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tv   MSNBC Live With Stephanie Ruhle  MSNBC  June 14, 2018 6:00am-7:00am PDT

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for our country if we've lost our compassion for children. >> agreed. you know, the twitter page from the bbc that actually monitoring what goes on and monitors donald trump actually had this clip of him saluting a north korean officer and of course we know what north korea has done to its people. and willie, my god, we don't have to say what if barack obama did that. what if anybody did that that was president of the united states to a regime that's brutalized and killed their own people and american college students? >> president obama dipping his head to the prime minister of japan, for example, was an outrage that lasts today in conservative circles. i wonder what folks will say about that image. that does it for us this morning. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage.
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>> hi there, i'm stephanie ruhle. we've got a lot to cover here in d.c., starting with ready to flip. trump's personal attorney and fixer michael cohen drops his own legal team. is this guy getting ready to cooperate with mueller? >> we're very comfortable if he cooperates. there's nothing he can cooperate about with regard to president trump. >> and border in crisis. an inside look at where migrant kids are living after being ripped from their families, a former walmart almost at capacity. >> one of the first things an employee said to me is can you try to smile at these kids because it's weird to see people from the outside. they feel like animals locked up in cages being looked at. >> can you please smile at these kids. that's what he was told. we begin with a potentially major legal shake-up in the works for president's trump longtime personal attorney and fixer michael cohen. i have a great team here to break all of this down.
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first, let's get you caught up on the fast developments involving the so-called fictioner. a guy who was going to be a lifer, royal to trump. nbc news has confirmed cohen is expected to part ways with his current attorneys and hire new counsel as federal investigators dig deep into his business dealings. the u.s. attorney in manhattan is focusing on that $130,000 payment to adult film actress stormy daniels. when, you know when, just before the 2016 election. but team trump, they claim that they do not appear to be fazed by any of it. the president's other attorney, rudy giuliani, he had a bit of a reaction last night. >> he's not cooperating. nor do we care. because the president did nothing wrong. we're very comfortable if he cooperates that there's nothing he can cooperate about. michael cohen i think would tell you he's got nothing incriminating with the president and, really, they should stop going after him. torturing the guy. the reality is they're trying to
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frighten him. >> sounds like it's working. you'll remember in april, the fbi raided cohen's law office and hotel room. at a recent court hearing, prosecutors say they're still sorting through the material they collected from that raid. cohen has denied any wrongdoing and has not been charged with a crime. points out, quote, the legal fight could intensify should cohen cooperate with authorities, particularly if he plans to turn over information or documents that trump's lawyers deem privileged. has told people close to him that a fight against the president could be crippling. so let's get more from nbc news intelligence national security reporter ken dilanian. what does this even mean? could dropping his attorneys signal what? it's buying more time for michael cohen? why exactly would he be doing this? >> it doesn't necessarily signal, stephanie, he's cooperating. the reason it's getting so much attention, it is true that many defendants when they decide to
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cooperate do change lawyers because they often are looking for lawyers with a history of cutting deals. potentially lawyers with a relationship with the prosecutors. they would want lawyers who maybe worked in that office who have a good relationship to cut a deal with those folks. but look, i spoke to a friend of michael cohen's yesterday who said it's very premature to suggest he's decided to cooperate. that friend did, though, say he was considering it, and he said, look, nobody is going to do 20 years for somebody else. if he decides he's facing serious legal jeopardy, he is going to flip. this could be essentially a way for cohen to put pressure on donald trump. because the trump campaign has been paying large sums of money to cohen's lawyers and it's been reported that part of this dispute with cohen's existing lawyers is the dispute over legal fees. cohen is facing enormous bills related to the analysis of this 3.7 million documents that were seized from his home and office. and this could be cohen saying look, pay my fees or i may flip. we'll just have to see,
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stephanie. >> wow. joining me now, stay with us, ken, "los angeles times" white house reporter my friend eli stokele. former assistance u.s. attorney kim wale. and one of my faves, ned price. kim what does it signal, splitting up with his attorneys? >> i don't think it signals anything in particular other than we have a shift here. >> why would you do that? >> we saw it with rick gates. we saw it with flynn. there could be just a decision to shift strategies. i mean, this lawyer that they have, this law firm, went through 3.7 million documents. that's very expensive. they made a largely frivolous attorney/client privilege claim. we have a third-party immediater who went through all these documents. so far, as far as i can tell, it's under 200 documents actually identified as privileged. the rest of those are going over to prosecutors. >> and now he's got a new legal team and he has to do it over again?
