tv Morning Joe MSNBC December 13, 2018 3:00am-6:00am PST
number of folks coming out saying they are likely to run. so he will certainly have his pick of the litter when the 20 something democrats finally announce they're running. >> alexi, we're going to be reading axios a.m. in just a little bit. to all our viewers out there, you, too, the sign up for the next letter. >> "morning joe" starts right now. >> the words the media should be using to describe mr. trump are generous, compassionate, principled, empathetic, kind, humble, honest and genuine. >> he's more to us than just a boss. he's a mentor. he's a sage. he's like family. >> i'm obviously very loyal and very dedicated to mr. trump. >> well, good morning. it is thursday, december 13th.
mika has the day off with her family, a long-planned family event which she's sorry she's not here because we'll be talking about baseball most of the morning. i'm just joking. we're doing politics. so along with willie and me, we have mike barnacle, john heilman, donnie deutsch is here and guru, advertising guru and all around good guy wearing baby gap t-shirts in all black this week only, donnie deutsch. actually, that's he week. also the ap's legendary jonathan -- >> okay. right. >> washington anchor for bbc world news america caddie kay and white house correspondent
for pbs news hour, yamish. willie, i know mika would agree with me and jonathan lamere would agree with me this morning that you got in the boston red sox, like we understand the yankees are going to probably win by 15, maybe 20 games next year. >> that's right, yeah. >> so we're kind of playing and lamere, feel free to chime in. we're kind of playing for maybe third or fourth place. we have joe kelly who is our best pitcher. we know we're never going to be a team that wins with, you know, by paying young kids a lot of money to throw the ball around. so joe kelly fight club. >> kelly is gone. kimbrell is not coming back. at this point, i think our best bullpen arm is going to be
barnacle. >> i'm ready to go. i can close it down. i've closed this show down many times. >> well, willie, which explains why the red sox maybe, maybe we squeak ahead of baltimore next year, maybe. >> i think it's the rays year, red sox fourth and fifth with the yankees, i think. >> is that right? >> yeah. >> the rays payroll, what, $65 million? >> they're going to be good. >> they are good. >> joe, we see who is in charge of this marriage because the second mika is not here, we're into baseball. >> instantly. >> on behalf of mika, i'm going to pick up the news. president trump's former lawyer and fixer michael cohen was sentenced yesterday to three years and to pay almost $2 million in fines, forfeitures and restitution. he has until march 6th to
surrender. the sentence comes after he pled guilty to two campaign finance violations that cohen claims were made at the direction on of donald trump. the judge accused cohen of creating a veritable smorgasbord of fraudulent conduct. while cohenen said he accepts responsibility for his actions, he also implicated the president again, telling the court, quote, recently the president tweeted a statement calling me weak and he was correct. but for a much different reason than he was implying. it was because time and time again, i felt it was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds rather than to listen to my own inner voice and my moral compass. my weakness can be characterized as a blind loyalty to donald trump and i was weak for not having the strength to question and to refuse his demands. meanwhile, another ally of president trump came forward in court documents yesterday to
acknowledge it concealed a legal payment the to benefit trump's 2016 campaign. as part of an agreement, american media incorporate, the publisher of the "national enquirer," admitted it paid hush money to a woman who alleged to have an affair with trump. the white house denies that. prosecutors said ami admitted that it made the $150,000 payment in concert with a president's presidential campaign and in order to ensure that the woman did not publicize damaging allegations about the candidate. ami further admitted its principal purpose in making the arrangement was to suppress the woman's story so as to prevent it from influencing the election. assuming they comply, the u.s. attorney has agreed not to prosecute ami for its role in that payment. the company and its ceo declined to comment. david becker and president trump have been close for years.
he has been a member at mar-a-lago since 2003. trump wrote in a tweet time magazine should definitely pick david pecker to run things over there. he'd make it exciting and win awards. >> i've always said, why didn't the "national enquirer" get the pulitzer prize for edwards and omp j. simpson and all of these things. >> so, joe, we have here those two stories dovetailing for what michael cohen is telling prosecutors and to what ami is telling prosecutors and that is in the waning days of the 2016 presidential campaign, payments were made at the direction of candidate donald trump to women to suppress their stories to help them become president of the united states. >> yeah. i'll tell you, yesterday was a fascinating day, had to be a very troubling day for donald trump where you had michael
co.e cohen going out there and basically delivering the same speech that darth vader delivered to lucas he was dieing at the end of return the jedi. but more troubling than that, you have ami brought into this, brought in specifically for another payment for the suit that they are obviously continuing. this does not stop with michael cohen going to jail. the this starts with michael cohenen going to jail. and they clearly have ami admitting as a third party they made a contribution and they made that contribution to help elect donald trump president of the united states. under any reading for all of these republicans who are covering, you know, their head in the sand, of any reading of the federal election laws, that is a crime. the fact that they knowingly conspired, i'm talking about trump and cohen and their team,
they knowingly conspired to hide that payment made in the waning days of the campaign or months of the campaign, even. that's a clear violation of the law and a felony. >> and, joe, it was a devastating day for the white house and for donald trump because what the ami settlingment with the justice department does is literally figuratively put donald trump in the room as part of a conspiracy. they are the corroborating witness to michael cohen's testimony. and danny sovalos, i don't know about you, but looking at the plea agreement and reading about it, this would seem to me, if they're climbing the ladder of justice, this is just maybe the second or third rung in this climb towards justice. there is a lot more to come out of this and potentially real, real, real threats to perhaps other people, including maybe the president's extended family based on cohen's agreement.
>> mike, you just took the words out of my mouth when i talked about ami. the prosecution and the government is building a foundation of corroborating evidence by using ami to bolster michael cohen's claims in the future so that it's not a he said, he said situation. that is the purpose of ami. the government knows they need a well corroborated case with document, text messages, e-mails, anything they can because this is not an easy crime to establish beyond a reasonable doubt. >> let's go to caddie kay now.
you're from britain and you see nothing but peace and happiness in the political system over this there. >> i love the civility. >> let's talk about yesterday and talk about what happens next. it is clear that they're building a case against donald trump and you do wonder how long republicans, all these senate republicans, especially, can sit back and pretend that a felony that they know would put them all in jail, that this felony is much ado about nothing? >> you put together the ami news and the michael cohen sentencing and it gives you a fascinating insight with the way donald trump's world worked, with michael pecker going down to mar-a-lago to discuss how they could get rid of these problems of affairs and liaison about it
during the course of the campaign. and then trump and his russia business and how he was negotiate, the russians all through 2016. you're building through these various court filings and sentencings a pretty clear picture of what the trump administration was up to in order to protect the candidate and to president the candidate's family's business during the course of the campaign. and a sense that rules were there to be thwarted and bent to the need of the candidate. whether any of that amounts to anything that would be impeachable or even indictable, perhaps when the president leaves office, we don't know yet. that we don't have. but the picture of how that campaign operated and how that business operated in service of the president, the candidate and the business above all else is emerging and that's pretty clear. >> and what is also emerging, john heilman, is the results and
the strategy that robert mueller and his team have been putting together quietly, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, going up against -- and we see this again yesterday with rudy giuliani's statements and him bopping around in bahrain to make an extra few bucks. you have a white house wholly ill prepared for a legal crisis that many are saying is far worse than watergate ever was and he's doing this without a legal team or without any knowledge of who his white house chief of staff will be guiding him through the legal battle of his life. >> right. we've seen president after president get into pickles, special counsel, special prosecutors common. the administrations often have one or two that they have to
suffer through. and usually in those cases, because they are paragons from their party, they can draw from literally the best people trying to help. when it's george b. bush or bill clinton, they have a swarm of people trying to come in and defend them. donald trump has the opposite. he's always had had trouble getting the best top level legal talent to come in and now he's managed to kind of cobble something together for these two years. now at exactly the moment when he needs help the most, he has the least help on hand. so donnie, i ask you this. what is it that -- we talked a lot about michael cohenen and your relationship with him, but now i want you to play trump whisperer, being donald trump's
new york psychotherapist. trump can't find a good chief of staff, let alone any chief of staff, and he can't help but see the vice, the pincher movement from this other district on one side, mueller on the other side. where is trump's head right now? he projects, at times in some of these you interviews, an incredible degree of calm and confidence as he did with reuters just a couple of days ago. but is he actually privately completely freaking out? >> that's a million-dollar question. i believe still he i think it will be interesting to wooatch him. if you think back about a year ago, when you describe brand, you would have said strong, authoritative, incharge, nasty, with intimidating. now when you look at him, as each day goes by, you see him as
pathetic and defanged and confused and goofy. so he's now going to be operating for the first time -- >> hey, donnie, let's go to the worst term to describe his brand. weak. he's cowtailing not only to vladimir putin, he's weak in the face of a saudi crown prince that slaughtered a washington post columnist. think about how weak as president of the united states, how sniffling as the president of the united states you would have to be to cower and kowtow to some 30 something-year-old saudi crown prince because you want his money after you leave the white house. >> joe, it's the first time in his life he's not dealing from strength. and you see it. and he's vulnerable and he's weak. there's a pathetic quality to him and it feels like a confused quality to him. and as this continues to be
there will be nobody around of any consequence and even when there has been people around with consequence, with it doesn't matter. and he's gone from malignant to benign. to me, he was always a cancer and he's gone from malignant to benign cancer. he does not have the ability to force his will on anything. and i think the weaker he seems and the weaker he is in reality, the more the circus is going to take on a surreal tone. >> there is -- willie, there is no doubt that the checks and balances of matesonian government which we've always said will hold him in check, they are tight.iening around hi. the checks and balances put in place years ago that he thinks is outdated and outmoded, it most definitely is not.
it's stood this stress test and at the end of 2018, it's doing just fine. >> and the biggest check off them all came on election day a few weeks ago. jonathan, i think we can measure the president's level of concern about michael cohen, ami, stormy daniels, all this by what you write about in your piece which is his shifting explanations for. back in april, remember on air force one, i think he was if in a place where he thought he could blow it off. then he said, yeah, michael cohen represented me in that crazy stormy daniels deal or whatever he called it. now he's got to the point where he said, yeah, it happened, but it was a simple private transaction. and if it violated campaignen finance law, it was a private matter, it was a civil matter. so he's gone from i don't know what you're talking about to okay that happens, how can i protect myself from the legal issues. >> the first time he learned
about it, he was on air force one and he was taken by surprise. since then, we have seen an evolution from trump denigrating michael cohen. in fact, trump memorably tweeted once that if you're looking for good legal counsel, whatever you do, don't go to michael cohen. his explanations have evolved as the legal peril has increased. he has acknowledged that he's had to be out there and acknowledged that there was some degree, he knew where the payments were, but he tried to suggest it was a civil matter pep compared it the to a violation of when president trump was hit with the fec. fec violations if they're done by accident or via bookkeeping error, you get a fine. you get slapped on the wrist, you move on. this is being categorized as a very different thing because it was seen as an attempt to hide from the american people, to
influence the election and that this, of course, could have a felony charge connected to it if, of course, a president can be charged. and you're talking about the original point about how the president has reacted to this. i think it's very telling in the last 24 hours, he's reacted not at all. had his twitter feed has gone completely silent. he hasn't weighed in on cohenen yet. >> he's a liar, that's it. >> at the white house, he was asked about it. he ignored the questions. this is something the president and his people don't want to touch. >> so the prevailing view seems to be still in the justice department that a sitting president cannot be indicted. is president trump counting on the fact that a president cannot be indicted, a, and b, even if impeachment comes up in the house, it won't get through the republican-led senate? >> i think the president realizes that he is hoping that some sort of legal issue arises so that he will not have to have the same fate as michael cohen.
