tv Face the Nation CBS August 27, 2017 10:30am-11:30am EDT
dramatic flooding everybody in the state of texas your top responsibility protect your life. >> garrett: latest on the disaster and tell you where harvey now a tropical storm is headed next. with an update from texas governor greg abbott from the trump administration the official overseeing the federal response white house homeland security advisor tom boss certificate. then we'll turn outside of tex texas. late friday, president trump pardon the maricopa county sheriff joe arpaio who defied a judge's order. in a flurry of late friday night, also reinstated ban on transgender individuals joining the military and fired another controversial advisor. plus, north korea test fired three more missiles while harvey was making landfall. how will the trump administration respond. it is our military ready, trained and equipped, series of na
jets have raised questions and doubts. it's all ahead on "face the nation." good morning, welcome to "face the nation." john dickerson is off today, i'm major garrett. tropical storm harvey is expected to be further downgraded to a tropical depression later today but national weather service says rain is expected for five to six days. storm surge and flooding are already devastating parts of texas and potentially louisiana. the houston police department has more than a thousand area residents were rescued overnight as more than 20 inches of rain fell, some areas six inches an hour. throughout the region hundred of thousands are without power, shelters have been opened up locally and in the city of houston, san antonio and austin. the national weather service reported 16 confirmed tornadoes as a result of the storm. is president trump is monitoring the situation a weekend ata
plans to visit texas later in the week. among the areas hardest hit on the texas gulf coast the city of victoria, we begin our coverage there with cbs news correspondent manuel bajorquez. >> in 24 hours, victoria received more than a foot of rain. that's nearly half of what it normally receives in a year. the downpour is not expected to stop for days. warning came to southeast texas but relief did not. officials warned the steady rainfall from the stalled system could result in flooding that is prolonged and catastrophic. last night, houston chief of police live steamed video of them self chasing people off the streets. >> stay unyour home. do not come out here. >> houston is still getting pounded and first responders worked through the night as rivers overflowed their banks where harvey came ashore as category 4 hurricane,
became ground for more destruction. out at see the coast guard already rescued dozens and texas major shipping ports are expected to remain closed for days to come. those stranded in the storm's path, the ordeal is only beginning. here in victoria, angela was unable to evacuate. >> we're not leaving built they don't know the situation, where to go. it was hard. no where to go. >> reporter: most of victoria remains without power and no running walter by the time the storm is over, some parts of southeast texas could receive several more feet of rain. >> garrett: now to cbs news correspondent mark strassmann in houston, tell us where you are in houston and what is the situation? >> reporter: more than a day into this, major, city is already -- downtown houston, i-10 behind me you cannot get
flooding like this. you find in flash flooding all over the city, many parts of the city are now island, completely surrounded by water. the rainfall totals are staggering. you have six inches in an hour. 14 inches in three hours. up to 30 inches in 24 hours and the forecast and rains are just going to keep come. there have hundreds of rescues already. and in fact the coast guard has now launched urban search and rescue operations and remember, we're just a little more than a day into harvey and this is the response that the city already needs. the area is under a flood emergency and people are being urged to stay inside, major, high and dry, find ground wherever you can. >> garrett: someone who once lived in houston, when the flood waters, high and dry isn't practical. you have to go some place. are we talking about prolonged rescue operation in ci
days? >> reporter: i don't see how they can avoid it at this point. response already is hundred of rescues, coast guard is here. i mean, what else are they going to do? only going to get worse over the next couple of days. a foot of rain is in the forecast. we already have reports, major, of people calling 911 saying we've climbed into the attic to escape rising waters, response from the police chief is, you belter have an axe to punch through the roof in case you need to. yeah, i think this is going to be response, emergency response of rescues that goes on well into mid week. >> garrett: you mentioned interstate 10 behind you, those familiar with the houston geography that's the major east-west interstate. i-45 is major north-south interstate. is it really the situation now that houston as far as vehicle traffic impassable except for the largest, most well-equipped rescue vehicles? >> reporter: i think it's fair to sayha
