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these, talk to somebody who went to a trump rally. and we always see those aerial pictures of the long lines outside, they say they were admitted very slowly so you keep getting the shot of the long line. >> great point. mike allen, thank you for your time. you can sign up for the news letter at signup.axios.com. i'm yasmin vossoughian alongside geoff bennett. "morning joe" starts right now. remember joe biden comes out, well, if you elect me president, i'm going to cure cancer. wow. why the hell didn't you do that over the last 50 years, joe. >> we will come up with the cures to many many problems, to many many diseases including cancer. >> i would like to apologize to
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all of those who have ever done political satire. >> what are you going to do now? >> you can't beat that. >> you have to be a south park guy, right? >> i live at south park. >> let me tell you something, this is something you would have seen five years ago in south park. they can't do it anymore. because john jr. is doing -- do is doing it for them. you're going to love this one about don jr. he actually is attacking joe biden, are you ready for this, for groping. can't make this up. >> no, you cannot. >> that's good stuff. >> you can't make it up. >> isn't you who said the whole thing had the feel of third rate bigot.
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you go, man, i have seen this stick before, where's the new material. >> it's getting tired. >> you know, a bobby vinton imitator in the poconos, i would go see him. melody of love, he kicked it old school. >> terry jacks. >> terry jacks tribute band. you take that up to the poke no -- poconos in 2019, my kids are going to go, dad, what's that. no, they don't want to hear that. and so this thing is old. and there's a problem with donald trump. donald trump was a disrupter. donald trump was dangerous but, you know, he's looking like, as we continue our pop references and i mean it, he's looking about as dangerous as austin powers after he came out of the
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whole cryogenically frozen thing. >> so good morning and welcome to "morning joe". >> like i said, there's a little bit of a -- >> it's old. >> it's starting to feel really sticky. you know, the thing of the transgression, the rule breaking, you know, the stuff that obviously worked for him in 2016, now it just feels like it's a greatest hits collection and they sound a little dated. >> i mean no disrespect to the king of rock 'n' roll, but this is elvis in '77, just kind of lumbering across the stage, sweating. >> or graceland in front of the six televisions with a big huge bottle of quaaludes and a bottle of vodka. >> you don't get too far. >> you were just a foil here. don't want to bring it into the gutter. >> i mean, seriously. >> it's elvis in '77 sweating,
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trying to sing the old hits but his heart is just not in it. they know what he's going to sing before he sings it. they know all the words and the guy who was once so exciting is now just dull. he's attacking -- heidi, he's attacking hillary clinton. he's still attacking hillary clinton. like doing lock her up things. i mean, that's beyond. >> it's not just a rerun but the best part of the rerun can't be replayed because if you remember, his rallying in the first campaign was build the wall, so here we are 2 1/2 years later, that was his marquee issue, the wall is nowhere near being built. i guess the new line is deport them all because that was the announcement that he made just a day or two before his first rally, and again, just like the wall, that's just as improbable. >> so why don't we play the
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game, the kids around the country, it's like 2016. >> it was all over hillary, hillary. >> are you ready? >> yeah. >> it's 2016, or is it 2020? let's start with the first, kids at home. >> look at hillary clinton and the dnc. the insurance policy just in case hillary clinton lost. remember during one of the debates when crooked hillary said. the free pass they gave to hillary and her aides. hillary used the word deplorables. hillary clinton made a big mistake with that speech. >> hillary's not running, sweetie. >> as you pointed out. >> come on old guy. >> it's the same black guy. >> don't you remember when he referred to my african-american. >> that's actually true. i have run into him in the middle of the night with scene
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hannit -- sean hannity. it is the same black guy. >> but for the 2020 signs, that was his 2016 campaign, which explains why the "times" and others reporting at the end there were empty seats. people have heard this. it was just old. he has nothing new to offer after hundreds and hundreds of rallies. >> three hours later, i can understand, 3 1/2 hours later, i can understand folks walking out. folks still bought tickets to elvis when he was old and sweating because he was elvis. it was entertainment. >> and for the free drinks. >> what i'm saying is that even though it's old and repeated, we heard a lot of screaming, a lot of yelling, a lot of excitement. folks were there. >> ron is also here with us. >> good morning. >> an elvis impersonator. >> i would say let's restore
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order but we never had it but we're going to have it now john hallman, and joe scarborough. shut your pie holes for a second. we're going to organize. >> and guess what, she's off in a new direction. we saw last night. >> it was so good. >> haven't you seen it before? >> you were excited about seeing it? >> i loved it. and i don't like movies. >> credible actors. >> it was a wonderful movie. you got to go see it. >> so president trump launched his reelection campaign in florida last night in a state where he is currently trailing his potential democratic opponents. a quinnipiac university poll released before his rally has former vice president joe biden leading trump 50% to 41% in florida. >> in florida t he's down 9 points in florida. >> while senator bernie sanders is up by 6 points. >> he's losing by 6 points to a socialist in florida.
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>> senator elizabeth warren has a 4 point edge over trump, 47 to 43. >> the person he calls pocahontas is beating him by 4%. >> and within the margin of error with kamala harris, beto o'rourke and mayor pete buttigieg. >> in your home state. >> i mean, seriously, beto shooting like 32% in the first half, right, and he's still ahead. that's when you know your basketball team is going to like win or lose. >> in your home state. brutal. >> last night's rally saw no new announcements no significant change in rhetoric. the president spent more time discussing past grudges and old promises than providing a vision for the future. the orlando rally was trump's 60th campaign style arena event since taking office less than 900 days ago. it was the 7th rally he's held
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in florida during his presidency, and the second one he has held in orlando. as "the new york times" puts it, by the end of mr. trump's 76-minute speech, there were patches of blue seats visible across the arena. some supporters had left the rally early, maybe because they had seen it before. >> yeah. >> our radical democrat opponents are driven by hatred, prejudice and rage, they want to destroy you, and they want to destroy our country as we know it. this election is a verdict on whether we want to live in a country where the people who lose an election refuse to concede and spend the next two years trying to shred our constitution and rip your country apart. >> you remember during one of the debates when crooked hillary
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said if i win, are you going to support me. but i must be honest, i didn't give her a great answer. that might have been my hardest question during the debates. lindsey graham was doing okay in south carolina, not great. now he's through the roof. so lindsey graham, they delete and they acid wash, which is very expensive, nobody does it. they acid wash those e-mails, never to be seen again, but we may find them somewhere deep in the state department, 33,000 e-mails, but let's see what happens. >> he's talking about 33,000 e-mails. >> he's screaming. >> your thoughts. >> i watched it last night, reluctantly, i must admit, and it was horrible. in every way. horrible in every way.
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it is, he's doubled down on the culture wars. that's how he won in 2016. that's how he thinks he's going to win now. and you know, fat elvis, joe, i think is apt. >> nailed it. >> i think that's right on point. >> elvis '77, kind of lumbering across the stage, sweating. >> forgetting the lyrics. >> this actually is not all about just sort of trolling donald trump this morning. it may sound like but it's not. you realized in 2016, i think more than many, that donald trump was viable, and that donald trump could win states like michigan. part of that had to do with the fact, and i remember the first rally we saw in new hampshire, there was nothing like it ever before in american politics, and
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half of the time we were like -- had our mouths wide open, just staring at the spectacle before us and the other half of the time we were like when's this campaign going to collapse? it's teetering on the brink of collapse, of course it never did. four years later, i think if you're a showman like donald trump, if you're the pt barnham of american politics, the greatest show on earth, you can afford to be many things but the one thing you can't afford to be is dull and predictable and i think 12 minutes in, that's the bigger point here this morning. what are your thoughts as you sit in, well, as you report from one of the most important states in america going into the 2020 campaign? >> you know, i'm back to where i was four years ago. this is a guy in an era of celebrity, in an era of grievance when voters are agreed the secret to his success is he
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has been able to reflect and validate voters grievances. so yes, what we saw yesterday was old news, but we can't underestimate his ability to be able to find new ways to reflect people's grievances. new ways to be abhorrent. we saw him yesterday talking about mass deportations of immigrants. that's a new twist on the old song and dance. what's really going to be new for him is his opponent. can there be a democratic opponent, the opponent, a year from now who's standing up against him. will she or he be able to reflect and validate people's grievances and offer concrete plans to address them. we know donald trump can't do the latter. >> let me ask you this, ron, again, because you know so much about the state of michigan, and michigan is key. it's hard for donald trump to find a way forward without winning states like michigan and wisconsin. >> right. >> he had to draw an inside straight to win that state, and
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the people that voted for them, when people were pretty darn smart, they knew what was in their best interests and they voted that way, four years later, his promises haven't come true. they don't have better health care. they don't have better skrobjob. the communities haven't come back. the manufacturing jobs haven't come back. they can see his promises were completed. that's why i saw his poll, reelection is 32 or 31% in michigan a couple of months ago. how does donald trump draw that inside straight again in michigan if people can see that their lives are not better today than they were four years ago? >> the only way he does it if democrats blow it. you look at a county, mccomb county that voted for barack obama twice and then voted for donald trump. can they address their grievances, validate their grievances and have concrete
quote
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plans to address them. can a democratic position, like barack obama did and bill clinton did, be a disrupter, unlike donald trump, these are voters let down by democrats, these are voters let down by republicans, and to your point, they have been let down by donald trump. that does not mean, though, that the game is over. the democratic party has to come up with somebody who can do this in the right away. michigan could still be lost. you look at not just counties like mccomb county and how the democrats and trump play off against white working class voters. the next democratic nominee better get detroit african-american voters out. better get voters out in flint and saginaw. there are a lot of democratic base voters who still are disappointed in their party, and they're not going to necessarily come out in mass numbers just to take on donald trump. >> well, president trump is blaming the fact that he's never hit at least 50% in gallop
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approval polls on the mueller probe. during an extensive interview with "time", trump said based on the economy, i should be up 15 t or 20 points higher, he added quote the thing that i have that nobody has had since the day i came down the escalator, i have had a phoney witch hunt against me. i think it's cost me. we'll just note that special counsel robert mueller did not begin his investigation until four months into trump's newly minted administration when his overall approval rating was already sitting at just 38%. he's the only president in history, in the history of gallop voting never to earn a majority for one day. saying it's made our people more resilient and he hopes to fuel his 2020 campaign with that momentum, and i should point out
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other historic things pertaining to this administration. secretary of defense, i guess a new one now that's acting. this is crazy how many cabinet posts are filled by acting cabinet secretaries and it just, it's a blank slate in there, just a bunch of people that suck up to the president in a frightening way. >> you know, donald trump is right in his analysis of republicans. they have actually become stronger trump supporters because of the mueller probe, but he's been playing what i have been saying is a 33% game. it's a 38, 39% gain which is continuing to talk about illegal immigration. continue to go exaggerate, continuing to demonize immigrants, continuing to demonize americans that are quote the others, continuing to talk about building walls. continue to go attack allies
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across the globe. and that's, again, it's what remains the great mystery of the trump presidency for me. why has he never figured out, why has no one around him ever figured out that he needs to expand his base. he needs to do things, and this illegal immigrant witch hunt that he's doing just doesn't work. because college educated people know that before he became president, legal crossings at the southern border were at a 50 year low. that doesn't work for educated voters. even at this late day, this guy is not trying to get to 50%. he's going back to the well. and just digging down deeper into his own base. >> if you think about the totality of the trump presidency so far, this has been a signal feature of it, right, which is like unlike any presidents in the past, we have seen others
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that have been elected with having lost the popular vote. we have seen others that have been elected well south of 50% of the vote. normally what you do in that circumstance is you come in and say i need more votes if i'm going to get reelected. george w. bush, first thing he did was education reform. i'm not going to get reelected if i don't gain more votes. part of that has to do with the fact that unlike the rest of us, he doesn't realize he pulled an inside straight. he thinks he won a landslide. he talks about it over and over again, if i just do again what i did in 2016 i'll win again because he doesn't think it was that close. he doesn't get it for whatever reason. and i think of it as words he said over and over again, greatest landslide in history. i believe thinks that. the problem is, and i think ron will back me up on this, having covered a lot of that he is -- a
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lot of these. you're an incumbent president, donald trump has never been above 44. he can't let it be a ref republican dru -- referendum. he wasn't on the ballot and his party got crushed. he's going to try to demonize the democratic party, and to ron's point if the democrats can put someone up who can slough off those attacks and keep the focus on donald trump, all the things that crushed the republican party in 2018 are going to crush the republican party in 2020, hooe's now trump the personality things that moderate voters didn't like then like worse. >> that's the problem for the republican party that has become even more in the house and senate, become even more trump like over the past few years. donald trump continuing to just narrow down to this base, and boil down and boil down to this
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base requires that senators that have to win statewide in states like colorado and north carolina follow along with him requires that house members and house candidates do the same to get through primaries and in so doing, he's damming the republican party in 2020. >> he's also making a very serious miscalculation in terms of his approach to repeating 2016 because he can not do the same thing in 2016 where we all call this a populist surge. he had actual promises he made, joe, like the forgotten man, like getting us out of foreign wars. these are things that have not materialized at all. as a matter of fact, not only have they not materialized, it's been the exact opposite if you look at the economic prescriptions have been from the traditional establishment republican donor textbook, you know, tax cuts and so he can't
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repeat those same promises. when you talk about boiling it down, you're boiling it down, simply to the grievance asset of his pitch and if you listened to him last night, he's now trying to superimpose his own grievances about the mueller report on to his people saying this isn't just about me, this is them coming after you, and when you remove the policies from it because to be fair there were some policies there, you're left simply with the anger does the grievance politics without any of the policies about the forgotten people. >> right. and ron talking about boiling things down, what donald hasn't figure out yet, when you're in office for four years, your four years is boiled down to 30 seconds and in just those 30 seconds, you tell me, how would the voters in mccomb county going to respond to donald trump or somebody voicing donald trump the night that his tax cut
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passed saying that all of his billionaire friends sitting around at mar-a-lago, i just made all of you a lot richer today. how is donald trump's former supporters in mccomb county going to respond to the fact that he's supporting a fleet of republican lawyers going around from court to court, state to state, district to district, trying to kill the preexisting protections for people in mccomb county and across the state of michigan. how is he going to deal -- how are they going to deal with the fact that time and time again, donald trump has passed corporate welfare while cutting other parts of the safety net. it's just, i don't get it. i don't know how he survives that. >> i can tell you how they're responding right now, that percentage of his supporters who have been swing voters, who voted for obama, and voted for him, voted for clinton, and voted for obama, they're taking a second look at him now.
