Skip to main content

tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  May 31, 2017 8:00am-9:01am PDT

8:00 am
the paris climate accord. it would be the biggest act to undo former president obama's legacy on climate. i'll be speaking with the woman who advised president obama on the deal about what this should signal to the world. and the tweeter in chief. the president's late-night tweeting causing a covfefe. no laughing matter. comedienne kathy griffin apologizes for participating in a photo shoot of a mock beheading of president trump. the secret service is investigating. a deadly attack taking place. a suicide bomber targets the diplomatic quarter in kabul. 80 people killed. we'll tell you who is suspected in this tragic hit. good morning, everyone. i'm glad to be back with you. i'm stephanie rhule at our msnbc headquarters here in new york city. we've got to begin with the breaking news. reports across the board saying
8:01 am
president trump is now leaning toward pulling out of the paris climate accord which, of course, is the landmark deal to combat climate change that was reached in 2015. nearly 200 countries have agreed to. nbc's white house correspondent kristen welker joins us live. so the president has not made a final decision, but while this news, i might say a covfefe, about his possibly leaving. >> the term you used, a reference to the garbled tweet the president sent out overnight. we'll get to that a little later. in terms of the paris climate agreement, here's what we can report. two administration sources say the president is leaning towardtoward pulling out of the agreement. it was first reported this morning he'd made the final decision. if you talk to some sources here who are familiar with the thinking inside the white house, they say that's part of the frustration here. essentially, the headlines get ahead of the president.
8:02 am
that makes it tough for the communications team to message, to get surrogates lined up, for example. has the president made a final decision in decision? he tweeted himself this morning he'd make his final decision and announce it sometime this week. with this president, as you well know, nothing is final until it comes out of the president's mouth. now, why is this so controversial? this was one of president obama's big policy initiatives. as you pointed out, 200 countries have signed on. i was just traveling witthe president last week when he was at the g7 summit, when 6 out of 7 of those leaders signed a communique, essentially saying they were committed to carrying out the paris climate agreement, which calls on all of those countries to try to combat climate change. if you look at the polling, according to one of our latest polls in april, 67% of americans say urgent action is needed on climate change. so if the president does, in fact, decide to pull out, which was a campaign promise, it is something his supporters will
8:03 am
undoubtedly be cheering. it will be following through on a campaign promise. but highly controversial. also, one more note, steph, you have a number of lawmakers on capitol hill, republicans, who say they'd back this move, steph. >> when you think about this though, what does it say who the president is listening to? i think back to just a few days ago when gary cohn and h.r. mcmaster had the off camera presser. they were talking so much about the g7, nato, the president was there listening. we know so many nato leaders were pressing him on the importance of staying in the paris accord. now he's home. we've seen sort of a shuffling of the deck chairs. who does it say has the president's ear since we know that jared and ivanka, especially ivanka, was outspoken, pressing her father to stay in it? maybe even pushing all those ceos to write that letter, urging him to stay? >> ivanka is setting up meetings with the president, steph. jared, ivanka, pushing for him to stay in.
8:04 am
gary cohn pushing for him to stay in. in the briefing overseas, he said the president was evolving on the matter, listening to a host of different voices. you have people like steve bannon opposed to the paris climate agreement, who want the president to pull out. that is in line with his populous plat tomorrform. steve bannon represents that. if, in fact, the president pulls out, it could underscore that point. we are eyeing a potential staff shakeup. yesterday, the communications director, dubke, was out. now the president seeking advice on potential staff changes that could go all the way up to the chief of staff. we know gary cohn, one of the names being floated for that role, as well as dave urban. again, all of our sources cautioning, no final decision made on that. we've been talking about staff shakeups every few weeks. they bubble up and die down. we'll see if this one is for sure. >> if the president does leave paris and it underscores the
8:05 am
