tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC January 25, 2019 9:00am-10:00am PST
analysts who joined me. "andrea mitchell reports" starts right now. good day, i'm andrea mitchell in washington, thank you, craig, with our continuing coverage on the indictment of longtime trump associate roger stone. he's appearing before a judge in ft. lauderdale and signing a $250,000 signature bond before his arrest on charges stemming from the russia probe. stone's travel is restricted to washington, d.c. and parts of florida and virginia. the grand jury indictment includes one count of obstruction, five counts of false statements to congress during his testimony before the house intelligence committee, and one count of witness tampering. all five counts of false statements are connected to comments stone made to the committee in relation to wikileaks labeled organization 1 in the charging documents. stone has repeatedly denied any direct connection to julian assange in wikileaks.
stone originally attracted attention after tweeting in august of 2016 that it would soon be hillary clinton campaign chairman john podesta's time in the barrel. stone has repeatedly denied having advanced knowledge of the hack of podesta's e-mails. >> just a coincidence that two days later, voila, the podesta e-mails dropped? >> the answer to your question is yes, that would be based on conjecture, supposition. but there is no evidence to suggest that that is what i was speaking to, i never said anything of the kind. there is no evidence whatsoever that i had advanced knowledge of the content or source of this material. i received nothing from wikileaks or from the russians. i passed nothing on to donald trump or the trump campaign.
we've been through this ad nauseam. it is a wild goose chase. >> the indictment alleges a link between stone and the trump campaign, saying, quote, during the summer of 2016, stone spoke to senior trump campaign officials about organization 1, that's wikileaks, and information it might have had that could be damaging to the clinton campaign. stone was contacted by senior trump campaign officials to inquire about future releases by organization 1. it also details an unnamed senior trump campaign official being directed to contact stone about additional releases from wikileaks just four days before then-candidate donald trump uttered these words. >> but it would be interesting to see -- i will tell you this, russia, if you're listening, i hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. i think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.
let's see if that happens. that will be next. >> and joining me now, nbc's kerry sanders outside the courthouse in ft. lauderdale, florida, nbc justice correspondent pete williams here in washington, msnbc's katy tur who asked the question that elicited that response from donald trump last summer, justice and security analyst matt miller, former chief spokesman to attorney general eric holder, and chuck rosenberg, former justice official. kerry sanders, let's talk about what happened in the courtroom today. we're waiting for roger stone to come out and, we think, address the press. >> reporter: yes, we're expecting him to come out because a representative came out and shouted twice that he would be out within 45 minutes to an hour. we probably have already passed that period of time. but we expect for him to be coming out shortly. meantime, he was in the magistrate's courtroom, which
was a pretty small courtroom. our nbc producer who was in there said it was very crowded. some members of the public and reporters were even unable to get inside, there was so much interest. when they were finally able to get a position inside, roger stone was already in the courtroom before u.s. magistrate snow. he was seated at the table, his hands handcuffs. an nbc producer said he was wearing a blue shirt, likely the shirt he wore when the federal agents, the fbi came to his house this morning and knocked on the door in a pre-dawn raid. while he is in the courtroom here and was eventually told that he would be given a $250,000 bond which means he would be able to walk out today, the federal agents have been at his home exercising a search warrant. the agents set up a series of tents in and around the house so that news helicopters and anybody else who might be able to peer from above with a drone or something would be obstructed. so we're not exactly sure what's
going on, because the street is also closed. but i'm seeing movement -- i don't want to say that roger stone is coming out yet. maybe it's people taking pictures. but there's been a fair amount of anticipation out here. as you know better than anybody, andrea, roger stone is somebody who likes to speak, likes to speak confidently, and i suspect when he walks over here to these microphones, we're going to hear some vintage statements from him. he has been quite focal already about the mueller investigation. some people say it appears he's even been taunting the investigation. so this indictment now and this being taken into custody certainly didn't come as a surprise. but he did not know it was going to happen this morning with federal agents knocking on his door with guns and bullet-proof vests. >> kerry, we'll of course be getting back to you. we've been covering roger stone for many decades here in washington, and all of his
political machinations. the president has tweeted this last hour, greatest witch hunt in the history of our country, no collusion, border coyotes, drug dealers and human traffickers are treated better, who alerted cnn to be there? because cnn was there and clearly knew that arrest was going down in the predawn hours. chuck todd, a lot of interesting facts emerging in this indictment as with the other mueller indictments, there is a narrative here, and i'm really struck by something chuck rosenberg was also calling to our attention earlier, which is that back in the indictment it says, after the july 22nd, 2016 release of stolen dnc e-mails by organization 1, which is wikileaks, a senior trump campaign official was directed to contact stone about any additional releases and what other damaging information organization 1, wikileaks, had regarding the clinton campaign. stone thereafter told the trump campaign about potential future
