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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  May 29, 2017 6:00am-7:01am PDT

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i'm stephanie ruhle. you're watching msnbc. there is a lot going on this holiday monday. starting with total confidence, the president comes out strong for his son-in-law and adviser jared kushner amid reports he tried to set up back channel communications with russians. >> any time you can open the lines of communication with anyone, whether they're good friends or not so good friends, is a smart thing to do. >> white house staffers publicly defending him, but we have new reporting on what some inside the administration are really thinking. and the hunt for the leakers, the president vowing to root out those who passed on the british intelligence about the manchester bomber. we've got the latest. plus weakening ties, german chancellor in a stark change of policy, europe can no longer depend on the united states. our 70 years of diplomacy about to dramatically change. we begin, of course, with
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the fierce new reaction from president trump to reports that his son-in-law and senior adviser jared kushner discussed setting up a secure and secret communication channel between the kremlin and transition team with the russian ambassador. a stellar team of correspondents and guests to break it down. start with the white house correspondent, nbc's kristen welker. we knew that president trump was going to take to twitter. it would be risky for him to sit in front of a camera and answer questions, seeing he needs to be flanked by his lawyers because he himself is embroiled in all of these russia ties. what is he saying thus far? >> he's fiercely defending his son-in-law jared kushner amidst those reports that you talked about that he tried to set up a back channel for communicating with the russians. as we have been reporting throughout the morning, there are some inside the white house who have suggested kushner should lay low for a while, no indication the president shares that view. this what is he told "the new
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york times" in strong terms, jared is doing a great job for the country. i have total confidence in him. he is respected by virtually everyone and is working on programs that will save our country billions of dollars, in addition to that and pore monthly, he is a very good -- more importantly, he is a very good person. the president taking to twitter lashing out at the media. one of his tweets the fake news media works hard at disparaging and demeaning my use of social media because they don't want america to hear the real story. important to point out that based on my conversations here, jared says he's focused on work, eager to cooperate with any investigation, and again, no sign that he's sort of internal grum blinx are having an impact on his role at the white house. he's one of the president's top advisors. >> i want to make something clear, president trump. i am not criticizing your use of social media. please, by all means, have at it. i also want to share you're learning new details about a possible staff shakeup within
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the white house. we know before this foreign trip, there was so much talk about it, when president trump fired james comey, it really seemed that only jared and ivanka knew about the firing. many within the white house, including steve bannon, only learned about it just as james comey did, on television. now we're learning, well, jared not being investigated, but there's questions around his involvement, but puzzling that jared maybe new james comey was getting fired and we're back to that staff shakeup. what have you heard? >> stef, we have reported on a potential staff shakeup so many times. important to caveat this reporting with that, the sense is that the president is going to make the final decision and he might be wavering. this latest round of reporting about potential staff shakeup has to do with the communications staff. this is where the focus has been, potentially giving the deputy press secretary sara huckabee sanders a more expanded
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role. one official telling me look for there to be some reassignments potentially, new rules expanded rules for some other folks. remember this all comes as they're setting up the war room, stef, and so look for a number of top officials to be engaged in that as well. a new strategy we're hearing about from the president himself expect him to hit the road more. more rallies to talk about this agenda. he wants the focus to be there, and pivot from some of the negative headlines about russia, talking about things like health care and tax reform. the other thing to look out for, stef, there could be fewer on camera briefings and more appearances by top officials like hr. mcmaster, gary cohn, for example. the white house thinks that's been an effective way to get their message out and we will see a lot more of that in the coming weeks. >> it's been an effective way to get their message out, but you're not seeing h.r. mcmaster or gary cohn talk about things extensively like russia. they didn't know the president during the transition time and
