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tv   The 11th Hour With Brian Williams  MSNBC  July 2, 2018 11:00pm-12:00am PDT

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isn't living up to his bargain with trump. "the 11th hour" on a monday night begins now. in new york. i'm ali velshi in for brian williams. day 529 of the trump administration, and a one-time trump loyalist breaks his silence, posing potential new dangers to the president. michael cohen, trump's long-time personal attorney and a key player this the trump organization may be sending warning signals to the white house in his first major interview since the fbi raided his home and office back in april. federal prosecutors in new york's southern district are investigating cohen for alleged violations of election law and possible financial crimes
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associated with his personal business dealings, including his payment of $130,000 in hush money to porn star stormy daniels. cohen hasn't been charged with any crime, but there has been speculation about whether he intends to cooperate with prosecutors. cohen in the past said he would do what is necessary to protect trump, including taking a bullet for him. this weekend, he sat down with george stephanopoulos of abc news for an offcamera interview, and cohen said this when asked what he would do if prosecutors offered him a deal in exchange for information on the president. >> my wife, my daughter and my son have my first loyalty and always will. i put family and country first. >> cohen was asked by abc how he would respond to an attack by the president or his legal team, and he said, quote, he will not be a punching bag as part of anyone's defense strategy. i am not a villain of this story, and i will not allow others to try to depict me that way. michael cohen also appeared to make a clear break with trump on the topic of the russia
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investigation and the president's efforts to discredit. >> very, very different message from michael cohen. he said i don't agree with those who demonize or vilify the fbi. i respect the fbi as an institution as well as their agents. in fact, when the fbi came to his hotel suite, the regency hotel in manhattan in april, they were very courteous, they were very professional. in fact, when he left, he shook their hands. when i asked him, the president is calling the mueller investigation a witch-hunt. he said i dent like the term witch-hunt. as an american, i repudiate any foreign government's attempt to interfere in our democratic process, and i would call on all americans to do the same. >> cohen's comments did come up today at the white house press briefing. >> is the president worried after his comments this morning that michael cohen is going to flip? and he is considering at all paying michael cohen's legal fees? >> as you know i'm not going to answer questions on this topic and would refer you to the president's outside counsel. >> could you at least tell us whether the president watched
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the interview this morning and potentially how he feels about the idea that his former attorney said that he would put his wife, his son, his family and his country first, but not the president. >> once again, i'm not going weigh into this issue. >> okay. a judge disclosed that federal prosecutors now have more than one million of michael cohen's files, which could be potential evidence in the investigation. that's about a third of what the fbi seized in that april raid. thousands of other documents are being examined ahead of a thursday deadline. cohen has recently retained attorney guy petrillo to replace his current lawyer. petrillo is a former federal prosecutor who served as chief of the criminal division in the southern district of new york. the division that's looking into cohen. robert mueller's team referred the cohen matter to that office, but significantly, mueller's investigators have not conducted an interview with cohen. his interview also raises the question whether cohen might be trying to sign a plea to the president or signal a plea to the president for a possible pardon. here's how the president
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responded when asked about that just a few months ago. >> mr. president, what about michael cohen? are you -- >> thank you very much. stupid question. >> stupid question. let's bring in our lead-off panel for a monday night. jill colvin is the white house reporter for the associated press. you saw her just moments ago in that clip. harry litman is a former district attorney and also a former clerk for supreme court justices thurgood marshall and anthony kennedy. and daniel goldman, with me here in studio is a former assistant attorney for the southern district of new york and a fellow at the brennan center for justice. in the past, he has worked with michael cohen's attorney, guy petrillo. daniel has also just been named an msnbc legal analyst. so welcome to the family. and in honor of that, you get the first question, daniel. the "washington post" has just published a story on this in which it writes some in trump's orbits say the interview was a miscalculation if it was an attempt to reach out to the
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president, whom cohen had served since 2007 for attention, financial support, or even a pardon that would end cohen's legal predicament. you and i were talking earlier. you don't think this was orchestrated to be a message to the president at all? >> no. none of what came out in the abc news reports it seems to me to be a plea to trump for anything. in fact, the language he was using, the comments that he made distancing himself from the use of the word witch hunt, distancing himself from some of the allegations that trump has made about mueller, even going so far as the say i will not be a punching bag, that's not an indication of somebody who is trying to cozy up through the media to donald trump. to me, what it was speaking, it's cooperator speak. he is praising the fbi. how he believes in the institution, he believes in the democratic process, and he thinks the investigation should
