tv Deadline White House MSNBC June 2, 2018 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT
that is our broadcast on a friday night and for this week, thank you so very much for being with us. good night from our headquarters here in new york. aloha, everyone. it is 4:00 in new york city. i'm in for nicole wallace. good news if you're the owner of a challenge coin. the summit with kim jong-un is back on. >> we'll be meeting on june 12th in singapore. a get to know you kind of a situation. it will be gang, i will say and never said it happens in one meeting. you're talking about years of hostility. years of hatred between so many different nations but i think you'll have a positive result in the end. >> mr. president, one thing north koreans are willing to do
with denuclearization. >> i know they want to do that. they want other things along the line. that's no doubt. take your time and fast or slowly. >> the announcement after trump spoke with the north korean leaders right hand man. and lasted over an hour. >> don't forget, this was a meeting where a letter was given to me by kim jong-un and that was a nice letter. oh, would you like to see what was in letter. how much, how much?
>> did you send anything back? >> no, i did not. i haven't seen the letter back. 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 could read it later. i may be in for a big surprise folks. >> my baby, my baby just wrote me a letter. we'll talk about with two very serious and esteemed gentlemen from the white house. mr. peter baker and nbc's hans nichols who joins us from singapore p. 11 days, president trump and kim jong-un are expected to meet face-to-face. peter baker, how much would you pay to read that letter that donald trump hasn't read? >> well, i'd pay a certain amount of money, yeah. it's interesting. he said a very nice letter, haven't opened it but very nice. hard to know what to make of that. the letter itself wasn't the only thing said in that meeting but a little surprising he wouldn't read it before making
an announcement to the press like that. >> it seemed like the letter was kind of the point, right? the whole thing was, all of this pomp and circumstance. he's going to bring in the letter. he brings the letter in. they come out and say, trump comes out and says the summit is back on but apparently, the agreement to bring it had nothing to do with what's in the letter since he hasn't read it. i find that incredibly confusing. >> it is a little odd. at the end of the session with the reporters, maybe i should read it. maybe a big surprise in there. you would have thought at the least a staff member would have own opened it to make sure there wasn't an unsettling moment in there. that's the real bottom line and didn't matter in some ways what was in the letter and intent on the getting the summit back on if he could find a way to do it and save face. in effect, he feels like he did that. north koreans clearly wanted to have the summit back on. that was the bottom line. the letter was just a vehicle to accomplish that and didn't exactly use the vehicle the way
most people would but the bottom line is that we'll see hans in singapore in a few days. >> the white house is saying the president has in fact now read the letter after saying he hadn't read the letter. taunting reporters with what's in the letter and in fact has, at this moment and minute do not know what's in the letter but i want to ask you from the perspective someone who's covered a lot of white houses and seen a lot of interplay with north korea over the course of your career. step back 30,000 feet to give aus sense of where you think this moment ranks in its importance. is this just a chimera or a big deal or should we still all hold our breaths and not necessarily assume that the summit is actually going to happen? >> well, anything can happen as we've seen. repeatedly with this president in particular. don't cancel your plans, but we don't know for sure. look, this is a big deal when a sitting american president meets
with a north korean leader for the first time ever. his meeting today with this envoy from north korea the second time met with any north korean official. that's a big deal. how to make the deal out of north korea that they are willing to live with to give them something they want. >> hans nichols, my friend. good to see you and apparently going to be sending peter baker to see you. he'll bring you a slice of good new york pizza with him on my behalf. sitting over there in the region, are people, just at the very first blush, is there a surprise right now in the region this thing is back on or is this sort of what people expect, this outcome? >> the expectation was that talks were on track and that they were proceeding at a good pace but the idea this is official, now somewhat set in stone. you never want to say anything
set in stone with president trump, but the idea that this is proceeding a pace was baked in to the expectation when earlier today, this big defense summit minister here, all gathered at the hotel. there the expectation was these talks would go forward. i will say though to peter's point, we still don't know whether or not the north koreans have signaled they are committed to denuclearization. that's been the threshold question. pompeo suggested that yesterday and hinted that. we had no response from president trump on that and as to whether or not he read the letter, i'm not going to fault anyone to that. i will when i start listening to my old voice mails. a lot of times, talking is just easier. now that he's read the letter, not a lot of surprise. if you can have a face-to-face conversation with that, i'd prefer that for information and intelligence as opposed to reading a stilted and old voice mail. >> you'll find three or four drunk ones from me.
