tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN April 6, 2018 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT
praised the trump administration response to russia. and the president fired the general in a tweet a couple of weeks ago. he'll be replaced by fox news analyst john bolton. time to hand things over to don lemon. "cnn tonight" starts right now. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. multiple breaking news stories tonight. first, a cnn exclusive on the mueller investigation. in the clearest sign that the president trump is considering sitting down with the special counsel even though that is the last thing some of his advisers want him to do. sources are telling cnn that trump has begun to prepare for a poll interview with robert mueller. pamela brown has more on that just ahead. and in another cnn exclusive, one of the trump campaign early foreign policy advisers who was no coffee boy, in fact he had a seat at table. look at the screen right now. he was part of the effort to expose damaging information on
hillary clinton during the campaign. joseph schmitz pushed the fbi and house intelligence to review materials from the dark web he thought were clintons missing e-mails from her private service. sources describe schmitz as relentless but they believe the tae -- the material was take. jick -- jim sciutto will be here with that. >> and praising scott pruitt even though he is under fire for renting a cut rate condo from energy lobbyists but the president said pruitt, is quote, a good man. which might be the kiss of death in this administration. ask rex tillerson, hr. mcmaster, steve bannon, michael flynn, anybody on the outs. and he hits vladimir putin where he lives with undeniably tough sanctions against a group of oligarchs with ties to the
russian president. so how will putin respond? we'll figure that out. plus the dow tumbling 572 points on fear of a bruising trade war with china. and the president said this -- >> i'm not saying there won't be a little pain. but we're going to have a much stronger country when we're finished. >> a lot to discuss. i want to start with cnn senior white house correspondent dan brown and legal analyst laura coats, and analyst michael zeldin who is robert mueller's special assistant at the justice department. a lot to get to. good evening to all panel. i'll start with you. you have exclusive new reporting that president trump's lawyers have begun to prepare for a possible interview with robert mueller. what kind of preparations are underway. >> my colleague and i have learned the initial preparations are underway between the president and his legal team for a possible interview with robert mueller and his team. now i'm told that the sessions
so far have been short, again informal. but clearly this is entering a new phase and it is a sign, don, that the deliberations are intensifying with the president's legal team to make a decision soon on whether it will allow the president to do an interview with robert mueller. so this is certainly a significant development in that light. and also shows that there is still open to doing an interview, allowing the president to do an interview with robert mueller. now sources caution that the more formal proceedings, a sit-down, practice session have not begun but what they have been doing with the president, don, is going over potential topics with him that robert mueller's team has shared with the legal team about what it wants to discuss in a potential interview. we should note that the president's lawyers, jay seculo and ty cobb declined to comment for the story. >> so john you have expert knowledge in this field. how do you prepare a
president -- prep a president for an interview like this? is he particularly challenging or a challenging client giving his free wheeling style. >> i think he would be extraordinary challenging. this is not a president you could go off -- not like nixon or a bill clinton or hillary clinton who prepared for 11 hours before the benghazi committee. so he is somebody they will have to creep up on to get him informed and be cautious. so i think it is a real rough assignment. >> and this president doesn't often listen -- but doesn't often listen to advise of his attorneys or of his advisers. and that is why john dowd resigned. how do you think the president's personality will factor into this. >> i think it is a obstacle for him and his counsel preparing him and it will come into play as to what the parameters of the interview may be. it might seem counter intuitive and both sides have an interest
in having a negotiated sit down. if you are the president trump's counsel and you are president trump, you would like to have the opportunity to have a voluntary session as p-- as opp to one by a grand jury and or if they want to reference or seek counsel during the interview and discussion. if it is a grand jury, he's in a lo -- alone in a room and could go rogue and if you are mueller you have an interest because there is not a whole lot of precedent in the same way you would think to have a subpoena and a sitting president. so maybe for him the idea of having to circumvent and go to the supreme court and get an a -- a apellot and so both sides have an interest in trump listening to good but an uphill battle about wanting him to be alone in a grand jury. >> that is a lot of what-ifs. but look at yesterday. speaking of someone you don't
know what tlhey're going to say or not following advice. this is aboard air force one the president speaking on the record about stormy daniels. it must have been -- they must have been pulling they're hair out over this. >> they probably were. if you were the attorney for trump and you're saying up until now we have been able to remain silent. please continue to do so. and with one response, one word no about whether or not he knew about the $130,000 payment, he put michael cohen squarely under a bus he was already capable of being under because of ethical violations and it opens a slight crack in a door for michael avenatti articulating a reason to the court in california to test the theories about what the president knew and whether it was a campaign finance violation or donation of some sort. and so as much as the attorneys for trump were pulling out their hair, i'm sure counsel for stormy daniels was jumping up in the air.