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they have doubts about him now. they're looking for another course. they're looking for another potential value didater of thei vall grievances. it comes down to john's point. if this is a referendum on donald trump, he's going to lose. but i wouldn't underestimate. what i'm going to watch, i would not underestimate his ability to make this a choice election, which would defy all past presidential elections but he's really good about making everything about me versus them, us versus them. if he can make this a choice election and the democrats put up a choice that is not attractive in mccomb county, he might have a shot. >> still ahead on "morning joe", we're going to get to the major developments involving iran, plus new details on the major shake up at the pentagon. a lot going on, you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. joe." we'll be right back. (woman) when you take align,
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i think the strategy of getting as much of the facts out and then months down the road making a decision on impeachment or not is the right strategy. >> senate minority leader chuck schumer saying a decision about whether or not to speech president trump could be months down the road and that congress doesn't know all of the facts just yet. ron you have a new piece in the "washington post" entitled will impeachment backfire on democrats, not if they do it right, and you're right in part this, the more i reflect on the clinton impeachment, the more i realize he didn't survive because republicans overreached, he survived because he made sure his public facing focus was always on the lives and the concerns of voters. he compartmentalized the impeachment drama inside of a
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team of lawyers, pollsters and communication specialists and this them weaponize the case against him. nick named the masters of disaster, this blunt force team leaked unfavorable information about the gop investigators, they spun every negative story about clinton into an argument that republicans were power hungry prudes. their mission was to control the impeachment narrative behind the scenes while clinton and the rest of his white house team persuaded voters that he was working his butt off for them. compartmentalize and weaponize, that's the lesson congressional democrats should take from 1998 and joe, i think nancy pelosi, and you heard chuck schumer there, they're taking the right course. it's frustrating for people who want to see immediate results when things are obviously wrong. >> right. >> and the law is obviously being broken when the president is obviously a national security threat. it's very disheartening on many levels, but people do need to be
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educated on what's happening to be along with them when this happens. >> you get a lot of members of the democratic caucus in congress, a lot of people can do different things, and you're exactly right, ron. and i think it's what nancy pelosi is doing right now, where nancy is going about her business, passing good legislation, elijah cummings and jerry nadler are doing their job as well. you are right, during impeachment, yeah, i don't remember, you know, being on the house judiciary committee, was a committee you didn't want to be on during impeachment. they all went after you if you were a republican, and i mean, it was like a scorched earth strategy, but it was under the radar. meanwhile, bill clinton, secretary of defense, secretary of treasury, all of them, they were on the hill every day, they weren't talking impeachment, they weren't talking scandal, they were talking about the defense budget. they were talking about keeping
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saddam hussein in place. they were talking about all the things you would expect a functioning government to do. bill clinton, you were right, he did it masterfully. there was a functioning government in the 1990s, which is why bill clinton did so well, and why donald trump, he's a one man band, he can't do that. >> yeah, i was covering the white house for the ap at the time, and even the most negative information about president clinton was leaked by his people in the right news cycle the right way. the controlled the narrative. what's the analogy for speaker pelosi, i hate to give her advice because she's one of the most brilliant tacticians of our generations. if i were her, what i would do instead of letting my caucus force impeachment upon me a couple of weeks from now, i would grab ahold of it, and say we're going to do impeachment on my terms, we're not going to have 18 committees, they're not as equipped as a hand selected
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group of select committee members, my best messengers, my best politicians and staff them up with pollsters, focus group runners, message makers, lawyers who can run the same kind of compartmentalized campaign, and same kind of politically ruthless campaign as bill clinton did from the white house, a campaign that, to your point mika would illustrate for american voters what it is the president did, while the rest of the house and the rest of the democratic party, including the presidential candidates are focussed on the people's business. in effect, it's flipping the script, donald trump played newt gingrich's role, a guy worried about himself, and filled with grievances, that was his problem. do as the first article in the constitution. >> helping the public understand what's going on is one challenge, and it is a challenge in the age of the president
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threatening the truth, basically, at every angle but heidi, also many republicans, and i guess my question for you for those republicans would be what more do they need? what more do they need? >> we have seen the answer and the answer is no, they're not going to change. they all hopefully at least read the index to the report. and the only person so far who's come out is justin aimagine, ma. 67 members who have said they support impeachment, so while there are a number of members, ron, who are making the same argument that you are privately to the speaker, she's not going to do it. not right now. i've spoken with them as recently as last week. they feel like they've really, you know, avoided some of these jabs and these moments where it seemed like they were reaching this tipping point, and they're just not going to do it at this time, especially when they have had a victory with hope hicks who's going to be testifying behind closed doors with the
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judiciary committee, hoping to get other witnesses and when you talk to them, they point to some of the court victories that they have experienced, for example, over getting the president's financial papers and, you know, corresponding with some of these accounting firms. and that's where they are right now. >> i think she's going to get there. i think for the first time, heidi, her inner circle, her leadership team is talking about how do we control impeachment, and not have it roll over us. i don't think it's going to happen right away but i think it's going to happen. >> they do the want want to get. they're not going to go there until they feel safe with the numbers. >> ron thank you very much. >> go tigers. >> there you go. >> coming up, acting defense secretary patrick shanahan drops out of the running for pentagon chief, and raises new questions about the administration's vetting process. hans nichols joins us live from the white house with that next on "morning joe."
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are you in good hands? can't imagine doing it any other way. this is caitlin dickerson from the new york times. this isn't the only case. very little documentation. lo que yo quiero estar con mi hijo. i know that's not true. and the shelters really don't know what to do with them. i just got another person at d.h.s. to confirm this. i have this number. we're going to publish the story.
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hold on, we have been trying
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to say something offset for three minutes. >> so say it onset. >> i can't say it because you keep interrupting us. >> we're so sorry. >> can you do that tease, joe, can you polish my shoes. >> i didn't ask you to do that today. >> so my question is this. >> you do a nice job. >> he does. >> you can't compare today to 1998 because washington was different. what i said was uyou could have placed bill clinton in the white house over the past eight years and you would have had something that looked a lot like the 1990s, like lbj, ronald reagan, like bill clinton, they knew how to make washington work. you could impeach bill clinton on thursday, and he would invite you golfing on friday to talk about some reform bill he was trying to pass. >> it would be interesting to see how clinton navigated profoupr profound differences in this
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environment. he would not be either a trump like figure or obama figure. his degree of enthusiasm and the ways clinton enjoyed all of this. >> a bush like figure. this is my 21st century argument. we have elected three presidents in this century who really didn't like washington, considered themselves above it. george w. bush preferred watching espn, barack obama preferred watching espn, donald trump, he watches cable news, which is like the sickest thing of all. but bill clinton loved governing. lbj loved governing. reagan loved making things work. >> yes. i think all of that is true but i think the thing that, the challenge that clinton would face, i mean, clinton is the beginning of the period of the great polarization where we went -- in 1992, we all still knew people who were democrats who occasionally voted for republicans, and republicans who occasionally voted for
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democrats. there were genuine ticket splitters. >> before you call it the good old days. before people say people were tougher on barack obama because he was black. jerry fallwell, the main player in evangelical politics accused bill clinton publicly of murder. >> i'm aware. >> that was pretty bad. >> but i'm not talking about, when i talk about the polarization thing, i'm not talking about the vitriol level, a lot on clinton, bush, on obama, different kinds but just the degree to which the polarization is a different phenomenon whereby, no longer room for people in america who vote for both parties. there's no longer, the level of party discipline is so intense, the ways in which the republican party has gone so far to the right, the democratic party so
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far to the left. clinton lived in the last v vestiges of the middle space. i'm not sure that the environment would be very forgiving or very open to clinton's political skills are great, but the structural factors are so intense and i'm not sure he would have had the room to move in 2019. >> here's the thing you do, eddie. it's straight out of the god father, what bill clinton knew how to do was always make republicans an offer they couldn't refuse. i talked about it yesterday with mitch mcconnell on infrastructure, bill clinton would put something on the table, you had to vote for it because if you didn't they were going to be running ads for voting against something your people wanted. >> this is the thing, john's point about polarization impacts whether or not the republicans would listen to that because
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people are tribe able in how th vote. they ran boehner out of office. he couldn't figure out what to do with the senate, seems to be broken. it used to be senators were individually powerful people. now it's just follow the leader, so i don't know how clinton could do what you're suggesting and so part of what i was asking was how do we take the advice from '98, the map from '98 and use it as the kind of political wisdom to respond to what seems to be systemic. >> here's what we have done to back up your point. there are all these huge structural shifts and everything is much more partisan now, however bill clinton on day one would have done what chuck schumer is hoping trump would have done, gone down to the capitol and said hey, democrats let's talk about infrastructure, let's do an infrastructure deal instead of first thing running to the donor side of the
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republican establishment and allowing them to deictate a traditional tax cut agenda. democrats were ready to cut a deal on that. >> to this point, mika, there was a huge immigration deal for donald trump. >> that too. >> if donald trump could have taken yes for an answer on immigration, he would have gotten 20, $21 billion to build his wall. it would be halfway constructed by now. >> right. >> he would have signed off on a dreamers piece of legislation that 75% of americans would have supported. any smart president, any politically adept president would have done that, and we would have had immigration reform, sweeping. whoever the next president is, if it is not donald trump, there are so many extraordinary bipartisan deals on the table. >> so many opportunities. >> they're going to look like fdr. i'm serious. >> we're going to have claire at
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the top of the hour, we can continue this conversation. but now this, president trump's acting defense secretary is stepping down from the role, and pulling his name from consideration to take on a cabinet position in a perm capacity. the president announced the move by patrick shanahan yesterday in a series of tweets saying that in part, shanahan had decided not to go forward with his confirmation process so that he can devote more time to his family and thanking him for his outstanding service. for more on this, let's bring in nbc news correspondent hans nichols at the white house, hans, what happened, and who's left at the department of defense? >> well, all very good questions. you know, there's so much, mika that is remarkable about this story. perhaps the most remarkable is how public these documents are, that was the undoing of patrick shanahan. it was out there. all you had to do was go to the king county courthouse and find this. it had been out there for several months. i started hearing about it in the winter at some point, and a
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lot of news organizations were looking into this. now, the operative question is at what point did the fbi become aware of this public document, and let's just run through it quickly. it details a messy divorce, allegations of domestic abuse, patrick shanahan's son attacked the mother in a grizzly incident. shanahan went out to help his son, clean it up. we haven't independently seen these documents. they are out there. all you need to do is go to king county courthouse and ask. >> can i stop you right there, there were nothing in those documents alleging that the acting secretary domestically abused anybody. >> correct. >> i want to underline that. >> there's one point in there where the wife claims that the acting secretary at the time, the ex-wife, struck her, but the police that came to that incident arrested the wife and not mr. shanahan, so thank you for that clarification. >> the only reason i said that
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is because there was a picture of acting secretary and then a headline underneath it that we had up. i wanted to make sure people didn't see that and assume that, actually the domestic violence incident the police actually acted on came from others in his family, not himself. we heard last week donald trump asking around about what people thought of patrick shanahan, and it sounded like even before this came out, he was ready to find somebody else. g give us the behind the scenes story there. what was going on? >> the president was asking around like he often does. he hadn't officially nominated shanahan, and there was concern about whether or not shanahan had the votes. the white house knew this was out there. they knew it was likely to become public in any confirmation hearing, and they're worried about making the acting the permanent. what do you think about mark esper, while mark is the current army secretary. it's not an operational position
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but esper came up, classmates with pompeo, he came up through a traditional way, a senate staffer, he makes a big point of going out and visiting troops. i was with him in hurricane coverage, and we went to make sure fort bragg wasn't too compromised in all of this. it's important to note we don't think and know whether or not esper will be officially nominated nominated, it's clear they want to have a permanent defense secretary, not just for the orders you can carry out but the moral authority, you also hear that on the hill, there's concern that the president will keep someone in an acting position and what are among the more important things that esper is going to have to decide, what sort of dod funding is he going to use to build the president's wall, and we know the president likes having actings because they have to bend to his will. the question is where will he push back on the president if at
quote
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all, guys? >> nbc's hans nichols, thank you very much for the story and the context there. patrick shanahan's resignation as acting defense secretary came just one day after he announced the u.s. was sending approximately 1,000 additional troops to the middle east. it comes amid heightened tensions with iran, which appeared to be nearing a breaking point last week after iran allegedly attacked two oil tankers in the gulf of oman. that followed four similar attacked from late may in the strait of hormuz, iran denies any involvement. however, at the same time as shanahan's troupe announce, president trump told time magazine that those alleged attacks are quote very minor claiming that the gulf of oman is not as strategically important as it wasn't was for the u.s. because quote other places get such vast amounts of oil there. we get very little.
