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tv   The 11th Hour With Brian Williams  MSNBC  June 2, 2017 1:00am-2:01am PDT

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the room in the room. >> thank you both. this sunday, guess what? you can hear from vladimir putin himself. the russian president has agreed to sit down with megyn kelly for an exclusive one-on-one interview. this is a video of them greeting each other today. you can catch the interview this sunday at 7:00 p.m. eastern for sunday night with megyn kelly. that is all in. tonight on "all in." good evening once again from our headquarters here in new york. day 133 of the still young trump also late news about the trump administration's secret
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move to ease russian sanctions right from the start. "the 11th hour" begins now. good evening once again from our headquarters here in new york. day 133 of the still young trump administration, and the president today stunned many people around the globe, announcing america's withdrawal from the paris climate accords. we will cover that in depth in just a moment. we begin with yet another new report out tonight on this white house and russia. wash-based investigative journalist michael i could have been acknowledged and outlines president trump's plan to ease sanctions on russia. it is a plan that reportedly fell short. i could have been says, there was quote there was serious -- he says he received several panicky calls from u.s. government officials who told them they had been directed to develop a sanctions lifting package and imploring him please my god, can't you stop this. it was apparently stopped in large part thanks to pushback from veterans at the state department.
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but there is a michael flynn connection here, too, as michael ikov told chris hayes earlier on the. >> february 13th, michael flynn resigns, he rye signs about the blow up about his secret meetings with kislyak and misrepresenting the fact that he was talking about easing of sanctions. >> on this issue. >> on this very issue. so it became politically tax toxic. i talked to a senior white house official today about this, making clear there is still an ongoing policy review about sanctions. >> right. >> these options are still on table. >> the state department veteran named in that report, dan freed, also appeared on this network earlier tonight. >> a number of colleagues came to me, and i heard indirectly that still more colleagues were concerned that the trump administration, the incoming team, was going to unilaterally
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rescind the sanctions on russia. it was further said by these people that there would be no -- there would be no action required from russia. that it would be simply a unilateral american cave after a few days and couple of weeks, i had heard from enough people that i believed that it was at least possible. and that was of great concern to me. >> this report comes just one day after the news of the trump administration may be considering returning to suburban diplomatic compounds in new york and in maryland back to russia. those reports got a harsh rebuke from the ranking member, the top democrat on the house intelligence committee speaking earlier with our andrea mitchell. >> i would be horrified if the trump administration returned these properties or allowed them to be reoccupied by the russians, who were conducting espionage out of them according to president obama. and they were part of the
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sanctions imposed over russian interference in the campaign to assist donald trump. if the president is now returning the use of these properties, rea allowing the russians to use them for espionage, if this is just some kind of reward i think it beg as lot of questions why on earth the trump administration would even contemplate such a thing. >> there is more a. democrat on that committee is calling out her chairman devin nunes. despite stepping aside side from all things russia related on his committee we learned yesterday that nunes acted aown issuing three subpoenas seeking information on possible unmasking of trump associates by obama administration officials. here is how intelligence committee member jackie spear of california reacted to that niece tonight. >> the problem, of course is that he has his hand in cookie jar. the cookie jar is trump's interest in wanting to deflect any interest in this hearing and
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in this investigation into whether or not the trump operation was engaged with the russians in interfering with our elections. i just feel that he has really, doing his level best to try and sabotage the investigation. it was really a blunder in my mind, and it once again shows that he is really a puppet of the president in trying to promote this alternative set of facts and this alternative narrative. >> all this russia news competing with the headline today that we have a firm date for james comey's testimony to the senate intelligence committee. next thursday, june 8th, at 10:00 a.m. eastern time. with that all in mind let's bring in our starting panel, michael crowley, white house reporter for the "associated press." vivian salaama and rick stengel back with us here in the studio. former unseth for public diplomacy and public affairs at
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the state department in the obama years. also the former managing editor of "time" magazine. rick i'll begin with you. is this story tonight the first clear evidence that they always and really wanted to lift sanctions as that gentleman called it, cave on russia? >> well it's just very, very strange, brian. and i mean it all does seem to fall into line. i mean, the sanctions policy against russia, because of the annexation of crimea, the quasi invasion of ukraine was something that actually was strong and powerful and putin -- really hurt putin and the people around putin. people at the state department actually wanted to do more. there was the assistant secretary for foreign affairs felt we needed to push back against russia. dan fried, who was the sanctions czar, this is something that
