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tv   Andrea Mitchell Reports  MSNBC  September 27, 2017 9:00am-10:00am PDT

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and family, even lunch with his son. >> we'll let you chew on that. thanks for watching this hour of "velshi & ruhle." i'm ali velshi. >> i'm stephanie ruhle. i can't believe what that ceo will walk away with. it blows my mind. now on "andrea mitchell reports," warning shot. he gets trounsced by an insurgent. >> i will be supportive as long as it's constitutional. but we have to return the knowledge of god and the constitution of the united stat states, the united states congress. zul s >> you'll see in state after state after state people that follow the model of judge moore. >> the alabama primary, the failure to repeal obamacare plus
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a key senator bowing out all adding up to a string of losses for republican leader mitch mcconnell. >> reporter: would you say this is a tough day? >> look, we haven't given up on changing the american health care system. and s.o.s. with stifling temperatures, loss of power and no way to communicate, the mayor sends out an urgent plea for help. >> people keep asking for memos. we need diesel, we need gas, we need running water, we need some sort of way for people to find their way around, and we need our hospitals not to become death traps. and a very good day to you. i'm kristen welker in for andrea mitchell in washington where the aftershocks from conservative
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republican roy moore's victory in alabama's state runoff are rippling across capitol hill and the white house. while president trump is making a quick pivot away from his preferred candidate, deleting tweets with luther strange, mitch mcconnell is stuck with a potential colleague he didn't want and the prospect of more senate allies following tennessee congressman bob corker out the door. here to discuss with me, hallie jackson, nbc capitol hill correspondent kasie hunt and "washington post" national political reporter robert costa. thank you for being here. kasie hunt, i spoke to one of my sources who called yesterday the worst day of mitch mcconnell's career. is that the sense you're getting on capitol hill? is that what people are saying? >> i think everybody is acknowledging that it was not a great day to be the senate majority leader. john thune, one of the leaders of his membership team
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acknowledged, he was quoted as saying, hey, it was kind of a tough summer for everybody and there was a lot of pile-on yesterday between the failure of the health care bill, what happened in alabama which was anticipated although we obviously didn't know the results yesterday afternoon when this health care debacle was unfolding. plus bob corker's retirement. and this is another example of -- i'm not sure that you would necessarily call bob corker a moderate republican, but i think that you could describe him as somebody who came here because he felt like the goal was to govern. there are a lot of people who have been elected in more recent years who feel like their role is more to kind of trip up government, if you will, or at least make it smaller and get rid of more of it. i do think there are still a lot of republicans who don't necessarily look at washington that way, and i would put bob corker in that category. now, he, when i talked to him earlier today, rejected the idea that he was doing it out of frustration with the trump administration. i want to show you what he had to say and then we'll talk about it. >> when i ran and i told people
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i couldn't imagine being here more than two terms, you know, it's been a pull. everybody back in the state has known that. i am in no way frustrated. so the narrative that someone like me would leave because of frustration just isn't there. >> but, of course, this doesn't make it any easier for mitch mcconnell who now has a somewhat unpredictable race in tennessee, and if it's another candidate like roy moore who ends up being the conservative choice, that could be yet another problem for him, kristen. >> undoubtedly, kacie. and hallie, look, the president didn't have a much better day. this is creating problems not just for mitch mcconnell but potentially for president trump. he is quickly pivoting, supporting roy moore, deleting tweets overnight. but what's the mood inside the white house? do they see this as a defeat for
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the president? >> reporter: they don't see this as a defeat at all. i just walked away from a conversation with kellyanne conway. she was asked specifically about the president's mood. i asked about his attitude and she said, attitude is the wrong way to look at it. she said now they will work with whoever wants to represent the republicans' agenda. these tweets endorsing luther strange are going to go away. those tweets obviously still exist. the president did endorse luther strange and conway said if you're there for the president's agenda, he will be there for you. which i think is interesting, because to a degree,a atit's a of having it both ways. talking about a way to keep that republican seat in the senate, but also saying, hey, look, here's a message to you other
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sitting senators, if you back potus, he'll have your back in 2018. one of the press corps from npr followed up by saying, does that mean he will back jeff flake given that jeff flake has largely voted for the president's agenda despite coming out with that book and interviews slamming some of the president's policies and positions, and there was sort of a little bit of a deflection saying, i'm speaking a little about luther strange and not jeff flake, but i do think it will have implications over the next year, kristen. >> there's no doubt about that, hallie. to you, robert. follow up with what hall,hallie hearing from the white house. they're defiant saying the president is going to support roy moore. he is going to come to washington. he will back the president's agenda. but to what extent does this call into question president trump's ability to have influence over these elections? we know he can get people to the polls himself, but what about