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trump also tells "time" that it remains a quote question mark on whether he would go to war with iran over the oil tanker attacks but the president adds quote, i would certainly go over nuclear weapons. joining us now former under secretary of state for political affairs, ambassador wendy sherman, now an msnbc contributor. >> ambassador chairman, how concerned are you with what's happening? >> how do you even characterize what's happening? >> i'm very concerned about what's happening. we're on an es ka cycle that ce us at war. the president and particularly his national security adviser mr. bolton, and secretary pompeo believe in diplomacy, having a credible threat of force in diplomacy. so do i, except there's one big division, they're about the coercion and not the diplomacy. >> let's take it a step further,
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though, ambassador. donald trump is about coercion in the beginning stages but doesn't the world know by now he's not going to follow through with any military action because he's repelled by the thought of the united states expending blood and treasure in other people's wars. >> i agree with you. i don't think the president wants to go to war but i do think that john bolton is in charge of this policy. i think as we've read in story after story this week about the russian, going into russian cyber grid, enter their electric grid, a lot goes on in this administration that the president of the united states knows nothing about it and it is quite frightening when we're talking about lives of the american people and of our troops that the president of the united states doesn't know what's going on, and i quite agree with hans. i think the president will keep the next secretary of defense acting. i think this strengthens bolton's hand, and i think the president is really going down
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the wrong road here. >> wendy, we had a deal to prevent iran from getting nukes, and now the president says that's the only circumstance in which he would go to war. that deal was working. he and his national security adviser who said we should bomb iran. he wrote an editorial about that, shredded it, and now we see that for the first time, iran may be disobeying this agreement, which they still have with europe, and we're sending more troops. the president doesn't want to go to war. so what is the way out of this? what is more likely? it seems like you have two options, either a better deal or a limited military strike? >> i do think the president may indeed want to take a military strike, do a redo of what he did in syria, but in this case, iranians are not going to sit still for that. they will take some reactive measure. both the hard hard liners in our government and the hard hard liners in the iranian context are on the ascendancy where you
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get this cycle where they work off each other and it doesn't advantage us. there's one way out and we saw this in the north korea situation where all of a sudden the president decides he's going to be the hero, for exactly the reason you said, he doesn't want to go to war. he might say okay, just as he said, this was minor, these tanker attacks, i'm going to make the deal, and i'm going to put something on the table, like he put military exercises on the table in the north korea situation so he could get a photo opportunity with kim jong un. that will be harder in this case because iran is a culture of resistance. they're not going to capitulate to this president. they don't trust this president. >> they don't want to meet him. he floated out there he wanted to meet with them. they don't want to meet. >> is there anybody in the pentagon you think is capable of holding the line in the position. >> general dunford is a very smart guy, but we are run by
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civilians in our military, and at the eof the day, it's the civilian leadership that tells the military what to do. a thousand troops came from a request by general mckenzie who was worried that he didn't have enough troops for a defensive measure and a secretary of defense will answer that call but when it comes to a decision about taking a strike, i think that will be up to the commander in chief. >> ambassador wendy sherman, ending on a chilling note there. thank you very much. still ahead, the president kicked off his reelection bid with a rally in orlando, but instead of focussing on 2020, the president seemed more interested in breaking out his 2016 pl 2016 playbook. house democrats are set to question hope hicks but the white house launched a last minute bid to block her testimony. and congressman jim himes of the house intelligence committee will be our guest this morning.
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welcome back to morning joe. those were the good days. >> that one is elvis. >> it is wednesday, june 19th. national affairs analyst for nbc news. >> he's good. >> he's exhausting today. >> and joining the conversation, he's definitely in full hileman mode. you two are motor mouths today. but don't worry because joining the table is former u.s. senator and now nbc news, and msnbc political analyst, claire mccaskill who will own the table
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today. >> there you go. >> and get these guys under control. >> we'll pipe them down over here. >> yeah, going to have to. >> you were here last night for the movie. >> it was so good. >> it was adorable, and wonderful and the music, you know. >> we saw the movie yesterday. >> that moment. that moment. there's a pretty remarkable moment near the end. >> don't give it up. it's stunning. >> it's remarkable. beautiful. >> it's a great twist, right. >> and beautifully done. and it's hard to do. and washington bureau chief for usa today and author of the matriarch, susan page is with us. president trump launched his reelection campaign, in a state where he's trailing his opponents. quinnipiac poll has former vice president joe biden leading trump 50% to 41% in florida while senator bernie sanders is up by 6 points, 48-42.
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senator elizabeth warren 47-43, and the president is within the margin of error with senator kamala harris, beto o'rourke, and mayor pete buttigieg. trailing them each by 1 point. >> let's look at all of those, claire. so joe biden up comfortably by nine. and he says joe biden's just not with it. well, floridians disagree with donald trump. bernie sanders, a guy that, you know, is a socialist, he's losing by 6 points in the state of florida, elizabeth warren who he's mocked as pocahontas, beating him by 4 points. kamala harris beating him. beto, who had a rough launch, even with his rough launch, beating donald trump in the state of florida as is of course mayor pete. >> yeah. and what's really going to be interesting here is he's going to try to run this whole campaign like he's a victim, and are there going to be enough
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floridians and michigananders and ohioans who are going to get with the idea that donald trump is the victim in all of this. that was his whole deal last night, i mean, it was the dirty rotten media, the horrible immigrants, the dirty rotten, you know, world trade people, and they're all picking on me, and oh, poor me, and can you really be a leader and a victim at the same time. that's really going to be, i think, the big macro question of 2020. you have been debating is it a referendum or is it a choice. it will be both, and whoever our nominee is needs to be prepared for that. but he's picked on so many at this point, guys, it's just hard for me to imagine that people are taking him that seriously on all of the sleepy joe pocahontas and all of that stuff. >> there's a real mika, a real
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culture of victimhood here that republicans used to mock, but donald trump now is the one who's claiming he's the victim, even claiming that it would be over 50% but for robert mueller when in fact, he was at 38% before robert mueller began his investigation. >> you know, the interesting thing about trump, maybe one of the few interesting things about trump, is that if you look at who he really is and where he has come from across all the years, it's this city, new york city, where he was always excluded from everything important. the dinner parties, the meetings, the social gatherings, regarded as a buffoon, a clown, an outsider, so here he was in new york city all these years, seething with resentment, and guess what, he's now president of the united states running for reelection on what is his basic core promise or premise to the people. it's resentment.
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he's running for president of the united states for reelection fuelled by resentment. >> he doesn't have to. that's the thing. >> that's what he is doing. >> when he went to washington, he knew nancy pelosi, liked her, nancy liked him. chuck schumer, i mean, he contributed to democrats. he gave a lot of money to the dnc through the years. contributed, i think, to hillary clinton. he was a big bill clinton fan. this is a guy who was perfectly positioned to strike sweeping deals because, again, they wouldn't run out and admit it, even hillary clinton at the beginning of her campaign, why did you go to donald trump's wedding, she goes because donald trump is fun. he's entertaining. everything is a game with him. i went because he's a lot of fun, and if you talk to other democrats off the record that knew him in new york city, they would say off the air he was a likable guy.
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he could have struck these deals, and again, the enduring mystery is why does he choose the 37% when he could get 50%. i've been asking that question from january the 20th, 2017. i ask it again. i brought up, he could have had an immigration deal, gotten over $20 billion for his wall. supported a dreamers fix that 75% of americans supported and boom, his full numbers would have gone up, chose not to. listen to steven miller, stayed down. >> i don't have a ground unified field theory of the trump psyche. when trump decided to become a political figure, the first thing he did was run a racist campaign to delegitimize the first african-american president. he got convinced that the donald trump who was a pragmatic deal
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maker who gave money to democrats, that was not going to get him a ticket in the republican nomination, the way to get a ticket in was to ride in on the coat tails of people who wanted him to be run on racial resentment primarily, and that's how he got into the political fray. he got traction by attacking barack obama. i think by the time he got to the white house, he, again, we talked about this a little bit earlier today, he looked at what happened in 2016, and said everyone told me i couldn't win. this is how i won. this is how i drew my inside streak. these people, my base, they are the ones who allowed me to do the impossible, and win this, in his mind, historic victory, and he has been doing nothing but feeding that base, reinforcing those supporters, and those supporters are the ones who he first got by running on a racist immigration plan, a racist immigration appealings, all of those things, that's what he believes allowed him to overcome the odds and win, so he goes back to it over and over again
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because that is the thing he's trying to replicate again and again. 2016. >> and this is, mika, we have said this before, too. this is a mistake. young congress people, young senators, governs, reality tv talk show hosts, listen. this is the mistake every president makes. i got to the white house, nobody said i was going to get to the white house, i did it my way. now, therefore, they're always going to be wrong, and i'm always going to be right. >> and there's obviously corruption on a couple of levels as well. you mentioned this whole victim hood thing, and you know, last night, they really focussed on that. we have don jr., donald and e k eric, sort of a pity party, take a look. >> my father is the one person who did not need this job. in fact, his life is worse running for office. >> he didn't need this job.