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people felt very, very strongly about, and that russia had violated the sovereignty of another nation, one of the first times since world war ii and we really needed to do something very, very serious. the giving back of these compounds is also very peculiar. the way diplomacy works is through reciprocity. the russians are the kind of reciprocity kings. >> countries expect it from each other. >> countries expect it. in a sense you are giving this back without getting anything for it. donald trump is a business man. it's like giving away a piece of real estate without getting anything back. it's really kind of like we are bending over backwards and it's very, very bizarre. >> michael crowley it's hard to differentiate all the headlines. the bunch of us, you and i have discussed and reacted to. of all of them of late, it occurs to me this could sneakily be the most damaging because this goes to the notion of a fix being in from early on. >> right, brian. the followthrough that it suggests of national policy takes it to that next level. you know, the most damning
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scenario on table here is that there was some kind of collaboration between the trump campaign and the kremlin that helped trump defeat hillary clinton and that there was a payoff on side for the russians, which was that there would be an easing of american policy towards russia, and that would fund lee involve the lifting of sanctions. brian, i also just want to point out here -- so, i mean it's remarkable there was this push to move so quickly on that front but trump did publicly campaign on the argument that we should have a cooperative relationship with russia, that he would befriend vladimir putin. i have to say i find even more striking even after everything that happened in the last couple of months, michael flynn's departure and the stories about jared kushner and the trump stil determined to push ahead with a better relation with russia. to me the amazing thing although the story is wonderful and
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revealing it's the fact that we are talking about these diplomatic compounds that trump is going to meet with putin in july, that the statements from if white house after sergey lavrov came to the oval office for the famous meeting. talked fondly with him about russia in other words, brian, they are still pushing forward with this warming of relations despite everything. and i find that kinds of amazing. >> and vivian, at the same time we have mr. comey, the "new york times" kind of injected a question into the mix with a story they posted last night. he will testify unless he is blocked by the white house. but he is a private citizen. he presumely will raise his hand and get sworn in next thursday with the blessing of mr. mueller it was reported today. maybe not reading those
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contemporary notes in open session. but your view of the chance this will happen and what it could do on the subject this administration? >> so far it seems to be going ahead as scheduled. there was a little bit of question as to the timing. up until this morning we weren't sure if it was going to be happening soon or lafr later of course fg they made the announcement it will be happening next week. there are three main issues we are going to be looking out for to try and get answers from jim comey next week. everyone is going to be on the edge of they are seat. that is the reports that president trump may have tried to urge him to pledge list loyalty in the early days of his administration. secondly, did president trump ask him to drop charges and drop an investigation against his national security adviser at the time, general michael flynn. and third, why was jim comey fired?
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these are the three things that lot of reports have been circulating over these issues and a of the will basically questions about whether president trump is obstructioning justice by having reportedly raised these issues with jim comey in his meetings. these are going to be major issues. it's going to be edge of your seat testimony next week when he's finally there, assuming that it goes through. and a lot is at stake for the white house, for this administration. and you know, beyond then as well, for the campaign as well. >> something tells me we will be here on the air for that high stakes morning of testimony, vivian. rick, when you go out on a fishing boat and you don't have a strong stomach they tell you just watch the horizon. keep your eye on the horizon. that's your role on russia. normalize the good folks watching who have now heard so much on russia it's moving public opinion polls on how we adults view russia. these are the two most armed to the toout nuclear nations on
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earth. russia is headed by a more canny than usual leader. >> one thing i wanted to mention, brian, in the context of what we dealt with with russia that was tlul actually on my plate. people don't realize russia over the last three years closed every american center in the russian federation. dozens and dozens of them, including the last american center in moscow. these are libraries that have mark twain and earnest hemmingway that russian people can come in and use. and that russians just efficiently began to close each one. why? just to push everyone america. so this story that we were talking about about those compounds. i mean, we do very little in response to the provocations from russia. and the fact that you have this administration that is getting nothing for the reciprocal deals that he want to cancel. they don't seem to understand that russia has trying to undermine american in a myriad
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of ways for dozens and dozens of years. >> vivian, i have been remiss. it was your story on donald trump's cell phone telling leaders of other nations to quote call me on my cell phone. what in your view are the risks and rewards of such a thing? >> let's start with the rewards. this is donald trump being donald trump. he is a personable guy. a businessman. he's reaching out. he's telling people you are special you can you call me directly. he is trying to establish relationships with the leaders. people do comment him on that. however, there are tremendous riskless. it's essentially an unclassified telephone. one would assume as candidate trump his telephone calls were likely being listened to. as president trump his phone calls are most definitely being listened to. because of meetings with foreign minister lavrov and ambassador sergey kislyak of russia -- it's not just that, it's also tracking. it's metadata, it's being able to say the president spoke to this leader at this time.
