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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  May 22, 2018 3:00am-6:00am PDT

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because after all, all of the people he admires, putin, you know, erdogan -- >> they can do that. >> so why can't he? but it's interesting when it has to do with him undermining investigations into his activities, and his family's activities, and his campaign's activities, and his white house's activities. he's not so frst rated any more. >> last night maggie haberman of the "new york times," reported a new details about the president's "i hereby demand" tweet. >> this is an open question. it's taken so long just to get through the introduction. every sentence offer as new historical precedents. can anybody name a president in 240 years of this republic's existence, i'm serious, that has ever said the words "i hereby
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demand." we can go through them, washington, adams, jefferson? >> lincoln? >> no, not lincoln. anybody? >> roosevelt? >> no. >> i hereby demand. >> stunning. >> erdogan and putin say that. >> this is maggie trump who is being investigated by a department of justice appointed special counsel consulted with his attorney on his order to the doj to investigate the investigation into himself. >> why do you go to your personal attorney, why do you go to your white house counsel? that's why they're there. this deals with the constitution this isn't a porn star pay-off. this has to do with the constitution of the united states and upholding checks and balances that madison gave us
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1787. >> he's not interested in the checks and balances that madison gave us. and the second part is this is a political strategy. this isn't about the constitution. this is about trying to get him out of trouble and create a diversion from what bob mueller is looking into. >> welcome to "morning joe" as we back into everything this morning. it's tuesday, may 22nd. with us we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle. fellow in global and comparative politics -- >> mike, not to keep interrupting. mike backed into a garbage truck the other day. they're going to take his license away. >> mike -- no. >> kids are trying to take away your license, aren't they in. >> sort of, yeah. >> all right. fellow and dploebl in comparative politics at the london school of economics, brian closs. >> how are the twins doing? >> not good. >> what's happening with the twins right now. >> they had a good start to the season and fell apart. >> what's happening? >> they won yesterday, in the eighth, they came from behind. overall, it's a disappointing
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season for the minnesota twins fan. >> brian's book, "how to rig an election" we'll get to that this morning and in washington, nbc news capitol hill correspondent and host of kasie d.c. on msnbc, kasie hunt. >> you wanted to start the show differently. willie and i you know what we do before the show. we go down the newsletter and the orphanage and we do that work at least. but on the way up from the orphanage, i just -- i saw i think it was guy vincent had tweeted out, hey, i'm all for investigating what we need to investigate. there's one thing that keeps bothering me. that is, if the deep state was really conspiring so elect donald trump, i just can't sort through this. why, why did they keep the
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investigation of donald trump private before the election, but of course comey sent out the letter ten days before -- i got to say -- if that in fact was the deep state trying to play puppet master, they are really bad at what they do. and "the new york times," one of the few times we'll say this "the new york times" editorial board, they write this about trump v. the department of justice. write quote there was a sophisticated multi-year conspiracy by russian government officials and agents, working underdirect orders from president vladimir putin to interfere in the 2016 presidential election of donald trump. full stop. donald trump's intel chiefs that he put in place all agree with that fact.
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let me continue. the american law enforcement and intelligence communities warned of the trump campaign during 2016 about this multi-year effort by vladimir putin to rig america's elections, which all of donald trump's intel chiefs said, they in fact did. and they asked both campaigns to report anything suspicious. now kids, you may have heard the department of homeland security after 9/11 say, if you see something, say something. that's what the intel communities did here. they told the clinton campaign and the trump campaign -- hey, there's a multi-year effort by the russians to interfere with america's 2016 election. if he see anything, anything at all that's suspicious, this is obviously very dangerous. one of our sworn enemies trixting to influence the outcome of the presidential election. let us know.
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get what the trump campaign did -- the campaign did nothing. to the contrary, writes "the new york times," at least seven trump campaign officials met with russians or people linked to russia. and several seem ed eager to accept the russians' help. as the fbi became aware of these contacts, it began to investigate. and yet the bureau went to great lengths to shield this investigation from becoming public even before the election. even as james comey, then the fbi director, spoke openly about the investigation into hillary clinton's private email server. these facts, write "the new york times" and i'm sure guy vincent and trump's own appointed intel chiefs are not in dispute. so the question has to be, brian
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closs -- how does devin nunes with a straight face, how does mark meadows with a straight face, how does rudy giuliani, with a straight face -- say the sort of things that donald trump wants him to say, when it is beyond debate that everything the guy benson, that "the new york times" that all of us have been saying for some time, that all of these things happened. the russians were trying to interfere, the fbi was warning both campaigns. the trump campaign -- we haven't seen anything. even mike pence, lying through his teeth, after the trumps were sworn in, lying through his teeth saying we never spoke to russians. >> well, because they're orchestrating a political campaign to politicize the rule of law in america and they're trying to do it to save the president's skin. even if it means hurting american national security. even if it means eroding democratic principles and institutions. even if it means sacrificing
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their own personal integrity that they tried to build for their careers. i think the strongest parallels 2014 in turkey when president erdogan facing a corruption investigation. he called it a witch hunt. he fired prosecutors and he purged the equivalent of the department of justice. this sounds really familiar, right. and they chipped away at it slowly, day after day and i think that's what we're in the midst of, democratic decay, we accept new normals, that were previously unacceptable by republicans and democrats and are now just daily life. >> and where's paul ryan? where's mitch mcconnell. >> something you said yesterday, that's the most disappointing because they should know better. paul ryan, mike pence, they have all the angles, all the experience, they absolutely positively know better. and have chose ton do the wrong thing. >> instead, willie, they're
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lumping olump i lurching out on something, the controversial version of the new coke. this doesn't end well. this guy trump, he goes away, he leaves a stain on the legacy of mike pence and leaves a stain on the legacy of paul ryan and leaves a stain on the legacy of devin nunes and leaves a stain on megcy of mark meadows and leaves a stain on of mitch mcconnell. he leaves a stain on the legacy of of every republican that will not raise their voice, at a critical crossroads of this constitutional republic, where the president of the united states is interfering with an investigation into the president's operation and willie, by the way, this is after the president's campaign manager. has been indicted. this is after. the president's head of national security has been indicted in and it cooperating. this is after the man that the president said was one of his top foreign policy advisers has been indicted and is
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cooperating. this is after one of the guys that ran trump's campaign, helped in the inauguration committee, and even was working the white house at the beginning was indicted and is now cooperating and how many russians? 13 russian nationals, three russian companies all indicted. and yet -- trump is trying to interfere with actually one of the most brutally efficient investigations in modern u.s. history. and republicans are saying nothing. >> and clearly, the president is worried about what bob mule certificate working on because he doesn't know what bob mueller has. mueller appears to be three, four, five months ahead of what we all know publicly. when you see the allegations about the middle eastern contacts during the campaign. all of these things that seep out from behind the scenes, these are things we didn't know were happening. that's got to worry trump and that's why you see diversions and why you see meetings like the ones you'll see today. the white house will gather
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lawmakers and intelligence officials for a meeting on a secret fbi source, the "washington post" described it as either a concession from the justice department or maneuver to buy time and shield actual documents, yesterday president trump met for an hour at the white house with deputy a.g. rod ros rosenstein as well as fbi director christopher wray and national intelligence director dan coats after trump posted on twitter, i hereby demand and will do so officially that the department of justice look into the whether or not the fbi/doj infiltrated or surveilled the trump campaign. in a statement after the meeting. white house reaffirmed a doj inspector general review and added it was also agreed that white house chief of staff kelly will immediately set up a meeting with the fbi/doj and dni together with congressional leaders to review highly classified and other information they have requested. the decision means congressional
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republicans like nunes can access information on what if any use the fbi made of a secret source during the russia investigation. something he has been demanding. yesterday morning at c.i.a. headquarters, president trump praised nunes. >> a very courageous man, he's courageous. congressman devin nunes. thank you very much, devin for being here. >> that's the president praising devin nunes whole will get a look at the classified information from the russian investigation. >> so much has been coming at us, is this the same devin nunes that held a press conference at the capital. >> he went scurrying to the white house. >> said i have information i must pass along to the white house that will -- it had to do with -- i have important information that i -- let me be perfectly clear, i am taking to the white house and i am not a crook. and then he comes out, and to
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the white house, and he's been given information -- inside the white house. >> who does that? >> after lying to reporters, saying i must go -- he's nothing but a floor fied courier. >> i believe they call it the midnight run. >> didn't charles grodin. >> he was great in that movie. >> grodin. one of the greats. >> "heaven can wait" with warren beatty, was grodin not great? >> and -- >> stay focused. >> willie, i got you. >> so this is a quote from the president of the united states. remember the interview in december with michael schmidt on the terrace at mar-a-lago. he told michael schmidt of the "new york times," i have the absolute right to do what i want to do with the justice department. that's the way he thinks. >> he hereby demands. that's the way he thinks and that's what he's doing today with that. >> let's go to kasie hunt.
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is the doj capitulating or buying time? >> one of my questions is whether or not democrats are going to be able to see this information as well. typically you would offer classified intelligence to a very select but bipartisan group of people and the details on this are so fuzzy. i think we can anticipate that today. i want to go back to paul ryan for a second. we touched on that, but let's, let's not underestimate the degree to which he is enabling and has enabled devin nunes in all of this and how many times he's appeared to be caught flat-footed by, in his understanding or apparent lack thereof of how it's going to play out politically. he said we have to know where there are fights of abuses -- fisa abuses, it has nothing to do with robert mueller. that construction is fundamentally not what is going on here with the freedom caucus. >> so is paul ryan mr. good guy
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act. oh, gee, i just care about policy. i don't know this politics stuff. had is the that tishtick this rn doing for years now. paul is not dumb enough to actually think the two are separated. nobody believes paul is dumb. he's a very smart man, right. is this just shtick. just gee whiz, oh gosh, go pac, yeah. devin, go ahead and go ahead and undermine the constitution. i mean what's going on with paul ryan he has to know. he's got to be able to link these two things together, right? >> i honestly think based on my conversations around this as they have unfolded over the last couple of months, i honestly think he got caught flat-footed in how quickly this moved. who -- kasie, who are his advisers? i was not allowed to like go to the bathroom at the wrong time
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in congress. if it didn't look right. hey well of course, you want to go to the men's bathroom. exactly. i was like mr. mcgoo. but if i was going to drop a bill as one of 435 like back-benchers, my staff would look through the building, no, this doesn't look right. paul ryan is the speaker of the house, while constitutional norms are being ripped to shreds. have we to believe that paul ryan and his staff member does not know what is going on here? that this is what erdogan did in 2014. not what americans have done since james madison and hamilton sketched together the united states constitution? is he really that out in the dark? are his advisers really that out in the dark? >> i think you have to remember
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the political reality that paul ryan has been living with for the past years. what made him speaker of the house and that was, the mandate to manage this group of people on his right, the freedom caucus broadly defined and to not let them tear the republican conference apart and he has continued to try to governor that way on this particular issue and there at a higher cost. >> a at what point, because this guy is leaving. >> and now he's a lame duck. >> i'm just curious, i don't know, paul, i've known paul since he's 23. i've always tone people i loved paul. i was so thrilled when mitt romney picked him to be his vice president. but at what point does paul ryan stop worrying about the republican party and start worrying about the republic? we're at that point now, is there a realization, kasie, on the hill that we are at that
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point? >> we've been talked so much about this. people sound so different when the cameras aren't on behind the scenes. everybody, i feel like most people that i talk to in both parties, obviously the degree of outrage and concern varies there are some republicans who will say all right everybody just needs to take the temperature down. for the most part people are in fact you know, they have their jaws on the floor. they use swear words that we can't use on tv when they talk about this presidency. they won't say it in public. >> you can use those words on this show, we have a seven-second delay. >> you can, i won't. >> you got to be one when you're leading. >> i don't understand it, mike. i actually heard, i always hear thing about bill clintonin, the would go on tv and scream in his defense. i understand this goes and works for both parties.
