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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  April 3, 2018 3:00am-6:00am PDT

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wouldn't be quite as much of an opening. >> oprah winfrey, donald trump, all running. >> quite a lineup, my friends. are you running? >> no. >> mike allen, thank you very much. of course we'll be reading axios am in just a while. you too can sign up for the newsletter by going to axios.com. >> that does it for us this morning. "morning joe" starts right now. >> i want to thank the white house historical association and all of the people that worked so hard with melania, with everybody to keep this incredible house or building or whatever you want to call it, because it really is no name for it. it is special. and we keep it in tiptop shape. we call it sometimes tippy top shape and it's a great, great place. >> well, the markets are feeling a little less tippy top shedding hundreds of points on the
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president's trade war and repeated attacks on amazon. then there's his authoritarian trifecta. going after the quote unquote he writes justice department and congratulating another strongman leader after democratic election most people don't think was terribly democratic. mika is off in a family matter. joe will be with us in a moment. we've got national affairs analyst, republican strategist and political commentator, and the president of the council on foreign relations and author of the book "a world in disarray." so markets overseas are seeing losses this morning following the latest massive selloff on wall street to kick off the new quarter. the dow fell as many as 758 points yesterday before trimming its losses to close down 458. the nasdaq was the hardest hit shedding nearly 3%. futures looking slightly like they're up this morning. stocks suffered heavy losses on
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the combination of fears of a trade war and the tech industry getting hit with new regulations. china announced yesterday it had implemented tariffs on 128 types of u.s. imports in response to president trump's tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. meanwhile shares of amazon hammered yesterday as president trump continued his attacks on twitter against the massive online retailer. he tweeted quote, only our money losing post office makes money with amazon. they lose a fortune and they will be paying. >> as we told you yesterday, while the post office is losing a fortune, the president is wrong to blame amazon for that. federal regulators have found the postal service's contract has been profitable for the post office. the losses are mostly due to pension and health care costs
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and not its deal to deliver packages for the internet retailer. so joe, good morning. there's a ton in there. the president for the moment you all went off the air yesterday just went on a twitter ram pauj a -- rampage and covered a lot of ground. >> he went on a tirade and peppered in false information and willie, how ironic that this is what the president does after praising sin clair's leaders for sending out basically fake news scripts and forcing people just like the old days of the soviet union to read those skrimts or be fired. but i think what we saw yesterday is that there is a cost if not for the president, even though there are polls that suggest there is a cost for the president doing this, but there is a cost actually for the rest of americans. autocratic impulses do not align with free markets, do not align with constitutional republics
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like our own and you saw billions of dollars wiped out yesterday for retirees, for people that are investing in retirements, for people that have college funds. all because the president decided to tweet against a man who owns the paug wowashington . the markets have dropped 4% this year and they've dropped not because of any fundamental changes in the economy but because of the president's own erratic behavior on twitter and on tariffs. >> yeah, and i think, joe, i mean, certainly there are two different pieces othis and i'm happy to get a lot of blame on trump. you've got a couple things going on that provide a little bit more of the larger picture. one is that the markets spent a lot of 2017 being able to absorb the volatility donald trump brings to our economic system and they expected a great payoff
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with corporate tax cuts and now they're looking down the road with nothing to kind of cushion the blow. there's no economic relief further in sight. if there was some chance there was going to be a giant infrastructure bill, nobody really believes that's going to happen and so the markets now, it's like trump alone and his actions kind of stark relief against that backdrop and then you do have a few things that aren't about the fundamentals of the economy, but go to the tech sector more broadly having gotten itself in a whole bunch of trouble, some of that related to some activity back in 2016, 2015, but more broadly you've got this sense that democrats and republicans alike are more likely to potentially regulate companies like twitter and facebook as well as google and the leaders in the tech sector. you put all that together it's a pretty nasty stew. >> yeah, it really is. and richard, all politics is
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local as we like to say. remember back in the early 1980s when some all time neo cons were attacking ronald reagan when he talked about importing grains from the soviet union. here we have on the other side of the equation, you have a president of the united states actually without really even knowing what he's doing getting engaged in a trade war because it feels right, because it feeds an instinct that he's had for 30, 40 years and how strange that he's hurting a lot of the same people who helped elect him president. a lot of farmers across the midwest, especially in iowa are being punished because china did exactly what people like you knew china was going to do. they responded to donald trump's tariffs with tariffs of their own. >> shocking. yeah, it's going to hurt not just american exporters, agriculture and otherwise, but also those american firms that have to use imports and that's
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the results of say the steel and aluminum tariffs the other day. it's as if the administration sees tariffs and more broadly protectionism as an abstract concept rather than as actually a policy tool that has real implications for american producers and consumers both directly and when others retaliate. it's just not being thought through, and it's one of the reasons the market is beginning to tank. this administration has got to be really careful. they inherited a strong market. they added all sorts of fiscal stimulus because of tax cuts and spending increases but now among other things, the protectionism they're going to bring down what was their single strongest calling card. >> just to follow up on that. i was going to say just to follow up on that, plus the instability of this administration with all its turnover. as he was saying, the market responded well to trump because he did have a strong cabinet and
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that when he was elected people trust that. now with all this turnover, it's really causing a lot of problems within the markets as well. >> it really is. and willie, i just keep waiting for my conservative friends and we don't need a whole lot, but maybe a few could really come out on capitol hill and speak out strongly. my conservative friends need to speak out strongly against these tariffs, that undermine free trade, that distort the marketplace. the president's attacks on job creators. you look at his attacks on amazon, and you look at his attacks on other companies that he doesn't like. this is a president of the united states doing exactly what free market conservatives like myself have always said we don't want the federal government to do. you don't want the federal government picking winners and losers in the free marketplace. that's exactly what donald trump is doing and according to the
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latest reports coming out overnight, he plans to continue to attack amazon, but what he doesn't realize is, is when he strikes out at amazon he causes -- he causes the entire tech sector to go down. and he's impacting people, you know, people's jobs and it's just like these tariffs, when he does something that he thinks feels good and feeds a political twinge, a misguided political twinge, he costs retirees and he costs people trying to set aside money in college funds, you know, just collectively, hundreds of billions of dollars. >> well, it's one of the many costs of having a personality driven president which is as you say, he's scratching an itch. he feels that washington post covers him unfairly so he has to go after jeff bezos, but richard, as joe said this has
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real world implications and if you're muddying the waters and if you really want to worry about the post office losing money there are things that you could do that have nothing to do with amazon, but what he's doing right now is picking on one of the most popular companies in america, in the world that people have a relationship with and not just hurting amazon, but if you look down the front page of the wall street journal, this slide in tech stocks yesterday, apple, netflix, all the way down. >> and it's hurting biotech stocks. there's technology across the board and joe made a good point. it's people with 401(k)s, retirement plan, it's a slow motion crisis but it's coming. it's going to be pension plans. we've got all sorts of states, municipalities and they're not even close to being able to meet their obligations to working class americans and this is going to hit hard. all these pension plans are based on things like 7, 8%
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annual returns in the market. those days are over and the sort of thing the president's going to do is actually going to accelerate the arrival where states and cities are not going to be able to meet their obligations to retired workers. >> yeah, it's interesting, the president's poll numbers went up one or two points to maybe 41, 42% on one or two polls and suddenly you saw screaming headlines that the president's roaring back and the president, this, that -- it's really not. i think i read somebody from real clear politics saying at the time, hey, listen, 42% is within the median range. the guy's been between 38 and 42% as low as 35, 34%. well, of gallop's latest poll's come out and he's sitting at 39%. again, about a third of the country, 35% of the country sometimes 40% of the country approve of what he's doing and the overwhelming majority of americans do not.
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i -- and again, all of this chaos, people seeing the markets falling down, the markets falling almost 5% so far for the year. all of the churning and again, it seems like this president is just not interested in getting any sort of momentum. he -- he wants to build up and tear down and have chaos every day. >> right. well, and again, i just think that you think as you look toward the midterm elections and you -- we've seen some of the data that we've seen over the course of the off years and other special elections we've looked at where republicans were even in the braces after the tax cut was passed. republicans found it hard to capitalize on that politically. and as i said there's not much -- when you look at the legislative agenda between now and november, there really is none. we have confirmation hearings
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for a couple of big jobs but it's not -- the combination of a long and sustained stretch of anticipated economic volatility and chaos matched with a long stretch of little or nothing happening on the legislative front leads almost towards what people have been expecting which is republicans getting hammered at the midterms and yet president trump does not seem to even in the most self-interested way look at that as the potential consequence he's facing. you would think that would discipline his behavior to some extent knowing that a democratic controlled house of representatives would pose a threat to his presidency. might bring on impeachment hearings and so on and yet he can't even discipline himself even with his own skin at stake during this game. yesterday rewe reported on anchors being required to read a
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script about fake news. that got widespread attention after dead spin published a video montage showing anchors echoing the same lines in the designated script. in a memo sent to sin clair employees yesterday, the senior vice president of news wrote, the critics are now upset about our we find it curious we'd be attacked for asking our news people to remind their audiences that unsubstantiated stories exist on social media. president trump tweeted his defense of sin clair writing so funny to watch fake news networks among the most dishonest groups i have ever dealt with criticize sin clair broadcasting for being biased. sin clair is far superior to cnn and even more fake nbc which is a total joke. the sin clair broadcast group which skews conservative owns or
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operates more than 190 stations including 22 nbc affiliates. two of those are in states that voted for trump. the company is also seeking to acquire dozens more by purchasing tribune media. let's bring in our senior media reporter for politico. it's good to see you. i think a lot of people woke up and heard about sin clair a couple of days ago when this video was making the rounds but talk about the basis of who they are, what they do and how much television they control and potentially could control going forward. >> that's right. in some ways sin clair has flown under the radar and that might be a lot of national media focuses on other national media. we cover news organizations that are big in washington and new york city. the thing about sin clair they have reached a broad swath of the country. a large portion of the country
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that voted for donald trump. if their acquisition of tribune media goes through they'll own about 230 stations and have penetration about 72% of households in the united states. so what's got a lot of people concerned about this is not just that tribune is owning a lot of stations but also that tribune is known to force local stations around the country to people would assume are being run by people in their communities. this can include segments that push a conservative line. it includes commentary by former trump official and in addition, they're forcing news anchors to read these promos that talk about fake news and seem to echo the talking points of trump that he uses to undermine legitimate news organizations. >> and people defended the clip, they say sin clair is an
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antidote to generations, they believe of biased news from the other side and as sin clair said yesterday in its statement, they said look, what we're saying is there's a lot of unsubstantiated fake news out there and we're here to keep our eye on it. does that hold water for you? >> another thing that they mentioned in that memo was saying -- mentioning stories like pizza gate which was a bogus conspiracy theory. i don't think anyone in the news media if anchors said we're not going to run unsubstantiated conspiracy theories on tv. i think the problem was when sin clair started saying news organizations not just stuff on social media could be biased and they could run fake stories and they don't do their due diligence, i think that's what got a lot of journalists up in arms. one of the things we're seeing right now which is striking to me is some local stations and some local anchors are pushing back a bit. we saw a station just last night
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in madison, a sin clair affiliate in madison say they weren't going to run this promo. some other anchors also jumped in on social media on twitter and facebook and raised concerns about the pro mamos and media consolidation more broadly. >> this really does -- talk about, if you will, richard, what this sounds like to you where you have somebody that's trying to get favors with the president, with the white house, sending out scripts to journalists all over the country and not only do they have must-read -- must-perform segments but more disturbingly to a lot of these anchors, they are scripts that they are forced to read, that set up the segments, that frame is segments and so many of these anchors we're starting to find out believe that it's just pure propaganda that they're pushing to promote donald trump.
