tv MSNBC Live MSNBC August 27, 2017 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
we continue our coverage of the situation in texas with harvey. and coming up, i'll have the opportunity to speak with the governor, greg abbott. to give you an example of what's taking place, we had gabe gutierrez speaking to a woman considering writing her social security number on her arm, because of the high floodwaters in her area. she's been evacuated to safety along the 610 loop. but this is what it is like for people in and around houston today, using whatever they can
to float down what would have been roadways to try to get to safety. part of the areas of the state received up to 17 inches of rain. the national weather service says some parts of this city could receive as much as 40 inches of water this week. emergency crews have been working around the clock to help those in need. the governor has asked people with any type of boats or high water vehicles to assist in rescue efforts across the state. we also just before 5:00 p.m. eastern time, the president announced he will travel to texas on tuesday, personally surveying some of the damage. we know the governor also enlisted for the disaster act, the presidential declaration. more than 50 counties, adding another 12 to it just a short time ago. more than 300,000 people are without power across the state. more flash flood emergencies have been enacted.
right now there's one in place for houston for roughly the next three hours. joining me now is the governor of texas, greg abbott. sir, thank you for taking time to join with me right now, because there are so many people concerned about everyone there in texas. what's the latest information you have on the number of evacuees and the people in harms way that you might have to evacuate? >> the number of evacuees is increasing. the number in harms way will increase also with the rain that is forecast to come. and that is exactly why, as governor, i've deployed 3,000 national guard as well as more than 1700 department of public safety officers. we've deployed more than 250 boats as well as 20 helicopters to assist in search and rescue missions. we have one primary goal, and that is to save lives. and we will work with the local authorities around the clock to make sure everything is done to
protect and save every life. >> governor, when it comes to loss of life and fatalities, what can you update us in terms of what you know is directly associated with harvey? >> i don't have any confirmation of the number that is directly associated with harvey. of course there have been reports of deaths. but it's premature what was and what may not have been caused by the hurricane or these storms. what really matters is our ongoing efforts to ensure that we do all we can to get everyone to safety. and we're working around the clock to achieve that goal. >> sir, earlier today you added more counties to the disaster declaration. update us on how many counties are fantastaffected and that wi fema assistance. >> sure. i updated the federal disaster declaration to 18 counties. that includes harris county, where houston is located. and that has been granted by the president. what that means is we have the full force of fema, and the
resources of fema at our disposal. and that will help us both save and aid the people who are in harms way now, but will also help us rebuild in the aftermath of this horrible tragedy. >> when we think about the announcement of the president coming on tuesday, have you spoken with the white house, and are you in favor of the president coming so soon to your state that will steel be dealing with flood issues, evacuee issues? i know the city of dallas has offered to open its mega shelter starting tuesday morning. is this the best time for his visit? >> i have spoken with the white house multiple times. i want you to know that the white house has been very engaged and very hands-on in helping the state of texas. the location where the president is flying into is a region that will be out of harms way, will not be associated with where the storm will be at that time. in fact it is going to be in an area where my texas department
of transportation has already been involved in the cleanup process, as well as the local authorities. and so there's part of the state that's on the pathway to healing while another part of the state is still suffering through damage. >> have you spoken directly with president trump, sir? >> yes, i've spoken with the president several times and he's been very supportive of our efforts. he's provided tremendous aid to us. . i've spoken with his fema director as well as the director of homeland security. they've been fully engaged and helpful. >> brock long, the administrator of fema, you've been in contact with him. i know the president wants a firsthand account of what the damage is like, obviously he'll have seen a lot of these images we're seeing now, rescue efforts in and around houston. do you think that taking him to areas that are already healing will help the president understand truly the devastation of the storm, not only for the weeks to come but for years to