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but mike -- not to cover old ground, but, god, it was very goldwater, firebrand, conservative, the really the founder of a modern conservative movement, that drove to the white house and told nixon -- it's over. and -- we're not even asking paul ryan to do that. we're just asking paul ryan to pick up the phone and go, hey, devin, listen, you're my buddy, you've been loyal to me, i understand. but you've stepped over the line. mark meadows, you've stepped over the line. you want to make me on, you want to divide the party before i leave? you can do that, but you're going to lose. you'll have the votes in the short run, but you're going to destroy the republican party. >> i've been sitting here and listening to this for 10 or 12 minutes. i have to tell you the truth, it is so sad and so depressing.
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we're talking about the united states of america -- unaptly named freedom caucus. the disassembling has worked. it has worked. you go out to the country and ask you people what do you think about this? they say what is going on. the freedom caucus. you want to take the freedom caucus? the root of this the root of this occurred nearly two and a half years ago when every american intelligence service, the c.i.a., the fbi, the nsa, realized that the russians were attacking the foundations of our democracy, our electoral system. we don't talk about that. people don't know about that. the freedom caucus never -- mark meadows and jim jordan never mentioned the fact that we were victims of an act of war. >> we have a commander-in-chief -- >> who is not defending the republic. >> whose intel chiefs, that he appointed. let me say it again -- that he appointed, not barack obama, not
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bill clinton. not karl marx, trump appointed these intel chiefs. who all said the russians have attacked our democracy, they are still trying to attack our democracy. and the republican party and their president doesn't give a damn? let me say it again, the russians are attacking american democracy according to trump's intel chiefs. the republicans don't care. >> and now these republicans, devin nunes, i don't know who else will be with him, they're about to get a peek at the foundations of intelligence-gathering, they're about to get a peek at sources, the most important element of gathering intelligence, human intelligence, human sources, they're about to see what's going on. you're going to tell me that they're not going to leak that?
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they're not going to twist that? they've done so much damage already, why stop now. >> what it looks like around the world, the damage being done, day by day. >> live outside the united states and it's a disaster. the pew research did a survey looking at confidence between obama's presidency and trump and it's down 75% in germany. 70% in france. 57% in the uk and 54% in japan. >> and we've become the butt of jokes around the world. >> trump is viewed as a tragic dangerous laughingstock in most of the places that used to be our key allies. >> i don't care what they think about us in luxembourg. but it matters. by the way, especially matters when the president is blowing up the iran nuclear deal. and you've got to get the other parties to actually work with you on sanctions. and it matters when there's a terrorist attack and we've got to get our allies to work with us and in germany --
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>> germanys view russia as a more reliable partner than the united states. >> you know why? because you can predict what russia is going to do. you can no longer predict what donald trump is going to do. take tariffs. >> he can't make a decision on tariffs. >> the entire international community is thrown into an uproar because trump is going to do tariffs, going to do this, going to do that. his treasury secretary comes out and goes, oh, no, we're not. and then the next day, somebody else comes out and says, well, maybe we are. still ahead, the principle sez, the president and the fortune seekers. a new a.p. investigation on a converted effort to raise favor with the trump team raises serious concerns. this is a story about mail and packages. and it's also a story about people. people who rely on us every day to deliver their dreams
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they're handing us more than mail they're handing us their business and while we make more e-commerce deliveries to homes than anyone else in the country, we never forget... that your business is our business the united states postal service. priority: you ♪ one picky customer shouldn't take all your time. need something printed? the business advisors at office depot can assist with exactly what your business needs to grow. get your coupon for 20% off services, technology and more ed
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mom, dad, can we talk? sure. what's up son? i can't be your it guy anymore. what? you guys have xfinity. you can do this. what's a good wifi password, mom? you still have to visit us. i will. no. make that the password: "you_stillóhave_toóvisit_us." that's a good one. [ chuckles ] download the xfinity my account app and set a password you can easily remember. one more way comcast is working to fit into your life, not the other way around. ed. a lengthy report from the "associated press" based on hundreds of pages of leaked
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emails and dozens of interviews reveals a story of money, power and foreign policy in trump's washington. as an adviser to gulf princes, george nader, now a cooperating witness in the mueller probe and republican fundraiser elliott broady, sought lucrative foreign contracts trading off their access to the president. summaries written by brudy, of two meetings he had with president trump report that he was passing messages to the president from the crown princes of saudi arabia and the united arab emiratesings that he told trump he was seeking business with them. the white house did not respond to repeated requests for comment. joining us now is the co-author of this a.p. investigation reporter on their international investigate i have been team, desmond butler. desmond, good morning this is the tip of the iceberg in this exhaustive report and george nader and brudy are not the only ones who sought to get lucrative contracts off access to the
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president. >> i'm sure that's true. >> tell us more about nader. >> well, george nader is a guy who has been an operative between washington and the middle east for decades, he's also a convicted pedophile. but he had access to the crown princes in the united arab emirates, the crown prince of abu dhabi and in saudi arabia. >> and so, what exactly did he promise these men? and why did he think he could deliver on it? >> well the gist was, that he could, through elliott brudy, get access to the president. and to members of congress and pretty much everywhere in washington. and the purpose was to change u.s. foreign policy. in the way that those two countries wanted it to be changed. >> did you see any evidence,
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desmond, that he succeeded in that goal in getting these men access to the president? >> elliott brudy had two meetings with president trump. one right in the oval office. and he carried important political messages straight from, from the crown princes, as far as we can tell. at least if you can believe his summaries of the meetings. >> mike barnicle? >> desmond. in the course of your reporting, did you get the sense that the uae and other countries in the middle east felt that they had a more receptive audience in the trump administration than in prior administrations, to doing things just like this? buying their way in? >> one of the really interesting things is that elliott brudy claims that he met george nader at the inauguration. and they were up and running within weeks. so if they had any doubt that
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they could navigate the swamp, they didn't show it. and you know, i think, i think the speed at which this happens shows a lot about the attitudes from both the two men and the two countries. >> desmond, we've had reports that brudy paid off a mistress or at least those were the initial reports. through michael cohen. is there any suggestion that it may have been for someone else other than brudy? or is that where the story still is? or was brudy just used as a cover? >> people have made that suggestion. i wouldn't speculate. >> okay. >> well if you don't have the evidence -- >> avenatti has speculated on our show. >> we speculate. >> i'm joking. >> a.p.'s desmond butler, greatly appreciate it. >> so there's a column in the "washington post" laying out the five political norms that president trump violated in the past seven days.
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among them, revealing intelligence sources. that involves congressman devin nunes demanding the name of an fbi informant. >> let's stop right there. >> that's kind of a problem. brian, this is what the republicans were most fearful of during the year and a half investigation into hillary clinton's emails. that because she was reckless with her emails, that she may have either revealed methods, or revealed sources. she did neither. but now donald trump, devin nunes and others have in the light of day. how dangerous is that? >> it's extremely dangerous. it's stunning hypocrisy and there's this angle where they just don't care. we have now grown used to republicans -- >> we're not supposed to get used to it. >> they're accepting that trump careerly and blatantly cares more about himself than in
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public security. that is something that should not be an open secret with an american president. >> back to the list by max boot. there's politically motivated prosecutions, namely the president's tweet, hereby demanding a dmartment of justice investigation. there's mixing, private and government business, in this case, china, giving a half billion dollars to a trump-linked project in indonesia. >> and again i want to go back to the clintons. we were and a lot of other people were rightly concerned about bill clinton's speech fees, weren't these the quaint, good old days, mike, when we were concerned about bill clinton getting $500,000 a speech instead of $250,000 a speech after hillary clinton became secretary of state? and could give speeches in areas that had business in front of the state department and were trying to change policies? that's -- >> a calculator at home, that's a $250,000 difference.
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we're talking here about half a billion dollars. that china has pumped in to, into a project that has the trump organization all over it. >> well we were just talking with desmond butler from the "associated press" and now we're talking about this. the white house has been turned into a money pit. by the people surrounding the president of the united states. and it's an endless line of grifters. people with their hands out. people using, using the assumed power of the presidency, assumed access to the president of the united states to turn a buck. >> there is foreign interference in u.s. elections, that's number four. max boot points to 75 characters that we know of between the trump campaign and the russia-linked operatives along with new revelations of other countries looking for influence. this list is for the past seven days. >> and kasie hunt -- i want to
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go back to mike pence who lied the week after donald trump was sworn in on one of the sunday shows said that there had been no contact between the trump campaign and russia. he lied and said well, golly, gee whiz, we've only been talking to the american people. extraordinary lie. >> for, mike pence's role in this or lack thereof is one of the most interesting story lines throughout this. it rarely pops up into the top of our consciousness as we talk about this. for him to say they'll also tell you privately he was unaware of any of this going on. he was not part of the campaign when the trump tower meeting happened. i think i've said this before, that it's not hard to find somebody inside the trump orbit that will be quick to tell and to insist usually off the record or on background, that you know,
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the president, the vice president had nothing to do with this. there's nothing to see here. i thought it was remarkable that he stepped into this story in that interview he did with andrea mitchell where he said it's time for mueller to wrap it up. because he had been pretty carefully steering clear of it and i kind of, it made me wonder what kind of pressure he was under from the president on this topic. >> it's time for muler to wrap it up. >> that's where he lifted the words from richard nixon's joint session speech to congress in january of 1974. literally said the same thing, that nixon said four months ehrlichman and halderman and most of his campaign and white house staff got indicted. it's really interesting, mike pence playing dumb. i wonder how the trump campaign explains that someone that they derided as a coffee boy, papadopoulos, just a coffee boy,
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nobody knows who papadopoulos is, that papadopoulos knew more than the vice president of the united states? coffee boy knew more than the vice president of the united states? >> this does matter. because we love this country. so here's the fifth. just in the last seven days. undermining the first amendment. here it's the president attacking amazon in what the column describes as a vendetta against the "washington post," which is owned by amazon's ceo jeff bezos, trump has a problem with him so he's using this country its laws and his power to try to hurt him. >> four times, four fims. president of the united states, was it five times, said he went to the postmaster, four times and put pressure on him, to change a policy, the president of the united states four times, calls the postmaster and pressures him to alter rates for u.s. mail, to harm a political
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adversary. that i guerin-freakin'-tee has never happened, at least in recent american history. >> imagine a president so obsessed with his own self-interests that he's making calls to the postmaster general about amazon. because he doesn't like the way the "washington post" has treated him. it goes back to brian's point of self-interest for his national interest. and as you wonder where paul ryan has been, where are conservatives about the hand of government, in facts the hand of the executive, the chief executive of government, putting his hand on a private business to control it and to tell it to change its rates to please him? that's the least conservative thing i've ever heard. >> and the hypocrisy, brian, because we conservatives have always been skeptical of the president that hamilton wanted in the federalist papers. we always held up madison,
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because he was so, so, had such a stringent standard for separations of power. and these hypocrits that call themselves conservatives, these hypocrits, who call themselves republicans, don't say a word. when the chief executive is battering the u.s. postmaster saying -- alter rates for u.s. mail. because i want my political adversary armed. >> it's a test of their political lives. we have a situation in which the founding fathers anticipated a demagogue like trump. they didn't anticipate that congress would be complicit with him. >> the shock and horror is because we love our country. coming up, how to rig an election, brian closs takes us through his book and jon meachum
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joins the conversation. >> by the way, if you think, if this is too much for you, if you can't handle the truth -- if you're thinking, oh, it's just one, "morning joe" is just one. yeah, guess what? a fire department has one focus. when there's like a four-alarm fire, all right? so if you don't want to hear the truth, you can change the channel. we'll be right back. you totanobody's hurt, new car. but there will still be pain. it comes when your insurance company says they'll only pay three-quarters of what it takes to replace it. what are you supposed to do? drive three-quarters of a car? now if you had liberty mutual new car replacement™, you'd get your whole car back.