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>> what it looks like when you look at the map, joe, it's a defacto international television network and it's one that's id logically fuelled in which the local fill yates have precious little independence or integrity and they're forced to tow the company line or they lose their jobs and this to me is at the opposite end of what journalism is meant to be. it's meant to be a check and a balance, not a cheering squad, so this seems to me fundamentally at odds with the dna of this country and our politics. i've got to tell you, this has got to make people uncomfortable. >> well and the vice president of sin clair said it's curious they're being attacked. we are trying to figure out any example of newspapers or television stations that actually gave people scripts and ordered them to read it. it would be like the new york
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times going to nick kristoff saying this is the op ed that you're going to put in the newspaper this week and you're going to sign your name to it and go. and these local anchors, what they're doing is they're employing the people who really are the most trusted faces in news, and those are america's local anchors. >> absolutely. and with those local anchors they're already frustrated enough that they have to do so much reporting on donald trump and the national news just because it overtakes so much of the national discussion, so when they do get a chance to do local reporting it makes it even more curious for them and it's harder for them to show that they don't have a bias and they just want to give the local news. and i guess, michael, to you, how much of a concern is it now for these local reporters that they're going to now seeing that they're kind of in some bias mode and they're not really being there for their communities? >> right. i mean, i saw one anchor at a rochester station who was responding to people on social
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media and wrote a pretty passionate facebook post saying how they were concerned that this damaged the reputation of not just this journalist but that the station, something they had worked on for years and i just looked at her twitter feed and you lad a lot of people in her community saying you know, why were you reading this, why would you do this? if you would read this thing that they put in front of you that you didn't agree with, what else are you going on air and saying that you didn't agree with. so not only did they invite a lot more scrutiny, especially trying for this acquisition of tribune but i think they may have damaged some of the trust that they have in local communities. what we see in polls is that americans most likely trust their local newscasts and i think people expect when they're looking at local news, weather, sports and traffic that they're not getting conservative opinion injected in there from somewhere in maryland and that's the problem. these executives in maryland are
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telling local newscasts what to put in their broadcasts and it's frustrated a lot of stations for a couple of years. in seattle and washington, d.c., news channels, local stations have said that they felt coverage got slanted once sin clair took over, once they exerted this type of heavy hand nationally on what they were supposed to be doing locally. >> well, you know, michael, you talked about the pugh poll but i'm sure you've known this and a lot of people that are media watchers have always known, the most trusted people in news really are those local news anchors. donald trump is always obsessed with fox or nbc or cnn, but it's those people that, you know, americans have been following for, you know, 10, 20 years and they really have more of a personal connection with the local news anchors than anybody else. so if you were -- if they were
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to come to the united states decided he wanted to control the country and control what americans believed that would be a pretty good place to start, wouldn't it? >> i think there's nothing wrong with this white house or political campaigns to look to local news and try to reach viewers in that way. it came out after the 2016 election is you had jared kushner suggesting that there was some kind of deal made with sin clair in which they would give more access to sin clair stations and get maybe less tough coverage or less scrutiny and more unfiltered interviews airing on sin clair stations. they disputed that characterization but kushner has sta talked about more local stations. and donald trump basically stayed on fox news and fox business was at the same time doing a number of interviews
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around the country that were maybe not getting on our radar, but in the swing states they were seeing him five or six minutes on the local news and i think that's a strategy the trump campaign tried to pursue and they're going to keep doing going forward in this presidency and in the re-election. >> all right. we really appreciate it. thanks so much, michael. >> thanks. >> still ahead we learn something more about the president's potential plans. how the kremlin broke the news about a possible meeting between trump and putin. plus, dr. jill mccabe decided to run for public office after seeing major problems in the medical system and she ended up attacked by the president of the united states. now the wife of former fbi deputy director andrew mccabe is speaking out to tell her side of the story. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. last years' ad campaign was a success for choicehotels.com badda book. badda boom.
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welcome back. the white house is confirming president trump and russian president vladimir putin discussed the idea of meeting at the white house during a phone call two weeks ago. the kremlin's foreign policy advisor revealed yesterday president trump had made the suggestion during his call with putin on march 20th. he mentioned a possible meeting while speaking to reporters that day. >> i had a call with president putin, and congratulated him on the victory, his electoral victory. we will probably get together in the not so distant future. >> press secretary has released a statement that reads in part, the two had discussed a bilateral meeting in the not too distant future at a number of potential venues including the white house. this information came out first
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from the kremlin. that's how we learned about it. the president did sort of float the idea at that press gathering on march the 20th but the formal announcement coming from russia and not from here. >> it's again, just add that to the list of strange occurrences, willie, as it pertains to russia and vladimir putin. you remember the white house confessional where he confesses to russia's foreign minister and their ambassador to the united states that he fired the fbi director to get pressure off of everybody, the russian investigation. then he went on to a european summit while everybody was having dinner he went off on his own with vladimir putin without any u.s. representatives and talked for 30, 45 minutes and now we learn from vladimir putin that we may be getting a summit in the not so distant future and again, one -- it just -- put it on the pile of bizarre occurrences as it pertains to
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donald trump, vladimir putin and what are we to make of it? >> same thing applies to mr. trump when it comes to russia, what motivates, what explains this sustained two years of whatever you want to call it, critical 'em bragembrace. the timing couldn't be worse. just at the time that the alliance isolate the russians and even though i was critical of that and even though i'm in favor in principle of talking to the russians this isn't the way to do it. you'd want to have certain conditions set. also i'm slightly uneasy to say the least with this -- this is a president that clearly is going to do -- rather than if you will obottom up to diplomacy, which is the normal way to go about it it's going to be top down whether it's with kim jong-un or vladimir putin it reflects his
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tremendous confidence in himself but is this the way to go about foreign policy and it's got to leave you uneasy given the backdrop of two years of uncritical 'embrace of russia. >> you say you have to ask yourself but you don't really have to ask yourself if this is the way to conduct foreign diplomacy because you and just about every other respected name in u.s. foreign policy circles say this is the last thing you do. you don't just jump to a summit meeting with kim jong-un. you don't just jump straight in to a summit meeting with vladimir putin. this reminds me of what their attitude was coming in in january of 2017. that they were just going to leap into the middle east and just going to buy off every -- every sunni arab country and
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that they'd have a two state solution. now you look at how things are over there right now and their missteps have actually caused the situation to be worse than it's been in a very long time. >> that's not going so well and also here if you're going to meet with somebody like the president of russia, you want to first line up your own support, not just domestically but obviously with the europeans and again, we -- you know, it hasn't been done. it's uncomfortable that he has closer relations it seems with vladimir putin than he does with angela merkel. there's something wrong with that, but this is -- this is his style but it's -- it -- say it's risky and a lot of other words barely scratches at it, joe. >> it is strange, willie, and you could look back again to the campaign, you can look back to the first year and a half of this presidency, and who are the leaders that he calls to praise?
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erdogan, the president of turkey, the president of china when he cracks down on any dissent over there. vladimir putin, the leader of the philippines, we could go down the list. he actually saves his praise for autocratic leaders and he attacks people that i can angela merkel and macron and other allies in europe. >> also yesterday president trump called to congratulate the egyptian president on husbais re-election. he reportedly won 9 # 7% of the vote. the election had low voter turnout and is widely considered a sham. the white house said the two leaders affirmed their strategic partnership and are looking forward to addressing common challenges. you're shaking your head. president obama congratulated
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sisi but like the call to putin, what else did you say? >> whether it was obama or trump to congratulate someone who essentially is so polarizing in this society. sisi looks strong but he's not. there's no place for anything in between. you're with him or you're against him. so you're beginning to see underground the growing of an opposition so one day change will come to egypt. it will not be democratic change. it will not be peaceful change. it will be violent radical change and those are the seeds being sown there. >> there's things we don't like what he's doing over there, at the same time you look at the muslim brotherhood and look at what a mess that was when he
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took cover. it seems the egyptian people didn't want that either. so what is after sisi if in fact his presidency isn't as stable as it looks from the outside. >> it becomes black and white, radical alturnalternatives. there's no concept of a loyal opposition. and so you -- anyone who's not with them is grouped as muslim brotherhood, as violent opposition and becomes somewhat self-fulfilling. you're not creating a political space for legitimate opposition. this isn't an apology for the muslim brotherhood and what it did but it is my own sense of doom down the road. i don't know if it's three years from now or ten years from now but i just believe given the economic problem, this is by far the largest country in the arab
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world. the economy is not doing well. and you know, this country is going up by about a million people every eight months. it is not on a sustainable economic trajectory. the only alternative right now do an authoritarian figure like sisi is authoritarian figures on the other side. the president calls out the justice department on twitter. we'll tell you why, plus president trump's personal attorney michael cohen makes a new move to try to silence adult film star stormy daniels. "morning joe" is coming right back. so, that goal you've been saving for,
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welcome back to "morning joe. the president is up and watching some television. he tweeted this, the fake news net works those that are a sick and biased agenda are worried about the quality of sinclair broadcast. the quote fakers have done so much dishonest reporting that they should only be allowed to get awards for fiction, end
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tweet. >> so now to the new move by president trump to keep the stormy daniels case under wraps. late yesterday the president and his personal attorney filed paperwork asking the judge to order the case be resolved through private arbitration and not in the courts. the porn star is suing president trump to get a nondisclosure agreement nullified. she signed the nda just 11 days before the election and as you know was paid $130,000 to keep quiet about an alleged affair with trump in 2006. the president denies the allegations, responding to the new filing, daniels' attorney tweeted this, quote, we will vigorously oppose the just filed motion by trump and cohen to have this case decided in a private arbitration in a private conference room hidden from the american public. this is a democracy and this matter should be decided in an open court of law owned by the people.
