tv MSNBC Live MSNBC June 2, 2018 4:00am-4:30am PDT
>> that's all for this edition of "dateline." i'm craig melvin. thank you for watching. good morning. i'm dara brown in new york at msnbc headquarters. it is 7:00 in the east, 4:00 out west. plans with putin, a new report says there are talks for a summit between vladimir putin and president trump. this coming just hours after the white house declares the korean summit between trump and kim jong-un is back on. the president is wrong, former trump adviser steve bannon calls out president trump while defending ag jeff sessions. and pardon motives. new comments from former attorney general eric holder on what he thinks is behind the president's pardons. >> the president is trying to send a message to some people who potentially might be
involved in the russia investigation. >> plus, does holder have plans for 2020? that's straight ahead on msnbc live. we begin with a new warning from senate majority leader mitch mcconnell to president trump as he gets ready to come face-to-face with kim jong-un months from now. >> i think for these situations to work, you have to not want the deal too much. if you fall in love with the deal, and it's too important for you to get it and the details become less significant, you could get snookered. >> meanwhile, new details in what appears to be a hurdle in theistical planning for summertime. the post says the presidential suede where the north korean leader wants to stay costs more
than $6,000 per night. this comes following a historic meeting with the president and a white house aide. >> appearing together after a nearly 90-minute oval office meeting, president trump and kim yong chol announcing the summit is now a go. >> june 12th, we'll be in singapore. >> but mr. trump dialing down expectations. and saying there could be more meetings to come. >> we're going to start a process. and i told him today, take your time. you can go fast, we can go slowly, but i think they would like to see something happen. >> the announcement ending a summit cliffhanger after president trump abruptly canceled it last week, citing kim jong-un's tremendous anger and open hostility. then days of diplomatic drama with kim yong chol personally delivering a letter to the
president from the north korean dictator. is north korea ready to get rid of its weapons? >> i think they want to do that. i know they want to do that. >> mr. trump saying he has no intention of ramping up his campaign. >> i don't want to use the term maximum pressure any more. >> the president signaling the high stakes summit could soon be beyond the north's nuclear program. >> we did discuss that. the end of the korean war. you're talking about 70 years. >> what's the biggest challenge now? >> the most important thing going forward is for the two leaders now to go into quiet mode, no tweeting, no propaganda statements and focus on policy deliverables for singapore on june 12th. >> the white house says it remains clear eyed about north korea's history failing to keep its word. for years, the country lied about its nuclear program and perhaps the biggest hurdle,
while the u.s. wants immediate denuclearzation, north korea says it wants a process that could take decades. dara. >> thank you for that. let's bring in kevin serelli and alexa mccammen with axio. great to have you both here this morning. >> good morning. >> do we know what they said to each other during that hour-long meeting and should we be reading too much into john bolton, his national security adviser not being there in the oval office. >> you know, the president gave a preview of what they talked about after the meeting when he said we talked about endsing the the korean war. one interesting thing is he said i'm not going to use the term maximum pressure any more and that is a phrase that has angered the north koreans, but something that has been a standard way of approaching these negotiations from the trump administration. it is likely that they talked about the pace but it is our understanding that the u.s. and north korea are on two different
pages on that. the the president is obviously someone who wants them to denuclearize from his presidency. there are still questions, though, about that timetable and it is not likely that they agreed upon a timetable at that time that. and from the north's perspective, they want security. the president said he's not going list sanctions on north korea, but he doesn't plan to impose any more. as far as john bolton not being there, the president is someone who has thought he could handle this largely on his own, but north korea was upset by john bolton's comments about this before. >> kevin, let me play for you what president trump told reporters of after that meeting. take a listen. >> a letter was given to me by kim jong-un and that letter was a very nice letter. >> it was a very interesting
letter. >> i haven't seen the letter yet. i purposely didn't open the letter. i haven't opened it. i didn't open it in front of the director. i said would you want me to open it? he said you can read it later. i may be in for a big surprise, folks. >> kevin, it is hard to overlook that obvious contradiction. was that letter simply immaterial to the president's decision to move forward with the summit? what do you make of that response? >> i just think the response speaks for itself. one of the takeaways here is this is a response to where we were just in the last weeks. it would suggest that secretary of state mike pompeo, the former cia director, former congressman, has really been able to capture the momentum and the attention of the