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at times history and fate meet at a single time. in a single place. to shape a turning point in man's unending search for freedom. so it was at lexington and concord. so it was a century ago at appomattox. so it was last week. and in selma, alabama. really it's all of us who must overcome the crippling legacy of bigotry and injustice.
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and we shall overcome. >> that was part of president lyndon johnson's speech calling for voting rights. an address writ within the help of speechwriter richard goodwin, whose death was announced by his wife of 42 years, doris kearns goodwin with us pulitzer prize-winning author jon meachum, writer . >> he was an american poet at a time when we had poetry in public life, which we miss so much right now. but the great story about that speech is dick goodwin had been a young clerk for felix frankfurter, had investigated the quiz show scandals, had gone to work in the kennedy white house, and at the time johnson,
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at the time of the terrible events and bloody sunday in selma, in march 7, i think 1965, he wanted to write the big speech for lbj, to lay out the voting rights act. and jack valenti assigned it to another speechwriter. so as goodwin would tell the story, he went out and as the victorians would say, dined deeply with arter sha l eer sch and shows up at the white house still annoyed and rather worse for the wear. johnson has ripped up the speech and said, i need goodwin to write this that speech as was part of the american canon, we shall overcome, the history meets at a certain point. the narrative of johnson how he looked into the faces of the young children in texas and
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never mapped that he could have the power to help them. all of that was written in a matter of hours. it had to come from deep in his soul. and it's really one of the most remarkable pieces of oratory in the american story. >> and of course now their children, when they find themselves at pivotal moments drink gin, it's a churchillian lesson. you knew dick for decades and so close to doris. both of them and the kids. what are your reflections on dick? >> what a life. what a grand meaningful impactful life. i've known dick for 50 years and i first met him in a small room in a dunfy hotel on elm street in manchester, new hampshire, after he left the white house, worked briefly for the "new yorker" magazine and gone to new hampshire to try to help end the war in vietnam. by helping gene mccarthy by
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writing speeches and a small olivetti portable typewriter on the desk when i walked into the room and he turned to the typewriter and said, between that typewriter and all of us, we're going to end this war. he said that not with arrogance, but with meaning, with intent. with purpose and we missed that sense of purpose, that sense of moral code for government and for people who want to govern. we miss that and we miss him today. >> you saw him just, just -- >> my wife and i and doris and the boys, joey and michael, we were with dick on saturday. he told, he was, he came alive for a while. and began telling stories, told a marvelous story about his relationship with che guevarra, meeting him in cuba.
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cast castro, che guevarra gave him a box of cigars and dick took it back to the white house on air force with the president. dick went to president kennedy and said guevarra gave it to us and he wants to solve something between the two countries. he opened up the box of cigars and kennedy grabbed one and lit it and c.i.a. looked at dick and said i suppose you should have been the first one to smoke this. >> john he obviously wrote the "ripple of hope" speech for kennedy. it strikes me as i hear stories about his life that we're losing these firsthand links to the kennedys, to lyndon johnson, to the civil rights movement. the people who were there as you said at the moments these pivotal moments of history. >> it's funny. time plays these kinds of
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tricks, but the kennedy white house and the johnson white house, we're now farther away from that era than they were from the new deal. which puts us all kind of which makes us seem older all the time. but it's one of the reasons that the literary legacy of someone like goodwin is most important. he wrote a marvelous book called "remembering america, a memoir of the '60s" which i can't commend highly enough. he walks through the quiz shows, rfk, jfk, lbj. and he's one of the few people who bridged those two very different worlds within the kennedy and the johnson eras and it was the power and ability to write quickly and so well and to understand in his bones what america could be and in the goodwin vision, in that era, the idea was how can we more
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generously interpret the assertion of equality in american life? how can we live up to that? and he gave voice to that inchoate and yet very real desire. >> he gave voice not only for americans but for people across the world and the ripple of hope speech delivered by bobby kennedy on june 6, 1966, two years to the day before he died one of the most remarkable speeches and the most inspiring speeches i ever read. each time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve the lot of others or strikes out against injustice he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance. spoken to the students of south
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africa before american politicians ever dared to say such things. >> and we wish men could do that today. jon meacham, your book "the soul of america" number one. thank you very much. we'll be right back.
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coming up, the "washington post's" eugene robinson says stop waiting for the constitutional crisis that president trump is sure to provoke, it's here. gene joins us next to explain. plus the "new york times" peter baker joins us with his analysis of the trump team's mueller strategy -- limit the investigation and attack the investigators. "morning joe" is coming right back.
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of your heart rate. common side effects of harvoni include tiredness, headache and weakness. ready to let go of hep c? ask your hep c specialist about harvoni. once again, donald trump had a busy weekend on twitter after reports there may have been an fbi informant in the trump campaign in 2016. on sunday, president trump tweeted, i hereby demand that the department of justice look into whether or not the fbi/doj infiltrated or surveilled the trump campaign for political purposes. i hereby demand -- [ laughter ] . who says that? they didn't even say that at the royal wedding. [ laughter ] >> it's true. it's horrifying. welcome back to "morning joe," it's tuesday, may 22.
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still with us, we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle, fellow in global and comparative politics at the london school of economics and co-author of the new book "how to rig an election." brian klaas. host of kasie d.c., kasie hundredhunt and associate editor of the "washington post," eugene robinson. also with us, chief white house correspondent for the "new york times" peter baker. >> i think we need a lightning bolt in front of peter baker. >> it's been watching -- to watch kasie's enthusiasm wayne over the months the smile has gotten a little less wide. >> she loves it. >> do you even know who foghat is? because there's a foghat rock block coming up in your next show. >> wow. okay, moving on. the white house will gather lawmakers and intelligence officials for a meeting on a secret fbi source. the "washington post" describes
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it as either a concession from the justice department or a maneuver to buy time and shield actual documents. yesterday, president trump met for an hour at the white house with rod rosenstein, seen leaving there, as well as the fbi director christopher wray and national intelligence director dan coats. after trump posted on twitter "i hereby demand --" yes, he said that "and will do so officially that the department of justice look into whether or not the fbi/doj infiltrated or surveilled the trump campaign for political purposes and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the obama administration. in a statement after the meeting, the white house reaffirmed a doj inspector genre view and added it was also agreed that white house chief of staff kelly will immediately set up a meeting with the fbi, doj, and dni together with the congressional leaders to review
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highly classified and other information they have requested. the decision means congressional republicans like intelligence chair devin nunes can access information on what, if any use the fbi made of the secret source during the russia investigation. yesterday morning at cia headquarters, trump praised nunes. >> a very courageous man, he's courageous. congressman devin nunes, thank you very much, devin, for being here. >> i mean, define courageous. what's courageous about lying about having information and going over the white house and pretending that you got new information when you're nothing more than the president's courier. eugene, in your latest piece, you say stop talking about the coming constitutional crisis. you say the constitutional crisis is here. explain. >> well, look, what is it but
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crossing uncrossable lines every single day. we crossed four last week or five. but this is serious. the president of the united states is using the power of the justice department and the fbi in a nakedly political way to go after those he perceives as political enemies to provide him cover for an investigation of himself. this is the kind of thing that vladimir putin does in russia. it's the kind of thing erdogan does in turkey and duterte in the philippines. this is not what an american president does yet it's happening now. and this idea that oh, dear there is a coming crisis, we're in the middle of it. this is outrageous. this is serious. >> i agree. >> we talked last hour about the fact that american presidents don't do this, nixon tried it
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and it ended badly for him but you say that just four years ago, erdogan, the autocrat that runs turkey tried doing the same thing. >> there's many parallels with erdogan. he tried to fire the people investigating him, he called it a witch-hunt, he said it was a victim of the deep state then he purged the justice department in turkey. he also uses the same strategy to go after media outlets that trump tried to do with the post office because soft authoritarians, as they're called, use financial leverage to shut down media outlets rather than blatantly shutting them down. so we have a situation where trump is trying to behave like a despot. whether he does or not it should be alarming to all of us. republicans are doing nothing to stop him. >> so peter baker, you write about a two pronged strategy. the president of the united states is putting out tweets to undermine and uds cut the investigation into russia and perhaps the link between the campaign.
