tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC February 9, 2019 5:00pm-6:00pm PST
to do with whitaker's qualifications which were severely lacking and everything to do with his loyalty to donald trump. and with his public hostility to the mueller investigation. in his combative, often evasive testimony today before the house judiciary committee, his first public appearance in congress, whitaker did little to ease concerns that he's a political hack, installed to run interference for the president. the acting attorney general defended his decision to not recuse himself from overnight of the mueller investigation despite having been advised to do so by ethics officials. he denied interfering or discussing with the president but given the opportunity to declare the legitimacy of the special counsel's work, whitaker declined to do so. >> there have been guilty pleas from flynn, manafort, gates, and dozens of indictments, including 13 nashtionals and companies an
roger stone. would you say the special counsel's investigation is a witch hunt? are you overseeing a witch hunt? >> congressman, as i have mentioned previously, the special counsel's investigation is an ongoing investigation and i think it would be inappropriate for me. >> but you wouldn't oversee a witch hunt, wouldn't you, you'd stop a witch hunt, wouldn't you. >> it would be inappropriate to talk about an ongoing investigation. >> whitaker insisted despite having interviewed for a job at the white house as lead attorney, his personal views on the investigation never came up with anyone inside the president's orbit. >> did they talk to you about your prior opinions about the muell mueller investigation. >> we discussed my legal process. you're asking me whether or not i talked with anybody in the president's circle about my views of the special counsel's investigation when i was a private season not at the department of justice, no, i did not. >> the clear evidence of how
whitaker understands his role as donald trump's acting ag was his attitude toward the democrats on the house judiciary committee. >> have you ever been asked to approve any request or action to be taken by the special counsel? >> mr. chairman, i see that your five minutes is up, and so. >> you said you're not interfering with the special counsel's investigation, have you denied him any funds he has requested at all. >> congressman, i can tell this is an important issue for you. >>st it an important issue for the american public and the whole world. >> i'm sorry, i don't know if your time has been restored or not. >> mr. attorney general, we're not joking here. and your humor is not acceptable. >> i get five minutes for lunch. >> committee chairman, jerry nadler says he's not done hearing from whitaker and threatened to subpoena him to get the answers the democrats
demand. our next guest is a member of the house judiciary committee, steve cohen of tennessee. congressman, first of all, i just have to get your reaction to that testimony you heard today, both to his demeanor and in many cases his refusal to answer yes and no questions. >> well, he came in to stonewall us, that was his purpose. he had an audience of one, which was donald trump, and when he was a football player and i can certainly see him as a football player, he was a tight end, and that's generally a blocker in the iowa program. he was a blocker today too. he's still in the same role he was when he played for the iowa hawk eyes. he didn't show me anything to say he should be the united states attorney general. i have met many and this man does not measure up to them in any way whatsoever. he was treading water and stone walling. >> in a lot of people's eyes, making a mistake of being disrespectful to the chair declaring his time up and
repeatedly saying in answer to questions, rather than answering them, i can see this is a very important issue to you. did you feel he was there just to stone wall and stall for time or did you think he was being openly disrespectful to the panel as a way of performing for donald trump? >> it's hard to say. it was kind of like, would you say luca brossey was being disrespectful or didn't understand things. he was kind of luca brossey-esque, i don't think he was very swift, and he had the same stock start to the answer. congressman, i thank you for asking that question and then finally, he said let's get through the thank you stuff. don't say thank you. it was all a time killer and they coached him, and they coached him, i guess, the question is important to you because he used that to mr. jordan on the republican side and others as well. i just think he was given certain talking points and he stayed on message. >> well, chairman nadler doesn't
feel he's done hearing from mr. whitaker. given the performance today, do you think there's any point in calling him again? >> well, he would be under oath. it would be a deposition, and we could ask questions. i think he's going to start to realize the fact that he could be in jeopardy. he didn't answer the questions forthrightly, it's hard for me to believe that donald trump didn't ask him as he did jim comey and others about the investigation and to have loyalty and to be easy on flynn and those type of things. he was upset with sessions. he did he didn't have his own attorney general. he wanted his own guy and this whitaker comes out of nowhere. he wasn't in the line of succession, which ted deutsch made clear. it was an aboerration there, an
