tv MSNBC Live With Stephanie Ruhle MSNBC February 17, 2017 6:00am-7:01am PST
sorry to say, and happy to say, she's headed to the family new york times. >> that takes courage. >> help it not fail. >> she will undoubtedly shine. we are so proud of you. we are going to miss you, so much. look, joe wanted me to say this -- yay for laura. we adore you and thank you so much for your service and long and putting up with joe. >> it's been hard, i know. >> we'll miss you so much. >> we love you. >> thank you, laura. you can let her say thank you. >> you want to say anything? >> thank you so much. it's been a pleasure working here. i don't know which camera to look at. it's been an amazing ride. thank you. >> thank you. we will miss you very much. come back. >> i will. >> come back soon. >> that does it for us this morning. it's been a long week. get some rest. allie velshi picks up the
coverage now. >> i may have to extend to the liberal mag as a result of laura going there. i'm ali velshi in for stephanie ruhle. the pick to replace flynn rejects the offer. flynn says he never discussed sanctions. >> i said i don't think he did anything wrong. i think he did something right. >> democrats one step closer to launching a 9/11 style investigation, a republican set to join that call today. >> hopefully this is going to open the door and some republicans will begin to join us on that. >> wild ride. trump's epic news conference. >> fakeness. quiet, quiet. i inherited a mess. >> new details this morning that the president did that press conference against the advice of his aides. >> this is a fine tuned machine. >> that extraordinary press
conference still making waves this morning. we begin with new details and questions in the deepening drama over president trump's national security adviser. days after general michael flynn abruptly resigned from the post, the man considered the front-runner is saying no thank you. i have a stellar panel of guests and reporters you won't see anywhere else. they are jumping to get right in. let's start with peter alexander, live at the white house. peter, so much to get through with you. retired navy vice admiral robert harward now turning down the offer to be the president's new national security adviser. what details do you have? >> reporter: that's the bottom line there, ali. we heard from a u.s. senior official describing this choice for the vice admiral. it's one between the call of duty and the white house dysfunction. ultimately, it appears that was a reason for the conclusion not to join this team.
a senior administration official, just within the last 20 minutes saying that's certainly not the case. it was presented to him, he wanted to talk to it with his family and ultimately decided for that reason, he wouldn't be able to join this administration. nonetheless, it leaves the white house without a permanent national security adviser acting in that post right now is the general keith kellogg. donald trump tweeted about this issue saying keith kellogg's name is among those being considered to be the permanent national security adviser. another white house aide tells me a short time ago there are at least three other names in the mix. president trump referred to three specific others. i can't say they are the three he is referring, but this aide tells me the names the president has been considering include the former cia director, david petraeus, the retired general, keith alexander and finally jim jones who notably, ali, served as the national security adviser
under president obama as well. >> we would assume reince priebus would check with these three candidates to make sure, if offered the job, they would take it. let's go back to general michael flynn for a moment. the president defended general flynn during his news conference yesterday. let's listen to it. >> it wasn't wrong what he did in terms of the information he saw. what was wrong was the way tt other people, including yourselves in this room, we given that information. that was classified information. it was given illegally. that's the real problem. >> directly contradicted that when kristen welker asked him about it. i fired general flynn because of what he said to mike pence. let's put that aside for a second. we are hearing new information about general flynn's interview with the fbi about his contact with the russians.
what can you tell us about that? >> yeah, ali, i want to put it in context with "the washington post" which has been first with a lot of this reporting. they said that current and former officials, u.s. officials say that flynn denied to the fbi in an interview with him last month. he talked about sanctions in his call with the russian ambassador. the post notes some officials bringing a case here could prove difficult because flynn may attempt to parse the definition of sanctions. that's from the post. my colleague, pete williams reports a senior law enforcement official says when asked if he was in legal jeopardy of lying, they felt his answers were ambiguous and did not conclude he was lying to them. one of the officials said, i do not get the sense it's proceeding in that direction. ali? >> peter, i'm sure you are going to have a lot more reporting today on many, many topics. good to see you, as always. we will chat with you later in the hour.