stay off the roads unless you absolutely have. to the roads are spotty the conditions do change but, yes, if you are driving on certain parts of the highway you are going to have trouble. i haven't heard latest about highway closure but i can tell you driving downtownf this is any indication, to get from point a to point b you have to do a loopy-loop all over the place. that is standard practice here. >> garrett: we thank you very much, mark strassmann in houston. we want to go now to austin, texas, where governor greg abbott is overseeing evolving, ongoing state response to the storm. governor thanks very much for joining us. tell us if you can what the situation is in houston and what you fear in the next few hours with the continued rain and rising flood waters? >> this appears to be either the worst or one of the worst floods houston has ever had. we're measuring it not in inches but in feet. as you probably have
are countless water rescues. our first and foremost focus at this particular time is saving lives. we're working on as many water rescues as we possibly can. and trying to find ways to get people out of harm's way. >> garrett: do you have a sense of the population that is in distress and how many boats, how many helicopters, how many resource you're going to need to move how many people to higher ground and safer terrain? >> well, i saw one report that i cannot confirm that there may be as many as 10 million people under flosh flood warnings. who could be in harm's way. the city of houston have multiple assets that are being used. the state of texas overnight has provided high profile military vehicles that will be manned by the national guard. we are also providing water rescue boats as well
local agencies are providing every resource possible to make sure that we can rescue everybody in need. >> garrett: will this be all of texas effort, governor, meaning resources from all over the state and other states brought to bear? >> yes. this is an all-in, all-resource across the state of texas. moments ago i spoke with harris county judge who is chief administrator for harris county talking about more assets. the state of texas can be providing, i'm proud to say that we've been receiving so many offers of help from all of our neighboring states, new mexico, oklahoma and louisiana, even as far away as governor cuomo in new york. is providing resource for us, so we're very appreciative of our fill low states as well as what the federal government has done. the trump administration has provided us everything that we need. >> garrett: i used to live in houston i know that the bayous, once they're filled with water there's no where for the water to go. that is the siio
you have a rescue operation that is mandatory and crucial but you are going to have a sheltering operation soon. do you have the capacity to shelter all the people you feel you might need to take higher ground, governor? >> right. the bayou, is that rise up and because of the ongoing rain and the coming days that may be a challenge that will going unabated for awhile. you are correct. there will be enormous needs for sheltering of people and so we appreciate all the help that is coming in. people want to help out by doing things like donating, best thing they dock to call 1-800-red cross or to go redcross.org we're working as we speak, assembling all the shelters for people who can go to them and who need them. >> garrett: do you foresee a need possibly to bring in stadium-like settings for those or arena-like settings for those who may be shelter for prolonged period of time, governor? >> i miss had you said.
arena or stadium type? >> garrett: yes. >> sure. we have multiple shelter locations. in fact we've had shelter locations pre-prepared in advance of this, in multiple regions across the state of texas. i envision in s and austin and other places, so we believe that because of our preparedness for this, week in advance that we'll have adequate sheltering and we're just asking for as many resources as we can get. we're very appreciative to wal-mart for what they have been providing to people here in the state of texas. but this is typical texas. that is we're challenged all the time and texas comes together to support fellow texans. weary salient and overcome this. take us a few days to overcome it. >> garrett: after katrina the u.s. military brought in logistics, supply movement and order do you foresee any
request that kind of effort to assist you? >> i have to wait and see. the collaboration of the professionals in houston and harris county combined with the assets the state is providing have it covered for now. we'll have to see where it goes from here. there are different weather predictions. one is that this storm could hover over the houston area for a couple of days. if so, this could get even worse but we will take it step by step. but also remember this, let's not forget what we are doing at the same time and let's not forget the people who were in harm's way just couple of days ago where the hurricane hit and we were involved in search and rescue missions along the coastline, place like rockport, corpus christi. we're doing two things at once. but right now we're capable of achieving all of that. >> garrett: before i legal you go, real quickly what are
you've been made aware of how are those first hit areas on the coast doing? >> right. i've seen reports of some casualties, only one report that i've heard of in the gulf coast region where the hurricane hit, i've seen some reports out of harris county but i am not capable at this time of confirming those reports and that those casualties were as a result of the storms. we will just need to wait and see. all we're focused on right now is not reports like that but we're doing everything we can to save every life we can. >> garrett: governor, thank you very much for your time. >> thank you. >> garrett: we'll be back in one minute to hear from a top white house official about what the trump administration is doing at the federal level.