most of his jobs had not been in the legal sector and in the political world had been abject failure and he had some encounters where he headed up some charity group where he got $1.2 million when he came to washington to do some work and there was suggestion, sheldon a adelson, a major contributor, might have been the person who gave $1.2 million to him. this guy out of iowa to show up in washington and get paid $1.2 milli $1.2 million, that talks about the influence of money in washington and the pernicious nature of it and how he's been a willing subject to it. >> congressman steve cohen. thank you very much. appreciate your time tonight. thank you. and for more on the acting ag's extraordinary testimony, i'm joined by nbc contributor, chuck rosenburg, former u.s. attorney. the testimony today was interesting. but some of the things that -- some of the areas gone into was,
what you just heard from the congressman was his background. before, as you know, before mr. whitaker became the acting attorney general, he did write this op-ed in which he said that the mueller probe was going too far. did you hear anything today from mr. whitaker that would disabuse you of the notion that his goal in being acting attorney general would interfere with the probe. >> let me take a step back and answer the question. i thought his performance, joy, was disgraceful. i have testified many times in congress. sometimes the questions are good and thoughtful, and sometimes incomprehensible, but you have to answer with civility and that was sorely lacking. your question, so, look, i don't know that he's the right guy for this job. in fact, i know he's the wrong guy for the job. i'm heartened by one thing, the department of justice, the fbi, the u.s. attorney's offices are primarily, if not exclusively staffed by career civil
servants, if someone was messing with their stuff, trying to undermine their work, torpedo their cases, you would hear a healing cry from the men and women, and we haven't. it seems like cases are proceeding and that gives me hope, and he'll be gone soon. >> did cryou get the sense of wt he was doing, this tactic of being snarky, and i think you could say disrespectful that this is just coaching, is this the way people are coached? how are coached people generally when you know you're going in front of congress and half the panel is going to be tough on you, what are you told to do? >> half is antagonistic, and half is friendly, that's fairly typical of who's testifying and where they are testifying. people handle it in different ways. what he did is disgraceful. you have to treat every member with a degree of civility and kindness and dignity. here's why. he's not representing matt
whitaker. if he were representing matt whitaker he didn't do a particularly good job. he's representing the united states department of justice, speaking on behalf of more than 100,000 men and women working 24/7 around the globe. they say their leader behave like an infant, and that is deeply disheart toening to me. >> we know there's going to be a confirmation hearing for bill barr and given what you saw today, what would you council him to do differently besides everything? >> bill barr doesn't need my advice on that. bill barr is a grown up. i may not share his views politically, but i do believe he's an institutionalist and i do believe he understands the department of justice, and oh, by the way, bill barr had no trouble denying that the mueller probe was a witch hunt. >> right. >> nor did chris wray, the director of the fbi, nor did attorney general rod rosenstein. that doesn't seem to be a big
lift for most adultings. i -- adults. >> thank you for your time tonight. for more, i'm joined by msnbc contributor, sam seeder, and democratic strategist, tara, indeed, there have been, it panned all around to be honest. haven't heard anything but people panning this performance, tara, by mr. whitaker. you are a political strategist, you have done political strategy, could you sense in that performance today, any strategic idea or goal or was he just in a mood? >> well, joy, thank you so much for the question. no, i understand this is very important to you. no, first of all, he was putting on a show, as you stated. he was putting on a show both for trump but also for himself. remember, this person used to be on tv, and so i think he's looking for a future back in that space after this is all
said and done. one of the things i would say about people who are sort of drawn to trump is they're not just drawn to trump because they want to be a part of trump and all the chaos and divisiveness, they want to hitch to his wagon, to chart their own course in terms of media and growth. i saw it when i was on the apprentice. people have said to me, why people had issues. i know people who wanted to sue him, and now they're supporters. full throated supporters and people will say to me, why would they support him now after all of this, because they want to be just like him and i think that is reflective in his administration, and that's what he wants. >> he wants people to be mini trumps. whitaker's previous job, for a lot of people's at least reading of it, a conservative nonprofit with weird roots, undisclosed funders. $1.2 million in money that went in. if this was a performance,
