tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC May 18, 2018 4:00pm-5:00pm PDT
"hardball" starts right now. >> only in america. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington or is it a ooh good eveninging? yet another school shooting three months after the massacre at a high school in parkland, florida. this time it's santa fe high school in texas 30 miles southeast of houston. it's a common story now in america as is the absence of action by the country's leaders.
intermittent gunfire across the country, political silence here in the capital. ten people are dead, nine students and a teacher, another ten wounded. this time all hell broke loose before 7:30 app local time. several witnesses heard a fire alarm go off, then shots rang out. >> nobody thought it was a shooting. everybody just thought it was, you know, normal procedure or practice fire drill. and next thing you know, we just hear so many three gunshots. a lot of explosions and all the teachers are telling us to run, run, go. run. i was scared for my life. nobody should go through this. nobody should be able to feel that in school. this is a place where we're supposed to feel safe. this is somewhere we come most of the week. nobody should have to go through this and nobody should feel that pain. >> we heard more shots and the teachers scream to run. everybody started to run. people were getting hit and everything. it's crazy. >> i've heard someone that a guy came in in a trench coat and
duffel bag and he had like a shotgun and just started shooting people. i don't know what else happened. >> officials said investigators also found explosive devices in the school and in surrounding campus areas. the suspected shooter is a 17-year-old who attended the school being held without bond on capital murder charges and he's expected to make his first court appearance momentarily. texas governor greg abbott told reporters two types of weapons were used in the attack, a shotgun and a .38 revolver both owned legally by the suspect's father. he also said one or two people of interest are being investigated by authorities in connection with the shooting. >> we come together today as we deal with one of the most heinous attacks that we've ever seen in the history of texas schools. it's impossible to describe the magnitude of the evil of someone who would attack innocent children in a school.
we need to do more than just pray for the jims and their families. it's time in texas that we take action to step up and make sure this tragedy is never repeated ever again in the history of the state of texas. >> for more, i'm joined by joaquin castro of texas, a congressman from the area, shannon watson of moms demand action for gun sense in america and greg pit man a teacher. parkland. thank you all for coming here tonight, a grim night again. congressman, tell us what you know about the shooting by the 17-year-old in texas. >> that area is a small town, probably about 13,000 people on the edge of rural and suburban. and it's in between houston and galveston. and fairly conservative area. but you know, just like any other place in america, have you students finishing off the school year, maybe just finished
up with prom getting ready for graduation. they're confronted with this massacre and this tragedy today. >> do most people in the area, can you say whether or not they own shotguns? have weapons in their homes? >> generally in texas, you know, there are a lot of folks that hunt for sport. a lot of people do own either shotguns or handguns. so i'm sure santa fe is just like that. >> what do you think should be done? maybe this is a bad question. it's in people's minds, if a kid grabs his father's shotgun and .38 we involver and heads out to shoot people, should the father be held accountable for the fact he left the gun sitting around the house. >> that is a tough question. we need gun owners to be much more responsible. i agreed with some of the comments made by the texas leaders even though texas state officials have done little to stem gun violence, mariners need to be more responsible in making sure their guns are locked up and kept safe from their kids. >> the lieutenant governor is talking about lis solution is to have one door rather than two
doors to the school. is that it? the single door policy? that's going to deal with this issue? is it that serious? >> i was really dumbfounded when i heard that comment by lieutenant governor dan patrick. >> we've got it here. let everybody judge for them selves. whether they think this is a serious response or not. >> this has been going on too long in our country. >> we're going to get backing to that. shannon in, you're a founder of mothers depend action. what action can we expect in i don't expect any action. we live in this gun. it's a gun tooting country. we believe in the second amendment. we live with it the way it's interpreted by the supreme court i think is irresponsible. here we are. >> you know, we have seen significant change on the ground since parkland. we've seen republican governors sign sweeping gun reform into law. we are seeing movement state by state. red flag laws being basd, laws
that disarm domestic abusers, states continuing to close the background check loophole. texas doesn't have many of these laws. there have been 20 mass shootings in the state since 2009. two just this week. all greg abbott has done is make it easier for dangerous people to get guns. it really is on all of us in november to elect lawmakers that will vote the right way on there issue and that will act. >> well, just to make your point, all i hear is calls for open carry in saloons and restaurants, people want to walk through the malls with guns, toting guns openly. it seems to be going in that direction, more guns in more places more openly. >> you know, we have something nothing other developed nation has which is the gun lobby. lobbyists are always fighting for guns for anyone anywhere anytime, no questions asked. that's how they continue to sell more guns. there's $100 million loss in gun sales since donald trump was elected. and the nra is trying to figure out how to make up for that
