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tv   MSNBC Live With David Gura  MSNBC  July 7, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PDT

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unbounded by law. "fake news" may be a term popular with russian president vladimir putin. let's begin with breaking news from north korea. the associated press reporting the trump administration has encountered major difficulties as it tries to get north korea to denuclearize. regrettable and dangerous is how north korea's spokesman described talks that just concluded with mike pompeo. secretary pompeo left pyongyang without meeting kim jong-un, although that is said to not have been part of the plan. geoff bennett and abby livingston are with me. geoff, let's start with this news out of north korea. mike pompeo on a long trip that's going to take him through asia. i'm wind up in brussels for this nato summit taking place a little later this week. what explains the contrast that
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we were just talking about? >> hey there, david. long time korea-watchers say this is not at all a surprise. they point to the all too familiar cycle of hope and then inevitable disappointment when it comes to dealing with north korea on this issue of its nuclear weapons program. but the secretary of state went to north korea with a mission. he was there to flesh out the details of that vaguely-worded joint declaration that the president and kim jong-un signed in june at the singapore summit. at the time, you'll remember, kim agreed to work toward the complete denuclearization of the korean peninsula, offering little in the way of specifics. even so, president trump tweeted that north korea no longer posed a nuclear threat. he said that americans should feel good sleeping well at night. but as it stands, north korea still has nuclear and ballistic weapons. they have not agreed to a disclosure of its weapons program, which would really provide a baseline for future verification, david. so at this point, mike pompeo comes back with little to show,
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it appears, for his series of meetings there on the peninsula. >> abby livingston, i want to ask you about the burden that has been placed here on mike pompeo's shoulders. we remember the president of the united states going to singapore to meet with the leader of north korea. they signed that one-page piece of paper. now it seems like this is squarely in the charge of the secretary of state. how problematic is that? that is a job that requires awareness and trips to places all over the world. it isn't something that he can focus on wholly, is it? >> that's right. and i do wonder what the president is thinking right now, when he reads these quotes coming out of north korea. but i also think this is just a consequence of trump declaring a diplomatic victory from that summit and not having anything written down very consequential. so it left room for this to go off the rails like this. >> geoff, we're going to focus on this north korea story this afternoon, i'll be speaking with ambassador christopher hill who led the most recent round of
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north korea talks, later in the show. let's turn our attention to the supreme court, president trump teasing the fact that on monday night, 9:00 p.m. eastern time, with grand flair, he'll announce his pick to replace justice anthony kennedy in the east room of the white house. what do we know about what the president is doing over the weekend as he looks ahead to that decision, geoff? >> we know he's in bedminster meeting with his team of advisers. he had dinner last night with the vice president who met with the three finalists, kavanaugh, barrett, and kethledge, all three of whom are acceptable to conservatives. judge kavanaugh has the longest record that the president and his advisers can mine to make sure whoever the president nominates will be the kind of justice he wants to sit on the court. the conventional wisdom at this point says that ckavanaugh probably has the inside edge
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here. >> let's hear from the man himself, president trump in his weekly address talking about the supreme court. >> in choosing a new justice, i will select someone with impeccable credentials, great intellect, unbiased judgment, and deep reverence for the laws and constitutions of the united states. >> that's not all, abby. help us fill in the gaps here, obviously a litmus test as to how he or she would rule on abortion rights. that is certainly what is driving the conversation about these three finalists in washington, d.c. >> oh, absolutely. but what i'm also looking for is how much this person has been vetted. this person is going to be one of the most scrutinized people ever. this is such a consequential appointment, more so than any other in my lifetime, going back to clarence thomas. how much research did they do for this person? what's in their background? will we look for any surprises?
