tv MSNBC Live With Craig Melvin MSNBC November 7, 2018 8:00am-9:00am PST
>> you say it as if it's a bad thing, hallie jack sson. msnbc headquarters here in new york. a day after the midterms, still a number of races to decide, enough results for both parties to take a victory lap. president trump will take his this hour, the president scheduled to appear in the eastern room of the white house for a news conference roughly 30 minutes from now. today he's already touted himself as the magic man for last night's senate wins. never mind losing the house, though. president trump also had a message for the incoming democratic majority in the house. investigate me? we investigate you. we also heard from senate majority leader mitch mcconnell just a few moments ago. >> the democrats in the house will have to decide just how much presidential harassment they think is good strategy. >> today is more than about democrats and republicans, it's about restoring the constitution's checks and balances to the trump
administration. >> one of the first orders of business that i think that democrats could easily do like that. >> they may try. >> is the president a little nervous about that? >> the president is not nervous about anything. >> joining me to talk day after and beyond, hallie jackson's chief white house correspondent for nbc news. we have convened an all star panel, matt welch, eddie glaude, and john meacham, also an msnbc contributor, collectively roughly i'd say what, 14 hours of sleep between the four of you over the past 24 hours? we'll start with you, are we going to see a victory lap from the president 30 minutes from now? >> yes, next question. i mean, 100%. >> how much of a victory lap? we already heard it already overnight from both him, his aides, people all night long wi were out there talking to officials upstairs. here's what i think he will likely say based on our reporting. he's going to point to the senate. he's going to talk about what he sees as historic gains for him,
he will tout how they have picked up seats in a chamber that is critical to his judicial nominees, critical to his personnel confirmations. i would think you'll probably see him -- he will probably be asked about nancy pelosi. he's going to take some shots at her. sure the house went blue. >> take some shots today? even after they apparently got off the phone a few hours ago? not even on the first day? >> oh, bless your heart. >> not even on the first day? mr. meacham, how much credit does this president deserve for what we saw in the upper chamber? >> let the record show that hallie used a southern phrase. >> exactly. >> how much credit? he gets a lot of credit for the senate, i think, and i think a lot of us are surprised that perhaps the democratic gains weren't greater given the atmosphere in the country and given that trump himself in 2016 was a reaction on the part of a
significant portion of america to what they saw as an overly rapidly changing country, and the historical pattern here is therefore in the american way we bounce from guardrail to guardrail that this election should have been a more significant check on -- as a reaction to his reaction, but i think the victory lap will do something that trump always manages to do, which is he never misses an opportunity to miss an opportunity, so he will come out swinging. he will make pelosi, speaker pelosi into the convenient villain, and take once again a moment where he can address the country as a country and address it as an audience where you have built-in opposition, built-in fans, and you just put on a show. >> can i just jump in here? this is a president you have to remember early in his administration after he -- and you look at the campaign and what he did in the primaries, he went after these republicans hard, the republicans he ran against. then the convention came around
and they were all buds. he went after the democrats in the beginning, but in those early days he invite them over and made these overtures about being by part sn. i want to get something done on infrastructure, on trade. this is a president who is very willing to make those shifts as we have seen in the past and to be a little bit malleable when it comes to his views, when it comes to people he works with. >> one of the takeaways it would seem eddie glaude from last night is that democrats continue to make inroads. continue to do well in major metropolitan areas in this country. they continue to struggle mightily in places where the vast majority of electorate don't look like us? >> yeah, that's absolutely true. let's just be clear, the blue wave works as a kind of floating signifier we didn't quite know what it meant, i'm going to get to your question, what trump has done is what he does with his hotels. he takes a building and smacks
his name on it. we already knew what the playing field looked like. we knew the senate was going to be a difficult run for the democrats, and so the idea that the democrats were going to take the house and the senate was part of this general reaction to the vitriol of trump, that america would, in fact, reject that, and it turned out that we didn't, and we didn't because in some ways trump's closing arguments appeal to our uglier an swre angels right. the demographic future of the country suggests that younger folk, the browning of america is happening. it's going to change the politics of this country, and you have folk who are kind of holding on desperately to a way of living, a way of being, a way of singing that they feel is dying, and so what we're in the midst of is a funeral. we're in the midst of a death, and i don't know what -- how long it's going to be, but we're in the midst of something dying and something being born. >> the death of what? >> an old view of this nation as
