tv Meet the Press MSNBC June 17, 2018 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
this sunday, truth and consequences. president trump makes ma false claims about the justice department and inspector general's report. >> the report yesterday may be more important than than anything it totally exonerates me. >> no, it doesn't. the fbi. >> you look at what happened, they were plotting against my election. >> no, they weren't. and about separating the children at the boarder. >> that's the democrat's bill that's the democrats wanting to othat. >> no it isn't. how can we believe a president who routinely says things that are provably false? my guests kellyanne conway and adam schiff. plus, what is happening to the
children separated from fair parents? >> this place is called a shelter but the kids are in fact incarcerated. >> whoever wins the immigration battle the children are the losers. and the new endangered species -- republicans who criticize the president. my conversation with trump critic congressman mark sanford. just lost his republican primary race. joining me for insight and analysis are, nbc news national political reporter carol lee. "new york times" pentagon correspondent he lean cooper. republican strategist al cardenas. and "new york times" columnist brett stevens. welcome to sunday, it's "meet the press." >> from nbc news in washington, the longest running show in television history, this is "meet the press" with chuck todd. >> good sunday morning. happy father's day.
what kind of week has it been for president trump? to president trump's critics the north korea summit was a self-serving spectacle that achieved lit and to the president it moved the world away from nuclear war. to the critics the gh, 7 summit was an unnecessary insult to our closest alallies. to the president, it was a triumph of american strength. mr. trump megyn kellying it clear the u.s. will no longer play the role of sucker to greedy allies to the critics the inspector general's report vindicat hillary clinton that her campaign was the campaign of james comey's decisions. to president trump the report fully exonerated him from charges of obstruction of justice and collusion.
finally to the president's critics, the jailing of his former campaign manager paul manafort was more evidence of the conspiracy and collusion with russia and to president trump it was a tough sentence. what about comey and crooked hillary? very unfair, he tweets. well, some of the president's assertions this week are debatable, others are flatout false. first of all the ig report did not exonerate it. the focus was on the hillary clinton e-mail investigation and not the mueller probe and though despite president trump's claims it's not a democratic bill that's separating the families at the border it's trump administration policy enacted by the attorney general. still the president spent the week feeling and acting emboldened, highlighted facts where they were helpful and making them up where they weren't. >> paul manafort worked for he for a short amount of time. >> president trump served up shorthoods before his former campaign manager was sent to jail. he was ordered to behind the bars. ahead of his trial on federal conspiracy and money laundering charges set for late this summer. >> he worked for me for 49 days or something. very short period of time. >> that's not true. in fact, manafort worked for mr. trump's presidential campaign for 144 days. including during the crucial
republican convention. the president also defended former national security adviser michael flynn. >> some people say he lied and some people say he didn't lie. i mean, really it turned out maybe he didn't lie. >> in fact, flynn has already pleaded guilty to lying to the fbi trump tweeted back in december i had to fire general flynn because he lied to the vice president and the fbi. on misleading statement he dictated last year about a trump tower meeting with russians during the 2016 campaign, which his lawyer at first denied on "meet the press," then his legal team admitted to -- >> let's not talk about it. you know what that is? it's irrelevant. it's a statement to "the new york times." not a statement to the high tribunal of judges. >> that's the president admitting he misled "the new york times." emboldened after the meeting this week with north korea dictator kim jong-un, mr. tr returned to the united states eager to go on offense against his political opponents. and hinted there will be rewards down the road for his allies if they stay loyal. the president's attorney rudy giuliani said on friday that the mueller investigation might get cleaned up with some
presidential pardons. before pulling back. >> he's not going to pardon anybody. in this investigation. but he's not obviously going to give up his right to pardon if there's a miscarriage of justice. >> lately he's facing little pushback from his own party. >> it's become cultish. >> some may be done defending mueller if the president acts against him. >> what i think about the mueller investigation they ought to wrap it up. it's gone on seemingly forever. >> mr. trump is relishing the lack of congressional and political guardrails also making false statements about separating migrant children from their parents. which over a six week period separated nearly 2,000 children. >> i hate the children being taken away. the democrats have to change their law. that's their law. >> sir --