idea of america first, that we know steve bannon, steven miller are supporting, it muddies the op-ed in the "wall street journal" that mcmaster and cohn penned today, that america is leading. i want to bring in the adviser of former president barack obama on the paris deal when she was the managing director on the white house council on environmental quality. you said leaving the agreement is reckless and dangerous. why? >> well, stephanie, just as you referenced, it really would put the united states alone, only with syria and anything wag rni only other countries who haven't joined the paris agreement. nicaragua hasn't joined because they think it's not ambitious enough. these are targets. the business community stepped forward. shell and exxon are saying we need to continue having a seat at the table. if the united states decides to
8:06 am
isolate ourselves this way, if the trump administration joined by, as you mentioned, mitch mcconnell and 21 other senate republicans pushing for this, if we stand alone to face this global crisis, it is more than reckless. we are endangering the planet, the american people and our economy at a really fragile stage. >> i want to underscore, again, the point just made. syria, who is not thinking about climate change. they have other things on their plate. and nicaragua didn't sign it because it didn't go far enough. you were mentioning other republicans. republican senator of utah was asked this morning when he was on "morning joe" if he was worried about what this could do to the u.s.'s relationships with other countries in europe. i want to share what he said. >> the united states has great relationships throughout europe. it is going to have those relationships with or without the agreement. it's based in part to the military support we provide to the world. the leadership in regard to the
8:07 am
rule of law throughout europe and elsewhere in the world. that's not going to change. >> that's not going to change. the president didn't clearly state that he supported article 5 when he gave the nato speech, despite the op-ed that cohn and mcmaster wrote this morning. what consequences would come from pulling out of the paris agreement? >> this is not the first time we've been in this situation, though this time, it is far more severe. when the bush administration didn't join the kyoto protocol, there was blowback that they suffered for years. we've been told they were surprised at the diplomatic consequences that really played out. this is different. these are non-binding targets. mike lee referenced american leadership. it was american leadership that brought all the countries to the table to figure out a solution that worked for the world. for every country besides syria and nicaragua, to come together and say, we're going to face this together. if we pull out of this, this will be long-term diplomatic
8:08 am
consequences for the trump administration and for our countr thankou so much. i want to bring back nbc's kristen welker. i have to talk about the russia investigation. new names, old names, now in this investigation. what can you tell us? the fact that epstein's name was back, i didn't think i'd have to hear of him for quite some time. >> one of the advisers to the trump campaign, he was here in the white house for a period of time, he is getting a request for documents. his attorney saying, we need more specifics before we can release anything. there is a blast from the past. michael flynn, we spent a lot of time talking about mike flynn, the former national security adviser. he, of course, had a request from the senate intel committee to testify and for documents. we learn oved overnight he is agreeing to testify -- or submit some documents and information, according to sources close to mike flynn. that is certainly a significant
8:09 am
development there. then president trump's attorney. michael cohen telling nbc news if he is asked to testify, if issued a subpoena, he will testify. i have nothing to hide, he says. i'll make myself available, and i'm more than happy and willing to testify, but they have to be specific. there's the word, specific again. steph, the broader point here is that this is an investigation that is expanding. this is a controversy that is deepening. it continues to overshadow the business here at the white house. the president's ee's domestic . he wants to move forward with health care and tax reform, yet this administration mired in difficult questions about the russia probe. that's why they're setting up the war room, to try to outsource some of these headlines and the damage control that surrounds it, steph. >> before we go, the bizarre tweet last night, covfefe, why is it important? >> it remains to be seen. this came out about midnight.
8:10 am
this is the tweet you're seeing. despite the constant negative press, covfefe. however you want to announce it. it shot to the twitter verse overnight. everas talki about it. a lot of confusion about it. what did the president mean? then this morning, he tweeted, who can figure out the true meaning of covfefe? enjoy. trying to laugh it off. bottom line, this is the president. this is his twitter account. why was this ambiguous tweet sent out? does it raise security questions? those are the broader issues we're going to try to drill down today. >> you have a lot of work to do today, girl. >> indeed, every day. >> we're going to bring our panel in. there's much to discuss. former democratic congresswoman, a prominent member of the house judiciary committee, the one that voted to impeach president nixon. and a national security reporter for the "wall street journal."
