tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC June 10, 2017 3:00am-4:01am PDT
right now. >> its kind of the equivalent of like the fire alarm going off except it was the voice of somedy working in another room, not on this show. that was kind of of amazing. i'm going to assume that wasn't god and just a technical difficulty. thaw for being with us. dan rather is here, which i'm very excited. we have a few new pieces of information to break on what is going on in washington with the what appears to be the mushrooming scandal around the president. we have a few new exexclusive pieces on the on that. lass night a columbia law school professor received what i'm sure was an unsettling letter from congress. the letter was addressed to former president at columbia law
school. yesterday in the senate the fired director of the fib, james comey, put the spotlight on daniel richmond when comey told the warld about his decision to make public that he wrote autopsy this meeting in which he said the fib told him the quib should let go it's yoen going tril. director comey explained the way he decided to publicize those notes, the way he decided to publicize his interaction with the president is that he gave it to h good friend, who word at columbia law school, and he gave his columbia law school professor slash friend the instruction that he should then pass on that memo to a reporter. after that testimony under oath from james comey, last night james comey's professor friend
at columbia law school got this from congress, from the senate, explaining director comey had all but said professor richmond had in his possession this incriminating memo about the president and could professor hand over the memo to congress right now. quote, mr. coney's memorandum are part of the investigative efforts. we ask that you provide copies of all it is memoranda you so seefd by mr. trump no later than june it the 929, 1917. it's june 9 the, 20. quick turn-around. yesterday the jk intelligence committee had them member. trying to kybosh the flynn investigation.
they heard that yesterday that the professor had that memo. they wrote to the professor giving him a headline. the head dine is today. we can report at of 9:00 p.m. eastern time, a couple minutes ago, dan richmond has neff gd nurnd over his consideration with the president. cnn manu reports professor richmond has been in touch with that as well. imagine this is kind of a stressful position for your average law professor to find himself in, right? but, hey, it's turning out these are stressful times. now, there's obviously a lot going on in the news at large right now. first and foremost, there's the u.k. election, which is fascinating and a total shocker and has implications for the u.k. and europe. also has interesting implications for us.
he'd love to be deposed by the special counsel investigating the trump russia matter. seems unlikely that he really wants to do that, but he said today he'd love to. there's also the matter of this ticking time bomb that is now potentially set to go off in the u.s. senate when it comes to health care. the senate may be moving toward at a vote that would kick over 20 million americans off health insurance. there's a lot going on. we're going to get to all those things this hour. we have dan rather here and some expert legal advice coming up on the show tonight, advice that may surprise you. but there are a few new things we've been able to report out tonight that i want to let you know right off the bat. the first is the news of that law professor who has a copy of james comey's memo describing the president supposedly trying to shut down on ongoing fbi investigation. that law professor not turning over that memo to the senate despite the senate telling him he had until today to hand it over.
that obviously relates to the possibility of obstruction of justice, which is this central question in terms of the fate presidency. did the president try to stop ongoing fbi investigations? now, the special counsel, robert muller, he was appointed to look into the russia issue, right? he was appointed to look into the specific question of who weather the trump campaign or any trump associates helped or cooperated with the russians in this russian attack on our election last year. the order appointing bob muller to be special counsel said i don't have any idea that investigation he could also investigated and prosecute any other matters that, quote, arise from that russia investigations. well, it now seems clear that one of the matters that has arisen from the russia investigation is this possibility there's been an
attempt to obstruct justice in this matter potentially by the president of the united states himself. and although the muller investigation, the spokesperson for bob muller is not confirming that overtly, that bob muller is now investigating whether the president obstructed justice, they're not saying so one way or the other. we're still pretty darn sure that's what he's working on. we're pretty darn reason of it because of two reasons. first reason is because james comey said so under oath yesterday twice. >> do yosense the president was trying to obstruct justice or just seek for a way for mike flynn to save face given he had already been fired. >> general flynn at that point was in legal jeopardy. there was an open fbi criminal investigation of his statements in connection with the russian contacts and the contacts themselves. so that was my assessment at the
time. i don't think it's for me to say whether the conversation i had with the president was an effort to obstruct. i took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that's a conclusion i'm sure the special counsel will work towards to understand the intention there. >> do you believe this will arise to the obstruction of justice? >> i don't know that's bob muller's job to sort that out. >> the special counsel will try to work to understand whether the obstruction intent was tlft that's the first obvious reason we believe the special counsel, bob muller is investigating whether anyone potentially including the president might have try to obstruct justice in the russia investigation. first reason we think that is bluntly because james comey said so yesterday under oath twice. the other reason we believe that the special counsel bob muller is investigating whether there was an obstruction of justice is because of this. >> so you didn't consider your memo or sense of that
