tv The Beat With Ari Melber MSNBC September 25, 2018 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
i want if it's sundae, get it? our names are pun-tastic, some are truly horrible. i'll take majority whipped cream. let us know what you would like to have. any of those flavors? do you want ifitssundae? we'll be back tomorrow with more but "the beat with ari melber" starts right now. donald trump, brett kavanaugh, and the wider republican party in congress under pressure, with two days until this hearing with kavanaugh's sexual assault accuser dr. christine ford. the news is about how this hearing will run. all the republican members of the judiciary committee are men. they made an issue of that fact today by announcing that a woman will handle the questions on thursday. majority leader mcconnell did not appoint a woman senator to
the committee, which he could do. that would be one way to do it. instead announcing the shirg hiring of a woman lawyer for this job. republicans assert she is an experiences sex crimes prosecut prosecutor, which may be true. i would love to tell you how we fact checked that. but the republicans have made that impossible for us to do. because they're not even, and this is weird, releasing her name. so there's no way to publicly examine the questioner's record for those of us in the newsroom. there's also no way, and this could be important, to prepare witnesses for how that person will approach questioning, which is normally done obviously in the senate as well as in court. these are the same senators who also have refused an fbi probe into dr. ford's accusation saying they, the people on your screen, can handle it. and now saying they cannot handle or don't want to handle part of it, the live questioning part. now we want to give you some context. there are some precedents for this. times where a committee relies on someone other than the
senators to ask a question. it's rare. it occurred, for example, with attorney fred thompson, official minority counsel for the senate watergate committee, and if you remember as many do the dramatic questioning back then, he dealt with some of the questions because of their complexity and the details involved in the probe, while senators stood by and watched. this, though, obviously doesn't look like that kind of case, where someone with a long-term subject matter interest, like the official counsel for the committee, is dealing with topics. my job is to report to you the news, but when it looks bad, i have to tell you it looks bad. this looks bad because it does look, unlike the watergate precedent, more like a method for the male senators to avoid catching heat, political pressure, criticism, for the way that they might push the accuser, an issue that came up in the 1991 hearings when anita hill testified. here's what one senate judiciary democrat has to say about all this.
>> i think this is an example of the republicans on the committee not wanting to reveal themselves to the american public. the republicans do not want to question dr. ford directly because they will reveal who they are, and i think they're afraid of that. >> they will reveal who they are. a political statement in the middle of a political brawl over the supreme court, but also runs to the heart of what are we preparing to witness? an investigation? congressional oversight? the advise and consent power responsibly exercised? or something else? is you hear the senator talk about what's revealing. many critics are saying donald trump is further revealing himself by going after a new woman who stepped forward, deborah ramirez, and she's a yale classmate of kavanaugh. she alleges that he exposed himself to her, and she says she is now in contact with the
senate judiciary committee to determine the best process to provide senators with additional information. here's trump on that. >> charges come up from 36 years ago that are totally unsubstantiated? she was totally inebriated, she was all messed up, she doesn't know if it was him but it might have been him, oh gee let's not make him a supreme court judge because of that? she admits she was drunk? this is a con game being played by the democrats. >> so that's where the president is. there's also news breaking late tonight, as so much news seems to break at this hour, a source telling nbc news -- this is new -- that senate judiciary staffers had a call with brett kavanaugh today to explicitly interview him about these new allegations from miss ramirez. kavanaugh has denied them but that tells you there's movement whether there's going to be a widening discussion of accusations. then senator lisa murkowski, a
key republican swing vote, asked if the fbi should open their investigation further. >> well -- it would sure clear up all the questions, wouldn't it. >> it would sure clear up all the questions. said running through a doorway, but an answer nonetheless. senator lindsey graham, often styled himself as a kind of moderate, even a kind of conscience for the republican party, at least on issues like guantanamo. here is his message to the republican party now. >> why didn't the democrats come forward in july? i would say to senator murkowski, this process is played out because of what they did, not because of what i did. are you really innocent? or guilty based on the accusation? if the accusation is enough, god help us all around here. >> this comes as other people are speaking out.