white. it's dying. whether or not multicultural america will emerge, i'm not sure, but something, a 1950s version of this country is dying. beto o'rourke, what he did in texas. >> but he lost. he lost in texas, andrew gillum lost in florida, stacey abrams poised to lose in georgia. >> but the numbers suggest, think about how they lost, how close it was, right? and so texas we say -- texas is going the way of california. georgia is already there, right? 40% of georgia is non-white. florida is complicated in its demographic shifts, right? the country is changing. it's not 2045. the demographic shifts are already impacting the politics today. >> i would also point out, i think that it's not clear that the pitch in the last three weeks, the pivot to the caravan, you know, birthright citizenship, and god knows how many troops on the border and all this, i'm not sure that worked, right? there's a number of immigration hard liners who are looking for
a job. unfortunately they might get one in the administration like chkr kobach in kansas, might be appointed to the department of homeland security, dave brat in virginia, lou barletta in pennsylvania, those used to be kind of winnable seats for republicans. they put trump anti-immigration restrictions there and they got their hats handed to them. all these suburban house districts, staten island, hello, that's not a democratic -- i'm not sure that those districts looked at the caravan politics, which were not -- >> south carolina, you look at mark sanford's old seat. >> mark sanford's old seat which is plus 19 trump, that's gone so those people i think reacted negatively and properly so in my estimation, with this pivot in the last three weeks. i think he might have even hurt scott walker in wisconsin there because people just looked at that and say, hey, you know whatever enthusiasm we had in the wake of the kavanaugh hearing, which really rallied
will the president ever understand that the presidents we tend to wish to emulate and the ones we commemorate are the ones who simply don't govern for their base. they do reach out. they do surprises. nixon goes to china. harry truman from missouri who had a great aunt who wouldn't come to the white house because there was a lincoln bedroom in it integrates the military. lyndon johnson from a segregated state finishes the work of jim crow. those are the presidents we remember. ronald reagan ends the cold war after being a ferocious anti-soviet. and so i don't think he's capable of this, but if we had five minutes with him, i think what you want to explain is you and nancy pelosi and mitch mcconnell can fix up what people are going to think when we look at your oil portrait. you don't want us to look at it
and say that's archie bunker who became president. >> one would assume that roughly 20 minutes from now when we hear from him, it will be glaringly obvious which trump we will likely see over the next two years as it relates to how he deals with democrats in the house. >> look at the last two years, look at the last four years. we just have to look at his history and who he has been, and this is a person who has shown us what he wants and how he governs. >> you don't think it might be different at all now that democrats are at least in control of the lower chamber? >> it totally might be. i don't know that we'll see what you're talking about, this complete sort of reinversion of who president trump is. that's not to say that he can't work with nancy pelosi, again, i do think there are some areas they can find common ground. >> my argument, and i don't think it's going to happen either, if there's any way to use a current political cliche, if there's any way to weaponize narcissism and use it against him and say look, we're going to be staring at your portrait forever, sir, which of course he
will think. >> there will be people. >> and if you want us to think well of you beyond this particular moment, you have to do certain things. >> weaponizing narcissism. hang on one second. don't you lose that thought. i do want to take a look at some of the outstanding races for a moment. florida, one big race still to decide. another one in the sunshine state that's too close to call. democrats still waiting to win the florida's governor's mansion. the senate race headed to a recount, governor rick scott does have a slight edge right now. nbc's kerry sanders on the ground in tallahassee. what's the latest on this race kerry? what's the latest on that recount? >> reporter: the recount will have to be ordered by the secretary of state here. he has not ordered it yet, but the law will require him to do it because the spread between the votes here, take a look at it on the screen, is so narrow, it's less than 0.5%, and as a result of that there has to be
an automatic recount. that means the 67 counties need to do it. these numbers are unofficial because there are still some votes yet to be counted. military overseas ballots are yet to be counted, and then there are what are known as provisional ballots. that's when people showed up yesterday across the state to vote. they didn't have their driver's license, they didn't have an i.d. they're still allowed to vote but it's a provisional ballot that each of the counties has to research to see is this person registered. is it really them? is their vote going to be counted or not? now, if they do the recount and then find out that the difference is not 0.5 but rather 0.25, an even narrower margin, then they have to go through actual manual recounts. feeding them into the machines, going through them, and then the computers will kick out some of them because people didn't fill in those little circles properly or they put check marks, and maybe they're slightly off and then they have to do on what the voter intent was, and craig, if all of this is reminding you
of -- it's a little bit different but getting back to the idea of voter intent, it likely won't happen because that's such a narrow margin, it would require quite a number of votes from overseas to go towards bill nelson, but bill nelson is not conceding, and governor scott now what appears to be from his spokesperson, the race is over. it's a sad way for bill nelson to end his career. he's desperately trying to hold on to something that no longer exists. there's going to be a recount. >> leave it to florida, kerry sanders in tallahassee. thank you. let's go north a bit, georgia. the race for governor there, also too close to call. still at this hour, republican brian kemp barely ahead of democrat stacey abrams right now. nbc's rehema ellis continues to follow that race for us from atlanta, and rehema, i believe at last check the difference was around 60, 65,000 votes so far. this one's not over?