because there's no way that the president, who we all know now is someone who watches cable tv watched michael cohen go out and watched michael cohen's family go out. his daughter, really, almost in tears. there's no way the president watched those people who he knew very well and didn't think, wow, that could be my fate. so i think there's a legal question of whether or not presidents can be indicted. rudy giuliani is counting on the idea the presidents can't be indicted. so i'm guessing president trump is also doing that. when it comes to impeachment, the president is yes, maybe a little worried, but democrats also have to show that they can balance power, that they can actually produce legislation and produce some sort of wins while also going after the president. so i don't know if impeachment is going to be something the democrats are going to want to go full throttle on. i can say this, though. catch and kill, this idea that there was a real attempt to catch stories and kill them to protect donald trump was
something that reporters, especially the people at the "wall street journal," broke and explained to people months ago. now we have a federal court justifying what journalists knew all along. so i think yesterday, as much as it was about legality and so much about donald trump and the people around him, the loyal people around him flipping on him, there's this idea that journalism still matters, that journalism is why in a lot of cases why we're in court yesterday. so i think that that's something that the president is also not lost on him, that there's this idea that when something wasn't caught and killed, when it was actually brought to the light, that you had someone then go to jail for three years. >> and we've talked about it on this show. obviously, a great deal. and in personal ways, too. the "national enquirer"er and donald trump worked hand in hand throughout the campaign and even after he was elected president of the united states. they would plant stories. if somebody -- if ted cruz was moving ahead in iowa, then there
would be front page slash and burn stories about ted cruz. the same thing with other republican candidates. whenever they started going ahead in the polls, if you're a surgeon, well, they would just, you know, put something in the nation"national enquirer" sayin you almost killed a child. and this, the coordination, you could see it throughout the entire campaign and as we've said here on the show, even after the campaign. so, danny, what happens next? what do you suspect we will see next, both in the southern district and also from robert mueller's office? >> for michael cohen, there is still a glimmer of hope at cooperation and by cooperation, i mean full cooperation. the rules of criminal procedure allow a defendant to cooperate after his sentencing, buttite not commonly done. going forward, i think the indication is clear that they are building a case for campaign finance law violation.
there would be no other reason to engage ami and to have michael cohen establish that fact of the violation of the law. also, with michael cohen rushing in to plead guilty last week to a -- for lying to congress, false statements to congress, it raises the question why have him come in and plead guilty for the special counsel's office to such a relatively minor federal crime. and the answer may be that the special counsel's office is laying another foundation, a foundation for those lies to congress, that they were, in fact, lies, because they're being compared against statements that others gave, including the president's written answers to his take home test that he submitted and the statementser or testimony given by other close members of the president's family or his team. >> all right, danny. thank you so much. we greatly appreciate you being here and more to come on this
important story. we appreciate it. jonathan lamere, speaking of laying the foundations, let's finish this segment the same way we began it. that's exactly what this new york yankees team is doing. i'm just curious, in terms of great regular seasons, will we at the end of next year be comparing them to the 1906 cubs, the '27 yankees, the '54 indians or the 2001 mariners? which one of those four great regular season teams, do you think.? >> i saw they brought back j.a. happ who i expect will win 30 to 35 games next year. there's talk of trading for cindegar, machado. we're not going to be paying much attention to baseball next
year. >> we hockey fans have always been gracious winners. it's the fact that you guys are taking this smug approach. >> what do you mean? >> well, you're mocking us, you're -- >> this isn't a smug approach. we're saying -- and on a new york -- i'm very humble. barnacle will tell you that whenever it counted, jonathan lamere and i had absolutely no faith in the boston red sox last year. we are boston fans true and true. we're chicken little. we believe the sky is falling tomorrow. and mike barnacle, i'm predicting right now, the yankees, 111 wins next season. >> joe, i can predict exactly who the yankees will be compared to in october, early october of next year. they will be compared to the 2018 new york yankees and finishing second. >> ooh. >> ooh. >> all right. >> okay. that hurt. willie, what's next? >> i think the rays dynasty begins in march. they're good.
>> oh, they are good. >> they are good, actually. still ahead on "morning joe," senator claire mccaskill joins us for something of an exit interview. what the missouri democrat is planning next. plus, yamish just mentioned it, president trump insists he's not worried about impeachment, but that is a different story from what he's saying behind closed doors. more on that when "morning joe" comes right back. fact is, every insurance company hopes you drive safely. but allstate helps you. with drivewise.
unstopand it's strengthenedting place, the by xfi pods,gateway. which plug in to extend the wifi even farther, past anything that stands in its way. ...well almost anything. leave no room behind with xfi pods. simple. easy. awesome. click or visit a retail store today. mr. president, did michael cohen cover up your dirty deeds? >> that was president trump in the white house yesterday with that last question in reference to michael cohen's claim that he covered up, quote, dirty deeds for the president. the president did not react on twitter yesterday as the "national enquirer's" parent company joined cohen in admitting to paying off karen
mcdougall who claims she had an affair with trump, something on which he has never personally commented. and the white house has side stepped by saying he never had a relationship with dougall. while trump told reuters tuesday night he does not fear impeachment, that is not what multiple sources are telling nbc news. people are saying he's alarmed by that prospect. cara lee joins us now, also with us senior reporter at ""vanity fair" emily jane fox. he's out with a new piece entitled "what a way to go." we'll get to that in just a moment. carol, i want to start with you, though. what is the president saying specifically about impeachment and why did he fear that prospect when republicans do
still own the senate and are obviously highly unlikely to vote to impeach and convict? >> well, he's start to go fear impeachment because of what we've seen in the last few days. it started with the cohen issue where he had that the president directed him to make these -- to make these payments to these two women. then we have seen, you know, the house democrats and it sort of sinking in for him a little bit about what their subpoena power is going to look like. he's been calling around to friends, so allies on the hill and basically a mix you the of venting about why is all this happening, why is no one doing anything about it to asking questions about about, you know, impeachment and kind of what that would look like. and i think the reason why it's so nerve-racking for him right now is they don't know what's coming next. so i can tell you that senator rubio's comments, for instance, over the weekend where he said that no one is above the law, you know, really rattled some of
the people around the president and what they've been saying is that given they don't know what's coming next, it really matters that they hold the establishment republicans on his side. and while, you know, the vast majority of republicans are sticking by the president, they're really worried that there will be some softening there and that is the most weak point within the republican party. and if that starts to fall, then they are worried that they'll be kind of a domino effect. >> so, carol, it's heilman here. i'm curious, yesterday we focused on a lot of michael cohen, but lurking around the edges and in one case not really around the edges, but very much in the center of the frame was the david pecker question. we now learn, again, with the end of the summer, we sort of knew this was happening, but now we've had it confirmed. this shoe has dropped in a very public way. then there's the discussion about allen wiselberg and his cooperation, he's maybe the person that moos the most about
donald trump's finances. we've known about this, but all of a sudden we're focused on those two. is the president focused on those two? he might be. and if he is, you would think the prospect of those two people would have the president completely panicked, but i wonder whether that is, in fact, the case. >> yeah. you make a really good point. this is -- we have been reporting on this had a couple days before this came out yesterday. and there was already concern. and that just was completely exacerbated with the news on ami yesterday. and, you know, we spoke to someone who said that, you know, basically now whether or not the president has committed impeachable offenses could hinge on these two people who have been extremely close to him for a very long time and know a lot. so that is kind of -- that's adding to it. and then you have, frankly, this is all happening at a time when the president is frustrated by his inability to get a chief of staff, that he's not getting his
border wall. so it's all kind of coalescing around him so he's focused on the fact that in some of the people who have been closest to him could ultimately, you know, hurt his presidency and lead to what he's been asking questions about impeachment. >> emily, you described the courthouse to me yesterday almost as a funeral. take us inside there. his family was there. it was kind of a tragedy. >> i don't know if i would call it a tragedy. this is what happened when people break the law. this is definitely a personal tragedy for him and it was three full rows of people who are related to him and parents and siblings, his children, his wife and it was an incredibly emotional thing. i think a lot of times we get caught up and these are characters in this, but this is real life for these people. for me sitting there, that was
the most parent thing. there's a human impact and there's a human toll of working with donald trump for so many years. and it had me thinking overnight, you saw the impact on his children and on this family and a couple of things that were laid out yesterday that cohen cooperated on and the things that he cooperated on. but this human toll may play out with the president's own children in three ways. so you had cohen being convicted on lying to congress. we know don jr. has testified to congress and there have been reports that perhaps he was less than truthful in that testimony. you also have the campaign finance stuff which i know from my reporting the president brought in eric trump earlier this year to deal with some of the handling of the civil suits surrounding stormy daniels. so you have him potentially wrapped up in that. and then you have ivanka trump
who received this e-mail from a russian wrestler's wife saying, hey, we would love to hook you up with putin to talk about trump tower moscow and she forwarded that to michael co.en. so all of these things are related to michael cohen's case and related to president trump. >> so, i mean, we know he's got three years already. i'm presuming that he's going to spend his time between now and march seeing what he can do to reduce that to bring that sentence down which leads the tantalizing prospect that he may spill more or cooperate more or have more to give. do we know what that might be and do we know where that sentence might eventually end up? >> you know, it's interesting. 70 hours is a lot of hours. and i think you generally get the to share most of what you know in 70 hours. and it's my sense that he has at least related to the trump organization and the trump foundation and what he knows about russia. he has shared voluntarily much of what he knows. now, it is possible that investigators will come up on
other avenues they didn't know to ask him about and that is what he could potentially share with investigators and a way he could continue to cooperate. >> did he think by cooperating that he would avoid prison time? in other words, was he surprised at all that he has to go to jail if for three years? >> i don't know that surprise is the right word. i think everyone around him was basically saying to him, expect the worst. hope for the best and prepare for the worst. i think -- of course he cooperated in order to reduce his prison time. of course there was another element to it, wanting to do right by his family and right by his country. but you cooperate and sit with investigators because you want to try and lessen your jail time. i don't think when he started cooperating back in august that three years in prison is what he was going to expect, but when the southern district released their presentencing memo last week and recommended more than three years, that is when he was surprised. but i think he had a bit of a
preview what was coming. >> so, donnie, you've known michael for a long time. what are your thoughts and what is he thinking his future looks likes in prison and after prison? >> he's devastated. i've said this on the show before and i take some heat for it. i think there are pad men that do bad things and i think he's a good man that did bad things. in his speech yesterday, i thought there were some interesting points. when he specifically said, you know, i was blinded by the light, and a few weeks back he said something to me for the first time that he had never said before. he goes, you know, i was in a cult. you get caught up in it. everywhere you go, there are crowds. you're a rock star. in hindsight looking back, i was in a cult. it doesn't excuse the behavior. i don't think it's set in for michael at this point. i think what michael's biggest concern, his family, that's when when we would talk he would break down.