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>> there could be potentially a new legal team to negotiate some kind of deal. but we don't know if there's been anything put on the table. it could just be a decision to listen, part ways, i want a different strategy. >> we heard from giuliani where they're saying we're not concerned at all. do you buy that? >> i don't buy that. when people flip, usually there's a bigger fish above you. there are any number of subjects and targets about who you could see. you tell prosecutors within your wider orbit. the interesting thing about cohen is he had three clients, only three clients. >> sean hannity claims not to be a client. >> exactly. i think those documents will tell a different story. we'll find out. sean hannity, elliott and donald trump. i don't think these prosecutors are too interested in the dealings of sean hannity. i think what they're really going for here is donald trump. that was really bad news for rudy giuliani. it's even worse news of course
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for donald trump. >> what are you hearing from inside the white house? because maybe all this noise is a way for michael cohen to say, mr. president, help me, i'm suffering. >> there's always been ambivalence with michael cohen about his loyalty to the president. a lot of people close to michael cohen are saying look he doesn't return your loyalty, you're going to go to prison for this guy? and he's saying, look, i'm out on a limb, help me or i'll cooperate. the raid on cohen's office was a really scary moment for him and it still unnerves -- >> it's one the president claims was illegal, unfair. michael cohen said they were respectful it all worked out. >> you heard giuliani amplifying that same public message. the u.s. attorney saying the new york office that got a warrant to do this from a judge is very hard to do, to seize papers like that. that the legal process here is torturing michael cohen. it's a fascinating position for
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rudy giuliani to be in at this moment. and that's what he and the president and their defenders will say publicly. but deep down, they know that there's a lot of serious vulnerability in all of that paperwork now in the possession of this u.s. attorney's office. >> kim, emily jane fox from "vanity fair" has extensively covered michael cohen. she spoke about what cohen's current situation is like. where his head is at. >> his general feeling right now besides his feeling of betrayal from the trump camp is that his life has been collateral damage in order to get to the president, so his business has been destroyed, his family has been destroyed. he is a pawn in this game. and so he is just waiting for a next phase. >> so his wife, his kids, they feel like he's a pawn. i guess no problem with having years of paying off porn stars. that wasn't embarrassing. but this, this it sounds like
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it's possibly ruining their life. >> if you're talking about years in years in prison. to get these warrant, there has to be a lot of what's called probable cause. a lot of information that is going to go before a judge to justify this. and we have his business partner who's cooperating with respect to state charges. we have potential problems with respect to, you know, campaign finance violations. we have tax fraud, bank fraud. there's a lot pending here. some serious considerations about do i flip. do i talk about my close relationship? he has -- to the trump team? he's got the keys to the kingdom here. >> assuming -- >> just lots of information, right? the two other factors is trump has now started his pardoning
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spree so there's a question looming. if he does flip, we will probably see an all-out additional attack on the integrity of the justice department. and the mueller investigation, which is a bigger problem in my mind with respect to democratic process and the ining at the gret of integrity of the justice system. there's lots of questions with respect to a pardon. could he pardon, could trump pardon him for all possible -- >> what about state law? >> state law, he can't pardon him for. it's not even clear you can pardon him for anything. whether arguably it would have to be, here's the charge, i pardon him from that charge. so the pardon isn't a panacea for mr. trump. if he does flip and he has information, it's really -- it's really of concern i think for this president.