please disregard those. on the ground, we've got very few days now. it was a hurry up summit before today. what has to happen logistically now with north koreans, south koreans and the americans in terms of tackling to get this set up so it can go off and purely logistically without a hitch? there's indications to attach themselves to the summit. this is a hurry up city that's on that in terms of the security. skurg an area and securing a hotel. that's easily done. they need to make a decision and maybe they have, they just haven't announced on the actual site and then the logistics of where's the water place and how high are the seats and what are the rooms going to look like? that's why you have these parallel negotiations taking place. those can be tricky issues sometimes. however, again, going back to the basic theory that everything
is different under trump. if this president wants to have a summit which he clearly does, i don't suspect they'll be caught up on whether or not the water is still or sparkling. i suspect this summit will move forward as long as the president is driving this administration. and that's something we hear at the pentagon is that this is a president that makes snap decisions and the policy whether it's pompeo or tiller is secretary of state or the national adviser, the president ultimately makes the decisions. >> so long there's big maces. so apparently the summit is on. what has to happen in the white house? not a logistical question but in the short period of time they now have to prepare in earnest, what all has to take place in terms of donald trump's preparation and in terms of the state department preparation and everybody part of this, what do they have to get done now in this tight window? >> the most important thing they have to get done is exactly what they want this meeting to
produce. that's been very vague from the beginning. how much of the issues that are on the table are supposed to be resolved by this meeting? what kind of progress and what would be success? you heard the president down play expectations in a way, much more than he has in the past. he said, look, this is just the beginning. get to know you session plus. we're not going to solve it all at one time. possible an agreement to the peace treaty formally ending the korean war and basically tried to suggest, don't get your expectations up. told the visiting north korean official take your time. >> okay, peter, hans, you guys are awesome. thank you for helping us. the panel here in new york city and a little bit here at this table. journalist, a member the "the new york times" and been on the air a lot. reverend al sharpton, the national action network and in washington, one remote guest, bill crystal, regular on this
program, friend of the show, founder and editor of the weekly standard. i want to start with you since we're doing all these remotes right now. what's your first reaction to what you saw today, the fact that the summit is on, how trump talked about it, just the kind of the state craft and stage craft of what we saw leading up to this announcement this afternoon and what for what it's about to unfold the next couple of weeks? >> i guess a couple of thoughts. i'm struck that president trump having stressed before we need to denuclearize noerk izize no. i think it's a propaganda victory, with no pre-conditions apparently, no actions on the part of the north koreans. look, if it all works out and no one will second guess it later on and i'm not going to second guess it too much but wouldn't say, the traditional american view is to get them before legitimizing, getting this
totalitarian regime after a legitimizing visit to the oval office. for this intelligence chief and say, hans and peter were good on the question marks that remain on the washington side. north korea is capable two days before the summit saying, we've been misled, the negotiations aren't going well, we need this concession and that concession. that's a regime that many times in the 25 years, dealing with the u.s. seem to offer things and pull back. so i think they could well be, very important to watch what they do over the next ten days as well. >> i think you know if you go back to the history of american and north korean relations, they've been characterized by north korea lying, cheating, dissembling. they've never dealt with america in any circumstance as a good faith partner. so, again, we should all be hopeful because god knows, denuclearization and the korean
peninsula, progress is something to be wished for but think that today moves us closer to that or should all of our skepticism be in tact? >> a couple of things, you're absolutely right and i think bill made great points as well. we don't have a great set-up here for high level talks. and high stakes talks. usually, it doesn't really help when you're lobbing insults across the world at one another. that's not usually a great set-up but i also just want to point out while these talks are high stakes and they're gravely serious, 100%, this back and forth that's going on right now about the letter, it's all drama, it's theater. it's something the president is excellent at and while we're not, you know, while we're talking about this, we're not talking about puerto rico, we're not talking about russia, and i think this is something that has given a chance for the president to look more presidential and that's reflected in the poll numbers. i don't see a need for the day
by day back and forth. >> al sharpton, i like to talk about it with you because you've known for a long time in a lot of different settings. and donald trump drama queen. he loves this. regardless of substance and where this is going. just this whole thing of today is the kind of thing that he just exactly what he wants. is that right? >> this is exactly what he wants because drama and him being the center of attention is what he really, really is all about. but i think that we cannot in any way dispel the fact that he caught himself out there and in many ways, noerth korea called his bluff because what's different now than it was 10 days ago or whenever it was he cancelled the meeting? they have not promised they're going to seriously deal with denuclearization in a meeting. we have not gotten any signal from them that's any different. so with all of his bluffing, they call his bluff because you are going to get a letter. the letter made no concessions.
