tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC July 24, 2019 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT
trump wants to turn it into. >> the thing i'm more focused on is they really are pushing these legal battles forward, but they are pushing them forward not quite to the emergency level. to me, the fact of almost a bigger deal right now, they have said we are not going to do any oversight and that's not acceptable. >> thanks for sharing your time. that's all in. the rachel maddow show starts now. >> good evening, my friend. i have been looking forward to be on tv tonight in a way i almost never am on any other day. i'm always glad for my job and it's the greatest job, but on a day like today it's a privilege to do this work and to talk about what we have seen. buckle up. intelligence chairman adam schiff will join us and you want to hear from him. this is the first time i will
have had. setting the stage for talking with him, i want to start with the basics. i want to start with my favorite place which is at the end. i want to start with the bottom line. >> i like to see if we can broaden the appture at the end of the hearing. from your testimony today, i gatherer you believe that knowingly accepting foreign assistance in a presidential campaign is unethical. >> and a crime in given circumstances. >> and to the degree that it undermines our democracy and institutions, we can agree it's unpatriotic. >> true. >> and wrong. >> true. >> knowingly accepting foreign assistance in a presidential campaign in a crime in certain circumstances according to special counsel robert mueller. it's a crime in certain circumstances and unpatriotic and wrong and unethical.
coming from a person who said repeatedly he was blocked by policy from bringing an indictment even if he wanted to, maybe that brings hollow for him to say. that might have been a crime. maybe it is just interesting. just dismaying to hear the actions of the president described as unpatriotic and unethical and wrong. maybe that's just a bummer. maybe that's a terrible thing to hear about your country and its leader. except special counsel mueller made clear under close questioning that there was more to it than that. >> the need to act in an ethical manner is not just a moral one, but when people act unethically it exposes them to compromise when dealing with foreign powers s that true? >> true. >> when someone acts unethically with a foreign partner, that foreign partner can expose
wrong-doing and extort them? >> true. >> that are conduct, that unethical conduct can be of a financial nature if they have a motive or business dealing, am i right? >> yes. >> if you behaved in an unethical, unpatriotic, wrong, potentially criminal manner when it comes to another country, that's not just gross and not just a dismaying thing that somebody might say about you. if you have done that, you are compromised by the foreign power. they can use what they know about you. they can expose your wrong-doing and extort you. you are compromised. if somebody associated with a preside presidential campaign is compromised, you are at risk. even if it's not the campaign. especially if it is. >> in the case of michael flynn, he was secretly doing business
with turkey, correct? >> yes. >> that could open him up to compromise, that financial relationship. >> i presume. >> he also lied about his discussions with the russian ambassador and since the russians were on the other side of that conversation, they could have exposed that, could they not? >> yes. >> if a presidential candidate was doing business in russia and saying he wasn't, russians could expose that, too. >> i leave that to you. >> i will look more closely at the trump campaign chairman, paul manafort. your investigation found troubling contacts between mr. manafort and russian verdicts during and after the campaign, correct? >> correct. >> manafort met with constantine konstantin kilimnik nick,. >> he shared private trump
campaign polling information with this man linked to russian intelligence, is that right? >> that is correct. >> in turn the information was shared with an ol' dark tied with vladimir putin? >> allegedly. >> director mueller, meeting with him wasn't enough. sharing polling information wasn't enough. he offered this russian oligarch tied to putin a private briefing on the campaign, is that right? >> yes, sir. >> mr. manafort discussed internal campaign strategy on four battle ground states. michigan, wisconsin, pennsylvania and minnesota. did he not, sir? >> that's reflected in the report. >> he hoped to be paid back money he was owed by russian or ukrainian oligarchs in return for the passage of private campaign thachgz. >>s that true.