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go forward. those are the things that really came out from what we saw in that interview. >> harry, "vanity fair" writer emily jane fox was on with rachel a while ago. here's what she said on why cohen might have done this interview now. >> he now has a new attorney who is still a little bit camera shy, but not completely against him doing press. there is also a sense, a belief by mr. cohen and people in cohen land that there is going to be an onslaught coming from people in the president's orbit. and so there is this window of time where he felt like i'm going to try and restore my reputation before this attack. >> harry, what's your sense of it? why do this interview now? >> i think that's exactly right. i agree 100% with dan that this
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is someone making overtures for cooperation, and i take it a step further. the first point here is guy petrillo, as dan says, is a total top-notch attorney. so you can put aside the normal assumptions in trump land that maybe he is doing something just stupid. petrillo has thought it through. my best guess is even this interview had the blessing of the u.s. attorney's office, and it served to kind of give cohen a chance to vindicate himself a little bit and maybe insulate himself from the charges that are coming. and what you'll see here after is his beginning to actually discuss things with the u.s. attorney's office, and he'll go dark on press, because that's the smart thing to do, and petrillo is a real pro. >> going dark on press is a big deal for michael cohen, by the way. this is a guy who spent a lot of his life in the limelight. jill, this is an interesting
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point. if the white house now sees michael cohen as someone who is increasingly in the service of the federal government, what do they do about that? what are they thinking than? >> well, it's certainly a very big risk for the president. look, it's been months now where we heard that the president has really felt as much as this russia investigation, as much as this so-called witch-hunt has been draining attention, that what they were really concerned about even more deeply was michael cohen. this is somebody who has spent more than a decade with the president, who was his self-described fixer, who is the one who knows figuratively where all the bodies are buried and has a potentially great deal about the president that people might be interested in. we've already seen the white house now and the president for the last couple of weeks really taking steps to try to distance themselves from michael cohen. it's a strategy that we've seen the president use repeatedly including with paul manafort, for instance, saying we did a little bit of my legal work. but you know this is something
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that the president is talking about. it was only a few weeks ago or a few months ago now where the president even tweeted about michael cohen. there was some talk about whether there was concern whether he might decide to flip on the president, decide to work with the fbi as it looks like he might be signaling that he is interested in doing, and you the president saying, no i don't think he's that kind of guy. i don't think it's going to happen. we'll see now if that happen. >> we didn't see in this interview with abc the bravado. it wasn't on camera. what we've heard is not that typical michael cohen bravado, not that typical michael cohen defense of trump, and of course no reference to this attorney-client privilege. the president doesn't claim to have him as his lawyer anymore. he has described himself as the president's fixer. there is no privilege with a fixer. in fact, fixers exist more on tv than they do, or in the movies more than they do in real life. >> right. the thing to remember about the attorney-client privilege, it only applies if a conversation or a communication pertains to legal advice. and if you're fixing problems for someone, it's there is a fine line.
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it could be some legal advice. it could be the other things. but you do raise a good point. they have really started going in different directions. >> in a legal sense as well? >> absolutely. >> they have a cooperation agreement that is coming to an end on thursday. >> so that's a critical, critical point. i think that michael cohen has been talking about his concern for his family for a couple of months now. and that's always a telltale sign when someone is thinking about cooperating. but this joint defense agreement, and it's somewhat unclear as to exactly what the parameters are. did they just pertain to the documents or a broader defense agreement. the reason why that's important and this agreement is important it is means they are sharing attorney-client privilege information, their strategy. they're working together. in they don't have something
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like that, and they break with something like that, that means that however is breaking it is going off on their own route, and that almost always means cooperation. the bottom line, ali, there are a number of different signs that michael cohen is considering cooperating. and in my experience, when someone gets in the head space where cooperation is something that they're thinking about, they usually cooperate. the people who don't cooperate are the ones who are determined not to from the get-go. and we're not seeing that with michael cohen. so i would expect that at some point in the relatively near future, the prosecutors have to go through all these documents, but guy petrillo will meet with the prosecutors, will try to understand what the case against michael cohen looks like, and then he'll talk to michael cohen what cooperation will mean. >> harry, you know, there are two things that people wanted to hear out of this interview, and we heard neither of them. the one is what did donald trump know about the payment to stormy daniels? and the other one is what did donald trump know about that meeting in trump tower. in both cases, he teased that there will be response later, that he has something to say, but not now. tell me what you read into that.