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>> okay, then ned, before a plea agreement could happen, cohen and his attorneys would meet with the prosecutors. they call that the queen for a day session. what would that look like? >> well, it could be a proper session. the interesting thing about michael cohen is there are circles of criminal activity or potential criminal activity i should say. so of course prosecutors are going to focus on the new york case. but we can assume, we have to assume, they're also going to focus on things like trump tower moscow. they're going to focus on this plan for ukraine that he presented in early 2017. michael cohen, as kim just said, holdings the keys to the kingdom of donald trump's personal life but there's a lot to suggest he has a lot more. he has a lot more that can incriminate this presidency. it seems like that's what donald
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trump is really worried about. >> to that point, eli, big picture, michael cohen has been happy to be labeled president trump's fixer. as his fixer, how much of a risk does this pose for the president, someone who's been by his side? people in the white house have said whenever there's a sticky issue, bring michael cohen in. >> he's done it for a long time. >> proud to do it. >> potentially, this is the biggest threat of everything he's facing in the legal realm. the point about michael cohen being proud to do it. i talked about the ambivalence he feels about whether or not to flip and what to do. it really is in his dna. he's defined by his work for donald trump. this is who he is. so his muscle memory is whacking the people, physically speaking obviously, that are in trump's
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way. >> you've heard him on the call with reporters. >> i've been one of those reporters he's talked to. >> trying to gut you like a fish. >> something like that. when you step back and think about him being in this position to be one of those people who hurts donald trump, that is just sort of against everything that he's done from the last ten-plus years of his career. even if he's frustrated. even if he feels trump hasn't been loyal to him. he's still doing it publicly. we'll see what happens when he has to make this choice. >> there's another person who comes to mind who the approval of donald trump means everything and it's donald trump jr. he was on fox news this morning. he was asked whether his father should sit down for an interview with bob mueller. here's what he said. >> i don't trust these people as far as i could throw them. i wouldn't sit down with them. you could sit there and ask questions for 50 hours, ask the same thing a thousand times and
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it's like, oh, the comma's different here, we've got you. >> it's weird, the comma's different here. it was donald trump who repeat lid changed his story about the trump tower. meaning none of it having to do with a comma, an exclamation point or even a semicosemicolin. what's your thought? >> these are federal prosecutors. top leadership of which donald trump, the president himself, appointed. look this is part of the trump strategy. to malign our public serviee se. you only malign public servants if you have criminal activity under your belt. >> we knew this was coming. releasing this eternal report detailing allegations of
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misconduct by the fbi and justice department. officials leading to the 2016 presidential election. what are you anticipating here? >> well, i think this is oversight of the justice department. i think that's all well and good. i don't anticipate this having anything to do with the legitimacy of the mueller investigation. there might be some comments about how mr. comey handled his public statements leading inin the election. i think rosenstein's initial memo justifying the decision to fire comey was probably i would think consistent with some of those conclusions. they don't have the subpoena power. they don't have access to the same full amount of an investigation that a criminal investigation would. so it's a snapshot. as ned mentioned, the attack on the justice department, the attack on criminal investigation process, that is a bigger threat. more broadly to the integrity of our democratic system. that's something i think we all need to keep an eye on. >> all right, thank you all.
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we're going to leave it there. we're going to take a quick break. we got a lot more to cover. you are watching msnbc live. look where we are, in our nation's capital. find the remote yet? nah. honey look, your old portable cd player. my high school rethainer. oh don't... it's early 90s sitcom star dave coulier...! [laughing] what year is it? as long as stuff gets lost in the couch, you can count on geico saving folks money. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance.
