tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC April 26, 2019 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT
have a good weekend. >> i wish you happy weekend yesterday. a day early. you have a great weekend. >> i pretended it was saturday all day. i took it to heart, my friend. >> gracious. >> thank you, ali, have a great one. and at home for you joining us this hour. good to have you here on a friday night. super interesting news day today. there are surprising developments afoot among the 2020 democratic presidential contenders including one that is at least on its face, quite constructive, actually. probably quite good news for the democrats as a group. we're going to have that story ahead tonight. also, as the nra met for its annual convention today, and the president of the united states gave a fairly blood curdling speech to that organization including calling for the scalps of his political enemies. we've got a snapshot from the courtroom today from where russian agent maria butina was sentenced for operating within the nra and within republican
party circles on behalf of the russian government. this case took a turn at the end into really interesting counterintelligence territory, which i think speaks to what we just learned about the trump administration in the mueller report, so as the nra convenes, the nra infiltrating russian agent was sentenced today. we will have that report ahead as well along with some expert help to sort that out. what prosecutors were trying to tell us in the resolution of the case coming up today. that's coming up. we are, of course, one week out now since the redacted report was released from robert mueller's investigation. the president, of course, had initially said that mueller's report was the best news for him ever, now every day, he has denounced the report and everything in it to the point where he is now publicly accusing his own white house counsel, don mcgahn, of having lied to the special counsel's office. mcgahn told the special counsel and the fbi that president trump had directed him to fire special counsel robert mueller and then
told mcgahn to create a false document to cover that up. and you can see why the president wouldn't want to own up to that kind of behavior once you see it in black and white there in mueller's report. but the way the president is pursuing this now is maybe causing some new trouble of its own for him because don mcgahn, of course, subpoenaed by congress to testify about those same things he described to the special counsel. president trump and the white house have said they'll try to stop don mcgahn from testifying to congress. but what do you think about how this is going to end here? i mean, do you think the white house could really count on don mcgahn putting himself in potentially dire legal jeopardy by defying a subpoena because the white house says he should because trump says he should? do you think don mcgahn could be counted on to be in a generous or even self-sacrificing mood here? because at the same time the white house is telling don mcgahn that he needs to defy
that subpoena and potentially put himself in legal jeopardy by doing so, there's and counterstrategic thing, accusing mcgahn of lying to investigators which is a federal crime. don mcgahn, however much he liked the white house service and the rest of it, he might reasonably want to defend himself from that kind of allegation. but the white house is demanding that don mcgahn shouldn't be able to defend himself from the charge and not be allowed to testify about what he knows and what he saw. he should not be allowed to back up and explain the evidence that he provided to the special counsel. it has been eight days since we learned from the redacted special counsel's report how much president trump really has to worry about in terms of don mcgahn. both "the new york times" and the "washington post" reported this week that the president is convinced and the president has been telling people that mcgahn testifying in congress would be a huge threat to him in terms of
the prospects of him being impeached, that's apparently front of mind for the president. if the president is worried about don mcgahn posing that kind of a threat to him, this new he's a liar, he's a liar strategy is probably not helping. in terms of the magnitude or the present nature of that threat. "the washington post," for example, is now reporting directly, some trump advisers are saying privately they fear trump's ire towards mcgahn could eventually prompt mcgahn to speak to protect his reputation. yeah, duh. other legal observers including one former presidential lawyer now warning that the president's attacks on mcgahn and the president's campaign firing mcgahn's law firm after the mueller report came out, that could all be construed as criminal witness retaliation by the president. the president retaliating against mcgahn for the witness testimony that mcgahn gave in this federal investigation. that's a crime for which the penalty is ten years in prison
and for which the five year statute of limitations starts anew every time the president takes an action that could be considered criminal under the witness retaliation statute. so i mean, this is getting dicier and dicier by the day. while the president is cultivating and aggravating his very own 21st century john dean problem and the white house is trying to figure out how they can block that probably inevitable testimony from don mcgahn. meanwhile, the democrats in congress are over the course of this week, they have been assessing their options for how to deal with the white house and the administration now that the president has decreed that all subpoenas will be defied, that no information will be handed over to congressional investigations but they will not allow the handing over of any documents, they will not allow any testimony, even with legally actionable subpoenas. well, how are they going to enforce that? what are their options?