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the white house response to hurricane harvey with fema and department of homeland security. those two agencies obviously are in charge of the federal response. great to see you, thank for joining us. we have a serious situation in houston, it's evolving by the hour. how serious is it, are we talking about hours ahead that could be both deadly and on an ongoing basis require massive intervention in terms of rescuing and sheltering. >> what we're focusing on is saving lives that's rightly so. that's the case. but what we're here involved with is a marathon. i think there's two messages for me today, first is that we're focused on life safety operations and the second is that we're not going to lose our focus as the next days and weeks unfold and people need continued assistance. >> garrett: there have been complimentary messages exchanged between the governor and federal government, you know those are premature, it's no time to be patting anyone on the back. that is an ongoing and deadly situation. houston was not evacuated, was
occasion for was that a mistake and does that now put lot more people in peril than otherwise would have been? >> it's not premature if you do it the right way. let me make a case for that statement. this governor has demonstrated great leadership, his emergency manager has demonstrated a great deal of experience and calm. they got together to ask for unprecedented degree of federal support prior to landfall, something that we haven't seen before. and what brought fema did and myself and president we got together and reviewed that carefully and decided on friday night that the president would issue major disaster before landfall. now, what's important about that it freed up federal resource, but also freed up federal resource for the individuals affected that is the unprecedented nature. generally what we'll do is provide money and assistance to those government, is that they dock what they have to do to save lives then wait later give money to the individuals as need demonstrates itself and presents itself. what we did said, no, we're going to provide that assistance to the individuals as well
any additional counties that require that assistance of individuals or the public they will get that and fema director has tort to add that. >> garrett: my point is that generalized assistance, what maters is how it translates on the ground. you got tremendous amount of work ahead. >> we have to make sure that the people on the ground know that theyth will be no impediment, don't have to make any prior decision, if there's competition for limited resource that make bad decisions. we make sure they of a all the resource they need to make decision based on the best interests of the individual they're trying to help and save. that's where we are today. the second part of your question was, let's not lose our focus on how bad this still is. news coverage outlets not yours are reporting that this is being downgraded, just a storm now. that is a mistake. we're going to see continued rain, upwards of 30 inches, i don't think people understand what 30 inches of rain, i don't understand. i've been around dozens of major disasters and hurricanes, hundreds of disasters, i've never seen 30 inches of rain. what we'oi
attention to this, watch the inland flooding unfold, milwaukee sure we take care of the people with their food, water and shelter needs then we're going to posture ourselves for the long-term care of the medical needy, of the elderly, of the weak. then we'll put ourselves in position of provide resource to rebuild and recover that's our priority right now. >> garrett: president has been active on twitter. explain what else the president has been doing on an hour to hour basis? >> among other things he's been talking to me and brock long and his acting homeland security secretary, plain duke. yesterday we had two hour long almost conversation with his entire cabinet all the senior leadership team. the president was actively involved in that making sure operations were coordinated unsticking any disagreements of which there were none at this stage. the vice president was very actively involved in that, in fact visit and president both called me in the last 12 hours probably dozen times. each, what you're doing making sure that we're coordinating. what i liken it to
off and out of the blocks the right way. strong preparedness and strong leadership. now have to run that race and finish well. >> garrett: what are you most anxious about? >> not a regular race, it's relay, lot of moving parts. there's a lot of effort we have to unify that effort into one direction. so what i'm worried about we don't drop the baton with this relay race we have mayors and governors and presidents and cabinet secretaries nongovernmental officials, there were 900 red cross volunteers when the vice president talked to the red cross. i think we have 3,000 people in shelters those are in churches. nongovernmental organizations that are sponsoring those things. what we have to worry about is not dropping the ball of coordination. although resource are there, now let's make sure we apply them in a way to help the people, not worry about the governments. >> garrett: oftentimes when communication are interrupted, the military can step in withstand-up communication, can provide logistics, lifts to get supplies to place, you foresee
