Skip to main content

tv   Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  February 13, 2017 3:00pm-4:01pm PST

3:00 pm
happening now. breaking news. flynn fall-out? the white house press secretary says the president is evaluating the controversy surrounding his national security adviser and his contacts with russia. but another white house aide claims michael flynn has the president's full confidence. so what is really going on behind closed doors? big, big problem. mr. trump promises to show strength against north korea just hours after a provocative new missile test. we're getting new details about why the pentagon is escalating the warning that kim june you know,'s threat is back. danger in restaurant. a discussion on an open terrace in mar-a-lago where patrons were within earshot and posting photos online. was national security protocol
3:01 pm
compromised. damage to the nation's tallest dam prompts massive evacuations and fear of cats if i can flooding. the threat to hundreds of thousands of people right now. we want to welcome the viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in the "the situation room." >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. we're following the fate of the national security adviser floif. white house sean spicer says the white house is quote evaluating the situation. there are concerns within the administration that flynn play have lied to pence about whether he discussed sanctions with russia's ambassador before inauguration day. spicer's statement coming just minutes after white house counselor kellyanne conway said something very, very different publicly claiming that flynn has the president's, quote, full
3:02 pm
confidence. also this hour, a disturbing new assessment of north korea's efforts to develop a nuclear weapon that could reach u.s. shores. u.s. officials tell cnn that a weekend test launch shows kim jung un's regime is making progress. claiming the nation is a quote big, big problem, by trump. he was not asked that he detail questions about the missile test during his news conference with the canned yan prime minister. mr. trump refusing to call on major news organizations, also managing to escape questions about michael flynn. i'll talk about all of those stories and more with a democratic on the senate relations committee chris kunz. he's standing by with analysts and guests as we bring you full coverage of the day's top stories. let's go to our correspondent
3:03 pm
brianna keeler. based on what we just heard from sean spicer, michael flynn's future does not seem to be settled at all and president trump remains silent as he met with another crucial ally the canadian prime minister. >> today we heard president trump talk border security but his press conference was noteworthy for what was not discussed, michael flynn's future now that it was reported he may have lied about his conversation was a top russian official. >> reporter: as president trump and justin trudeau appeared at the white house today they were quick to exchange pleasantries on trade, women's issues and fighting terrorism. >> our two nations share much more than a border. we share the same values. >> no other neighbors in the entire world are as fundamentally linked as we are. >> reporter: but their differences became evident when a canadian asked this.
3:04 pm
>> president trump you seem to suggest that syrian refugees are a trojan horse for terrorism while the prime minister hugs ref joes and welcomes them with open arms. are you confident the northern border is secure? >> we can never be totally confident. but we have done a great job. we're actually taking people that are criminals, very, very hardened criminals in some cases with a tremendous track record of abuse and problems and we're getting them out. >> reporter: in trump in what has become common promise used the issue to brag about his election victory. >> i'm just doing what i said i would do when we won by a large electoral vote. a lot of people are happy right now. >> reporter: but trudeau quick to highlight canada's openness to refugees.
3:05 pm
he side stepped a question about trump's travel ban. >> the last thing canadians expect is for me to come down and lecture another country on how they choose to govern themselves. >> reporter: today's q&a session had one glaringo mess, no discussion of trump's embattled national security adviser, michael flynn. it's come to light flynn may have spoken to the russians about lifting sanctions before trump entered the white house then apparently lied about it to vice-president mike pence who backed flynn up in january. >> they did not discuss anything having to do with the united states decision to expel diplomats or impose a censure against russia. >> we'll take a couple of questions. >> reporter: while the topic of flynn's future didn't come up when the president called on a conservative outlet, late today after reporters made an issue of the white house not creasing the
3:06 pm
traverse yoi, counselor to the president kellyanne conway went on msnbc to tap thing down. but then, wolf, white house press secretary sean spicer said the president is evaluating the issue. trump is speaking to vice-president pence about the conversation that pence and flynn had, that also according to spicer and one source tells cnn, wolf, that trump has expressed his disease pleasure to flynn with him in recent days. >> brianna, thank you very much. he's raising a lot of questions about security by discussing the missile threat over dinner with the japanese prime minister. there were lots of people close by, they were watching, they were listening, they were taking photos, posting online. let's bring in michelle kosinski. michelle, this is not necessarily the typical way to handle a very sensitive situation like this.