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#sunlight. john, this isn't going to be decided by arbitration, but it goes back to the president on this one issue, this one particular issue does seem to want to push it to the side and not tweet about it and not -- well, put sunlight on it. >> again, the president's behavior on this throughout has been unusual and indicative of some kind of a fear that he has. we continue to ask the question, what exactly is it he's afraid of? people speculate wildly and interestingly about this, but on every -- in every phase of this thing, part of the reason why stormy daniels and her lawyer have been able to inflict so much discomfort on the president if not yet actual damage politically is that they have managed to change the framing of this discussion from an adult film entertainer who took $130,000, has repeatedly by her own admission made false
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statements, they've chaungnged t into a discussion like he's having right here, which is a discussion about truth, justice, the american way, openness, candor, bring it all out, her right to speak, her right to tell her story versus a scared president who's trying to stifle her and on that argument they are not only winning on the legal merits and we've talked about this a lot, are they outlawyering the president and his team but they're also winning the rhetorical argument because who's not for sunlight? >> but besides that, what else is she going to say? she did the 60 minutes interview. it was pretty graphic in some ways and maybe she has a photo, maybe they're worried about that, but it seems to me that going to arbitration, one of the things they're most concerned about is how many other nondisclosure agreements are there, because if this goes to court a lot of those may open up, and we don't know. this is -- it's doubtful that a, this is the first time the president cheated on his wife as we know from other stories, and
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it's unlikely this is the only other -- the only nondisclosure agreement out there. so i think the bigger concern for the trump team is how many other women will free to come out and what do they have. >> yeah, and joe, i think, you know, the president doesn't want to go through discovery. michael cohen doesn't want to go through discovery so i think this is something of a hail mary to hope this enters arbitration and can be done in a conference room somewhere. >> i still want to know what he has on that cd. >> yeah, what's up with the cd? did we ever find out? mix tape maybe? >> i think it -- i was going to say it could just be a cd of duran duran. we have no idea. maybe he's an 80s fan. but the president steering clear of it also because i'm sure he doesn't want to be pulled into a defamation case. if he denies anything and then suddenly he can pull trump into
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a defamation case and hopefully get discovery. so it seems like they're just circling the wagons right now. >> and again, the next tweet by the president about stormy daniels will be his first. still ahead, the washington post robert costa will join us with his reporting and why she asked the wife of former fbi director andrew mccabe to break her silence after she was attacked by president trump. "morning joe" is coming right back.
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if you're just waking up, the ncaa national championship game featured michigan and villanova. michigan looking for its first title since 1989. villanova hoping to get its second title in just three years. villanova was down early against the wolverines, a rarity for
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them during the tournament but they came back with about six minutes left in the first half and never looked back. jehlen brunson the national player of the year had only nine points but the guy you've been watching here, villanova's dante di vincenzo put the team on his shoulders scoring 31 points. the sophomore was awarded the most outstanding player of the final four as coach jay wright and his team win the game 79-62, earning the program's third overall title. villanova won all of its tournament games this year by at least a 12-point margin. one of only four teams, richard, ever to do that. title town. we got the philadelphia eagles, last night villanova. blew out a good kansas team, michigan couldn't hang with them. >> the semifinals and the finals were the most one-sided game in the tournament. >> i think they're changing college basketball. if you have five guys, even your big guys can shoot threes, a lot of people will model after that.
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this comes one night after an incredible women's national title game. sunday night between notre dame and mississippi state came down to the wire. check it out. >> for the win. good! they win the national championship. >> that was notre dame's junior guard urike ugumbawale. she sunk that shot to win the national championship, defeating mississippi state 61-58. notre dame came back to win that game so the women's final four was unbelievable. both semifinal games in overtime and the championship game ended that way. >> the defeat of uconn was about as good as it gets. >> congratulations, notre dame and villanova national champs. markets dive on the first day of the new quarter in part because of the president's trade policy and his beef with amazon.
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we'll dig into that. and new revelations between the latest phone call between donald trump and vladimir putin. will the white house play host to the man who meddled in the u.s. election? "morning joe" is coming right back. as a control enthusiast, i'm all-business when i travel... even when i travel... for leisure. so i go national, where i can choose any available upgrade in the aisle - without starting any conversations- -or paying any upcharges. what can i say? control suits me. go national. go like a pro.
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i know words. i have the best words. but there's no better word than stupid. >> well, here's a sampling of some of the president's best words from his twitter feed over the past 24 hours. stolen, drugs, weak, fake, dead, crime, pathetic, dishonested, biased, joke, fools, embarrassment, ridiculous, wasted, disgraceful, sick. oh, my god. i feel so inadequate that i went to the university of alabama instead of penn because after all he tells us what a great degree he got from wharton and i know this morning everybody at wharton is so proud that that man came from their institution and learned such big wonderful words as those. this guy is -- he's going -- he's completely out of control
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and conservatives on capitol hill are doing nothing about it. they're doing nothing about the fact that the trump tariff tax is actually causing trade wars that are going to hurt farmers across the midwest. people that helped elect him, it will especially have an impact in iowa. you look at the trump tariff tax, you look at the fact that he's now attacking amazon, he's causing the tech sector to collapse. his trade wars are causing of course the overall market collapse. it's gone down 4% this year not because of any economic changes that have occurred. in fact, the economy is doing pretty well. it's his own erratic behavior inside the white house that's causing this drop. we'll talk about that with national affairs analyst for nbc news and msnbc john heilemann. we have political strategist
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susan del percio. president of the council on foreign relations, richard haass is with us. and joining the conversation, "new york times" washington bureau chief elizabeth bumiller. and also political reporter for the "washington post" and moderator of "washington week" on pbs, robert costa. john heilemann, i will continue the list with you. there's a caravan, a caravan in his mind. i think there is a caravan somewhere in central america or maybe moving up to mexico and buzzfeed i think has a reporter on it. so there's this big caravan of people. a big -- there's -- john heilemann, there are a couple of vehicles from people who would like to come to the united states and donald trump has been tweeting about this now for four
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or five days. you can take the tweet down. i don't want to see the tweet anymore. he's been tweeting about this for four or five days only because fake news is covering it. and while he's doing that, he's attacking the "washington post," a newspaper that's investigating all of his misdeeds. he's slashing and burning amazon because -- he's angry because guess what they're doing? they're using the united states post office. a lot of people in 2018 are not using the united states post office but he is. he's hurting retirees with trade wars. their retirement accounts are going down. it's absolute chaos and it seems to be one self-inflicted wound after another and, yes, donald trump's approval ratings are going to go down by my god, the republicans on capitol hill are going to have a political bloodbath on their hands this fall and get wiped out at the
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ballot box and yet they say nothing. >> yeah. >> thank you so much john heilemann. [ laughter ] >> there's so much there to go with, joe, i don't know exactly -- where to proceed on that basis. i like the part of the tweet where he referred to -- again i always love how he uses punctuation in these tweets. the weak laws thing in quotes. our weak laws border. that's almost as crazy to me as the caravan thing. and there's a chance the caravan -- a high degree of probability the caravan reference comes from "fox & friends." there's also a possibility he's been listening to van morrison over the weekend and has been singing caravan with his family at mar-a-lago. i don't know. to me -- and i'm going ask bob costa about this because he has great insight into donald trump's brain, psyche, mind, than i have ever had. but joe just rattled off a bunch
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of things that objectively seem to be chaotic and self-inflicted wounds and marching congressional republicans to doom this november and yet at core to me much of trump's behavior seems to reflect some weird delirious diluted high that he's on where he thinks not only is he not inflicting wounds on himself, not son-in-law he not creating chaos destroying the american economy and the political fortunes of his party but he thinks he's doing great right now. he thinks everything is going exactly his way. i've never understood that particular conundrum but maybe you can help me understand how he can believe those things in the face of all the objective facts. >> john, of course he's projecting confidence on numerous fronts but based on my reporting over the last few days, his comments on twitter about this alleged caravan reflects this core around him at mar-a-lago with him on the
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phone, these conservative people who have conservative positions on immigration who are warning him again and again privately that he risks losing his political base in the midterm elections if he does not take action on immigration to either build the wall or to have stricter measures on illegal immigration with different kinds of migrants trying to come into the u.s. and this is an animating thing for him because he's hearing it on television when he's watching fox news and at the dinner table at mar-a-lago and he's hearing it on the phone. >> bob, i was saying yesterday that all of these tweets on immigration could be wrapped up together in a neat package and could be called by future historians an ode to ann coulter. this is -- it seems to me this is a reaction to ann coulter's biting criticism of him as well as people on the hard right. >> it is. and pay particular attention to which aide went down with him to mar-a-lago over the weekend.
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it was stephen miller. so you have an aide that is not john kelly the chief of staff, who is trying to push the president in a more centrist and even tempered direction but ste outside advisers and it's stephen miller who won't try to pull him back from pushing out these tweets. >> i think you bring up a great point, bob. a lot of people are talking about trump finally untethered, maybe trump unhinged. i'm sure donald trump has never read "the art of war" but one of the key bits of advice from that is that when you are weak, look strong, project strength and he certainly has to feel, does not not, the mueller probe getting closer and closer by the day? he's silenced by the stormy daniels scandal and he's
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striking out in all these new ways to project strength when, in fact, he's back on his heels. >> and you look at the personalities he's bringing around his presidency. these are big, bombastic personalities. john bolton, the former u.n. ambassador, now national security adviser. larry kudlow, long-time cnbc commentator. these are people who have outsize presence on the public stage. that's what he wants around him to project that strength. >> so elizabeth, it does raise the question of where the chief of staff is, john kelly, in all of this. if the president over easter weekend is hanging out on the patio with sean hannity and stephen miller and getting his immigration message in order to punch out on easter day as he sees a segment on "fox & friends," has kelly been so marginalized in all of this that he doesn't have a voice in this conversation? >> well, we're not -- again, we're not sure how long john kelly is going to last. we thought he was -- we have a story ready to go that he's been
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fired but it's -- it looks like he'll be around a little bit longer. but what happens with these caravans, this happened every spring. it happened under the obama administration as people make their way from central america into mexico floeeing violence. and i think it was a combination of brief things the president must have got about these caravans and also stephen miller, sean hannity and right now let's face it, there isn't a lot he has to push in terms of issues of a program of initiatives and so he is relying on something that has been good for anymore the past which is this tough stand on immigration. you saw there was a white house briefing yesterday about how they'll try to cut back on refugees to the united states, asylum seekers. so he's -- this is what he has to work with. >> and the term caravan is transparent to me. i was doing my sunday today show, we looked up and there was
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a banner on "fox & friends" that said "caravans of immigrants headed to the u.s. "shortly thereafter there was a tweet where the president used the word "caravan" for the first time. you mentioned off story ready to go on the firing of john kelly. is that in the event he's fired or -- >> yes, protectively. we have stories ready to go on the firing of many people in the administration so we can move something quickly. i shouldn't say we know something that the rest -- >> joe? >> richard haas, over the past 24 hours, you've had the president of the united states attacking the free press, you've had him praising foreign dictators, you've had him deferring to russia's dictator to announce upcoming summit plans, the market collapsing is hurting retirees, schools. just go down the list.