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they don't have a long history with him. if the president needs to get himself away from the russia issue, a few days ago, before we heard that jared could be deeply involved in this. we thought jared was going to lead the war room. if the president's plan is to put guys like gary cohn and h.r. mcmaster front and center they're not going to touch russia, how is that going to help the president? >> we saw that play out in the foreign leg of the trip, they did the final briefing. it was an off camera briefing. they were asked repeatedly about russia and the latest reporting as it relates to jared kushner. they wouldn't answer questions. the mood in the room got very tense frustrations on both sides, so i think your point is absolutely accurate, and if the president is going to be putting top officials out in front of the camera in that sense, they're going to need to either be bracing for questions about the news of the day, that don't necessarily relate to whatever topic they want to be focused
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on, or things are going to continue to become very heated, stef. >> all right. then, i want to bring my panel in to join this conversation. joan walsh, msnbc political analyst and national affairs correspondent at the nation and evan is a republican strategist and ozzy, i said i was going to get it right, senior political reporter for politico with us, naveds is a former fbi double agent and author of "how to catch a spy." i want to share first what the secretary of homeland security john kelly said about reports of jared kushner trying to set up this back channel. >> there was a lot of different ways to communicate back channel publicly with other countries. i don't see any big issue here relative to jared. any time you can open lines of communication with anyone, whether they're good friends or not so good friends is a smart thing to do. >> i don't know how he's going on tv and defending this,
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stephanie. i really don't. this is not just a back channel, this is not that he went and had coffee down the street with somebody. he wanted to open up a secure communication line and do it in russian facilities. at a time when we actually had a real president, barack obama. he was not serving the president. there's something really fishy about it. we don't understand it. we don't know what he was trying to get at. for someone like secretary kelly to go out and use his status, his standing, to say this is just normal, i'm frankly kind of shocked that he's doing that. >> evan, are we putting the cart before the horse in any way? i've spoken to people inside the white house they're upset but they're saying rules are rules, this is a law of nations, we've got a special, special prosecutor and investigations going on. before sending jared kushner to the bench before saying he's got to sit on the side, do we have to wait and see how all of this plays out? >> we have to wait and see how
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all of it plays out. we don't convict somebody based on a "washington post" report. i'm disturbed by what was in that report but i want to render final judgment based on someone who finds who is in a position of prosecutorial power. we are talking about back channels. back channels can be good and republicans are going out saying secretary kissinger when he was in power in the '60s he would have back channel. his back channels were at a cafe, weren't in the russian secure information facility. there is one aspect which has been gnawing at me for a while. see the division in the country and the destabilization it plays into vladimir putin'shands. the russians who have been known to feed false sfwhejs their own back channels back to moscow because they know we're listening and did this and they're responsible. >> what you're saying is, maybe the russians have fed this, maybe jared didn't do it at all? >> that's quite possible.
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jared might have said we could keep the line communication open but didn't suggest using the secure information facilities. ambassad ambassador kislyak is the russian spy master in the united states. could he have fed it knowing it was false to destabilize us, absolutely. the tip sent to the reporter at "the washington post," via anonymous letter supposedly from somebody within the transition. we have to verify the facts so we know what happens -- >> no one has come out and refuted it. people said it's not a big deal. no one said it didn't happen at this point. >> naveeds, who is screwed here, house of cards, because real life is so much crazier than fiction. what's your take on evan's response. >> this is crazy town. i think evan is partially right. i'll take a disagreement with my friend here. look, back channels are what we did with the swiss when we didn't have relations with cuba and iran. we used the swiss to back channel into those governments.
