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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  March 27, 2019 3:00am-6:00am PDT

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after a wave election last november put democrats back in control of the house. now republicans are trying to get ahead of the issue in 2020, a fight democrats are happy to have when "new york times" reporter maggie haberman asked why they would challenge the affordable care act on the heels of trump's best two days in office, well, that official dead panned. quote, too much positive news. we need to change the subject, i guess, and go back to doing destructive things. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it is wednesday, march 27th. with us we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle, white house reporter for the associated press jonathan la lamier, richard haass is with us, msnbc political analyst and former chairman of the republican national committee michael steele is here this
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morning, and nbc news national political reporter heidi prisbila is with us. what is going -- what are they doing, joe? i hate to take their side, but i think they're making a mistake. >> don't worry, nobody will ever think you're taking their side. that's what a lot of republicans are asking right now. i'm glad we showed the clip of the morning after the election because, remember, this was the biggest landslide in the history of off year elections. republicans did worse, got beaten by more votes than any party ever. and the 40 house seats that were flipped, that was a republican party's worst performance since watergate. there were three issues that mattered. russia -- wait, no, it wasn't russia. health care, health care and health care. and as we said yesterday, mika, donald trump's record on that this is so abhorrent, so sure to turn off voters in wisconsin and michigan and ohio and
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pennsylvania and florida, the states that matter the most, he promised universal health care, and then he lied. two years later, he said no way. he didn't want it. it was too expensive and too inefficient. he promised he wouldn't cut medicare for seniors, wouldn't take money away from them. ended up cutting $845 billion in his latest budget. they'll quibble and say it wasn't $845 billion. it was more like $560 billion. it was a lot of money. donald trump also promised he would never cut medicaid. he bragged about it. he said this is my deal. promising to never cut medicare and medicaid and mike huckabee is stealing these ideas from me. he broke those promises as well. he promised americans, he promised workers in pennsylvania. you're going to pay less, your deductibles are going to be less. you're going to get better coverage. everybody is going to have
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coverage and i'm not going to eliminate pre-existing conditions. what he proposed yesterday, make no mistake, in 2020, a much bigger political earthquake on the ground than anything we find out when the mueller report is finally released. and we actually know what is in the mueller report instead of a hand-picked sort of scrubbed sanitized letter that william barr picked. a man, again, who got his job because he wrote a job application that said i don't like robert mueller's -- whatever he said, it was -- he was like a third grader asking if he could get a paper out and that's how barr got his job. he wrote a letter, that letter, nobody will remember in 2020, they will remember the mueller report when we finally find out what the mueller report is and they're going to remember this, because health care will be the
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issue that determines who wins wisconsin, michigan, ohio, pennsylvania, and florida and the white house. >> so the justice department says it is going to take weeks, not months, for the attorney general to make a version of the special counsel's report public, that's going to be the issue there too. the chairman of the senate judiciary committee lindsey graham says william barr told him the delay is so that classified information, grand jury testimony and other sensitive material can be removed. graham says he spoke to president trump last night and that the president did not object to the mueller report being made public. attorney general barr, the senator says, will appear before the judiciary committee sometime next month. meanwhile, house speaker nancy pelosi suggested attorney general william barr summary was written to protect the president. >> right now the message should be clearly let us see this
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report. we don't need an interpretation by attorney general who is appointed for a particular job to make sure the president is above the law. >> so foreign policy analyst david rothcof tweeted this yesterday. trump publicly welcomed the support of an enemy, one with whom he had hidden financial ties, that enemy helped work to get him elected and rewarded them with a defense of their attacks on our democracy and with policy benefits no u.s. president had offered before. >> richard haass, let's keep that up for one second. i actually -- i challenged the -- everybody that followed me. i just had a quick question, which one of these are not true, trump publicly welcomed the support of an enemy, he certainly did in that press conference, one with whom he had hidden financial ties, of course he lied throughout the entire campaign, but in fact he was hoping to get the tower in
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moscow through most of the campaign, that enemy worked to help get him elected, we know that, every intel agency in washington, d.c. says that's true, and he rewarded them with a defense of their attacks on our democracy, which he did, he said vladimir putin ex-kgb agent, i believe you, not my intel chiefs, and with policy benefits no u.s. president had offered before, and where do we begin? he's busting up nato. or at least he certainly has been more negative towards nato than vladimir putin could ever suspect. and he opened the door back to the russians staying in syria and the middle east. which one of those, david rothkopf said, which one of those statements is not true. >> fair enough. i say on the other side of it, joe, that it still doesn't prove collusion, so i think one just has to put that aside. and then secondly, it is also
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true that this administration did some things, sri as vis-a-v russians that i didn't think was right and put in robust sanctions against russia and individuals in russia. i'm not going to argue the basic point, the most serious thing is what this administration has done to weaken the fabric of the atlantic alliance, calling the eu a foe, introducing questions into nato. i think that is truly, truly corrosive on a historical scale. >> mike barnicle, let's put up the list for you and you take a shot at it. the question is very simple. which one of these are not true. trump publicly welcomed the support of an enemy, one with whom he had hidden financial ties, that enemy worked to help get him elected, and he rewarded them with a defense of their attacks on our democracy, and
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with policy benefits no u.s. president had offered before. from syria, to nato especially. what is not true in that statement? >> it is all true. it is all true. i was told by a very wise person yesterday afternoon that when you look at all of the charges surrounding the conspiracy charges that have been leveled against the president, it is not illegal to encourage someone or some entity to do something. if the russians wanted to do something, they were encouraged to do it. that's not illegal. richard is right on the mark when you talk about this presidency, it is what he's done to diminish and/or maybe destroy existing institutions that have stood for 70, 75 years and created at least a welcome mat in europe and a system for peace and existing conditions there
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now. >> and, again, we understand, robert mueller has said there is no collusion with the russian government. whatever that means. because, of course, you had william barr tighten it up as much as he could to talk about the russian government. we don't know what is going to end up being in the mueller report. but, mika, i have a question for you. and if you could put up the david rothkopf tweet again, i'm not talking the legal side of this, i'm saying, be that as it may, even if we end up reading the report, and finding out that this wasn't even a close call on conspiracy, i'm wondering, mika, what voters in michigan and wisconsin and pennsylvania and ohio and florida are going to want a president who publicly welcomed the support of an enemy, one with whom he had hidden financial ties, and then that enemy worked to help him
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get elected during the 2016 campaign, and then donald trump rewarded our enemy with a defense of their attacks on our democracy, by saying that he trusted an ex-kgb agent more than he trust the fbi director or his own homeland security secretary, and then he rewarded them with policy benefits no american president had ever offered before. i'm not going over here, mika, old news. this is not about the mueller report. this is just about what we know to be true and when people are running around a tv saying, he was vindicated, there was nothing there, forget the fact that donald trump and everybody around him lied about their support of russia, their connections with russia, i'm just saying we're taking it from the legal now just straight to the political. i mean, how many people in swing states are going to look at those facts, which are not in dispute and go, oh, yes, that's
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who i want as my commander in chief, somebody that, you know, provides aid and comfort to the enemy politically. >> so i can add to that, you can see it will be fascinating to see what the report shows if we're allowed to see it all. my concern is that national security concerns could be stretched to cover up a lot of what is in this report. i hope all of it is seen for everybody. but all along the way, while all of this was happening, and while you can read along to everything that david rothkopf tweeted about and see it happening in real time in front of our eyes, donald trump had his close allies, people who worked with him every step of the way in the campaign who came with him to the white house, michael flynn and paul manafort being at the very top of that, his national security adviser, a guy who flew around with him everywhere and apparently was his emotional teddy bear to talk to him in between events to keep him busy and paul manafort, the guy who
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headed his campaign, in jail, going to jail, in jail, and guess what, look at the president, not one line of defense for these guys. throws them under the bus, close friends, family friends, people he lived and traveled with, stayed at mar-a-lago with, throws people under the bus as if they are garbage could give a damn about them. is that someone you want in the white house? somebody with no empathy, somebody with no sense of duty or loyalty, somebody who doesn't take a loyalty oath back as a human being. who does he hire, by the way, criminals? that's what people have to think about. when they're wondering whether or not to re-elect this president. >> awfully harsh to say ask if hires criminals. can't just say he hires criminals. >> i can't? really? >> i understand his national security adviser is a convicted felon. i understand that. i understand his campaign
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manager, the guy that he said he needed to win the republican nomination is going to jail, probably for the rest of his live, but does that mean he hires criminals? i understand the guy he told the washington post -- most important -- come on, you got to let me be sarcastic here. let me finish. anyway, you ruined it. you ruined the setting. you ruined the mood. he hires criminals. everybody around him is a criminal or they're lying. they have all lied about russia. >> these are his closest friends. look at this. >> just down the list. jonathan lamier, though, i read -- because i read everything you write, in fact, mika and i, like, that's what we do for entertainment on the weekends. >> don't talk about our private life. >> i have to. this part is the most exciting part of our private life, where we print out on our copier thing, our copy machine, we mimeograph actually, just -- it
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is just coming out in triplicate, by the way, and we read your ap reports. >> they're amazing. >> they are amazing. they're amazing. i don't even get into it. but anyway, as we read this in triplicate, mika gives me like the carbon, dirty and then i have to wash my hands all weekend, you don't -- you just don't want to hear about any of this, but, anyway, neither do the viewers, thank you for staying with me, viewers, but anyway, because this has got to go somewhere, i understand by reading all of your associated press stories that donald trump has been planning for some time and your reporting was dead accurate, planning to use this as a political plus going into 2020. the only downside of that is that when he brings it up, then you bring up, not you, but anybody running against him, is going to be able to bring up all of these stubborn facts. donald trump encouraged the enemy to get involved in his
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campaign. the enemy responded that night by starting to try to hack the democrats. donald trump and his son were thrilled that the russians were going to help with their campaign and give them dirt. donald trump and his entire family got together and his staff got together and concocted a lie on air force one about the -- what the russian meetings were about. there was a litany that would last five minutes that may not make him legally guilty, just like hillary wasn't indicted. but certainly would indict him politically. so i just wonder, do they really want to take this into 2020? are they really going to be campaigning on mueller and russia so democrats can remind everybody what a liar he and his staff are, and how many felons are actually spending time in jail because of russia? >> well, a few things, first, thank you to joe and mika for being such loyal readers. second, you mentioned the
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problem perhaps of stubborn facts and i would put the question back to you, when have stubborn facts ever stopped this president when it comes to his campaign rhetoric and what he chooses to talk about each and every day? so yes, you're right. this is something in recent weeks as there was seemingly growing momentum that the mueller report was going to come back without new indictments, and, again, of course, as you point out, we don't know what is fully in there yet, may be a few weeks before we do, and then it might be a version of what is in the report. at the very least, as momentum grew that there wasn't going to be that smoking gun, that last wave of people being charged, the president and people around him realized they could turn the tables on the mueller report, they would attempt to, they would use it as -- to point out, look, you had a two-year almost investigation. yet, yes, i criticize it at every certain, bturn. there was nothing he asked for he couldn't get and that he -- you didn't bring me down. it is the short version of this. he was then going to go ahead and say, look, you had your chance, house democrats, you
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want to still come at me with this investigation, look, i gave you the opportunity. if you're going to continue with this, that just shows it is partisan overreach. we can dispute that, that what the facts of that, the politics of it, that's going to be their play. now, an argument can be made, of course, the white house should turn the page on this. you move on next thing. it does bring up uncomfortable questions. but the president time and time again instead of suggesting that he would try to turn the page, move under bipartisanship or anything like that, the vibe from the white house in the last 48 hours is they plan to use this, they'll be vindictive and use it as retribution. i'm going to be at his rally tomorrow night in michigan, his first since this mueller report findings, and i think it is safe to say he'll bring it out more than once, and not in an effort to say let's turn the page, but rather to bludgeon his political foes. >> absolutely. >> let me ask you and mika a question, what are the odds, do you think, that russia, the whole thing we have gone
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through, we're still talking about today, obviously, the redaction that are coming in the report, will not be a factor in october in 2020, in michigan, wisconsin, indiana, new york city, largely because it is potentially, given the drift and the incompetexcompetence of thi administration, there will be over 100 million americans without health care, unable to see a doctor or perhaps paying through the nose in higher premiums for their existing health plans because the insurance companies will be able to run amok. >> well, mike, that's exactly why we show the clip coming off the top. not only will it not be an issue in 2020, it wasn't a issue in 2018 when a lot of americans thought donald trump was guilty and was going to be going to jail. people never cared about the russia investigation. we have said it here on tv before. democratic candidates have come up and said they aren't talking about russia. they were talking about caravans in middle america, when donald trump was making up stories about crisis at the border.