donald trump at this moment can't help him, right, he can't get him, i guess he could get him on fox news. i don't understand what he gets out of this. at the end of the day, that democratic panel, you can see the democratic house, they're not going to let him undermine the mueller probe. >> yeah, i mean, i think there were two things i took away from this. one was there was a sense that the scrutiny he got on day one when he was appointed acting attorney general, we don't know what his intentions were. it's very hard to look at that guy and say he was the best candidate for the attorney general's office, but he didn't do, at least in terms of what he said today, and it would been a precarious thing for him to lie about, he did not set up obstacles for the mueller investigation. one thing i took away tr that was -- from that is the scrutiny seemed to work or left us at the baseline. the other is this is a guy from the conservative movement, i'm a little bit more cynical about the way these guys behave than other people who we anticipate
these type of folk to have respect for the institution. he is going to go out. there's a lot of money sloshing around out there. this is a guy who's just set himself up to be run any one of a number of conservative so-called think tanks or movement groups or independent expenditures there's fox news. there's a huge industry out there that someone like him can walk into right now, if he doesn't, if trump doesn't turn around and give him another job in the administration. >> he made a good point. he did a performance on television where donald trump could probably see it. if that was the goal, he did it. that was an audition. yet another audition. let's talk about the republicans for a moment. it seems no matter how far off the rails, it's universal, the panning of the performance, but republicans are still, seem to want to protect even him. here's an exchange where republicans tried to stop democrats from questioning the qualifications of whitaker for the job. >> it's my understanding that
before you moved to the department of justice that you were the executive director of the foundation for accountability and civic entrust. >> mr. chairman, i have a point of order. >> the fact is a conservative ethics watchdog, where he made full use of the opportunity to call for an investigation of multiple democrats. >> the gentleman will state his point of order. >> my point of order is outsight the scope of an oversight hearing on the department of justice. >> you know, if you think of the donald trump presidency as sort of a television show rather than a presidency, right, everyone is performing for a purpose, to the point that sam just made. what is the purpose for republicans at this point? they have just gotten a shah lacking in the house. they can look at the poll numbers and see the places they are losing support are the places they need to retain the white house where senate seats are up. what is the point of jealously guarding mr. whitaker?
what does he mean to them? >> they have made the political calculation that in any way going against trump is more costly than actually speaking out and showing some degree of integrity, even with the losses that they took in 2018, they think that if they go against trump, the electoral results will be worse. >> all the people you are talking about are there despite the fact that they were supportive of trump or because they were supportive of trump. the ones who are going to lose have lost. these people are there because they're supporting donald trump. and so that is the problem ultimately that the republicans have long-term is that they cannot separate themselves from donald trump because ultimately their voters, the vast majority of the republican party still very supportive of donald trump. he may look, what happened today may look like a freak show to 50, 60% of the country, but there's 30 to 40% of the country
that thinks, yeah, this is our guy. >> sam cedar, tara, thank you very much. up next, one of the most impassioned moen impassioned moments of today's hearing when congresswoman, camila, the congresswoman joins me right after this. , camila, the congresswoman joins me right after this. side, shaquem, you got it? come on stay focused. hard work baby, it gonna pay off. (vo) the only network to win in all four major awards is the one more people rely on. choose america's most reliable network on the best device: iphone. get iphone xr on us when you buy another. and the kids chose medieval faire. they wanna hit the bullseye. you need to hit the atm. good thing you chose hampton, frz ree hot breakfast. frz m for our price match guarantee. hampton by hilton.
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sessions. p pramila jayapal lit into whitaker. >> before or after the zero tolerance policy was put into place, and i call it the zero humanity place, did the u.s. attorneys track when they were tracking a parent or legal guardian who had been separated from their child. there's only one answer to this. it's gone through the courts. >> you know, did we track it? >> did you track when you were prosecuting a parent or legal guardian who had been separated from tha child? >> i don't believe we were tracking that. >> you were not tracking it. that is the correct answer, and when parents are prosecuted and sentenced they are in doj custody, correct? >> correct. their custody is transferred to the u.s. marshal. >> so these parents were in your custody, your attorneys are prosecuting them and your department was not tracking parents who were separated from their children.