>> reporter: no, not over at all, especially for the people who are stacy abram supporters, and for the candidate herself. she's really determined that every single one of the votes must be counted, and brian kemp, on the other hand, he's very optimistic that he's going to pull out a win. i want you to hear from both of them, and we're going to talk about it on the other side. take a listen. >> we are waiting on the final results, but i'm confident that victory is near. >> but i want to say this, if i wasn't your first choice or if you made no choice at all, you're going to have a chance to do a do over. >> reporter: she thinks there's going to be a chance for a do over because she believes that there are some 15,000 absentee ballots that have yet to be counted, and that along with significant number of provisional ballots she thinks will go her way. if so that could narrow the gap
of difference between her and her opponent brian kemp, and force this thing into a runoff. one of the things they're concerned about is the candidate, brian kemp is also the secretary of state. it's the secretary of state's office that's got to take a look at these ballots. they're saying that they think they're going to have them counted by sometime next week, possibly as early as tuesday. will that be an end to it? it's hard to say. according to kemp's office, he says the math is done. they're just waiting for someone to do the arithmetic, and stacey abrams knows this. he thinks this is just a stalling tactic before all of us are calling him governor-elect brian kemp. >> rehema ellis for us there in atlanta. thank you so much. let's turn to some of these other races to watch, steve kornacki, resident political guru. let's go back to florida. you were making a point about the governor's race here? >> yeah, check this out. it started on the senate race,
4/10 of a percent inside that range that if it holds would trigger the automatic recount. check out where the governor's race stands right now. 6/10 of a percent, and you heard from kerry there, there are still some votes to be counted. the provisional ballots tend to be much more democratic than republican. the military overseas ballot, tend to be fewer of those but they tend to be more republican. those are two factors. there also may be -- and we're trying to track this down. it's possible there are a few other votes out at precincts around the state, a small number, not enough to vault to the lead or anything like that, but when you're at 6/10 of a percent and 5/10 is the trigger, keep an eye as the votes come in. maybe put it that way to start with. the senate race is clearly within that range right now. as kerry said, the idea that a recount is going to actually reverse a 30,000 vote difference statewide that's a different
matter. but to get to the recount we'd be in that range. >> there's florida. take us to montana, if you can. >> this one right now we've got -- the gap here is 2,000 votes. matt rosendale a challenger leading jon tester. we'll take you through the counties in montana, missoula county, big democratic area, tester is leading this 2-1. there is outstanding votes there. there is outstanding votes in cascade. tester is leading there and there's outstanding vote in yellowstone. basically what you see is the bulk of the outstanding vote in montana is in places that are likely to be friendly to tester, friendly enough to make up a 2,000 vote difference. that's what we're going to see. >> why are there still outstanding votes there in montana? >> i'm tempted to say because it's montana. we might get that today. arizona might be a couple of days. >> if you're watching or listening from montana, please
tweet steve kornacki. >> the people are great. it's the election officials in missoula county. i love montana, i drove through it this summer. >> this is what happens. >> election officials only. >> steve, thank you. just a few moments ago, nancy pelosi, she talked to nbc news exclusively on capitol hill. there have been some suggestion that nancy pelosi might not be the next speaker of the house. that is apparently fake news. >> good morning, nancy. >> hi. >> are you confident you're going to be the next speaker of the house? >> yes. >> well, there you heard it. nancy pelosi says she is going to, in fact, be the next speaker of the house. pelosi did talk about investigating the trump administration last night. much of her speech, however, was about delivering on health care promises. a record smashing number of women elected to congress last night. we're going to look at how the pink wave is changing the face
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a history-making night for women in congressional races all over the country. this nation's come a long way from 1916 when janet rankin became the first woman elected to congress four years before women won the right to vote. now a century later, 30 first-time winners from last night will bring the total number of women lawmakers to more than 100. among the new female members of congress, new york's alexandria ocasio-cortez at 29. she's the youngest woman elected to the house. ra she data lid and debra halam the first native american woman elected to the house, a lot of first. who better to talk about those than "new york times" columnist, michelle goldberg. also back with us, eddie glaude and john meacham. you wrote something yesterday and i want to call our viewers and listeners attention to it. the last two years have been a stress test for american democracy based on the results
that we continue to see pour in. how would you characterize the state of our democracy? >> one of the things i said was that yesterday was going to be a test about whether women could save this deeply broken country. i think we've seen that the answer is a provisional yes, right? it obviously wasn't the overwhelming triumph that democrats wanted but women won overwhelmingly in a will tlot oe contested races. it shouldn't be forgotten that the democratic margin of victory was higher than the republican margin of victory in 2010, which is often seen as the baseline for wave elections, right? because of the contours of the map it didn't necessarily show up in seats, but women who are repelled by this president, they ran for office, they organized, they voted, they canvassed and they made the difference. >> is there one race in particular from last night that
you were either most surprised by or you were proudest to see? >> there was a bunch that i was thrilled about, but i was -- i'm really delighted to see that it looks like -- it hasn't been called yet, but it looks like lucy mcbath is going to pull it out in the georgia 6th. that was the district that jon ossoff ran in in the special election last year. i remember going down there to cover that and being so struck by all these women activists who had not been super political before, not paid a lot of attention to local politics, had been shocked out of complacency by their horror at trump's election, threw themselves into organizing, and there was a lot of talk at the time that all the resources that had been poured into the ossoff race were a waste, but in the end it laid the groundwork for lucy mcbath, an african-american progressive woman running on a platform of gun control, it looks like she has just won newt gingrich's old seat. >> for folks who don't know,
never an elected position. she's never been elected to anything. >> yeah, and there's a lot of women like that who didn't come up through the ranks of the party, who, you know, maybe never saw themselves as politicians but were called by the emergency of the moment to step up and a lot of those women won their races. >> there were a couple of high profile losses, arguably the highest profile being claire mccaskill, a former senator from missouri. up until last night she was 22 and 1. she'd only lost one election. she said, though, it's not the end of the road for her. take a listen. >> i know my mouth gets me in trouble a lot, right? but believe it or not, i've really had to be kind of careful. not anymore. i will be out there fighting with you. i am not going away. i love this state. i will continue to serve. >> how surprised were you, john meacham that claire mccaskill lost?