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use said, states. the president's words, we've talked about the president's words mattering. sean spicer a long time ago said it was official white house policy. obviously the markets and foreign dictators are listening and you wonder where free market conservatives are coming out, speaking out picking winners and losers in the economy and against the president, of course, pushing a tariff that basically taxes everybody's retirement plans. >> i find this also baffling is the word i use. if the administration would do nothing and say nothing i would bet the stock market would be 10% or 15% higher than it is. instead, all this talk about protectionism and tariffs, the threats against mexico and through that nafta, all this erratic behavior which is making people incredibly uneasy heading towards the crisis with iran or north korea or who knows what, it's working against the
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president. the lead story which i would have been thought would be good is the economy is humming along, the market is reaching new highs, more americans are working, unemployment is low and so forth. i would have thought that would be a pretty good political story as you move towards the midte s midterms. instead he's playing to a much marrower base and undermining what ought to be the good news story of this administration. >> and what he's undermining also is his ability to get anything done between now and the midterms. you mentioned he's worried about what's happening in the midterm elections. right now he's creating more and more instability. how concerned are republicans right now especially in the house about having to run on this kind of instability world affairs as well as the stock market. >> they're already concerned. just look at the mounting list of retirements among congressional republicans. they're nervous about how
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they're going to play in red states, looking at southwestern pennsylvania and alabama's special senate election. when it comes to legislation, they recognize not much is going to likely happen. the president had his own concerns about that bipartisan spending bill. if anything happens, i think it could be something small on immigration to maybe do more border security for some kind of daca fix but anything else has really been written off at this point. >> elizabeth, try to put in perspective if you can the past 24, 48 hours, the president's attacks on print journalists, on broadcast journalists, his raising of -- his elevating of a corporation that's acting along with the president like part of a plutocracy that's forcing reporters to read scripts in hopes occurrying favor with the president so they can get washington's regulators to
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approve an expansion of their footprint as far as stations they own. and i guess throw in that mix as i've been doing, his praising of foreign autocrats and dictators. >> right and his attacks on the justice department. the interesting thing is that it's also his meeting with putin. in the midst of everything else you've expelled russian diplomats, russia has become a pariah in much of the west and now there's talk trump will meet with putin some time soon at the white house. it's hard to see how that happens given he has to meet with kim jong-un and the french president coming up this month but russia was pushing that story that things are just great between putin and trump even if there's a lot of tension between the two governments. so in the middle of all this he is still embracing his friend
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putin. i can't explain the last 48 hours with this president. i can't explain the tweets other than that it's good for his base, that he attacks the crackdown on immigration but i can't explain the rest other than that he is -- i think he's under enormous pressure for the mueller investigation, feeling pressure from republicans, from the midterms and i think this is his release. >> joe, even as elizabeth has been saying she can't, like the rest of us, explain the president's tweet he is added another one. he's talking about the rasmussen polling that shows him around 15% thanking them for the honest polling and saying just hit 50% which is higher than "cheatin' obama" at the same time in his administration. not clear what he means about what president obama cheated on or about but he's trying out a new nickname. >> trying out a new nickname and yes he is sitting at 50% in one poll and sisi got 97% of the
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vote in egypt. in fact the gallop poll -- gallup poll has the approval rating at 39%. all the talk of the president's numbers going up, he was at 42% earlier in a cnn poll maybe last week. as columnist for real clear politics stated last week, the president is between 35% and 40%. sometimes he goes up to 42%. sometimes he goes down to 33% but, yes, yes, the president would like you to know that sisi got 97% and he's sitting at 50%. nobody in america believes that. >> elizabeth bumiller, robert costa, thank you both. we appreciate it. still ahead on "morning joe," it's one thing for the
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president to attack an fbi official, another to attack his wife. dr. jill mccabe, whose husband was fired from the justice department, is speaking out after she found herself at the center of a presidential firestorm. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. 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. it's part of our commitment to being america's best first job. ♪ hello. give me an hour in tanning room 3. cheers! that's confident. but it's not kayak confident. kayak searches hundreds of travel sites to help me plan the best trip. so i'm more than confident.
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both republicans and democrats. she said andrew kept himself separated from my campaign. he wouldn't even drive us. he could have attended one of my fund-raisers but never did. on the president's attacks from terry mcauliffe mccabe writes my campaign received funding for the state democratic party and the governor's pac on par with what other candidates in competitive races on both sides of the aisle received and clinton's e-mails never came up, if they had i would have found that alarming, immediately reported it and likely pulled out of the campaign. ms. mccabe writes nothing can prepare you for what happens when your life is turned upside down for current events. nothing prepares you for conversations you have to have with your teenage children. nothing prepares you for the news crew staking out your house, your backyard, your place of business. nothing prepares you for the feel you feel every time you receive a package from a stranger. to have my personal reputation and integrity and those of my family attacked this way is beyond horrible. it feels awful everyday, keeps
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me up nights. i made the decision to run for office because i was trying to help people, instead it turned into something that was used to attack our family, my husband's career and the entire fbi. joining us in washington, columnist at the "washington post," ruth marcus. here on set, former adviser to president george w. bush, mark mckinnon, he's co-creator and executive producer of showtime's "the circus" along with the man to my left john heilemann out with season three a week from sunday and it will be a big one. you have big stuff up your sleeve we can't talk about but trust me, tune in. ruth, i want to start with you and ms. mccain's op-ed. did you approach her and what was your pitch to get her to write in the "washington post"? >> well, it started the weekend before last with an op-ed from her husband who had been fired, famously, the previous friday night and we approached his folks and asked him to write and
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as i was speaking with andrew mccabe's representative i said, wow, what about jill mccabe? and we started talking about it, started talking about whether they might want to write a piece together and in the end he had enough to say on his own and her story from my point of view -- and we really appreciated andrew mccabe's op-ed -- but her story is in some ways even more human, more compelling, more tragic because it's the story of this woman, she's an emergency room physician. the notion of running for politics had never entered her mind for a moment. she's an accidental politician who became the unwitting pawn of until the game that led to her husband's -- the destruction of her husband's career and it's such, to me, a sad and human story that i'm -- and i'm so thrilled that she felt like it was time after 17 months of
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having to remain silent that she was able to tell it to the public. >> and it's such a moving story of an emergency room physician encouraged to run for public office to protect people that need medicaid to be able to go into the emergency room, bring their children in, bring their mothers in and their fathers in. it really is a moving story about how somebody wanted to get involved in public service and how terribly it went. and we didn't even read in this op-ed when the president of the united states told andrew mccabe to tell his wife that she was a loser. the hatefulness of this president, the inhumanity of this president knows no end but i have to say of all the many terrible things he'd about many people, including those that i love, that was perhaps the low
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point to show just again, the depths of inhumanity of this man. mark mckinnon, i want to read you a list, stop me if you know where i'm going. bob mueller, republican. >> yup. >> james comey, life long republican until recently. jeff sessions attorney general, republican. justice department run by republicans. rod rosenstein, republican. house of representatives, run by the republicans. united states senate, run by the republicans. andrew mccabe, life long republican. that's a hell of a conspiracy you got there, boys. it's a conspiracy of republicans and an fbi that if anything helped defeat hillary clinton with comey's letter and mccabe's leak. please can you explain to me the
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convoluted logic that would have donald trump thinking that somehow this republican fbi and this republican investigator and this republican house and this republican senate and the republican mccabe and the republican rosenstein and the republican sessions somehow had a conspiracy to help hick? >> yeah, joe, i smell what you're stepping in there. >> it's deep. >> it's true. first of all let me just say the mccabe story is compelling and makes me think a lot about people who run for office. especially people who work for the fbi, these are people who are truly doing a yeoman's job for the country and are largely non-political except they're human beings and the reality is people who serve in law enforcement and the justice department are largely republican and when you pull the
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lins back lens back, what makes no sense is that when you think about if you're trying to make the case that the fbi are investigating that are ongoing, whatever, affected the outcome of the presidential election, it's because they made the information about hillary clinton public and kept the information about donald trump private so you net that out, advantage trump from the fbi, not clinton. >> and with andrew mccabe, john heilemann, you have andrew mccabe getting in trouble because he got information out there and i believe in part because he felt like loretta lynch and the justice department was exercising undue influence but he got the information out there that the clinton foundation was, in fact, under investigation by the fbi. that hurt hillary clinton's campaign, not donald trump's. trump parroted it when he went out on the campaign trail. and again, the same thing with the james comey letter. this president has fired two people whose actions actually
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help keep him in the race till the end. >> yi. you could go further than that. not only did comey put the letter out that had a hugely negative affect on hillary clinton's campaign but at the same time he was keeping from the american public that there was a counterintelligence investigation of donald trump being conducted by the fbi. so it's layers upon layers of irony here and ruth i have to ask you. one of the things we've been waiting for for a long time here is the inspector general's report. it's now central to a whole bunch of things we've wanted to know about -- for anybody who wants to get to the bottom of what happened with the fbi and the campaign itself and how it treated hillary clinton and now the backdrop to the mccabe story. when are we going to see that report and what do people in your world think is going to be in it to the extent that people have insight on the basis of reporting, gossip, speculation,
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intuition, ouija boards, whatever? >> so first of all i think it's an important question. where is the inspector general report? and it's a particularly important question since andrew mccabe was fired on the basis of an inspector general report that has not yet been med public and people i know think that's highly irregular. whatever he did and whatever untruths or misunderstandings there were between him and investigators and between him and the people were interviewing him in the aftermath. why the rush to do is this? it's highly irregular to rush to do that without the report being made public and it's incumbent on all of us. i've been told springtime a notice the cherry blossoms are out. i would like to see it. but one thing i would like to say about andrew mccabe is
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whether or not there is some questions of misconduct or lack of utter truthfulness or accidental misstatements on his part, however that shakes out, that has to be weighed against a 21-year career and your point about layers of irony is so true. among other things not only did his actions and comey's actions and everybody else's actions if anything, benefit, the whole alleged conspiracy between virginia governor terry mcauliffe and mrs. mccabe and getting donations to her, he would have had to have imagined the existence of an e-mail story and e-mail investigation that pre-dated andrew mccabe's involvement in the investigation so it would have been the most predictive conspiracy of all time for them to have come up with that. >> an important fact to remind people that he was not the deputy director of the fbi at the time the donations were made
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to jill mccabe. >> not the deputy director and not supervising the e-mail probe. when she decided to run, the e-mail story hadn't yet broken. >> just more facts. from ruth marcus of the "washington post," ruth, thanks so much. mark mckinnon, stay with us, if you would. coming up, tom friedman has written about the far reaching impacts of technology in our lives. facebook demonstrated that first hand recently, but is it only just the beginning? the pulitzer prize author joins us next on "morning joe."