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>> as i say, the first thing, the axiom one now, the new prism is cohen's got a really good lawyer. and it would be foolish, it would probably infuriate the u.s. attorney's office in fact if he were somehow revealing this on national tv that is the kind of information he has to sit down and share with the u.s. attorney's office. it's going to be an exchange of information, as daniel says, where basically, the u.s. attorney's office tells him the kind of jeopardy he is under. he tells them in return the kinds of things he can do. and by the way, the point about the joint defense agreement critical, of course. and i think actually, what he signalled in the interview is so -- begins to be so different and going away from trump centrist. it's probable by operation of law, the joint defense agreement is already a dead letter. if it's not, it will be soon, because all it takes is one person to say i'm not in anymore.
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>> we're not on the same side anymore. jill, the president is trying to keep all attention his supreme court pick. he is headed to a nato meeting. he is going to be meeting with vladimir putin. that's going to be something he is going to want to spin his own way. he's not prove very hard to bait on the conversation of michael cohen and federal authorities in his opinion overstepping their bounds in their investigation of him is he going to get baited into something about michael cohen? >> this is a president who certainly likes to have his opinions be known to people, usually through twitter. we have not seen him respond to this report yet today. he has been fairly reluctant to answer questions about michael cohen for a couple of months now. you played that clip from the president in the oval office. there was one of his helicopter departures, probably two, two or three weeks ago now where i also asked about michael cohen. i said how do you feel about
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these reports that michael cohen was sort of using you to enrich himself. and he immediately jumped into his talking points about the raid on michael cohen's office and how he thought that that was disgraceful, didn't really engage. i will not be surprised if we see something pop up on the president's twitter feed, maybe seven hours from now when he usually wakes up and starts tweeting. it's important you all recognize the fact that this is a very, very busy week for the president. >> it is. >> he set this very truncated deadline for making his supreme court announcement. he has a very important meeting coming up at first and nato and then to the uk, then the meeting with putin. there is a lot on his plate right now. >> we're going to talk about the supreme court nominee potentials. thank you, jill, jill colvin, harry litman and daniel goldman. coming up, as jill just teased, the name of the next supreme court nominee is now just a week away. president trump says he is talking to, quote, outstanding people about the job. and later, the federal government changes what it will and will not say about children being taken from their
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in the morning, during the morning i interviewed and met with four potential justices of our great supreme court. they are outstanding people. they are really incredible people in so many different ways, academically and every other way and i had a very, very interesting morning. >> that's president trump earlier today speaking about meeting with potential supreme court nominees.
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robert costa of "the washington post" reports tonight, quote, trump met monday with four federal appeals court judges, brett m. kavanaugh, amy coney barrett, amul thapar and raymond kethledge. according to three people briefed on the meeting who spoke about conditions of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak otherwise. others on trump's short list include federal appeals court judge thomas hardiman and william pryor jr. on friday, the president promised to announce his final choice of a nominee one week from today on monday, july 9th. and if history is any guide, that means we could be headed for a final senate vote some time in september. according to the congressional research service, ever since the ford administration, the average time from a nomination to a final vote in the senate is about 67 days. here to talk about it, anita kumar, white house correspondent for mcclatchy newspapers.
