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tv   The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell  MSNBC  May 7, 2018 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT

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zbleef again, the breaking news this hour after jane mayor and ronan farrow published allegations in in the new yorker magazine from four women who said they were hit and slapped and otherwise abused by new york attorney general eric schneiderman, he has just resigned effective close of business tomorrow. he said in a statement that he, quote, strongly contests the allegations. he says these allegations will prevent me from leading the office's work at this time, so i resign effective may 8, 2018. that's it for us. now it's time for "the last word with lawrence o'donnell." >> it's been extraordinary watching this develop. governor cuomo called for his
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allegations in the last hour and a half or so and that resignation was delivered right around an hour or so after the governor asked for it. this was something no one could have possibly seen coming. this is again extraordinary reporting by jane mayier and ronan farrow at the new yorker. jane mayer is going to join us in a bit to tell us how this came about. this raises big political questions in new york state. you referred to the notoriously insane new york city state legislature, which many would call a charitable description. and it falls to them now to choose the next attorney general. >> that's right. at a time when -- attorneys general are always powerful jobs, important jobs, in new york state the attorney general position has been a high profile job, a stepping tone to the
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governor, and has a higher profile than usual because of the -- what's been reported as a cooperative relationship twine attorney gener between eric schneiderman and the special counsel's office. they could be pursued as a state matters and there was a question if that might happen through schneiderman's office if the president is somehow able to dismantle the federal investigation. this affects the personal lives of the women. it has big political consequences in new york and national implications too. >> we've both had eric schneiderman on our shows since the trump administration began, he was one of the first you attorneys general to come out and explain the powers that state attorneys general have to
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confront this presidency, even before there was a special prosecutor on issues like the muslim ban that the president tried to introduce and other policies, and eric schneiderman, even before we got to any issues of special prosecutor's investigators and what eric schneiderman might be able to do that could be a state companion to that, he was one of the attorneys general leading the resistance to the trump presidency. >> if you could wipe the slate clean and know nothing else ant what happened in the last year and a half, to know before he took office, the president agreed to pay $25 million to settle a civil fraud case brought in the trump university matter, that fraud case was brought by eric schneiderman, other states attorneys general did lead the way. the president had to pay $25 million, that settlement was
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finalized in the last couple weeks. the president counter sued eric schneiderman for bringing the suit. being eric schneiderman in this era, the trump era has been as high profile as you can get with this kind of job and to have this bolt from the blue in the new yorker and he's gone before dinner's over, this is a remarkable turn of events. >> thank you very much, rachel. >> thanks, lawrence. >> we are joined by phone by jane mayer who broke this story today in the new yorker. i was going to read a description for the audience of what it was that you discovered and reported about attorney general eric schneiderman that forced this resignation tonight but i'm going to leave it to you to tell us what the key elements of your reporting are that forced the attorney general of new york state to resign
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tonight. >> well, there were four women who were romantically involved with him in the past, who have described just repeated episodes of nonconsensual violence inflicted on them by him. but they -- these are episodes that range from someone who was just -- you know, a single situation, where attorney general schneiderman made a sexual advance to her, and she is a very well known attorney in new york, very prominent person, and just out of the blue he, according to her, hit her incredibly hard across the face twice and there were photographs of this that we were able to see that were taken the next day. so that's just a one-time thing. to then the descriptions of similar kinds of activity that
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were prolonged over a year or even longer from relationships that these -- some of the other women had with him who were really girlfriends. and descriptions of being slapped repeatedly in the face, choked, which was really particularly disturbing because he was the lead sponsor of the strangulation law in new york that made it a serious crime to try to choke someone because it's so often an indicator of really serious violence in domestic violence cases. so it was just -- it was just the most unexpected thing. he's been such a star in the democratic party. and, you know, i don't think -- nobody's taking any great pleasure in this. these were women who supported him, who i think were crazy about him at some point.