continues and sits over the greater houston area that you might need to go in that direction? >> that's the big concern. while there's been a thousand rescue operations, now we have the figure out gain access to places that are flooded with cloud cover, we can't always use helicopters, some times we have to use ground assets. what we need to do is deliver commodities. here is what i tell people, the way we deliver commodities, federal government is in wholesale business and state and local governments they're in the retail business. we might drop off millions of liters of water in air force base which we've done or different distribution centers, the states have to dana water or the other commodities involved push it down into the local communities then distribute for people who need it. so, that distribution effort requires lot of time, coordination and logistics expertise that's what brock long is bringing to the table. >> garrett: before we leave this topic, how do you do that when water is 12 inches high, 18 inches high, four feet
you have enough boats, enough basic equipment to talk about this distribution chain you just described because if you don't i'm not sure how people get to where they need to get. >> the men and women of fema coordinate the men and women across our federal, state and local i have every bit of confidence in them. what they will do, insert their best effort. what we'll see now are people that say, maybe i'll hunker down for a day or two when the storm passes i'll be okay. the problem now they're finding they open up their door they're going to be in their home for another two or three or four days, i'm in trouble, i have to get out. what we're doing now, isn't just informing them like to influence and inspire. to influence them that are messages going out by responsible merge earn seep managers to tell people in serious flood harm in the path of these rising waters to not just go to the second floor of their home. end up trapped up there, you end up trapped in your attic want to get out of your home if you have to get on to your roof if water levels that are high. make sure you find way to get out of that home don't try t
to fix a bad hair cut you don't keep cutting. take advantage of the resource that are there, men and women of the federal government and all volunteers will come together, what makes america great right now. >> garrett: before the president signed the disaster, he pardoned sheriff arpaio, in what way does that -- that he always calls for law and order? what is law and order about orderrening a share in who was convicted of criminal contempt of court for defying a federal court order. >> he weighed the sheriff's history of service in the military and law enforcement community and decided that the 80 something year old man with his history and record of service deserved clemency. that was a very unique and personal decision the president took. he made that decision on friday night. i don't think that took up more than a minute of his time on friday night because -- >> garrett: but the -- to hide the pardon because
important news event. >> no. >> garrett: when you say weigh the totality of experiences, senator mccain and others have said this contradicts the rule of law. that there is no totality of circumstances. president the a minimum should have let the process play itself out i believe that was the advice he received from white house lawyers. why didn't he? >> i understand that that's their position, i have a great deal of respect for senator mccain and others but clearly clemency is within the body of law that he's referring to and the president and other presidents have that legal authority to issue that kind clemency. he did. as i made a point earlier today to some other questioners, this is something that previous presidents have done, only controversial when this happens. there's legitimate questions, it's pretty straight forward. >> garrett: tom bossert, thank you for coming in. >> thanku major. >> garrett: back in a moment. please, stay with us.
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>> garrett: welcome back. we turn now to foreign policy and crucial question of military readiness. we're joined by the former national security tom donilon and former vice chairman of the joints chief of staff, now also cbs news military and homeland security advisor. gentlemen, thank you very much for joining us. sandy, begin with you. want to read to you something that was from a memorandum issued by united states navy after the uss mccain episode. a fatal episode, second in the last six weeks. it says in part, the two deadly collisions, just referred to are, quote, not limited occurrences but part of a disturbing trend of mishaps involving u.s. warships. i also want to read to you something from government accounting office report of 2015.