administration as they head into the june 12th summit in singapore. john bolton's absence from this meeting should be very much discussed and dissected because it would suggest that secretary of state pompeo is in charge in terms of moving his cia team over to these negotiations with north koreans and elbowing out of the way john bolton and his staffers. so what does that mean from a policy standpoint? this is what it means. it means that the administration is committed to a long-term nuclearzation deal. that's something that democrats as well as republicans want and there was concerns notice just amongst democrats, but among hawkish republicans that the president would try to get some short-term deal. the president also said yesterday when we were at the white house with that he was fully prepared to add additional sanctions to the north koreans should they not be cooperative, should they not play ball. and the reason this meeting was originally postponed or called off was because of chinese
president xi jinping and their role in this. let's not forget that the economic ties between china and north korea are so interlocked and they play such a crucial role here and the president essentially saying to russia and they have to stay out of the way. >> as all this is going on, "the wall street journal" says u.s. officials are are in early talks for a trump/putin summit although there is no date or location yet. so in fairness, how president trump and bush they met with putin in the first six months of their administration, but what would the nature of a putin meeting be while president trump is under this cloud of the russia investigation? >> and the "wall street journal" reporting the discussions would likely focus on syria and ukraine and a nuclear arms deal. but as you just mentioned, this ongoing investigation with bob mueller and his special counsel team is obviously a cloud hanging over the president and something that would make a meeting with president putin totally suspect, right?
there was reporting last week or earlier this week that the president mentioned something about russia when he was talking about rod rosenstein about his memo for firing james comey. that is something that was highly significant when he was thinking about russia. he is always criticized for not bringing up this issue of election med election meddling. these are all things that people want to hear about from russia but things that the president is not prepared or willing to talk to him about. so the optics of this are terrible, quite frankly. >> commentators and legal experts are looking at this
pardon of d'souza as a signal to his colleagues in the mueller investigation. the president said you've been a great voice for freedom and he said i have to tell you man-to-man, you've been screwed. he goes, i've been looking at the case. i knew from the beginning that it was fishy. but he said upon reviewing it, he felt a great injustice had been done and using his power he was going to rectify it,er sort of clear slate, and he said he just wanted me to be out there, be a bigger voice than ever. >> kevin, is that what these pardons are meant to serve as, to use these people for his political agenda? >> i think that's a great point. when you talk to allies about this trump white house, they view these pardonings as a signal to other folks who are in legal trouble or being investigated that a pardon could potentially.happen. but the second point that i would make quickly, dara, is
that, you know, typically we only see a president use pardoning at the ends of their second term. but theses have become something of, you know, a fodder that is discussed that the president is using every so often. he circulated this week with martha stewart. it's interesting, but i think it's a signal to those who are under investigation. >> i think the president wrong. if i can respectfully disagree with the president of the united
states. i think the whole concept of recusal is not an issue. anybody associated with the campaign would have had to recuse themselves before grassley's commit voted them out to go to the floor for a vote. >> what do you make of that reaction coming from steve bannon? how does it square what your colleagues are hearing? >> i rarely if ever agree with what steve bannon says. especially because trump, according to my colleague's reporting told jeff sessions that if he reversed this decision to recuse himself, he would be a hero among conservatives. it's clear steve bannon has certain views on this and he sees, just like the rest of us, how the president is potentially implicating himself in this
russia investigation. the president wants this to go away, but he is further implicating himself and everything he's saying and doing will be under investigation. a former attorney general says he's a little about the president pardons and why they may end up back firing on president trump. tection... advanced connectivity... and one more thing... the world comes with it. the new, reimagined 2019 jeep cherokee. (honking) when your craving strikes, you need your wing nut. ( ♪ )
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that's been stripped away. that person becomes a perfect witness for the special counsel. >> former attorney general eric holder saying president trump may be flaunting his pardon power to send a message to those caught up in special counsel robert mueller's investigation. but could this end up back firing on the president? joining me now is glenn kirschner. great to have you here today. after listening to this, could president trump be targeting those under investigation by mueller? >> it could be. the president has pardon power. once he exercises that power, it says something about his intent. let's take an example. if the president decides to pardon a series of drug offenders and he decides to pardon all left-handed drug offenders, he has that power. it's not on its face unlawful or