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what's the other piece and can we call it a strategy? >> it's always a hazardous word to use when we're talking about president trump because he's a mix of impulses and instinct and possibly strategy and in this case they are obviously trying to tear down the investigators, trying to just credit the investigation into him by saying in itself is compromised. what you saw yesterday went beyond what the president has done in the past is not just sit there complaining about it, calling it a witch-hunt and even during the justice department. he forced the justice department to back off revealing their sources and that forced them to sit down with kelly the chief of staff and give up things they think should be confidential. that's a more direct intervention in an investigation that involves him than we've seen up until now. the second part is trying to lay out limits for the investigation through rudy giuliani's
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comments. he says if we have an interview, it will be two hours. robert mueller has decided he doesn't have the power to indict a sitting president and our mueller hopes to wrap this up by september 1. robert mueller hasn't said that to us. >> peter, let me ask you about that ch that. robert mueller never said that to rudy giuliani. this september 1 date is something giuliani made up. >> sort of like trump. >> his point is anything after september 1 would be fatally compromised as a political exercise because it would come in the middle of a mid-text election. >> i understand the point but i can make that point, you could make that point but if we said robert mueller had assured them that it wasn't going go past september 1 on the obstruction of justice charge, well, if mueller didn't tell us that we would be lying like giuliani appears to be lying right now. >> it's fair to say mayor giuliani is not a spokesman for
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robert mueller and we should keep that in mind when we talk to him about these kinds of things but what he seems to be doing is laying out some red lines or boundaries or signaling to the prosecutors look, this is as far as the president is willing to go and not any further. that may set a predicate for some action later in the year. >> let me ask everybody. everybody feel free to pitch in. how many of you think that robert mueller iii really gives a tinker's damn about what rudy giuliani says? how many here think -- >> he's calling and telling him stuff. >> -- think that robert mueller iii is going to be backed into a corner by a lie that rudy giuliani tells himself, donald trump, and then the rest of the
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world? any takers? mike? >> i would venture bobby three sticks is unbothered by anything rudy giuliani says. >> i don't think he's thinking about him. >> peter, let me ask you this. in all of the work you do in covering this on a daily basis in preparing these wonderfully written analyses in the "new york times" that you provide us with, has anybody in the trump orbit, any of your sources in the trump orbit, asked you to sit down with them because they wanted to tell you why these allegations against the president are untrue? has anybody done that? >> i think that's not the way they approached this. they have approached this by talking about how the investigation got started and how that's part of a democratic intrigue. they don't engage in the most part on the substance of the questions that have been raised. you hear the president say again and again no collusion no
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collusion, well that ignores evidence we know out there. we know there was an attempt at collusion arguably in the summer of 2016 when the president's own son, son-in-law, and campaign chairman sat down with russians who were promises incriminating information about the candidates opponent, the explicit understanding that it was coming from the russian government. so even though they say that meeting didn't result in what i want thissed, -- it doesn't me there wasn't an attempt there. when the president says no collusion, it doesn't mean there's anything illegal, we haven't heard from robert mueller about that but what the president is trying to do is create a reality in which everybody agrees with him that this is a fatally flawed investigation, that there is no collusion and that they are in his view targeting an innocent person. that's the reality he's trying to create with his strategy here. >> so brian your new book is called "how to rig an election" and it talks not just about the united states, this is a broad argument about what's happening around the world and you say
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democracy is on the decline. is this something you think we've seen in the united states or could see in the united states? >> i absolutely think so. i think we're seeing a president who is breaking democratic norms which are the soft guardrails of democracy and poisoning the well of public discourse, which is deeply damaging, and i think we have a crisis of civic culture. we had 36.4% turnout in the last midterms. tunisia had local elections that had 35% and people are saying they were undemocratic. these are national elections. we have problems with gerrymandering, corrosion of money in politics and we have a president who has no interest in securing the integrity of american elections from foreign meddling which we know is a threat and we know will only get worse as we go forward so i think we have a global crisis of democracy. by the way, that's facilitated by president trump's modeling of authoritarian behavior on the global stage because he's congratulating dictators for their sham elections at the same time he's attacking the press calling to lock up his opponents and hiring family members and cronies. how is the state department
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supposed to pressure these terrible regimes around the world when the president is doing things they say you shouldn't do? >> there's a second side to that coin that, yes, he congratulates the leader of china when he becomes even more oppressive. and locks down control even more, the same thing, of course when it happens in turkey, when it happens in the philippines, when it happens across the world, when autocrats become more autocratic, donald trump will be the first person to pick up the phone and congratulate him even when his national security team is begging him in all caps do not congratulate putin. but there's another side to that coin. he attacks theresa may our ally in great britain. he constantly attacks angela merkel. probably america's most steadfast ally in the post war era. he attacks leaders of
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democratically elected governments while uplifting -- lifting up these autocrats. >> and those signals matter for this book we did about 500 interviews in 11 countries in the developing world and we interviewed prime ministers and presidents and they said some version of the same thing which was we look to washington for what we can get away with. how we can rig elections, how we can imprison opponents, how we can jail journalists and when they get the signals coming from washington that trump doesn't stand with our democratic allies but does stand with authoritarian regimes who rig elections, that matters and it makes it more likely those regimes will double down on the strategies without real pushback. and the problem you hear from diplomats is they're still saying the right thing. the state department says don't jail journalists, don't rig elections but if trump picks up the phone and calls erdogan when he rigs an election and says congratulations or calls putin when he rigs an election, do you think they care about what the state department says? it undercuts u.s. diplomacy and makes our diplomats doing their jobs impotent to support
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democracy around the world and that's the story of the trump administration's america first democracy last foreign policy. >> the book is "how to rig an election." appreciate that. everybody stay with us. still ahead on "morning joe," check throughout tweet from marco rubio on trade. china is winning the negotiations and the u.s. is #losing. the "new york times" explains why trump's charm and threats may not be working on china. that's next. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. chevy suv'. the first one is called the trax, great for when you move in together. -ahhh! and this is the chevy equinox, perfect for when you two have your first kid. give me some time... okay. this is the traverse... for when you have your five kids, two dogs and one cat. whoa! five? uhhh... it's the chevy memorial day sales event! get an additional $750 on these select models. that's on top of most other offers! find new roads at your local chevy dealer.
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>> i don't think president trump is thinking about public relations. he's thinking about peace. he's thinking about how we achieve what has eluded successive american administrations. truthfully, the clinton administration, even the bush administration got played in the past. it would be a great mistake for kim jong-un to think he could play donald trump. >> vice president pence
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addressing recent reports that president trump is reconsidering going through with his summit with north korea's kim jong-un partly over concerns that if it fails it could be an embarrassment for the administration. >> but he said he's not doing this for pr purposes so why would he be concerned about a negative pr outcome? mike pence says -- and mike pence is an honorable man -- that donald trump isn't concerned about public relations involved in this summit. >> every time he speaks it's painful. president trump is hosting south korean president moon jae-in at the white house today. yesterday on twitter, trump called on china to continue to "be strong and tight" on the border of north korea until a deal is made. adding, quote, the word is that recently the border has become much more porous and more has been filtering in. i want this to happen and north korea to be very successful but only after signing -- yikes. peter baker? i'm frightened by his tweets on north korea at this point. shouldn't we be?
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>> i don't know. >> he doesn't know what he's doing. >> seriously? it's evidence, ee's everyday, >> look at this, for some reason siri is the deep state. >> your phone just starts recording. >> it only happens when i i start saying things i never want it to hear. >> then it starts recording like nobody was touching it. that's weird. anyhow -- >> so anyway, okay. come on. >> drunk driver. >> it's donald trump. >> peter baker, we've had the tweets back and forth. where are we right now as it pertains to negotiations and is donald trump moving forward to wait to act non? >> there's so many hazards on
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the trail to singapore it may not come off but one of the questions raised by the tweet you just said is i want things to go across the border but not until after signing. what does that mean? does that mean he's willing, for instance, to ease up on the economic sanctions on the promise of denuclearization as opposed to delivering? at what point along the road would you deliver benefits to north korea in exchange for some progress toward giving up his nuclear program? this is where people have gotten caught up in the past. you heard vice president pence say well, people have gotten rolled in the past. one criticism of presidents in the past is they gave up benefits without north korea going all the way. so the president has suggested in the past that he wouldn't necessarily give them anything until they got rid of his nuclear weapons. would there be something before such a goal, a staged progress for progress kind of thing as other presidents have done? you can't tell. that president seems to suggest yes but he's not very precise in the way he communicates.
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>> every foreign policy expert we've talked to on the show in the last several months says there's no way kim jong-un is going to totally scrap his nuclear program. it's the one thing he's got. the one thing that commands respect around the world. did the white house, did the president actually believe or convince him to give up the program? and, of course, last week the north korean government came out and said out loud, just to be clear as you enter this negotiation, we're not giving up our nuclear program. >> well, people around the president don't believe that. certainly john bolton doesn't believe that. bolton has been a skeptic for many years. he doesn't think the north koreans are genuine, doesn't think they're sincere and he thinks they'll probably happen in the singapore summit is that the president will come to that realization and he can get off of this diplomatic track and return to the path of maximum pressure. that's the phrase the president uses so i don't think people like john bolton think there's much possibility of success here but they have a president who wants to give it a try. >> so if we're not getting rid of the nuclear weapons, what is
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the united states negotiating for? i thought that was the point of this exercise. >> it is the point. that's the goal, no question about it, but i think people like john bolton are skeptical that the north koreans are serious about it, that they would do what they've done in the past which is say things they don't mean. so, look, at this point we're in negotiations, that's certainly a better place to be than threatening fire and fury and being on the edge of some sort of a conflict but the question is what happens on june 13, the day after that summit. will they walk away from the summit feeling like they're making progress and it's worth continuing down this path or will they decide in fact the whole thing is a sham and return to a more confrontational position? >> and willie there is a -- a collision is coming because nobody -- very few people believe that kim is going to give up his nuclear weapons and even the most optimistic foreign policy analyst says the united states can't walk away from the table with a nuclear north korea.
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donald trump, because he does scare, unlike what mike pence says, just reverse just about everything mike pence now says about donald trump and you'll get the truth. donald trump does care about public relations and donald trump can't afford to walk away from the table as the commander in chief of the united states that allowed north korea to have a nuclear weapon which now, by the way, can reach just about anywhere in the continental united states. >> and now we're in a position where if they don't give up their nuclear weapons, where does that leave us? if he said you can't have a nuclear weapon, does that mean there's a military confrontation if diplomacy doesn't work? you haven't left yourself much else. meanwhile, there's a growing belief that the president and his administration are being outmaneuvered by china regarding the ongoing trade dispute. the "new york times" reports so far nearly any time china resists an american trade demand the u.s. backs down such as refusing to commit to a fixed dollar reduction in the massive trade deficit. >> sorry, willie, did you say every time china makes a demand
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donald trump backs down? because that's what marco rubio said yesterday and i'm curious that is -- the "new york times" is even saying every time china makes a demand donald trump backs down. because before they gave this trump project $500 million, he sure talked tough. >> that seems to be the reporting on the "new york times" is that he has made concessions to china. in addition, while china has streamlined its ability to make economic policy decisions, the u.s. has shifted its demands and struggled to send out a consistent message partly due to various high profile public disagreements within its own trade team in addition to the president's own conflicting messages and tweets. the "times" notes with the u.s. only exporting $130 billion in goods to china each year, it would be extremely difficult for the country to significantly reduce the imbalance by imports alone unless it cut its own exports to the united states.
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gene, there's a worthy read here in the "new york times" because it talks about the different factions in the white house. the president saying one thing one day, somebody else saying something else the next day, contradicting themselves and sending out not just public conflicting messages but also to china as to where the u.s. stands. >> right. the president promised since the beginning of his campaign to be the toughest you could be on china and trade and start a trade war and this will not stand and he had a bunch of economic advisers, including his head of his team of economic advisers larry kudlow, including his treasury secretary steve mnuchin who believe the exact opposite. who don't want a trade war with china. so that in part is the mixed message. and then there are the mixed messages from trump himself you saw that tweet about north korea which was really a tweet at china saying be -- exercise more control, please, over your border with north korea and let
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fewer goods and resources in. so the great negotiator donald trump has maneuvered himself in a position of weakness in both of these negotiations because he can't be so tough on china because he needs them with north korea and it's just absurd. so he's not going to get only rolled by the north koreans but he's getting rolled by the chinese as well, it's all in a day's work for the man who wrote "the art of the deal." >> it's hard to imagine -- north korea, china, trade deficit, supposed summit to take place in singapore, the level of distraction in the white house led by the president of the united states with the mueller investigation hovering over all of it, it's amazing you get anything at all done. >> and it shows a very weak hand internationally and a lack of strategic thinking on very, very
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high stakes gambits. i think you have a situation where trump isn't prepared for these. he's sending mixed signals, people don't view him as a reliable partner internationally and he's trying to stake his presidency on challenges that have destroyed the foreign policy legacy of previous presidents. that's why we're in a dangerous moment for american foreign policy. the house of cards teetering in the white house could collapse very quickly. >> this has been so great. gene robinson, the trump presidency has just been a god send for china. >> oh, yeah. >> you can talk to people in china, you can talk to business people and talk to people internationally. they will tell you the chinese absolutely love donald trump because he's so easy to play and he's got autocratic tendencies to them. so they can relate to him better than they can relate to an anti-communist like ronald
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reagan. >> do you remember the old days, joe, when american presidents used to tell chinese dictators that she should reform? that they should have democratic reforms and permit more freedom? do you remember those days? it seemed like eons ago now. you'll never hear that coming from donald trump. he gives dictators a free pass. a the dangerous thing about this moment in foreign affairs is that once the dust settles, once trump is even -- makes no deal with north korea around they still have their weapons, because i think they will still have their nuclear weapons and he's out of the iran deal now and once that comes to some sort of crisis what's left is john bolton. what's left is this totally belligerent approach to these
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two nuclear crises that is is extremely, extremely dangerous. >> as you point out, the crisis is already here. eugene robinson in your column, thank you very much. peter baker, thank you. coming up, a runoff in texas and primaries in georgia, kentucky, and arkansas. it's election day so that means it's time for steve kornacki. >> the rage is coming. >> the rage sets the stage. >> do you think he's going to throw a chair like next time? >> like bobby knight. >> go to break. this is a story about mail and packages.