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but they were stuck in this situation that was really like being battered women. it was kind of amazing. >> before the attorney general announced his resignation tonight, he did give a comment to you at the new yorker saying in the privacy of intimate relationships, i have engaged in role playing and other consensual activity, i have not assaulted anyone, i have never engaged in nonconsensual sex, which is a line i would not cross. in your reporting did you find anything about confusion in his line of role play? >> no. it was a line we were sensitive to, not wanting to invade somebody's privacy. there are two women in the story who are on the record and they
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are speaking out because they really felt it was so important at this point, and they wanted to make sure that other women didn't fall into the same situation with him, but both of those women on the record used the word assault. and they say this was nonconsensual and they say they were objected to it over and over. and that it included also a lot of very demeaning psychological, what they describe as abuse. and the pattern just having done a lot of the reporting here, it just repeated itself with each person that we interviewed and it became familiar. it was really kind of hoe r horrendous. >> did the victims clomplain to him? did he say anything in way of apologies in verbal explanation about this? >> we're talking about something
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that went on -- we're talking about over a decade here, so a lot of different things happened. but yes, there were -- there were -- these women say they told him to stop and he didn't, sometimes they would think that maybe he'd get better, maybe he could get therapy, maybe they could -- maybe it was their fault. they went through a lot of different things but basically they did not consent to this activity, this violence, and they were incredibly upset and eventually broke up with him. so he made them feel that it was their fault and they weren't liberated enough for putting up with it, is one of the things that i came across in a number of occasions. >> jane, as you were preparing this story for publication just hours ago, did it feel, before publication, that it could lead to the resignation of the attorney general within hours?
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>> i thought it might. i didn't know how fast it would happen, but i think given how important women's rights are to the democratic party and, you know, the me too movement has been for democratic leaders, it didn't seem possible that he could behave in one way that one of the women on the record describes as dr. jeckle and mr. hyde, to be so different in public and private, i thought he may face a fire storm. >> jane mayer, thank you for developing us on these developments as a result of your reporting. we're joined by john heilman, the cohost and executive producer of show time's the circus. joyce vance, former federal
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prosecutor. she's an msnbc reporter. and jennifer rubin, an msnbc contributor. i want to go to you joyce vance. here is an attorney general of new york state, who is engaging in behavior that he has to know, according to jane mayer's reporting, is going to get him in trouble, especially in the position he's in, it would get any man in trouble in any position. >> it's so hard to contemplate why we hear these stories over and over again. perhaps there's a sense he's powerful enough he can outrun the story, he can outrun any sort of allegations that come up, but in the end this caught up with him fairly quickly and an unfortunate juncture in our country's history where he was in charge of several weighty investigations. >> eric schneiderman is not married, was not married during
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any of this conduct that's been reported here and his ex-wife and mother of his children has issued a very supportive statement about eric schneiderman tonight. jennifer rubin, i wanted to get your reaction to the developments. >> i think it's two-fold. one is there's a level of credibility these women have because of the harvey weinstein episode, because of so many other episodes that at least we have reached the point in time when this does surface that there's an immediate reaction. governor cuomo came out and said he didn't think the party would survive. so we look at one positive element of it, these men cannot continue after the story comes out. the other thing is how it affects various trump problems.
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he was also investigating a charity that eric trump was involved in. if we remember anything in the trump episode, the wheels of justice do continue, there will be another attorney general, he may be more or less kofrpt tent, but those cases go on. there will be attorneys who work for the attorney general who continue to do their work day in and day out, and i don't think we have to fear this will somehow imperil whatever is going on in new york state. the states attorney general have huge offices. they're in essence law firms with very skilled prosecutors, investigato investigators, i would hope the state legislature chooses wisely. they have a one-seat advantage for democrats as well as a large majority in the state assembly.