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>> and sahil kapur. welcome to both of you. thank you for being here. anita, what is your latest reporting on how this process is going? >> it seems like we're going fast, but we have to remember that president trump has anticipated probably having at least one other vacancy. so he's had this list of names going for, as he says, a couple of years, even before he inaugurated. it's going pretty fast as the president mentioned. he had four interviews today. each is about 45 minutes. he wants to interview about three other people this week. and as you mentioned, he will announce his decision on monday. but let's be clear. he is familiar with all these people because they have been on this list. so the white house and various advisers have been talking about this list and talking about who it might be for quite some time. >> sahil, you wrote an interesting story today. for three decades republicans have successfully used the
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abortion issue to mobilize the religious right, whose support proved critical in trump's 2016 election. the president, who in 2016 promised to pick justices who would overturn roe has an historic opportunity to alter court's ideological balance with a more conservative nominee. but trump may keep in mind where broader public lies ahead of an election where a surge of voter enthusiasm among women is endangering his party's grip on congress. and that is an important point you make, that while public opinion on abortion is roughly split, public opinion on making abortion illegal is not split at all. it's overwhelmingly against the overturning of roe v. wade or anything similar. >> that's right, ali. by a 2-1 margin, two recent polls found that americans do not want to see roe v. wade overturned. this is kind of the gut check moment for the conservative movement. because for a generation now, they've been able to mobilize their voters to the polls without having to worry about potentially succeeding here. and now they're at the cusp of a possible fifth vote on the supreme court to overrule roe v.
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wade potentially or at least to kill wit a thousand cuts. you can imagine a solid block of five conservatives on the court voting to uphold state laws that essentially make abortion inaccessible in wide swaths of the country. so this is where they're at now. there is the politics of it, number one, in terms of what voters will get mobilized and get excited to show up. will it be the pro-choice, the pro roe voters and the second the confirmation there are several similars like susan collins of maine who said they are not comfortable voting for someone who has a demonstrated hostility to roe. that's a key demonstrated record. if it's someone without a paper trail, i would expect collins and murkowski to vote yes. >> on paper it's a 51 to 49 split. in reality it's 50-49 because senator mccain is not able to come the house for a vote. but anita, there are a few vulnerable senators who the president is courting. and there is susan collins and
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lisa murkowski. let's listen to what susan collins said about this. >> candidate for this important position who would overturn roe v. wade would not be acceptable to me because that would indicate an activist agenda that i don't want to see a judge have. >> what -- that is a traditional republican view. we don't want an activist judge. chuck schumer tweeted the same thing out today. we don't want an activist judge. we want someone who will respect existing law and roe v. wade is existing law. how are they going to work this all out? >> it's interesting because you hear the conservatives saying they don't want an activist judge either. what's going to happen here is it's not really going to come down so much to roe v. wade or whose pro-life. clearly this list that the president is looking at, he
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announced or said last year that this list was, he got help on this list by the federal society and the heritage foundation. those groups are going to put forward conservative pro-life judges. the question is whether that judge, when they get on the supreme court, will want to revisit that issue or not. you can be pro-life, but not want to revisit and not think that you should revisit that, something that's already has legal precedent. that's what senator collins was talking about is someone going to go back in time and want to look into that. and so the president says he is not going to ask the question. >> he doesn't need to ask the question. >> he doesn't need to know. he knows exactly where these 25 people stand. it's the question on whether they want to go back and revisit. >> sahil, the reason the president doesn't need to ask the question is senators will. secondly, the president, who has an ability to mess up things that can't be messed up is not doing so when it comes to supreme court justices. didn't mess up neil gorsuch because he outsourced to it completely vet the candidates.
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>> right. this list of potential 25 justices that president trump has put throughout, as you point out been heavily vetted by conservatives, including the federalist society, which is a group of deeply conservative lawyers who want to dramatically restrict the federal government's powers to what is explicitly enumerated in the constitution. now, we've seen this dance in the senate happen for about two decades now. it's a bipartisan one where supreme court nominees get up and say this precedent or that precedent is settled law. they say it's a precedent of the court that is not a particularly meaningful thing to say because the supreme court overrules its precedents all the time. this is not a court, unlike the lower courts that doesn't have the ability to do that. so it seems perfectly legitimate, it seems perfectly fair for senators to ask and demand that potential supreme court nominees say where they stand on a precedent because they're going to have the
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i suspect you're going to hear a lot of that. democrats have shifted their strategy from initially trying to point out that this goes against majority leader mcconnell's statement of norms and traditions and that sort of thing. wait until after the election. they have shifted their strategy to talking about the merits, what a conservative majority on the supreme court will do to progressive values like abortion rights, like voting rights, like potential access to health care. remember, the supreme court came within one vote of wiping out the affordable care act in its entirely the 2012. so they're talking about the merits. for the first time, we may be having a midterm election that is substantially and known to everybody being about the supreme court. >> there is so much to talk about. all right. thanks to both of you. we're out of time for this segment, but we're going to be talking about this a lot. coming up, the president head backs to pyongyang. the president isn't talking about reports that the north korean leader is still up to go "the 11th hour" back after this.