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primary voters head to the polls today in four states -- georgia, kentucky, texas, and arkansas. with us now to break the table -- he tipped the table. he's like the science teacher who loses his mind. >> he's in rage. >> he's like the science teacher if the science teacher beat up students. >> national correspondent for msnbc news, steve kornacki, the nicest guy. also at the table, two former congressmen from florida,
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democrat patrick murphy and republican david jolly. they're considering runnering for governor and lieutenant governor of florida as a bipartisan ticket. >> i like this. >> i like it. >> let's start with kornacki. steve is anything going to happen that any of us should care about. on friday, willie had people reporting from the royal wedding and everybody on set was going "you know, nobody watches that." >> it was cute. >> is there anything tonight i should care about? >> it depends how much of an election junky you are, if that's a way to sell this. if you're like me, you'll care about a lot of this. >> what do you care about the most? >> i think there's two interesting stories i'm following tonight. number one is this choice that democrats have in georgia statewide for the governor's race this year. it's a strategic choice and you've heard this debate nationally and democrats in georgia will weigh in on it tonight. it's this idea of is the strategy in the trump era and going forward for democrats --
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especially in a state like georgia -- is it we change the electorate, we try to bring new voters in, we try to exexcite voters who haven't been voting or is it, hey, these folks, these more conservative moderate white voters who voted for trump who typically vote republican, do we try to win them? >> i saw. put that picture up again if you will. i saw an ad. it was -- is s say ttacey evans one in the military and she had 16 homes. she's the more moderate candidates. >> she embodies the traditions democrats have made in the south. in georgia -- remember it was michelle nun a few years ago, it was jason carter, the moderate candidate reaching out to white voters who vote republican. the case made by stacey abrams her opponent is hey, we democrats keep trying that, it keeps failing, we keep coming eight to ten points short in georgia, let's try to go to our core voters, let's try to energize and get more of them out, let's expand the pie that
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way. >> by the way, i don't know anything about this campaign but i do know that that advertisement is still the strongest i've seen all year. give us an overview about what's happened so far in this election cycle. which way have the democrats gone. i know in the last election they went more the bernie route but overall what have they done? >> they're still figuring it out but there are a couple races where the dccc weighed in early and maybe they're going to get rebuffed in a way but maybe they've already made piece. i'll give you an example. in kentucky, there's one congressional district we may end up talking about around the lexington area, the sixth district. this has the highest concentration of college degrees in kentucky, the suburbanites. you can see there, amy mcgrath, a military veteran caught fire online. she's raised millions of dollars online in this thing and now there are some indications she may have the momentum. we don't know, we don't have polling. there's indications she may have
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the momentum, she may be able to win this thing and the democrats in washington who initially backed mcgrath, recruited him into the race, maybe they end up okay with that. and we have a similar situation in texas. the most -- the marquee race in texas for the house will be in the houston area, the seventh district where democrats weighed in against a candidate, there she is, laura moser. if she wins today there are some indications democrats may say okay, we'll go with that. so she's one -- >> sounds like david jolly. >> they weighed in against. i remember newt a week before my campaign announced to everybody "joe scarborough cannot win his district. he is too conservative." >> how'd that turn out? >> i got 62%. >> that's what i thought. we'll get to this ticket in just a minute but have we seen a reaction from democrats in 2016 that's been more the argument that we need to get back to the middle and sweep up those voters and flip from democrat to vote for donald trump or are we
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seeing as a theme that they're going harder to energize the base? >> i feel like we're seeing two simultaneously different things from democrats. number one is when you go into these individual districts they have shown a willingness to nominate a conor lam, so individual districts and states in trump country i think you're seeing that. there's a different question here, though, with the national message of the party and what that is. what is the emphasis, who are the faces, what are the issues? >> they don't a national message. they have no clue nationally. they just don't. by the way that's how it works out they don't have a clue and -- but one thing you are seeing, you're seeing a lot of former military people and they're doing it the way they're supposed to do it -- district by district by district and there's some impressive democrats out there. >> the way it usually goes, there is a theory about politics and i tend to subscribe to it that in a midterm year you don't need that national message.
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you focus on these individual districts, there's a tendency of the electorate to check the president so you can do well. it's in 2020 where it becomes a question of who has emerged nationally, what voice has emerged nationally. >> so will you come on tomorrow because -- or at least could you look tonight? i don't know how late your night is going to be but i'm curious to see how donald trump's uptick in the approval rating, the tightening of the congressional ballot, how that's driving energy among democrats and republicans because you've always been able to tell in the past. i remember the year obama won in 2008. democrats in every race were getting 200,000, 400,000 more voters in other races statewide leading up to that election. have you seen trends there? >>. >> pennsylvania is a good example. in 2016 in the presidential race more folks took republican ballots. the bernie race on the democratic side, the trump race. >> what's happening this year?
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>> more democrats voted in the primary this is year now there is a lot more republican incumbent members of congress in pennsylvania than democrats. but you did see a turnout flip and we've seen this in a lot of places where if you're looking for a turnout to give you a clue, it's weighing more on the side of the democrats. >> easily? >> it varies by state and a lot is these locked-in patterns in a state like west virginia. democrats have this registration advantage even though it's become such a trump republican state. >> kasie hunt, jump in. >> sure. i'm interested to talk to the two gentlemen who are proposing that they run in a bipartisan way for governor of florida, primarily because i would like to hear what both of you have to say about president trump and if you're on the same page there and how -- is there nip in the representative parties, how can you get a coalition together that would send you to the governorship when you assume --
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i would think you have to take a stand on the president. >> so let's start with the republican. >> kasie is killing hamlet in the first act. >> that's easy. as a sitting member of the house i went to the well of the house and called on donald trump to drop out of the presidential race after his muslim ban. i have been a critic as the leader of the party and the country and i can say that as a republican who wants to remain a republican. >> i'myou're a conservative? >> yes. >> what was your acu rating? >> i have no idea. but i talked ant marriage equality and climate change and gun control and all these other issues, not to doopt tadopt the democrats' position but say you can be a republican and offer solutions and win. >> there's that. okay. >> well as a moderate fiscally responsible democrat i want this president to succeed like all of us. however watching what's happened it's obvious that's not working out for our country and on the
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heels of this last conversation, what do democrats want? where are they going? where is the country going? when you look at what happened recently, president obama ran on a message of change and he won. then president trump ran on the message of the outsider going to shake things up. people didn't like him because he was a bully, they liked him because they thought he was going to get results and that's what we are proposing here. as a democrat and republican working together, we can open up this conversation to more people and get results done and get legislation that's going to last. not get something done and two years later it's repealed by the next administration and we believe there is more middle ground. >> when will you decide whether to run or not? >> we have two or three weeks before qualifying. we've seen a drop in trust in government edelman says outside of -- we conflate being a moderate with being bapt and they're two different things.
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being moderate is an ideology, being partisan suggests everybody has a home. what we're talking about doing is creating a place where everybody has a voice, a ticket where everybody has a voice. if you're a progressive, conservative, down the middle, create a ticket where everybody has a home. 90% of the issues as a country we agree on. everybody needs access to health care, gun control, better teacher pay, protect the environment, those aren't partisans. >> so you both consider yours economically conservative, socially moderate? >> yes. >> for the most part, i have very traditional conservative leanings but what i know is that the dogma crushes all of us so let's create a place where everybody has a voice. >> we've spent the last year touring the country talking about why congress is broken. it's not that they're bad people or dumb or lazy necessarily. there are structural problems ripping us apart, the gerrymandering and the money and the lack of relationships and the cameras always on people
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that have become actors. >> and you are running as independents? >> no, we're running for -- theoretically. >> patrick could be a democratic nominee, i'd be a republican running mate. some have said they would sue us to try to kill bipartisanship. we've had parties and candidates suggest you can't do this. the florida code and the constitution is silent on it. we have a legal opinion that says you can do it. i would anticipate whether we do it or not the republican legislature in the spring will try to change the law. >> good luck with that at the united states supreme court. >> you talked about -- >> freedom of association. >> clearly not aligned with the m maga side of this, would you be comfortable saying either one of you is part of the resistance? >> resistance in its own unique way that we care about results in our country. we care about solving problems, expanding medicaid and helping teachers get better paid and making sure students are safe in
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school. getting things done that some people would argue president trump said he was going to do but has changed course on that. >> former congressmen patrick murphy and david jolly. thank you very much. let us know. steve, stay with us. still ahead, donald trump spent the entire 2016 campaign attacking hillary clinton for her unsecured e-mails. >> that was bad, wasn't it? because you could actually expose -- >> i thought it was a problem. >> you could expose informants, that would be horrible. >> the question is, is he making a similar mistake? there's no reporting about how risky trump's cell phone use is, and i don't just mean the tweeting which is obviously a huge risk. we'll be right back. once there was an organism so small
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two senior at mdministratio officials says president trump uses a cell phone that is not designed to shield his communications. a departure of course from the practice of his predecessors that potentially exposes him to
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hacking and surveillance. the president uses at least two iphones, one capable only of making calls, the other with a twitter app and preloaded with a handful of news sites. the white house communications agency and office staff by military personnel that oversees white house communications. while aides have urged the president to swap out the twitter phone on a monthly basis trump has resisted that telling them it was too convenient. the same official says. too inconvenient. the hi poypocrisy quite obvious clear. an easy thing for the president to do, get a secure phone, swap out periodically as his military advisors suggest but apparently he wants to keep the old reliable on his desk.