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this is not back channels. the prosecutorial thing aside and legal thing aside, as an intelligence officer you look for indications and warnings and patterns. this is a pattern emerges that shows a consistent effort to deceive. when you have that, only one conclusion you can draw from an intelligence standpoint this man was either a russian agent, aspiring to be a russian agent or was a russian agent. i don't know what that means in terms of legality -- >> hold on, this man being jared kushner? >> absolutely. >> you think jared kushner was a russian agent? >> absolutely. i -- my -- >> why would he be a russian agent? >> i will tell you exactly why. i think in this case we're going to look back -- we have michael flynn, relationship with the russians that goes back to at least 2014, right. i think that what the fbi is going to do now is look at this frame, we have from december to january, from the election to december, that there's this purported sort of contact with the russians. i think the fbi xwizing to look back three or four years, into
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mr. kushner's past and see it if there's more connections to the russians. >> that's a major allegation. >> absolutely. >> people can agree jared kushner wants to be mega rich, mega powerful, jared kushner and ivanka want to be mega, important, glamorous, super star celebrities but you think he wants to be a russian agent? that's kind of a stretch. >> hold on now. the concept of a russian agent as we heard director brennan said about treason that someone goes down the path they may not be aware they're going down that path this is how it happens. in this case it could have been, perhaps, an innocent decision to try to make contact with them and that's how you start these things. yes, i think there is -- the term russian agent perhaps is not what people think in sort of the movies. this is, you know, when you have someone who fails to register as a foreign agent, for example, that is what i'm talking about. this could be someone who started a relationship that was frankly inappropriate that skirted the law and made a hard left turn. i think in december sitting down
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with flynn and having this conversation to set up purported quote/unquote back channels before you're even in the government that smacks me of something that is wildly at a minimum inappropriate. >> ozzy, that is a fair point. we've heard president trump defenders who have said listen, when he's done things that have appeared to be illegal or immoral it's just that he didn't know better. is there an argument to be made here that maybe jared kushner didn't realize, he has no government experience, guess what that doesn't mean it's okay. >> right. i don't know if a prosecutor will buy the i didn't know that was wrong kind of defense. what it does speak to is the lack of experience among the people around trump. remember there was an entire republican establishment with years of experience that know what they're doing that said we don't want to work for this guy. what naveeds says which has credibility prosecutors may look for patterns and if he tried to do this once did he try to do it before. what other communications did
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you have. did you think it was okay here. did you think it was okay to do it elsewhere. they're going to take this moment and say, if you tried to set up back channel communications with russians, knowing that there was a scandal about their role in the presidential elections, did you try to do this elsewhere. they -- i think if you stand by this and you use the i didn't know it was wrong defense, what else did you do that you didn't think was wrong? if you didn't think it was wrong to communicate with the russians as a nongovernment official talking about, according to the "new york times" syria and trying to have mike flynn, about military matters, i think that was the -- >> didn't think it was wrong to have your sister go to china and try to market to raise money through the eb-5 visa program at the very least is a sleazy cheesy program. it is wrong. >> if he didn't think this is wrong what else did he do that he didn't think it was wrong. you can't defend it and say it's
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appropriate and fine and say i didn't know it was wrong. something doesn't fit here. you have a divided white house saying we're going to attack the leaks find out what's at the bottom of this stuff and by the way it's totally appropriate. >> we've got a white house saying we're going to attack the leaks that we don't like. yet the white house is not acknowledging there are many, many leaks from those within the white house who the president himself does like. we have a lot more to cover. next harsh words from german chancellor angela merkel, on the heels of an intense g7 summit says the u.s. is longer a reliable partner. remember, what today is. memorial day. i want you to take a look at this live shot of arlington national cemetery. two hours from now the president will participate in a wreath laying ceremony at arlington's tomb of the unknown soldier. fun in art class. come close, come close. i like that. [ music stops suddenly ] ah. when your pain reliever stops working,
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president trump's tough talk towards germany, nato and the g7 is leading to a stunning response from german chancellor angela merkel. at a campaign event sunday, merkel, without specifically mentioning the u.s. or president trump, suggested that the united states could not be fully counted on when it comes to the nato alliance. merkel said europeans need to take their destiny into their own hands. i'm joined now by four-time ambassador christopher hill, whose last post was in iraq, and my panel is back with me, the nation's joan walsh, gop