bloomberg was first to report this week at the judiciary committee, the chairman there, jerry nadler, considering fines, financial penalties for any person who does not comply with the subpoena from congress. now there has also reportedly suggested that federal officials who refuse to obey subpoenas could even be jailed. and i know that sounds jarring, but that prospect has now been echoed by congressman jerry connolly on the oversight committee and says to cnn, we will go to the max to enforce the constitutional role of the legislative branch of government including explicitly saying that may involve incarcerating some people who defy subpoenas. the same sentiment echoed by congresswoman robin kelly also on the oversight committee. she now tells msnbc, we'll be talking about fines, we'll talk about actually putting people in jail that are not cooperating if we have to go to that extreme. i don't think anyone wants to do that but the congresswoman says, quote, if they don't cooperate,
i'm for putting people in jail. again, she's on the oversight committee. same echoed by the judiciary committee now citing a precedent from the 1930s in which assistant secretary of commerce really was jailed for contempt of congress, jailed for defying a subpoena, to show up and testify and produce documents. i should say, in that case from the 1930s when that assistant commerce secretary was jailed, they jailed him at least for a while at the willard hotel in dc because they didn't feel they had a suitable jail. the willard hotel was then and is now quite nice. so that might have softened the whole constitutional confrontation part of that standoff. i mean, jailing government officials and regular american citizens who defy legally actionable subpoenas from congressional committees, that is literally what was threatened by watergate committee chairman sam ervin when the nixon white
house tried to stop federal employees from testifying to that committee, specifically, white house counsel john dean. after the nixon white house tried to block nixon aides including john dean from testifying to that committee, sam ervin literally called the press conference and said he would issue arrest warrants for any officials who didn't turn up to testify. and of course, we know they did ultimately turn up to testify. but i mean, even looking at the whole historical record on that and the number of times that's been hinted at or threatened, we're there. we have already jumped right to the point where subpoenas are being defied and jail is being threatened. i mean, right away, we are up to that point again within 8 days of the redacted mueller report being made public. and it still is only the redacted version. and don't worry, you are not the only one who may be feeling a little shaky about where the country is headed next here given how fast we seem to be careening down this cul-de-sac.
ultimately, the issues of accountability for what we have just been through are very much still in process. that doesn't even necessarily feel like a process but at least feels like they're still in motion. and at least feels like we're still in that tumble dry cycle. recall, for example, just one of the incidents of alleged criminal obstruction of justice by the president that was detailed in volume two of the mueller report. this is the one we've talked about before on the show since the report came out. this is the one where the president tried to draft his former campaign manager cory lewandowski to help him shut down the special counsel's investigation. that was june 2017. "the washington post" just reported mueller's investigation wouldn't only encompass stuff from the campaign and what russia did and whether anybody in the trump campaign helped and what russia did to the campaign but the post reported in june that the investigation would also include actions that trump took as president and
specifically, the question of whether he had obstructed justice by trying to obstruct that investigation as president. now what the mueller report explains is that after that report came out in the "washington post," the president freaked. and he told his white house counsel don mcgahn he needed to call the justice department and get mueller fired and don mcgahn said, no. the president then took a meeting with corey lewandowski of all people. corey lewandowski, a private citizen at that point, sat him down in the oval office and take dictation. corey, write this down. told him to write down a message that was essentially a draft statement that he wanted attorney general jeff sessions to deliver. that draft statement he wanted jeff sessions to deliver would have jeff sessions announcing that he was unrecusing himself from the russia investigation, taking over control of the special counsel's investigation, and he was directing mueller that he could no longer look at anything that happened in the
2016 election. instead, mueller henceforth must only look at future crimes. he must only look at crimes that russia might commit against future american elections that hadn't happened yet but all of 2016, that's no longer what mueller is looking at. as the mueller report describes, lewandowski got this direction from the president. wrote it all down and then actually did take action to try to reach jeff sessions to deliver that message. they ultimately never got together and corey lewandowski never delivered him the message but then decided to hand the task off to a white house official, to rick dearborn, then deputy white house chief of staff, according to mueller's report, dearborn said, okay, sure, i'll do it. i'll take care of it. i'll pass on that message to jeff sessions, i'll get jeff sessions to do this crazy thing. but then rick dearborn did not actually pass the message on. did not actually do it. we've talked about this specific incident on the show since the mueller report came out.