3:07 pm
>> well, no, wolf, we have former national security advisers expressing surprise. we don't know the sensitivity of what could have been audible or sensitive at that time. the unique situation was absolutely not lost on the people around who were watching it unfold, especially as officials were pointing cell phones, which are hackable at the documents they were lock at in an attempt to see them better. >> reporter: tonight, pentagon officials tell cnn north korea's latest launch shows kim jong un's missile program is moving forward. >> north korea is a big, big problem. and we will deal with that very strongly. >> reporter: as the president considers how to respond, questions about how the white house handled the chaotic hours after north korea's leader celebrated test launching a ballistic missile, 300 miles off the korean coast towards japan.
3:08 pm
it happened saturday night, just as president trump, the japanese minister, wives and aides were settling in into dinner at mar-a-lago in florida. a flurry of activity in trump's table. one person posted, holy moly. the president was seen reading documents with president abe, aides holding the flashlights on the cell. >> that shouldn't happen in an uncleared facility. the basic problem is what do we do with the crazy north korea. >> reporter: eventually the leaders left the table and held an imprompt u press conference. >> translator: north korea's recent launch is intolerable. >> reporter: president trump's response was one sentence, 24
3:09 pm
words. >> i just want everybody to understand and fully know that the united states of america stands behind japan, it's a great ally, 100%. >> reporter: not quite the same tone as when he tweeted a stern warning in january. north korea just stated that it is in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon, capable of reaching parts of the u.s. it won't happen. and wolf, just now we're getting information from the white house press secretary who is saying that president trump and prime minister abe at that dinner were not discussing classified information. he says they were briefed prior to the dinner in a classified setting and what all the hub ub was about was just the logistics for what followed. >> michelle, thank you very much. we're learning more about north korea's missile test at the same time and why it's causing aalarm
3:10 pm
at the pentagon. barbara starr. >> just look at the military hardware. what u.s. officials are telling us this was the first test with a land-based launch of what has been a submarine based launch of a ballistic missile. this is an advance by the north koreans able to now launch this from land from a fixed site. it also had solid fuel. that means it is much more difficult for u.s. satellites to detect the early fueling of the missile because you don't see the hoses, the tanks, you don't see all the materials. this launch went father than any previous surface to surface ballistic missile launch from north korea. launch flew across north korea and landed about 300 miles out
3:11 pm
in the sea of japan to the east. there are some key military advances here by the north koreans all of it underscoring the pentagon's concern that the north koreans plan to continue their advance testing program and plan to continue to develop a ballistic missile eventually with a warhead that could potentially someday reach the united states. wolf. >> very disturbing. barbara, thank you. barbara starr at the pentagon. let's talk about the president's response to north korea. democratic senator chris kunz of delaware is joining us. >> thank you, wolf. >> are you worried about the trump administration and its response to the north korean threat? >> i'm very worried. both about the lack of confidence expressed in the national security adviser because of credible reports that he lied to the vice-president and that he misled the administration and because of how this incident at mar-a-lago
3:12 pm
was conducted. there is serge enough evidence here to suggest that in a meeting with a head of state with a close ally in a close circumstance, president trump was showing off for his country club guests. these sorts of important briefings between heads of state should be happening in a classified setting not over cocktails and appetizers. i'm concerned that north korea continues to make steady progress, and we don't have a plan to deal with this other than looking to china in being our partner in reigning in north korea. >> the chinese don't seem to be doing much. >> what concerns me about president trump's diplomacy was he took a call from the taiwan and set on its ear a 40-year established one-china policy where there was a settled understanding about how we would handle that. just this past weekend president
3:13 pm
trump was forced to take that back in a conversation with chi sing ping. >> there is one china and taiwan -- as far as you know did he win some concessions from the chinese? did they promise, for example, they would squeeze the north koreans and slow down their ballistic program. >> as far as i know, no. i would assume president trump would boast about having getting that concession. he made a misstep in his first days as president and had to walk that back, back to neutral. >> he blamed that he didn't get anything in exchange. he sees himself as the great negotiator. he knows how to deal with other countries and other people. >> there is a very troubling article in the front page of the "new york times" suggesting that within the national security counsel, staff, are concerned that president trump won't read anything more than one page and