losses in sales. part of it is to do things like arming teachers. if they arm a fraction of america's 3.6 million teachers they could easily recoup the loss. get ready to hear those talking points tomorrow morning. >> let's see what the lieutenant governor of terms where this happened today had to say. his name is dan patrick. he offered his own solution to reduce gun violence in schools today. >> maybe we need to look at limiting the entrance and the exits into our schools so that we can have law enforcement looking at the people who come in one or two entrances. we're going to have to be creative. we'll have to think out of the box because from what we know this dude walked in today with a long coat and a shotgun under his coat. it's 90 degrees. had there been one single entrance possibly for every student, maybe he would have been stopped. >> well, let me go to greg pit man because you've been through
this before as a teacher at a school hit hard by gun violence. what do you think of politicians who openly say their entire philosophy is answered in fewer doors? and somehow seriously, the guy shows up dressed like he's in the movie "the matrix" with a long coat on. you would think they would have noticed that behavior before and not have a law about it but common sense would have told them this is a troubled kid out to make a point. what do you make of a politician, lieutenant governor of a state whose entire response to this is fewer doors. >> again, i think chris, one of the things here with that, that's certainly might help in one way. we go back to the problem of the question of the guns. back to the question can you raised earlier. a 17-year-old was able to obtain the father's guns. why did the father not have them locked up? again, there is some responsibility borne by both the father, the mother, the parents here with this kid being able to access guns. one of the big problems in our
society is no one ever is responsible anymore. our politicians aren't responsible. they're not responsible to the people. the parents here aren't responsible. somebody needs to be responsible for some of the actions and just the idea of limiting the doors that certainly may help. i know at douglas, we've tried to limit, they've tried to reduce access points so they can better watch the students as they come in. they've gone to these clear bags and other things. again, if they really want to get a gun in, you can still get a gun in. the same thing here not unless they search every single kid with everything they bring in. it goes back to the access to be able to obtain the guns to begin with. it goes to raising the age i think to be able to obtain guns. how do these 17-year-olds, so many of these shooters, the shooter at our school was 19 who was able to legally buy the gun at that time. florida raised the age to 21. many states need to raise the age to 21 or perhaps older.
very easy to get guns. we need to extend background checks which wouldn't have prevented this but back to some responsibility of the parents or someone on controlling guns. whose fault is this supposed to be? it can't be no one's fault. someone has to be responsible for this and i don't understand why the parents are never responsible anymore. that's one thing that we see at schools now, no one is responsible for anything. the only ones responsible are the teachers. the teachers are being asked to do everything. >> governor abbott of texas also said he planned to hold a roundtable around the state to discuss how to prevent further shootings in texas. here's the governor of the state. >> we will assemble all stakeholders to begin to work immediately on swift solutions to prevent tragedies like this from ever happening again. we want to hear from parents, we want to hear from students. we want to hear from educators. we want to hear from concerned citizens. we want to hear from those who hold the second amendment right
in high esteem. we want to hear from everybody who has an interest in what has happened today so we can work together. >> i'm sorry, but congressman it, makes me convinced that politics is an acting profession. that was an act. mike, let me ask you this. this is the question. everywhere in the world, there are countries that have violence of course, but they don't have school shootings. we seem to have a lot of them. >> yeah. >> every couple months it happens and every couple months somebody like the governor says we'll talk about it and the pro gun safety people like me i guess and the other people on the show say something, the pro gun people say do nothing. we go back and think about something else the next two days. >> it is a shame that the united states congress has not done anything, anything to protect our students from gun violence. >> do you feel the prevalence in your life? >> certainly in texas. >> if you go to vote for gun safety, you know they're coming at you, right? >> sure. i've stood at polls and asked for people's support and they've
said they're not going to because the nra said they shouldn't and have a list of approved candidates. greg abbott was basically lip syncing. he will stood by while tragedy after tragedy has hurt texans and he's done nothing. when they have the roundtables i have the first suggestion for him. he should allow under texas law local governments to take action into their own hands. right now texas state law doesn't allow any local government to do anything about gun violence to make their own laws regarding any of this. he should free up local governments to do that especially if they're going to sit on their hands and do nothing. >> shannon, we're looking at the parents apparently recover recovering. they're not going to recover from this violence. it's a hell on earth situation. what is it about america that has this headline around the world, if you're in tokyo right now where they don't have this or london where they really don't have this or paris or nish in the world, south africa, they don't have this kind of stuff, you go what's with america?