i have an incredible superpanel with me you can see them surrounding me. howard dean is a former dnc chairman. caitlin burns is a political reporter for real clear politics and casey hunt. casey, stay there, we are getting to you in a minute. norm, i want to start with you, picking up on what peter just said. the fbi saying his answers, flynn's answers were ambiguous and may lead to legal jeopardy. >> good morning. thanks for having me. nice to be with you in person, for a change. what we are talking about here is the oldest story, legal jeopardy for government officials. it's not the cme it's the cover up. it's amazing that so early in the trump administration. it took us six years to get here in the nixon administration.
the second term in re gan and george w. bush. we are talking section 1,001 liability. did michael flynn make a false statement to the fbi? don't take the leaked efforts to exonerate him as the last word on this. it's not just an fbi call. career professionals of the justice department will review exactly what michael flynn said and whether you can bring one of these false statement prosecutions. but, it's always a challenge. i have worked on the cases in private practice defending. it's always a challenge. why? words shift. meanings are adjustable. you know flynn is going to have a very good defense lawyer. i can't believe the guy already needs a defense lawyer. >> we have to remember, he was a career intelligence officer. there's nobody who thinks michael flynn is not a smart
man. caitlin, i want to ask you, hours after donald trump said this is a fine tuned machine, the white house is running like a fine tuned machine, the guy he offers national security adviser job to says no. that is typically something that is vetted, checked and you know if you are making the offer, the person is likely to say yes. is donald trump, is this a sign he's having trouble filling the spot? there are enough people that will say yes. >> if you are a career public servant and spent your entire career in this environment, this is a great job for you, a high position for you. the fact of everything going on is possibly detring top talent from joining this administration. i think by most accounts would be troubling. what was interesting about the press conference, though, is that donald trump really said he had no problem with flynn discussing sanctions, perhaps,
with the ambassador. what's interesting, though, is why he lied about it. that's something that donald trump was not able to discuss or to explain. >> right. various times in that conference, he said he did nothing wrong. he blamed the media and i fired michael flynn because of his lie to mike pence. he said three different things. >> three different things. it's difficult to say, to understand where donald trump thought flynn was wrong. if he was able to discuss sanctions, but lied about it, why was that the case? >> let me play a little of this to get a sense of what we are talking about in case you missed the conference. >> russia is fake news. this is fake news put out by the media. i have done nothing for russia. i own nothing in russia. i have no loans in russia. i don't have any deals in russia. >> obviously that's going to take deep reporting, the last sentence. i have no loans in russia, i don't have any deals in russia.
he's now invited everybody to check whether or not it's true. russia is fake news. the leaks are fake new how do you make sense of this? >> what's not fake news, the russians expanded their efforts to attack the ukrainians and trump is doing nothing about it what so ever. i wonder why that could be. this problem with talent is much deeper than not wanting to do this. there are young people who will not accept staff positions in the national security keown till. that's insane. a junior staff position shouldn't get you in that kind of trouble. there are young people who won't accept positions in the state department because of trump. this guy cannot get the kind of people he wants to join them. >> the testimony that took place before the inauguration, they went before congress, that was brought up. one of the leaders of the
intelligence community says the danger here, particularly covert services is people who otherwise work in secret and who may give their lives for it don't want to be part of an administration where that part of the government is under attack. >> the cia, i know for a fact, is going to have trouble recruiting because of this. one, there's a position freeze that applies to the cia and two, people are wondering if this is a career render because you worked in the trump administration. that is unusual. if you are a democratic young person that worked in the bush administration, it's experience. this is different. i have never seen this before. >> i want to go to casey hunt. she is standing by. new information about the investigation into the trump team's connections with russia. casey, what do we know? >> reporter: well, ali, what we are looking for an capitol hill is how the investigations will proceed. right now, they are in the house and senate intelligence committees. what we are looking for is whether or not there's enough