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that's what i'm looking for. >> geoff, we're poised at the beginning of a busy week for the president. mike pompeo will be making his way to europe eventually. we see the president's itinerary for the week ahead. there's the announcement of his pick for supreme court. he'll meet with the prime minister of the united kingdom on thursday, the queen of england on friday, and i'm sit down on friday with the president of russia. a very busy week for a president whose relationship with a looks has been thrown into question the last few months. >> that's right, the president has a reputation for hitting his allies and hugging his adversaries. the thing we're looking for is to see whether or not the president will be the skunk at the party at the nato summit, much the same way he was at the g-7 summit. as you mentioned, later in the week he'll meet with british prime minister theresa may and the queen. and the summit he'll have with russian president vladimir
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putin. what deliverables does the president walk away from, from that meeting with putin? is it just a handshake and a photo or do the two come up with an agreement on syria or something like that? the president told reporters on air force one that he plans to bring up russia's election meddling as long as issues regarding ukraine and syria. >> abby, a lot of people are referring to this summit as a new yalta with a nod to the meeting in 1945. many foreign policy experts are pouring cold water on that analogy. what does the president plan to get out of this, what will these two leaders walk away with? >> the thing i'm watching for is sanctions. where does the president come down after this meeting on sanctions? that's something so important to putin. it could put the president in a tough spot, because congress almost unanimously voted about a
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year ago now to strengthen sanctions. does president trump come back to the united states advocating to let up on russia given everything that's happened in the last few years, and how does congress react to that? that's what i'm curious about. >> geoff, i want to ask you about a story we can't lose track of, that is the separation of children from their families at the u.s./mexico border. the u.s. government acknowledging the fact that they've lost track of the parents of 38 of these young migrant children. we focus on a court in san diego next week as the federal government begs for a little more time here to reunite those children with their families. >> that's right, and the federal judge in that case will not allow for a blanket extension of those deadlines. the first one is tuesday for children under the age of 5 to be reunited with their parents. the deadline for children over that age is july 26th, i believe. so the judge in that case says there will be delays or extensions provided on a case-by-case basis. but you mentioned the fact that the government doesn't know where the parents of 38 of those
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children are. 19 of them, david, were released from federal custody. the u.s. government doesn't know where the parents of 19 of those children are. the other 19 children, their parents have already been deported, david. >> geoff bennett covers the white house for us at nbc news. abby livingston covers washington for "the texas tribune." thanks to both of you. up next, why it's seeming less and less likely that president trump will sit down for an interview with special counsel robert mueller. plus toxic environment. epa administrator scott pruitt is out. now some democrats are calling for homeland security secretary kirstjen nielsen to be next. one of those democrats will join us right after this break. whoooo.
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welcome back. i'm david gura. new demands today from the president's legal team that suggest an interview with the special counsel is getting more and more unlikely. "the new york times" reporting the president's attorney rudy giuliani is asking robert mueller to provide evidence that the president committed a crime, and further, to prove why the president's testimony is necessary. joining me now is representative ted lieu of california, a member of the house judiciary committee. let's start with this piece on the front page of "the new york times" today, indicating that what these personal attorneys for the president want is evidence, and they want to know the president's testimony is essential. how do you react to that piece, congressman? >> thank you, david, for your question. the demands by the president's lawyers are utterly ridiculous.