releases of damaging material by organization 1. that suggests not only that he was in touch with organization 1, something he has previously denied, repeatedly denied, but also there was someone who directed a senior trump campaign official. who was that unnamed person? >> you know, what's interesting here, it's both on the one hand very damning, because it's collusion. you see it there -- >> alleged. >> alleged, between wikileaks and the trump campaign with roger stone as the conduit. this lays out a pretty good case. at the same time, you would ask yourself, okay, if the campaign, whoever asked roger stone to contact wikileaks, i guess you can now claim, well, the campaign didn't know what wikileaks had or maybe didn't -- you know, they might be able to somehow claim that some detachment, not knowing if it was russian stolen material and russian intelligence that they were using. but to me, the scary thing here for the president is, he's sitting here tweeting no collusion, and i'm thinking, you
didn't read the indictment. this is the first mueller indictment that lays out a collusion case. now, again, it's collusion between wikileaks and the trump campaign with roger stone as the conduit. we know mueller has alleged that the russian government gave it to wikileaks. what we don't know is was stone, trump, were they also aware of all of this too. those are dots that haven't been connected. >> which also makes that, of course, the june trump tower meeting, all the more important. >> by the way, rudy giuliani's now re-imagination of what no collusion is, no, no, it's just the president, i'll be honest, that was in my head this morning when i read this and you realize, oh, he now knows other trump campaign officials colluded with stone and wikileaks. >> let me bring in someone who knows a whole lot more than any of us about this, although he can't say anything about what was said in private, and that's adam schiff in florida, the new chairman of the house
intelligence committee and some of these charges, of course, relate to roger stone's testimony to your committee. your immediate reaction to all of this today? >> well, my immediate reaction is that very paragraph that you're focused on, which is that someone directed a senior campaign official to reach out to stone, to find out about future releases. how many people could direct a senior campaign official? and that language of direction we've seen in other indictments before, referring to individual 1 directing the campaign finance fraud scheme, for example. so there's probably a very select number of people that are in a position to do that. and also, the chronology of all this, that you have these private efforts to find out about these stolen e-mails and the publishing arm of the russians, which is wikileaks, as well as guccifer 2, at the same
time that the president is calling for russian help in hacking hillary clinton's e-mails, after russians communicated that they had dirt on hillary clinton, were offering to help the trump campaign in the setup to that trump tower new york meeting. and of course you've got the contacts that the russians had through intermediaries with george papadopoulos when they informed the campaign they had hillary's e-mails. you all see this as part of a big picture coming together, additional pieces being placed in the puzzle. >> you've also got in this indictment some really interesting language about obstruction of justice, witness tampering, alleged, and his having said many times that he would never give in, he would never talk about anything, he would never cooperate. as a former prosecutor, you know very well that there could eventually be a superseding
indictment. is this a pressure tactic to get him to cooperate? >> you know, it's possible that the special counsel has in mind other charges, wants roger stone's cooperation. at the same time, enforcing the notion that you can't come before congress and lie is in itself an important aim of the special counsel, and it's obviously very important to our committee. this is now the second witness before our committee that has either pled to charges or been indicted for making false statements to our committee. and i think that stands on its own as an imperative. but you certainly do see i think a gathering of momentum in terms of the evidence that the special counsel is putting out. the information we're learning about these contacts, these meetings, these communications, all of which mr. stone denied to our committee in the most
flagrant way. the other thing i have to say that leaps out at me about this, when you look at the discussions between mr. stone and one of the two individuals where he is making references to the "godfather" film or threatening this witness if they testify or threatening his dog, i mean, it is really mafia, mob-like tactics. and of course you have the president using mafia, mob-like terms of "rat," you have the president and his lawyer trying to intimidate another witness, michael cohen, who will be coming before our committee. so it's really astonishing. it all hearkens back to something james comey once said, which is his impression in dealing with the president and people around him was like dealing with a mafia boss. >> you mentioned that, and in the indictment itself, it says, on multiple occasions, including on or about december 21st, 2017,
stone told person 2 that person 2 should do a frank pentageli, who is a character in the film "godfather part 2," who testifies before a congressional committee and claims not to know critical information that he does in fact know. i'm probably mispronouncing the name. let's watch the clip. >> the fbi promised me a deal so i made up a lot of stuff about michael corleone because that's what they wanted. but it was all lies, everything. i kept saying, michael corleone did this and michael corleone did that. so i said, yeah, sure, why not? >> mr. corleone, would you kindly identify for the committee the gentleman sitting
to your left? >> i can answer that. his name is vincenzo pentalle. >> will he come forward and be sworn? >> he does not understand english. he came to aid his brother in a time of trouble. he is not under subpoena and his reputation in his own country is impeccable. >> are you saying he knows nothing about these matters? >> to my knowledge, nothing. >> i did mispronounce it, it's pentengelli. the fact is, in that great scene, mr. chairman, of course, the mob, the godfather, brought in the brother from sicily, and with that, the witness caved, took a dive, and eventually went to jail and killed himself. >> well, as is all too often the case in the last couple of years of the trump administration, life is more strange than art.