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but they don't -- they just don't care about it, they're not going to care in 2020. we're going to be talking about health care in one minute. we're going to be showing you polls and some swing states that show donald trump is under water, has a lot of work to do, but i would just say, jonathan lamier asks a good question, when will facts matter to donald trump? can i answer that? when the democrats have a candidate, how to get in his face, with a full court press and smother him with the facts wherever it goes. it was a witch-hunt. will you pick up your campaign -- oh, you can't, he's in jail. why don't you -- your foreign policy -- oh, wait, no, he's in jail also. you can talk to your long-term political adviser who has been your longest political adviser ever, roger -- oh, wait a second.
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no. well, maybe your fixer, maybe you can -- no, no. the facts are so bad. >> yeah. >> this is just sort of a swatting away, swat that rhetoric right away, and go right to health care. land the political punch and then move straight in to where it counts the most and the gut of american politics, and that is health care, the promises he made and the promises he broke. not over russia. not over robert mueller. not over his hand-picked attorney general. but over health care. he promised universal health care. he took it away. he promised no cuts to medicare. then he slashed and burned medicare. he promised no cuts to medicaid, then he slashed and burned medicaid. he promised people they're going to get lower premiums, they're going to have lower deductibles, they were going to have better coverage that he wasn't going to take away pre-existing conditions, lie, lie, lie, lie,
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lie. good luck with that in the upper midwest, mr. president. >> we'll talk to heidi and michael steele about the battle over health care coming up and the trump campaign job description, which would be defending that broken promise. also if you want to work for the trump campaign, you got us on that loyalty oath and must be willing to go to jail. we'll add that on as well. >> it is part of the deal. >> it is part of the deal. he'll throw you away like a piece of trash and that's exactly what you want to do when you give to a candidate. coming up, president trump is renewing his fight to end obamacare, even the issue hurt republicans in 2018. we'll get michael and heidi and their reporting on that story. plus this -- >> he did this all in the name of self-promotion. and he used the laws of the hate crime legislation that all of us collectively over years have put on the books to stand up to be
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the values that embody what we believe in. this is a whitewash of justice. >> what was that about, mika? >> i think the mayor of chicago just said it. >> jussie smollett stuff, what was that about? >> i'm going to stick to the facts, but your gut, when you listen to the story will tell you something else. the mayor of chicago is furious after officials dropped the charges against "empire" actor jussie smollett. we'll talk about that. but, first, here is bill karins -- >> bill karins also got ougall his charges dropped, which great news. >> yes, time served on "morning joe." that's all my punishment was. >> oh, my god. comes right back. bill karins' got the forecast. >> we're in the teens for windchills this morning from buffalo to burlington, all through areas of northern new england. even as far south as jackson, mississippi, at 39, windchill this morning. it will warm up significantly as we go to the end of the week, as
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cold as it is going to get for a while. award for the worst weather in the country this morning, florida. especially northern florida. we have heavy rain, thunderstorms, this is what they call a nor'easter in florida. strong northeast winds, rip current threats are very high for anyone at the beaches today. it is not a pretty day from anywhere from jacksonville, southward, daytona beach, the space coast. the other story is we have a big huge warmup over the snow pack in the northern plains. these rivers are already super high from our flooding two weeks ago. so areas like today, denver, 75, omaha, 73, minneapolis, 69, about 10 to 20 degrees warmer than it should be, this is the current snow pack over north dakota, minnesota, wisconsin, this is how much is expected to melt probably day today and tomorrow, as much as six inches of snow will melt, that's going to cause some problems. as far as forecast goes today, after that cold morning, that's a brisk afternoon in the 40s. it is sunny in the northeast. no problems atlanta, dallas looks good, traveling through chicago today at the airport, no issues whatsoever. so new york city, you have to
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beyond traditional tv. to tv on any device. beyond low-res surveillance video. to crystal clear hd video monitoring from anywhere. gig-fueled apps that exceed expectations. comcast business. beyond fast. you think the affordable care act is invalid and should be struck down. what is your message to -- >> let me tell you what my message is. the republican party will soon be known as the party of health care. you watch. >> president trump said the republican party will be the party of health care. if that is true, god help middle class americans. >> all right. the battle over health care, believe it or not, back in the headlines, ahead of the 2020 presidential election. the trump administration on monday asked a federal court to
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fully repeal the affordable care act. that would include protections for pre-existing conditions, and the expansion of medicaid. the move gives democrats a chance to pursue an issue that damaged republicans in last year's midterm elections. in 2018, democrats flipped 40 house seats and smashed the wat watergate record for the largest margin of victory in a midterm election for either party. several top republicans have blamed the losses on the issue of health care. nbc news asked kevin cramer yesterday if the 2018 election losses were the reason president trump is focusing on health care. he laughed and said, quote, that's a good way to put it. senator lindsey graham said, quote, we have done enough to go after obama care, but not enough to replace it. what do they have? according to politico, the administration's move to invalidate obamacare came despite the opposition of two
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cabinet secretaries, health and human services alex salazar and bill barr. democrats seized on the administration's move yesterday, unveiling their own plans to bolster the affordable care act. michael steele, is this a gift to the democrats? i'm trying to understand the strategy here. >> i haven't figured out if it is a gift or a trojan horse of some kind that the president and republicans have something inside this package that will bite the democrats. i don't see it. the republicans i talked to, they're scratching their head, going you got a great message, you know, sort of using his term, exonerating the president on mueller, ride that horse as far as you can and the president pivoted. he wants to talk about healthca healthcare. here is the problem, republicans don't. they don't because they know their history on this subject is replete with failure. there is no plan to replace.
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so if the courts take the president up on his charge to completely eliminate obamacare, then what? we revert back to the old system, which means pre-existing conditions go away, meaning people who have those pre-existing conditions no longer will have coverage. as mike barnicle reported out in the first segment, those who currently have plans will see increased premiums because insurance companies who were at the center of this health care debacle in the first place will still run amok and set the market against consumers. so republicans don't want to have this fight, they saw the costs paid in 2018, the costs will be exponential in 2020, layered on top of a presidential race. democrats will have the upper hand on this issue until the republicans come to the table with the plan. and we saw how that went since, what, forever. >> exactly. >> i was going to say, heidi what is so remarkable about health care and the reason why
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donald trump stayed away from it, it is the one issue that more than any other issue has proven that the intellectual bankruptcy of the republican party, how they are void of ideas. they starred running against obamacare in 2009. a decade later they still have no plan. paul ryan never put together an effective plan to replace obamacare. here we are a decade later. they still have no plan that they can submit to americans and say this is our idea on health care, we're behind it, we're going to pass it, you're going to like it. it does seem like a political disaster waiting to happen. >> it was the one thing, or one major thing that separated trump from his party that gave him those populous credits that he was proposing this health care
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plan that seemed too good to be true. it would cover everyone. it would be cheaper. it would be better. he made all of those promises on the campaign trail and now the news flash today remains there is no replacement and to your point, yes, this is opening a much broader discussion here, not just about what is happening with obamacare, but the broader jan agenda is with social security and medicare. if you look at the budget, joe, this got very little coverage because we are so focused on russia, but the cuts that were proposed in that budget were almost dollar for dollar equal to the tax cuts that have gone to the top 1% over the past 20 years. so democrats very much are looking forward to seizing on this issue to have a broader conversation with the american people and i know from speaking with democratic aides just yesterday that part of that is that they want to show how this
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is going to disproportionally hurt in some of the working class trump districts that they're going to be breaking that down for people. you know, look, this is how much more you pay for insulin. look, this is the trump districts that will be losing their health care or that face a disproportionate number of cuts under social security and medicare. and they think it is an opportunity to do something to unite the working class that they really believe has been divided by trump based on cultural wars and fanning cultural flames. >> so, jonathan, once you get past the giddiness and the relief in the white house over attorney general barr's letter and once you get past the clearly thirst for revenge and vengeance that clearly exists in the white house, is there any awareness, real awareness, of the depth of feeling in this country that people have and fear of losing health care, or having adequate health care?
