tv MSNBC Live MSNBC May 29, 2017 10:00am-11:01am PDT
make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around. use clorox disinfecting products. because no one kills germs better than clorox. good afternoon to you. live at msnbc headquarters in new york on this memorial day. total confidence, president trump standing behind his top adviser and son-in-law jerrod kucurb er in despite revelation kushner tried to set up back channel communications with russia before the nothing racial, advisers suggesting kushner lay low for a while. but will the president let him? and dems fighting words as more details come out from the various investigations into the russian role in the presidential campaign. some democrats are already calling for president trump to be impeached. we'll talk with one congressman who's actually drafting articles of impeachment.
and the end of an era, two days after president trump's return from his first overseas trip as commander in chief, german chancellor angela merkel says europe can no longer rely on the united states. so can that alliance survive? we begin in the nation's capital this memorial day. president trump who says he has total confidence in his son-in-law taking time earlier to honor the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country, the president laying a wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier before saying a few words. >> they died in war so that we could live in peace. i believe that god has a special place in heaven for those who lay down their lives so that others may live free from fear and this horrible oppression. >> and this new video coming into our newsroom of president trump visiting section 60 of arlington cemetery, a moment of humility as the white house faces growing questions about
its ties to russia. new reports over the weekend shining the spotlight on jared kushner who nbc news first reported is being looked at as part of the fbi/russia investigation. chrkristen welker joins me now m the white house. are kristen, the president is back. some potential changes underfoot. what's the mood in the white house right now? >> reporter: well, president trump is defending his son-in-law, jared kushner. over the weekend we learned accord iing to "the washington post" kushner tried to set up a back channel with russian officials during the transition before the inauguration. he has gotten a lot of criticism, a the lot of scrutiny in the wake of that. according to one source familiar with the inner workings here in the white house i am told that some staffers have even suggested to kushner he lay low for a while. but president trump not echoing that sentiment, ali. let me read you what he told "the new york times" today, a robust endorsement saying "jerrod is doing a great job for the country. i have total confidence in him. he is respected by virtually everyone as soon is working on programs that will save our
country billions of dollars." in addition to that and perhaps more importantly, he is a very gooderson. but i can tell you behind the scenes, ali, they are bracing for a fierce battle setting up a war room here in the white house and the president even look iin to change strategy himself. he wants to get out on the road more, to have more rallies to talk about his domestic agenda, health care, tax reform. that was had his key focus before he left for this foreign trip. he wants to get back on track with those types of headlines. it's obviously going to be very difficult, though, with these mounting questions about the russia probe. >> kristen, let's talk about staff shake-ups and who might be in and who might be out. >> reporter: well, of course, we report on these potential staff shake-ups every few weeks and they wind up not happening. that's in part, i think, because the president is still trying to determine exactly what he wants to do, and there's no final decision until he makes it,
until he comes to a decision. we're hearing this notion of having the deputy press secretary sarah huckabee sanders potentially play a more visible role in some of the briefings, having some of those other top officials, folks like h.r. mcmaster, gary cohen come to the briefing room more frequently. we saw that during the trip and have been seeing it in recent weeks. the white house thinks that has been an effective way to get out their messages. there's also, ali, the possibility you'll see fewer on camera briefings altogether. the president is eyeing the possibility of bringing in former campaign staffers, folks like his deputy campaign mana manager, bringing him back into the fold to help him strategize to deal with this moment. he's looking at louwendowski in term of consulting, with strategy and defending him on the airwaves. those are among the changes the president is eyeing. no final decision yet on this
memorial day. >> a personal question for you white house reporters. how do you feel about the idea there might be fewer of those daily press briefings that aren't really daily? >> reporter: well, obviously the white house, the press corps always looking for as much access as possible. the daily briefings are certainly a part of that. having said that if they are off camera, there's no doubt that we will still go with the same robust set of questions, but i can tell that you obviously this is something the white house knows would be a shift. so i think they're considering it very seriously and cautiously as they make the decision. >> kristen, good to be working with you on this memorial day. >> reporter: you, too. the president isn't the only person coming to kushner's defense. homeland security secretary john kelly telling chuck todd this on nbc's "meet the press." >> i know jared, he's a nice y guy, a decent guy. his number one interest, really, is the nation. there's a lot of different ways
to communicate back channels, publicly with other countries. i don't see any big issue here relative to jared. >> all right. these revelations are a point concern for senator john mccain, however, who spoke to australian media this morning. >> i know that some administration officials are saying, well, that's standard procedure. i don't think it's standard procedure prior to the inauguration of a president of the united states by someone who is not in an appointed position. >> joining me to discuss this with more malcolm nantz, the author of wikileaks tried to steal the 2016 election. also msnbc's terrorism analyst. a political reporter for bloomberg. matt welch is here with me in studio, an editor-at-large at "reason" magazine. john kelly's pushback on criticism is often the same. it's no big deal.