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we have to wait and see who the individual is that is appointed, but i think the quicker they get schneiderman out of there, they get someone else in that has credibility, has the confidence of the people of new york, and of the officials who -- in the state legislature, the governor, the better off we'll all be. >> john heilman, the parallels to elliott spitzer tonight are striking, a former attorney general to new york state who then became governor and whose career was destroyed in a scandal involving prostitutes. a story that began while he was new york state attorney general and involved in the prosecution of prostitution cases. it is just mind bog lugling how they could find themselves in these situations. >> certainly mind boggling not
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to defend elliott spitzer, but between the two cases, as far as my memory serves, elliott spitzer was not accused of committing any violent acts against the women he was involved with, although people have different views on prostituti prostitution, these are a different category of case because of the nature of the allegations here that goes to acts of violence in some cases. it is certainly staggering, though, that two cases kind of in the same zip code could fell two new york attorneys general in such close proximity to each other. i think jennifer rubin, not to shift from the swiftness of this, i'm not surprised at all. the moment i read the story i thought he will not last the night. in this era, these circumstances he will not last. i'm not as sane quinn as
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jennifer about the trump related investigations. joyce and i were talking about it before. it may be, yes, justice -- the wheels of justice continue to turn. they can turn faster or slower and the thing i asked joyce, is it the case if you decapitate an investigation does it immediately pick up where it left off or can it be hobbled, crippled, slowed, and her answer was it can be hobbled, kriped and slowed. i also think it's the case what we know about the mueller and schneiderman partnership, was that there was a lot of cooperation going on behind the scenes between the special prosecutor and the state attorney general there. and that kind of disruption, however long it takes to get a new person in the job. that kind of disruption in a moment where things are happening rapidly, i don't know what the impact of this will be, but it may not be -- it may be less -- the wheels of justice
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may have to hit pause for a little while. they may be stuck in a ditch for a little bit, when it comes to continuing on the path that schneiderman was on. >> and governor cuomo, who demanded his resignation, is himself a former attorney general, he was the last democratic attorney general of new york state to emerge from the job without having drowned in scandal. elliott spitzer and now eric schneiderman. there's something weird about the elliott spitzer history and what we know his conduct was secretly when he was new york state attorney general, and eric schneiderman what we're learning about him tonight, to make me wonder, is there something about prosecutors reaching this seemingly all-powerful level of new york state attorney general
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that tips them over the edge that they cannot evaluate their risk factor? >> i don't think that's the case. i think new york has produced some extraordinarily fine chief prosecutors, particularly on the federal side of the house. scott prui schneiderman's office did phenomenal things during his tenure, that doesn't forgive his conduct, he was challenging the inclusion of an immigration status on the census. i would say this personal criminality is balanced out by people who are high achievers. these two folks i think are i had owe sin cat you can. the assembly will replace him with a strong replacement and we won't have problems moving forward. >> we're going to squeeze in a break. coming up there's a new report that the president is
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that was the one word that rudy giuliani could not say, must not say. the defense of donald trump is and always has been a just say no defense. say no to anything anyone has accused him of or might ever accuse him of. so when rudy giuliani was asked yesterday on television if donald trump's hush money handl handler, michael cohen has made hush money payments to other women other than stormy daniels, rudy giuliani was supposed to give a trump-like answer filled with misinformation but under no circumstances was the word yes supposed to be anywhere near that answer. avoiding yes or no answers is a lawyerly skill so, of course, lawyer rudy giuliani would have no problem handling a question like that for his new client,
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the president of the united states. >> did michael cohen make payments to other women for the president? >> i have no knowledge of that. but i would -- i would think if it was necessary, yes. >> yes. it would be hard to find a lawyer anywhere in america who would allow the word yes into the answer to that question, but donald trump has found one. rudy giuliani shares donald trump's problem of always sayinl too much. if giuliani's answer was going to begin with i have no knowledge of that, it should have ended right there. but when you watch his interviews you will see he literally does not know how to stop talking. on friday the president had this explanation for what a terrible job rudy giuliani has been doing for him on tv last week. >> reporter: . >> he started yesterday. he'll get his facts straight. he's a great guy. >> that was, of course, a stunning lie. rudy giuliani's very public
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first day on the job as trump defense lawyer was two weeks ago, not yesterday. even if the president wasn't lying and rudy giuliani really did start yesterday, that is no excuse for a lawyer giving reckless answers on tv that get the client in even more trouble. and for rudy giuliani to say yes to the question of did michael cohen make payments to other women, rudy giuliani would have to have been born yesterday. here is the best rudy giuliani could do when he was asked if the president does acknowledge meeting stormy daniels? >> it depends on what you mean by met her. >> there's the picture there. i want to get that fact on the table. >> is giuliani the only person in the america who doesn't know that there is a famous photograph of donald trump with stormy daniels, meeting stormy daniels? so it's impossible not to acknowledge that they met.