3:14 pm
wants things with big graphs and big maps. and the lack of trust in michael flynn and lack of engagement with some of the career professionals about how to engage with china, and north korea it was a very alarming article and very disconcerting. >> if michael flynn lied to the vice-president and others, the white house chief of staff, white house press secretary denying that the subject of sanctions ever came up in that phone conversation with the russian ambassador to the united states, should he step down? >> that's a call for president trump to make, but if i were in his shoes, absolutely. i would not rely on a national security adviser who on such an important and sensitive issue as outreach to the russians before the inauguration on the issue of sanctions lied to the vice-president and put me as president in the very uncomfortable situation of having to publicly distance myself from that position. >> do you trust the national security adviser with michael flynn as the head of that national security adviser. he's the president's chief
3:15 pm
national security adviser? >> i have real concerns about his background and experience, what he's said and done in the past and his relationship with the intelligence community and nsc. that is the president's call to -- whether to continue to rely on a national security adviser who is so compromised by his uneven relation with the truth. >> what does it tell you that at 4:00 p.m. eastern kellyanne conway says the president has full confidence with flynn. then the press secretary sean spicer says the president is evaluating the situation. no repeat of the words full confidence. and then they put out another statement saying that that is the operative statement, that's what the president wants the public to know, that the situation is being evaluated? >> this is the first three weeks of a new administration, but it suggests they haven't gotten their sea legs. and there is a keystone aspect
3:16 pm
to their operation. having concern on the message on such an important issue on whether the national security adviser retains the president's confidence or is being reviewsed, is a message control issue and i think that this frankly does not reflect well on the trump administration. >> we heard on the democratic leader, chuck schumer, he wants an independent investigation of flynn, conversations he had with the russian ambassador to the united states and in the meantime he wants flynn's national security clearances to be revoked. do you agree with him? >> that's a strong step. i'll support senator assumer in those two steps to call for the security clearance to be suspended until there is some resolution about whether or not he intentionally misled the vice-president on such an important national security matter as to whether in advance of the inauguration he was engaging in his own conversations of diplomacy. >> do you think he should have
3:17 pm
national security -- >> it's very troubling the role that he played in advocating for russia today, his very close relationship with vladimir putin and with the propaganda organs of the russian government particularly the ongoing investigation about whether or not there was communications of the trump campaign and the russian government. >> just ahead, did the canadian prime minister deliver a jab to president trump today regarding his travel ban? i'll asking the canadian foreign minister. she's here in washington. you see her live. we'll discuss what happened in that meeting and more. we'll have the latest on the flooding threat in northern california as a potential disaster unfolds at the nation's tallest dam. our disciplined approach remains. global markets may be uncertain... but you can feel confident in our investment experience around the world. call us or your advisor... t. rowe price. invest with confidence.
3:18 pm
more j.d. power initial quality awards than any other car brand. and they received more last year too. and the year before that... wow! and the year before that... in fact, chevy's received more j.d. power initial quality awards than any other car brand, four years in a row.
3:19 pm
impressive! current qualified lessees can sign and drive this chevy equinox for around $232 a month. plus, find your tag and get an additional $750 lease cash on select equinox vehicles in stock. find new roads at your local chevy dealer. yeahashtag "stuffy nose."old. hashtag "no sleep." i got it. hashtag "mouthbreather." yep. we've got a mouthbreather. well, just put on a breathe right strip and ... pow! it instantly opens your nose up to 38% more than cold medicine alone. so you can breathe ... and sleep. shut your mouth and say goodnight mouthbreathers. breathe right. and her new mobile wedding business.tte at first, getting paid was tough... until she got quickbooks. now she sends invoices, sees when they've been viewed and ta-da, paid twice as fast! see how at quickbooks-dot-com.