h.r. mcmaster has even suggested that why wouldn't we want more channels with srussia. but is this line of communication described in "the washington post" that jerrod cukushner communicating through the russian embassy in washington is that typical? is it atypical? really weird? what is it? >> it's completely aat this pointcal. it's really weird and, in fact, you noticed there are two line of defenders. you have the ex-generals who were appointed or active generals that were appointed by donald trump who cameut a spouted the party line that there is nothing wrong with having back channels. that is correct. there is nothing wrong with having back channels. usually the state department handles back channels at a -- above the ambassador level and secretary of state level. this is not that. this is a citizen attempting to establish covert communications using russian secure systems inside a russian facility in order to secret information to
moscow so u.s. intelligence couldn't collect it. everyone in the intelligence community this entire weekend has said this would be espionage if it was carried out by any other person and we need to determine what his intent was. what did he intend to transmit? there's no explaining it. >> kevin, that's not necessarily how the president sees it. we have the president defending jared kushner to "the new york times." that same report in "the new york times" says in recent weeks the trump/kushner relationship, the most stable partnership in an often unstable west wing, is showing unmistakable signs of strain. the article goes on to say mr. trump who feels he has been ill served by his staff is increasing ly included mr. kushner when he dresses down aides and officials. what are your sources telling you about the kushner/trump relationship at the moment? >> well, there's no question president trump doubling down in that interview earlier today with "the new york times" defending jared kushner.
like all of the other aides surrounding the president including people like reince priebus and steve bannon and jared kushner himself there has been frustration. look, the bottom line is over the past several weeks this administration has not been able to get out ahead of the bevy of firestorms of allegations facing it. while we were on the trip traveling with the president there was a new headline suggesting that the u.s. intelligence committee led, of course, by senator richard burr and mark warner, a republican and democrat respectively, are going to have the right to issue subpoenas. so in order for the administration to get out ahead of this before the type -- any type of investigation is made public, they're going to have to somehow subject themselves to congress to finalize these questions. they're hoping that the communicative standpoint will be able to help them get on offense. but clearly after the president's first foreign abroad
trips, he's returning to work more publicly following this memorial day holiday with congress in recess and only more attention going to be focused on this russian probe. >> matt welch who is with me here in the studio, the it's an interesting concept unless the problem is coming from inside the war room. jared kushner is a big part of this. the president doesn't like bad press. we know that. he particularly doesn't like it when it originates in the white house. there is, whether or not you think jared kushner did something wrong, this focus on one of his key advisers is problematic. >> the administration believes or is telling itself that the problem here is a hostile press and also a hostile intelligence community with obama holdovers who are trying to undermine what they're doing. so they see it, at least some of them do, as a threat are from the outside or maybe half outside and half inside. so it makes sense from that point of view. but a lewandowski type of person can create as many problems as
he solves. he is impetuous, has a hair trigger kind of temper and all of this. so i'm not sure what that's going to do. also, keep in mind that donald trump's whole coalition such as it exists depends on being anti-media. anti-media sentiment is the last glue holding together the kind of republican party or the conservative ideology right now. and so they need a sort of locust of that to go out and talk about fake news and go to rallies because they need their base to think this is a plot against them much like richard nicks on was able to rally people. people didn't like richard nixon because they thought everyone was ganging up on him. >> richard nance, people say it's the stuff that may have happened between the russians and the trump campaign that were the problem and those defenders came out and said, no, it's the leaks that are the real problem. at this point the leaks that we have seen in the last week having to do with manchester, having to do with other things,
is feeding the argument that it there is a deep state of people in government who do not like the trump administration and are working to undermine it. the leaks are a problem both for and against trump. >> let's separate the types of leaks we're talking about here. the leaks general kelly were talking about why u.s. law enforcement who had been trusted with intelligence information on the manchester bombing. and that came out of department of homeland security or their liaison officers overseas. that's completely different from the types of leaks we're seeing about donald trump which may not even come from u.s. intelligence. a lot of indications are that these are coming from foreign intelligence agencies and they're being dropped into envelopes in front of "the new york times" and "the washington post," which is what you would expect to see with agencies that have some suspicion about that. but you have to understand where they were coming from. if i had this information in my hand and i belong ed to gchc or