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i really believe north korea has a tremendous future. i got along really well with chairman kim. we had a great chemistry. >> but do we believe him, mr. president? >> i made a deal with him. i shook hands with him. i really believe he means it. >> well, that may be the problem. president trump saying again he trusts north korean dictator kim jong-un to follow through on agreement to get rid of north's nuclear weapons. this comes only days after nbc
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news reported that u.s. intelligence agencies are convinced north korea has increased its production of fuel for nuclear weapons in recent months. the "wall street journal" also reports that north korea is expanding a missile manufacturing plant, one that makes weapons capable of striking u.s. forces in asia with a nuclear warhead. at a briefing this afternoon, white house press secretary sarah huckabee sanders announced that secretary of state mike pompeo will be departing for north korea on thursday to meet with kim, but she declined to comment about reports that north korea is continuing its nuclear program. >> we aren't going to confirm or deny any intelligence reports. what i can tell you is that we're continuing to make progress. >> you say make progress. how can the public evaluate that progress? what's happening? >> i think a number of things. one, in the last eight months you haven't seen missile launches. you haven't seen nuclear -- you haven't seen the nuclear detonations. and, again, these conversations are continuing to evolve.
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i'm not going get into the details, but i can tell you that progress continues to be made. >> joining me now are gordon chang, and michael crowley, senior foreign affairs correspondent for politico. welcome to you both. gordon, we're going to have a truncated version of a conversation you and i had a little earlier in the green room, and that is for decades, north koreans have suffered under their dictatorship because they feel they're giving something up for some greater fight. those nuclear weapons, that development of that nuclear program is part of that fight, that kim jong-un and his father and his grandfather told the north koreans is necessary. this is his raison d'etre. >> yes, you have two koreans sitting side by side, one rich, one poor. the world's most interesting
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political experiment. and in the poor korea, the kim regime has told people you can sacrifice because we're going rid the peninsula of foreigners, and we're going to extend our system. and nuclear weapons has been really at the center of this, because kim jong-un, his policy was nuclear weapons, economic development. you give up the nukes, that basically says everything i've been telling you for five years is wrong. >> so is donald trump being duped into thinking that kim jong-un really wants to give up his nuclear weaponry? >> it certainly looks that way, with a ramping up of the yongbyon reactor. the point is president trump has based his policy on a judgment that kim jong-un wants to give up his weapons. no one really thinks so except for perhaps trump. the other thing is maybe kim does want to give up his weapons but the north korean military doesn't want. to there is a opinion that kim doesn't have a firm grip on the generals that could be it. either case, it's really bad
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news for the united states. >> michael, national security adviser john bolton brought up the pocket of disarming north korea inside of a year. let's listen to what he is saying. >> i'm sure that secretary of state mike pompeo will be discussing this with the north koreans in the near future, about really, how to dismantle all of their wmd and missile programs in a year. if they have the strategic decision all made to do that and they're cooperative, we can move very quickly. >> within a year? >> well, what our experts have devised is a program that with north korean cooperation, with full disclosure of all of their chemical and biological nuclear programs, nuclear missiles -- that. >> hasn't happened yet? >> it has not. physically would be able to dismantle the overwhelming bulk of their programs within a year. >> it's very tricky, michael. we have to unpack that. physically we could. if they have the strategic decision already made to do that, if they are cooperative, if they cooperate, if there is full disclosure of all of their
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chemical and biological nuclear programs and ballistic missile sites. we didn't get any of those things in the first series of discussions in singapore. >> no we got none of that. you can almost imagine what bolton is doing here is almost setting the process up for failure. he is setting this timeline which under the most ideal circumstances, which are very hard to imagine and run against the evidence like you just cited which is the lack of additional declaration and the fact that there seems to have been no follow-on progress to the initial summit, maybe this could physically happen in a year. it seems almost impossible that it actually will. and we all know that john bolton came to this white house as an intense skeptic of the possibility that north korea
