tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC July 8, 2017 3:00am-4:00am PDT
of whose is bigger with the world itself is at stake. none of that today. none of it, let's pray, ever. that's hardball for now. thanks for being with us. the rachel maddo you show starts right now. >> there's a lot going on in the world. we have eyes on the big g-20 meeting in hamburg, germany, where there were huge protests today. president trump is in hamburg tonight. he is meeting there tomorrow with vladimir putin. nbc's richard engel is there too. he will be joining us live from germany tonight ahead of his big richard engel special that we're doing here tomorrow night. his name is walter schelb. he said he basically is leaving
because the u.s. government ethics rules are not strong enough to allow him to stand up to what this president and his family are doing. so he is leaving his job at the office of government ethics in order to try to strengthen those rules from the outside. very interesting resignation today. more on that ahead. there's a lot going on. we have a big show tonight. we are going to start with something different tonight. i said at the end of last night's show that we've got a little bit of a scoop to share with you tonight. this is that scalp. inhouse on our staff we have been talking about this as an inside -- kind of an inside-out story. okay.
here it goes. we have this thing. we have been doing it on our show for a while now. it's called www.send it to rachel.com. basically the idea is that if you want to get in touch with us, if you want to give us a tip or send us a document, can you do so via that website. www.send it to rachel.com. we get tons of stuff that way. we get information about local political fights. we get a lot of information about bat behavior by elected officials. we occasionally get news about really good behavior by elected officials. we get anonymous tips, and we get documents too. we get a lot of documents. we've had a lot of firsthand records come across the transome through www.send it to rachel.com. documents that show us how the government is making decisions, what the government is doing, whether or not they are talking about it publicly yet. it's been a great resource for our reporting. i will say it one more time.
www.send it to rachel.com. it's still up and running. a few weeks ago we got a new document through that channel, and at first glance it was just unbelievably red hot. if by any chance this document is real, it is so sensitive, so classified that i cannot show it to you. i cannot show it to almost anyone because of its purported classification level. it's hard to circulate it at all or even to describe it to people. i don't say that to try to hype it. i say that to let you know it's logistically difficult to validate something like this. when it's classified at that level or appears to be classified at that level, you can't run the document like that by people the way you would for any other kind of document we might get shipped to us from some source. people who are in a position to recognize or authenticate this
document, people who have worked with things at this level of classification, they typically will refuse to even look at a document like this if there's any chance that it is real, that it is real classified information that has been improperly disclosed. that's because the terms of their own security clearance mean effectively that they can't review something like this without it creating legal obligations on them. >> it's very hard to check this stuff out. classification-wise, it is logistically very difficult to deal with. very, very sensitive. in terms of the political implications of this document that we are given, its content, politically this thing is so sensitive, it takes all the air out of the room and all of the nearby rooms as well. people talk about finding the smoking gun. what got sent to us was a smoking gun. it was a gun still firing proverbial bullets. here's the deal. we believe now that the real
story we have stumbled upon here is that somebody out there is shopping carefully forged documents to try to discredit news agencies reporting on the russian attack on our election. specifically on the possibility that the trump campaign coordinated with the russians in moubting that attack. let me show you what i mean. here's what we know. do you remember a month ago when a relatively new news organization called the intercept published this report. top secret nsa report details russian hacking effort days before 2016 election. this was published by the intercept almost exactly a month ago. monday, june 5th. the intercept has a bunch of very good reporters working there. a lot of aggressive national security reporters who really earned their stripes. in terms of the russia story, the intercepts have -- they've really stood out for being basically aggressively skeptical on that story. skeptical that there was a russian attack on our election.
skeptical of the possibility that the trump campaign might ha have colluded in that russian attack. there is nothing wrong with a news organization have an editorial take. i'm not criticizing them for their take on russia. for the purposes of understanding what we just figured out, it's important to understand that the intercept does as a news organization have a take on the russia attack, on the russia story. their take on it is that they're dismissive of the story. that's why it was really spriesing and really interesting that it was the intercept of all places that published this big advance in the russia story. new details on the russian hacking effort into the u.s. presidential election, including a u.s. intelligence report, which said that the attack went on for longer than had been previously disclosed. it was wider than previously disclosed. they got further this their attack than had been previously disclosed. quoting from the intercept.
