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tv   Deadline White House  MSNBC  February 5, 2019 1:00pm-2:00pm PST

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our time in really hpf fhelpful >> thank you, sir. >> roger mcnamee, author of "zucked." that does it for me this hour. look for me tonight. it 8:00 p.m. eastern. i'll host our state of the union preshow on nbc signal. that's our digital channel. you can watch on the nbc news app or on any streaming device oar on nbcnews.com. 8:00 p.m. eastern. "deadline white house with nicolle wallace" starts right now. hi, everyone, it's 4:00 in new york. when donald trump walks into the house chambers tonight, he will be making the kind of history that you're not likely to hear touted from his twitter feed or the bimonthly press briefing. he will likely not mention that among the ways he's changing the presidency is this. nearly every organization, political and professional, that donald trump has ever been associated with, is under investigation today. the latest trump entity to be served with a subpoena, the
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president's inaugural committee. "washington post" reports, "a wide-ranging subpoena served on the inaugural committee monday seeks an array of documents including all information related to the inaugural donors, vendors, contractors, bank accounts of the inaugural committee, and any information related to foreign contributors to the committee." that's according to a copy reviewed by the "post." "the new york times" writes, a subpoena for documents from federal prosecutors out of the southern district of new york, "they show that the investigation surrounding mr. trump, one centered on potential ties to russia during the 2016 presidential election, have spread far beyond the special counsel's office to include virtually all aspects of his adult life. his business. his campaign. his inauguration. and his presidency. and while the subpoena comes from the same prosecutors who charged michael cohen and implicated donald trump in an illegal hush money scheme before
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the election, there is an overlap with what we know the justice department and fbi have been interested in. a suspicious number of russians and pro-russian ukrainians at the inauguration. the picture of grave legal peril for the president coming into focus as even his closest allies, people like chris christie, have predicted. >> i've always thought that that was the bigger problem for two reasons. one, because the southern district of new york has no restrictions on their purview. all right, bob mueller has a task, it's russian interference and potential collusion in the 2016 election. southern district of new york, whatever the heck you want, and so -- >> particularly the -- >> that's right. without michael cohen, the president's former lawyer, as a tour guide, that means you could go anywhere. >> if you commit crimes, that is. that's where we start today with some our favorite reporters and friends. phil rucker, white house bureau chief for the "washington post." former u.s. attorney harry litman. here with us at the table, elise jordan, former aide in the george w. bush white house and state department.
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co-host of the fabulous podcast "words matter" and friend of the show, donny deutsch. donny, i got to start with you, chris christie is saying two months late whar what you said this table. >> the mueller thing is going to be fis. i don't think it's going to take us to trump leaving office. >> we don't know. >> we don't know. what i will tell you is that the southern district of new york that actually christie calls the sovereign district because they really cooped of operate -- >> i think that's a jersey thing. i think that's a -- the u.s. attorney's office turf thing. >> they'll take apart the trump organization. there's something called rico, racketeering influence corruption organization act. they basically brought in mob bosses. any organization, if you're a mob boss, if anybody is killed in your organization, aided it, directed it, you're found guilty of that crime. the trump organization has always been a dirty organization, every which way. you're seeing the inaugural committee, seeing the attorney general going after the charities. this is where it ends for this
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president. it is a criminal enterprise and the southern district will rico it. we haven't heard that term a lot, especially with politics. wait. >> harry litman, i got to jump to you. i remember i worked in the white house when i felt out of my depths, i read broooks like "ro to damascus." this is the only white house where you have to do your homework about what the gocht can do by watching "good fellas" over and over again. >> it's really true. sometimes more like married to the mob. the kind of version of it. look, we have now -- this is a very broad-ranging subpoena and a whole smorgus board of different crimes bought it's true we have the latticework now combining all kinds of different names and episodes and incidents we've heard before that may lead to ukraine, to qatar, to all -- it's a very rich series of
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leads. and the fountainhead of it all, michael cohen. he is the one who's been there for the ten years. it's his and rick gates' cooperation that gave rise to this particular investigation, and he and the southern district of new york are basically not going to stop until everything has been unearthed. not just as candidate, not just as nominee, but dating back several years to the wild and woolly times. just today we find out the trump organization officials have been subpoenaed -- come in to talk to southern district of new york prosecutors. this is a long and complicated trail. >> phil rucker, see, i'm going to have donny talk about what chris christie describes as i'm thinking disneyland and it's a small world. michael cohen as the tour guide. i want you to talk about donald trump's relationship with mike b cohen. what's public facing now are the tweets where he attacks him,
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rudy going out and calling him a liar. chris christie wouldn't deny that the president at least at some point desired, keeping michael cohen very close, almost as close as, you know, on the 18-acre complex. he wouldn't deny that that was a notion that the president had. and when cohen's office was raided, i'll never forget because it was so eerie seeing him sitting in the roosevelt room shoulder to shoulder with the country's national security officials describing a raids on his fixer's office as happenan on the nation. talk about donald trump's shifting stranging stories, vis-a-vis what michael cohen did for him. and what michael cohen might be able to talk about. now that he works for the feds. >> that last question, nicolle, what can he talk about? the answer is a whoele lot. michael cohen worked for mr. trump as a businessman for a full decade. he was in the orbit. he was his lawyer. he was his fixer. he was his friend.