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even if giuliani started on the case yesterday, isn't he supposed to know at least that? reports indicate that giuliani has been speaking to the president every day of the last couple of weeks, but you'd never know that on sunday if you listened to rudy giuliani explaining how and when the president reimbursed michael cohen for the $130,000 paid to stormy daniels. >> the other day you told buzz feed that at some point after the 2016 election michael cohen complained to some people he hadn't been paid by donald trump so then you said cohen met with trump and told him and giuliani said we'll cover your expenses, they worked out this $35,000 a month retainer after that. so the president did know about this after the campaign? >> can't say that. at some point yes but it could have been recently, a while back. those are the facts we're still working on and may be in a
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little bit of dispute. this is more rumor than anything else. >> you said that to buzz feed. >> yeah. that's one of the possibilities and one of the rumors. >> you stated it as fact. >> maybe i did, but i -- right now i'm at the point where i'm learning. i can only -- i can't prove that. i can say it's rumor. i can prove it's rumor, but i can't prove it's fact. >> you said as a matter of fact on hannity and buzz feed -- >> how do you separate fact and opinion? >> i don't know how do you do that. so rudy giuliani labels things he has declared to be facts as rumors. he's calling his own answers on fox news rumors and having done that he said he does not know how to separate facts from rumors. so right on schedule tonight, politico is reporting a giuliani headline that reads trump grows
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frustrated with giuliani as stor stormy drama rages on. he's been griping to associates that rudy giuliani has failed to shut down the stormy daniels hush money saga and he has expressed frustration that giuliani's media appearances are raising more questions than they are answering. turning to the story on sunday that the president may have made similar payments to other women. for now, white house aides said giuliani still has a direct line in to trump. but said aides said they expect donald trump to fire giuliani if his behavior doesn't change. instead of deflecting whether the president would take the fifth amendment yesterday, something any lawyer could do with ease, here's how rudy giuliani handled it. >> are you confident the
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president will not take the fifth in the case? >> how can i be confident on that? >> he rambled on for several more sentences. which amounted to maybe the president will take the fifth amendment how will i know? and then the all important question we've asked many months now. >> what happens if robert mueller subpoenas the president? >> we don't have to. he's the president of the united states. president clinton negotiated a deal which he didn't admit the effectiveness of the subpoena. >> he did testify before the grand jury. is the president willing to do that? . >> only for two and a half hours, only an arranged fore mat -- i'd rather have the hillary clinton treatment. >> and once again, rudy giuliani rambled on without adding any substantive to his answer. so his answer is the president does not have to comply with a subpoena from the special
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prosecutor. as to giuliani's wise guy nonlegal comment about wanting the hillary clinton treatment, as first lady, hillary clinton was subpoenaed to testify to the special prosecutor's grand jury, which she did, for more than four hours. and as a former secretary of state, she testified under oath to the benghazi committee for 11 hours. back with us in our discussion john heilman, joyce vance, jennifer rubin and joining us curt anderson. you've been following both rudy giuliani and donald trump for decades now and people who have been doing that there's something unsurprising about the giuliani performance here. >> there is. back in the 1980s when he was u.s. attorney and already clearly politically ambitious, he was an absolute publicity
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hound and you didn't want to get in between rudy giuliani and the press. and then as mayor, after he had been accused of leaking grand jury testimony while he was u.s. attorney again and again because he was trying to play the press, he had his own little war with the media, not unlike the one trump has now, because like trump then too he had gotten nothing but fawning coverage as the new elliott ness. i remember when i was editor of new york magazine and we were preparing to run a cover story about his then communications director, a woman who was close, rumored to be having one of his affairs, and he was just ala plek tick about that, had his thuggish chief of staff call and threaten me. i'm not sure if that was before or after he wouldn't pose for a
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picture we wanted to do of him and his police commissioner saying look at this amazing job they're doing bringing down crime. he didn't want bratton being in the picture. he's a media obsessed guy as much as he is a politician and prosecutor. but it's been interesting to me this prosecutor, the guy who made his bones by prosecuting corrupt politicians, bringing down the five families. >> rudy giuliani has not been on his feet in a courtroom as a lawyer in over 30 years and like most u.s. attorneys he delegated almost all of the trial work to assistant u.s. attorneys and after politico comes out with the story saying the president is frustrated with giuliani and
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might be firing him soon, rudy giuliani told nbc that is not true. rudy giuliani is firing back at reports the president is growing frustrated by his recent media grabbing interviews, according to nbc news, he's not frustrated at all giuliani tells nbc news. the president is concentrating on north korea and we're concentrating on the case and we have a good division of responsibility. so rudy giuliani is not working on north korea, the good news, jennifer. >> yes. although he did make statements and the state department had to disown him and say he doesn't speak on north korea for us. so even that he screwed up. the difference between rudy giuliani then and now, i went back and talked to a slew of assistant u.s. attorneys who worked with him at the time and some defense attorneys as well, although he did delegate some