do you know what kind of damage has been done to children and families across this country, children who will never get to see their parents again, do you understand the magnitude of that? >> i understand that the policy of zero tolerance -- >> has the justice department started tracking parents and legal guardians who were separated from their children at the border? >> the time of the gentle lady has expired. the witness may answer the question. >> congresswoman, i appreciate your passion for this issue and i know that you have been very involved in the front lines of this issue. >> this is about more than my passion. this is about the children's future, mr. whitaker. >> joining me now is congresswoman, pramila jayapal democrat from washington state. thank you so much for being here tonight. appreciate it. >> thank you, joy. watching that exchange between yourself and acting attorney general whitaker, there's this incredible contrast between how impassioned you are, and we're
talking about children who may never see their parents again and the weird indifference, dismissiveness and the way he was looking away. and his answer about i know this is important to you. did you feel condescended. what was your reaction to his attitude? >> absolutely and it started from the minute he walked into the hearing. he was arrogant, dismissive, disrespectful and when it came to this, i think he knew quite not what to do. earlier i had said did you know about family separation. he said it didn't happen. i said there was a memo and he said no, that didn't happen. and i said, there were four pinocchios to that statement that the "washington post" has afforded to this, and by the time we got to the end, i think, you know, this is such a compelling issue, joy, you and i have talked about it before, republicans and democrats agree that this was a heinous crime that has been committed against thousands of children and i
think he really didn't know what to do, and he tried to be dismissive, i respect your passion, which is a way to say, you're getting emotional. i had to make it clear, this is not about my passion, this is the future of the children. i will say that i am so proud that i am passionate about this, because anybody should be thinking about not only these children who don't get to see their parents ever again, but the children that were separated for months and some of them, i watched them come together with their parents. i heard their parents say the kids didn't want to go back to their parents in some cases because they thought they would been abandoned. if we don't have real passion, real commitment to figuring out what happened and making rep r reparations, the u.s. government should make reparations for what we have done to the families. >> speaking of the idea of how long this has been going own, the great producers found sound from march of 2017. this is john kelly, who at the
time was secretary of homeland security. this is before he was donald trump's chief of staff. and this was before the policy officially began. take a listen. >> if you get some young kids who are coming in, managed to sneak into the united states with their parents, our department of homeland security personnel going to separate the children from their moms and dads. >> we have tremendous experience of dealing with unaccompanied minors. we turn them over to hhs and they do a very very good job of either putting them in foster care or linking them up with parents or family members in the united states. i am considering, in order to deter more movement along this terribly dangerous network, i am considering exactly that. they will be well cared for as we deal with their parents. >> in the course of all that happened today, are you able to get an answer of how long this policy is going on, and how many kids are actually still missing because we now know there are
probably many more than the 2737 as of december 2018 who were actually separated, many thousands more. >> well, you know, the department of justice is only responsible for the prosecutions. we were supposed to have a hearing on tuesday which has now been cancelled because of john d ir ingel's funeral with hhs and dhs. there are over a hundred kids that are still in custody from the ones that we originally thought were the first ones that were being separated, and now hhs has come back and said, we done know that we can ever separate them. you know, that's a court order, i'm, that we can rejoin them with their parents, reunite them with their parents, a court order is that they have to do that. on top of the thousands that happened before, and i'll tell you something else, joy, when john kelly says we're doing this
to deter, that is actually illegal. the courts have ruled that you can not detain and do what they are doing for deterrence purposes. so everything about this family separation policy, this zero humanity policy was so wrong and i really don't know, first of all, how we fix what we have done, but then also how we make reparations, i mean, these kids are traumatized and the parents are traumatized and wen from psychologists that that is real trauma, lasting trauma. >> congresswoman, if you can't be passionate about that and what's happening to these children, i'm not sure what you can be passionate about. congresswoman, pramila jayapal, thank you so much for joining us. is matt whitaker taking part in a plot to stop robert mueller. what we learned from the hearing about where the special counsel stands. >> the investigation into russia's attacks on our democracy is not a witch hunt. it's not a fishing expedition. it's not a hoax.
it's not a lynch mob. it is a national security imperative. the fact that people suggest otherwise comes dangerously close to providing aid and comfort to the economy, in your final week, keep your hands off the mueller investigation, i yield back. the mueller investigation, i yield back be sweatpant s cool. not quite ready to face the day? that's why we're here with free hot breakfast. book at hampton.com for our price match guarantee. hampton by hilton. book at hampton.com for our priceeach day justine. at work... walk. and after work. he does it all with dr. scholl's. only dr. scholl's has massaging gel insoles that provide all-day comfort. to keep him feeling more energized. dr. scholl's. born to move. when i walked through a snowthat's when i knewtte, i had to quit. for real this time. that's why i'm using nicorette. only nicorette gum has patented dual-coated technology for great taste. plus intense craving relief. every great why, needs a great how.