3:20 pm
♪ ♪ when you find something worth waiting for, we'll help you invest to protect it for the future. financial guidance while you're mastering life. from chase, so you can. tech: don't let a cracked windshtrust safelite.plans. with safelite's exclusive "on my way text"... you'll know exactly when we'll be there. giving you more time for what matters most. (team sing) safelite repair, safelite replace. of your brain can make it hard to lose weight? contrave is an fda-approved weight-loss medicine that may help adults who are overweight or struggle with obesity lose weight and keep it off. contrave is believed to work on two areas of the brain:
3:21 pm
your hunger center... (woman) i'm so hungry. (avo) to reduce hunger. and your reward system... (woman) ice cream. french fries. (avo) to help control cravings. across three long-term studies, contrave patients lost approximately 2-4x more weight than with diet and exercise alone. contrave is not for everyone. one ingredient in contrave may increase suicidal thoughts or actions in some children, teens, and young adults within the first few months. other serious side effects include seizures, increase in blood pressure or heart rate, liver damage, manic episodes, glaucoma and allergic reactions. do not take with opioids. reduce hunger, help control cravings. contrave. the #1 prescribed weight-loss brand. go to abdominayou may have ibs. ask your doctor if non-prescription ibgard is right for you. ibgard calms the angry gut. available at cvs, walgreens and riteaid.
3:22 pm
president trump is offering an unapologetic defense of his travel ban, speaking at a nus conference with the canadian. justin trudeau made a different view. let's talk about this. joining us is foreign minister, thanks very much for joining us. >> great to be with you, wolf. >> your prime minister trudeau said today he didn't come to washington to lecture how to govern but did say canada would continue what he described as, quote, its policies of openness toward immigration and refugees and he tweeted this very significantly, when president trump's initial travel ban was enacted. to those fleeing% kugs and war, canada will welcome you.
3:23 pm
diversity is our strength. do you believe that president trump is wrong when comes to indestiny barring syrian refugees from coming into the united states. >> you know, wolf, i'm really going to echo my prime minister. we didn't come here to washington to tell you guys how to run your country, and i don't think canadians would be very happy if american politics came to canada to tell us how to run our country. we are very proud wherever we are in the world to tell you about canadian values and what we think is right for canada to do. when it comes to refugees, we very much believe in welcoming refugees to our country, and that includes syrian and muslim refugees. as the prime minister said we believe that our diversity is our strength. it was a campaign commitment of our government in 2015 to
3:24 pm
welcome 25,000 syrian refugees to canada. we're now almost at 40,000. but the main theme of our visit here today has really been talking about the close enable relationship between canada and the united states. and in particular the close economic relationship. and i felt we really made very good progress in talking about that -- those close connections between our countries. >> and you sound like you've emerged from being a journalist, foreign minister to becoming an excellent diplomat in the process. >> it's my job, wolf. what about i say? >> you've got a tough job right now. let's talk a little bit about president trump. he said today at the news conference that he couldn't be sure that 3,000 mile northern border that the united states has with canada was, in fact, secure. do you believe -- do you believe he's suggesting that terrorists could emerge from that refugee population, coming into canada and then sneak into the
3:25 pm
united states? >> i am not obviously going to put words into the president's mouth but what i heard from the president at the press conference today was a very strong, very warm endorsement of the relationship of the united states and canada. the border between canada and the united states is a tremendous resource for the two countries. it's a secure border. it's a border that 400,000 people cross every day. it's a border of which $2 billion of business are done every day and in our conversation in our official statement afterwards, what we're talking about is actually making that border, while maintaining its security, which is a priority for can aidians as well, also make it thinner, making it easier for all of the crossers, to visit family, to go
3:26 pm
to a restaurant and go do business. that will create jobs and growth on both sides. >> canada is the united states's largest trading partner. the president, he called nafta that emerged more than two decades ago during the clinton administration, he often called it the worst trade deal in the history. prime minister trudeau made clear today nafta is a real concern for can aidians. do you believe president trump will keep it, what assurances did you get from the president when it comes to nafta, the trade deal with mexico and canada? >> i heard from the president what you heard and what everyone who listened to that press conference heard, which is that the u.s. president strongly endorsing and speaking to the strength, the mutual benefit of the economic relationship of canada and the united states. and we really believe in that
3:27 pm
too. canada is the top export market for top 25 u.s. states, 9 million jobs depend directly on it. we're not only your friends and neighbors, we're also your clients. that's something we talked about today and we felt was understood. >> canada, also a key member of nato. but here is the problem -- >> i am not hearing anything now. >> can you hear me now? foreign minister, can you hear me? unfortunately we seem to have lost the connection with the canadian foreign minister. we'll take a quick break. conflicting statements from inside of the trump administration on the future of the security adviser michael flynn. n. this is one gorgeous truck. oh, did i say there's only one special edition? because, actually there's 5. aaaahh!! ooohh!! uh!