>> contacts with russians close to vladimir putin and efforts to exchange private information on americans for money left him vulnerable to black mail by the russians? >> generally so. that would be the case. >> several individuals were also trying to make moan during the campaign in transition? >>s that true. >> paul manafort was trying to achieve debt forgiveness? >> generally that is accurate. >> michael flynn was trying to make money from turkey? >> that is true. >> donald trump trying to make moan fre moscow. >> you are talking about the hotel in moscow? . >> yes. >> i was not sure what to expect from today's testimony. i think ag noft simple was warranted. even with that studious refuse am, you still could have knocked me over with a feather as lates last night if you told me that
today we would get from robert mueller over the course of these seven hours such a blunt accounting from him. a blunt unequivocal accounting of who in the president's campaign was compromised by russia and how, specifically how they were compromised by russia, including the president. >> the spokesperson for the kremlin that the trump organization was in contact with to make that hatch, yppen, he w the phone with the office and presumably the russians could record that conversation, could they not? >> yes. >> if trump was saying i have no dealings with the russians and they had a tape recording, they could expose that, could they not? >> yes. >> that's the stuff of nightmares, is it not? >> robert mueller's answer was that it points up the need for a strong counter intelligence
effort, which i thought was a plucky way to put it. mr. mueller would not say how the country handled that nightmare or even whether it's yet been resolved and whether it's over. >> the special counsel mueller, i want to ask you something important to the nation. did your investigation evaluate whether president trump could be vulnerable to black mail by the russians because the kremlin knew that trump and his associations lied about connections to russia related to the trump tower deal? >> i can't speak to that. >> he can't speak to that. could trump be vulnerable to black mail because trump and associates were lying about the deal and the kremlin knew it and as adam schiff put it, they might have tape recorded conversations with the trump organization about that deal that the president was lying about. they could have black mailed him that way. did you look into that?
i cannot speak to that. we will take that as a maybe. a lot happened at this historic testimony. robert mueller seemed older than his 74 years. he seemed less on top of matters than anybody who has worked with him in the past expected in terms of his appearance today. there had been the justice department threat ahead of today's testimony that mueller shouldn't tread outside the bounds of his report and shouldn't talk about uncharged third parties and shouldn't talk about decision making processes and did reference those boundaries at times, but surely went outside them at times as well. he did so in way that is it seems point the neon arrows toward what is we couldn't and didn't get from him that seems imperative to chase down. given the dire descriptions he gave about the president's conduct and the conduct of the president's campaign and ongoing
implications for the country. it seems like they gave us two big directions that feel imperative to try to get to the bottom of this still open scandal. the first one is that mueller's personal performance today puts a spotlight on the man sitting next to him. his deputy is described as the deputy special counsel and told he ran the day to day operations of the investigation and the rest of mueller's staff. there was so much that mueller seemed detached from and seemed to be at times taking it on trust that certain things were in his report or not. whether or not he personally recalled those things. because of that performance today, that lights a fire under the need to speak to the people on his team who actually did the work. if congress does want more substantive and detailed answers from the people who actually did that work, it would seem like
they would have to pursue conversations now and testimony now from zebly and the other members of his team including those sitting behind him in the hearing room and those we have seen involved in the sears court cases. we will talk more about this over the course of this hour, but one of the outcomes of the hearing is a renewed interest by congress in hearing from the people on mueller's team and did the work beyond the sort of distant figure head figure of mueller himself which was revealed today by what i think was a surprising affect. the second thing that i think sort of comes out of today's perriper i hearing is a renewed focus at least by democrats on figuring out the money side of it and the financial side. all day long today, much to my surprise, robert mueller
affirmed the money stuff that led them all into compromising positions with russia. when it came to following the financial paths in his investigation and following the money, it seemed for mueller that maybe they didn't do that. >> other than trump tower moscow, your report does not address or detail the president's financial ties or dealings with russia, correct? >> correct. >> similarly, since it was outside your purview, your report does not address whether russian oligarchs engaged in money laundering through the president's businesses, correct? >> correct. >> of course your office did not obtain the president's tax returns, which could otherwise show foreign financial sources. >> i'm not going to speak to that. >> the special counsel said he wouldn't speak to that.