a lot of the things that are going on today, if you put them into a script, would never be produced because they would be too implausible. it is so destructive of our system of rule of law that you have a president of the united states who overtly is attempting to interfere with witness testimony before congress, who is praising people who refuse to cooperate, he is at times lio lionized roger stone, he has lionized paul manafort for refusing to cooperate, and calling people rats who do cooperate, who do make amends, who do want to make recompense for what they've done. and sadly, you know, this is not at the moment in the realm of film, it's in the realm of the presidency. >> where do you take this next in your committee? >> well, we're determined to continue to follow the evidence, bring in additional witnesses on
this investigative thread. there were several that we were not allowed to proceed further on. we had wanted to subpoena roger stone's e-mails and text messages. we had wanted to compel other testimony. the majority was largely uninterested in doing so. and took the position that we should accept at face value whatever witnesses said before our committee. we have now seen repeatedly how flawed an investigative strategy that is. so we're going to pursue, we're going to find out just who was directing senior campaign officials to interact with mr. stone, to find out about future releases. there's also i think more to the story than what we have seen laid out in this indictment. and because the attorney general nominee is not committed to releasing the mueller report to congress or other evidence to congress, we're going to have to make sure we find out the facts ourselves, because at the end of the day, we intend to let the american people know exactly what happened, what the
president's role was, what the role was of people around him, and that's our mission. >> and i'm not going to ask you to speculate, but do you have any idea who the campaign official was who was supposedly ordered to give stone orders, to get more information from wikileaks? >> well, you know, i don't want to go into both the evidence that we have as well as our suspicions about who played various roles. there have been already public accounts of some of the e-mails and who might have been on the other end of some of these e-mails. but it's clear that some of the witnesses came in before our committee and refused to answer questions, they're going to have to come back, and this time we'll have the power of the subpoena to compel them to answer questions. others that we wanted to bring before the committee but the majority refused, we will be bringing, so that we understand the full nature of the contact that the campaign and those associated with it had with this publishing arm of the kremlin,
in wikileaks. >> thank you so much, house intelligence chairman adam schiff. with us here also, chuck rosenberg, as i pointed out. we've got matt miller and pete williams, katy tur in new york. i wanted to ask chuck, what happened in that quick procedure down there and what's next for roger stone? >> sure. that court procedure was fast and not all that interesting. it's called an initial appearance, and simply mr. stone goes before a federal magistrate judge. she ascertains that he is in fact mr. stone and that he has a charge pending against him in washington, d.c. in this case she set a bond, so he is released and will have to travel on his own to appear. so not a big deal, nothing adjudicated, no testimony. it's really just a quick administrative proceeding. >> he's apparently done a telephone interview and talked about -- with alex jones of info wars, obviously a friend and
compatriot, and is complaining about the procedure, they took him from his house, scared his dog, scared his wife. why the predawn arrest? >> there's a couple of reasons why you arrest somebody. one is he has been charged with committing a crime, not to be overly simplistic here, but that's one reason you arrest people. the other reason is because he was charged also with tampering with witnesses. when you're talking about obstruction of justice or witness tampering, even though he did not have a criminal record as far as i know, even though there's no crime of violence alleged, when you start to mess with the criminal justice system you're really waving a red flag. you're telling federal prosecutors and federal agents this might be someone you want to arrest. simply telling him to come in and present himself on a summons doesn't always work with people who obstruct justice. >> pete williams, let me ask you about some of the other highlights of this indictment, as you've been going through it. >> well, the basic picture here, remember, we've been sort of talking about this in shorthand, but remember what robert mueller
has said before, that it was the russians who hacked the democrats and hillary clinton's computers. the russians, through a person that you heard adam schiff talk about named guccifer 2, who was a hacker, who released it to wikileaks and wikileaks released it. roger stone really brought this attention on himself by bragging publicly that he was in touch directly with julian assange, something he later said wasn't true, he back-pedalled on that, and then it became clear he was dealing with wikileaks through an intermediary named randy credico, who is a talk show host, and then saying to randy credico, see if they have this stuff, see if we can get more information out. that's what he claimed to have done. the mueller team says they have
e-mails and texts claiming that he did. the problem for him is when he went before congress in september of 2017, he denied all that and then directed, according to mueller, told randy credico to lie about it, and that's the person you're talking about in the clip from "the godfather," he said be like that guy in "the godfather" and if you don't lie, i'm going to take your dog. that's the essence of what this is. the picture that's painted here is he was bragging about his contacts with wikileaks and the trump campaign said, well, you're the guy that deals with wikileaks, see what else they've got. >> and i wanted to play also for anyone who is going to expect that the white house will say, well, he wasn't part of the campaign at that point, he really was not a major player, this is paul manafort talking about roger stone from a netflix doc called "get stone." >> roger's, you know, relationship with trump has been so interconnected that it's hard to define what's roger and
what's donald. while it will be clearly a trump presidency, i think it's influenced by a stone philosophy. roger's relationship with trump, they both see the world in a very similar way. if trump is elected president, roger will see a very significant impact he's had on world history. >> katy tur, you covered the trump campaign, and your perspective on this, if the white house tries to say this isn't the white house and has nothing to do with donald trump. >> roger stone has a long relationship with donald trump that goes back decades, you can't exactly call him a coffee boy. while he was fired from the campaign or he quit from the campaign, depending on who you ask, in august of 2015, he still did have contact with donald trump throughout 2016. i talked to four members of the 2016 trump campaign today about this. all of them said that they had no idea that stone was acting in
this way at the time. they all dismissed stone as somebody who was trying to bring relevance to himself, somebody who wanted attention, wanted to seem like he was still a part of things. then again, all these people were very careful to point to the caveat, "as far as i know." "as far as i know, there was nothing going on." "as far as i know, stone wasn't if contact with the campaign." there were only a handful of senior campaign officials on the trump campaign, though, there wasn't a lot of people. paul manafort, in the summer of 2016, there was paul manafort, rick gates, there were the trump children and a couple of others. and then once manafort was gone, steve bannon came in and kellyanne conway came in. again, the group of people who could be considered senior trump campaign officials doesn't go past five or six people. it was a small operation there. when you look at this indictment, what stands out to me, andrea, is the timeline.