russian military intelligence and sent spear phishing emails to more than 100 local election officials just days before last november's presidential election. russian government hackers were part of a team with a cyber espionage mandate specifically directed at u.s. and foreign elections. they focused on parts of the u.s. election system -- russian hacking may have penetrated further into u.s. voting systems than was previously understood. russian hacking may have breached at least some elements of the u.s. voting system. all this explosive stuff is cited to a highly classified intelligence report obtained by the intercept. in addition to their write-up of it, this is important, the intercept didn't just publish an article about that top secret intelligence report. they actually published the top secret intelligence report. they published the p top secret nsa report they said they obtained. five pages of it.
detailing this american intelligence understanding of how wiggle their way into the election system. it came with a flow chart of how the russians go the in and why they targeted the places they did. it is detailed. the whole thing was labelled top secret on every page. the intercept reported when they published this thing that u.s. intelligence officials wouldn't comment on the document, but they said agencies did ask them for certain redactions. some of which the intercept agreed to make. they made those redactions specific redactions at the request of u.s. agencies, and then they hit publish on that story. new detailed evidence into american intelligence gathering on russian attempts to get inside our election system. this was a very big story based, again, on a very classified document. huge story. real scoop. now even just a month later that intercept story is remembered
less, i think, for the content of the story, and more for what happened immediately after they published it. because immediately after they published it, we learned that there was an arrest. we got our first heads up about that intercept story just before 4:00 p.m. on june 5th. an hour later at 5:00 p.m. sharp, june 5th, the justice department announced they had already had in custody, already arrested the person who allegedly leaked that top secret document to the intercept. this is a pending federal case now against that nsa contractor. it's not resolved at all. the nsa can tell how many people have ever looked at an individual secret document like this. they can tell who they are by name.
>> they have this list of a half dozen people who they know have accessed this document. they go down that list looking for someone who has access to the document who also appears to have been in touch with this news organization. >> she was the only one of the six who had both access to the document and been in touch with the intercept. then they go down a second line of approach. the agent says in this criminal complaint that there's a crease like you get a crease from folding something. there's a crease that is visually evident on the document itself that was a clue to the fbi that whoever took this document off the nsa had printed it. had printed the page and folded it and carried it out of the nsa
office by hand. and then there was another clue. this is where the story gets a little crazy. most color printers, maybe even all of them, i don't know, they apparently leave behind when they print, right -- when they print out a piece of paper from a computer, right? when they print, they leave behind a fingerprint on every sheet that they print out. you know how in old school detective stories they do forensic analysis of the quirks of individual typewriters to find out which typewriter typed the ransom note or whatever. there is a version of that for computer printers too. that may have come acalling when the intercept showed the nsa this document they had obtained through a source because they wanted the nsa to validate it, to comment on whether or not this document they had received was real. in that document, which we have access to because they published it on-line when they published their story, in that document along side all the plainly
visibility texts and the flow chart and even the redactions and everything, along side all that obvious stuff was also this barely visible fingerprint from the printer it was printed on. the fingerprint is basically a series of light almost invisible yellow printed dots. unless you were looking for them, you would never notice them by reading the document. if you run the page through like an image software and do a little magic reversing the colors, and in this case a little brightening so you can see them on your tv, up pops if you are looking for it a readable specific grid of these little dots. it tells you the model number, tells you the serial number, and it tells you exactly which time and date that printing happened. now, it may be that the fbi didn't have to uses those little yellow printer dots to track
down their suspect. the fbi doesn't mention their printing dots in their charging documents, but once the intercept published this document on-line, for people who understand forensic tracking of documents and the dangers of leaking documents, those little yellow dots were an obvious thing to worry about because they were there on that document that the intercept published. they were there to be read by a trained observer on that document that the intercept published on-line. now let me show you how this worked for us. now watch. i'm going to show you that same pattern of dots except this time it's from a different document. okay? as you can see, it's the same pattern of dots. the top half of the pattern.
