tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC November 14, 2018 12:00am-1:00am PST
♪ tonight on "all in." >> what a stupid question that is. >> the president will answer robert mueller's questions. >> that was a democrat hoax. >> as potential indictments loom. >> well, look, perhaps they have squeezed poor dr. corsi to help frame me. >> the latest movement in the mueller probe. then -- >> they wanted their voices to be heard. now i'm being arrested. >> republicans push to stop counts votes continues. plus, why the first lady is publicly calling for the firing of a deputy national security adviser. and climate protests on capitol hill -- >> it's about making sure that we are getting the job done. >> as california burns. >> i saw a tidal wave of fire like right over there, a wall of
fire, a tidal wave. >> los angeles major eric garcetti joins me live when "all in" starts right now. good evening from new york, i'm chris hayes, 19 months after the appointment of robert mueller as special counsel in the russia investigation the president of the united states is nearing completion on written answers to questions from the special counsel about possible collusion and may submit those answers as early as this week. this, during a post-election week in which the mueller team appears to be more focused than ever on links between the trump campaign and the russian-backed hacking of dnc e-mails. a source familiar with the matter tells nbc news president trump met with his legal team yesterday and was expected to do so again today. the questions and answers pertain only to russian interference in the 2016
election, not obstruction of justice. the substance and timing of that presidential testimony is particularly intriguing since far right conspiracy theorist jerome corsi, an associate of roger stone, announced he expects to be indicted by the special counsel on perjury charges, following previous assertions by stone that he too expects to be indicted. mueller's interest in stone, corsi and others reportedly centers on what they may have known ahead of time about those wikileaks e-mail dumps. if mueller's team is indeed to trying to establish which trump associates may have been a part of the criminal conspiracy the special counsel has already laid out in its indictments it might explain why the special counsel is interested in trump ally nigel farage. investigators asked about both nigel and ted malick. they went over who was my source with julian assange. it appears the net could be closing. on top of that there's also now
a real question about who exactly is supervising the mueller investigation, who is running the justice department now? the state of maryland asked for a court injunction to stop matthew whitaker, in addition to his membership on an advisory board of a fraudulent exercise investigated being the fbi, may not be allowed to be the attorney general. the appointment is unlawful, the complaint asks the court to issue a judgment declaring that deputy attorney general rod rosenstein is the acting attorney general of the united states. i want to bring in anna shecter whose interview with john corsi was abruptly cancelled. >> he came to rockefeller center, i sent a car for him, he was out on 49th street and his lawyer at the exact same time
that he arrived got off the phone with special counsel and shut the entire thing down on advice of counsel, dr. corsi is cancelling this interview. i invited him to lunch, he declined and that's the end of it. >> his lawyer was on the phone with the special counsel's office? >> that's right, 12:30. >> confirmed? >> confirmed. they had a previously scheduled call. >> do we know what happened in that phone call? >> we don't. but david gray, the attorney, jumped off the call with me to get back on the call with the investigator. so something is moving today. i don't know what it is. >> so corsi's a strange case. we know he's turned over a lot of files and documents, right, to the special counsel's office. he's an associate of roger stone's. he's been in at a talk to them a bunch of times. what is your sense of where he fits in this puzzle? >> what's so interesting about him is that we've learned that there were communications between him and roger stone that appear to show that corsi had advance knowledge of the john podesta e-mail dump. that's the heart of it.