kavanaugh's former roommate said to "the new yorker" magazine, he recalled kavanaugh being frequently and incoherently drunk and he believes the second accuser saying, based on my time with brett, i believe he his social circle were capable of the actions debbie described. kavanaugh denies those allegations and that is more of a character witness than an underlying allegation. as it stacks up the question for the committee is at what point is a promotion in question? i want to play some more of kavanaugh's side of this, but first let me introduce our panel of correspondents. the coauthor of a book that i've said around here i like, "the notorious rbg: life and times of ruth bader ginsburg." lisa hernandez, contributing editor of "bustle." take a look at how many times kavanaugh really tried to slam the idea in this fox news interview that he wants a fair process.
>> i am looking for a fair process. all i'm asking for is fairness. all i'm asking for is a fair process. just asking for a fair process. again, i'm just asking for a fair process. i want a fair process where i can defend my integrity. i want a fair process where i can defend my integrity. i just want a fair process. i just want a fair process. i just want an opportunity, a fair process. we're looking for a fair process. >> so what i'm hearing is he wants a fair process. yeah. i guess i would ask brett kavanaugh, you are a learned man of the law, why does a fair process not include a neutral record, fact finding, why does it not include speaking to investigators, why is this hearing as of now only taking place with two people? one of whom has an allegation, the other of whom denies it? ? you're not going to interview the other person that christine ford puts in the room, if you're
prejudicing the results, prejudging the results by making statements like, we're going to plow through to a vote, or i'll listen to a lady but let's hear her out, is that due process for dr. ford? is it due process or fair process? it seems like republicans are making it up as they go along. they're saying they're going to have a prosecutor whose identify they won't release? it makes it seem like they can't help themselves. they can't help but say something sexist or insensitive to victims. and they realize that a big portion of america is finding these allegations credible so are they going to sit there during these proceedings, stony-faced? is this going to be an illustration to their base that white men are being silenced? i don't think anybody understands what this is going to be like. to me it does not look like a fair process, it does not have the markings of a fair process. >> speak to that, a town that you've covered for some time, that when a woman walks into this judiciary committee hearing on thursday as the first
republican representative, she will not be a senator, she will be a staffer. >> yeah, by the way, mitch mcconnell may have a point, that they should worry about how this is going to look, because he this afternoon called the woman in question, who i believe is an expert in the field of sexual harassment and is a prosecutor herself, a lawyer herself, he called her an assistant. so that may be some indication of the kind of mistake republicans would like to avoid. >> you make an important point. let me play mitch mcconnell for your analysis of that quote, let's take a look. >> everyone on the judiciary committee, all men. you don't have women making decisions about judge kavanaugh. what message does that send to the american people? >> we're looking for the truth here. we have hired a female assistant to go on staff and to ask these questions in a respectful and professional way. >> i think she makes the coffee afterwards as well? for all the male senators? look, this is their problem,
right? this is why they have made this call that they can't be the ones standing there. i actually gave them the benefit of the doubt thinking it wasn't what it was coming out of their mouth, it was the optics of 11 men sitting there. having heard mitch mcconnell this afternoon, it makes me think they needed to worry about the tone of their questioning as well. >> to build on your point, let's look just at the historical evolution here. we have the percent of republican women on the senate judiciary committee? '91 during those -- the only similar precedent, the bruising hearings questioning anita hill. and that's the percent today. >> that's the saddest pie chart i've ever seen. i feel bad for your graphics department that they were asked to make that. to this question of brett kavanaugh saying he wants fairness, he was explicitly asked whether or not he thought an fbi investigation was the way to go and he responded again, what i want is fairness, trying to stay away from specifics. to your point about optics, you
have senator corker saying, if i were on the judiciary committee, i wouldn't want to ask questions because someone is going to say something you guys, cable news, are going to run 24/7. so there is awareness on their part they could step in it. at the same time the president of the united states, the leader of their party, degrading a woman who has come forward with these allegations. so i'm not sure they are going to save themselves simply by having a woman ask these questions. >> i think the bigger question, besides the republican party's optics on this one, what they might say, is what are these hearings going to achieve in the growing sense is both sides are going into thursday with their minds made up. is there anything that she could say or he could say, barring something extraordinary that would actually change minds? in which case why are we doing this? what we need to be doing is having a proper investigation. that is the only way, in this very partisan environment, with these midterms coming up, that we have any chance of getting to