8:11 am
and david, msnbc political analyst. congresswoman, the russia investigation, how significant is it that the scope keeps expanding, now including the ptd's personal lawyer? >> the important thing is it is expanding and the congressional investigation seems to be expanding. they seemed to be dormant for a while, and it looks like they're moving. of course, we don't know exactly what's happening on the special counsel front, which is what has criminal powers and that'll talk. we need the house and senate to move forward. to me, what's amazing is the president's counsel said, well, he doesn't like the style of the request. too wordy. it's not clear. he's got nothing to hide but you have to subpoena me. let's see if the house and the senate have the guts to subpoena him. >> while he hasn't been subpoenaed yet, it seems across
8:12 am
the board everyone is willing to answer questions. >> they say they are. we'll see what happens. >> okay. walk me through that. walk me through that. what's thefferce? >> well, they can say, sure, i have nothing to hide, but i don't like this request. then they wait, force the house and senate to issue a subpoena, maybe they won't. then they never have to testify. then they don't ever have to say they don't want to testify. so even if they get issued a subpoena, then they show up and say, you know, attorney/client privilege. the question isn't clear. we don't know what shenanigans they'll engage in, if they do show up. >> shenanigans. dion, you've been reporting on general michael flynn, his business dealings and alleged ties to the turkish government. you remember the turkish government, president erdogan, who was in his car a couple weeks ago while security guards were physically attacking peaceful protesters. what have you learned? >> we've been looking at the heart of the investigation, which is $500,000 contract that
8:13 am
mike flynn had with the turkish businessman with close ties to president erdogan. they hired some former journalists, some former cnn anchor and a vice news cameraman to do a documentary, attacking the man that president erdogan says was behind the failed cue in turkey. they misled the journalists about the intentions of this documentary, and they tried to hide their role in producing this film. they wanted to make kind of a 60-minute style documentary and put it out there without having the flynn intel group's fingerprints on it. this is part of the investigation. these are the documents that the senate intel committee has subpoenaed. mike flynn had agreed to give to them. they were able to talk to the people involved in it. they were shocked to find out in march, when mike flynn filed the filings, that a turkish businessman was behind this
8:14 am
documentary. they had no idea that that was who was funding the project. >> all right. david, without jumping to nying kushner tried to set up the back channel with russia during the transition. what is the best and worst case? >> he is a private citizen at this point, during the transition. it is not that he wanted to create a back channel between the president and putin. things like that have happened in the past. but he wanted to go into the russian embassy here in d.c. and use their secret communications to carry out some sort of secret communications with moscow. that strikes many people in the intelligence business, in the foreign diplomacy business, as being completely bizarre. and weird. does that mean he trusts the russians more than he would trust the americans who are in charge of the secure communications between the white house and foreign leaders?
8:15 am
why is he doing this? and the white house did not deny it. they said it was about syria, which for a lot of reasons doesn't make a lot of sense. why can't the president pick up the phone and call putin about syria, or michael flynn, once national security adviser? so the involvement of the leader of a russian bank, as well in the conversations. it dsn pass the smell test. why -- who put him up to this? was it his idea? this in and of itself, unconnected to a lot of the other russian investigations, deserves a probe of its own. >> he also did this before he had any official role in the white house. i want to bring in rena shaw, a republican strategist and served as spokeswoman for the conservative candidate mcmullins 2016 presidential campaign. i've spoken myself to people inside the white house, saying whether or not jared did anything, the cloud of this russia investigation is so suffocating, they can't possibly si see how the president is going
8:16 am
to get to move forward on his domestic agenda. do you agree on that? >> i have real concerns, as well. i do agree. i think there's suspicion about what jared was intending to do. where there's smoke, there ought to be fire. let's put it that way. i think there are republicans on the hill who are very concerned about it but aren't speaking about it publicly because they want to know more. let's go back to really last summer and the campaign trail that donald trump went on, in which he, simply put in real words, he did not trust our intelligence community. i think that is what is at the core of the matter here. his distrust in the intelligence community obviously had a ripple in the campaign. i think jared was sort of operating off that. he didn't want american intelligence to pick up on that. why else would you go to another facility? i think this is of deep concern. i think we have a lot to see in the days to come. again, the frustration here, congressional republicans aren't saying, you've slapped our intelligence community in the
8:17 am