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i'm a former prosecutor. and i know that prosecutors don't give their entire case to the defendant before they interview the person. in this case, there could be information or witnesses that the president knows about that robert mueller has the right to ask him about. just because the president is the president doesn't mean he's above the law. the special counsel has the right to ask the president about what he knows about potential criminal misconduct. >> we have seen a change in tack here remember going back to april. rudy giuliani now leading up this president's legal team. we've seen those lawyers casting aspersions on the process, on special counsel robert mueller, on the house's investigation and the senate's investigation. how do you react to that, this information game that they're trying to play? >> as every prosecutor knows, when you don't have the facts or the evidence, what happens is the defendants attack law enforcement. they attack the process. that's what you see the white house lawyers doing, because
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they know that the facts and evidence look pretty bad against if not the president, at least the president's associates. >> there's that big "new york times" piece, there's an ap piece as well making some waves, that centers on a memo that marc kasowitz, one of the president's attorneys, wrote, centering on james comey, former fbi director. this is a memo that dates back to june 2017, a classified memo in which james comey is referred to as machiavellian, his conduct called into question. this particular facet of the campaign i mentioned a moment ago, how they're targeting james comey, who one would assume is an integral part of robert mueller's investigation. >> if you look at what james comey did, people who are republicans or democrats could disagree. but no one really challenges james comey's integrity. i disagree with what james comey terms in terms of judgment calls. but there's no evidence that he lied or that he perjured
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himself. >> congressman, you're a former prosecutor. i want to get your sense of timing here. in that piece in "the new york times" there's a reference to whether or not robert mueller might subpoena the president, compel him to testimony. the president's legal team is concerned that this is taking far too long. what is your sense of the timing of all of this and the potential need here for a subpoena of a u.s. president? >> the whitewater investigation by ken starr took four years. the benghazi investigation by republicans in congress took 2 1/2 years. robert mueller is moving quite quickly. he's secured numerous indictments and guilty pleas. i don't know where these calls are coming from that his investigation is taking too long. he's proceeded faster than any other investigation against a p.m. -- against a president.
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robert mueller is very aware of the elections coming up. >> let's pivot to talk about the resignation of former epa administrator scott pruitt after a long list of scandals, beginning with those travel expenses, getting into security, the motorcade with sirens and lights he used to get to restaurants in it washington, d.c., the cheap condo he was renting that was owned by a lobbyist, numerous violations of lobbying laws. 15 investigations continue on capitol hill. your reaction to his decision to step down, lo these 15, 16 months after he took the job. >> scott pruitt was a national embarrassment who likely committed multiple criminal felonies. i'm glad he's gone but he should have been fired a long time ago. he's just one example of the trump administration's cabinet of corruption. we now have wilbur ross, who has been accused of insider trading. you've got ryan zinke who used taxpayer funds to spend $139,000
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on office doors. and then ben carson, who spent $31,000 to get a dining table until he was forced to reverse it after the free press reported on it. >> what can you tell us about andrew wheeler, pruitt's successor? he's being described as a washington insider, somebody who knows the halls of congress well. is he someone you're familiar with? what can you tell us about how he might lead the environmental protection agency? >> i have not met him personally. i'm happy to give him a chance to show what he can do at the epa. i do know he's a former coal lobbyist. he will be very aware that coal is not coming back. >> do you think it will be a radically different agency under his leadership? he demurred when asked if he would take the job permanently. he said, i haven't been offered that, i'm doing it on an interim basis. >> i think we should give him a chance to show what his views and policies are. i don't think we should prejudge what he's going to do.
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but he does come from the coal industry, and he certainly does not have views as i think that would be good. but we should still give him a chance. >> there was a moment a few weeks ago when homeland security secretary kirstjen nielsen sat down in a washington, d.c. restaurant for a meal and some protesters took issue with her leadership. let's take a look at what happened inside the mexican restaurant. >> shame, shame! >> homeland security. you're among the democrats, congressman, who have called for her to step down from that position. in light of scott pruitt's decision to step down, are you any more confident that's going to happen? do you have any more confidence in her leadership in light of what we've seen over the last few weeks? >> i have no confidence in secretary nielsen's leadership, that's why i've called for her
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to resign. not only did she lie to the american people, saying no family separation policy existed, but she's grossly incompetent. there was no plan to reunit families. 3,000 kids and babies have been ripped away from their parents with no clear plans to reunify them. the american psychiatric association has said it will cause lasting harm to the kids. she has to go. >> we've seen this play out acutely on the u.s./mexico border. we'll be focused on the district court in california on monday when it decides whether to grant the federal government more time to reunite these kids. what's your reaction to what we've learned over the course of this week, how many more children we've thought have been separated from their parents, the fact that the federal government will use dna testing to try to reunite the children with their parents. what does that tell you about the federal government's grip on this crisis? >> not only do we have an evil
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policy, we have gross incompetence. that makes for a very bad mixture for kids who have been traumatized. we have kids whose parents have already been deported, how do you track those people down? then you have kids who cannot identify the parents. with every passing week this looks more and more like the functional equivalent of kidnapping by the federal government in our name. that is reprehensible and horrific. >> the gentleman from the 33rd district in california, democratic congressman ted lieu, thank you very much. i appreciate it. up next, the white house asks for more time, as i just mentioned, for families to be reunited at the u.s./mexico border. why is it taking so long? two reporters who are covering the crisis join me next.
