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tv   MSNBC Live With Stephanie Ruhle  MSNBC  April 16, 2018 6:00am-7:00am PDT

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>> the american people if you look at the polls, overwhelming, overwhelming of the americans want the investigation into the payoffs to continue, want the investigation into donald trump's business dealings to continue. we now that will continue even if mueller, rosenstein and jeff sessions is fired because the southern district of new york will continue their investigation. and firing rosenstein only making matters worse for donald trump. >> that does it for us this morning. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage right now. >> thanks, mika, hi, there. this morning, we've got a lot to cover. we're just getting started with trading shots. james comey sits down for his first tv interview since his firing last may, calling the president morally unfit to lead and, no surprise, the president fired back. >> a person who sees moral
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equivalent, who talks about and treats women like they're pieces of meat, that person's not fit to be president of the united states on moral grounds. >> mission accomplished? the president celebrates what he calls a perfectly executed missile strike in syria. but u.n. chief nikki haley says it is not over, warning russia new sanctions are imminent. >> our goal was to send a very strong message to assad and his friends that we are not going to watch them continue to use chemical weapons on their people. >> and full-court press. the president's longtime lawyer, michael cohen, heads to federal court, trying to stop prosecutors from using materials seized in last week's raid. as the president's lawyer claims it's attorney/client privilege. >> he seems to think it means if you have a lawyer in the room, you can do anything you want and you can't be held responsible for their actions and that's not the case. >> we begin this morning with
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the former fbi director jim comey attacking the president on moral grounds. even suggesting he could be vulnerable to russian blackmail. but he says impeachment is not the best option. i have a great team here to help us break all of it down. first, i want to get you up to speed on comey's interview, the one that ran in its entirety on another network last night. the headline, the former fbi director says donald trump is not fit to hold the office of president. >> i don't buy the stuff about him being mentally incompetent, early stages of dementia. he strikes me as a person of above average intelligence who's tracking conversations and knows what going on. i don't think he's medically unfit to be president. i think he's morally unfit to be president. a person who talks about and treats women like they're pieces of meat, who lies constantly about matters big and small and insist the american people believe it, that person's not fit to be president of the united states on moral grounds.
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>> comey also recounted a moment that has become key to robert mueller's investigation. it happened when jim comey says the president asked to speak to him alone about former national security adviser michael flynn who of course had been forced to resign just the day before. >> his words were, though, i hope you can let it go. i took the expression of hope as this is what i want you to do. >> the president says he didn't say that. >> what am i going to do. he did. >> was president trump obstructing justice? >> possibly. certainly some evidence of obstruction of justice. >> the president has denied that exchange ever took place and over the weekend, he slammed comey in a series of tweets, calling him a slime ball, a liar, a criminal and, quote, worst fbi director in history. saying, quote, the only thing worse than comey's history of misconduct is his willingness to say anything to sell books.