convertion t a govnm document? you considered it to be somehow your own personal document that you could share with the media as you wanted to? >> correct >> through a friend? >> i understood this to be my recollection reported of my conversation with the president as a private i see citizen. i felt that important to get it out. >> were all your memos that you reported on classified or other documents memos that might be yours as a private citizen? >> i'm sorry. i'm not for that the question. >> you used classified -- >> not the classified documents. unclassified i don't have any of them anymore. i gave them to the special counsel. >> so that means any notes, any memoranda james comey wrote about his interactions with president trump, he has handed them over to the special counsel, robert muller. and that's a simple thing, but it has a couple of really important implications.
the first of which is that may be what's complicating the issue of this poor law professor. the fact bob muller has these documents, that may be the complicating factor as to whether or not jim comey's friend, this law professor can hand over his copy of the memo to the senate. that may be what's making this a hard night for that law professor. but the fact james comey gave his modems about his conversations to the special counsel that implies pretty strongly they are investigating potential obstruction of justice by the approximate president. we know he never talked to the president about russia or about the russian attack on our election. james comey said under oath the president never brought that attack up, never expressed any concern about that russian attack to him ever, even once. so bob muller's only investigating the russia attack
and possible trump campaign involvement in the russia attack. these memos aren't about the russia attack. if that's all he's investigating there's no reason for him to be reviewing james comey's memos about his interactions with president trump. the only reason they would need those memories if he's investigating the possibility of something else besides the russian attack. >> do you believe this will rise to the obstruction of justice? >> i don't know. that's bob muller's job to sort that out. >> bob muller, special counsel, as of tonight appears very strongly to be investigating whether the president of the united states, donald trump, committed obstruction of justice. now, the race is on to confirm that for a fact, but in the absence of direct confirmation, it really seems clear by every
indication that that's what he's doing. so we've got james comey saying under oath that president trump was not the subject personally of a counterintelligence investigation by the fbi into the russian attack on our election and possible collusion. but it appears that he very much may be the subject of the special counsel's investigation into the potential obstruction of justice. so here's the other thing going on about that tonight that is turning into a really interesting question. bob muller appears to be investigating obstruction of justice. is congress investigating that too? we know the intelligence
we know they're looking russia. is anybody in congress looking into whether or not the white house tried to obstruct justice or illegally medals with or block the russia investigations? is that bob muller alone or is congress working on that too? as of tonight we have a lot more information about it. it looks like the answer to that is possibly the committees in congress that would have jurisdiction over obstruction of justice by the president or bob goodlatte and said, hey, we're the judiciary committee, this is our turf, we should be investigating potential obstruction of justice now that these serious allegations have been levied against the president. let's have the president come in and testify behind our committee. that's just a request from the
chairman from one democratic on his committee. so far senator good looth lavenlt atlanta doesn't seem like he's going to do anything from this. auto. >> on the sideline -- >> comey said this would be his only pep anticipate tomorrow if under our rules, if senator feinstein to subpoena, i would agree. >> that's that good cnn reporter, manu raju, basically door stopping chuck gratly, and being questioned by him, he says, yeah, if the d-- if diann feinstein to wpt so his kids,
they may wanted to do something very much that. the reason i think tonight we she has issue just the this is. there mr. champ charm as ranging member it's my center investment inves qualt gate all strukzs that rich a develop of and be subject it he can gulldy de hearing. from ji dwran feinstein to chuck rattly. she hum rises james copy comb yo obstruction of justice by other to kybosh this active investigation into mike flynn. of course, comey jk says the president pressured him on that. the presidt says, no, i didn't. . the qup is whether judge-j has
anything to mack back up his story. we know he has a meeting. everything and is xa xa after that figs with his member pem mow. about the they're trying to pry away from the fbi, fuller, fine that side senator fib stein feinstein takes it win. nun within unone, he's swearing out in number two. two auto on oef what that haptd who can book it up. with you we saw it coming company. direct testify that he smoke toek and aen in number after ins
dpenting. this followed v-of director, chief of staff to the, general ounce, james bake arer, four, number three person in the agency, dr. bow pifsh of the national security branch of the nash fabulous fabulous, date, kill tis. tells chuck grassley that the judiciary committee thud hear from those witnesses to queefy if he this had this raldless of the ion existential question of whether the russians had american confederates helping them in that swak. less was russian feft.