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strategist evan siegfried and ozzy pabera. i'm getting there. ambassador, i want to start with you. is angela merkel right? is the u.s. no longer a reliable nato partner? if that is the case, what does it mean? >> well, it's a very harsh statement and she's a very careful, prepared person, so she obviously knew what she was saying. i would say -- i'm quite surprised that the european swing was so bad. how difficult is it to go to a nato meeting, thank people for the plaque on 9/11 and reiterate the commitment to article 5 and say we're in it and all for one, one for all, and oh, by the way, people should really keep up their defense spending. not a hard message to deliver. yet, he completely failed there, and in cons trast to the sort of love in he had with the saudis. it was a bizarre overall trip
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and i think it may have left our relations with the sunni arabs better and our relations with our european allies worse and i think angela merkel was reflecting, part purposefully, that amount of frustration from the europeans. >> ambassador, if from your estimation it was an unforced error and easy for the president to clear to articulate his support for article 5 and he chose not to, should we read that as the white house not viewing it as a failure or the white house wanting this outcome? >> well, i think the white house, you know, it is the white house, has to put a positive spin on things, but i think to some extent we have a president who frankly doesn't like to be told what to do and so when someone says you need to reiterate article 5, he goes hey, i'm the president, do i really need to do that. the answer was absolutely yes. and i was a little surprised that he didn't. i understood why he kind of hedged on the climate agreement
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and on trade because those are kind of more basic issues to his campaign, but his unwillingness to kind of be forthcoming about this grand alliance that is, after all -- i mean we're in it not to protect europe, we're in it to protect ourselves, we're in it because we want allies and we want to be forward deployed. this is for our benefit and this notion somehow we're in it for charity for europeans is completely wrong. so i find it kind of mystifying why he chose to have this terrible meeting with the nato allies. >> evan, from your estimation, does the president understand that? because to the ambassador's point the white house has to put a positive spin on it, these were prepared remarks. this wasn't an off the cuff tweet he put out at 2:00 a.m. the president made a decision to do this and to the ambassador's point the president can do whatever he wants. why wouldn't he want to support article 5? >> i don't think he understand
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what he was doing. i think this all goes back to what happened when he was addressing the new nato headquarters and talking about at the 9/11 memorial there, and he lectured about how the different countries need to pay their dues and their fair share. well there was movement behind the scenes on that, but when he did that publicly to somebody like angela merkel who's facing a tough re-election fight and trump is massively unpopular, it puts her in a corner and she has to come out and oppose him which is what she did yesterday. the white house created this problem and it's because of their own making because they are not competent when it comes to foreign policy and domestic policy, we have to be honest, and i think that what they did was the problem of their own making. you can actually go and look at a report in politico about how president trump was treated by the other world leaders. they said one world leader who was anonymous said it's like when you have that new kind of weird kid who comes into a class half way through the school year, when the teacher is looking you smile and say oh,
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we're welcoming them in, and when they're not looking you make sure they go in the corner and stay the heck away from him. >> talk about the ramifications of this. tongue and cheek, he's the weirdo, the new kid in class, but given what president trump said, now looking at angela merkel's response, doesn't this rhetoric play right into what vladimir putin wants to happen? >> it does. that's why i'm having a hard time dismissing this as kind of incompetent, didn't know what he was saying, didn't understand article 5. >> stephen miller wrote this, and he's not incompetent. >> he understand article 5. all through the campaign, president trump, the candidate trump, disparaged nato said we were paying too much, said he didn't know if it -- it was an obsolete alliance. i'm having a hard time just giving him the benefit of the doubt that he didn't mean to be saying these things that he was saying. i think he meant a lot of them. i don't know that he knows what the ramifications are going to
