tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN December 19, 2017 8:00pm-9:00pm PST
with the breaking news, senate voting any minute on the republican are tax bill. couple of bumps in the house forcing the revote tomorrow but the bill is still expected to reach the president's desk shortly after. stra straight to capitol hill now. pulling long hours, following it all what's happening at this hour. >> well senate is starting to move through debate. going to get to the point they're closing that debate up. this result is a foregone conclusion we know the republicans have the votes however the process will take longer than expected. the house passed the tax bill 227-203 earlier today and senate was supposed to send it straight to the president's desk big signing planned for wednesday there was a hold up because of the senate rules, allowing republicans to pass on a simple majority vote those rules found something in the vote ran a foul and because of that two minor
technical provisions will be sent back to the house. er you want me to go into deep detail i know but to give a short summary republicans are still in position to get this to the president's desk tomorrow. just going to take a little bit longer, republicans about to do an over haul of the tax code, doing in a partisan manner, no democratic supporting this, they repeatedly a thak this bill say it is too slanted towards the corporate side of thing but hasn't stopped republicans on the verge of passing but with every single member of the republican are conference who is present voting yes. >> thank you sir, appreciate it. want to bring in former advisor to interest george w. bush and john mccain and executive producer to showtime's "the
circumstance circus" joining us now. watch this. >> this promise being kept today is one of the most important things we can do to get the u.s. economy growing faster and help people get bigger paychecks to have a fairer tax system and to simplify the system so people can have more peace of mind. >> this tax bill will be a anchor around the ankles of every republican they haven't learned it yet will learn it next september remgs will rue the day they passed bill and the american people will never forget it. >> you heard what opponents of this are saying. trickle down never works who is right, will republicans ride this bill to success in 2018 or will they rue the day. >> i think that's what you expect from the leadership of the democrats party and republican party and the answer
lies somewhere in between. the bill pushed through on serpa. the budget to add $1.5 trillion to the budget. not typical. and -- he said originally wouldn't be good for him but clearly is good for him. at the end of the day this is a very important win for donald trump and the republicans. legislative win they needed badly. i think the answer to what this will be, let's have this show a year from now and see how it worked out but the fact is the economy is growing at a very good clip right now and came in at 1.9. donald trump now at about 3% or more with donald trump that's a 50% growth rate for donald trump. if this gives confidence for more businesses to hire more, spend hornet and put more money in wages and paychecks so people
have more confidence will be a big deal. >> how did republicans manage to make a tax cut unpopular. 33 americans support this. >> well great question. i think your colleague john king hit it earlier when he said with the perception and distrust of congress today, congress could pass a bill giving everybody a apple pie and suddenly people will be feeling very bad about apple pies. they would have an unfavorable opinion about apple pies. the fact is the congress itself is unpopular. people don't trust congress and nobody thinks they will get a tax cut. interesting thing about some of the poll something that they say it's a very unpopular tax bill only 17% respondents think they will get a tax cut when in reality 80% will. when the facts line up and people realize oh, well actually
i did get a tax cut i think the perception will change over time. >> the tax cuts for the middle kwl class are based on a timeline. it's not permanent. >> that's true. i think ryan's goal and everybody else is to make them permanent. when that comes up it will be very hard including for any democrat to vote against extending those because it's one thing to give people a tax cut but to take it away is very, very difficult. not often done in congress. i think it will be made permanent at some point. >> same with health care once you get it hard to take it away. let me put this up it came out today. you can see the rich irare going to get the bigger tax cut here. both in dollar amounts and percentage of your income. could you blame someone in the
middle class for wondering why rich people get more money and higher tax cut under this plan? >> no flot at all. >> no, not at all. that's a result you get when you run things through. it's not bipartisan. i think republicans were so anxious to get a short-term win to get a legislative victory that they didn't really understand the ram fibificatione impact of how democrats can attack this bill to say it did more for the rich than the middle class it's a debate we'll have. in the long run we'll see what happens to the confidence to businesses whether the wages come down, whether people spend more whether they feel good and confident about the economy and if they do if there's substantial growth will take care of a lot of problems over time. it's a big if too. >> you're a republican but you're also a sensible republican, why are people out