special counsel did not address or detail financial ties or dealings with russia or money laundering through the president's business. special counsel would say nothing when it comes to the president's tax returns. your office did not obtain the president's tax returns which could show foreign financial sources, correct? i'm not going to speak to that. did they follow that money trail? simultaneously today, mueller is talking about how foreign compromise of the president and his campaign were driven by the entanglements they lied about that russia knew about and could expose at will. it was money and financial interest and lies about entanglements that were the roots of the compromise he described with president and multiple people and his campaign, but he won't say out loud how they pursued that line
of inquiry. on the president's taxes alone, this is now kind of an urgent mystery. you might remember after the mueller report came out before today, the president said he is sure that robert mueller looked at his taxes and since he didn't say anything about that, that must mean they are totally clean and clear. remember when the president started making that case? you may also remember that amy klobuchar is running for president and she at one point asked william barr if that was true if robert mueller obtain and looked at trump's taxes as part of the mueller investigation. barr told her in his testimony that she should ask robert mueller that if she was interested in getting that question. senator klobuchar did ask that question in writing. did you obtain trump's tax returns and look at them as part of the investigation. she got no answer from mueller. today in person under
questioning from congressman krishnamoorthi, he still wouldn't answer it, while he multi simultaneously was opened up to being compromised by the hostile foreign power as were several other people. did mueller look at trump a taxes or didn't he? shouldn't someone? given what mueller just said about the financial basis of trump's compromise by russia. if you didn't think it was urgent before, it's weird that this is the first president not to release the tax returns. it's interesting and a fascinating legal matter. it's never been a more urgent matter than today after mueller directly linked the compromise by russia to the foreign entanglements and the business pursuits he maintained concerning the government of russia that he lied about and russia knew about and could expose at will.
now, given that new urgency around the president's taxes, i should tell you that literally eight minutes after the close of the mueller hearings today, eight minutes after the second hearing, the president filed an emergency writ in federal court to try to block his taxes from being released in new york state. an emergency writ. eight minutes after the hearing wrapped up. nervous much? the other thing that nobody expected from robert mueller was his blunt accusation and assessment of what the president did with regard to russia releasing the stolen material they hacked from the democrats to try to benefit his campaign. >> for we can put up slide six. this just came out. wikileaks. i love wikileaks. donald trump, october 10, 2016. this wikileaks stuff is unbelievable. s it tells you the inner heart.
this wikileaks is like a treasure trove. donald trump, october 31st, 2016. boy, i love reading those wikileaks, donald trump, november 4th, 2016. do any of those quotes disturb you, mr. director? >> i'm not sure. i would say -- >> how do you react to it? >> it's problematic is an under statement in terms of what it displays in terms of giving some, i don't know, hope or boost to what is and should be illegal activity. >> problematic is an under statement. could maybe be the theme of the day today. robert mueller said the president's encouragement and praise and promotion of the way rugs were releasing the information they had hacked and stolen to help his campaign,
robert mueller said that was a boost to illegal activity and problematic to see the least. immediately after that show stopping moment in the hearing, robert mueller went on to suggest that other interactions between the trump campaign and people associated with the president and the russians and their cut outs, those may still be the subject of ongoing investigation. >> volume one, page 59. donald trump, jr. had direct communications with wikileaks during the campaign period. on october 3rd, 2016, wikileaks sent another direct mess origin to trump, jr. asking you guys to dem nate a link alleging candidate clinton advocating drones to attack julian assange. trump, jr. said he had already done so. same question. this behavior at the very least disturbing? your reaction? >> disturbing and subject to investigation. >> director, thank you.