what we keep coming back to, again, is the summer of 2016, and what was happening around then. in this indictment, mueller's team points to july 22nd. and it's paragraph 12, they say that the release of stolen dnc e-mails by organization 1 after that, a senior trump campaign official was directed to contact stone about any additional releases and what other damaging information organization 1 had regarding the clinton campaign. five days later, andrea, on july 27th, donald trump was standing at a press conference in doral, florida, in the middle of the democratic national consequential, and he suddenly says, russia, if you're listening, where are hillary clinton's e-mails. i think we have that sound, we should play it. >> i have nothing to do with russia. i told you. i have no deals there. i have no anything. now, when wikileaks, which i had nothing to do with, comes out and happens to give, they're not
giving classified information. they're giving stuff, what was said in an office about hillary cheating on the debates, which by the way nobody mentions. >> now, we did play -- the earlier reference you made, we played that earlier in our program, katy, at the beginning of our show, we did play that, i think it was you who asked him the question. >> it was after he said that, i said to him, are you joking, does it give you pause to say something like that? and he was very adamant, no, it doesn't give me any pause, i want to see those e-mails. interestingly, though, and this will get pointed out all day long, there was an indictment from mueller's team last summer, i believe it was last summer, that shows that that very night, that night, russian hackers, believed to be or according to mueller's team having ties to russian intelligence, tried for the very first time to hack into hillary clinton's personal e-mails. so it seems like there was -- they were listening. "russia, if you're listening, find her e-mails."
it seemed like they listened to donald trump on that stage and then went to look. again, this timing is all becoming very questionable. it feels like what robert mueller's team is doing is laying the groundwork to come out later with a superseding indictment that talks directly and alleges directly collusion as opposed to lying and obstruction and tampering with witnesses. >> and katy, at the white house right now, kristen welker is standing by, where they're beginning to set up the rose garden for some sort of public appearance. do we know what's going on yet? >> reporter: we don't know what's going on, andrea, we're trying to work our sources to get to the bottom of it. are they setting up the equipment for the president or perhaps some other event that's going to take place? will he perhaps have something to say today about the shutdown? andrea, let me toss it back to you, it looks like roger stone is coming out. >> exactly, we were expecting roger stone.
now you see he's coming out. he's the gray-haired man, white-haired man in the blue shirt. if the camera pulls out, you can see attorneys and others around him. there's roger stone, if they pan back to him, he was doing basically a richard nixon big victory signature, arms swept wide there, for a moment. he came to light originally, of course, on the national stage as a young richard nixon aide, especially in the 1972 campaign, which eventually led to, memorably, the watergate charges. we'll see whether he comes to the microphone. first he's going to be introduced by his attorney, i think. let's listen. can we say, this is a media circus that only roger stone could properly appreciate.
>> quiet, quiet! whoa, whoa! mr. stone is going to speak. he speaks for himself. you know that roger stone has always spoken for himself. he's never been shy about telling his story. he is innocent. we're going to defend this case and we're going to win this case. but let me start out by saying that the spectacle this morning was completely unnecessary. everyone knows where roger stone is. he's not in hiding. the spectacle this morning with an s.w.a.t. team breaking into his house, searching the house, scaring his wife, scaring his dogs, completely unnecessary. a telephone call would have done the job and mr. stone would have appeared.
but let me let roger speak for himself. he has nothing to hide. he has nothing to hide. and he's spoken before. he'll speak to you now. roger? >> thank you. [ booing ] >> as i have always said, the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about. after a two-year inquisition, the charges today relate in no way to russian collusion, wikileaks collaboration, or any other illegal act in connection with the 2016 campaign. i am falsely accused of making false statements during my testimony to the house intelligence committee. that is incorrect. any error i made in my testimony
would be both immaterial and without intent. [ crowd chants "lock him up" ] i find it disturbing that the special counsel office released a press release prior to informing my attorneys that i would be charged today. this morning, at the crack of dawn, 29 fbi agents arrived at my home with 17 vehicles with their lights flashing, when they could simply have contacted my attorneys and i would have been more than willing to surrender voluntarily. they terrorized my wife, my dogs. i was taken to the fbi facility, although i must say the fbi agents were extraordinarily courteous. i will plead not guilty to these charges. i will defeat them in court. i believe this is a politically
motivated investigation. i am troubled by the political motivations of the prosecutors. and as i have said previously, there is no circumstance whatsoever under which i will bear false witness against the president nor will i make up lies to ease the pressure on myself. i look forward to being fully and completely vindicated. >> reporter: will you cooperate with the special counsel's office in any way? >> since i was not contacted prior to the charges today, my lawyers have not talked to the special prosecutors. i don't want to address that question. but i have made it clear i will not testify against the president. because i would have to bear false witness. i will be appearing for an arraignment in d.c. next week. and i'll address those questions
at that time. >> reporter: the president said you had guts. what do you think he meant by that? >> i intend to tell the truth. i have told the truth through this entire proceeding and i will prove that in a court of law. >> reporter: are you going to ask the president for a pardon? >> i am one of his oldest friends. i am a fervent supporter of the president. i think he's doing a great job of making america great again. >> reporter: did anyone tell you to contact -- in the trump campaign to contact wikileaks? >> no. i've addressed that before. that is incorrect. >> reporter: do you think the president will pardon you? >> pardon me? >> reporter: if you were convicted, do you think the president would pardon you? >> the only thing i've advocated a pardon for is marcus garvey. >> reporter: i'm from nbc news, sir. my question is did you in any way work with the russians to help president trump? >> categorically not, no.