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we've got some breaking news at this moment. the pentagon preparing former guidance on suspending military options with south korea. for more, let's go right to nbc's hans nichols at the
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pentagon. what does this mean? >> the key word is suspending, not kabs lation. this is the pentagon getting in line with president trump who announced that these military drills would stop. the key thing to look for in this announcement is how far does it go? does it just have to do with military exercises on the korean pa numbers la or is it across the entire asian-pacific region? because so much of what the pentagon does is training. yes, it's a planning organization. it's a war fighting organization. as we see it in the middle east. fundamentally, it is a training organization. and that's why president trump's comments from singapore took so many aback here because what they do here is train. if you don't train, you don't have a ready force. that is the core of what they like to do here. >> how do you think allies like south korea are going to react to this? we heard from victor cha the morning after saying south korea was completely surprised by the president's statement. >> south korea has in the past
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suggested this and it's not entirely out of line you would do what you call a freeze for freeze, which is to say the u.s. and south korea freezes their military operations in response from something from the north koreans. the august exercises that are scheduled is something called ochi freedoms guardian. that's basically a tabletop exercise. a fancy way of saying comb putser simulation. the bigger ones are the ones that happen in the spring. that's when they do amphibious assaults, all kinds of training. calling that off, that's at thing we'll look for, whether or not this is an indefinite suspension, calling that off is bigger. if you have a few cycles without training, what officials here will say there's no point in actually having an alliance. to maintain it isthe alliance, have to have interoperainterope. >> these exercises cost $1 billion. so on a daily basis, they're
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spending $2 billion. it's amazing that the president is saying it's all about finances here. the math doesn't add up. secretary of state mike pompeo, he's meeting with chinese president xi jinping. tell us about that because xi jinping must be thrilled about this. >> it was the chinese that floated this idea of -- >> last summer. >> right. it was the idea if you have the u.s. military and south korea stop doing these military exercises, you might have the space for negotiations. in a way because of the olympics, that's what happened. the pentagon, when they suspended those exercises in april and march, they didn't use the word suspend. they said delay. they said they're simply doing it to deconflict because they didn't want to have too many forces on the ground doing this when you have the plix going on. that crew it's yaed the space for these talks to really take off. in some ways, it was the chinese suggestion of a freeze for freeze which ultimately became part of the bargaining position. and president trump, as he said,
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he said this up front, he's going to go ahead and call off what he calls war games, which they insist here are military exercises. >> they insist here. when you say they, you mean the pentagon? >> i mean pentagon officials, military officials do not like the term "war games." that is across the board. because they say these are defensive in nature. war games means you're planning for some sort of, as they say here, kinetic action. at the same time, let's not get too caught up in euphemisms. a bunch of battalions moving, it's meant to be a signal. and it's the same thing when they bomb ranges in south korea. they're leading the north koreans know this could be use. the term of art they use here though is military planning and military exercises, not war games, stef. >> general mattis has his work cut out for him. hans, thank you so much. coming up, we're getting our first look behind the closed
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now to the thousands of children who have been separated from their parents along the southern border and packed into dozens of shelters. ever since the trump administration announced a zero tolerance policy that separates undocumented parents from their kids, the number of kids in government custody has spiked. right now the hhs is housing more than 11,000 migrant children and that number is getting bigger every day. in fact, those shelters are so packed right now that the government is reportedly looking into building, talk about budget, building tent cities to accommodate the overflow. msnbc got an extraordinary firsthand look at one of those shelters, a converted walmart. jacob, talk us through this. i read your twitter feed last night and it was stunning. some of these kids are 10 years old. the images we've seen, i know you couldn't bring any cameras in. you were not allowed to tape any of it, anything we've seen, the
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government has provided. this doesn't feel like we're in the united states. >> yes, and thanks, because i saw you shared that last night. this is a story that needs to be told and needs to be shear ared. i've been inside federal prison. i've been inside county jails. they call this a shelter but effectively these kids are incarcera incarcerated. these kids are inside this former walmart. there are more children in there now than there have ever been before. the department of health and human services invited us inside because i think they wanted to show us relatively speaking how good the conditions are. there are licensed professionals in there that are taking care of the children. there are not cages. there are not fences that have been described at some of the border patrol station. but the reality is these kids and an increasing number of them are alone because they were ripped apart from their parent because of the zero tolerance policy from the trump administration. they walk out there on the yard and they're only outside -- we're showing the outside
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pictures. they're only outside for two hours a day. they're inside a former walmart 22 hours a day for around two months, if not longer. it's jail or prison-like conditions without the cells is the best way i could describe it to you. >> what was the environment? what was the tone? when you and those kids looked at one another? >> well, check this out. so when you go in, an official from the shelter says to you, to me, please smile at these kids, they don't see people from outside all that often and they feel like animals in cages being looked at. which was shocking. to actually hear from them. because there aren't cages in there. but that's the vibe. that is what these kids are going through on an everyday basis. it's organized chaos. they have structured time to do everything. but it's a bunch of 10-year-old to 17-year-old boys without parents or family. and it's one staff member at the shelter for every eight kids. so, i mean, just by virtue of