talking why aren't people out talking about the tax bill like you are. why won't republican say listen we need a win so work with us on this one. >> i think what voters want is just candor and authenticatity and it baffles me the extent to try to spin something when it is obviously something completely different. republicans are making a big bet that by giving money to corporations and to other well-off interests that they are going to increase wages and it's the old trickle down. you know we've done this experiment before with mixed results but in is trump's turn. he's got to win. republicans are in control of congress and we're seeing the result of what laps. they got their executive and got their w on the board which they needed by the end of the year. >> it's because of how people feel about congress that agrees
is unpopular any time you deal with taxes it's going to be unpopular also has to do with the president at 35% lowest he's been in our polling. why with a booming stock market, a strong economy, he's going to have a win when it comes to taxes, why's he have numbers that are so bad? >> i think a lot of it has to do with the chaos. >> the rhetoric. >> oh, sure. it's rhetoric and he's been communicating to his core base of constituentcys not broadly to the middle or democrats and people feel he's been very partisan that he's attacked everybody across the board except his base and he hasn't governed in a way people are used to seeing presidents do. this is a very conservative base
strategy by donald trump and he suffered for it. but listen, the thing that strikes me about the poll is his favorable ratings are so disconnected by the economy normally we see those numbers are close parallel if people feel 50% confidence in it's economy that's generally the way they feel about the president that shows the problem president trump has personally when he is so disconnected with economics number that's are better he ends with lower poll numbers in the first yiear then any president n office. he's historically unpopular. in year two we know that's an election year a mid-term year. >> well it is an election year as i have been alluding to. if the economy is booming and wages are up and people are feeling good that's going to make up for a lot of problem be
and i think is an opportunity too now he has this w on the board, he has a win, and he likes winning, we know that, if he could go to infrastructure which is something democrats like. i argued a long time donald trump may be the only president to get a infrastructure bill done a typical republican president would never spend the money required and if it were democratic president republicans would never are vote for it. you could argue donald trump could be the only president to get a massive infrastructure bill done and in doing so would be an opportunity to reach out to democrats get a bill done with good economy on the back of it could help. >> do you think democrats will ever work with this president? they seem really a verse to working with this president. >> great question, don. i think that's a consequence of how he came out of the gate. in other words, i would have argued strategically to do infrastructure out of the gate.
my old boss george w. bush did on education, find an issue get with democrats early in the administration by doing the way he did it i think democrats felt burned early on and said we're never going to help this guy. that may be the case going forward. on the other hand democrats want to go home and show results and infwrastructure is something democrats love. there's a possibility there. >> thank you and if i don't see you again merry christmas. >> thank you don. >> we'll come back -- talking about donald trump jr. slams russia investigation.
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railing against the russian investigation president's son complaining about having to testify about that infamous trump tower meeting with russians. donald trump jr. spoke to a gathering of college students tonight, here's a portion of what he had to say. >> as charlie alluded to earlier i have now spent 23 hours testifying about 23 minutes. hillary clinton spent 11 hours testifying about benghazi where
she was second of state where people died and she lied about it because of a youtube video. >> some of those 23 hours would have been in front of you at the house at the intel committee right? >> that's right, don. it's quite shocking to hear him talk about our interview and say something other than a father-son privilege he made up. so i welcome him talking because there was a lot we wanted to hear from him that he wouldn't tell us because he invoked this privileged privilege as we would call it. >> just a bit ago deputy fbi can mckane wrapped up a meeting with the committee after eight hours he has come under fire to his wife's ties to clinton mccull and his name coming up in text messages between special agents that were removed from special
