tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC January 3, 2019 9:00am-10:00am PST
right now. good morning. i'm andrea mitchell on capitol hill for a special edition of "andrea mitchell reports" as congress makes history. both chambers convening with the house about to elect nancy pelosi as the second speaker to regain the gavel since sam raburn way back in the 1950s. and today, the new reality of divided government for the president for the first time. and now, the house has a democratic ma jjority and savvy political speaker. nancy pelosi telling savannah guthrie on the i to d"today" sh >> i'm effectively as a legislator and effective as a fund-raiser, and the best, and they have to take me down. that is what they have tryied te do, but they don't. they just light my fire. >> in the battle with president
trump, pelosi is going to be em po powered by a new house majority in the political wilderness. and the democrats will be backed up with the muellost women memb since john f. kennedy was president and pelosi's father was the mayor of baltimore and the return to power for the first time since 2007 when she took the podium surrounded by her grandchildren. and now her rise to greater prominent as donald trump's toughest adversary. and now all grown up to witness pelosi's rise to greater
prominence as donald trump's greatest adversary, and the battle is engaged over the wall and the government shutdown and the president clearly provoked as he created his own reality in a wild swing through topics and false statements in a 95-minute long self-defense in the cabinet room wednesday. >> look. when they say that the wall is immoral, and well, then you have to do something about the vatican. when they say that i am not popular in europe. i shouldn't be popular in europe. if i were popular in europe, i would not with be doing my job. and general mattis is so thrilled, but what has he done for me? what has he done in afghanistan? not too the good. and as you know, president obama fired him and essentially so did i. and they say that bob cork er retired, and jeff flake is selling real estate or whatever, and i was surprised at mitt romney, but i hope that he is a team player and if he fought so hard against president obama as
he did me, he would have won the election, and does that make sense to you? and joining me on the hill, kasie hunt, and garrett haake, our great pair here on the hill, and at the white house nbc's kristen welker. kristen, take a first look at how the president is preparing to face-off against nancy pelosi and the new house majority. >> well, andrea, the president is a counter p puncher and you w it on full display yesterday, and that is the approach as he is preparing to go with this new reality and divided government for the first time since he has taken office, and he is going to have to deal with the democrats having control of the house. as you laid out at the top of the show, they will have the ability to launch investigations. nancy pelosi weighed in on that earlier today with savannah, and didn't rule out the possibility of impeachment. i asked kellyanne conway about that, and she took a swipe at democrats saying, look, they are
focused on the politic, and we are focused on trying to reopen the government, and that is the line here at the white house today. and president trump tweeting about, this andrea, saying that the shutdown is only because of the 2020 presidential election, and the democrats know they can't win based on the achievements of trump and going all out on the wall and border security. and e have been talking to the officials at the white house, and what is the plan for reopening the government? right now, no one seems to have a clear idea of what the president would be willing to compromise on, agree to, and yesterday, of course, he seemed quite dug in that he is not going to accept anything less than $5 billion for the border wall and a wall that he promised that mexico is going to pay for and democrats not giving an inch, andrea. >> and as far as pelosi is concerned, they have just been convening the house. she is getting ready, and it is going to take a while for them to go will through the
procedures,and they have done the prayer. kasie hunt, this is a transformation, and they are about to do the pledge. and transformation on the house, and no way to describe the diversity of the house, and plus the membership, and not just ethnic and religious racial diversity diversity, but the women members and the fact that this woman is now again the speak over the house. >> it is really remarkable, andrea, and i was reflecting on this as i was walking through the walls on the house side, and the people here to support the new members, and fran scli, they look different and dressed differently and come from some of the -- i was outside of rashida talib's office, and some had come to support her as the first palestinian woman to serve in congress, and she is wearing the traditional dress, and one of over 100 women. >> including native americans. >> yes, two native american women to be sworn in. and for nancy pelosi, this is
not a walk in the park by any stretch. she worked hard to to make sure that this moment was a triumphant one for her. and if you are speaking to the the people who are pledged in the campaigns, they will not back her, and she has met with them, and some of them several times, and she has met with them several times, and she has worked very, very hard for them. i remember when they first passed obama care on the floor of the house, and i remember her working the mem membbers and no knew if she could get it done, but she was able to do it by saying that i am a battle heart and general and i am the person that you want to take this fight to donald trump, and she is going to get the chance. >> talking to max rose, the new member from staten island and new democrat, and an army veteran, and he says he is going to vote against her, but he knows those are symbolic votes, and she sat down with savannah gutherie, garrett and kasie, and