the truth. even then it's going to be difficult. but at least give the professional investigators a shot. >> i mean, if there is going to be an investigation, it's going to be because of lisa murkowski and susan collins. i think as partisan and polarized as this is, there are still persuadable votes, red state democrats who are standing there with their finger in the wind trying to figure out which way it's blowing. everybody is looking for signals. it fascinated me that after a week of saying, no fbi, no fbi, the fbi doesn't do that, today the national review's jenna gold berg ran a story saying maybe we should look at the fbi. i take that to mean they cannot count on lisa murkowski and susan collins, and as we get closer to the hearing, and dr. ford has called their bluff and is showing and up negotiating terms, and maybe they were hoping they wouldn't show up, they now realize that this is not going anywhere good for them. >> i think you make a good point. that's why this is not theater, although i think katty's
washington seasoned skepticism is apt, which is to say this hearing could be a joke and farce based on the trickery. it could also be the thing, potentially, that changes everything if some of these swing senators on the republican side see and their constituents see enough evidence -- this is not the criminal standards, we emphasize, nobody is up for going to jail here. just enough evidence to say, this promotion should be in doubt. to that effort, i want to show susan collins, i want to be clear as we try to be precise, this is susan collins before the second accuser came forward. they are view of things when it was only dr. ford, courtesy of an interview through showtime, take a look. >> if mitch mcconnell has the votes he must have your vote? are you still undecided? >> i am, how could i decide before a hearing? hearing the testimony of professor ford? >> is christine ford the only thing that leaves you undecided on him? >> i'm close.
i'm very close. but i'm not all the way there yet. and professor ford deserves to be heard. >> that is her hanging it on professor ford. you're making a face. i can't quite tell what face you're making. >> i think that she's repeating what the republicans have said all along, professor ford deserves to be heard. but when she says, i'm close, i'm very close, but i'm not quite there yet, what more could professor ford say in that hearing that would change her mind? that's my question. professor ford has laid out her story, we know the parameters what was she's going to say. i guess the only thing that could happen would be that she would be very plausible and brett kavanaugh would come across as implausible or say something that was detrimental to his case. i find that hard to believe because he's so prepped on this. >> since you pose it in the form of a question, which is sort of supposed to be my thing, but we can all do it. >> you can't invite three journalists and not expect answers. >> i will hazard an answer for
the sake of argument as lawyers would say when they're being annoying, which is to say, i don't necessarily believe this. if the process works, putting her under oath before a government committee under the penalty of perjury, and the criminal sanction that comes with that, ask rick gates or george papadopoulos what happens when you lie and get caught before the government, that that is a higher standard than her speaking to the "washington post." if she does that, that alone makes it more probative than simply speaking in public. >> i guess the same applies to him too, right? he will have to answer very specific questions and speaking to that body is going to be different from speaking to fox news. >> what i find more interesting is corker saying that there are more of us than you think there are. you keep saying there are a handful of republicans who want to hear the testimony and what he called the rebuttal. but there are more of us and we're a silent majority. that i think is something. >> you talk about silent
majority, you think about the majority of voters being women, you think about how the senate still is not representative of the gender diversity of the nation. here's some of the pressure i want to show that we dug up locally on senator collins on the issues. >> senator collins says she has yet to make her decision on judge kavanaugh. >> delay the hearings until the information comes out. >> i wasko concerned with him before this all came about, with roe v. wade. >> women are counting on her. >> no new statement from senator collins who has been the target of dozens of protests and a $1.5 million fund for her future opponent should she help confirm kavanaugh. >> where does that pressure fit in? >> i think she has to at least acknowledge this testimony, sit there and consider it, and have a very good rationale coming out for why her opinion has stayed