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the president discussed x, y, z, with this particular leader of this country. you can really kind of create a trail and understand the policies based on those phone calls alone. so there's a lot of concern in the national security community, the intelligence community about the nature of these phone calls and how, you know, he's just kind of going with the flow and treating it as an average citizen and not the president of the united states. >> michael crowley i never cease to be amazed that the amount of news that breaks on our watch, 11:00 eastern time, washington, june 1st, reuters, president trump on thursday asked the u.s. supreme court to revise his ban on travelers from six muslim majority nations after it was blocked by lower courts that found it was discriminatory. your reaction? >> well, you know, this guy
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doesn't give up, brian. you know, maybe we are going to talk about the climate deal, the paris acard in the next segment. i think part of what was appealing to trump about pulling out of that paris accord was it was something he could unilaterally. trump is the chief executive. your jaws are all on the floor. just watch me because i did it. as opposed to health care reform, tax reform, where he has to go through the congress. it's boring, there are people challenging him and making it complicated. that's not how he likes to operate. i think with the travel ban it is a similar thing. he can do this by fiat. although he is fighting with the courts it is a not a long messy legislative process. i think he is going to keep ramming his head and try to get this done because it's something he can do in unilateral way and i think that's appealing to him. >> our thank to michael crowley, vivian salaama, and rick stengel. terrific first segment.
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a break will fit in here. coming up, president trump's america first policy on display today in the rose garden as he takes america out of the game on a big stage. when "the 11th hour" continues. the future isn't silver suits and houses on mars,
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withdraw from the paris climate accord. so we're getting out. but we will start to negotiate. and we will see if we can make a deal that's fair. if we can, that's great. and if we can't, that's fine. >> president donald trump president donald trump pulling out of the paris climate deal, a deal that only two other nations are not a part of, syria and nicaragua. we should point out knick wag with a didn't joichb because they didn't think the agreement went far enough. about the president's decision tonight, even some prominent republicans have called it shameful and grotesque. that fear that under the banner of america first today the president single handedly diminished standing and leadership in the world. before taking the news public, trump called some of other closest allies, the leaders of germany, france, canada, the uk. here's how some of them and other world leaders are reacting
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now. president emmanuel macron of france wrote on twitter, the united states turned their backs on the world. more on his strong reaction a bit later on in this broadcast. canada's prime minister, justin trudeau said he is quote deeply disappointed. the. u. says it is a sad day for the global community. and the u.n. calls this a major disappointment. if you thought that was harsh, listen to one of the americans who helped get this deal across the finish line originally, former secretary of state john kerry, during an interview with andrea mitchell earlier this evening. >> it is an extraordinary abdication of paper leadership. it is a shameful moment for the united states. he's made us an environmental pariah in the world and i think it is one of the most self deinstructive moves i have ever seen by any president in my lifetime. >> joining our conversation, philip bob, national correspondent for the "washington post," heidi press bella, senior politics rorltder for u.s.a. today, and of course
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our msnbc political analysis, steve kornacki who also happens to be our national political correspondsent. welcome to you all. philip, a question we like to ask especially people we haven't seen in a while on a momentous day, what just happened? what did he do today. >> essentially, what he did today. i think it's fair to level the critique what he did was changed the nature of america's relationship with the rest of the word. for years -- >> other than that. >> let's jump into it. essentially, for years, republicans opposed climate change legislation by saying, hey, look, american can't act unilaterally, china may need to be constrained as well if we are going to be constrands otherwise we are going to take an economic hit. this del was the first time the entire world has come to an agreement on a way everyone could move forward together to address global warming. that the united states is stepping away from it now suggests a fairly remarkable switch on how the united states