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would surrender its nuclear weapons. he advocated, he argued for legality of an american first strike against north korea. he has said that north korea should cease to guest as a state. he must think that this whole process is a fraud, and i think he is reminding people that if kim really is as serious as trump is saying, this should be moving really fast. what we're going to start seeing i suspect is that it is not. and bolton is going to have an opportunity to say i told you so, possibly behind the scenes. but thing is a very interesting tension reflected by those comments where donald trump is basically saying i trust kim. bolton is saying this ought to move really fast if they're serious, and so far it's not and i don't think it's going to. >> and the if they're serious, gordon, is the big deal. if they're not serious, if these reports that we have at nbc news about the intelligence agencies doubting that there is a serious commitment to this, that in fact north korea is going the other direction, they are increasing their fuel supplies, the president has some obligation to stop wearing rose-colored glasses about this whole thing
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and tell america what's going on with north korea. >> because the president has based his policy on that one judgment of kim's intentions, all of this evidence we've seen in the last four or five days, the president i think has an obligation to tell the american people. because what the president did june 12th, first of all, we're suspending the joint exercises with south korea. that puts our forces at a lower state of readiness. the north koreans are continuing to exercise. they've got their summer drills that end in august, but we're not going to have our corresponding drills to make sure we're ready to defend. all sorts of things that president trump has really put us at risk. now, it doesn't matter if he is right about kim's intentions. but if he is wrong, we have some really serious problems we've got to deal with. >> michael, at this point, the president has always had these qualifiers, that if he is telling the truth, if they are going ahead with this thing. at what point do we start to realize that it might not be that? because there are reports out today that the white house is so
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excited about the way things went in singapore, which would make them about the only folks in the country who are, that they want to have another summit in september when everybody comes to new york for the united nations. they want to have kim jong-un come here to new york which will be fantastic for traffic and further these discussions. at some point, does somebody have to step in and say, guys, you're living in a bit of a fantasy land? >> you would think. i would think if the president is going to meet kim again, there's got to be some more tangible progress. it's just, you know, i think in the chaotic news environment we have right now, the white house can kind of skate through this and obfuscate. and the media is distracted. the public is distracted. if there is going to be another grand event like a sit-down meeting with kim, it's just too embarrassing. there is too much of as will of face if you don't have tangible movement, including i would say with a full declaration by the north koreans. that's really the first step here. it will be really interesting whether mike pompeo purports to make any progress toward that on his trip. and i think what's interesting here is that john bolton understands this.
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john bolton, it's very strange. he came in right away -- he got the iran deal was essentially donald trump withdrew from the iran deal just after bolton arrived a the white house. he must have been delighted by that. and now he is trapped in this nightmarish situation where trump seems to be operating on trust with kim. bolton has said for years you can't trust the north koreans. they'll lie to your face over and over. and i think behind the scenes, bolton is probably trying to convince the president this is a very dangerous game he is playing. >> gordon when he came in here actually said this pompeo trip may be make or break. if pompeo doesn't make some ground up here, there may be a problem. guys, thanks very much. gordon chang and michael crowley, thanks to both of you. coming up, the trump administration is now keeping the number of those undocumented kids who have been taken from their parents secret. when "the 11th hour" continues.