the same or changed. >> we learn a lot from each of you and i suspect as this story continues we'll be hearing more from each of you. so thanks to you. katty kay, an easier name. >> for some people. >> also alliteration. and lisa hernandez, i have nothing. >> it could be the hardest. >> why senate republicans are refusing to reveal the identity of this now mystery questioner. i'm going to speak live with a senator who will do some of his own questioning, democratic senator sheldon white house. hypocrisy, looking at work and advocacy for personal questioning for clinton in the ken starr probe. what should happen in the russia inquiry after rosenstein leaves if he leaves. i know that every single time that i suit up,
breaking news, the senate judiciary committee republicans have just now formally announced when there will be a vote on brett kavanaugh. it is now scheduled for friday morning. 9:30 a.m. that's one day after this hearing that's scheduled for the accuser to testify. i have this right here. it's quite clear from chairman grassley saying the brett kavanaugh nomination will be voted on, according to this
schedule, on friday morning. that is a big deal because it would suggest not a lot of time to process or fact check or follow up on whatever is learned in the thursday hearing. let's get right to it. senator shelton whitehouse will be questioning the accuser on thursday. is friday snuff time between the hearing and a vote on this nomination? >> of course not but for republicans that's not the issue. >> what is the issue? >> the issue is try to get through this as quickly as they can. they're between a rock and a hard place with very powerful, big donors who want a supreme court justice they think will be reliable for the republican big donors and they've got witnesses who have come forward making a lot of really serious allegations. and it looks like they'd rather roll the witnesses than roll their donors. so get the pain over as quickly as possible i think is the
solution for them. >> the pain over quickly is the idea that more time and more pain could make it even harder to get the vote through. how do you explain to viewers watching, you're closer to it than most of us, sitting in the room with these other senators, making your own judgments. how do you explain a process that seems to try to pretend or evoke a notion of fairness that the accuser gets to testify, and then seems to undo it with an announcement like this right now around 6:20 p.m. on the east coast, they're going to hold the vote the next day with no time to process anything? >> the basic flaw in the republican strategy has been that they've tried to set up the notion if both sides get to say their piece, then that's fairness and that's the end of the story, don't look behind the curtain. and what's behind the curtain is that in any trial, in any administrative proceeding, in
any prosecution, in any grand jury investigation, when you get a witness to comes in with a story like these women have, your first obligation to them and to the process is to do a proper, thorough, sincere investigation. nobody takes a witness who claims she was the victim of sexual assault and just throws them up on the witness stand without any sincere or thorough effort to look into and try to corroborate, or explode, their claims. so the original sin of the republican strategy was to allow for no investigation of any of this, to shut down the fbi background investigation, and to do nothing but the most partisan, insincere, and tenuous efforts on the committee side. the noninvestigation investigation. so that's been the problem. >> when you look at that, it's coupled with this somewhat unusual decision to have a mystery questioner instead of the republican side.
go ahead, sir. >> talk about a vote -- >> you'll be doing normal questions and they'll be deferring an entirety to this questioner? >> talk about a vote of no confidence in your own team's ability to get on the field and ask questions without blowing themselves up in terms of mistreatment of the witnesses and so forth. if they don't trust their own 11 white male republican senators to ask questions without blowing up and they've got to bring in a ring tore cover for them, that tells you all you need to know. >> here's republican senator corker's view of it. >> i think it's really smart of them to get outside counsel. >> why? >> somebody will do something that you guys will run 24/7 and, you know, inadvertently somebody will do something that's insensitive. >> senator? >> well, looks like bob and i agree. >> when you talk about
quote-unquote unsensitive, he's almost reducing it. what we saw from people very clearly in both parties, men in both parties in the clarence thomas confirmation hearings, it didn't make the senate look like a responsible institution at that time. >> no, it didn't. you've got to remember -- >> let me show you, and we'll get your response, take a look. >> you testified this morning in response to senator biden that the most embarrassing question involved -- this is not too bad -- women's large breasts. >> why in god's name would you ever speak to a man like that the rest of your life? >> he never did ask you to have sex, correct? >> i've got to determine what your motivation might be.