>> quiet. >> and joining me now is kellyanne conway counselor to president trump. welcome back to "meet the press." >> thank you, chuck. >> i want to start with something that senator graham said on friday on cnn. take a listen. >> president trump could stop this policy with the phone call. >> he doesn't seem to acknowledge that. >> well, he can't. now go tell him. if you don't like families being separated you can tell dhs stop doing it. >> is the president ready to make that phone call to the attorney general to dhs, to stop this policy? >> the president is ready to get meaningful immigration reform across the board and chuck, let me just tell you that nobody likes seeing babies ripped from their mother's arms, from their mother's wombs frankly, but we have to make sure that dhs is -- the laws are understood through
the sound bite culture we live in. there are three circumstances by which dhs evaluates a child at the border. one is does this child actually have a custodial or familial relationship with the adult? number two, is the child in danger and plenty have been over time. some adults are using children to gain access to the border. number three is the adult subject to criminal prosecution? this is a vexing problem that both presidents bush and president obama faced as well. secretary of dhs under president obama told "the new york times" this weekend that this was the bane of hitence for three years. he was describing the fact that they had to detain families in these large facilities for a very long period of time. why? because in the summer of 2014, we saw this surge particularly from central america. tens of thousands if not more unaccompanied miners coming to the border and trying to gain entry. i have a teenage daughter, you have a dean age daughter. can we say with a straight face that we know all -- what happened to the teenage girls? very left leaning reporters from huff po did a segment about the girls faced certain rape trying to make that journey northward. many of them are getting
vaccinated or getting shots for birth control because it was almost certain. this is a perilous journey for many of the children and if people cared, we would figure out way to get the funding to expand the centers and to close the loopholes. these loopholes are allowing open border policies. i think what the president is saying if the democrats are serious they'll come toget again and try to close these loopholes and get real immigration reform. >> so it sounds like -- this is going to sound harsh but sounds like you're holding the kids hostage to get the democrats to the table to pass some law. >> no. >> you disjust laid out a very compassionate case for why. i understand, you just laid out a very compassion -- with a lot of compassion, a lot of empathy in there. but it's not very empathetic the most traumatic thing to do to the kid separate them from their parents once they made that
journey. why do that right now? i understand we have an immigration debate going on in this country. why use these kileverage? >> well, i certainly don't want anybody to use these kids as leverage. i saw a headline that breathlessly screamed as much and i objected to that forcefully. let me say this. these children are -- >> in fairness by the way it was a white house official who told the "wall street journal" -- the thinking is to force people to the table. >> by the way i want that person to say it to my face, i really do. i'll meet them at the white house because i think that's a disgrace. >> should that person be fire liquiditied? >> that person should have the guts to come forward and put their name to that quote. how's thatter? number two, and most importantly, these children are handed over to hhs. why? because thatman services so they can be put into the facilities like al cajon
where there was a report that there were boys aged 6 to 17 who were all there. they have the necessary medications. obviously, food and shelter. they have exercise. day. have education during the >> i don't -- nobody is doubting that they're getting reasonable care there. the question is, the most dramatic thing to do is taking them away in first place. you don't have to. >> chuck -- don't have doing that. >> in orders if i commit a crime and i'm put in jail, my four children are separated from their mother. because we don't have a policy or why would you want the children in jail with their parents? you want them in the facility temporarily or you want them to be repatriated back to the home country with said parent or come in with a responsible adult who you know, who the authorities are confident means that child no harm, won't get them into the gang. won't subject them to trafficking or rape or worse. you want them to go with a
family member or another close family friend who would be a custodian. so this has been a vexing problem for many years. i would tell everybody, this week when the president goes to congress at 5:30 on tuesday, get together, chuck, i don't remember a single democrat debut -- i could be mistaken, where the republicans and the democrats were invited to the cabinet room. i believe that your cable station covered it live. >> sure. >> for one hour, did this issue come up? the democrats only want to talk about daca the, dreamers. >> but in fairness kidweren't become separated from their parents then. this policy got implemented in april. a zero tolerance policy where every migrant, asylum seekers are treated as a criminal. >> it's adjudicated, and what they should have said is look, we had a surge over the border in 2014. mr. president, under president obama, it shocked everyone and we simply didn't have the capacity. we want to avoid that in the future and work with. look, the democrats just own it. why don't they say, we're for open borders. if you extrapolate the money spent on every unaccompanied minor, we have 18 million in households that make less than $35,000. >> but as you know, this is a question of morality. a question of -- >> you have heard me weigh in on that. >> i did.