you made it clear that you think it unethical to put it politely to timeout a foreign service like wikileaks publishing stolen do you means in a presidential campaign. >> certainly calls for investigation. >> certainly calls for investigation. what you just quoted pea o me about the way donald trump, jr. communicated with wikileaks, that is subject to investigation. oh. that touting of wikileaks publishing stolen documents calling for an investigation? though they are happening? there is an indictment against julian assange and wikileaks which relates to stuff that well proceeds the election. this suggest that is not just what wikileaks did, but also the president's son and his engagement with them is subject to investigation and calls for investigation and implying that it is under investigation. by the way, while we are on the subject, there are other investigations still happening that robert mueller described
for the first time. here's the part that trump national security adviser mike flynn swallowed his tongue. >> individuals can be subject to black mail if they lie about their interactions with foreign countries, correct? >> true. >> for example, you successfully charged former national security adviser michael flynn of lying to federal agents about his conversations with russian officials, correct? >> correct. >> since it was outside the purview of your investigation, your report did not address how flynn's false statements could pose a national security risk because the russians knew the falsity of those statements, right? >> i cannot get into that, mainly because there are many elements of the fbi that are looking at many aspects of that issue? >> currently? >> currently. >> many elements of the fbi that are looking at different aspects of that issue. that's in response to questions
about mike flynn's lying about his voflment with the russian government and whether that could pose a national security risk to the united states because the russians knew about the falsity of his statements, therefore compromised him, therefore in a position to put the united states over a barrel because they had their national security adviser by the you know what. so that's new. mr. mueller telling us that there are many elements of the fbi looking at aspects of that issue right now. currently we know from the appendix to mueller's report that there are a bunch of ongoing cases we don't know the names of. in appendix d, there were 14 cases that were described as criminal matters from mueller's investigation that were ongoing. they were all plaqued out and not able to say what any of the ongoing marries was. one of the cases listed in that a pentics by name was not
blacked out and transferred to other prosecutors and the case of mike flynn's business partner who was a trump transition official and flynn's former business partner. just yesterday bijan i can on was convicted in federal court. that case is not one of the 14. that is blacked out that we can't name. that according to mueller's report is spun off from the investigation. today with these references that mueller made surprising everyone as to ongoing investigations and thing that is the fbi is looking at, that was a good remind they're we don't know what any of this stuff is behind the redactions. the reference by muler to an ongoing investigation by flynn and compromise to a foreign country and wikileaks and those were all very much put on the table by mueller. presumably lots of billable hours for the attorneys for those gentlemen. we shall see. that was mueller propping open the door into a wing of this
house we didn't know existed. all in all, as you can tell, there was a bunch that happened they thought was surprising. even some of stuff you might have predicted would come out because of the way we knew we wanted to walk through his findings, all in all, look at today as a whole. it was a remarkable day for the pedestrian. chin up and make it seem like they had a great day and nobody died. they did not have a great day today. this was the president's day today. breathtaking. >> director mueller, the president has repeatedly claimed that your report found no obstruction and that it completely and totally exonerated him. that is not what your report said, is it? >> correct. it is not what the report said.
>> the report did not conclude that he did not commit obstruction of justice. is that correct? >> that is correct. >> what about exoneration. did you exonerate the president? >> no. >> your report expressly states it did not exonerate the president. >> for does. >> adviser flynn lied about discussions with the ambassador related to sanctions? >> that is correct. >> michael cohen lied about trump moscow, is that correct? >> yes. >> george papadopoulos lied to the fbi about communications of russia's possession of dirt on hillary clinton? >> yes. >> the president's campaign chairman lied about meetings that he had with someone with ties to russian intelligence, is that correct? >> that's true. >> on january 25th, 2018, the "new york times" reported that "the president ordered mcgahn to have the department of justice
fire you." is that correct? >> correct. >> after the news broke, did the president go on and deny the story? >> do not know. >> in fact the president said "fake news, folks, fake news. a typical "new york times" fake story, correct? >> correct. >> your investigation found substantial evidence that mcgahn was ordered by the president to fire you, correct? >> yes. >> did mr. trump, jr. or counsel communicate intent to invoke against self incrimination. >> i'm not going to answer that. >> the president did not claim the fifth amendment? >> i'm not going to talk to that. >> next, the president told the secretary rob porter to pressure mcgahn to make a false denial. is that correct? >> that's correct. >> you found the "said he wanted
to write a letter to the file for our records, that is correct? >> correct. >> the president is asking his white house counsel, don mcgahn, to create a record that mcgahn believed to be untrue while you were in the midst of investigating the president for obstruction of justice, correct? >> generally correct. >> mr. began was an important witness? >> i would have to say yes. >> from your testimony i galther you believe knowingly accepting foreign assistance in a campaign is an unethical thing to do. >> and a crime. >> and a crime. >> and a crime, bottom line. that's what today was like for the president of the united states. that's what it was like for the presidency of the united states. has a president ever be substantially accused of the litany of things that they have been accused of, not just in
print, but out loud to investigate his behavior or anything close to this. that interjection on the last question and a crime, yes, mr. chairman, and don't overlook that. it's a crime, too. a remarkable day in the history of this country and the chairman of the committee, adam schiff joins us live next. , adam schif joins us live next ♪ ♪ [ text notification now that you have] new dr. scholl's massaging gel advanced insoles with softer, bouncier gel waves, you'll move over 10% more than before.