>> very, partly it was a sign of where the senate numbers were going to be. missouri is becoming increasingly conservative. it was of a piece of what happened in my home state last night, which was a former democratic governor losing to marsha blackburn, a republican congresswoman, and it's a sign of just how difficult the national path is for a democrat to win nationally, which of course is i guess already the conversation. to my mind, one of the things we have to keep thinking about is we want to say that when things are harsh in the country, when things are vitriolic that this isn't who we are. >> right. >> it's kind of kpaexactly who are. i don't think we serve any end particularly well by trying to pretend that there's a kind of cultural zoloft we can take. this is a country that was founded on deep moral
compromise, founded on the idea of equality, but incredibly limited in its applications, and the story of the country has been that journey toward a more perfect union, and depending on the case you want to make, you know, if you want to be optimistic, you can say two years ago today barack obama was president of the united states, and a lot of people thought that was, you know, this leap into a new demographic future. turns out it was a jump, not a leap, and we're experiencing the blowback right now, and i promise that over the next 20 to 30 years there's going to be a couple of steps this way and a step that way, and that's the story of the country. >> when you think about i'm so happy that i'm going to be seeing the back of scott walker's head, but you think about all of the organizing that happened over the years that led -- that made this outcome possible, when you think about the young folk who showed up last night, you think about the organizers in georgia, you think
about black women showing up all over the country, it lets us know that something is on the horizon, the immediate horizon, what's interesting, though, in those governor's races, in georgia, 76% of white women voted for kemp. in texas, 59% of white women voted for cruz. in florida, 51% of white women voted for desantis, so when we begin to talk about what's happening with women, we need to begin to disaggregate that category, so that we can understand what's really happening as we think about the future of the country. >> all right, we've got to get down to the east room here. a big thank you to all of you. thank you so much, professor, mr. meacham, always a pleasure. you are looking right now at the white house east room. this is where president trump is going to be holding a news conference any moment now. we suspect that this will be quite the midterm victory lap. republicans holding on to a senate majority, trouncing at
least three democratic house. peter alexander standing by for us at the white house. set this up for us. what are we going to hear from this president? >> hey, craig, good morning to you. i do think we will hear that victory lap as you described, and it will be a remarkable scene. the president, of course his party gaining seats, padding their advantage in the senate, but for a man who said that americans would be tired of winning, it will be interesting to see the way he spins losing at least 27 seats for the republican party in the house. the president last night defiantly tweeted that it was a tremendous success. again, focusing solely on those wins in the senate, and officials that i've spoken to behind the scenes here tell me that the president feels strongly that everywhere that he went they won. they focus on states like indiana where they won the senate race, north dakota, missouri as well, not to mention florida where the president last night tweeted his compliments to ron desantis who won the governor's race there. this is a president who throughout the course of the last couple of weeks has said
that if he had any regret over the first two years, it would be that he didn't have a softer tone, but it's also a candidate over the course of the last several weeks demonized democrats saying they were the party of crime, that they would unleash a violent wave that would effectively put all american families at risk, so we'll be watching to see if there is any real change in the president's tone. we know he spoke to nancy pelosi overnight who's likely to be the new house speaker. does the president change the way he addresses the media when we speak to him today? >> peter alexander for us there in the east room. peter, thank you. as we await the president again, he could start any moment now, but let's bring in peter baker, chief white how the correspondent for the "new york times," he is also an msnbc political analyst. peter, you where in "the times" that a partisan war awaits trump. that just might suit him.