>> as a mother, as catholic, as somebody who has got a conscience and wouldn't say the junk that somebody said. apparently, allegedly. i will tell you that nobody likes this policy. you saw the president on camera, he wants this to end. but everybody has -- >> he can end it on his own. >> chuck, congress padded -- passed a law that it's a crime. this is a crime to enter this country illegally. so if they don't like that law they should change it. >> you can keep the families together. why can't you find a way to still potentially -- >> -- as opposed to -- >> why don't you create a family detention center? >> we had those under president obama but the democrats are holding up the funding to expand them. the president had a 70 point immigration plan this was included in it. doubling the detention center capacity, hiring more i.c.e. agents. we don't have the capacity. those brave men and women at the border trying to do their jobs as best they can, this is an issue.
and if the democrats are serious and if a lot of republicans are serious they'll come together. they won't talk about this week the dreamers or just the wall. or just catch and release. it's all of the above. there are ways to repatriate these families back to their home countries expeditiously. i want to make clear because thank you for saying nobody is arguing e kids aren't getting care. a lot of folks are propretending the killeds are not getting. a lot of people on your network are saying it's analogous to the concentration camps. >> i want to move on to tariffs. there's a headline in "the des moines register" that shows the impact this is having on the farm states. iowa is feeling it at the 624 million hit on soybean sails alone. perhaps for iowa. we're in the full fld trade war now with china, canada, the european union, mexico which may not be as helpful to us in this border problem because we're beating them up with tariffs. is the president going to follow
through with the tariffs? >> respectfully, the president's position is we lost the trade war a long ago and you know who lost it? the american worker lost it. you have over 300,000 new construction jobs, 300,000 new manufacturing jobs, more jobs created in timber and mining. these were industries that were flat on their back in years past and never had seen the growth in the job security you see under this president. this president has exempted certain countries, industries. he's given a pause for a month, then another month. but he thinks that we have been on the losing end of this so-called trade war for years. we have a $400 billion deficit with china. >> you're creating your own political problem in the midwest. >> i didn't say that. these farmers are very -- many of them are very supportive of president trump because they like his policies when it comes to the tax cuts and deregulation and the fact that china is buying beef and poultry and dairy for first time in is a
years. every time the president is told you can't do that it will never happen, what a mistake you'll be making, pulling out of the paris accords, going over to singapore and trying to get denuclearization of the korean peninsula. really keeping the promise of five presidents to move the capital -- excuse me, recognize jerusalem as the capital of israel and move our u.s. embassy there he keeps the promises and people say don't do it, it will be a disaster. this will play out over time. but he's tired of the american workers getting screwed. >> president trump on friday said the real fbi, those guys love me. what does that mean? what's the real fbi? >> the rank and file -- it cease so disturbing to everyone when you see the comments being made in text messages. on september 9th, the same day that hillary clinton would go on to refer to president trump's supporters as irredeemable and deplorable, the same day an fbi agent according to the ig report referred to trump's supporters in iowa -- excuse me, ohio as retarded. are we comfortable with that? who is that person?
does that person still work at the fbi? are they still getting government resources? do they have his top secret -- >> are you comfortable with the fact that the new york fbi staff was leaking stuff to devin nunes against hillary clinton? what is going on if -- i understand you guys want to make an issue of that. that new york fbi office looks like it's leaking like a sieve. >> apparently in exchange for some leaks that fbi officials were taking gifts from journalists. and you should be very concerned too. i'm sure you are. that people are being offered meals and tickets to games and things of real value. what were they getting in exchange? a new friend? or someone who would be a source for them? it's very disconcerting. there are many concerting things in the report. i know people are running around cherry picking it according to their own political point of view. what i would recommend, chuck, is that everybody take the time
to really digest 568 pages. although people say that oh, the actions weren't biased. the people certainly were biased at the tippy top. james comey got a hero's welcome for a silly book about leadership, morality and you have the ig report coming to the same conclusion, he was insub ordinary not and outside the chain of command. >> if the president had never uttered the word russia to lester holt, then he would have -- he would have been on higher ground. >> happy father's day. >> thank you so much. same to george. when the justice department's ig report was released on thursday, here was the reaction of the head of the fbi, christopher wray. >> this report did not find any evidence of political bias or improper considerations actually impacting the investigation under review. the report does identify errors of judgment, violations of or even disregard for policy and decisions that at the very least with the benefit of hindsight were not the best choices. >> joining me is the chief democrat on the house intelligence committee, adam schiff.