are you a scorned woman? >> senator, if they're trying to avoid that, what will it look like on thursday to have one person do the party's entire questioning? is that what you expect to happen? >> well, probably better than that. but we shouldn't overlook the fact that the two biggest abuses that they have done to these witnesses have been, first, to deny them the basic courtesy of investigation. and second, to mount this smear campaign attack. because there is no universe in which you can both treat these women as sincere witnesses who deserve to be listened to, and at the same time say they're part of an orchestrated smear campaign. it's one or the other. and they're trying to have it both ways. so pitching these witnesses into the pit of nothing but a smear
campaign, nothing but an orchestrated effort, completely deprecates what they have to say. you throw on top of that the fact that they wouldn't investigate any of these facts so they can't produce corroboration for what they have to say. and the whole thing is a setup. and frankly ms. placy ford is very courageous to take the step she did to walk into this setup and try to give it her best shot. >> and finally, i wanted to ask you, as a member of the committee who is assessing this nominee for the high court, he made a big deal of emphasizing how nonpartisan he is and how as a judge he only looks at the law, he only looks at the facts, he doesn't look at the red or blue or politics of ideology. do you think any of that has been undermined by his very unusual decision to come out and defend his nomination with a single appearance on fox news and no other public appearance or media? >> and also very harsh comments
about the witnesses lined up perfectly with the rhetoric that the republicans are using. he is now in absolute rhetorical symmetry with the republicans. which doesn't exactly look very bipartisan or neutral. worse than that is the fact that he is complicit, for a guy who says he's all about fair process, in this very rigged and setup process. he could at any moment have said, look, i'm going on the supreme court, i've got to stand for rule of law, and these people who i disagree with and i think are wrong are at least entitled to a modicum of sincere investigation. and i'm simply not going to go forward and take the oath of office until we do this right. i'm not going to be run into the supreme court on a wave of abuse of witnesses. and he's been very happy to have that happen. >> so if i understand you right, you're saying that his response to this, that his approach to procedure, to dealing with
claims, to as you quoted him, to fairness, is itself a cause for concern separate from adjudicating the underlying allegation and its veracity? >> correct, you've got to live your values. if your values are you respect process and think women who claim to have been victims of sexual assault should have their day, should have an investigation to support and potentially corroborate their stories, then you've got to live that. you can't have it that way out in some other world but when it comes to your own hearing you're happy to be a part of and complicit in such a ram-rod effort. >> senator sheldon whitehouse, a busy time for your committee, thank you for coming on "the beat." >> good to be with you. the other big question about about firing mueller as back when we're back in 30 seconds.