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he was his confidant. he was his defender. also a key political adviser in the run-up to the presidential campaign. he was in the room. he knew what was going on. he knew the president's, you know, how he conducted business. he knew where the president tried to cut corners. and he was left out when donald trump moved to washington. cohen had, you know, designs on a big office in the white house and thought he could be white house counsel, thought he might even be white house chief of staff or at least get aboard the trump train and be along for the ride, but he was not given that opportunity. he was not given the job by the then-president-elect donald trump and that's when the relationship began to fray. and cohen clearly now does not feel any loyalty to the president. he's cooperating with these investigations. and the president in turn is, you know, publicly admonishing him. but this is somebody who is very close and very intimate in the trump world for years before the presidency. >> and elise, he's admonishing him for disloyalty. not for any of his conduct as a
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fixer because i think as the sentencing documents from the southern district show, it was a scheme directed by the president, but i want to ask you about the through line. the through line that runs thrust the subpoena for the inaugural committee, through the investigation, what we know about the trump org, through the mueller probe, through the fbi counterintelligence investigation into donald trump, is russia. >> and it's a foreign interest. and the big question for me, far bigger than whatever the mueller investigation finds out, has donald trump been acting in the service of the national interests or of a foreign interest? that's what i hope that we're going to find out because there are too many through lines starting from the republican national convention in cleveland back in 2016, and you look at the various amount of cash that has been potentially flowing through these entities and donors and mike flynn being a lobbyist for turkey, it does not
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make sense, and so donald -- and you also looking at the kushner family and they're underwater at 666 5th avenue and how did that influence foreign policy in the gulf? there are many, many questions to baanswered and it's petrifyi that this is how or foreign policy that's been conducted. >> someone that's trying to get some answers for all of us, congressman eric swalwell, member of the house judiciary committee, intel committee. i was back in our home state, i was in northern california last week. i just want to blow up the idea that ordinary people don't understand the russia probe. that's bs. i was asked tons of questions. people know about deutsche bank. people know about paul manafort. people know about his deputy rick gates and people know that they are all now working for robert mueller and people are very interested in knowing that our elections will be protected in 2020 from russian interference. i wonder what you tell them you're doing to make sure that's the case and to get to the bottom of what happened in 2016. >> that's right, nicolle, and
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the conventional wisdom here in washington is people outside of washington don't care about the russia investigation. my constituents in california certainly do. when i'm in other parts of the country, it's because the concern is that russia is not attacking us to benefit transactionally from donald trump, although that's a collateral benefit. people get that they want to tear down the values we have of rule of law, freedom of speech, human rights, because they know if you tear that down in america, then you can stop that from ever coming to russia or russians ever wanting that in their own country. and so the best way to protect that is invest in technologies at the ballot box to keep us secure, but nicolle, the american people need to understand why these investigations are so important. remember, now, it's not just the southern district of new york, not just the mueller probe and not just congress. also, there are subpoenas issued by the state of maryland yesterday and so when you have a grifter president, that affects his ability to advocate on
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behalf of the american people. and it affects his ability to deliver on the promises he made in the campaign trail. >> i want to drill down, if i may, with this news yesterday about a subpoena for the inaugural committee and read you a little bit from "the new york times" reporting. the "times" writes, "in raids of mr. cohen's office, home and hotel room in april, fbi agents seized his cell phones which included many dozens of voice recordings, mostly voicemail messages, according to people briefed on the seized material. in one, mr. cohen spoke to stephanie winston wolcoff, top official on the inaugural committee. is your committee at least on the foreign contact side going to look at the president's inaugural committee and is any of this evidence of interest to you and your investigation? >> so speaking as a judiciary committee member, a think a lot of this will fall under our purview, yes, we want to know how compromised and corrupt the president and the team around him were and continue to be.