now, did he transfer it to stone and then stone tell trump campaign? that's the big question. we have not connected those dots. >> but that's where you think investigators are looking with respect to corsi? >> absolutely. and i think he has told me that he expects to be charged with perjury because he tripped up somewhere. there was some communication with wikileaks that he doesn't recall and the investigators had evidence of that. >> so there's an interesting precedent here. michael cohen gets in trouble, gets raided and indicted, i'll take a bullet for mr. trump. next thing you know he's cooperating. paul manafort, raided, indicted, tried, convicted, awaiting a second trial, not going to roll, not going to roll, next thing he's cooperating. we've seen this time and time again. there's a question about whether that's the situation corsi might find himself in. >> he might find himself in that position. what's interesting about him is he's this bizarre character out of left field who's now front and center in the mueller investigation. investigators spent two months poring over all of his communications, texts, e-mails,
really focused on what he was talking to stone about. but also potential communications with wikileaks. >> in some ways he's both bizarre, but also adjacent, he is the father of birtherism, the president made his political bones, got his start in american political life on that conspiracy theory. >> that's right. and he has fueled a lot of the far right theories, conspiracy theories, he's written 20 books since 2004. he's always reminding people of that. >> 20 books since 2004? >> yes. >> that's a lot of books. the linchpin in all of this, they think about, you've got on one side a criminal conspiracy that's been established in indictments by robert mueller on the russian side, you've got a question about did anyone on the american side, were they a party to that criminal conspiracy? and the person that seems the most likely to end up in that nexus is roger stone. >> absolutely. well, he is the american who, in
that gru indictment, they refer to an american who was in communication with wikileaks. so we know roger stone was tweeting with wikileaks. we don't know if he actually got advance knowledge. john podesta's e-mails are coming. stone's defense is, hey, julian assange went on television in june 2016 and told the world he had damaging e-mails, e-mails that would damage hillary clinton. >> and i just guessed right. also the jerome corsi line, correct? >> he looked at the july dump of dnc e-mails, noticed there were very few podesta e-mails, and he figured out that's got to be the october surprise. >> well, dr. corsi, author of 20 books, don't put much past him. i'm joined by mimi rocah, former federal prosecutor in new york, elliott williams, worked in the justice department in the obama administration.
start with you, mimi, the speculation swirling around about the mueller team whirring back to life. there was a period they were quiet because of the election, there's the corsi stuff. what -- i guess sort of procedural question is like, when would they choose to indict people? do they have to wait until certain dates? could there be sealed indictments? what do we know about that? >> the answer is, there's no formula. really. i mean, they're going to indict people one when they have necessary evidence. so one thing i think people have to keep in mind and it's so easy to lose sight of in this environment. because of the great reporting we get from all of you we learn so much through the media. what we learn in the media may not be provable evidence that someone can put in court. this is a really important point. mueller is not going to charge people, you know, trump is going come out with his version of the facts. giuliani has already said that. mueller's version of the facts is going to be as close to the
truth as you can get because it's going to be based on evidence admissible in court. and that's a very high standard. i think people forget that, oh, well we already know this, that roger stone knew about the podesta dump. but how you prove that is a very different thing. that's something i hope people can keep in mind. so i think, one, when they have the evidence. and two, my hunch is that he's not going to indict one person alone, but he's going to indict a group of people. and so it may be that he's still working on building, you know, assuming anyone's going to be indicted, but it seems that the signs point that way, that he's working on indicting a group of people together for similar conduct. >> there are two people who have said on the record i expect to be indicted. it's not a crazy thing we're pulling out of thin air. elliott, the reporting today, the president was sitting with his legal team on the written questions, six months back and forth, the president once said i'd love to answer questions, walked back by the lawyers, they keep lucying the football, moving it and moving it. he's sitting down and writing it.
what's the significance? >> one, it's clear they do not want the president to sit down with mueller or anyone from his team. he would be a truly disastrous witness. i know mimi has dealt with witnesses like this, i have as well. it's the mr. i alone can fix it. it might work well at a republican convention but it doesn't work well as a witness. so that's point one. point two is that they don't -- you know, he -- i lost my train of thought. the -- >> hold on one second. i'll come back to you. i want to ask about that question. there's a thought that this is the capstone that the mueller report, whatever the final work product is, can't happen until there's something from the president, what do you think of that thinking? >> i absolutely think that. i think that, you know, because of the way that giuliani and trump and company work, if mueller doesn't give trump some opportunity to put his version out there on the record with
him, you know, you will never hear the end of that once the mueller report comes out. >> almost political as much as a legal matter. >> look, i think mueller would like to interview him and i think he has good reason to want to and need to interview him. but if trump isn't going to do that this may be a way to say, okay, fine put your story on the record. it does lock him is in to a certain extent. i don't think it's valuable. it's not nearly as valuable for all the reasons, you know, i think people know at this point as an in person interview but it does sort of cage trump in a little bit in terms of how much he can shift his story afterwards, or at least his lawyers who care about that. but it's a way to get things done so that he can't later say, well, i didn't get a chance to tell my version. >> right. elliott, can i ask you about the whitaker situation?