she made some news of her view of whether or not the president can be indicted is an open legal question. let's take a look at that. >> as you well know there is longstanding department of justice guidance that states a sitting president should not be indicted, but it is not the law. >> it is not the law. and everything indicates that a president can be indicted after he is no longer president of the united states. >> and what about a sitting president? >> well, sitting president when he is no longer president of the united states. >> and a president who is in office, and could robert mueller come back and say i am seeking an indictment? >> that is an open odiscussion, and it is an open discussion in terms of the law. >> and of course, she has been really walking a tight rope here political politically, garrett, because she does not want to get out front on impeachment, and they know it is going to be toxic politically, and she is being pushed by the progressive members, and sheep wants to leave it as an open question, and the senate with 53 republicans is at this stage at least very unlikely if it even
got the impeachment and became a house vote, that is where the trial takes place and the conviction would have to take place, and so it is a futile effort to empower donald trump for 2020 election, and just as impeachment was gaiagainst bill clinton. you had the chance as we can see mike pence as president of the senate and opening with the prayer. you had a chance to talk to mitt romney today, the newest voice, and former nominee, and says he is is not interested in running again, but boy, the opening salvo in the "washington post" yesterday was a strong critique of donald trump. >> it is something. and on the mueller side, too, because it will give a buffer between what house democrats may try to do and tomorrow, right? we won't see this rushed through. she wants to make sure that this
is going to have an opportunity to play out on its own. >> and as we have been speaking here just across from the capital and the dome, right there in the capital, mike pence swearing in the new senators, and this is the official swearing in. and then individual swearing in s which the vice president is going to be conducting in the -- >> you may remember joe biden doing that for many years. >> and so many asides and hugs, and quips. i don't think that we will see that with mike pence. >> probably not, they are sli t slightly different personalities. >> and let's listen as a moment as he has sworn in and shaking hands and the new senator from kentucky, a house member, and applause from everyone, and a standing ovation from everyone, and this is going to be bipartisan, and moments in the senate, garrett, and i covered the hill for years, when you have to love the bipartisanship in the senate, because we have not seen a whole lot of that lately. >> and something to that, and in arizona for the first time not just one female senator from arizona, but two, and both of
them sworn in. and kirsten cinema will be sworn in over martha mcsally, and is it is going to to be interesting if martha mcsally can hold on to that seat, and also with another pair of members from same states. >> and also, joining new hampshire with a longstanding tradition of all female delegation, and senators and house members as well. >> it is a great point, too, andrea, they do to the same extent work together, and ted cruz and tim kaine were chatting on the subway coming over here. so. >> and so i was talking to a leading democratic senator who mentioned the fact that even coming out, the member of the
judiciary committeeb and she mentioned the fact that to be in the senate you generally have to with be really smart. these are a lot of really smart people who respect each other's intelligence and hard work for the most part. >> and you are not speaking of the senate? >> there are many senators who may joke about the house of representatives unfavorably, and we will not do that here obviously, but the senate is still a place where the people like to think of themselves as a body of equals and the most distinguished -- and go ahead, andrea. >> you can see there for a moment, the short figure in the red suit jacket, and that is barbara mikulski who is the senior woman senator for years and years and there was a saying that saying that 13 was not enough when hillary clinton joined and she came to show up for the swearing in. >> yes. >> and this is the swearing in of i think of ben cardin of maryland which is to explain why she is there. >> you will well and faithfully
discharge the duties of the office upon which you are about to enter, so help you god? >> i do. >> con gragratulations, senator. >> so these swearing ins are done four at a time. the newly elect and the re-elected and of course by the president of the senate, the potential tiebreaker, which he won't have to do this time, with 53 democrats this time. >> you certainly don't expect, so but for how things are going for donald trump, and he was a critical member for the vote in the last two the years and an emissary to capitol hill for this white house, but he does not get a lot of credits for the senators and recently on the border funding issue, but in general, a feeling of the republican senators that he is a full trump person, and not somebody who can be like an equal bridge between the l lawmakers and he does not have