both are premature until the judge rules but i'm surprised he spoke on the issue at all. >> it is -- i feel like i'm watching dynasty from the '80s. >> or falcon crest. >> or "dallas." "knott's landing." and michael tie this up. you worked for robert mueller and i saved the last question for you. talk to me about the tactics he and his team could use here. >> in terms of whether they guest an interview or the -- the course of an interview? >> either way. go on. >> so i think that mueller and his team wants an interview of the president because there is no way they can write the final report at least on the obstruction matter and perhaps on the coordination and conspiracy matter without hearing from him. i don't think there is evidence that exists outside of the oral testimony of the president that would allow them to skip the interview. so i think they're going full
force at getting this interview. and whether they have to do it by grand jury subpoena or by voluntary cooperation, we'll just be -- will determine on what the president says. during the course of the interview, it will follow as all interviews follow which is they will ask for a testimony, they'll get what the answer is, and they'll present the witness with documents in respect to what they have said orally and to confirm or contradict what the testimony is, and then move forward topic by topic that they are authorized to ask the president about with respect to the parameters of the interview. so i think it is a very methodical step by step and relatively long interview with the president. that said, one thing i wanted to mention, don, if i had time, in respect to the story that they are prepping the president, i see there is two possible -- possibilities. one is they've made the decision more or less they are not going to be able to defeat a grand
jury subpoena. clinton versus jones and nixon versus the united states do not allow them to resist. and so they're preparing for the inevitable. or they still think there is wiggle room and trying to present the evidence to the president about how he could be in danger were he to sit down and use these prep sessions as a means to dissuade him from moving forward with the interview and taking it to court. >> or also to see maybe -- possibly how he performs during interview and then judge well maybe he might be okay with the special counsel -- >> maybe. but if you watch the presser or whatever it was in west virginia where he threw his notes up in the air, i don't think that is a good sign of how things might work out in that respect. >> well said. that is a good observation. pam, the president has said multiple times that he wants to sit down with robert mueller. watch this. >> would you be willing to speak under oath to give your version
of -- >> 100%. >> if robert mueller asked you to come and speak with his committee, are you committed still to doing that. >> just so you understand -- just so you understand, there is no collusion. there has been no crime. >> would you be open to -- >> we'll see what happens. certainly i'll see what happens. when nobody found any collusion at any level it seems unlikely you would even have an interview. >> are you going to talk to mueller? >> i'm looking forward to it, actually. >> so listen, he said publicly he wants to do multiple times in an interview with mueller. do you think he's saying the same thing behind closed door. >> he shows more enthusiasm under oath and saying he would love to do it. but behind closed doors i'm told that he vacillates and he will waiver depending on the day. not that he is saying he doesn't want to do it definitely, but not showing the same amount of enthusiasm particularly as he
sees this probe play out. his lawyers see this probe with 19 people at least being charged with criminal offenses and including for lying, i think the president understands the gravity of the situation and as we know he has not formally agreed to a sitdown interview. but what it seems to me from talking to sources, don, is that the lawyers wanted to go ahead and take the steps to just begin preparing him, taking those initial steps and even though that final decision hasn't been made yet. >> that is a very smart strategy. i have to admit. john, listen, when under oath, if the president is under oath, when he's under oath, he lacks details. but "the washington post" looked at two depositions that he sat previously through and they said in 2012 trump university deposition, he couldn't recall details 24 times in a 2015 deposition 35 times. that won't fly with the special counsel, will it? >> they will press him. indeed in his most recent
deposition on the contract action since he's been elected, he was totally unprepared. made very boisterous overstatements and went off the rail on truth on several occasions. so i think they'll have to caution him about that. that these are very dangerous -- and also, don, very likely it will be video taped. i don't think they'll ask the president under any circumstances to go to the courthouse to the grand jury room. there are all kinds of security problems. you can't z you can't -- separate the president from his football or a television if needed. so they'll make a combination and it will be much like bill clinton's video where there is a good record of it so people could observe the -- the grand jurors could observe his demeanor because that is telling. >> and if he said 25 or 35 times i don't recall to their questions. how will that go with the -- robert mueller. >> that doesn't play well. does not play well and they'll keep pressing him. >> quickly -- >> go ahead. >> especially if mueller has