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especially as it relates to foreign influence efforts. and we shouldn't assume, nicolle, that this president was only faithful to russia. it looks like he also had interests with saudi arabia and, you know, whether it was them investing in him decades ago and bailing him out, buying his yachts or buying his condos, he was -- he visited them first when he became president and we saw that they invested in buying over 500 hotel rooms in the first few weeks after that inauguration. so there's a lot to work on here, nicolle. i'll just say we must make sure the president does not benefit and allow more to become less because somehow, the more investigations that stack up, it becomes more work for congressional investigators, but we can't let that be left in the minds of the american people. >> let me speak in concrete terms about what things i know are on your schedule friday. i believe michael cohen is in front of one of the committees, house intel committee.
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i believe matt whitaker is on the other. you can explain how you're going to divide your time to us, too. first, i want to start with cohen. what are you looking for in friday's closed testimony with cohen? >> michael cohen lived in the president's personal, political, and professional life and he had front-row knowledge as to what donald trump's intentions were, whether it was business deals in russia, whether it was what the russians were doing on his behalf when they were saying to michael cohen, if you connect donald trump and vladimir putin, we can engineer this election and make our boy, donald trump, president. so what was donald trump's knowledge about all that? and then just the shadowy ways that they operated then once we understand why michael cohen lied for donald trump, whether he was directed to lie for donald trump, it will allow us to better understand the other witnesses who are presently lying for donald trump, and what their motives are and, prance, how you can crack them. >> can you give us a suspect list of that group that you just described? the witnesses who are presently lying for donald trump?
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>> yeah, well, we interviewed dozens in our last investigation and they include the people who are closest to him at the trump organization, family members, you know, people on the campaign team, but we can now subpoena the third-party witnesses in documents that the federal investigators are going after now. and let me, also i just want to say quickly on whitaker, the point of whitaker is not about whitaker, this is a damage assessment of the rule of law because it's has a wrecking ball taken to it for the last two years. he's the chief law enforcement officer right now. and we want to see if the rule of law is still standing in this country principally as it relates to the largest investigation our country has ever seen of a president and that's the mueller probe. >> let me follow up first on whitaker. are you looking for the kind of specificity, are you going to ask him -- and i understand he'll be under oath or if he lies, it would be as though he lied under oath. so are you going to ask him if he's had specific conversations with the president about the status of the mueller probe?
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>> yes. first, it's why are you here? essentially, how did you get this job? did you advocate for it? you know, working around your boss, jeff sessions, and telling the president that you would bring down or, you know, stifle the mueller probe? and then second, what promises did you make to president trump about the probe? third, why did you not recuse yourself when you were advised to recuse yourself? and then also want to know, what are you passing back, if anything to the president or his defense counsel as you are starting to get read in to the mueller probe? >> and i want -- >> from his appointment to the recusal to why he inexplicably told the country the mueller probe was winding down. >> just the very act of getting a job, he was the chief of staff to the guy that was fired. he seemed a lot of people would have a conscience and not go in and do that. i agree with you about what's fishy. i want to jump back to cohen quickly and just isolate something you said. my friends at the justice department sometimes accuse me of overdramatizing legs of the
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investigation but i don't think it's dramatic enough to say that you want to ask cohen who asked him to lie. i mean, are you looking for sort of the investigative version of, you know, who called the code red? i mean, who told you to tell this lie which happened to be the same lie many other people if the president's business and political orbits told, lies about russia, lies about business interest with russia, lies about contact with russia? >> right. everything we know about michael cohen is that he faithfully executed directives on behalf of donald trump for over a decade. so everything he would do was only by direction of donald trump. so if he lied to congress, which he pled guilty to, i think logic dictates that you want to know was that at the direction of donald trump? we interviewed hope hicks and i asked her during an exchange that we had in our interview if donald trump had ever asked her to lie and she invoked a number of privileges, refused to answer but finally told us she had, in fact, told white lies for donald trump. so we know that this is the m.o.