the relationships on the senate side. >> and mitch mcconnell will not bring things to the floor unless he knows that he has the votes, and mike pence told them all in a caucus meeting that the president was supporting this bill to reopen the government, and to pass the appropriations measures and to have is a short-term funding bill for the homeland and they voted for it two weeks ago, and two weeks ago, kasie, and he was communicating with the president, and then he reneged and that is seriously undercutting the authority on the hill. >> and yes, mike pence attends most of the private lunches tuesdays with the senators here. and that last, two weeks ago now sh now, he told them in that conference meeting that in fact the president would sign it, and mitch mcconnell walked out to microphones and he said you don't learn anything with the second kick of the mule, and i asked him if he was confident and then of course, the president completely changed the calculus there, and mike pence's
role there is almost as impossible as any are republicans in washington which is to say that nobody can trust anything that the president can say, and it is impossible to negotiate. >> kristen welker, if you are still with us at the white house, and let's talk about that, because the president had a free-wheeling wild conversation yesterday in the cabinet room, and that kind of thing not only undercuts him overseas with the foreign leaders, but certainly, everybody is watching him from capitol hill. >> and everyone is watching. kasie hit one of the biggest challenges which is that lawmakers have said that he is difficult to negotiate with, because where he stands continues to change. and now, of course, he had indicated that he would go along with the kcompromised measure several week withes ago, and so there was optimism that the government would not shutdown, and then he got that barrage of the backlash from conservative commentators on fox news and
privately some of his allies saying that if he could not get funding for the border wall, he would be backing down on the key campaign promise, and get this wall built. so now, the shutdown is entering the 13th day, and no end in sight, and he has met with the congressional members in the situationroom, and started out with the dhs secretary kirstjen neilson briefing people on the border situation, and she was interrupted with by nancy pelosi and chuck schumer about how to get the government back open oed, and that got some reaction in the room. and the democrats are feeling emboldened to take control of the house, and feeling as though they don't have to compromise, and now likely voting on the legislation later today that would reopen the government. i pressed the top adviser k kellyanne conway on that today and any chance that the president would pass off on
that, and the answer is no. he is going to have the lawmakers back to the white house tomorrow, and take another sta stab, but the political pressure is building with the images that we are seeing are from the parks across the country, and of course, these hundreds of thousa thousands of federal workers who are furloughed and essentially working through the holidays withoutt pay, andrea. >> and one of the things that happened yesterday, you pointed out that it is in the situation room, and i thought that jen palmieri, a former white house communications director under president obama, of course, pointed out that there is a really good reason for that from the standpoint of the white house staff, because what they experienced on the white house office that was not supposed to be on the camera when chuck and nancy and the president met to say the colloquial, and to bring in the camera crew, and boy, did he suffer from that comparison with both pe llosi and schumer taking him on, and really showing that they had the
political savvy. so one place in the white house which the staff could guarantee the president could not say, let's bring in those cameras is the situation room, and no kidding. that was a very smart move, because of those audibles that he is calling, kristen. >> it is a really good point, andrea. and of course, it is during that free-wheeling oval office meet nag the president said that he would be proud to own the shutdown, and the if you are talking to republicans and some of his closest allies and advisers they will the tell you that very statement and the fact that it was captured on camera really backed him into a corner. and now, i have spent part of this day trying to press officials here on that very moment, and does he not still own this shutdown, because he is on camera saying that. they are rejecting that. and of course now sh, the big question mark. how will americans start to view this shutdown now that democrats
do have control of the house. at some point will the tide start to shift, and at this point though, if you are looking at many of the polls, they show that americans do place a larger portion of the blame on president trump, and you have to think it is because of in part of the comment in which he said that he would own this shutdown. >> i just want to show everybody what happens when cameras do come in for 95 minutes that the cameras were in the cabinet room yesterday, and the president had his own take on russia, afghanistan, on world history and this is just part of what he had to say about russia, the decline of the soviet union and afghanistan. >> the reason that russia was in afghanistan was because terrorists were going into russia. they were right to be there. the problem is that it was a tough fight. and literally, they went bankrupt and they went into being called russia again as op po