prsure building that these investigations might grow. aelect committee on independent investigation. what democrats are focusing on now are trying to argue a 9/11 style commission to investigate russian meddling in the election by the hacks we have been talking about and that it should include mike flynn. elijah cummings was on saying he has a republican from north carolina to sign on to a bill to create this and on the senate side, chuck grassley, a republican asking for more information, briefings and documents around what flynn has done. as of now, there's no screaming headline about changes up here in the investigations, but, there are potentially movements that show kind of the increasing potential pressure and also set the stage for potential new information. chuck grassley has a committee with real teeth. if they are able to find out new
information, it's entirely possible it will move the ball forward on the investigation. >> stand by, we are going to come back to you. caitlin, i want to ask you this, republican senators are of a certain vintage. they may want to stick by donald trump for political reasons, this russia thing is weirding them out because they remember when russia was an enemy of the united states. they understand some things have changed. they are worried about not knowing the truth about this administration's connections to russia. >> mitt romney called russia the biggest geo political tlet. nothing unites the republican party quite like this now. you are seeing bipartisan interest in investigating. administrations have called for independent prosecutors for various things for various reasons. if donald trump wants to turn the page and say, look, i want to focus on the economic agenda, i want to focus on this list of
things he referenced yesterday in the press conference, condoning an investigation might be a good way to do that. >> all right. i want to bring peter alexander in. in a moment, peter, or there was a moment in the president's news conference that has gone viral. it stems from this claim by president trump that i want to play. >> the biggest electoral college win since ronald reagan. >> now, i remember while this was going on, peter, you fact checked it live and sent us all the information. let's listen to that. >> you said today that you have the biggest electoral margin since ronald reagan with 304-306 electoral votes. president obama got 365 -- >> i'm talking republican. >> president obama 332 and george h.w. bush 426 when he won as president. why should americans trust you -- >> i was given that information.
we have a very, very big margin. >> why should americans trust you when you accuse the information they receive as fake when you are providing information that is not accurate. >> i was given that information. actually, i have seen that information around. >> that wasn't the first time that president trump has made that claim. first of all, all the business he brings up the number 306 all the time. that's the number of electoral college votes he won in the election. it was 304 because two texas electoral votes didn't go his way when it came to voting, but he said this before. >> reporter: he said in a tweet this week, he said out loud multiple times the last three plus months since the election. a lot of that conversation, the news conference wa focused on the past. he appeared to be obsessed with hillary clinton, obviously, his past opponent. it's in the rear view window. what that moment provided was the opportunity to pin the
president down. the question a lot of americans, at least to whom i speak, trump supporters in the country who i'm in contact with say we want you to be president and do your job. cut out this other stuff. why should we trust you on the big things when you keep making up stuff about the little things like the electoral margin of victory? that's the biggest take away i have from the exchange. >> i want to repeat what peter said there. president george h.w. bush won 426. there's the math. those are the numbers. they are not alternative facts. it is what it is. peter, thank you. coming up next, democrats pushing for a 9/11 style commission investigation into the white house and its contacts with russia. i'm going to ask a democratic member of the house intelligence committee, what they hope to find. cracked pepper sauce" "most ribs eaten while calf roping".