i don i don't think it's fully set in. basically, he's lost his law license. he will spend three years in prison, but when you come out, what is your next act? obviously he's very torn. up until the guidelines of the southern district, he thought he would be in a much more lenient state. >> emily jane fox, we didn't get to talk about everything. >> there's always next time. >> okay. thank you, emily. carol lee, thank you, as with well. we'll be reading your new reporting at nbc.com. coming up on "morning joe," another of the president's top picks for chief of staff is out of the running. we'll explain while congressman mark meadows will be staying in congress.
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survived. two questions, one, why would she want to survive to fight another day in this mess and, two, what in the world is she going to do next to get this thing moving one direction or the other? >> yeah. it's interesting. there are two very undesirable political jobs at the moment. one is british prime minister and the on other is white house chief of staff. she has survived. she's sort of the houdini of politics. every time you think she's going to get caught in a vice, she manages to writingriggel out. she's a vicar's daughter. she wants this job, she wants to see it through. she's tenacious, she is stubborn. every time you think she's going to be thrown out, she manages to still be there outside 10 downing street with the
christmas lights in the background saying i am still here. but you're right, there is no plan on brexit that a majority of parliament wants and that is still the reality after she survived that very dramatic day yesterday where she had that vote of no confidence. britain voted 2 1/2 years ago to leave the european union. 2 1/2 years on, it seems we still don't know what we want that to look like. >> those great english poets, the clash, why don't they pick a side? why don't they call boris johnson's bluff? why don't conservatives and members of the labor party cobble together a coalition? >> yesterday, those boris johnson faction, those faction of hard brexiteres who want to leave the european union, cut all ties, they did pull the
trigger. it just turned out that their bullet was a blank. they couldn't get enough people behind them to support them to oust her. so now she goes back to europe today, tries to get some better deal, her -- a better version of her deal. she goes back to particle many. it's unlikely that that passes and then what? are we facing the prosecuteses prospect of a much closer relationship with the european union or are we facing going back to the country and having a second refer run dumb and potential reversing the whole process. after 2 1/2 years of this, the british people are exhausted. we aren consumed with this process at a time when wouldn't it be great if we were out there on the world stage as america is retreating. britain can't fill that role. for the last 70 years, britain and america have been leading
the world. america is retreating under donald trump and britain with its negotiations can't do anything else with that. >> all right. caddie kay, you say the clash is best. we won't talk baseball. what's your favorite clash song? >> i did like jonathan lamere's haircut, though. i was more interested in that. >> news of the day. . >> it was going to be london calling, right? obviously. >> willie, your favorite clash song? >> i was a child of the 80s, so i'm going to drop "rock the caspagh" in there. good fun. >> jonathan lamere? >> i am going to go with "london calling." >> it is london calling." >> why do we never bring up barely manilow. >> really? seriously? >> donnie, i would pay you -- i would pay you a substantial amount of money to sing a verse
of "mandy." >> or coba cabana. >> you have to go a little bit i write the songs. >> looks like we made it. >> if you're going to do manilow, it has to be trying to get the feeling again or week in the new england. heilemann, let's go back to the clash. my personal favorite, working for the clamp down. you start wearing blue and brown. >> i knew you were going to go for the clamp down. that's a strong -- >> what about you? >> that's a strong pick. you know, it's a good lost in the super market, love that song, love london calling and train in vain. >> by the way, little known fact, willie geist for you children of the 80s and the 90s, on the original album, we used to get albums and open them up
and look at the cool pictures in the middle. train in vain, it was a hidden track. you didn't even know it was on the album. >> you learn something every day on this show, don't you? >> that's a fact. yes, you do. yes, you do. >> okay. still ahead it looks like nancy pelosi is on her way again to become speaker of the house. we'll talk about the deal she reached with democrats in opposition ahead on "morning joe". ♪
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democratic leadership would only be allowed to serve in their roles for three terms before needing a two-thirds majority vote in the caucus to be elected to a fourth. current. ly those leadership positions are not subject to term limits and require only a simple majority to be elected. the deal will provide pelosi the critical number of votes she needs on january 3rd to become speaker of the house. nancy pelosi survives this run at her once again. in the agreement people like tim ryan, linda sanchez, some of the most prominent democrats who wanted to see new leadership at the top. there's some institutional change that nancy pelosi gives up in exchange. >> there is. let's remember where nancy pelosi started. she started with someone who -- she started by fundraising and getting out the votes enough so democrats could one, take back the house and there would be a speakership to run for. even people who didn't know if they would support her for
speaker were telling me in interviews they were happy she was out there fundraising for democrats in the way she was. then the fact that she really knocked down every single opponent that even talked about running for speaker. marcia fudge, you had a news story how she was supporting a man who ended up killing his wife. nancy pelosi going into that meeting with donald trump and showing she's a woman of strength, can be strong in meetings and the fact that she was quiet but decisive when she told the president look i come to this white house with a position of strength, i come to this white house with democrats knowing they have control of the white house in 2019. people that were doubting nancy pelosi between her fundraising, getting the house back, getting opponents to get out of the way and her leadership with donald trump has said, you know what? she deserves this leadership. >> in the wake of what happened yesterday with nancy pelosi, securing the speakership, is
there any trepidation among the seth molton gang of going forward? >> she didn't knock down her opponents by hitting them with sticks. they gave them carrots. she had lawmakers work on their pet projects. nancy pelosi, she has resisted the idea of term limits for a long time because people say having a lame duck speaker, somebody who won't be there in four years will water down her power. but in this case, nancy pelosi will have all the power she wants. but on a larger caucus they will have problems passing term limits for some. john lewis says he's not sure term limits is the right way.
>> thank you very much. as always. still ahead "the washington post" robert costa joins us with his reporting on the president's search for a new chief of staff. first michael cohen, now the publisher of the president's favorite tabloid prosecutors appear to pile on evidence implicating donald trump in campaign finance violations. we'll talk the to a former prosecutor from the southern district of new york when "morning joe" comes back. (whooshing) - [narrator] for powerful suction, you need a shark. with two swappable batteries, at maximum suction the shark ion f80
you know it may be the end of the year but still a lot happening on capitol hill. senate minority leader openly touting the president. >> the president is so used to advisors who fail to dispel his false and made up facts that he lives in a cocoon of his own mistruths. leader pelosi and i had to tell
the president no that's not true. we had to puncture that cocoon and he threw a temper tantrum because of it. >> you have a president trying to ram through a vote on the house. on his border wall, political consequences be damned. >> the question of whether or not we can move it, yes, we can. the question whether or not that's the right play call that i think is quite debatable. >> since trump said that he would be proud to shut down the government, doesn't that kind of screw your messaging? >> a bit. >> care to elaborate? >> nope. >> okay. house republican congressman patrick mchenry who serves as the chief deputy whip saying basically he's destroyed our strategy. you got some top republicans willing to support a government shutdown while trotting out the same tired talking points from just before the mid-terms. >> what do you make of the
president saying he's willing to shut the government down over the wall? >> i think it's very important. i think that we have seen what has happened with the caravans, because we've had people cross the borders illegally but you have never seen anything as threatening oscar vans. obviously, you don't want to encourage more of that. >> i'm sorry, willie geist, you have never seen anything as threatening. it was a made up story. it was a made for mid-term election story and i wonder what the good people of iowa think about their senior senator saying that caravans are the most threatening thing to the united states ever. >> that's an amazing thing. the president the other dether
day conflating what happened with france. this is why we need tough bore walls. there's no problem with terrorists coming over the border. there's no problem with the caravan. yes people attempt to cross the border. it happened we saw some of it in tijuana several weeks ago but there are not mass caravans moving into this country and i don't know why at this point with the mid-terms past, i can't figure out a justification for someone like senator chuck grassley who knows better to continue to push that story. >> mike, what's going on? we have chuck grassley -- a lot of republicans would look at chuck grassley and say you know he served us well. i know a lot of people would say the same thing about orrin hatch. both of these senators are absolutely humiliating themselves right now and you wonder if there are any family members or staff members that can politely take them to the side and say you got a great
legacy, please enough. >> i don't know if there are. it would be helpful to both of them if there were. but, i think, part of the think is kind of a very vivid i illustration signature reflex we've seen during the trump term is that many people who you would have thought would know better have become kind of conditioned to or reflexive, bowing and scraping before donald trump. they never want to say anything that gets them on the wrong side of donald trump, contradicts donald trump in anyway and they are not alone in this. these particular instances are glaring, but we've seen it time and time again for two years which if you're a republican in the united states senate, you are asked a question, the way in which you answer is what's the way in which i can answer this question that will not provoke some kind of a mean tweet from
president trump. >> we have john heilemann, donny deutsch, katty kay and eugene robinson, columnist at the "washington examiner," political reporter for "the washington post" and msnbc political analyst robert costa and former assistant united states attorney in the southern district of new york. a distinguished fellow in criminal justice at pace school of law and msnbc legal analyst. mika will be back tomorrow. we have a lot to talk about as it pertains to michael cohen but this new element to the conversation and a new piece to the puzzle when we talk about american media, the parent company of the nation"national enquirer" coming out and prosecutors saying they helped
protect the president of the united states by suppressing stories right before the 2016 election. >> yep. and we want to get to that in a second. willie, of course, mika is off today for a planned family event. as we said before. this is our chance to go a little free form, talk baseball, talk music. but i want to go to something mika would want to talk about quickly. you've written an article about jeffrey epstein. i'm still shocked by the miscarriage of justice that occurred in the justice department. you have up to 80 girls, possibly even more who were raped by epstein and his rich and powerful friends and then it was covered up by the federal government. what do we do moving forward? what are the opportunities to re-open this case, to get justice for these young girls who were raped.