come in your state? >> right. and, you know, the way you spoke about it is the way that brock spoke to me earlier about it today. he wanted to emphasize, this is a long game. it's going to take a long time to heal. i think both brock coming to town as well as the president coming to town, i want to say "town," to the state, they want to be able to see firsthand the devastation. as you rightly point out, it will take a long time for us to be able to rebuild. and we need and appreciate the role the federal government is playing. >> there have been a lot of dire warnings that you've had to give to make sure that people stay safe, that people are thinking about how to protect themselves for the hours and the days to come. one woman was talking before, cheryl, who has been evacuated from her home in the bel air area in the 610 loop, saying she's going to write her social security number on her arm. i know you've been advising that for people, as well as security officials advising if you go to
the attic to get away from floodwater, you have to take an axe with you to be sure you'll be able to get out of your home. what are they vulnerabilities that you're instructing people in texas right now that they may not be aware of in the hours and days to come? >> well, one obvious one is, don't get out on the street. we want to prevent people from getting out and driving around. that will just lead them into harms way, but also get in the way of first responders. we need clear paths for first responders. people need to know that there are large and growing rescue teams that will be working around the clock to evacuate people in need. people need to have a way of signaling that they are in a situation where they need to be rescued, so that they will get the attention of the rescue teams. >> what about the rural areas where people might not have had contact or direct links to some of the rescue operations that you've been performing? i know you've been asking for
good samaritan patrols. is there information you can give us on that? >> i can, because of these national guard members swells the texas department of public safety officers, as well as we have what's called texas task force 1 and 2 which are search and rescue teams. they're working in houston, but also they're working in a larger region. there's a large triangle that goes from corpus christi all the way to austin, texas, over to houston, texas. and then in the middle of that triangle is the more rural part. we're working in the rural regions as well, in part search and rescue to help people out, in part to rebuild, in part to prevent people from getting into harms way. >> sir, we know also not only have the forces for what you've used for the national guard been working round the clock, but your rescue officials are getting coordinated help from other states. i saw uniformed officers from salt lake city. i also know our neighbors to the
south from mexico have come in to help you. how important has that been in terms of neighboring states and also neighboring countries like mexico to assist in the needs you have right now? >> it has been very important. my office received a phone call from president pena knnieto's office. we've been in contact with officials from around the country. there are ten states across the country that have already provided resources including every state that borders texas like new mexico, arizona, louisiana. i spoke to governor cuomo in new york. new york has sent resources to texas. you mentioned utah, tennessee. i'm sorry, i'm parorobably leav out a few. ohio. a few others have helped out. we appreciate them so much. >> what is the tone you expect from the president when he comes to visit texas and the devastation? the tone we've seen on twitter
today is a little back and forth from the president, especially when it comes to the neighbor that you're grateful for and hearing from the president of mexico, he was attacking mexico earlier today, saying it's one of the highest crime nations in the world and we must have the wall, mexico will pay for it through reimbursement slash other. what tone do you expect from the president when he comes from? >> unfortunately i think it will be one that he will see great damage. he will be i think going close to where the hurricane came across land. and there's great devastation there. and he may even be able to see the flooding that's taken place in houston, texas. and it's just total devastation. and it will break his heart. and it will humble him like it humbles all of us. and i know it will spur him to be very helpful to our fellow texans. >> sir, i'm going to let you get back to work. i hope you do get a minute of rest as well so that you can be prepared for the days and months and years to come. governor greg abbott, thanks
very much, i really appreciate you taking time to talk to us. >> sure, thank you. i want to go now to the team that's been tracking this deadly storm that caused all of the damage we've been seeing this fresh video from. we have correspondents that are throughout the area in the coastal areas of texas. our catie beck who has been reporting to us from florida. catie, it's been interesting to talk to the governor, and to talk about the president and what tone he will strike. you've been speaking to people that are happy about this news that the president is coming. >> reporter: yes, i think they're happy for the attention, they're happy to get resources. in terms of personal happiness, i think most people here, they're on kind of fragile nerves at this point. they're bracing for another round of weather. they're worried about the river flooding here in victoria. they're worried about whether they're ever going to get their electricity back on. most people have been in the dark for the last two days at