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be. i have to end by saying, he defeated the first woman president, but he's now made a woman a leader of the free world. it's angela merkel right now. >> before we leave i want to get your take on the new scrutiny on jared kushner. he is under fire over reports he may have set up back channel communications between the kremlin and the trump transition team. in your years of experience how unusual is that? >> well, the way it's done, the context of it, is very unusual. i mean, look, we have a historically weak state department right now. we have a senior adviser who's historically inexperienced. we have a president who clearly doesn't know these issues. i can see how in this sort of -- with these ingredients you get this sort of thing. the way a back channel works you say to some official look, if you ever have concerns or questions about what we're doing, here's my cell phone. give me a call. and i'll help straighten it out for you. but to sit down and say, let's
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be friends or let's have a back channel, is a little odd in the way it was done. and when you look at what is going on in this whole russia investigation, clearly something people would have been aware of at the time kushner was having these talks, it speaks to someone who either doesn't know what he's doing or knows all too well what he's doing. so i think it's just going to be more for what mueller will be doing in the investigation. >> and whether he knew what he was doing or didn't know what he was doing, both are pretty bad. all right. ambassador, thank you so much. you guys, you will stick around. next, uncertainty builds in washington over intelligence leaks of classified information flowing that suicide bomb attack at a manchester arone na. after the break, what the white house is doing to chase down the source of the leaks. ena. after the break, what the white house is doing to chase down the source of the leaks. (dog) mmm. this new
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welcome back. i'm stephanie ruhle. time for your morning primer, everything you need to know to start your day. we begin with the latest missile launch from north korea. the secretive nation fired off a short range ballistic missile early monday, it's the third in three weeks. it landed in busy fishing and
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shipping waters. and eight people, including a sheriff's deputy are dead following a shooting rampage in mississippi. the mass killing took place over three separate crime scenes miles apart. beginning when police discovered three bodies after responding to a domestic call. a suspect was taken into custody and treated for a gunshot wound. in a town just outside manchester, england, hundreds paid their respects to martin heck, a victim of last week's manchester bombing. the crowd gathered in his hometown to celebrate the 29-year-old's life wearing shirts adorned with his face. donations and tributes pouring in to honor two men who were killed on a portland mass transit train on friday. the men were killed after reportedly coming to the defense of two girls they didn't even know who were being berated by a man shouting anti-muslim comments. at the first 101st running of
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the indianapolis 500, two drivers miraculously escaped serious injury after a terrifying crash. meanwhile, at the finish line tack kuma saito -- is he drinking milk -- the first japanese winner. intelligence sharing between the u.s. and uk was temporarily suspended following leaks of information in the aftermath of manchester's bombing. here's how they described the leaks to chuck todd. >> if it came from the united states it's else toly unacceptable. -- it's totaleny unacceptable. testimony i don't know why people do these kind of things it's borderline if not over the line of treason. >> nbc's pete williams joins us now from washington. pete, if these leaks did come from american sources, how might
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the administration go about investigating that? >> well they've already said they're going to investigate it, stephanie. the president talked about it at the go 7 after receiving a bit of a tongue lashing from theresa may. the attorney general said the justice department will look into it. this is the latest leak that the justice department and the administration say they'll look into. i can say, stephanie, leak investigations are notoriously difficult and i think the only way to get the thing started, would be to start on the british end and they're a little busy right now. they've arrested 14 people following the attack not only in and around the manchester area but other parts of england and they're not done yet. they have their hands full right now and are probably a little too busy to talk to american investigators about who was in touch with whom. the president is, trying to find out where the leaks came -- where the information passed officially and then how it got leaked. it's a very difficult thing to
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do. frankly very few prosecutions ever follow these claims of leak investigations. but the administration seems quite serious about this one. >> where exactly does intelligence sharing stand now between the u.s. and great britain? we knew theresa may had aggressive things to say but it seemed she's backed off of that. >> there's two ways to think about it. one is the classic intelligence sharing, their mi 5 to our cia, that doesn't seem to have been affected by this. it's more the sharing on the law enforcement level, law enforcement agency, the law enforcement agency, and that was suspended for a time and then the british decided that it was in everyone's interests to keep it going again, to the u.s. as well as the british interest. there's a long history of sharing information between the u.s. and uk and that doesn't seem to have been significantly altered by this. we'll see what happens in the next big episode either here or there, but for now, it seems to be back on track. >> all right.