you didn't even read the letter and when you were questioned about denuclearization, you said, oh, they want it. i don't know when or how. so what are you talking about? why did you cancel the meeting in the first place and why was bolton and them talking about libya in the first place? it's a flimflam game on a global level on something very serious that we ought not to be playing with. >> we all agree it's a serious thing, we shouldn't be playing around but let's take the notion that the summit is now going to happen for the sake of argument. it's going to happen. what if you were asked to come into the trump white house having worked in executive branches when summits have taken place, if you were called in and said, bill, we want to make this a success. give us the hard talk, the hard truth of what we need to do in the next 12 days to make this, increase the odds, the likelihood of success. what would be the bullet points you would say you've got to do x, y, and z and that's the best chance of real success?
>> get some real north korea experts, not me to start with. but the one on one summits are interesting. we just wa we haven't had that many but the g-7 meetings and that kind of thing, the multilateral summits and the prepared remarks and side bar one on one, two on one meetings. one on one, as we saw with reagan and raikovic. make sure trump understands what we want to achieve and what we won't give away and what we need to see happen in terms of real verifiable progress of denuclearization before we talk about lessening sanctions or other things. one on one is a different thing than big round table with 15 people. >> you are so right and over the next few weeks, everyone would go back and see the history. it's an important word and gives you a sense of how incredibly fluid a situation can be like that when you have two heads of
state, especially two heads of state where you're not friendly countries. how much can happen at the table no matter how you're prepared for it, it's like a realtime crisis in the making. so when we come back, we'll move on to other topics. man, just got granted a pardon from trump. dinesh de souza and are there more pardons to come? why they may be stepping on the gains we've seen in the company. and rosanne and samantha bean. one fired for racist tweet and the other kale fafacing calls t fired. double standard or false equivalency? we'll talk about that coming up. and the safey for "most parallel parallel parking job" goes to... [ drum roll ] ...emily lapier from ames, iowa. this is emily's third nomination and first win. um...so, just...wow! um, first of all, to my fellow nominees,
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dinesh d'souza. what he wants in exchange for the clemency. >> the president said dnesh, you've been a great voice for freedom and i've got to tell you man to man, you've been screwed. i knew at the beginning of the case it was fish yy but felt a great injustice it was done and using his power, he was going to rectify it. sort of clear the slate and want med to be out there to be a bigger voice defending the principles i believe in. >> a voice for freedom. that's what donald trump says he
has been. he came to prominence, a far right provocateur running the dartmouthreview. outed gay students at the time and now become infamous for a bunch in the obama era and inflammatory tweets like this one about former president obama which starts with, you can take the boy out of the ghetto. and his nickname for the president, grown-up trayvon and even defended hitler. once again for just one woman. beyond that, may have a different agenda. convicted of campaign finance charges like the ones swirling around michael cohen, allowed a clear message for president's personal attorney to stay strong in the face of offers to flip and one of the most vocal critics who is the man who
indicted and prosecuted d'souza. part of a pattern. one thing is becoming clear. attack the things he believes are wronged and what he must to protect himself and the issues today are a small hint of what could be coming as the russia investigation heating up. in washington, from the "washington post," bureau chief phil rut ger. southern district of u.s. and at pace university's law school. and we quoted from the "the new york times" editorial, start with you. a lot of things to say about the pardons but the notion of the pardon as not a form of clemency or forgiveness but retribution, not really what the pardon was designed to serve. not the function it was designed
to serve but seems at least one of the things donald trump is doing here is trying to exact punishment on his enemieenemies >> exactly. i think it's a great reflection of who he is and how he wants to use this presidency and when you think about the message we believe is sending to the folks around him who may be under investigation, that's terrifying. and then secondarily, when you think about the message it sends morally, it's repugnant, it's disgusting. he's a great example of someone who i think was treated quite generously, actually, as a conservative intellectual but is essentially just is a racist troll and, you know, i just think. >> that's quite generous in and of itself. >> i think this is trump's guy. joe arpaio. there you go. >> i want to go to you because you've got a report and i'm