>> thank you. >> we sort of ended there with kellyanne conway. the report did include that text message exchange between two romantically involved fbi employees, peter strzok and lisa page. august 8, 2016, trump is not ever going to become president, right, right? strzok said no, we'll stop it. if the were shoe on the other foot can you imagine what democrats would be saying? if they had text messages from new york fbi agents, right, that said, we're stopping her. >> yes, i certainly can and in fact the rept spells out that loretta lynch and james comey talked about the virulent anti-clinton bias which is a concern to democrats. we would take solace in the fact that the ig found this didn't have an effect on the decision making at the bureau. with respect to the new york office we don't know that's the case. presumably -- >> didn't kelly ann say the case, we don't know if that's the case with peter strzok? >> there's an ongoing investigation on to whether the new york field office was leaking to rudy giuliani or the chairman of our committee. that's ongoing.
so we don't know the answer yet about whether that ultimately affected the revelation on anthony weiner's laptop e-mails. >> i want to bring up devin nunes, something amazing he admitted to earlier this week. take a listen. >> we had whistle-blowers that came to us in late september of 2016 who talked to us about this laptop sitting up in new york that had additional e-mails on it. >> so good fbi agents brought this to our attention. but what could we do with it? >> for what it's worth, september 26 of 2016 is when this laptop was discovered. so it doesn't i don't think meet the definition of whistle blowing. he said we in the intelligence committee. were you informed of this whistle blowing? >> no, this is the first we have
heard about it and it's deeply disturbing because if this was shared by new york field agents with devin nunes, was it also shared with rudy giuliani? or did devin nunes do something which we have seen subsequently which is coordinate with the trump team. was this information share z by the committee with rudy giuliani or shared directly with him? we don't know the answer. but we hope the inspector general will find out. >> do you think peter strzok should be with the fbi at this point? >> i don't know. i imagine that the office of professional responsibility will have to make that decision. certainly the text messages are troubling. the fact they were on work e-mail, the fact that they were comingled with e-mails discussing business, all that's problematic. again, you know, the ig concluded that none of this affected the decision making but nonetheless, that was completely inappropriate. >> the midterm elections are
coming up. there's an idea there should be pauses when you have high profile investigations is there a point that mueller should publicly pause, continuing the investigation, but not -- you know, is there a window where he shouldn't issue the report until after the election? >> i think that he's very conscious of not making the same mistake that comey made by having a decision or a public disclosure made close to the election. so i have to think within a suitable period of time before november -- >> august 1? >> i don't know if it's 30 days, 90 days or more. >> it's not october. >> not october. absolutely not october. i think we're likely to see another indictment before that window. the hacking and dumping operation wasn't charged in the last indictment. the only reason to exclude that when it was part of that same overall conspiracy is if that part of the indictment either involves u.s. persons or you haven't finished to include the persons. >> there's a compromise piece of immigration legislation, paul ryan, that would include more protection for daca folks. not clear if it will have support on the right because they call it amnesty. can you support this especially if the kids are not separated
from the asylum seekers? >> i think what the administration is doing is they're using the grief, the tears, the pain of these kids as mortar to build their wall. and it's an effort to extort a bill to their liking in the congress. it's -- i think deeply unethical. and by the president's making these provable falsehoods about what's required the party adopting that has become the -- the gop has become the party of lies. and it's such i think a sad -- >> painting the entire republican party with that? >> i'm saying that republican members of congress -- republican members of congress who will not call out the president for demonstrable falsehoods on a daily basis and often trump at them --
>> mark sanford did. he'll be on here later. he did and he lost. >> well, this is the problem. because the gop in congress has been -- has become craven enough they'll do anything to maintain the majority, even be complicit with a president who ignores and tears down the rule of law. who repeats falsehood after falsehood. they cannot maintain their integrity as a party if they follow this president. >> all right. do you have a better solution on how to deal with this migrant crisis from central america? it's now a four-year crisis? >> first of all, i think we end this policy of separating kids from their parents. and then i think, you know, we have to work with these countries to figure out what we can do to stem the violence back home. what we can do to humanely deal with people who are fleeing
because they have no option but to flee. we need to be working with our southern neighbor, mexico, to deal with this crisis. none of this can be resolved by angry tweets or by using these families as a leverage. look, you're absolutely right, it's going to be very difficult to get a comprehensive immigration bill in election year, any year. let's not tear the families apart in the meantime. >> shouldn't be part of the immigration -- separating them? >> it shouldn't be. it's just plain wrong and immoral. >> adam schiff, i have to leave it there. ranking democrat on the intelligence committee. democrat from calirnia. thank you. when we come back, it's never comfortable to call the president of the united states a liar. but what do you say when the president says things that are provably false? well, the panel is going to tackle that when we come back. it's about delivering a more comfortable shave, every time. invented in boston. made and sold around the world. order now at gilletteondemand.com. gillette, the best a man can get.