because it's freaking ridiculous, right? because it's comical. corey, write this down. but also because mueller lays this out very clearly. not just in terms of the facts in his report. he lays out very clearly, very plainly, like a choose your own adventure novel but one that had only one available ending. make your choice carefully but there's one choice. mueller laid out forward as straight as possible that ridiculous incident with the president telling a private citizen to go get the attorney general to give this speech unrecusing himself, limiting mueller's investigation to future crimes and then told corey lewandowski he should feel free to fire the attorney general if the attorney general wouldn't agree to do that, right? mueller lays that out, in terms of the facts, as potential criminal obstruction of justice and then he explains why that looks like criminal obstruction of justice. you need three elements under
the law to bring obstruction charges and try to prove them in court. obstructive act, in this case, the president directing the curtailing of mueller's remit. so it would no longer apply to anything having to do with donald trump. you need a nexus to an ongoing investigation. the mueller investigation was the ongoing investigation and then evidence of corrupt intent on the part of the person carrying out the obstructive act. on that, mueller was very blunt in volume two of his report. substantial evidence of trump's corrupt intent to enact this act of obstruction related to an ongoing investigation and the intent to try to save himself by curtailing this investigation that posed a threat to him. obstructive act, check. nexus to an ongoing investigation, check, check. evidence to obstruct, check, check, check. it's all there and mueller lays it out in black and white. not just legalese. it's a comical situation but
lays out how it's a crime. upon receiving the report, attorney general william barr announced that didn't look like a crime to him. that didn't look like obstruction of justice to him. i wouldn't charge that. now, of course, we got that assertion from attorney general william barr before mueller's report, even in the redacted form was ever released to anybody else other than him. he just said, i've got the report, you don't, i've looked at it all and decided that none of these things are crimes. like, we never got any explanation from william barr as to how he arrived at that conclusion. let alone, how he could have instantly arrived at that conclusion, not just on that alleged crime but on all of the other alleged criminal behavior along those lines described in excruciating detail over hundreds of pages in this report. he was able to just somehow, like, absorb the whole thing that he just held the whole thing to his chest like, breathe in, nope, no crimes there. i'm the attorney general.