least. it's been rather warm here in texas, and supplies are limited. we saw long, long lines at the gas station today, emotional folks there wondering what they're going to do next if this gas runs out. we are currently in the parking lot of a barbecue restaurant that was completely destroyed by the storm. fortunately the same restaurant has figured out a way to open up what is a mobile food truck in the parking lot. and there are people that have been coming here for hours in the rain, waiting outside, braving the elements, it's not raining too hard right now but it has been for the last couple of hours. these folks have been waiting for long periods of time to try and just get a hot meal. it is really difficult when you're inside, you're eating canned food all the time. it's a struggle. they've been in the dark, they've been waiting, and now they're waiting in the rain for a chance at a hot meal. this is one of those people, linda anderson, she's been in
the dark for a couple of days. lynn, your home is right in the path of the river if it floods. how worried are you? >> that is our worry now. we've made it through this, and our home flooded in the flood of 1998. it was october 20th, '98. the only time our home has ever flooded. that put us in the 100-year flood zone, plain. >> reporter: and you had three feet of water, right? >> yes, yes. >> reporter: can you imagine going through that again? >> well, i'm imagining it right now. i'm trying to be positive, but, you know, you have to be prepared. so that's what we're facing at this moment, is trying to watch what we can, no electricity. things are in the loop as far as the reports, and the river now, we physically walked over and looked at it, it's high. we at least know what to do this time. >> reporter: how much are you looking forward to this, get
something to eat? >> oh, it's going to be good, having hot food. we drove to halletsville today where we heard they had electrici electricity. our biggest obstacle over the last couple of days was no coffee. we did all the other things but we didn't think about coffee. we drove to halletsville for coffee and stocked up. we're drinking it cold, that's okay. >> we talked to folks in the gas station who are doing the same thing. they told us after a while this starts to wear on you, your nerves get put to the test. >> reporter: it does. you just have to turn it over to a higher power and let him lead you the right way. you have to stay positive, do what you know you can do, and go from there. >> reporter: you're stocked up, you've got enough food and supplies? this next round, if the water comes up, which they're
predicting it might, your house is right in the way. >> yes. definitely they're saying it could probably be, the last i heard, more water than the flood of '98. so if we got three feet then, we'll get more now. it means moving furniture. we're lucky to have a two-story home, so we can haul everything upstairs, or try, to the best of your ability. >> reporter: you're in surprisingly good spirits. we'll let you get your barbecue. >> stay positive, anybody out there going through something like this, just stay positive is all you can do, and do what you can. >> reporter: thank you very much for sharing your story with us. that's some of what we're hearing, thomas, people, like i said, waiting in the rain just at the chance to get a hot meal. >> i certainly like her attitude and her energy, about dealing with this. but when it comes, i'm curious, the food truck pricing, catie, right now, how are these prices for people? right now they the food truck,
the trucks there, they have an opportunity to, for lack of a better term, cash in. are they being fair about knowing the people they're dealing with, how are they treating people? explain that. >> reporter: yeah, it's amazing, actually, i think everybody has been exceptionally fair in terms of realizing the situation that people are in. i'm pretty sure if someone here says, look, i just don't have the money to pay, they would likely give it to them for free. the owner of the restaurant started here back in 1952, it's been here a long time. he has a vested interest in this community. at the gas station, although people's nerves were high, there was some agitation, there was a system of fairness, people would say, hey, if you don't have the money, i'll pay for your gas. you see that kind of solidarity when tragedies occur. i think at this point everybody is sort of in the same boat, waiting for what's next and hoping for the best but expecting the worst. >> we do hope that at this time,
the better angels in all of us come out to help those in need. catie beck in victoria, thank you very much. shanna mendiola has been tracking the updates for harvey and join me now with more on the path and what people can expect over the next she ever hours. shanna, is there new information or is this the same producer of water that it's been over the last several hours? >> that's right, thomas, unfortunately it's doing the same thing. our latest update shows the center of circulation, 25 miles northwest of victoria, texas, that's pretty much where it's been all day. the speed of the movement is two miles per hour, slow enough to be like a person walking down the street. it's not making any moves. the wind has died down and now it's a tropical storm. we won't see the effects of the rain go away for several days. it does make a turn towards the water. that's a problem, because it will keep this storm going in the form of a tropical storm.