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welcome back to "morning joe." joining us now, "new york times" columnist and author of the book "thank you for being late" tom friedman. tom, always great to have you with us. the great thing about having you here is we can ask you almost anything so i'm going to ask you about facebook, although it was the subject of your latest column. i talked to some people in silicon valley over the last couple weeks and they believe that this latest crisis for facebook about the personal data of 50 million users or maybe more could be an existential one for facebook and that it's not clear that mark zuckerberg gets the extent of the crisis. is that your opinion? how big a deal is this for facebook? >> i think it's a huge deal and
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i think your sbi lock yinterloc a lot of evidence on their side. facebook now has 2.1 billion users around the world. and their initial approach to this story was -- we at the "new york times," we have editors on one side and regulators on another if you want to run a political ad in the "new york times," you have to identify yourself. in between we have readers and advertisers. facebook basically came along and said we'd like all your readers, we'd like all your advertisers, we want none of your editors and none of your regulators because we're different. we're a platform. and we as a society didn't know how to handle that a platform that had 2.1 billion readers. so we said we're going to trust
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you and they violated that trust. they didn't live up to the trust. they allowed their platform to be used and abused for bad guys and remember, bad guys are early adopters so they're quick to understand how that flat form could be used to draw their political and economic agendas and the question is can anyone control the content of a platform that has 2.1 billion users. >> how do you unwind this? do you treat regulation like a public utility? what do you think changes from here? >> it's going to be a combination of three things. one is technology, they are instituting at facebook i think impressive technological fixes, that's one thing. there is going to be some regulation, i'm sure, down the road and at the same time they're going to hire and have hired but they will have to hire more of these things called editors, a human being to follow the content.
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otherwise i think they'll continue to be abused and used by bad guys in a way that it will make them uncomfortable. let's give facebook its due. they have 2.1 million users. that means their platform is needed and helpful to a lot of people around the world but that scale can be damaging when it goes sour. >> tom, let's talk about the president's helter-skelter foreign policy just over the past couple days, maybe the past couple weeks, try to make sense of it. you, of course, a couple weeks ago had the president rushing in to a meeting with south korean leaders when he wasn't supposed to even be in that meeting and started pushing for a summit with kim jong-un. then the south koreans announced it. you had the president being handed a piece of paper say dog not congratulate vladimir putin for his recent election because of the poisoning of a former russian citizen on british soil.
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he ignored that and now we learn from putin that they may have a summit coming up and everyday the president is praising au autocrats and seemingly attacking democratic elected leaders like angela merkel. what to make of this a year and a half in? >> well, it's unnerving, joe. if you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there. so to ask your question what kind of world do we think we're in and how do we align ourselves with those trends? i think the biggest trend in the world is that the world is divided no longer east/west, north/south, communist/capitalist. i think the biggest divide is between the world of order and the world of disorder and what's happening today globally is we have millions of people trying to get out of the world of disorder, subsaharan africa, the middle east, central america into the world of order and this is changing the politics everywhere.
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it's affected european politics, produced these nationalist parties, it helped produce trump in america. to me, the biggest thing american foreign policy should be about is how do we stabilize the world of disorder? how do we work with britain, france, russia, china, korea to globally stabilize this world of disorder? but i don't see anywhere that that's the plan of the president. i have no idea what take he has on the world, why putin today and kim jong-un tomorrow. it seems to revolve around him and his personal urges and impulses but there's no strategic take going on because if there were, there's one thing i know for sure. to stabilize the world of order you need allies and institutions. nafta, the european union, the u.n., all of these institutions really matter when the giant challenge facing us i think in the future is going to be this creeping disorder.
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>> i think you wrote the lexus and the olive tree 20 years ago, however long ago it was, it was a extraordinary book and it seems a few decades later more and more leaders across the world are choosing the olive tree instead of the lexus. >> what that book is arguing is at the end of the cold war what will be the new international system. what will be the end of history as frank fukuyama argued, the spreading of capitalism and democracy. will it be the clash of civilizations as huntington argued? i argue that it will be an interaction between two things, something that's very old, our olive tree urge is nationalism, regionalism, religion, faith, sect, the things -- tribe, things that anchor us in the world and how they interact with this new globalization system and technology. and i still -- i believe that. and the challenge we're facing now -- and, joe, we've never
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been here before but the big question coming up i think is are these authoritarian systems, the one in china, the one in turkey, the one in egypt, the one in russia, can these systems, despite their authoritarianism, grow in the only way you can sustainably grow in the world today, through innovation and entrepreneurship? i would say in reality 20 years ago i was skeptical. i thought ultimately these systems would have to unleash their human talent but you have to look at china today, you have to look at russia -- well, russia is a different case but it's up in the air whether these authoritarian systems can grow in the new world. i believe in my core thesis but it's a big question now. can these dictators -- have they figured it out and is trump following them, not a more traditional and liberal free
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market approach. >> tom, it's john heilemann. i want to take you back to six weeks ago when you in a fit of passion knocked out a column that lit up the world where you wrote that america was facing a code red moment and that the biggest threat to democracy in this country sat in the oval offic office. you weren't supposed to file a column, you put it online and people went nuts and responded to it. i wonder where you think six weeks later given the jam packed nature of our news cycle, a lot has happened, are we still in code red? something beyond code red? what's the read on the threat you see posed to american democracy by the president of the united states? >> john, i feel more strongly than ever in everything that's happened. that the biggest threat to our democracy is sitting in the oval office. we have a president who's a disturbed person.
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this kind of tweeting, this kind of overthrowing or throwing overboard all these cabinet secretaries at once, this is not normal behavior, if this man were running a fortune 500 company, the board of directors would have thrown him out long ago. the board of directors in this case is the republican party and i find it deeply disturbing in the face of all of this aberrant behavior and destabilizing behavior as we can see in the markets that you don't hear a peep out of the republican party and there's nothing that unnerves me more when you have a president who is attacking companies, attacking media organizations, applauding a media organization that put its anchors out and local stations across the country in what could only be described as a hostage video. these are deeply disturbing trends. if you're not afraid, you're not paying attention. >> tom, mark mckinnon here.
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let me ask you about the broader economy and the president. we have a blooming economy, the highest wage growth in eight years, consumer confidence the highest it's been in 18. does he deserve credit for that? if so, where do you see problems lying down the road in the year ahead and what's happening right now. the stock market was up last year, down now. what do we make of this? >> i think our economy was steadily improving from 2008. i think trump inherited a strong economy and then i think he poured gas on it with this corporate tax cut. i'm in favor of corporate tax cuts but i would have paired it with a tax on carbon, sugar, bullets, a small financial transaction tax so we cut corporate taxes over here to unleash our corporate power but didn't increase our deficit by another trillion dollars. as interest rates creep up, mark, that rising deficit and the interest on it is going to
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cost more and more and the financial experts i talked to say boy, watch out for 2019, 2020 when these bills start to hit. so i think we did something -- obviously the economy was up and the president has been talking it down in a sense but in the long term if we don't get our fiscal house in order eventually we're going to pay for that in a huge way and it will probably come under trump's stralgs so yeah, i'm for corporate tax cuts, i'm for getting rid of all corporate taxes but pair them with a carbon tax, a tax on sugar. we cannot afford diabetes anymore. it's going to bankrupt our financial system. a tax on bullets and a financial transaction tax so we maintain. we're driving into the future without a bumper or a spare tire. if we get into a financial crisis now, we have no interest rates to lower. we don't have a piggy bank that we can crack up in the way we
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did in 2008. we're driving without a bumper and a spare tire and donald trump is behind the while. what could go wrong? >> it also seems like to that point what can go wrong is we have basically a dictator or someone who likes those authoritative views in the white house and we know dictators like to punish people more than create things about how do you hold someone like that accountable? . we say see the republicans aren't out there but at what point to elected officials look out for their own best interests and say we have to put country above party, we have to do the right thing. when duds toes the bumper fall ? when does the car crash and burn. >> i'm not rooting for this but i would suggest a precipitous fall in the stock market would flush out some republicans to finally speak up. and then we have the mueller investigation. i believe the mueller investigation, when it is
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finally put on the table before us, will trigger some form of constitutional crisis. i don't know what he's going to find about the president, whether it's collusion, financial impropriety, i have no idea. but i think it's going to find something that will trigger a constitutional crisis and one reason -- this is my guest. barack obama and george w. bush have both been staying out of the political fray. despite all the attacks on them from trump. they understand they are going to have to come together in the face of this constitutional crisis that's in our future and stand up for the constitution. it's going to have to be done in a bipartisan way by two ex-presidents who still have a lot of credibility and my guess is they are saving their powder for that. i shower hope so because if the remembers won't call the game, we're going to need someone with lidge mat authority to do so. >> before i let you go i want to talk about something else you've been writing about, that's the
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visit by the saudi crown prince to the united states. he's visited washington, he's been in hollywood. he had dinner with rupert murdoch. he said he believes each people anywhere has a right to live in their peaceful nation, talking about palestinians and israelis. he also said "i believe the iranian supreme leader makes hitler look good. what should americans watching this young crown prince make of him and his visit, what is he after? >> i've spent some time with the crown prince including on this trip and i think he has tremendous upside. he has tremendous down side, too. he can be very impulsimpulsive. i'm focused on the upside. you guys were talking about sisi before i came on. right now mohammad bin salman is the only moving object in the arab world. the arab world is largely dysfunctional and its dysfunctionality has created situation that between tehran
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and tel aviv there's only soft tissue. there's no power authority there at all so do we want to fill that vacuum? do we hope the sunnis will get their act together? to me, willie, the most important thing that mohammad bin salman is doing and talking about doing is bringing saudi islam which is the most important islam because mecca and medina, the two holiest cities of islam, are located in saudi arabia, back to a moderate place. that ice his stated goal, he's made concrete steps doing that at home. now, when you think, willie, how much we have spent as a country since 9/11 combatting radical islam, $2 trillion, $3 trillion. i don't know what the number is. the fact that we may have -- underline that three times -- a saudi leader coming in ready to bring islam back to the center, he met with a cob tick leader when he was in egypt. he met with the barge of canterbury when he was in london. this is the most huge potential
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tra teerj i can plate-shifting change in the middle east that i can shi of so i'm rooting for him. to pro detective his -- only a full would predict his success but only a fool would root against him. even with his downsides, a reckless intervention in yemen, crazy purchases of paintings and yachts, at the end of the day he's 32. he could be the king of saudi arabia for 40, 50 years going forward and if he brings islam back to the center, there's still so much toxic material in the supply chain that we'll have to live with but if he can bring saudi islam back to the center, that affects the muslim world from morocco to indonesia. i'm hoping for him. >> tom, you brought up syria. let's finish on that. you look at what the united states has done in iraq since 2003, you look at us leaving in 2012. look at the voidvilled by isis,
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the fear isis was going to create a terror state that would undermine that region for some time. we went in there over the past year two and had a game plan, had aplan, a sustainable plan where we used the kurds and used others to actually drive places for the most part out of that region. now donald trump is talking about leaving that area again, despite the fact the that the approach that was used was actually sustainable approach by the united states military because we relied on others, primarily, and we had a very limited footprint. what dangers do we face if the united states, once between, enters that region like we did in 2011? >> we had about 2,000 troops in syria right now, largely special operators. and the cost is relatively low. started under obama and it was
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increased with by president trump. i think we got a great payoff from those 2000 troops. they helped us to largely but not entirely defeat isis. certainly break their back. now, if we pull out, the iranians will have an open road from tehran to lebanon, which is what they crave. if we pull out, we will freak out the israelis because our press ebbs there is one of the stabilizing forces that keeps the iranians counterbalanced, not to mention the russians. and most importantly, this is something i was writing about libya and syria over the years, joe, that libya imploded, but syria explodeds. it goes out. syria's hemorrhaging of refugees both to surrounding states and to europe has been enormously destabilizing for european politics. our presence there helps to mute that, as well. you know, americans don't like to think about the european union. it's boring.