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my concern is, have we established a new normal from the past campaign that will apply to future campaigns so that if any one of us running for the u.s. house, any candidate for the u.s. senate, any candidate for the presidency of the united states, where if a hostile foreign power is trying to influence an election has no duty to report that to the fbi or other authorities? >> i hope this is not the new normal, but i fear it is. >> perhaps one of the most
chilling moments in our committee was when he expressed the fear that this become the new normal. and of course i think what is animating that fear of the director, what certainly animates it for me is the fact that even after the nightmare of the last 2.5 years, the president of the united states will not forswear receiving foreign help again. >> joining us live is adam schiff, chairman of the house intelligence committee. today must have been exhausting. i appreciate you taking the time to be with us tonight. >> great to be with you. >> you probably know by now i follow this story closely and i have read the mueller report and paid as much attention to this story as humanly possible. even still, robert mueller to my eye covered a bunch of topics in your hear thag never expected them to touch. i feel like he cracked open new avenues of investigation. i did not expect to hear him talk about.
did you learn new information that you didn't know before heading into the hearing? >> it wasn't so much for those of us on the committee new information and some of us have seen the more complete versions and have a better window into the other issues, but new and fresh hearing it from him and you're right, he did go beyond the report. the report doesn't talk about the lack of ethics and morality and lack of patriotism that characterized the trump campaign. it doesn't characterize as directly as he did today how the president's statements are false and so it was powerful hearing it from him. that moment you just played and the questions he had with peter welch, that was the most chilling. it was so true and all of this of course is forward looking. we are protecting ourselves in the next election and what do we have to expect and the point i tried to underscore at the end, we can't control what the
russians do, but we can control what we do. if we can control what we do from foreign intervention, got help us. >> i didn't expect as much detail as we got, but him talking about the relationship between hidden financial ties and compromise by a foreign power. he talked about how financial ties that are elicit and potentially illegal that are hidden and being lied about is perfect leverage for a hostile foreign power to extort a number of different people in the president's orbid and indeed, the president himself. mr. mueller was not specific or at least not definite when asked whether or not his investigation, therefore, looked at the president's finances and tried to see if the financial records would show evidence of those ties or might be able to detail the ways in which the president might have been
compromise. do you have clarity on whether or not they looked at the president's finances and looked at his taxes? >> i don't think the mueller team looked at his finances and followed the money. i think they really -- and the document bear this is out. they viewed their mission as quite narrow and loorked at russian intervention and the social media campaign and narrowly trying to assess did they conspire with either one of the two things? beyond that, they didn't look. the one glimpse we got is when mueller said we got this counter intelligence compromised information and fed it out to the bureau. i think mueller viewed his job as to determine if he can prosecute on these issues some of the other case were farmed out, but in terms of whether he observed the red line that donald trump tried to set around his finances, he wouldn't answer directly, but indirectly it
looks like it was observed. >> does that create new justification for congress being able to inspect the records themselves. does that bolster what they are pursuing in court as the president sues to stop compliance with subpoenas for those materials. >> it does and underscores how falsely the argument is if mueller never looked into the issues of compromise. the nation is exposed. if key can't tell mueller talked about and couldn't speculate whether o about whether mueller is motivated because he wanted to do the deal and he can't bring himself to criticize putin or something else and the fact that we the american people also don't know. we have to speculate is the problem. so i think it falls on the congress to do oversight and to make sure they are pursuing
policies on their interest and they shouldn't have clearances, we are starting to get some of those answers. we had a lengthy meeting with one of mueller's staff on the counter intelligence issues, but there is a lot we don't know and a lot the justice department is withholding and we would like to get that information. >> over the course of the two hearings as the hours stitched and as robert mueller i don't think increasingly, but persistently seemed old. it seemed like he was struggling at times to hear and maybe struggling to comprehend compound questions in terms that were complex. robert mueller today and i don't mean this in an adhomonym way, but seemed less vital than i and a lot of people expected. i don't mean to suggest he is incapable, but he was not on top