unconstitutional. but i don't think there's a supreme court justice that will say that was a lawful or appropriate act. once he exercises his admittedly unfettered pardon power, that becomes evidence that the mueller team can and will use in their investigation. >> and holder says he's concerned with the president's recent pardons in regards to that. the "new york times" writes by choosing to pardon political supporters whose cases largely failed to meet the basic guidelines for pardons, mr. trump could turn the to one in which those with fame or a line to the president's ear are first to receive clemency. >> people are rightly troubled when they see the president
choosing to use his pardon power in the favor of the rich, wealthy and influential when there are so many people who are poor or middle class who have been convicted of a crime or have no influence, they're powerful. those people, if they're seeking a pardon, those cases are sitting in the office at the pardon attorney at the department of justice waiting to be heard. and the president does seem to be leap frog that process for his own reasons. it will become evidence in bob mueller's investigation. >> and i want to play for you what former trump adviser steve bannon said about attorney general jeff sessions. >> i think the whole concept of recuse ideal is not even an issue. i think that rudy julie an know or chris christie or jeff sessions, anybody associated
with the campaign would have had to recuse themselves before grassley's committee even voted them out to go to the floor for a vote. >> would anyone involved in the trump campaign had to have recused themselves from the russia investigation? >> yes. mr. bannon is right on this one. if you are a potential witness in an investigation, you must recuse yourself. if there is even an appearance that you're a witness in an investigation, you must recuse yourself. even if it turns out you're not a witness, there's abdomen appearance problem and people will not have confidence in the outcome. if people who are potentially a part of it and have not been removed, it gives the public confidence. when people with interest in the investigation remove themselves. >> interesting. have to see how this all turns out. thank you so much for your time.
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welcome back. a new report suggests the democratic party is neglecting black women candidates this election cycle. axios says there are at least 43 democratic black women running as challengers for u.s. house seats, but only one has backing of the organization. alexi, you would think this historic win by abrahams in georgia would boost support of all women running for office. what is happening here? >> right. they feel that they have invested in the democratic party in ways that are highly significant for years and they are feeling like now that they are choosing to run as candidates, they're not getting that same investment in return. and, you know, we hear a lot about electability of candidates based on money and fund-raising
and something i've heard from national democrats is that the easy excuse of these women are not raising a lot of money, therefore, they're not electable. that is problematic for a few reasons, but one big reason is that as you just mentioned, stacey abrahams was highly successful this year in these elections and that should serve as a wake-up call to the democratic party that if you want to build a more diverse bunch of candidates, you have to invest in them early and often. it can't be if they just so happen to win their primary. these women that i spoke to for this report told me they don't want handouts or more than other candidates are getting, they want best practices, they want guidance, they want advice. they want recognition. some of them have not been recognized by the party when they reach out.
they need to invest more in these black women who are running, but they're only supporting one this cycle. >> and politico is reporting that president trump will head a dnc fund-raiser at the end of this month, his first for the mid material. how much should we expect him to inject himself into these races? >> i think there are a lot of former democratic obama staffers who want to see former president trump get involved in the state of the midterm elections and the 2020 looming political battle. the apparatus surrounding the administration is trying to figure out where they're going to go ahead of this new cycle. and i think what is interesting here is not just that former president obama is going to be campaigning there, but what will hillary clinton's role be in the 2020 cycle? when you have a centris democrat up for re-election giving a local radio interview and
saying, direct quote, that she hopes former secretary clinton rides off into the sunset, there's tension in terms of the ideology and strategy about who is going to lead this party moving forward. >> thank you so much for your time this saturday. >> thank you. that will do it for me. at the top of the hour, it's hugh hewitt. your brain changes as you get older. but prevagen helps your brain with an ingredient originally discovered... in jellyfish. in clinical trials, prevagen has been shown to improve short-term memory. prevagen. the name to remember. hey, i'm curious about your
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