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trump does something good, it's swept under the rug. someone else takes credit for it. they pretend it didn't happen. >> the swamp is fighting back so viciously and violently. they went after my family, my business, my finances, my employees. but they are really going after you. that's what it's all about. it's not about us. it's about you. >> susan page. trump supporters that are still trump supporters are firm. trump supporters and the question is what will keep them when they look at their lives and will they consider, for example, did the tax cuts benefit them, and all of the other things that trump has done in his presidency or will they play into this resentment and be ginned up by it because they like seeing washington get turned upsidedown. >> i think we have the answer to that question, you know, it's become pretty clear that trump's base is with him, and you look
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at the rally he spoke to last night in orlando, it was back to the future, it was very reminiscent of the rallies in the 2016 race. he does come to this contest with two strengths that he did not have the last time around, one is a united republican party behind him. he didn't have that last time, and the other is this good economy, the fact that the economy continues to be in recovery, the fact that unemployment is low, even though there are some other economic problems that persist. this gives him a base for reelection that in a way is stronger than his prospects last time around. we have a new poll out this morning in which we asked americans who they thought would win, not who they were for in 2020, who they thought would win. 49% told us they thought trump would win a second term. 38% said they thought democrats would win the white house back.
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that is much brighter sentiment around donald trump than last time. >> and that's good news, though. that's good news because that means that people are not going to be laid back about what's going to happen here. there are a whole lot of people that won't vote for donald trump that believe he might win. i've said it before, and i'll say it again, i think that's good. the other thing he has going for him that you didn't mention is he's got a much bigger and more professional campaign operation. and here's their goal. their goal is not to get the obama trump voters back. their goal is to grow the trump base. their goal is to find more people who have never voted, find more people who have seething resentment about what life has done to them, seething resentment that there's got to be somebody to blame, fiend those people through very sophisticated targeting methods, get them registered and get them to the polls. they are trying to grow their base, not get the swing voters.
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that's what their strategy is in terms of what they're up to the in the trump reelect. >> that's exactly what the bush campaign did in 2004, they grew their base, and they did it in every key state, they did it in florida, i mean, you go around the country, they're going to try to do that. they're also going to try to depress the democratic vote. we've got a game, and this is for real. i'm going to play sound bites for you, you guys guess whether it's greatest hits from 2016 or 2020. we're not going to know. let's take a look. >> drain the swamp. drain the swamp. the system is rigged. the system is rigged. crooked hillary clinton. crooked he know. beating crooked hillary clinton. >> it's like the same either y way. he went back to 2016. he focussed on hillary. does this work?
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>> nope. nope. >> at some point you have to let go of hillary clinton. >> and you know this better than anybody, voters want to talk about the future. >> they do. >> voters want to talk about how are their lives going to be changed. voters in a great way, i think are very selfish. they want to know how are they going to pay their kids college, how are they going to be able to pay their rent every two weeks. if they have a small business, are they going to be able to make payroll f. it's that simple. >> biden's biggest challenge, when people see him they think future. it's going to be interesting because he and mayor pete are right next to each other on the debate stage next week, so you've got the embodiment of young, forward looking, you know, definitely an outsider right next to someone who is obviously in command at this point. can joe biden project the future
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in a way that will inspire people, especially within the democratic primary. that still remains to be seen. >> no matter who the democratic candidate is, the clip that you just played, that you saw, mika, gives you an indication of how to run against this guy, and it's basically, guess what, he can't do the job. he just can't do the job. what were you resentful about four years ago, what were you angry about four years ago, what was going on in your life four years ago that caused you to vote for donald trump, has it changed? >> and by the way, if he's giving the same speech, and going down the same laundry list, it obviously has not changed. ronald reagan in 1980 asked people are you better off today than you were four years ago. >> that's the question. >> and 1984, guess what, ronald reagan got to ask the same damn question again, and 49 out of 50 states went for reagan because they said, yeah, our life is better. donald trump can't do that. >> we know who will be senator
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stage for next week's democratic debates, based on who's leading the polls, on the first night elizabeth warren and beto o'rourke, bill de blasio, and john delaney on the outskirts. >> tell me what you're looking at, what you're looking for. >> i think amy will definitely i think do well in this environment. i think she's going to -- she's a good debater. she's experienced and she's funny. she can breakthrough in terms of personal warmth. cory is going to be inspirational. he can't help himself. so i think the action will be the four in the middle. i think the rest of them are going to try to have a breakthrough moment, and that's what's going to be interesting about these debates. you thi if you think about it, you look at what donald trump did, he was different than the legions on the stage, bizarre, but different. will one of the outside candidates have such a breakthrough moment that it's embarrassing, that it's so
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forced and artificial. >> the answer to that is yes. let's put that back up again, and i want to ask you, john, the same question, what are you looking at, what are you looking for that night? >> i got to say i'm mostly looking at the thing about this that you see is there is a lot of people up there. we knew that already. >> how does that work? >> the biggest to me is a clock management problem. for everybody. you've got ten people up there. it's 120 minutes. do the math on that. that's 12 minutes per person. you know, you have questions. you're looking at probably each one of these people is going to get four questions and going to be able to speak in total for 2 minutes on four questions with a little back and forth, how do you make an impression without making a fool of yourself, without trying too hard, without reaching for it. all of them have the same problem. some are better known, some worse known. the moderators have a huge
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amount of puniressure to do thi right. all of these guys try to figure out a way to leave an impression without trying to be a talking dog. what are you going to do? >> i think if you look at that list, though, i think you're right, claire, i think amy is going to surprise a lot of people. i think beto, because his expectations have dropped, politics is a funny game, his expectations have dropped so low, and he has been working so hard since that time, i think beto is going to surprise people. elizabeth warren is in a great place. my dark horse, tim ryan, i think he's going to speak to swing voters in a way a lot of over people can't. >> night two will feature joe biden and bernie sanders side by side, with marian williamson, and eric swalwell on the edges. >> let's get mike and susan page in here. >> the second night is a big night for joe biden. he's going to remind people it's
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all about where he's going, not about where he's been. it's about where are you going to take us, joe, the future as claire just pointed out. it's going to be a really interesting night. i would think the match up between kamala harris, and bernie, i think there's going to be some rubber hits the road there, and kamala harris is no one to be -- to underplay. i would bet she would have a pretty good night. >> i think we're going to see the fireworks on the second night, bernie sanders is going to provide them. he'll have no problem attacking joe biden, no problem attacking anybody else. on this night, we'll see how hickenlooper does, michael bennet, two colorado guys may have pretty good nights. but we shall see. what do you think, susan page, what are you looking at the second night? sgli >> i think it's all about joe biden, he has had a great start, raised a lot of money.
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doing well in state polls against trump, and against him nationally, so he's seen as someone who's got the potential to be a strong democratic contender. but he's number one has not really been playing this this field, big stage, people will -- the other candidates are going to be focussing their attacks on him, and that's not something he automatically does well at, you know, we have seen he's not done as many of the interviews as other candidates. you know, he may be a little rusty on a debate stage, so this is a big test for him, and a big opportunity for those who want to challenge him. >> you know, i didn't talk about the one guy, and i'll hear from mika afterwards because i didn't bring up mayor pete, but mayor pete is the guy as far as just one of the purest natural political athletes i've ever seen in my life, i actually think that's a guy, you give him an hour, he'll do better than everybody else. >> oh, yeah. >> you give him six minutes throughout the course of the
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night, he'll also hit that mark. he is about as good as it gets. >> you think about the two candidates in the race who have been on the rise, one of them, elizabeth warren from the previous night, and mayor pete on this stage. people are going to be paying attention to those two. they are starting to move. they are the two getting lift but i do think that the main, the dynamic here that's the most fascinating is those two older white gentlemen in the middle of the frame there, joe biden and bernie sanders have been the leaders. >> bernie is older. >> have been the leaders in their respective lanes. the progressive lane, the mainstream lane, those two guys have been the dom innoceinant f there's a lot of pressure on joe biden and bernie sanders because they have seen a little bit of air come out of their tires in the last month. they're going to have to show that they can try to get back up on top. >> more on bernie. >> more on both. >> bernie doesn't realize it. >> bernie is losing votes to elizabeth warren. her lift is at bernie's expense,
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and i think she's got a lot of pressure on her. shoo she's got to excel. she's the big deal on the first night. it's going to be interesting to see if biden can pivot. will he take the incoming and try to respond or will he be able to rise above it and pivot. if i were on his team and advising him, i would say pivot, pivot, pivot, don't engage. pivot. >> pivot that many times he's going to be going in circles. >> not if he doesn't it right. >> with that short amount of time, claire, i've got six things to say if i have six minutes, and you can ask me seriously about anything, i'm going to brush it off in five seconds and deliver my 55 seconds, and pivot, like you're saying. if they bring up abortion, which they will bring up abortion, he can pivot. if they bring up anita hill, he can talk about how terrible it was and gee whiz, however he does that in 15 seconds and pivot. isn't that the key?
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>> that's exactly right. and he needs to pivot to the things about joe biden that everybody loves. the big smile, the i am a regular guy, i know who you are, i see you, and we can have a brighter future together. if he does that kind of messaging, and hopefully they're practicing. he's had some discipline. >> to your point, joe, no matter what the question is, joe biden has to do a variation of the following, i understand what you're talking about but this is the moment, this is a critical moment right now and talk about the moment and the future. >> the past is the past. >> i think it's critical he doesn't apologize so much. i mean, he will need to for anita hill. for the crime bill, i mean, you know, i think americans will like somebody forceful to say, okay, for those of you who weren't alive in 1991 and '92 and '93 during the crack
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epidemic, no it wasn't perfect, if you had been there, doing nothing wasn't an option. yeah, it looks bad. i wish we hadn't had to do it, but you know what, i was there, you weren't, i did my best. >> and i'm wiser and understand more now. >> exactly. >> and that's the advantage. >> i agree. it should be interesting. susan page, before you go, final thoughts and what are you looking at today? >> you know, the kind of luck of the draw, the field of these two nights of the debate, i think elizabeth warren was lucky to be in the first debate which in a way looks like fewer of the big top tier candidates because that makes her at the center of the stage. it means she's going to be the main topic. if candidates are going to go after a front runner, that gives they are time to respond. this is really a chance for her to showcase, and i agree that she has been, after kind of a
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rocky start, she has been connecting with voters and really challenging bernie sanders for that progressive side of the party. >> i think she's the one to watch, i really do. that message is holding and people are catching on. she could do really well because especially she's such a teacher in all of her answers and she enjoys it. so that will be fun to watch. susan page. thank you very much. still ahead on "morning joe." democrats want a little less conversation, a little more action on impeachment. are things all shook up on capitol hill? do you get it? we'll talk about that ahead on "morning joe." . that ahead on "morning joe."
