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tv   MSNBC Live With Hallie Jackson  MSNBC  May 30, 2017 7:00am-8:01am PDT

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happy he hasn't made a call on a critical climate agreement yet. we have a lot to talk about on this tuesday morning. our team is here covering all of this. kristen welker is down the driveway at the white house. kasie hunt is on capitol hill. the former director of the fbi's office in counter intelligence, frank montoya is also with us. on the set. white house bureau chief for the "washington post," phillip rucker and white house reporter for the associated press, jill colvin. we know the communications director mike dubke is leaving. is this the start of the so-called summer shakeup? >> it could be. we know that mike dubke gave his resignation on the 18th. of course, as the president's foreign trip was getting under way. he was only here for three months. so it's certainly striking. what are the circumstances that surrounded his decision to issue his letter of resignation? those are some of the facts we are drilling down on, sean spicer will brief today at 2:00
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so we'll and sean about that. we know based on my conversations over the weekend, hallie, that the president is eyeing potentially expanding some parts of his team, scaling back other parts. he is eyeing some of his former campaign officials, for example, corey lewandowski. dave bossy, who were spotted at the white house yesterday. i am told probably more likely you would see him bring dave bossy back into the fold. he is, of course, the former deputy campaign manager. corey lewandowski has a lot of tensions with his family, as you know, hallie, from your time covering the campaign. this could be the start of a big shakeup. it is certainly significant, hallie, this is the communications director issuing his letter of resignation after three months on the job. >> kristen, you talked about dave bossy, somebody who may rejoin the team here at the white house. i am going to throw the control room for a loop because i'd like to bring up what bossy said on fox talking about this. take a listen. >> they've talked to, you know, many people, including me.
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>> david, is that a yes? have you been asked? >> no. i am not going to say that there is a -- something sitting on the table for me to pick. i think that's -- there -- it's an ongoing conversation. and i think that's a fair way to put it. >> kristen welker, that's not a no, right? it's not a yes. sure sounds like dave bossie is keeping the door open. it could create some tensions inside the west wing from people who are perhaps a little bit concerned about the old guard coming back in. >> you're absolutely right. he left that door open, hallie. but, as the president tries to figure out how he's going to deal with this mounting russia scandal, i think he is considering a host of options. as you know, he is setting up a war room. is dave bossie someone who could help him with messaging. that's are the questions he is asking as he tries to make that decision.
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you're right. bringing someone back from the campaign to create tensions behind the scenes. there is a reason why he was let go as the deputy campaign manager. this is one of the headlines that we are watching closely today, hallie. >> kristen welker on the driveway in front of the west wing. thank you for joining us here. as we talk about all of this, it, of course, is a headline, jared kushner, the new questions about his potential contacts with russia. this is something that another senior adviser to the president was talking about this morning. cla kellyanne conway. >> he has said from the beginning he is willing to share any information he has with congress, with the fbi. as you heard general mcmaster, secretary kelly over the weekend say, they're not concerned, back channels like this are the regular course of business. >> okay. the regular course of business, she says. that is not exactly what you are hearing on capitol hill. that's where we find nbc's kasie
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hunt. walk us through what you are hearing from republicans in particular about these comments and about, frankly, kushner's potential interactions with russians even before president trump's inauguration. >> that's right, hallie. this is something that, of course, has come up throughout the course of these ongoing investigations in the house and senate intelligence committee into russian meddling in the election broadly and overall. jared kushner has been somebody who all the way along those committees have wanted to speak to. he has seemed unlike, say, general michael flynn, willing to cooperate with these panels, and there hasn't been much of an indication that there are problems surrounding the -- those committees talking to him or anything along those lines. but as this has kind of ramped up and we've learned that the fbi specifically interested in what jared kushner has been doing, saying potentially these contacts with russian officials, potentially -- potentially unknown to him as maybe people
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with russian intelligence ties. nonetheless the investigations going deeper. john mccain had some choice words for jared kushner over the weekend on the sunday shows. take a look. >> my view of it is i don't like it. i just don't -- i don't -- i know that some administration officials are saying, well, that's standard procedure. i don't think it's standard procedure prior to the inauguration of a president of the united states by someone who is not in an appointed position. >> so there you have it. now, of course, he and senator lindsey graham known as the more hawkish wing of the republican party. they've been more willing to kind of push the envelope on this subject, anything related to the russians than some of the leadership. mitch mcconnell, perhaps. the senator majority leaders. others have tried to steer clear of this. congress is gone. the hallways are quiet. we won't be getting a lot of reaction. my guess is there is a lot of private relief among republicans