indications that that is not a truthful statement. remember, you can be charged with a false statement by saying i don't remember when there is evident that you actually do remember and that you're sort of lying if you will by not remembering. >> laura, go ahead. >> the number 25 and the number you also quoted about the number of times he lies is important but the bigger number here is five because he still has a fifth amendment right against self incrimination if he does sit down under an interview. and in most cases and circumstances would you think that a president of the united states exercising or asserting the fifth amendment would be political suicide. he has done a fine job of trying to undermine the integrity and credibility of the investigation. i think in large ways to secure a reason to say, i'm not having anything to hide. i just don't want to sit down for a witch hunt and that is why the fifth amendment privilege. he has that in his back pocket and may carry it out and if they try to press him in favor of holding you in context, well no one has ever held a president in
contempt, that is another battle mueller would have to face. >> thank you, all. i appreciate it. >> thank you. when we come back, he was no coffee boy. joseph shmitz was one of the earliest foreign policy advisers and mixed up in efforts to find dirt on hillary clinton during the campaign. another cnn exclusive next. trade ya. okay, people, that's a reset. let's take it back from "supri--" (avo) get up to 50% off our best phones. because unlimited is only as good as the network it's on. ♪ ♪ we're ready for you. ♪ ♪ introducing new elvive protein recharge leave-in conditioner. in just 1 use, elvive revives damaged hair.
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mixed up in efforts to find dirt on hillary clinton during the campaign pushing what he thought were clinton's missing mails. here with that story is security correspondent jim sciutto and editor at large chris elisa and security analyst samantha vingrat. what could you tell us about what the campaign adviser was trying to do with what he thought were hillary clinton missing mails. >> joseph schmitz in the famous photo with donald trump and jeff sessions and the foreign policy team right next to george papadapoulos and he had a serious background and he was a d.o.d. official in the bush administration. and he would later be considered for secretary of the navy by trump when he was elected president. so he obtained what he believes are the deleted hillary clinton e-mails from the dark web and multiple sources told us he was relentless in trying to get these cleared and verified and
he brought them to the fbi and brought them to the intelligence community and brought them to the state department. went there and said, we need to declassify these. apparently with the intention of disseminating them. when he didn't get satisfaction he was interviewed briefly but they didn't want to touch it because they knew it came from a place -- the dark web where it could be questionable. but the source and also the veracity of the e-mails and then went to the house intelligence committee and tried it there. again, did not get a receptive audience. but fitting into the larger picture because we've heard of multiple trump aides told or offered potential dirt on hillary clinton and not just dirt typical campaign opposition research, but even the possibility of e-mails stolen from hillary clinton and here is joseph schmitzs taking part in the effort. >> and that is him at the table if we could put up with then candidate trump with jeff
sessions and i think this is during the campaign. this is before the >> that is right. >> so there he is sitting there at the table. again, no coffee boy. and these -- am i correct, jim, these were deemed to be fake, right? they weren't real, the e-mails? >> what happened -- as he went to the intelligence community and the fbi and the state department, they didn't want to touch this. material coming from the dark web and who knows. what was it stolen or provided by a foreign entity. and they didn't want to speak. and my colleague and i, a national security reporter, did speak with someone who viewed the e-mails and his reaction was they were not authentic on the dark web and based on what he saw in those e-mails. but like i said, there was real his -- his tensy to treat them seriously because there was the possibility they were stolen or where you should not have gotten them in the first >> got it. and so he went to the fbi and