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the numbers, it's an overwhelming experience. even though they're going to class six hours a day and they get to go outside and meals, it's bleak honestly is how i would describe it. >> well, what's the plan? where are they supposed to go from here? >> they're supposed to be matched with a sponsor and then the sponsor is supposed to pick them up and then they go to immigration court hearing. we know many of the sponsors don't show up for that immigration court hearing. the change now, again, in this self-inflicted crisis as our colleague has put it by the trump administration, many of these kids, an increasing number are unaccompanied minors that are ripped apart from their parents. their parents are in federal prison. they got to figure out where their parents are before they're able to reunite and get out. they don't know if they'll be deported. all because of this new policy by the trump administration that's designed to deter people from even trying to get into the
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country, which critics say doesn't even work. >> my goodness. all right, jacob, stay with me. extraordinary reporting. i really appreciate you doing this. this is a story that needs to be told. i want to bring my panel in. robert costa, national political reporter for "the washington post." also the moderator of "week week" on pbs. and my old friend, brendan greely, editor of the research note, all we know so far. i don't even understand why this is happening. >> he doesn't get a lot of attention but think about who's still inside of the white house, steven miller. you of course have president trump is his boss. they believe in hard-line conservative immigration policy. as much as congressional republicans and some moderate republicans on capitol hill are talking about taking action on daca or moving forward to a more centrist position on immigration this administration, this white house, continues to push for these sorts of policies. >> what is this immigration problem that they're talking
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about so much? because that's what i don't understand. there are these two narratives out of the administration that i'm confused by. on one hand, the president greatest jobs ever, full employment, and on the other, look at those mexican immigrants stealing our jobs. so which is it? if these mexicans are stealing j jobs, how is it that everybody seems to have a job? >> that's a rational question. because there isn't one. there's no rational policy here. ultimately this is what is happening in jacob's robert, and i'm so glad that he has been all over our air waves talking about this. this is an out of body experience. watch i watching these pictures. listening to his reporting. that's not the america i know. i'm wondering where is the shame. where is the outrage from
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capitol hill about what's happening? where are the calls for hearing? where is the party of family values? >> nancy pelosi said where are people of faith. okay, for completely perverse moment, take humanity out of it. brendan, let's go economics. you do have six million people in this country that do not have jobs. you have lagging wages. those people need to get retrained. and look at the amount of money that has been spent fruitlessly on this for no reason. it solves no problem. >> i'm slightly more cynical than you are about this if that's possible. >> i'm not cynical at all. >> i think we're carrying out a policy perfectly designed to suppress wages in america. what we know about immigration, we know 11 million undocumented immigrants is the best guess we have. is that its lack of documentation that drives down wages. there's about a 20% gap.
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there's almost no gap between documented immigrants and naturalized -- >> make it clear, when you have no papers, you can be paid almost nothing. >> so that's how that works. so what we've done now is we've made it almost more difficult for people to be undocumented in america. which gives employers even more pressure over them. if we really want to solve this problem, where are the rest of the employers, right? why is there not a raid on absolutely anyone who might possibly employ an illegal immigrant and why aren't they being arrested? let's actually solve the problem. what this is a lack of honesty about who does the jobs in america. >> a great point. i want to bring you back in. you were saying earlier there
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are more kids expected. as this grows, how's the court going to keep up with this? >> you have these massive court cases. you have these undocumented immigrants coming in. and then these people are being remanded to the u.s. marshal's service. somebody said, quote/unquote, it's ridiculous how many people are coming in here. it's just not sustainable. i want to go back to something you talked about earlier. the president's justification for doing all this stuff, undocumented people are bringing drugs. the violence is pouring across the border. look at the reports from our own dea that says spillover violence is not a credible threat in the united states, despite the fact there's drug war violence that happens on the other side of the border. we talk about drugs that are coming. we need a wall to put up a wall to stop these people from coming in. drugs come through the legal ports of entry. and then people coming in for
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work, the border patrol chief in this sector told me half of the people coming in here are not coming as economic refugees or migrants. they're coming to seek asylum from dangerous street gangs like ms-13. which by the way, jeff sessions said is a culture -- yes, he says there's a culture of violence in central and south america. ms-13 were created in los angeles and deported to those countries and that's what people are fleeing from. >> wow, all right, robert costa, you're saying look inside the white house and pointing to steven miller. outside the white house, corey stewart, anti-immigrant platform, wins in virginia. stephen king, retweets a neo-nazi. paul ryan, undercutting a daca solution. steve king, excuse me, steve king. and you got paul ryan undercutting a daca solution. so you can point to steven miller, but where's congress? >> where's the republican party?