oppose ed to the soviet union, and lot of these places that you are reading about now are no longer a part of russia, because of afghanistan. but why isn't russia there? why isn't india there? why isn't pakistan there? and why are we there and we are 6,000 miles away? >> kristen, you know, i don't have to tell you how foreign leaders view this, and ambassadors here in washington all message iing the capitals b home, and i hear this all of the time, and our colleague david ignatius does as well as the generals. the real generals. those who are left, who are are all sort of scratching their heads heads. >> scratching their heads and add to that, andrea, this sort of remarkable break that we have witnessed with president trump and his generals, and yesterday, as you pointed out at the top of the show that he also said that he fired the defense secretary jim mattis and we know in reality that he resigned in protest over the president's
plans to withdraw troops from syria, and the president also not giving specifics about that yesterday. what is the timetable? what will that look like? that all raises more questions and concerns for some around the globe about the president's foreign policy and who is exactly advising him, andrea. >> and there was a moment in the situation room when the president was not on camera, and he turned to pelosi and talked about the vatican and claiming that there is a wall around the vatican, and there are walls around the vatican, but there are walls that tourists and others can enter, but at one point he turned to nancy pelosi and he said that she was a good catholic, and pointed out that the vatican city is surrounded by a wall, and so she should support a wall on the border. >> yeah. you know, i think that nancy pelosi has really proven to be something of an unexpected foil
for the president. and she is somebody that he, whose comment does not fit with some of the past mentions, but, you know, she, herself, when she talked about this in her interview with savannah, and she says that she is not sure if he knows how to deal with a whom is extraordinarily powerful, and she got the better of him in not wanting to bring the cameras into situation room, and this the comment would be playing perhaps differently and worse for the president were it on camera are. >> and joining now, garrett has stepped off for a moment to make room for jeremy peters and jeremy, politics reporter for "the new york times." and you are look at the 2020 candidates and we have talked about mitt romney and some of the other possible republican foils for the president, and he says that he is not a candidate. you have covered romney so much, but some of the others are really getting ready for what is becoming a presidential race.
we saw elizabeth warren in her conversation with rachel maddow last night making very clear where she is headed. >> yes, and often, andrea, it is said that the 100 men and women across the street wake up in the morning every morning and wake up seeing a future president. >> and two-thirds of the caucus running. >> yes, and never has that statement been truer, really, and not just on the democratic side, because there are an awful lot of republicans, and i put romney in the category, and even though the aides are quibbling with it, but they are looking at the republican party beyond are donald trump, and he is not going to be president forever and whether it is after 2020 or 2024 or sooner, and we just don't know. there is a real existential identity crisis about what exactly the party is going to stand for when he is no longer the leader. do they go in the direction of somebody like romney who is a more traditional republican,
somebody who espouses the values of leadership and morality or do they go with somebody who is in the mold of donald trump, who is a fighter, who brings people to him more because of what he is gains and who the enemies are rather than who he is for. >> and we see mitt romney, the republican on the floor now who will be sworn in after having shaking hands with vice president pence, and he said tartly in the negative op-ed that he had written, he said that he hoped that he is a team player. >> do you solemnly swear na you will uphold the constitution of the united states against all enemies foreign and domestic and you bear true allegiance no the same, and that you take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion and that you will well and faithfully discharge the duties uponb which you are about to enter, so help you god? >> i do. >> congratulations, senator. >> thank you.
>> just noting that bernie sanders, krysten sinema. >> and this is a moment because i have covered the mitt romney presidential run as well, and i was surprised that he decided to put the op-ed out right out of the gate, and it sent a message and jeremy knows this as well as i do, that this is somebody who is very, very cautious and if anything, he took a lot of the political scrapes for too often sticking his fing ner in the political wind to figure out which way it is blowing and to determine his position off of that, and he earned the flip-flopper nickname in 2008 and the evolution here and the fact that he was with willing to put that stamp on his tenure as a senator before being sworn in is remarkable and there is a report of whether or not he decided to do it.