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welcome back. i'm david gura. a new hurdle for the trump administration in its attempt to reunite families separated at the u.s./mexico border. they told a judge on friday that they are unable to locate children under the age of 5 and would only be able to reunite
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half of approximately 100 children by july 10th. the judge agreed to grant an extension only if lawyers could provide a master list of the children and the whereabouts of their parents. joining me is alan gomez and cindy carcamo. alan, let me start with you. i want to ask you about the situation we find ourselves in. the judge now weighing this. it's going to reconvene on monday morning, as i understand it, in san diego to weigh the government's request. what more do we know about what the government knows about where these children are and where their parents are? >> this court hearing was really interesting because it was the first time we got a detailed account of at least a portion of these nearly 3,000 kids that need to be reunited by the end have to be reunited by tuesday, the rest of them by july 25th. 19 of them, their parents have been deported. 19 of them, their parents have
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been released in the united states and the government is having trouble tracking them down. the government was asking, do we have to reunite these kids with the parents who have been deported? the judge said yes. they tried to fight back on that but the judge said you absolutely have to. the aclu lawyer who has led this effort offered the assistance of his organization to try to find them. that's why the government has to produce this list so the aclu and other organizations can try to track down the parents. it's only a small sample but it gives us an idea of the challenge ahead as they try to reunite these thousands of kids within the next a couple of weeks. >> help us understand the policy challenges. you have the federal government indicating they want to use dna testing to reunite these children with their families. what's your sense of how, to the extent this government has gotten itself in gear here to handle the policy side of things? >> i can talk a little bit about what's happening along the border, actually. >> please. >> in regards to -- you know, i
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think one of the things that's not being talked about is also what's happening at these ports of entry. particularly in san ysidro, where you have people actually giving themselves up at the ports of entry. and even so, even while they're doing that, they're being turned away. and the government has set limitations on how many people can actually enter these ports of entry. again, the trump administration, the government, has been saying, look, we want people to enter the proper way, we want people to come in through ports of entry and ask for asylum if they're asylum seekers at proper ports of entry. but when they do so, there have been many cases where people have been turned away and they end up stuck along the border on the mexico side, for instance in tijuana, waiting for weeks, sometimes for up to a month, waiting to be able to enter and to make their case for asylum. >> cindy, you wrote an incredible piece about a notebook down at that sin isidro point of entry there in tijuana,
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where you have folks who are trying to get into this country, trying to claim asylum, basically setting up a system by which they'll do that. the federal government two years back saying folks can't come in at the same time. there is now this notebook. describe what it is, you do it so well in the piece. >> thank you. well, the notebook is an actual notebook, a ledger-like book. it's written in blue ink. what's so interesting about this notebook is it's unofficial, it's unsanctioned, and the asylum seekers have taken it upon themselves to kind of inject some sort of order into this chaos, because there are these limitations where people are not being allowed to go inside and ask for asylum. like you're supposed to under international law. so they've kind of taken to this notebook and this notebook represents help for these people. but the thing is that this notebook is also flawed, because you have the people who chrome this notebook are asylum seekers themselves. you have one asylum seeker who
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is in charge of a notebook and basically takes people's names down as they come to the port of entry. but once that asylum seeker leaves, they then leave that notebook to another asylum seeker who they deem trustworthy enough to be able to take charge. and so you can see that, you know, this notebook is susceptible to prejudice, to some kind of corruption. so it's a very -- it's a flawed system but it's their only way of being able to keep track of who should be able to be let in or who can be let in. and, you know, i've asked government officials to weigh in and to comment on this notebook and they've refused to comment on this notebook. mexican officials say that they just help facilitate the process. but there is communication between mexican officials and u.s. officials, because the u.s. officials at these ports of entry basically tell them how many people they can take on that certain day. for instance, in san ysidro there is definite communications