. we belief the republican-controlled house, at lease so far, is going to basically let that ge go. just not so far. the republican-controlled senate, however, may be showing signs of life, at lease if democrats and republicans on the economy judiciary he can if they continue no knee that inside the special council has that invest within, on that they're theirs things to take away to that tonight what wanted appears to be yil until. they things to take away, first. >> if it is at mat 5 maly the
spishl counsel quks about thes about, pe rn they'll have hard time smearing comey jk. they'll have a hard hard time spike much more. they'll have a hard time smearing bo bob muller because rnc benlt went through the actions of hiring mop mop bop mucker themselves. they they were hiking. hot's find foopd got james comey. they may try to end up smearing bob mueller down the road it's it's a matter of record they tried to interview him and consider him themselves for running the fabulous. second thing to know about ron mctirl second to known that
been. jifry at looits issuing siching. the first one we aern ba is wane nabl nobl notice to mike fin flynn and his highs to investigation into plate three ♪ a issue injury and far that gortrail. that vfgs has aea been followeded into what robert mueller is doing at the fbi. in addition to thatin' investigation fbi fez said thaush a kam cripple that he. i can tell you it's leaf not but to be fick the second second
involves vovs a fement and apply for with the. mothers foertd has now reportedly been fill-ier is doing as such count if thing about that for a second. if you wouldn't worry worry with about other attorney serviceses, subpoena such the that's being hurndpy proef sunl about that. if the special downs koubs up ip bring charges it is possible he could do that work, to some aspect of this issue.
and that's not the kind of thing that's done in public. but as the flynn and manafort cases show, as the history of lots of other high profile cases show, the impanelling of a new grand jury, that is sort of thing that's impossible to keep secret forever. and that brings us to the last thg to know about this tonight. it's this guy. in "the washington post" tonight, he's described by a former solicitor general walter dellin ger as, quote, the most brilliant and most knowledgeable federal criminal lawyer in america, period. wow. his name is michael dreeben. he's now part of the robert muller investigation into the mueller investigation into the trump/russia affair with increasingly seems like the parking lot obstruction of justice investigation that has arisen along with it. top federal criminal lawyer in america, period.
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one that keeps you connected to what matters most. here's a recent scoop from the british newspaper that's called "the guardian." you see the headline here, nigel farage is a person of interest in the nib investigation into trump and russia. nigel farage is a far right, very anti-immigrant politician in the u.k. in this country he's best known for his unexpected appearances with donald trump.
farage popping up at a trump rally in mississippi, of all places. they're like, who's this foreign guy? showing up regularly at trump tower. he was one of the first politicians to be there to congratulate him after the election. there he is again with the same look on his face sharing an intimate delighted dinner with donald trump just after the inauguration. and then there was the time nigel farage was spotted at the embassy of ecuador in london. that's where julian assange has been living for years. he was seen leaving the embassy. that's him with the purple tie. that was march 9th, the same day julian assange and wick wikileaks with a big dump. and a buzzfeed news reporter caught up with farage as he was
leaving and asked him what he was doing there that day. and nigel farage responded that he couldn't remember. i love this quote so much, i want to kiss it. i love this. i can actually do it from memory. approached by buzzfeed news as he left to get into a car waiting around the corner, farage said he couldn't not remember what he had been doing in the building. was i just in a building? really? that may be the sort of thing that got fbi investigators working on the trump/russia probe interested in nigel farage according to "the guardian," a person of interest. "the guardian" reported last week they are looking at him, quote, because of his relationships with individuals connected to both the trump campaign and julian assange. if you put russia, wikileaks, the one in the middle is farage.