you know, i can just sniff. there's an odor that i can, nope, it's fine. he's never explained how he processed all of that so quickly and all uniformly, no crimes here. now what we're now realizing eight days in to mueller's report being at least in redacted form being public, we're now realizing that it's possible that william barr is a little embarrassed about how he has handled this. now that we have all seen what's in this report, which he took a deep whiff of and decided he smelled no crimes, we can tell now he may be a little uneasy with the public having an understanding of the distant between his proclamation there was no crime here and what we can see about mueller laying out evidence of a crime and why it should be charged. the reason we can tell he's maybe a little embarrassed about that, maybe feeling a little heat about that is because "the
washington post" now published a long piece based on anonymous justice department sources who are, quote, people familiar with the thinking that led to barr's conclusions. hmm. now, why would people familiar with the thinking that led to william barr's conclusions be speaking to the "washington post" about the content of his conclusions? i mean, i don't know and neither do you. that's the beauty of anonymous sources, even those who speak on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. but the argument that is now being spelled out to the "washington post" to try to make barr look good, to try to justify what barr did here, his conclusion that he doesn't see any crime here, it's honestly not a great argument. i mean, what barr is telling "the washington post" here, i mean, i'm sorry. what people familiar with the thinking that led to barr's conclusions are telling the post
here is that that particular instance of alleged criminal obstruction i just described involving corey lewandowski is the president telling corey to take a memo and bring a draft speech to jeff sessions and tell jeff sessions he's going to have to unrecuse because of the investigation in 2016 and if he doesn't do it, corey lewandowski is supposed to fire the attorney general. that particular instance of obstruction according to barr's thinking as described in the "washington post" now by these anonymous sources, barr's thinking is that that shouldn't have been charges of obstruction of justice because it was a scheme to obstruct justice that did not work. it didn't actually succeed after the president tried to set that obstruction in motion. quote, bringing a prosecution on these facts would have been complicated because the obstruction relies on multiple people in a chain all doing something. and since all the people in the chain didn't all do what they were directed to do, that meant the obstruction didn't work and therefore, it's not obstruction.
that's the argument that's being spelled out to the "washington post" so we can all have a better understanding about how barr arrived at his conclusion. now, i am no lawyer. but let's just do a thought experiment. let's say you are sitting on your front step and a dude runs past you. runs past you. a loud alarm starts sounding at the bank at your corner. all of the employees, all the customers run out of the bank on your corner and say, that guy, that guy who just ran past you, he just robbed a bank. as you're observing this information, then a cop comes running down your street, coming from the direction of the bank and he is going after the guy who just ran past you. everybody's pointing at that guy, that's the bank robber, the cop is yelling, stop, thief, stop, i'm police, stop. at this point, you, sitting on your front porch, stick your foot out and trip the cop. under this proported reasoning from attorney general william
barr as spelled out in the "washington post," that's fine. you're good. as long as ultimately, that bank robber still got caught at some point, you're good. your obstruction effort, you tried but it didn't work. which means you're fine. now, do not try this at home. this is not how the law actually works, but this is the way that william barr or rather, people familiar with the thinking that led to the conclusions of william barr, that's how they are explaining how he arrived at this idea that president trump didn't commit the crime of obstruction of justice based on robert mueller plainly explaining exactly that the president committed the crime of obstruction of justice. so why is this in the "washington post" now? why has this propourported justification that william barr committed a crime here, why just appeared in the post and regardless of what you think about the quality of the reasoning being explained here
and the quality of the lawyering that barr is trying to have ascribed to him, why is his reasoning being described by anonymous sources to the "washington post" today? is it possible that william barr is feeling a little bit of heat now about his decisions look given what we can see and even the redacted version of mueller's report? and i mean, this, corey lewandowski, this is only one of the alleged incidents of obstruction of justice by the president that is spelled out in totally plain language in mueller's report. a whole bunch of incriminating incidents with as much damning evidence and legal support and clarity from mueller on how the president's acts meet every legal action of obstruction of justice. not just this corey lewandowski one but a whole bunch of them. don't take it from me, but this is a actually a pretty good summary. >> what do we do if the president commits a crime? let him get away with it? the crime is not a difficult one to understand.