and i saw this information of the united states attempting to establish a covert communications network so that u.s. intelligence couldn't find out about it, i would have to assume that someone within the white house works for the russians because there is no explaining that. the united states has open communications on syria with operation infinite resolve out of iraq and european command and central command. we can actually run right up to the russians and talk to them in northern syria. all of these stories don't make sense and we have to get to the bottom of what they he were trying to transmit. >> matt, real quick. >> that's a third category, leaks within the administration refle reflecting in-fighting. >> good point. good to see you. matt welch, kevin cirille, malcolm nance. >> happy memorial day. >> go on and enjoy it a little bit, barbecue some burgers, something like that. the end of an era. days after meeting with president trump, angela merkel
warns europe can no longer rely on the united states. is this a watershed moment in global relations? former vice president biden slamming democrats for not having a plan for the middle class. we'll ask one democratic congressman about how his party is planning to reach out to voters and who is leading the party into the midterm elections. breaking news out of florida. golfer tiger woods arrested in the early morning hours today. we'll have a report on that coming up. art. it can be sculpted, bringing to life beautiful detail. or painted in luxurious strokes. and in rare cases... both. ♪
after president trump scolded allies in his nato address and failed to sign on to a climate change agreement at the g7 summit german chance lar angela merkel suggested europe can no longer entirely rely on the you states. she emphasized europe must take its destiny into its own hands. joining me now are steve clemons, editor at large of the atlantic and an msnbc contributor, john finer, form earp chief of staff to secretary of state john kerry, and gordon chang is a daily beast columnist and author of many books including "nuclear showdown -- north korea takes on the world." gentlemen, good to see you here. thank you for joining us on memorial day. steve, let's start with you. angela merkel said what people have been thinking. there has been an erosion in u.s. relations with our european allies. we have a president who has articulated things other american presidents have been concerned about in the past. but there's never been a question that the u.s. and europe are together when it
comes to military mutual defense. >> well, we were joined at the hip. this was a sacrosanct alliance that gave america leverage in key issues and i think angela merkel, while she does reflect at least the private thinking of a lot of people, her comments -- because she is probably the least flamboyant leader out there -- these comments are so important that they, in my view, punctuate just a very different direction for the notion of american leadership in the global space that i think we'll see america become smaller, less able to leverage its power and less powerful over the long run because europe no longer trusts us and we're pulling in a different direction. >> let me ask you, john, if europe cannot entirely rely on america as part of a mutual defense relationship, it doesn't mean we're not going to share a lot of things with the europeans, but who then becomes the leader of that europe which is a little bit under attack
whether it's immigration or terrorism or russia? is it angela merkel? >> well, i think she's as good a candidate as any. i think it's important not to overread this, at least not too quickly. we need to remember chancellor merkel has an election coming up in september. uk prime minister teresa may has an election in a couple of weeks but worth looking at three core u.s. allies. germany, france, and the uk and how each of them since this trip has started to sort of distance themselves a bit from trump. you mentioned the comments by chancellor merkel. today french president macron standing next to vladimir putin took a hard shot at state-run media and the lies and disinformation they were spreading, something president trump has been unwilling to do and even teresa may throughout her tenure has tried to cozy up to the trump administration and keep them close, who has an election coming up herself and is now starting to fade a bit in the polls, although she remains ahead on this intelligence
sharing issue that came up in the aftermath of the manchester bombings has started to put distance saying the united states has leaked some things and she was going to raise that with president trump. >> good point. gordon, let me talk to you about something different. north korea launched a missile that flew for six minutes, landed in the sea of japan. again, i think it's important for us not to just treat these missile launches as, whatever, north korea launched another missile, they are being provocative. president trump seems to indicate you may actually get a response from the united states if you continue to be provocative. >> this missile launch is important. we have two carrier strike groups off the waters of north korea. it was just announced the nimitz will leave for the western pacific. that will be three carriers in the region. people are starting to see this as a test of wills. and kim jong-un is saying by about missile launch today, i don't care. bring as many carriers as you want. and remember that he tested his antiaircraft system recently. essentially that's a whole way