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these down ballot races? >> if you are running for senate next year, roy moore's claim on the nomination in alabama has been unsettling. they now believe, whether fair or not, they will have to respond to judge moore's comments which are at times incendiary and they think he could be a political burden for them next year, and as republicans confront this environment with roy moore type candidates emerging in the country, senators like bob corker may choose to step aside and avoid the anger on the left and the right. >> robert, just to follow up on that point, i know you're watching a couple races, in particular arizona, nevada, mississippi where is these anti-establishment picks could be gaining traction and could get a fresh look today. >> they certainly could, especially from donors on the conservative side of the republican party. i spoke in the last 24 hours
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with state senator chris mcdaniel of mississippi. he's eyeing a race against the incumbent roger wicker, long-time senator. i spoke to danny tartanian in nevada. he's already running against dan heller. they feel like they'll get more enthusiasm, more money because of what happened in alabama. >> ka krr arrepublicans want to about tax reform now. what can you tell us about this tax plan, kacie? we know the president wanted a much lower tax rate. >> that's right, kristen. i hope the hopes and dreams of the republican majority, in fact, its very existence, may ride on whether they can pass a reform package. they want to make changes to the tax code, simplify it, change a lot of deductions. they want to cut the corporate
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tax rate from 35 to 20%. that is higher than what the president was looking for. they would also lower the overall individual tax rate to 35% would be the highest bracket, but others would be simplified. so there is a lot here. we could walk through these fine details, but i think the most important thing at this early stage of these negotiations is to know that there are a lot of people who are interested in this bill. they have -- the tax code touches dozens if not hundreds of industries, it touches individuals. there are so many details here, all of which, any of which could potentially sink the package. bob corker said this to me. he characterized tax reform -- he said, if you thought health care was hard, then you have another thing coming when it comes to tax reform. this is going to be way harder to figure out. he said, i am not going to vote for anything that doesn't -- that raises the deficit. what does that mean? it means he's not going to vote for just a straight tax cut.
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it's much easier, he said, to pass tax cuts. so i think there is a lot of grappling here the republican party has to do. if they can't get it through, they are at risk of losing their majority in 2018. >> it's going to be a tough road ahead. hallie, let me finish with you here. if you talk to white house officials, they say they need this win. the president has to show that he can get something done. he's going to be selling this in indiana today. we saw him sort of lay the groundwork, trying to work with democrats in terms of getting that spending bill passed. to what extent is the white house saying, hey, we need democrats in order to get this tax reform bill passed? >> reporter: not much, or at least not right now, kristen, is the honest assessment here. you look, and kacie knows this well, the way the senate is trying to get through tax reform via reconciliation, which means it only needs 51 votes. that is not necessarily a recipe for bipartisanship. i think there are certain parts of this tax plan, this
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framework, so to speak, for now that democrats are going to be very angry about. you've already heard reports that some democrats wanted to go to the gop retreat today and were told no. that may be a political stunt, but i do think while the president cut this deal on the debt ceiling as you're well a ware earlier this fall with nancy pelosi and chuck schumer, i'm not sure what appetite there is to work with democrats, despite hearing they absolutely want to work with democrats. we heard that with sean spicer and we saw how that went. >> thanks to all of you who joined me. i really appreciate it. now i want to turn to democratic senator chris coons who joins me. thank you, senator. i really appreciate your time. >> thank you. >> let's just start with where we left off on tax reform. is there any room, do you think, for bipartisanship on this issue? i know this is an issue that democrats care about when you see the outlines of this tax
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reform plan coming together. do you think some democrats can get behind it? >> absolutely. this is an example of an area where, right from the election, there were many democrats saying we would like to find a way to work across the aisle, to work with president trump. there are a number of other areas like infrastructure where we had early hopes we might be able to work together. but if we look back at the health care process and outcome, that's got some important warnings here. we should be listening to senator john mccain who says the only way to do very hard, very complex things here in the senate is in an open process, not by having five or six people craft a complex plan in secret and then roll it out and try and pass it with only one party's vote. if the health care process had been open and robust and bipartisan for the last seven months, i think we would be making progress. and given that the tax plan that's being rolled out today was crafted largely in secret and with no democratic input, that's not very encouraging.