obstruction of justice, the statute making obstruction criminal prohibits interfering or attempting to interfere with a criminal prosecution or an investigation of the government's conducting. so when bob mueller said the president of the united states did about a dozen things to slow down, impede, negate or interfere with the investigation of his campaign or of his former national security adviser general michael flynn, that's a serious allegation of criminal activity. so when the president asked his former adviser and my former colleague and fox kt mcfarlacfa that's obstruction of justice. when the president asked corey lewandowski, his former campaign manager to get fired, that's obstruction of justice. when the president asked his then white house counsel to get mueller fired and then lie about it iss it, that's obstruction of
justice. when asked don mcgahn to go back to the special counsel and change his testimony, that's obstruction of justice. when he dangled the pardon in front of michael cohen to keep him from testifying against him, that's obstruction of justice. >> yeah, i told you there were more examples. that's a good list. that's andrew napolitano, a former state court judge and chief legal analyst on the fox news channel and his take on the implications of the mueller report in terms of the president and how attorney general william barr handled this, it is not unlike what you may have been hearing in legal circles for the past week since the redacted report was released but definitely unlike what this president and this administration have gotten used to hearing about themselves on fox news. >> why not charge him? because the attorney general of the united states would have blocked such a charge. because the attorney general of the united states is of the view that obstruction of justice can
only occur if you're interfering with a criminal investigation of yourself. but that's not what the obstruction statute says and that's not what law enforcement believes and that's not what prosecutors do. prosecutors prosecute people who interfere with government functions and that's what the president did by obstruction. where's this going to end? we don't know. if he had ordered his aides to violate federal law, to save a human life or to preserve human freedom, he would at least have a moral defense to his behavior, but ordering them to break federal law to save him from the consequences of his own behavior? that is immoral, that is criminal, that is defenseless and that is condemnable. >> and that is the fox news channel. which might explain why deputy attorney general rod rosenstein gave a super defensive speech
last night in new york city declaring that everything that went wrong here happened before he got there and none of it can be blamed on him. it may explain why the president himself is trying this incredibly risky gambit of trying to block all testimony by people who served as witnesses for mueller including his own white house counsel. it may also be part of the heat that attorney general william barr appears to be feeling. at least as evidenced by the anonymous sources popping up in the news, bearing blind quotes about how totally unreasonable william barr's decisions have been despite visible evidence to the contrary. william barr will be testifying an open senate in the session on wednesday and then on thursday, over the weekend, i bet you dollars to donuts we'll get more blind quotes from anonymous officials talking about really, if you think about it, how reasonable william barr really has been in this whole process despite what you might have heard and actually, really, if you think about it, he's kind of a hero of the story.
honestly though, given barr's performance, when it comes to handling mueller's findings thus far in this week since we've been able to see him, why is congress bothering to hear from him at all? haven't we sort of heard from william barr and got a sense from where he's come from and how he fits into this process? i'd be happy to just stick with anonymous officials describing william barr's take on things. why don't they just bring in mueller instead? why are they bringing in barr next week and what's the wait to getting mueller to testify? ticktock. lots to come tonight. stay with us. at carvana, no matter what car you buy from us,
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and they don't end up clearing the courtroom during this sentencing. the sealed stuff at this point in the case of maria butina who was sentenced today for her role in a russian government directed effort to influence conservative politics through the nra, in large part, the sealed documents seemed to be about her cooperation. she pled guilty. helped prosecutors, prosecutors say she helped them a lot with we don't know. it's all sealed. but her case, her case today got its ending. for the prosecution, it was assistant u.s. attorney for the district of columbia, eric kennerson. while it's true was a devoted daughter and sister, she was simultaneously in her own words as quoted in the government sentencing memorandum, executing a plan to establish unofficial contact based on common views and a system of conservative values with key politically
minded organizations in the united states including the executive level of political party 1. political party 1, of course, the republican party, which is funny, currently led by a person who is referred to in court as individual 1. from political party, see, it rhymes. prosecutor mr. kennerson continues, defense is not contesting butina was here trying to establish a back channel of communication with russia. the defense does not contest that before she was a student, she was able to get meetings with the russian ambassador and that at that meeting, she promised to send him contact information for a prominent american and the name of an adviser to a presidential candidate who would come to moscow or that she was drafting notes that talked about how to exert influence over u.s. foreign policy or noting how downplaying the kremlin hand will help the russians exert the speediest and most effective influence in the decision making apparatus of the u.s.