those winds will increase as we head to maybe wednesday or thursday of this week. so several days of rain, again, still the major concern as we head into the weekend of next weekend. might even be seeing rain on saturday. again, we need a steering mechanism and it's just not moving anywhere. since friday, the major impacts, the first major hurricane to hit sin wilma in 2005. we had as much rain in alison, but in half the time. over 50 inches of rain is possible by the end of it from this storm. it's going to set some records. >> it's amazing to think of that much water coming into the area. >> it has nowhere to go. >> these are the prediction models right now. we hope it comes in less and in some cases it could come in more. >> we're seeing breaks in between, that may throw people off a little bit. it's not offever, we'll see
circulation over the gulf every single day. water amounts will go down, but you're adding to the amount of rain already on the ground. there's the flooding information. i do want to take a look at what we do expect in terms of rain totals. even houston going up in the day to almost 20 inches of rain already. so that, again, is showing you just how wet the ground is, and again, the flood stages are going up in those rivers, really nowhere for that water to go, as well as, again, areas towards the east, lafayette, louisiana, looking at less rain. again, the bullseye will be 50 inches. i'll give you an update on why you shouldn't be getting out there on the roads. as much as two feet of water is enough to push a car along the road and lose control. water is not something to play around with, a number one killer in natural form. we'll have to watch that and give people updates on that as well. >> thank you very much, shanna. we'll continue coverage on
harvey and the devastating effects with flooding and the saturation of already wet areas. and the systems that are in place in and around texas, how they're handling it. as you see right there, there are cars that are barely making it through the road systems. we've seen rescue operations taking place in the thousands today, coordinated by officials, and also good samaritan patrols. we'll switch gears as well, update on politics in a moment too, with president trump versus his party. and there's a growing rift with the president and fellow republicans reacting to his latest policy, and that just all happened on friday. back in a moment. david. what's going on? oh hey! ♪ that's it? yeah. ♪ everybody two seconds! ♪ "dear sebastian, after careful consideration of your application, it is with great pleasure that we offer our congratulations on your acceptance..." through the tuition assistance program, every day mcdonald's helps more people go to college.
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governor, john kasich, among many republicans calling out president trump for his pardon, the latest example of a rift between the president and his party. house majority leader paul ryan's press office put out a statement. we should not allow anyone to believe that responsibility is diminished by this pardon. ryan last week said the president messed up in his handling of charlottesville. this morning secretary of state rex tillerson was asked about the global backlash from those comments as he travels the world. take a listen. >> i don't believe anyone doubts the american people's values or the commitment of the american government or the government's agencies to advancing those values and defending those values. >> and the president's values? >> the president speaks for himself,s chris. >> are you separating yourself from that, sir? >> i've spoken. i've made my own comments to our
values as well in a speech i gave to the state department this past week. >> you can make your own assessment of chris wallace's reaction to that right there. joining me now, cnbc political analyst david corn, and chris lu, former labor secretary, currently a senior fellow at the university of virginia's miller center, and a former aide to karl rove and former spokesman to president george h.w. bush, and a reporter and covers the presidency. david, let me talk about rex tillerson. he wouldn't categorically speak to the president's values or even that the president is speaking for all of us, americans, in one unified voice. >> it was a stunning moment. the secretary of state is one of the two top cabinet picks, that and defense secretary. here you have him saying that the president doesn't speak for america, he doesn't represent
american values, no one in the world should look at him as the embodiment of american values or an advocate for american values. even republicans who didn't like barack obama said that when was he elected, it said something about america. and george bush and ronald reagan, republicans and democrats, bill clinton, have always tried to represent what they thought -- i didn't always agree, but what they thought were the best qualities of america. and here is rex tillerson, basically throwing the president, his boss, under the bus, saying you should regard what he says as his own notions. it shows you how far we've come in only a couple of months into the trump presidency. >> it does feel like longer. >> i know. >> if we look at the calendar, it is still only august. giancar giancarlo, i want to talk to you about the division we've seen among republicans since the