the state intelligence and did he do the right thing by taking the materials to them. >> this sounds like it might be different from the other stories we've heard. he did seemingly go to authorities and say i have legally obtained information and let's do splg with i-- somethin it. but i'm listening to this and my thought is shady people do shady things with other shady people. a guy with a client on the dark web, i don't even know what the dark web is. i don't know what you use it for, that is anything good. this information just lands in his lap. don jr. gets contacted by wikileaks and papadapoulos just contacted about this information and just too cute avenue coincidence and i ask what was the interview process for the campaign. was the basic question do you know how to get legal information or know somebody who does rather than policy experience. >> all of the best people. >> right. >> yeah. was that chris? >> that was me. i was just going -- one quick
thing to sam's point which is what you have to remember is that foreign policy national security team was thrown together very slap dash because donald trump was being questioned over and over again on who he had that had any experience as he became -- looked more like the nominee or could be the nominee and he thrust these people together. >> he was at the first five campaign foreign policy adviser. >> and these are people that i don't think were vetted. i think it is hard to go back and remember. but donald trump went from zero percent chance of being the nominee suddenly to, hey, wait a minute, this guy might be the nominee and they shoved a punch of people like this in there. >> but on that point, don, to be clear, yes, you could say that about george papadapoulos, and folks didn't know where he came from. but joseph schmitz was the inspector general of the defense department in the bush administration. and he was not -- he was literally not a coffee boy.
he had a pedigree and advised the campaign for a number of months and then when trump was elected after that slap dash period in the campaign and he was considered for secretary of the navy. >> what do you say -- he should have known better? >> absolutely. >> don, one thing i think is important is step back and look at the context of this. the truth is hillary clinton during the campaign prior to -- made decisions she went through -- she didn't personally inspect them and split the e-mails in the server to things that had potential relevance in her professional life and things she deemed personal. personal e-mails were deleted and they became a holy grail for the trump campaign on the eve of the democratic convention. you had donald trump literally appealing to the russians, please get your hands on this. i think that is one of the reasons why you see so much interest, so many attempts for people like joseph schmidts and papadapoulos and the don jr.
meeting at the trump tower, they believe there was something here to disqualify her and they thought they needed that out of nowhere shot to take her out because simply te didn't think they had a chance short of that. >> well sam, they certainly seemed obsessed with getting hillary clinton's e-mails and to -- to both chris and jim's point, he was one of the first five campaign foreign policy advisers named by the trump campaign and others were carter page, george papadapoulos and who pled guilty to mueller -- to lying. so what does this say about the cast of characters that trump had working for him. >> that is not who i think anyone would want advising us on anything other than doing something illegal. and i think that schmitz is just the latest in the group of shady characters surrounding donald trump and there is a point that we haven't discussed which is the russians all knew that these campaign characters were trying to get access to illegal information and that is exactly why the russians reached out to
them to try to launder information through them to get donald trump elected. >> seems like a coincidence. >> and they knew. and i have dirt on hillary clinton, do you want it? absolutely. i forget what the -- don jr.'s exact phrase was. jim, what does this have to do with mueller? is he interested in joseph schmitz. >> we don't know if he's interviewed by muellerme and we asked him and went to his home and prior in the week he did not comment. now one could theorize that -- other witnesses have been asked about schmitz because he was an adviser to the president and prebts in the meeting in march 2016. but we do know that mueller has been interested in what you were describing, don, which is efforts to get hands on information damaging to hillary clinton, which a lot of campaigns do.
but even if that information had a questionable providence, whether it was coming from russia as we saw in the trump tower meeting with the russians or the dark web in this case whether it was illegally obtained. that is the questionch . so we know robert mueller is interested and whether he interviewed joseph schmitz about this we don't know. >> thank you. appreciate it. when we come back, more on what a conversation between robert mueller and the president could look like. and the president and his chief of staff disagreeing about whether yet another cabinet member should be fired and you know what always seems to happen on friday. it is not over yet.