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>> there are a lot of republicans who counseled the white house not to do this. this is not the push that you should be taking right now. as much as they could very much overstep what they should do in terms of the thirst for vengeance for the russia probe they could overstep here too and overplay their hand. the president made this -- personalized this issue, not because of that necessarily out of concern of americans' health care but because it represents a stinging defeat for him that he did on the 2016 campaign trail talk about repealing and replacing obamacare night after night after night, the republicans thought they had a plan in place, until john mccain in one of his last public acts voted it down. that is part of the reason why it is fueled the president's animosity towards mccain and that's why he's still thinking about this. we know in his meeting with senators yesterday, closed door meeting on capitol hill, we have -- we know he was talking over and over about health care and he's fumed privately that he is still upset that his effort to replace it was defeated by
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john mccain. >> richard, he's gotten a plan and he said himself up and he set republicans up for the political kill. i remember bill clinton, one of the most effective attacks he had on republicans was that they're cutting medicare to pay for tax cuts for the rich. well, you look at the $845 billion that he's cut from medicare in his proposed budget, look at the hundreds of billions of dollars he wants to cut from medicaid and totally eliminate block grants back to the state, it matches up pretty nicely with a tax cut for all of his billionaire buddies down at mar-a-lago. and, you know, jeffrey epstein will be very happy about the huge tax cuts that donald trump's given him, bob kraft will be very excited, and in fact, it was trump who said to all those guys, i don't know if epstein was there, but said i made you guys a lot of money
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with my tax cuts. so here we go again, every republican is going to have to defend the fact that donald trump and the republicans slashed medicare and medicaid to pay for tax cuts for the rich. >> i thought it was an extraordinary 48 hours, joe, bill barr giveth and bill barr taketh away. does the spin on the mueller report and the justice department challenges the affordable care act. and as you say, there really isn't anything resembling substitute for it. but i also thought yesterday was interesting for another reason. mitch mcconnell moved to get a vote on the green new deal. and if the republicans are guilty of overreach on the affordable care act and on health care, because they have no substitute, i think the democrats are wildly vulnerable on the green new deal. it is a kitchen sink proposal, not just on energy and climate, but would essentially remake american society and the american economy. and when donald trump talks about it and talks about
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socialism and enormous government role, he's on to something. and that is something that resonates. so each side is overreaching. one on health care, one on climate and energy policy and everything else and the real question is to me, which party has the discipline to stay focused on the era of the other party and whether it is the democrats keeping a focus on health care, the republicans keeping a focus on the green new deal and all that would come with it. i think that will tell us a lot about the run-up to 2020. >> so we'll get to that issue of the green new deal coming up. and still ahead, a stunning development in the case against "empire" actor jussie smollett. prosecutors dropped all 16 charges against him. and officials in chicago are not happy about it. plus, there are a lot of big developments in foreign policy this morning. we'll go around the world with richard haass. we're back in a moment. richard haass. we're back in a moment everyone's got to listen to mom.
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[zara larsson - "wow"] ♪ ♪ make you're jaw drop drop say oh my drop drop drop ♪ ♪ make u say oh my god my drop drop ♪ ♪ make you're jaw drop make u say oh my god ♪
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breaking news this hour, chicago prosecutors have dropped
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all charges against "empire" actor jussie smollett. >> i've been truthful and consistent on every single level since day one. i would not be my mother's son if i was capable of one drop of what i've been accused of. >> actually just got a new statement from the cook county state attorney's office, literally just moments ago, says we did not exonerate mr. smollett, the charges were dropped in return for mr. smollett's agreement to do community service and forfeit his $10,000 bond to the city of chicago. >> okay, wait. so jussie was set free but he's not innocent. but he's also not guilty. what? we need someone to figure this out. mueller, we got a new case for you! this time, just tell us what happened! >> in a shocking move, chicago prosecutors announced yesterday that they had dropped all charges against "empire" actor jussie smollett. the state attorney's office announced the move weeks after
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smollett was indicted on 16 felony counts of filing a false police report after claiming to be a victim of a hate crime in late january. smollett made a deal with prosecutors to perform two days of community service and forfeit his $10,000 bond to the city of chicago. even though the charges against smollett have been dropped, he's not entirely vindicated. as prosecutors say, they still believe -- they still believe he organized the assault against himself. let's bring in msnbc legal analyst danny savalos. before i ask exactly what happened here, what in the world happened here, i was watching on the plane yesterday the live coverage of this, they had a camera on the courthouse, all these people were walking out of the courthouse after waiting in line to deal with the system for whatever they were going there for, just normal people, who have to be american citizens, get penalized for what they get penalized for, get their licenses, just like everybody else, whatever they were doing in there, and then jussie
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smollett comes out, cleared, with some sort of deal. so what is the difference? what happened here? how does a case against this guy just go away and i'll put that in quotes, what's going on in chicago? >> when this story first broke, the idea that the prosecution would rush into court to null pros, drop the charges against smollett initially as it was breaking, i thought this might mean that the case, the prosecution's case suddenly went south. witnesses went sour or new evidence emerged. as the day went on, however, it appeared instead this was part of a deal, and as a criminal defense attorney, this is a realm, a gray area of the law that happens thousands of times across the country every day. when the prosecution has a lower level felony that is nonviolent, often it is the case that they can't prosecute every charge, so they offer a deal, and it is not
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even a probationary or a lesser included offense, they say essentially, listen, we think you did it, but you don't have to plead guilty if you do some community service, often it involves giving the government some money, look, that is exactly what happened here, he forfeited his bond, we'll all do a walkaway. you're exactly right that smollett, did he get treated differently? maybe. in this case, smollett's case, the prosecutor said it is like thousands of other cases that we offer these deals to, but maybe it is not. maybe the ordinary garden variety false police report doesn't marshall or waste police resources a way a celebrity false report about a hate crime against him because of his race or sexual orientation does. the vast majority of the cases nobody hears about. but when somebody like jussie smollett, if he submits a false report, it puts together all of
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the police -- chicago police and prosecutors on manpower, wasting resources, all kinds of other things in a way that they just wouldn't devote to a private citizen. >> yes, so, while other people are probably doing time or a lot more for selling weed on the streets of chicago, i just want to ask, why would this guy get a deal if they think he did it? >> the prosecution's position is not -- what was surprising yesterday is that as the story came out, the prosecutors backed up a sense chicago pd saying we still believe he did it, we just made a judgment -- >> so why a deal? why would they get a deal? >> they apparently made a judgment that because this is the kind of lower level felony with no violence, that this is the kind of case, i'm not advocating for the prosecution, but they said this is like what we do with many similar cases. but the argument is, this isn't similar to other cases because it got all of chicago pd and all
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of the prosecutors office burning manpower, hours, all kinds of other things, that they wouldn't ordinarily do for a run of the mill false police report. >> so can we cut to the core of this case with this explanation that what happened yesterday with jussie smollett is in fact he got the same kind of deal that is offered hundreds of times a day in courtrooms across the country to rich white guys. >> the last part i can't agree with because i can't say for sure that's the case. but i will tell you, across the country, state courts everywhere have arrangements where you have a lower level crime and i'll give you an example, dui crimes often get a first bite of the apple. and most dui defendants do not fit the ordinary mold of criminal defendants. they are a wide swath of life, including wealthy folks who can pay big fines for that first free bite and they get to do some probation, pay some money to the government, and then the
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case often gets dismissed against them depending on the jurs. you're right, we have a system of justice where the government sees they have a defendant with money that they can extract for a first time nonviolent offense, that's exactly the system that we have in this country and people benefit -- defendants benefit from that across the country, not necessarily with smollett's resources, but often with considerable resources of their own. >> why was the mayor and the police chief so angry over what they thought was a charade yesterday? >> because this case is different than the ordinary false police report. false police reports are submitted every single day. but they don't have the effect and maybe in a way chicago police maybe because they devoted all their time to this, that's why their frustrated. they made it clear yesterday they believe they had a case and that the prosecution strangely enough backed them up and said we believed we had a case. even though we believed we had a case, beyond a reasonable doubt, we made a decision that it is
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not worth our resources to prosecute this case. which begs the question, if it was worth your resources to investigate the heck out of it, why is it not worth it to continue where you truly believe that you have proof of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt. >> danny, thank you very much for trying to explain that to us. this is a confusing one. still ahead, a top republican senator makes fun of the green new deal by using dinosaurs, "star wars" and "aquaman", but democrats say it is no laughing matter. "morning joe" is coming right back. matter. "morning joe" is coming right back - [woman] with my shark, i deep clean messes like this.
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heidi przybyla, you have new reporting on how the democrats are going to be approaching the mueller report and what form and how, when it comes out. tell us about it. >> right, mika.
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yesterday, the department of justice said it would be weeks, not months, before they released some version of this report. well, that is not good enough for democrats who i met with yesterday. they're saying they gave this deadline and they mean it and they're getting ready to tee up subpoenas if they need to. they want a firm commitment from barr on when this is going to happen. the president is setting the narrative here and misstating in this report, about on strucbstr saying he's been exonerated. if they don't get it, there is an april 9th appropriations committee hearing where william barr will be appearing before the house and they are telling me that they're already teeing up some pretty basic questions that they think he has no excuse for not answering, including and most importantly whether it was ever the intention of robert mueller for william barr to even make this decision on obstruction because if you look at previous special counsel cases, involving presidents, and obstruction, in recent history, it has fallen to the congress to
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come down on that and to weigh those important questions. it is not a call that is made by the attorney general. >> all right. heidi, thank you very much. still ahead, republicans lost the house after just trying to repeal parts of obamacare. what happens now that the trump administration wants to scrap the whole thing? former senator claire mccaskill joins us and the must read opinion pages, including one from george conway entitled trump is guilty of being unfit for office. we're back in three minutes. for office we're back in three minutes. - [woman] with my shark, i deep clean messes like this.
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there is a new scandal shaking the catholic lot of ca kissing the pope's ring as tradition in the church if you're lucky enough to meet him. it appears pope francis isn't too keen on the idea of meeting people after the mass yesterday. he kept ripping his hand away as people -- >> quick reflexes, like it looks look a weird video game where you have to try and kiss the pope. ♪
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>> okay. welcome back to "morning joe." i love him. >> great. >> what was that? let them kiss the ring. >> no. it is wednesday, march 27th. still with us, we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle, white house reporter for the associated press jonathan lemire, president to the counsel on foreign relations richard haass and former chairman of the republican national committee michael steele and joining the conversation, political writer for "the new york times," msnbc political analyst, nick confessore and now msnbc political analyst claire mccaskill is with us. >> mike, you're the boston catholic. what is up with the pope? should they put up a sign, do not kiss the ring? what is going on? >> i think it is the pope's inner humility and out were the humility that he's reluctant to do that. he doesn't abide by it. he doesn't like it.