what i'm showing you here, this is not the document published by the intercept. this is from the document that somebody sent us through www.send it to rachel.com. that same pattern of dots, the upper portion of it it's not all of the dotsz. just the ones that slipped through in a cut and paste job. this is what it appears to be to us. a cut and paste forgery using the intercept's nsa document as a template. again, here, see that thin line there on the upper left-hand corner? you can see what i think is the
crease where the fbi says the intercept document was folded after it was printed. we think we see remnants of that exact same crease on the forged supposed top secret nsa document that got sent to us. here's another thing i can show you. look at the metadata here. check this out in terms of timing. the suspect in the intercept leak goes to jail on saturday. gets arrested on saturday june 3rd. saturday, june 3rd, the fbi interviews and arrests reality winner, this nsa contractor. she has not -- she has been in jail since saturday, june 3rd. the intercept published they are story around 4:00 p.m. monday, june 5th. the foshlged document that we got sent to us appears to have been created in that narrow window of time between those two events. after reality winner got arrested and before the intercept published the document with its identifiable printer
dots and the crease in the paper that appear to have been lifted off that same document that the intercept published. they were working from a document that was not yet publicly available. they would have started creating that file or they would have started that file after reality winner's arrest and before the intercept published it to everyone. then sent it to us two days later. from what we can see from the metadata, we believe this is the timeline. now, is the timeline a clue as to who contacted us and sent us this document? we don't know. maybe the metadata itself has been faked or is wrong in some way. i don't know.
the big red flag for us is that the document we were given -- this is part of what made it seem so red hot -- it names an american citizen. the document we were sent, which we believe to be a forgery, names a specific person in the trump campaign as working with the russians on their hacking attack on the election last year, and the specific name of the trump campaign person is irrelevant. i am not sharing it now because we believe from how the nsa works from multiple conversations with current and former officials familiar with documents of this type, we believe a u.s. citizen's name would never appear in a document like this. even if the typos and the weird spacing and the other odd stuff had snuck through for some reason, an american citizen's name would not have snuck through. not at this level of an nsa
report. tham our document contains an american name spelled out, that says to experienced people who have worked with this stuff that what we got is forged. it's fake. that's interesting if you work on this show. this is news because why is someone shopping a forged document of this kind to news organizations covering the trump russia affair? last week three journalists resigned from their jobs at cnn after that network retracted a story they had written about the trump administration related to the trump russia affair. cnn says the sourcing of that story in retrospect did not meet its editorial standards. also last week, vice retracted two stories about the trump administration, like cnn. vice also cited problems with the sourcing of those stories. the thing that's not knocking
around in the back of your mind right now is from 2004 when the legendary dan rather lost his career over a story in the evening news that delved into president bush's -- the rather team had documents that they got from a source that they checked out, but the sourcing of those documents was later attacked and undermined. cbs was ripped to shreds over the process it went through that resulted in those documents being put on the air as the basis for that story. still over a decade later, the origin of those documents is murky, but undeniably cbs running that story was a disaster for two things. it was a disaster for everyone involved, and it was a disaster for a news story. that was, in personal terms, the end of a trusted voice of reason and insight and perspective, dan rather, as a regular presence in the family living room. in terms of the news, that was a spike through the heart of the story of george w. bush's
national guard service keeping him out vietnam, which was a true and interesting story, and which really might have been an ongoing political liability for candidate george w. bush. nobody was ever willing to touch it again during that campaign because of the way those documents purporting to prove out the worst aspects of that story blew up like a pipe bomb at cbs news. and so heads up, everybody. this is what i mean by an inside-out scoop. somebody for some reason appears to be shopping a fairly convincing fake nsa document that purports to directly implicate somebody from the trump campaign and working with the russians on their attack on the election. it is a forgery. let me cavat that. it is either a forgery, or every single national security official we consulted about that story is wrong about it. i don't know if the trump campaign worked with russia or not. if they did knowingly work with
a foreign government, a foreign military intelligence service to attack our election, to help trump to the presidency, that is clearly the biggest political scandal in modern american history. by a mile. we don't know if it happened or not though. we don't know yet whether it happened or not. not yet. the special counsel is investigating. kpgal committees are more or less investigating. the american news media is investigating. whether or not the trump campaign did it one way to stab in the heart aggressive american reporting on that subject is to lay traps for american journalists who are reporting on it. trick news organizations into reporting what appears to be evidence of what happened, and then after the fact blow that reporting up. you then hurt the credibility of that news organization. you also cast a shadow over any similar reporting in the future. whether or not it's true. right? even if it's true. you plant a permanent question. a permanent astericks.