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cases he tried some of the most high profile ones, probably because he wanted the attention, but he was very good in the courtroom, that was a long time ago. since then he's become an attention hound, ran for president unsuccessfully, he hasn't kept up with the law for i would imagine a very, very long time. so when he says things as he did today like who else would they get? i know the justice department better than anyone else, you have to laugh because that's obviously not the case. now rudy giuliani has made a lot of mistakes, but perhaps the biggest is that he violated the cardinal rule of lawyering, and that is when you don't know what you're talking about, shut up. he recently said today that it was going to take him about three weeks to get caught up on the facts and then he could have a conversation about whether the president could testify. what is he doing on television
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if he doesn't understand the facts? but that's not rudy is there for. it's to be on television and trump to have rudy on television for him. so it's devolved into a mess, and he may beat the mooch record, which was about two weeks. i think rudy maybe just passed that, but not by much. >> i think he's already beaten the scaramucci record. maggie haberman is tweeting one person close to white house sums up trump legal strategy right now as two teams, there's the trump-rudy team and then there's the lawyers. that might not be a successful combination. >> none of the white house lawyers, none of the lawyers on trump's team can be happy with what they've seen from rudy giuliani. midway through this media barrage you had to wonder whether rudy was the president's lawyer or a plant from the
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opposition. it really was a misstep at every step along the way. so i would imagine, emmet flood can't be happy about what he's seeing and there will have to be some sort of meeting of the minds before they can move forward. >> you had a close look at candidate trump and trump campaign supporter rudy giuliani during the campaign, you've watched them upclose during the presidency, what about these two -- how do they work together? the president did not bring giuliani into the cabinet, giuliani openly craved for secretary of state, didn't get it. is the relationship one of trust? is it one of convenience? what's going on here? >> no, certainly not trust. yes, more desperation than convenience. in donald trump's world, there
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is the most critical weekend in history is the weekend of the "access hollywood" tape, what bannon called billy bush weekend, and almost everybody involved trump's views of them were formed that weekend. if you were someone who said he should fight, he still loves you to this day. if you were someone who said he should apologize he thought you were terrible. >> which most people said. >> including rudy giuliani and chris christie. however when nobody would defend him that sunday, rudy said i'll do it, and he went on five shows that day. and you would have thought that would endear rudy giuliani to donald trump and yet trump mocked him behind his back. >> at that time? >> at the time. >> mocked his performance -- >> mocked his performance on the sunday shows, even he should have been grateful.
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was brutal to him for not having done a good job, mocked his behavior in debate prep. giuliani would fall asleep at debate prep tables. trump thought he was a clown and unhinged. and told people, i can't have this guy in the administration, he's out of his mind, he's way past it. and you notice for a year and a half we saw no rudy. he served him with great loyalty in the "access hollywood" moment, he did not end up in the administration. and now donald trump who wanted joseph digenova, a tv lawyer, he wanted someone to get on television and punch anyone, hit everyone in the face, that's what he wanted to see. he couldn't hire joseph digenova so he turned to a less coherent version of joseph digenova, took rudy giuliani, and this is what
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he is getting. he will not have this job by june 1. >> june 1 is the official prediction. >> it could be way sooner than this. >> that includes the possibility of tomorrow. >> absolutely. >> joyce vance, i want to get your legal opinion about what rudy giuliani said that, of course, the president doesn't have to comply with the subpoena. >> it's an interesting legal question because it hasn't been answered but the answer is almost certainty that he will have to respond. there's precedence from the nixon and clinton administration. nixon was forced to turn over tapes and just short of the question being decided clinton decided it was in his best interest to voluntarily interview. it seems likely he'll suffer an adverse ruling. and this is about a pr situation for him. he wants to make the case to the american people that mueller is
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being unfair, that he's corrupt, he has conflict of interest, so it's much less a legal strategy at this point more one of throwing down red meat to his base. >> curt, i thought it was laughable, the idea of bringing giuliani into the cabinet. i did not see how he could survive a confirmation hearing that examined his businesses to discover how he got a net worth of $50 million after coming out of city hall, which means he made a lot of deals fast that would be interesting in a confirmation hearing. but also the series of marriages and affairs, a mayor who gets kicked out of the mayor's residence by his wife, who objects to the affair that he's having with his press secretary -- >> this would because donald trump is such an emexemplar of
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marriage fidelity. >> donald trump didn't have to have a confirmation hearing. >> when i was reading stuff about rudy giuliani today, he said 30 years ago as u.s. attorney, the only people who don't answer questions are criminals and accused criminals. this is a man who suggests the president may well take the fifth amendment when questioned by robert mueller. >> and refers to the fbi agents working in the southern district of new york as storm troopers the other days. and then said we're not criticizing the fbi. >> if you were going to write a novel with rudy giuliani as a character, the guy who was this true, there is right, wrong, sell lot, to come to this end is just grotesque. >> the end is sometime between now and june 1st. we're not sure. that's the official prediction.