absolutely not. >> reporter: and the prosecutor, the special prosecutor is [ inaudible ] will you in any way -- >> with all due respect, i haven't even had a chance to read the indictment. my attorneys have. i have not had that opportunity. >> reporter: so will you help the prosecutor answer his questions? >> i will address those questions next week in washington, d.c. >> reporter: if you didn't do nothing wrong, why do you think you're here? >> well, you saw kerry sanders asking questions of roger stone. a little bit hard to hear because of all the background noise and shouting. back with me is msnbc justice and security analyst matt miller, former chief spokesman for eric holder, chuck rosenberg, former u.s. attorney and former senior fbi official, and national security and justice reporter julia ainsley as well. matt miller, you heard roger
stone say he will never testify against the president, he's never said anything about the truth, denying any misstatements to the house committee were in any way deliberate lies. >> the most important words you heard in that press conference is "the president is one of my oldest friends, i'm a fervent supporter, and i will not bear false witness against him, i will not testify against him." he could not be making more clear that he will not do what everyone thinks the special counsel wants him to do, which is to come forward and tell the truth about any interactions he had with the united states. i don't know that that's a blatant appeal for a pardon but it certainly looks like it. if you look at the evidence against him in the indictment, it is pretty overwhelming, it's compelling. you played the clip on this show earlier of "the godfather part 2," you can imagine that being played to jurors so they can understand exactly what he meant when he made that reference in his conversations with randy credico. most defendants facing charges like this would be in the
special prosecutor's office this afternoon talking about how to make a deal to plead guilty and get the lowest possible sentence by cooperating. why is he not doing that? i think -- why is he not willing to testify, why is he not willing to cooperate? the only explanation you can get is that he sees another way out of this and that would be a pardon. >> and chuck rosenberg, joining us as well, we also today in a federal court in washington had paul manafort appearing. and while there wasn't a whole lot of developments, the prosecutors certainly indicated that they now are withdrawing any special benefit that might have been given to paul manafort by his original plea agreement because they say he did not cooperate fully and did not tell the truth. >> you have to cooperate and you have to cooperate fully and truthfully. and it was those last couple of words i think on which he got hung up. so that's exactly right, andrea. no credit, no reduction. to matt's point, and my experience as a federal prosecutor, almost all
defendants become convicted felons and almost all convicted felons cooperate. but not every one. there's something that we can do about those who don't cooperate. we simply prosecute them and then a judge puts them in jail. it's not that complicated. would the mueller team prefer to have the cooperation of manafort, fully and truthfully, and of stone, fully and truthfully? sure. but we don't have to, right? they are not required to help themselves. if they want to make a bad choice, and many defendants do, then have at it, make a bad choice. >> we should point out that the fbi agents who arrested him, the marshals, the bailiffs, the prosecutors, everyone who appeared in his apartment and in the courtroom today, are not being paid. they are part of the shutdown. julia ainsley joining us as well. julia, you've been watching all of this as well as the paul manafort brief hearing, and now he will proceed to sentencing because he will not be given further credit, he will not be
charged with the other crimes that had been set aside, but focusing on roger stone, your takeaway from this really very descriptive indictment. >> matt's takeaway is absolutely right, he's adamant that he's not going to cooperate. he's said that for some time. two nights ago on fox news he said he didn't want to testify because he didn't want to bear false witness. he said michael cohen, trump's personal attorney and long time fixer cooperated and he lied about trump. he's associating cooperation with lying about the president. and so this is part of the trickery he does, of kind of these dark arts, where it's hard to see exactly how that could be possible. but another thing that i think is worth pointing out, while we don't see in this indictment that wikileaks -- that the trump campaign or roger stone knew that wikileaks was getting their information from russian hackers, we do know, and be snb news has reported in summer of 2016, the president, the
candidate, and the campaign, were warned about foreign influence, specifically from russia. so today, to hear kerry sanders ask roger stone did you work with russia to help the president, he didn't want to go there, he said, no, i never have, it's the same thing he said to chuck todd on "meet the press." it seems like it would be very hard to have that level of detail and that level of connection to wikileaks and julian assange and not know where they're getting their information. >> and ken dilanian as well at the courthouse in washington, you've covered the manafort hearing and are covering all of this as well, can you weigh in here on today's indictment and what it tells you about the emerging narrative of robert mueller's case? >> reporter: well, it's interesting, andrea, in the sense that many people were expecting that stone would be indicted as part of the conspiracy against the united states, in connection with that indictment that robert mueller filed against the russian
hackers. he hasn't made that link in this indictment, he's charged roger stone with lying. but there's a particular passage where he seems to be suggesting to wikileaks that they focus on hillary clinton's health, for example. he seems to be encouraging them to release certain things at certain points. and so that to me is crucial. if robert mueller can prove that roger stone went beyond just simply soliciting information from wikileaks, which after all journalists have done, and went beyond that to actually coordinating with wikileaks, suggesting courses of action, that gets us closer to collusion. and of course the other big question is, you know, did roger stone know and did the people he was talking to in the trump campaign know, did they know for sure that this material had been stolen by the russians and handed to wikileaks. >> and bring us up to date exactly on what happened with the manafort case today, if we can button that down. >> reporter: absolutely. so there was a hearing in this courthouse behind me where robert mueller's prosecutors