agent mueller's team where do you stand on today's performance. >> i can't but i can tell you what i learned often the house judiciary committee that robert mueller and fbi team made the right call when agent's work was called into question because he demonstrated a perceived bias and that agent was immediately removed from the investigation. compare that, don, to president trump. he learned that his national security advisor michael flynn had lied to the fbi and he kept him on long as he possibly could until it was made public by the washington post. over 18 days he stayed on. finally when it became a public relations problem he was fired. this team bob mueller and the professionals around him heard a perceived bias and was removed,
that's what you do. >> the president's legal team wrote a letter to congress complain being muller's team and his team pushing back saying not so fast these e-mails were acquired legally. >> right wire talking about public e-mails, saying bob mueller was on a transition e-mail account where there was not expectation of privacy as the fbi agents were on their work phones and their text messages were released night before rosenstein testified to the committee. and for better reason anything come before it which is they may have been working with the russians which is under investigation. i don't think that will stand up
as a legal argument or keep them from being ad missable. >> this is from a interview from chris christie on msnbc earlier. >> he deserves scrutiny, you know why, because he was involved in the transition and in meetings that call into question his role. >> is that just bad blood between christie and the kushners or does he have a point. >> no he has a point it's not js jared kushner's involvement in the transition it's that he also attended june 9th meeting that he met with sanctioned russian bankers during the time of the transition and so there's a lot of questions about the relationship jared kushner had that he did not disclose and only acknowledged once press report or our investigation were able to expose them. what you see these aren't coincidences you see family members, campaign team members and administration team members having contact with the
russians, not disclosing them and being confronted with them and minimally acknowledging them. it's a pattern the public needs to know about. what do the russians have on donald trump why does he treat them so favorably. >> the question is cyst christie could have answered that a number of ways, he could have deflektsed. why do you think he is talking about this? why is he discussing this? why did he answer that way? >> i don't know, don, i hope he's being candid has he's known to be from time to time. sometimes democrats like it sometimes we don't. his assessment matches up with an objective a sectissessment w was what the transition role was which was worthy of skrcrutinsc
>> the president over time ha l allies who . >> i think firing bob mueller would be obstruction of justice and would also pulverize the team's investigation and set it back. best thing we can do is have bipartisan legislation to protect mueller it's not just the president's wishes to get rid of mueller it's what we are hear from the conservative voices of media and those on the house judiciary committee, i think wiright-hand n right now i'm very concerns. it's public sentiment is what wins the day and is largely behind bob mueller in the investigation. >> a portion of the strategy reads today actors such as
russia are using tools to under mine the legitimacy of dem racis. -- democracy. -- does that passage than other comments we heard from russia. >> i agree with that passage but have no reason to believe donald trump read that or has actually signed off on that because everything he says is 180 degrees in the opposite direction. he acknowledged when he saw vladimir putin at the aegis summit that he took putin at his word that he was not responsible for the campaign and it was insulting that he had to keep raising it so thank god we have so many who care so much about our country to protect it from russia and other actors who
would meddle i don't believe that's because it is coming from the top. >> always a pleasure to talk to you. >> of course my pleasure. >> when we come back more of what the president's son had to say about are you of pushing conspiracy theory. run, jthe power of in to tempur-pedic sleep with our 90-day trial and being the highest ranked mattress in customer satisfaction by jd power, it's easy to love. find your exclusive retailer at tempurpedic.com
donald trump jr. slamming the ongoing russian investigation. want to bring in our cnn national analysis former direct of the national security agency good to have you on. >> evening. >> donald trump jr. just spoke to a group of college students this is a portion of what he had to say. >> i'm glad this is coming out now because it is good because real people have to see this. my are father talked about a rigged system throughout the campaign and it is, you're seeing it, there is, and there
are people at the highest levels of government that don't want to let america be america. they don't want to let the little guy have a voice. >> people at the highest level of government who don't want america to be america. does it sound to you like donald trump jr. is pushing conspiracy theory about america's government? >> i have to confess when i first heard that this evening it is scary, an appeal to the heart of atrocity and challenging the pate rottism for the folks who work in the united states government. we have good institutions in this country. they are imperfect. they make mistakes. we have imperfect people that send messages they shouldn't send about doesn't under cut the legitimacy of these institutions. we're seeing it under attack.