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thank you all for joining us. coming up, what happens if the president cannot be trusted to know what is real and what is not? especially when it comes to the iran deal or negotiations with north korea. michael hayden is asking questions just like that, and he joins us next.
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>>. >> why the president was not truthful with the american people? >> when the president and the white house show what appear to be a blatant disregard for the truth, how are the american people to trust or believe what is said here or what is said by the president? >> we give the very best information that we have at the time. >> an age of lies, that is how our next guest describes what can now be called the trump era. former nsa and cia director general michael hayden's new book is entitled "the assault on intelligence" reports this weekend and today indicate aides to president trump hired an israeli private intelligence agency to orchestrate a dirty opts campaign against key individuals from the obama administration who helped
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negotiate the iran nuclear deal. people in the trump camp contacted private investigators in may last year to get dirt on ben rhodes who had been one of barack obama's top national security advisers and collin kahl, deputy as is tenant to obama as part of an elaborate attempt to discredit the deal. the press secretary did not deny the allegations today. >> there's been reporting that president trump hired an israeli security to dig up dirt on the obama administration? >> i'm not aware of anything on that front. if something comes up we'll let you know. >> ben rhodes tweeted this is not behavior that should be acceptable in a democracy. it is thuggish, mean-spirited and casts a chilling and threatening cloud over public service.
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>> former nsa and cia director micha p michael hayden joins us with his reaction and what he thinks the president will do with the iran deal tomorrow. we came with big appetites. with expedia, you could book a flight, hotel, car, and activity all in one place. ♪ i'm a fighter. always have been. when i found out i had age-related macular degeneration, amd, i wanted to fight back. my doctor and i came up with a plan. it includes preservision. only preservision areds 2 has the exact nutrient formula recommended by the national eye institute to help reduce the risk of progression of moderate to advanced amd. that's why i fight.
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use the cars.com app to compare price, features and value. anna and a little nervous. into retirement... but not so much about what market volatility may do to their retirement savings. that's because they have a shield annuity from brighthouse financial, which allows them to take advantage of growth opportunities in up markets, while maintaining a level of protection in down markets. so they can focus on new things like exotic snacks. talk with your advisor about shield annuities from brighthouse financial- established by metlife. we have one to two fires a day and when you respond together and you put your lives on the line, you do have to surround yourself with experts. and for us the expert in gas and electric is pg&e. we run about 2,500/2,800 fire calls a year and on almost every one of those calls pg&e is responding to that call as well. and so when we show up to a fire and pg&e shows up with us
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it makes a tremendous team during a moment of crisis. i rely on them, the firefighters in this department rely on them, and so we have to practice safety everyday. utilizing pg&e's talent and expertise in that area trains our firefighters on the gas or electric aspect of a fire and when we have an emergency situation we are going to be much more skilled and prepared to mitigate that emergency for all concerned. the things we do every single day that puts ourselves in harm's way, and to have a partner that is so skilled at what they do is indispensable, and i couldn't ask for a better partner. those reporters from the observers and guardian reached out to me. my understanding is they also reached out to ben rhodes separately. and they essentially said, look, in the process of us doing an investigation on cambridge analytica, we came across references that trump aides had
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hired a foreign intel opps firm from israel to dig up dirt on you and ben to try to discredit the iran deal. have you heard about this? to which i responded i've never heard about this. >> joining us now, general michael hayden. he is the author of the new book "the assault on intelligence, american national security in an age of lies." general hayden, i want to get your reaction first of all to this story about the trump administration hiring private israeli contractors of sorts to do this kind of intelligence work, it seems. and is this something that the white house would by now -- should by now have a better answer to than "i'm not aware of anything on that front," which is what the press secretary said? >> well, lawrence, i would hope. and first of all, thank you for having me on this evening. that charge is so outrageous. i have to admit, my personal