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>> senator, let me shift now to the other big headline today, and of course, that is roy moore's victory overnight. of course, he still has a ways to go before he actually gets to washington, but is he someone you think you can work with? this is someone who said he believes that parts of the united states are under sharia law, that homosexual conduct should be illegal, that his personal belief, still, is that former president obama was not born in the united states. what do you make of his win and is he someone you can work with? >> well, i have worked very hard to find some way to partner with republicans and democrats from a wide range of backgrounds and views. so i will give roy moore, if he's elected, the benefit of the doubt. but all of those statements you just repeated are gravely concerning, even alarming. hopefully he will come to the senate with an attitude that changes and he will show that he's interested in constructive legislation. but if he's simply a bomb
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thrower, someone who comes here determined to shake things up and to make things difficult for mitch mcconnell, he will be able to do so and it will be an even harder road ahead for the republican majority as they try to legislate and to govern. >> senator, as you know, former vice president joe biden is poised to campaign for doug jones who is going to be facing off against roy moore. how much effort and energy should democrats put into this race and to what extent are you concerned that democrats still haven't found a message that they're still the anti-trump party right now? >> doug jones is a great candidate. he's a former u.s. attorney, he's a prosecutor. he's someone who has stood up for justice in a state where that makes a real statement. it's my hope that the contrast between doug jones as a candidate and judge moore will be clear, and i can't think of anyone to be a better person to deliver democrats' message to the middle class folks, the voters of alabama, than vice president joe biden.
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the special election is on december 12. there is going to be a very small turnout. and look, i'm someone who got into a race for the u.s. senate against republican congressman former governor mike castle and i ended up facing christine mcdonald. in the primary, who knows what might happen and if democrats might be successful in 2018 because of unexpected upsets in republican primaries. >> it's an important point, and when you talk about unexpected races, we've seen so many unexpected outcomes. there seems to be a real mood for outsiders when it comes to the backdrop of senator corker announcing he's retiring. what does it say about the state of the senate and about voters right now and what they're looking for? is everyone in washington just getting it wrong, i guess is my question to you. >> kristen, i was surprised and disappointed by chairman corker's resignation announcement last night. he is a conservative republican. we disagree on a number of
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important policy matters, but on the foreign relations committee, he's been a good chairman and a good legislative partner. we've introduced and moved forward -- >> do you worry it actually hurts bipartisanship on your committee? >> yes. because senator corker has worked very hard to find ways to work together despite our disagreements on a number of areas. he and i, i believe we've moved five bills from introduction to becoming law in recent years. we've traveled together, we've worked together. ben cardin, the ranking democrat on the committee, has a respectful chairman relationship with bob corker. it's my hope that the next foreign relations committee and the next congress, whether it's a democrat or republican, will also work as hard as bob corker has to find a way to put our country's interests first. but he is the sort of pragmatic legislator, someone who really wants to get things done, that our country wants more of.
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when i go home to delaware, what i hear from people when i'm going to the grocery store or after church or coming home from the train station, they say they want government to work together and move forward to the betterment of america. the election of roy moore certainly suggests there are a lot of states where folks are pulling in the opposite direction. >> that's for sure. let me ask you quickly about mark zuckerberg, these revelations about facebook, thousands of ads purchased by russians and used to try to meddle in the campaign. does mark zuckerberg need to testify in an open hearing? >> yes. i think we need to hear from mark zuckerberg. we need to better understand both what facebook knows about how to microtarget ads and what they know about russian activity. we need to be preparing for the 2018 and 2020 elections and make sure we understand the really disruptive power of social media to move messages directly to the in boxes of americans, to their
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social media feeds. we've got real restrictions on the ability of foreign powers to influence our elections in traditional media. the russian government can't come and buy ads on fox or msnbc to try to push an election. but through facebook, they may have accomplished exactly that goal. we need to better understand what's happened to the 2016 election and prepare ourselves for 2018 and 2020, because vladimir putin and his regime continue to interfere in elections across europe, and he continues to have interests and objectives that are quite different from ours. we need to make sure we're securing our future elections. >> senator chris coons, we covered a lot of ground. thanks so much. i really appreciate your perspective. coming up, culture war. why is the president continuing attacks on the nfl? that's next. you're watching "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. organic. a premium juice company. a coconut water company.