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you can talk all you want about russia, which is fake news fabricated deal to make up for the loss of the democrats and the press plays right into it. i saw a couple of the people that were supposedly involved in this. they know nothing about it. >> that was donald trump during his first solo news conference answers questions about russia. he says the recent news about russia and the trump
administration is a fabrication by the media. joining me is congressman jim hines of connecticut and a member of the house intelligence committee. good to see you. thank you for being with us. >> good morning, ali. >> what's your response to donald trump's accusations that the stories about his administrations connections to russia have been fake news because you are all sore hillary clinton didn't win? >> i mean it's as ludicrous as many things the president said in his press conference. his ownctio contradict what he said. he fired after 24 days the national security aide, general michael flynn, fired because he lied to pence and others about the nature of the conversations with the russian ambassador. now, we are left with the president having zero credibility. it was flynn wishing the ambassador a merry christmas. that turns out not to be true in a way that created turmoil for
this administration. guys like me are in the position of hopefully, we are investigating. this is gotten beyond the point where it should be guys like me who live in the political fray. this should move to an independent commission that can be held up outside the party fray. >> tell me why. what's the difference, for the viewer who is don't draw the distinction between the commission. what's the difference? >> the president made the case in this case. he will, as he has, say, oh, there's no there there. it's absurd given he fired the national security adviser to say that. he's going to continue to say it's a partisan witch hunt. it's the democrats being sore over the loss of hillary clinton. sitting members of congress, we are part of political parties, we have our eye on the next election and the presidential election four years down the road. really, what needs to be done here for something that is so important in our history, the
russians may -- well, the russiansid meddle in the election. there's a question whether the current president and his people colluded in that effort. that's the core of it. it's time to take the investigation out of the hands of people like me who can't get away from political parties and put it in the hands of people who say these are statesmen who have the interest of the country ahead of any political party. >> your colleague, elijah cummings says he has a co-spon tor for the 9/11 style commission on russia. do you have details on that is this. >> mitch mcconnell said it ain't gonna happen. our hope is americans come to understand the facts here, which is there is russian meddling and there was communication prior to the president being sworn in between his people and the americans should say what exactly was in those conversations that flynn had. by the way, did others have conversations? if so, what did they say?
why is it the president is going after "the new york times," after the cast of "hamilton" after senator blumenthal but when russia violates a missile treaty, it's crickets. that's an investigation that should not be done by current sitting active people. it should be done by elder statesmen and women who can focus on this in the entirety. >> let me ask you this, congressman. there have been reports this week that new york billionaire steven feinberg may be tapped. he has a lot of experience on wall street, last i checked, zero experience in the intelligence community. there are some concerns within the intelligence community that this will politicize intelligence agencies. what is your take on this? >> well, as it happens, mr. feinberg is a constituent of mine. he's a fine man. if this goes forward, it is
essential it not be about the president continuing his war with the cia and the nsa and looking to root out leakers. we should investigate leaks, there's no question about that. leaks are a bad thing. as you know, here in washington, there's concern this person is going to come and be the intelligence man in the community and possibly intimidating people. this raises a question for people like me on the intelligence committee. we are charged with oversight. we are going to stand in the way of anybody's effort, anybody's effort, democrat or republican or whoever it may be to cow the intelligence agencies or try to politicize the intelligence that is important to the security of this country. >> thanks for your time this morning. coming up, more op president trump's incredible press conference yesterday. i'm going to ask a member of the foreign relations committee if his russian defense gives him concern. the cia agent who --
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welcome back. i'm ali velshi in for stephanie ruhle. we begin with president trump's plan for the long weekend. the president is going to depart on air force one on the way to a boeing plant in south carolina. tomorrow, the president will hold a campaign-style rally in orlando. the ninth circuit court of appeals said the case surrounding president trump's travel ban is on hold pending a new executive order next week. you are looking at live pictures of democratic senators in the middle of a talk-a-thon over the vote of attorney
general scott pruitt as head of the environmental protection agency. the democrats are pushing for it to be delayed after a judge in oklahoma ordered pruitt to release thousands of e-mails between his office and fossil fuel companies. tens of thousands of people are expected to skip work and attend rallies in what is called a general strike to get our knock si back. more than 100 protests expected across the country. check out this video. whoa! whoa! an employee at an indoor sky diving place in houston made the save of a lifetime. he was in the right place at the right time after the toddler fell making for one incredible one-handed grab. the president used much of his incredible news conference yesterday to slam the media. he's doubling down on the criticism today. guess what? a donald trump tweet. thank you for the statements on the press conference. rush limbaugh said one of the
best ever. fake media not happy. here is a flavor of what he said yesterday. >> the press has become so dishonest. the level of dishonesty is out of control. the public doesn't believe you people anymore. >> let's bring back the panel, howard dean, norm and caitlin. caitlin, let's start with you. how does this play with his base? does it work? >> it plays so well with his base. whep he was standing with benjamin netanyahu, the israeli prime minister and called the u.s. media fake news. i tweeted that. the responses on my twitter feed from conservatives and those who support him were overwhelming. for them, it looks like he is standing up to his opponents the way he did in the campaign. he's using the same campaign tactics. politicall that's l he knows. his only experience in governing has been the last three or four weeks. it plays well among the base. keep an eye on the approval ratings numbers.