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between u.s. customs and border protection and the mexican officials on how many people will be let in that day. they give that information to the person in charge of the notebook. if it's 30 names, they call out 30 names that day. it's fascinating, complicated, and it's also really -- it's a really dangerous situation for some of these people who are seeking asylum, because really they shouldn't even have to go through this notebook. they're within their rights to go to the port of entry without being on that list and asking for asylum themselves. >> alan, i want to get your perspective on what's happening in washington, d.c. from a political and policy perspective here. there was some new polling out by "the washington post" and george mason university on public approval of how president trump is handling immigration policy. 59% disapprove of the job he's doing, 39% approve. of course we had a holiday here
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over the last week, members of congress returning to their districts for the july 4th holiday. what will greet them when they come back to washington, d.c.? we saw those two republican pieces of legislation fail on the floor of the house of representatives. as we search for policy answers here, cindy describing an ad hoc solution, as much as it is one, to part of this problem. what is washington trying to do at this point or has it given up until the midterms? let me let alan weigh in here. >> that's fine, yes. >> the fact that congress has been unable to come up with a solution for the roughly 800,000 or so dreamers or daca recipients, whose protections president trump has tried to end, a federal judge has ordered they resume. the fact that they can't even come to an agreement on finding a solution for them is an indication that it will be nearly impossible for them to come up with any kind of solution for these far more complicated issues that we're seeing along the board before
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the midterm. when we're talking about the policies that trump is proposing for any kind of legal immigration, they're looking for cuts in legal immigration, they're looking for more money for the border wall, the idea that this will come this summer, when a lot of republicans, the last thing they want to talk about is immigration going into the election, given the track record of congress, i don't see them passing anything along these lines. then you add these even more complicated issues we're seeing right now, i just don't see that anything gets done before the midterms. >> cindy, i'll give you the last 30 seconds here. a lot of folks on the left have been calling for the abolition of i.c.e. jeh johnson writing in "the washington post" today that that is not the solution for this, he says that's as realistic as the phrase that mexico is going to pay for this wall. is this a rally, something around which democrats will rally? >> i think there is definitely a segment, there are some democrats out there definitely
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who are for the abolishment of i.c.e. but there are also moderate, i guess, democrats, and just the american people, who see immigration and customs enforcement as a necessary agency. so it's going to -- i really don't know how that's going to go. it will be really interesting to see how that resonates with the american public as a whole. >> thanks, cindy and alan, i appreciate it. power tie. why president trump has been so complimentary of dictators and strong men and so dismissive of long-time u.s. allies. >> remember they said, he's too tough, he's going to cause a war, it's too tough. now they say, he's too nice. he's too nice. the winter of '77. i first met james in 5th grade. we got married after college. and had twin boys. but then one night, a truck didn't stop. but thanks to our forester,
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crisp leaves of lettuce. freshly made dressing. clean food that looks this good. delivered to your desk. now delivering to home or office. panera. food as it should be. welcome back. i'm david gura. we're following breaking news out of afghanistan today. a u.s. servicemen there has been killed. the department of defense says it happened during what appears
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to be an insider attack. two other service members were also hurt, they are in stable condition. we're still gathering more information about this incident. we'll bring you anything new we can report throughout the afternoon. for more on those contrasting characterizations of secretary of state mike pompeo's latest trip to pyongyang which just concluded, north korea calling the trump administration's demands for denuclearization "gangster-like," a spokesman adding the talks were "deeply regrettable." the secretary of state on the other hand referred to the two-day talks as productive. >> we had many hours of productive conversations. these are complicated issues. we talked about what the north koreans are continuing to do and how we can get our arms around achieving what chairman kim and president trump both agreed to, which is the complete denuclearization of north korea. no one walked away from that, they're still equally committed,