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lies. >> well, no, there's no trade war. i think that the report yesterday may be more importantly than than anything it totally exonerates me. some people say he lied, maybe he didn't lie. manafort has nothing to do with our campaign. the democrats have to change their law. that's their law. president obama lost crimea, just so you understand. >> every single one of those things is absolutely not true. the crimea one being the most ridiculous. there's no democratic bill, manafort for three months -- more than almost six months of the campaign. the president himself said michael flynn lied, that's why he fired him. the ig report was of course not about that. bret stephens? it's -- what do you do?
>> you have to be a tax on mist of falses. he has been trafficking in a substance that's identical to my initials. >> your name again is bret stephens. >> right. >> i wanted to clarify. >> i mean, this is a world sort of -- the gray world between clear truths and unmistakable lies. and there's always a question also about the president's state of mind because he says stuff and then often doesn't seem to remember what he had said the day, the hour, the minute before. i still think that you have to hold the president clearly accountable when he is contradicting information that he has previously pervaded. >> it's funny you say this about the mental capacity. andrew sullivan went there. if someone behaved like this, if someone kept initialing that the sea was red and the sky was green i would assume they were a few sandwiches short of a picnic. it's vital to remember this every day, almost no one else in public life is no openly living in his own world. >> what do you want me to do? that's like -- it's something that at the "the times" we have been wrestling with because we get a lot of letters from readers why don't you call a lie
a lie, and we have said lied in the past. but the executive editor of "the times" says we shouldn't use it all the time because it loses the meaning. i can't remember wrestle with -- if you keep saying and he's right to a certain extent if you keep saying lie, lie, lie, it loses the impact when it's a whopper. it's something i don't have to deal with when it's the president. >> that's the thing. all politicians tell lies. we have experienced this in covering -- >> but there used mob honor among thieves. >> this is a different level. what we struggle with as reporters, it's deliberate. so with president trump you know in order to call it a lie, you have to be able to show that he is deliberately and intentionally doing that. a lot of times when he's ill informed, misinformed you don't know what his intent is. that adds a whole other dimension we are not used to. but his false statements -- there's nothing to compare it
with. the number of times. >> after watching what you just played out here, the only -- you only reach one of two conclusions. does he have mental capability issues or he is chronically doing this and if he's doing it chronically is it purposeful? or, you know, just a matter of habit or addiction? and -- >> it does sound like he's selling a time share all the time. >> here's the point. the point politically it's less damaging for him to lie 18 times in one morning than once.