there's a real question about -- we're in this -- you've got this guy whitaker who's the acting attorney general who's supervising the mueller investigation. he says he's going to consult the ethics office of doj about recusal and maryland is saying he's not the real ag. two pope situation. how serious a challenge is that? >> it's very game of thrones. it's very serious, incredibly difficult legal question and there's merit to that lawsuit. he is in charge of the justice department, the acting attorney general now, but he's working and living under a cloud. he can really only be in the position for 210 days, under the vacancy reform act which you and i have talked about in the past. the problem is that that's not a lot of time and his entire period in the justice department is going to be characterized by litigation challenging his legitimacy. a lot of very, very smart people who devote their lives to these constitutional questions are thinking long and hard about this and no one's ever really established it. odds are it may very well end up in the supreme court. but again, of all the attorneys in the united states, of all the attorneys in the united states department of justice, why did they pick the one guy with a long chain of personal
conflicts, a long chain of, you know, of conflicts of interest with the president of the united states? we know why, and we know what goal they were trying to effectuate. but again, they've created a mess, and it's sort of leaving the justice department without leadership. it's particularly striking today in the news as we're hearing about the secretary of homeland security about to be fired as well where department of homeland security, department of justice and maybe the department of defense may not have senate confirmed leadership by the end of the month, or whatever. >> that's a good point. >> it's a major national security crisis, who's in charge? it's a shame what they've done to doj there. >> if you're thinking about how mueller and the team and rosenstein are managing this vis-a-vis whitaker, what are your thoughts about how that works? >> there's a lot we don't know that's going on. there's rosenstein and his deputy callahan meeting with sessions and trying to convince him to stay on.
there are probably a lot of things going on. behind the scenes, strange statement with them saying whitaker is a superb choice. a lot of people believe that rosenstein is trying to hold the fort down. i think that, you know, mueller is -- look, he's been doing what he's doing for a long time. it's not like this is starting today. if whitaker tries to, you know, stop it in some way i do think we will hear about it. i don't know that we'll hear about it in realtime. and just the one thing -- the way in which these two stories are sort of connected, this idea of what mueller's doing and whitaker, is, you know, i mean, why doesn't trump want us to have faith, right, in what mueller finds? if -- even if he finds no conspiracy, no collusion, how do we have faith in that now with whitaker there? >> that's a great point. mimi rocah, and elliott williams, thank you for joining me tonight. the really dangerous
we're working to make things simple, easy and awesome. we have seen a dangerous new partisan divide. the issue whether to count every vote cast in an election. democrats have been on the side of counting every ballot, even when it might not benefit them like for instance utah's fourth congressional district where new votes just counted have narrowed the lead for democrat ben mcadams over mia love. as love might actually take the seat, democrats have not cried foul, not said there's a great
theft going on. in contrast, republicans have been launching baseless accusations of fraud in close election after close election they might not win. it's gone so far that a state senator in georgia today was arrested and taken away by police for demonstrating in favor of simply counting outstanding ballots in georgia. that's what democrats want in florida, to count every vote and then to go through the recount. even if there's been a conservative attempt to sow doubt about the legit masy. martha mcsally is graciously conceding her race instead of making up fraud allegations. to talk about this, ron klain, and former chief counsel and senate judiciary committee, and david becker, a voting rights attorney at the department of justice and the executive director for the center of election innovation and research. ron, start with you. fights about recounts have been
happening, the florida recount, the norm mcdonald, al franken recount was litigated. but it does seem to me there's something new going on here, what do you think? >> there's something worse going on here. if i told you, christ, that we had an election where someone was both the chief election officer and a candidate in the election, and he knocked 10% of the voters off the rolls, refused to process 50,000 applications to vote, and urged -- you'd say let's send in the u.n. observers. that happened not in the republic of georgia, but in the state of georgia, next door to the recount in florida. there's more partisanship in how the elections are run and republicans have the playbook of attacking merely the counting of votes as somehow election fraud, election theft, governor scott, who is both the candidate and the chief law enforcement officer in florida has made this allegation.