you say that he faces the proce prospect of a two-year partisan war with a democrat house, and empowered to block his legislative agenda. are you contending that things are actually about to get uglier there in washington? >> oh, yeah, i think we've only been in the preseason up until now. we're about to head into the regular season, and it's going to be a real grind on the field. you've got for the first time power is not all in one party's hands since trump took office. that means he's going to either have to negotiate or fight. he likes to fight, and the democrats are in a position where they want to fight back, and they'll now have power to do it. that means that you can see a lot of investigations, obviously, subpoena power. we've talked a lot about that this morning. you know what you haven't seen yet is how the president will play off that. that's one of the strengths he likes to have an adversary. in some ways this gives him an opportunity that he didn't have when he had to fight with his fellow republicans on the hill. >> lets bring in andrea mitchell, nbc news chief foreign affairs correspondent, tom brow
k aw and eugene robin son, an msnbc contributor. and former lead spokesman for the democrat congressional campaign committee. let's hope the president doesn't start soon. mr. brokaw. i saw you on the air last night. we're still waiting for a number of these races to be called. it looks like the headlines are democrats take the house, republicans manage to grow their majority in the upper chamber. what are your other key takeaways from what we saw go down last night? >> one of the big takeaways is obviously we're in a new era on several accounts. first of all the number of women who have been elected to the congress are a record. i've been saying for the last four or five years that i think this will be the search of women. interestingly enough, when i first started to talk to that in mixed gender audience, the women would stand up and applaud and the men would look at me. but now they're going to get the message, and the question is
what happens as a result of all of these women in the house? do they bring a different demeanor and do they do a different agenda? on the president's side he can rightly claim that getting on air force one and going from town to town to town to campaign for his agenda and for his candidates paid off for him. now the question is does he become more of a statesman than rather just a guy who's going out there and beating up on everybody who stands in his way? i think that's the real test for his presidency, and to make it work in a congress in which democrats control the house is going to take some finesse. >> what do you think we will hear from the president in a few moments from now and what should we hear in a few moments from now? >> that's the right question. what we've heard on twitter overnight is celebrating himself, quoting from ben stein calling him the magic man. trolling the democrats by saying that they really should select,
you know, nancy pelosi whom he's been demonizing on the campaign trail, and that if she needs some votes because they are not really behind her, he'll give her some republican votes to help get her elected speaker because she deserves it. so that sort of heavy handed approach of irony seems to be what he's about to say. we expect he's going to be doing a major shake-up at the white house, possibly even starting right now. i'm reminded of 2006 when donald ru rumsfeld was fired the day after the midterm elections, and we could see jeff sessions leaving, either fired or quitting in advance of being fired as early as today if not this week. my attack aways, like tom, the number of women in the house, i remember when a handful of women were in the house. this is historic, and the diversity, you have two, possibly three native americans. you have the first muslim american woman. >> we've got two. >> coming from minnesota, and
elsewhere. the fact that you have so much diversity, men and women, and tom as the father of three women has always been an evolved man, but you're seeing that this is ebs te extending to a lot of other people in the country. >> mr. robinson, looking at the results from last night, democrats takeaways, you've got guys like andrew gillum in florida, stacey abrams in, beto o'rourke who came up short in texas. if they had won outright, clearly the party was being pulled to the left, well, they all lost. what does that mean for the future? >> they all lost, but they were all clearly stars of the president and i believe of the future of the democratic party. look, the party is in the process of redefining itself and figuring out what it's going to be, and we'll see that evolve as we head towards 2020. you know, when control of the
house, of one of the houses of congress changes hands, that's a really big deal. this is really big deal that democrats took control of the house yesterday. that's really the headline when this happens to george w. bush and when it happened to barack obama, they came out the next day. >> ronald reagan lost the house in his first off year election. >> exactly. bush and obama, they came out the next day and said -- >> that was a huge recession. >> and said, you know, obama said it was a she lac-- they sa hear you, we have to work together, they embraced and the opposition and they said they understood the message of the voters. i would be surprised if we heard that from the president. >> based on what, eugene? >> i just don't -- just a wild guess. one other thing from our home state. >> oh, yeah. >> that was interesting, south
carolina. >> the sanford seat. >> along the coast, held by mark sanford who had been, i think rather mildly critical of president trump. he got beat in a primary by katie arrington who was trumpyier, and she got beat by a democrat, joe cunningham, that doesn't happen in south carolina, in that district. >> some folks who have suggested that this could be the beginning of some sort of seismic shift in south carolina politics, they might not want to take that argument too far. >> i know, i wouldn't go all the way to seismic, but. >> peter, i want to come back to you because this notion that presidents who are dealt bad hands after the midterms, what typically happens to them. historically this has been a bit of a benefit politically for presidents, has it not? >> well, that's exactly right. look, bill clinton lost both the house and the senate in 1994.