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thanks, pete. we will take a quick break. when we return he is back from his first overseas trip and the president is once again facing controversy and none of it has to do with policy. this time, it's hitting close to home. how much of a liability is son-in-law and senior adviser jared kushner and before we go, we cannot forget how important today, this memorial day, is. i want to show you the true spirit of what this day is all about. honoring, celebrating those who lost their lives for this country, a group of maryland kids, true patriots, with 3500 flags at the graves of local veterans. this tradition dates back 50 years. there you have it. god bless america. flat tire in the middle of the night. hold on dad... liberty did what? yeah, liberty mutual 24-hour roadside assistance helped him to fix his flat so he could get home safely. my dad says our insurance doesn't have that.
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joan, evan, ozzy still with me. i have an apology, a correction when i saw the winner of the indy 500 drinking milk, i've never heard of it, it is a tradition, i was unaware, never heard of it, i app is go. i simply reporting that's who the winner was. i'm glad i learned this morning that drinking milk is part of the transition. if twitter wants to slay me have at it. nick, someone else, jared kushner, how big of a liability is this. >> well, i mean i think the key thing to know is how many things he's involved in, which is what we want to do with this story. he was inmately involved in setting up the saudi arabia, the israel, the italy portions of the trip. he helped negotiate the arms deal. he had been involved in setting up the china summit in mar-a-lago. now he's getting himself in a little trouble because he is involved in what "the new york times" reported a syria call with the russians. nobody as we've written who has his hands in as many things in
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this administration as kushner deal and that's playing a higher level of scrutiny. >> jared kushner has his hands in so many things, what we have very rarely heard is jared speak. speak on behalf of the president. he's sort of been this dark force. is it acceptable to say he had a lot on his plate maybe he didn't know better given the things he's involved in as well as personal business ties. when do we say the buck stops here and he has to step away. >> it's up to the president to decide when his staff becomes so embroiled in scandal and controversy that they can't serve him properly and it's separate than what mueller and the investigation is going to turn up. but the -- but the question about the size of his portfolio, it's almost comically large as if -- >> you left out, nick, he's also leading the office of innovation. >> right. >> that's right. >> and the idea that he is -- i think one of the backdrops to all of this, that makes the attempt to communicate with
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russia so questionable, is that there's so much about trump we do not know. he doesn't reveal his taxes, says he has business around the country, but -- and around the world but doesn't affect his policies, here's my tax returns but you can't look at it. there are so many things we don't know about him and when somebody like jared opens up a line of communication that you're not supposed to be having that you want to set it up within a russian facility, it brings more questions to the table that he is unwilling to answer that they have not answered and the only thing that trump says is fake news. and that is not going to deter dogged reporters or investigators from getting to the truth. >> evan, as a gop strategist, how do you take the lack of information and get comfortable? talk about the saudi arabia trip versus when he spoke to nato. some people are saying, well, you know, that's when the president was being the president. when he spoke in brussels. go back to the saudi trip that jared kushner helped organize, blackstone, which was a lead component, steve schwarzman, steve schwarzman and blackstone
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got a massive investment in infrastructure fund they're starting from saudi arabia. blackstone the main lender to jared kushner's family real estate business. so from your perspective, how difficult is it for you, the expanse of jared kushner's portfolio, the limited information we have, how hard is it for you to continue to say, you know what we're just going to trust in this, this is our white house? >> well, the white house has had a massive messaging problem to begin with and jared kushner, that's just one piece of the pie. the president himself has a bigger portfolio of real estate holdings and business dealings from across the globe as ozzy pointed out. as a white house staffer, if i were advising the president i would say what you have to focus on are the wins because there are voters who just want to hear how they're going to be economically benefited from the president's trip to saudi arabia. and that's just from a staffer's perspective. from a logistical perspective it's untenable the president has put himself in a situation the people who have so many questions and lingering doubts