what's with us? are there that many angry kids 17 years old angry at the kids in class who don't treat them right and go out shooting at them? what combination of facts do we have that is no other nation has. >> every nation is home to disgruntled teens. what we have that is different is easy access to guns. if more guns and fewer gun laws made us safer, we would be the safest country in the world. instead we have the highest rate of gun violence of any nation. 96 americans are shot and killed in this country every day. we talk about it when ten people are killed at a time. there's gun violences in communities all day long that isn't being addressed or seen or even reported on the news and these families are suffering. and it is on our lawmakers to act. they could stop this. we know any states with strong gun laws they have much fewer gun deaths. and yet, these lawmakers are sitting on their hands. >> we're watching now the suspect be brought into court
for the first time. this is the 17-year-old suspected of committing this horrible crime today in texas. santa fe. here he comes. let's watch. >> slide him over. >> to his left. >> to his left. >> we're watching the suspect in the school shooting down in santa fe, texas, today where ten people were killed and ten others injured. some of them also victims of
shotgun violence and he's being brought in for the first time right now to face the court. to face a judge. this, of course, the first step in any kind of judicial proceeding. he's being brought before the system basically. strange now, he's standing behind that partition in the doorway there. let's listen to this. >> apologize. i'm judge henry. have you been charged with capital murder and charged with aggravated assault against a public servant. i'm denying your bond on both charges. you have the right to retain counsel, right to remain silent to have an attorney present during interviews with attorneys representing the state. you have the right to interpret that interview anytime. you have the right to request the appointment of council. you are not required to make a statement. any statement made by you may it be used against you. are you a citizen of the united states? are you a citizen of the united states? >> yes, sir. >> are you requesting consideration for a court
appointed attorney? >> yes. >> are you out on bond for any other charge? >> i'm going to ask you to sign the front pang which is just acknowledging i road you your rights this afternoon. you're not entering a plea today.your rights this afternoo. you're not entering a plea todaacknowledging i road you yo rights this afternoon. you're not entering a plea today. i'm going to have you sip a second time requesting consideration to be appointed a court appointed attorney and a third time saying that you'll keep your appointments and tell us if you change your address or phone number. one more time right here please saying that you're requesting that court appointed attorney. >> judge?
>> i'm sorry? >> to the next window. over again. go ahead and do it over again. do you have any questions? all right. we're finished. they're going to work on the application. congressman, you're a texan. i mean, it's not -- texas isn't responsible for this obviously. one person is perhaps the situation he faced at home had some role in it having access to the gun. texans aren't going to change, are they? it sounds like we'll be back here in a couple months with another one of these. >> shan in mentioned i think things are changing slowly. the public sentiment is changing in texas also.