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he has no credibility. president trump was right to follow through on a bipartisan call for him to be fired. as for comey, he made it clear that he has seen no evidence of illegal behavior by the president, and he even said the idea of the russians having dirt on him is, quote, unlikely. he does not want to see him impeached. >> i think impeaching and removing donald trump from office would let the american people off the hook and have something happen indirectly that i believe they're duty bound to do directly. people in this country need to stand up and go to voting booth and vote their values. >> i want to go to the white house where nbc's kristen welker joins us live. all right, kristen, doesn't it seem like the president just doesn't want to let this go? i mean, he could, in that there's no smoking gun. jim comey is pushing this moral
Check
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issue which the president could say, great, i'm going to take it to the bank, people voting for me knowing all that stuff. >> it's a great point. the press unleashed a series of tweets over the weekend. i spoke to a white house official who said are we going to see more of that today. he said it's not clear how deeply the president plans to engage with james comey today, but there's no doubt this is getting under his skin, stef. you make the important point there was no new revelation from a legal perspective but this was comey's moral judgment on president trump. referring to him as discredited, disgraced. president trump, in one tweet so far we've seen this morning, let me read it to you, he writes, comey drafted the crooked hillary exoneration long before he talked to her, lied in congress to senator g, then based his decisions on her poll numbers, disgruntled, he,
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mccabe, and the others, committed many crimes. stef, back to you. >> wow. i want to bring my panel in. jeff quinn served as former white house counsel to president clinton and chief of staff to vice president gore. evan siegfried, republican strategist. you haven't read the book, but i'm guessing you've seen the interview. do you see a smoking gun anywhere? >> i don't see a smoking gun. let me say first of all i honor james comey's service to the country and the rule of law. i was certainly -- i'm troubled by the timing of the publication of his book. the investigation here is in the main -- in the hands of mr. mueller and the southern district of new york. and, you know, conceivably with the attorney general of the state of new york. i think injecting himself now is unhelpful. it's bad timing. just as was the bad timing of his announcement of the
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reopening of the investigation of mrs. clinton during the campaign. i wish he had held off. i don't think this makes life easier for the fbi. i don't think it makes life easier for mr. mueller. it was just an unnecessary intrusion at a very -- what i think is a very delicate moment in this investigation. >> the thing i think many of us thought we would get out of the book was real wrongdoing. the fact that jim comey is pushing this idea that the president is morally unfit and people need to stand up and vote, we're not looking for an ex-fbi director to tell people who should vote. so evan, is the white house missing an opportunity to say here, look, jim comey didn't say that the president did anything illegal? >> i think the white house is really blowing it, again, because we know they missed opportunities. they're responding -- >> they could take this as a win. >> and stay above the fray and say, listen, james comey, he's entitled to sell his books.
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we're going to talk about the issues that matter. instead, the white house and rnc are spending money rebutting james comey. in fact, they're inflating and amplifying his message. if you liked the president, you're going to be attacking james comey. if you didn't like the president, you're going to be attacking trump and saying here's the smoking gun. but the white house should be -- and the rnc should be focusing on, say, the midterm elections. and also they're incentivizing the anti-trump book market. because look at the sales or the presales. the book comes out tomorrow. and it's through the roof. 850,000 copies were printed in advance and at least 200,000 have been sold in presales. >> okay, great, well then, this administration or this presidency thus far has paid lawyers a whole lot of money and it sold a whole lot of books. but does this story, tim, does it change anyone's view? does it change anyone's vote? because it certainly seems like, listen, he's saying his skin was orange, it looked like he went tanning, his ties were too long, his hands were really small.
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people who felt that way already felt that way. >> i think that's why the issue of a smoke gun is so important. that's also the challenge bob mueller faces. at the end of the day, whenever his investigation concludes in the future, will he have a legal narrative and story that disturbs voters and members of congress about the president's conduct? i think everything that comey has said is known. i also agree with jack. i think strategically in terms of the mueller investigation it's a shale that comey came out now with his book. i think he's more valuable as a witness, a witness who is not seen as a self-promoter. a witness who is not trying to sell books. but a witness who has a story to tell. >> if i may, to tim's point, i mean, he says at one point in the interview that perhaps the president obstructed justice. well, that could be, under certain circumstances, an impeachable offense of course. then he said the president shouldn't be impeached. he said it in a way that
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suggests the american people deserve punishment for electing him. the constitution doesn't work that way. if, indeed, there are high crimes and misdemeanors, then impeachment is in order. i'm not suggesting we know that now but, again, he's injecting this sort of moral conclusion in an area where a fine analysis of the law is what's really in order. >> the issue on the president being morally unfit, those issues were known before he won. whether we're talking about a career of lying about things great and small. the "access hollywood" tape, the people he surrounded himself by. everyone knew that when they voted for him. that part is not a surprise. the surprise would be did he commit illegal activity that colluded with russians to help him get elected or bad business practices, evan? >> this was already litigated in 2016, yes. i think the wonderful quote was, the people have spoken and now they must be punished.