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that they're a little bit distant from this for the next few days. however, the committees will continue working behind the scenes. the big question up here is just when will we see james comey, the former director of the fbi, come up here and potentially testify, what form will the testimony take? we know he is supposed to be in open session at some point next week. we're awaiting final details. we know comey wanted to talk to mr. mueller, the special counsel leading the investigation, before deciding how to proceed up here. >> before i let you go, are you getting any sense of like turf battles between the different committees on the hills that are looking into this russia probe? >> i think at this point there is always a little bit of kind of elbow throwing and back and forth. i think the senate intelligence committee's side has been proceeding much more smoothly than the house side, and that is occasionally rankled. that's a big part of the reason you saw what happened with devin nunes. a lot of members were feeling like we're becoming irrelevant
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if we continue to let this kind of discord consume our committee. it's been a little bit smoother since that change was made, although there still are some issues around nunes is still apparently involved in the subpoena process, for example, or there are reports that he was and that that was causing problems. i think on the whole you are seeing a higher level of function than we can during the period where the house intelligence committee was a bit of a mess. >> kasie hunt, roaming the somewhat empty hallways on capitol hill. thank you very much. appreciate it. bringing in retired fbi special agent frank montoya who served as the director of the office of national counter intelligence. i want to play for you something that your former boss, james clapper, had to say about this supposed back-channel move by jared kushner. here it is. >> i think it's, again, legitimate to establish contacts, to meet and greet people and all that. but i think, if it steps over the line of undermining the
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policies of the current administration, that's a different matter. >> so, frank, i want you to talk about why this might be a concern. it seems as though the fault lines are already being drawn between those who say, diplomat diplomatic back channels are fine and say this was not. >> the third part of this discussion is important to note, which is how they were going to communicate. that's what's most troubling. the possibility that they would be using russian communication systems in order to facilitate this back channel. the other thing that stood out in yesterday's conversation was when jim talked about having one government at a time. that's our custom in this country. before you are the government, the appropriateness of that. >> are you confident that these investigations that kasie was talking about in the house and
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senate and the new special counsel, that they'll end up with answers, that the american people will get answers to all these questions they have? >> that's another great question and one of the dramatic moments in our history will be when these things do come to a conclusion. the investigations are going forward. especially the fbi one, the special counsel one, in such a way that i think that they will get to the bottom of some of this. will it become public? the parts that deal with the russian interference in our democracy, perhaps, perhaps not. will they -- will they lead to charges against some of these individuals? that remains to be seen. the -- what's really been, i think, a challenge for the investigators to this point is the fact that so much of it has become public. and yet, there is, i think, a legitimate public interest in what is going on because it affects the security of our republic. >> jill and phil, here with me on the white house north lawn on the set. to pick up where frank is leaving off, jill, you have been
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reporting on the potential shake upin the white house. what it could mean particularly in light of how it plays with the russia investigation. >> you have the president coming back from his first foreign trip. hopefulness that that would change the conversation and we are back here exactly where he was when he left even with an escalating situation. he is somebody that we know believes that he is his best spokesperson, he is the only, you know, effective communicator for himself. and you see him really trying to figure out how to make this better, how to change the conversation. that's looking back to old campaign aides, people he believes are loyal to him, people he feels like he can trust in this kind of ballooning situation that they're trying to contain right now. >> and people who are, as axios points out, killers. people he thinks are killers and who can come in and be loyal to him. phil you talk about how he's getting some of the information he is using to make these decisions, not just related to the staff but other things as well. how he gets these intel briefings. >> there has been an evolution
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in donald trump's thinking about intelligence. before he came into office he was shunning these intelligence briefings. he thought the deep state was out to get him. he didn't think he had anything to learn from them. >> there are still some in the west wing who believe the deep state is out to get him. >> the intelligence briefings have become a staple in his day. he loves them. they go over time. he looks for kernels of information. it's not like the briefers are giving him a presentation or a document to read. it's a back and forth, a dialogue, a conversation that really gets in-depth. he likes to experience the nitty-gritty of the secrets. he also likes visuals, as we know. videos, maps, killer graphics is the way the cia director put it in an interview with us. >> frank, does it hearten you that the president seems to be shifting his view on the intel briefings when it comes to a lot of the issues he is facing? >> i do hope he is paying attention to them. this is why we exist. this is what our role is is to provide him with that information, give him the objective perspective. as he moves forward.