but knowing that it made a bigger impact of that op-ed in context. he is somebody who while he noted in the op-ed, policy agreements of where he signs and where mitt romney stands, and these two men could not be more different as human beings -- >> that is an understatement. >> mitt romney is coming from a secure place, and he says that he does not have presidential ambiti ambition, and nominee already and heading to the place where he can end his political career as a senator of utah. >> or not. >> but he could. but he is wildly popular in his home state, and my point being that he can afford unlike many of the other republicans who are terrified for their own hides, that he can afford the do this for his political context. >> well, six years and he is not going to be primaried at home not the way he is sitting right
now, and this is romney though trying to modulate that criticism when garrett haake and others caught up with him in the hallway. >> if the president were to say things of divisive of a significant nature, and i would do that and have in the charlotteville attack, and the khashoggi approach, and have continued to point out places where we are different and this is the great thing of this democracy and where there are agreement agreements we come together, and disagreements, we can express our opinions openly and honestly, and that is what creates trust. and i want to have trust with the president and others despite disagreements from time to time. >> and the agreements. >> that is a long list there. >> and the focus is on where they do differ. >> and garrett, looking at the democratic side, it is interesting to see bernie sanders signing the official, officially, jeremy, talking about bernie sanders and
elizabeth warren and they are rivals not only regional rivals, but progressive rivals, and they had that, you know, the dinner, and i interviewed him the next morning and he said it is not abnormal for -- >> he was very -- >> and to go over to somebody's house, but the fact is that they were being blunt with each other in private to say, we are both running, and he has not declared yet, but he is organized certainly so he can run are, and she is off launching first, and heading to iowa this weekend. >> i think about these two dramatic storylines that you have unfolding on both sides of the capital, and you have all of the presidential candidates in wait ing waiting in the senate on the democratic side, and too many to even name, you are looking up upwards to two dozen people in total who are possibly running for president on the democratic side. and then on the house side, you have this debate over impeachment that began before
democrats have even been handed the speaker's gavel with nancy pelosi talking about this morning not to take it off of the table or putting on it the table, but it is extraordinary to me that this is where the congress begins with the discussion of whether or not to bring articles of impeachment against a sitting president of the united states. will the democrats with this intense presidential primary unfolding be able to the resist the pressure, i really don't kn know. >> and elizabeth warren was on with rachel maddow and also a generational issue here, because she and bernie sanders come from the same sort of category of older democrats who are going to be challenged by the younger faces, and this is warren last night outlining her agenda with rachel maddow. >> how do you fit in with the democratic party and where do you see the party right now? >> look, i don't think of this so much in terms of the party. i think of this as people who want to see change. and the kind of change that they want to see. and this is the fish or cut bait
year for the democrats. it is going to be how do we think that government should work and who do we think government should work for. >> how do you see the caucus evolving here on the hill with all of these members. you have amy klobuchar clearly considering a race, and strong race from neighboring minnesota to iowa and a lot of support among the more moderate voices, and younger voices. >> yep. >> and also a lawyer and former prosecutor and member of the judiciary and did well in the kavanaugh hearings, and notably well. >> yes. >> and other senators -- >> kamala harris and cory booker and every time we have to list these, we will accidentally leave somebody off of the list, because it is very long. >> like mitt romney's list of grievances against the president. >> indeed. and to jeremy's point, it is the field that you have seen with terry mcauliff who has a op-ed
where he is seriously considering it, and he said that he was out there saying that we should not fall for what he deemed as fake populism, and he slammed the idea of universal college, and yes we should aim for universal education, but we can't pay for it. and so some of the clintonian type thing, and okay, you want to have all of the things but how do you pay for them? and a version of that debate is going to play out in the primary and maybe it will start here in the senate, and put pressure on nancy pelosi walking a fine line on the impeeachment question, because a lot of the democrats believe that if they go down that road, they will jeopardize what is potentially a majority that runs through the middle of the country where they know they need to win, but if they are too far down that road, they would risk losing that, but there are some presidential candidates who are going to be just looking to distinguish themselves from other s others in the field, and that could create a potential problem.
but we will see a real debate playing out here at the capital between the progressive ideals and the middle of the road, hey, we want to make sure that we are appealing to the the broadest group of people possible. >> jeremy and kasie, stay with us, and we will take a quick break as we rare seeing the houe chamber. they have reconvened. this is the 116th congress. a moment of history. we will be watching the nomination of nancy pe llosi to become speaker. we will be right back. i've always been amazed by what's next. and still going for my best, even though i live with a higher risk of stroke due to afib not caused by a heart valve problem. so if there's a better treatment than warfarin... i want that too. eliquis. eliquis is proven to reduce stroke risk better than warfarin. plus has significantly less major bleeding than warfarin. eliquis is fda-approved and has both. what's next? reeling in a nice one. don't stop taking eliquis unless your doctor tells you to, as stopping increases your risk of having a stroke. eliquis can cause serious and in rare cases fatal bleeding.