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>> for mike barnicle, the same thing we heard in hillary clinton's case, convenience. >> yes, so -- yeah. i guess we'll get a flurry of stories about this. >> can we back up here? can we get a shot of the president holding that phone that was just up on the screen? can we get that back up there again? look at that phone. that phone is bigger than the 1954 desoto. that's not an iphone. >> it might be the case on it. >> it's huge. but i mean, look -- >> you know why it looks so big, mike. >> oh -- >> you know why it looks so big. >> mammoth. it looks ma mommoth. >> small hands? >> you said it, not me. >> obviously hillary clinton supporters with good reason are
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aghast that hillary clinton had articles written about her for a year and a half, and here's donald trump doing the same thing with another technology for quote, convenience. >> yeah, like you said, the headline writes itself, the story writes itself and i feel this is a road we've been down a number of times since january of 2017 where you can call back to something in the campaign and you can look at what's in the news now and you can say, there's maybe a disconnect there. >> casey, there's so many disconnects, you could talk about flynn and trump and everybody else saying anything that you know, cooperates with the fbi is guilty or pleads the 5th is guilty. sarah suck u huckabay standers talking about two investigators talk about how corrupt hillary clinton was. these headlines all write themselves. >> yeah, i was just sitting here reading this letter from paul ryan, speaker of the house o dear director of clapper i'm writing to formally request that
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you refrain from providing any classified information to hillary clinton for the duration of her candidacy for president. which is when he demanded that she not be allowed to receive classified information because she had used unsecured devices to send and receive e-mail. so just curious if the same standard applies. >> that is fascinating. >> before we go, really quickly, i had talked about donald trump's numbers, they were high 30s. now they're low 40s. and right track, wrong track, pretty high. >> if you're a republican worried about keeping the house and the senate for that matter. there have been a couple of positive indicators in the last month i would say. right track, wrong track, donald trump's approval rating is now about 42, 43%. for him that is a -- that is a higher place than it's been. and also the generic ballot. when you ask people that question, are you going to vote for democrat or republican for congress in your district this fall. at the end of last year when i think the people thought the bottom was falling out for
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republicans after that l a al sena -- alabama senate election. now it's creeping down lower and there's a question always. you can go back to 2010. the big republican wave year. there were periods where democrats started to say hey, maybe it's not that bad. make we got this thing under control. these things still have time to play out but the you're a republican you've had some hopeful signs. >> what's driving this? >> it could be a couple of things. the north korea news, number two, the turn in focus on the stormy daniels sex front. we saw 20 years ago with clinton, when that came up his numbers went up. >> it's also the economy, joe. you go on any major highway you see the building going on on either side of the road. >> the obama era is continuing. >> what's going on today isn't a natural predictable followup to
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what happened the last 7 years in barack obama's tenure. it's just data, man. and willie and i are data driven. aren't we? >> we are. >> i did it with my baseball team last night. metrics for nine-year-olds it works very well. >> thank you so much. still ahead, did the justice department blink in its standoff with the white house and republican members of congress hoping to get classified information in the mueller probe? we're going to break down today's high stakes confrontation between the white house and the doj and we're going to be bringing in a member of the senate judiciary committee. republican john kennedy. he never says anything interesting. no, this guy is great. can't wait to hear what he has to say about what's going on. "morning joe" coming right back. how do you become america's best-selling brand?
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you know the saddest thing because i'm the president of the united states i'm not supposed to be involved with the justice department. i'm not supposed to be involved with the fbi. i'm not supposed to do the kind of things i would love to be doing and i am very frustrated. >> that was president trump last year. frustrated with his inability to order an investigation into hillary clinton, but now he is wading into the doj and
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directing specific investigations into perceived enemies. >> he's frustrated when he couldn't order an attack, an investigation against his political enemies because after all, all of the people he admires, putin, you know. >> they can do that. >> so why can't he, right? >> yeah. >> but it's interesting when it has to do with him undermining investigations into his activities and his family's activities, and his campaign's activities. >> all of a sudden it's a witch hunt. >> he's not so frustrated anymore. >> last night a report of new detail about the president's i here by demand tweet. >> can i ask a question? >> yes. >> just this is an open question and i'm sorry it's taking us so long just to get through the introduction but every sentence offers a new historical precedent. >> it does. >> can anybody name a president
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in 240 years of this republic's existence, i'm serious, that has ever said the words i here by demand? we could go through them. washington? >> no need to. >> adams? jefferson? >> lincoln? >> no, not lincoln. anybody? >> roosevelt? >> no. >> i here by demand. >> it's stunning. >> anybody? >> putin. >> this is maggie trump who is being investigated for obstruction of justice by a department of justice appointed special counsel consulted with his personal lawyer on his order to the doj to investigate the investigation into himself. >> let me stop right there. why do you go to your personal attorney. why do you go to your white house counsel? that's why they're there. this deals with the constitution. this isn't a porn star payoff.
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this has to do with the constitution of the united states and upholding checks and balances that madison gave us 1787. >> well, two things. he's not interested in the checks and balances that madison gave us and the second part is this is a political strategy. this isn't about the constitution. this is about trying to get him out of trouble and create a diversion from what bob mueller is looking into. >> okay. welcome to "morning joe" as we back into everything this morning. it's tuesday, may 22nd. with us we have msnbc crick contributor mike barnicle. >> mike backed into a garbage truck the other day. they're trying to take his license. i here by demand they take away his license. >> mike, no. >> the kids are trying to take your license away, aren't they? >> well, sort of, yes. >> fellow and global and comparative politics. >> how are the twins doing? >> not good.
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>> wait, what's happening with the twins? >> they had a good start to the season and fell apart. >> what's happensing? >> they won yesterday and they came from behind so that was good, but overall it's a disappointing season for minnesota twins fan. >> bryan's book, how to rig an electi election. and in washington, kasiedc. >> you wanted to start the show differently. >> i came in, you know what we do before the show. right? >>, the smoking? >> the newsletter and we go down to the or orphanage and on the way up, i think guy benson had tweeted out i'm all for investigating what we need to investigate, but he said there's one -- one thing that keeps bothering me. that is if the deep state was
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really conspiring to elect donald trump, i just -- i can't sort through this. why -- why did they keep the investigation of donald trump private before the election but of course comey senlt ot out th letter ten days before -- i got to say, if that, in fact, was the deep state, trying to play puppet master, they're really bad at what they do. in the new york times and this is one of the few times we'll say this, the editorial board they write this. about trump v the department of justice and they write quote, there was a sophisticated multiyear conspiracy by russian government officials and agents working under direct orders from president vladimir putin to interfere in the 2016 presidential election in support of donald trump. by the way, full stop right
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there. guys, full stop. donald trump's intel chiefs that he put in place all agree with that fact. let me continue. the american law enforcement and intelligence communities warned the trump campaign during 2016 about this multiyear effort by vladimir putin to rig america's elections which all of donald trump's intel chiefs said they in fact did, and they asked both campaigns to report anything suspicious. now, kids, you may have heard the department of homeland security after 9/11 say if you see something, say something. that's what the intel communities did here. they told the clinton campaign and the trump campaign, hey, there's a multiyear effort by the russians to interfere with america's 2016 election. if you see anything, anything at
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all that's suspicious, this is obviously very dangerous. one of our sworn enemies trying to influence the outcome of the presidential election, let us know. guess what the trump campaign did? campaign did nothing. to the contrary writes the new york times at least seven trump campaign officials met with russians or people linked to russia. and several seemed -- and seemed seems to be actually a passive way to write this -- seemed eager to accept the russians' help. as the fbi became aware of these contacts it began to investigate and yet the bureau went to greating lengths to shield this investigation from becoming public even before the election. even as james comey, then fbi director spoke openly about the investigation into hillary clinton's private e-mail server.
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these facts write the new york times and i'm sure guy benson and trump's own appointed intel chiefs are not in dispute. so the question has to be bryan. how does devin nunes with a straight face, how does mark meadows with a straight face, how does rudy giuliani with a straight face say the sort of things that donald trump wants them to say when it is beyond debate that everything that guy benson, that the new york times, that all of us have been saying for some time, all of these thinged happened. the russians was trying to interfere. they were warning both campaigns. even mike pence lying through his teeth after the trumps were sworn in, lying through his teeth saying we never spoke to russians. >> well, because this is their orchestrating a political
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campaign to politicize recall of law in america. they're trying to save the president's skin even if it means eroding democratic principles andist tugss and even if it means sacrificing their own integrity that they've tried to build for their careers. i think the strongest parallels here are 2014 in turkey, when the president was facing investigation. he said he was a victim of the deep state. he fired prosecutors and he purged the equivalent of the department of justice. this sounds really familiar, right? and they chipped away at it slowly day after day and i think that's what we're in the midst of. democrats decay where we accept new normals and are now just daily life. >> and mika, where's paul ryan? >> something you said yesterday we were just chatting, that's the most disappointing because they should know better. >> they know better. >> paul ryan. mike pence, they have all the angles, all the experience, they
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absolutely positively know better and have chosen to do the wrong thing. >> and instead, willie, they're lunching out on something that's never been done here. this is like the constitutional version of a new coke. it doesn't end well. this guy trump, he goes away. not sure exactly when, but he goes away, he leaves a stain on the legacy of mike pence. he leaves a stain on the legacy of paul ryan. he leaves a stain on the legacy of devin nunes, he leaves a stain on the legacy of mitch mcconnell. he leaves a stain on the legacy of every republican who will not raise their voice at a critical time -- a critical cross roads for this constitutional republic where the president of the united states is interfering with an investigation into the president's operation and by the way, this is after the president's campaign manager, you know, has been indicted. this is after the president's head of national security has
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been indicted and is cooperating. this is after the man that the president said was one of his top foreign policy advisors has been indicted and is cooperating. this is after one of the guys that ran trump's campaign helped on the inauguration committee and even was working in the white house in the beginning was indicted and is now cooperating and how many russians? 13 russian nationals, three russian companies all indicted and yet trump is trying to interfere with actually one of the most brutally efficient investigations in modern u.s. history and republicans are saying nothing. >> clearly the president's worried about what bob mueller is working on because he doesn't know exactly what bob mueller has. as we talked about the other day mueller appears to be three, four, five months ahead of what we all know publicly. when you see those allegations about middle eastern contacts during the campaign the other day, all these things that seep out from behind the scenes,
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these are ithings we didn't though was happening and that's why you see the meetings like the ones we'll see today. >> still ahead on "morning joe" from revealing intelligence sources to undermining the first amendment we'll run through the five political norms that president trump has violated in the past week alone. but first, bill karins with a check on the forecast. i had a joke there but forget it. never mind. just give us the weather. >> i'll try to be nice every single day. it's very difficult. good morning, everyone. once again we are watching heavy rain in areas of the northeast. we had a picture perfect beautiful day yesterday and now the rain is moving through a rainy morning from pittsburgh all the way heading towards philadelphia. washington, d.c. has had some showers and we'll do some thunderstorms this afternoon. if you want perfect summer like weather we're talking texas today, dallas 89 degrees. st. louis a gorgeous 85. a lot of low clouds around chicago. showers and thunderstorms in the southeast and that's going to be the trend not just today but
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right through the holiday weekend. we have a tropical potential. weave h we've had this connection over florida and this is sending moisture north wards. doing so again today and what's interesting is the hurricane center is now tracking this and they're saying it has a 40% chance of development. a tropical system heading into the gulf of mexico. it's early in the season. conditions are not really favorable for it to become a big storm. i don't think the wind and waves will be much of an issue. i did hint at the holiday weekend forecast. so friday is your get away day. great day in the northeast, mid-atlantic. the tropics there. saturday, more heavy rain in the south. not great beach weather at all all through the holiday weekend down around the gulf coast and then by sunday some of those rain showers try moving a little further up to the north. you'll notice we're pretty much calm and quiet heading right through this week in many areas of the west. we'll fine tune that memorial
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day forecast as we get closer to it. new york city will have a little rain in the forecast as we go throughout the afternoon hours. maybe some minor airport delays but shouldn't be all that bad. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. ♪ it can grow out of control, disrupting business and taking on a life of its own. its multi-cloud complexity creating friction... and slowing innovation. with software-defined solutions, like hpe oneview, you can tame the it monster. hewlett packard enterprise. less complexity. more visibility. at bp, everyone on an offshore rig depends on one another. that's why entire teams train together in simulators, to know exactly what to do before they have to do it. because safety is never being satisfied. and always working to be better.