a permanent who knows as to whether that too might be false like that other story. whether that too might be based on faked evidence. heads up, everybody. part of the defense against this trump russia story now, we can report, includes somebody apparently forging at least one classified nsa report and shopping it to news organizations as if it's real. we don't know who is doing it, but we're working on it. heads up, in the meantime time, everybody. we'll be right back. with hydrogenated oil...
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they meet every year. the g-20 summits almost always attract major protests. mostly anti-capitalism protests, but also just protests by anybody who has a beef with this small minority of countries that represent the lion's share of all the wealth and trade in the world. this year today the g-20 is meeting, and they are meeting in hamburg, germany. this year's protesters picked a cheery theme. to greet the leaders of all the g-20 countries. their theme this year is g-20 welcome to hell. okay. this should be fun. officials say this he expect upwards of 100,000 protesters to show up during the g-20 overall. today it kicked off with about 10,000 to 15,000 protesters in the streets. within minutes of the start of their planned march today, the march was broken up by german riot police. look at this. the police said that some protesters were breaking the law by wearing masks that covered their faces and so they broke the whole thing up.
from there things pretty quickly went pear shaped. police turned water canons and co copious amounts of tear gas. the protesters threw rocks and bottles at police. the protesters were lighting fires in the streets by nightfall. we don't know how many protesters were arrested in hamburg today. nor do we know how many were injured. we are told that more than 75 police officers were injured today. three of whom had to go to the hospital, including one who had an eye injury when the officer had a firecracker blow up in his or her face. right now as we speak, it's after 3:00 in the morning in hamburg. things have died down. after the big and somewhat violent confrontations today, there were a lot of peaceful protesters who stuck around and made themselves known thereafter, but as of right now we're told that heading into tomorrow despite the very big
protests today, things are still on schedule for the official summit, which does start tomorrow. in terms of american politics, says that means everybody is bracing for the first official meeting between president trump and the russian president vladimir putin. tomorrow is trump's first meeting as president with putin, but it is not his first meeting as president with a russian official. i think part of what's giving so many americans so much focus about this meeting tomorrow is what happened the last time trump had a meeting with russians, since he has been president. you'll remember that was the one inside the oval office where trump inexplicably disclosed to the russians top secret intelligence that never should have been shared with any other country, but especially not with the russians. that was also the meeting where he told them overtly that, yes, he had been fired the fbi director because of the russia investigation, that he was feeling pressure because of the fbi's russia investigation, and that firing the fbi director gave him hope that he would be relieved of that pressure from
that investigation. that's what happened the last time this president met with russian officials, and also, remember, says he got played too. remember, for that meeting the white house refused to let any american media into the oval office to cover that meeting, but trump did let the russians persuade him to allow the russians to bring in their own dpifl russian photographer, with his own equipment into the oval office, after which they admitted they had no idea that photographer also worked for a russian news agency and would publish all of the photos. a white house official told the washington post thereafter, we were not informed by the russians that their official photographer was dual-hatted and would be releasing the photographs on the state news agency." cnn's jim accosta got a white house official to speak much more bluntly on the subject. this was his tweet. "white house furious over russian government photos of
trump meeting with lavrov kislyak. they tricked us. they tricked us. they lie." it went awesome last time they met with russians. now he will meet with vladimir putin tomorrow. the only other people in the room besides trump and putin and two translateors at that meeting will be rex tillerson, who was personally awarded the order of friendship by vladimir putin for his friendship to the nation of russia. the only other person besides him will be sergei lavrov, last seen receiving code word top secret intelligence from trump in the oval office and tricking trump into allowing into the oval office a russian photographer in his bag full of electronic equipment. it will be just the you are for of them making sure america's interests are protected. in the face of russia's unprecedented recent attacks on
our country. i'm sure that should go fine. richard engel joins us live from hamburg next. my hygienist told me to try... ...a mouthwash. so i tried crest. it does so much more than give me fresh breath. crest pro-health mouthwash provides all... ...of these benefits to help you get better dental check-ups. go pro with crest mouthwash. checkup? nailed it i have to tell you something. dad,
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>> msnbc world headquarters in new york. we continue to bring you the latest from the g-20 summit in hamburg, germany. president trump held talks with indonesia's president. economic issues are expected to drive their discussion. the two presidents meeting for a second time. their first encounter came at
the riyadh summit back in may, but they did not have the chance to hold talks. we'll keep you updated on what's happening at the g-20 summit all day here on msnbc. i'm dara brown. now back to rachel. >> when the iraq war started, he up and brought himself to baghdad on his own steam, started covering it alone as a stringer. when i started at msnbc, he started tutoring me on the subtlies of the middle east in central asia. mostly in bars with hand drawn maps that he would make for me on cocktail napkins, i'm not ashamed to admit. when it was time for me to do some reporting in iraq and afghanistan, it was richard who hooked me up with his local knowledge, his access to sources, the language.