face. this is wrong. you need to answer as to where the fire is. >> congresswoman, what if smoke turns out to be smoke and more smoke? granted, smoke is suffocating. what if there isn't fire? can president trump and his administration move forward with their agenda? >> well, personally, hope not because his agenda is a disaster for this country. so whatever stops m fine with me at the moment. but it's a disaster for our country to have a president, his son-in-law, people in the white house, people he'd hired in top positions, under this inquiry. and the point that i think is crucial here is not only the issue about smoke, but they filled out forms for security clearance. mr. flynn filled out a form. jared kushner filled out a form. i had to do that, have had to do that. it asks you what foreigners you've met and who you've known. isn't it amazing that mr. kushner forgot, totally forgot,
8:18 am
about this meeting with mr. kislyak and the meeting with the bank official. and mr. flynn didn't put down his meetings either. i think we're not going to have an issue of not getting to the fire and finding out what's going on here for some time. these people have been engaged in a lot of questionable, dubious activities. >> before we go, i know we're out of time, but the fact that jared kushner, mike flynn, jeff sessions, all missing information on those security forms, we've heard rumblings that, well, the person they were working on it with, the fbi people said you didn't need to share that necessarily. does that hold water based on your reporting? >> we need to let the investigation run its course. these are complicated and there are technical issues here. to be honest, i think mike flynn has deeper problems than improperly filling out forms. there's indications of money going back to the turkish
8:19 am
businessman in this contract. $80,000. there's a dispute over whether it was a consulting fee or reimpurrei reimburei reimbursement. >> thank you, all. elizabeth, dion, rena and david. next, the disturbing image. comedienne kathy griffin holding the likeness of president trump's severed head. did she go too far? we'll have reaction from the white house and the latest on the secret service's response. this isn't funny. i- [sound of wrench] [intricate guitar riff] [engine starts] [guitar continues]
8:20 am
♪ everything your family touches sticks with them. make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around. use clorox disinfecting products. because no one kills germs better than clorox. let's take a look at some numbers: 4 out of 5 people who have a stroke, their first symptom... is a stroke. 80 percent of all strokes and heart disease? preventable. and 149 dollars is all it takes to get screened and help take control of your health. we're life line screening... and if you're over 50... call this number, to schedule an appointment... for five painless screenings that go beyond regular check-ups. we use ultrasound technology to literally look inside your arteries... for plaque which builds up as you age- and increases your risk for stroke and cardiovascular disease. and by getting them through this package, you're saving over 50%. so call today and consider these numbers: for just $149 you'll receive five screenings
8:21 am
that could reveal what your body isn't telling you. i'm gonna tell you that was the best $150 i ever spent in my life. life line screening. the power of prevention. call now to learn more. what's the best way to get v8 or a fancy juice store?s? ready, go! hi, juice universe? one large rutabaga, with eggplant... done! that's not fair. glad i had a v8. the original way to fuel your day.
8:22 am
8:23 am
welcome back. i'm stephanie rhule. you're watching mississipsnbc. comedienne kathy griffin is facing a backlash after posting a graphic photo of holding what appears to be a bloodied, severed head in the likeness of president trump. the comedienne known for pushing limits has apologized and deleted the message. stephanie gosk has been following the story for us. give us an update. this one is ugly. >> reaction was fast and furious. you know, kathy griffin has made a career out of pushing the boundaries of comedy, but her critics say the images she posted are more than a failed attempt at humor, that this is disturbing and upsetting. she's apologizing. the images are graphic. >> reporter: this morning, kathy griffin is all apologies.
8:24 am
>> i sincerely apologize. i went too far. the image is too disturbing. i understand how it offends people. >> reporter: after facing a ground swell of condemnation over a controversial photo shoot, showing the 59-year-old comedienne holding will bloodied ness of president trump's head. >> my name is kathy griffin. i'm shooting with tyler shields, who is talented. this is fake blood, just so you know. >> reporter: the behind the scenes video of the photo shoot begins by a warning. >> i won't give away what we're doing, but tyler and i are not afraid to do images that make noise. >> reporter: reveals the disturbing images. griffin jokes about the reaction the photo shoot would get from law enforcement. >> we have to move to mexico today because we're going to go to prison. >> reporter: online, the reaction was swift. there were very few laughs. inappropriate, disgusting, upsetting. some just calling the stunt dumb. the president tweeting this morning, kathy griffin should be ashamed of herself.
8:25 am
my children, especially my 11-year-old son, baron, are having a hard time with this. sick. chelsea clinton weighing in, saying this is vile and wrong. it is never funny to joke about killing a president. >> it is our tenth anniversary. >> reporter: clthere were calls for griffin to be fired from the new year's eve program on cnn. her colleague, anderson cooper, said he is appalled and it is inappropriate. the network is evaluatie ining year's eve. the secret service said threats made against protectees detserv the highest investigation. griffin said, i am nearly mocking the mocker in chief. followed hours later by the full apology. >> iegor your forgiveness. i went too far.