unfortunately the politicians have not changed with the sentiment. >> nra still calls the shots? >> they still have a lot of sway. i think that's waning also, i think they're losing power. >> greg, what were the reactions today of your students in parkland who have been through this hell before up front? >> again today, this afternoon, i was with my fourth period which is a class that i was with the day of the shooting at douglas on february 14th. and all the kids were veryup set about it. they wanted to watch, they wanted to see what was going on. some were very quiet but they were very interested but also upset and it was bringing back you know some of the same feelings that we went through, the fire alarm goes off, everybody starts going out, starts the same kind of things that we did that same day and then so similar as to what we experienced. so again, kids were upset by it. very much. and the other thing i'll throw out, not only that, but before this, our kids, our teachers, our school is suffering from
ptsd. even the people that weren't in the building directly where the students were shot and teachers and others were killed, it has been a very slow process to get to where we are right now. we are definitely not healed. the school is not normal. we've got there -- we joke or call it the new normal which is nowhere near what we used to be. it's very difficult. three months out and obviously this kind of brings it all back to life again for us. and i can only sympathize with the community there and what they're going to experience because i understand what it's like and it's going to be a long difficult road and they're going to need a lot of support. certainly i'm sure we'll try to help support but they'll need support from all around the country. it's not an easy thing to deal with. then you go back. it's not like many other places that you're at some other random place. there is where the kids go to school, where we go to work, why we don't use that one building, we'll go to the school.
we've got three more years of kids before they graduate and the teachers obviously will still there be. so. >> congressman, i want to thank you. greg, i want to tell you one thing, i'm so proud of the fact your students have spoeng out. i hope they keep speaking out. the one thing the gun lobby has going for it, they're be obsesses. the people who want gun safety have to be relentless. that seems to be true with your students. thank you, joaquin castro, thank you for coming on this grim -- you were going to come on anyway. thank you for coming on despite this. shannon watts, you're a wonderful spokesperson. we need you, greg pitman, teachers are great. coming up next, the other big story of the day, president trump and allies are attacking the very investigation of russian election pleding and coordination with moscow by the trump pain. trump says it was wrong for the fbi to investigate his campaign. wrong for them to be looking for evidence of criminal activity. is he crazy? we're watching the
investigation. they're attacking the investigators worried what the outcome of evidence will be. of course, they're getting nervous. plus, rudy giuliani tooting the same horn says the investigation should end and that trump deserves an apology. thanks to videotape we'll show you something tonight he said during the clinton impeachment he doesn't want you to remember. back then, he said no president is above the law. what changed? meanwhile, trump is uniting the right to defend him. he won't apologize for mocking john mccain. he's going after planned parenthood, standing up with the nra on the gun issue. finally, let me finish with trump watch. you're watching it, it's "hardball" where the action is. what is it? the next big thing in food was once a little paper box. now we can easily take out food from a restaurant. let's stay in and binge-watch the snow. genius. now, the next big thing is the capital one savor card. good choice babe. oh, wait, hold on.
willing to sacrifice the identity of an fbi cohort who insisted on the investigation of the campaign. in a tweet today trump alleged the fbi used the informant for political purposes. "reports are there was at least one fbi representative implanted into my campaign for president. it took place early on and long before the phony russia hoax became a hot story. if true, all time political scandal." the informant is a u.s. citizen who has provided information over the years to both the fbi and cia and aided the russia investigation both before and after mueller's appointment. "the post" reports the president joined with allies in a fight against the justice department and agencies whose leaders worn that publicly identifying the confidential source in this case would put lives in danger and imperil other operations. trump attorney rudy guiliani seized on the development to slam the mueller investigation. >> this goes back 100 days
before the election. they had spies in the trump camp. i'm trying to figure out who was sitting next to me on the airplane. this is a far worse crime and intrusion on democracy than a nonrussian conspiracy. and who is investigating it. >> i hope that this is turned over for criminal referral. and i hope for once, the justice department wakes up and investigates something other than you know, empowering mueller to do an illegitimate investigation. it is ill leths. >> despite their faux outrage, it's not clear how it was in any way wrong for the fbi to use an informant to get evidence in a crime or how blowing the cover of that informant would exonerate the president from allegations of collusion or obstruction of justice. i'm joined by phil rucker, also a contributor, malcolm nance a national security intelligence analyst and shannon petty piece
a correspondent for bloomberg. i want to start with phil. everybody knows when you go to court in a criminal situation, the defendant to get off which every defendant wants to get off, comes up with some theory. some wacky notion. somebody told me to steal the car. i didn't know i was stealing the car. some guy told me to take it. that's what rudy sounds like, a hopeless case public defender defending a hopeless case with a loony toon argument that there's something wrong with gathering evidence against a potential crime. he calls informants spies in order to create an alternative reality. your thoughts? >> there's a clear effort by president trump on down including allies and including importantly attorney rudy guiliani to discredit the mueller probe by point together origins of it to try to say this was somehow improperly started because of an informant who was passing along intelligence from inside of the campaign to help the fbi's russia investigation.