3:28 pm
holy mackerel. wow. nice. strength and style. which one's your favorite? come home with me! it's truck month! find your tag for an average total value over $11,000 on chevy silverado all star editions when you finance through gm financial. find new roads at your local chevy dealer. if you have moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis like me, and you're talking to your rheumatologist about a medication... ...this is humira. this is humira helping to relieve my pain... ...and protect my joints from further damage. humira has been clinically studied for over 18 years. humira works by targeting and helping to... ...block a specific source... ...of inflammation that contributes to ra symptoms. it's proven to help relieve pain and... ...stop further joint damage in many adults. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened, as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure.
3:29 pm
before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas... ...where certain fungal infections are common and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flulike symptoms or sores. don't start humira if you have an infection. talk to your doctor and visit this is humira at work. it's about moving forward not back. it's looking up not down. it's feeling up thinking up living up. it's being in motion... in body in spirit in the now. boost. it's not just nutrition. it's intelligent nutrition. with 26 vitamins and minerals and 10 grams of protein. all in 3 delicious flavors. it's choosing to go in one direction... up. boost. be up for it. i'm phil mickelson, pro golfer. my psoriatic arthritis caused joint pain. just like my moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. and i was worried about joint damage.
3:30 pm
my doctor said joint pain from ra... can be a sign of existing joint damage... that could only get worse. he prescribed enbrel to help relieve pain and help stop further damage. enbrel may lower your ability to fight infections. serious, sometimes fatal, events including infections, tuberculosis, lymphoma, other cancers, nervous system and blood disorders, and allergic reactions have occurred. tell your doctor if you've been someplace where fungal infections are common or if you're prone to infections, have cuts or sores, have had hepatitis b, have been treated for... heart failure, or if you have persistent... fever, bruising, bleeding, or paleness. don't start enbrel if you have an infection like the flu. joint pain and damage... can go side by side. ask how enbrel can help relieve joint pain and help stop joint damage. enbrel, the number one rheumatologist-prescribed biologic.
3:31 pm
3:32 pm
the breaking news tonight. conflicting statements from inside the white house on the fate of the national security adviser, michael flynn. he's under fire for a conversation with a russian official before president trump took office in which flynn may have illegally discuss dollars u.s. sanctions against russia. the white house now says the president is evaluating the situation. top aide kellyanne conway said flynn has -- the president has flynn's dpul confidence and sources say the knives are out
3:33 pm
for flynn. let's discuss this and more. jim sciutto. it's really extraordinary, kellyanne conway says the president has full confidence and sean spicer says the president is evaluating the situation. and then he says that's the president's current system, evaluating the situation, which is clearly no vote of confidence in michael flynn. >> it all happened within an hour. >> a vote of confidence from kellyanne conway lasted about an hour. stephen miller said -- gave an equivocal answer and now you have another equivocal answer. there is clearly a question mark here. and the question is who is rallying to his defense. how much of the relationship with vice-president mike pence, apparently lying or not telling the truth to the vice-president of the united states and as you happen national crises playing out. general flynn was next to the president and the japanese prime minister as they were reacting to the north korea missile launch as it was happening.
3:34 pm
it's not the time that you want this kind of undermining about the future. >> it is remarkable that within hours kellyanne conway says the president has his full confidence and then an hour later sean spicer says not so fast, the statement says, the president is evaluating the situation. >> i know from two administration sources that one of the reasons that happened is because new information came to light within that hour. obviously it's unclear what that information is or whether that means that the general's fate is probably -- is less likely to stay in the white house, but it certainly doesn't sound like it's a good thing. we don't know exactly how this is unfolding, what they are learning, how they are learning. but the fact of the matter for kellyanne conway to say what she said and we're told that she felt at the time that was the truth, that he had the full confidence and then sean spicer changed it an hour later.