i am psyched to tell you that richard engel has a new special he is doing here, right here, this networks, this hour tomorrow night. it's the first of a new series called richard engel on assignment. it premiers tomorrow night here. tonight richard is at the site of the g-20 in hamburg, germany, where donald trump and vladimir putin are meeting in just a few hours, and richard joins us live now. richard engel, richard, i am so happy we have finally got this new series launch. congratulations, my friend. >> we've been talking about this for a long time. i'm really excited about it. thank you, rachel. it's going to be interesting. we'll start with this one on russia, on this meeting between trump and putin. then we have some others in the works. >> tell me more about what is going to be in this special
tomorrow. obviously the trump-putin meeting is in just a few hours at the g-20 meeting in hamburg where you are. what are -- what are you looking at in terms of the first in the series tomorrow night? >> so the way this -- the show, the series is going to work is it will look at a specific subject. in this case it's russia and the u.s. we went to russia and talk to people who are directly involved in this. we went to several different countries, in fact. we were in ukraine. we crisscrossed the globe to try and find out a little bit more. what we're going to be looking at in this special is how do you understand russia? what is russia after? what is russia's game? what does vladimir putin hope to
do with -- what is he up to? that's what this special really tries to look into. the why of the story. then we're working on another one. it was just in baghdad the other day, and i think -- in mosul, excuse me, the other day, about the offensive there. we'll be heading back there soon. we'll be doing a combination of not just russia, but some frontline reporting and jumping from issue to issue, story to story, and i think your audience has clearly shown that they want to hear more about complex issues around the world. >> you have also sparked sort of an insane and very difficult for me fight among all of my producers who all want to work with you on these damn things. thank you for making -- you have made my life much more exciting because we are doing this, but also on a day to day basis a little more difficult, like you always do.
>> i'm glad you didn't step on that land mine. we can keep going and doing things like this. >> something else happened today that i want to ask you about. do you mind sticking around for one more minute before we let you go? >> absolutely. >> all right. we'll be right back with richard engel. stay with us.
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so that's the idea. what do you think? hate to play devil's advocate but... i kind of feel like it's a game changer. i wouldn't go that far. are you there? he's probably on mute. yeah... gary won't like it. why? because he's gary. (phone ringing) what? keep going! yeah... (laughs) (voice on phone) it's not millennial enough. there are a lot of ways to say no. thank you so much. thank you! so we're doing it. yes! start saying yes to your company's best ideas. let us help with money and know-how, so you can get business done. american express open. >> here's a thought. imagine if as soon as donald trump took office he and his republican allies in congress passed a law that said the editor of your favorite newspaper or the manager of your favorite tv news network would
now be hand selected and installed in office by donald trump's treasury secretary. it would be like one of the follow-up questions on election night. trump has won the election. treasury secretary steve manuchin, who will you put in charge at nbc news now and cnn and the "new york times"? that is not the way it works here, praise jesus and the founding fathers, but in poland that has recently become not a thought experiment. last night we started talking about the radical change in government that preceded this visit by president trump today to poland. very conservative right wing nationalist party came to power in poland less than two years ago. they did all sorts of things to consolidate in themselves all forms of political power. they removed the independent leadership of the secret services. they took over the supreme court. they put their new finance minister personally in charge of hiring and firing in poland, and they didn't make up some high minded reason for that change.