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this tech stuff is easy. [ whirring sound ] you want a cookie? it's a drone! i know. find your phone easily with the xfinity voice remote. one more way comcast is working to fit into your life, not the other way around. welcome back to "morning joe." max boot has a column in the washington post laying out the five political norms that president trump violated in just the past week alone. among them, revealing devin nunes demanding the name of an fbi informant. that's kind of a problem. >> this is again -- this is what republicans were the most fearful of during the year and a half investigation into hillary clinton's e-mails that because she was reckless with her e-mails that she may have either revealed methods or revealed
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sources. she did neither. but now donald trump devin nunes and others have in the light of day. how dangerous is that? >> it's extremely dangerous. stunning hypocrisy obviously, but this angle where they just don't care. we've now grown used to republicans -- >> we're not supposed to get used to it. >> they're now accepting that trump clearly and blatantly cares about himself more than national security. nobody debates that point that when he's acting he's acting out of self-interest, not national interest and that is not something that should be an open secret with an american president. >> politically motivated prosecutions, namely the president's tweet here by demanding a department of justice investigation. there's mixing private and government businesses. in this case china giving a half billion dollars to a trump linked project in indonesia. >> and i want to go back to the clintons. we were and a lot of other people were rightly concerned about bill clinton's speech.
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weren't these the quaint good old days when we were concerned about bill clinton getting $500,000 a speech instead of $250,000 a speech after hillary clinton became secretary of state and he would give speeches in areas that had business in front of the state department and were trying to change policies. so that's -- you know, you -- >> that just seems so -- >> that's $250,000 difference. we're talking here about half a billion dollars that china has pumped in to -- into a project that has the trump organization all over it. >> the white house has been turned into a money pit by the people surrounding the president of the united states, and it's an endless line of grifters, people with their hands out, people using the assumed power of the presidency, assumed access to a president of the
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united states to turn a buck. >> there is foreign interference in u.s. elections, that's number 4. 75 contacts that we know of between the trump campaign and russia linked operatives along with new revelations of other countries also looking for influence and by the way, i'm just talking about the past week. this list is for the past 7 days. >> yeah, and kasie hunt i want to go back to mike pence who lied a week after donald trump was sworn in and on one of the sunday shows said that there had been no contact between the trump campaign and russia. he lied and said oh, golly gee whiz, we've only been talking to the american people. extraordinary lie. >> i mean, mike pence's role in this or lack there of is actually i think one of the most interesting story lines throughout this. it rarely pops up into the top of our consciousness as we talk about this, but for him to say -- i mean, it's a good point
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as to what you say, but they'll also tell you privately you know, he was unaware of any of this going on. he was not part of the campaign when the trump tower meeting happened. and i think i've said this before, but the -- it's not hard to find somebody inside the trump orbit that will be very quick to tell you and to insist usually off the record on on background -- on background i should say that the president, the vice president had nothing to do with this. there's nothing to see here. i thought it was remarkable that he stepped into that story with that interview he did with andrea mitchell where he said it's time for mueller to wrap it up because he had been steering clear of it and it made me wonder what kind of pressure he was under from the president on this. >> so here's the fifth. just in the last 7 days. undermining the first amendment. here it's the president attacking amazon in what the column describes as a vendetta against the washington post which is owned by amazon's ceo
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jeff bezos. trump has a problem with him so he's using this country, his laws and his power to try and hurt him financially. >> four times, four times. >> five. >> was it five times he went othe postmaster? four times and put pressure on him to change a policy. the president of the united states calls a postmaster and pressures him to alter rates for u.s. mail to harm a political adversary. that i garn freaking tee you has never happened at least in recent american history. that's just extraordinary. >> imagine a president so obsessed with his own self-interest that he's making calls to the postmaster general about amazon, because he doesn't like the way the washington post has treated him. it goes back to bryan's point of
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self-interest versus national interest and by the way, as you wonder where paul ryan has been, where are conservatives about the hand of government, in fact, the hand of the executive, the chief executive of government putting his hand in a pie vat busine -- private business to control it and change its rates to please him. >> the hypocrisy, bryan because we conservatives have always been skeptical of the president that hamilton wanted in the federalist papers, we always held up madison because he was so, so -- had such a stringent standard for accept rations of power and these hypocrites that call themselves conservatives, these hypocrites who call themselves republicans don't say a word when the chief executive is battering the u.s. postmaster saying alter rates for u.s. mail because i want my political
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adversary harmed. >> it's the test of their political lives and they're failing it and i think we have a situation in which the founding fathers anticipated a demagogue like trump. coming up on "morning joe" senator john kennedy joins the conversation next on "morning joe."
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of this advertising. joining us now from capitol hill, member of the judiciary committee, john kennedy of louisiana and here on set msnbc chee chief legal correspondent. my mike is not working. >> so senator, thank you so much for being with us. >> you bet. >> a lot of things happening over the past couple days. i know the chairman of your committee has suggested the mueller committee moves forward. let's investigate, make sure everything is okay. any concerns about the events of the past 24 to 48 hours where the president's pushing the justice department to investigate the investigators? >> the president has asked for
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investigation, joe, as we all know. that's his right. i mean, you can ask for investigation. i can ask for investigation. doesn't mean the fbi has to do it. what would disturb me is if someone tried to steer an investigation in a particular direction. but to ask for an investigation, i don't think that's improper. i mean, the president's entitled to do it and as i said, you or i am. >> right. >> i would -- let me look at this from 30,000 feet. the inspector general's investigations, mr. mueller's investigations, i don't want to interfere with them, but i really wish they would try to wrap it up. and report to the american people. there's been so much speculation and rumor and frankly i don't know what to believe or not to believe. >> right. >> i don't like the american people do either, but once -- once mueller and the inspector general make a report, the
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american people will figure it out. you know, most americans don't -- they don't read every day. but they're smart, they'll figure it out. >> we all have a right to ask for investigations. but we shouldn't try to influence the outcome of the investigations and yet -- >> agreed. >> and yet the president would you -- when you recommend to the president that he not classify mueller's investigation as a witch hunt, democratic driven, corrupt, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera? >> well, i can -- i can -- i can ask him. i'll doubt he'll do it. >> well, does it concern you as a member of the judiciary committee? >> it -- what concerns me as a member of the judiciary committee is that everybody's out there spending. including the president. everybody is. and the people that don't like
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trump are saying well, something happened and the people that do like trump are saying well, it's a witch hunt and the president as we know weighs in, and there's all -- all this speculation and innuendo and i don't know what to believe. i think i'm like the average american. but i do want to know. i want to know and i want to see the facts. and once i -- >> we do know, senator, because the president's own appointed intel chief said the russians tried to interfere with the 2016 election. >> they did. there's no doubt about that. no doubt about that. >> and the president says that's not true and there should be no investigation and that's a witch hunt. i'm not trying to be difficult and don't want to -- >> no, i understand. >> i've always respected you as a straight shooter and i at least want to lay this predicate that you are concerned that the president of the united states, the guy that runs the executive branch, is striking out against robert mueller, the fbi, the department of justice, and other intel agencies.
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>> i'm concerned if the president tries to influence an investigation. now, as long as he offers his opinion about an investigation, he's entitled to do that just as you are, just as i am. there's no doubt in my mind that the russians did interfere in the 2016 election. now, did they determine the outcome of the election? you know, i don't know how anybody can draw that conclusion, even with the facts. people have a multitude of reasons for voting the way they do. all i'm saying is that all we have is speculation, sometimes it's rational speculation, but speculation, it's rumor, it's innuendo and i want to see the facts. if somebody did something wrong let the chips fall where they may but the american people are smart enough to figure it out but we've got to have a report and i trust the fbi to give us a report and i trust the inspector general to give us a report and
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let's get the facts and if somebody deserves to be punished let's punish the hell out of them and move on. >> i totally agree with you. this is the last question i'll ask regarding this investigation. >> okay. >> but you said you're concerned if the president tries to influence the investigation or if anybody tries to influence the investigation. >> yes. >> he is the president of the united states. he has appointed these people in the justice department, he has appointed the director of the fbi. he can fire all these people. and so it seems to me by the very nature of a president striking out attacking an investigation, attacking the fbi, attacking the justice department would be like you or me walking into our offices and attacking people inside of our offices by very nature of the positions we hold and the very nature of the position the president of the united states holds, that would be him trying to influence the investigation. correct? >> el, well, it comes down to
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character, joe. if ef peopwe have people in the echelon of the justice department can't stand up to someone. >> i'm not trying to get into their heads. i'm trying to see if president trump is trying to influence the investigation by his very actions. >> i don't know and really nobody else does. you can draw conclusions from the objective evidence. >> and this is why the american people don't know what's going on. >> it's pretty -- >> because there's no answer. >> it's pretty objective evidence though, is it not? >> senator, it's willie geist. you said a minute ago echoing something the vice president said last week that you wish mueller would quote, wrap it up. i wonder why there's this urgency to get it over with. you were a practicing attorney for a long time. shouldn't the time for it to wrap up is when all the evidence has been gathered and then the special counsel can give us his report? why this rush to get it over with now?
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>> well, i don't think we're rushing. i mean, it's been a year. >> but you don't know where the investigation stands so why would you say right here and now that it's time to wrap it up without knowing what's happening in the investigation? >> this is why i say that. russian interference and they did try to interfere in our 2016 elections, it's an important issue, but we've got a lot of other important issues and this issue just sucks all the oxygen out of the room. i mean, on some days that's all anybody wants to talk about up here. in the media and outside the media and all i'm saying is my personal preference, i'm not trying to tell mr. mueller what to do. i don't have the authority anyway. i'm not trying to interfere in his investigation. i don't want to end his investigation. i would just ask respectfully if he can along with the inspector general to try to wrap it up. now, in terms of the president trying to influence the investigation, look, the president tweets a lot. we know that. >> right. >> i'm not a big fan of it. if he asked me my advice i would
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tell him that i'd try to convince him that tweeting less would not cause brain damage. you don't have to -- you don't have to tweet every day. but he likes to tweet and that's his style and that's his prerogative and it's not my style, but it's his. >> but would you agree that the fact that a lot of people are talking about bob mueller's investigation, the fact it may be a distraction to the president is not a reason to quote, wrap it up. >> sure. not alone, no. but i think a year is a long time and i will be -- i mean, i confess i'll be glad when this is all over with. we've got a lot of other -- not more, but other important issues and there are some days up here where this just -- there's no oxygen left in the room. it just all goes to the russia investigation. >> do you agree it's important to find out how and why russia did meddle in the 2016 election? wouldn't you want that investigation to play out however long it takes? >> yes, yes, i do.