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i think it is refreshing in terms of long held traditions where people get on their bended knee and kiss the pope's ring. he doesn't want to do that. i'm happy he's doing -- look at that. that's great. you know what it is like, it reminds me of the old -- you hold your hands out, and someone else tries to slap your hands, he would be great at that. great reflexes. >> very good reflexes. what i don't understand is we come to the set, you talk about humility you make us get down on our knee and kiss your ring. >> but that's off air. that's not on air. i never do that publicly. >> it is the world series ring which -- >> stop it. >> april 9th, in boston, fenway, welcomes a new season. claire mccaskill, first of all, got to ask you as we talk about baseball and how excited you are about the cardinals, they -- they got an exciting team this spring. >> we do have a great team this year.
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st. louis can't wait to see goldie with the birds on the bat. our opening day is next week. april 4th. and st. louis will turn out en masse as it always does for a special opening day. and we'll be in the hunt again like we always are. >> yeah. it is going to be great and, of course, the east is going to be an exciting division, national league east will be very exciting division. the central is going to be packed too. going to be great, great year. so, claire, let me ask you about health care. we're a little surprised. i remember talking to you during the campaign about how donald trump's lies about the invasion of america by leprosy filled caravans actually was having the impact with your voters. but i'm sure you wish that you could just debate donald trump on health care in 2020. 2018. i know a lot of democrats are hoping the same. what do you think about donald
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trump taking his victory lap and talking about going straight into another battle on health care and specifically eliminating pre-existing conditions and eliminating block grants on medicare, cutting medicare, medicaid. how is that going to play politically? >> i -- you know, this guy never ceases to amaze me. a normal president after having what could be arguably one of the best moments of his presidency, you would think he would pivot and say, okay, let's all come together and let's work together on infrastructure. or let's all come together and work to really lower the cost of prescription drugs, which the president has said a number of times he wants to do, instead, he says, you know, let's pivot and pretend like we got a solution to some of the problems that are in the health care system, which we clearly don't, because we never come with one that has any kind of bipartisan support. let's just see if we can figure out a way to cut people's
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prescription drug coverage on medicare, do away with pre-existing condition protection, and kick millions and millions of people off health care. gee, that's a really good idea for 2020. i don't get it. i know this, there are a whole lot of my former colleagues on the hill yesterday that were going, whew, dodged that bullet, this guy is continuing to really be out of step with the american people when it comes to the things that they worry about when they put their head on the pillow at night. >> of course, the people in the white house, close to the president, when they were asked by maggie haberman why is the president going to health care and they shrugged their shoulders and said well, we had a couple of good days in the press, why not ruin it all? you were there in 2018 campaigning, and here's maggie's tweet, too much positive news, we needed to change the subject. it always fascinates me what
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certain voters believe. as far as donald trump's lies. he's able to get away with lies. they sort of, again, turn a blind eye to all the lies and then in fact accept some of it. i'm curious, though, what about his promise to give all americans, working class americans, universal health care, to not cut medicare, to not cut medicaid, to make premiums cheaper, to make deductibles cheaper, to make coverage more expansive. did you get a sense -- did your voters remember those promises of his, will that have an impact in 2020 in missouri and iowa and wisconsin and michigan and pennsylvania and ohio and florida in the states that will determine who is go to be the next president of the united states? >> i think many of them did believe him. and particularly around the issue that we spent a lot of time on the campaign, which is pre-existing conditions. you know, my opponent was one of
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the attorneys general that brought the lawsuit and he basically lied during the campaign and said, oh, he was going to protect pre-existing conditions when he was in court to do away with protects for pre-existing conditions. the president says the same thing. very difficult if not impossible to do that unless you have some kind of statutory mechanism like the affordable care act where you can get everybody into an insurance pool to make it more affordable. and to make it work in terms of a business model for insurance companies. so i don't see how this has -- there is a train wreck coming on this issue and it will come before 2020 because these cases are working their way through the courts and there is going to be a decision, i believe, before 2020, which i think could be a total game changer for the control of the u.s. senate, and certainly for who occupies the oval office. hey, before you go to somebody else, can i get a point of personal privilege in here about
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smollett, about jussie smollett? this is on my bugging me, i listen to the previous segment, the explanation as to why this might not be so bizarre, they let this guy off. here is the thing as the former prosecutor that really stands out to me. they did not make him admit guilt. that is the deal. he is walking out there, pretending like he's innocent of these charges. saying he's always been consistent and told the truth. no, he's never told the truth about it. and the fact that this prosecutor did not force, whether or not they were going to give him community service and dismiss the charges, they should have forced him to admit guilt. that's what's going to stick in the crawl of not just chicago voters, but voters across the country. >> well, i have to jump in, i wasn't to a want to add to that. you heard the head of the police department in chicago just express his utter disgust with what went down. you heard mayor emanuel as well
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and i can't help but to believe that this wreaks, this just stinks to high heaven because this was an attack on what plagues chicago. the issue of race. and trying to have justice meet up with the issues of race in that very troubled city, and to let that guy walk and to claim that he's completely innocent and did nothing wrong, to me was an assault on the system, was an assault on the city of chicago, was an assault on the police department, made fools of everybody, and it made me sick to watch. >> yeah, i'm not arguing whether or not he should have gotten probation as a first time nonviolent offender. >> me either. >> that would be expected in a case like this. but what really is unexpected is they're letting him walk around pretending like he didn't do it and that's what -- >> why in the world would they do it? you're a prosecutor, as your son
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said, you're the best, well, we'll say prosecutor in all of kansas city. >> fourth grade. >> was -- did you have somebody who was star struck here? what happened? >> what's not clear to me is that the elected d.a. of cook county had recused herself. and so the person who is talking about all this is one of her deputies. i would like somebody to find out did she sign off on this? did she say this was okay? did she influence this decision? she's the one who is accountable, she is the one who was voted into office by the people of cook county. so i don't think this is the end of the story for her. and the fbi still has some stuff on it. but it is not nearly as important as pre-existing condition protection for all of america, but i wanted to get it off my chest. >> but, michael, still, though, it is important when we talk
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about criminal justice, criminal justice reform, how certain people get advantage and benefits that other people don't have, we usually term that as it has to do with race, and the two americas that exist in a criminal justice system because of race. but in this case, i don't know if it was celebrity, i don't know if it was money, i don't know what it was at all. but, you know, you can't just say that this guy is just like everybody else, first time offender and just slap him on the wrist and let him go. he used his stardom to give chicago a black eye, to -- a city that has been under cut by racial strife through the years, and this wasn't just your run of the mill first time felon, as claire said, they should have done a lot more than make him write a check and do two hours
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of community service and go on his way. he should have had to admit that he was guilty as charged. >> i don't -- the last part of it i have a problem with. why would i admit i'm guilty of something i didn't do, that's the sticky point. if they really wanted to drive that deal to claire's point, they could have forced that issue but they didn't. that goes back to the rest of the story which i think you put your finger on, joe, this was a lot about celebrity, this was a lot about money, yes, the city got $10,000 out of the deal, and the idea of prosecuting for somehow for some reason became untenable, became distasteful to the prosecutors. we don't know why. their explanations fell flat. clearly for a lot of the city officials. and i think right now a lot of folks are sitting there scratching their head over something that we know under any other circumstance or anyone else who would not be able to
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forfeit $10,000 by the way, that they wouldn't get that kind of a deal. and so i draw the line at, you know, assuming he was guilty because he was not tried in court, we do not know all of the facts, that would not reveal to us in time. so we'll set that aside and just say there is something fishy in the city of chicago. >> something fishy. >> when it comes to the prosecutor's decision here. >> but because of the issues of race, and also the political sort of lightning rod that this case was, and i also think the fact that prosecutors are certain that he did it and they're still letting him off or dropping charges, the deal should have been, joe, not that he admits guilt, but that he cannot use this case as a megaphone for his sob story, like the deal should have been, you go, you walk, you keep your mouth shut.