establishment. the defense does not contest that she sought the russian governmental feedback on someone she thought would be a secretary of state candidate believing that the russian opinion would be taken into account in the united states. so this is the u.s. attorney's office in dc, prosecutors here, laying out the case for why the judge should sentence maria butina to 18 months in prison for working as an unregistered russian agent in the united states. they lay out that case from the prosecution's side. the defense then lays out their case to the judge, saying maria butina shouldn't serve more time in prison. she's already done plenty of time while she's been awaiting trial. they say she wasn't a spy. just a curious graduate student. she was keen on learning as much as she could about the nra and top leaders of the republican party. miss butina herself has spent about five minutes addressing the judge, expressing her remorse saying it had never been her intent to harm the american people. this was all a big
misunderstanding and failure to register as a foreign agent of russia but basically a paperwork problem. that's how it started off today. prosecution made their sort of blistering case. defense said, really, she did nothing wrong. butina said i meant to do nothing wrong and then it was the judge's turn to have her hand down the sentence and that was the hot, hot fire part of the day and that's next. you see a small satellite... but draper saw a way to fight disease. ♪ so they're using dell technologies with the power of vmware to bring their idea to life. together, we're powering ai that analyzes satellite imagery to follow the spread of pathogens like malaria so we can stop them in their tracks. and that kind of technology... can make the world a healthier place. vmware, a part of dell technologies. i switched. we switched. i switched to chevy.
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started. the judge, quote, with regard to the nature of the offense as the former assistant director of the fbi's counterintelligence division noted in his sentencing declaration, the united states is russia's primary target for malign and intrusive intelligence operations. the judge says, quote, in targeting the united states, russia works to obtain not only classified material or trade secrets but also to collect any information that could by itself or in conjunction with other efforts assist the russian government in increasing its geopolitical power or undermining and harming that of the united states. quote, contrary to defense counsel assertions in its sentencing memorandum, this was no mere failure to provide the u.s. government with required information. this defendant was not simply seeking to learn about the u.s. political system. she was seeking to collect information about individuals and organizations that could be helpful to the russian government. and she was doing this under the direction of a russian official for the benefit of the russian government at a time when the russian government was acting to
interfere and affect the united states' political and electoral process. her activities, organizing gun rights organization, meaning nra visits to russia. u.s./russia friendship dinners. all used to establish back channel lines of communication to advance russian interests. the conduct was sophisticated and penetrated deep into political organizations. one of the things that miss butina should have learned in the studies of the country is that she was able to participate in our political system and make connections because this is a country where our constitution protects individual's freedoms to associate, gather and exchange ideas free from governmental interference but this is also a country where the rule of law means something. and our laws require her to declare her true business in this country which was to gather information and to develop relationships that could be used to russia's advantage. quote, this was no simple misunderstanding by overeager foreign student, the judge said. quote, there can be no doubt
that the offense miss butina pled to is serious and jeopardized this country's national security. the judge then accepted prosecutor's recommendation in sentencing maria butina to 18 months in federal prison and asked for time spent serve because already spent 9 months behind bars. part of the reason maria butina she has been in jail since charged last year is because prosecutors had argued the minute she got let out of jail on bail, she would immediately go to the russian embassy or have a diplomatic vehicle on the street and be gone out of this country faster than you can say nyet. so she was kept in jail this whole time but didn't get time served. she will do nine more months in prison on top of the nine months she's already done. court affirmed she will be deported immediately to russia upon the conclusion of her sentence. and so this does sort of bring this case to a wrap, but number one, still don't know what she cooperated in.
prosecutors actually argue that she should get a lighter sentence because of the help she gave with other cases. we don't know what those other cases are. and then there's also the fact that this case wrapped sort of this week in a way that feels quite resonant. what the judge said there at today's sentencing reflected the way justice department prosecutors set up this sentencing, right? saying that even though maria butina cooperated, even though she pled guilty, what she did was super damaging to the national security of the united states. this wasn't some technical violation. this was something that harmed america. well, what she did do, right, what she admits to doing on behalf of the russian government was making contacts with influential people in political circles in the united states for the purpose of serving russian intelligence needs. and according to the justice department, that is hugely harmful to the united states. it also rings a bell, right?