yes, very high approval among republicans in republican districts. if that number fades, that's telling. looking at voters who supported him but reluctantly. the hard core supporters are always going to be with him. remember, he said he could go out on fifth avenue, shoot someone and they would be with him. i think it's true. republican lawmakers say it's true, they are hearing it. the softer supporters, i think, are important to keep an eye on. he saw the media as a foil. we'll see him do that with the rally in florida. >> people were asking me yesterday, what is the most amazing part to you of the speech? i guess what comes to mind is the exchange with april ryan. i want to play that for you and then get your comments, howard. >> are you going to include the congressional black caucus? >> i would. i tell you what, you want to set up the meeting? do you want to set up the meeting? >> no, no, no. >> are they friends of yours?
>> that was weird. april ryan asking the president about meeting with the congressional black caucus. the first reference was the cbc. she didn't know what that was, she said the congressional black caucus. he said do you know people there and want to set up the meeting? >> they lied. he made up a conversation he did not have with elijah cummings. >> he said i don't knowhy he would do such a thing. >> he a decent person. you may not like his politics, but he's one of the most decent, honest people in congress. the president lies, again. the worst part is he keeps talking about wanting to do something for the african-american people. this is a put down of a black reporter. it's not very smart. there can't be an african-american in this country who shaw that exchange who thinks donald trump does not have some racial difficulties trying to figure this out. >> april was saying this morning
that she, her real take away from this is why is he asking me as a reporter to set up a meeting with the black caucus. >> you know these people? these people. >> it was weird. norm, something is interesting. donald trump made one of the more interesting parts is where he talked about i have no dealings in russia, no business in russia, nothing to do with russia at all that. that stands no opposition of other people with the last name trump. >> the chaos, if it's a well oiled machine, it's a goldberg machine with the crazy parts. one of the challenges is following the through lines. a through line is donald trump about russia. if you look carefully, he dodged the questio yesrday before he decided to run for office, his son said that russian -- they see a lot of
russian money in their business and that russia is a very significant portion. russians are a significant portion of their assets. we need the tax returns. two of the through lines, russia and donald trump's financial conflicts and his illegalities. >> the statement he has nothing to do with russia, does that give anybody any legal standing to then say well, we need the tax returns because we believe it to be untrue or a fishing expedition? >> well, myself and my republican counter part in the bush white house are litigating now over donald trump's, right here in new york, over donald trump's acceptance of foreign government benefits. we have more of this leaked from china. we are going to get those tax returns should we make it to the
discovery portion of the case. there will be others, this special committee in congress. even if you have a bipartisan senate investigation, they have the right to look behind closed doors. what do those tax returns say about russia? they can't. >> all right. all right. fantastic conversation. let me go back to congress. you are looking at live pictures of democratic senators on a 14 -- on hour 14 of a talk-a-thon opposing scott pruitt. we are joined with why they think pruitt is the wrong choice later, lost in the chaos of the press conference was the event that was called to announce the nomination of alexander acosta as the lead secretary of labor. you would be surprised how many times trump said his name. it's the phillips' lady!