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of donald trump. it's to make directives like that and i think we will probably find that that may be what motivated michael cohen to lie to congress. >> harry litman, let me ask you about that. this pattern of lying is something that in donald trump's mind, he described in an interview sunday to cbs. even with the definition of a crime is seems to be lost on the chief executive of the country, the person who sits atop the federal law enforcement bureaucracy. >> yeah, i mean, from a policy standpoint, in some ways, it's the most abiding and really troubling aspect of the whole presidency. he wakes up lying and lies all day and seems to think nothing of it. but as a federal criminal matter, a matter for congress to investigate, it's serious stuff. the same thing that we had in iran contra or watergate, et cetera. it's throwing sand in the gears of vital investigations and keeping people from knowing the truth.
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usually to serve yourself. and it often involves conspiracy, for instance, the hope hicks story on the plane about the russia trump tower meeting. what could be more important even than the criminal aspects than the american people getting the truth and that is what this pattern is a direct assault on. >> phil rucker, hope hicks' name has been invoked twice, one i haven't thought about in a while, but it does remind me there is an active obstruction of justice investigation under way into this president. he's also essentially an unindicted co-conspirator in the southern district of new york. and the mueller probe is now still looming large over his head. maybe some sort of interim report or some sort of update to be delivered, perhaps, to the new attorney general. what is sort of the current white house posture about all of these spokes pointing inward directly at the president? >> well, the obstruction of justice investigation is
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important, as you just pointed out and often overlooked when we're talking so much about possible collusion with russia, but we should remember that so many of the president's top advisers including his counsel, don mcgahn, have spent hours as witnesses before mueller and before the special counsel investigators going over key moments, recollecting, you know, what the president said, when and where and why, and what happened as mueller builds a narrative that tells us about the president's interactions and involvements at some of these key moments including the firing of jim comey as the fbi director, including writing that false -- dictating that false statement aboard afforce one for his son, don junior. all that this going to come to head at some point when the mueller investigation wraps up. the white house posture today is to try to figure out how to fight and use privilege to prevent aspects of that report from becoming public.
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it's something that the president's lawyers as well as the white house counsels have been focused on in the last few months trying to exert privilege, trying to prevent key parts of that report from being made public to the congress. now, it's going to be up to the attorney general and that could be barr by the time this all comes to a head to decide what to release to congress, if anything, and there is certainly a fight that's taking shape between the department of justice and the congress where democrats are going to be calling for a lot of these details to be made public. but that's the thinking right now, to try to prevent damaging information from being consumed by the public. by us. >> congressman, let me give you the last word on that. special counsel regulations, as i understand them, don't require that a report from robert mueller go to congress. so what are you exploring to get that information for the purposes of your investigations and available to the public? >> yeah, the american people will see the mueller report. i say that with confidence, nicolle, because for two years we were powerless under this
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administration as the republicans protected the president from investigations and transparency. we were given power to put a balance of power on abuses of power by the voters last november and so wie will fight like hell and do all we can to make sure this report, this large investigation, is known to the american people. >> wow. all right. fighting words from congressman eric swalwell. thank you. phil rucker, harry litman, thank you for being with us as well. after the break, donald trump's wall becomes more like a political ball and chain, with congress balking at his emergency declaration for wall funding, a desperate president trots out a new plan, a human wall. daniel dale takes us to truth school. and the state of the union is bleak. the toll donald trump is taking on our democracy. all that coming up. p is taking on our democracy all that coming up
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. back in 2016, then-candidate donald trump spoke with the "washington post's" robert costa and bob woodward and said this. "real power is i don't even want to use the word, fear." that's how he's governed. now his power to instill fear is not what it used to be. "new york times" writes today, "as his presidency enters its third year, a less convenient truth is emerging. few outside the republican party are afraid of him. and they may be less intimidated after the disastrous government shutdown." even in his own party, trump is seeing cracks. about a dozen republican senators have voiced their opposition to trump declaring a national emergency to build his silly wall. senator john cornyn of texas laid out the risks.