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i think if we have to look at james comey and his career, i served in the eastern district of new york for six years and james comey was a revered figure at that time. and over the past year, since he was fired as fbi director, he has taken the integrity and respect he has earned throughout the legal community and the law enforcement community and set it on fire with how he's been show boating, with this book, the timing of the investigation. and that's a very sad thing to see. >> i don't think he set it on fire. i think he's thrown a wrench into the investigation. jim comey still has enormous credibility. when president trump starts tweeting at jim comey yesterday that i never asked you to take a loyalty pledge, i don't believe that for a second. you know, it's one of the knowns of trump landia. you don't survive unless you're loyal to trump. i think comey's account of all their meetings has enormous credibility. i just think no one wants comey to pass moral judgment. jim comey should be part of the
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legal process. >> what's twisted is jim comey may be correct in comparing trump's behavior to that of a mob boss, but trump and his posse are okay with that. michael cohen loves that brand. they actually think, as upsetting as it is, is that it's cool. i want to share more of the interview. just take a look. >> do you think the russians have something on donald trump? >> these are words i never thought i'd utter about a president, but it's possible. has always struck me as unlikely and i would have been able to say with high confident about any other president i dealt with, but i can't. it's possible. >> so he's saying it's possible. does it sound like he's holding back because he's possibly sharing information with robert mueller? or he really doesn't know? if he doesn't know, kind of makes you think, well, who does? >> it's hard to say. look, i think -- i certainly
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wouldn't be the first, nor would he, to suggest that the president's silence in the face of what is clearly an interference on the part of russia in our democratic elections is remarkable. and suggestion of something going on that is not at the surface. specifically, any number of people have wandered aloud is he somehow beholden in a way that prevents him from condemning russia in the very strongest possible terms and with the strongest sanctions on the part of the united states for what it did, what it is trying to do and what it continues to try to do to interfere with america and its democratic processes. >> yes, i, too, am on that list of people and would love to know what is it about president trump and putin. all right, thank you. a programming note. this thursday if you didn't get
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enough of jim comey last night, we've got more. thursday night, rachel maddow will be joined by jim comey live in studio of course to discuss the release of his book and a lot more. watch that interview thursday at 9:00 p.m. here on msnbc. next right here, we're going to talk president trump defending his declaration of mission accomplished in syria, but what exactly is the mission? plus, the u.s. is set to unleash new sanctions against russia today for supporting the assad regime. we're going to tell you who the sanctions are going to target. - anncr: as you grow older, your brain naturally begins to change which may cause trouble with recall. - learning from him is great... when i can keep up! - anncr: thankfully, prevagen helps your brain and improves memory. - dad's got all the answers. - anncr: prevagen is now the number-one-selling brain health supplement in drug stores nationwide. - she outsmarts me every single time. - checkmate! you wanna play again? - anncr: prevagen. healthier brain. better life.
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you will see that russian sanctions will be coming down. secretary mnuchin will be announcing those on monday if he hasn't already. they will go directly to any sort of companies that we're dealing with equipment related to assad and chemical weapons use. >> welcome back. u.n. ambassador nikki haley announcing plans to impose a new round of sanctions against russia today for its support of the assad regime. president trump has declared mission accomplished after the u.s. and its allies launched air strikes on syrian chemical weapons facilities friday night. nbc's hans nichols is at the pentagon. hans, what's next for the u.s. involvement in syria? has the white house outlined a strategy moving forward? we know that we heard the president make a statement friday night. he talked about it on twitter. as far as an official strategy from the pentagon what do we know? >> for the pentagon, the strategy is the same. it is the status quo.