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not one press conference. not one, you know, social media post about your sob story. >> i would have stuck him in a room like barnacle, like woody allen was in, during sleeper where he had to watch howard cosell on the loop. i would have actually -- i would have actually done that, but i would have made him watch his pathetic interview with robin roberts on "gma" on a loop where he just lied through his teeth, made a fool of himself, and made a fool actually right now, let's just say it, of the prosecutor in chicago. >> that's the core of the story here, claire mccaskill brought it up. cook county attorney is an elected position. no assistant prosecutor, you know, couple of jumps down from the cook county prosecutor's main office is going to do this on his or her own. they're not going to do something like this. so if there had to be to use this word collusion between the
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top of the house and the in court prosecutor, to allow this to happen, to allow a defendant like this to walk out and without claire is absolutely right, without admitting guilt to walk out into the sunshine and say, and see, everything is okay, my story is true, i stick by it, blah, blah, blah. when they have evidentiary proof that the story was concocted. >> right. so let's -- while we're on this topic, richard haass, let's talk about people who have been indicted or who may get indicted and walk. i speak, of course, of bebe netanyahu, an election is coming up. what is that looking like? does netanyahu squeak by again despite the fact that so many israelis do not like him? >> if i were a betting man, i would say he and his party get the most votes in the first round. you never had a time in all of israel's election since it was created in 1948 where any party was a majority. so bebe netanyahu will get the most votes, first one asked to
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form a government. what he's going to do is not just go to the right, he's going to go to the far, far right of his israeli politics, religious parties and ultra nationalist parties and try to form a government there and if they can do it, it will be the most conservative or right wing government in israel's history. >> so, richard, why -- what happened to the center in israel? you certainly can't make the argument you can make for most of israel's history that there was an existential threat all around them. there are sunni arab nations who are working and coordinating with israel. why is israeli politics getting more extreme? why is it going to the extreme right? >> it is a really good question because you're right, it is not because of external threats, it is because of internal demograph demographics, the role of the religious parties. it is about the changes to the society and the way the political system works. you put your finger on an
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interesting thing. just at a time that israel is finally in a position to break out of some of its diplomatic isolation, and forge some ties to some of the sunni arabs who are much more worried about iran than they are about israel, suddenly working with the united states, they now go -- they're moving to the golan heights, there is talk of annexing parts of the west bank, they'll create conditions where the arab countries that might have been prepared to reach out to them will say no way. this administration won't be able to introduce its long awaited quote/unquote peace plan because this is really government would say no to it on day one. so none of this makes a lot of sense. people who really care about israel ought to be worried. if you want israel to be a democratic jewish state, a jewish democracy that is prosperous and secure, israel is on a trajectory now where that i think -- they will put that
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themselves in doubt. the israelis need a two-state solution with the palestinians. not as a favor to the palestinians, but as a favor to themselves, to keep israel jewish, to keep israel democratic and secure, and i worry that bebe netanyahu's policy of drift and annexation will set up a situation where israel's own future is being placed in jeopardy. >> richard, for years, mika and i for the last couple of years we heard from friends in britain that actually our friends in that government are actually only people that are making donald trump's washington seem stable. and focused with a clear vision of where they want to go. another way to say that great britain remains just such an absolute mess. when i started hearing this two years ago, i laughed, looking over the past couple of weeks,
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though, actually past couple of months, man, it is no laughing matter. theresa may's government is just in shambles. and there really does seem no -- like there is no way forward. what's next for our most important ally? >> this is really sad because this is not a threat to the strength of europe. this is a threat to the united kingdom. it is going to be much weaker, much influential, much less influential. i think it is a threat to the united kingdom itself. i think of if some form of brexit goes ahead, it is a question of when and not if. >> but they can't figure out how to go ahead. they can't figure out how to do anything. what's next? where do they go? and why is theresa may still prime minister when she keeps getting crushed in vote after vote after vote? >> she's prime minister because she -- you don't want to go to
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elections because, you know, long conversation, but there is no real choice to be had there over brexit, her own party, not clear who would step up to replace her. i do think her days are finally numbered. i think what will happen is we'll see some delay on brexit, and we're increasingly boiling down to two choices. either this all turns out to be a never mind and you have remain, or you have some kind of brexit like, some sort of brexit where the uk keeps some associations with the common market and so forth. and we'll just see how that plays out. i think what is off the table is a radical brexit where so-called hard brexit where they cut all ties, so i think that we'll see delay in the short run, and then either figure out a way to stay or figure out some half brexit and some different prime minister. >> richard what about -- why is the labor party failing so miserably to stepping into this vacuum and exert more
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leadership. what is going on with the opposition party that they are so bad right now? >> great question. and normally exactly you have a leader of the labor party who would say, since we have a tory government torn apart, we'll be remain and make that a defining issue. you have a labor party run by an extreme leftist who with pretty credible charges of anti-semitism on top of it to boot and he doesn't want to go to the polls and have an election based on brexit because he's an anti-european himself. the labor party doesn't offer a choice. so the politics of britain are dominated by a divided tory party and i did vadivided weak party. >> a weak labor party that unfortunately is not only anti-europe, but has a leader who is anti-nato, and anti-semitic. i know that's normally that would be, like, wow, a charge
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that you just wouldn't want to make on television. you just look at his words and his actions through the years, it is really shocking. mika, let's move from politics overseas to politics here and the states that matter most. of course, in 2020, most likely going to be wisconsin, michigan, pennsylvania, and florida. but we have new polling out from the upper industrial states, upper midwest and industrial states. and it looks like the president is upside down in all of those states. >> these are states that were pivotal to his electoral college victory. and the new emerson poll out of iowa shows president trump down in a state he won nearly ten points by in 2016, trailing joe biden by six points and down two points to bernie sanders. while in michigan, trump is eight points behind biden, and six points to amy klobuchar and
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trailing sanders, kamala harris and elizabeth warren. recent emerson poll shows trump losing to biden by eight points while down four points against each sanders and warren and even trailing beto o'rourke by two points. claire mccaskill, it looks like democrats have two tracks to run on. the big one, i think would be health care. >> health care. but also i think we got to talk about the loss -- the failure to build manufacturing jobs in those states. the false promises. there are so many promises that have not been kept and i think those two tracks, you know, we still have a trade problem that is significantly impacting, not just manufacturing jobs in those states, because of the increased cost of steel and aluminum, but impacting agriculture. you have a state like ohio, michigan, wisconsin, agriculture is huge in those states. and the fact that farmers,
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especially with, you know, between climate change and flooding, and the trade war, i think there is a real opportunity here if democrats don't blow it, by not sticking to those meat and potato issues that are so important in people's lives. >> that's -- michael steele and nick confessore, let's talk about the jobs and trade, that's an issue that donald trump talked about all the time. he said barack obama and every president before him was a sucker because we had large trade deficits. now we have the largest trade deficits in u.s. history. and you stack that on top of health care, on top of tax cuts for the largest multinational corporations and billionaire buddies at mar-a-lago and i wonder how tough is it going to be for republicans, especially donald trump, to go back into wisconsin, to go back to michigan, to go back into pennsylvania, and claim that
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he's going to be fighting for the working man and woman. >> well, here's the truth, donald trump will go into those jurisdictions and make that claim. and he will make that claim boldly and loudly. here's the rub. will those voters believe him? at the end of the day, as reported just this morning on cnbc, those workers, those former manufacturer workers, those who are out there on the consumer end of this, the taxpayers, are paying for this trade war, paying $1.4 billion that has been -- that has lost to them, money that sought of their pocket in consumer goods, et cetera. they are feeling the impact. the question is will those voters discount that impact? will they say i love donald trump so much, i like what donald trump is doing, that i'm willing to suffer the pain of increased cost at the grocery store, increased cost for
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products that i like to buy. and increased loss of job opportunities. that's where this really comes down and this is the opening, i think, to claire's point that democrats will have. sort of a one-two punch, the health care punch, you're going to see increased cost of premiums, you'll see the loss of health care options provided to you, and the economic punch of, hey, you lost wages, you lost jobs here, you lost consumer good availabilities, those questions are ones that the consumer, the voter, the taxpayer is going to have to ask and answer in those states and that is going to be for me the tell of 2020. >> it really is, confessore, how fascinating you have a president who ran in 2016 as a candidate, a first time candidate, we didn't have a record on him, but he ran as a populist. he's governing as a plutocrat
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and the question is will people in the midwest who are going to determine who is the next president of the united states notice they got a plutocrat instead of a populist? >> every candidate for president or a campaign for president is a fight over who gets to be the outsider candidate and the outsider candidate is almost always the person who wins. i think the russia probe ending is a good thing for democrats and here's why, it breaks the fever, it clears the decks. the best outcome for the president was to run against washington again to be the object of a mysterious conspiracy, mysterious forces in washington, the deep states, the threat of impeachment looming, that's done now. it is now a race over his record and these issues. and it was health care that made up -- pelosi speaker in 2018 and could be health care that keeps her speaker in 2020. this now sets the stage for
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democrats to run on the president's record on trade, on manufacturing jobs, on soybean prices, and on health care, which ultimately is their best bet to beat him. >> you know, claire, it seems to me this is pretty simple. pretty basic. donald -- you'll understand this obviously, a prosecutor, and somebody that spent a ton of time inside the courtroom, you can give the same evidence to a great prosecutor, that you give to a bad prosecutor, and that can be the difference between a win or a loss. here the democrats have all the evidence that they need to send donald trump to mar-a-lago for good. only question is, are they going to have a great prosecutor of that case? are they going to have another failed candidate that can't take it to donald trump because if it is another bad prosecutor of this political case against donald trump, he can be sitting at 42, 43% and as we saw two,
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three years ago, he'll still win, won't he? >> yeah. and the skill that is go to be needed here is the candidate who can speak to the base of the democratic party in an inspirational way, but keeping their eyes firmly focused on those voters who will not make up their mind who they vote for president, based on a political party. that is the key. because those voters, the ones who will decide who frankly call themselves independent, or sometimes republican or sometimes democrat depending on how the wind is blowing, they will decide this presidential election in the five states that are going to be key to a victory for the democratic party. so you got to do both of those. you got to sell your case to the american people and i do think whoever can do that, skillfully, without losing themselves to the left, will be the candidate that will inspire and will get the nomination and frankly the big field may help us with that.
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because somebody is going to have to be really good to fight through that thicket. >> former senator claire mccaskill, thank you very much, always great to have you on. >> thanks, guys. still ahead on "morning joe," from iraq to afghanistan to capitol hill, we're talking to a pair of american troops turned congressmen about their bipartisan effort to breakthrough the noise in washington. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. us as people. they see us as profits. we're paying the highest prescription drug prices in the world so they can make billions? americans shouldn't have to choose between buying medication and buying food for our families. it's time for someone to look out for us.
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a business owner always goes beyond what people expect. that's why we built the nation's largest gig-speed network along with complete reliability. then went beyond. beyond clumsy dials-in's and pins. to one-touch conference calls. beyond traditional tv. to tv on any device. beyond low-res surveillance video. to crystal clear hd video monitoring from anywhere. gig-fueled apps that exceed expectations. comcast business. beyond fast. joining us now, coach harris of the newly launched for country caucus in the house democratic congressman jimmy panetta of california and republican congressman don bacon of nebraska. congressman panetta served with the special forces during the war in afghanistan and
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congressman bacon served four deployments across the globe including the war in iraq. and both are recipients of the bronze star. thank you so much for your service. you guys want that service to translate. jimmy panetta, i'll start with you, when it comes to restoring trust, where are the biggest areas where trust has been broken? >> well, look, let me start where trust is going to be formed. that's -- you're seeing that right now with the for country caucus, veterans like don and myself and a number of the veterans of the freshman class coming together using that common ground that we have based on our service to basically understand what it takes to get things done and from there, doing it in a civil way, and focusing on areas that we can help our constituents, veterans, national security, and national defense. i think that's an area where we can easily come to the table, have these types of civil
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conversations, and which can lead to discussions about other topics, such as immigration and infrastructure. >> so -- >> mike? >> both of you members of congress, this is a new story, a democrat and a republican standing right next to each other, apparently civil behavior between the two of you. yeah, yeah, that's great stuff. but let me ask you both as veterans, the authorization legislation, it has been nearly 20 years, we still have forces in afghanistan, still have forces in iraq, do you favor -- what do you favor with regard to our position right now, our policy right now, men on the ground right now, in afghanistan? >> well, if i may, i'll start, both jimmy and i agree that we need a new authorization. we were co-sponsors last congress to bring this back up to a vote. the last authorization was 2001 and 2003. we have been in iraq and afghanistan ever since. we need a new authorization. we need to have article one
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responsibilities and congress needs to step forward on that. this is one area that jimmy and i have been working together on for already over two years. >> exactly. >> congressman bacon, a question for you, we discussed a lot this morning about the mueller probe and its findings, but how it is going to be the real world everyday issues that impact people's lives that are probably going to dictate the next presidential election and other elections to follow. give us one of those things, of course, the government's response to natural disasters. can you give us an update what is going on there and what do you see washington do? >> roughly two weeks ago, i went home, we knew there would be flooding, but the word was it would be manageable, not a problem, we could get through it. 36 hours later, it was the worst national disaster nebraska has ever had. thousands of people lost their homes. we lost about $1.4 billion in agriculture and homes. and the air force base i commanded, a third of it is under water.