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>> i think it's a dangerous step, one, because of the precedent it sets, two, the president's going to set sued, and it won't succeed in accomplishing his goal, and third, because i think miss pelosi may well introduce her resolution of disapproval that will pass the house and then come over here and divide republicans. so, to me, it strikes me as not a good strategy. >> hm. the legislative quagmire, senator cornyn talks about there, is the president's declaration could be met with a congressional resolution of disapproval that would pass both in the democratic-controlled house, and it would go on to the senate and would only take four republican defections for that resolution to pass that chamber, too. this would force a showdown with the president who would have to use his veto to block the measure. now, remember, during the shutdown, six republicans showed a willingness to break with trump. six republicans voted with democrats on their bill to
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re-open the government. but it looks like republicans are right to worry about the political fallout from an emergency declaration. nbc news reports that trump and kushner have already met with contractors to discuss building a border wall. that's today's onion news. yo joining our conversation, "washington post" columnist, msnbc political analyst eugene robins robinson. my date all night long. nbc news national political reporter, heidi, is with us. so, it's my understanding, and you both correct me if i've got this wrong, that the shutdown didn't end because the white house was horrified by the human calamity or by the air travel shutdown. but it was losing that vote. the fact that more republican -- six republicans voted for the democratic bill to open the government. >> yeah, democratic bill got more votes than the republican bill. >> so the idea that they got any sort of legislative sway or acumen is now also obliterated. >> yeah, there's basically no way for donald trump to get what he says he wants, right? >> which today is a human wall.
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>> i wish cornyn would tell us what he really thinks, right? he listed the three reasons why this is a bad idea, totally worthless, such a bad president and won't work, it won't get the wall built. and there's no way democrats are going to vote for the wall. so he's not -- never going to get the house to pass money for a wall. so he can't have it. now, does he just throw a fit and do it, anyhow? the emergency declaration to show the base that, you know, he's still fighting? i don't know, but that's not going to go over well, obviously, with the republican senators that he really relies on. i mean, he needs those republican senators. he may need them a whole lot at some point. >> yeah. >> but he needs them now. >> for his conviction -- >> that's what you really need republican senators for. >> my understanding is he's been whipping that vote for months to make sure there's no conviction should he be impeached. we covered yesterday the ongoing human tragedy of the immigration policy. why don't democrats offer him a dollar for every child reunited
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with their parents? >> i mean, that would be the smart thing to do if they could -- >> a dollar. >> -- strike some kind of a broader immigration deal. that is not in the cards here, nicolle, and part of the reason why, to fini isish pivoting off gene's point, big part of the reason is republicans actually supported this, they would have done it during the two years -- >> that they ran everything. >> -- that they were in control of both -- all chambers and the white house. but they didn't. >> it's like a dating movie, "you're just not that into me." they're not into the wall. >> slow walking it saying, yeah, donald, we'll get to that. underneath it all, they didn't actually support it. if you talk to members who served on the homeland security committee, for instance, in the house, they had hearings where they were all told by conservative experts that you don't need a wall along the boarder. the biggest problem is underneath all this, ball it all together including the. th's low approval ratings. low approval ratings of the shutdown.