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that is they're trying to defeat isis in the eastern part of the city. they don't support regime change. whether or not assad stays in power, they're technically agnostic on. they believe they've sent a clear message that use of chemical weapons will not be tolerated. now the ambiguity there is what qualified for chemical weapons. is it sarin or chlorine or a combination of the two? officially the posture remains the same. now in response to those strikes on friday night, they did change the force protection for the 2,000 u.s. troops still in syria. remember, they're one step away from the front lines. they're really helping the kurdish partner forces, there's some arabs in there as well, defeat isis. just speaking to officials in baghdad, military officials are saying that they're saying they've not seen any change in posture from the regime, the assad forces in eastern syria. it doesn't look like u.s. troops at any increased risk.
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stephanie. >> the former senior adviser at the state department, and kevin barren, executive editor of defense one. the syrian government put out a tweet over the weekend basically a video of bashar al assad showing up to work, sort of this, you know, business as usual. is that the case? are they not deterred by this? are they just putting up a front? >> they have the backing of russia. russia even declared yesterday if any strikes continued in syria that the western world would have to pay, that this would lead to chaos. was the specific terminology coming out of russia. no, this is not the deterrent that the white house necessarily is saying that it is. this is where the ambiguity that hans mentioned comes in. if you're not looking at regime change, but you are trying to deter chemical weapons use, don't wait a week. don't signal to them that you're going to be doing that. and on top of that, don't attack the positions where majority of the chemical weapons have
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already been removed. so not sure that trump administration made anyone happy with this attack. neither the humanitarian intervention folks who want to see the civil war end and want a stronger u.s. presence there and engagement. he didn't keep happy the america first people who want to see the united states retreating from the rest of the world and not trying to police what's happening in syria. >> kevin, russia and iran spoke by phone yesterday and reaffirmed their alliance with syria. does that signal that iran and russia are not going to be spooked whatsoever by the u.s. response? >> well, pretty much. i think russia did allow this to happen. let's not forget that. the russians did not engage their air defenses. they talked some bluster they would immediately strike back and it didn't happen. the pentagon was able to put in 105 missiles without any, you know, fightback. so i think, you know, i think it just showed the time that it took for the administration to do the strikes was beneficial in
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that sense. it allowed russia to kind of save face. it let the united states do this punitive strike against chemical weapons possession, not get overly involved. that's the measured response the pentagon went for. >> so clearly it's an overstatement for the president to say mission accomplished, but is he on the right track? something is happening. >> that's -- well, there should be a combination here of military tactics and diplomacy. we're not talking about multiparty talks. talking about the type of diplomacy that happened in 2014. the infamous president obama didn't strike syria moment. however, the threat of u.s. strikes did lead u.s., russia and syria to negotiate through the opcw an elimination of 97% of the chemical weapons stockpile that syria had at the time. so there is -- it should be a multi -- multipronged effort
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here. not an arbitrary tweeting. and then following up with missile strikes. it needs to be a cohesive strategy that uses all the tools of a national security tool box. >> "new york times" writes, quote, if the west refuses to invest the resources needed to determine syria's future, its efforts to penalize mr. assad will make life worse for average syrians. what's your thought? >> i think i'd agree with that. i've been writing also that the united states just simply has not laid out its plan for how to get to geneva. i try to remind folks that the united states military mission on the counterisis part, their military mission is to stay there. to stay with the democratic forces they've built up. but right now, tell me who's in charge of that. there's no secretary of state. nobody from this country has owned this issue to take it to that final -- to get across the goal line.
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maybe that will change with mike pompeo coming to the state department from cia. they're more attune to syria than probably rex tillerson was. maybe it will change with john bolton. until then, yes, you've got u.s. troops on the ground in a hold phase. the hold phase is where guys get killed. that's where you start getting some fight back from either isis and where the americans are or some sort of blending on that line when it comes to the syrian civil war or the united states has tried to stay out of. >> all right, this complication is clearly complicatcomplicated. i appreciate you joining us. coming up, stormy daniels will be in court today as a spectator. she's sitting in on a hearing for president trump's attorney michael cohen. and you know we are keeping track of gun violence in this country. according to the trace, there have been at least 12,323 cases of gun violence, 91 over this weekend alone. patrick woke up with a sore back.