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pelosi becomes the most consequential woman in politics. along with a record number of women being sworn into congress. she had this to say. >> he was afraid of women. >> and i don't know if he knows how the deal with women in power and strength, but we will see. >> you are probably the most powerful woman in government. >> in the united states, yes. that is true. >> and do you think about that and what that means? do you think about that as a personal accomplishment? >> no, i think of it as a responsibility. i don't think of it as an accomplishment, but a responsibility and how we go forward and how that means in terms of the lives of america's working families and more that
this is not breaking a glass ceiling, but this is breaking a marble ceiling in the capital of the united states. >> joining us now, nbc's national political correspondent steve kornacki and doris concerns go goodwin. and what do you see with this vote? >> it is a moment of national significance. and the if i were her, i would let the resentments fade and give them good assignments and make them part of the process. one of the things that teddy roosevelt said when he was kept on the mckinley cabinet when
they said, are you worried about them not being loyal to you in the past, and he said that he is only worried about how they feel now. and so it is so optimistic watching them say, i can be one of them, and if she can get them to spread the wings, and get them to fly on the key issues and forget the people voting against her, it would be a magnificent thing, and she knows procedure and politics and confident as hell. >> and watching her moments ago escorting some of her nine grandchildren who will be with her on the podium, this is the mother of five, and grandmother of nine, and i think that every woman in america can sort of relate to the balancing act that all women have to navigate at home and in workplaces outside of the home. this is a really complicated role that she socondu
conducting very well indeed, steve kornacki. >> well, she has been there certainly. in 2007, she became the speaker for the first time, a wrend seeing something that is unusual here. it is not exactly unprecedented historically, but it is very unusual historically for a former speak over the house to remain her party's leader for a number of years when the party was in the minority and then to return to the speakership, and we have not seen it happen since sam raburn, the democrat in 1955, is the last time when a former speaker returned to the speakership, and it is a testament to the insider skills. you heard so much about this in the last few months as she tried to fight off the attempts to get her to step down from some of her fellow democrat, but it is something that she is mindful of. it is really for decades now, and in the house. this is somebody who got her spot in democratic leadership n for the first time back in the fall of 2001 and beat steny hoyer, her long-time rival and
won the minority whip's job against him in 2001, and a year later dick gephardt stepped aside and she took over, and then since 2003, she has been the top democrat in the house and sometimes as minority leader and speaker, but the top democrat for 16 years, and looking at both parties and the modern era of congressional p l politics, you will not see a leader in either party of the house surviving for that long of a period of time, and honestly, one of the things that she has been good at and one of the things that has allowed her to endure through all of that time is that she was able to spot the threats, and able to spot the threats early, and able to make sure they never got to the point where they could potentially take her out. and that rivalry with hoyer, wow. i was there and it was about a decade ago the last time that the democrats took over the house which is back in 2006 and amazing that they had run against each other for years, and one of the first moves that
she did was to get hoyer out of the leadership. and it didn't work, but hoyer survived. so it was a clear message of how important she feels about her surviv survivor. and democrat, male, female, we have not seen anybody this enduring in congressional leadership in a long time. >> and steny hoyer who started as a congressional intern and they are both from maryland and she is from baltimore as well, and he is from suburban washington, and they grew up together in politics. the diversity of this, doris s so extraordinary. you have new women members and like ms. oommar who is from a refugee camp, and you are not allowed to wear headwear on the floor of the house, and they had
to change the rules of the house there to allow her to have her tradition traditional headwear. >> and yes, it is about time that the members of the house starts to look like the people of the united states. it is thrilling. i felt that at the time of the midterms and you have more veterans in now than we have had in recent years. and way back in the 1965 and 1975 period, 75% of the congress and the senators were veterans, and no wonder they could come together on a common mission and work across the partylines, and the exciting thing that is good about nancy pelosi she loves this institution, and she is not running for the presidency and this is her life and love and if you can make the people in the house feel a loyalty to the responsibility that might get the near left and the moderate to divisions in the par ti, because it is exciting to be a member of the house of representatives and today, we can see they are signing in for
the first time and some 20 or 30 years from now, there is a young doris kearns goodwin writing about one of these figures. i am always optimistic at one of these moments of change. it is grand. >> and now, nancy pelosi is about to be nominated as speaker. >> in connection with the start of the 116th congress. the scripture says that we may endure even in the long night, weeping may endure, but it is with joy that we rise. so as elected by the democratic house caucus to place the name of nancy pelosi in nomination to be the next speaker of the united states house of representatives.