because it has been a week now that we have had the redacted mueller report which seemingly details those exact same kinds of contacts for that exact same type of purpose. and those targets not only landed, right, they succeeded in cultivating multiple people who are currently serving in the federal government and who were part of the trump campaign. i mean, what maria butina did, we know lots of other russians did when it came to the trump campaign, transition, and the trump administration. we learned that from the mueller report volume 1 this week. regardless of the individual fate of maria butina, should we see today's sentencing of her, should we see the way that the justice department spelled out the national security harm of those types of intelligence operations by russia, should we see this as sort of meaningful communication from the justice department about the kind of harm that can be caused by these type of operations? i mean, robert mueller we now know did not do a counterintelligence report.
robert mueller apparently did not even do a counterintelligence investigation of the president, his campaign or his administration. even though we thought he was going to, the report makes clear that he didn't. is this case the the one sort of trailing end of that concern that we are allowed to see? joining us now is frank figlucci, thank you for coming on the show. i really appreciate you being here. >> thanks, rachel. >> so let me ask you, hearing from the prosecutor there, hearing from the judge there, knowing what was in the declaration from your former counterpart at the fbi, what do you make about the way the justice department and the judge in this case are spelling out the kind of harm that was caused by the type of operation maria butina was engaged in and whether that does have any wider resonance? >> it's noteworthy, rachel, that the federal judge in the butina case chose to publicly link
those in the case with the time period it was happening in and pointing directly to the russians' efforts to mess with our campaign and with the election. that's not something that's haphaza haphazard, that's not something a federal judge just pulls out of thin air. she knows the fact of this case and she knows the level of cooperation that maria butina offered to the u.s. government and she's choosing to say publicly she did this during a time where russia was trying to influence our elections. there's a linkage there. i'm not going to go far to say it's a signal to us, a major connection but the special counsel spent at least a hundred pages of his report detailing contact after contact, attempt after attempt by the russians to get next to, successful attempts, awaby the way, to get next to campaign officials, those in president trump's circ circle. we see in butina's case a microcosm of what we see in the mueller report.
just one individual being sentenced today but realized that the mueller report details dozens and dozens of attempts in a hundred pages, at least, in his report of russia trying to do this over and over again. so i view this as a signal to us that russia engaged in a new kind of spying with a new kind of spy. they tried to do it in the maria butina case and they've done it to us already in spades in the 2016 campaign. >> and, i mean, the way you're putting that is clarifying for me. i feel like what we got from mueller's report, the redacted version of the report we've got is, as you say, a description of dozens and dozens of these efforts from the russian side to get close, as you say, to people who were involved in the trump campaign, in trump's circles and trump's business orbit, the orbit of the transition and the administration. what we don't hear from robert mueller is any sort of explanation as to whether or not those things might have negative national security consequences
for the united states. what the counterintelligence, what the intelligence or counterintelligence cost might be of those dozens of successful overtures to people in the president's orbit. am i missing it? is that there or should we expect to hear that from somewhere else or the closest we get the declaration we got from maria's sentencing? >> you're right that we have a gap here. let's remember that the whole special counsel inquiry started as a russian ci case, a russian counterintelligence case and let's remember that andrew mcgab, then acting director of the fbi chose to add the president's name based on predicated evidence to the russian ci case. where is it? we don't know today, rachel, whether the president's name has been removed from the title of that counterintelligence case. and we aren't certain at all that the house or senate intelligence committees have yet received a briefing from the fbi on the status of that russian counterintelligence case and
there's three d's associated with counterintelligence and what you're object r objectives. detect, deter and defeat the adversary. when it's the president of the united states you've opened a case on, how do you defeat that and detect and defeat that when he's trying to obstruct the investigation itself and where is that going? we may never know. we've got, in american history, certain mysteries that remain under seal, whether it's tapes involving martin luther king, whether it's something in the national archives about the assassination of john f. kennedy. is this going to be another one of those american mysteries where we simply don't know the answer? >> it better not be. not while we're living through it, it seems inconceivable. frank figliuzzi, thank you for being here. we appreciate it. much more to come tonight. stay with us. at carvana, no matter what car you buy from us,
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as the 2020 democratic field hits progressive group indivisible signed up six of the 20 candidates in two days to what they're calling the indivisible pledge for a constructive campaign. ezra eleven is joining us. i appreciate you being here. >> thanks for having me. >> the pledge is both for candidates and for people who are supporting a democratic nominee in 2020. is the pledge the same for both groups? >> the key points are exactly the same because as you mentioned, we've reached this point of having 20 candidates in this primary. and news flash, 19 of them are not going to become president of the united states. we know that right now. that's a fact. so our contention is that number one, primaries are great. primaries are an opportunity to debate the future of the progressive movement.