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welcome back. time now for your morning primer. everything you need to know to get your day started. we begin with barbara bush in
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failing health this morning after a number of recent hospitalizations. a family spokesperson says the former first lady will not seek additional medical treatment and will instead focus on comfort care. at least one person was killed in north carolina overnight when severe storms and tornadoes ripped through the state. thousands of people are now without power today. and across the midwest, three people were killed in a powerful spring storm that dumped up to two feet of snow from kansas through wisconsin. and protests have erupted for the second day outside the philadelphia starbucks where two african-american men were arrested for allegedly refusing to leave while waiting for their friend. the dispute was caught on camera and has been viewed more than 8 million times on twitter. starbucks has apologized, saying the company is reviewing its policies and ceo kevin johnson promises to offer a face-to-face apology to the two men who of course were arrested. and teachers in colorado will join a nationwide movement
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today planning to march on the state capital in denver to push for more school funding and better pay. please remember that. it's not just about their pay, it's about funding. giving kids the resources they need. and president trump's personal lawyer michael cohen will be in court today at his own request in an effort to stop prosecutors from reviewing files seized in last week's raid. cohen has asked a federal judge to allow president trump to go through and determine which documents can be withheld from the investigation because of attorney/client privilege. not only will cohen face a federal judge today but he might come face-to-face with stormy daniels, the adult film star he paid 130 grand to to keep quiet. stormy daniels is also expected to be in the courtroom and watch from the stands. i want to bring in robert costa, national reporter for "the washington post" and moderator of "washington week" on pbs. okay, robert, president tweeted over the weekend,
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attorney/client privilege is not a thing of the past. that's the president's narrative. that's what his supporters want to say. what is that going to mean in a courtroom? from your reporting, what are you hearing? >> it's going to be judge kimba woods' decision about what's allowable in terms of the material collected by the southern district of new york. you had both the president's personal attorney and michael cohen's attorneys trying to have some say over what's reviewable or not. a lot of time with these seizures of documents, it's up to the discretion of the investigators, not necessarily those being investigated. >> okay, mcclatchy has been reporting that back in 2016, there was a period of time when michael cohen was in prague. that's obviously of particular interest to robert mueller. michael cohen is double, triple, quadrupling down, saying no way, jose, i was in los angeles.
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so this one is very black and white. where do you think it's going to go from here? >> as you said, cohen has denied being in prague to meet with the russian figure. this has been a question mark throughout the past year, as the investigation into possible russian collusion has unfolded. at the say time, mcclatchy has its report. that report has not been corroborated by "the washington post" so i don't want to speculate too much about the mcclatchy story it the interactions between michael cohen and different people throughout the campaign. that is the target for these investigators. he has been confirmed to be a criminal target. part of that is not only financial dealings but possible meetings with russians. >> you argue that michael cohen is not the biggest fish. he doesn't know that much compared to others. maybe they're putting too much pressure on it. >> he knows a lot about the russia investigation.
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obviously, an attempt to built trump tower in moscow during the campaign season. and he was trump's fixer on this, like stormy daniels. however, he didn't run the trump organization. he was not trump's primary legal advisers in the trump organization. he's one of these many sort of hangers on who floats around the trump universe. there are other people at the trump organization, for example, his inhouse counsel. and his ceo. who often had final say on how deals looked and what got signed off on, presumably, depending on how deep the investigation, those folks will be of interest to him. they have been at the organization longer. wi wiseleburg's been there a decade. and i think that cohen matters. he's very important. i think the idea that the cohen prosecution or the hot water
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cohen is in right now represented the end game in the trump organization. >> evan, how much does stormy daniels matter? the $130,000 payment, possibly a misuse of campaign funds or campaign finance rule violations or is she just the tip of the iceberg and this is about corrupt or bad business practices? >> stormy daniels herself and the case she's bringing forward is not that big a deal in the grand scheme of things. and the president is facing and what mueller is investigating. there may be fec violations and they should be held accountable for that. i think stormy daniels has hurt herself with michael avan netty constantly out there. the whole point is when they are their lawyers go on tv to talk about the case, the opposition can argue they're just using it as an excuse to get on air and get publicity for themselves.