without question, nancy pelosi has a track record of legislative success that is unparalleled in modern american history. nancy pelosi captained the ship that defeated the effort to privatize social security, rescued our economy in the midst of the great recession, saved the american automobile industry, provided aftfordable health care to more than 20 million americans -- [ applause ]
-- created the consumer financial protection bureau and enacted a minimum wage increase for the first time in ten years, and are struck a blow against mass incarceration with the passage of the fair sentencing act and provided relief for tens of millions of americans who were credit card holders being defrauded, but nancy pelosi is just getting started. in the 116th congress, she will continue to fight hard for the people. nancy pelosi will fight to lower health care costs, strengthen the affordable care act, and protect people with pre-existing conditions, increase pay for everyday americans, enact a real infrastructure plan, clean up corruption, defend the dreamers and fix the voting rights act and end the era of voter suppression once and for all.
will fight for a country that p provides for poor and provides for working families and stands up for senior citizens and innovates the cities and strengthens communities. nancy pelosi is a woman of faith, a loving wife, a mother of five and grandmother of nine, a sophisticated strategist, a legendary legislator, a voice for the voiceless, a defender of the disenfranchised and a powerful profound, prophetic principled public servant, and that is why we stand squarely behind her today. let me be clear, the house democrats are down with ndp,
nancy delesandro pelosi, and we proudly place her name into nomination, and may god bless her and may god bless the united states of america. as nancy pelosi's name is placed in nomination by hakeem jefferies her fellow house member, joining me is ron klain, a former white house aide under president obama and vice presidents gore and biden and we have to start here on the capitol hill here, and michael steele, former house speaker, and john carlson, commenter for the daily beast. and michael steele, you have
witnessed this up close and personal, the handoff from nancy pelosi to john boehner, and bittersweet, but certainly collegial, and they had a pretty good relationship, didn't they? >> yes, they did. in the first day of any day, the time of congress is exciting time, and triumph of hope over experience, but it is an incredibly exciting day of the peaceful transfer of power from one party to another, and the the end of a era, and no longer will republicans control both ends of pennsylvania avenue and we have democratically elected democratic house of representatives and the president is not going to be challenged like he has in the past few years. >> and margaret, he is going to have difficulty? >> as he does with half h of the human race in that he does not know how the deal with women. and we went back to look at pelosi and the intersections, and there are not many, but maybe he has grudging admiration
for her. he has not given her a nickname, which he has, and when she questioned his manhood, he said, i hope that we can avert a shutdown. and he has respect for somebody who knows the art of the deal, and she does not want to bury tr trump, but elevate the country. she is not going to gloat. her daughter said yesterday on tv, she can cut your head off and you don't know that you are bleeding. that is going to be a bloodless dealmaking for her, because she is not going to gloat. >> and at the same time in the senate chamber by the way, another rising woman star liz cheney, now third ranking in the republican leadership on the senate side is going to be as you can see right there introducing kevin mccarthy and she is over on the house side now rather. >> it is an exciting transition.
it really is. i hope that she is part of a new wave of house republican candidates who help to take back the house in coming years and it is a positive thing for the conference and the country. >> and liz cheney is i should point out from wyoming and obviously, the elder daughter of dick and lynne cheney. very, you know, very strongly conservative and smart and former state department official, and she is introducing kevin mccarthy being nominated as well. >> yes. >> and how is this process going to work? >> well, it is an exciting new leadership team for the house republicans. they kept some of the strong members from the last kopg, and the addition of liz cheney is a huge addition to the team. we need to remember that kevin mccarthy is the best choice to be republican leader in the house, because he played a pivotal role going into 2010 the last time that the republicans defeated nancy pelosi's democrats and won the majority in the house of representatives and he is the best possible
choice for a leader right now. >> and let's talk about how the democrats are organizing going into the 2020 campaign and as a lawyer, what do you think of wh that justice department guidance against not indicting a sitting president actually is something that should be binding? >> look, i think she's right to leave that to robert mueller to figure out. let the lawyers figure it out. she's focused on doing her job which is running the house of representatives and getting the government reopened. they're going to act on that very quickly. putting anti-corruption legislation on the floor. moving forward with the positive agenda. she wasn't elected to prosecute donald trump. she was elected to lead the democrats. she leads a very different democratic party. when she was made speaker in 2007, there were a lot of conservatives in the democratic caucus. a majority created by a lot of conservative districts. this time, she is leading a
progressive democratic caucus, one that was created from a lot of suburban districts. the defections to the left, not to the right. she's got a pretty unified caucus to go forward and put forward the policy agenda the democrats ran on about health care, the economy. i think that's what we're going to see from her. >> one of the remarkable things, doris, you cab commen comment o children. we just saw the baby. they bring all their children. the one time of year when everyone can come up in the gallery. we saw some shots of the pelosi family proudly in the gallery. this is family day on capitol hill, doris. >> yes, which makes it even a more warm occasion. it struck me in representative je jeffrey's nomination, when he spoke about what a joy it was. we've had so little joy in politics in these last months. so little joy in president trump
as a person. except when he's fighting against something. to see the joy of new people thinking that maybe things will be different, you know, that maybe something will change and this fever will break. normally they can't be there so let us just take this moment. i just have a little better feeling about things right now as of this moment. >> we love to have your optimism as we face this continuing shutdown though, nancy pelosi talked to savannah gathry abogut what it's like to negotiate with donald trump. >> what's it like to negotiate with him? >> you have to know, you stipulate to some fact. it's hard to do that with the president because he resists science, data, truth. it's hard to pin the president down on the facts.