as suggested as other members of the party attacking institutions of the american government. it's those institutions, the rule of law, the processes that keep us a free people. >> why would the president's son say something like that. >> i don't know is that don jr. has been marked by cool, calm judgment in his public utterances in the past. what it suggests to me in their heart of hearts they don't think this investigation is going to a happy place at least not from 24 their point of view. i'm not from predicting criminal indictments about collusion or anything but as the investigation goes on we learn more and more about the sink ronnization of the trump campaign including with the president's son withwikileakes and the actions of the
federation. >> thinking that he may be concerned about the personal consequences of himself. >> sure they are family with concerns for one another that's human and understandable you need someone around this group who advises them that number one this is not wise on their behalf and the collateral damage they're doing to american institutions. belief in the american government and integrity of the american system. my great fear based on that earlier quote we're going to do long-term damage on things we depend. >> the institution that's made america great to begin with. interesting because most would say if their president was the father they would leave the presidenting up to the father and commenting as well. wise to do that. former against clapper joined yesterday to talk about president trump's relationship
with vladimir putin here's what he had to say. >> i think this past weekend is illustrative of what a great case officer vladimir putin is. he knows how to handle an asset. that's what he is doing with the president. >> here's what clapper went on to say that he meant that in a figure ative way. but i'm curious your reaction to his comment. >> i agree with jim particularly since he qualified it saying he is speaking in a figuratively way. putin is a case officer. case officers attempt to influence other people we got this little tool we use, how do you influence others, money, ideology, compromise, ego. putin will pull the level that's most of use to him in all of his relationships, so it's not surprising he would try to do it with our president and frankly in this case the technique that
country was founded on. >> missia yates is pointing out something quite real on the institutions under cutting of legitimatecy -- she went on to talk about the critical role of truth in sustaining the american democracy and see that as well in our institutions. >> yates saying there is a moment to return to core values do you agree with that? what kind of effort would that take. >> don, i've spent more time reading the papers in last two years than over 50 years of my life. we're returning to basics. my great hope is after this period we emerge with a greater, deeper understanding and appreciation for what makes america america to refer to the quote from don jr. before. >> amen.
we are almost a year into trump's presidency. how are american institutions holding up you think? >> actually pretty well that sound you hear from washington is the sound of american institutions pushing back, whether the law enforcement, the courts, the press, american intelligence, don we've even had moments we have the nfl and boy scouts of america pushing back. >> the president expected to be exonerated from this whole investigation rksz do you think that will happen? if he is not what will happen there? >> don, i have no insight in if into what bob mueller's details and i'm certainly not a lawyer if you ask me as a layman where this ends up unfortunately it probably ends up in an ambiguous place, may see indictments for activities like tax, money
laundering or registering for agency of power, so on, on the core question of collusion may not be enough evidence to show any crime and what we will have is people who thought there was collusion going in will believe there's collusion going out, people with a contrary view whether have their view equally sustained and we'll be left in this t ernether world without resolution. >> thank you sir. >> thank you. >> when we come back , we talk late night tv. it's what's inside isthe person who opens it.x. give ancestrydna, the only dna test that can trace your origins to over 150 ethnic regions. save 20% for the holidays at ancestrydna.com.
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trump. >> late night comedians have been laughing all the way. >> wonder if remember water this time. someone tell him he can't drink water like that. that's how a baby drinks out of a sippy cup. >> it's a new day to shop. >> every day i wake up terrified at the notion he's the president of the most powerful nation of the world but knowing he will make me laugh. >> tv ratings usually dip after elections but not this year, trump made late night great again as they channel it's anti-trump feelings of fans. >> hopefully that will be a great, great beautiful christmas present. >> i'm sorry the last person i want to get a christmas present from is donald trump. >> dozens of reasons he is stuck with historical low factor. >> he's so unpopular pretty soon
will be fox and friend. >> kimmel knows trump's base is still with him. >> they don't care what he does. he would have to eat bucket of kentucky bald eagle and wriep his mouth on the confederate flag to go forward. >> interest some of the 59% who disa plpprove are grateful the comics are surging. >> the real loser here is donald trump. >> when trump falters when he falls these shows rise, yes they joke but they tackle serious issues including health care policy. >> before 2014 if you were bofrn born with heart disease like my son a good chance would never get health care because of pre-existing condition. >> it n shout matter how much money you make. i think that's something whether
you're a republican or democratic we all agree on that. >> trump himself has complained about the venom come from late night. even at one point saying should we get equal time but so far no pro-trump show has emerged. >> the war on christmas is soon over will be replaced with the war on north korea. >> stephen colbert with an animated spoof our cartoon president. >> eleven months in the audience is cheering these comics on. >> 37 more months to go. or less. hey could be less. never know. [ cheers and applause ] >> ha, ha and it could be more as brian just said before. brian is with me with former editor in chief of ebony magazine.