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our cnn exclusive reporting tonight, president trump taking the first steps to prepare for an interview with special counsel robert mueller. and i'll talk about that with david axelrod, a former senior adviser to president obama. david, good evening to you from lovely and i'm sure cold chicago. >> yes, sir. >> so president trump is starting to prep for an interview with the special counsel through a source said
the preparation efforts are in the infancy. is that a big deal, david? >> it will be if he does it. the think the question that needs to be answered is, is he following his own advice or going to follow the advice of the lawyers. and so much of what we've seen lately in every realm has been that this president now is flying by his own lights and not taking a lot of advice. he's obviously lead lawyer quit. and so there are many, many legal people who will tell you, including people on the show, that they wouldn't testify if he had the option. and yet he seems to be moving forward. in any case, he should be preparing if there is any chance he will testify because this is not something that he can sort of bow guard his way through as he's done -- >> you mentioned his lead lawyer quit. what about the lack of lawyers.
going up against a team as well prepared at robert mueller. >> yes. it is like the green bay packers versus the little sisters of the poor. it is not a -- this is not a fair fight. and i would think that the president -- i mean, he is not well served. but he -- as i said, something has happened. he has crossed some sort of rubicon and tired of being told what he can do and what he can't do. he has a sense of om knishence and he thinks he got here at this stage in his life to be president of the united states but follows hissen instincts and will follow them now. and we'll see how that works out for >> what do you think about that as someone who has advised presidents? >> well, i mean, forget about advising presidents and i'm not a lawyer but i think any lawyer would tell you that is a very bad idea in this situation. >> i just mean doing what he wants to do and not listening to
his adviser. like he has a sense of -- om nishs about him. >> oh, i see -- well look, i think that we've seen this on the tariffs and saw it on north korea and now on personnel he is shunning the advice of his advisers and doing his own thing. and i think ultimately the wheels are going to fall off as a result. because i've sat in that -- i sat in the office next to the president, i've seen the kinds of things that come across that desk. you can't fake your way through that. you can't tweet your way through that. there are substantive decisions that have to be made and you want to make them on the basis of the best -- >> and you want to rely on people. >> you have to. i don't care who you are, every person needs the advice of people -- because the subject matter is so complex and so vast that you can't possibly know everything you need to know and the problem is that donald trump doesn't know what he doesn't
know. >> yeah. well there you go. let's talk about some of the folks around him. his bee leagued epa chief scott pruitt and the president met with him and john kelly wants to fire pruitt. trump is not there yet. here is what we heard from the white house today. watch this. >> everything has been reported mr. pruitt ends up being true in the president's estimation. security detail, the $50 a day -- >> i'm not going to walk through hypotheticals until we have time to go through a full review. that is what we're doing right now. but again the president thinks he's done a good job on the purpose of carrying out the goals of the epa. >> leaving herself a little wiggle room there? >> oh, absolutely. look, one thing we know, this president can give you a full endorsement on one day and fire you -- >> on the next -- >> -- on the same day. i don't know that means anything. i'm sure he is happy with scott pruitt. scott pruitt has been a radical
deregulator in the environmental area as he just -- this week rolled back the fuel emissions standards for cars which was a dramatic step backward in terms of climate change and in terms of pollution. and i think this is consistent with what trump promised as a candidate. but the question is, and this is why john kelly apparently recommended that he be dispatched, that pruitt be dispatched an the question is how many bricks can the load take. every single day there is a new scandal associated with this guy. and at some point it is just going to be too heavy of a load to bear. >> and also details that -- that he overstaid his welcome at the room he was renting. the landlord was -- had to change the locks. >> had to change the locks. >> the one that was $50 a night. that is pathetic, don't you think. as you said how many -- how many bricks with a load take. come on. >> yeah. don, there was an old song --
country western song called "how can i miss you when you won't go away." i think he overstayed his welcome for sure. >> trey gowdy is looking into that cheap condo, the head of the house oversight chairman. >> i think it is amazing how courageous people get when they announce retirement from congress. but, look, there is plenty there. i think that congressman gowdy and anyone else in a position of authority in the congress who has oversight responsibility would be remiss in their duties if they didn't look at this. this is a glaring, glaring ethical breach. and so i'm glad he's looking at it. he should be looking at it. >> david axelrod. he has the weekend off. it is van jones' turn and you'll be back next week and tell us who you have. and when we come back. trump administration slapping sanctions vladimir putin's inner
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election slapping sanctions on close associates of putin, a big change from tuesday when he thought he could have a good relationship with putin. let's discuss now april ryan and correspondent for the urban radio network and also matthew ojanski, the director of the wilson center kenyan institute. good evening to both of you. i like the bow tie, mathew. >> good evening. >> very fancy. >> thank you. >> april. you have to catch up. he has a bow tie. >> okay. >> and so ties to putin and 12 companies and seven individuals. and that is a big move for trump considering he was hesitant to -- what changed. >> it is a big move. but remember the devil is in the details when it comes to this administration. what has changed, don, cenis th
president is under scrutiny when it comes to russia and their interfering in the 2016 presidential elections. but at the same time as this is happening, there has been a flip. this president, according to sara sanders approved this and signed off on it and not expected to come out and make a pronouncement or statement or write something about it. but what happened was it was issued through the treasury secretary. now the president is supposed to give the directive and the cabinet and the rest figure out how to include the treasury secretary. but the president did not necessarily -- the onus was on the treasury secretary and he didn't come out and say i'm behind this and sara said that and he's not doing that himself. so there is another piece that kind of makes you wonder, is this just like saying okay, my administration did this but i'm standing where i am. >> so he is -- >> just separate from it.