high pace of operations that the navy use for overseas home portage ships limits dedicated training and maintenance period. periods, which has resulted in difficulty keeping crews fuelly trained and ships maintained. admiral can you tell our audience what is going on heres this a systemic problem and to the families of u.s. sailors that have to believe that their loved ones are i am peril simply by doing their jobs? >> first of all, major, our hearts reach out to the families of those sailors. they were doing something they loved, they were doing something extremely important and their loss is sad to us all. in the pacific, it's a very unique situation these are some of the most high leverage naval efforts we have in the country to create the equivalent presence that these ships provide by being based out there, you have to have three or four ships back in the united states. also got the very best stuff, our newest and plates and greatest equipment. but, they're also our hardest working ships in the navy they have very
tempo. their maintenance is very stretched, some of the basic training that they would need to operate out there is very stretched. they are out there on the edge -- >> garrett: are they overtaxed? >> the navy is obviously based on the memo, going to look deeply into that question. it's a very valid question one of the most dangerous operating environments in the world where the uss mccain had the collision is one of the most operated there, i've taken a ship through, like operating on superhighway but there aren't any overpasses and nobody is obeying the stop signs. it's pitch black. we have to have the best trained people we possibly can the navy will look very closely at that question. >> garrett: just on simple basic level admiral, how can two of the most prized vessels in the united states navy both of them hugely important strategic missions, be off line for year and a half, losing 17 sailors, wasn't anyone paying attention? this seems so basic? >> sure, collision w
details of the investigation we have to let that run its course. can be a result of human error, or a material failure or some combination of the two. there are some indications i think that perhaps one of the collisions was human error and the other might have had a material component to it. but it does wrap into your larger question, that is, the funding out there, do they have right amount of down tame for main continuance and training and the navy will dig into that. very important for not only these families but for the families of every sailor. >> and the u.s. uss mccain control do you have any knowledge or believe about that? >> they will look very closely at all aspects of that. they include in accident investigation these days, because it's so prominent. i would be very reluctant to suggest that that would be the case but has to get looked at. >> garrett: tom do donilon, the president's speech, your initial reaction to it do you believe it is wise for the president to focus autos you said not on nation building but on
operators in the cia will have a big footprint and whatever number that turns out to be. >> major, one thing following on that, the navy is a high accountability organization, we certainly owe it to our men and women of the navy to get to the bottom of this, make sure resources and training that they need and deserve. and age is really key, obviously strategically for the united states and the navy is a big part of our presence. on afghanistan, the president's speech laid out the same goals that have been laid out by the last two presidents. presidents bush 43 and president obama. the strategies are basically the same going forward here. there is some increase in the number of troops, i don't know the exact number yet but increase in the troops and be some change in the rules of engagement laid out by the president and secretary tillerson. >> garrett: and more assets brought to the table as well. >> it's essentially the same. same strategy at this
were discussed, aggressive counter terrorism efforts that is the strategy of the united states for years in south asia and in afghanistan, we -- during obama administration had effort with 150,000 troops, 100,000 american troops, regional approach, correct. i think and concept, the approach of the united states has taken. diplomatic aspect is important, military aspect and going after the safe harbors and leaning on safe havens. leaning on pakistan all part of it. you have here i think declaration of open ended strategy and commitment to carry on a counter terrorism effort in south asia. increase in troops, trying to stop the taliban, trying to go after the safe havens apps i said but have ongoing open ended counter terrorism campaign here to protect the country. >> garrett: when the white house described this they said, ti's new because there's no
they thought that was important distinction vis-a-vis obama administration. also said we're not going to describe conditions but we'll know what progress looks like. >> with respect to the conditions verse time-based point that the president made we've been in afghanistan 16 years. this has not been an effort that has lacked persistence or commitment and president recommitted to it. indeed before president obama left office in 2015 he indicated decided that in fact the united states would not withdraw given conditions on the ground in afghanistan we have here i think fundamental continuation of the strategy on open-ended basis. one thing that wasn't mentioned that i wanted to mention that i'm very concerned that afghanistan about the role the russians are playing. couple of times he worried about the russians supplying arms to the taliban that's directly -- >> garrett: all the white housis
helpful. you're saying much worse than that. >> you know, it's a violation of school resolutions, right. it's arming the enemy of our soldiers on the ground in afghanistan, very serious matter i think we should be much more aggressive. >> garrett: when you become a cbs consultant you have to deal with heart breaks and short compressions of time, in 30 seconds, is afghanistan winnable and is this a strategy that can help achieve that? >> i think it's really important to understand that the president said we're going to win in afghanistan. asking that question, what does winning mean. that can be mean at two levels. winning if you look at the overall objective for our presence there is prevention of attacks on the united states originating from that region which we've successful done the last 16 years, that is open ended nature that tom was talking about. we don't know when this is going to end. hard to put a hard stop on it but principle objective preventing attacks on the united states emanating is there.