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is that fundamentally, republicans don't support this idea, either, even if they've been entertaining this president for you years. >> trump needs a -- i'm sorry. trump needs a foggy pivot. what i mean by that, he creates his own fog about what's going on and the irony of this whole thing is he could be talking tonight about about a dow that's up 20% since he took office. gdp up 3% versus 1% since he took office. unemployment. consumer confidence up. guess what, less illegal immigration in this country. guess what, no terrorist attacks. that's a pretty -- >> thank god he doesn't watch this show. . >> you know, in most universes that's a pretty good 24 months. what he's got to do at this point, he really is out of moves, nicolle, you and i were talking, almost a trumpian like way, is, look, i'm tougher than everybody, i'm going to get another billion out of it, anyway. i'll get the wall next time from a those weak other republicans out there. i got you a name.
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that's it. that's the transactional move. by the way, two days from now, just like -- when was the last time we talked about the caravan? that was even more absurd. he just left it. so just do what i call the trump foggy pivot. >> i can't help but to start to imagine worst-case scenario, though, when i heard jared kushner is in the oval with donald trump meeting with contractors. i envision him with, like, different colors of tile and fabric swatches. why are we laughing? we've already trotted out the samples. >> you look at how jared kushner was the go-between, the liaison. he thought he could get some democratic votes and advise donald trump to keep pushing forward during the shutdown. and you wonder how much further will this go with the political bad judgment? >> you can't rule it out because when has this president nameded the times when he's put his party above his own political interests and maybe he doesn't care that it will get caught up in the courts or maybe he doesn't care that ultimately he'll get overruled.
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if he satisfies his base, which is who he's always playing to on this, he may well -- >> self-survival is always about him. >> yeah. >> you know what, don't worry about it, i'm not giving up on this and let's go to another station over here. >> something that's really astounding, if you think about it, during the shutdown, and the standoff there, what horrific political advice he was getting and how just clueless they were about the hill. i mean, anybody who went to the capitol and talked to five people -- no, you just have to go there, talk to five people and you knew that this -- that these democrats who were ready to fund the wall -- >> got joe manchin. got joe manchin. >> you know, it's just ridiculous. >> let me break this down, a little technocratic, but there's a silver lining here. and that is that none of us
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including trump actually knows what the wall is because he's never defined it. >> let me read today's -- he redefines it every day. wall, steel slats, a fence, a barrier. it's not. today, here's what the wall is today for those of you keeping track. "tremendous numbers of people are coming up through mexico in the hopes of flooding our southern borders." actually at a 40-year low. donny's right, you should brag about. but you won't. "we've sent additional military." you shouldn't. "we will build a human wall if necessary." good god. "if we had a real wall, this would be a nonevent." today, today, a human wall. link arms. >> appropriations request, i know this is wonk talk. let me wonk out for a second. that went from the white house to the appropriations committees. they outlined a dollar amount but didn't outline any specifics about where that would go. if you just break down the numbers, you're talking about 500 miles of wall. we already got about that much
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wall and the border is 2,200 miles long. so there very well could be some kind of a compromise here for reinforced fencing and human wall-like people and, you know, you got a deal. >> pelosi offered a billion dollars and where there isn't physical wall, there's drones and other -- >> it's been there. it's been there all along. that was the deal. they wouldn't take it. >> we could go -- you guys need a late-night show. after the break, if you happen to know any presidential fact checkers, tonight's a good night to send them some pizza or bottle of wine. the liar in chief with the whole world watching for an hour own a half. our favorite fact checker joins us next. us nex [music playing] (sashimi) psst. hey, you!