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the european union is the other united states of the world. it's the other great center of free markets, free ideas, free people. and if it cracks up, well, you know, we had two world wars in europe before that. so i think these 2,000 to pay off -- i wouldn't minimize these, these 2,000 soldiers, i think, are very good investment for american national security. >> tom freedman taking us around the world this morning, thanks as always. we appreciate it. still ahead on "morning joe," a source says epa chief scott pruitt gave his closest aides tens of thousands of dollars in raises after the white house declined to approve his request. what the late nest a string of controversies surrounded the embattled cabinet official, ahead on "morning joe."
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tear. his attacks on amazon yesterday sent wall street tumbling and world markets down with them. we'll discuss the broader implications ahead on "morning joe." gh, gh, we have more than 8000 allys looking out for one thing: you. call in the next ten minutes... and if that's not enough, we'll look after your every dollar. put down the phone. and if that's not enough, we'll look after your every cent. grab your wallet. (beeping sound) (computer voice) access denied. and if that's still not enough to help you save... oh the new one! we'll bring out the dogs. mush! (dogs barking) the old one's just fine! we'll do anything, seriously anything, to help our customers. thanks. ally. do it right. when did you see the sign? when i needed to jumpstart sales. build attendance for an event. help people find their way. fastsigns designed new directional signage. and got them back on track. get started at fastsigns.com.
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there really is no name for it. it is special. and we keep it in tip top shape. we call it sometimes tippy top shape. and it's a great, great place. >>. >> well, the markets are feeling a little less tippy top shedding hundreds of points on the president's trade war and repeated attacks against amazon then there's his authoritarian attack yesterday going after the quote/unquote justice department and congratulating another leader after a democratic election most people don't they was terribly democratic. welcome to "morning joe." it's tuesday, april 3rd. with us here we have national affairs analyst for nbc news and msnbc all-highlyman, susan delpercio and author of the aye book "on world in disarray" richard haas. so markets overseas are seeing losses. the dow fell as many as 758
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points yesterday before trimming its losses to close down 458. the nasdaq was the hardest hit, shedding nearly 3%. futures looking slightly like they're up this morning. stocks suffered heavy losses on the combination of fears of a trade war and the tech industry getting hit with new regulations. china announced yesterday it had implemented tariffs on 128 types of u.s. imports in response to president trump's tariffs on imported steel and aluminum. meanwhile, shares of am zom hammered yesterday as president trump continues his attacks on twitter against the massive online retailer. the president kwoeded only fools or worse are saying that our money-losing post office makes money with amazon. they lose a fortune and this will be changed. also, our the fully tax paying retailers are closing stores all over the country. not a level playing field, he wrote. as we told you yesterday, while the post office is losing a
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portion, the president is wrong to blame amazon for that. federal regulators are postal service's contract has been profitable for the post office. the post office losses are mostly due to hengz and health care costs and not its deal to deliver packages for the internet retailer. joe, good morning. there's a ton in there. the president for the moment you all went off the air yesterday went on a twitter rampage and covered a lot of ground peppering in a lot of false information along the way. >> yeah. he went on a tirade. and peppered in false information and, willie, how ironic that this is what the president does after praising sinclair's leaders for sending out basically fake news scripts. and forcing people just like pravda did back in the old days of the soviet union to read those scripts on or be fired. i think what we saw yesterday is that this is a big cost, if not
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for the president, there are polls that suggest there is a cost for the president doing this, but will there is a cost actually for the rest of americans. autocratic impulses do not align with free markets, do not align with constitutions like our own. and you saw billions of dollars wiped out yesterday for retirees, for people that are investing in retirements, for people that have college funds. all because the president decided to tweet against a man who owns "the washington post." and it's -- the markets have dropped about 4% this year. and they dropped not because of any fundamental changes in the economy or our economic conditions, but because of the president's own erratic behavior on twitter and on tariffs. >> yeah. and i think, joe, look, there are two different pieces of this. i'm happy to give a lot of blame to donald trump. you've got a couple things going on that provide a little bit more of the larger picture,
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which of which is for the markets, they spent a lot of 2017 being willing to absorb the volatility that donald trump brings to our political system and our economic system because they expected there was going to be this great payoff with corporate tax cuts at the end of the year and now they're looking down the road with nothing to kind of cushion the blow. there's no economic relief further in sight. if there was a chance there would be a giant infrastructure bill, that might change things, but nobody believes that's going to happen. so the markets now, it's like trump alone and his actions standing kind of stark relief against that back drop. and then you do have a few things that aren't about the fundamentals of the economy, but go to the tech sector more bodily, having gotten itself in a whole bunch of trouble. some had of that related to some activity back in 2015, 2016 led by facebook, but more broadly, you've got this sense that democrats and republicans alike are more likely to potentially regulate companies like twitter,
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companies like facebook, as well as google and the leaders and the tech sector. so, you know, you put all that together, it's a pretty nasty stew. >> yeah. it really is. and richard haas, all politics are local, as chip o'neal liked to say. remember back in the 1980s when he talked about importing grain from the soviet union but he wanted to do it because it would help midwest farmers. here we have on the other side of the equation, you have a president of the united states actually without really even knowing what he's doing getting engaged in a trade war because it feels right because it feeds an instinct that he's had for 30, 40 years, and how strange that he's hurting a lot of the same people who helped elect him president, a lot of farmers across the midwest, especially in iowa, are being punished because china did exactly what people like you knew china was
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going to do. they responded to donald trump's tariffs with tariffs of their own. >> shocking. yeah. it's going to hurt not just american exporters, agriculture and otherwise, but also those american firms that have to use imports. that's the result of, say, the steel and aluminum tariffs the other day. it's as if the administration sees tariffs and more broadly protectionism as an abstract concept rather than a policy tool that has real implications for american producers anden consumers both directly and then when others retaliate. it's just not being thought through. and it's one of the reasons the market is beginning to tank. this administration has to be really careful, joe. they inherited a strong market. they added all sorts of of fiscal stimulus with tax cuts and spending increases. but now, among other things, trashing tech and the protectionism, they're going to bring down what was their single strongest calling card. >> and just to follow up on
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that, plus the instability of this administration with all its turnover. as highlymeilman was saying, th market responded well to trump because he did have a strong cabinet and that when he was elected, people trust that. now with all this turnover, it's causing a lot of problems within the markets, as well. >> it really is. and, willie, i just keep waiting for my conservative friends. and we don't need a whole lot, but maybe a few could come out on capitol hill and speak out strongly. my conservative friends need to speak up strongly against these tariffs that undermine free trade, that distort the marketplace. the president's attacks on job creators, you look at his attacks on amazon. and you look at his attacks on other companies that he doesn't like. this is a president of the united states doing exactly what free market conservatives like
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myself have always said we don't want the federal government to do. you don't want the federal government picking winners and losers in the free marketplace. that's exactly what donald trump is doing. and according to the the latest reports coming out overnight, he mrns to continue to attack amazon. when he strikes out another amazon, he causes the entire tech sector to go down. he's impacting people's jobs. it's just like these tariffs. when he does something that he thinks feels good and feeds a political twinge, a misguided political twinge, he costs can retirees and he costs people trying to set aside money in college funds. you know, just collectively, hundreds of billions of dollars. >> well, it's one of the many costs of having a
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personality-driven president, which is that as you say, he's scratching an itch. he feels that washington post covers him unfairly, so he has to go after jeff bezos. but richard haas, this has real world implications. if you're muddying the waters and argue background the post office losing money, if you really want to worry about the post off his losing money, there are things to do that have nothing to do with amazon. but what he's doing right now is picking on one of the most popular companies in america, in the world that people have a relationship with and not just hurting amazon, but if you look down the front page of the "wall street journal" and slide in tech stocks yesterday all the way from amazon, alpha bet, facebook, netflix, all the way down. >> it's technology across the board and this is our future. and joe made a good point. it's people with their 401(k)s and retirement plans. but one of the looming crises in these country, it's going to be
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pension mans. we've got all sorts of states and municipalities and they're not even close to being able to meet their had open investigatioobligations to working class americans. all these pension plans are base dollars on things like 7%, 8% return in the market. those days are over. and the sort of thing the president is going to do is accelerate the arrival where states and cities are not going to meet their obligations to retired workers. >> john heilman, it's interesting. the president's poll numbers went up maybe two points and suddenly you saw screaming headlines that the president is roaring back and the president this and that. he's really not. i think i read somebody from real clear politics saying at the time, hey, listen, 42% is within the median range. the guy has been between 38 and 42%, as low as 35, 34%. well, gallop's latest poll has
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come out and he's sitting at 39%. again, about a third of the country, 35% of the country, sometimes 40% of the country approve of what he he's doing and the overwhelming majority of americans do not. and, again, all of this chaos, people seeing the markets falling down, the markets falling almost 5% for the year. all of the churning and -- again, it seems like this president is just not interested in getting any sort of momentum. he wants to build up and tear down and have chaos every day. >> right. and, again, i just think that you think -- as you look towards the midterm elections and you've seen some of the data that we've seen over the course of the off years and the on her special elections, after the tax cut was passed, remembers thought it was
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hard to capitalize on that politically. as i said a little while ago, you look towards what the legislative agenda is between now and december, there really is none. we have confirmation hearings for a couple big jobs, but the combination of a long and sustained stretch of economic volatility and chaos matched with a long stretch of little or nothing happening on the legislative front leads almost towards what people have been expecting, which is republicans getting hammered at the midterms and yet president trump does not seem to, even in the most self-interested way, look at that as the potential consequence he's facing. you would think that that would discipline his behavior to some extent, knowing that a democratic controlled house of the representatives would pose an existential threat to his presidency, might bring on impeachment hearings and so on yet he can't even discipline himself with his own skin sort
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of at stake in this the game. still ahead on "morning joe," it's not called trump tv, but critics say it's pretty close. we'll look at the dynamic playing out behind the scenes at sinclair broadcasting which required anchors across the country to echo the same p politicized message. but first, here is bill carin wes a check on the forecast. >> dangerous day. we're going to see a typical april strong storm. that means severe weather and snow on the back side of it. let's start with where the storm is. it's now porming over areas near missouri, snow on the back side. we've had a lot of heavy rain around indianapolis. on and off thunderstorms all morning long. 48 million at risk. we'll get large hail with stronger storms. the this area of orange, we could get isolated tornados, that includes nashville, memphis, everywhere in between. minneapolis, lacrosse to green bay, northern portions of michigan, we're talking about the possibility of snow this