>> so, ron clain, one of the problems they have faced, certainly the senate republicans face now, is what legislation can they bring to the floor if the house is going to pass those spending bills? >> you know, i think it's hard to negotiate with donald trump as speaker pelosi said, in part, because he doesn't know facts. in part because he doesn't know policy. in part because he keeps changing his mind. twice, mike pence has outlined deals he said the president would take. he's the vice president. he should be able to speak for the president reliably. both times, donald trump's rejected them. look, i think speaker pelosi can only do what she can do. which is put forward a sound plan to reopen the government. the democrats in the house will do their jobs. and then it will be up to the
senate republicans and president trump to decide if they'll do their jobs. >> chuck schumer has also come over to the house floor. a former house member to watch pelosi be sworn in. he said he fired mattis and this set off a reaction on twitter from newt gingrich defending mattis, michael steele. >> even republicans who are supportive of the president generally really felt reassured that general mattis was at the pentagon, was keeping american foreign policy safe. was reassuring our allies. absent that reassurance, i think you'll see a lot more questions about foreign policy. >> we reach a point where republican senators start speaking out because they've lost bob corker. they've lost, you know, flake. a number of the more independent senators. lamar alexander.
but what are you going to hear from republican senators taking on this president? >> i think on narrow foreign policy issues, republican senators have been quite willing already to make it clear when they have disagreements with this president on russia sanctions in the middle east, yemen. they've been willing to not just say but vote contrary to the president's position. at the same time, they know the best thing to get done with this president is not to directly confront him, but try to be as supportive as possible publicly while seeking to influence that policy. >> even so, you can see cracks in the foundation. just on the wall, the president has said things like, you know, you can see through it but it's concrete. >> steel slats, yeah. >> it's steel slats. his supporters who are still, you know, out there with him as you say have also questions the wall and tried to build the wall
down so it's not this huge thing he says it is. senator alexander. pence. others. have tried to find a way to get trump out of this. there are senators who aren't going to stick with him on this shutdown because they know nobody wins. >> we'll have to leave there. we'll take a quick break. margaret carlson, michael steele, ron clain, thank you. we'll be back after this short break. my experience with usaa has been excellent. they really appreciate the military family and it really shows. with all that usaa offers why go with anybody else? we know their rates are good, we know that they're always going to take care of us. it was an instant savings and i should have changed a long time ago. it was funny because when we would call another insurance company, hey would say "oh we can't beat usaa" we're the webber family. we're the tenney's we're the hayles, and we're usaa members for life. ♪ get your usaa auto insurance quote today.
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as we watch the house floor, the vote is officially under way for nancy pelosi as speaker of the house and we witnessed these remarkable events here on capitol hill. important to remember, we're all americans, privileged to participate in our form of representative government and as journalists, watch history unfolding in front of us. privilege to be here today. for this special edition of "andrea mitchell reports." here is ali velshi for "velshi and ruehl" in new york. >> good afternoon. i'm ali velshi. stephanie ruhle is off. it is an historic day. the first new congress. >> do you slolemnly swear -- >> the official start of the 116th congress. >> prayerfully, humbly with confidence and pride, will meet the challenge and will make a difference in the lives of the american people. >> i look forward to being able to