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views its role in the world. secondarily, this is a huge fight within the business community. there is evident and push toward renewable energy and taking a leadership role in that business -- in that industry. this is something now the united states, it seems as though, it is not a priority, and it will -- you know, we are sort of vacating the field in a business sense as well to other countries. >> heidi on twitter we heard from elon musk. we heard from the ceo of g.e. the reaction is still coming in. these are captains of industry. in musk's case the originator of his company, the founder of his company. when jeff eye multiple, representing general electric, says climate change is real, what does today's decision mean? who won? who won? and thus the president announced that we are getting out. >> this is the great ironry, brian, of this decision is that it is packaged as pro business. y yet you have so many of these business leaders who are literally panicked simply because we are about to go into
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a new era of economic and jobs revolution, a green revolution. and the countries that are in this umbrella, in this paris umbrella, and their companies, are going to be the companies that get those incentives from their governments, and they are going to be the companies that benefit and the countries that benefit from those investments. companies like exxonmobil, by the way, who, you know, was where rex tillerson came from are among those companies. it's also the oil and gas companies that see that this is the way the world is going and these are where the economic opportunities are going to be had. you have countries like china which are starting to outpace us in terms of the renewable energy revolution of uppia, which is making solar energy cheaper than coal. americans don't realize this. or there's a small -- about 33% of whatever that coalition is of trump voters who don't realize that in the end we could be the
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big economic losers who are. bracing a time warp industry to try and save it and prolong -- or just prolong its eventual demise. >> steve kornacki, is there political peril here for all but the base? republicans are going to be asked about this issue when they go home from now until the ends of their time in congress, did you agree with what the president did? where is the benchmark level of support for this. >> it's interesting because in the past, donald trump is operating with a model we haven't seen before. >> i have heard that. >> in the past there was the base and then the swing voters. with donald trump there is real loo just the base. it's hard to say -- he doesn't seem to play outside of that. i really think today, you have to say, at least i do, there is a fair amount of symbolism to this.
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this is ant agreement dlshs there was an agreement that was not enforceable by law in the first place a. lot it had been obviated by some of the executive orders he had previously set in motion. officially the united states won't be out of it until the day after the 2020 election. >> a lot of people are asking can it be stopped? theoretically, a new president could be elected in 2020 and say we are got right back to this. i think a big part of this is political symbolism. he is delivering to people who believe their jobs, way of life, national sovereignty, national identity, that's how he reads his base, they believe that all that has been sold out to globalist elites. donald trump is making what i believe is a symbolic political stands. you just saw at the beginning, john kerry, the president of france, angela merkel, the head of eu are horrified, petrified, screaming tonight. his base reads that as finally somebody stood up to them. >> two things.
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the president indicated today unless we make a better deal, like 190 nations are going to say you know what, that's great we'll rip up what we had. but the second point, your newspaper is reporting on the that this was a loss for ivanka trump, who, according to our friend at the "washington post," was calling ceos saying call my dad, and kill it that way? >> right. so first of all i just want to say i think steve is exactly right about the broader theme. during the speech, donald trump said the rest of the world was laughing at us when we sign this thing. that's the way he viewed it. a miss represent senttation of what was actually happening. the ivanka trump is an interesting company. donald trump tends to respond most strongly to whoever he last spoke with. we are seeing now the fruits of that. a lot of folks who were trying to get in front of donald trump as he was trying to make this
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decision, how he responded to it there is a fascinating in the article from the both from kellyanne conway which said he already had his conclusion and then found evidence that supported his conclusion. that was the approach he took. if ivanka wasn't able to work him on this issue, i think it's telling. >> steve kornacki, buried in awful it i noted he labelled an incident today in the philippines terrorism. turned out not to be. said this about the middle east. we're also working very hard for peace in the middle east, and perhaps even peace between the israelis and palestinians. we noted that on a beautiful sunny day supplied by the environment in the rose garden the speech was dark. ali very well she said it was four dark speeches all in one. on odd political day at the white house. >> i was watching it. a couple things jumped out at he moo.