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interfered in any way with the special counsel's investigation. >> that was the line from matthew whitaker, the acting attorney general also testifying that he had provided no insight about the mueller probe to the trump administration. whitaker refused to discuss his conversations with trump among other issues. prompting jerry nadler, joining me for more on whitaker's testimony former federal judge nancy gurtner. there has been universal condemnation of this testimony as ill advised and ill prepared and ill executed. i wonder if there was anything in it that tells you whether or not this gentleman poses a threat to the future mueller probe. >> i see that your five minutes
are up. i'm here under the fooi minute ru -- five minute rule and your time is up. >> touche. >> before we get to the answer to your question, can we pause a moment to think about if one of your guests showed up on the show and behaved the way the acting attorney general behaved toward the chairman of the judiciary committee. >> it would be a short segment. >> it's an incredible thing. all right. look, this was a disgraceful performance all around. but he did actually say a few things that are reassuring and he did them in a fashion that he can be held to account for. and one of them was that he had not participated -- he had not involved himself, he hadn't interfered with or directed the outcome of the special counsel's investigation in any way. now, this is not a man i would trust to say the truth about anything. >> yeah. >> on the other hand, it is not
insignificant when a person says something like that in a fashion before a congressional committee, even one that he's directing as to which questions they can ask him. it's not an insignificant thing that he made that representation. and so, look, i don't take a lot of reassurance from his testimony today on any points, but i don't think that is an insignificant thing for him to have said. >> right. and you know, nancy, i wonder if you subscribe to the notion that what we saw here today, somebody who seemed to be motivated to interfere in some way with mueller's probe, who clearly can't do it, either because he's not capable of executing the plan or maybe because there are some guardrails that seem to be so strong, even now, that it couldn't be possible. i wonder if what you saw today informs you at all of what should be asked of bill barr, whether or not this tells you that maybe even putting in a trump crony as attorney general permanently might not actually pose as big a threat as people
might have thought. >> well, there are two issues. one is interfering on the one hand and the other is the issue of communication with the president. on the interfering issue, frankly, as long as rosenstein is in place who is essentially the guardrail between mueller and the attorney general, then i feel reasonably confident that there won't be interference. when rosenstein resigns and then there is a direct line between the attorney general and the special counsel, i would have some concerns about that. now, i don't have particular concerns about bill barr, but then the opportunity exists. the community issue is very different. in my reading, if you recall in august of 2017, whitaker becomes chief of staff to sessions and it's widely reported that kwh whitaker is in regular touch with the white house, so much so as the "the new york times" described him as a partisan and a spy in the attorney general's office to funneling information
to trump when he's the chief of staff. it strains credibility to me that he did not communicate with trump about what he knew about the investigation. in the light of what he had done before. the communication issue is a troubling issue. that's a troubling issue. affirmatively interfering, as long as rosenstein is in place, i would tend to doubt it. communicating with trump about what's going on, that's a different matter. >> let's dig into that, what kind of a matter it would be. the question would be, what kind of risks would mr. whitaker be willing to take, and what are the risks if he were communicating, funneling information that he was learning from the special counsel to the white house, what legal jeopardy could that place him in and how would that play out given the fact that he's acting attorney general? >> this is the scary part, i don't think it would place him at risk if he did it in his official capacity as attorney general.
you know, it would be wildly improper, and offensive to the entire way the justice department is supposed to operate, but, you know, the executive branch is a unitarian and the president does have the raw power to get information about investigations, and so i agree that that is a serious concern that it could have happened and i also think there probably isn't a whole lot of remedy against it if it did happen. >> and i didnquickly to you nan what do you think of the fact that he wouldn't answer the question that the constitution said the president could be indicted or not, he didn't answer that? >> he could have answered along with the office of what legal counsel was saying. i think that to some degree was a softball. when you step back from all of this, what the committee was trying to do here was to see if there was trump obstruction. that's why they kept on asking
the questions about communications, so i agree with ben that, yes, there may be sort of a general right to confer with trump, but if trump is saying tell me about x or do y rgs that's a different issue. >> thank you, guys, very much. the tabloid that worked to help donald trump get elected president is reportedly under scrutiny by the sdny for allegedly trying to blackmail the richest man on the planet and putting in writing, the latest on bezos versus becker after this. i switched to liberty mutual