3:35 pm
could be chaos, could be the fact that the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing, but i'm told that it is actually not that, that they have new information. >> new information damaging to flynn? >> potentially. we shouldn't say that it's damaging or not, but i think that the fact that he had full confidence and then it was being evaluated, might suggest that is the case. >> we'll see where michael flynn ends up. we don't know that right to now. we'll assess that once the situation is assessed. what we do know, what is before our very eyes is a white house process that is not at all buttoned down. a white house process -- where is the person -- this has been four days in the news now, that flynnance story changed. who did the president task the moment he learned that the story changed with reviewing everything, figuring out, making a recommendation, what is the process that is happening in this white house? it just doesn't seem what we're seeing in public, that there is a formalized process for a very
3:36 pm
senior aide. >> but the other thing we do know is that this is a president who don't like to be embarrassed, not that any of them do. remember corey lewandowski, after that incident where he assaulted a reporter he wasn't gone immediately. he kind of quietly went into the night. this is something we don't know what the president is going to do but we've seen in the past he's loeathe to get rid of individuals who were loyal. >> we have seen this in the past. listen to chuck schumer, the democratic leader, the minority reader in the senate speaking about michael flynn and this whole incident. >> of course, we have asked for and demand an independent investigation of what flynn's discussions were with the russian ambassador and all others, and we'll be saying more about that soon.
3:37 pm
second, his security clearance ought to be withdrawn until that independent investigation is completed and if he has violated any law or ethical precept he ought to be fired. >> that's a -- security clearance at least temporarily withdrawn. you can't be a national security adviser at the white house without security clearance. >> no question. keep in mind, there is some subtle under the surface message there. remember back in the campaign with whether we talked about security clearances, et cetera. this gets to the bigger issue, issue for the democrats, and many senior republicans as well, the larger russia issue. it's about flynn but also about this administration's relationship with russia which is the subject of a bipartisan congressional investigation. this is not just going to end -- whatever happens to general flynn, it's not going to end there. i can tell from his comments but from other folks that i speak into it's an entree into the bigger issue of this
3:38 pm
administration. >> it's a real, real mess, should we say in a technical term. stand by. just ahead sean spicer gets the "saturday night live" treatment for the second weekend in a row. is the "snl" show changing the way the president is seen and the team? >> are you kidding me? you'd better -- you don't have a chance. spicer, spicer. times and bad...hrough good t. rowe price... ...we've helped our investors stay confident for over 75 years. call us or your advisor. t. rowe price. invest with confidence.
3:39 pm
more j.d. power initial quality awards than any other car brand. and they received more last year too. and the year before that... wow! and the year before that... in fact, chevy's received more j.d. power initial quality awards than any other car brand, four years in a row. impressive! current qualified lessees can sign and drive this chevy equinox for around $232 a month. plus, find your tag and get an additional $750 lease cash on select equinox vehicles in stock. find new roads at your local chevy dealer.
3:40 pm
why pause a spontaneous moment? cialis for daily use treats ed and the urinary symptoms of bph. tell your doctor about your medicines, and ask if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain, or adempas® for pulmonary hypertension, as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. do not drink alcohol in excess. to avoid long-term injury, get medical help right away for an erection lasting more than four hours. if you have a sudden decrease or loss of hearing or vision, or an allergic reaction, stop taking cialis and get medical help right away. ask your doctor about cialis.
3:41 pm
tech: don't let a cracked windshtrust safelite.plans. with safelite's exclusive "on my way text"... you'll know exactly when we'll be there. giving you more time for what matters most. (team sing) safelite repair, safelite replace. (bin einstein since he startede eating beneful. the number one ingredient in it is beef. (einstein) the beef is fantastic! (becky) he has enough energy to believe that he can jump high enough to catch a bird. (vo) try beneful originals with beef. with real beef as the number one ingredient.