it's been disproven. it's been knocked down by republican appointed judges, it's been knocked down by republican appointed election officials. it's just an effort to sow doubt in partisanship into a process that should be nonpartisan and professional. >> richard hassan has a piece in slate, writing about election rights and voting rights and the voting war. he said what's happening in florida is a nightmare. 2020 could be so much worse. the new voting war has threat tond undermine the foundation of american democracy that election officials can fairly and accurately count ballots and they can declare winners who we accept as legitimate. >> as elections are are getting closer, especially in florida, it's ray sr. thin margins, we have the stakes are so high. and we have to be careful not codelegitimize our democracy while we wait to determine the outcome. the most important thing in all of these elections is to get the outcome right. we want to find out who the voters chose.
we have to give election officials time to do that. there are millions of ballots still being counted nationwide and we have to let officials do their jobs so we know who accurately won. >> in california, you've got this -- it's striking to me, two republican candidates, young kim, in the 39th district of california and a republican named mimi walters in the 45th district who slipped behind her democratic runner katy porter, we know votes come in late in california, we know that. in both cases, they're both alleging fraud, simply because california takes a while to count votes. >> well, not only does california take a while to count votes. but we shouldn't forget the day after veterans day that we have statutes that say that military voters, all voters overseas, most of them tend to be military voters get ten days after the election for their ballots to come back from overseas, and be counted. and if we're going to stand up for military rights and veterans rights and taking the time to get their ballots in and make sure they're counted seems like
the least we could do as a democracy for the men and women defending us overseas. yeah, i do think this new playbook the republicans have of trying to say that the normally orderly process that's frustratingly long, but the process that makes it right, that that process is fraudulent or contrary to democracy, that is a dangerous trend, and i think rick hassan is right, we are seeing a preview of the playbook trump may run in 2020 if instead of narrowly winning wisconsin, michigan and pennsylvania, he narrowly loses those three states. the nonsense we see coming out the president now could be what we see in two years. >> how much does it rest on the shared sense of legitimacy as opposed to the final say of courts? >> well, i think we've become more divisive as a society. and more and more partisans are
only concerned with winning and not concerned with the long-term implications for our democracy. and it didn't used to be this way. i still remember when vice president gore conceded in 2000, when norm coleman conceded after a long recount in the 2008 minnesota senate race. it used to be that we had more of a sense of the long-term importance of trusting our institutions in democracy. >> i will say that norm coleman, that litigation extended, if not mistaken, six months, it robbed the democrats an opportunity to seat 60 senators to get over the filibuster. and ron, you were in florida in 2000, that was as much of a dog fight as anything i've ever seen, the supreme court ends up stopping the recount on a 5-4 decision they themselves disavowed in the decision. >> yeah, but to david's point, look, that is true, and the
supreme court decision in the bush v gore is an outrage, historic outrage, with even not recovered from that and never will in some ways. al gore went on national tv that night and said the supreme court has spoken. i encourage all my supporters to accept that outcome as final. and i think, again, the danger we see, particularly from president trump is, he is so little invested in democracy, so little committed to our system that if he were to lose in 2020 what he would do about that, that's something we should all be concerned about. >> great point. ron klain and david becker, thank you both for your time. coming up the midwest can be tough for democratic candidates. senator sherrod brown has it figured out for a 2020 run, after this.