quote, he's right in the middle of these relationships. he turns up overnd over again. there's a lot of attention being paid to him. for his part, farage calls this, quote, hysterical nonsense. i describe faraj as a british, far right anti-immigrant politician. but he's not technically a politician anymore. he resigned from the party he led in britain, the uk independence party. that's the party that stood for brexit, forgetting britain out of the european union. it was strange from faraj resigned as the head less than two weeks after the brexit vote, successful brexit vote he pushed. that was unusual.
in lass night's bizarre and interesting national election in the united kingdom, ukip lost every single one of its seats. as of now, nigel farage artery party, this follows the vote for brexit, which is what their reason for being was. more stantively with a lot more questions because of what ended up being a political fiasco for the ruling party. theresa may is holding o but by a thumbnail. the whole point of this election was to give him a clarifying day, and leaving the europe yuction, but her country is more. her party lost 12 seats and
she's still trying to hold on. she's style trying to hold on. it's chaos. we know a little something about that. it's the second chaotic unexpected turn the world on its ear national vote in a short amount of time. is this the new normal for big country, big power politics now? should we expect more wild, unexpected swings in big, powerful countries? is this the new world? joining us now for the interview somebody i'm lucky to be able to turn to to help understand big political moments, dan rather, now president of news and guts media. dan, it is wonderful to see you. thank you for being here, my friend. >> thank you for having me. >> i want to talk you to about a few different things tonight, but let me ask you about the election results in the u.k. it was a surprise result.
but should we see this as a big global signal, something important about the kind of world we're in now? >> yes. i certainly think we can read much into it. what you have is a pattern of angry voters doing surprising things at the polls. we had it with donald trump in this country, you had it in france with their election. germany had aed a strong challenge to their leader. what's happening in great britain -- the prime minister was almost thrown out of office. so of the press is callinger a zombie prime minister. a terrible phrase to use. >> because she won't be able to hold on, not because she eats brains. >> in britain it's a volatile and fluid situation. if you're a leader of the democratic party in this country, you would be thinking
about what happened in great britain because what the country voted to do, they elected more leftist politicians, left center politicians. if you were looking to the 2018 congressional elections in this country, can we tap into some anger about donald trump now? it might be a bridge too far, but i think not, and i think politicians in this country will be studying it for that reason. the democratic party has a real problem if they go far with this analysis. if they take from great britain, an angry public was more willing to go left of center, more bernie sanders, full. we democrats in 2020, should we pick elizabeth warren or toward the middle? i think it will mix in. the second thing is this is not good news for the united states of america and here's why. it weakness the western alliance. a fluid volatile situation.
in great britain with a prime minister barely hanging on. some doubt whether she can hang on for very long. we'll have germany and france trying to get together to hold a center in great britain. france on the rise, germany, the most important country in europe now. britain at least for the moment on the fade. nonef this is good news for the united states. it's very good news for the russians. >> dan rather, will you stay here for a moment? there's a follow-up question i want to ask in terms of the volatility and the hazy future for your own president. what that means for our role in the world. will you stay? >> absolutely. you bet. >> dan rather stays with us. be right back. . kel (instrumental) [ snoring ] [ deep sleep snoring ] the all-new volkswagen atlas. seats seven, sleeps six.