reading from a senior white house official said as many as a dozen other pardons are under consideration by president trump and most are likely to happen. there are going to be more, said the official who spoke on the condition of anonymity. i know you were reporting on this topic. phil, are we about to see a wave of pardons and is that wave going to grow bigger and more pointed in some ways as it's closer to the oval office? >> that's right. we've seen the president enjoy flexing his powers of clemency here. he was considering pardon for martha stewart as well as rod blagojevich but white house officials working behind me say there's many more under consideration that the president may be acting in the very near future on a number of these and important to point out these are not happening through the sort of normal department of justice
process where sort of regular people can apply for a pardon and that gets consideration by the pardon attorney but the president sort of hearing about a case and reading about a case in the new seeing it on tv or a friend in the case of yesterday's pardon with danesh desouza and the president asking his lawyers here at the white house to review those cases and prepare the paperwork for a pardon. >> we hear over and over again from real lawyers and some fake ones on tv that the president can do for whatever he wants. is it true? >> it's absolute in the sense, the short answer is yes it's absolute but doesn't mean it can't form the basis of other charges against the president later and some of those have already been talked about. obstruction is the main one. could his dangling of pardons to potential witnesses, if that's sort of what this is a part of,
could that, if he did in fact offer the pardon to flynn, could that be part of an obstruction charge and some have said, it could possibly be a bribery charge because he's trying to ibe a witness? but i think, you know, the part of why it's an absolute power is no one, i don't think anyone ever assumed it would be used in this way. pardons are supposed to be about justice but not vindictiveness or personal favors. >> or obstructing justice. >> yeah, he's taking someone who pled guilty to a crime. admitted under oath he was guilty, had his arguments to the judge that this was selective prosecution and all of that is just being thrown under the table. >> i ask you this question from "the new york times" by michelle goldberg where she says donald trump presents celebrity impunity. here's the quote. functions as revenge when they called rosanne barre, highest
celebrity supporter and sent a message that entertainment industry will hold the line against overt bigotry even at the risk and departing dsouza, sends a rejoinder. his supporters can cross any lines they please. agree or disagree? >> agree but two points in that. one, he never, he being president trump, never denounced the racist tweets of rosanne. he didn't, at the same time, give this pardon to dsouza who definitely made racist statements and at the same time a lot of us have not dealt with in the media is he had a high profile meeting with the other kim, kim kardashian, who came in and asked him to pardon two blacks. one, a great grandmother. what happened to that? your answer to kim kardashian,
your friend kanye west's wife is i'm not going to deal with pardoning them. i'll pardon a guy known for overt racism, who called the first black president a boy and a grown-up trade. that's your response to the west family and black america in the week we had to deal with rosanne? >> phil, let me ask you this. one more in with you. we got the blagojevich pardon bloat floeti floating out there and the martha stewart one. blagojevich, in egregious corruption. arguably, the most corrupt state official of his era. what message do you think it sends, not just to the country but the message to particular constituents that trump may be speaking to through these pardons, what message would it send to them if trump decided to pardon rod blagojevich given his egregious level of political corruption? >> it would send a message that that in trump's view is not
worthy of the prison sentence he was given of 14 years. trump feels like blagojevich was wronged by the justice system and it's a signal he just simply doesn't think these acts of political correction are that bad relatively speaking and remember, president trump is somebody who's come under attack for his own ethics and own conduct in office and his own conflicts of interest with his businesses and so forth. so in a way, it's him signaling that all this stuff that maybe sort of against the rules or against the law, really, isn't that big of a deal. >> rules, schmules, would be the sub nation of that message. thank you, great to see you. up next, despite the encouraging jobs numbers, is the trump administration making it harder for republicans to run in the economy come november in the midterms? we'll get back to that in a second.