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try and kill red sox icon david ortiz earlier this month. officials say the fugitive suspect used a liaison who is now the tenth person arrested in the case. six people including the gunman were arrested last week, and three were arrested, including two in prison for unrelated crimes, one of which reached out to the liaison a week before the shooting sending him a picture of the target to pass along to the hitmen. ortiz was shot in the back at a bar in santo domingo. suffering damage to organs after undergoing emergency surgery. the red sox flew ortiz to massachusetts general in boston where he is receiving care. >> mike, do you know how he's doing? >> he's getting better by the day. i believe he's still in intensive care, but he's certainly in a better place than he was in the hospital. >> any permanent injuries? >> it appears now, but there
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will be lasting psychic trauma obviously to him getting shot. the big thing about this story is motive. it goes to motive, what was the motive for this shooting, and apparently they're going to have a press conference later today in santo domingo, the police department, to address motive, but until they do, i mean, ortiz is being consumed by rumors more than he is by anything medical, so they have to get the motive! >> was it a cartel, somebody in the cartel shooting? >> there are all sorts of rumor about it, joe, which is not good for anyone, certainly not the ortiz family or david himself, but they've got to get to motive. >> yeah. all right. president trump once again refused to apologize for past comments he made including calling for the death penalty for four black and one latino known as the central park five, wrongly convicted of brutal
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beating and rape of a jogger in 1995. trump was asked if he would apologize to the five for the ad he took out in 1999 in four new york city newspapers, calling for the state to bring back capital punishment. >> why do you bring that question up now, it's an interesting time to bring it up. you have people on both sides of that. they admitted their guilt. if you look at linda farsteen and some of the prosecutors they think that the city should never have settled that case. so we'll live it at that. >> central park five's convictions were vacated in 2002 after dna evidence, dna evidence linked a serial rapist to the crime and their confessions were discovered to be coerced. the netflix mini series has renewed focus on the case and generated public outrage. there's a columbia law professor had to leave her post because she was a prosecutor at the time. but eddie, you know, there are some things you can abate, there
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are some things where you don't know exactly what happened 20, 30, 40 years ago. here, dna evidence. >> clearly. >> open and shut case. there are not two sides to this. >> not at all, and you know, these were babies. these are children. 14, 15, 16. and the fact that donald trump at the time, because at the time there was a discourse around super predators, around these kids that john delilio, talking about these crack babies who weren't able to submit themselves to social norms, they were monsters. >> this was 1989, we were talking about it before, in the middle of the crack epidemic, when chaos, i mean, large towns, small towns, chaos sweeping over america, which led to the crime bill. >> and the fascinating thing is
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that the social scientists who put forward the idea of super predators, came back a decade later and said they were completely wrong. what happened in this moment for donald trump, he basically said, right, that these kids should be murdered, they should be killed, and one of the interesting things about this, and particularly the netflix documentary, or film, not a documentary, it's a film, is that she views how broken these kids were, and how broken the men still are, and folks went on to live their lives, and they have to deal with being put away. one kid at 16 was put in rikers, and is grappling with what happened. and the fact that the most powerful man in the world can't say that he was wrong. >> in addition to all that went wrong, the coerced confessions, the lack of dna evidence, the false convictions, the rapist
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himself went on to abuse, assault and rape several other women in the park after, after this heinous crime was committed, and he committed it. >> part of what happened with central park five at the time, even at the time was the notion of a bunch of african-american kids in the park, wilding, that wilding was a thing that happened in central park, and this was an example. it was a racist trope at the time. >> created by the police in some ways. >> the fact that trump in 2016 was on the campaign trail saying that the central park five who had been exonerated by dna years before, stood by the notion they should have gotten the death penalty and now today at the white house, yesterday at the white house, not only still defending that position but defending it with the language that he used around charleston, there are fine people on both sides of this argument. >> charlottesville.
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>> charlottesville, i'm sorry, and you wonder why people think donald trump is racist, it's because in these instances, there are fine people on both sides, there are arguments on both sides, no there are not. >> i have got to say, it was stunning, claire, that he went back, and actually used the charlottesville language, again, to remind everybody that he had said there were good people on the white supremacist side, and good people on the anti-nazi side. >> think about how his mind works. he gets this question, right, and he has to make a decision on the spot, how do i respond to this question, and he is most comfortable reassuring his base that he is not going to apologize, he is not going to say he was wrong, he is so welded to that position, he is willing to say something that is outrageous on his face, and everybody in america should watch that netflix special.
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everybody should watch it, because when you watch it, you then comprehend how outrageous it is that the president of the united states refuses to say those young men were convicted and it was wrong, and somebody else did the crime and let's hope our justice system is in the process of cleaning up the fact. >> with one other add on to what you said, everybody in america should see the documentary, and everybody in america should reread the language that donald trump used in the wake of the arrest and conviction of the central park. and compare that language that he used then in 1989 to language he uses today about people on the border. it's the same. >> it's the same stuff. >> we have been talking about donald trump not wanting, apparently to get above 50%, doing everything he can to swat away, 50% of americans, 60% of
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americans, there has just been a trend, and throughout his campaign where he is, and very careful, i have not been as careful in the past, trying to be more careful not to say, this was racist, or that was racist. instead i'm trying to say it's racially insensitive, and boy it certainly seems like, because that's, again, a heavy charge to lay on somebody, but yesterday reminds me, there are times when he is appealing to neo-nazis and white supremacists. >> that would be the moment. >> and there is a pattern, if you don't believe me, go back and see his sunday interview before super tuesday where there are all the votes in the south, and he was asked about david duke, don't know him. despite the fact in 2000, he said he would not run in the reform party because david duke was a racist. the ku klux klan, you know what, i don't know anything about the
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ku klux klan, send me a list of these organizations and i'll be able to tell you whether or not i'm for them or against them. purely racist. he backed down later but at the time, hae's sending a message t david duke supporters, sending a message to the klan. charlottesville, good people on both sides, of course jack asses, on the far right, they're not far right. trump supporters that are in the media, and decided to defend him in charlottesville, and tried to tell you that he never really said what he said. you know who said that donald trump was providing comfort to white supremacists a man who was there, david duke, he thanked donald trump. richard spencer thanked donald trump, they all said we finally have a man. >> our guy. >> we finally have a guy who is going to support white nationalists. and then we go to yesterday, it's one more example of donald
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trump not sending a dog whistle but getting on the fog horn and just blaring it as loud as he can, yeah, you know what, dna evidence, i don't care if there's dna evidence or not, those black kids should have died, should have been murdered. >> you know, one other element there, joe, that you touched upon that is critical to understanding donald trump, there's an underlying theme to his entire life, his professional life, it goes back 40 years, and it's sustained every day in the presidency. donald trump across 40 years in business and his personal life through his marriages and into his presidency, has thrived and prospered on one component above all, division, he divides people, he divides lawyers, he divides building bitters on properties, and he divides the country. >> at the time, too, not only
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divide but he does it, it's all part of a game for donald trump because, you know, al sharpton was reminding me just now that he was demonized and so many people were demonized for defending those kids, right, but donald trump, when it suited donald trump, when he had casinos in atlantic city, donald trump was hanging out with hip hop stars. he was hanging out with al sharpton like, you know, al wasn't buddies with him, but i remember asking him about, you remember that tyson fight, i was there with donald. he dated black women. like he actually was friends. i remember being surprised, i think it was jay-z at the end of the 2016 campaign, they are all up on stage, and everybody is pounding donald trump, but jay-z and if this is wrong, i
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apologize mr. jay-z, but said something like well, this is nothing personal against donald trump, and i asked willie the next day, what was that about, and he said donald trump had a great relationship with the hip hop community, and, you know, there was this sort of mutual admiration, society sort of the bling, the gaudiness, and fit in very well with a certain something. >> you could do an entire episode of morning joe going back and looking at the history of hip hop lyrics in which trump, hip hop rappers praising trump, invoking trump throughout the 80s and 90s as an object of admiration, not as derision. >> if being a socialist, calling
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for the nationalization of banks were invoked, donald trump would do it. wait a second, he did it in 2008. and said maybe we consider nationalizing the banks. he'll just go, and by the way, there's a crime wave in new york city, everybody was scared as hell to let their kids go anywhere in new york because it was a more dangerous place. donald trump puts out an ad, kill them all. >> he's transactional, and there are underlying beliefs, he was sued for his real estate, denying black access, and the central park five, and how do we describe his beliefs. >> racism is racism is racism, and he owns it. >> black parents have to deal with it. we have to deal with the environment that he produced. >> that is correct. >> and the same day that he says this, the proud boys show up in orlando, the same day the proud boys show up in orlando, mitch mcconnell says we gave you your
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reparation, we allowed you to elect an african-american president. the context of this is that this country still remains at the highest level, so profoundly overdetermined by racism that we have a long way to go. >> and by the way, it doesn't matter why he does it. >> doesn't matter why. >> doesn't matter why somebody is acting racist, whether they believe it or not, it's the same impact, maybe he is a racist, and maybe he believes it. i remember one time talking on the phone, and him basically yelling at me, going, joe, you know i'm not a racist, and i go donald, you play one on tv, and that's even worse. and it is. >> and we went after him, and he said it works, so whatever. it's still racism. you really can't slice it up. >> no, no, and again, think about donald trump, this is when people go to vote in 2020.
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i want people to think about the impact of donald trump's attacks on muslim americans. let's call them this, americans who happen to worship god in a certain way. what's it like for a 7-year-old girl or a 7-year-old boy who is a muslim who worships the god of abraham the way their parents and grandparents worshipped the god of abraham. when they go to school, how much harder is it for that second grader, that third grader to get through their day without having abuse heaped on them. what about a latino whose family, who knows, maybe has lived in this country for 150 years. how much harder is it for a 7th grade, 8th grade girl who is a latino, who is getting abuse heaped upon her when life is tough enough for a middle schoolgirl. but because there's a president who's constantly vilifying
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latinos, how much harder is her life every day, how much harder is it for her mom and dad to get her out of bed and say go to school, it's going to be better, we're going to talk to the principal. >> we're in america. >> what about a black kid who, again, has the president of the united states who does the things, says the things that donald trump says, and yesterday, given the chance to say i was wrong when i called for the execution of four young black boys. >> innocent. >> five. >> four young black boys, and i think one latino, and they were boys, they were 14. >> 14, 15, 16, what a wonderful time for a president to say i was wrong. i've got to do better. all right. joining us now, a member of the house intelligence committee, democratic congressman jim himes of connecticut. welcome back to the show. good to see you. >> good morning. >> we'll try and transition the
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conversation back to the issues that you're dealing with on capitol hill. we have been talking this morning about impeachment. is it still the mindset of most democrats in congress or at least those in leadership positions that it's going to be a wait for republicans to come around and are there any who will? >> yeah, good question, mika. i think the question you just asked, the answer is sadly, yes, you know, the justin amash phenomena, the member from michigan who made this incredibly principled argument in favor of impeachment, standing up, by the way, not for a left, right, democratic republican thing but standing up for the prerogatives of the congress of the united states against a president who has said the congress, i will not produce documents, i will not allow people to testify. that is a unique thing. what is more interesting, mika, as you know, a minority today of the democratic caucus is
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actively supporting impeachment, but i must tell you that that is fraying, you know, there are an awful lot of people, myself included who are saying we are getting to a point where when the president completely ignores an unprecedented indictment of kellyanne conway for violating the separation between official functions and being a partisan person. the president says that doesn't matter, the president says no, i'm not sending documents about the citizenship question on the census within my caucus, there are people who are saying this has gotten so serious that it might be time to stop sort of, you know, thinking about the, you know, 9 point bang shot into the next 18 months, and just call this president out for what he is. >> a lot of different layers of concerns happening at once. you're especially concerned about iran. this is what the president said yesterday. >> why should americans trust you in the administration to tell the truth about what's going on with iran, why should
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we believe you? >> we have iran, we have been talking to various people on lots of different sides and we'll see what happens with iran. we're very well set. we're very well configured. i spoke with president xi this morning of china. we're looking at iran. we have a lot of things going with iran. we're very prepared for iran. we'll see what happens. let me say this. we are very prepared. regardless of what goes, we are very very prepared. >> big picture, mike, barnacle, i can't help but to see our credibility on the international stage just eroding before our eyes. people asking if he can be believed. >> every day. and congressman himes we had ambassador wendy sherman on earlier today, and we are talking about the possibility of slow walking us into a war in iran. i have two questions for you, one, your assessment of the intelligence that has been
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released or perhaps that you have seen thus far about the tanker explosions in the gulf of oman, credible, not credible, and b, what is your feeling about the possibility that we might by accident slow walk ourselves into a war with iran? >> both good questions, mike. on the question of the intelligence i can't get detailed until the answer to that, i will tell you having looked at some of the intelligence quickly, this is not a situation like in 2002 where people were saying it's a slam dunk and there was absolutely nothing there. there is no question that the iranians have assumed a much more aggressive posture in the region themselves. they have any number of proxies around the region, they are saying -- they are preparing for a conflict, so again, it's not that there's nothing there, but the sad thing, and this gets to the second part of your question is, we don't need to be here.