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and i think that what we're really seeing here, with the president saying attorney/client privilege is dead, first of all, don sqr is most freaked out because he claimed attorney general/client privilege, saying he can't talk about what he said -- >> don jr. is an attorney? >> apparently. >> because don jr. went to law school -- >> i think don jr. put his hand on a rock and said "i am an attorney." >> sure. >> but the judge, she is very well respected throughout the legal community. i think she will make sure that all sides are adhering to the law. and she's not going to let a circus happen in her courtroom. >> and if investigators wanted the trump folks to review these documents before turning them over, they would have issued a bean is th subpoena. they went into the door and got everything they wanted. >> they went into the door with a search warrant. they didn't break it down. remember, last week, soon after the raid, when the president spoke, he said they broke in.
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no one broke in. so as the president spins a narrative, let's make sure we get you the straight one. robert, thank you. you too. we're going to take a break. coming up, the gop tax overhaul legislation has permanently slashed corporate taxes but are you seeing a permanent bump in your paycheck like the republicans promised? remember, it was all about trickle down economics. is it trickling down? we just switched to geico and got more. more? they've been saving folks money for over 75 years. a company you can trust. geico even helped us with homeowners insurance. more sounds great. gotta love more... right, honey? yeah! geico. expect great savings and a whole lot more. we see two travelers so at a comfort innal
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welcome back. i'm stephanie ruhle. it's my favorite part of the show, money, power, politics. today, we're talking stock buybacks. republicans promised you would see more cash in your paychecks, so-called trickle down, but so far people have only seen one-time bonuses that just make up a fraction of what these companies are saving in taxes. bank america/michelle lynch analysis found that less than 45% of the s&p companies, the ones that benefit the most from the major corporate tax cuts, have invested those in tax bonuses. cn cnbc's sara eisen joins me now. only a handful of companies gave bonuses. we barely saw raises. it's all about buybacks. expected to be record numbers this year. walk us through how buybacks work. it's shareholders. it's not that middle america that the president promised to
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deliver for. >> right, stephanie. the president, house speaker ryan and everybody else who backed the tax reform bill made big promises about what american workerings would see in their paychecks and they were specific. remember, they promised 4,000 to $9,000 more for an average american household per year. so the hill has already crunched some numbers and the reality is not coming in anywhere close to that. to the administration's credit, i will say americans did say the progress. if you multiply that by 52 weeks for a year, that's only 323 extra dollars in american's pockets. nowhere near the $4,000 to $9,000 that was promised. now, a caveat, it's still early and companies could still use those big cuts in taxes to boost workers pay. a lot of that money went to one-time bonuses. we saw that from jetblue.