3:42 pm
we're back with our political team and the breaking news from the white house that
3:43 pm
the future of the national security adviser michael flynn is still being evaluated. what is clear tonight is that the president is very pleased with the work of another top adviser stephen miller. we'll get to that in a moment. we heard earlier about encrypted conversations that michael flynn may have had with the russian ambassador to the united states. so we spoke to the top democratic in the house intelligence, adam schiff. if there were phone conversations and separate encrypted conversations that raises potentially some issues. >> no questions. adam schiff as you know is very careful. interesting for him to bring that up in a public context. the key is how they were used, right? using encrypted communications by themselves, not necessarily incriminating. there are loads of people in washington who do that, they're just worried about having a constant digital diary for every word that you communicate, text, e-mail, et cetera. so that by itself is not. then it becomes a question of context. was it with a russian official,
3:44 pm
when, was it before taking office? what was the context of those discussions? did it happen just after a phone call where it would then give the insinuation that you were trying to avoid being watched. to my knowledge, there is no evidence it was used to avoid surveillance by the fbi or for others, but it's still an open question. >> it's a serious question. we'll take a look at that. the president's senior policy adviser, stephen miller, david, he was on the sunday shows, four sunday shows, didn't go on cnn but he was on the four broadcast networks. here is a sampling of what he said. >> we have a president who has done more in three weeks than most presidents have done in an entire administration. i do want to say that sean spicer is as always 100% correct and that what he said is true and important and i agree with it. it is a fact and you will not deny it that there is a massive number of noncitizens registered to vote.
3:45 pm
this is an ideological difference between those who believe there should be borders and controls and those who don't. that's the essence of the debate and the bottom line is the president's powers in this area represent the apex of authority. the whole world will begin to see as we begin to take further actions that the powers of the president to help the country and will not be questioned. >> not be questioned. what's your reaction? >> he's a true believer. no doubt about that. the president said that he was pleased with stephen's performance last night. he got on twitter to express it. stephen miller is a die hard in that way and he'll fight until the end. the problem is when he does so without facts such as the voter fraud situation that you played the clip. how does that not ruin his
3:46 pm
credibility overall. in you're going to get on national television in an interview claim there is this mastiff voter fraud that there is zero evidence that exists. he was talking about new hampshire and and the governor said there is no evidence. people who do this for a living day in and day out. so stephen miller should stick to facts and he would serve his -- >> what he says, jacky, the powers of the president in his words will not be questioned. >> well, that's going to be disappointing for him. because stephen miller is a very smart guy and he probably, you know, should -- should read up. because they will be questioned and the judiciary has the absolute authority to check the president. that's how all of this works. but that said, when the president himself keeps this voter fraud issue alive and says that it happened, it's top down. >> that's exactly right. >> stephen miller is a loyalist. that's one of the reason he's
3:47 pm
there now. he was a loyalist to sessions and certainly a loyalist to donald trump. >> so that point, the people in the white house and those of us who covered the campaign know that stephen miller has a special place in donald trump's heart because first and foremost donald trump thinks he is very smart and he's very willing to go out and say things without any kind of fact or evidence basis to back it up like this voter fraud situation. this is the ultimate example of an audience of one and people even today -- i was sort of asking around about why the president -- why he was so loving about stephen miller and his performance and it's because he just adores him. they spend a lot of time together, particularly at the end of the campaign. stephen miller was traveling nonstop, writing speeches, helping with policy. >> doing the warmups during the rallies. >> exactly. and for somebody who needs to
3:48 pm
have a comfort zone like this president, frankly, any president if you're in a place of isolation in the white house, to have that and hear the person going out and say things that you want them to say especially when there are things that don't have a basis if fact but you just want it out there. >> but there are p -- presidents, david who like different views and who give them different advice. >> to be fair, i think the president has this. the team assembled in the west wing, but what this president we know loves because his appetite is insatiable for media consumption is somebody who can bring brute strength, power to that interview, you don't concede a single appointment that's the way trump presents himself and that's what he watches for someone who is
3:49 pm
speaking for him. >> the president and his team have another problem, "saturday night live," once again going after the president and his senior officials. let me play a clip. >> first of all, i'd like to announce that i'm calm now. >> i just want to know what president intents to do now that the supreme court has denied the travel ban. >> you're testing me, big guy. look, it's simple. if the appeals court won't do what's right, president trump will see them in court specifically the people's court. >> this is the plaintiff, the president of the united states. he claims that some phony judges are being very mean to him. he's asking for broad unchecked power. will he get it? >> mr. trump, you understand this is a tv court, right? >> that's okay. i'm a tv president. >> all right. so your travel ban has been
3:50 pm
reekt judged as unconstitutional once again, but here you are. what are we doing here, ben. >> i signed a tremendous travel ban. these judges have been very disrespectful. >> i've read the ban. it seemed rushed even to and let me just say, you're doing too much, okay? i want one day without a cnn alert that scares the hell out of me. >> that was the best part. >> the problem, dana, a lot of people watch that, and get around impression of the president or sean spicer, kellyanne conway, steve bannon, that sticks in their mind. >> just ask sarah palin about tina fey. there are things she never said like i can see russia from my
3:51 pm
house. it's satire and sometimes satire stings. >> yeah. in this particular case, it certainly does, and these people, you know, they got these other characters playing them, it's going to be a problem down the road. stand by, there's breaking news we're following. almost 200,000 americans are forced to evacuate as a california dam threatens to give way.