there are differences between the candidates. there are differences around what we should do about concentrated wealth abcorporate power and the status of our democratic institutions and climate change these are things we should be using the primary to debate. once we have a nominee, it is our responsibility to rally around whoever wins and not just endorse but do the work to beat donald trump because you know, i don't care whether it's your number one pick who wins or your bottom number 20 pick who wins this nomination. they are abraham lincoln compared to donald j. trump. we need to do the work to put them in office. >> you've asked candidates and people supporting the eventual democratic nominee to pledge to be make the primary skukttive, pledge to rally behind the winner and pledge to do the work to beat donald trump. bernie sanders was the first candidate to sign on in is space of two days, got sanders,
booker, castro, pete buttigieg. usually candidates are allergic to pledges at this point. were you pushing on an open door here? >> i think we're going to get all the candidates here. we've got almost a third on board. we'll get the rest. it's where the grassroots this. this is not the ezra eleven movement. this is the d indivisible movement. we have about a third and want to get the rest. this is isn't just about the candidates. we as citizens have a responsibility to do the exact same thing. we've got about 16 weeks in between the democratic national convention in july of 2020 and the november 2020 election. we've got to be knock on doors, making texts. we've got to be making calls in order to win. and actually, we've already started preregistering unity events for the weekend after the
convention. we have indivisible events in ohio and colorado and arizona in some of the key states being led by people who say look, i may have a preference in this primary. but i know at the end of the day, my role is to rally voters all around my community in order to replace donald trump. >> ezra elevra lev vib. keep us apprised. thank you. we'll be right back. non-drowsy claritin and relief from symptoms caused by over 200 indoor and outdoor allergens. like those from buddy. because stuffed animals are clearly no substitute for real ones. feel the clarity. and live claritin clear. the 2019 subaru outback is how safe is the car you're considering? an iihs top safety pick plus. the honda cr-v is not. sorry, honda. which suv would make the best investment?
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joe biden's campaign announced he raised $6.3 million in the first day of his campaign. at least for now, that top fund raising number matches his status at the top of the polls, as well. here's another metric. joe biden put charlottesville and president trump's comments about fine people on both sides at the heart of his campaign announcement. that had the instant and very unusual effect of putting president trump back on his heels and on defense. today president trump awkwardly trying to explain his both sides fine people thing with praise for robert e. lee. trump being asked about that based on biden's announcement video asking him people asking him to defend his comments on charlottesville. the president not having a good defense for being able to do that, reminding us that defense isn't his strong suit. biden hasn't even been in the
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thank you for being with us on this fine friday night. i'm going to spend the weekends chasing shad and failing to catch them. i will see you on monday and if i any fish stories i'll bring them back to you. >> it's only fair for you to warn the shad like that. that's very, very generous you of you. >> they're a big part of my demo. abdrew napolitano, does he still work at fox us? ? i saw him say those things yesterday very convincingly about the president being guilty of all of these counts of obstruction of justice and i was just amazed. i ran some of it last night. i assume he's going to need safe harbor somewhere very soon. >> you know, you know, cable news networks are