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i appreciate the quick response from the federal government. and we'll do bipartisan work here to get funding back to the farmers who also lost their homes in nebraska. that's the worst national disaster in nebraska's history. >> it is terrible. and certainly our thoughts and prayers are with you and all the people of the state of nebraska. it has been a tough, tough stretch for them. let me ask both of you about something that has been in the news, obviously in the debate for quite some time. congressman, syria has obviously been a vexing problem for this country, for the middle east, for the world over the past five, six, seven years. looks like the united states actually figured out how to get the right number of forces in there to push back on iran, on russia, on syria aggression. but yet the president wants to
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move his troops out, as many as possible, obviously many in the military community want them to stay there. what do both of you think about what america's future should look like in syria? >> i understood exactly the recipe for what is needed to fight that sort of counteroperation, that counterterrorism operation fight. and that's when the president made this decision to, you know, fly by night, pull out all the troops, i knew that was a mistake. and it -- what it takes is a small focus group that can actually target individuals. and what it comes down to is -- as we saw in afghanistan, it does work. >> i think we found the right middle ground. the president initially announced that withdrawal, i pushed back as well. but now we're looking at 400
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troops, we need a minimal level of troops in syria, iraq, afghanistan to prevent that void that isis would fill in or the taliban and afghanistan, so i think we're in about the right spot where we're at now. >> all right, the co-chairs of the newly launched for country caucus, congressman jimmy panetta and don bacon, thank you, both, for being and this morning. and thank you for everything. coming up, we'll be joined by another member of congress, the woman tasked with making sure democrats hold the house in 2020. congresswoman cheri bustos is standing by and joins the conversation next on "morning joe." d joins the conversation next on "morning joe. at fidelity, we make sure you have a clear plan to cover the essentials in retirement, as well as all the things you want to do. because when you're ready for what comes next, the only direction is forward.
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i rise today to consider the green new deal, with the seriousness it deserves. this is, of course, a picture of former president ronald reagan, naturally firing a machine gun, while riding on the back of a dinosaur. this image has as much to do with overcoming communism in the
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20th century as the green new deal has to do with overcoming climate change in the 21st. perhaps not as efficient in some ways as airplanes or as snowmobiles, these hairy bipedal specieses of space lizards offer their own unique benefits. all residents of hawaii would be left with is this, this is a picture of aquaman. i draw your attention, mr. president, to the 20 foot impressive sea horse he's riding. under the green new deal, this is probably hawaii's best bet. >> that was -- that's so bad. i -- >> trying to poke fun at the
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green new deal yesterday. >> that's all you got? >> with most democrats -- a politically motivated show vote by republicans -- >> don't say it was a show vote. that's insulting show votes. let's bring in cheri bustos. thank you for being with us. now, i understand democrats for good reason are going to want to talk about health care. it will be a huge advantage for them in 2020 like that was in 2018. but you're thinking about donald trump using some statements that have been made by people in your freshman class, he's trying to use the green new deal statements by aoc, anti-semitic remarks, and also talk of socialism, loose talk of socialism to actually distract from that. do you think democrats, especially some of your freshman members need to be a little more
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careful with what they say, so they don't give the president political ammunition going into 2020. >> well, you use the right word, joe, distract, it is distraction, distraction, distraction. that's what the president is an expert at. in the meantime, we have had 11 hearings on making sure that we address the cost of health care, the price of prescription drugs, we have had another ten hearings on transportation, rebuilding our country, the things that we ran on going into november of 2018, we are doing that. i got asked yesterday when we left one of our meetings by a reporter saying are you now going to pivot since the mueller report is out there, and i'm, like, we don't need to pivot because we have been having these hearings, we have been talking about health care, we have been talking about rebuilding our country, so this is ongoing, and it is not even behind the scenes, this is in full view of anybody to see.
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the problem is we -- inside the beltway, especially, there is an obsession with all of the distractions that you mentioned earlier. >> richard haass. >> congresswoman, recently your organization, the dccc issued a public statement, an e-mail, basically telling that people in the political world, if they supported challengers to democratic incumbents, they would -- they would be cut off essentially from working with the democratic party. can you explain that about why it is that you -- you're basically supporting that sort of an approach to politics and why you seem to be opposing challenges to incumbents? >> that's much more of an oversimplification than what the reality is. we are telling vendors that we do business with, and keep in mind that the democratic congressional campaign committee we will raise somewhere around $200 million over the next couple of years, that's a lot of money that we spend with different organizations that
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help elect democrats. what i'm saying is if you're in the business of helping elect democrats, we'll do business with you. but if you're in the business of opposing democrats who are in office or the seats that we're trying to pick up, then we probably don't want to do business with you. i think the way that was characterized in your question is an oversimplification. i have two jobs as the chair of the democratic congressional campaign committee. and that is to protect the majority that we have right now, and to do -- do what i can ethically and morally and legally to gain further seats. so that's my job and that's what i'll keep fighting for. >> i'll tell you what, nothing new to see here, because if when i was in congress, there was a vendor that was helping somebody trying to primary me, boy, everybody up and down the line would be hearing about it. you don't undercut your own members who are trying to hold on to their seats while you're trying to gain additional seats. >> thank you.
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>> nick confessore is with us. he has a question. >> i'm curious, if you have advice for freshman members on what to say about impeachment and the russia investigation, i. there was word going around as to what the message should be for 2020. >> yes. health care, rebuilding our country. we already passed hr 1 to clean up the mess in washington d. krchl. lo washington dc washington d.c. i hope the attorney general will release that to the public. we have got to get to work and get the nation's business done. we ran on a platform that made a lot of sense. it is what got us into the majority. we have got to stay focused on that. i talked with you guys before about how when i go home i walk the aisles of a super market.
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he has not gotten a raise in seven years. the company just took away. do you think that's about all he has time to do? that's what he does for fun is volunteers in his community. do we want to tell him we will keep focusing and fighting as hard as we can on this mueller investigation? we'll do what we can to make sure he does have access to health care and we'll do what we can to raise wages in our country. that's what we have to fight for and we have to be talking about.
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he has let you down on he'll care, on wages, on everything i think the democrats have a strong chance to really get the focus on moving forward. sherry, thank you very much for coming on. come back some time soon. >> thank you. up next the president's attitude was clear when he tossed paper touls in the wake of hurricane maria. now he is reportedly complaining about how much recovery funding the island has received. we'll have that ahead on morning joe. ♪ limu emu & doug
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2017s hurricane maria they think they are receiving too much aid money. during an hour long monologue with senate republicans president trump reportedly ranted about the amount of disaster rate designated for the island saying it was too high. trump reportedly stated that texas and south carolina states also hit by recent storms were awarded $29 billion in aid. the president then claimed that puerto rico got 91 billion adding that you could buy the island four times over for that sum. however it appears that trump may have been confusing the amount of aid money approved by koc congress and a cost estimate of the damage done by the storm. so very interesting insights into his attitude towards puerto rico. still ahead a preview that the president talks about how he was
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cleared in the russia probe. democrats have already moved on the health care front. one has already proven to be a winning campaign issue. >> plus the justice department says it will be weeks, not months before the mueller report is made public. democrats want days not weeks. the battle is ahead on morning joe. e battle is ahead on morning joe. - [woman] with my shark, i deep clean messes like this. this and even this. but i don't have to clean this, because the self-cleaning brush roll removes hair, while i clean. - [announcer] shark, the vacuum that deep cleans, now cleans itself. has been excellent. they really appreciate the military family and it really shows. with all that usaa offers why go with anybody else? we know their rates are good, we know that they're always going to take care of us. it was an instant savings and i should have changed a long time ago. it was funny because when we would call another insurance company, hey would say "oh we can't beat usaa" we're the webber family. we're the tenney's we're the hayles, and we're usaa members for life. ♪ get your usaa auto insurance quote today.
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for voters nationwide. 41% put it at the top of the list. 23% said immigration is the most important issue. 22 said the economy and 10% said gun policy. >> so that was our reporting here on morning joe just hours after a wave election put democrats back there control of the house. now republicans are trying to get ahead of the issue in 2020. a fight democrats are happy to have when flonew york times reporter asked why they would challenge the afortable care act now on the heels of two days in office? too much positive news. we need to dlachange the subjec and go back to doing destructive things. good morning. it is wednesday, march 27th. with us we have mike barnicle.
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good to have you all on board. what are they doing, joe? i hate to take their side but i think they are making a mistake. >> don't worry, knnobody will er think you're taking their side. it doesn't make any sense. i'm glad we showed the clip of the morning after the lek. it was the biggest landslide in the history of your elections. republicans did worse. they got beaten by more votes than any party ever. the 40 house seats was the republican parties worst since watergate. there were three issues that
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mattered. it was health care, health care and health care. as we said yesterday, donald trump's record is so sure to if your honor off voters in wisconsin and michigan and ohio and pennsylvania and florida, the states that matter the most he promised universal health care and he lied. two years later he said no way. he didn't want it. it was too expensive. he promised he wouldn't cut medicare for seniors. ended up cutting $845 billion in his latest budget. it wasn't 845 billion. it was more like $560 billion. it was a lot of money. he also promised he would never cut medicaid. he said this is my deal. promising to never cut medicare and medicaid. he is stealing these kblds from me. he was so proud of that fact. he broke those promises as well.
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he promised americans and workers in wisconsin. he promised workers in michigan and pennsylvania you'll pay less. you're going to get better coverage. everybody is going to have coverage and i'm not going to eliminate preexisting conditions. p what he proposed yesterday, make no mistake in 2020 a much bigger political earthquake on the ground than anything we find out when the mueller report is finally released. we actually know what's in the mueller report instead of a hand picked sort of scrub sanitized letter that william bar picked. he got his job because he wrote a job application that said i don't like robert mueller. whatever he said it was like a third grader asking if he could get a paper out.
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that's how he got his job. he wrote a letter. nobody will remember. they will remember a mueller report and they will remember this. it will be the issue that dechls who wins wisconsin, michigan, ohio, pennsylvania and florida and white house. >> so the justice department says it will take weeks, not months for them to make a version of the special counsel's report public. that will be the issue there too. the senate says william barr told him the delay is so that classified information, grand jury testimony and other sensitive material can be removed. he says he spoke to president trump and the president did not object to the mueller report being made public. attorney general barr will appear before the senate
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judiciary committee some time nep next month. they suggested the summary was written to protect the president. >> right now the message should be clearly let us see this report. we don't need an interpretation by attorney general who is appointed for a particular job to make sure the president does follow the law. >> he tweeted trump publicly welcomed the support of an enemy. that enemy worked to help get him elected and he rewarded them with defense of attacks on their democracy and with policy benefits no u.s. president had offered before. >> so let's keep that up for one second. i actually challenged everybody that followed me. i just ladhad a quick question.