made clear, as they had said in court documents, that they believe that paul manafort has lied and therefore should get no cooperation, no break -- i'm sorry, no break in sentencing for his cooperation to date, even though he has met with the mueller team on many occasions and has provided a lot of information to them, they say he lied on key points and therefore shouldn't get a break on sentencing. the judge wanted to know more details about that and she's scheduled a closed hearing for february 4th. but really it's just a matter of, there's no motion at stake here. the judge just wants the information. she's going to defer to prosecutors as a matter of law on this. and what this means, andrea, is paul manafort, who could have had a very substantial break on sentencing, now faces as many as 15 years in prison. he'll be sentenced both in virginia and in washington, d.c. and the real question is why, why did manafort, having cut a deal, choose to lie about certain things including his relationship with this russian intelligence linked person named
konstan kilimnick, andrea. >> matt miller, when we look at why someone may decide not to cooperate, it's already been suggested, you suggested that there could be only one reason in this case, in the case of roger stone, because he's talking about -- he's talking directly to the white house, to donald trump, and saying, you know, i believe in you, i believe in donald trump, i'm loyal to you, you've been my friend and i believe you're doing a great job of making america great again. >> that's right, it also goes to the question, why did roger stone behave the way he did is laid out in this indictment. why did he take such incredibly risky actions. going into the congress and lying about things that were easily provable. intimidating witnesses, tampering with witnesses. >> at least according to -- >> allegedly, according to the charges, in such blatant ways that are sure to come back and bite you later on down the road, if all you're trying to do is protect something you've already publicly admitted to. let's remember, he in the fall of 2016 was quite open in talking about his communications with wikileaks. if he's just trying to protect these communications with wikileaks that he had already confessed to, why would he go to
such extreme lengths? it doesn't make sense to me. it leads you to believe he's trying to cover up something worse. you hear this cliche a lot, the coverup is worse than the crime. sometimes that's true, but sometimes the reason people are covering things up is because the underlying crime is so bad that they cannot risk the polite of it ever becoming known to prosecutors or the public. >> when we look at this case, jul julia, as it's beginning to evolve, now you've got on the hill a house chairman, democratic chairman, because of the takeover, and a fully-engaged house intelligence committee as well as the judiciary committee and the other committees. on the senate side, you've also had an intelligence committee working in a bipartisan way, in the way intelligence committees previously did in both houses until this recent iteration. so at this stage, what about those committees and what they do? it's been suggested that they should stop holding back because of the -- in deference to the
mueller probe. congress has its own interests here in things that are not necessarily illegal but things that need to be addressed in terms of public policy, in terms of legislation. >> well, you saw a strong reaction from adam schiff who chairs that house committee that you talked about. so obviously there are problems, as joyce vance has said, there are things that are awful but not unlawful, to use her term. that could be where congress picks up. but it's really key that they do work in conjunction with mueller, and i think mueller's team has made that clear, that they don't want congress to get ahead of what they may have and be ready to bring criminal charges on. another thing i'll say about the house committee, and this flies in the face of what stone said, that these were immaterial things he lied about. if you go to paragraph 21 in the indictment, what he lied about, what roger stone lied about in his testimony to the house committee -- permanent select committee on intelligence, is that he lied about the source for his statements on wikileaks, the request he made to
wikileaks, and his communications with his identified intermediary, so we know from persons 1 and person 1 2, and his communications with the trump campaign. those are not immaterial. as congressman schiff pointed out, democrats now have the power of the subpoena to go back and get more information from people who did not give them forg forthcoming information, who were not as forthcoming as they should have been, clearly roger stone was not as forthcoming as he should have been in his testimony. it could be that mueller could wrap his investigation or submit a report and that we still uncover more about what happened during the course of this campaign, more wrongdoing, maybe not necessarily criminal acts because of the power of those committees. you're absolutely right, andrea, that that is an area that cannot be overlooked and is really important on a day like today. >> now, while all of this is happening, as we were pointing out, the fbi agents, the federal marshals, the prosecutors, they
are not being paid. we've all seen other impacts of the continuing government shutdown. now we're talking about into its fifth week. kelly o'donnell on capitol hill, the senate is technically in session. the house is on the call of nancy pelosi but not in session today. are there any glimmers, now that the senate has defeated both of those options, the trump republican plan and the democratic plan, defeated with crossover votes with a number of republican senators, more republican senators crossing over to vote for the democratic plan than some might have expected, any glimmer of talks between mcconnell and schumer that might result in some sort of compromise in the next couple of days? >> reporter: okay, andrea, there are a lot of things that are happening here that don't give us a clear picture of a done deal. but let me just sort of set the table of what our sources are telling us. there is a certain sort of expectation that, a, it's a
friday, b, this has gone on for 35 days. there's an outside problem with air traffic control at a ground stop in florida -- or in la guardia, rather, and issues related to can they -- now that they have defeated the known bills, can they do something short term. so various sources, both democrat and republican, have been saying, there is this coming together in a bipartisan way of wanting a short term reopening of the government. but everyone is saying, you've got to get a sign-off from the white house first before mitch mcconnell could move with that, and from the democratic side, house speaker pelosi's team, her caucus of democrats have passed a range of measures including a short term what we call cr, continuing resolution, which keeps funding going. and there's been this push among bipartisan senators to say a short term, good faith effort to reopen the government, get paychecks rolling, put people back on their jobs, and then continue to negotiate.