thrower to tradition and presidential norms yet again. slightly over an hour before the u.s. jobs report released. donald trump tweeted, quote, ro looking forward to seeing the numbs at 8:30 this morning. this was a move questioned by many although president typically see the night before they become public. by custom, don't say anything about them in advance in order to not affect the margarkets bu insists the president did nothing wrong. >> doesn't this go against the 1985 omb directive that said no one should reveal what the findings are the night before they're released officially? >> and we didn't. >> why is there such secrecy? >> no one revealed the numbers to the public. >> why would the president tell anybody to look at the jobs report if it was going to be negative? >> that's a therapy thing.
look, it's up to him. he likes to tweet. >> that's a therapy thing. all right, trump touted economic growth admittedly but steel going into effect today may undo that. "the wall street journal" editorial board with a needless trade war writing, quote, so much for donald trump as genius deal maker. we're supposed to believe his tariff threats are a clever negotiation strategy but an old fashioned protectionist. cana canada, mexico. foreign policy and perhaps republicans in november. joining us now from the white house associated press, jill. i want to ask you this. to me, having watched donald trump in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018.
he's been a proud protectionist and anxious to do this the entire time. is he happy today in the face of all the criticism and condemnation, he's like, dudes, i'm right about this, doing what i think is best? >> this is something that clearly is at the heart of the president's thinking. he feels this innate injustice that other countries have been treating the u.s. badly and finally someone taking this seriously and going to fight for the u.s. and try to turn things around by winning these trade concessio concessions. >> bill crystal, i ask you, probably the freest free trader in this entire group by history, by tradition and by ideology. what do you make of the fact that donald trump has done this despite the fact that you look at all the economic impact studies and everything that everyone is saying including the editorial board and saying it's bad for the boards. what's going on? >> i think the trump rationalizers saying we don't like to tweet or the behavior but the policies are good. it is not a policy that the business community and a lot of
reluctant trump supporters. the republicans who stayed republican, rationalized trump. thought the policies were okay. this is not a policy they support. so it will be interesting to see if any have the nerve to criticize it. congress has the ability to override and delegated that to the president, but let's see if they do something instead of complaining about it or tweeting about it. larry kudlow known for a long time. decent person to see him chuckle about something a violation of a norm. a small norm, not a huge deal but the kind of thing that president obama has done it. larry would be. it's part of a pattern and good for him the more it gets normalized, all the old rules
and one of the things and all the norm breaking does kind of reinforce itself, i guess, if that's the right way to say it. and 30 years railing against tariffs and against anything with max protectionism. there are some republicans, at least who are criticizing the president on the question and a lot of questions the critics raise and paul ryan who has called it out. i disagree with the decision. orrin hatch, will have damaging consequences. representative kevin brady. hitting the wrong target. and then saying this is dumb. al, my friend, what do we make a