because that feature that helps him the mos the numbness. because of the frequency and volume of these things. the numbness with the electorate. they have so much to absorb and so little time to do it that they go home half of the time confused rather than convinced that something is amiss here. >> what a great point. you know, barack obama got the quote lie of the year, if you like your health care plan, you get to keep it. that was back in 2012 or '13. but you're right. he didn't serially do it. here he's punished for one -- the numbness. >> the lies sort of disappear in their own ubiquity. but it's important -- >> right out of the putin playbook. >> right, it's important to pick our spots. i remember senator mccain said i can't be the car alarm that's always going off. and i think we also have to be careful about -- for our own credibility about being very scrupulous of separating what are clear lies or seem to be clear lies from misstatements,
falsehoods. otherwise, it gives him the opening to call us the fake news media which is what he wants. >> it's possible one of the reasons he did that crazy press scrum on friday is that it's been a bad week legally for the president. this is all the developments this week. michael cohen splitting with his legal team. is he going to flip? paul manafort now in jail. is he going to flip? don mcgahn, the white house counsel recused his office from the mueller probe months ago and now the attorney general of new york is suing the trump foundation and perhaps referring a criminal complaint to the irs. this was not a good week legally. >> no, not at all. you see him latch on to this ig report to argue that he's been vindicated and that, you know, there's bias at the fbi and that all of his -- the whole public
campaign that he's been waging against the mueller investigation is valid and that he's ramping that up and so not only did he do that scrum on the white house lawn, which by the way, i have never seen a president do. but he also is latching on to that and preparing to really double down on their pushback and effort to undermine the mueller sgletion what you left out from that he had an interview friday morn on the white house lawn with "fox & friends" and he heaped this praise on kim jong-un and he likes the way that he makes his people sit up at attention with him and he wishes he could do the same with his people. later on he said he was kidding but it's such an extraordinary -- at a time where we have had a year and a half of extraordinary president trump performances, i think friday should be up there. >> here's the thing that is an indicator that's troubling. there's been a lot of talk about what flynn may have done, what manafort may have done. some people tell me, well, those
are selfish actions and those were horrible, and they're paying a legal price for it. but what's that got to do with president trump other than to say that he surrounds himself with people of questionable judgment and moral ilk. but when we had last week or the week before that admonition by the president himself that he wrote this script for "the new york times" for his son donald trump jr. and three times before they lied about it, i say to myself, you know, there's more involvement here than meets the eye because with all the staff that he has for him personally to do this with his son, he had to have a briefing of what occurred in order to write the thing. now we know of his involvement and in a concrete way that we didn't know before. >> what was amazing he almost admitted that yes, look, i lied to "the new york times," but so
what? you guys are no high tribunal. >> saying it to the new york times. >> no high tribunal -- apparently it's not illegal to lie to the american people either. when we come back, my interview with republican congressman sanford who lost his primary largely because he was willing to criticize president trump's personal conduct. and he hasn't stopped criticizing him. >> there's no seeming consequence to the president and lies. brighthouse financial allow you to take advantage of growth opportunities... with a level of protection in down markets. so you can be less concerned about your retirement savings. talk with your advisor about shield annuities
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welcome back. congressman mark sanford of south carolina has been tough on fellow republicans who criticized president trump in private but are silent in public. if you want to know why they're silent, he's exhibit "a" because he's soon or the former congressman sanford. he has criticized president trump in public and on tuesday, mr. trump tweeted the following, mark sanford has been very unhelpful in my campaign to maga. guess what happened? sanford lost the primary to arrington. and i sat down with the congressman on friday. i began by asking him if he blames president trump for his defeat. >> plenty of blame to go around, but if you boil it down i wouldn't -- i wasn't trump enough in the age of trump. yeah, so in that regard, he certainly had a hand in it. >> you knew this for a while though. you saw this upfront.
when did it dawn on you, boy, this is a tide you won't be able to defeat? >> my boys have been saying this for a whil yoto feel certain things at the end of the day in this process you have to be you. so i had spoken out as i had with regard to the president. so the commercials by the opponents were a greatest hits of what i said about the president over the last year and half. if you look from the policy standpoint i w supportive. this is not about policy, but it was about personal loyalty. >> let me play what your colleagues said to your loss. >> when you're in primary season, again, it's usually a good thing not to be at odds with the most important elected official in your party. >> if you're not on the same page as the president, in 85, 95% of your base is that can cause a problem. >> you have to be critical and add value and, you know, my view is that i guess people didn't