8:26 am
i made a mistake, and i was wrong. >> forgiveness may not be an option for some after these images were posted. it wasn't just fierce reaction online. federal law enforcement received a flood of calls from people both outrage and had concerned for the president. stephanie, we're getting a statement from melania trump, first lady. as a mother, a wife and a human being, that photo is disturbing. when you consider the atrocities happening in the world today, a photo opportunity like this is wrong and makes you wonder about the mental health of the person who did it. strong words there from the first lady. >> strong words. stephanie gosk of nbc news, thank you. i want to stay talking about what scary times we're living in. moments ago, the d.c. police chief say they averted a potential disaster with the arrest of a man outside the trump international hotel. police say the 43-year-old, of washington, was taken into custody after midnight. officers were acting on a tip he
8:27 am
was traveling to d.c. with an assault rifle and ammunition in his car. he made threatening remarks but didn't reveal to whom the remarks were directed. he was charged with carrying a pistol without a license and possession of an inregistered ammunition. federal officials say he is a trump supporter and did not intend to harm the president. as i said before, these are scary times. the pentagon reached a milestone with its missile defense test and says it was a success. you remember, it took place yesterday. extraordinary test. question is, could it change the game with north korea? remember, that test, it was planned months ago. we're going to have a live report from the pentagon. hans nichols joins us after the break. when this bell rings... starts a chain reaction...
8:28 am
...that's heard throughout the connected business world. at&t network security helps protect business, from the largest financial markets to the smallest transactions, by sensing cyber-attacks in near real time and automatically deploying countermeasures. keeping the world of business connected and protected. that's the power of and. ♪ everything your family touches sticks with them. make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around. use clorox disinfecting products. because no one kills germs better than clorox.
8:29 am
you need one of these. you wouldn't put up with an umbrella that covers you part way, so when it comes to pain relievers, why put up with just part of a day? aleve, live whole not part. tell you what, i'll give to you fohalf off. bring you more ways to helpies reduce calories from sugar. with more great tasting beverages with less sugar
8:30 am
or no sugar at all, smaller portion sizes, clear calorie labels, and signs reminding everyone to think balance before choosing their beverages. we know you care about reducing the sugar in your family's diet, and we're working to support your efforts. more beverage choices. smaller portions. less sugar.
8:31 am
welcome back. i'm stephanie rhule. no group claimed responsibility yet for this morning's horrific suicide bombing in kabul, afghanistan. the blast ripped through the heart of the capital city during the rush hour. at least 90 people were killed and hundreds of others injured. it happens, the heavily fortif fortified, diplomatic quarter is near many embassies.
8:32 am
this took place on what is one of the safest areas of the city. why have authorities said this happen or do they know? >> thanks, stephanie. the authorities don't know how this bomber was able to breach security and drive the devastating bomb into what many considered, as you mentioned, to be one of kabul's safe havens. that's going fobto be a major question going forward as the dust settles. this is one of the largest and deadliest bombings in recent memory in kabul. the target was obvious and there hasn't been a claim of responsibility, as you mentioned, but the message was devastating in its clarity. enormous suicide bombings, targs eing civilians and the foreign presence in afghanistan. this truck bomb hit kabul's district at rush hour at the beginning of ramadan. the timing and size of the blast seemed to aim at maximum civilian casualties. it shattered windows as far as a mile away. as you mentioned, stephanie, killed as many as 90 people and
8:33 am
wounded more than 300. the numbers have been rising all day and are expected to rise more. according to some media reports, thecide bomber used a tanker truck that's normally used to carry seic tanks, and filled it with explosives. the bomber or bombers detonated this lethal payload close to the german embassy, which a witness said was devastated by the blast. the turkish, japanese and french embassies also reported damage. it's the latest tragedy to afflict afghanistan, where american troops have been fighting the taliban for more than 15 years. in the hours since the attack, the taliban has disavowed responsibility for the bombing. that means suspicion is likely to focus on another american enemy, islamic state. they're a relatively new ingredient in afghanistan's mix. violence in the country has spiked. it remains unclear whether either group was responsible for today's blasts. let's face it, afghanistan and