of everything he was talking about. my mind was wonder to the gentleman sitting next to him, aaron zebly and the guys sitting behind him and the senior members of his team. you have spoken with at least one member of mueller's team recently about counter intelligence. do you expect you will be calling mr. zebly or any of the other members of mueller's team, particularly mueller himself to get more from his team who seems to have done the work about what the investigation was like? >> you may have noticed this morning that one person was particularly unhappy that aaron zebly was there and sworn in as a witness. that was the president who was tweeting about it. another person who was very unhappy about it was bill barr. the justice department did not want him there. we wanted that precedent, frankly, that the members of the team can be called as witnesses
and can be sworn in and provide testimony that the doj tried to make a claim of a policy and doesn't hold water. this is more true for people who have left the justice department. we are going to press to get the answers and whatever format and whatever means we need to. i think the short answer is some of this work was done and we will find out what was done. where there was no follow-up where they were not allowed to pursue leads or allegations, we will do that ourselves. at the end of the day, we want to make sure we leave no stone unturned when it comes to protect the country from people who are not compromised. >> should we expect open hearings with other members of mueller's team? >> wouldn't rule it out. we think that today's hearing was very powerful and very important in bringing that report to life and hearing it through mueller's own words and we look for other opportunities
to do that, too. some of the counter intelligence questions, it may be more difficult, particularly if it involves ongoing litigation or classified matters. where we can, we would like to do hearings like this in public that help inform the nation of the dangers we face. >> for we learned anything, it's about the power of an open hearing. you have to do a lot of things behind closed doors, but to the extent that the country has the opportunity to hear it from the horse's mouth s there an appetite for it and is it valuable. >> this is why the judiciary is working so hard to get don mcgahn to testify. that's very important. >> adam schiff, chairman, i know it's a big day. much appreciate it. >> thank you. >> much more ahead tonight. stay with us. >> thankou y >> much more ahead tonight stay with us , you eat right... mostly. you make time... when you can. but sometimes life gets in the way, and that stubborn fat just won't go away.
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mueller report and now an entire day of testimony from robert mueller, before all of that, there was a russia investigation that preceded him. our nation's first and contemporaneous attempt to understand russia's de facto invasion into american democracy in our 2016 presidential election. our next guest was there for the beginning of this premueller investigation. he served as a top official in the justice department's national security division. his work, particularly the steps he took to strengthen the country's laws about registering as a foreign agent, that led to ultimately the biggest convictions we have seen in the scandal, including the conviction of the presidential campaign chairman, paul manafort and michael flynn and the trump transition official, bijan kian. thanks for making the trip. good to have you here. at the justice department, you
dealt specifically with counter intelligence matters and that came up in a big way. i was struck by an exchange adam schiff had with the compromising behavior around the president and by the president as a counter intelligence nightmare. robert mueller did not answer that directly. that's your characterization, not mine. how did that strike you. was that fair? >> it was fair for him to ask the question, but i understand why he demured on responding to it. the generic answers that would present and precisely why they went to the white house and told them about concerns regarding michael flynn. they said he was a pinata for the russian security service. >> he was suggesting that the trump tower moscow deal and they is secret secrecy around that
that too was a counter intelligence nightmare because it gave the russians the ability to expose something about a leading candidate that could potentially extort him. >> anything a foreign power could exploit that they want to keep a secret creates a vulnerability and the national security of the united states that has access at risk. if you are joe blow or jane doe and filling out the security clearance questionnaire, you are going to have to respond about whether there is anything going on in their life that causes to be subject to compromise. >> what's the remedy with someone in an important position with implications for national security has been compromised. what do we do to fix that? having a secret real estate deal with russia is not a crime. but if it is potentially a point of leverage and extortion