inauguration. the categories of newness they've had to deal with when it comes to presidential norms. in working for karl rove, he's been painted as such a boogieman through the bush years, and we've seen actual action from the president that paints him categorically in bigot or racist categories. how is he supposed to push back on that when his first reaction to charlottesville, the way that it was, then the press conference at trump tower, the arpaio pardon, how do people get a better impression that that's not correct? >> the best way that the president of the united states can push back is by changing his demeanor, changing his tone, and changing the way he leads this country. and many republicans, myself included, have been nothing short of disastrously disappointed at his conduct in office on a human level. and i think his comments
post-charlottesville are a testament to that. you mentioned karl rove. karl rove was as damning of the arpaio pardon today in the morning news shows as i've ever heard. when you lose karl rove, you lose a lot of people in the republican party. this president needs to change his behavior and change it quickly. >> meanwhile, there's the new forces that have been in the white house, and danielle, you've been covering it, what it means to have a steve bannon in there or a gorka or stephen miller who is still there, who is reported through "the washington post" having been an advocate to get arpaio this pardon. what type of congress and sentiment on capitol hill do you think that the president is going to face when they all come back, you know, to start the new school year? >> well, i mean, i think that after charlottesville and after the arpaio pardon, that there has been sort of a freeing of
republican members of congress where they feel like they have a little more license to criticize the president and to talk specifically about what they disagree with. we saw paul ryan came out and talked about how he disagreed very specifically with the arpaio pardon. but still, i mean, there are a lot of people across the country who wanted arpaio to be pardoned. we knew from trump's words in phoenix earlier this week that he was planning to do this and that he was going to get some support on that. >> he teased it up. >> that's right. >> when we think about, chris, secretary tillerson in that interview with chris wallace, kind of adding to the voices that have been collective in a rebuke to president trump in reference directly to charlottesville, with the fact that it was white house economic adviser gary cohn telling "the financial times", "this administration can and do better
in specifically and unequivocally condemning these groups. i've come under tremendous pressure both to resign and remain in my position. i feel compelled to voice my distress over the events of the last two weeks." from what you know, chris, in your service in government, have cohn and tillerson painted a larger "x" on themselves to be evicted than what may have consisted before, say, till tillerson's appearance on the sunday shows or cohn talking to "the financial times"? >> i'm amused when i read these comments from people like cohn or rex tillerson. we've heard these statements of concern. so far these are empty words. until one of these people takes a moral stand and says, enough is enough, i'm not serving anymore, i don't read too much into this. whether it is tillerson or mcmaster or mnuchin, they are
all enabling the core behavior, the bad policies of this administration. a lot of this just feels like self-serving words to appease their friends. the truth is cohn is adding his reputation to this president. enough is enough. they need to stand up. while i give them some credit for speaking out, i don't take this that seriously. >> giancarlo, do you think any of them think they're doing a more admirable job by kind of rolling with the punches and sticking with it, to have some influence on the inside, because they think in leaving that it makes it more unstable than it already is? >> i mean, i agree with what you just said. were gary c ochlcohn, were rex tillerson were to leave, who would replace them? they're honorable men who would hopefully have effect on this parking lot. you would much rather have them inside the tent, working to
modulate the behavior of the commander in chief, than outside being critics. we heard that the president was distressed by the interview that mr. cohn gave. that's a good thing, in my opinion. you want the president to be distressed when one of his top advisers speaks his mind. >> who was the grown aner? david? >> that was me. i understand the argument. at the same time, they are the enablers of donald trump. you always keep making this argument that i got to stay, i got to stick in to make these better. i spoke to one republican who is a critic of donald trump who says, they believe that&should leave except for defense secretary mattis because maybe he's the one who will panot pas on the president's order if he does something rash.