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hair during the campaign. lots of fans didn't find it funny and tv host steve harvey got blow back. remember this meeting. by we have former editor in chief ebony magazine and our others here thanks for joining us. steve harvey regret that meeting saying it was the worst mistake of his life. why do you think they both face such an animosity for this. >> this cultural backlash for donald trump is like nothing we've seen, so polarized this country, forced to takes side. even taylor swift is criticized for not commenting on donald trump that's the weird environment we're in. fallon has tried to change his
tune, become more critical of trump made more jokes about trump but viewers chosen colbert and fallon. colbert is firmly in first place and rising head and shoulders above the rest. >> kimmel at two and fallon has slipped to three. he's said he doesn't want to do that kind of comedy. >> he is doing political event , colbert with the advantage to begin with, but hillary clinton would have gone another way, ratings wise david letterman would have been winning that slot. hosted trump number of times on
the show and toyed with them like cat and mouse. >> much like howard stern. >> i do think fallon messing with trump's hair was an awkward i do think had hillary clinton been elected most likely there wouldn't be resistance in the air and he would still be number one. >> i just know you don't get to tussle someone's hair and dehumanize them. i think that's a visceral and immediate reaction. >> it was immediate, and it's interesting to watch the ratings go from there, and i think other late night hosts realized it and took advantage of it certainly cobert. >> he was criticized, but i think a lot of people liked
seeing the president in an informal format. cobert would love to book president trump, but -- >> and he'd never show up. >> because remember when president obama would slow jam the news? >> those are popular clips, but we don't see president trump looking for those entertainment formats. >> you're forgetting fox and friends, america's favorite entertainment. >> it really an entertainment morning show. they don't consider themselves part of the news. that is often your counterpart on fox news will say this program and that program is not considered news, but the people at home don't know. >> to the lay person news and news is news. you turn on your television, you consider it. >> and they're saying these people don't have to be accurate
and factual because they're not part of the news division. >> there are a lot of real journalists at work there. >> trump's approval ratings is it related not just to the news coverage on channels like this, not just because of lack of accomplishments but also because of these late night shows. people soak up information in different ways now. whether it's a joke on kimmel's show, it explains his approval ratings. >> i want to bring up something es. alex baldwin did his usual portrayal of the president and also referenced me. listen. >> now, i can settle down and be super presidential, that is until don lemon says something mean about me and i can tweet the n-word. even worse in omarosa. >> hey, let me in. >> quick, someone turn off the lights. >> no one quicks omarosa out the
white house. >> hey, get away from the window right now. >> he's a tough cookie. i think we're going to have to move. >> what is it about omarosa that seems to insight such strong feelings for so many? >> i just came from a kerchs of all black women ever, republicans, democrats, independents, april ryan, everybody, we're ready to trade omarosa. just the bottom line is that she represents no one but herself at all times. and she doesn't do that well. i don't know if anyone has seen this youtube dape tape of her recently, but the level of ridiculousness, and the fact we've been forced to entertain her as an inty as something serious, it just doesn't jive with anyone's common sense. folks good common sense says no to omarosa.
>> she became so famous as an apprentice candidate that she got to be on celebrity apprentice. she was that disliked she qualified. i don't think she has the ability to anchor a show. i'm honored someone i sat next to on a wendy williams show got a white house e-mail address. >> she brought up something really important -- >> hold on, how you doing? you're not saying anything about wendy, right? >> not anything bad about wendy, but omarosa became famous -- >> here's what i found interesting, there was a point when people like me and people like you would only be seen in a clip on the daily show to criticize something about what the news. >> yeah, you weren't getting talked about on "snl."
>> but now we're being used to criticize the administration on late night tv. maybe if you had a project or book or some big story like katrina, but now it seems like every night i never know what show i'm going to show up. >> it's because these shois, they are taking the news seriously and then making fun of it. they are acknowledging what's going on in the world, quoting from the cnn's of the world and then usually adding this anti-trump twist. >> but kimmel is correct. he's not going to lose the base. the base would abandoned him unless maybe he did a black lives matter march and then married liamdunham at the end. it took six years before george bush's popularity took a hit. we see how long and devotedly this pro-trump base holds.
>> we're right now in the trump -- and i do think that media is centered as a key player, so there's no way comedians can work around you. they've got to go through. >> thanks for watching. i'll see you back here tomorrow. with our 90-day trial and being the highest ranked mattress in customer satisfaction by jd power, it's easy to love. find your exclusive retailer at tempurpedic.com
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so the president says he is not going to see a dime from the tax bill he is about to sign. now, that may be true but only if he keeps his eyes closed. john berman in here for anderson. the bill just hit a technical snag, but still on track to pass tonight and the house to pass a second time tomorrow. based on what the president has said in the past, he might be surprised on what is in it. >> this is going to cost me a fortune, this hing, believe me. this is not good for me. i have some very