and to bring these powerful men to justice? >> well, thanks, joe, for helping keep the spotlight on this because it is a really important issue, and i think the best hope right now and what we need is an official investigation. i and inreporting on this has been excellent and i did write a piece sort of laying out based on "the miami herald's" reporting how i can see just in public reports that the handling of this case differed greatly from my experience in 16 years where i did lots of sex crimes, sex trafficking prosecutions, how this case differed greatly and the way it was handled. huge red flags that something here was not right. this was not handled in the way that sex trafficking cases would normally be handled where defendants who have frankly much less bad conduct go to jail for 10, 15 years because those are very strict mandatory minimums
written into our laws. >> as you pointed out, 10 to 15 years and yet you got 80 young girls who may have been sexually abused, who reported they were sexuallied abused, they were not prostitutes, they were under age girls raped by older, powerful men. shouldn't those sentences be stacked and shouldn't epstein be spending the rest of his life in jail? >> he should. we need to know, sometimes prosecutors know things that the public doesn't know. based on this public reporting, if i had that case in the southern district of new york, jeffrey he sign would be in jail for the rest of his life. any prosecutor in the southern district of new york. prosecutors really -- these are the kind of cases prosecutors and investigators like to make because these are -- these cases make your blood boil. you know, jeffrey epstein got a
slap on the wrist. something went wrong here in the system. you know it seems like it was intentionally corrupted to protect certain people but we need an official investigation. the department of justice, office of the inspector general is probably the right mechanism to do that. if there's misconduct that was found that would then enable or help the victims in being able to, first of all, seek further civil justice, and possibly allow, you know, a new prosecution because the agreement that was reached with epstein could perhaps be thrown out. if there's misconduct that's found. >> you talked about working at the southern district of new york, maybe you can help the rest of us out by looking at everything that was coming at us yesterday. you had cohen, of course, being sentenced, and perhaps people thought that might be the end of the investigation and they were going to start piecing things together, to come to their conclusions about what the
president and others around him did illegally. suddenly we hear about ami, the company that owns the "national enquirer". they've struck a deal and doesn't look like the beginning of the end to borrow from winston churchill, this looks like this may just be the end of the beginning. what do we expect next from the southern district of new york as it pertains to donald trump and the legal jeopardy he's now in? >> well, that's right, joe. this certainly doesn't seem like the end. and i think it's very telling, first of all, that the southern district entered into the nonprosecution agreement with ami. essentially you can view that as a cooperation agreement which i know people now are pretty familiar with that term but it's a certain kind of cooperation agreement with a corporation where they agree not to prosecute in exchange for ami's cooperation and they get immunity for its participation in the crimes.
so we know michael cohen has been, you know, pled and been sentenced. many of us were always saying the evidence that the southern district had was more than just michael cohen's say so. we now know that for a fact because we know they have witnesses in ami and there's much more out there as well that the southern district has. so the question is what case are they building? where else is this going? because of the nature of the people involved in the transactions that michael cohen pled guilty to, the campaign finance felonies involving the payoffs to these women and the attempts to manipulate the information to the american public during the 2016 campaign, there was a small number of people and entities involved. donald trump and the people who are the executives at the trump organization. so in addition to cohen and ami. now you've got two of that very small group of participants essentially having admitted
guilt, pled guilty, and said that it was done in coordination with the campaign to influence the election. so prosecutors have essentially already met, you know, elements of the crime that they would need to prove at a trial, which is a very high burden, and they've already knocked out some of the defenses that someone like donald trump or other executives of the trump organization could raise. namely saying that this was just a personal expense. so i think where this was going, it's going to the trump organization and it's executives. >> so, bob costa, what's your read on the level of concern in the white house right now? we were talking with jonathan lameer in the last hour about the evolving explanations for these payments beginning in april on air force one when the president said i don't know what you're talking about, you have to ask michael cohen about those payments. now you have support from michael cohen's story effectively in the case we're
seeing with american media is that payments were made as directed by the president. this is the allegation to suppress news stories to help donald trump be elected president of the united states. all we've seen out of the mueller investigation has sort of been tangental to the president. paul manafort the crimes are about him and not the president. this gets close to the door step of the white house. >> inside the white house, white house officials are trying to avoid the topic. they know if you bring up michael cohen with the president he goes on a rant about how his former lawyer is a liar. when it comes to the russia investigation they don't want to get close to it or hire a personal attorney. they are also uneasy it's mayor giuliani on the outside being the lone spokesman for the entire administration on these matters and they see coming down the pike house democrats with subpoena power maybe not even going after the russia aspect and the halls for president trump but trying to maybe
impeach president trump next year based on campaign finance violations. >> so, gene, the president has gone from, i don't know anything about this to now it was a private transaction, and if it was -- if it was against the law it was in a civil sense, it wasn't a criminal -- he's gone from i don't know what you're talking about but if it happened -- >> i didn't know. okay, you know, if it happened well, yeah, it did happen but it was no big deal. nothing to see here. look, yesterday was a hugely important day, i think, in this entire investigation. baufl, for t basically, for two reasons. it was ami corroborating the account that michael cohen had already given of this attempt to pay the women being directed by the president of the united
states. that directly implicates the president of a flown. we already had a tape recording or a recording that cohen secretly made that did that. but this is -- that's very solid. the second big thing that happened, i don't know, we talked a lot about it today that the incoming new york state attorney general, latisha james will launch a wide ranging investigation of the trump organization and the trump foundation. the business practices, the whole nine yards. and i think in the long run that could be potentially the most dangerous thing about donald trump and i'm talking about, you know, his liberty, you know. essentially. the trump organization, the trump empire. my sense and the sense of a lot of people who know him more
closely than i have, once you start poking at it, you just don't know what ugly things are going to come out but there's going to be a lot of them. a lot of questions about potential money laundering, a lot of questions about money from russian oligarchs and other shady people and so we'll see. but that's very dangerous. >> i want to ask a question about the republican electorate. we have the mueller investigation and the two tracks we've known that were in place there, collusion and obstruction of justice. if you can this question about republican voters, not just the trump base but republican voters broadly defined, of the three kind of buckets we have here,
one, donald trump in bed with russia. two, donald trump obstructing justice. three, donald trump having engaged in and i don't want to call it campaign finance violations but having directed for somebody to commit a felony that involves campaign finance law but for the purpose of defrauding the american public, all based on hush money to porn stars and playboy models, of those three buckets what potentially causes the president the greatest political vulnerability when all the facts come rushing out to the public as we're seeing now and about to see more in the coming weeks? >> that's a good question. each of those buckets present a different risk to the president and i also think he's had to take different actions to inoculate him against those risks. let's take michael cohen. we know conservative, one of the things that moral taste buds that tends to be pretty valuable and for conservatives is the idea of loyalty.
there's a great book called "the righteous mind" that talks about the way that people on both sides of the aisle think about being right and wrong. conservatives think being disloyal is the worst thing you can do. people in trump's orbit that were once loyal to him but now turning, conservative voters sticking with the president, hey these people turned on you even though it's saying he broke the law in all of these ways. if i'm trying to think if you're a republican voter, trying to stay on the president's side that's one angle. two we saw in the exit polls coming out of the election that republicans think that the mueller investigation has become political, it's gone on too long. the polls can completely change on that once we get actual results. i think the third piece of this is, remember there's another thing that happened with the national "national enquirer" an
an affair on the part of ted cruz. this is not paying off women in which you had an affair, even if he wasn't running for president, trump might want to keep that quiet. if you're not running for president why is this media organization that's friendly to you begins running these stories about your opponent? that's something i haven't heard talked about in this recent round much news about the "national enquirer" and ami. i'm interested to see if more comes out about where that story originated and did this happen during the primaries? >> bob costa, as the president is sitting out there and wonder what other stories are out there, i won how much time you're hearing he's also spending concerned about the economy and the state of the markets at the moment and is that something -- is he so fixated on the russian investigation that he's not focused on the economy because it seems to me that this is a moment of particular peril for him having tied his fortunes so
strongly to the markets to see them so volatile and potentially volatile and trending downwards for the next two years of his presidency. is that something he's talking to his close associates about? >> it is. the trade war has been eased slightly at least for the moment with china. the president used his trade war as way to get his basics cited, reaffirm his position. but as the markets swing back and forth there's a real question hovering over the white house how is this trade war pursued, is it with the same aggressiveness in 2019 and i think about divided government. is the economic plan not a tax cut like it was for the first two years is it an infrastructure program that includes some democratic spending, democratic votes. the white house has to wrap its arms around the idea of actually working with democrats on something big and they haven't figured out the calculus at all. >> donny deutsch, i want to go
back to what kristen was talking about, about republicans, how long does the rank-and-file stay with him, how long do the senators stay with him. i know you'll remember this. you can lift from 1998 and 1999 everything that republican senators, republican house members were saying about bill clinton. you can lift from talk radio exactly what people were saying when they were calling in to shows like rush limbaugh and apply them to what's happening in 2018, and actually what donald trump has done certainly in terms of the law, in terms of impeachable offenses is far worse than bill clinton lying in a deposition and lying before a grand jury. and, yet, the question is, when does that dam break? when do they wake up and say you
know what? selling our soul to this life long democratic fundraiser is not worth it. >> to compare the two, what trump is being accused of is basically the pillars of our democracy and trying to destroy them. since mika is not here i'll bring up a pop culture now, lawrence olivier, is it safe yet? when will it be safe for these republicans? i think very soon. we got to go back and remember republicans hated trump at the beginning. he stormed this universe. i think a perfect storm will start to happen. the mueller investigation continues to heat up. the economy has slowed. i think with trump's display the other day in the nancy pelosi-chuck schumer meeting when he said i'll quadruple down on an issue that 27% of this country said is not an urgent issue, immigration and 8.5%, a
popular congressional vote the largest differential in the last election, since 1947. since they started counting. at some point this is going to start to resonate the things he's doubling and quadrupling down is not mattering and the very people who voted for him will see right now he's basically benign. basically he's impotent to do anything for them and i think that combination of things, i think at the beginning of this year you'll start to see the peel sean it safe yet? the answer is yes to come up. >> robert costa, it's jonathan lameer. the other thing that the president is dealing with. he doesn't have a chief of staff. john kelly is leaving. yesterday mark meadows is removed from the conversation. explain to us a little more why meadows is no longer a candidate and at this point who is left? who can take this job? >> talking to white house officials and top republicans they say at one level they wanted to avoid to have a
special congressional election in north carolina. mark meadows is a combative congressman, a top trump ally and the white house said we're not sure he has the skills set to deal with divided government plus the investigations plus a president whose temperament can go from here to there in a second. he's more valuable as democrats heat up on capitol hill. their short list remains so varied and the president spent much of the day on wednesday making calls from his executive residence. hearing dozens of names out there. meadows is a leading container. the former deputy campaign manager, an investigator for republicans, who has those attack persona. but others are saying governor chris christie of new jersey should be in the mix. one of a more political mind. more in the mind of nick ayers. >> let's wrap up this block where we began with two big stories yesterday with michael cohen and ami.