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the state of the union is it iically icalltypically a rose c glasses affair. a president who lied 8,500 times during his tenure in office, we better brace ourselves for tonight. the fact checkers are going to be working overtime. our next guest is one of the best of the best and says he'll be watching for whether or not
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trump follows through with his unity message and for how easily the media falls for the nice guy routine. joining us now, our favorite guest, "toronto star" washington bureau chief, daniel dale. daniel dale, i want you to start with your thoughts about what we in the media, what i, you and i entered the tough love part of our relationship now, what we get wrong when we fall for the pre-spin trump. >> well, i think we get everything wrong because he is only that version of himself for an hour and then he immediately reverts within 24, maximum 48 hours, to the trump we see the other 363, 364 days of the year, and so last year, his team executed what i thought wases quite a masterful fakeout. they told the media in advance this was going to be a speech about unity and bipartisanship and got the media to run in the early front-page headlines for the next day's paper headlines about bipartisanship, even though the speech included just a nod to that, just a paragraph or so before he reverted to his usual fear mongering about
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brutal crimes committed by illegal immigrants so i think we not only need to watch for how much of the speech is devoted to the so-called unity call, but put it in the context of the other two years of his presidency. >> he's also already lied about bipartisanship. he said that the speech and his staff said it would be about bipartisanship then he started the day by attacking chuck schumer, so even the nice paragraph you talk about, so far, even that doesn't ring true, does it? >> i don't think so. i mean, this is a nice pre-speech sales pitch, and it has the effect of getting them advanced headlines about their desire for unity and bipartisan sm ship. it's a no-lose situation. he goes into the speech and does the same pitch to his base, trying to rile people up about immigration and so on as he's always done. i'd urge my colleagues in the media to watch the speech and react to that and not react to the pre-spin from his team. >> i'm going to advise them to watch you and your twitter feed because that's how i watch everything these days. but i want to go through some of
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the specifics. so, on immigration, and you track all the lies, i feel like most of what you turn around on an hour-to-hour, day-to-day basis is around immigration. what do you expect tonight? what are you looking for? what are you ready to sort of fact check on that front? >> immigration was his number one subject of dishonesty in the second year in office with 584 false claims. that was up from 88 in his first year in office. >> wow. >> so it's the focus of his dishonesty. so i'll be looking for whether he does the usual false fear mongering sort of the scary rhetoric that he has done recently, and i'll also be looking for how he describes some of the problems he is alleging a wall would solve. in the last week, he's been repeatedly misdescribing the problem of human trafficking. saying, for example, that some people say almost all of it comes across the southern border. experts do not say that. saying that almost none of it comes by airplane. it's almost impossible to traffic by airplane. that's false, too. saying that human trafficking
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cannot come through legal ports of entry. experts tell me overwhelmingly a significant number of human trafficking victims come over on legal visas fraudulently obtained by their traffickers. so this issue of human trafficking, in particular, is one he's been wrong about repeatedly over the last few weeks. >> when i saw some of your thoughts, i looked back at the last two addresses to the nation, one wasn't technically a state of the union, but he called for healing in 2017. i think within days, we got the muslim ban and within weeks or months we got the kkk rally where he described good people on both sides. in 2018, he called for common ground. we got child separations, babies in cages, bleep hole countries, and nonstop border hate. at a moment where border crossings are at a 40-year low. also in the national security side, we just had it up, he talks about defeating isis, his intelligence chiefs testified last week that that's not the case. he talks about his love affair with kim jong-un and the letters they send one another.
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our intelligence agencies view them as an ongoing existential threat to the security of the region and us here at home. he talks about leaving troops in iraq to spy on iran. our intel chiefs have testified that iran is actually in compliance with the nuclear agreement. what do we do with all of this? i guess we say it's a lie before we listen to the lie and then we say it's a lie after? >> yeah. i just think we need to point it out all the time. and i think that has to go beyond the state of the union. you know, this is the one night a year that many media outlets throw resources, you know, people, at the task of fact checking. when, in fact, this is someone of the speeches in which i think he'll lie the least because it's one of the ones where he's the most on script. it's when he's just talking, being donald trump,s th that he lying all the time. so my plea is, you know, let's keep doing this. let's keep calling out the lies. keep providing people important contextual and accurate information and not just, you know, resign ourselves to doing that for one hour each year.