they feel like that's wrongdoing as trump has said, a scandal bigger than watergate. they feel like if more information can become public about the beginning period of this probe, if the documents that congressman devin nunes is requesting from the justice department are make public that that will give them sort of evidence or cause to move against the mueller probe. at this point, it seems more like a public relations offensive than anything with any legal bearing. we'll have to see. >> malcolm, i think this is faux, this outrage is faux. they're about to be really nailed and coming up with all this bogus stuff about spies. the use of word spies brilliant because it gets in people's heads wrongdoing, bad guys. >> it goes back to their belief that president obama wiretapped trump towers. this is fantasy baseball but it's going out to a very select audience. he wants them to believe this. i mean, you know, the only
equivalent that i can give you here, it's like the head of the gambino crime family complaining that there are witnesses from within his camp against him in a trial. i mean, there's nothing they can do here but what they can do which is very dangerous is, it's quite possible that they could informally get this person's name and then out them. and discredit the fbi's ability to have confidential informants. >> my question is, what's wrong with and i formant, shannon? we found out the cigarette industry was putting all the nicotine in the products because we had an insider, russell kroh played him in the movies. what is wrong with finding out what's going on on the inside of the trump campaign if that's what you're investigating? >> there student necessarily anything wrong with it. there's a lot we don't know about this case, who the informant is. if someone came to the fbi or someone the fbi had been working with on a number of matters and brought them information, there is nothing wrong with that. that is how investigations go.
now, but there is a lot we don't know how this all came about. there could be things we find out later in process. >> evidence they could lewded with the russians, does it matter you used informant to find out? >> did you have grounds to seek that information or to obtain that information. of course, because we have a justice system where you can't just wiretap anyone. you have to get a warrant. to malcolm's point, it is very reminiscent of this wiretapping argument. the president tried to raise that as an issue. but there are many people who asked why are your wires being tapped? why is the fbi listening to your phones? why is there an informant talking to the fbi? what is going on there. >> in his testimony two days ago, fbi director christopher wray appointed by trump warned that the identities of covert intelligence sources must be protected in the interest of national security. >> human sources in particular who put themselves at great risk
to work with us and with our foreign partners have to be able to trust that we're going to protect their identities and their lives and the lives of their families, and the day that we can't protect human sources is the day the american people start becoming less safe. >> malcolm, do you think they're ready to push the guy into the public light and expose this person who may be very endangered because of this political play by the trump people? >> well, in my career, we've already lived through that happening with the exposure of valerie plame. >> right. >> clandestine service officer. that outing destroyed an entire global intelligence collection network. i think that this administration is definitely political enough to go out there and expose a confidential informant if it would help their case and damage the fbi. >> it seems according to "washington post," trump is strategizing with allies on
capitol hill "congressman mark meadows has been conferring with trump in three or more calls a week communicating concerns the justice department is hiding information about the elements of the probe. one former administrator told the post he sees alis in congress as more credible than his own staff." it seems there's a lot of efforts toe distract from the upcoming delivery of evidence by robert mueller. that they seem to be saying rudy's out there you deflecting attention to stormy daniels. it the daniels case is distracting attention. it seems like they've got -- is this coordinated all these efforts to undermine mueller? >> absolutely, chris. this is a clear strategic solicit for president trump and his legal team in the last month or so since rudy guiliani came on board. he's on the offense. they're trying to sort of muddy the waters to discredit this mueller probe as it reached its