see the value. >> i know how close you and lindsey graham are. i think he's the god father to one of your sons. i have noticed he's changed his style of late. it's -- you didn't. what did you make of that reaction? >> people are scared of getting bad news from the president. they'll say what they want to say. the number of people who wil say privately to you, this sz a tribal as i have ever seen it in my life, but in public will say the things you saw on air. it's remarkable. that's been the case since the election, but even before where i legitimately disagreed with the president. based on stands i held for 20 years of my life. >> what's conservative -- do you think donald trump -- is the definition of conservative changed inside the republican party? >> i think we have to do a whole lot of sole searching as a party. it was a narrow victory back home. it was 3,000 votes one way or another. >> 00 votes for a runoff. >> correct. but what was interesting is the
number of people who said, look, i want something between -- halfway crazy and socialist. what's happened to our party? i hear that over and over again. >> what's your explanation? >> well, legitimately, the trump phenomenon was caused by people who wanted to see a change in the way that washington works and that's real and it needs to be acknowledged but it has morphed or metastasized into something that is quite different about this larger loyalty to the president himself. and so have i been loyal to -- you know, the conservative cause, yeah, i have every merit badge on the front. >> bob corker said this. it's becoming a cultish thing. isn't it? it's not a good place for any party to end one a cult-like situation as it relates to the president that happens to be purportedly of the same party. would you use that word? >> i wouldn't go so far as cult. but i would just say that from an electoral sense people are running for cover because they don't want to be on the losing side of the presidential tweet. from a populist standpoint it's
almost a philistine bargain, i'll pander to you if you band tore me and that exchange is very -- it's dangerous really with regard to the -- again, to what the founding father set up which is a system designed to garner debate and dissent. the idea that you can't speak out and say, i disagree with you here, but i agree with you on 90% of the stuff is again a twilight world i have never seen. >> what about this issue that literay the president can whatever he wants, fact free, mischaracterize the friday morning spectacle was something to behold. you -- like i said, you have been troubled by his issues with the truth. you have been troubled by some of the things he's done with law enforcement. but speaking out cost you your political career. jeff flake, cost his political career. these -- you guys are very like minded libertarian leaning conservatives.
what does say that? >> well, we have gone from is george washington, i can't tell a lie back down at the apple tree, to so replete and nobody questions him anymore. that's a dangerous spot to be in a reason based republic. i have a unique vantage point on this front. we all know the story of 2009 and my implosion. >> yes. >> a lie was told on my behalf which means i own it. more to the point i was living a lie in that chapter of lies but there were incredible consequences. financially, politically, socially, i lost -- i can go down a long is list. >> you paid a price. >> right. so maybe the reason i'm so outspoken on this now is there is no seeming consequence to the president and lies. and if we accept that as a society, it is going to have incredibly harmful consequences in the way that we operate going forward, based on the construct of the founding fathers. >> why is it just you and jeff flake and bob corker?
where's speaker ryan? where's the head of the legislative branch? >> people are running for the hills. again, everybody -- what you do as an elected official is an all-time -- old time senator said the name of the game is to stay out of the game. >> so you compartmentalize? >> you compartmentalize. i saw a thing with kevin mccarthy talking about how the president was a genius with regard to trade and you're going oh, my goodness. tariffs are taxes. and yet, somehow we're going to rationalize at a republican party leadership level what the president is proposing with regard to, you know, using section 232, go down the list is somehow okay with what the republican party has historically stood for with regard to engagement or trade? i mean, i could come up with a long list of things that people rationalized but they do it because they want to stay in the game. >> you want to take the issues national in 2020 and debate the president about the direction of the party? >> no, i'm just trying to sort out the last 48 hours of my
life. if you have -- i never lost an election before. so this is new territory. but there's some real soul searching that goes with it. i have had a couple of different chapters of life that have caused intense soul searching and this is one of them. >> when we come back, a lot of voters don't like eit you're headed down the highway when the guy in front slams on his brakes out of nowhere. you do too, but not in time. hey, no big deal. you've got a good record and liberty mutual won't hold a grudge by raising your rates over one mistake. you hear that, karen? liberty mutual doesn't hold grudges. how mature of them. for drivers with accident forgiveness, liberty mutual won't raise their rates because of their first accident. liberty stands with you. liberty mutual insurance. this is not just a yard. it's where memories are made. and you have the best seat in the house. the john deere x350 select series with the exclusive mulchcontrol™ system. nothing runs like a deere™
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voters this year who feel negatively about both political par tirs and it could have a big impact in november. overall compared to 2010 when republicans gained 63 house seats this group of voters is now younger, less white and more likely to call themselves political moderates or liberal. the result -- in 2010 voters that were dissatisfied with both parties favored the republicans by 26 points. now, these dissatisfied voters favor democrats by 40 points more. among those voters who don't like either party. keep in mind, these are the throw the bums out voters. they rarely vote for the party in power. when we come back, end game and what to do about those kids separated from their parents at the border. coming up, end game, ♪ this is a story about mail and packages. and it's also a story about people. people who rely on us every day to deliver their dreams