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you can have every story written about any success you have, and still have questions asked about them. >> well, they've stepped all over their own victory so to speak, that the house passing some version of trumpcare with -- by firing comey. it's like we keep saying it's a messaging problem and that's partly true, but it's because the president himself gets in the way, you know, creates a new story line to distract from even good news for his team. so, you know, it's just -- they're going to rearrange the deck chairs on the titanic i suppose but you really can't manage this president's message because he's the charge of it at the end of the day. >> nick, to joan's point, the president does like to say fake news isn't paying attention to the right news. why is it that the white house steps on their own messaging and i take you back, you know, the first monday, tuesday, the president was in office, the dow hit 20,000, that should have been a huge victory lap and that night is when the president
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launched into voter fraud. the tuesday or wednesday when he gave the joint address and it was considered a very positive speech, you saw the market go up, four days later he wakes up and tweets that the president -- that president obama wiretapped him. and again, to this point, james comey, coming right after the passing of that bill. so is it fake news or is it the white house that can't seem to get their wins straight? >> i think we've seen a lot. the white house struggles to control this message and to steer the president as he can come out and tweet about the wiretapping or whatever passes his fancy as he's watching television. we've done reporting in the week while he was gone and expecting some changes to the messaging to show up next week or so. we know a lot of staffers are thinking about whether lawyers should vet trump's tweets before he goes on twitter because they may fall into the investigations, change the way the briefing is run. there's understanding that they don't -- are not steering the message as well as they want to and we will see some staff changes perhaps in the next week to address that. >> is the issue who's
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communicating the information? or is the issue the information? >> it's the information. it's when trump contradicts his own staff. this is like a guy who goes into work, gets a bad job review and blames his in-laws. he likes to -- >> let me get something straight. you don't ever blame -- >> right. but he gets -- he gets unflattering coverage, contradicts his own staff and when he actually confronts it he says you know what it's the reporter's fault. reporters are the ones saying -- who went out into a white house press briefing or told -- or you know stood up in front of media and said the president has full faith in mike flynn and then fires him, right. that was not reporters doing this. and, you know, trump repeatedly undermines his own surrogates. it's okay if you bring in lewandowski into the war room and joan was saying lewandowski had conflicts with jared kushner and now might be part of the group defending him. where do you think more leaks will come from. it's trump's inability to be on
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the same page as his own surrogates, that's the problem. >> whether or not the president is losing faith in jared kushner, it has been reported in the spring that jared and ivanka were part of the force behind pushing cory out. it was reported in "the new york times" from at least two sources within the white house when the president has his rants of all the people he's angry with, he does that in those morning meetings he wasn't happy with jares sist and the presentation in china with the 85 visas. the fact that these are the first cracks we're seeing in the president who never speaks against his own family is it telling that we're starting to see bits of it? >> i think a little bit. just a small amount. remember, you know, you don't fire family. trump is loyal to his family and values that kind of loyalty. jared may take on a different kind of role on that. there are a lot of others like lewandowski and others in the campaign which may be coming back. i don't think we should spend a lot of time trying to understate kushner's influence and his
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daughter's influence as well. i think they will remain an important part of this administration going forward. >> the idea that we could see more people from the campaign coming back, more rallies, does that make you lose confidence that we're going to move forward towards policy? because many non-hard core trump supporters started to warm to this administration when they saw a gary cohn and h.r. mcmaster saying guess what, president trump is surrounding himself with good guys, we will see good things get done. if that changes and we have a cory and the rally rodeo begin again is that going to be a negative for moderates? >> first of all the legislative agenda for republicans has been derailed by this president and the scandals and drip, drip, drip of everything bad that has come out of the white house. the president retreating into the places or his safe space of the rallies, and with the people he feels comfortable around, is just not going to help the republican party or anything get done. it's going to be insular and only be a negative for the white house. >> this is really good conversation.