one-year anniversary yesterday to take down the public confidence in the russia investigation so when they get to the point where president trump wants to call for it to end, if he's threatened to fire mueller or the deputy attorney general who oversees it, if something like that were to happen, there would be less public trust in the operation this is a clear coordinated public campaign to discredit robert mueller as he's continuing his work in the investigation. >> shannon, do you see that too is a an reporter? do you see this multifaceted effort to undermine. >> yes, my reporting is in line with phil's. the president's allies are absolutely trying to undercut the legitimacy of this investigation. regardless of what is found, a large section of the public will not believe or will have big doubts about it because this will likely not end up, if there is anything here, as a legal court battle. it will end up as an impeachment proceeding if anything is found. now you get into the court of
public opinion and that's where these sort of things matter. >> it becomes what side are you on. >> thank you phil rucker, fal come nance and shannon pettypiece. >> rudy guiliani is back at it this time saying it doesn't matter if it doesn't matter if a candidate gets information from a foreign source. actually, it is illegal. rudy says trump is owed an apology for this investigation. what does he want? what's he up to this is "hardball" where action is. it's the details that make the difference. only botox® cosmetic is fda approved to temporarily make frown lines, crow's feet and forehead lines look better. it's a quick 10 minute treatment given by a doctor to reduce those lines. ask your doctor about botox® cosmetic by name. the effects of botox® cosmetic, may spread hours to weeks after injection, causing serious symptoms. alert your doctor right away as difficulty swallowing, speaking, breathing, eye problems, or muscle weakness
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welcome back to "hardball." it's been a month since donald trump hired rudy guiliani as his personal lawyer and trub ba door. since then he embarked 0 a sustained media campaign to divert attention from the facts of mueller's investigation. which has secured so far five guilty pleas and 19 count them, 19 indictments. giuliani is now calling for an end to the investigation on his own word i guess. and an apology. he wants an apology to the president. let's watch. >> the whole investigation is totally legitimate. how about what jeff sessions has done to him. >> what. >> jeff sessions has stuck him with a special counsel because he didn't stand up. you can't indict. >> you've said it should be wrapped up. do you believe it should be wrapped up overall or just as it pertains in any way to president trump? >> i think it should be wrapped
up completely. in fact, they should apologize for putting him through this. >> modern day giuliani stands in stark contrast to a decidedly more muted version of the former mayor of new york who appeared on pbs during the 1998 starr investigation. >> under the criminal law, everybody should be treated the same. >> and lying it one. >> people would say the president should be treated stricter but the right answer is the president should be treated as far as the criminal law is concerned, the president is a citizen. the watergate litigation resolved the fact that the president is not above the law. >> for more, i'm joined by ashley parker from the west and an msnbc political analyst and susan del%io, a republican strategist. susan, i know this puts you in a box. i think we're going to be uncomfortable. my question, i'm always found what's the right word, familiarity of rudy guiliani and considered him somebody i know from growing up, guys like him. big city kid.
i know him. i don't dislike him in any personal way certainly. i just wonder why he has changed to the guy who istology say outrageous things like you can't indict, you have to apologize to somebody. you can't have an informant. i mean all these rules are gone in terms of defending his current client. >> they are gone. and chris, i'm so happy you showed that earlier video of rudy in 1998. that's the giuliani i worked for, the administration i worked for. he led our city through one of the darkest times. i have no idea why he's willing to sacrifice that legacy if you will, for one of being the head pr guy to discredit the justice department. the only thing is i think he's back in campaign mode. he liked the 2016 campaign. he liked being there with donald trump. he liked being on the attack. this is basically -- it's the action. it's the relevancy. is he doing this again for donald trump.