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evidentiary bar would be pretty high because if that were true, that would just be a remarkable event. now, put that aside and come back over here to the broad pattern of the trump administration. and frankly, a lot of american society, which is what i try to point out in the book -- when president trump tries to prove a point or support a policy, lawrence, you don't see him arguing the facts or the data or logical sequence of arguments. what you see is an attempt to discredit those who would oppose him. he makes an appeal not to data, not to facts, but an appeal to emotion, to preference, to fear, to tribe, to loyalty. the perfect pattern for that is what he's now trying to do with the fbi and the department of justice with regard to the special counsel. >> so far, his appeal in those kinds of approaches appeals to a
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minority. it does not appeal to a majority of voters or a majority of the american people. what is it that you've studied about this kind of communication that works with the people that it works with? >> so what i try to describe in the book is a kind of a three-layer cake, lawrence. and the basic layer is not the president, not the administration. it's us. it's our political culture, which is in kind of a post-truth world. i described earlier, not data but appeal to tribe and loyalty. the president recognized that as a candidate. he exploited it. and frankly i think he makes it worse as president by what he does and especially what he says. and then i'll throw in the third complicator, the third layer, the russians coming in over the top, making all of that more complicated. so what we've got here, lawrence, is the president exploiting a development within the larger society for his own
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advantage. and what i greatly fear, as he pushes back against these institutions -- fbi, the department of justice, the intelligence community and others -- he weakens the institutions over the long term, institutions on which we have relied and will rely in the future. >> the president is going to make an announcement tomorrow afternoon about what he's going to do with the iran deal, and this is a president, as you've pointed out, who does not adhere to facts in most of the things he talks about. and tomorrow what he's going to be talking about is pretty important. >> yeah. so i suspect he is going to walk away from the deal and back to the fact-based or non-fact-based, lawrence, his director of national intelligence, dan coats, has made it quite public that iran is further away from a weapon with this deal than we would be without it. we know more about the iranian program with this deal than we would without it. but the president is going on
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other instincts. again, to my mind, not fact-based. perhaps campaign rhetoric. perhaps instinct. i don't know. but there are a lot of folks in the national security community who are quite concerned. >> the book is "the assault on intelligence, american national security in an age of lies." general hayden, i started reading it on the plane yesterday. i'm going to keep going. i'm learning on every page. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> really appreciate it. tonight's last word is next. your society was led by a woman, who governed thousands... commanded armies... yielded to no one. when i found you in my dna, i learned where my strength comes from. my name is courtney mckinney, and this is my ancestrydna story. now with 5 times more detail than other dna tests. order your kit at ancestrydna.com
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time for tonight's last word. >> hello, donald. >> come on, stormy. stop making such a big deal about this. everyone knows it's just an act. >> i work in adult films. we're not really known for our acting. >> just tell me what do you need for this to all go away? >> a resignation. >> yeah, right. being president is like doing porn. once you do it, it's hard to do anything else. >> stormy daniels gets tonight's last word, and that word is "resignation." and all of that was just a tease, a tease for the fact that stormy daniels' lawyer, michael avenatti, will be joining us
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once again at this hour tomorrow night. the associated press is reporting now that some of president trump's allies think rudy giuliani is causing more legal and political trouble for the president. the associated press reporter who broke that story joins brian on "the 11th hour" with brian williams, which starts now. tonight, new reporting from the associated press. the president frustrated with rudy giuliani as rudy tells nbc news tonight the president isn't frustrated at all. plus a look inside what's reported to be a practice session for the president to prepare for robert mueller's questioning. and on the eve of election day, the president weighs in on the ex-con running for senate in west virginia. james carville here to talk politics tonight. jon meacham is here to save the american soul. all of it as "the 11th hour" gets under way. good evening once again as we start a new week from ourbc