the first time the house had gone republican in 40 years, big time setback for him, and two years later he cruised to re-election over bob dole. same with barack obama in 2010, had the biggest sweep of the house in a long time, and he came back two years later, won against mitt romney. so presidents like to have somebody to play off of, you know? it worked for bill clinton to triangulate off of newt gingr h gingrich's republicans and it worked for barack obama then. we'll see if donald trump has the same sort of nimble agility politically or not or whether he goes full-bore, guns blazing and that's been a tactic that's worked for him as he sees it throughout his time in national politics. >> we should also point out that they have gained the chairs of these committees, and that means that maxine waters who's been demonized by the president could well be the chair of financial services. nancy pelosi has been an attack
line at all of his rallies, and you've got jerry nadler, adam smith, subpoenas, investigations. this means that the mueller report will not be deep 6'd. with the house in republican hands and them in charge of intelligence and judiciary committees, that mueller report might never have seen the light of day with the exit of jeff sessions and rod rosenstein, potentially as well. a big shake-up coming at justice department, and now you have an attorney general that will be appointed who could very well try to kill that probe. they never legislated the support legislatively for bob mueller, so if that report is ever going to reach the american public, this is going to be up to the democrats now in the house. >> i think the democrats have to be very careful about one thing. adler who's an upper west side new york liberal is going to be a very powerful new person in this new congress. he's already been saying we can reopen kavanaugh. if they start down that road,
it's a road to disaster. >> overreach. >> overreach. >> they've got to have a coherent idea of what the democrats are. this is a party that is deeply divided. you've got the bernie sanders and elizabeth warren section of the party. you've got the nancy pelosi section of the party, and then you've got all these newcomers coming in who got elected because they had a fresh message. now, how do you put all of that together? you know, remember bill clinton was successful as president, and partly because he went with a group of like minded democrats to south carolina and they spent several days deciding what the democratic party ought to be, and i think the democrats have to decide what is our coherent message here? >> doug, what is that message? not to put you on the spot as he puts you on the spot, what is that coherent message that the democrats should make their own for the next two years? >> well, i think one of the things that impressed me about this campaign was the message discipline of democrats running both in the house and the senate and gubernatorial. they were talking a lot about
health care, and if you look at these districts across the country, if you look at the gubernatorial victories that we had, it was all about health care. it was health care, health care, health care, and i think that you didn't hear a lot about investigations or oversight, although, i think it's about time we had some oversight in this administration. i think what you're going to see when are going to come into washington, they're going to vote on leadership elections november 28th, i think you're going to see a democratic caucus that focuses on those pocketbook issues that help win the majority. health care, wages, i think they will look at things like ethic, and campaign finance reform. i think infrastructure is another thing that democrats will be pushing for. that's something that there could be some bipartisan support, but overall, look, they ran on kitchen table issues, and that's why they won the house. >> doug, we heard from nancy pelosi a short time ago. she's given all indications that she will, in fact, be the next speaker of the house. what do you make of that? is nancy pelosi the best choice
for speaker of the house, or does your party need some fresh blood, if you will running the party? >> well, we do have fresh blood now. we may have 30, 32 new members and so that's going to be very helpful to the caucus. i think nancy pelosi is the best person to be speaker. >> but doug, you have obviously seen and heard the response that the president gets at his rallies when he simply mentions the name nancy pelosi. >> yeah, well, i mean we won the house. it obviously didn't work in a lot of these districts where she was front and center in these advertising campaigns. republicans tried to demonize her again, and it didn't work in a whole bunch of districts. we won out because we had a better message. i think 2020 is going to be much more about the president than it is going to be about chuck schumer and nancy pelosi or mitch mcconnell, so i don't think that's going to be something that weighs on democrats' minds when they vote
for who they want their leadership to be in two weeks. she proved throughout the course of this campaign that she can -- you know, that she's the best fundraiser that the party has, and she's been speaker before and was very successful, more successful than john boehner or paul ryan was in terms of getting legislation through. i don't think she lost one vote on the floor when she was speaker except the tarp vote, and so, look, she's the best qualified, best person to do the job, and she should be elected to do it. >> i think, in fact, she is the one person especially after the defeat of joe youcrowley, she ks the leaders of power. she knows how to do this. she's experienced, and they expanded to 85 seats where they put money in, so their campaign committee did its job. she's got a victory lap. talk about 2020, look at the house and the senate, look at the, you know, from cory booker to kamala harris to elizabeth
warren, bernie sanders, you could even throw a couple of john delaney's been running from the house side, people look at joe kennedy. michael bloomberg's in the race, potentially. >> one could argue you could have a campaign ad last week. >> jeff flake practically announced against the president last night. >> last night. >> so you've got such turmoil potentially it's going to look like the republicans looked with 17 people on the stage in 2015 and 2016, but then some. >> and it's conceivable, i would say, maybe even probable that we haven't even mentioned, you know, somebody who's going to be really prominent in that race. >> terry mccall lif, eric garcet garcetti. >> mitch landrieu. >> mitch landrieu indeed. >> we have not heard from the special prosecutor yet. everybody has to keep that in mind. we're talking about they're in a separate universe here. the fact is if that universe does contain as well a man who's in a long, deep investigation of