it's really an extension of the campaign. let's face it, in 2016, all donald trump did is discredit other people. and his opponent. and that's what rudy guiliani is trying to do right now which is a shame. >> you know, ashley, i know you're a straight reporter. the question of rudy why he changed, i've always bragged on rudy in the old days during 9/11 because i said something we pressure in a politician. he didn't engage in ro disclosure. he would say we've got a couple cases of anthrax right now. he would give us the information as he had just been handed it. we love that in a politician. tell us what you know now. don't tell us three weeks ago which is called rolling disclosure. what do you sense when you talk to rudy? what do you think he's like now as and i formant? >> in in moment, giuliani is playing a role. he is playing the role of what president trump has demanded which is that of a tv lawyer. so when you see him, it's interesting to watch this probe and this defense go on because
you have mueller and his team building a legal defense and have you giuliani who has made a choice and people can wonder as you did why he made this choice but to basically be the aggressive pr apparatus for president trump's legal team and so the choices he's making are not the choices he would make or the things he would say as a federal prosecutor or as america's mayor but they are the things you say when you're prosecuting a case in the court of public opinion more so than even building a legal case behind the scenes. >> how they cooking this up together? have you been able to figure out, are they on the phone together, conniving together, like the na mendez procedures on these phones that are taped together somehow they find a way to connect without anybody knowing it? how do they do it, ashley? >> they're spending a lot of time together. giuliani for instance, we know the other weekend he and president trump spent about five hours at the president's golf course in virginia. they talked about the case, they
talked about the strategy. giuliani told us at "the post" they tried to eat healthy together. he had a cobb salad. the president had a ma'am hamburger but without the bun. >> that will last ten minutes. i don't think i see any evidence of that. susan del%io is, this the real rudy or was the old guy the real guy. >> i think the old guy is the rudy i wish i was see right now. >> that's the one that was in the history books till now. thank you ashley parker. "the post" is amazing. susan del%io. we have to talk about rudy sometime. coming up, trump is uniting the right on all fronts. he won't apologize about the knock at john mccain. he's taking on planned parenthood. he's not going to do anything about guns as long as the nra is part of his camp. this is "hardball" where the action is. and a little nervous. 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
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mueller's investigation, of course, president trump has been focused on uniting his right wing base on multiple fronts. this week alone his white house refused to apologize even for that communication aide kelly sadler's comments that be john mccain's vote doesn't matter since he's "dying anyway." he opened up the u.s. embassy in jerusalem. his administration stood by its policy of splatting children from their parents if they entered the country illegally and floated the idea of housing those children at military bases. and the trump administration announced a proposal that would ban organizations like planned parenthood from receiving federal funding for health services if they perform abortions in the same facility. ruth marcus, editor for "the washington post" and contributor, eli stokols, contributor and jonathan capehart an opinion writer for "the washington post." they're all both contributors. let me ask you about this circling the wagon. it seems like on all fronts, i'm not going to compare it to a certain german leader, hold the
line on the eastern front, take all the casualties but hold the line. he's doing that. he doesn't give an inch on anything. >> he doesn't give an inch. i don't think it's actually out of weakness. i think it's out of strength. he's doing exactly what he said he was going to do. i'm not advocating these positions. he's doing exactly what he wants. not out of the need toffee kowtow to his base but because his base is loving it and he is. >> eli, i'm going to try you on this. how come after the shooting in parkland in florida, he did budge. he budged in that meeting we all watched in the candidate room. he talked about all kinds of background checks and all this stuff. he talked about let's take a look at it. that's who he was. let's take a look. >> i'd rather have you come up with a strong, strong bill and really strong on background collection. >> we're talking about rules and regulations for purchasing.
we're talking about change agage from 18 to 21. these other weapons that we talk about that some people don't like, they're allowed to buy them at 18. how does that make sense. >> take the guns first, go through due process second. >> there he is a tough law and order marshall like matt dillon and a couple days later, he hears from the nra, he's back to lying down for them. >> there's the zig and zag we've been accustomed to with donald trump. rife with self-contradictions all the time. he only lives in that one moment that, one interview, that one cabinet meeting. he's trying to win the room. he's trying to say what he thinks is the right thing in that moment. ultimately, we know he's not going to advocate for gun control. he didn't. and this is what he does. he realizes over time that there are no consequences really for saying one thing in one context, saying the opposite thing hours later, sometimes minutes later because we can play the clips and show him contradicting himself but the poll numbers
don't budge. >> why don't they budge, jonathan? >> they go up a little bit. >> they go up a little bit but don't budge because that 43% according to gallup now and maybe 40, 39, these people have been with him from the beginning. > there's probably more that don't say it. >> there's probably more. i think eli hit on the key thing. he has never suffered any consequences for what he's done. josh green wrote in his book on bannon and trump that trump learned the lesson through the birther situation that he said all of these horrible things about the sitting president of the united states denying his legitimacy and no one within the republican establishment no one on capitol hill, no win-win the republican firmament took him to task for it. he has a quote from priebus on television saying you know, that's his opinion. no big deal. lesson trump learned from that was i can be as outrageous as i want and no one is going to hold
me accountable. that is what's happening here. eli is right. he plays to the room. in front of the people in front of him at that very moment and then all his people steven miller and these other folks grab him and pull him back to where they want him. he said on television, chris, i want a bill of love to protect the daca kids and then killed it. >> you guys are great. thank you. the roundtable is staying with us. super roundtable. you're watching "hardball." hey jess.