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i can't -- it can't be denied either that a lot of the challenges that he is facing right now are self-inflicted. so maybe if he starts to pay attention to the briefings that will change. >> frank, i'll let you have the last word because i want the bottom line for you. when it comes to jared kushner's role inside the administration, based on what you know and what's been reported there, do you have confidence he is the best person to be two offices down from the president in the oval? >> a lot of concern about that. when this thing -- if -- when i was running counter intelligence operations, if my guys had come to see and said, listen. there is an adviser close to the president. these are the things he's doing. the back-channel part of this is not the issue. it's about how they were going to communicate it and facilitate it with the russians. there would have been concerns about whether he is acting as an agent of a foreign power or a threat to national security. >> what would you advise people in the administration to do now? what would you do?
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>> first of all, they have to take a deep breath. see what happens next. at the same time, what is the nature of the relationship that they want to have with the russians. are they open-eyed and clear-headed about it? jim said something yesterday as well that's spot on. the russians are not our friends. they are out -- this is a -- part of the great game. these are guys that are -- folks that have been intent on undermining our national security for generations. and this is just the latest chapter in that. if we're going to change the way we do business with them, we have to be a lot smarter about how we do that. >> frank montoya. thank you for joining us. jill and phil, stick around. we have much more to talk about. including president trump. talking tough to a key american ally this morning. we'll fill you in on what he's saying about germany and what it might mean for the europe alliance overall. after the break.
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. this morning we are looking at a lot of foreign fallout. starting with this coin-flip question. will he or won't he? when it comes to the president's support of the paris climate agreement. that's the 195-nation deal to cut graenhouse gas emissions and try to slow the effects of climate change. drama building on that end and drama building with new comments from germany's angela merkel. she said, quote, the times when we could completely rely on others are, to an extent, over. big deal. big questions ahead. to help answer them. joel reuben joins us. former deputy assistant
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secretary of state for legislative affairs. jill and phil are back. jill, starting with you. with the comments from angela merkel. alarm bells going off. you saw donald trump tweeting, quote, we have a massive trade deficit with germany, plus, they pay far less than they should on nato and military. very bad for u.s. he says. this will change. walk us through what's happening inside the state department right now. take us there based on your experiences and the president's posture on germany. what are they saying? >> well, hallie, we are at a dangerous inflexion point with the united states's role in the world. the state department, an agency dedicated to global negotiations and advancing american security through diplomatic agreements there is a lot of head scratching and concern. the paris accord was signed by 195 nations. it was in force. it was late last year. it's an american commitment to lead the world in combatting
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climate change. if we pull out of that, people at the state department are going to begin to question what is it that they're actually supposed to do, how can one negotiate agreements with foreign governments with our allies, get them signed up to what we believe are tough targets to combat climate change, and then how can we then watch our own leadership pull out of those agreements? how does state continue in its work as diplomats. it's a troubling concern. >> jill and phil, isn't this what trump supporters wanted, folks who voted for president trump, to see europe take more responsibility for their own future? >> that's absolutely right. this is what he campaigned on. donald trump on the campaign trail would attack angela merkel, talk -- >> gagain and again. >> talk about germany and the other countries to pay their fair share. i'm not surprised by the president's actions. frankly, the european leader shouldn't be totally surprised also. clearly we see the leaders of france and germany in particular trying to counter trump and