the president said he signed that law about who is running media companies because all those darn journalists were biassed against him, so they had to go. thereafter they kept going. they tried on a new rule to limit the number of journalists who would be allowed into the parliament. those who were allowed in to cover the parliament would have to stay in a special room and not go out in the halls where they might run into an actual lawmaker they could talk to. oh, and also nobody would be allowed to film or take pictures anymore. that proposal sparked such a backlash, including days of street protests and a blockade of the parliamentary hall by opposition lawmakers that the ruling party eventually scrapped that plan. poland's president then said that the plan had only been intended to help journalists organize their work better. that's nice. you know, it's one thing, you know, whether or not you care about poland, but today after in recent weeks senate republicans
here briefly tried to institute a plan where american journalists would no longer be allowed to interview anybody in the halls of the u.s. senate. after a few weeks press briefings stopped almost altogether at the state department and where journalists have recently been restricted from using their cameras or even their audio recorders even at white house press briefings. today our news president went to poland where they have had radical curtailment of the press in the last couple of years, and standing beside the polish president our american president joined him in attacking the press. >> do you have that also? >> you see the face the polish president made? in polish that face means we did have that, mr. president, but then we just fired all the journalists. you should try it. you used to have that problem. in any year before this year
poland's media crackdown is the kind of thing you would expect a visiting american president in poland to raise a big stink about. not to make common cause with. still with us is nbc chief foreign correspondent richard engel. thank you for sticking around. i wanted to ask you about this part of the presidential visit today to poland. as a jushlist who works often in inhospitable places, do you think that it matters materially when an american president says stuff like that in a venue like that? does it have an impact, or is it just noise? >> no. i think it has an enormous impact. if you remember when president trump first got elected, and i'm sure you do, the international reactions around the world, the first most effusi skr e reactions to come in were from countries like poland, the far right government there, the far right government in hungary, far right leaders like maureen la pen, the brexit movement in the u.k.
they thought they had a new member of the club. they thought the u.s. now has someone just like us. sympathetic to our cause. whereas, the sort of let's call them other european countries were somewhat diplomatic, but in private and in private conversations i had with them, their hair was on fire. it does matter when you have the u.s. president come and share the stage with a government, with a country who is tearing apart press freedom and sort of jokes about, you know, how is the press going in your country. i think it sends an absolutely loud and clear message of encouragement that this kind of behavior is not only tolerable, but it's something that the united states and the u.s. president encourages. >> and, richard, looking ahead to the g-20 and to obviously everybody is very much focused on that bilateral meeting between trump and putin, which is going to happen in just a few
hours, what do you think we should be looking for in terms of the way trump is received in that stage tomorrow, from that important bilateral meeting, but in general at this summit. in terms of america's role in the world and how it's changed under this president. what are you going to be watching for? >> i want to watch the statements that come out of the meeting between putin and trump. you brought up a tiny example, but i think a really revealing one. lavrov, the russian foreign minister, was in the oval office, and then suddenly the russians release the russians will as well. i want to see who goes further. if the russians go further and further and start laying out all the things that they supposedly agreed upon, will the u.s. push
back? will the -- president trump said we -- or will that become possibly t a possibility? they could be big statements there. if this is not -- this is not the policy that trump agrees to, he is going to have to go out and say no. putin lied. we will see. >> richard engel, nbc's chief foreign correspondent. the host of the brand new series on assignment with richard engel, which starts tomorrow night in this very time slot, and we could not be more psyched about it. 9:00 eastern msnbc. super psyched for tomorrow. thank you for being here tonight. >> until tomorrow. >> all right. be right back. stay with us. i hate the outside. well, i hate it wherever you are. burn. "burn." is that what the kids are saying now? i'm so bored, i'm dead. you can always compare rates on progressive.com. oh, that's nice, dear. but could you compare camping trips? because this one would win. all i want to do is enjoy nature and peace and quiet! it's not about winning. it's about helping people find a great rate even if it's not with progressive. -ugh. insurance. -when i said "peace and quiet," did you hear, "talk more and disappoint me"?