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>> announcer: "end game" brought to you by boeing. continuing our mission to protect, connect, explore and inspire. >> back now with "end game" and those kids at the border. let me play for you guys the attorney general, jeff sessions, explaining this policy that they have instituted. here it is. >> and every time somebody, hugh, gets prosecuted in america for a crime, american citizens, and they go to jail, they're separated from their children. we don't want to do this at all. if people don't want to be separated from their children, they should not bring them with
them. >> al? >> separation anxiety. i'm a refugee. i came to america. i experienced it. the pain, the heart break of a child about that experience will never go away in their lifetime. and to justify that by saying to have a clean bed and food is such a cruel comment regarding what's going on with the children and their hearts and their parents. i will debunk two myths or lies from the white house right now. number one, things are not the same as before on two areas. number one, office of refugee re-settlement, before the white house changed the rules, they would be the ones that would intake these children, they would interview most of these children had relatives here, mostly undocumented, and they would turn the children over to these relatives. the president of the united states changed it and gave i.c.e. the jurisdiction that the office of refugee re-settlement
for decades has had. so what does i.c.e. do? if you're a relative undocumented, you come to interview to take that child, they deport you and the child remains alone. and so relatives are not claiming the children. all of that is because of the policy. and the second policy that's really all here, the president has total authority to deal with the separation of chill drdren. so all of those arguments are fallacious. we've had more than 2000 children separated in a few weeks. it's deplorable, it's wrong and this thing needs to get fixed. i don't care -- i was listening this morning to kellyanne and congressman schiff going back and forth. when it comes to human tragedy like this, you stop the personal assaults, take a time-out and get something done. >> do you think that anonymous white house staffer will get as harshly treated privately as kellyanne conway promised publicly? >> that was a hard interview to listen to that you just
conducted with kellyanne conway because it was just one talking point after another. and of course my heart bleeds for these children being torn i'm a mother.nts. but at the end of the day, this is what the administration has chosen to do, what jeff sessions said to hugh hewitt w preposterous as well. he's sitting there ask comparing it to a criminal matter. he's saying they're treating it as if it was a crime to ask for political asylum in the united states. that's a ridiculous comparison. >> look, it's a master class in cynicism which is, in turn, borne of a philosophy that treats people trying to come to this country as criminals and as liabilities. you heard it in the president's comments about people from s-hole countries. you heard it from previous jeff sessions comments about why do we need these people who are -- >> john kelly said they struggle to assimilate. >> so, there are two refugees at this table. and then i'm the son of a
refugee, and i think we would all fairly say we're living an american dream and we're evidence that an immigration-based culture is also a success culture. you generally actually judge the success of societies by how many people want to come to them, not how many people want to flee them. angela merkel, the europeans work hard with turkey, with other countries to make sure the refugee crisis stays outside of their borders, with some success, some failures. we could do that. there are options other than a cruel and unusual punishment we're calling, almost recalling japanese internment. >> carol, last point. >> this is a problem the president created, could easily as you pointed out in your interview with kellyanne, could easily undo and he's kicking it over to congress. what's been interesting to watch is how this has divided his own party in the sense you see the evangelicals and the religious republicans say that this is not a good policy and put pressure on the white house. and yet the president is trying to have it both ways where he's playing to his base and saying
this isn't my faults. >> sadly, i have to end the conversation there. you guys can keep it going. but before we go, i want to announce the return of the "meet the press" film festival. it's our second annual festival done with the american film institute and it will take place this october here in washington. to learn more go to nbcnews.com/mtp film. maybe you want to submit a doc for our festival. that's all for today. thanks for watching. happy fathers day to all the dad's out there. we're back next week because if it's sunday, it's "meet the press." oh, you brought butch. yeah! (butch growls at man) he's looking at me right now, isn't he? yup. (butch barks at man) butch is like an old soul that just hates my guts. (laughs)
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♪ ♪ welcome to "kasie d.c." i'm kasie hunt. we are live every sunday from washington from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. eastern. tonight zero tolerance. the white house defends separating families at the border. as lawmakers, clergy and everyday americans say this is a bridge too far. i'll talk to republican congressman tom cole as the house tries to end the immigration stalemate this week. later i'm joined exclusively by senators jeff merkley and chris van hollen as they des