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we saw that from our parent company comcast. it doesn't translate into a annual wage increase. buybacks. this is straight into investor's pockets. we're actually set to see a record number of stock buybacks this earning's season. what it means is these companies have extra cash, billions of dollars worth, and one way they like to reward shareholders is they take that money and buy their own stock. they also pay investors in the form of dividends. and that is worth hundreds of billions of dollars in earnings. it also should help the u.s. stock market which should help 401ks and pensions. the number one beneficiary, no question about it, is investors, not american workers. >> okay, but at the end of the day, tim, isn't that because corporate america is not beholden to the american taxpayer? a corporate ceo has to answer to his shareholders, his customers and he does want -- he or she
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wants his employees to be happy. the fact that the tax plan might be getting a high disapproval rating from the american people, if i'm the ceo of caterpillar, what do i care? >> you may care about your institutional investors first and foremost, right. >> i don't care about voters. i care about investors. >> that's where the bang of this tax cut meets reality. when the republicans begin to campaign during the midterms this season, i think they thought the tax cut was going to be a strong forward-looking banner for them that they could make hay out of. there's a lot of things attendant to this now that are problematic. it's not only wage growth for americans and middle class americans whose standard of living has fallen behind since the mid-1980s, an important bloc of people who supported trump when he got elected. the other thing is the money hasn't gone into capital expenditures at the corporate level. with the money getting cut, with the taxes lowered, that money would get reinvested by
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corporations to make themselves more efficient, more productive and the economy would then grow and all boats would be lifted. we've yet to see data that suggest that happening. >> what comes with these tax cuts, a ballooning deficit. something that hard-core republicans shouldn't be pleased with. i got to ask you, before we go, because i know you certainly love currencies, it's your mojo. he tweeted, russia and china are playing the currency devaluation game. a, what does he mean here? because we have to remember, he called china a currency manipulator throughout the campaign and that was factually incorrect. what is he saying now? what is not acceptable mean? he can't control what they do. >> yes, i don't think there's enough attention being paid to currency devaluation on msnbc so thank you -- >> you think no one pays attention to it. >> it is very important. clearly, the president understands that. but his tweet is completely
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false. i'll fact check for you. everybody wants a weaker currency, right? it makes our exports more competitive. president trump talked a lot about this. however, the u.s. currency is a lot weaker since the fed began raising interest rates back in 2015. so the president has his facts wrong here. if you look at a lot of charts recently like the chinese currency, it's actually stronger against the u.s. dollar so far this year. contrary to what the president said. the ruble is weaker but that's because the u.s. just slapped more sanctions on russia last week and that killed the currency. bottom line, the statement is false. it's interesting that he's using currency manipulate, but it just feeds into his argument that we've been treated unfairly when it comes to trade. >> well, sara eisen just slapped you with some facts. coming up, a new poll shows democrats with a clear edge in the upcoming midterm elects but do republicans still have a fighting chance? i'll be asking the chairman of the american conservative union
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democrats just barely edging out republicans. only 47% of americans prefer congress run by democrats. 40% prefer republicans. this comes as president trump is on his way to florida right now to tout florida right now to out ut tax cuts. max, i want to get your reaction to that poll because it's a positive for republicans, it's not that blowout that many people are talking about. so if you're goal is to close the gap by november's midterms, how are you going to do it. >> you know, it's a lot about what your reporting has been in morning. we can all characterize the big tax cut plan, but the one thing that we all have to admit is it was a completely democrat plan. so if an individual voter feels like they have greater economic prospects, we're seeing an increase in the market which is
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affecting their pensions and retirement accounts, we're seeing an uptick in areas in home valuations which they also love to hear, and then people are having upticks in their salaries and bonuses and every other questions. if people feel like they have more economic opportunity because of trump's agenda, i think we'll be just fine. and that economic poll you referred to, seven points, i think it will be tighter if the economy continues to improve. >> but what if it's just the opposite? because republicans can take complete responsibility or ownership of the tax krucuts, t were tax cuts not reform. we've seen them take issue with the president approving the budget,er in not comfortable with the raises. bonuses are run-time bonuses. when you look at raise, we haven't seen an extraordinary a. races because you can't force
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corporate america do it. >> but the shareholders it's important to understand 2/3 of americans own stock. a lot of people have pensions invested in the stack market so it's good for whereverybody whee market goes up. but do wages go up in i'll be honest about the economic question if the was all republican votes. if the economy goes flat like it was under obama and people don't see a big improvement -- >> hold on. it was a slow zbloth pretty flat. >> no. it was not flat under president obama. >> 1% average growth or so. and people, look, average americans, you have to admit -- this is bipartisan. we've seen for over a decade wage stagflation. and that's the problem. we want to see increases in people's wages. i think you're seeing an uptick in gnat pu corporate america son the line here. they got the biggest tax cut or reform, whatever you want to call it in a generation. what will they do with it?