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and welcome back. president trump continuing his unrelenting crusade against nfl protests. tweeting this morning, he spoke with dallas cowboys owner jerry jones who, along with his team monday night, took a knee on the field before the national anthem. the president saying, quote, jerry is a winner who knows how to get things done. players will stand for country. joining me now to discuss all of this, congressman jim clyburn, the third-ranking democrat in the house. congressman, thanks for joining me this afternoon. >> thank you very much for having me. >> let's start right there.
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what do you make of the president's ongoing fight, if you will, some say crusade, against nfl protesters? >> i think the president has got a whole lot on his plate other than to tweet about sports. i don't know of anything in our country that has brought people together as much as sports, be it football, be it basketball, baseball. these are things that we enjoy together as americans irrespective of what it may be for. these people are entertainers who do not give up their right to be americans. and it's an american right to protest things that you think are unfair. the owners of these football and athletic teams have an association, and through their association, they lobby congress, they do other things at the local levels to get what
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they need to do business. now the players have an association as well. and through their association, they voice their opinions about things, and if they demonstrate it in such a way as i did as a college student, thinking there was something wrong with me being able to purchase supplies in a five and dime store and not be able to sit down at the lunch counter, i went to jail for that. so we have a culture of protesting in order to bring attention to things, and that's all these players are doing, bringing attention to a significant amount of unfairness that they feel is taking place for their nephews and nieces and other children as well. >> the "new york times" has a fascinating report which says the president behind the scenes is acknowledging that effectively this is a culture war on behalf of white working
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class voters. that's a "new york times" report. but there's no doubt a lot of people have seen this through a cultural and racist lens. if you hear from the president, he says this has nothing to do with race. he is defending the flag. what do you make of that argument? is this a culture war or is it not? >> you know, i said to a business group on yesterday, i asked them, if this is all about the flag and has nothing to do with race, i asked them, how many athletes, black, or how many black people have you ever seen burning the american flag? they all looked around and said to me later they never have seen that. that's because we respect the flag. this has nothing to do with the flag. this has to do with those things -- >> congressman, do you think the president is effectively trying to spin up his base, though, at a moment that's politically difficult for him, or is there some validity to his argument, that a lot of people in this country feel, you know what, if
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you are a paid sports player, you should pay honor to the flag? >> well, they do pay honor to the flag. this has nothing to do with honor to the flag. the president may be trying to gen up his base. these athletes are trying to bring attention to unfairness and ask this country to come together and do something to respond to that unfairness which has nothing to do with them honoring the flag. many of them have been in the military, some of them still serve in the military. this has nothing to do with that. even the gentleman from the pittsburgh steelers who went out and stood by himself said later that he looked around and saw himself alone, though he respected what his players were doing, and he has served three terms in afghanistan. this has nothing to do with defending and respecting the flag. >> congressman, let me ask you about the news overnight. roy moore winning the alabama primary last night.
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what do you make of his win? what does it say about establishment candidates in this country and the appetite of voters right now? >> well, it says a lot about people's disenchantment with government. there are tendencies to want to vote for people who will go in, challenge the system, bring about changes and they see that in roy moore. but i will tell you this. he is in for a real contest for, i believe, the december 12 general election. we have a very good candidate in doug jones. i have already been actively working on his behalf and i can tell there are a lot of people up here who are going to do what is necessary to give the people of alabama a real choice between doug jones and judge moore. i think that mr. jones has a very good chance of winning this race. i know we're going to do what we can to make sure that the people have a very good choice.