two days away of what will happen on the supreme court. the russia probe does still hang in the balance depending on what happens in the probe. the nation watch ing brett kavanaugh and his accuser testifying thursday. that very day donald trump will be meeting with mueller's boss, rod rosenstein. >> i'm meeting with rod rosenstein on thursday. today i'm doing other things. >> it appears by design a split screen moment, questions about what trump would do given that new york times story about rosenstein. >> does the president have
confidence in mr. rosenstein? >> the president has confidence in the system. and -- >> that's not what i asked. >> one of the president's attorneys, jay sekulow, said yesterday if rosenstein leaves, essentially the mueller probe should be put on pause. >> i'd go a step further, i think the mueller probe should end, they've spent a year and a half and found nothing because there is nothing. >> that's a white house official saying it should end. fox news has a poll showing mueller's approval rating 13 points higher than the president, wanting him to take his time. 36% have the trump line it's time to wrap it up. i'm joined by the congresswoman who served on the house judiciary committee. congresswoman, do you feel like the rest of us in the country when you see the new york times touting a bombshell on friday, then other reports saying it wasn't a bombshell and was basically a thinly sourced,
misunderstood piece, then reaction to the reaction. where do you get your facts and what do you think is the significance or lack of significance of what that has spawned, which leads to a thursday meeting that may or may not be the end of rod rosenstein's career? >> the percent thing, ari, the fact that it's on thursday tells me they want to to detract from the kavanaugh hearings, or the kavanaugh hearings to detract from what could be a slow-motion saturday night massacre as ranking member jerry nadler has said. i think the reality is donald trump has wanted to get rid of rod rosenstein and jeff sessions because of their attention to the mueller investigation. and he would like to put in place people that do not want this mueller investigation to continue, or can undermine it in significant ways. it isn't just by ending the investigation that they can undermine it. they can undermine it by not providing resources, they can undermine it by stopping him
from doing certain things he needs to do, including sending a report to the judiciary committee. there are ways around that and mueller is smart on this stuff, but i do worry that if rosenstein resigns, if he's talked into resigning or he resigns, we are going to see the start of a -- really an attack on this investigation and a new kind of way. there's been attack publicly from the president on twitter over and over again. but this is going to be new because anyone that comes in -- first of all, most of the people that would be -- have been named as potential people to oversee the mueller investigation don't actually have prosecutorial experience. so that is a problem. on top of that, they are people who have been sort of saying the same lines that the president has been saying. >> right, your view is they may be more political. >> potentially. >> briefly, do you think "the new york times" story on rosenstein was basically right or basically wrong? >> i have no idea.
it's very difficult to say. but certainly i trust "the new york times" as a publication. i don't think they generally put stories without really having some credible sources. and so i think that it's possible that some pieces of that were true. it's also possible that people within the white house are trying to find an easy way to force rosenstein to resign. he's come and testified before us in the house judiciary committee several times. i never got the sense that he was looking to step down. so i was a little surprised by his reaction to all of this, very emotional reaction. though i will say -- >> do you think he gets easily rattled? >> i don't think he gets easily rattled and so i think -- the follow-up story said he was worried about a potentially negative tweet, and thus wanted to go to the white house to talk to john kelly, if he had to leave he could do it without a tweet. i don't want to put words in your mouth but i imagine you have to do your job knowing
donald trump may tweet something mean about you or a friend or a colleague or constituent, since he punches down to normal citizens, and you still have to do your job with or without the fear of that ominous tweet. >> that's right, ari. i think that's what got me, actually, reading that story. i thought, what is going on here? this doesn't seem like the guy who has been pretty strong so far with a few notable exceptions on making sure this investigation continues and making sure that we really have -- get mueller the resources he deserves. no matter what happens, here's lay think the american people have to understand. we have a big hearing for the highest court in the land on thursday. and this is going to distract from that. i think we have to be very careful of that. and i think we have to be very careful that whatever happens on thursday is ultimately going to protect the special counsel. that's why we democrats are working to try to get that bill through that says let's protect the special counsel no matter what happens. >> stay with me.
i want to pass the mike as we say to katty kay. the congresswoman and i both admit we're not quite sure what's up with this story but it's hinkie, to quote the old movie "the fugitive." there's something hinkie here. >> the idea rod rosenstein would leave his job because of the fear of a tweet from the president doesn't ring true. in that case we'd have no one left in government, especially rod rosenstein's boss who's received most of the awful tweets that have come out. >> tweets are some of the only renewable resources we have. >> yeah, we can generate endless numbers. i think the fox news poll, i think that is so interesting. we know donald trump is watching it. the second fox news poll in a roll that has shown an opinion of mueller is in positive territory amongst the respondents of that poll. we know how many people have been calling the president and saying, hold off from his supporters' side, saying don't do this. it's leading me increasingly to think on thursday that rosenstein stays in his job. >> you think he stays. then you talk about fox.