for democrats some of the best news to come out of election night came from the industrial midwest. democrats conseven out of eight marquee statewide a ises in wisconsin, michigan, ohio and pennsylvania, all states, of course, the president won two years ago putting them in the white house. the one democratic loss came in ohio where richard cordray fell four points short. ohio's democrats make it challenging for democrats, particularly in this era. trump won by eight points. when democrats do well in ohio, people pay attention. joining me now the newly reelected senator sherrod brown, reelected last week by more than
six points. senator, all right, you outperformed the democratic presidential candidate two years ago by about 14 points generally in the state. what did you figure out? what did you do? >> well, i think it's pretty simple. i mean, it's all on whose side are you on? if you love your country you fight for people who make it work, whether you punch a clock or swipe a badge, or work for tips or work on a salary, whether you're raising kids or caring for an aging parent. to me it's about the dignity of work, it's about who had side you're on. i don't look at white bourquers and black workers and la know workers, i look for workers. that shows in election time, the way you should govern and run for office. >> richard cordray who you endorsed, an ally of yours, he was at cfpb, he's got a similar populist politics, vision of politics as you, not able to pull it out against mike dewine, do you have thoughts about that? it is a tough state for democrats. >> it is a tough state. it's moving -- we've won a total
of two statewide elections in the last decade. these two races for the senate in '12 and '18. it's -- i mean, i think it's -- i mean, it's a -- you know, we talked about -- we talked about republican interest groups. we talked about -- made the contrast on health care and taxes that -- talked about patriot corporation, active companies, pay decent wages and provide good benefits and make their products in the united states, get a lower tax rate, we talked about the corporate free loader act, if you're a large company and you pay -- you pay $8 or $10 or 12 an hour, and your workers rely on medicaid and housing vouchers, and earned income tax credit, and food stamps, then you pay a corporate free loader fee, you pay a higher rate.
and that -- i think that -- voters in the end think you're on their side because i am on those kinds of issues. i think that matters. >> you know, there was -- yours was a state where donald trump came to rally for jim ranacey, the congressman opposing you, and he's got a very specific tactic here, there's a lot of talk about the central american migrants, did that stuff cash out? did that work? did you see it work? did it fall flat? >> i think it did. i think that voters turned out in huge numbers around ohio on the democratic side, particularly in the big urban areas, they turned out in huge numbers, motivated by 18 months of a very divisive president who engaged in racist demagogic rhetoric who always tried to divide people, that's how he's been successful by turning people -- he's got this fake populism. but populists, you know, real populism is not racist, it's not anti-semitic, it's not pushing people down so others can do well. it's not turning against each
other. it's about work and about those who work hard and play by the rules ought to be able to get ahead. those who work their whole lives ought to have a secure retirement or medicare and social security in spite of efforts in washington to cut those programs or raise the eligibility age or they will be there. it's a covenant between the public and their government. >> you have said, your wife said you guys are thinking about your possibility of running for president in 2020. what are you thinking about? >> we weren't much before the election. i mean, people think -- ohio is progressive. as you know, chris, from lots of conversations, i didn't as a kid dream of being president. i dreamed about playing center field for the cleveland indians. i've finally given up on that dream. we've heard from an overwhelming number of people who have said i
should consider it in large part because of our message and my long-time commitment to the dignity of work. if you stand for workers, it means never compromising on civil rights and women's rights and lgbt rights, it means never caving to wall street or the gun lobby or donald trump. and i think that makes -- that's, i think, why people of large numbers across the country have begun to approach me. >> it's interesting. you said two statewide races, 2012 race, 2018 race, a state trending in a republican direction, do you want to be president of the united states? >> well, i don't know yet. i don't know if i have the -- i mean, a lot of my colleagues have thought about wanting to be president for a long time. and i really haven't until this election. i mean, people have asked me. i've thought a little bit about it. but it's not been a lifelong dream. and emily elizabeth and caitlin and andy have to sit down and figure that out, what we want to do.