this president and the possibility that there was collusion between the president, which he absolutely denies and the campaign and other transactions that were also illegal and certainly unethical. that investigation has not yet come to a close. i don't know how it's going to turn out, but i think it will have an enormous impact one way or the other, so we can talk all we want about how this is going to play out in the next couple of months, but until we hear from mr. mueller, we can't make an accurate judgment. >> if there's no indictment, if there's no conviction, tom, do you think that even findings by the special counsel, which would indicate that president trump did, in fact, collude or there was obstruction -- >> but there already have been. i mean, michael flynn, look at paul manafort, michael flynn, people very close to him, gates, this already has been michael cohen, people all around him in
his campaign have already been convicted. >> but do voters care about it? and will potential 2020 voters care about it? >> what really counts is how the house feels about it. the house has the tools to act on whatever they happen to see. it's obviously got to be an airtight case that he makes against the president's involvement. i don't know whether that's going to happen or not, you know, he's been very, very tight-lipped about it all, but you look at the list of people who are close to trump who have been pulled in or have voluntarily walked in, including his lawyer who is cooperating apparently on a daily basis, no one knew more about what was going on than he did. i think it's very hard for us to make a strong judgment about where we go from here until we hear from the special prosecutor. >> peter alexander, still standing by for us there in the east room. peter this was a news conference that was supposed to start roughly 17 minutes ago. any idea what's holding things up there? >> reporter: no idea. we're still waiting to hear from the president. his aides, a few of them in the
room right now. we expect others will gather shortly. we have no indication exactly when this will start. i want to punctuate some of the points you were discussing with tom. it's obvious that the mueller investigation is on the president's mind. only an hour ago focussing on one of the statistics that cake out of the exit polls last night. about 46% of americans who were polled said they thought the mueller investigation was in fact, politically motivated, effectively saying more people thought it was politically motivated than thought it was justified at this point. the president realizes that this is an issue that he thinks that relitigation of it, the use of the word witch hunt repeatedly has benefitted him. has changed opinions. this is a guy who casts himself as a master brander on that topic. it's obvious that he thinks that branding of it, of the mueller investigation is a witch hunt is an item that works. i suspect we'll hear that from him again over the course of the news conference to take place a short time from now. we heard from the president again indicating that this is on his mind saying if democrats try
to in his words, waste taxpayer money investigating him, well, republican senators will investigate democrats for their misuse of classified information as he described it. two can use that game, which was kind of striking as if he says the democrats are wasting taxpayer money, it's as if he's saying i can waste taxpayer money now. it's the first time we have had a solo news conference in this east room since just less than a month, i think almost exactly a month after he was inaugurated in february of 2017. this room is packed with reporters with a ton of questions right now, and as i speak to you, craig, we're getting the two minute warning which means we should be seeing the president anytime now. >> you know what peter alexander? >> we were going to take a break, but because of your two-minute warning, we won't do that. steve kornacki is standing by. i understand we've got some news from the big board. >> big news out of that montana senate race we've been following. there it is, jon tester has now taken the lead. there are still some votes
remaining. tester taking a 2,000 vote lead. three counties we believe have outstanding votes. they are all counties that tester is leading right now, so this obviously a very -- for his campaign this is a very positive indication he's this is an nbc news special report. here is harry smith. >> good morning, everyone on the morning after a divided nation that is divided we are about to see it back to back first with a press conference with president trump. and pouring a lot h of money
into the opponent and jon tester has won every election by this much. it has always been a very, very tight race for him. we will see what happens. i was quite surprised that it was as close as it has been going into it. but, you know, the president went out there, i think three times frankly and had big rallilies, and that has an impact. >> it was personal. >> yes, very, very personal with him, and tester, you no, he is a moderate to right democrat frankly. but he did take on the president's pick for the head of the v.a. and the president doesn't forget those kinds of things. so we will see what happens here. that one, however, in the cou y counties out there is in tester country and we will see if he can pull it out. >> and corn yacky, can -- k
kornaki, can you update? >> yes, mississippi is head nog runoff and there is a wild card, but if they were to go to democratic column, we would be sitting on arizona waiting on florida to go to the recount, and arizona, by the way, let me show you where arizona stands right now. this could be a while. 16,000 votes and hundreds of thousands of votes to be count and maybe not until thursday at the earliest. >> 16,000 votes separating the two candidates in arizona, and it is a hard to get your head arou around, that and people say, oh, my vote does not matter, and not true, not true, look at arizona. >> and eugene, look at the 2020 and you brought it up and hard to believe we are 700-plus days from a presidential election. >> but who is counting. >> yes, and this idea that we may not be talking about the democratic candidate or no, ma'am knee, but likelihood of that? someone completely comes out of the blue. >> yes, it could be. and look, i mean, the obvious example is when did we start to talk about donald trump.