we had several days over the last year and a half or so where we said okay this is a bad day for the president when something has come out from bob mueller or the southern district has provided us with some insight into its case. where do you put yesterday? how significant a day was it and how concerned should the white house be about what came out yesterday in court? >> that's a great question, willie, because i think we've gotten into this ranking of criminal behavior by the president and the republicans are trying to put it down to the a two, some republicans. i put it at a ten. here's why. it's not just that it is serious criminal behavior, despite the shoulder shrugging and trying to minimize it. we had that laid out by the southern district how this corrupts our electoral system and operating from the shadows when other people were out knocking on doors. you have a federal judge who essentially adopted these facts in court on the record saying
that individual one, you know, directed and coordinated with michael cohen. you have a federal judge who called these crimes sophisticated in their nature. this is not an ordinary campaign finance violation. this is a felony scheme where they used corporation, set up shell companies, falsified books and records. this to me resembles more of a fraud scheme which people go to jail for all the time. so i wish that our republican lawmakers would start looking at the seriousness of this and so i would put it at a ten for that reason. >> as we look at twitter today and yesterday the president of the united states has been completely silent about what he said. that may be some indication. still ahead this morning on "morning joe" two u.s. senators with different results in their mid-term raises. senator claire maccass kill who lost her bid but debbie stabenow who locked in another term joins
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stay connected while you move with the best wifi experience and two-hour appointment windows. click, call or visit a store today. congress has taken care of one piece of business by overwhelmingly approve a sweeping compromise farm bill to the tune of $867 billion over a decade. but there still that year end government funding bill still up in the air. joining us now democratic senator debbie stabenow of michigan. senator, always great to see you. we talk so much about how congress can't get along, nothing gets done in washington. let's talk about something that did get done in washington. you passed out of senate this farm bill 87-13. why was it so important? >> this is incredibly important. first always great to be with you and this particular bill we write every five years. it's the rural economic development plan for the country, small towns, rural communities. our food policy. it's supporting farmers.
it also does things like make the largest investment in voluntary land and water conservation efforts for the country. it's 12 different bills put into one. bioenergy, trade promotion, so on. it's a big deal we were able to come together actually with the largest vote ever, bipartisan vote ever in the history of writing farm bills in the senate and then the house had a strong, strong bipartisan vote yesterday. so if we're willing to put our heads down and work hard and trust each other and keep our words you can get things done. >> senator, it is an example of bipartisanship. we saw the opposite approach in the oval office the other day with the president's heated exchange with senator schumer and incoming speaker pelosi in which of course the government shutdown was raised. the president suggested he would take ownership of the shutdown. i want to get your take on where do you see these talks going?
do you think this is something -- do you agree with senator schumer and nancy pelosi in which the president would have to own this if not pay for it politically? >> he will own it. let me first say we all support strong border security that's why we put $1.3 billion into last year's budget that they haven't even begun to spend yet on border security. we put another 1.6 for this year. and it's not about whether or not we want strong border security, we all want our families to be safe and communities to be safe. it's about a strategy to make sure it's the most effective way to do that. i should also say we've already passed 75% of the budget for next year. so this is 25% that's left. i find it really strange that the president would want to have a shut down of the department of homeland security and require up to 88% of the employees to work without pay over the holidays. this whole thing makes no sense.
>> senator, this is gene robinson. let me ask you about something that's going on at home in michigan. governor rick schneider has a question of whether or not he'll sign lame duck bills that are coming out of the legislature now that democrats are taking office. there's a sense that republicans are trying to lock in policies that will hamstring essentially the new government. talk about that and your position and what can to be done? >> well, gene, it's always good to talk with you. i have to say this is a power grab plain and simple. the people of michigan voted for democrats in each statewide elected office and they did that because they wanted a governor who will focus on health care, clean drinking water, an economy that works for everybody, an ag, secretary of state that will
fight for people. so on their way out of town at the end of the year the republicans in the house and senate are trying to change the law so secretary of state can no longer oversee campaign finance laws, for example. she actually wrote a book on that, by the way, and wants to get rid of dark money and put the light of day on what's happening on campaign finance. they want to have the state republicans in the legislature be able to have equal power with the attorney general. our new attorney general so they can bring different lawsuits if she tries to bring a lawsuit from text people who have pre-existing conditions so they can get case they want as republicans to be able to offer something and have equal standing. it's really ridiculous. yesterday, i can't believe the state house passed a bill that would make it harder for people to put proposals on the ballot in michigan so that people could actually vote for things that they care about.
and so our governor has got a choice right now. he can either leave by being a political hack or be a statesman and veto these bills. >> senator, the two facts that clearly came out of the mid-term elections were that women did well and the midwest did well for democrats. >> right. >> you had a surge back of democratic power throughout the midwest. would that suggest to you when you look forward to 2020 and a presidential nominee from the democratic party that perhaps a woman from the midwest might be the answer? >> i definitely want to see a woman on the ticket and, you're absolutely right that we actually have a woman governor, secretary of state general, i was re-elected. we flipped two u.s. house seats with terrific new congress women. so i think it's about making sure that everybody is at the table. we want as women to be there with our experiences and our
views, and i think both looking at the midwest and understanding that women as over half the voters in the country intend rehanes engaged is going to play out i think in the presidential election as well as the other congressal elections. >> specifically would it make you throw your hat in the ring for amy klobuchar? >> she's terrific. we have a number of members in our caucus who are looking at this and we were joking that maybe we would have the fir presidential debate at a caucus launch. but from my perspective amy is terrific. >> all right senator debby stabenow of michigan always great to talk to you. thanks so much. as we talk about this fight over the budget and whether the president is willing to shut down the government over the border wall, he doesn't get his money, what's your sense who may blink first here? >> i think republicans. i don't know if this is the right calculation.
i believe republicans believe a shutdown would not create a huge political price for them. we know this time president trump said i own this shutdown. it's my shutdown. sign one sense he gave democrats a gift. we resolved that question. who owns the shutdown? the president said he does. the last time the government shut down there was a lot of talk this would be a disaster for the republicans. if you look at the polling during that month it looked rough for them. all of a sudden the government re-opens after a little over two weeks and suddenly that story goes away. two weeks later you have the health care.gov exchanges roll out. news cycle moved on to something else. by the time you got the mid-terms in 2014 we forgot about the shutdown. so at least in recent history the one example we have is that there's not a huge political price to be paid for a
government shutdown. that doesn't necessarily mean that this time around would be the same but i think if that's the memory that a lot of they republicans have about a shutdown they may be calculating it's not a big risk after all. >> the president declare in front of those tv cameras in the oval office he's happy to make it the trump shutdown. coming up next we'll talk to a republican member of congress who accuses democratic leaders chuck schumer and nancy pelosi of working against united states national security. we'll hear that argument next on "morning joe". ♪
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the farm bill we just discussed is heading to the president's desk but not without controversy. the billionairely advanced in the house after lawmakers included the addition of a rule that prevents debate on u.s. support of saudi arabia's war in yemen. joining us is our congressman from kansas. what was the controversy in that farm bill? >> the controversy was on the
rule. the final vote was overwhelming over 90% superport arthured the final bill. in some proceewhat this was abo halting iranian aggression in the middle east. >> let's talk about your tweets. we're talking about the meeting between president, nancy pelosi and chuck schumer, the much talked about meeting, televised meeting in the oval office. you wrote this i'll always support donald trump putting national security first, securing our boards is a no brainer. nancy pelosi and senator schumer in their unending efforts to work against anything the president proposes are working against the security of our nation. that's a pretty serious claim that they are working against the security of our nation. what did you mean specifically by that, congressman? >> this is the brilliance of donald trump is to put that meeting on national tv so
everybody can see the dynamics of what's going on when the president tries to meet with mr. smumer and miss pelosi. this border is all about national security. every day over 40 criminals try to cross the border and ten terrorists. over 90% of the illicit opioids come over that border. i get that number from dhs. >> that they capture ten terrorists at the border every day. >> ten terrorists try to governor that border. >> how do they assess that. how do they know they are terrorists. >> that's what the dhs is communicating to congress. we have experienced guards down there. >> what kind of terrorists are they specifically because we know since 9/11 norad i radical islamic terrorist has come
across the southern border. >> secretary of state has orders what he would consider a terrorist. if they meet those criteria that's what the department of homeland security will work with. but i certainly would not undermine or underestimate the threats on this country coming across our boards by terrorists. >> congressman, i mean have you made a call to dhs -- where are these terrorists now presently being held? >> i'm not saying they even made it across the border. but if they are in our jails. >> okay. what about people coming across the border? what would happen to a lot of the farmers who are in your district if they to go without the migrants who come across the border to assist in helping them, you know, close their crops at the end of the season. >> it will be really tough. we have 40,000, 50,000 open jobs in kansas right now. we have 70,000 jobs that depend
upon an agriculture guest worker visa and that's why i prioritize working so hard to make sure we have more agriculture guest worker visas. >> are you concerned some of them might be terrorists? >> i sure would be. absolutely. we had some, you will recall, some terrorist actions in kansas. but i think that most of the people that are here illegally came here legally and were properly vetted. absolutely i'm concerned about terrorism. >> i think we all are. this is gene robinson, congressman. you said everybody could watch the meeting and make their own judgments. one other thing that everybody knows and can see is that republicans have a majority in both the house and senate. so why are you blaming nancy pelosi and chuck schumer for what republicans could just do if they want to do it? >> right. i think that's my concern is why we always focus on the blame. what i want to do is take
responsibility. i want to take responsibility and say that border security is so important that we're willing to shut the government down if we can't fund $5 billion of border security now. as you know, we need 60 votes in the senate. we're not going get those 60 votes unless we have some democrats cross the line. we can do it in the house. we'll get it done in the house. we need some democrats to cross the line on the senate side. >> why doesn't the speaker call the vote in the house as speaker-to-be pelosi suggested. why not do that. show the senate the house is serious. why didn't that happen? >> we're willing to do that. as a matter of fact, i aspect the republican house demand we have that vote before january 1st gets here. i expect that will happen. we're not ready to put our cards on the table. we want to give the senate some time to work out a plan. be much smoother if we have some confidence from the senate side
as well. we're willing to do that. i have confidence in our conference that we can get this vote across the border. >> we should put out the man who was charged in kansas city with providing material support isis did not come across the border he was a man from missouri. coming up later democratic senator claire mccaskill joins us. "morning joe" is back in a moment. ♪
and this is moving day with reliable service appointments in a two-hour window so you're up and running in no time. show me decorating shows. this is staying connected with xfinity to make moving... simple. easy. awesome. stay connected while you move with the best wifi experience and two-hour appointment windows. click, call or visit a store today. i'm the namesake, so i got regift all of the things that were monogrammed for him at times. so there was one christmas where he may or may not have given me the gift that i had given him the year before, because i monogrammed it. it was like, oh, yeah. i know you didn't get this. how do you know that? because i gave it to you last year. >> you know, of course, the problem that many in the trump household are worried about right now are not actually letters on outfits but numbers,
possible numbers on outfits they may be wearing in the future. >> yeah. that's true, but the scourge of regifting, joe, we need to, we can't let that pass. i mean, it's on awful tragedy. >> it is. speaking of awful, we have about 47 people saying they're going to run, possibly run in the democratic primary for president of the united states. >> yeah. >> my cat, meatball, announced to me last night that he was thinking about also running. i'm sure you have a pet around your household. everybody -- >> everybody is in. >> is thinking about jumping in this race. it almost makes you miss those days of smoke-filled backrooms, where they can sort out the pretenders from the rest. >> well, yeah, that was one way to do it. but you can't do it that way anymore. not in the age of social media, not in the age we live in.