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where iran is today is a function of the fact that the president tore up the iran nuclear deal, which look, we can have an argument about. i thought reallyabout. i thought hard about that deal before i voted for it. put but we used to be in the world where war was out of question, iran was a bad regime but they were not violating the terms of the nuclear deal, which they said they might do this week, and we were hopeful to have the opportunity over time to build on that agreement. instead we're in a place purely -- by the way, i'm not even going to say it donald trump here, mike pompeo, a guy who i know and i generally respect but a blind spot to iran, saudis, uae, others in the region are spending their days thinking about how they can create a situation where not that they convince the president to go to war -- because i'm not
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sure this president can be convinced to go to war but they know one thing, if the president gets hit, he hits back. you know how you get the president hit? sit up a situation with enough troops, close enough in the region some member of a militia in baghdad does something really stupid and the next thing you know the president is hitting back and we're involved in yet another military conflict in the middle east. >> congressman, i want to ask you about something you raised at the very top, which is impeachment topic and 18 cushion bank shot and calculations around that. we're starting to get fact witnesses up on the hill. hope hicks will come up there. but the real big kahuna is bob mueller. your chairman, chairman schiff said time is running out. he said august will be too late. if you are going to get momentum on the impeachment front, you
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need to hear from him. please explain to the normal people out there in the world, and i think there are millions, why is it so hard to get bob mueller up on capitol hill by invitation or by subpoena? >> the process itself takes some time. that's the big problem here, right. it's the big time element. the president is basing no, we're not sending people. we're not sending documents. he told hope hicks she could not comment on her time in the white house, which is most of what we're interested in, obviously. so in the case of robert mueller, he no longer works for the department of justice. i'm sure they will try to stop them. bob mueller has his own reasons for not wanting to testify. >> what are they? how much money did the investigation cost? i don't mean to sound like a trump supporter. how much did taxpayers pay him? i'm sorry, does he really think it is every man's way they want
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to spend their day reading the mueller report? some people are not going to read that government document. i want to know why robert mueller thinks he's above coming to capitol hill and testifying for americans? it's outrageous. i want to know something else, jim. why don't you subpoena him? this is absolutely ridiculous. he documented ten examples of the president of the united states obstructing justice. he documented illegal or at least very improper contact between people associated with donald trump and vladimir putin, and you guys can't get him on capitol hill to talk and he's too high and mighty to get on capitol hill and talk? hey, i've got a picture of this guy in my house. >> yes, you do. >> but this is absurd. that you somehow thinks hee above testifying. by the way, since you asked,
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since you asked, all he's going to go is read the mueller report, you know what i would do? i would say, do me a favor, you've listed ten examples of how donald trump obstructed justice. number seven is pretty incredible. can you read that for me, please? would you like me to read that for you? you go yeah, yeah. millions and millions of dollars were paid for your report. not everybody, bob, is going to read it. so you read it for them! like this is seriously, i'll tell you what, as you can tell, i'm a little -- this is outrageous that this guy has not been dragged to capitol hill to talk. >> two things to say, number one, it's going to happen. he will get subpoenaed. look, we have a profound interest inside the intelligence committee in hearing about something we have not heard nearly enough. by the way, it will be behind closed doors so it will not
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necessarily be news worthy. >> why? >> because it will be behind closed -- >> we need to hear about it in the intelligence community is the counterintelligence investigation. >> that's totally separate. the other thing which is what you're -- >> the other thing which you're talking about so animatedly is getting bob mueller, for all of the reasons you state, getting bob mueller to simply say what he said in the report, which by the way he said he would do. he said my testimony is in that report. but as you pointed out, not an awful lot of people got through the 500 pages. you're being pretty tough on bob mueller here. i do not blame him for wanting to join the partisan fray. but you know this man. he's a patriot. will he do what he's asked to do. >> he's a patriot, but he's also a director of the fbi who was asked to come and testify. he's a patriot. i love bob mueller. i have a picture of bob mueller in my house. this was a guy who was told he
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could go to vietnam, and unlike donald trump he busted his ass to make sure he could get there. he worked hard and was a hero in vietnam, hero after 9/11. i have nothing but respect for him. but this coy routine is a bit much for me, claire. a bit much. and can i say, too, the guy should have done his job. >> down boy! >> the guy should have reached conclusions in the report. >> i agree and never let william barr do what he did and he's smart enough to know what barr did. but i say to the congressmen, you have to communicate to all of your colleagues on the hill. nobody in america believes you're capable of do anything on impeachment if you can't get bob mueller in front of congress. >> he passed it to you in that press conference. >> jim, jim, jim! what are we going to do? >> and nadler's doing press conferences trying to push nancy pelosi into impeachment when he
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cannot explain to the american people why his subpoena wasn't issued the day after mueller talked about the report. >> and passed it to you. >> and the day after. i know we all want to cooperate, and you try to work down the aisle of cooperation. i get that. believe me. but this is a moment where the american people need to hear it coming out of his mouth and with questions being asked, both in the senate and house. the senate will never do it so the house can. jerry nadler needs to quit talking about impeachment and talk about getting mueller in today. >> i totally agree with that. claire, this is not so much an issue of republican obstructionism. although this is happening. and there would never be action in the senate. >> correct. >> but the bigger picture, we won in court two, three times with deutsche bank, the president in court, i believe mueller will be subpoenaed and i
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do believe he will show up. he's not the kind of guy who ignores a subpoena. but remember there are four, five committees working 24/7 against a white house saying no at every turn. and because we don't have a police force here in the united states congress, we're forced to make appeals to the cost and that takes a little time. >> we're talking about bob mueller, i think you should subpoena bob mueller. by the way, jim, of all of the hits you have done on "morning joe," this is your best. >> i'm sorry. i best you wish you were stuck in traffic. >> by the way -- >> i'm calling the producers because now on it's nothing but herbal tee. take the copy cup away from joe. >> i put a checkmark here so i don't have to talk about this again. as you can tell, it's been bubbling up inside. >> it has. breathe. >> congressman jim himes, you're a good sport but we're watching you guys and want to see what happens. thank you very much for being on
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the show this morning. >> need a cocktail and a couple kools. i'm going to smoke a menthol. >> we have to go to break. still ahead -- president trump was in orlando last night to kick off his 2020 campaign. yes, jack is here. but new polling shows voters in the sunshine state seem to prefer a few of his democratic opponents. we're digging into the new numbers. "morning joe" will be back in two minutes. "morning joe" will be back in two minutes. also available in hybrid all-wheel drive. lease the 2019 ux 200 for $329/month for 36 months. experience amazing at your lexus dealer.
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what was the good one last week, joe biden comes out, well, if you elect me president, i'm going to cure cancer. well, why the hell didn't you do that over the last 50 years, joe? we will come up with the cures to many, many problems to many, many diseases, including cancer. 1.
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>> i would -- i would like to apologize to all of those who have ever done political satire. >> what are you going to do now? you can't beat that. >> john heilemann, you have to be a "south park" guy. >> i live at "south park." >> this is something you would have seen five years ago on "south park." they can't do it any more because don jr.'s doing it for them. get this. you'll love this one about don jr. he actually is attacking joe biden -- are you ready for this -- >> oh, i'm ready. >> -- for groping. can't make this up. >> awesome. that's good enough. 1. >> whew wee. >> all right. >> the whole thing has a feeling of the third rate biggest loud jacked at this point.
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>> it is pinocchio. >> you look at this, i have seen this shtick before. where is the new material? >> you know, a bobby vinton imitator in 1978 in the poconos, i would go see it "my melody of love," that guy kicked it old school. >> terry jax. >> you take that up to the poconos in 2019 -- >> your kids are not loving it. >> my kids will go -- dad, it's polka! no, no, they don't want to hear that! this thing is old. this is the problem with donald trump. donald trump was a disrupter. donald trump was dangerous. but you know, he's looking like -- as we continue our pop references, and i mean it, he's looking about as dangerous as austin powers after he came out
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of the whole cryogenically frozen thing. >> i wish i could remember the gold member joke. >> good morning. welcome to "morning joe." >> it's old. >> it's starting to feel really schticky. the thing of the transgression, the rule breaking, all of the stuff that obviously worked for him in 2016 and now just feels like like a ktel greatest hits collection and they sound dated. >> i got it. no disrespect to the king of rock and roll but this is elvis in '77. just lumbering across the stage, sweating. >> yeah. >> or graceland in front of like six televisions with huge, bottle of quaaludes. >> okay, all right. >> you just took it too far. >> you don't want to bring it to the gutter. >> seriously --
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>> it's elvis. late stage. >> '77, sweating, trying to sing the old hits but his heart is not in it. they know what he's going to sing before he sings it. they know all of the words. the guy who was once so exciting, he's attacking heidi. >> heidi's here. >> he's attacking hillary clinton. he's still attacking hillary clinton. doing lock her up things. that seriously, that's beyond. >> it's not just a rerun. but the best part of the rerun can't be replayed because if you remember his rallying cry in the first campaign was build the wall. so here we are 2 1/2 years later, that was his marquee issue. the wall is nowhere near being built. the new line now is deport them all. that was the announcement he made a day or two before the first rally. just like the wall, that's just as improbable.
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>> why don't we play the game that kids around the country love playing like 2016 -- >> all over hillary, hillary. >> are you ready? >> yeah. >> it's 2016. or is it 2020? let's start with the first. kids at home -- >> hillary clinton and the dnc insurance policy just in case hillary clinton lost. remember during one of the debates when crooked hillary said the free pass they gave to hillary and her aides, hillary used the word deplorables. hillary clinton made a big mistake with that speech. >> hillary is not running. >> as you pointed out -- >> come on guy. >> -- i think that's the same black guy. they unfroze him from 2016 too. >> don't you remember when we referred to him as the lone african-american. >> that is true. i ran into him with sean
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hannity. it is the same black guy. >> eddie said it. but for the 2020 signs, that was his 2016 campaign, which explains why there's a time to know by the reporting at the end there were empty seats. this is old. he has nothing new to offer after hundreds and hundreds of rallies. >> three hours later i can understand, 3 1/2 hours later i can understand folks walking out but what's interesting is people still bought tickets to elvis when he was old and sweating. he was elvis. he was entertainment. >> even the free drinks. >> even though it's old and repeated we heard a lot of screaming and yelling and excitement. >> ron fournier with is us, by the way! >> ron! >> good morning. >> an elvis impersonator.