listen to on fox them saying, wait a minute, after beating up on the doj for so long, don't fire, take a look. >> this is a setup. this was deliberately leaked by an anti-trump person to provoke trump into firing rod rosenstein in order to assist the democrats in the midterm elections. >> yeah, i don't know if this was a setup or not, some conspiracy theory. 52% of people in that fox poll saying, let this play out, let this run its course, and the president hearing that, as you know he does hear it, and hearing it directly from people like sean hannity. if sean hannity's saying on it television, he's saying it on the phone to donald trump as well. that's going to have probably more impact than almost anything else the president hears. >> it raises a question of whether it's not a conspiracy but a conspiracy of a setup of a fake conspiracy under which there's actually a real conspiracy? that happens sometimes. >> yeah, i followed that. >> katty kay and congresswoman,
thank you both. this is very important, what questions would brett kavanaugh, the ken starr prosecutor ask brett kavanaugh? he's in hot water as people are digging through what kavanaugh indicated clinton should face, including graphic questions of a personal nature. ♪ hungry eyes ♪ one look at you and i can't disguise ♪ ♪ i've got hungry eyes applebee's new 3-course meal
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welcome back. tonight we've covered many aspects of the news developments regarding this explosive kavanaugh hearing on thursday and the republicans announcing they want to rush to a vote on friday. here's something that hasn't gotten as much attention. will brett kavanaugh face the brett kavanaugh treatment on thursday? considering when he was a prosecutor working for ken starr, kavanaugh urged certain questions be asked of president clinton. they were of a graphic sexual nature regarding his relationship with monica lewinski. in fact, this is documented in a
1998 memo he wrote which said he strongly opposed give the president any kind of break in that kind of questioning and going easy on him regarding those personal questions itself would be abhorrent, and get this, think about this as you prepare for the hearing thursday. brett kavanaugh writes, quote, it's our job to make clinton's pattern of revolting behavior clear piece by painful piece. kavanaugh listed, as lawyers do, the explicit questions clinton should face, some of them, and this is important, went even further than what prosecutors went on to ask. >> if monica lewinski says while in the oval office you touched her breast, would she be lying? that you touched her genitalia, you'd be lying? that you used a cigar as a sexual aid in the oval office area work, she be lying? >> obviously graphic questions.
some more graphic than you may have heard. "the washington post" reporting that in practice sessions kavanaugh has grown quote frustrated with questions digging into his private life, drinking habits, sexual proclivities, not wanting to answer questions he deemed quote too personal. brett kavanaugh right now facing brett kauf gnaw from 1998 would have a lot of trouble. i'm joined by liz plank, senior producer for fox media, and helene olin, opinion writer for "the washington post," whose latest piece "the staggering hypocrisy of brett kavanaugh" reviews exactly this history. >> thank you for having me on. this is about the impossible hypocrisy of brett kavanaugh, the nerve of this man. he 20 years ago put clinton through the wringer. all but tortured him and monica lewinski. we cannot read these questions that he wanted asked on the air. i believe you would bleep me out every other secondfy tried to read them. you can tell me if i'm right or wrong.