i'm not committed to doing it. we're having the conversation now. like you are, chris, i'm worried about my country. i'm worried about long-time young federal judges he puts on the bench, i'm worried long-term about climate change. i'm worried about the hate speech coming out of the white house. and that's given license for people to engage in racist or worse racist rhetoric or worse, or anti-semitic rhetoric or worse. i was at a meeting with a jewish group today in cleveland and talking to -- talking to them about the security they now -- they've always had good security in most of their synagogues in cleveland. now they're stepping it up, at great expense, because they think they need to. i don't put that all at the feet of donald trump but i've called at him, i spoke to the hebrew immigration aid society right after pittsburgh, a columbus group after the pittsburgh shooting and they -- they're concerned about all this and we
all called on the president to try to heal and unify. i don't blame him for this stuff, but he has made -- he has emboldened far too many people to do things that are just awful. >> senator sherrod brown, entering his third term, thanks for being here tonight. the mayor of los angeles on the deadly california fires and why the first lady publicly called for the firing of a top security official, that story next.
we been expecting personnel turnover in the west wing following midterm elections. reports of a bizarre personnel situation in which the east wing, the office of the first lady has become involved. a senior national security official pictured here with the president at the white house today is expected to be fired according to "the wall street journal" following this unbelievable statement. "it is the position of the
office of the first lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this white house." the position of the office of the first lady. that is a new one, publicly calling for someone to be fired. nbc news reports that ricardel repeatedly angering the east wing, demanding nsc staff have seats on the first lady's plane during her trip to africa last month. people familiar with the disagreement said. when asked for a response to the statement from the office of the first lady, a senior white house official told nbc news the east wing speaks for the east wing. #bebest everyone. today hundreds of protesters
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2 dogs and jake over here? that would be great. that would be great. that okay with you, jake? get a portfolio that works for you now and as your needs change from td ameritrade investment management. today hundreds of protesters joined by congresswoman elect alexandria cortez gathered in nancy pelosi's office, chanting
12 years, demanding pelosi draft an action plan to cut carbon emissions, the goal set forth by the government panel on climate change to avoid catastrophic climate change. cutting missions in half, if that seems ambitious, it is. if you want a sense of the stakes in this entire thing, when you look no further than the state of california. of course, california's death toll now looking to be around 44 or wildfires continue to rage, and they continue to burn across the state tonight. joining me now for the latest is the mayor of los angeles eric garcetti. mayor, how are things out there this evening? >> well, they've turned a pretty good corner thanks to the heroes out there, firefighters on the line, mutual aid throughout the state.
and all our volunteers. even purveyors of politics can't kill the fact that americans care ff each other after times of need. after a shooting in thousand oaks, the firing breaking out here in southern california, but a lot of hard work and love has turned the corner: we're optimistic. but then of course a long rebuilding. i appreciate what you said in the lead-in. cutting carbon emissions, it's not about forest mismanagement, it's about earth mismanagement. here in southern california we're showing you can cut emissions while growing an economy, investing and facing reality. we need that sort of leadership coming out of washington, d.c. and around the country that we see at the local level right now. >> even california, which is cutting emissions, and which is sort of one of the most ambitious states in the union isn't sutting it enough to meet those ipcc goals, is california prepared, is the country prepared for what it needs to do so that what you're seeing on the right of your screen does
not become more common place? >> absolutely. from those fires in california, to my friend in houston rebuilding a town devastated by par vee, to the florida panhandle, locals know this is real. we've been able to measure this, our emissions by 11% in a single year. at the same time we cut our unemployment rate by 14%. we're creating green jobs, a prosperous middle class economy that people can do from solar, to water, to other things at the same moment we're facing the reality. and quite honestly, chris, we have no other choice. i lead -- climate mayor is a group i co-founded of mayors across the country. when donald trump said he was going to withdraw from the paris climate accords, we have in 47 states 409 cities that have said if he's out, we're in, we're the only centralized country meeting the goals. and some of us are accelerating, doing it now, promised 100% renewable energy in california, and that is the pathway to the
future to save the earth. >> how huh thinking there's 44 people, the majority in northern california, but there are many missing, down in southern california, you have more control over the fire now than they did 48 hours ago, how are you thinking about the relief efforts, what people need, and how do you think about rebuilding? >> well, we're going to have to have help for people in their homes, we have to first find the dead throughout the state and anybody who has lost the places where they live. but, you know, i think it's a sobering message when you see this, that the last climate change deniers tell that to a firefighters on the line, tell that to somebody who's lost their loved one to a fire who has died, tell that to somebody who longer has a home. despite what you hear from national politics, our local officials and federal officials at the departmental level deal with each other with incredibly good will, the federal money is coming, some people want to distract us with the politics of