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the trump administration continues to deal with the fallout over its zero tolerance immigration policy. this weekend protests took place across the country as demonstrators called for families separated at the border to be reunited. earlier today, the department of health and human services says it will no longer be providing the specific number of undocumented migrant children held in its custody as a result of the trump administration's previous separation policy. as of the most recent update on june 26th, at least 2,047 were still separated from their parents. meanwhile, a group of democrats including senator elizabeth warn sent a letter to hhs and dhs asking for a list of all children separated. a list by the way that would be anonymized so it wouldn't get out to the president. they want to know how long the children have been detained and whether their family members have been successfully contacted. back with us is anita kumar. anita, what do you make of the fact -- we've been saying we keep reach out and asking health
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and human services for an update on how many of these children have been reunited. they have a court order now that instructs the administration to do two separate things. young children have to be reunited with their parents very quickly. older children with a little more time. it's not even clear the administration has the resources to do that. >> right. what i make of it is it's been a couple of very bad weeks for them on the pr standpoint on this. they had to backtrack on their policy. and so the president went back on not prosecuting people that have crossed the border. he is saying if you come with a child, you're not going to get prosecuted. children were being held alone. now they're being held with their parents. so he backtracked on that, and they don't have a way to quickly do what the court has asked, exactly what you said. they have two to four weeks to get these children reunited, and that doesn't look like it's happening. so after a couple of bad weeks, it's clear that they're not providing the number.
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>> i guess what they dent want is the media sticking billboards up that say 2,047 or whatever the number is. >> right. >> when the clock is rung out on them. the bottom line is the government may be in breach of the court order in less than two weeks. >> right. i mean, obviously, their number one concern right now is dealing with this court order. how can they get these children back, reunited with their parents. from what we have been told before, before they stopped giving out some information was they were waiting for some of these court cases to go through with the parents. they can no longer do that. court cases generally take longer than two to four weeks. they're going to have to speed that up or make other accommodations. i don't think they don't want to deal with that. >> some democrats including kirsten gillibrand of new york are calling for the disbanding or abolishing of i.c.e. on thursday she tweeted i believe we need to protect families who need help, and i.c.e. didn't doing that. it has become a deportation force. well need to separate immigration issues from criminal justice. we need the abolish i.c.e. and
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start over and build something that actually works. good strategy orris ski strategy for democrats? >> well, i've heard some democrats say -- obviously more democrats are doing that than they were before, supporting this. but have i heard some democrats say that it is risky, because it takes the emphasis and the focus off the president and his policies. that's what they want to emphasis is that they think his policies are inhumane. that sort of takes it off. >> and the reason you say takes it off is because i.c.e. isn't sort of central to the discussion for a lot of americans right now, the separation of children at the border, the detention of people, that. >> exactly. we saw those pictures of tent cities going up and detention facilities and children, and we heard the sounds of screaming children. and some people are worried that if you start talking about this sort of bureaucratic agency, that you sort of take things away from the president. i will say the other thing about this is that i.c.e. actually does two things.
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it does deal a lot with deportation, no doubt about it. but it also deals with trafficking and smuggling. so i think there is going to be a lot of people who are going to hesitate on that. actual crimes that need to be addressed in the country. and so the republicans and the president can easily say well, wait, you're going to be soft on crime new on this issue? so that's kind of a risky strategy as well. >> you already tweeted about the fact that i.c.e. is keeping american cities safe. >> good to see you again. >> thanks. coming up, president trump likes to speak in superlatives, and his white house did just break a record. what it could all mean for his administration and the country, when "the 11th hour" returns after this.
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here's a simple true-or-false quiz for you. if you're between age 50 and 85, it's important for you to know the truth, so please listen closely. i'm alex trebek, and all of the answers are false. so what is true? you can get coverage, regardless of your health, with the #1 most popular whole life insurance plan available through the colonial penn program. whether you're in the best of health or you have high blood pressure or other health problems, you can get coverage, with no health questions and no medical exam. you can't be turned down for any medical reason. you don't pay a higher rate because of your age. and coverage options start at just $9.95 a month,
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less than 35 cents a day, and will never increase. permanent coverage with a permanent rate lock. call to get your free information. you'll also get this free beneficiary planner. use this valuable guide to record your important information and your final wishes. it's yours free, just for calling. so call now. i we worked with pg&eof to save energy because wenie. wanted to help the school. they would put these signs on the door to let the teacher know you didn't cut off the light.
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the teachers, they would call us the energy patrol. so they would be like, here they come, turn off your lights! those three young ladies were teaching the whole school about energy efficiency. we actually saved $50,000. and that's just one school, two semesters, three girls. together, we're building a better california. tonight there are new indications of just how rapidly this white house is churning through its staff. the associated press reports the trump administration is setting turnover records. an analysis of white house filings shows, quote, president donald trump has seen staff turnover in excess of 37% over the calendar year ending june 30th.