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back with us now is the great dan rather who's the president of news & guts media. thank you for sticking with us. we were just talking about the instability in britain after their big election, the possibility that prime minister theresa may may not be prime minister for long. they may have to hold another election very soon. they had this referendum on brexit that was going to get them out of the european union. that's now in question. we have no idea how that will proceed. our closest ally has a lot of unserpts. and is it's going to be a volatile position for a long time. are we also in a volatile and weak position as a country because of the scandal that hangs over this president? is it a big enough scandal there's uncertainty about the
future of this presidency and is our political volatile as a country? >> first of all, i certainly think it's seriously enough to be concerned about this particular presidency. i think it's too far a stretch to say right now that the very vital of the country. after all, the extrusions performing pretty well in the country, the courts are performing pretty well, parts of congress seem to come alive. so our system of checks and balances, including the press is part of that, have finally taken traction, several months ago, i among others were concerned. in terms of president trump, i use the phrase in regards to british election, it's a volatile and fluid situation to say the least. we have a real showdown credibility gap between president and who was in effect the top policeman in the country. president trump did something
today. he went into white house survivor mode. to have a president in survivor mode is extremely hurtful because of how people oversee, particularly the leaders of foreign countries reed that. your question was are we in a situation in real peril, i would say the presidency is in peril. and because it's in peril, we are in some danger ourselves because there's a lot that needs to be done in the country. there's so much talk about trump and comey and who's telling the truth and who isn't telling the truth. i think it's really important for americans to understand the big question and how this all started and how the direction we shou go is what did the russians do? because here you have a situation. the russians pulled off what i call a psychological pearl harbor a surprise attack that was devastating to the
confidence of our whole system of elections and our whole system of government. it's one of the great psychological war fare victories. >> you can see them doing similar things to smaller countries in their orbit. so we could see it. it was a shock and surprise to us because we thought we're protected by our oceans, but we think of ourselves as the great power in the world, the sole surviving super power in the world, not susceptible to the tactics that would work against these smaller countries that russia -- >> in our huberus, it would work
here. if the russians ever tried that here, it would never work in america, well, it worked to devastating effect. and i call it a psychological pearl harbor. but i want to keep the focus on getting the truth of what happens to the russians. this is how this business with the fbi director, the investigations into president trump turned out. president trump todays, he was desperate to change if narrative. comey yesterday for one of the few days in the trump presidency, another person controlled the narrative, and he was masterful in weaving his own narrative as he would in presentation to a jury. and president trump in effect said to himself, i have to get out there tomorrow no matter what it takes, and i've got to reseize the narrative, which he did today. most people are not talking about comey. they're focusing on what president trump did and didn't do. >> the new bombs. >> he didn't say when he was going to testify under oath, but it's a headline.
this business of being so coy about the tapes. listen, this is not normal. let's see it for what it is. if he has tapes, we need to have the tapes played. this business of saying, well, i'm going to doll out a little news today and i'll doll out -- >> in a small period of time a short period of time you'll find out the answer. he could give the answer now and just won't. >> absolutely. and the question is, why won't he give the answer now? >> dan rather is the president of news & guts media. a person i feel privileged to talk to every time he's here. much more ahead tonight. busy night. stay with us.
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not a big deal. that was a random still picture of nigel farage squeezing donald trump. that is a very big deal. >> that is a very big deal. i told you it was coming. former fbi director james comey saying under oath he believes he was fired by the president because of his oversight of the russia investigation. under oath he said, the president fired him over the russia investigation. and that is a big deal. but the white house has now met that big deal testimony from james comey with their own big deal potentially problematic reaction. the president's personal lawyer
yesterday came out befor reporters and told them james comey's sworn testimony was not truth truthful. he said james comey leaked information he should not have, oolt there were no allegations that there was any classified information involved here and the om thing james comey said he leaked was his own recollections, his own written recollections of a consideration. the president himself today called james comey a leaker, and said the account he swore to under oath was not true. now the president's personal attorney has followed up by saying he plans on filing complaints against former fbi director james comey. filing complaints with him with the senate judiciary committee and the justice department. now, i didn't go to law school. and i'm not a lawyer, and i don't know exactly how that works. but i know that james comey isn't a senator on the judiciary committee, and i know he doesn't work for the justice department anymore.