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chairman kim is still committed. i spoke to president trump this morning, my counterspoke with chairman kim during the negotiations as well. we had productive, good faith negotiations. >> mike pompeo on the tarmac in pyongyang a short while ago. what could all this mean for future talks? sue me terry and evelyn farkas. see me terry, you and i spoke around the singapore summit, there was plenty of september simp -- skepticism going into it. what does this tell you about how the process is unfolding? >> this was very, very disappointing, although not surprising at all. we still don't have an agreement on definition of denuclearization of north korea. we don't have any agreement on timeline of what denuclearization would look like. we don't have any declaration from the north koreans on their
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nuclear weapons program, which would be the beginning step before we even get into a negotiation. we didn't even get an agreement or the remains of the p.o.w.s back. we got really nothing. still what we have is north korea's statement that they will work towards denuclearization of the korean peninsula, which of course they always meant by that, regional security, which means end of u.s./south korean alliance. i'm still profoundly disappointed. i think this is very, very concerning, particularly with north koreans saying that these talks, the latest talks was regrettable. >> evelyn farkas, we've talked time and time again about the personnel issue when it comes to this part of foreign policy. over and over again we talk about whether or not the state department is equipped to have these kinds of negotiations. there was a quote in "the washington post" indicating a problem with having the secretary of state as the point man for this.
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the ambassador to the philippines still involved in these negotiations. how sustainable is it for the u.s. secretary of state to continue flying back and forth to pyongyang if we don't have deliverables coming out of those meetings? >> it's not sustainable, clearly, david. the man has a responsibility to deal with u.s. foreign policy across the globe. and he can't be focusing just on north korea. our most urgent national security issue is in fact russia and what they're going to do coming up in the run-up to our elections and of course elsewhere globally. syria, et cetera. so i think north korea is not the place for him to be expending his energy. of course we would love to have them turn over their nuclear weapons program. i have to say, you know, i don't even have the disappointment that sue mi has, because i just feel we all predicted this. you need experts to start the negotiation. you cannot start at the level of the president. and the north koreans time and
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again, and they just did it again, they take the engagement ring and leave the united states at the altar. >> sue mi, we've heard that we should not compare the summit in helsinki and the one coming up. do you agree we have to look at them differently? i'm thinking we could learn from ha helsinki what might unfold in the upcoming meeting. >> the helsinki meeting was a mistake. president trump should never have sat down with kim jong un. we gave them legitimacy. we don't have a lot of policy options left now. even when the talks with north koreans are not going to go well, and they're not, now that kim jong-un has met with xi jinping three times, there's something else going on between north korea and china.
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it's going to be really hard to get back to pressure and sanctions. we have reports that china isn't even implementing sanctions on the ground level. kim jong-un is getting everything they want. i'm again worried that when president trump meets with putin, are we going to give away too much without really getting anything in return. >> evelyn, last question to you -- >> exactly. >> -- i just want to get your perspective on that, certainly there are things that could happen with regard to syria, the nato alliance as well. what are you most worried about as the meeting unfolds? >> i'm very much worried about giving away our leverage. these countries are not our friends. we are negotiating with them about issues that have to do with u.s. national security interests. and so in the case of russia, we could give away -- i mean, i shudder to think that president trump might somehow accept russia's invasion of the neighboring countries ukraine and georgia or that he would make a similar concession about exercises or the placement of our forces in europe. that would be highly problematic. in syria, we are already giving
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up, frankly speaking, you know, our forces are still there, but just barely, and that is our number one top leverage with regard to assad, the iranians, and russia. >> evelyn farkas and sue mi terry, thanks very much. shine on. former fox news executive bill shine is now in the white house. how will president trump's favorite news source change the trump administration's message machine? at every meal ♪ ♪ he holds your house in the palm of his hand ♪ ♪ he's your home and auto man ♪ big jim, he's got you covered ♪ ♪ great big jim, there ain't no other ♪ -so, this is covered, right? -yes, ma'am. take care of it for you right now. giddyup! hi! this is jamie. we need some help.