not after 2016 when nobody thought was, would ever be a serious presidential candidate sunday without becoming president. so what we know is that we don't know and i think at this point you have to be a thousand points of light kind of person in terms of, you know, everybody get in, see bo can get attention, who can raise some money. who can sort of start assembling a base and then hope that by the time the democratic party gets to the point of actual debates, there is not, you know, there is not so many still in it that you have to have the, you know, some sort of double decker stage. you know, you have to have like two rows of candidates. one hopes it will pair down by then. >> that is a concern. willie was joking ability a
smoke-filled room. i am a big believer. i seen time and again the more people you have in primaries, the better it makes the candidates the sharper they are by the time they get to the gem election. this -- general election. this does seem to be a challenge, if not logistically, if have you 20, 25 people on the stage during these presidential debates. >> i think so. part of it is a reaction to what happened last knight time which was a coronation for hillary clinton. everybody else was blocked out of the process, with the exception of bernie sanders that was more of an annoyance, although, he did well and stayed in a long time. i think we should put a name in an envelope, a wild card pick and see ba we end up with in 18 months. >> yeah. because there are so many places can you go. you can make the case for 20 different people. >> william castro saying he is exploring it, joe wide isn't going to take time over the holidays to figure out if he will do it. the idea is it's such a crowded
field, there is some talk of how does someone break through? the white house believes the democratic candidate that will break through will be through who donald trump picks, that he will fight that he will elevate that democrat, that person gets to respond to donald trump. >> that will start some of the buzz. >> well, there is only one wild card that makes sense. anne fernukan. >> willie, one of the most powerful women on planet. she still deals with barnacle. i will say one of the downside of having 25 people in the debates, actually donald trump was able to get away with knowing absolutely nothing about policy because he had 16 people on the stage at the same time. all he had to do is throw out an insult or a joke and he never got nailed down on policy and he was completely ignorant of it. but voters didn't get a chance
to see that. the debates were just sound bytes. >> let's hope we have more informed candidates running this time. still ahead, we will talk about the increasing legal pressure facing donald trump after another ally flips. that's next on "morning joe." i just got my cashback match, is this for real? yep. we match all the cash back new cardmembers earn at the end of their first year, automatically. whoo! i got my money! hard to contain yourself, isn't it? uh huh! let it go! whoo! get a dollar-for-dollar match at the end of your first year. only from discover.
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hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flu-like symptoms or sores. don't start humira if you have an infection. be there for you, and them. ask your gastroenterologist about humira. with humira, remission is possible. the words the media should be using to describe mr. trump are generous, compassionate, principled, and empathetic, kind, humble, honest and genuine. >> he's more to us than just a boss. he's a mentor, he's a sage, he's like family. i'm obviously very loyal and very dedicated to mr. trump. >> let's do it. president trump's former lawyer and fixer michael cohen was sentenced yesterday by a federal
judge to three years and to pay almost $2 million in fines, for fitchtur -- forfeitures. he pled guilty to a series of crimes, including two campaign finance violations, that cohen claims were made at the direction of donald trump. the judge accused cohen of committing a quote veritable smorgasbord of fraudulent conduct and said each of the crimes involved deception and each appears to have been by greed and he accepts responsibility for his actions. he implicated the president again, telling the court quote, recently the president called me weak. he was correct. but for a much different reason than he was implying. it was because time and time again, i felt it was my duty to cover up his dirty deeds rather than to listen to my own inner voice and moral compass. my weakness can be characterized as a blind loyalty to donald
trump and i was weak for not having the strength to question and refuse his demand. meanwhile, another ally of president trump came forward in court documents yesterday to acknowledge it concealed an illegal payment to benefit trump's 2016 campaign. as a part of an agreement with the u.s. attorney's office in new york, american media, incorporated the publisher of the national enquirer admitted it paid hush money to a woman who is alleged to have had an affair with trump. prosecutors said ami admitted it made the $150,000 payment in concert with a candidate's presidential campaign and in order to ensure the woman did not punl size damaging -- punl size damage -- publicize damaging allegations. it was to suppress the woman's story so as to prevent it from influencing the election. assuming they comply, the u.s. attorney agreed not to prosecute ami in its role.
the company and ceo david pecker declined to comment. pecker and president trump as you know have been close and loyal friend for many years. according to new yorker, pecker has been a member at mar-a-lago since 2003 and was a guest at trump's 2005 wedding. trump wrote in a 2013 tweet, "time" magazine should definitely pick david peck tore r -- pecker to run things over there. similar to what trump said after the 2016 republican convention. >> i've always said, why didn't the national enquirer get the pulitzer prize for edwards and oj simpson around all of these things? >> so, joe, we have here in those two stories, a dovetailing for what michael cohen is telling prosecutors and ami is telling prosecutors, that is, in the twawaning days, payments we made at the direction of candidate donald trump to women to suppress their stories to help him become president of the united states. >> yeah.
i tell you, yesterday was a fascinating day. it had to be a very troubling day for donald trump, where you had michael cohen going out there basically delivering the same speech that darth vader delivered to luke as he was dying at the end of "return of the jedi." but more troubling to that, mike barnicle, you have ami brought into this. brought in specifically for another payment for the suit that they are obviously continuing. this does not stop with michael cohen going to jail. the starts with michael cohen going to jail. and they clearly have ami admitting eighth third party. they made a contribution and they made that contribution to help elect donald trump, president of the united states. under any reading, for all of these republicans who are covering, you know, their head
in the sand, of any reading of the federal election laws, that is a crime. the fact that they knowingly conspired -- i'm talking about trump and cohen and their treatment, they knowingly conspired to ride that payment, made in the waning days of the campaign or months of the campaign even that's a clear violation of the law and a felony. >> joe, that was devastating day for the white house and for donald trump. what the ami settlement with the justice department does is literally figuratively put donald trump in the room as part of a conspiracy. they are the corroborating witness to michael cohen's testimony, danny, i don't know about you, looking at the plea agreement and reading about it, this would seem to me, if they're climbing the ladder of justice, this is the second or third climb of the rung, there is a lot more to come out of
this and potentially real, real threats to perhaps other people, including maybe the president's extended family based on cohen's agreement. >> mike, you took the toward out of my mouth when you talked about ami. the prosecution and the government the corroborating evidence by using ami to bolster michael cohen's claims in the future, so it's not a he said-he said situation. that's the purpose of ami. looking at campaign finance law violations and the history of prosecution, they are not a slam dunk for prosecutors. and the government knows this. the john edwards case for similar charges did not result in a conviction. so the government knows, that i have to bailed well corroborated case. not just with testimony, but with documents, communications, text messages, e-mails, anything they can. because this is not an easy
crime to establish beyond a reasonable doubt. >> let's go to katty kay next. i know you sit in wonderment at the chaos that's happening in the united states, when you look at where you are from originally, britain, you see nothing but peace and happiness in the political system over there. we'll get to ter ris sa may in a little bit. >> reporter: civility. >> it is. tis, but let's talk about yesterday and talk about what happens next. it is clear that they're building a case against donald trump. and you do wonder how long republicans, all these senate republicans especially can sit back and pretend a felony that would put them all in jail that this felony is much ado about nothing. >> reporter: you put together the ami news and the michael cohen sentencing. it gives you a fascinating insight into the world donald
trump's world went, going town to mrg many, to discuss how they could get rid of these problems of women, affairs, kill those stories and keep on liasing about it all through 2016, you are building through these various court filings and sentencings a pretty clear picture of what the trump administration was up to in order to protect the candidate and to protect the candidate's family businesses during the course of the campaign and a sense that rules were there to be thwarted. rules were there to be bent to the needs of the candidate. whether any of that amounts to anything that would either be impeachable or even indictable, perhaps when the president leaves office, we don't know yet. >> that we don't have. but the picture of how that campaign operated and how that business operated in service of
the president, the candidate, 57d the business above all else is emerging and that's pretty clear. >> and what's also emerging, john heilemann, is the results, the strategy that robert mueller and his team have been putting together quietly, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, going up against and we see this again yesterday with rudy guiliani's statements and him boping around in bahrain to make, you know an extra few bucks. you got a white house holy ill prepared for a legal crisis that many are saying is far worse than watergate ever was, and he's doing this without a legal team or without only in of who his white house chief of staff will be guiding him through the legal battle of his life. >> right. joe, i think one of the things that you have seen, as we've
seen, president after president get into these, not quite this kind of a pick him, but special counsel, special prosecutors, common administrations often have one or two that they have to suffer through. usually in those cases because they are paragones of their party, they can draw from the top legal talent and top political talent, literally the best people in that department that want to help. whether it's bill clinton or george township. bush, they have a swarm of people that want to come in and defend them in these circumstances. donald trump has the opposite. we seen that over the course of the last two years. he's always had trouble getting the best top level legal talent, the best political talent to come in. now that he's managed to cobble something together for these two years, now at exactly the moment he needs help most. he has the least help on hand. so donny, i ask you this, what is it? we talked yesterday about your
relationship with him. i want to ask you to play trump whisperer, as being donald trump's new york psychoi psychotherapist. he has almost no one on his legal team as joe suggested. he sees, he can't help but see the vice, the pincher movement from the southern district on one side, mueller on the other side. where is trump's head right now? he projects at times in these interviews an incredible degree of common confident as he did with reuters a couple days ago. is he privately completely freaking out? >> that's a million dollar question. i believe he lives in a delusional state oddly enough. you asked me about his brand and if you think back about a year ago, you describe brand
attributes, you would have said, strong authoritative. in charge. nasty, intimidated. now when you look at him, as each day goes by, starting particularly with the election, you see him as kind of pathetic and defanged and confused and goofy. so he is now going to be operating -- >> hey, donny, let's go to the worst term to describe his brand. weak. he's cowtowing not only to vladimir putin. he's weak in the face of his enemies. he's weak in the face of a saudi crown prince that slaughtered a washington post columnist. think of how weak the president of the united states, how sniff eling as the president -- sniv eling you have to be to cower and cowtow to a 30-some prince because you want his money after you leave the white house. >> that's where i'm going.