this, or the crazy north side ideas they have, but we have work to do. we have people to feed, we've got people who have to get back into their homes, firefighters on the line, we have people still living in shelters tonight, here in southern california, and obviously up north. we will put all hands, not just for this fight, but for the months to come, to make sure people can come back and rebuild. >> there are thousands of units, thousands of home and thousands of units of residential housing taken out. there's going to be a tremendous cost here. >> no question. especially up in northern california where we see thousands of structures that have probably been destroyed. but even down here in southern california, we're going to be working extremely hard to make sure people can get back, can build new housing and that we do everything we can to protect. we can't keep denying this is happening. this is a new normal, and this drought that is here that causes these fires requires federal leadership that we hope will come soon. >> all right, eric garcetti as the major of los angeles, many thanks. >> thank you, chris. after the break, senator
about 5,000 migrants from central america are now heading to san diego, where they plan to ask the u.s. government for asylum at the legal port of entry. and in anticipation of that, customs and border protection officials have shut down several lanes from tijuana into san diego, one of the busiest border crossings in america.
now they did that today, as you can see from the traffic, even though according to the san diego tribune, as of last night, most members of the caravan remain more than 1500 miles from tijuana. while the 5,000 plus troops the president sent to defend the border, well, most of them are hundreds of miles away from tijuana, stationed instead in texas near the rio grande valley. it's an absurd situation that iraq war veteran tammy duckworth pointed out to me is also a waste of resources. >> there is no real mission for the troops there. and this is at the cost of i'm hearing figures as high as $200 million. you know, this president has done everything he can to politicize our military, and that's completely wrong. so we have 5,000 troops under title 10 which means under posse comitatus, they're not allowed to do any law enforcement functions. they're basically sitting out in the desert building fences and latrines for each other, eating mres with no real mission.
it is a waste of resources and a real misuse of our brave men and women in uniform, and they're going to be there over thanksgiving. >> a way from their families. >> you were tweeting yesterday, if i'm not mistaken on the day that folks were observing veterans day about the anniversary of what you called your alive day, the day that your helicopter was shot down. tell me about what it was like to sort of recollect about that day. >> well, yesterday was the 14-year anniversary of my alive day. it's a tradition out the to us by the vietnam veterans. i would look at the day i was shot down as a very sad day or as a second birthday, and i choose to celebrate it. and so for me every year, it's my gut check. it's my moral compass. i don't ever want to live my life in a way in any day of my life that the men who saved me would ever be ashamed of what i do. it's my moral compass here in congress. every day i'm in the senate, i don't want them to regret, ever, ever regret saving my life. and try to do everything i can
to support our troops, to support our veterans, to live by the ideals that they lived by when they saved me that day in that dusty field in iraq. >> in terms of supporting veterans, there is a story that i really am still scratching my head about. 82,000. >> yes. >> -- beneficiaries of the gi bill are awaiting on housing payments. a and this appears to be a technical glitch that was known for quite some time. why is this not fixed? >> incompetence. incompetence from this trump administration. there is still not a chief information officer for the v.a. two years in, the second largest agency in the united states government with 300,000 employees that are serving tens and millions of veterans, they do not have a cio. so their computer system crashed, basically, and now 80,000 young men and women who are going to school on a gi bill that they earned thanks to their military service, protecting and
defending us are not going to get money for their housing allowance. many of them have gone too little money. some have been paid as little as $800 less than they should have been paid. they're going to get kicked out of their apartments, their dormitories at a time when they're trying to move on with their lives. and this president can't -- he is spending $200 million on sending 500,000 troops to the boarder where they have nothing to do, and yet he is going to leave 80,000 veterans who have already done their job, who have already performed their missions out there with no place to live because they're not getting the housing allowance. it is shameful. >> you worked in the veteran's administration. in some ways, it's one of the most sprawling, complicated bureaucracies in the federal government, and also vital and important. the president hammered on the v.a. in his campaign. what grade do you give the performance of that agency under his stewardship? >> well, you know, i think that he's done an f. i give him an f rating when it comes to the v.a. many of the folks in the v.a.