gary cohn's comment was dismissing. he said he was dismayed by what happened in charlottesville. he didn't say he was dismayed by what the president did. they're still letting trump be trump and have his finger on the button and his hand on the tiller of the ship of state. >> we know, making its way around the social media universe, there was a video of the general, mattis, that you referred to, saying he wants military officers to hold the line until our country gets back to understanding and respecting each other. we're still trying to track down the origination of that video was, who the shooter was, so we can show it to you. check it out on twitter because i can't show it to you right now. david, thanks so much, thanks to our audio ops for picking up your groan, because i love it when guests groan. thank you so much and good luck,
giancarlo, to your 10-year-old for soccer season. everybody, we'll get you on the ground in houston where we've been witnessing the unprecedented level of flooding. what the governor is doing, how they're coordinating with fema to send in rescue teams in response, but also asking for public support for all of this, for people who have boats or high water vehicles -- excuse me, for vehicles that can travel through high water to help out here, because people are in need of assistance in certain areas where they just weren't anticipating it. we're back with which more after this. liberty mutual stood with me
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the number of evacuees is increasing. of course the number in harms way will increase also with the rain that is forecast to come. and that is exactly why, as governor, i've deployed 3,000 national guard as well as more than 1700 department of public safety officers. we've deployed more than 250 boats as well as 20 helicopters to assist in search and rescue missions. we have one primary goal, and that is to save lives. >> there we have texas governor
greg abbott who joined us just a short time ago when we spoke at the top of the hour for what his state is facing right now. houston continues to see catastrophic flooding in its area. tropical storm harvey dumping a deluge of rainfall onto residents who are struggling to form a path out of this storm. now there have been 18 counties populated by 17 million people that are covered by president trump's disaster declaration. we also know the president will be traveling to texas on tuesday, the governor saying that the president would be surveying an area that was already healing, so a spot that would be safe for him to get a firsthand account of, and also get kind of an idea of what people there are going through. the governor said he expects it to humble president trump in going there to witness it. we'll see for ourselves.
ray valleja joins us. >> reporter: you can see cars are trying to get through 610 right now. all the water that has swamped over this, all the lanes of traffic are covered in a pond of water. this isn't the only highway in houston that looks just like this. if you look next to me, this is a service road. you can barely actually see that service road. the truck, there's a truck right down there. we talked to a woman that was rescued from that big rig. she said she turned the car off and it started sucking the truck right back down into the water, she thought she was going to drown. another citizen driving by helped her out of the car with rope, pulled her through the water onto dry land. we've been seeing these stories in the communities past these trees, some of those neighborhoods in there submerged
in water. i'm not just talking about the cars and parking lots. i'm talking about the houses around there as well. folks have been running to get their stuff, trying to get as much as they can out of there and into hotels. this is the problem we're talking about, getting to hotels that are on dry land because of highways that look like this. to give you an idea how much help are calling in, the 911 center has been maxed out. they've had so many calls, they're asking people to stop calling unless it's a life or death situation. for some people it has been. there have been thousands of rescues here, many more expected as the rain, while it looks like it's stopped, will continue to fall in the coming days. thomas? >> ray, thanks so much, reporting from houston for us, i appreciate it. earlier today nbc's catie beck had an emotional conversation with a small business owner who endured the last major storm that texas suffered, back in 1998. living through what they're living through now, harvey, takes him back to a time he
would rather not remember. take a listen. >> i'm really worried that they've been talking about the flood being as bad as it was in '98. [ crying ] in '98 we had almost two feet of water going through. we didn't have any way to get -- i had a bunch of my brother's crew come in, because we found out at 9:00 that morning that houses were floating. and i was at work. we didn't even know. it was kind of a quick deal, because all the rain fell in san antonio at one time. it was just a fluke. anyway, my brother showed up with a bunch of cattle trailers and his whole plant shift. we shoved as much as we could into them. then we had to get out because the water was already through. >> reporter: roger, you're worried this is going to happen again. >> yes. i've only had six hours sleep in three days because we've been preparing for it and fixing our
house. we're in the middle of some remodelling and construction in our house. we had to hurry up and get the windows boarded up. >> reporter: you told me you have six children. >> i have six children. we lost one in 2001, my daughter was 5. >> reporter: you've had devastation after devastation. >> yes. a lost my mom, my dad, and my daughter in a year and a half's time after the flood. it's just one thing after another. i own the building there, close to the river. but i'm trying to relocate my business. and i've been slowly working on that with every time we get some money. >> reporter: if this river floods, which it possibly could, what is that going to mean for you? >> i could lose a lot. and i'll have a lot of customers that really are going to be upset. but, you know, this hurricane is something else. one minute you don't know if you're going to live through it or if your house is going to fall on you or whatever. we rode it out, so we could try
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we're back with new developments to talk about. the probe of the alleged russian meddling in the presidential election and whether or not they intersected has been at the four front of the special counsel investigation of bob mueller. the nation has focused on tropical storm harvey right now, but we do know robert mueller has made his move, serving subpoenas to public relations firms linked to former trump campaign manager paul manafort. mike i ssikoff, charlie sykes, d former vermont attorney general chris cofen.