afghanistan fundamentally as a nation. that is a tough problem. that means winning counter insurgency, fixing a corrupt government, getting the region nor stabilized that is a much harder project. >> garrett: sandy winnefeld, tom donilon, great to see you. thank you very much. we'll be right back with our political panel. too many children in this neighborhood do not graduate from high school. the kids after school, they are alone and they have nowhere to go and we tried to solve that problem by having this wonderful place where they can be children. wtef is the washington tennis and education foundation. we help the kids with their academics, and we teach them tennis.
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chief for "usa today." ben domenech is publisher of "the federalist," also joined by national editor for the "cook political report" amy walter and clarence page, columnist and senior member of the editorial board at the "chicago tribune." thank you very much for joining us. susan let me start with you. we could do entire panel of three hours friday night of last week from 8:00 p.m. to 11 p.m. we'll broad in it. let's start with that friday night. transgender military policy communicated to the pentagon and pardon for maricopa county sheriff joe arpaio. i won't ask you about the legalisms what do you think of political long term affects of those the those, will they last and linger? >> i think it is quite remarkable and of more importance than our usual discussion about latest provocative tweets that the president has posted because it goes to actual policy. it goes to policy of the pentagon, policy on pardon ovwers that we may see over and
that's entirely possible. i think that is one reason we saw a bigger reaction from some key republicans including the house speaker, paul ryan, than we have in the past. that is different. >> garrett: ben, how do you assess the pardon of sheriff joe. >> sending a message to the president's base. i'm going to take this figure who for you is a significant figure, even if they don't have necessary sort of national profile and i'm going to make it clear that i'm with you in regards to this figure. but what surprised me a little bit was the timing of this. i felt like the president might have kept this in his back pocket for a little bit longer, use it at some point to make up for some failure of legislative argument within the context of the border wall or another issue that might have come forward in the coming months. the fact that he used it now i think is just a sign that, too his base, that i'm with you, i'm going to defend the people that you like. and damn the
things they throw at me. >> garrett: clarence, the president said in reno that we need to come together and unify around common values. what do you think that joe arpaio pardon when you combine it with the speech he gave before reno in phoenix, where he talked again about -- he didn't mean to reopen the wounds but many of the remarks were determined of charlottesville, i think the pardon of joe arpaio, someone who was with then citizen trump in the birther movement, then defying federal court order about racial profiling how does that influence the credibility of what the president was talking about in reno? >> this is what we're calling it, a tuesday-thursday move. president was reasonable this week on monday and wednesday, model of reasonableness of leadership and unity. then was model of disunity tuesday and thursday were concerned. the same thing of his election that bringing the country together. he has
base-oriented president who cares about his political base and absolutely right that he sends a signal to his base with the arpaio move. but back in chicago, we'd say this is good example of gangssa politics, sending signal to anybody who might want to snitch on him or testify against him that, hey, i'm going to protect you, i'm going to watch out for my people. i'm loyal to my people. and i'll pardon joe arpaio and other people if i want to do it. and, republicans give good lip service to opposing him but they care about their agenda, too. they need him too much right now. he's getting away with it at this point. the question is how long will he get away with it. >> garrett: are you suggesting that among the most interested parties, friday night was mike flynn? >> he would be one of them. there are others out there. we just don't know that's why you have investigations to find out what is going on. trump right now has gotten in the way of that investigation, in a way that