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we have a front page story in "the washington post" about how president trump has a total grip over the gop. if you think immigration policy's going to change it all, think again. inside the white house, on capitol hill, they're already preparing this fall with the upcoming spending bill to have a major showdown over the border wall. they're looking to ramp up on these sorts of immigration policies, not wind down. >> how does he have a total grip? a guy like mark sanford doesn't win? if "the washington post" asks you to do something reprehensible, you say no. the republican party is just saying, i'm going to keep on rocking under this? >> yes, no, that's exactly what they're saying. keep in mind, the loss of congressman sanford is huge because it's not like he was a middle of the roader or someone -- >> this is a great point. >> this guy was a -- not a far
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right but a conservative's conservative. a republican from south carolina. open up the dictionary to republican, his face among a lot of others used to pop up. >> you have a pop-up dictionary at home? >> just about republicans. >> maybe. >> yes, just about republicans. >> really exciting dictionary. >> in the three -- you mentioned three name, steven miller, steve king and speaker ryan. >> corey stewart. >> and corey stewart. i'm going to leave off speaker ryan. steven miller and corey stewart what we're talking about are people who are pushing white supremist ideas. that's why immigration is being pushed so hard. when the republican party can rally behind in virginia, corey stewart, a white supremist. one, we shouldn't be surprised. the president ceded the moral authority of the oval office by siding with white supremacists in charlottesville.
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so the fact that mark sanford got defeated, the fact that corey stewart won, shows that yes, robert is right, our story is right, this is now no longer the republican party. >> president trump -- >> it is the party of donald trump. >> many sides. he said the same thing when asked about kim jong-un and human rights violations. many people do lots of bad things. no other country does things to their people as bad as north korea. brendan, last point. >> we keep talking about immigration policy. i want to make clear what's happening there on the border is not policy. >> thank you. >> it is theater. if we were -- >> whom? >> i don't know. but evidently they seem to know their own voters. >> and what kind of -- >> it's not policy. we need to openly honestly address it in the united states. do we need a guest worker progr program? it's not my preference but we need to talk about it. this is detaining people who are applying for asylum.
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and their children are being torn from them at the border as they're arrested for what is, by the way, a misdemeanor, crossing the border. >> you say for whom. the voter, the republican voter who elected corey stewart as their nominee and kicked out mark sanford. that's for whom. >> we're going to leave that there. up next, money, power, politics. the interest rate slightly up 2% as they try and return to a normal level. if the economy is so strong, why are they taking their time? this is another one that just doesn't make sense to a girl like mae. alice is living with metastatic breast cancer, which is breast cancer that has spread to other parts of her body. she's also taking prescription ibrance with an aromatase inhibitor, which is for postmenopausal women with hormone receptor-positive
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her2- metastatic breast cancer as the first hormonal based therapy. ibrance plus letrozole was significantly more effective at delaying disease progression versus letrozole. patients taking ibrance can develop low white blood cell counts, which may cause serious infections that can lead to death. before taking ibrance, tell your doctor if you have fever, chills, or other signs of infection, liver or kidney problems, are pregnant, breastfeeding, or plan to become pregnant. common side effects include low red blood cell and low platelet counts, infections, tiredness, nausea, sore mouth, abnormalities in liver blood tests, diarrhea, hair thinning or loss, vomiting, rash, and loss of appetite. alice calls it her new normal because a lot has changed, but a lot hasn't. ask your doctor about ibrance. the #1 prescribed fda-approved oral combination treatment for hr+/her2- mbc.