of looking at kim jong-un attacking the credibility of the u.s. >> it's worth noting that we have 28,000 troops, i believe, in south korea. we have allies a around the region. the u.s. isn't really in a position to get into a war with north korea. >> no, but people are talking about the increased possibility of a war. kim jong-un very interesting he conducted his second nuclear test in 2009 on the first memorial day of president obama. this missile test today is the first memorial day for president trump. the north koreans are out, i think, to look at the united states and push it to the side. and trump can't let that occur because if kim wins this test of wills he will do other things. >> steve, let me ask you this. senator john mccain was asked how much of a threat russian president vladimir putin was to global security. here is what he said. >> i think he is the premiere
and most important threat, more so than isis. it's the russians who are trying -- who tried to destroy the very fundamental of democracy and that is to change the outcome of an american election. >> john mccain's been saying that. lindsey graham is saying the same sort of thing. it's not yet clear that that message is getting to the administration. >> no. i think there are people like h.r. mcmaster and now secretary kelly, jim mattis. they understand it at their core. they may not go out in public and say what john mccain has. he's giving a lesson in strategy. isis is an important challenge but not existential to the affairs of the united states. what russia is doing around the world and within our own borders represents a kind of existential threat. you don't want to overhype these things. mccain is giving them a strategic studies lesson which i think is very, very important, but there are people around president trump that understand that framework and have it.
what is strange they seem to have only occasional influence on the president of the united states right now who seems to be very willing to ignore and just go his own direction despite where his advisers think is the best course for the nation. >> john, you were quoted in "the washington post" saying kushner's reported back channel effort illustrates the trump team had less trust in the american government than in a foreign adversary that undermined our election. tell me about is that influential in what we heard from angela merkel, the idea russia threatens in the eyes of some european nato allies threatens their sanctity. is this influential? >> well, it's hard to argue that european partners are not closely following our domestic politics in the political and legal context book here in the united states. so what they see he is when president trump shows up at nato and doesn't mention russia and
doesn't reaffirm his support for collective self-defense which our allies were hoping he would do and then shows up at the g-7 and does not sign on to a statement on climate change and just recall for a second the reason the g-7 is a g-7 is russia was thrown out of the g-8 in part because it was at odds with ukraine. when president trump shows up with the two paramount institutions and creates a degree of division we want to show unity and look at the backdrop in our country of all sorts of swirling allegations and charges about back channels, you have to believe they are seeing the political context of the united states. >> gentlemen, good to talk to you. steve clemons, washington editor at large of the atlantic, john finer, chief of staff to secretary of state john kerry, and gordon chang, daily beast columnist and author. enjoy your memorial day. breaking news from florida where tiger woods was arrested early this morning. plus, a russian in paris. emmanuel macron. the visit coming after france accused russia of interfering with its presidential
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florida. golf great tiger woods spending part of the night in jail after being arrested for driving under the influence. he was eventually released on his own recognizance. gabe gutierrez is covering the story from atlanta. gabe, what do we know about this? >> reporter: hi, ali. good afternoon. tiger woods was arrested around 3:00 this morning by jupiter police in florida. he was taken to the palm beach county jail and released just before 11:00 on his own recognizance. he's been charged with driving under the influence, and police have not said whether driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol or both. lots of questions we have right now. you're seeing his mug shot just released right there. it's a holiday so police aren't releasing a lot of information. there are questions if it was alcohol, what was his blood alcohol content, and what were the circumstances of how police pulled him over in the first place. we have reached out to a representative for tiger woods and have yet to hear back. of course woods was a golf prodigy. he was just 21 when he won his first major tournament in 1997.