then he has the nerve to turn around and say, no, i can't answer these sorts of questions, it's too personal. this is an invasion of my privacy. where was he 20 years ago? where was that brett kavanaugh? and of course we know where he was, he was a partisan then, and he's a partisan now, who doesn't even want an investigation into his own behavior. >> and your piece holds up the standard and the documented history which you don't have for every drunk, but he had this stint on what was deemed a political operation in ken starr's office. is your conclusion that he was too partisan to be part of the supreme court? that he is too sexist? or that he's too hypocritical? all three? >> all the above. this is somebody who really does not -- should not be in this position. his track record is as a republican partisan from his early days in washington through the ken starr investigation, through his time in the washington courts where he has ruled as an extreme republican
positions, for example, a few years ago a woman was -- a trainer was killed at seaworld, if you remember. working with animals. and he claimed that this was a dangerous profession on par with race car driving and football playing and seaworld should not be held liable for not offering her protection. this animal had killed before, by wait. he should not be in this position. >> i don't want to make light but i didn't know we were getting into seaworld liability there. >> a whole other thing. >> how do you add to this pile of apparent steaming hypocrisy? here comes ken starr himself. vouching for brett kauf gnaw on the issue of these allegations of sexual misconduct. >> i believe when brett says it did not happen, and i believe brett based upon my seeing him. you kind of learn pretty quickly what a person's character is when you're in the trenches with
them, right, day in and day out. for me, year in and year out. >> well, it looks like brett kavanaugh is getting a taste what was it's like to be a woman in america. particularly a woman in america who is accusing a man of sexual assault. as we saw even today what it's like to be debbie ramirez, arguably one of the most powerful men on earth, donald trump, goes after your drinking habits, goes of a your character, how messed up you are, how stormy daniels must have felt when the entire country went after her character. and at person, rudy giuliani, in the trump administration, went after her choice and her line of work to discredit her as a person. this happens to women all of the time. the personal is always political. and this is brett kavanaugh getting a taste of that right now and he does not like it. >> and so when you look at that in this white house strategy, i'm going to do something we don't always do, read the headline on the screen. under fire for sexual allegations, kavanaugh draws
backing from ken starr, who hired him to probe sexual allegations against a democrat. it's almost too perfect. and it must be, i phrase this as a question, is it something that ken starr and brett kavanaugh can't see, are unable to see from some sort of male blinders, that this is not something they should be drawing attention to, that ken starr coming out isn't helpful? >> and we also have to remember that the monica lewinski case and whole thing that that sort of scandal didn't ruin bill clinton's life, it ruined monica lewinski's life, right? we only bring up monica lewinski when it's to talk about that thing that happened. we bring up bill clinton in a lot of different ways. the other thing i would say also, the hypocrisy squared of that is brett kavanaugh is very concerned about his private life, while being someone who denied an abortion to a young woman who was 17 years old, saying he had a right to make her personal decisions for her. this is not just the male blinders.
it's their position on so many issues when it comes to women, that we don't have a right to our privacy, we don't have a right to our personal lives. and he doesn't like that. but maybe that should change the way he makes decisions for other people as well. >> i think you both brought to the fore a lot of different things that haven't hit full crescendo, maybe they will. check out the piece in the "washington post." an important story about accountability. a dallas police officer fatally shooting an unarmed black man in his own apartment. that update for you next. what if numbers tell only half the story? at t. rowe price, hundreds of our experts go beyond the numbers to examine investment opportunities firsthand. like a biotech firm that engineers a patient's own cells to fight cancer. this is strategic investing. because your investments deserve the full story.
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an update to an important story. a da dallas police officer has been fired after fatally shooting a blackman. amber guyger was charged with manslaughter. >> reporter: in dallas, more anger overnight over the shooting death of bothan jean. police say amber guyger when she shot botham jean. >> that shooting sparked protests throughout dallas. the officers claiming she thought she was actually inside her own apartment. it's reignited a large dialogue against african-americans and unarmed african-americans. while we don't know the results
of the investigation, that officer is out of the job. that lawyer to the family says this is a first step but not enough. >> this comes as a welcome relief, however, there's still a long way to go. we're still locked in to an appropriate indictment by the grand jury which we believe is murder. an effective prosecution and an appropriate sentencing. >> as mentioned, the criminal investigation process continues but in this case the police department's made a decision that this person should no longer be an officer of the law.
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that does it for "the beat" we'll be back at 6:00 p.m. eastern tomorrow. don't go anywhere. "hardball" with chris matthews is up next. thursday is d day. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. we're now two days away from the most consequential hearing in the nomination process of judge brett kavanaugh, looking for a victory at all costs republicans are gearing up for a brutal fight. in new york donald trump launched a full scale attack on democrats and kavanaugh's accusers. >> i think it's horrible what the democrats have done. it's a con game they're playing. they're really con artists. 36 years ago? nobody ever knew about