so what we've been told is to be looking for mitch mcconnell today to speak at some point, the earliest would be 1:00, perhaps later. and various sources have said watch the white house for a signal that the president would be prepared to back something coming from capitol hill. so we are poised for that. could it happen today? we don't have reportable proof that that's moving forward, but there are a lot of signs. everything from activity at the white house to activity here on capitol hill, conversations that are happening behind the scenes, where democratic senators have said to me there are signs that the other side, being republicans, here and at the white house are coming toward us. at the same time i've been told by aides to speaker pelosi, they're not looking for any meeting from the white house or meeting with the president at this time. so what do we make of that? fridays are often notable in washington, the pressure points are real. two bills that were solutions failed, meaning you've got to start with something else.
and now the question is, is the president prepared to okay something. he did say on camera yesterday that if there was some kind of an agreement, bipartisan, that he would be open to looking at that. he has also said he wants a down payment on his wall. that has been a nonstarter here. democrats are offering more funding for new technology and a more robust border security, not a wall. so we're just really in a place where it feels like something is going to happen. that's not reportable, that's just instinct based on all the tidbits we're watching. we'll keep you posted as we get any developments, andrea. >> we trust your instincts, having covered both ends of pennsylvania avenue. kelly, a couple of things happening. we don't know why, but there are cameras and events being set up, something being set up in the rose garden with a teleprompter. it appears the president might be making some kind of statement sometime this afternoon, we don't know what and we don't even know if it is connected to
a break in perhaps his position, his opposition to a short term agreement to reopening the government without a guarantee of a vote or of some money for the wall. >> reporter: what we know, andrea, the rose garden is not a conference room you can sign up to use. if they're setting up something in the rose garden, that bumps it to the presidential level. but as you point out, the topics could be many. >> exactly. one other thing i wanted to point out, "the washington post" reporting overnight about that republican lunch you were flagging yesterday, that's the regular lunch that vice president pence was showing up for. apparently it got to be a little stormy, that ron johnson, a republican senator from wisconsin, actually raised his voice, spoke out against mitch mcconnell, saying you got us into this, and mitch mcconnell said something to the effect of, according to sources to "the washington post," you think i like it? and there was stress, let's just say, which occasionally happens
at these party lunches once a week, we know. but not that often, and certainly not with the iron hand of mitch mcconnell, which has been in place. clearly the republicans are getting restless, they're hearing from they're hearing from their constituents. >> reporter: yes. >> and you saw that incredible outburst from the normally docile democratic senator michael bennett from colorado, who was literally shouting on the senate floor against ted cruz, saying that he was not going to listen to crocodile tears from ted cruz who started the 2013 shutdown at a time when people in colorado were being flooded and suffering greatly from that. it was a dramatic singular moment on the floor. hallie jackson -- let me just jump to hallie jackson who is in the white house briefing room. hallie, what are you hearing about an event and could it be related to a break in some gridlock in the shutdown? >> we are hearing about an event according to a white house official, in essence confirming
what we see with our own eyes, relates to a shutdown and a possible breakthrough. that is still tb d. to echo kelly o'donnell, rose garden events don't happen. if the president is beginning to speak, there are indications that could happen. it could have something to do with the potential for a deal on reopening the government. here's a couple of pieces of information we don't know. we don't know what this deal specifically might look like. we do know from our hill team that it is more likely that mitch mcconnell speaks after president trump speaks if that is, in fact, where this afternoon is going. we don't know what the style of the remarks or what president trump will be doing. is it just a speech and then he leaves? is it a sort of impromptu news conference, andrea? two weeks ago we had one of those out in the rose garden on another chilly winter day, so it is possible the president may take some questions from those of us who will be assembled out there and there are a lot of questions, right? not just on the potential for a breakthrough in this shutdown, for the possibility that the government may reopen, although,
again, we don't know what this could be, right? there could be a curve ball. the president could come out and talk reciprocal trade. however, there are indications rumblings, at least, that it will be something perhaps different than that, although again, nothing definitive. the other piece of this, of course, the news related to roger stone, somebody who donald trump has san antonio for decades. if there is an opportunity to ask him questions, i cannot imagine how that doesn't come up, andrea. it is possible the president may respond on that as well. i will tell you that in conversations with white house officials just inside -- raced over here from set where you are, have been discussions about the president in touch on the phone today with members of congress. he's been talking with lawmakers on the phone. his team this morning has also been in touch with the negotiating team over on capitol hill. and as kelly has pointed out, that has largely been mitch mcconnell and chuck schumer rather than necessarily speaker pelosi and chuck schumer and that tag team we've seen before. mitch mcconnell is on the scene and he is a player in this.