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the tone of the speech. the length of this speech. >> 35 minutes. >> more than half an hour. unlike a state of the union address he is going through it without audience reaction so the word down was enormous although we have had those moments with donald trump. we look at his republican national convention, wow, we have never had a convention like this. it was missing pomp and circumstance. the audience was empty. we had never seen and heard an inaugural like this. he is not by traditional measure a popular president. but with donald trump i don't think that's the question. i think the question is he stitched together a coalition that was just -- i mean just big enough to get him elected president. and the question is does he lose any of that or keep that coalition that was just big enough together for four years? i think these things resonate with that collation. >> gentlemen, thank you heidi, i see you there.
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don't move. we have got to fit in a break. we'll get to you. when we come back, back to russia and then back to the trump administration. much more to come. ♪ pressure. i feel it everyday. but at night, it's the last thing on my mind. for 10 years my tempur-pedic has adapted to my weight and shape, relieving pressure points from head to toe. so i sleep deeply and wake up ready to perform. ♪ now through june 11th, save $600 when you buy select tempur-pedic adjustable mattress sets. find your exclusive retailer at
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if it is russia, which it's probably not. nobody knows who it is. everybody is being hacked. they have no idea who is doing it. i don't think anybody knows it was russia who broke into the dnc. she's saying russia, russia,
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russia, maybe it was. it could be russia. it could be china. could be all kinds of people, could be somebody sitting on their bed who weighs 400 pounds, okay. >> candidate trump loved to sew the seeds of doubt whether russia was really behind the hacks into the 2016 election or were they perhaps blameless. president trump has, too, as recently as three weeks ago. >> if russia hacked, if russia did anything having to do with our election, i want to know about it. >> there is already intelligence from virtually every intelligence agency that yes, that happened. >> i tell you this, if russia or anybody else is trying to interfere with our elections, i think it's a horrible thing, and i want to get to the bottom of it. and i want to make sure it will never ever happen. >> now, today, vladimir putin weighed in on that after repeated denials that russia hacked our election. today in st. petersburg he told reporters, perhaps patriotic hackers could be behind the
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hacks on the world's largest democracies. he added, quote, they might have read a certain article and if they are in the patriotic mood then they start making their contributions the way they see it positive toward the russian image. let's bring in ambassador mike mcfaul former u.s. ambassador to russia during the obama administration. mr. ambassador b the cuteness of the putin quote, he never wastes a word. there is kind of adriatic admiration of his role formerly as head of the kgb. is this the closest we are going to come to a tacit admission what have they have been up to? >> i think so. i mean i think it's taumting us, right. he is saying it could have been us and our people because we are patriotic. brian n the russian he use as particular phrase. he says at the government level, there was no support. but of course the
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non-governmental level, the private sector, all of those people who are closely tied to the kremlin, he leaves the possibility that it was them. and the real striking thing is, he's taunting us. he's basically saying, yeah it probably was us, and there was no response. no response from the white house, no response from the state department. that looks really weak to me zpoo and how do you think the rank and file in the diplomatic world -- how do they view this? >> to those of us who followed president putin closely, this is a style that he has, right, remember he kind of joked about soldiers being on holiday in eastern ukraine at one point just kind of taunting us. he knows that we know. let's be clear about that. and we do know despite what the president just said if those clips that you just played. we know categorically that it was the russians that stole the data from the dnc and mr. podesta. and he knows, and we know that. i think the thing is for those that follow him closely, this is taunting us and there is no response. >> the normalization of all
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things russia and all things putin has been especially maddening to you as you and i have talked for months about it now, given your history. do you feel, in light of the investigations we know that are going on, that it has a finite time left? do you feel we are nearing the end? or has this moved -- has this normalized public opinion in some way? >> i actually don't know the answer to that, brian. i mean, the survey data shows that a lot of people, more people distrust the russians and putin than before. and there also is a great curiosity in knowing the facts. i find this when i speak publicly, people want to know the facts. and in my opinion, there are still many, many thing we still don't know. and of course that's why it's disturbing to president trump, because he wants us to move on. but i think the american people don't want to us move on.
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i think we need to know the facts first. >> well, after a day like this, we often want to hear you out. thank you very much for coming back on the broadcast with us. >> sure. >> rm former ambassador mike mcfaul. we wanted to let you know it's already friday morning in moscow. in a short while megyn kelly will sit down for an interview with vladimir putin. it will be on sunday at 7:00 eastern time on our local nbc station of we are back with more on sho show right after this.