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handcrafted, and served any way she wants. purely fancy feast filets. love is in the details. the one part of the economy that has been lagging is wage growth. we all talk about great unemployment numbers and 3.8% unemployment is a great achievement, it really is. but we still have about 2.7% wage growth with about 2.5% inflation. >> you know what you just heard right there, it's called the truth. in today's money, power, politic, that was gary cohn, the former economic adviser to the president. it's easier to tell the truth when you've got "former" before your name. the central bank points to two more increases by the end of the year. this comes as the president in recent weeks has touted the strong economy as the greatest in this country's history.
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brendan greely back with me to discuss. gary cohn also said that trade deficits don't matter. that a global economy and global trade is good for us. so help me with these two things. the president, sarah sanders, they're saying the economy is the greatest ever. if it's the greatest ever, then interest rates should rise. the only reason they've been held so low for so long is because we were coming out of a financial collapse. >> not only that, on tough what you're saying, the fed said we still think it's accommodative. we think we're helping the economy. it's not just that we're rising as fast as we should. >> why is it that we need this if this is greatest, strongest? >> the same thing has been happening. the fed has been studying what unemployment really means. it turns out it's not just the top-line unemployment rate, right? what people want is to have full-time jobs when they only have part-time jobs.
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they want 40 hours a week when they can only get 30. it's not just about whether or not you have a job. >> this takes you to wage growth. it's one thing we rarely hear out of the administration because that number's lagging. >> it has been lagging since before this administration but this administration hasn't fixed it. so right now it's 2.7%. at this point in the cycle, given how good all the other numbers look like, given business investment, all of this, it should be 4% is where wage growth should be. and it's not. we need to be asking ourselves harder questions. >> when companies got these massive tax cuts, if i'm a ceo or an executive or somebody who owns stocks, i'm in fat city. it's people in the middle and bottom who say i need this wage growth. where is the trickle down? >> let's talk about walmart. so walmart raised its wages, starting wage is now $11 an hour. they also said they were going to provide college tuition. what they're providing is job
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training in supply management. i read through the investor meeting. there were two employee proposals to the investor meeting for walmart last month. both of them were about predictable 40 hour weeks. people cannot pay for child care. they cannot plan for child care because they never know when they're going to have hours. >> they don't know when their shift is. >> they can't take a second job if they can't get 40 hours because they don't know when their shift is. >> and what's going to change that? >> the fed is doing what you're hinting at. the fed knows there's still plenty of what we call slack in the labor market. there's still plenty of help for employees. >> but just by not jacking up interest rates, you're not -- there's not a direct lever to raise wages. >> everything that the fed does, it's a blunt hammer. congress can fix this. congress could pass a law and say if you want to employ someone, you got to give them a predictable schedule.
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the fed does what it can. that's a sledgehammer. we've got a scalpel right there on capitol hill and we're refusing to do surgery to prevent some of these abuses. >> a little girl power news. good news rules a little early. general motors has a new cfo, divia. she makes general motors the first auto company in history to be led by two women. that is a great stat. there are still more men leading fortune 500 companies. but i'm going to take this baby step as a win.