he dominated the professional golfing world throughout the early 2000s, 14 major championships all before the age of 32. he hasn't won a major tournament since the u.s. open in june 2008, and since then has dealt with a number of high-profile scandals including his divorce in 2010 after admitted infidelity. he hasn't played professional golf since injuries forced him to pull out of the dubai desert classic in february. but in a recent blog post he said he was looking forward to getting back into professional golf. quote, it has been just over a month since i underwent fusion surgery on my back and it is hard to express how much better i feel. i haven't felt this good in it years, woods wrote. i want to say unequivocally, i want to play professional golf again. so, ali, he was arrested this morning around 3:00 a.m. in jupiter, florida. we're still waiting on more details about the arrest. >> gabe, we'll stay with you on this. we'll talk to you more about it. gabe gutierrez covering the story of tiger woods. time for a look at other
stories making news. president trump marking his memorial day in office by laying a wreath at the tomb of the unknowns at arlington national cemetery. the president paid tribute to the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country saying they died in war so that we could live in peace. mr. trump also visiting the graves of soldiers who were killed in recent conflicts. president trump today tweeting about friday's deadly train attack in portland calling it unacceptable. he also says the victims were standing up to hate and intolerance. police say two men were stabbed to death and a third wounded by a man who was shouting hateful comments at two teenagers, one of them was wearing a hijab. the suspected attacker was arrested. investigators say he was known to have extremist views. police in manchester, england, say a 23-year-old man was arrested in connection with last month's concert bombing that killed 22 people and injured dozens more. so far at least 16 people have been arrested. 14 remain in custody. this as britain's domestic intelligence agency began an internal review how it handled
intelligence on suspected balmer salman abedi. staying overseas russian president vladimir pugh it continue is trying to improve his country's ties with western europe with talks with emmanuel macron. joining me is msnbc contributor and world news he heditor for " daily beast" in paris for us. chris, good to see you. thanks for being with us. what did the two leaders discuss and was macron receptive to putin given he not only backed his opponent but the russians were accused of interfering in the election? >> well, at the press conference a lot of questions were asked about precisely that, and it was fascinate to go see how they reacted, both of them. putin basically looked like he wanted to crawl behind the curtain. i've never seen him look so abashed, so uneasy in his own skin. macron was in complete control of the press conference, and i imagine that things went that way when they had lunch
together. he was clear on what his priorities were and when he was asked about the question of interference in the elections he said, you know, we talked about that two weeks ago when president putin called to congratulate me. that's behind us now. we're moving ahead. but when he was asked specifically why macron, why he had barred two russian media today from his own campaign headquarters, he department bid down an inch. those two media, russia today, rt as it's called, and spudnik, they are propaganda and spread lies about my campaign. this while he was standing next to him. it was quite a scene. >> does vladimir putin see a potential opening in western europe among the disagreements that were on display last week at the nato summits and the g7 summits? on one hand there is an opening for big power. on the other hand the reason that western europe wanted these assurances from donald trump in
many cases because of russia. >> that's exactly right. i think there's a lot of concern about the aggressiveness of russia. i don't think anybody really has any illusions about the desire of vladimir pugh it continue to rebuild the russian empire, not necessarily the soviet empire but the russia empire, and that threatens all the states in what he's called the near abroad. and those states need and want the protection of europe if not of nato. so all of that is still in play. ukraine is still a very difficult issue. the baltic states which are members of nato have felt very vulnerable. i think they're all feeling more secure now that they've seen the populist wave essentially peteering out here in europe and the last blow against it and the most descisive is the election f macron. >> what's all the fuss about macron's handshake with trump the other day?
[ laughter ] >> you saw the photo-op where they shook hands and trump likes to be very, very aggressive, very macho when he does this. well, macron gave as good as he got staring right into trump's eyes and at the end of it he told a reporter, it wasn't published until sunday, that he wasn't being innocent when he did that. he knew exactly what he was doing. he knew the world would be watching and he wanted to make the point very clear areally that he would stand for the things that ep thought were important and he was not going to back down in the face of donald trump. >> chris dickie, be always good to talk to you. chris dickey is a world news editor from "the daily beast." impeachable offense? only one congressman says there's plenty of evidence. we'll ask him what proof he has and why he's he already drafting articles of impeachment and reports of a power shift in the white house as jared kushner is put under the fbi microscope.