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trump pub luckily welcomed the support of an enemy, one with whom he had hidden financial ties. of course he lied throughout the entire campaign but he was hoping to get the tower in moscow through most of the campaign. that enemy worked to help get him elected. we know that. every intell agency in washington d.c. says that's true. he awarded them with a defenseover their attacks on our democracy and with policy that fits no u.s. president had offered before. he is busting up nato or at least he certainly has been more negative towards nato than putin could ever subpoena. he opened the door back to the russians staying in syria and the middle east. so which one of those statements
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is not true? >> fair enough. i just say on the other side of it that it doesn't prove collusion. i think one has to put that aside. >> yes. >> and it's also true this administration did some things that i think were right. it did provide arms to ukraine, something the previous administration wouldn't do. it has put into play some fairly robust sanctions. i'm not going to argue the basic point. i think the most serious thing is what the administration has done to weaken the fabric whether it's by calling the eu a faux, introducing real questions of unpredictability and reliability. i think it is truly corrosive on a historical scale. >> mike, let's put up the list for you. you take a shot at it again. the question is very simple. which one of these are not true?
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>> trump publicly welcomed the support of an enemy, one which he had hidden financial ties. i worked out getting him elected and he rewarded them with defense on attacks on democracy and policy that fno u.s. president offered before from syria to nato especially. what's not true? >> it's all true. it's all true. i was told by a very wise person when you look at all of the charges surrounding the conspiracy charges that had been against the president it's not illegal to encourage someone or some entity to do something. if the russians wanted to do something they were encouraged do it. it's not illegal. rich clard richard is absolutely right on the mark. it is what he has done to destroy existing institutions
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that have stood for 70, 75 years and created at least a welcome mat in europe and a system for peace and existing conditions there now. >> yeah. and again, we understand robert mueller said there was no collusion with the russian government, whatever that means. of course you had william bar tighten it up as much as he could to talk about the russian government. we don't know what's going to end up being in the mueller report. i have a question for you. if you could put the tweet up again and again this is not about just a poor country lawyer. >> here we go. >> i'm not talking the legal side of this. i'm saying be that as it may even if we end up reading the report and finding out that this wasn't even a close call on conspiracy i'm wondering what voters in michigan and wisconsin and pennsylvania and ohio will
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want a president who pub welcomely welcome the support of an enemy, one with whom he had hidden financial ties and then that enemy worked to help him get elected during the 2016 campaign and then donald trump rewarded our enemy with the defense of their air tacks on our democracy by saying that he trusted an ex-agent then he rewarded them with no had ever offered before. i'm not going over here. old news. this is not about the mueller report. this is about what we know to be true. people are saying that was vindicated. nothing was there. everybody around him lied about their support of russia, their connections with russia i'm just
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saying we are taking it straight to the political. i mean how many people in swing states are going to look at those facts which are not in dispute and go oh yes. that's who i want as my commander in chief, something that provides aid. president trump wants to be the voice of health care reform, something that requires well thought out policy positions. democrats say have at it. why the house speaker's party is happy to go head to head to the white house on that defining issue. you're watching morning joe. we'll be right back. watching m. we'll be right back. [zara larsson - "wow"] ♪ ♪ baby i'm not even in a gown ♪ and the only thing u have to say is wow ♪ ♪ make you're jaw drop drop say oh my drop drop drop ♪ ♪ make u say oh my god my drop drop ♪
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believe it or not it's back in the headlines ahead of the 2020 presidential election. the trump administration asked a federal court to fully repeal the affordable care act. it would include protections for preexisting conditions and the expansion of medicaid. it gives a chance to pursue an issue that damaged republicans in last year's midterm elections. in 2018 democrats flipped 40 house seats and smashed the watergate record for either party. several have blamed the losses on the issue of health care. nbc news asked republican senator kevin cramer yesterday if the 2018 election losses were the reason president trump is focusing on health care. he laughed and said that's a good way to put it. senator graham said we have done now have go after obamacare but not enough to replace it. what do they have?
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the administration's move to invalidate came despite the opposition of two key cabinet secretaries. democrats seized ton the ad administration's move. mike it steel, is this a gift to the democrats? i'm trying to understand the strategy here. >> i haven't figured out if it is a gift or a trojan horse of some kind. i don't see it. the republicans i have talked to, they are scratching their head. they are going you have got a great message sort of using his term, exonerating on mueller. ride that horse for as far as you can. the president's pivoted. here is the problem. republicans don't.
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they don't because they flknow their history is replete with failure. there is no plan to replace. if the courts take the president up on his charge to completely we limb fl eliminate obamacare then what? we revert back which means preexisting conditions go away. people that have those preexisting conditions no longer will have coverage. as mike pointed out in the first segment those that currently have plans will see increased premiums because insurance companies at the center of this health care debacle will still run a muck and set the market against consumers. they saw the doses paid in 2018. it will be exponential in to 20. democrats will have the up are hand until they come to the table with a plan. we saw how that went since what
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forever? >> exactly. >> i was going to say how you would consider a remarkable amount of health care. it is the one issue that more than any other issue has proven that intellectual bankruptcy, they started running against obamacare in 2009, a decade later. they still have no plan. paul ryan ain all of his years running against obamacare never put together an effective plan to replace obamacare. here we are a decade later. they still have no plan that they can submit to americans and say this is our idea on healthcare. we are behind it. we are going to pass it. you're going to like it. it does seem like a political disaster waiting to happen. >> it was the one thing or one of the major things, joe, that
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separated trump from his party that gave him those populist kreds that he was proposing a health care plan that seemed too good to be true. it would cover everyone. it would be cheaper. it would be better. he made all of those promtss on the campaign trail. now the news flash today remains there is no replacement. to your point this is opening a much broader discussion not just about what's happening with obama care but what the broader agenda here is for instance social security and medicare if eye look this got very little coverage. the cuts that were proposed in that budget were almost dollar for dollar equal to the tax cuts that have gone to the top 1% over if past 20 years. democrats are very much looking forward to seizing on this issue to have a broader conversation with the person people. i know from speaking with
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democratic aids just yesterday that part of that is that they want to show how this is going to disproportionally hurt in some of these working class trump districts. >> coming up on morning joe the it isn't the only case shrouded in history right now. there is also smollett whose charges were unexpectedly dropped based on hate crime. we'll discuss that nengs xt on morning joe. scuss that nengs xt morning joe. at fidelity, we make sure you have a clear plan
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in a shocking mover chicago prosecutors aflown that i had dropped all charges against smollett. they anouned after he had been indicted on 16 felony counts of filing a false police report after claiming to be a victim of of a hate crime there late january. he made a deal to perform two days of community service and forfeit his $10,000 bonds to the city of chicago. even though the charges against smollett have been dropped he is
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not entirely vindicated. prosecutors say they still believe he organized the assault against himself. let's bring in msnbc legal analyst. before i ask exactly what happened here what happened here i was watching on the plane yesterday the live coverage of this. just normal people and get hair licenses like everybody else, whatever they were doing in there. he comes out cleared with some sort of deal. what happens here? how does a case against this guy just go away? i'll put that in quotes. what's going on in chicago in. >> when this story first broke the idea that the prosecution
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would rush into court, drop the charges against smollett initially i thought it might mean that the case, the prosecution's case suddenly went south or new everyday immerged chltd as the day went on it appeared it was part of a deal. as a criminal defense attorney this is a realm, a gray area of the law that happens thousands of times across the country every day. when the prosecution has a lower level felony that is nonviolent often it is the case they can't prosecute every charge. so they offer a deal. it's not even a probation nar or a lesser included offense they say essentially, listen, we think you did it. you don't have to plead guilty. often it involves giving the government some money. he forfeited his bond. we'll all do a walk away.
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you're right that smollett, did he get treated differently? maybe. it is like thousands of other cases that we offer these deals to. maybe it's not. maybe the ordinary garden variety false police report, it doesn't marshal or waste police resources the by a celebrity's false report about a hate crime against him because of his race or sexual orientation does. the vast majority nobody hears about. when someone like smollett puts together all of the chicago police and prosecutors on manpower, wasting resources and all kinds of other things in a way they wouldn't devote to a private citizen. >> yes. so while other people are probably doing time or a lot more for selling on the streets
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of chicago. >> the position is not -- what was surprising is the prosecutors backed up in a since by saying we still believe he did it. we just made a judgment. >> so why a deal? >> apparently -- >> that apparently made a judgment that because this is the kind of lower level felony with no violence that this is the kind of case. i'm not advocating for prosecution. they said this is like what we do with many similar cases. it isn't similar to other cases because it got all of chicago pd and all of the prosecutor's office burning manpower, hours, all kinds of other things they wouldn't ordinarily do far run of the mill false police report. coming up the mueller probe has wrapped. that's not the end of the investigations. we'll bring in jim from the house intel committee next on
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tnchts first time he ever supported a democrat. a few months before her death the former first lady described how perplexed she was by the rise of donald trump. quote akwoek up and discovered ho my horror that bush had won. she asked if she considered himself -- she answered i would peebl say no.
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she also blamed trump for what she called a heart attack. susan page it wasn't technically a heart attack it was a crisis in her long battle with congest ifr heart failure. one day in june of 2016 the presidential campaign in general and trump's ridicule of jeb bush had her angst sz he described it. >> we had often heard stories before. like us you went up and visited the bushes and can but we knew how much any criticism of her sons to hear those stories during the gulf war and during 43s presidency and barbara bush knitting with headphones on so
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she didn't have to listen to the cl clabbering. >> yes. i would go up fleernearly every summer. i was in awe of his wife and war record and commitment to the country. barbara bush was incredibly incredibly and refreshingly honest about everything including all of her children including certain people in politics. she was as critical of her children in a very funny way as the media some times was and what she recordgarded as a crue way. the largest scope was really refreshing to see two people two had been in love and were still in love with each other after 75 years. >> it really was something. barbara bush, everybody knew she
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always spoke her mind, but it was something to see her and see how unvarnished her commentary was on all things political and nonpolitical. it really was a joy to be around her. it was an honor to be around president bush as well. we'll be talking to susan page about her book. >> fascinating details coming out. >> joining us now member of the house intelligence committee. democratic congressman, good to have you on this morning. >> good morning. >> so george conway has a piece in the washington post. he writes a lot about the mueller report but the part that really stands out is how stunned he is that the report is quoted as saying it does not exonerate him. he says it's a stunning thing far prosecutor to say.