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we reported last week on the president's new commission on election integrity. it's been making a lot of news over the past few days because the person in charge of it, kris kobach, and his decision to send this letter to elections officials in all 50 states asking those elections officials to give up personal information for every single voter registered to vote in all of those states. for every voter in every state he wants full names, addresses, date of birth, political party, the last four digits of your social security number, your voting history back to 2006, pretty much everything short of what you ate for breakfast every day you ever voted and whether or not you liked it. should all of those pieces of information really all be colatd in one convenient place for everybody in the country? really? before today, even as there has
been increasing upset over that request to the states, before today it had been an open question as to what exactly the white house intended to do with all this data, where they planned to keep all of this super personal information about every single voter in america. today we got our answer. "washington post" reports according to kris kobach all that voter information for every voter in the country will be stored on white house computers under the direction of a member of the vice president's staff. well, that's fine then. this past year we now know an attack that continued right up until days before the election, russian hackers tried to access voter data from individual states. they successfully broke into multiple states registration systems. that is a scary thing to hear about in terms of the integrity of our elections. what's always been the silver lining here, the thing that makes elections so hard to do in
this country is that every state has its own system, their own database where they store all their sensitive information about their voters in different ways. hackers would have to crack 50 different systems. that's been a safeguard thus far. and the feeling that that safeguard might be endangered is what's been rumbling underneath this news that the white house wants to put all that information about every single voter in all 50 states all in one place on a white house server. what could possibly go wrong? depending on how you count it, somewhere between 14 and 45 states have already said they will not turn over some or all of that data to kris kobach's office and mike pence's laptop. it's been an amazing, even entertaining scene to watch the responses from various states trying to sound more resistant and more upstanding in refusing to hand over their voters' personal information. but even as that has unfolded, something else happened the day kris kobach sent all those
letters to the states and that other thing is arguably more important than your social security number ending up in a mystery government database somewhere in mike pence's office. that other thing that happened that same day, that's next. award winning interface. award winning design. award winning engine. the volvo xc90. the most awarded luxury suv of the century. visit your volvo dealer today and get up to $4,500 in allowances.
before the 2000 election florida paid a private company to eliminate duplicates and take off dead people or felons who were on the rolls. the resulting list was full of mistakes. the state wrongly purged thousands of people off the roll who say should have been allowed to vote. disproportionately they purged african-american voters. because this was florida in 2000, because jeb's brother wound up winning by 537 votes the decision could have swayed not just the results in florida but arguably the presidency. that's where the white house's new pop-up election commission comes in. the same day that a letter went out to all 50 states asking for
voter information from everybody who has voted in every state, this letter also went out not from kris kobach and the pop-up commission but from the justice department. state election officials got this from the justice department informing them that justice is reviewing voter registration list maintenance procedures in each state to make sure states are in compliance with the law that decides who should be kicked off the voter rolls. justice department tells the states to explain how they're going to kick people off the rolls in every state in the country. we talked to officials in rhode island and california who told us that the justice department letter was a total surprise, out of nowhere. people who track this sort of thing say the letter is unprecedented. they're calling it a directive from the federal government to start purging voters off the rolls. it appears that the justice department is laying the groundwork for a lawsuit if states refuse. this is one to keep an eye on. we have seen big purges of the voting rolls before and we have seen it go very, very wrong. whether or not there is a national effort to push for that
sort of thing, we do not know, but watch this space. the department of justice pushing for that, again, is unprecedented and we don't know how this is going to work out. watch this space. that does it for us tonight. "msnbc live" is next. good morning. i'm dara brown in new york. it's 7:00 in the east and 4:00 out west. it is day 170 of the trump administration and the final day of the g20 summit in germany. president trump having meeting with allies as the u.s. grows more isolated. reaction in washington to the president's meeting with vladimir putin. the president called it tremendous, but did his demand for answers in the election hacking go far enough? show of force, u.s. bombers carry out an exercise in south korea to send a message to the north. we begin with politics and new questions surrounding