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>> all right, congressman clyburn, thank you so much for joining us this afternoon. really appreciate your perspective. >> thank you so much for having me. coming up, puerto rico's growing humanitarian crisis. how workers are getting aid to the most hard-hit areas of the island. but first the gop republican revolution could be in a standoff in 2018. this is "andrea mitchell reports." oh, you brought butch. yeah! (butch growls at man) he's looking at me right now, isn't he? yup. (butch barks at man) butch is like an old soul that just hates my guts. (laughs)
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do you worry about working with mitch mcconnell? how are you going to do it if he was that determined to make sure you didn't get this seat? >> as long as he stands for a conservative agenda and what we promised the people's republicans, i'll work with everyone. >> candidate roy moore striking a slightly more conciliatory tone after the majority leader mitch mcconnell was trashed. while you worked with john baynor, you were no stranger to having to deal with the right flank. what are the implications for the agenda here? >> i certainly hope mr. moore's
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comments this morning indicate that he has a new understanding of his role, first, as general election candidate, and if he's successful, as senator. that means working for the senate to get things done for the american people. there is no question he's said some incendiary things in the past. i hope he learned from that and is better going forward. >> i wonder what your perspective is on the state of the gop right now. when you were there with john baynor, it was divided. it seems like last night was a real moment and awakening in some sense that these insurgent candidates, not only are they not going away, they're em boldened. >> it's absolutely not going away, but that's what makes it more important to move on issues like tax reform and get things done for the american people. we can bring the party together around pro-growth tax reform to help middle class people. that's what we can offer going into the 2018 midterms. >> the president wants to show he can get things done, that he can govern here.
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but there's a new axiom report coming out saying he can't lead, if you will. what are the implications of that, michael? is that smart politics? >> no, it's dumb. look, senator mcconnell and john mccain are grown-ups, they have very thick skin, i have no doubt they'll help the american people, but there's no doubt it's juvenile. >> what do you make of the fact that the president spent the weekend tweeting with the nfl, what i was just discussing with congressman clyburn, and yet people in puerto rico are saying, we need help. we are u.s. citizens. we need the federal government to weigh in here. finally he did yesterday, to be fair. >> i think the sustained focus that people in these disaster areas need is something that's been lacking, at least in terms of the tweets, at least in terms of some of the things the president has said and done. i hope and pray we're doing everything humanly possible to help those people. >> is it one of these moments,
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though, michael, that could be too little too late. the president says he's going to visit next tuesday and wednesday. he's also going to the virgin islands. we know $7 billion was approved for hurricane harvey, so i suspect congress will be back at it. do you think enough is being done by congress and the president collectively? >> i think congress is acting quickly, they've gotten resources there that the folks need. i know the armed services are doing extraordinary work bringing relief to these folks. >> is it something that could bring these people together so get tax reform done? to say, hey, let's get together and create a little more bipartisan spirit to get these things done? >> these awful hurricanes in texas and florida have created mo more. women will finally be able
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to drive in the religious kingdom. the first woman in washington tells us what this means for her country. that's next on "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. ♪ if you could book a flight, then add a hotel, or car, or activity in one place and save, where would you go? expedia i've got a nice long life ahead. big plans. so when i found out medicare doesn't pay all my medical expenses,
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need running water, we need some sort of way for people to find their way around, and we need our hospitals not to become death traps. >> and that was san juan's mayor on "rachel maddow" last night pleading for help as puerto rico faces a humanitarian crisis. it looks like a war zone and they struggle with lack of water and communications. they are still trying to reach people in some areas. >> reporter: in some areas of puerto rico, calls for help are written on rooftops, families desperate in a long wait for aid, roads obliterated by mudslides and flooding. >> they might be stuck in an area where they just can't leave. >> reporter: the blackhawk helicopters getting aid to some areas where eight-year-old miati says her family needs supplies. she's worried about her grandparents she hasn't heard from in days. >> i hope you're fine and i love