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do you think that is as well? the president says he is completely exonerated by the report. what is your response? >> i have two responses to that. number one, the dead end defenders of the president are getting it wrong. some of the people that are disappointed are also getting it wrong. the dead end defenders doing things like adam schiff saying there is no everyday, they are plain wrong. there is lots of evidence of a possible collusion. it didn't rise to the level of an indictable defense. here is my theer rhode islatheo. the president cannot be indicted. there is no amount of evidence, no fact pattern that would cause them to indict for obstruction of justice. we have all seen the oefd of possible and i emphasize the word possible obstruction. what i think is happening here is that bob mueller that understands the workings about
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probably as well as anybody, he is sendsing a signal that congress which is the sole body that can hold the president accountable needs to make the decision about whether there was obstruction which is of course why it is important that we get the full report. >> well, we have to get the full report. you all in the national review at a great column yesterday. he talked about -- he called it the barr letter interlude. when we look back we won't remember the clon collusion as defined by bar's letter but by mueller's report. we have yet to see what the report says so we don't flow exactly what we are -- >> what that definition will consist of. again, it's fairly remarkable how from the start you did have both sides jumping to conclusions when in fact we
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still don't know what the report says. how do you get the report so we can put this behind us and start focusing much more on health care and wages and, you you know, getting people back to work. >> we are going get the report, joe. there was a unanimous vote in the house to release the report. most senators agree the report should be a release except for graham. the president says release the report. we will get it even if it rekwiefs a subpoena. i'm curious why it hasn't been released. i understand classified information. if it made the president of the united states look good we would have had it 3 milliseconds after it arrived. i'm curious about that. we are going to get the report. people need to manage expectations. there is no way you come out of being cleared of treason looking good. there is no way you get out of
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not being impeached for obstruction of justice. >> on the other hand those on the other side of the aisle who are disappointed the president wasn't colluding with a hostile foreign power, step back. the fact that our president was not criminally conspireing with a hostile foreign power is cause for celebration not cause for political disappointment. >> i want to ask about something you said earlier. so in the barr letter he writes i believe that the question of whether the president can be prosecuted was not central to his determination that there was no obstruction. i'm asking you, it's possible that he is making that up. something else is going on there. the policy and the view of the president can't be criminally prosecuted was in fact part of his consideration.
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>> without the facts it's hard to know whether that conclusion is right or not. what we do know is two things. number one, the attorney general with all due respect got his job partly because he wrote a 19 page memo saying you can't investigate, not charge, can't investigate for obstruction of justice. number two setting that aside, it's not his call to make. they were threatened or impeached for obstruction of justice. so what the decision she making is arrogating the authority of congress to make that decision. it is another reason that report needs to be made in its entirety available to us. >> let pick up thoon that point. it says a lot about where the democrats go flexion. how much of this do you think is
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reasonating to the american people? we have spent the last few minneapolis or so. do you think it is something that the american people have been paying that close attention to, that all they see right now is the president going hey, no collusion, as i said. i'm exonerated even though the report didn't say that they don't know that necessarily how do you think the american people are reading this and what does it mean for democrats going into 2020 let alone the rest of this year? >> that's a great question. to me it's sort of the central question. to me what i mean is i'm in the camp that those that believe the president gets held accountable not via impeachment but gets held accountable in 2020 when the american people decide whether to renew his contract. i'm pretty convinced that this scandal speaks intensely and
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probably inappropriately to those americans that are absolutely dug in proor against this. for them it is catnip. for most americans who have worried about losing their healthcare i think it is a little bit of a side show. to answer the other part of your question i think if democrats are smart we'll continue to do the oversight that we need to do of a president that desperately needs oversight. we'll remember that our chance to hold this guy accountable coming down to the extent which we have told the american people that we care about their health care. we care about their ability to retire. if we don't focus on that our opportunity to hold this president accountable with full weight will begin to reroad. it scares me a lot.
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>> thank you very much for being on this morning. >> thank you. up next steven moore defending himself against criticism that is he is not qualified to serve on the federal reserve board. we'll go live to the new york stock exclang next on morning joe. k stock exclang next on morning joe. ♪ - [woman] with shark's duo clean, i don't just clean, i deep clean carpets and floors, so i got this. yep, this too, and this, please. even long hair and pet hair are no problem, but the one thing i won't have to clean is this because the shark's self-cleaning brush roll removes the hair wrap while i clean. ♪ - [announcer] shark, the vacuum that deep cleans now cleans itself. [zara larsson - "wow"] ♪ ♪ baby i'm not even in a gown ♪ and the only thing u have to say is wow ♪ ♪ make you're jaw drop drop say oh my drop drop drop ♪
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time now for business before the bell with cnbc's sarah eisen. president trump, sarah, is expected to nominate campaign adviser is steven moore for a seat on federal reserve. there's been pushback and in an interview with the "new york times," moore is defending himself. what more can you tell us? >> there is fierce backlash going on for their nomination for a member, a key member of the federal reserve. why? because the fed is a sacred institution. it is famously independent. this is not like nominating a government agency position. steven moore, there's a lot of questions about whether the fed can stay interpret or whether it's going to be a trump loyalist servant in terms of policy. here's what he told "the new york times." he said do the president and i think a lot alike on a lot of things? absolutely. that's one of the reasons he picked me 0 to be on the fed because we share a lot of the
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same economic philosophy. he does say i don't think anybody can say i am a sick cofant for trump because i'm not. that is one of the key questions. he wrote a book called "trump nom micks." this is the first time we have seen president trump someone from the fed. he's made other fed picks before that is more of a politico type, known for some of his views on fiscal economics and doesn't have the monetary policy background some of these other esteemed economists have. the backslash not just coming from the left. greg man cue says he does not have the intellectual grave tas. though you know, the senate is mostly republican. so he is expected to pass. there is a one-vote advantage on the banking committee which he has to go through. there is a slightly narrow path. he has to win over republican lawmakers. questions continue to pile up and a lot off opposition on this
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picking. > cnbc's sarah eisen, thank you very much. we'll have more on this tomorrow on "morning joe." >> i've known steve moore for a long time. he actually was one of the found others of club for growth, an organization i've known through the years. and what's fascinating about steven moore is his own views have changed. conservatives like myself that are still conservative economically that were there at the foundation of club for growth but know it's about limited government and was about balanced budgets and paying down the federal debt and saving social security and medicare with entitlement reform, he doesn't believe in any of that anymore. at least he doesn't seem to because he's writing a book now that is defending trump nom micks. he put that out which is just a ridiculous book. all the things be that certainly
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all of my friends that contributed, you know, have talked about charlie hilton and earl derden, guys who believed in less spending and believed ned free trade, those guys actually put a lot of money and support north club for growth and enough course, steven moore is defending a system that it is blowing a hole in the deficit, the largest federal debt ever, over $22 trillion. the largest monthly deficit ever. donald trump ran up more of a deficit last month than any government in the united states ran up for the first 200 years of its history. like in a year, he did it in one month. so it's reckless spending and you've got steven moore defending that. i've got to say, i know there aren't a lot of the people still conservative like me on economic matters especially, but for those three of us who are still
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conservative economically and are concerned about $22 trillion debts, steven moore's transformation is disturbing. > yeah, we're going to gig into that big-time tomorrow as well. we're not done with this topic joining us now professor emeritus of american foreign policy at the johns hopkins school of advanced international studies, michael mendalbaum, the author of a new book "the rice and fall of peace on earth." also with us dr. evelyn farkas at the german marshall fund and national security analyst. >> professor, your argument srg from 19289 with the fall of the wall to will be 19 -- or 2014, there was almost an unprecedented period of peace in this world, at least certainly over the past 300, 400 years. but you now say because of
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china, russia, iran, other major powers, that era is over. explain. >> that's right. in those 25 years, not only was there is no war among the strongest states, nobody really thought of going to war. it almost fell off international agenda. that's unprecedented. but unfortunately, that is correct era. deep peace ended because three important countries and the three crucial regions are of the world, russia in europe, china in east asia, and iran in the middle east, embarked on policies designed to achieve domination for themselves of those regions using force. so we've left behind this era of unprecedented peace and we're back in a world that more cleesely resembles the world of the cold war in which many of us grew up. that doesn't mean that war is about to break out but it does mean that the prospect of armed conflict among the strongest countries is unfortunately more
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serious now than it has been for 25 years. >> but certainly you'd argue it's certainly far more distant than it's been in the entire post-war world, right? since '45? obviously the chinese are staking claims in the south china seas, russia obviously looking at the baltic states and looking obviously at ukraine. iran moving noorg syria and across the middle east but isn't it more contained? isn't it more regional skirmishes. >> an it is more regional. that's an important point. in the cold war, the soviet union was a global adversary. the three disturbers of the peaces are regional adversaries. i don't think war senior about to break out tomorrow, but what this new circumstance in the world means is that the major countries especially the united
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states, have to take security more serious lis than we have in the past. at least since the fall of the berlin wall, and it also means that we have to go about the business of organizing and maintaining coalitions of like-minded countries to deter and contain the three disturbers of the peace in those three regions. diplomacy and alliances are back. >> don't you also see that they are attacking us internally? i mean on one hand, we have to deal with the international dynamic and the international order is being assaulted by these countries first and foremost russia. but we also have the problem of what's happening domestically where the russians first and foremost are attacking our democracy. what do we do about that? >> you're right. the world is more complicated. the digital age gives countries far more tools than they had during the cold war. we have he to work hard to figure out how to defend
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ourselves. >> given the rapid pace of technology just within the last 10 or 12 years, you were talking about things 75 years ago and george marshall and conrad adenaur are not going to help us save things. we're now part of a global entity on a daily basis, technologically, geologically, politically. do you see any optimistic element out there, any body of people who realize that the tensions that exist today can this can simmered or reduced? >> i think there is an understanding around the world that enter depend conditions makes war very costly. for example, the soviet union wasn't part of the global economy. it didn't have any stake income it. china is deeply integrated in the global economy and that acts as a kind of check on china's aspirations for domination. so we're living in a world that's more complicated, in some ways safer than during the cold
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war but that also poses new challenges that i try to understand and explain in the rise and fall of peace on earth. >> and that is the book, "the rise and fall of peace on earth." michael, thank you very much. dr. farkas, can you come back tomorrow? we want to hear more from you. we are wrapping up "morning joe." chris jansing picks up the coverage right now. >> thank you so much. hello, i'm chris jansing. this morning on the clock. the justice department says it plans to publicly release a version of the mueller report in "weeks, not months." until then, scrutiny builds. james comey reveals his confusion over attorney general barr's summary while lawmakers demand answers. >> we don't need an interpretation by attorney general who is appointed for a particular job to make sure the president senior abo

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