comey says he was told, i care about loyalty, et cetera. but it's not looking good for the president in the long run right now. >> garrett: amy, let's talk about the legislative agenda such as it is. there's some important basic governing tasks that need to be accomplished in the month of september raising the debt ceiling. funding the government to avoid a shut down. and right before that he not only have arpaio all these other things you have a persistent effort with the president criticizing publicly i think last count is one fifth of the senate republican conference. >> that's not traditional way to build -- >> garrett: not what most politicians say is a team-buil team-building exercise. >> what we saw this weekend, what we continue to see from this presidency this is an isolated president. this is a guy who ran as i alone can fix this. it is lot easier to cam call pain as i alone, a message that resonated with lot of folks who were frustrated about the dysfunction in washington, frustrated about institution that they felt
he's a business guy who has been able to create things, he can come in with a fresh perspective and shake up washington. what he's been able to do that, the i alone presidency, much more difficult than the i alone candidacy. so, the question i think for whole bunch of voters, we don't know the answer to this question yet. as we go through there are going to be these check marks or sort of semester grades. the first semester grade is mid term election. are voters do they believe that this system has worked for them. do they believe that this way of doing business, yes, it's different, yes, it's chaotic but it's actually resulting in something that they like to see. we don't quite have the answer to that. but it's clear that we're going to see this over and over again. one morening about the isolating piece, too, what is interesting about arpaio that again this is isolating a president in some ways, too. he's getting hit on the left on immigration and racial profiling. that arpaio was noted
and that is where the left is hitting him. on the right the idea of the president thumbing his nose at the constitution. this is a sheriff who disregarded a judge's orders and is getting pardoned for doing so. he finds himself where he's always been, which is a man unto himself. >> let's go clear what is going on with the legislative agenda and i agree with amy. you saw this past week the placing of stories number of different stories from mitch mcconnell and his fellow travelers that clearly teed up a narrative about what is going to happen in september. which is the narrative of, we can't do x because the president is crazy or uncontrollable or something like that. mitch mcconnell has led in the senate for years, always having some villain to point to. it was ted cruz, we have to do this thing that i don't really
is forcing us to do it. he's putting trump in that position right now. and it's teeing up a situation where he's going to go to the body of the senate and base you cannily say, well, i don't really want to do this deal or i don't like this aspect of it i share your negative opinion of it but we have to do it because the president is the president. >> garrett: to that point, susan, isn't there cilvefication going on -- cilvefication, saying mitch mcconnell is weak he doesn't understand because he'd go to 51 votes on all legislation not just high profile nominees, he's creating a fall back position of blame as well. >> the vilification by republican leader of the senate and the republican president to some degree the republican speaker of the house and what that tells you when you look at the legislative agenda, nobody runs for president saying, i'll raise the debt ceiling. i'll fund the government so it doesn't have to shut down that's a level of -- that's kind of
given. not maybe a given this time, assume that mitch mcconnell and paul ryan will work together to make sure those two things happen. the larger 'general that president trump laid out, the prospects for tax reform go down every single minute just ticking down, idea that they will get back to health care in a way that is consistent with what president trump campaigned on as candidate, not maybe zero yet but getting to that point. >> garrett: clarence, they don't talk about it with any regularity, reviving the replace and repeal of the affordable care act. they may occasionally remember, that talking point, it's not part of the structural conversation at all. tax reform we had the treasury secretary saying i told you long time ago it would be done by august clearly i was wrong. he was very, very careful -- >> we got to lift the debt ceiling. >> no problem. maybe you know something we don't know. but at least on tax reform much more cautious, much more hesitant about making any kind of prediction.