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and tiny. and this is laura's mobile dog grooming palace. laura can clean up a retriever that rolled in foxtails, but she's not much on "articles of organization." articles of what? so, she turned to legalzoom. they helped me out. she means we helped with her llc, trademark, and a lot of other legal stuff that's a part of running a business. so laura can get back to the dogs. would you sit still? this is laura's mobile dog grooming palace and this is where life meets legal. we turn to our made in the usa series. when the family imfwrat cmigrat they were determined to create their own american dream but after a trip to haiti they found
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the massive impact technology can have. the family created bak usa, a social enterprise on a mission to make mobile technology more accessible to schools and small businesses. they are all doing it right here in the usa. joining me now christian andava bak. you are inspired to start this company after helping with the devastating earthquake in haiti. tell me about it. >> as a family in 2010 as you mentioned we went to haiti to try to help. what we found and what we learned from our experience there is that in order to help the best way to do that was to create sustainable employment. then we went to buffalo and replicated the model here. >> buffalo. help us out because companies like apple who has quite a bit more money than your team said
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it is too difficult to manufacture their devices here in the u.s. what is your secret? >> i think that is a great story and i thank you for asking me. it is part of a larger strategic vision which is to focus and bring our modern manufacturing model to really help the cities serve themselves. we want to focus on rejuvenating series. if you look at it that way buffalo is an almost obvious choice. it has great community support, dedicated workforce. we have seen individual support through our backer who is from western new york who supported us for nearly 3 1/2 years. it has been a real fortunate thing that we chose buffalo. >> your company isn't just buffalo-based. you employ people from more than 20 different countries. is a diverse workforce intergrl to your mission? >> absolutely. we really wanted to go back to
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the american dream of creating this very diverse group of people. we are all working towards one goal together. every day we are just so lucky to see these people working together, getting along and really being a team which is just amazing especially when you look at everything else that is going on in the world. >> each technician i learned build the computers and tablets from start to finish. you don't use an assembly line. talk us through this because your goal is to build the devices and tablets for small businesses and communities. take me from constructing them to the hands. >> that is part of the larger modern manufacturing strategy we have. we use what is called cobots. it is a cellular system where
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each person is actually working with a robot and really the robot is serving them, not the other way around. i think we have seen enormous advantages of that model not just from an hr and human perspective. we obviously want to bring humanity back into electronics manufacturing. also the small tweaks that we can make for each individual customer so when our product lands on their dock or table it is ready to go and they don't need to have a huge i.t. team customizing the products for them like they probably do with some of our competitors. >> do you have fears or concerns about impending trade war or the president's take on trade? >> no. so we are a private company. we are trying to, of course, stay up to date about what is going on in the world and in america. right now we don't have great concerns. do you have anything to add?
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>> i have one concern which is the made in the usa designation is probably our biggest problem. when we ship overseas we are proud to label products as made in the usa. when we ship domestically that is not possible which means when our technicians are putting together products of high quality and built to the american standard they are not able to faithfully put on the device that this was made here and not just assembled with foreign parts. i think that is a huge issue that we need to tackle going forward. >> hopefully we will. extraordinary story. what a company. that is the american dream. we just had two bits of good news and you know i will give you more because we always end this show highlighting good news because my team, we think good news rules. this young man rodney smith is on a mission to serve those in need. the 28 year old is mowing lawns this summer for those who cannot do it themselves, elderly,
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single moms and veterans. his philosophy, if you are able you can make a difference. his hope is to mow lawns in all 50 states. he made it to state number two. it will be a hot summer. he is on the road with that mower. i hope you stay hydrated. i wish you well. that is one great american. i am stephanie ruhle. you can find me all day long on twitter. i will head to get business done so i will not see you at 11:00 but i will hand you off to my friend chris jansen in new york. >> have a great afternoon, productive one. good thursday morning from new york. i'm in for hally jackson. big decision out of the pentagon. officials prepping to stop military operations with south korea just as the president promised and those plans could come as early as today. we are also watching today the potential flipping of the fixer.
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nbc news confirming michael cohen expected to split with his lawyers. what it could mean for any cooperation with fellow prosecutors. the white house watching that. a major new report dropping today about fired fbi director james comey and the hillary clinton e-mail investigation. that report finally ready to go public. a lot going on. let's start with big news out of the pentagon. multiple sources confirming preparations are underway to cancel long standing u.s. military drills with south korea. these changes, one of the promises president trump made to kim jong-un, a decision that prompted a lot of concern, a lot of confusion and new questions about america's commitment to long-time allies. also right now on capitol hill the senate is holding a hearing on the nomination of harry harris to the ambassador to south korea.


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