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establish themselves as sort of a moral voice to stand up to him. >> the new leader of france out with strong words not just about that sort of infamous never-ending handshake with president trump but also about russian television, russian media outlets, jill. that seems to play into this as well. >> it was fascinating to watch trump for the first time on the global stage and see all the european leaders trying to figure out how they could get through to him, trying to convince him when it came to paris and the environment, trying to figure out ways to try to get through to him. i think what you're seeing now is that the president came with no intention of doing that and they weren't very successful in that mission. >> jill, he talked about the idea of the paris climate agreement being a significant moment in some of these relationships. jim mattis talked about the president's thinking here yesterday. listen. >> i was sitting in on some of the discussions in brussels, by the way, where climate change came up. and the president was open. he was curious about why others
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were in the position they were in. his counterparts in other nations. i am quite certain the president is wide open on this issue as he takes in the pros and cons of that accord. >> so wide open on this issue, joel. you have got global leaders around the world pushing him to stay in this agreement. you have the pope nudging him to stay in the agreement as well. what are the expectations here, do you think, on the international stage? what would you do if you were advising the president? >> what i would do is i were advising the president is look clearly at the impacts from withdrawing from this accord and the long-term impacts of climate change. it's interesting that secretary mattis spoke about it. the generals and the military and the intelligence community of the united states for much of the past decade have been very outspoken in their concern about climate change and its potential impact on our naval bases, about the potential for harming populations around the world and creating refugee flows.
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they are concerned about it as a security issue. in addition to that, again, global leadership is concerned in america is going to lead and if we're going to lead in technology, for example, not bowing to the market being controlled by china but having our own technology leading the market we need to stay in the accord to help build better jobs here at home. >> do you think the market argument is one that could sway the argument? >> it could be an effectively argument. certainly in the myidwest where there is a lot of investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy industries, that's where we could really see growth on a global level. america has the technological prowess. we need to allow the market to work for us, not against us. >> i am old enough to remember when the president was fighting against the paris climate agreement on the campaign trail and after he got elected where he seemed to open the door to it. who are the key influencers in
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the white house who are trying to put pressure on him either way? >> there are a number. one was with him last week. gary cohn. he has with him at the g7 meetings where the european leaders were pleading with president trump to stay in the paris accord and impressed upon him how important it was. what cohn told us at the end of the trip was that the president's thinking had evolved and he was learning more about the issue. and that he would always prioritize u.s. economic forces and the manufacturing needs above anything else. >> this is not like there is a consensus in the gop on this either. you have lindsey graham, ted cruz, two important voices with diametrically opposed views. >> it's not just an in or out. a lot of conversation about the potential of maybe changing the benchmarks, altering them. the u.s. has done a lot already to move towards those goals. progress still happens whether or not the administration decides it's going to formally adhere to these goals.
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>> smart point, jill. it's not black or white. there are shades of gray. jill and phillip. thank you. joel reuben, thank you for your insight. coming up next. talking about president trump not doing too many favors for congress. the headlines over europe, jared kushner, staffing shakeups. russia. all may be putting the brakes on the gop agenda. we'll talk about how anything on health care, taxes, jobs can actually get done. after the break. ♪
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we're back now with a look at this mornings's headlines with the daily barrage of headlines all about the russia investigation it's possible that a staff shakeup could be happening at the white house. we know that communications director mike dubke has submitted his resignation after three months on the job. sources telling nbc news the president is weighing other changes too. also this morning, new questions about the first son-in-law jared kushner. the "new york times" reporting that kushner was looking for, quote, the direct line to vladimir putin back in december during the transition. a source tells nbc kushner has been asked to lay low after the latest reports. manuel noriega, convicted drug trafficker and panamanian dictator has died. he seized power in 1983.