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american cities are joining the calls to impeach president trump. political reports a growing number of local governments are trying to push members of congress to launch impeachment proceedings against the president. ten u.s. cities have passed resolutions calling for impeachment, most are located in massachusetts and california. you can see chicago there as well. local governments have no
authority in this matter but you they're hoping to convince congress to take the first step. now talk of an impeachment officially in the house began after an emotional call from texas democratic congressman al green on the house floor two weeks ago. >> i rise today, mr. speaker, to call for the impeachment of the president of the united states of america. for obstruction of justice. >> al green joins me now. good to see you. thank you for being with us. what is the basis on which you are drawing up articles of impeachment? >> well, thank you for having me. please allow me to express my respect for the fallen, the families of the fallen, especially the gold star families. and i want them to know they're not alone. their country will do what it can to make sure they are taken care of. this is not something i wanted
to do, sir, it's something i felt compelled to do after reviewing evidence. we live in a country where we believe no police officer, no congressman, no senator and no president is above the law. when the president decided he would fire the fbi director who was investigating his campaign, which means he was investigatinging him, the president, when he decided to fire him and he acknowledged that he was doing it for this reason, when you couple that with the fact he said the russian thing was a madeup story and he said it is a witch-hunt, and then he went on to tweet something that may be considered an intimidating statement with reference to a recording he might have, when you combine these things you have obstruction of justice, the constitution of america recognizes obstruction of justice as an impeachable offense. >> talk to me about what this does. when we've talked to lawyers
about obstruction of justice they've told us what the impediments would be if someone were to bring this through the courts. when it comes to congress are there specific impediments or more than half of members of congress have got to support this impeachment motion? >> sir, that is an excellent question because the president will not go before a court. this is akin to an indictment in congress but not quite the same. it's similar. in a court of law you do have standards that have to be met. but the president won't ever be brought before a court of law. in the congress the house of representatives is charged with the responsibility of charging the president. that is called impeaching the president. a majority of those voting, if they should vote for impeachment, the president will be impeached, he will be charged. he will not be deposed. the president will then go to the senate where there will be a trial. and the senate has very broad
subpoena power. if we want to get to the bottom of all of this let it get to the senate so they can use that broad subpoena power and hear from witnesses. the senate then votes and if two-thirds of the senators conclude that the president is guilty, then the president would be deposed and removed from office. but only after a trial in the senate. >> that's a high bar given that the senate and the house are controlled by republicans but you don't have at the moment any democratic members of congress supporting this motion, right? >> i have not asked democratic members of congress nor have i asked republican members of congress because this is not about democrats. it's about democracy. it's not about republicans. it's about the republic and what benjamin franklin said when he indicated we have a republic if we can keep it. it's about keeping the republic. and the constitution does not make an exception for times when the house is controlled by one party or another. it really is about principle and whether they're going to put principle above politics and i
know this is a high standard but that's the kind of standard that the american people expect us to meet if there is going to be an impeachment and a trial. the impeachment in and of itself does it not mean there will be a conviction. it means there will be a trial in the senate. >> let me ask you this. i'm sure you knew when you did this that you would get quite a response. however, regardless of how one feels about what you're doing in congress, i think a lot of people are a little surprised, maybe we shouldn't be surprised, you've received not just death threats but a number of racist calls and messages. >> yes, sir. people have indicated that they would lynch me. i take that to mean murder me. but i'm proud to tell you my colleagues, many of whom differ with me on impeachment, have stood up and they've indicated they don't support this kind of behavior in our country. the texas democratic delegation has issued a letter indicating
such and i've had other members of congress who told me they support my efforts. they don't necessarily agree all the time with me but they don't want anyone to be emboldened, empowered, if you will, by making statements that are unchallenged. we live in a country, my dear friend, and i appreciate you allowing me to say this, we must challenge, stand up to hate. there is no place for hate in the united states of america. if we don't stand up to it, it becomes emboldened, it can metastasize and infect the entire body of the country. i thank all of those who have stood up to hate notwithstanding their positions on impeachment. >> i apologize for the threats that you've received and the racist remarks you've had to face. thank you for joining me today, sir. enjoy the rest of your memorial day. >> thank you, sir. >> that is representative al green of texas. the white house shake-up, president trump considering
staff changes. who is in and who is out? and hillary clinton today marching in her hometown's parade alongside had her husband. she tweeted this picture saying a rainy but wonderful morning march in the chappaqua memorial day parade thinking of their veterans who gave their lives for this country. [radio alarm] ♪ julie is living with metastatic breast cancer, which is breast cancer that has spread to other parts of her body. she's also taking prescription ibrance with an aromatase inhibitor, which is for postmenopausal women with hormone receptor- positive her2- metastatic breast cancer as the first hormonal based therapy. ♪ ibrance plus letrozole was significantly more effective at delaying disease progression versus letrozole. and ibrance plus letrozole shrunk tumors in over half of these patients.