8:34 am
its government are subject to attacks from multiple different militant groups. regardless of who is responsible, an attack of this size, in what is considered kabul's most secure neighborhood, will once again shake the confidence of the u.s.-led coalition. stephanie? >> thanks. nbc's matt bradley. i want to take you to the pentagon. just releasing dramatic, extraordinary, new video of a test of its missile defense system, which came shortly after north korea launched its ninth missile test this year. i want you to take a look. it's amazing. >> three, two, one, ignition. that, of course, is a video after a rocket fired from an air base in california. moments later, it collides with an intercontinental range missile tired from a test site in the pacific. u.s. officials are calling it a big success. nbc's hans nichols joins me from the pentagon. hans, this test is being called
8:35 am
historic. i want you to walk through for us, you and i discussed it yesterday but it is important, the timing. people could look at this on the surface and say, wow, is this in response to north korea? i know that's not the case. >> it's not the case that this was direct response from north korea, but when you look at the president's budget, he is clear that it is north korea and iran this threat is imnating from. when you think of how long ahead they have to plan for these, it is clear it wasn't in response to the most recent test by the north koreans. we now know the next test is going to be in the fall. stephanie, what's different about that one, they're going to send up multiple intercepters. two intercepters. this time, they sent up one. the big question on this is what happens if north korea launches more than one missile? this is just a single test target coming in. what happens if north korea launches more than one? so far, the goal is to have 44 of these intercepters at the end
8:36 am
of the year. that's a finite number. it's a limited number. stephanie? >> even just one, you and i discussed, this is like a bullet hitting a bullet. >> yeah. >> hard to do. yesterday was a success. but does it mean that the u.s. is fully protected? no way. >> no. i think that's a good way to put it. to give you a sense of how precise they are, i figuring out what happened, they want to figure out the point of impact down to the centimeter. this collided outside of the earth's atmosphere, the kill vehicle released from the interceptor missile. it happened -- they just said it was northeast of hawaii. >> thank you. extraordinary, those images. we're going to take a break. when we come back, we'll take you down to louisiana for senator bill cassidy's town hall. it is taking place at this moment. he is pushing his own health care bill. we're going to get live reaction from the ground. you are watching msnbc. stay with us.
8:37 am
-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. the travel rewards credit card from bank of america. a lower a1c is a lot witabout choices.tes but it can be hard sometimes, 'cause different sides of you struggle with which ones to make. well, what if you kept making good ones? then? you could love your numbers. discover once-daily invokana® a pill used along with diet and exercise to significantly lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. it's proven to lower a1c better than januvia®.
8:38 am
invokana® works around the clock by sending some sugar out of your body through the process of urination. it's not for lowering systolic blood pressure or weight loss, but it may help with both. invokana® may cause dehydration, which could make you feel dizzy or weak when you stand up, so be sure to drink enough water. important side effects to know may include kidney problems, genital yeast infections, changes in urination, or potentially serious urinary tract infections. as is risk of fracture, or increases in cholesterol or potassium. ketoacidosis is a serious condition, which can be life threatening. stop taking invokana® and call your doctor right away if you experience symptoms. or if you have an allergic reaction, with signs like rash, swelling, or difficulty breathing or swallowing. do not take if you have severe liver or kidney problems or are on dialysis. taking with a sulfonylurea or insulin may cause low blood sugar. the choice is yours.
8:39 am
♪ lower your blood sugar with invokana®. imagine loving your numbers. there's only one invokana®. ask your doctor about it by name. parts a and b and want more coverage, guess what? you could apply for a medicare supplement insurance plan whenever you want. no enrollment window. no waiting to apply. that means now may be a great time to shop for an aarp medicare supplement insurance plan, insured by unitedhealthcare insurance company. medicare doesn't cover everything. and like all standardize medicare supplement insurance plans, these help cover some of what medicare doesn't pay. so don't wait. call now to request your free decision guide. it could help you find the aarp medicare supplement plan that works for you. these types of plans have no networks, so you get to choose any doctor who accepts medicare patients. rates are competitive, and they're the only plans of their kind endorsed by aarp.