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>> you do it every day. history will look back favorably on what you do for us. thank you for spending time with us. after the break, donald trump, the politically lame one-trick pony. that's how our friend, joe scarborough, described him today. we'll tell you all about it, next. today. we'll tell you all about it, next ♪ only tylenol® rapid release gels have laser drilled holes. they release medicine fast, for fast pain relief. tylenol®
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someday we'll broadcast the breaks. lucky for -- >> allowed on the show -- >> lucky for donny, that doesn't start today. all right. awkward pivot here. just as interesting as what trump says tonight is the point in time in which he'll say it. our colleague, joe scarborough, calls it, quote, a grim political backdrop. he writes, "trump lumbers along like a political --" still laughing about you, donf fdonny. "trump lumbers along like a politically lame one-trick pony, seems content in doing little more than dragging his party from one self-inflicted political crisis to another. no amount of forced aplausz pla
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strained smiles will change the gop is doom to dysfunction and defeat for as long as it blindly follows its chaotic commander in chief down the political path to oblivion." elise? >> it's not going to be a jubilant night for republicans out in the audience because listening to donald trump's state of the union as with any prepared remark, you know that, wow, for a moment, things seem normal. and then within ten minutes after he leaves and gets back to twitter, it's going to just be par for the course and more insanity and chaos. >> we were talking -- one of the things -- safe for television, it was the first address to congress where he was well received by some and he tweeted that obama tapped his wires two days later.i mean, that's -- >> so if we're mapping cycles of insanity, this -- >> it never takes long, so we can
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can sort of build that into our expectations and what i'm wondering now is, does he actually make it through the whole teleprompter thing without, you know, getting ticked off by the fact that democrats are not standing up or by -- >> nancy, clap. >> or something like that. >> it's a great point. >> something set him off. who knows. >> tonight's going to be such a great contrast from the last time a republican president introduced nancy pelosi because that was really one of president bush's biggest grace notes at the state of the union. when he said, like, i have the distinct honor of being the first president to say, welcome, madam secretary. madam speaker. sorry. >> a lot of the state of the union as you know is about theater and optics, and this will be a striking optical display of what his leadership has brought which is the 2018 midterm elections and the whole democratic side of the aisle which will reflect all the women and the diversity. >> america. >> people of color.
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who were swept into office as a direct consequence of his leadership. >> he's in a lose/lose proposition tonight because the one thing trump has always had going for him is authenticity. when he gets up there, if he does this more kind of unified thing, it's not him. he loses authenticity. it's like when burger king tries to sell salads. it doesn't work. you're burgers. stick to burger. if he sticks to his burgers, he's sticking to propositions, lost by the biggest vote in the last midterm election in our history. he's really, really boxed in and also off the prompter. it's like somebody puts a pin in him. there's no energy. so goingcorey lewandowski. let trump be trump. if he's trump, he loses, if he's not trump, he loses tonight. >> for those of us who watch it, what we'll see is a portrait of today's watch which has changed. we'll see a washington in which donald trump has to share power with nancy pelosi. and that's a new reality for him. he's not the most sort of self-reflecti
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self-reflective person. >> you don't say. >> by any other -- any normal human being would stand there, i think, and realize who was over his shoulder and understand that things had to be different from now on. >> do you know he said, does she have to be on camera behindmy
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take a look at the front row of his address. the who's who of the i quit, you're fired blah blah blah. john kelly, nikki haley, scott pruitt ryan zinke, jeff sessio rex tillerson, all gone. one year later. >> you know, you look at rex tiller say wow, i miss rex tillerson. these guys, it will bring them all back. i have a question. who is designated the survivor tonigh >> on a serious level, these are all the actings. the government is statutory. these are all the acting people in a key role. mick m vapy is the acting of s. the acting secretary of defense and acting attorney general,
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matt whitaker and acting secret and ambassador and acting epa administrator. i don'know. two people that it could be. >> it will be interesting. i don' if the designators, you ha have something who is confirmed. i don'know. you probably do, actually. they probably had to go pretty low. just an astounding turn over. you ha to throw out the record books, both good and bad. every expectation that you have of what a normal administration is. >> it's not normal to confirm. why it is particularly troubling for this president it for the promis he made and the platfo he ran on. i may be the first president in withou military or political experi or public service experi but i'm going to surrou myself with the best people and what we have seen is
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a constant drumbeat of turn over both by people seeking to leave and him pushing people. >> he had kelly and mattis and killer nikki haley. he has strong people. >> donald trum said he can get more done with acting secreta secret even he had the time in e-mail he is trying to make it into the trump organization trying to make it a family business. >> with russians running around. we can we'll
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>> glad to know we think alike on that one. if it's tuesday, comedy central. >> chuck todd here in new york. millio of people will watch tonigh state of the union should to be absurd theater.
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it wil be about

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