you won't find relief here. congestion and pressure? go to the pharmacy counter for powerful claritin-d. while the leading allergy spray only relieves 6 symptoms, claritin-d relieves 8, including sinus congestion and pressure. claritin-d relieves more. yesterday, amazon ceo and "washington post" owner, jeff b bezs revealed, how it ainquiried texts that exposed his extramarital affair, unless he put out a statement that the actions were not politically motivated. the faceoff between the world's
richest man and the tabloid run by david pecker has riveted the media with headlines like this and raised serious questions about the "national enquirer's" tactics. ami released a statement which reads in part, american media believes it acted lawfully in the story of mr. bezos. in the time of the allegations it was in good faith negotiations to resolve all matters with him, and it would thoroughly investigate the matter. bloomberg and the associated press are reporting tat office of the u.s. attorney of the southern district of new york is looking into whether am oora's actions. ronan farro, i and at least one orr prominent journalist involved in breaking stories about the national -- an
investigative reporter for the "the new york times" who has reported on the donald trump and the "national enquirer" and white house reporter for the daily beast who reported. thank you, i'm going to go to you first. that ronan farrow tweet was intrigued. do you have anything more on whether or not there were -- because he says at least one other reporter, on other reporters that may have been threatened by ami. >> we at the daily beast will have more on what you were just talking about coming out soon. i'm sorry i can't get into it at the moment. to give your viewers a back story on this, as we reported at the daily beast.com last week, jeff bezos personally underwrote this private investigation headed by a guy named gavin debecker who has been jeff bezos top security guide, into how the leaked text messages got to the "national enquirer" and
throughout the course of their investigation, their list of suspects became so narrow that in terms of who the leaker was, in terms of their top suspect, one name came to the fore and that was michael sanchez, the brother of lauren sanchez who is the jeff bezos to be a close as, both business and personal wise to peripheral trump world figures like roger stone and carter page. as bezos said investigators looked more and more into this they started to suspect, i'm not sure if the investigation concluded and what concrete evidence they have to support this, but they suspected at the core of the leak so that all culminated into what happened yesterday when bezos put out the post, accusing ami, and the pecker tabloid of maliciously blackmailing him. >> by political motivation, that
translates to trump, that's what was meant by political motivation. >> bezos himself in that medium post strongly implied that it could be trump and/or the saudi regime which has had close ties to david pecker and the ami empire, so, and again, i must reiterate that this seems to be speculation or educated guessing on the part of bezos and his team. i don't think they have presented publicly solid evidence to confirm either way, but twith. they are plumbing political motivation sgls a motivations. >> and saying spare no expense. let's talk about the way the enquirer operates both now and before. there was another tweet by a gentleman ted britus a former ap editor who say we were warned by insiders that ami had hired private investigators to dig into the backgrounds of ap
journalists looking into the tabloid on behalf of trump. never saw evidence and it didn't stop our reporting. i'm wondering if is this is a feature, not a bug that they are running research on journalists. >> that's a great question and the associated press, the journalists there were some of the folks at the forefront of reporting and digging into the allegations that trump was actually working with ami to cover up potentially damaging stories that could come out about him during the presidential race sg. >> right. >> and obviously michael cohen has pled guilty for campaign finance violations, ami itself had entered into sort of an agre feds as they in their investigation that led to cohen's guilty plea. and have actually acknowledged that they were doing things to help influence the presidential
race, but they have also, at the time, before this all came out, before the feds nailed that information, there were reporters who were trying to figure out and piece together that the pieces of that puzzle and there's no doubt that ami went after, like, basically pushed back against those reporting efforts, not just the associated press but also where. >> the catch and kill operations obviously were to be helpful to drum donald trump, in your reporting, what was the motivation or was there a revealed motivation to be helpful. was there political allies or something more to it? >> the relationship between pecker at ami and trump goes back to the 90s. they enjoyed a close relationship, and it's also, you know, and since then, there has been additional reporting that has showed that david pecker and ami has benefitted from its relationship with trump. if trump was able to basically get ami to help cover up damaging stories about him, and
to also promote negative stories about hillary clinton, that he in turn -- >> or tickers. >> that david pecker may have received some benefits from his close relationship with the white house, especially when it came to business pursuits that he was pursuing with the saudis. and so, you know, listen, trump is not the only person on whose behalf david pecker has done favors. >> sure. >> and has like waded into questionable and the question is whether or not illegal tactics to benefit them. >> this day. thank you so much. thank you both. and up next, amazing new reporting from the "washington post" about a virtual pipeline of undocumented immigrants to find work at donald trump's properties. o find work at donald trump's properties tin and relief from symptoms caused by over 200 indoor and outdoor allergens. like those from buddy. because stuffed animals are clearly no substitute for real ones. feel the clarity.