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u.s. invasion toppled the regime six years later. noriega was 83 years old. british police are releasing new photos of manchester bombing suspect salman abedi. they want people's help finding this blue suitcase he had. you see it there. just days before the attack. police don't think the luggage is dangerous but they want people to be careful in case. >> we talk about the daily drip about the russia investigation. it has some republicans worried about getting their legislative agenda back on track. you would never know it from the president tweeting. quote, the massive tax cuts/reform that i've submitted is moving along in the process very well, actually ahead of schedule. big benefits to all. and i suggest we add more dollars to health care and make it the best anywhere. obamacare is dead. the republicans will do much better. >> joining me now to talk about this is jason osborne, former senior communications strategist for the carson campaign. and jill and phil, #jill, #phil back for more.
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jason, i want to start with you. a new tweet out from president trump saying the u.s. senate should switch to 51 votes and get health care and tax cuts approved fast and easy. dems would do it, no doubt. so listen, if we were to do some mind-reading for the president, clearly this is something he wants to be talking about. health care, tax reform, et cetera. but it is also juxtaposed with what else he is tweeting about, the headlines with the russia election interference. the questions about his son-in-law's involvement. how damaging is that part of it to the actual agenda? >> i think the russian investigation is noise that's trying to disrupt, trying to get the congress and president to implement an agenda. there is no story here as far as i can tell. nobody has said anything that there is illegalities that have been committed. but we also have to take into account the republicans that ran for the house and that ran for the senate ran their own campaigns for the most part. there is nothing preventing them from putting forward proposals and acting on those proposals
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regardless of what the administration does. so, for the president to put out a tweet that says we should switch to 51, i think he is expressing a sentiment and an anger that many americans have that why is the congress sitting around and waiting to implement some of these proposals. whether or not they're exactly what the president has proposed or not. just go ahead and put some proposals forward and let's get moving on them. >> let me clarify. listen, i know you are gop strategist. i get it. but you called the russia investigation noise. you have a special counsel, house and senate intelligence committees looking into this. really? you think that's noise? do you think there is a sense that they have to put the russia investigation behind them to move on and actually get to the bottom of whether there was anything done improperly or not? >> let's take this -- if you want to talk about the russia investigation. what's come out that has been an illegality or something that a felon or something that is a crime that's been committed? i have not seen anything yet.
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>> right. okay. yeah. but you support the investigations as they're going on? i just want to -- i am curious. >> that's fine. special counsel has been appointed. let him do his job. let's move on to the governance and running a government and actually passing legislation and having the president sign it. >> so, on the topic of governance. bringing in jill and phil. republicans, as jason is talking about, they have a lot they want to get done. the hill was a pretty good wrap upof the top five goals. adopting a budget. raising the debt limit. avoid a government shut down. tax reform, health care. how realistic is any of this and how do they stop the president essentially from maybe getting in their way? >> this is a problem that we have seen again and again. it's hard to say at this point. the health care plan they put forward obviously was going to have enormous hurdles being passed by the senate. you had the president tweeting today saying we just need to
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give it -- might have been yesterday -- i apologize. saying we need to spend more money on health care. that's not actually what the republican plan does. seems like again and again you have the president being a distraction here to the process. >> do you think he has political capital? how much does he have to spend on the topics he is tweeting about currently? >> he doesn't have a lot left right now. you showed the tweet earlier where he boasted that his tax plan is ahead of schedule. it's not actually going anywhere on capitol hill right now. and we don't have a plan yet. all we have is a one-page blueprint of bullet points of things he wants in the tax plan. that's not what tax reform looks like. there is a lot of work to be done on capitol hill to get it done to a vote. >> folks are looking ahead obviously to 2018. there is a "new york times" report out today saying a band of conservative advocacy groups is grappling with a question
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that may decide if you run with president trump or against him. what are vulnerable republicans going to do? >> republicans that are running in the house and running in the senate have to run their own races. there is no question that having a president in the white house that's the same party has an influence, but at the end of the day the voters in those districts are going to judge those members on what they did or did not do in congress. and i think, to the point that we talk about the president getting in the way of the house and the senate acting, i think the last time i checked, the president doesn't have a seat in a committee. he doesn't vote on the floor of the house. he puts forward proposals and he expects them to then advance those. so now it's incumbent upon the republican leadership in the house and the senate to pick one issue or one topic and say, we're going to focus on this. there was a report today in roll call that the house is considering putting all the appropriations into an omnibus bill and having it out.