are trying as hard as they can. but when you don't have a cio, you can't overhaul that computer system. >> let me ask you -- one sec. so is that a senate confirmed position? or is that just a political appointment? >> it's a senate confirmed political appointment. >> so they just haven't nominated someone? >> they haven't nominated someone. >> in two years? >> yeah, to be the chief information officer for the v.a. at a time when they're trying to integrate the v.a. and the dod's electronic medical record and they've left 80,000 veterans throughout with no forms of payment. something similar happened when we first put in the gi bill, post- 9/11 gi bill when i was under secretary shinseki. there was a glitch then. but secretary shinseki blew up at the cio at the time and said i don't care. we're going fix it and cut checks tomorrow. so he went out and we cut checks to all the veterans who are not getting their payments. this president is leaving these guys to get thrown out on to the streets. they can fix this. they can do emergency payments to make sure they get the money
to pay their rent and housing bills for their dormitories and they're not doing it. >> final question about the representation in this congress. you're someone who comes from a different background than a lot of your fellow senators. obviously you're a veteran. you're a woman of color. you have a seven-month-old daughter who you are mothering right now as you are in the capitol. there is a whole wave of new folks who are going to be taking office, two new women who will be joining you as democratic colleagues in the senate. dozens of women who have been elected in the house. how does that change the atmosphere and the leadership structures and representation on capitol hill? >> well, we need more women in leadership positions all across this nation, not just here in capitol hill, but in boardrooms as well, all across america. remember, we also lost two women. well lost claire mccaskill and heidi heitkamp. in the senate, at least on the democratic side, we haven't gained any more women. you recall afghanistan, their parliament has 25% female representation, and we're sitting at 22 in the united
states. so we're not doing as well as afghanistan is. and that says something about how much more we have to do and how much long were have to go. until we get 50% of the senate occupied by women, we're not at true and quell representation of the american people. >> all right. illinois senator tammy duckworth, thank you so much for making some time. >> thank you. >> all right. i want to thank everyone that already bought tickets to our first ever live recording of why this happened, our weekly podcast out tuesdays. that event is now sold out. but here's the thing. hopefully it will not be our very last live show. we are thinking about maybe making this a thing. we don't know if it's going to be a thing, but we're thinking about making it a think. we'll see how this one goes. so you should keep your eyes out. watch the space. if you're not able to make it out sunday we have good news. we have a brand-new episode up today. and that is about the lasting legacy of slavery on southern politics, and it's way more complicated and way more enduring and fascinating than you might imagine.
it's also our first ever episode with two guests, maya sen and matthew blackwell. you can download it wherever you get your podcasts. don't forget to rate and review. that is "all in" for this evening. "the 11th hour with brian williams" starts now. tonight, the first lady's extraordinary call for a senior white house staff tore be fired saying she no longer deserves the honor of serving there. and tonight, reports of an even bigger shakeup sparked by a president described as furious and brooding in a cocoon of bitterness. on the russia investigation front, will written questions for this white house even matter in the end? plus the president dismissing reports that he's getting played by north korea. an update on those troops at our southern border guarding against that caravan. and trump on the defensive over hisy