3:52 pm
3:53 pm
3:54 pm
what do you get when you combine an h&r block tax pro, with the deduction finding superpower of ibm watson? ah! you get more money. that's what you could get. h&r block with watson. get your taxes won. whattwo servings of veggies? v8 or a powdered drink? ready, go. ahhhhhhhh! shake! shake! shake! shake! shake! done! you gotta shake it! i shake it! glad i had a v8. the original way to fuel your day.
3:55 pm
3:56 pm
urgent efforts are now underway in northern california to repair part of the nation's tallest dam, fear of a possible failure has forced almost 200,000 people to evacuate. congressman john garamende is on the scene. he joins us on the phone. you're there in oroville california. is this an imminent disaster. >> it has the potential but it is not imminent. in fact the first helicopters just took off with these thousand pound bags of rock to drop into the emergency spill
3:57 pm
way to shore up that spill way. we have a lot of water here in the reservoir, it's dropped a foot, maybe a little more than that over the last couple hours as the inflow has subsided and the outflow is around 100,000 cubic feet per second. imminent no. potential yes. that spill way is badly damaged, the foundation is eroded as a result of the water coming over the top of the top of the emergency spill way. the main spill way remains degraded with the huge hole in the middle of it. we're going to be hopeful, i do have 200,000 of my constituents that are no longer in their homes in various shelters scattered around northern california. it's a very tense -- but we're going to be hopeful here. >> that spill way is part of that dam. what would your greatest fear
3:58 pm
be, this nightmare scenario for the folks out there. >> it would have been last night, and when the water was flowing over the top of the emergency spill way, it was very rapidly eroding below the spill way, and coming back underneath the foundation, the concrete foundation for that spill way. have that erosion continued. and the emergency spill way give way, it's 30 feet high, you would have a 30 foot wall of water rushing down the canyon immediately below the zam is oroville, the town of oroville, the water would have been 100 feet deep within a matter of an hour. and further down the river in marysville and uga city, not as deep, but just as dangerous.
3:59 pm
>> as you know, congressman environmental groups advised the dam needed upgrades. could that all have been avoided? you're an expert in this area. you served as a deputy u.s. interior during the clinton administration? >> it could have and it should have, but it didn't happen. for reasons that are apparently -- the water contractors, the current county water district and others didn't want to pay. and they didn't want to be told how to build a spill way. it turns out the club was quite correct. should the spill way ever be used there would be serious down stream sediment harming the fisheries and quite possibly
4:00 pm
stirring up the mercury that remains. >> congressman. unfortunately, we're going to leave it there. good luck, we're hoping all of your 200,000 or so residents are back in their homes sooner rather than later, congressman john garamendi thanks for joining us. erin burnett "outfront" starts right now. breaking news, president donald trump evaluating the situation surrounding the national security adviser michael flynn, as calls for flynn to go. more details on what the white house could include on a into executive order on immigration. will trump just rewrite the same travel ban? my exclusive interview with elliot abrams, trump learned he criticized him.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on