8:40 am
remember - these plans let you apply all year round. so call today. because now's the perfect time to learn more. go long. i count on my dell small for tech advice. with one phone call, i get products that suit my needs and i get back to business. ♪ ♪ we want continued coverage, sharing with those with preexisting conditions, eliminating the obamacare mandate. the americans hate the federal government telling them what to do. and lowering premiums. and lowering -- that's what he said. >> he lost. >> that, of course, was the
8:41 am
scene a short time ago at a town hall for republican senator bill cassidy of louisiana. this is his second one in two days of these town halls. give him credit, they ain't easy to do. the bigto pic, health care. senator cassidy is a doctor and is pushing a bill he co-wrote with fellow republican susan collins. president trump tweeted, hopefully republican senators, good people, can all quickly get together and pass a new repeal and replace health care bill. and save dollars. garrett haake joins me from covingt covington, louisiana. how are people reacting so far? >> the town hall just broke up here. folks are starting to file out. it was a mix of supporters and critics of senator cassidy's in the room. the health care answers seem to be the ones that frustrated the most people. frankly, the ones where he had the hardest job. he has his own health care bill that he's trying to gain
8:42 am
bipartisan support for. he would answer most questions by saying, essentially, he doesn't support the house-passed version or obamacare. managed to offend at least half the room at any time. his most controversial answer to a question in the room, i have to say, was about the paris climate deal, which has got a lot of ink spilled today. he is neutral on whether or not the u.s. pulled out and called the issue immaterial. a broad swath of questions from a broad segment of louisiana. interviewed a couple folks coming in this morning, sampling the topics they wanted to hear. take a listen. >> you have a lot on your plate. the president is a traitor. that should be the biggest thing -- [ applause ] >> he is not following the constution, as he swore t do. you don't go and [ inaudible ]
8:43 am
you are not doing your duty. >> let's see if he has or not. that has to be established. >> that should be big on your agenda. that is huge. >> well, i'm not the special counsel. i'm not on that committee of jurisdiction. at some point, the process -- not to say i don't follow it and not to say i don't intend to learn -- i already go to classified briefings. actually, the special counsel is asking some material not to be shared with congress yet because he is keeping it in his office to review. >> stephanie, obviously, a different bite there but another good example of the senator trying to reflect the anger at his party and washington. when it comes to the russia issue, he's interested in the investigation and following the investigation but, frankly, that's not his job at this stage. he's trying to focus on other things, particularly health care. >> these town halls are speck kl
8:44 am
-- spectacles. how can you tell who is a protester and who is a con stit -- constituent with real concerns? for people, it can be life or death. >> yeah, absolutely. for a senatorial town hall, it is a finer line. anybody in the state of louisiana is a constituent. we have people coming from some of the conservative parishes in northern louisiana and folks coming up from new orleans to air their concerns. there's probably half a dozen committed protesters sort of out in front of this event. the folks inside seem to have, you know, fairly legitimate questions about things like medicaid. in particular of note here because louisiana expanded it last year with the democratic governor. that's one of the elements to the cassidy plan. you did see this sort of tight ropewalk that the senator had to take to try to appeal to both of thosestituents here. >> you know what, we actually do
8:45 am
have a little bit more sound from the senator speaking. i'll share that. >> we were present for the one and didn't get any answers in so we're hoping for answers today. >> what answers to what question? >> tax returns, special investigator, budget. >> what do you want to ask? >> basically, if health care is a right or a privilege. right now, health care is under attack in the united states. with this new republican health care bill, there's a lot of provisions i'm against. especially as it pertains to preexisting conditions. >> my mistake. that sound, of course, was people just outside the town hall expressing what they'd like to learn and what they want to hear about. we're going to take a break. msnbc's garrett haake, thank you. when we return, president trump's staffing challenges. new reporting we've got here at nbc that reince priebus and other staffers are potentially
8:46 am
in limbo, or at least the president is working on a backup plan and why. why are there still so many open positions in the administration? ? how about we pump more into promotions? ? ♪ nah. what else? what if we h♪re more sales reps? nah.hat else? what if we digitize the whole supply chain? so people can customize their bike before they buy it. that worked better than expected. i'll dial it back. yeah, dial it back. just a little. live business, powered by sap. when you run live, you run simple.
8:47 am
8:48 am
whuuuuuat?rtgage offer from the bank today. you never just get one offer. go to and shop multiple loan offers for free!
8:49 am
free? yeah. could save thousands. you should probably buy me dinner. no. go to for a new home loan or refinance. receive up to five free offers and choose the loan that's right for you. our average customer could lower their monthly bills by over three hundred dollars. go to right now. ♪ everything your family touches sticks with them. make sure the germs they bring home don't stick around. use clorox disinfecting products. because no one kills germs better than clorox.