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you. >> reporter: this chopper crew also responsible for helping in a major catastrophe. >> if this would have come to the ground, if this would have hit puerto rico, how bad could things have gotten? >> pretty bad. we would have had an oil spill. >> reporter: american soldiers protecting their island, looking for more people to save. >> and that was nbc's gadi schwartz reporting in puerto rico. he will have more tonight on nightly news. we want to turn now to the middle east and a major win for women's rights in saudi arabia. the deeply conservative country issuing a surprise announcement, lifting a ban on female drivers, a move activists and critics say was a long time coming. one saudi arabian mother told us it was a special day because of what it means for her 13-year-old daughter. >> her future will be a brighter future than i had or her
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grandmother had. i had to wake her up and share that moment. >> reporter: what was her reaction? >> she started crying. >> incredible. saudi arabia is the only country in the world that ban women from driving, putting women under strict government law. the first person to speak for the saudi arabian people, thanks for coming here. >> thank you for having me. >> how did this come about? >> to echo the president, it's been a long road for saudi arabian women. we've seen this across several different areas, one in the labor market and the retail industry and executive appointments with respect to the chair of the saudi stock exchange is a woman. one of the airports in saudi arabia is chaired by a woman. we've seen this also in the
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politics, which is the representative body that embodies men, has also appointed women as well. we've also seen this in other areas with municipal elections as electors and electees. we've seen the expansive kind of collective progress of women entering the public space, and driving will further facilitate that. >> reaction, of course, pouring in, including from hillary clinton who tweeted, it's about time. ladies, start your engines, which i thought was appropriate. then you hear that mom talking about the very emotional reaction of her 13-year-old daughter. what has the sort of emotional reaction been in saudi arabia for women and families? >> i think what's happening in saudi arabia right now is that there is kind of an evolving of social norms. and that's why driving has taken place when it has. this has really kind of been a social reconciliation process.
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what we're seeing now is the leadership is instituting policies to kind of reflect organically the sentiments on the ground. and i think it's very positive. >> there are still some things that women can't do in saudi arabia. one of them, as i understand it, correct me if i'm wrong, is get married without the permission of a guardian, a male guardian. do you expect to see other changes? is this going to open up the floodgates in some ways? >> well, so the crown prince announced in april of 2016 an economic diversification long-term strategy which is also underpinned by social and economic reform. saudi arabia again, to echo the sentiments of our ambassador, is not easternizing or westernizing, it is simply modernizing. one of the goals is to enter
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women into the matriculation of the economic market. >> i think that's interesting what you brought up, the practical implications of this. some women, not only were they dr driven by their husbands, others had to get cars to take them to work. what are the implications, not only for the individual woman who can now drive herself to work, but for the family more broadly? >> women everywhere around the world hail cabs, so i think we just need to kind of bring it to a very pragmatic perspective, that saudi arabia is not different -- too different than any other society. >> but now they have the choice. >> now they have the choice. and again, i think to your question, previously there were stipends or initiatives built by the government or the private sector to augment the salaries, to address kind of the burden of
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transportation costs. and now this is, again, the leadership is not forcing women to drive. and the leadership respects everyone's respect active opinio -- respective opinions, whether they be conservative or on the other side of the spectrum. >> thank you so much for helping us understand what is an historic moment in saudi arabia. we really appreciate it. >> thank you. >> great to see you. coming up next, lawyering up. why sean spicer just hired a criminal defense attorney as the special counsel's russia probe heats up. this is "dreenandrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. we'll be back after a quick break. humana medicare advantage members. no, it's this john smith. who we paired with a humana team member to help address his own specific health needs. at humana, we take a personal approach to your health, to provide care that's just as unique as you are.
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ask your doctor if chantix is right for you. many insurance plans cover chantix for a low or $0 copay. nbc news has learned special counsel robert mueller could start interviewing current and former members of president trump's inner circle as early as this week, as "the daily beast" says sean spicer hired an attorney. joining me for more on the russian investigation, bob bauer, now a law professor at new york university. thanks for being here. >> it's a pleasure.