>> so imagimatthew, the new sans will block access to russia and control assets under u.s. jurisdiction and prohibit americans from doing business with them. how serious of a move is this? >> well, i think it is very significant, don. but details matter. so number one, these are sanctions that were described in the official treasury statement as a pattern of malign global activity by russia. it is not just the hacking and attempted murderer of skripal in the u.k. or ukraine, it is everything rolled together. and then it is a list of individuals that is quite diverse. so you have categories of people, one or two, three or four picked from each category which tells me -- you have the security services, you have the head of putin's guard, you have the head of gas prom, putin's former son-in-law and russian
oligarchs that made their money in the 90s but are powerful in russia and i get a sense this is a symbolic list and a shot across the bow saying domestically, congress, we heard you and you passed legislation that require sanctions and there are more names to come along the lines but a message to the russians themselves, saying, hey, we get it and we're going after these two or three now and we'll go after more tomorrow. it is an attempt to push the russians in a new direction of rolling back the activity. i'm doubtful it will be different than what we've seen before. but it is an effort. >> what do you think -- how i do russia is going to respond? what do you think we'll see from them? because they're vowing a harsh response, matthew? >> yeah, there will be a response. the sad reality is that those w who are in the firing line of the russian response are those keeping the doors of dialogue
open, whether civil society, university exchanges, church groups going over to russia, and ngo get punished. companies doing good business and employing russians and americans because these are the people that russians have access to. they don't have the control and influence in the global and financial and trading system that the united states has. they cannot impose reciprocal sanctions on the united states that look like our sanctions on them. they don't have the ability to do it. so ordinary people will suffer from this. and the fact is putin will actually -- his domestic political line will be strengthened. he'll say, look, we're under assault and it is time for fortress russia. i'm you're defender and that is his message all along. >> before leaving the white house, h.r. mcmaster was critical this week of the u.s. lack of response to the russian election meddling, saying the u.s. had failed to respond appropriately. do you think that he had anything to do with this decision? >> well, i will say this, john bolton is coming in for last
couple of days and you never know how much mcmaster or bolton was all in this. but either way, it is about the election and also assad and crimea and so many other things. but again the focus for the united states primarily is the 2016 presidential election and what happened and this is a response. and if it was h.r. mcmaster, so be it. he had a big crowd today for all of the work that he's done. so -- he had a huge crowd today supporting him. so if it was him, good for him. he leaves not getting the fourth star but leaves -- >> with a lot of fans. >> with integrity. >> yeah. >> absolutely. >> a lot of fans. >> that is important. >> april and matthew, thank you. have a great weekend. >> thank you. when we come back, markets plunging as china threatens a major response to president trump's tariffs. how is the art of the deal going now? need a change of scenery?