and he is president of the united states. so i think that the we just don't know. it is very difficult to run for president and win from the senate. we know that. we have seen it tried. and it is really hard to do. so, you know, ckamala harris an cory booker have looked at it, but that is a difficult way to do it. >> and beto o'rourke raised an unprecedented amounts of money, and did it in an unusual way, and even though he lost, he ran a heck of a race in texas. >> and bet tow o'rourke, and if you did not think that he was serious, a guy that uses a fog machine at his concession speech, and that is a big time candidate. now, i watched last night, and if you are watching with the sound down, you would have thought that he won the race. it is going to be interesting to
see what they do with him, since he did not win. >> and the members of the country, the democratic house and republican senate, and everybody is a deep breath to evaluate what happened and how it plays out and i believe strongly in the ufo thoor ri, the unforeseen is going to occur and i don't know what it is, but it could happen in the economy, international loir osome kind of catastrophic event here. so don't get too far down the road with certainty saying to the audience that we know, because we don't know frankly. you may know, but i don't. >> well, if you don't, i certainly don't. i will steal the ufo theory now, and unforeseen -- >> it is unforeseen what? ufo? >> unforeseen on looker. and i wish i could remember the guy's name that i stole it from
large number of military vete n veterans. >> on both sides of the aisle. >> yes. and these are the people who come in with a different kind of experience and used to public service, and used to command and to actually think about service first and party second. i think it is a a different kind of caucus on both sides. >> and we are living in a environment where social media, you not overstate its impact and the importance. >> absolutely. >> and as a form of communication, and as a form of distortion, attack weapon of some kind, and that has changed everything, but especially politics. people can sit in a basement somewhere in their underwear to decide who to take down and if they are clever enough, they can flood the network of all of the terribly distorted representations of who they are. >> or do it from the oval office. >> and most of all from trump people out in wyoming and they say, i wish he would stop tweeting, but it is the most effective tool quite honestly.
>> he has mastered the artt of it and say with what you may about the policies and the politics. and andrea, if you were there in the room for the news conference and you could ask the president a question, what would you ask? >> are you going to try to work with the democrats in the house or are you going to fight them? are you going to try to get something done? >> eugene, what would you ask? >> i would ask the same question. i might ask it a little differently. a little bit more provocative and say, mr. president, you got your butt kicked by nancy pelosi last night, and just to see how he would react. >> and doug, if you were in the room, and you could ask a question, what would you ask? >> are you finally going to turn over your tax returns. >> funny that doug should mention that, because we heard from eric swalle low on the "today" show, who is a congressman who is a rising star and he all but promised that americans were going to see this president's tax return, and that would become one of the first
orders of business for the democrat-controlled house. is that a good idea? is that where we want to take it? >> i don't believe that the country wants to dive back into a investigation, and he has gotten away with it so far and not a big popular demand to show the tax returns and a lot of people realize that there is something probably something that he claims in the tax return, but he has a enormous powerful constituency without go going there, and the question is that you have to ask the president, what is it that you want for the president to be at the end of your four years? do you want it to be more deeply divided or continue this cat fight that we have under way here or do you want to find a way to heal a lot of the wounds. >> tom brokaw, thank you so much for that, sir. president donald trump speaking now now. >> thank you. >> it was a big day yesterday.
incredible day. and last night the republican party defied history to expand our senate majority while significantly beating expectations in the house for the midterm year. we did it in spite of a very dramatic fund-raising disadvantage driven by democrats' wealthy donors and special interests and hostile media coverage. they set a new record and a new standard. we also had a staggering number of house retirements. so it is a little tough. these are seats that could have been held pretty easily with the newcomers coming in and a lot of them coming in and it is difficult when you have that many retirements. we held a large number of campaign rallies with large,
large numbers of people going to the everyone to the best of my knowledge, we didn't have a vacant or empty seat, and i am sure that you would have reported it if you had spotted one, including 30 rallies in the last 60 days, and we saw the candidates that i supported achieved tremendous success last night. as the an example of the 11 candidates that we campaigned with during the last week, nine won last night. this vigorous campaigning stopped a blue wave if ever there was one. i don't know if the campaigning did, but the history will really see what a good job we did in the final couple of weeks in terms of getting some tremendous people over the finish line. they are really tremendous people, but many of them were not known, but they will be
known. this election marks the largest senate gains for a president's party in a first midterm election since at least president kennedy's in 1962. there have been only four midterm elections since 1934 in which a president's party has gained even a single senate seat. as of now, we picked up it looks like three, and could be four, and perhaps two, but we picked up a lot. most like ly the number is thre, and you people probably know that better than i do at this point, because you looked at the more recent numbers. 55 is the largest number of republican senators in the last 100 years. in years a president's