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thank you. >> let's start with the information i just reported. the fact we know former and current white house officials are going to be interviewed by mueller at some point this week likely he'll start those interviews. where does that tell you about where this investigation stands and that type of he was information do you think he's looking for them? >> it's difficult to say what direction the investigation is going. you see awe lot of activity. you can't infer from the activity what lines of investigation mr. mueller and his team are actually pursuing. you assume they're going about it vigorously. probably mindful to do this expeditiously. you raised the question, what are they looking at? one of the reports reflect this, whether there were attempts to obstruct the investigation inside the white house and what various aides can shed in the way of light on that possibility. >> and cnn is reporting -- we haven't confirmed yet addition but the irs is sharing information with robert mueller as well. when you hear that, what does
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that tell you? and i think of the president's tax returns, but there's no way to know for sure. is that a sign, as you point out, that the investigation is moving forward or is that something that the president should potentially be concerned about? >> i imagine the president's concerned. in fact, he's made it very clear he's concerned about all of it. >> that's a fair point. >> but in in particular instance, you would expect this information to be information that the special counsel would be looking at. i think it would include personal financial information of the president's as well as oregon personal financial information of other witnesses and subjects. >> the president's former adviser, roger stone, was on capitol hill testifying yesterday. he was insistent there was no collusion with the russians. congressman adam schiff, who was a part of that hearing, said they didn't get as much information as they wanted. take a listen and then i'll get your reaction. >> at times he said publicly he was in direct communication with assange, other times he said through an intermediary.
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obviously, we want to know about those communications because they're taking place at a time when the russians are using those two outlets as a way of dumping their stolen documents. mr. stone wasn't willing to answer questions about that intermediary. we'll have to subpoena him unless he changes his mind and decides, as promised, he would answer every question. >> can the house intelligence committee actually compel him to testify? is that a step you anticipate they'll take? >> i think they'll issue a subpoena and then the question will be whether at this point somehow he can sustain his position he won't answer under a fifth amendment claim. i don't know that he can actually testify to some parts and decide other parts to protect journalistic privilege he's not going to disclose. he'll certainly have that conversation with special counsel mueller. bear in mind, one of the facts he has not explained is how he knew the publication of the podesta e-mails on wikileaks is coming.
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he said, it was coming and, indeed, it did. it's simply information he will not be able to withhold. i predict it will be provided to congress and special counsel. >> you have a new piece out in l lawfare. you talk about the fact that president trump has described this investigation as a hoax and that that's significant. it's something i think a lot of people haven't thought about. what do you mean by that? you draw comparisons to nixon. >> the watergate episode, richard nixon from the very beginning, almost within days of the break-in, began a process of cover-up, which includes statements from the press secretary and from the president denying there was any white house involvement, dismissing the entire episode. at one point the president even said that he had authorized the white house counsel to conduct an investigation and it turned out no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of white house staff. that was false. there was no such investigation.
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there was no such finding. that found its way into the articles of impeachment improved by the house judiciary committee. a president does have an obligation to speak truthfully to the public about these sorts of matters. the deception of the public, as the nixon case shows, can be an impeachable offense. it's likely in this instance it would become an offense in the impeachment process if there are other offenses that arise out of this russia investigation that become the subject of impeachment, but he does not get a go free card on this one, of continually insisting against the evidence he knows to be true that it's a hoax. >> one of the reasons why his attorneys are so nervous every time he tweets, no doubt. very quickly, your reaction to the reports that tom price has used government planes for some trips that mixed government but also some personal business as well. some say that's crossing the line. do those actions cross the line? >> from what i can tell from the
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reports and the inspector general is looking into it so we'll have validated facts at some point, he gamed the system. these were trips in one particular case it seems to be organized around a desire to have lunch with his son. one of the official events on the calendar is one the host didn't know he would be attending until right before he showed up. spoke for 20 minutes, took no questions and headed for the airport. there's a question whether these trips were predominantly personal in character but dressed up as public events so the taxpayers would pay for them. the one in tennessee, $18,000, the price of a commercial ticket between $100 and $300. >> breaking news, the president was just asked about tom price and he said, we'll see, when asked if he plans to fire him. this is something we will continue to track throughout the day. bob bauer, thank you for being here. >> a pleasure. >> really appreciate it. more ahead. this is "andrea mitchell reports."
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before we go, i want to congratulate andrea mitchell, who's getting a lifetime achievement award today. she's simply the best. craig, i'll toss it to you. >> kristen welker, thank you. good afternoon, craig melvin at msnbc headquarters in new york city. trump tries again. president trump on his way to indiana right now to pitch his tax plan. the establishment guy backed in