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welcome back to our broadcast. jared kushner has not given a single public interview since becoming a white house aide. that has not diminished interest in the 36-year-old man who has the president's ear. put another way, he is likely the closest man to the president, and his speaking voice has not been heard by the american people. kushner is the subject of this
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"time" magazine cover story titled the good son, a quote about kushner and his faurnl, president trump, reads they share the same wager that relationships and instinct can substitute for experience. now with adjacent windows overlooking the white house lawn, they are bound to rise or fall together. i am joined tonight by karlovic, the author of this profile in "time" magazine. thank you very much for coming over. you make a case that he is a sypher. about him, we know he is a tall slender man, often expressionless. prep school. harvard. his dad made a big donation to harvard. father goes to federal prison. that's a bit of a different upbringing. what am i forgetting? what were you able to piece together. >> well that piece about the father going to prison was important because he was 22 years old at the time, jared
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was, and was the eldest son. suddenly he's thrust into the position of leading the family and trying to bring the company -- heading the company. because banks won't loan -- it is a big real estate company and banks won't loan to a convicted felon. so he's now the front man, and he moves the -- moves the -- which has been a new jersey real estate successful company, but is in some peril because this downturn into new york. well first he buys the new york observer and becomes sort of like a young -- a young prince of the city. and then he buy as trophy building up the road on fifth avenue. and this is at some peril, too, but gets through all that and becomes sort of -- redeems the father's name, the family name. meets ivanka trump. they fall in love. they fall in love, she converts to judaism. he is raised orthodox and then his faurnl runs for president.
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>> tell us about a rally you write about in the article that was a turning point. >> well, he was -- you know, trump allowanced in sthul july or something 2015. and i think in september. >> november i've just been told. >> you tell me. >> you wrote it. i read it. both of us can't conjure it. >> no, springfield, illinois and he goes, and it's the first time he sees this scene, 10,000 people in there, transported. and as he tells it the sort of scales fall from his eyes and he realizes he has been living in a bubble and there is real point out there and that his father-in-law is in fact their messenger. >> is he an idiolog? >> no. i -- he was asked after -- he did give one interview right after the campaign to forbes and they asked him what his political affiliation is. and he had just guided a man to the republican nomination and presidency, and his answer was, to be determined. >> and what about his portfolio?
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you name it, improving veterans services, the opioid crisis, business in america, oh, yeah, and if the president said if jared can't achieve middle east peace, no one can. >> well this is -- his people in the white house say, you know, it's -- he shouldn't be blamed for what the presidencies in him. >> yeah. >> but -- and that, in fact, he's the point person on these things or the point of contact. that creates its own -- i mean, it does create this image of you know the only capable man in the world or something. but this also creates this issue inside the white house, which is sort of two -- two staffs. there's the family and the private trump organization people and then there is the white house staff. it's bifurcated and not the those efficient system. >> it is well written, the "time" magazine issue that just came out today.
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coming up, what else is going on across the vast trump administration. the news we would otherwise be covering perhaps, were it not for the ongoing and seemingly never-ending russia storyline. that and more when "the 11th hour" continues. whuuuuuat?rtgage offer from the bank today. you never just get one offer. go to and shop multiple loan offers for free! free? yeah. could save thousands. you should probably buy me dinner. no. go to for a new home loan or refinance.
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welcome back to "the 11th hour." there is so much news surrounding this white house that at times other big and important stories can get lost in the shuffle. we want the talk about a few of them tonight. and we're going to try to stay at it in the the weeks to come. like a new effort launched by democratic massachusetts senator elizabeth warren called devos watch. she says the ongoing project will be her way of enforcing accountability at the department of education as run under secretary betsy devos. >> we'll raise questions and concerns. and when we get reasonable
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answers, everybody will benefit from hearing them. and when we don't, everybody is going to see that, too. because accountability is about making government work for everyone. >> philip bump the "washington post" and heidi press bella are our nominees for most patient people in the and heidi are the most people in the world. bring us up to speed on devos so far in office, and how robust the anti-devos and the accountability effort now is. >> she was one of the most polarizing cabinet nominees who had even members of her own party vote against her. but when you look at what has happened since she has come, in certainly there is cause for alarm among democrats. not only because of the proposed cuts to the budget, which pretty much touch on everything in terms of education that you would be concerned about in terms of the future, in terms of after school programs, programs to help underprivileged children, but possibly even more troubling than that is this report which elizabeth warren
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herself writes about in a cnn article that the head of the federal student aid office quit and complained about political meddling. why is this really concerning? well, because that was the number one concern that senators cited about betsy devos when she came in was that she had no background in official education and the education field, but she was financially an activist, a school choice activist and a political donor. so certainly there is going to be a lot of focus on russia going forward. but you would hope that some of these stories about what is going on in terms of that and in terms of these proposed budget cuts as well as some of the members, folks who she is staffing up with and she hired a lawyer apparently who is also heavy into public choice and has worked for some of these for profit colleges that are under federal investigation. >> other than that, everything going swimmingly.