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>> that's me. >> i would say let's restore order, but we never had it. we're going to have it now john heilemann and joe scarborough. shut your pileholes for a second. we're going to organize. >> she's telling me to go off in a new direction. last night -- >> it was so good. >> had you seen it before? >> no. >> and it lived up to expectations? >> yes, it did. it was a wonderful movie. everybody has to see it. >> president trump launched his re-election campaign in florida last night in a state where he is currently trailing his potential democratic opponent. a queinnipiac poll released before the rally has former vice president joe biden leading trump 50% to 41% in florida. >> he's down nine points in florida? >> senator bernie sanders is up by six points. >> he's losing by six points to
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a socialist in florida. >> senator elizabeth warren has a four-point edge over trump. >> the person he calls pocahontas all the time is beating him by four points? >> and the president is within the margin of error with senator kamala harris, beto o'rouke, mayor pete buttigieg. >> beto's beating you, donald. i just wanted to let you know that. >> in your home state. >> in your home state. >> beto, seriously, this is like beto shooting like 32% the first half, right? and he's still ahead. that's when you know your basketball team is going to like win or lose. in your home state. brutal. >> last night's rally saw no new anounszmentes, no significant change in rhetoric. the president spent more time discussing past grudges and old promises than providing vague for the future. the orlando rally was trump's 60th campaign style arena event since taking office less than
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900 days ago. it was the seventh rally he's held in florida during his presidency, and the second one that he has held in orlando. as "the new york times" puts it, by the end of mr. trump's 76-minute speech, there were patches the blue seats visible across the arena, some supporters had left the rally early, maybe because they had seen it before. >> yeah. >> our radical democratic opponents are driven by hatred, prejudice and raise. they want to destroy you and they want to destroy our country as we know it. this election is a verdict on whether we want to live in a country where the people who lose an election refuse to concede and spend the next two years trying to shred our constitution and rip your country apart. you remember during one of the
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debates when crooked hillary said, if i win, are you going to support me? but i must honest, i didn't give her a great answer. that might have been my hardest question during the debate. lindsey graham was doing okay in south carolina, isn't that great? how he's through the roof. so lindsey graham, they delete and they acid watch, which is very expensive, nobody does it, they acid watch those emails. never to be seen again. but we may find them somewhere deep in the state department. 33,000 emails. but let's see what happens. >> he's talking about 33,000 emails. >> and screaming. >> your thoughts? >> i watched it last night reluctantly, i must admit. it was horrible. in every way, horrible in every
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way. it is. he's doubled down on the culture wars. that's how he won in 2016. that's how he thinks he's going to win now. that elvis, joe, i think that's right on point. >> nailed it. still ahead on "morning joe" -- when facing reporters president trump often credits bob mueller. when facing supporters, he often disparages him. so you can only imagine the talking points at his re-election rally last night in orlando. we'll show you that. but first bill karins with a check on the forecast. >> before i get to another rainy, gloomy forecast, i have to show you what these jersey fishermen almost caught off the jersey shore. this is about a 14 to 18-foot great white. they were fishing for mako, smaller version of shark. that's the chum bag there. yeah, that ruined the beach for me this summer. strong winds this afternoon.
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additional storms last night, strong storms moved through oklahoma. another area of storms on top of shreveport. today 26 million at risk of severe storms and dallas-ft. worth could be the worst of it. dft h dfw has significant delays possible. the rainy pattern looks to break by friday but two more days of heavy rain and philadelphia pokios und poconos under a flash flood watch. and 90s, and we haven't had 90s yet this season. and many of spots only mid-80s. so it looks like our coolest-type summer weather pattern will continue the next week or two. new york city one of the spots that hasn't hit 90 yet but i have sunshine and low 80s this weekend. a lot better than the weather
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click, call or visit a store today. president trump is blaming the fact he's never hit 50% in gallup approval polls on the mueller probe. in an interview with "time" magazine trying to kick off his 2020 rally trump said, quote, based on the economy i should be up 15, 20 points higher, arcing he has a natural base of 45% or 46%. he added, quote, the thing that i have that nobody's ever had before from the day i came down the escalator, i've had a phony witch-hunt against me. i think it's cost me. we will just note special counsel robert mueller did not begin his investigation until four months into trump's newly minted administration when his overall approval rating was just
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at 38%. he's the only president in the history of gallup polling never to earn a majority of rating for a single day in office. trump did note two times the mueller probe ignited his republican base saying, quote, it's made our people more resilient and he hopes to fuel his 2020 campaign with that momentum. i should point out other historic things pertaining to this administration, secretary of defense i guess a new one now acting how many cabinet posts are filled by acting cabinet secretaries. it just a blank slate in there. a bunch of people who suck up to the president in a frightening way. >> donald trump is right when his analysis of republicans. they have actually become stronger trump supporters because of the mueller probe. but, he's been playing that i say is a 33% game, john
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heilemann. it's actually more of a 38.9% gain, which is just continuing to talk about illegal immigration. continuing to exaggerate, continuing to demonize immigrants, continuing to demonize americans who were can quote, the others, continue to talk about building walls, continuing to attack allies across the globe. and that's, again, it's what remains the great mystery of the trump presidency for me. why has he never figured out -- why has no one around him ever figured out he needs to expand his base? he needs to do things, and this illegal immigrant witch-hunt that he's doing just doesn't work. because college-educated people know that before he became president, illegal crossings at the southern border were at a 50-year low. that doesn't work for educated voters. so i just remain flummoxed at
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this late day he's not even trying to get to 50%. he's going back to the well and digging down deeper in his own base. >> when you think about the totality of the trump presidency so far, this is a signal feature of it, unlike any presidents in the past, we've seen others who have been elected that have not lost popular vote. we have seen others elected well south 50than 50% of the votes. >> what does george w. bush go? could to ted kennedy. no child left behind. >> exactly. and saying i'm not going to get re-elected if i don't gain some vote. trump hasn't done that. and unlike the rest of us, he doesn't realize he pulled an inside straight. he thinks he won a land slide in 2016. he talks about it over and over again. i think he believes if i do again what i did in 2016 i will
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win again, because he doesn't think it was that close. he doesn't get it. i just take him at his word he said over and over again, greatest landslide in history. i believe he thinks that. the problem is you're an incumbent president. the question is is this going to be a referendum or choice? for a guy like donald trump who's never been above 44 or 46, he can't let it be a referendum. we saw what happened when he was a referendum in the midterms, it was a referendum on trump and he wasn't even in the party and the ballot got crushed. all he's doing is demonize the democrat democratic party. if democrats can put up somebody to slough off the attacks and keep off donald trump, all of the things that crushed the republican party in 2018 will crush the trump party again in 2020. all of the things voters did not like then, they like it even worse with donald trump on the
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ballot. coming up on "morning joe" -- one of the issues the president didn't dwell on last night, impeachment. we will talk about where that issue stands this morning next on "morning joe." e. everyone's got to listen to mom. when it comes to reducing the sugar in your family's diet, coke, dr pepper and pepsi hear you. we're working together to do just that. bringing you more great tasting beverages with less sugar or no sugar at all. smaller portion sizes, clear calorie labels and reminders to think balance. because we know mom wants what's best. more beverage choices, smaller portions, less sugar. balanceus.org i'm and i'm an emt.erer when i get a migraine at work, it's debilitating. if i call out with a migraine, that's one less ambulance to serve a community. i just don't want to let these people down. excedrin migraine.
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i think the strategy of getting as much of the facts out and months down the road making a decision on impeachment or not is the right strategy. >> senator minority leader chuck schumer saying a decision about whether or not to impeach president trump can be months down the road and congress doesn't know all of the facts just yet. ron, you have a piece in "the washington post" titled "will impeachment backfire on democrats? not if they do it right." and you write, the more i reflect on the clinton impeachment, the more i realize he didn't survive because the republicans overreached, he survived because he made sure his public facing focus was always on the lives and concerns of voters. he compartmentalized the impeachment drama inside a team of lawyers, pollsters and communications specialists and had them weaponize the case
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against him. nicknamed the masters of disaster, this blunt force team leaked unfavorable information about the gop investigators. they spun every negative story about clinton into an argument that republicans were power-hungry prudes. their mission was to control the impeachment narrative behind the scenes while clinton and the rest of his white house team persuaded voters that he was working his butt off for them, compartmentalize and weapon niez is the lesson congressional democrats should take from 1998. joe, nancy pelosi and you heard chuck schumer there, they're taking the right course. it's frustrating for people who want to see immediate results when things are obviously wrong. whether the law is obviously being broken. when the president is obviously a national security threat, it's very disheartening on many levels. but people do need to be educated on what's happening to along with them with this happens.
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>> you get a lot of members of the democratic caucus in congress. a lot of people can do different things and you're exactly right, ron. i think it's what nancy pelosi is doing right now, where nancy's going about her business and trying to go about the business of passing good legislation. elijah cummings and jerry nadler are doing their job as well. but you're so right, during impeachment, yes, i remember, you know house judiciary committee, was it committee, you didn't want to be on impeachment because they all went after you if you were republican. i mean, it was like a scorched earth strategy. but it was under the radar. meanwhile, bill clinton, his secretary of defense, his secretary of treasury, all of them, they were on the hill every day. they weren't talking impeachment or scandal, they were talking about the defense budget, they were talking about keeping saddam hussein in place, all of
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the things you would expect a functioning government to do. bill clinton, you're right, he did it masterfully. >> no functioning government here. >> no, but there was a functioning government in the 1990s which is why bill clinton did so well and donald trump is a one-man band. he can't do that. >> i was covering the white house for the ap at the time and even the most negative information about president clinton was leaked by his people in the right way, they controlled the narrative. what's the advice for nancy pelosi? i hate to give her advice because she's one of the most brill tae brilliant tacticians. but if i were her, i would grab ahold of it now and say we will do impeachment but on my terms. we will not have 18 committees looking at investigations or even the judiciary committee because they're not as equipped as a hand select group of select committee members, best messengers and politicians, and i will staff them up with
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pollsters, focus group runners, message makers, lawyers who can run the same kind of compartmentalized campaign, same kind of politically ruthless campaign as bill clinton did from the white house, a campaign that would, to your point, mika, would illustrate for american voters exactly what it is the president did. while the rest of the house and rest of the democratic party, including the presidential candidates, are focused on the people's business. in effect it's flipping the script. donald trump played newt gingrich's role, a guy only worried about himself and filled with grievances, that was gingrich's problem as you know, joe, back in '98. flip the script on republicans, play the game bill clinton did from the white house but do it under the first article of the constitution. >> and helping the public understand what's going on is a challenge and it is a challenge in the age of the president threatening the truth basically at every angle. but heidi, also many
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republicans -- and i guess my question to you for those republicans would be, what more do they need? >> we've seen the answer and the answer is no, they're not going to change. they all hopefully at least read the index to the report. the only person so far who has come out is justin homage and we don't have a mass in the democratic party either. we're up to 67% support impeachment. while there are a number of members, ron, making the same argument you are privately to the speeaker, she's not going t do it. not right now. i have spoken to them last week. they feel they avoided some of these jobs and moments where it seems like they were missing the tipping point and they're not going to do it at this time, especially when they had a victory with hope hicks. they're hoping to get other witnesses and when you talk to them, they point to some of the
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court victories they experienced, for example, over getting the president's financial papers and expandi corresponding with these accounting firms. that's where we are right now. still ahead -- >> lindsey graham was doing okay in south carolina but now not great. through the roof. >> senator lindsey graham got a shot out at president trump's re-election rally. up next we're joined by his challenger for that south south carolina seat, democrat jamie harrison. he grabs a seat at the table straight ahead on "morning joe." "
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he's a kook. he's not fit to be president of the united states. he's a xenophobic bigot. >> i don't think he's a xenophobic bigot. i like the president. i'm the happiest dude. >> here's a guy who would say anything to stay in the office. lindsey graham can't lead us in any direction because he traded his moral compass for political gain. >> i like it. jaime harrison's video announcing his run to take on senator lindsey graham for senate in 2020. jaime joins us now, the associate chairman to the dnc and also with us is the former trat jit f
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strategist for hillary clinton's campaign and author of "how the right lost its mind," charlie is with us. >> great to have everybody here. and jaime, i'm dead serious, you can use all of lindsey graham's quotes -- >> own words. >> -- to not only attack the president of the united states but lindsey. you're right. he said the president is unfit, donald trump is unfit to be president. said if republicans nominated him, they would be destroyed and deserved it. it's on and on. nobody said harsher things about donald trump than lindsey graham. >> and donald trump said harsh things about lindsey graham. we just released a video last night because lindsey and donald were continuing their lovefest down in orlando which basically had donald trump saying lindsey graham wasn't fit to be dog catcher. >> remember he gave out his phone number? >> exactly. we're going to allow donald trump and lindsey graham to
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continue to have a conversation. >> keep going. >> keep going. >> don't get in a word. >> it will be fun. i want lindsey graham 1.0 to debate lindsey graham 2.0, and people will see the hypocrisy. he epitomizes why people don't like politics anymore. >> charlie, if there's one name, one face, one person that epitomizes the republican party's complete capitulation to donald trump, it would be lindsey. i have known lindsey since '94. i like him personally. it's hard not to like lindsey personally. but to hear what he said during the campaign and then see him flip-flop and attack anybody who says anything bad about the president of the united states, that's like rich even by lindsey's standards. >> it is. marco rubio, by the way, is giving him a run for his money here. we are talked a lot about capitulation or gutlessness or lack of a spine on the part of
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republicans. but that's not the case with lindsey graham. more and more, tonyism is a choice. this is somebody who worked alongside john mccain, who understands who john mccain was and for a lot of us thought he was going to do in that direction. but he's chosen to align himself with donald trump even though he apparently has -- not apparently, he has no allusions who donald trump is. this is a choice he's made, s k sycophantsy is a choice and that is going to be lindsey graham's legacy. >> amy, what do you make of that strategy, as you sit right next to him, but one of the things that trump's done to the party is make republicans look like cartoon characters. >> right. >> this feels more extreme in terms of the types of things republicans are able to stomach in support of their president. >> when you look at the surface
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of this and the way you're literally using lindsey graham's words against him, it seems to make sense. i'm more interested, jaime, in digging into the numbers. knowing that south carolina tends to be more of a republican state. how are you going to register more voters? what is your actual path in order to achieve victory? >> south carolina is very similar to georgia in this aspect. there are a large number of unregistered african-american voters in the state. about 150,000. and a large number of latino voters, about 50,000. there will be 2.1 million people who will vote in the next election. unregistered voters alone, we have 10% that could change the electorate. we will go in and register the voters and give them a reason to come out and vote. that's the real power. that's what donald trump was able to do, give folks a reason. they felt he was fighting for them. we will make sure the folks in south carolina understand there's somebody who wants to fight for them.