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let's do that. put something forward so that the people in the congressional districts or in the states where the senators are running can demonstrate that they've actually been proactive in trying to get this government in rein. >> jason osborne, thank you very much for joining us here, from over an capitol hill. i appreciate it. jill and phil, stick around. coming up next, over to the pentagon. today the u.s. military will see if it can shoot down an incoming ballistic missile. the pentagon is testing a new defense system as the threat grows from north korea. we're talking about our own hans nichols after the break. liberty mutual stood with us when a fire destroyed the living room. we were able to replace everything in it. liberty did what? liberty mutual paid to replace all of our property that was damaged. and we didn't have to touch our savings. yeah, our insurance won't do that. well, there goes my boat.
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and antioxidants that help bring your hair back to life. new herbal essences. let life in. all right. have you heard this headline yet today? the u.s. getting ready for a missile defense launch later today after pyongyang tested its own ballistic missile monday, defying threats of more sanctions. nbc's hans nichols is live at the pentagon. jill colvin and phillip rucker also on the set at the white house north lawn. hans, when will the test happen? how significant is it? >> the significant thing about the test is what the u.s. is trying to do. shoot down an actual icbm. they're launching one from the marshall islands an atoll in the western pacific. they'll send it up and over
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around noon pacific time, 3:00 p.m. local and they'll try to knock it down sometime before it splashes into the water there in the pacific ocean west of california. so the significance really is the speed with which this missile is heading towards the states. it would approximate an icbm. in pentagon-speak that's hitting a bullet with a bullet. one thing -- a few caveats. number one, north korea doesn't have, as far as we know, an operational icbm. number two, tests like this are long planned. they're long budgeted for. don't think of this as a tit for tat conversation between what the pentagon can do and what north korea is attempting to do. >> i was going to ask, is this a show of force to pyongyang to show the muscular strength of the u.s. military? >> that might be going too far for how long the lead time is in testing something like this. that said, they need to have the system operational. it hasn't had a great track record. it's around 56% success rate.
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this will be the tenth operational attempt. this is designed for rogue nations for rogue missiles. this is not a defense system against russia and china, who could overwhelm our defenses with literally hundreds of missiles. this is for a lone one-off missile and they're trying to knock it out of the sky. hallie. >> how many north korean ballistic missile tests have there been this year and what does it say to you? i think it's ten, 12. >> in the half a dozen range. the more important number is three missile tests from the north koreans in the last three weeks. gives you an indication that president trump's state of strategy on this is to let the chinese figure it out. before we had the most recent battery of tests, there was a lot of talk in the pentagon that the mar-a-lago strategy, outsource it to the chinese, doesn't seem to be working anymore. president trump saying this morning, this is a great disrespect to the chinese but he seemed to buck up the chinese saying china is doing a great
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job. just where the strategy is on sort of outsourcing it, putting china in the lead and putting pressure on north korea, where that is should be a focus of our reporting today. >> let me pick up there. phillip and i during the break were talking about china's role regarding the north korea threat. does that gel with what you're hearing? >> exactly right. the president from the beginning of dealing with the north korean threat has wanted to leverage the relationship with china, pressure china to force north korea to change its behavior. that doesn't seem to be working right now. this is a good reminder that for all the noise we have in washington about the russia scandal and other issues facing the president, this is a real serious threat. it's something he deals with every day in his intelligence briefings. >> secretary mattis had strong words. frankly, a dark outlook on what would happen with north korea. let's listen. >> a conflict in north korea, john, would be probably the
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worst kind of fighting in most people's lifetimes. why do i say this? the north korean regime has hundreds of artillery cannons, rocket launchers within range of one of the most densely populated cities on earth. south korea. it would be a catastrophic war if it turns into combat, if we are not able to resolve the situation through diplomatic means. >> that's bleak talk from the secretary. >> those are extraordinary words to be hearing from the secretary of defense right now. i know, you know, it takes a long time for these things to be planned but nonetheless you have this test happening, the t.h.a.a.d. missile system being deployed. >> hans nichols, thank you for joining us. phil and jill, thank you for being on the set. i'll make you walk back inside in the rain. coming up ahead, a major
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white house power player quit. the president dropping a twitter bomb on a nato ally. the wood house brothers, brad and dallas here to break it all down. we'll talk about it in three minutes. -what? -we gotta go. -where? -san francisco. -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 ] the travel rewards credit card from bank of america. it's travel, better connected.