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president trump is back at the white house after his first big foreign trip, and a major staff shakeup could be in the works as the administration tries to contain the controversy over alleged ties between trump campaign associates and russian officials. let's look at what could happen to some of his key aides. chief strategist steve bannon had been on rocky footing in recent weeks, and now a possible comeback. bannon's allies describing him as a wartime concigliary who is super savvy when it comes to leaks. now jared kushner at the center of this controversy. some white house aides have discussed whether he should have a reduced role or maybe even take a leave of absence. but those close to kushner itself says he has no plans of doing any of that. there's also been conversations in the white house about making
chief of staff reince priebus the ambassador to greece. the administration is denying that report. and secretary sean spicer could reportedly take a behind-the-scenes role and be replaced by his deputy, sara huckabee sanders. there is also talk of having a rotating cast of officials brief the media and that those daily briefings that aren't really daily might become a little less frequent. joining us now to talk about this and other political headlines are former ted cruz spokesman rick tyler. he's an msnbc political analyst. alena maximwell, director and former director of the clinton campaign. welcome to both of you. rick, let me start with you. if you were advising this white house and president trump right now fresh off this trip, things happening at home, what would you tell him to do? >> clearly he's not being served very well by his current staff, but i think the problem, ali, is donald trump himself. reince priebus, many of these people just don't have the federal government experience
is. they have political experience, some of them, but there's really -- there's little legislative progress, and looking at a legislative agenda going into 2018, i don't know what piece of major legislation they're going to pass. you have mixed messages coming out of the white house consistently, you have mixed messages with contention in europe. even if he does change his staff, is donald trump going to put in the time necessary to create an effective communication strategy? that will remain to be seen. >> when people look at these things, staff shake-ups happen in political america, they happen in regular america, but most people don't understand why the staff shake-up changes the underlying thing of what you're critical of or expecting of. >> this is complicated because you can't fire family. when you're talking about the allegations of jared trying to set up a covert communication with russia at their embassy, those are really serious allegations. under any other circumstances, he would be gone. but he's the son-in-law of the president, so you're in this moment where do you fire your
son-in-law? can you actually do that? and more broadly, in terms of the communication strategy, part of their problem is they haven't been honest. when you come out with stories that are essentially covering up the real reason you fired director comey or when you're saying you did not meet with the russians when in fact you d that's going to be a challenge to any communications staffer no matter how good they are. >> rick, you saw this morning the president was at arlington cemetary. big rousing round of applause. they're talking about him having morae rallies now because that' the stuff he feeds off. the sword dance, the big welcome, he likes that kind of stuff. by the time he got to europe and he was not around people who think he's the second coming, he doesn't respond as well. he starts to get a little bit aggressive. >> that's right. i think the first part of the foreign trip was actually a great success for donald trump, and the pictures coming out of there were very good and we suspended -- sort of suspended
animation of thhis current problems, but they're all coming back now. i think the point about family is a really good one. anyone who works in politics knows family are a fact, not a problem. you have this huge center of power with ivanka and jared, meaning that at any time if the chief of staff, reince priebus, tells you to do something, they could potentially override that. and so i really think that's a real problem. it's very difficult to have family in such a high power or senior positions. >> talking about family, there is some infighting in the democratic party. alena, former vice president joe biden seemed to distance himself from the campaign this weekend. he questioned the strategy of targeting middle class voters. who are the de facto leader of the democratic party, particularly as they start thinking about midterm elections? >> i think it would be wrong to look for that sole leader, that barack obama figure that can be inspiring and charismatic. i think we're shifting away from that one leader strategy.
i think in terms of which joe biden was saying, i would disagree. if you look at all the data points from the 2016 election, the margins in the three states that ended up determining the election essentially are a very small portion, and really what democrats need to be focusing on is voter suppression. because if 200,000 people in wisconsin were not able to cast their ballot, that's more critical than reaching out to white working class voters. president trump signalling he might be wavering on climate change. what happens if he does back out of the paris climate accord this week? we'll meet with bill nye, the science guy, when we come back.
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combined with the most wifi hotspots. it's a new kind of network. xfinity mobile. it is 2:00 p.m. in the east, 11:00 p.m. in the west. our word of the day is confidence. mr. trump telling the "new york times" jared is doing a great job for the country and he has total confidence in him. president trump pushing back. new reports his son-in-law jared kushner trying to establish a secret back channel with russia. >> any time you can open lines of communication with anyone, whether they're good friends or not so good friends is a smart thing to do. >> you look for patterns and this is a clear pattern that's emerging. it's a pattern that shows a consistent effort to deceive. >> the president defending his son-in-law amid reports he tried to establish a secret back channel with russia. but is jared kushner being advised to lay low? plus, the