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>> that makes sense but look at this, president trump's kickoff yesterday proved to be a lucrative windfall for his campaign. according to gop chairman ronna mcdaniel, trump raised nearly $25 million in less than 24 hours. >> that ain't nothing. >> that's not nothing. and the president is going to have all of the advantages of being an incumbent president while democrats go through months of beating each other out and incumbent president who reserve his resources and, with all due respect, not have wealth or republican challenges. >> can i ask quickly, wlhat is built into our political system that has allowed the last three presidents, all who have been fairly divisive at times, they've run in a divisive climate, that allowed them to be re-elected since the first time, what, 1800s we had three
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incumbents winning re-election in a row, so what is it? has it become too hard for a challenger to beat the power of incumbencisy? >> the reality is this goes to a thing we talked about earlier in the show. the big trend of polarization. by that i don't mean divisiveness and vilification but the hardening of the tribalism of the politics. the center produced almost nothing. the number of votes in play is almost none. people who were ticket-splitters don't exist anymore. democrat and republican walk in with high floors and low ceilings and you're competing for a very narrow sliver of vote. and because any incumbent for the reason we just talked about has a certain advantage, they don't have to go through a primary fight, conserve resources and spend months and months and months figuring out how to put together 270 electoral votes, that with the built-in base they have and so little to compete for gives the power of incumbency enhanced i
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think in a very polarized environment for those reasons. i would say another thing you were talking about earlier today is the big democratic change happening in the country. i want to talk to jaime about it. i think we've seen in the polls with donald trump, wow, georgia is in play. that's a state we have not focused on in past states. arizona, sktexas maybe. but south carolina, and the same changes that are happening there are happening in charleston and other places in south carolina, so is this the moment where the democrat democratic change, as much as lindsey graham's weaknesses, but that opens the door for you? >> it has opened the door. and for the first time in 30 years a democrat is representing a seat that ran against a trump sycophant. the young man who won against him said she wanted to be the
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kellyanne of congress. donald trump did all of that stuff and democrats won that seat because charleston's changing. we have all of these people moving into south carolina who are thinking differently. and so we have a shot here. i know a lot of folks say, well, it's south carolina. remember in 2008 barack obama lost georgia by seven. he lost south carolina by eight. >> and won north carolina. >> and won north carolina. >> and won indiana. >> we are on the cusp of the birth of a new south. there's a renaissance that is taking place in the south and this race is going to be the tip of the sphere. >> you look at virginia and these numbers in virginia are really the most stunning. virginia used to be a purple state is now a blue state. >> plus 17 in the latest polls for joe biden over donald trump. charlie, we've been talking this morning, i spoke earlier with the great ron fournier from michigan, talking about macomb
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county. why don't we get some information from you about racine and kenosha and other parts of wisconsin -- >> don't forget oshkosh. >> oshkosh. talk about the swing parts of that state. we've seen polls that show donald trump getting pounded by double digits. do you believe it or do you think donald trump still has a good shot of carrying wisconsin again? >> i think he does have a good chance of carrying wisconsin again. it depends what the democrats do. everything john said is absolutely true about the power of embassisy. incumbency. and i think we saw a preview last night. but the flip side is he will be running against those democrats and those democrats who want to hate america and destroy america, and it was really striking. i think four years ago he ran as the talk radio candidate. now he's running as a full internet troll. here's the question, if the
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democrats move hard enough and fast enough to the left, if the republicans can paint them as scary for open borders, not weak on security, poised to trash the economy, you will have a lot of those swing voters in places like appleton and green bay and racine and kenosha, okay, we're sick and tired of donald trump but at least that's the evil that we know. again, donald trump doesn't need to win this election. he just needs the democrats to be more toxic than he is. and he's proven in the past he can do that. >> real quickly, charlie, have you seen any anecdotal evidence of people peeling off of donald trump? >> no, not really. and this is part of the dynamic. again, john mentioned the incredible polarization and tribalization and how much of our politics is this negative partisanship. i do think with all of the things that we talk about and look at and talk about the norms being shattered and outrages,
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that's almost baked into the formula. people accepted that. they understand that the president is a liar. they understand he's a narcissist. they understand that he's erratic. but they figure at least he is not bernie sanders. he's not going to bring socialism. >> okay. adrian, i want to take a look before we go at the debate stage. let's look at day one. my gut is elizabeth warren stands out in a big way. she's the one to watch. claire mccaskill thought amy might stand out that night. what are you thinking day one? >> i agree with your assessment and claire's assessment. i think elizabeth warren will rise to the occasion. i think this is a moment for her to talk about her policies in a way that millions and millions of people will see as opposed to some of the lower numbers in the forums. i think somebody like amy will stand up and beto will stand out and tim ryan as well. >> that's the thought. >> let's look -- yes, let's look at day two. and the one to watch, obviously,
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joe biden. i think it will be interesting to see buttigieg and biden pair up. >> me too, the contrast, right? the next jen raks generation ofy versus the older i think in his first debate joe biden can rise above the fray, he can paint himself as the candidate who already achieved a nomination to an extent, which is sort of the tactic he's taking in these other states. but after the first debate, he has to be careful not to look like the inevitable candidate. if you go out to other states and look like you've got this nomination locked up, you can get yourself in a lot of trouble. >> bernie's campaign, i asked what was going on there. silence concerning bernie. weird. >> ask jamie what he thinks about bernie's campaign. >> okay. jamie? >> they're all in south carolina
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and they're trying to send lindsey home, so go, bernie sanders. >> thank you, guys. we really appreciate you being here. our next topic kind of hurts. quote, your professional decline is coming much sooner than you think. >> oh, good. >> author and columnist arthur brooks explains why next on "morning joe." t arthur brooks explains why next on "morning joe." you try hard,
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it's funny what happens when people get together. we're there. so you can be too. holiday inn. holiday inn express. joining us now, outgoing president of the american enterprise institute and columnist for the "washington post," arthur brooks. he's the author of the recent book "love your enemies: how decent people can save america from the culture of contempt." and today has a new piece out in the atlantic entitled "your professional decline is coming much sooner than you think, and here's how to make the most of it." >> thank you, arthur, for that. >> my pleasure. >> why don't you depress is first and then we'll go to your book. >> hit us. >> actually, i can enlighten you
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and make you feel good, too. i've been on this four-year personal quest to understand why so many people of accomplishment who are my age, early, mid-50s or a little bit later, they tend to feel so frustrated. they worked hard, they accomplished a lot, but they start to see their skills start to starting to slip and they don't know what to do. i'm a social scientist and i took on my independence as a surgeon or something, but i decided to use the best brain science and survey data to find out how people can design their life to actually be happier even when their skills start to slip. i think i found the answer. >> what is it? >> to begin with, people have a tendency to rage against the sense of decline ask thatnd tha big mistake. you have to go from thinking of yourself as an innovator to one of a teacher, use all the stuff
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you've learned passed on with your wisdom. the second part, people tend to want to add more stuff to your life to feel more successful. every year after 50, you should have a bucket list of everything you can take out and throw away to find yourself. who is that deep joe behind that block of marble? if you do that, you'll be happier and happier. >> there is no deep joe. it's surfaced. i actually find myself -- actually, mika and i talk about this all the time, we've spent the past several years focusing on clearing things away. >> getting rid of stuff. >> we've not only downsized our life massively, but also downsized our outlook on what we do. mike, this is sort of -- reminds me of what i told my kids in the past, being a guy from pensacola where there is always an undertow, you always teach people. you get caught in the undertow, you let it take you out and you relax as it takes you out. then when it's done, swim
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sideways to shore and then paddle in. if you fight the undertow -- >> you're gone. >> -- you go under. that's what this is. >> nothing is more liberating than excising things from your life. property, responsibilities, whatever. i'm stunned with the feeling that i have that you wrote this about us, but let me ask you, when you say they recognize their skills are being diminished, what kind of skills are you talking about? >> it depends on the profession we're in, but you find when people who are in creative professions or idea professions, they think they can go on and on until the wheels fall off. that's actually not true. there is innovative capacity and that tends to peak in someone's early 30s and tends to decline after that. there is another crystallized intelligence based on your stock, what you know, all the stuff you can synthesize and that starts to increase in your
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50s and 60s and stays high in your 70s and 80s. you want to teach early on and share your ideas later and think of yourself as an instructor and less as an innovator. that's actually one of the great secrets as well as taking away all the loss. the metaphor i really like is the first half of your life is like filling up a canvas, a beautiful painting, more and more brush strokes. the second half you're more like a sculpture. you chip away to find what's in you, but if you don't start j jetjet jettison stuff, you're going to be less than what you should be. >> see what he said? use my experience. >> always use your experience. >> i'm going to change the
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subject from the article to last night's trump rally. >> yeah. >> we saw a lot of stuff, heard a lot of stuff, saw a lot of anger, saw a lot of grievance. and i'm thinking about your book "love your enemies." >> yeah. >> how would you respond to what we saw last night? how might we take some of the insights from your powerful book, parts of which i disagree but fort most part, you know, we are in the same spot. how do we take the insights from the book and respond to what we saw last night as the launch of trump's reelection campaign? >> let me respond to the people who are offended and alarmed by it. i know people watching us today didn't like what they saw last night. let me respond speckifically to those folks. i'm on the topic of "love your enemies," this book. people say how do you expect me to love donald trump? i say donald trump is an abstraction from most americans. your job isn't to love donald
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trump, it's to love the people who love donald trump. if you want a happy life, if you want to be more persuasive to your numbers, if you want to bring more unity to america, you have the responsibility to love people around you who disagree with you. that means deep listening, trying to form some bonds -- don't agree, because disagreement is part of the compilation of ideas, but disagree better, disagree with more love. this is what dr. king taught. if you hate a man, you cannot redeem a man, is what he always said. if you want to be more persuasive, love the people who love the president if you're having a hard time with the president. >> so, arthur, i hope you come back tomorrow. i don't know if you have time, but i'd love to talk about the book for at least 10 to 15 more minutes. please come back. >> all right. >> hope hicks arriving moments ago on capitol hill for a closed
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hearing. it will be the first time the committee has heard from a white house official since the mueller report became public. we'll be following that story all day here on msnbc. five seconds or less, adrian, trump's thoughts on hillary. >> did raises his poll numbers and he just can't get her offer h -- off his mind for some reason. >> but we can quit. stephanie ruhle picks it up from here. good morning, everyone. i'm stephanie ruhle. it is 9:00 a.m. on the east coast and we have a fascinating hour ahead, starting with testimony from a woman we almost never hear from, hope hicks. she arrived on capitol hill less than 30 minutes ago. her testimony will be behind closed doors, but it is still critically important. remember, hicks was part of the trump campaign from day one. she played gatekeeper for the president and had

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