublican and frankly outside the republican party too. so there's the one group including rand paul who says that any attempt to provide any sort of tax credits or financial assistance to low income uninsured folks is bad. obamacare-lite, it's socialism. then a larger group who says hey, we can't throw people off their health insurance. we can't pass a bill that drives premiums up, net of subsidies by thousands of dollars. that is larger. and i don't think the bill gets out of the senate at all, let alone the house, unless that fix that problem with the bill. >> and can those two sides then be reconciled echblgfully they were to make the kinds of changes you're talking about, could that then lead to more of
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a revolt from the right side? more from sort of the purist free market side of the party? >> you know steve, two weeks ago i thought that was the case. i wasn't sure how you square a circle, but there's been interesting developments. so the president as i know you've reported has met with members of the house freedom caucus. republican study committee and hard lined groups and hard lined members. . and he's gotten them on board by ideas like block running medicaid or allowing there to be a work requirement. some of the thing things that doesn't contradict improving the structure of paul ryan's tax credits so do more to help lower income people, particularly lower income people who are near retirement and therefore going to pay a lot more on this bill than under current law. >> he was a health care policy adviser in 2012. now joining us from austin, texas, thanks for the time. appreciate it. >> hey, thanks steve.
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still ahead, president trump setting another record with his approval ratings. not necessarily a record he wants though. our most important number of the day is next. it's an important question you ask, but one i think with a simple answer. we have this need to peek over our neighbor's fence. and once we do, we see wonder waiting. every step you take, narrows the influence of narrow minds. bridges continents and brings this world one step closer. so, the question you asked me. what is the key? it's you. everything in one place, so you can travel the world better. i own my own company. i had some severe fatigue, some funny rashes. finally, listening to my wife, went to a doctor. and i became diagnosed with hodgkin's lymphoma ...that diagnosis was tough. i had to put my trust in somebody. when i first met steve, we recommended chemotherapy, and then we did high dose therapy and then
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is. can you take the president at his word? >> do i think the president gets everything right, no, but i want president trump just as i've
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wanted every other president to be successful because he is america's president. >> a very qualified defense of donald trump there from a fellow republican susan collins. senator from maine. that is one of the things you hear from republicans, they have not -- the elected officials at least always embraced this president and gets us to our most important number of the day today. it is 39 as in donald trump's current approval rating today is 39%. gallup, fallen to 37 the other day. it's up to 39 right now. obviously this a pretty low number at this early point in the presidency for any chief executive. take a look at this, it's been pretty steady since he came to office. you see his first week there, he was at 46%, that's the highest level he's been in this gallup daily poll. couple valleys here. he's in a valley in the mid to high 30s. little peak here, 45 around that time was the tweet about
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president obama and wiretapping. that might have brought him down, but you know what, this looks like the campaign did on a good day, donald trump and the race against hillary would be mid-40s, low 40s, he could drop down to the 30s. it looks like in many ways when it comes to public opinion and trump, it's a repeat of the campaign. and this is one thing -- you look at a republican like susan collins, why does she, you know, have a qualified defense of trump? a lot of it is republicans like him. republican voters still very much like him. the complete opposite for democrats. huge partisan gap right there, and again if you compare him to past presidents at this point, this is what we said, much, much lower at this early point in the presidency then we've seen for past presidents. how much can you compare donald trump to past presidents when it comes to public opinion because we are seeing a presidency in so many ways that is so different from past administrations. so this comparison, it is stark, it's also not clear how much it applies to as a test of the political strength of donald trump. something we just haven't seen before. most important number of the day today, it is 39.
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going to squeeze a quick break in here, be back right after this. i was active. then the chronic, widespread pain drained my energy. my doctor said moving more helps ease fibromyalgia pain. she also prescribed lyrica. fibromyalgia is thought to be the result of overactive nerves. lyrica is believed to calm these nerves. for some, lyrica can significantly relieve fibromyalgia pain and improve function, so i feel better. lyrica may cause serious allergic reactions or suicidal thoughts or actions. tell your doctor right away if you have these, new or worsening depression, or unusual changes in mood or behavior. or swelling, trouble breathing, rash, hives, blisters, muscle pain with fever, tired feeling, or blurry vision. common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain and swelling of hands, legs and feet. don't drink alcohol while taking lyrica. don't drive or use machinery until you know how lyrica affects you. those who have had a drug or alcohol problem may be more likely to misuse lyrica. with less pain, i can be more active. ask your doctor about lyrica.
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all right. before we go, news from a federal investigation of a different sort. some good news in the sports world. the big mystery of super bowl li has now been solved. the nfl confirms that not one, but two of tom brady's missing super bowl jerseys have now been recovered. one from this year's super bowl, the other from the patriot's win two years ago over the seattle seahawks. investigators say the culprit appears to be a journalist in mexico and that one of the jerseys is valued at $500,000. and now, tom brady is back.
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mtp daily starts right now. katy tur in for chuck. in it's monday, a historic moment at a hearing on the hill deepens. the president's credibility crisis. tonight, tapped out. fbi director james comey shoots down the president's wiretap claims. >> i have no information that supports those tweets. and we have looked carefully inside the fbi. >> and confirms a probe into a possible collusion between the trump campaign and russia. plus supreme pick. a battle 13 months in the making begins today. >> i'm dying for somebody over there tell me why he's not qualified to be sitting here. >> and how today's hearings on the hill took a page from this '80s classic. >> bueller. bueller. bueller. >> this is mtp daily,

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