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bill shine is joining the white house. shine left fox news after he was accused of covering up or downplaying allegations of workplace harassment and discrimination. joining me now is npr's media correspondent and the author of the book "the last of the old media empires." david, this is not a household name. what role did bill shine play in building up what fox news is today? >> he was a guy who had been a producer in the world of talk radio in long island. he came up with sean hannity, who was one of the earliest and most pivotal personalities for fox news. a champion of bill o'reilly, another long islander, familiar to folks for many years on fox news. he was one of the loyal lieutenants of roger ailes who rose to be his top guy, the opinion wing of fox news, the part that makes the most money.
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in a sense he helped to replace roger ailes when ailes was forced out over sexual harassment scandals but he got enmeshed as well. >> gretchen carlson, upon her departure, this, she wrote, on the two-year anniversary eve of filing my harassment lawsuit, giving women a voice, launched a national movement to stand up and speak up and say enough is enough. life works in mysterious ways. she concludes with the hashtag #befierce." he said he didn't play a role in the scandals. >> roger ailes was acting in a predatory way to the women on the staff on fox news. allegations are still surfacing against ailes. he denied them to his death. bill shine said he simply didn't know. bill shine and a couple of managers, diane brandy, a long
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time top lawyer for fox news, were aware of and in brandy's case, signed off on a $3 million payment to a long time fox employee who alleged that ailes had essentially extracted her cooperation under duress for years. bill o'reilly paid millions of dollars over a decade ago to a fox news producer over an allegation that he had sexual actually harassed her and she had it on tape. millions of dollars had to be spent. shine said he was unaware there was such activity having at fox and he was as surprised as anybody. but women have consistently said he facilitated such things, he deflected their concerns, tamped them down, and even after roger ailes' departure, in two lawsuits women complained that he continued to ensure their
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concerns weren't taken seriously at fox. >> how might he change the messaging machine at this white house? the federal government has been subject to a lot of undulation over this year and a half of the presidency. there is no communications director in earnest at this point. what input can he put on that comm shop? >> i thought "the washington post" did a good job of reconstructing what kind of interviews will he be giving. he doesn't give interviews, he's a study in careful uselessness, except where he was throwing an elbow or an shiv on behalf of the network. shine is not known as a voluble guy in talking to the press. secondly, if you look at the top opinion monitors in fox, "fox & friends," he's been comfortable with the pugelistic edge.
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someone who knows him said, this is a guy who pored over the ratings minute by minute and knows what subjects turned the fox viewer on and what kinds of subjects caused them to take their remotes and turn to another channel. and he is going to be exquisitely attuned to the rhythms of what a fox viewer, a trump-based voter, is going to want to hear. he'll be a base message strategist. that is gorbaching to be the aue he's playing to in the lead-up to the election and the lead-up to a reelection campaign in 2020. >> david, thank you very much, the media correspondent for npr joining me here in new york. we're two days away for what president trump promises will be a big prime time announcement of his nominee for supreme court justice. he teased it on twitter.