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now to some new reaction to retired vice admiral harward's decision to refuse the role vacated by mike flynn. he's calling it a personal issue. joining me now is tom udall, a democrat on the foreign relations committee. senator, good to see you. thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> what is your take on the significance of the decision of harward not to take the offer? >> i think it looks like chaos to me. he's saying he doesn't trust the
people flynn brought in. he wanted to hire his own staff, wasn't given that guarantee, so he's not taking the job. it's a very chaotic situation for the national security council and we need to get somebody in there solid, in place, doing the job as soon as possible. >> president trump is focused and he brought i up again and many republican colleagues are focused on the source of the leaks that surrounded flynn's departure. it seems to me to be two separate issues and they are important. the source of the leak is critical, but the content of the the information in the leaks seems to be equally important. the relationship between this administration and russia. >> that's right. i think the bigger issue that the american people want resolved by a blue ribbon commission is what did russia do, how did they interfere with the election, who was involved and how do we make sure it never
happens again. that should be done by a 9/11-type commission. that's what i think the american people are looking for. there are a lot of details about flynn, about his lying to pence, lying to the fbi, possibly being prosecuted. all that is out there and part of the greater investigation, too, i believe. >> senator, you are one of six democratic senators who sent a letter last night to president trump's commerce secretary, wilbur ross, raising concerns about the banking deals with russia. tell me about this. is this related to the flynn revelations? >> what this is about is the president hired millionaires and billionaires in his cabinet. they have all sorts of financial ties around the world and as with wilbur ross, with russia. so, people want to know, are they going to be acting on
behalf of their financial interest and future financial interest or are they going to be acting in the public interest? so, it's a big issue. that's why we signed that letter to try to get to the bottom of what's happening. as you know, many of these millionaires and billionaires that trump has hired have serious problems in terms of their entanglements around the world on economic and other issues. explain this to me, though. while the issue of the flynn stuff and who knew what when is important and the idea president trump said he has no connection, financially, to anything or anybody in russia is important and worthy of investigation. does it matter if some of these millionaires and billionaires in the cabinet has business dealings in russia? is there no way they could be impartial in their dealings by virtue of the fact they have dealings in russia? >> i hope they can be impartial.
i think what happens with these kind of business dealings is big questions are raised. as we move forward, whatever happens, people are going to say, well, did the president and his team do that in the public interest or did they do it because of private gain that might happen to somebody on the outside or something they may have happen to them in their future lives. >> senator, i want to ask u, before you go, the confirmation vote today for the president's nominee for e.p.a. administrator, scott pruitt, scheduled for 1:00 p.m. today. a judge in oklahoma ordered pruitt to turn over e-mails between him and fuel companies, fossil fuel companies. he has until tuesday to do that. the vote is today, the deadline is tuesday. >> we should delay the vote. they are important e-mails looking into scott pruitt's background. he wasn't vetted by the administration, he was thrown up
here. we had to do the vetting and do our job. that vote should be delayed is what should happen. >> senator, finally, congressional lawmakers are turning to the congressional review act to dismantle regulations that came in late in president obama's final term. is this all fair game? >> it's fair game and it's law. it's only been used once. it's a very blunt instrument. they are dismantling things that are very much in the public interest. the methane rule, we have a huge methane cloud, the size of delaware, over new mexico and the four corners area. we are trying to clean that up. it's good in cleaning it up for public health. it's good to tackle climate change. they are going to repeal it and just blow out a whole area that we would be able to move forward on. this is very discouraging to me. we hope that we can get the votes here to head this off. >> senator tom udall, thanks for
joining us, appreciate your time. >> thank you, a real pleasure. the cia agent who interrogated saddam hussein. up next, president trump's press conference by the numbers. (vo) this is not a video game. this is not a screensaver. this is the destruction of a cancer cell by the body's own immune system, thanks to medicine that didn't exist until now. and today can save your life. ♪ ♪
the epic press conference, calling the situations he's dealing with a mess. he used the word mess six times. the goal of the news conference seemed to be the trash the media and he did just that. >> i've never seen more dishonest media. the media. the media. he used the word "the media" ten times and called them fake six times. >> he talked about ratings four times. >> i do get good ratings. i know how everybody's ratings are. the good news is who doesn't have good ratings. >> and rerlived some of the pas. >> that's how won. i won. i won the presidency. >> speaking about winning, he referenced his electoral college
win six times and how many times do you think he mentioned his opponent, hillary clinton. >> does anybody really think that hillary clinton would be tougher on russia? hillary. hilla hillary. hillary clinton. >> he mentioned hillary clinton in some form 18 times. >> and his purpose was to mention the new secretary of labor and he only mentioned him four times. president trump will depart the white house on his way it a boeing factory in south carolina. up next, president trump has come out hard against the intelligence community, blaming them for the number of leaks in his war against the intelligence community. is it a danger to the country? american express open cards can help you take on a new job,
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we're going to find the leakers. there's a price for leaking. >> president trump calling on the justice department to investigate who leaked information about his administration. this follows a bombshell report from the wall street journal claiming that intelligence agencies are keeping information from trump. now, cia director mike pompeo schrammed t-- slammed the repor saying the cia has not and will not keep information from the president period.