against a candidate and a president, how do we fix that? >> you undergo a vetting process that any responsible transition operation would in the run up to taking office. that didn't happen because as we have been let to believe, the trump campaign didn't think they would be successful and they were playing catch up. they cut a lot of corners for people in the administration. >> they would not be in a position to vet the president. >> fair enough. >> to me, i feel like we are back to the brass tax questions that started the investigation in the earliest stages because of robert mueller's blunt, quick answers to all of the answers today. how did you feel watching it today and thinking about what the country has been able to absorb given your early work on the investigation? >> there were no major
revelations, but it was important for the country to hear his clear voiced affirmations of basic things in the hospital if one had the time to read it that they welcomed derogatory information and welcomed the dumping of documents, derogatory to the a posing candidates stolen through unlawful cyber activities. even if they didn't result in admissible evidence to charge criminally with the conspiracy, they do not reflect in a welcoming way of the trump campaign. there were minor things and it was important for the country not to view what happened today as a summation of this matter. to paraphrase that this is not the end of a nightmare. we are in the middle of a nightmare and special counsel mueller emphasized it today as
he did in remarks weeks ago by calling attention of not just the historic threat, but ongoing present danger that requires acknowledgement by the president of the nature and severity of this threat in continuous leadership, mobilizing all national power to understand and counter that threat. >> one of the things that was unusual today was that some republican members of congress involved in both committees did at least in a sort of pro forma way did suggest that the russian threat was real and we deal with it as a country heading into 2020. there has been a party line take on that with a party line lead and it's fashionable to deny there was a real threat. >> it's contempable not to stand shoulder to shoulder with the fbi and intelligence community to call it what it is. it is a threat to subvert american democracy in the
election that comes before us and for members of congress to equivocate about the nature of that threat and what needs to be done is doing an enormous disservice. >> i want to ask you one last question. i was surprised to hear mr. mueller talk about ongoing investigations, things calling for an investigation and being the subject of an investigation. at one point there were numerous elements who were looking at something. those were -- he brought them up in questions about mike flynn and donald trump, jr. and wikileaks. how should we understand? >> michael flynn is not a threat. he is out of government. kislyak is no longer. the election bleeds into the next cycle and there was continuation of that that counter intelligence at large. the other specific matters have
live strands and i'm not sure what he was talking about. >> the live strands are of acute interest. the former chief of counter intelligence at the justice department. if you are interested to see the people getting charged with the registration act and that's not something we used to pay a lot of attention to. a lot of legal ground work was laid. we'll be right back. stay with us. as laid we'll be right back. stay with us when i book at hilton.com i get to select my room from the floor plan... free wi-fi...
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elections deserve the attention of every american. other leaders and intelligence including from fbi director christopher wray in the senate. the alarm bells are going off and yet the republican leader of the senate, mitch mcconnell and mark warner of virginia unexpectedly took to the senate floor to demand a vote on this once and for all. demand a vote on legislation to try to protect the 2020 election from foreign interference. >> in the nearly three years since we uncovered the attack on democracy, this body has not held a single vote on stand alone legislation to protect our elections. just a month ago, the president of the united states sat in the oval office and by dismissing
this threat gave russia the green light to interfere in future elections. if a foreign adversary tries to offer assistance to your campaign, your response should not be thank you. your response should be a moral obligation to tell the fbi. >> one of the pieces of legislation to be the fire act to make sure that attempts to interfere in future presidential elections are promptly reported to the fbi. despite the warn about it despite the plea, as you might guess, mitch mcconnell once again blocked this request to get a vote on that legislation as well as the other election security this year. it makes you wonder what it is he is so worried about if he might pass some of that legislation and might do it. we'll be right back. t do it. we'll be right back. ♪
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>> i love my job and consider my job to be the single greatest job in the country. that said, a day like today is something special. i hope that members of congress and the leadership in congress recognizes that open hearings before the cameras are really, really important for the country in terms of dealing with even the most controversial issues in terms of airing out stuff that we are fighting about as citizens and partisans and independents and voters and when it matters to the country, having us all have the same information is solid to move forward with a higher level conversation and more constructively debate and enables us to be better citizens. i'm super glad that congress had open hearings and hope they are the first of many and ready to