it's the first time in his life he is not dealing from strength. you see it. he is as a resultner annual. he is weak. there is a pathetic quality to him. it feels almost like a confused quality to him. as this continues to be, there will be nobody around with consequence. even when there has been people of consequence, it doesn't matter, he's going from malignant to benign. he was always a cancer. he is going from a malignant cancer to a benign cancer. the cancer is there. he doesn't have the toxic effect. he does not have the ability to force his wall through. he does not have the ability to force his will on anything. i think the weaker he seems and is in reality the more the circus is going to take on a surreal tone. >> well, there is, willie, no doubt the checks and balances of madisonian government we always said would hold him in check. they are tightening around him. the checks and balances that our
founders put in place in the constitution 240 years ago, something he says is outdated and outmoded. it most definitely is not. it stood the stress test. in 2018, at the end of the 2018, it's doing just fine. still ahead on "morning joe," more on the fall of michael cohen with someone inside the courtroom yesterday. vanity fair reporter emily jane fox joins our conversation. first, bill kierans has a look at the forecast. >> hey, willie. two big storms, mostly rain events. the first one, it poured overnight in houston. now it's pouring in noerps and houston, a little snow -- pouring in new orleans and houston. a little snow. i was looking at the long-term forecast. there is a chance of rain every single day for the ten days. it's living up to the reputation the storm in texas the back side is very windy, could even have winds gusting to 70 miles per
hour. maybe minor damage possible. we made late today here to the west of shreveport and northeast texas. tomorrow, jacksonville to orlando and tampa, strong storms, maybe even an isolated tornado, for everyone else, a big old rain event. we may set our rainfall recovered for washington, d.c. as we go throughout the weekend, especially friday into saturday. it's only going to take a half inch. this will be the westest year on record in the nation's capitol. it's been very soggy on the eastern seaboard. i don't have to tell you that. this weekend, watching rain moving in, new york city after about 6:00 p.m., it may not stop until sunday afternoon. ugly. you are watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. this is not a bed.
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that was president trump in the white house yesterday with that last question in reference to michael cohen's claim that he covered up quote dirty deeds for the president. the president did not react on twitter yesterday as the national enquirer's parent company joined cohen in admitting paying off former playboy model karen mcdougal, which she said she had an affair with president trump and they side stepped saying the president says he never had a relationship with mcdougal. now this, trump told reuters tuesday night, he does not fear impeachment. >> that is not what multiple sources are telling nbc news in repeat days, he says he is alarmed by that prospect according to reporting by karen lee, kristen welker and nicole wallace.
with us senior reporter at vanity fair and msnbc contributor emily jane fox, out with a new piece, entitled "what a way to go." why did you do that? that is some colombia journalism school stuff there. carol, i want to start with you, though. what is the president saying specifically about impeachment? why does he fear that prospect when republicans own the senate and are highly unlikely to vote to impeach and convict? >> reporter: well, he is starting to fear impeachment because of what we have seen in the last few days with the cohen issue, where he said the president directed him to make these payments to these two women. then we've seen the house democrats and he sort of is sinking him for him about what the subpoena power is going to look like. so they're telling us he has
been calling around to friends to allies on the hill, basically a mixture of venting about why is this all happening? why isn't no one doing anything about it to asking questions about impeoplement and what that would look like. i think the reason why it's so nerve racking for him right now is they don't know what's the coming next. i can tell you that senator rubio's comments, for instance, over the weekend, where he said that no one is above the law, you know, really rattled some of the people around the president. what they have been saying is that given they don't know what's the coming next, it really matters that they hold the establishment republicans on his side and while you know the vast majority of republicans are sticking by the president, they're really worried there will be softening there and that's the most weak point within the republican party and if that starts to fall, then they are worried that they'll be kind of a dominoesque. >> emily, you were in the courthouse yesterday, you
described it to me almost like a funeral. take us inside there, the current end of a tragedy. >> i don't know if i'd call it a tragedy. i'd call it what happens when people break the law. this is definitely a personal tragedy for him. it was three, four rows of people who are related to him, parents of siblings, his children, his wife. it was an incredibly emotional thing. i think a lot of times we get caught up in the headlines. these are characters in this that we are watching play out. for me sitting there, that was the most apparent thing that this is a human impact and a human toll of working with donald trump for so many years. it had me thinking overnight, you saw the impact on these children and on his family and a couple of things that we laid out yesterday in a way that cohen cooperated and the kind of things that he cooperated on, that this human toll may play
out with the president's own children. so in three ways. so you had cohen being convicted on lying to congress. we know that don jr. testified to congress. there are reports that programs he was less than truthful in those, in that testimony. you also have the campaign finance stuff, which i know from my reporting the president brought in eric trump earlier this year to deal with some of the handling of the civil suits surrounding stormy daniels. so you have him potentially wrapped up in that and you have ivanka trump that received an e-mail from a russian wrestler's wife saying we would like to hook you up with trump tower moscow. she forwarded that to michael cohen. so all of these things are related to michael cohen and trump's children. these are the kind of things cohen has been sharing in the 70 hours he sat so far with them. >> as we know, he's got three years already. i'm presuming he's going to
spend his time between now and march to reduce that, to bring that sentence down, which brings the tantalizes prospect he may spill more or cooperate more or have more to give. do we know what that might be or where that sentence might end up in. >> it's interesting. 70 hours is a lot of hours. i think you generally get to share most of what you know in 70 hours. it's my sense that he has at least related to the trump organization and trump foundation and what he knows about russia. he has shared vol materialuntar avenues. he could continue to share and cooperate. >> coming up, keeping her job may have been the easy part. british prime minister teresa may is still in office, but now she's got brexit to deal with. >> that story next on "morning joe." - [narrator] the typical vacuum head has its limitations,
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survives. two questions, one, why would she want to survive? to live to fight another day in this mess? and two, what in the toward is she going to do next to get this thing moving? one direction or the other? >> reporter: yes, it's interesting. there are two undesirable jobs at the missouri one is prime minister and the other is chief of staff. you wonder why anybody would who want either of them. she has survived. she is the houdini of politics. she manages to wriggle out. she's still there, it's that determination that grittiness, she is a vicers daughter, she has been brought up with a sense of duty. >> that is why she wants this job. she wants to see it through. she is tenacious, stubborn. she will not back down. every time she will be thrown out, she mansion to be there with the christmas lights on in the background saying i am still
here. but you are right, there is no plan on brexit that a majority of parliament wants and that is still the reality after she survived that dramatic day yesterday where she had that vote of no confidence. britain voted two-and-a-half years ago to leave the european union two-and-a-half years on. we don't know what we want those to look like. >> the great english poets clash, saying this indecision is killing me. why don't they pick a site? why don't they call boris johnson's bluff? why don't conservatives and members of the labor party cobble together a majority coalition? why is this so hard? >> yesterday, those faction have nothing in terms of rules,
trades and agreements of any kind. they couldn't get enough people behind them to support them to oust her. now she goes back to europe today, tries to get some better deal, her better version of her deal. she goes back to parliament. it's unlikely that that passes and then what? are we facing a prospect to the general election of a much closer relationship with the uniform mean union or are we facing the prospect of going back to the country and having a special referendum? more people are talking about. what i can tell you, after two.5 years of this, the british people arest haufted. we are doing this. we are completely consumed with the brexit process, these complicated negotiations, at a time, when wouldn't it be great to be out there on the world stage as america is retreating, britain can't fill that role. for the last 70 years, britain and america have stood shoulder and shoulder, leading the world, being the grownups in the world,
america is retreating. britain with brexit negotiation can't do anything else. it's consumed with that it's taking it off the world stage. >> coming up on "morning joe," she never held her tongue on capitol hill. she says that's not going to change even after she leaves office. outgoing senator claire mccass skill of missouri -- owe mccaskill of missouri joins us next. what if numbers tell only half the story? at t. rowe price, hundreds of our experts go beyond the
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president trump is tweeting this morning, quote, i often stated one way or the other, mexico is going to pay for the wall. this has never changed. our new deal with mexico and canada, the usmca is so much better than the old very costly and anti-usa nafta deal. >> that just by the money we save, mexico is paying for the wall. just moments ago, here was another one,
writing, i never directed michael cohen to break the law.
he is a lawyer. he is supposed to know the law. it's called, advice of counsel, and a lawyer has great liability. if a mistake is made, that is why they get paid, despite that, many finance campaign lawyers have strongly stated that i did nothing wrong with respect to campaign finance laws, that they apply. cohen was guilty on many charges unrelated to me. but he pled to two campaign charges which were not criminal and of which he probably was not guilty even on a civil basis. first base, second base, third base. those charges were agreed to by him in order to embarrass the president and get a much reduced prison sentence, which the he did, including the
fact that his family was temporarily let off the hook. as a lawyer, he has great liability to me. joe, i'm so relieved now i read those tweets. he is home free, practically.