that is something a little bit different, particularly after both of those bills in the senate failed yesterday. and i have to tell you, too, this potential tipping point, what we are seeing with air traffic delays, with these issues -- >> exactly. >> these northeast airports, is that the thing now that has broken this dam, if you will? for weeks we've been reporting on it. we have been hearing from our sources that that may have been what it takes to end this shutdown as it hits day 35. some kind of a nationally focused, big national breaking point. this may be it. as we see now, these air traffic controllers sounding the alarm now for the last 72 hours or so concerns about safety and what this means for air travel in this country, something that affects so many more americans than just those 800,000 federal workers. and i don't mean to say just. i mean for proportionality when it comes to numbers and those 1.2 million federal contractors. another question the president may face if he takes questions, because again, we've seen him come out, deliver a
speech and walk back in, it relates perhaps to the empathy angle, whether or not his administration has been too tone deaf during this process when you look at comments that have been made by his top officials. there is definitely anticipation here in the white house. people are ready for something. we just don't know what that something is yet. >> hallie, i just want to stress what you just saying. there was a ground stoppage today. it was because of a shortage of air traffic controllers. the inconvenience and the timing and t.s.a. workers who are poorly paid already, and all of that was just really exacerbated by the ground stoppage. it's back up now we understand, and could lead to more delays. this could be a tipping point. hallie, i know you have a lot of reporting there. thank you so much for weighing in from the white house today as we wait to see what is going on in the rose garden. we do believe there is a teleprompter, which would mean a speech from the president or at least remarks from the president, whether he sticks to it or not. chuck rosenberg here with me as
well, matt miller. so, the context is if he is appearing, will he answer a question about the indictment today of roger stone? it's very clear that they are long-time, closely connected despite what the white house and the president today might say. and he has already tweeted this was part of the witch-hunt that these were all false charges. >> the type of advice i would give has long, long gone out the window, andrea. >> you're not of counsel to -- >> i have not been retained by the president. >> to the president. >> no, not yet. >> yet. >> not yet. >> i think we have a sketch also from the courtroom of what happened in that magistrate's courtroom which you had described earlier in florida. and as you pointed out, there he is in a sport shirt. usually the natalie, excessively natalie attired roger stone in the pin stripe suit.
he was taken from his home before dawn this morning. >> that's pursuant to law. people shouldn't misunderstand what the fbi did today was completely lawful. they had an arrest warrant that would have been signed by a federal judge upon application by the prosecutors. so it's not like the fbi sort of decides whose house they're going to go into for fun. arrest warrants are court orders. they were executing a court order when they arrested him. but to your earlier question, it's very easy for me to tell you what a president ought to do, which is not comment on pending judicial matters. >> but that would go for all pending judicial matters. >> all presidents, all pending judicial matters. >> he has crossed that bar multiple times. >> that horse has left that barn, right. >> matt miller? >> if i were a reporter, there is one question i would want to ask. it stems from paragraph 12. mr. president, did you ever direct an official on your campaign to reach out to roger stone and talk to him about wikileaks and find out if there are further disclosures?
this paragraph is worded in an extremely spra extremely strange way. >> in a passive voice. >> it is a strange tell. chuck and i have been reading these court documents. half of america has gotten used to reading them in the last few months. the way it is written, senior trump campaign official one contacted senior trump campaign official two and directed them to get in touch with roger stone. the fact that it's not written this way, it doesn't tell you it was conclusively the president or candidate one and giveaway who it is they're talking about, which they're trying not to do. it gives you a pretty good educated guess that's likely who it is. >> the follow-up question, are you aware whether your son or other people close to you directed such an action. >> that's right. by the way, there has been reporting the president was having nightly -- not nightly, but late night phone calls frequently with roger stone in the closing stages of the campaign in the fall of october
and november. i'd love to know if those reports are true. were you talking to roger stone during the entire time where he was communicating with jerome corsi? if so, what were those conversation about? if they were having conversations, that might give you some clue why roger stone tried allegedly to obstruct this investigation. >> why did you say in july of 2016 to katy tur, russia, if you are listening -- why would you even begin to say, russia, if you are listening. julie ainsley, we have a few minutes left. your final thoughts on what we know of this roger stone case. >> what an unusual day. i would love to hear from chuck and matt on this, but i don't think it's very often that you would see someone who has just been arraigned in federal court want to talk to the cameras because they realize that so much of what they're saying now can be used against them. what they say publicly can show their intents. he came out and said, just like i always say, the only thing worse than being talked about is
not being talked about. it's almost like he was loving this limelight. it's such a difference covering the manafort trial as i've been doing for months now, where manafort comes in sullen, you don't even see him enter the courtroom. but both of these men -- again, they worked together and they've known donald trump for a long time. both of these men have been charged with lying and then -- in roger stone's case, said he will continue not to cooperate. and in manafort's case, did basically rip up his plea agreement by lying again. so why do these men who have everything to lose -- i mean, facing decades in jail, why would they continue not to cooperate? what is the loyalty behind all of this? what are they hiding? that's what i want to know a. >> well, a lot of questions put out there. an extraordinairetive in this diemt. what a day. we're going to continue of course on msnbc to have coverage throughout the day. you expect that we might hear from the president today. there might be some sort of breakthrough or negotiation on
the continuing shutdown. if you see a t.s.a. official or anyone else in the federal government, say thank you to them today. we are all thinking about what they are going through. and chris jansing takes over right now in new york. >> good advice. what a day, and i think we're just getting started, andrea. thank you. hello, everyone. i am chris jansing. ali velshi and stephanie ruhle are on assignment. it's friday, january 25th. let's get smarter. this is a major development in the russia investigation. roger stone, the president's former advisor, was arrested today in florida after an indictment by a federal grand jury. special counsel robert mueller has had his eye on stone over his alleged connection to wikileaks and hatched democratic e-mails released by the site during the 2016 campaign. >> what the investigation says is that he was trying constantly to get wikileaks to get more damaging e-mails and release them. >> intent.