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i appreciate your time today. a quick break. nick, thank you. you stick around. next hillary clinton went back to her old stomping grounds delivering the commencement address at wellesley college using the opportunity to wade into the current political climate. no surprise. >> you are graduating at a time when there is a full-fledged assault on truth and reason. ♪ the opioid my doctor prescribed for my chronic back pain backed me up-big time. before movantik, i tried to treat it myself. spent time, money. no go. but i didn't back down. i talked to my doctor. she said: one, movantik was specifically designed for opioid-induced constipation-oic- and can help you go more often. number two? with my savings card, i can get movantik for about the same price as the other things i tried. don't take movantik if you have a bowel blockage or a history of them.
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it is graduation season. and i got a chance to deliver the commencement address at my alma mater lehigh university a week ago and it was a privilege to be a part of the grand tradition of getting to deliver maybe some words of wisdom to garage wait graduates. here are some of our favorites from the many people who spoke across the country. >> congratulations class of 2017! >> remember this feeling. >> you've earned every minute of it. >> it is your day. >> it's also a day of appreciation, especially for all of those who believed in you. >> nobody makes it alone.
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>> not even me that killed predators with his bare hands. >> your family made a lot of sacrifices for you to be here. >> tell them your love them and then ask for the money. not the other way around. >> graduates at this exceptional university i urge you -- >> to ask yourselves, what did i really get out of this any way. >> when i was in your seat, i felt small and insignificant. yes, i was afraid. you're never not afraid. i'm still afraid. >> the struggle is real out there. it's real. >> we're all in this struggle together. >> you got to figure out what makes your heart flutter and your stomach clinch. >> for many of you who maybe don't have it all figured out, it's okay. >> open your mind. >> don't lose your sense of humor. >> never let anything get you down. >> be humble but not too humble.
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>> like a hangover, neither triumphs or disasters last forever. >> no permanent victory, no permanent defeat. >> you move forward by taking the next right step. let me tell you this -- >> nothing worth doing never ever ever came easy. >> your legacy is every life you' you've touched. >> please embrace that. >> and congratulation to a generation of promise. >> i'm so proud of you. >> good luck and god bless you. >> god bless you all. enjoy the parties. >> that's it. i'm done. >> your legacy is about every life you touch. congratulation to all of the graduates out there. that certainly made me feel optimistic and excited about these young people coming together. our next generation of leaders. i want to turn you now though to
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arlington national cemetery. you're looking at the image now of where the president will be in one hour. he already tweeted earlier this morning, i look forward to paying my respects to our brave men aend women on this memorial day. of course the president will lay a wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier later today. but first it was a memorable graduation day at west point over the weekend. among the graduates for three bro brothers, something that hasn't been seen at the academy in decades giving true meaning to the phrase band of brothers. -when? -friday. we gotta go. [ tires screech ] any airline. any hotel. any time. go where you want, when you want with no blackout dates. [ muffled music coming from club. "blue monday" by new order. cheers. ] [ music and cheers get louder ]
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that wraps up this hour for me. i'm stephanie ruhle. i will see you tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. eastern and you can find me all day long on twitter. now i'm going hand off to my friend and colleague with more news. it is a bhiz monday morning. good morning everyone. you're at or msnbc headquarters here in new york. this morning the nation is observing the 149th annual memorial day. in less than an hour president trump will mark the day at our nation's most hallowed ground, arlington national cemetery where he'll lay a wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier and then e he'll make remarks. we'll bring that to you live. new reports that president
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trump's son-in-law jared kushner tried . president trump is tweeting back saying he is working on programs that will save our countries billions of dollars and perhaps more importantly he's a very good person. and top officials on both sides of the aisle pespeaking o on the latest controversy. >> there was a lot of different ways to communicate back channel, publicly with other countries. i don't see any big issue here relative to, relative to jared. >> i will tell you that my dashboard warning light was clearly on and i think that was the case with all of us in the intelligence community. >> i think jared has said he's more than willing to answer any and all questions. >> if these allegations are true and he had discussions with the russia