>> home free and mexico will pay for the law. you wonder if there is somebody out there much of a dupe to believe that. even his most try dent supporters know donald trump is lying to them. with us now is washington bureau chief from usa today, susan page. also, democratic senator claire mccaskill of missouri, claire, of course, we have to ask you the most important question first, what about these off season pickups by the st. louis cardinals? it's going to be a very, very good year for the cards. >> goldie, huh? we're excited. it's great, of course, in missouri, we're excited very now about the chiefs. we got patrick mahone playing sandlot football with an incredible amount of excitement so tonight is a big game for the chiefs so sports are great in my
state. >> all right. well, so, let's talk about the election. let's talk about the lessons that you learned during that election. let's talk about the state of the democratic party right now specifically for heartland democrats, because democrats can win the presidency. they can win the house, they're still going to have trouble getting the judges they want in, if they can't win senate seats in the heart of america. >> there is no question that donald trump ruled in missouri and ruled in indiana. the republican party is now donald trump's party. i believe that pendulum will swing back. i am optimistic democrats will swing back in the senate and my state. the spectacle around the kavanaugh confirmations. the leveraging of the caravan optics. and the fact that the president probably directed by mitch
mcconnell figured out he needed to camp out in indiana and missouri, in order to boost the enthusiasm on their side of the leger. he was there so often, joe, i figured he had to be building the golf yourselfccourse. he usually only goes to that place so often if there is one of his golf courses. there is no question we saw a bump up in enthusiasm on their side because of his constant presence and because of the other two things i mentioned. in a state like missouri, it's all about who shows up to vote. >> well, let's talk about kavanaugh specifically. and how we were saying on the set in real time the mishandling of the kavanaugh case could cost democrats like you and donelly and others. how devastating was that to your campaign? >> well, we have record democrats in missouri. don't let somebody feed you the line, democrats weren't excited.
i spent too much in missouri. we saw an unbelievable enthusiasm of both independent voters and democrats in urban and suburban areas and even in rural areas. but up until the kavanaugh stuff, we really weren't seeing that enthusiasm on the republican side. there was a double digit difference in enthusiasm between the blue side and the red side of our state. until kavanaugh. then it popped up. frankly, it popped up even slightly higher than our level of enthusiasm. what that whole spectacle did was get a whole lot of people off the couch and that really made the difference. >> so let's talk about 2020 for a moment. a lot of people are talking about running in 2020. i'm just twondering as someone that has been campaigning over the past decade in a state that bill clinton won that jimmy carter won, that used to be a
swing state in missouri. what type of democrat needs to get nominated? can camela harris win in missouri? can elizabeth warren win in missouri? can they make it competitive? >> i'm not sure about that i do think that what as a party we need to do is maketure we are nominating someone inspirational and can convince the american people that they can make things change and it's very hard to make things change if you are hanging out at the ends of the spectrum. if you are on opposite sides of the room and saying things that you know will never get 60 votes in the senate. i think, what i hope, is there is some authenticity with the candidate who will convince independent voters in my state and other states like mine that
they have an equation, they can bring people together. they can repair the damage that has been done in terms of tribal polarization in this country. i think that's what most americans want right now. i think that will be the winning combination for president. >> claire, nobody really knows the percentage of trump loyalists in terms of voters, per se. whether it's 32%, 25%. we don't know that. but we do know there were an awful lot of really good solid substantial american citizens who do support him for whatever reason. and they're getting short cheated by him in terms of his performance. you gave an interview the another day in which you were talking about what some of the republican senators say about donald trump behind his back. now, i'm not going to ask you to name the senators, obviously, but in terms of the lockstep vls withtives march on the republican side of the senate, all professing loyalty to trump. what are some of the adjectives
these senators do use to describe him behind his back and in the cloak room? >> nuts, weak. doesn't really understand government. doesn't care to understand anything complicated. asks and says the most unbelievable things in meetings that clearly shows he doesn't understand the subject matter. no intellectual curiosity. >> dangerous? >> i don't know i heard dangerous. i will say this, i believe history will judge down the line those members of the republican party who have silently looked down and think they can wait this out, without even speaking up about the level of lying that goes on. i mean, think about this. the president this morning tweeted there is nothing wrong with paying off a porn star that
you had an affair with in order to win the presidency right before the election. that's what he basically said. i mean, that's crazy. >> i think there are a lot of my colleagues two feel trapped by the political reality of donald trump. i think if more information comes out. nobody can argue, not leaking, being professional. as this thing continues to move forward, i am hopeful my colleagues, the ones not retiring, will speak out and say, no this is not a process crime, this is something much bigger than that. of course, add, claire, the fact that he paid off a porn star right before the election, to win the election and then went to great lengths to hide it not only from the american people
but also from the federal elections commission. >> that is, of course, illegal. it is a felony and let's go to susan page. she has a question for you. susan. >> i'd like to go back to something you said a moment ago about the direction of the democratic party and the battle for the 2020 presidential nomination. it seems to me, you were raising a cautionary note the energy is on the left that the recipe, that the path for democrats to regain the white house does not run through states like missouri. are you concerned that the party is going or not learn the old lesson, hills toric lesson because there is so much excitement with a progressive message and coalitions that did not depend so much on centrist
voters. >> i think a presidential candidate who shows that i have some pragmatism about getting things done. you don't get change by rhetoric. by saying, you know, we should have free college. you get change by actually bringing people together and accomplishing something. so i'm hopeful and by the way the math is unforgiving, susan. it is very difficult to get to the presidency without wing a state like florida. and it is very difficult to get to the presidency without winning states like host. while sherrod brown won in ohio, it was not a good cycle in ohio. it was obviously a terrible cycle in florida. if this is about a progressive uprising, we wouldn't have lost as many seats in the senate and we would have done eastern better in terms of the house. so wisconsin, ohio, michigan, pennsylvania, florida, you can't get there without those states.
so appealing to independent voters in those states is absolutely critical. and you can do that with progressive ideals as long as you don't fall off the left side of the earth. >> senior claire mccaskill, stay with us. the entire panel will stay with us as well. and we'll have more questions in just a minute. ♪ the united states postal service makes more holiday deliveries to homes than anyone else in the country. ♪ with one notable exception.
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or if you have type 1 diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis. don't take trulicity if you or your family have medullary thyroid cancer, you're allergic to trulicity, or have multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2. stop trulicity and call your doctor right away if you have symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, a lump or swelling in your neck, or severe stomach pain. serious side effects may include pancreatitis. taking trulicity with a sulfonylurea or insulin increases your low blood sugar risk. common side effects include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and decreased appetite. these can lead to dehydration, which may worsen kidney problems. to help lower my a1c i choose trulicity to activate my within. ask your doctor about once-weekly trulicity. welcome back to "morning joe." we continue with senator claire mccaskill. and catty kay.
>> the centrist candidates in the face of more populist candidates seem to be centrists do better when they talk about economic issues rather than cultural issues. so given what you were saying about florida and ohio, pennsylvania, michigan, and the importance of winning states that are have very different, au prepared to put names to that ideal candidate that can run on results in those different diverse states and produce something for the democratic party? >> i'm not ready to tut names on it. i think this is going to be a testing period in the next six to eight months. for each candidate to show themselves to the american people and to see if they can inspire. don't discount how important a piece of it is. someone who is not poll driven. who is not trying to drive to a
certain answer on a certain question that spiked a certain demographic. they're wanting someone who is fog to say to them we will bring down the price of prescription drugs because i will gather enough votes because you're mad enough about it, we owe you results. that's the kind of stuff that people are sitting around their kitchen tables talking about. the reason they're so mad at everybody in washington is because we're really not changing much that matters to them. no wonder they're mad. and i think the candidate that can capture -- what donald trump did is he tapped a vein of anger and frustration, and our candidate needs to recognize that anger and frustration and inspire people that we can actually accomplish something for them. not just go to the lowest common denominator like trump did. the problem is mexicans or the problem is muslims. but rather the problem is the pharmaceutical industry has a vice grip on washington and i'll break it up. >> senator, i've got a question,
a very quick follow up. the question is, that was a really good speech you just gave. i've read that you don't inend to run again. why is that? you don't seem to have a lot of energy and enthusiasm and ideas for this. think maybe you might change your mind? >> no, i'm done. i'm so sick of asking for money. you know, and besides that, my mouth has always gotten me in trouble. i figure now i can take it to new heights. >> the follow up is mahomes, you think mvp, got it locked up? >> he certainly deserves it. we've lost incredible talent on the team, yet we're hanging in there in difficult games. if we lock it up tonight at home and have home advantage all
through, there's a little bit of, you know, i'll whisper the word super bowl fever running through the streets of kansas city. especially because gronky took the rams out of st. louis and said it wasn't a good enough market for professional sports and kansas city is not exactly a large market and we're doing just fine. thank you, i'd love to beat the rams in the super bowl. >> obviously we've been focusing on all trump's legal issues. it's easy to forget he's not able to do anything. what is the tipping point for voters? what do you think will be the signature issue, moment, disappointment, when they realize even though i liked his barking, he can't do anything? >> depends on how effective the house is. at holding him accountable with
oversight. without turning into his foil. there's going to have to be some discipline that is used in the house. if they are going after trump and, importantly, his family, on every front. that will rub people the wrong way. if they are surgical and strategic in the way they conduct oversite, where more facts come forward that would be concerning to them about the competence of this white house, i think that is where i hope their focus is. a lot of this is depending how we handle the divided government over the next year and frankly that the economy does. with interest rates going up. i don't think he's got this trade war thing figured out. i think he went in without an exit plan. if the market keeps being as volatile. if inflation picks up. if we don't have real wage growth, then i think he gets beat on the economy. >> as a patriots fan, i'm not looking forward to a road game
at arrowhead, i will say. as you reflect on your time in the senate, how has it changed. what do you say to americans who look at washington who feel like it's more broken than ever? >> i'll talk about this a little in my speech today. one of the things that has changed is the senate cannot be called the greatest deliberative body in the world anymore. we don't deliberate much. we don't even have a real amendment process anymore. my first year in the senate, we voted open over 300 amendments on the floor. lots of debate. lots of discussion. this year, we'll be lucky to get to 38 total amendments that we have actually debated and voted on. this is all being done by a handful of people in rooms that most of us aren't even in. so that's what's changed. we got to get back to a more open process. even if you have to take tough votes. senators need to buck up and take tough votes and quit being afraid of taking a vote that's
hard at home. >> all right, senator claire mccaskill, thank you so much. good luck with the chiefs. good luck in the 2013 world series, cardinals against the yankees. we appreciate you being with us. susan, i was going to ask her over/under wins, which she was taking for the yankees, but susan page, what do you expect to be happening today? >> i think we're dealing with the repercussions of yesterday. let's not forget what an historic day yesterday was. not just one more brick in the wall in the legal case that we've been seeing robert mueller build, but an important one because we have now a direct accusations of illegal activity by the president from his former lawyer that is cooperated by the legal filing with the publisher of the national inquirer. so this is -- this was not just another day in washington yesterday. this was something important. we're going to still be dealing with the repercussions as you
hear president tweet rump in th tweets. >> my five thougnal thought i h someone will speak up today about the portrait of greed and corruption with giuliani sitting down begging for a contract while he is working for the president of the united states. >> it's unbelievable. all right, thank you so much, mike and everybody else on "morning joe" this morning. we greatly appreciate it. stick around though. right now, stephanie ruhle has the news. stephanie. >> good morning, everyone, i'm stephanie ruhle with a lot to cover today. starting with all the president's men. president trump's former lawyer michael cohen sentenced to three years in prison and fined millions of dollars. his organization's cfo and a publisher with a history of covering up stories about trump both strike deals with the government. now an nbc news excsi