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according to the most recent filing, 141 staffers who worked with the president at the white house at this point last year are gone with 138 new arrivals. some 61% of trump's senior most aides have left the white house. the ap also found that former president clinton is the only commander in chief in the last five administrations to have had a somewhat similar senior staff turnover rate at 42%. as far as the trump white house is concerned, the name we most often hear when it comes whose next to do is chief of staff john kelly. it's been report head wants to be out of the west wing by the end of this month, and that the president is already looking for a replacement. here's what trump said about kelly just a few days ago when talking to reporters on air force one. >> are you looking for a new chief of staff, mr. president? >> no, no. we're getting along very well. we have -- look, at some point things happen, but i will tell you we have a very good -- you
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see that -- we have a very good relationship. >> how long will that last? >> i don't know. i can tell you that. >> i love hope. she is great. i hope that maybe -- i've been hearing little things like that. i bet you hope misses it. i think everybody missed it. many people would like to come back. look, there is nothing more exciting than what we're doing. >> the white house had a job fair last week to attract staff. it seems that the staffers who want to be part of that trump white house are being recognized for their loyalty. the ap also noted that the white house's annual salary disclosure to congress shows that more than 170 staffers received raises during a 12-month period ending june 30th. coming up, still more ethical controversy for the scandal plagued epa administrator. what staffers for scott pruitt are now telling congressional investigators. and one mother's message to the man when "the 11th hour" continues.
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hi. i just wanted to urge you to resign because of what you're doing to the environment in our country. this is my son. he loves animals. he loves clean air. he loves clean water. we deserve to have somebody at the epa who actually does protect our environment, somebody who believes in climate change and takes it seriously.
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for the benefit of all of us and our children. so i would urge you to resign or hopefully your scandals push you out. >> the last thing before we go tonight, that was epa administrator scott pruitt. and the woman who put that video on her facebook page says she confronted him in d.c. while he was having lunch. since he took over at the epa, like it or not, pruitt has been one of the most effective members of the trump administration at carrying out the job for which he was hired, assuming that you believe he was hired to essentially deregulate and dismantle the epa. but as the protester in that video alluded to and as we have detailed for months on this broadcast, scott pruitt has also been plagued by scandal after scandal. tonight, a new "washington post" story reveals more about several of those scandals. citing three sources, the post reports two of pruitt's aides spoke to staffers from the white house oversight committee, both republican and democrat late
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last week, and they, quote, provided fresh details to congressional investigators in recent days about some of his most controversial spending and management decisions. including his push to find a six-figure job for his wife at a politically connected group, and listing staffers to perform personal tasks and seeking high-end travel despite aides' objections. the reports of these conversations shed new light on the epa administrator's willingness to leverage his position for his personal benefit, and to ignore warnings even from allies about potential ethical issues. officials at the epa and on capitol hill declined to comment to the post for the story, but don fox, the former acting director of the u.s. office of government ethics told the post, quote, if we were talking about any other federal employee, it would be that person's supervisor to take disciplinary action which could be anything from counseling to dismiss federal public service. this falls squarely on the
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shoulders of the president, and he seems to do knowing but go out of his way to praise scott pruitt. that is our broadcast for tonight. thank you for being with us and good night from nbc news headquarters in new york. tonight on all in. >> is the president worried after michael coenhen's comment this morning that he's going to flip. >> tonight why michael cohen is publicly breaking with the president, and just how worried
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should donald trump be? >> the substance of what he told abc if it's true should cause the president sleepless nights. >> plus as the president meet plus, as the president meets with potential nominees -- >> would the president like to see roe v. wade overturned? >> why republicans keep hiding from the abortion question. and in the wake of massive protests -- new reporting on the indefinite detention plan for migrants. when "all in" starts right now. >> no family detention! good evening from chicago. i'm chris hayes. michael cohen sure sounds like a man who is about to flip on the president of the united states. silting down with abc's george stephanopoulos over the weekend


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