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you might or joints.hing for your heart... but do you take something for your brain. with an ingredient originally found in jellyfish, prevagen is the number one selling brain-health supplement in drug stores nationwide. prevagen. the name to remember. >> do you believe in punishment for 0 bortion yes or no as a principle? >> the answer is that there has to be some form of punishment. >> for the woman. >> yeah, there has to be some form. >> ten years. >> that i don't know. >> you take pentagons on everything else. >> that was my "hardball" best. that was my interview with president trump when he was a campaigner back in '16 where he
stirred up controversy saying he would punish women who had abortions. rule, rely and jonathan, let's start way woman. he's out there again today punishing beak planned parenthood even if the money doesn't go to abortion services it's some of their money does. therefore, it's fungible and he wants to shut them down. >> right. it was have that was such a telling encounter with you during the campaign and it was illustrative of his having failed to think really deeply about the subject. >> i don't think he penetrated that issue too much. >> you pushed him. >> that was an interesting moment where actually the official base, said no, no, no, that's not our position. we really don't mean that at all. here he is doing actually a form of what ronald reagan did many years ago in trying to go after planned parenthood. the tragedy is, of course, if you go after planned parenthood, deny their funding or make them
set up separate physical facilities to perform abortions you know what happens? fewer women get birth control, more women get pregnant, more have abortions. >> is this a constitutional issue? it looks like one to me. webster and casey, you can't have an undue burden. this sounds like an undue burden. >> i'm not a constitutional law expert. i just think going back to what we were talking about watching that interview, that is trump vamping. he's trying to answer that question and get through it. he's in the context of what's the right answer fur my base. but he hasn't thought about these things deeply. that is problematic not just on this issue but all the issues. this is a president getting ready for a nuclear summit with north korea. there are questions about his capacity to absorb information to, process what's in the briefing materials. and just to think deeply about all the things that come across the president's desk. >> the other problem with this to jump off of what ruth was saying is that it's not only, if you close down planned parenthood clinics you're not
just stopping them from doing abortions if those clinics do abortion. in a lot of places, the planned parenthood clinic is the only place where people can get health care, period. >> especially poor people. ruth, eli, jonathan what a panel, knights of the roundtable. let me finish tonight with trump watch. you're watching "hardball." ♪ this is a jungle gym... and a baseball diamond... ...a mythical castle ...and a grand banquet hall. this is not just a yard.
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2018. i know how president trump will react to this latest school shooting. he will react politically. he will do nothing. that is true now more than ever. trump is in a bunker right now. he needs his coalition to stand hard. he can't afford the slightest sign of weakness or reasonableness. it's the trump right or wrong crowd he needs now, the people who don't ask questions. have you noticed trump's rigid pattern of late? the more robert mueller tightens the web of truth around him, the harder trump drills his truth. there can no giving an inch. watch him this week whether a white house staffer should apologize for a nasty remarking about john mccain, not an inch. say nothing. on abortion rights, another hard line. there needs to be some form of punishment. gun safety, not an inch. even a hard right governor of florida was willinging to raise the age of gun buying to 21. not trump. this may of 2018, we find ourselves led by a president so concerned with his political survival he dare not consider the survival of our youth.
but then again, it is consistent with how he operates. how he lives. for donald j. trump. and that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us, all in with chris hayes starts right now. >> tonight on "all in." >> i was scared for my life. nobody should go through this, nobody should be able to feel that in school. this is the place where we're supposed to feel safe. >> another school shooting in america. >> it's been happening everywhere. i felt i've always kind of felt eventually it was going to happen here, too. >> ten dead at a high school in santa fe, texas. >> this has been going on too long in our country. too many years, too many decades now. >> then the president declares open war on his own justice department. >> i wonder what the heck is the legitimacy of the mueller investigation in the first place. >> new testimony to the mueller grand jury. the russia probe subpoenas two of trump confidante roger stone's aides and a scan lal lous abuse of power as the presid