and our guest did interrogate saddam hussein. the director of national intelligence has come out and said this report is false. how do you characterize this relationship, this ongoing bale betwe trump and the intel community? is i a war? is it a nonissue as the cia director has suggested or is it something in between? >> it's something that i think is very bad. i've said on this program before the cia -- the intelligence community and the president need each other. if we're going to have this kind of constant sniping at each other, i think this plays into the hands of our enemies. it's going to hurt his presidency in the long run. >> you've got to have contact as a former cia analyst, you've got to have contact with people who are in the intelligence community. what's the situation? what's the morale?
how to people in covert operations even fight this sort of thing? >> there was a lot of encouragement after donald trump came to the cia headquarters and gave his speech that day. there's a lot of people who thought this was a good thing. now i think there's a lot of alarm over some of the plans that the white house has for the intelligence community. the way the white house is going about trying to implement some of these changes, it's sort of cutting everybody out of the process. and we've had a number of indicators. for example, stephen bannon being put on the security council, the demotion of the dni and chairman of the joint chiefs of staff off the council and a number other things. certainly general flynn's personal and professional animus towards the agency did not help matters much. i think it's a bad situation that is just getting worse by the day. i wish president trump would not rely so much on some of these
people who are painting targets on his administration and encouraging people to attack his administration because maybe then he wouldn't feel so under siege. i think one of the things that trump needs to do is make a transibs from the c-- transitiom the came to governing the country. >> what do you think about the threat of the leakers? >> every president comes in town and says they're going to get the leakers and they try and can't. >> john, it's good to talk to you. thanks so much for joining us. that wraps up this hour. i'm ali velshi. right now more news with my friend hallie jackson. >> the hallie and ali hour. we is a full friday of news.
the president's latest pick for national security adviser taking a pass, so what happens next even as his former national security is front page news again? a new report says michael flynn denied talking abo sanctions with russia during an fbi interview. we're looking at the next steps for the one-time insider. all of that from the 77-minute marathon news conference. we've got it all covered, peter alexander, phil rucker and kasie over at capitol hill. peter, we've got key issues facing this nation like the lack of the national security adviser in the white house right now. the administration is looking to hire, right? >> reporter: the acting national security adviser remains, keith kellogg.
we learned robert harward, the navy vice admiral declined the offer. u.s. officials said he was deciding between the call of duty and white house dysfunction and basically said he would choose to pass. a senior administration official tells me that was not the case, this was exclusively about family and that he made the decision for his family he wouldn't be able to do this. in terms of where this white house goes now, president trump did tweet earlier saying kellogg is in the mix to potentially stay on permanently. he said there are three others being considered. i do know from a white house aide that among the names that president trump has been considering are the former cia director david petraeus, the retired general keith alexander and finally jim jones, the retired general who formerly served as the national security adviser to