republican party that has bowed down in front of donald trump on almost everything but this one issue, suddenly, not gone against him as crystal points out, legislatively and don't know what that will end up with but publicly, there's more resistance to this than anything else donald trump has done in his presidency it seems to me. >> one because they understand a trade war which we can't lead into with this, can damage in a little thing called the midterm election. if there was a time they didn't need him to do this, it's now. and secondly, pardon myself for saying this about pardon, i agree with john boehner. there is no gop. it is the party of trump. and i think that some of them are beginning to say, wait a minute, if we're going to have any semblance of the gop getting past the midterms, we can't do this because you're dealing with some of the things that they're
base needs in terms of jobs. >> you know what they say about me? i'm a uniter, not a divider. i brought you and john boehner together. never seen that happened here or any place else. i want to ask one last question. just think about the political consequences. the president is on a role with the economy. it's doing well. we've got a new low and the unemployment number, everybody kind of. even the president's fiercest critics and acknowledged the economy is doing well. the tariffs that could tank the economy. any thought within the white house and more importantly, congressional republicans by pursuing these policies? >> he'd be happy or interested into two separate bilateral deals and the negotiations with china happening right now. and then the problem is the
people who threatened to be hurt by this, people like farmers. there are people who work in manufacturing. these are the trump core and people who work for him and the people who the republicans are counting on to turn out in the midterm elections and this is obviously a concern, especially trump supporters and folks across the country. >> thank you very much for your time and help and brilliance and wisdom. coming up, if i asked you a week ago what rosanne bar and samantha bee had in common, you'd be hard pressed to say person on tv. now people linking their controversial comments but should they? that conversation coming up next. (burke) vengeful vermin.
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had this to say. why not firing for the horrible language used on low rating show? a total double standard but that's okay. we are winning and we'll be doing so for a long time. samantha bee explained herself at an awards dinner in hollywood. no cameras allowed, but indy wire and quoted her saying this, quote, we spent the day wrestling with the repercussions of one bad word and we should all have spent the day incensed we as a nation are wrenching children from their parents and treating people legally seeking asylum as criminals. if we're okay with that, then really, who are we? guys, samantha bee doubling down. i'll start with you. she did, i thought, she was obviously required to put out an apology yesterday. if you look at it, seemed per
fu funt fu functo rrk functory. >> what samantha bee said about ivanka trump was crude and it was offensive. she used a word that has been used to demean women. sure, absolutely. she apologized for it. fine. there is no comparison between that and what roseanne barre did. it draws upon a racial history in the country going back before the civil war that has been used to oppress americans. and so that's the first thing. the second issue here is that samantha bee is a comedian who was using crude language actually to confront and i would
say even, i'll just say, to confront a president that has, and a white house and an administration that has supported racism and supported bigotry. that is not the same thing as rosanne bar using crude language way worse in defense of that kind of cannon. >> i think, you know, when we talked about morning joe, my syllogism here is racism is not vulgarity. they're not the same thing. we could all be against discourse and vulgarity and comments that often demean women. all of those can be condemned but have to think it's a separate category, a separate level of offense and separate punishment meeted out in comparison to something that's as virulently racist as what rosanne said.