charlie is not here anymore, it's not like he ditched us or anything but it was a mistake, that he was in there. mike, let's talk about bob mueller's investigation, where it stands right now, the strategy expected for going after people that worked with manafort in the past, specifically 2011, 2012, and dealing with ukraine. >> right. this goes back to disclosures from last year during the campaign, that a nonprofit in europe was set up and hired, through manafort and his deputy, rick gates, a pair of high powered lobbying firms in washington, mercury group and the podesta group. and the disclosures that that nonprofit was essentially being funded by a pro-russia ukrainian political party that manafort
had been a consultant for. so it raises the question of whether this was a violation of the foreign agents registration act, because at the time manafort and gates arranged for these firms to lobby in washington, he did not register as a foreign agent. neither did the firms at the time, saying they were relying on manafort's representations that this was a nonprofit and not in fact a political party which would have required the registration. that's the essence of that particular case, that mueller is pursuing. i should point out that it is relatively rare for -- but not unprecedented, but relatively rare for the justice department to bring criminal prosecutions based on failure to register under the foreign agents registration act. usually the firms retroactively register and pay a fine.
so how far this goes is unclear. >> usually with paul manafort and mike flynn, it's look this way, look this way, the fact that both had to retroactively register as foreign agents. chris, do you think that's a legal route to take for bob mule and her his team? >> certainly failure to register as a foreign agent, if done under willful circumstances, is a felony subject to a five-year penalty. it's clearly a serious crime, a serious statute. whether it is often prosecuted or not isn't the point. it is an appropriate statute to bring under particular circumstances. and mueller will investigate those, and if there's evidence of a willful violation of a type that warrants bringing those charges, he will bring those, and he would be justified in doing that. >> we've got "the wall street journal" reporting he's investigating whether flynn's attempted to obtain hillary
clinton's e-mails from russian hackers during the election. if there is any kind of connective tissue evidence of that, or his son, mick flynn jr., being involved in that sketchy activity, how bad is th? >> well, the whole thing is bad. this is a russian derived operation, not a trump operation. the russian intelligence operations. we think of subpoenas and mueller talking to these people and trying to get him to talk. the other part of the occasions he occasions -- equations here, we understand what methods they did. we cannot put anything in place to stop that. we may have pieces of this operation, it is still active that's not burnt and dried up. if you look at espionage cases, if you go back to the famous fbi
that worked for the russianruss one of the things they offered is to give details of the other people's operation for immunity. >> this is a big message to the people of what can come to the white house. >> thank you very much, back with much more as we return to our coverage of tropical storm harvey.
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flooded with water. what are people doing the most, are they apart of the evacuation plan or shelter is in place? >> reporter: i think there is frankly a confusion here, i am standing in the middle of interstate 45. i want to show you why. take a look behind me, you can see this is completely covered at this point. there is a car that tried to make and did not. a truck submerged and the 18 wheeler could not make it through here. you are toobt sabout to see wha have been watching here all day. you can see people coming northbound. there is standing water here and people are rushing through that, which is probably not the best of ideas. what you got is people going the wrong direction on this highway to try to get through. we have seen a lot of people coming back and forth, going
again the wrong direction on the major side. speaking to the desperation here as people are trying to get around. they already conducted more than 3,000 rescues today and say they are expected for this to continue today. >> jay gray reporting for us in houston. i appreciate it. i appreciate you at home. stay with us, we are going to cobit continue to follow the developments out of texas in the next hour on msnbc. stay with us.
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especially is hard hit. that's america's fourth largest city is under water right now. we know the governor enacted a declaration for certain counties. there are certain areas that are receiving this much of 17 inches of rain. some areas of the city can see historic flooding of roughly totality of 50 inches by thursday. two more feet of rain could fall between now and then. the mayor of houston is saying that 2,000 emergency calls have came in. emergency crews have been working around the clock. president trump announcing several hours ago. we'll travel to texas on tuesday to support areas devastated by harvey. right now without power across the state.