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and we know they tried to meddle. we know one of the ways they did it was through social media platforms. look, if i were king for a day and i'm not and don't aspire to be, i -- i would hit putin so hard with sanctions he'd cough up bones. i'd just shut him down, but that's just my opinion. >> so senator, we want to make sure that a republican, a good republican like yourself to come on our show and not think they're going to have talk about donald trump and robert mueller and russia the whole time. >> i watch the show all the time. i enjoy it. >> you know, it's like jeb bush said, it's like three hours, beating the same seal, that's what jeb said. so what we want to do here because you are correct. there's a lot more stuff going on out there than donald trump his tweets, the justice department although that's extraordinarily important. what issue for you right now is -- is the front of your mind right now as something that you
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think the american people need to focus on? >> oh, gosh, there's so many. north korea, i guess would be the first, joe. >> so let's talk about that. are you concerned that the president may be moving too quickly towards this summit with north korea? >> no, here's what i think. i think number one, kim jong un, the boy king is a butcher. i feel badly for the people in north korea. he's built a third rate country with nuclear weapons. we have to take them seriously. i think eventually he'll come to the table for a couple reasons. number one, china has told him to. i think china almost completely controls north korea. some disagree with me, but i think if you took president xi jinping of china, turned him upside down and shook him kim jong un would fall out of his pocket. i think north korea will come to
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the table because the sanctions are hurting them badly. number three, how can i put this? you remember nolan ryan, the 100-mile-per-hour fastball pitcher? >> of course. >> he also hit 158 batters. and reporter asked him one time, look, what's your edge with d batters? he said it phelps if they think i'm a little crazy. >> i think kim jong un thinks the president is a little crazy. i'm not saying the president is crazy but kim jong un saw what he did in syria twice. he knows a military option is on the table and it makes him nervous and when you combine all three of those things, sanctions, china telling him to do it and the fact that he thinks the president might use military force i think he'll come to the table. will we get a good deal? i hope so. if we -- if we don't, we shouldn't take the deal. >> yeah. i think nolan ryan got that from dizzy dean.
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>> he was the best. >> and it packs a punch with 102-mile-per-hour fastball. that's a whole lot of crazy coming at you. what about net neutrality? >> i voted to sustain it. here's why. the cable companies and other companies that provide internet say they contend that in a free market, so long as they disclose the cable company should have the right to control their product. they say that they should have the right to decide which websites download quickly, which websites download slowly and which websites don't download at all depending on how much money you pay them and if you don't like it, just switch service providers. now, in principle, i agree with that. there's just one problem. there's not a free market. in my state, 23% of all louisianaians have access to one
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internet service provider that can deliver the download speeds they need. 25 megabits per second. nationwide that number is 19%. if you throw out satellite and go to fixed broad band, half of all americans have access to only one internet service provider. internet is a necessity. it's like water, it's like electricity, it's like a telephone and if -- if your internet service provider jacks up the price on you, you can't switch and many people can't afford it. five or ten years from now when we've got 5g where we have a true, free competitive market i'll agree with the cable companies, but right now i just don't. and some of my colleagues disagree with me, but you know, that's the way it rolls. >> all right. >> senator thank you very much for being on the show this morning. >> thank you so much, senator. we greatly appreciate it. >> we do. looking at the takeaway here is
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that he wishes the investigation would wrap up. he doesn't know p the president is trying to influence the investigation and kim jong un thinks president trump is crazy. >> you know what's interesting on -- at least the kim jong un aspect of it, a lot of foreign policy experts have actually been saying what i've been reading about the chinese. they are actually comfortable as is kim jong un with a leader like donald trump that doesn't respect democratic traditions. that doesn't apologize for being who he is, for basically being a bull in a china shop and not being bound at least in his own mind by -- >> this is not a compliment, but it might be true. >> no, but by the democratic values that other presidents actually abide by. >> i think it's fair to say that donald trump's language is the lingua franca of many places in
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the world where the state and private sector are fused. corruption is not a dirty word, and everything is fairly transactional. i mean, we take pride in this country of having more separation and checks and balances. that's not how it rolls everywhere else. i do think that if donald trump did something that no other modern president has done which is pull off some nuclear agreement worked out that would be great but that's the biggest if in international politics. >> you have a special report on rudy giuliani? >> we do. the big question about rudy giuliani and your coverage has picked at this point. >> did you know he was knighted by the queen? >> and he's smarter than anybody and mueller told him september 1. >> i remember a white house lawyer who also used to give out time lines. he's no longer on the team. here's the big question of rudy giuliani. is rudy giuliani the shaquille o'neal of the russia probe?
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by which i mean, did donald trump say well, that guy talks about the game a lot on tv. i need him on the court and you go, yeah, but you know, shaq played a long time ago and he was excellent but that doesn't mean you put him on with lebron today. has donald trump put the fate of his criminal defense and to some extent the trump presidency in a 20-year time lag of a man who used to practice law but now practicing television and there's wrong with practicing television obviously but it's different. >> he wanted his generals. he wants mcfar land to run the pent gagon right after the election. >> tonight we have the former executive editor of the new york times who clashed with rudy giuliani. we have vince warren who sued him over civil rights issues in new york. jennifer rogers who worked in the same southern district prosecution office so we're getting everyone around the table to talk about it but some of the people that are reporting
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suggest that rudy looks worse than he is. there is a method to the sloppy madness. >> you're saying he looks worse as in this is even more damaging to donald trump's cause? >> they think that he is playing a certain way that it looks sloppier than it is. that's one view. >> that could be fascinating. >> that's sort of like the "morning joe." >> for success i look more sloppier than i actually am. >> okay. thank you. >> it's stunning to me that donald trump hires these misfits. it's -- it is the island of misfit attorneys that he can get for free or that he can get at a reduced rate, people that he can -- >> well, he doesn't pay them any way. >> no, he doesn't pay anybody but that's why he doesn't have -- >> but the big card to play will be part of the program tonight i assume is rudy is on tv a lot and he does tv. he's a tv guy. not a lawyer. >> shaq can still get you 15 and
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10. >> should i revise this for charles barclay? >> maybe. >> who's more dangerous to pick a public feud with though? >> you can fler go wrong with a round man of rebound. >> 6:00 p.m. eastern time. up next millennials have been accused of ruining everything from department stores to breakfast and america. what? by our next guest -- it's kind of -- >> what's that mean? >> how did they ruin breakfast? >> i'm confused. our next guest is a baby boomer who says his generation broke america. >> they did. everything. >> oh, yeah. americaning joe "morning joe" is coming right back m f .
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sadly, the american dream is
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dead. i am officially running -- [ cheers and applause ] -- for president of the united states, and we are gg to make our country great again. >> that was nearly three years ago at trump tower. donald trump if his speech declaring his candidacy. our next guest argues in his latest book that america's decline actually began nearly half a century ago when this country's most cherished values became weaponized against the people they were intended to serve. the book is "tailspin." its author, award-winning journalist steven brill joins us. always good to see you, welcome back to the show. >> same here, good morning. >> america's in a tailspin, how do you define that? >> define it a lot of different ways. if today's like any other day, there will be 659 water main
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breaks. the average american family, if you count the out of pocket cost of health care, is making less money than it was making 40 years ago. in the intro, the one thing that president trump said that actually, you know, is true for a lot of people, a lot of people in the middle of the country, is that the american dream has died. and that's what this book is about. this book, you know, if you're a republican, this explains how we got from eisenhower to trump. if you're a democrat, it explains how we got from camelot to trump. >> let's start with eisenhower, which is where you start when you talk about republicans. policies put in place that you think now with the benefit of historical hindsight were disastrous. >> for example, when we initiated the kennedy round of international trade, which i think is good policy, what we promised we were going to do then and what we promised for 40 years thereafter, we were going
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to have a real program for trade adjustment assistance. we were going to do what every other country in the free world does, retrain workers who were victimized by a good policy, which is globalization. we didn't do that. we passed a trade adjustment assistant bill with a program and we ignored it. i found that over the 45 years of the program, there were exactly two articles for reports on broadcast media or national media about that program and how it was doing nothing. it was a mirage. and nobody cared. because the people who were the victims of it were not the people that, frankly, the media cared about. >> you talk about meritocracy. >> yeah. >> how meritocracy -- >> i love it. >> rve loves meritocracy and they look back on the ike years and the kennedy years when white
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anglo saxon protestants who sent their kids to harvard and yale ran the world. but now we have am meritocracy and it's more. what happened? >> i was a scholarship kid at yale. they didn't take a lot of people like me. >> same here, i fell off a turnip truck and they accepted me in alabama. >> the irony was, as the smarter people made their way into these institutions, whether they were higher education or law firms are banks. >> right. >> those institutions became, you know, much more powerful because the people there were much more able. and you had a system where, you know, legal engineers took over law firms and did things like fight the class action suits that were the subject of the supreme court's decision yesterday. that's the result of a 25-year
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campaign of legal engineering by people who were beneficiaries of the meritocracy. >> the best and the brightest. >> yeah. >> so you wrote the cover story for last week's "time" magazine. >> exactly. >> the piece was titled "how my generation broke america." the story of america's tailspin is not about villains. it's not about conspiracy to bring the country down, nor did it spring from one single source. there is a theme that threads through and ties together all the strands. many of the most talented driven americans used what makes america great, the first amendment, due process, financial and legal ingenuity, free markets and free trade, meritocracy, even democracy itself, to chase the american dream. and they won it for themselves. then in a way unprecedented in history, they were able to consolidate their winnings, outsmart and co-op the forces
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that might have reined them in and pull up the ladder so more could not share in their success orprimeacy. what an incredible excerpt. >> that leads to striding and the ladder. 40 years ago people had a belief not just in the middle of the country, people talking about this business, the middle of the country like it's a lab experiment, it's the entire country. >> exactly. >> people out there today whose children have no concept of climbing the ladder to social and economic success. when did that ladder get cut off? why did it get caught off? and does education have anything to do with it in the sense that you went to yale. children today go to yale, not from poor families, they meet a young woman, beautiful young woman from harvard and they get married and become their own social strata. >> economic diversity at places
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like yale and harvard is less than it was two or three or four decades ago. those are just effects. on the other hand, this is a positive book. because there are people all over the country in all those arenas who are working to change things. >> that's what i was going to ask you. fighting to reverse. >> they have put yale and harvard to shame. they are fighting to reverse it. if you look at people, the bipartisan policy center, in washington, they actually believe that patriotic americans on both sides can come up with real solutions to things. they're working at it. they're in place for when i think this is going to happen. i think the level of disgust in this country is going to be so great that things will snap back. >> who else is fighting to reverse this trend? >> there's a guy who runs a program in queens. in a converted zipper factory.
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who is training bouncers and sale clerks to be software coders. they average $18,000 a year when they come in. 11 months later, $80,000 a year drops. >> wow, that's impressive. >> you can do job training if you care about it and concentrate on it instead of having a program that is basically, you know, lip service. >> the book is "tailspin, the people and forces behind america's 50-year fall, and those fighting to reverse it." steven brill, thank you. >> thanks, good to be here. >> great topic, wow. >> all right. >> so, final thoughts? >> i think you said it at the top of the show. i think there are some republicans who have no excuse, who are standing by a president who is breaking through constitutional norms at a rapid pace, and it does matter, and we should be shocked and horrified. >> i will repeat one more time, the quote from the president's interview in december with michael schmidt. quote, i have the absolute right to do what i want to do with the
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justice department. >> yikes. >> he's proving it in the last couple of days. >> have to rebuild that ladder so people climb to the top no matter where you come from. >> that we do. >> need a new ladder. >> stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage right now. >> thanks so much, joe. thanks, mika. hi there, i'm stephanie ruhle. tilting the scales. the justice department will release highly classified information related to the russia probe. is it just indulging the president's conspiracy theories? >> for the president to order the doj to investigate someone or something is just not appropriate. >> hitting a roadblock. the president of south korea visits the white house today ahead of the u.s. talks with north korea. there are new worries that trump's need for a big win and that nobel peace prize could tank the summit. >> it would be a great mistake for kim jong-un to think he could play donald trump. >> and talk is cheap. the president and his

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