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he has a list of three finalists, brett kavanaugh, amy coney barrett, and raymond kethledge. joining me now is a supreme court reporter for bloomberg news. greg, great to speak with you here. i want to get your sense of what the president is weighing at this point in time. we have this long list since when the campaign was under way. the president has teased how it's being shortened. there's a lot of politicking in terms of who backs whom. >> sure. in terms of what kind of justice they're likely to be, it's a pretty narrow band. all these people are clearly conservative. the differences are primarily style and perhaps some politics. amy coney barrett who you listed there, as an academic has written and said some things that make it clear she is morally opposed to abortion. it would be hard to portray her as someone who would not vote to
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overturn roe v. wade. brett kavanaugh, a judge here in washington, might be perceived as a little more moderate and may make it a little bit easier for some of the senators who might be on the fence to vote for him. >> how much does academic pedigree matter? this is a president who often talks about his tenure at the wharton school of finance, as he calls it, using the old term for the school at the university of pennsylvania. he cares about who has what degrees. you mentioned judge kethledge, he's a wolverine through and through. some of the others on the short list did not go to ivy league schools. how much does that matter to the republican establishment and to this president, as you look at a supreme court who is composed entirely of folks who went to harvard or yale law schools? >> i'm told judge kavanaugh has the inside track. that doesn't mean he's going to get it. he went to yale undergrad and
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law school. everybody else, even if you broaden out the list a little bit, went to another very fine law school but not an ivy league. they would be portrayed as somebody more from the heartland of the country. if indeed judge kavanaugh gets it, we'll remain with the supreme court entirely made up of ivy leaguers. >> the president has said he's fond of the playbook he used to pick neil gorsuch, his first choice to be on the u.s. supreme court. the reports are that he's using that same playbook this time around. from your vantage, how is the process different this time around? obviously you have this self-imposed deadline the president put in place to name somebody by 9:00 p.m. on monday. how is the conversation this time around different from what it was like those first few months that president trump was on the job? >> it's actually pretty similar from what we're getting from the white house. we have a pretty good sense of who is on the short list, obviously we'll see whether that is accurate. the president, the last time, there was a certain amount of showmanship, he wanted to have a big reveal in prime time. it looks like we may have that
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again this time. the biggest difference is what's at stake for this seat, because this is not replacing another conservative, antonin scalia. it's replacing a conservative who often voted with the liberals on some of the biggest issues like abortion and affirmative action and some other issues. so the potential for this pick to swing the court is much greater than last time. >> last question, greg. it's about gestation. when it comes to ideological gestation on the supreme court, when somebody is nominated and confirmed for the supreme court of the united states, how long does it take for that man or woman to develop a brand of jurisprudence, to make his or her mark on the court? >> it depends on. most people would say justice gorsuch has already made clear what kind of justice he's going to be. back in the past, in previous nominations, decades ago, you might see somebody drift one direction or another. it doesn't seem like we have seen that as much with these more recent picks from either side. in part because both parties have just gotten a lot better at
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figuring out what kind of person they want to nominate and nominating someone who is going to be a reliable vote for them down the road. >> greg, great to talk to you this afternoon, i appreciate it. in our next hour, much more on secretary of state mike pompeo's trip to north korea. a trip he describes as being productive. a trip north korean officials describe in much less glowing terms. stay with us. , we've seen almost everything so we know how to cover almost anything. even a "cactus calamity". (man 1) i read that the saguaro can live to be two hundred years old. (woman) how old do you think that one is? (man 1) my guess would be, about... (man 2) i'd say about two hundred. (man 1) yeah... (burke) gives houseplant a whole new meaning. and we covered it. talk to farmers. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪
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hey, everybody, i'm david gura at msnbc headquarters in new york. regrettable and extremely troubling. those are the words north korea is using to describe talks with the u.s. secretary of state mike pompeo that just concluded. his hope for a denuclearized north korea fading fast. new demands and proof that president trump's lawyers now want before special counsel robert mueller interviews the president of the united states. plus the accusations by other attorneys you haven't heard before questioning the character of one james comey. ignoring advice. what president trump is likely to propose when he sits down with russia's president vladimir putin. the two men say they've got the same thorn in their side. important new insight into their relationship, just days before the two leaders meet face-to-face in helsinki. we begin this hour with a startling turn of events at the end of secretary of state mike pompeo's visit to north korea. it just wrapped up.

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