8:50 am
welcome back. we've got our daily briefing on politics and a potential major shakeup at the white house. sources telling us at nbc news thisorning that president trump isreplacing reince pre b -- priebus as chief of staff. joining me now is mark murray. reince is not necessarily out, but it appears that the president is feverishly making calls and lining up potential replacements, gary cohen, the president's economic advisor and former president and coo of goldman sachs and david urban who was part of the trump campaign and was an advisor for quite some time now. who are you hearing is a front runner? >> what we are hearing is that what president trump has been doing is sounding out to his friends and others about potentially replacing reince
8:51 am
priebus. sometimes the trade happens, sometimes it doesn't, but our reporting centers on two individuals if he goes and gary cohn who you know very well, one of the top officials at goldman sachs. and then you have david urban what who has experience in the rust belt. plead the efforts in the 2016 presidential campaign. but bigger than anything else, you know, is that this is a really tough job. white house chief of staff might be the toughest job in all of washington, including peing president. you you have to be a good traffic cop, a good gate keeper, especially different in those times. >> if we compare it to who the president is usually listening
8:52 am
to, does he look to be a front runner if he suz pl out of the paris ement, he has been pro sticking with it. it really seeps there is a shift within the white house as long as there is a steven non, a kelly a kel kel kellyanne con way. it doesn't make any sense. you you would have super man as your chief of staff, but if you have an administration that is broken and those america first versus the globalist camps, where gary cohn is seen as the banking sector, and you're
8:53 am
always going to be a level of chaos. and president trump ended up succeeding in chaos in 2016. but i think you are right, that no matter who ends up becoming the chief of staff, or who ends up saying things, the main mover and shaker is the president himself, trump. >> there is still hundreds of positions in the trump administration still notfilled. i want youo go through two things for me. what the numbers are and how has the white house responded. president trump thought washington was too booted, has he articulated he plans to fill the seats, conditional them entirely, or do people not want those jobs? >> according to the hardship for public service, just 3 members
8:54 am
have won confirmation from the republican controlled senate. you have another 63 that have been formally nominated and 240 positions that have know nominees at all. we're still just four months into his tenure, bus his pace is much slower than we saw with barack obama, bill clinton, and george w. bush, and going fundamentally, you have republicans saying you know it's not a big problem, but these are the political positions. these are the people that work for you and if you don't fill these political positions chances are the career bureaucrats and the people that serve in the administrations might have a whole lot more power and it becomes harder to cover that way. >> i have to ask one more thing. the president on the campaign trail saying no lobbyists would have positions in his administration. show me what it looks like, is
8:55 am
that the case? >> there has been been talk about having waivers and that was a situation for barack obama. you have to remember that the drain the swamp has not living up to the campaign promise, but it is also note worthy, sometimes you need the lobbyists to know how government works, they're the ones that have experience. >> and certainly we know they're learning on the job. mark murray, are those new glasses? >> they are, thank you. >> they look fantastic. next, a hot new announcement from nasa, hot,et it? the sun. what may be the most ambitious unmanned space mission ever. we're getting this in so my sons like the show today.
8:56 am
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. movantik may cause serious side effects including symptoms of opioid withdrawal, severe stomach pain and/or diarrhea, and tears in the stomach or intestine. tell your doctor about any side effects and about medicines you take. movantik may interact with them causing side effects. don't back down from oic. talk to your doctor about movantik. remember mo-van-tik. if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. i know you worry i can't keep up with our weekly tee times. dear son, but i've been taking osteo bi-flex ease. it's 80% smaller but just as effective. which means you're in big trouble, son.
8:57 am
improved joint comfort in seven days. osteo bi-flex ease. made to move.
8:58 am
that goes beyond assuming beingredients are safe...ood to knowing they are. going beyond expectations... because our pets deserve it. beyond. natural pet food.
8:59 am
this hour, a historic announcement from nasa in hopes of solving a mystery of space. the solar probe plus, the goal is to fly right into the sun's atmosphere and orbit within four miles of the sun's surface. why is it hotter than the surface of the sun itself? it is one of the biggest unanswered questions. extraordinary.
9:00 am
thank you for watching this hour of msnbc live. i am stephanie rule, i will see you tomorrow morning at 9:00 a.m. let's go over to my friend and colleague. >> right now, heating up, is the president about to get out of that landmark global client deal. >> i have three grand children, and i50 years i don't want them to say you knew climate change was happening, you were a senator, why didn't you do anything? >> terror in kabul. more than 80 people killed, hundreds injured when a truck bomb explodes on