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notion that he would finally stop illegal immigration, that he would literally build a wall to stop those people coming in through the southern border. but he felt the same way about those brown line cutters that they did. in fact, trump said so himself again just this week. >> no issue better illustrates the divide between america's working class and america's political class than illegal immigration. >> well, new reporting from "the washington post" shows just how much of a lie this entire foundation of trump's presidential campaign and presidency have been. thanks to some great shoe leather reporting from the post, we know that donald trump's golf club in bedminster new jersey had a virtual pipeline of undocumented employees coming from a little town in costa rica. david farenthold one of the amazing reporters on that story joins me next. i can't tell you who i am or what i witnessed,
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reporter david farenthold of the washington post has been covering the trump family businesses where he and his colleagues at the post uncovered the trump national golf club is i'm imploring a pipeline of undocumented workers. joining me is david farenthold, reporter at the washington post and analyst and the headline of your piece, my whole town practically live there. that is the headline of your piece. tell me how you found this town and how many people are working for donald trump? >> well, this started back in december when "the new york times" wrote about one woman who is an immigrant who was here in the u.s. undocumented and
working for president trump at his bedminster course. by talking to her and her lawyer, you heard about this much bigger picture, so many more people that worked in the course in landscaping, housekeeping that were undocumented and heard there was actually a town in costa rica where they had come from and gone back to. if you just went there you could find all these houses, all these lives built on money made illegally at donald trump's course. so my two colleagues both former correspondents went down to this down and as you said, it was there. they have talked to all these people who had mementos, photos, shirts, evidence of their time at trump's club and they talked about how there is this pipeline that started small and grew pretty large bringing dozens of people from that area, from costa rica to work at trump's club. >> i guess people would wonder, how wouldn't somebody in the
hospitality business not know? e verify was big. did any of these clubs use e ver e verify? >> some of trump's clubs use e verify but this one doesn't. if you were donald trump and you cared about illegal emigration and thought it was immoral, we talked to some of these workers that said it was obvious to their managers and clubs and they said it in front of managers they were undocumented. nobody took action. >> we know there are instances where people have been quickly fired and hustled out the door because donald trump, it's bad for messaging. >> donald trump has done a real purge. these are documents the club had on file for ten years or 15 years looking at the documents that had been in their files the whole time and discovered they are undocumented and firing them. >> starting in september the
course in bedminster. they're looking at those documents that have been in there 10 years, 15 years. discovered them you were undocumented and fired them. there are at lease five fires, including bedminster. in the winter time, golf courses shrink from a few hundred down to 20 or 25. in some cases at one club in new york, trump fired half of the winter time staff because they were undocumented. the real test is this summer, how do they find the pool of labor if they can't use illegal workers. >> what will they pay them? undocumented workers at bedminster working for $10 an hour for heavy equipment work that would pay $50 to $51 an hour. >> the wages they paid to the folks were incredibly small. $8 an hour to operate heavy equipment to 50, $55 an hour for a legal american that's licensed to operate it with benefits. it's not hard to accept documents, you save so much money. if the trump organization is
going to go legal, all of the gulf clubs and screen out undocumented workers, their labor costs are going to go way up. and we're interested to see how that affects the whole business. >> your reporting said the head of security was actually told there were workers potentially working there in legal documents. >> that's right. one of the things the trump organization said is we didn't know. we didn't know there are all these people working for us, they fooled us. we found this police report from back in 2011 where a bedminster p.d. cop and a suspect is an undocumented immigrant. the cop discovers this and tells the head of security, i'll here because you have an employee in this accident and here undocumented. nothing seems to have happened after that. >> thank you so much. appreciate you joining me tonight. thank you. that is all for "all in" this evening. catch me for "a.m. joy."
thank you very much, my friend. thanks to you at home for joining us. happy friday. we'll start with an update on the story we have been covering since just about exactly this time last night when we last left the million mile an hour on the blink wildly spinning out of control carrousel that is the news cycle now. jeff bezos, the founder of amazon.com and founder of "the washington post" just published what he says were the extortion threats he received from a supermarket tabloid in the united states. the same tabloid that has been named by federal prosecutors as a participant in a felony case involving illegal campaign contributions to the president's campaign in 2016. the president's long-time lawyer, of course, is about to start a fairly long prison sentence for his role in the felonies that lawyer himself, michael cohen and federal prosecutors that worked th