don't tax me, tax that guy behind that tree that's still true. it's very complicated. more complicated than health care at this point at the same time, president trump is engaging in these orders that will appeal to his base, doesn't need congress, or executive order or partly cloudiening of arpaio. i was talking with a couple of trump supporters who were delighted with him. look all that he's accomplishing in office where me and my colleagues, look all he's not accomplishing, that's why his numbers are still dwindling. >> garrett: do you think there is important disconnect that we are in washington tend to either miss entirely or overlook? >> i think that in the context of this broader debate the real issue here is culture. i think -- >> garrett: that's the backdrop. >> trump has sort of delivered to
about american culture, that they find very appealing. i think you saw that this week in the fact that you had this embrace of this conversation about statutes and monuments as opposed to conversation about racial, radicals or things like that. the fact that so much of the conversation shifted to cities and towns that wanted to take down various confederate monuments or conversation that bill de blasio is having about getting rid of the statue of christopher columbus, that's a win for president trump, win for his people, fact that this conversation is even happening because they view him as a defender of their perspective on american culture. >> to that point he said in phoenix the media trying to take away our history and culture. >> this again -- everything that people around this table said wasn't going to work for donald trump as candidate, he defied
norm, political advice and he won, should would he listen to what anybody here in washington has to tell him. i absolutely get that. the challenge right now, though, he's not on ballot in 2018 it's his party that is on the ballot in 2018 when the president says, congress is worthless, they're not getting it done, not pushing the agenda what it says to republican voters is, why should i bother showing up to vote. because the president, who i do like and has his own brand and does his own thing, we can talk about whether ocean been successful in shaking up washington culturally defending me, he's doing all the right things. congress isn't. i'm not going to turn out and volt and that's a problem. >> garrett: any of that in alabama in the special election of the united states senate to replace jeff sessions. >> this is the awkward place, sitting incumbent he's both supported by mitch mcconnell and president trump now there's been some reporting that trump
maybe not a slam dunk for the guy that he endorsed might not be as active in promoting him as we move on the president doesn't like to lose. so he can distance himself a little bit. but this battle between the establishment was going on long before donald trump. this is the tea party debate has been raging for a long time now. the question is, what happens, does his party then become a separate brand from donald tru trump. that we don't know how that works. >> garrett: we'll have lot more with our panel in a moment. please stay with us.
>> garrett: welcome back to our outstanding political panel, susan page, ben domenech, amy walter, clarence page. the president gave a speech mob die which he did something he hardly ever does. said it went guns my instincts where i told you was wrong we need to stay in afghanistan and here is y. is that in itself an important moment of evolution for our commander in chief? >> it may be. because he listened to advisors around him and he did something, he did not rbu
as he had promised to do during the campaign. he rebuked president obama in doubling down our commitment to afghanistan that removed the timetable for withdrawal. move that the idea that, there is some moment we'll be out of afghanistan, i think now every possibility that we'll have thousands of u.s. troops there throughout the trump administration, when he leaves office this longest war will go into a fourth president's agen agenda. >> garrett: 30 second ben. >> this is just a sign to lot of supporters of president trump that in washington the swamp drains you. this is a reality here is that his policy when it comes to afghanistan is really very little different than what we've seen under hillary clinton. >> garrett: that might be the quotable quote of this panel. in washington the swamp drains you, you don't drain the swamp. thank our panel. let you know we'll be right back. david. what's going on? oh hey! ♪ that's it?
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>> garrett: that's it for us today. we will have continuing coverage of hurricane harvey, stay with us now for a special report. the mayor of houston just held a news conference tonight the weekend news tonight from houston. cbs this morning cohorse norah o'donnell will anchor from houston tomorrow morning. thank you for watching "face the nation," i'm major garrett. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
for tai cheng, brought to you by beach body. >> quijano: this is a cbs news special report. i'm elaine quijano with kristine johnson in new york. we want to update you on the catastrophic floods now hitting southeast texas. >> at least two people are confirmed dead in the devastating aftermath of hurricane harvey. it made landfall along the texas gulf coast friday evening as a category four hurricane. it hit with sustained winds of 130 miles an hour, and a powerful surge of sea water. it was the most powerful hurricane texas has seen in more than 50 years -- and the strongest to make landfall in the u.s. since 2005, the year of katrina. harvey is now a massive tropical storm -- churning over the region -- dumping buckets of rain -- withta