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i think they're going to do things that result in economic growth and in the reend if you don't compete for the very best workforce, you won't have the higher productivity levels you need. so they'll have to pay their employees more. we're already seeing an uptick and if the american people feel like they have greater economic opportunity because these regulations have fallen away and taxes are lower, the republican party will be rereasonable doubt w -- rewarded and so does the president. >> what about paul ryan? is that a positive or negative for the midterms zble he's a friend of mine, i think it has zero impact. i think at the end of the day paul ryan got tired of doing probably the toughest job in washington, which is trying to bring some kind of order to the republican and the house. we're going to lose seats and i think paul ryan doesn't love the political part of this job and he got his achievement with this tax reform. we're going to pick a new leader and at the end of the day think you're right. it's going to come down to do
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the american people agree with the economy ic policy or in f ty don't. >> handling syria is also a tough job. no one has figured it out. when you look at what's been done already, sanctions. we had a strike last year, a strike this weekend. the president has said mission accomplished. is it fair to say mission accomplished? this is a hornet's northwest es it light. >> i i'm don't want to get if he any further in syria. this san example of a dynamic that's difficult for the american militaritor figure out what victory is. if you don't know what victy is then we should step away. we do have to do things like the strike to demonstrate that using weapons of mass destruction in syria with iran having nuclear capabilities, with north korea having nuclear capabilities there's a line in the sand we
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must draw but you don't want to see american forces getting pulled into syria. >> on the stepping away front, i'm not a communications person, but if i was and i watched the jim comey book and the pr rollout this weekend, if i was the whous whit the white house, i would be looking at the jim comey book and taking it as a win because there's not a smoking book. he's saying there's possibly something between russia and trump and he's going after trump in terms of being morally reprehensible. people were comfortable with trump being morally represe reprehensible and they voted for him. is the president and the white house taking the right approach that they're going after him or couldn't they say there's nothing illegal here and put a febling feather in their cap. >> i completely agree with hillary clinton and her supporters who are attacking jim comey. i think it's all about jim comey. he thinks he's the only moral man in town but he went up to
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congress and lied on two separate occasions and i think what's a credibility gap with democrats and republicans. i for one am glad he and his department mr. mccabe are out of the fbi. i think america will be better served for it. >> the president also has a credibility issue, so why not leave this aside and say nothing in the president's only selling more books for jim comey. >> i guess except, stephanie, after a year and a half of a special prosecutor the president has grown tired over this request of russia collusion. he's had a special counsel almost his entire president vir it's time put the cards on the table, what do you have. >> i'm with you. put your cards on the table. >> if there's no collusion then let's move on. >> put your cards on the table, sit down and do an interview with robert mule, he sit down and show us your taxes and divest yourself from your businesses and don't have the family working in the white house. >> the question of the special counsel was was there russia collusion not do you think that donald trump injury favorite
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preside -- is your favorite president '. >> but if you're saying let's end this, let's end it with full transparency. thank you for joining me, i hope to see you soon. when we come back, president trump leaving the white house and he's on his way to floo to tout his tax retax reform plans. i'm not calling it tox reform, i'm calling it tax cuts. he's going to be doing that soon. much more ahead on msnbc. for a cracked windshield. that's why at safelite, we'll show you exactly when we'll be there. with a replacement you can trust. all done sir. >> grandpa: looks great! >> tech: thanks for choosing safelite. >> grandpa: thank you! >> child: bye! >> tech: bye! saving you time... so you can keep saving the world. >> kids: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace ♪ we see two travelers so at a comfort innal with a glow around them, so people watching will be like, "wow, maybe i'll glow too if i book direct at choicehotels.com". who glows? just say, badda book. badda boom.
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