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welcome back to the white house. where the president is back here too. back in the oval and back on twitter. as his administration is looking to find a new path through the russia investigations in an attempt to try to keep the gop agenda afloat. despite all the upheaval trump supporters are giving their president the benefit of the doubt. joining me now, brad woodhouse former president of americans united for change and former dnc communications director and dallas woodhouse executive director of the north carolina republican party. gentlemen, start your engines and thank you. dallas. mike dubke, the communications director, is out. a war room in the works. old names from the campaign potentially coming back in action. is this welcome news to you? do you think the trump agenda can get a restart with people like corey lewandowski and dave bossie in the room? >> i used to work with corey lewandowski at americans for prosperity. i am a big fan. i don't see anything concerning
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either way. white houses typically have communications operations to deal with, you know, some particular issue. the communications director himself is not exactly a household name. he is not somebody -- obviously somebody that the press is familiar with, but he is not the face of the administration, so to speak. so i think these developments are fine. and i think they are normal and routine. i think we are moving forward, we're working on troosax reform health care. the president had a great week overseas. >> brad, you're chuckling. >> he has to be kidding. if you listen to these apologists like my brother, they sound like bagdad bob. you have bombs falling all over this administration. you have the kushner bomb, flynn bomb. carter page bomb. it goes on and on. they're sitting there saying, stay calm, all is well. this is a disaster for the white house.
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if you have people like dave bossie, who i know, and corey lewandowski going in the white house to run a war room to respond to these russia investigations, all you'll ever hear out of this white house is russia, russia. nothing on health care reforms. >> you want to talk about russia because y'all want to relitigate an election you lost. come on! we're talking about moving the country forward. you want to drag us back. get hillary clinton back on the stage. come on. >> this is where the apologists for donald trump sound like baghdad bob. you're talking about 17 intelligence agencies said the russians meddled to help elect trump. a special counsel appointed by the current deputy attorney general. my brother would have you think it is all going on because democrats are upset about the election. >> time out a second. dallas, i want to ask you specifically about some of the people who support president trump. the detroit free press talked to supporters in michigan over the
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weekend, referring to all the stories. one person said, quote, he causes a lot of his own problems but i don't think he is getting a fair shake. as he said, it is a witch hunt. he never got a fair shake from the get go. another said, he is the president of the united states. he should be able to say whatever he wants to say. leave the man alone. let him do his job. i joe that you agree with what these supporters are saying, but how long does that benefit of the doubt last, do you think? >> well, imean, i think the republicans, like any administration, have to achieve some important policy goals and advance the mission of the party. >> so you think if the policies don't move forward, maybe the benefit of the doubt erodes, if we don't see movement on health care and taxes? >> i think it is our job to deliver. i mean, i think that's the case of any political party. i think we're going to do that. i will tell you this, that this weekend, in the coast of north carolina, we have our republican convention. kellyanne conway is coming down.