>> it's vulgar, crude, and she should have apologized. many of us used the "n" word and others against others and had to apologize and should have way before i was television and radio. said you can't talk like that and continue civil rights but what rosanne did was not just something crude. this was bringing up a racial history directed at a black woman. samantha bee was using something wrong, crude, woman against another woman. this is not nearly the same thing, but samantha bee should have apologized and stood up for her as all of us that have ever done that even if it was 20 years ago have done that. >> bill crystal, i'll ask you this question. i have some sound i'm not going to play because i don't want to play this fox news sound but someone from fox news who has the rnc spokesman saying it's an evident double standard that
rosanne loses her job but samantha stays and drives. it's hard for some people to say the president supporters in general who have tolerated ted nugent using this language about hillary clinton and donald trump people wearing t-shirts that use the q word and hard for them to hear republicans make the arguments that samantha bee should be fired when they say nothing about people on the republican side of the aisle, president trump supporters who use the same language about about the women broadly in the "access hollywood" tape. does that make sense to you? >> i guess for me, comedians can be vulgar or bigoted and judged differently as people have said on those two criteria and private tv can fire them or another chance. the big difference is the president of the united states. and trump supporters can be held
directly responsible for what they're wearing on the t-shirts and said deplorable things. in 2011 and 2012, both nuts and clearly bigoted and racial and it's clearly winked at best or turned a blind eye or worse in terms of other racially charged expressions and as you said, i think bringing people into the white house who have done things like that. but the trump problem is a much bigger problem than the samantha bee problem or the roseanne problem. >> this is not a legal issue but as a woman who's part this political conversation. when i said this thing this morning how there's a difference between vulgarity and racism and
racism is more serious than vulgarity. some on twitter said what's the difference between racism and misogynistic thing. and the kind of vulgarity in question elevates it to the level of racism. again, i'm citing some people taking issue with my distinction. where do you come down on that issue? is the c-word as bad for its misogyny as what roseanne barr did in terms of racism? >> you can't answer that question in general. in this specific context, as the reverend said, the way that samantha bee used it was not meant in a way to put women down in general. i'm not condoning the comment, but she was outraged about something that ivanka trump had done, and she used a very bad word. i think that's different than the way that, for example, president trump has used words to try and put women down. i mean for him to be on his soapbox talking about samantha
bee, he's used language very close to the c-word in talking about women as we all heard on the "access hollywood" tape. he has put women down in ways that go far beyond her comment. so i think you can't say generally whether one word is worse than the other. but in this context, i think they're very different. >> and he uses them talking about a whole class of women in some cases. up next, new comments from the former cia director john brennan, who is among several former intel chiefs speaking out against this president. a truck didn't stop. but thanks to our forester, neither did our story. and that's why we'll always drive a subaru. looking for a hotel that fits... whoooo. ...your budget?
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former cia director john brennan in "the washington post" today, quote, trump's strategy is to undercut real, potential, and perceived opponents. his focus is to win at all costs. >> that's john brennan. last week we saw jim clapper, former dni. before that we had michael hayden. these are people who have worked for democrats and republicans over generations and they are all in quick succession speaking out against donald trump, something we've never seen before. 15 seconds. what do we make of that? >> we make that there seems to be those that know what they're doing, united no matter what their background is saying he does not know what he's doing, nor does he care. >> this is an unprecedented assault on the rule of law, and it is very dangerous for the country both in a security sense and in a legal sense. and i think that's what this shows. >> mara, you look at this and you think to yourself, my god, what is happening here? >> yes. i read the column. i agreed with all of it. also great moment. great reminder.
anybody who has a platform and knows this is wrong, which it is, should say something. >> bill kristol, you have a little more time because our other guests were so concise. again, you've been around fr a long time. did you ever think you would see a day where three people as decorated with the kind of experience, the kind of résumes that these three guys have, would speak out essentially in unison about a sitting american president of either party? >> it's remarkable, but this is why some of us were so intransigently against trump and remain against trump and hope that his tenure can be abbreviated as much as possible, at least whatever mueller finds, but then to one term. i do think the damage that's being done to democratic norms, to the rule of law, day after day, some people hoped it would get a little better. it hasn't gotten better, if anything, in the last few months it may have gotten worse. >> rudy giuliani the other die said that john brennan and jim clapper were clowns. i think the alternative way to describe them is as truth
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my thanks to bill kristol, mara gay, mimi rocah, and the reverend al sharpton. you did a tremendous job today. i'm john heilemann. the road to singapore. let's play "hardball." good evening, i'm chris matthews in washington. here's where things are headed this friday night. we've got the latest of course, but who knows how long this latest is going to hold? trump is headed to singapore and now he says he never wasn't headed to singapore. samantha bee is getting lined up with roseanne barr before a right-wing firing squad. and there are new reasons to ask questions about the other far east meeting, the one in the seychelles. it looks like