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afternoon and evening of about 8 inches of snow. minneapolis somewhere around 3 to 4 inches. we have some rain moving into the northeast. possible airport delays. the only great weather to be pound. southeast, you're fantastic and no problems at all in much of southern california. california, you've got heavy rain heading your way at the end of this week into the weekend. new york in, yesterday was snow. today is going to be rain. the yankee opener, 41 degrees and rainy. it was canceled yesterday because of snow. good will luck trying to get that in today. you're watching "morning joe." this is the story of green mountain coffee roasters dark magic told in the time it takes to brew your cup. first, we head to vermont. and go to our coffee shop. and meet dave. hey. why is dark magic so spell-bindingly good, he asks? let me show you. let's go. so we climb. hike. see a bear. woah. reach the top. dave says dark magic is a bold blend of coffee with rich flavors of uganda, sumatra, colombia and other parts of south america. like these mountains, each amazing on their own. but together? magical. all, for a smoother tasting cup of coffee.
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welcome back to "morning joe." yesterday we reported on sinclair broadcasting news stations being forced to read a
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script showing anchors echoing the mandated lines. now the sinclair broadcast group is responding to the criticism. the senior vice president scott livingston wrote the critics are now upset about our well researched journalistic initiative focused on fair and objective reporting. livingston where he, we find it curious that we would be attacked for asking our news people to remind their audiences that unsubstantiated stories exist on social media. president trump tweeted his defense of sinclair writing, so funny to watch fake news networks among the most dishonest groups i have ever dealt with credit same sinclair broadcasting for being biassed. sinclair is far superior to cnn and even more fake nbc which is a total joke. sinclair operates more than 190
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affiliates across the united states. the company is seeking to acquire dozens more by purchasing another group. michael, talk about the basis of who they are, what they do and just how much television they control and potentially could control going forward. >> theater. the national media focuses on other national media. the thing about sinclair is you just showed is they have reached the broad swath of the country, including a large part of the country devoted for donald trump. and sinclair right now owns around 190 stations and if their acquisition of tribune media goes through, they'll own about
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230 stations and have penetration about 72% of households in the united states. so what's got a lot of people concerned about this is not just the tribune's owning a lot of stations, but also that tribune is known to force local stations around the country to people that are being run by communities. they force these station toes run what are called must-run segments. this can include segments that push a conserve he line. it includes commentary. they're forcing news anchors to read these promos which talk about fake news and echo the talking points of trump. and if you listen, michael, people defended the clip that was making the rounds from dead spin saying, look, sinclair is an antidote to generations of bias news from the other side. and as sinclair said yesterday
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in its statement, they said look, what we're saying is there's a lot of fake news out there and we're here to keep our eye on it. .does that hold any water for you? >> another thing that sinclair mentioned in that memo that you just read from was mentioning stories like pizza gate, which was a conspiracy theory. i don't think anyone in the news media would be upset if anchors around the country said we're not going to run unsubstantiated news stories on tv. one of the things we're seeing right now which is striking to me as somebody that has covered sinclair for a long time, some local stations and some local anchors are pushing back a bit. we saw a sinclair affiliate in madison say that had they weren't going to run this promo. some other anchors on sinclair
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jumped in on social media on twitter and facebook and raised concerns about the promos and media consolidation more broadly. >> thanks so much. still ahead, turkey, china, russia and now egypt. president trump has called to congratulate strong men around the world. will he offer those compliments to vad mere putin in person? the latest on a possible face-to-face meeting between the two lead hadders straight ahead on "morning joe." do ndo not misjudgenity quiet tranquility. with the power of 335 turbo-charged horses lincoln mkx, more horsepower than the lexus rx350 and a quiet interior from which to admire them.
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welcome back to "morning joe." the trump administration confirmed yesterday the trump administration is still considering meeting with vladimir putin. joining us now, timothy snyder. his new book is "the road to unfreedom" in which he examines the rise of authoritarian leaders across the globe. also with us, director of the institute of national studies, michael mcfall and former dod official, dr. evelyn fark you s.
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evelyn is a senior fellow at the atlantic counsel and an msnbc national security analyst. welcome and good morning to you all. ambassador, i want to start with you just on this potential meeting between trump and president putin. we learned about it from the kremlin yesterday, not from the white house, that president trump introduced the idea of a white house meeting on their call a couple of weeks ago. he did sort of drop it as a possibility in an open press briefing in the oval office. bha what would it mean to have president trump sitting in the white house with president putin? >> i want to underscore how incredibly unusual it is that the kremlin is announcing the summit on our behalf. that's pretty unusual on diplomatic materials. but second, i am not, in principle, against president trump talking to president putin. there are times in diplomacy when you have to talk to
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difficult people to do really bad things. the question is for what purpose? what is the purpose of the meeting? what will we do? in government, we used to call it deliverables. right now, it's not clear to me that there would be any outcome that would benefit national security interests from such a meeting. what would happen is that putin and trump and putin would be pushing for this and i fear trump might go along, trump would say, okay, bygones. let's forget all those horrible things we did intervening in your elections, annexation in crimea, the war in syria, let's just move on. that would be a terrible mistake. that's why the meeting shouldn't happen right now. >> and what do you think president putin would want beyond that photo-op, obviously, of a sit down inside the oval office with president trump? >> exactly the idea that no matter what i do, no matter what
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agri egregious thing i do, everything is going to forget about it because donald trump wants to have a quote/unquote good relationship with putin. >> ambassador, speaking of of that relationship, it seems that an invite to the white house is seen as a reward and it's something world leaders want. obviously, we know what putin has done in london on or in britain and what he's done as far as our elections go here. what do other world leaders make of this type of visit? >> i just think it makes president trump look very weak. i think it makes him look like he doesn't understand diplomacy. you're absolutely right traditionally, including when i organize subjects, when i worked at the white house for president trump, we used the subjects, these meetings to get things done, to put pressure on our government, on their government, to achieve concrete outcomes such as a new arms control
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treaty or sanctions on iran. it's just not clear to me the agenda of president trump and his administration would be with vladimir putin right now. >> evelyn, to the ambassador's point, when president trump called president putin to congratulate him on his re-election, it wasn't the fact that the phone call president made to president putin. if it happens, the floated meeting between president trump and president putin. does he call him in the oval office to wag his finger at him and to admonish him or does he come in and slap him on the back and get the photo-op that president putin would so love to have? >> willie, you put your finger on the other problem. one, as mike pointed out, there is no agenda. so what are we going to get done with russia? and i would say actually the last summit we tried to organize within the government at the time in 2013 and it was called off because the russians refuse
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to hand had over edward snowden. but at that time, even then, we realized we didn't have much cooperation going, even though we were trying our darnedest. now, what's worse is not only do we have no agenda, buts as you just pointed out, this is a really bad signal to be sending. a week ago, we were on together with our allies standing up for our best friend, the united kingdom, against russia for its latest action, trying to assad nate two people on british soil using poison, using a nerve gas and, of course, this was number 15 and 16, i think, of the long list of attempted assassinations on the soil of the united kingdom and on.top of all the things that mike already mentioned. so, you know, we should be standing together with our allies and not inviting russia over the next day, you know, to sort of have a drink with us after they've assaulted, attacked our allies and attacked us. and i should also note president
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trump is supposed to be meeting today with the baltic countries for baltic day. and the russians, you know, they just can't stop. they announced a missile test which is to take place april 4th, 5th and 6th all day, cutting off air travel over the latvian air space. it doesn't seem like a necessary missile test because these things are normal. you conduct missile space over air space and you alert countries. this seems like a thumb in the face of our baltic allies, and yet another test that i'm afraid our president might fail because he should stand up for our baltic allies publicly and tell the russians to behavior. >> profedssor snyder, this fits in nightly with your book. as you sat down to write this book, what was the thesis, what was the premise? >> it's interesting, that made the point that we have no agenda from this meeting because one of the main thesises of the book is
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that russia does have an agenda. russia's agenda is to transform international relations from something which is about goals or interests into something about personal relationships, about relationships between the master o will i oligarch and between mr. trump. the agenda is to break down the rule of law. to break down the democracy of the united states. >> so we talk about the president calling president sisi congratulating him on his victory. what are president trump's goals within the thesis of this book? where do you think he wants this to end? >> the great thing about america is that we have a sense of time. we have a sense of future. there's the american dream, things can get better. mr. trump admires leaders who have problems, like putin, like
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sisi, leaders who don't really function in democracies. leaders when you don't know it's going to come to an end. mr. trump's goal is to shift our politics in that direction. we don't know that elections are going to matter. we don't even know what's true. i think that's his personal goal. and it's very personal. it's not about the country. >> so looking at had this book, and i think it's totally fascinating for a variety of reasons, but one of them is you talk about there's been a series of things that have been victories for russia, things that they would have wished tore. the brexit, the weakening of the european union, rise of populist throughout europe, these are all things that russians would, if they could plan the way things up folded over the last decade or so, they would have wanted. but the threat is not a threat of vladimir putin in some way affecting our society, but our
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weakness with the institutions history at home. the twlet we really face is internal. >> russia is about us. it's true that russia is carrying out a consistent policy to break up the european union and to interrupt the united states. the way we can use this is to say, well, look, our vulnerabilities are the problems that we have to solve. they have to do with our democratic institutions, as you've said. they also have to do vulnerability to cyber, which is something we can address if we want to. russia, in a way, is helping us. they're giving us an early warning and that gives us a chance to react. >> ambassador, you obviously know russia better than anybody having worked there for so long and dealt with the players. what about the professor's thesis, about the rise of
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authoritarianism and in some way president trump looks up to president putin? >> ironically, i was reading mr. snyder's book yesterday. for me, i would frame it a little bit different because i have my own book coming out soon. is the idealogical dimension. i think there's a complacency in america to say this is not the cold war and we all sit on our hands and think, well, thank goodness it's not communism versus capitalism. but vladimir putin has an ideology. it's a very consistent set of ideas. some go way back as professor snyder writes about in his book. he see is it as a conservative, authoritarian russian orthodox set of ideas against the decadent democratic west. and he's fighting that idealogical struggle.