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philip bump across town in washington to a different cabinet agency, and that's the department of justice under jeff sessions. what have the rollbacks been that have been rolling back quietly since the obama years? >> jeff session came into his position sort of as the archetypical attorney general you would have expected from donald trump's campaign. he is very, very tough on crime. crime is a huge problem that is increasing, so on and so forth. so the efforts that we've seen him undertake, for example, he has directed that the u.s. attorneys under his direction are going to have to charge the most -- the strongest possible charge they can apply to someone. they can no longer use flexibility in terms of whether or not they charge drug offenders under the maximum possible charge. they have to go for the maximum possible charge, which of course over the past couple of decades was one of the main reasons the prison population blew up in the way that it did.
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because people would be being sentenced to jail for these long-terms. there are also additional concerns about whether the justice department, when it put out its planned budget, it's still giving the same amount of money to civil rights enforcement. but some questions have been raised what is actually going to be the focus of the civil rights division of the department of justice. obviously that an historically very important part of the department of justice that has stood up for minority groups and for people who have been disadvantaged in various ways. you know, jeff sessions is a former senator from alabama. and questions were raised about him when he was up for a nomination. this time when he was up for a nomination for a federal judgeship before about his relationship with the black community. i think that the budget that he has put forward continues to raise those questions again. and but, again, this is what donald trump promised. and so i think from that regard, it's not particularly surprising what we're seeing. >> two of the very best in the business. and we thank you both for stick around and talking about these two cabinet agency. and with you, let us promise to
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keep doing this and updating this. we didn't even get to the fact that the u.s. embassy is not for now going to move from tel aviv to jerusalem that was kind of snuck in today. but thank you both. philip bump, heidi przybilla, "the washington post" and usa today respectively. up next, when the french president chooses to speak english so he will be heard by the american president. it happened today. we'll show it to you when "the 11th hour" continues.
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climate change is one of the major issue of our time. it is already changing our daily lives, but it is global. everyone is impacted. and if we do nothing, our children will know a world of migrations, of wars, of shortage, a dangerous world. wherever we live, wherever we are, we all share the same responsibility. make our planet great again. >> how about that? last thing before we go tonight. that was the newly elected president of france, emmanuel macron in a three-minute statement, he dictated to -- directed to the united states in english. how unusual is that? when was the last time an american president spoke to the french people in french? macron continued to say he respected president trump's decision, but thought it was a,
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quote, mistake. and he invited american scientists to france to work on climate solutions with their scientists. later, graphizing his version of the president's campaign slogan, "make our planet great again" on twitter. then came this quote in french, quote, tonight the turned its back on the world, but france won't turn its back to america. a french daily took on with this page, "goodbye america" with what appears to be a backdrop of dripping oil. there is this page from london's the independent. america first, climate last. and a front page on newsstands here in new york, the new york daily news with trump to world: drop dead. there will be more of this as the world wakes up on friday. we will be here to cover it that is our broadcast for now. for this thursday night, thank you for being with us. good night from new york.
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states will cease all immra mentation of the nonbinding paris accord and the draconian financial and economic burdens the agreement imposes on our country. >> global reaction was immediate. leaders across the country and the world are weighing in on president trump's decision to leave the paris climate accord. plus, james comey set to testify next week about russia and allies of the former fbi director tell nbc news he's eager to tell his story. for the first time russian president vladimir putin suggests private patriotic hackers may have meddled in the 2016 u.s. election.


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