so why would you issue complaints about him to those entities to which james comey has no affiliation? what are they going to do if they find the complaints substantiated? cha chase him down and give him a whack? the white house response to james comey's testimony makes me wonder what exactly the white house, the president and his personal lawyer are getting at here, and whether they might be making it worse for themselves. and i don't know whether that's true because i'm not a lawyer. but i do know the person to ask, and that's next. (woman) when you have type 2 diabetes,
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when the president decided to line up legal representation for himself on the russia issue, he was not able to persuade any big-name d.c. lawyers or big-name d.c. law firms to represent him. he did bring on a lawyer who had previously represented him in some business disputes. in fact the lawyer who he brought on is lawyer who's known for threatening to sue people who cross donald trump in various ways. those threats from this particular lawyer in the past have included him threatening to sue "the new york times" for reporting sexual harassment, sexual abuse allegations against then presidential candidate donald trump. president trump, then candidate trump also threatened to sue the women making the allegations themselves. although those threats were made, those suits were never filed. now, now that he is representing the president in this trump
russia matter and other things that may arise from it, now the president's lawyer says he will not file a lawsuit, but file a complaint against the former director of the fbi, james comey, with the senate judiciary committee for something related to director comey's testimony. to the senate yesterday. the president's lawyer came out and said he was going to file that complaint with the senate judiciary committee. nbc news can report that as of tonit he may have made that threat. but they haven't actually filed the complaint. if they do, is it possible that that could be the president's lawyer? president's legal team, his defense strategy, stepping in it and making things worse for themselves? joining us now is barbara mcquaid, the former u.s. attorney for the eastern district of michigan. thank you for being here. >> thanks, rachel. >> this is a narrow question, but an interesting one. james comey has made these very serious allegations that the
president tried to impede an ongoing fbi criminal investigation. the president is refuting that testimony. and now his lawyer is threatening to file various complaints against james comey. aside from the venue of those complaints, which i think is itself an interesting question, is there a possibility that this could be seen somewhere down the road as the president and his legal team essentially harassing or trying to intimidate somebody who is likely to be a witness against the president in some future legal proceeding? >> well it does seem like a bullying tactic. it seems like a very hollow threat to me. i don't know that the senate judiciary committee or the justice department has any recourse against jim comey in this situation. and i suppose you could suggest this is some effort at witness intimidation. which is one of the classic ways that the obstruction of justice statute is charged. now it's been done so publicly, and so columns lumsily that i d
know that it would be charged by a lawyer in that. it's in the court of public opinion of demonstrating further bullying tactics. >> listening to james comey's testimony yesterday, a lot of us nonlawyers and citizen journalists, see what james comey testified to yesterday and it seems like he's alleging obstruction of justice on the part of the president, the president trying to impede or stop that investigation. as a former u.s. attorney, is that what you heard in terms of james comey's allegations yesterday? >> there's certainly some pieces that could lead to that conclusion. he mentioned at least twice that whether this was obstruction of justice is matter for bob mueller, the special counsel to look at. which suggests he thinks that bob mueller is looking at that. and it also seemed to me that jim comey is helping him do his work. he's putting out the bread crumbs. he created for mueller in his written statement a chronology of all the things that happened. one of the first things a prosecutor does when investigating a case is put together a timeline. so that you can see the sequence
of events. you can see coinciding events. you can see that on the very same day that sally yates was over at the white house in the morning, is the same day that trump invites comey over for dinner that night. and asks him to pledge his loyalty. so it seems that jim comey at least has that in his mind. >> barbara mcquaid, former u.s. attorney, thank you very much for your time tonight. appreciate you being here. >> thanks, rachel. >> stay with us. we can't stay here! why? terrible toilet paper! i'll never get clean! way ahead of you.
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senate. jeff sessions has a history of backing out of public open testimony, right before he has to do it. but right now as of tonight he's still on the calendar for tuesday morning. so -- plan your sick days accordingly. see you again on monday morning. msnbc live is next. good morning, everyone. i'm dara brown, at msnbc world headquarters in new york. it's 7:00 a.m. in the east and 4:00 a.m. in the west. the president strikes back, saying parts of james comey's testimony at a hearing this week are simply not true. plus he gets asked directly about whether there are white house recordings from meetings with james comey. you'll hear his answer. both houses of congress are demanding two potentially explosive pieces of evidence in the russia tampering probe. is the president at odds with his secretary of state over middle east conflict that's boiling over? brace yourselves, those in the midwest and the northeast are