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last night he was consider tare i was on $100 billion more in the chinese exports, which could triple what the united states is already planning. i want to bring in our senior economic analyst steven moore, senior economic adviser on the trump campaign appear rick wilson a republican strategist. i'm not looking at myo401(k). today was scarey. i sat there in the afternoon watching the number going, oh my gosh. oh my gosh. rick, if the president's new economic council director was asked about the threat of $100 billion in tariffs on china this is what he said this morning. watch this. >> one when did the president first tell you he was announcing additional potential $100 billion in tariffs? >> last evening. >> president trump says enough is enough. now, we're not running a trade war. if you read this thing you'll
see. this is just a proposed idea which will be vetted by usdr and open for public comments. none of these happen none of these have been executed. there is no there there yet. but there will be. >> okay. so that's larry cudd low. a couple of things to dissect here, rick. one which did the president not consult with the new top economic advisers on the tariffs. and two, do you think the president threat was an empty one? the first question answers itself. this is the pattern of behavior the president engages in at all times. he is impulsive. ep shoots from the lip. talks whatever is in his brain leaps out of it and heads tragt though his twitter fingers. and as for the second part, you know, i think the fact is the damage is already done. we've started down this path where you have seen the market shed off many billion dollars of equity because they are
terrified that the chinese have all the cards in the trade war aband they are terrified where donald trump has written a bunch of checks he can't cash, no surprise. but politically speaking, they realize they can bring a lot of pain into this. when it comes to trade, the u.s. and china are frenemies. we have a big problem with the sblgle property with you they buy our the t. bills and they sell us things that improve lives of american consumer. any one wants to pay $9 for a toilet brush when they can pay $99 cents. when you level the prices it's a net plus. the president is off on one of his little tang ents and tares. whether it was a war meant to start he started it. >> do you think, steven, what do you think is this a negotiating tactic without the intention of follow you know all the way through as the president -- is
the president consulting with his team or is he wing going here? what's going on. >> this wasn't kbusive. . i disagree with what rick. you weren't listening to donald trump during the campaign. this was one of the major economic points with we were getting tough with china. he mentioned china in every speech. they are stealing, cheating on trade keels, consorting with enemies in north korea in every way china in my opinion donald trump shares this opinion has become an enemy of the united states. they're not an ally. a lot of americans are wondering rick and don why has it taken us 15 or 20 years to react in this which when china has been stealing about $300 billion of intellectual property every year? i talk to ceos every day who say it's almost impossible for american companies to penetrate the chinese markets. so it's not a level playing
field. rick is just completely wrong. the country -- look if we can't trade with china that will hurt american consumers. it might mean rather than paying 99 cents for a tube of tooth paste mieft cost $1.29. cell phone extra $15. but china if they don't have access to the american market the they plunge into recession. i think trump unders we have the upper hand. what i want and i think trump wants is a negotiated settlement where china starts behave itself. >> let him respond. >> stops cheating and stealing. >> rick what if he is doing something that needs to be done? or maybe -- i don't know maybe he is bluffing his way and maybe china will buy it. i don't know. but it could end up being a good thing. >> look, the -- the fact that we have to address the trade imbalances with china we have to address the intellectual property stuff with china. no one disagrees. steven is correct. that's an issue. what you don't do is enter negotiation with a country that
buys our t-bills and can tank our market a hot minute in if chases to and we have a broad set of relationships that benefit of the u.s. in many way and china. we are bound together. and you don't don't go into the negotiation impulsively with the typical donald trump, a monkey in a zoo a cage throeing poo out of bars and making people run the right direction. this is not a guy that does things -- trump supporters often ascribe the president, that quantum chess. it's not he doesn't have the intellectual where with alto do that. very few economists think a trade war with china has good joukt process. we'll see what happens today it rate over and over again, see the market go into the -- >> i'm running out of time. >> but if the chinese decide one time to set out a t-bill auction.
today will look like a love tap. >> steven ten sfleekds they are the ones who own our aur t-bills they would be hurting themselves if they sold all the t-bills people are buying our t-bills at 3% interest rate there is no shortage of people buying. we borrow way too much money. trump understands we have the upper hand here. at some point china has to make concessions. i mean, look. >> got to run. >> it's simple rick we can't have free trade deals with a country stealing $300 billion from us every year doesn't work. >> loufr it works out we hope that works out. we tant take many more days like today. it's like a -- >> that's true too that's why we got to get it resolved i agree with you. >> thank you guys. have a good night. we'll be right back. >> thanks, don. how do you win at business?