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he has been for years now and investing in allies across europe and even in the united states. we don't want to engage in that debate or that struggle. >> i agree and i actually want to point out that there's an excellent short book that professor snyder wrote called "on tyranny" and it's basically what we do in this country to strengthen our country and i also wrote an article talking about the legacy and how we need to deal with our own weaknesses, shore up our own civil society because the russians, as we know, based on what they did during the election necessary 2016, they were using our weaknesses through social media to deepen the differences among us in america. so i do agree that, you know, we have to strengthen our democracy
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at home, our european allies have to do the same thing. that is an important opponent of standing up to russia. but then we also need to do things to deter russia militarily, economically and politically. professor, we've seen in the last 24 hours president trump tweeting about the things that threaten him trying to undermine him. the press, the fbi and the justice department. >> and those are three things russia doesn't like. russia doesn't like factuality, the rule of law and institutions. in general, if the russian trolls and russian robots are on your side, it's a side that you're on the wrong side. >> the road to unfreedom, russia, europe, america is the book. check it out now and then go and preorder michael mcfall's book. hely, with you probably have one coming out. >> i've got to get in the act. >> i'm going to work on it. >> and evelyn was wise to point out professor snyder's other book on tierney which is a must read. >> thank you so much.
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the latest developments in the troubled tenure of the epa administrator whose job may hang in the balance. keep it on "morning joe." as a control enthusiast, i'm all-business when i travel... even when i travel... for leisure. so i go national, where i can choose any available upgrade in the aisle - without starting any conversations- -or paying any upcharges. what can i say?
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the president has been ill served by this and if mr. pruitt is going to go, it's because he -- >> does he have to go? i don't know how you survive this one. if he has to say, it's because he never should have been there in the first place. >> it all smells to high heaven. and i think in an ethically challenged administration, pruitt is going, i guess, for the gold medal. and i just can't see how he can last. >> chris christie and john poe ded d podesta might not agree on much, but they found common ground on scott pruitt. pruitt gave his aides tens of
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thousands of dollars in raises after the white house nix' ed this. this as "the wall street journal" reports the white house is reviewing pruitt's $50 a night rental of a washington condo. the daily by beast records that the capitol hill town house coowned by an energy lobbyist served as a location for republican fund-raising events. several took place on dates when pruitt was in up to. lawmakers requested information on pruitt's unusual lease that had him paying only on nights when he stayed there. a senior administration official says john kelly considered firing pruitt but is waiting for an internal report and credits pruitt with being an effective cabinet member. pruitt announced yesterday he is revoking obama era standards on vehicle admissions.
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susan, how does this story end for scott pruitt? >> i think he should watch the president's twitter feed because you're fired is coming up. >> you think he's done. >> he's done. he's tote. advertisers. so how will parkland students respond to ted nugent's new attack? what the singer/songwriter said is next. give families a second chance. but to help others, they first had to protect themselves. i have afib. even for a nurse, it's complicated... and it puts me at higher risk of stroke. that would be devastating. i had to learn all i could to help protect myself. once i got the facts, my doctor and i chose xarelto®. xarelto®... to help keep me protected. once-daily xarelto®, a latest-generation blood thinner... ...significantly lowers the risk of stroke in people with afib not caused by a heart valve problem. it has similar effectiveness to warfarin. xarelto® works differently. warfarin interferes with at least 6 blood-clotting factors. xarelto® is selective, targeting just one critical factor interacting with less of your body's natural blood-clotting function.
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attacking the outspoken survivors of the parkland florida school shooting. he said, quote, they have no soul. joining us now, author for the "new york daily news." in his latest column, mike takes on nugent and other critics of the student activists. he writes, quote, nugent is not the only one who has tried to demonize these kids. acting as if they're part of some sort of deep-state conspiracy. but if you believe that, you also believe the alt right boogie man theories about pizza gate which got adults, not intelligent and informed high school kids, to believe democrat ys r were running a childhood pornography ring out of a pizza parlor. on that note, we talked about laura ingraham losing a ton of advertisers after she sort of criticized and mocked david hogg for not getting into a bunch of
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schools. what is this instinct to go after these kids? >> to me, it just shows how threatened they are by these eloquent passionate kids. and because it's only been six weeks, we're supposed to forget that their classmates got gunned down on valentine's day. and for ted nugent, that dim bulb, to actually think he can call these kids soulless. the guy who wrote the famous song "jail bait" back in the 1980s is preposterous. but he continues to take himself down the rabbit hole. saying these things about these kids. >> i think some of these people have made themselves -- some of the students have made themselves part of the gun debate, so they are fair game to be challenged on the merit s of their arguments -- >> but not on what colleges -- >> that's where i was going, the personal mocking. >> but that's the attack dialogue of american politics. which is not only are you
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supposed to disagree with their beliefs, you have to ascribe to a whole different set of beliefs that have nothing to do with the conversation. it's like the meryl streep thing with trump. not only was she, you know, disagreeing, she had to be a bad actress too. >> fact check on that one false. >> kind. >> of what do you make of this? >> as a media guy, one on one, first of all you don't attack children. second of all, you don't attack children whose friends have just been shot. >> how do you balance people who are now among the most prominent defenders of gun control? how do you balance having a conversation with them, having a debate defending your respect for the second amendment, your belief it ought not to be touched with the fact that they are survivors of that shooting? >> well, i think you have the dialogue on merits and the policy debate but as mike said, you know, you don't take on kids. i think mike's real point is somebody's threatened here. i think they see the pendulum shifting. that's why they're going so far
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over the line. >> not only do you not take on kid because it wasn't just that they lost their friends six weeks ago, it's that every day children around the country say they are afraid to go to school. this is something that is ongoing. it's not something that just happened six weeks ago. what these folks who are attacking these children should learn from the get go is something that even donald trump realized, you don't go after these kids because they will kick your behind on social media. >> i remember right after sandy hook, and i lived about 30 minutes from where that school once stood. i was just out for a walk and i watched the school bus pull up at 3:00 and i'm thinking, wow, we've got a contract in this country. there's a level of trust that we present our kids to schools in the morning and then we get them back safe and sound. that has been completely shattered over the last five years. and the first graders didn't get to go out and have the platform these teenagers did. but these kids are going to keep coming.
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they're like the first army coming over the hill and they're not going to go away. >> they're proven they're effective. laura ingraham lost a ton of advertisers because david hogg suggested they abandon her show. your fourth and final insta installme installment. the new novel is called "team players." tell us more about it. >> it's one of my favorite books. it's about a girl softball team. eighth grade girl softball team. added to the team is an extremely gifted girl withes asberger's syndrome. so many of her teammates see her as a threat. the star of the team embraces her and tries to learn about her and they try to find some common ground. then get shunned by the other team. i have a daughter so i know a fair amount about how easily this can happen. and casey, the star of the book,
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thinks she can, quote, fix sara and she finds out that that's not what she's looking for. they form a bond and a friendship across the season. and while all this is going on, the boys team is coached by a screaming aggressive dad woz so bad he gets kicked out of the league. >> i know some of those dads from my own little league experience as a matter of fact. why the last one? why don't we keep this thing rolling? >> the idea coming in was the home team series. there are four characters. casey, jack, gus and teddy. each one kind of got their own book. by the way, there's a star closer in this book named j.b. scarborough. >> oh this is the book, oh. there's a scarborough in it. congratulations on the book. got to ask you because you cover sports and write about it so well, villanova last night dismantling another team, winning every game in the tournament by double digits. how good are they? >> willie, they could have won three in a row. they got upset in the second
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round last year. it shows you don't just need freshman to win. >> so fun to watch. they'll just be going every year. the book is "team players." that does it for us. stephanie ruhle picks up our coverage. >> thanks so much, willie. hi, there, i'm stephanie ruhle with a lot to cover. a toxic deal. epa pruitt under fire. after new revelations he paid deeply discounted rent for a pricey condo that's linked to a lobbyist whose project, guess what, got approved. >> a hotel room for $50 a night in washington, d.c. and tell me that's not a gift from a lobbyist. this is disgusting. no decent ethics lawyer would sign off on that. >> and the white house now looking into the deal. will pruitt be the next cabinet member to go? and some trouble on wall street. markets plunge over fears of a tre

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