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registration is through the roof. republicans are excited about the trump administration, and they like him, you know, talking tough overseas, getting other nato people to try to belly up to what they owe and showing that america has some backbone again. i think they are thrilled with his overseas performance this past week. >> brad, as dallas is talking about republican enthusiasenthu particularly the base, is that a concern for democrats? the president's nationwide approval rating is in the high 30s. should democrats be afraid of that? >> like you said, he's got an approval rating lower than any president at this point in his presidency in modern times. there is proof in some polling that his base is beginning to erode. but i'll agree with dallas on this, that where the rubber will meet the road, two things. one, the course of this russia investigation certainly seems like there is a lot there. number two, whether or not they
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can get anything done. no administration in my memory has gotten less done this far in. they have not passed one significant piece of legislation. not one. and the trip to europe was an unmitigated disaster. >> neil gorsuch is pretty significant. >> you haven't put -- >> putting him on the supreme court is pretty significant. >> you had to change the rules of the united states senate to do that, dallas. >> dallas -- >> one piece of legislation. >> brad, i want to get dallas on the record before we get going here. your state, north carolina, center of this battle over voting rights. i want to ask you about it. the supreme court ruled last week that north carolina relied too heavily on race and redistricting earlier in the month. the court said it'd not consider restating a voter id law. is your party still planning to put these things in place despite the consistent losses in the courts? >> well, two things, and it's technical but important to remember. the court did not rule on the merits of our voter id case.
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they ruled on standing. so we have to fix that. yes, north carolina will pass another voter id law, like about another dozen states have. north carolina voters have the same rights to install photo voter id as the folks in indiana, virginia and georgia. unfortunately, the supreme court can't make up its mind on exactly what rules they want in these redistricting issues. they changed the rules constantly. we keep having to adjust it. unfortunately, the courts haven't provided clarity on how to mix the requirement to take race into account and the prohibition against it. >> the problem is -- >> you can't do both. >> the problem in north carolina is that they have, with the previous court ruling, said with surge a surgical precision, target african-american. >> that's nothing to do with redistricting. you're mixing the cases here. facts are wrong here. >> we're talking about voting rights. talking about not just redistricting but also your
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effort to suppress the vote of african-americans, which was well-known during the election, which you got shot down for by the courts. you view -- >> we had record turnout all across the state. we had more voting hours, centers -- >> dallas, those are just -- >> this is more garbage from my brother. straight up lies. >> talking points. >> no, there were more sites. >> i have to cut you off for a second. dallas, you get the last word this time because brad got it last time. final thoughts to wrap up the segment. >> that's fair. >> this country seems, and especially north carolina, the battle over the redistricting issues and the supreme court made this harder for legislatures by removing bright line rules. they need to tell legislatures what the rules are and they'll act accordingly. now, they're being unfair to the human beings that have to perform this. they keep changing the rules. >> yeah, right. >> after the game has been played and the score has been recorded. brad and dallas, thank you. brad, you disagree on that one.
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that does it for us for this hour of msnbc live from the north lawn of the white house. i'm hallie jackson. thanks for being here. you can find me online, facebook, twitter, instagram and snap chat now that we're back from the overseas trip. my league stephanie ruhle is back with more news. >> i'm back with more news for
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you. right now, we're talking about the white house shakeup. the president's communications director resigns just as the shakeup begins. i'll have exclusive new reporting from a source inside the west wing. if corey lewandowski is back in, more staffers could be out. back channel is back under fire. jared kushner reportedly laying low as new revelations surface about his alleged ties to russia. is his white house role in jeopardy? escalating tensions. in hours from now, the pentagon will test an intercontinental range missile for the first time. the message to north korea. good morning, everyone. i'm steph knanie ruhle at our mc headquarters here in new york city. we begin with a flurry of develops. this morning, the white house and russia. nbc news confirming a long-rumored shak


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