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tv   The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell  MSNBC  December 4, 2017 7:00pm-8:00pm PST

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whether he sent text messages that expressed anti-trump political views in the campaign. text messages in which strzok and a colleague reacted to news events like presidential debates to appear critical of mr. trump. and then "the washington post" filled in the blanks on the aforementioned colleague, another fbi lawyer who was working for a deputy director andrew mccabe. a lawyer who had also been part of mueller's invest and involved a romantic relationship. strzok removed from mueller's team immediately upon discovery of the texts. his female colleague had already left mueller's team two weeks earlier. and so we have got lots of intrigue around this subject but now we also have an answer to what happened back in august. ♪ thank you, ma kayla. that does it for us tonight. see you again tomorrow. now it's i'm for "the last word with lawrence o'donnell." good evening, lawrence. >> good evening, rachel. it is about standards. it's about the thing that the trump administration is collapsing all over the trump
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administration, robert mueller says there are standards, there are strict standards and you have to meet those standards to work here. that's not -- is that happening anywhere else in the trump administration? >> i know s. that happening anywhere? b, of course the trump administration is now using this as a cudul to beat the fbi and the mueller investigation with. you did the right principled think about political bias? how politically unbiassed you are. >> can't win with those guys. >> exactly thank you. >> thank you, lawrence. >> thank you. well, twitter is to donald trump what video cameras are to bank robbers. have you ever wondered what happened to america's famous bank robbers? among the most famous people in the country. john killinger. machine gun kelly. willie sutton who when asked why he robbed banks said because that's where the money is. and of course, bonnie and clyde and portrayed on film by fay
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done away and warren beatty. what happened to america's famous bank robbers? career bank robbers, successful bank robber who is robbed a bunch of banks and got away with it before they ever got caught or gunned down? video cameras. that's what happened to them. video cameras ended bank robbery as a career. bullets weren't enough to scare bank robbers but video cameras? video cameras did it. video cameras in banks stacked the odds just a little too much in the cops' favor and so in the 21st century only the very stupidest criminals among us are willing to step in front of the video cameras at your local bank and try to withdraw more money than they have in their accounts. then came twitter. and then came donald trump. on twitter, donald trump is like a bank robber who looks up at the video camera to make sure
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the bank gets a really good picture of him. who else, who else would tweet a confession to obstruction of justice? here's what the president of the united states tweeted on saturday. i had to fire general flynn because he lied to the vice president and the fbi. he has pled guilty to those lies. it is a shame because his actions during the transition were lawful. there was nothing to hide. and as soon as i saw that tweet, i said, this is a confession to obstruction of justice. trump flew flynn was guilty when he urged comey to let him go. i wasn't the only one who thought it was a confession to obstruction of justice. here's the front page to "the daily news" tweet l dumb. trump claims he fired flynn because he lied. legal pros call it obstruction of justice. of course. what else would you call it? that was an obvious
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interpretation. it was the first thing that would come to the mind of any lawyer or investigator reading that tweet. james comey was so pleased with donald trump's tweet, so convinced that this proved the case of obstruction of justice against donald trump that james comey posted this on instagram. beautiful long island sound from west port, connecticut, to paraphrase the buddha, three things cannot be long hidden. the sun, the moon and the truth. james comey clearly believed that trump's confession on twitter was vindication and confirmation of james comey's version of their one on one conversation in the oval office about michael flynn and this is james comey's written testimony about that conversation. this has become all the more important tonight. as the participants started to leave the oval office, the attorney general lingered by my chair. but the president thanked him and said, he wanted to speak only with me. the last person to leave was
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jared kushner and also stood by my chair and the president then excused him saying he wanted to speak with me. when the door by the grandfather clock closed and we were alone, the president began bying i want to talk about mike flynn. flynn had resigned the previous day. the president began by saying flynn hadn't done anything wrong in speaking with the russians but he had to let him go because he had mislead the vice president. he added that he had other concerns about flynn which he did not then specify. arenas priebus leaned in by the door and i could see a group of people waiting behind him. the president waved at him to close the door saying he would be done shortly. the door closed. the president then return odd the topic of mike flynn saying he is a good guy and has been through a lot. he repeated that flynn hadn't done anything wrong on his calls with the russians but had misled the vice president. he then said i hope you can see
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your way clear to letting this go. to letting flynn go. he is a good guy. i hope you can let this go. two things happened when donald trump and the white house staff and the trump lawyers realized that the trump tweet was a confession to obstruction of justice. they decided trump was going to have to actually testify immediately via twitter about what happened when he was alone in that room with james comey. and donald trump was going to need someone else to blame for the tweet in which he confessed to obstruction of justice. that was the only way to pull back that confession. and so, president trump's wildly incompetent lawyer stepped forward to take the blame for the tweet. remember that the president ended up being represented in this special prosecutor's investigation by john dowd only because the best washington lawyers turned donald trump
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down. so what would you do if your criminal defense lawyer put out a tweet that your hometown newspaper interpreted on the front page to be a confession to obstruction of justice? >> meatloaf, you're fired. >> no one in donald trump's life has ever done anything more worthy of getting fired than his lawyer who claims to have written a tweet in which donald trump confesses to a crime. meatloaf and anyone else in donald trump's world that donald trump has ever fired never did anything that stupid. meatloaf, never had a day that stupid. donald trump fired meatloaf and so many other people for so much less than what donald trump's lawyer publicly claims he did. if by some chance it is true that john dowd actually did write that tweet, that makes him
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the worst lawyer in washington history, the worst lawyer in the history of the presidency. the worst lawyer who has ever spoken to a president. and maybe a worse lawyer than meatloaf would be. never mind a lawyer who actually tried to defend a president. this is the worst lawyer who has ever, ever tried to defend a president for anything. donald trump really could tonight sue his lawyer for malpractice if his lawyer actually did write that tweet. another reason for donald trump to fire his lawyer is that donald trump actually offered his testimony about the obstruction of justice case publicly yesterday for the first time. this was all part of trying to repair that damage. and donald trump offered that testimony on twitter. and no sane lawyer would ever
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allow donald trump to testify about his conversation with joemts on twitter. but that's what donald trump did yesterday when he tweeted, i never asked comey to stop investigating flynn. just more fake news covering another comey lie. now, the reason that i just read to you james comey's detailed written description of what is maybe the most important conversation donald trump ever had in his life is because i wanted you to have all of that in mind, all of that detail in james comey's own words and the words that james comey put in quotation marks that donald trump spoke, want you to have all of that when you consider this trump repons to all of that. i never asked comey to stop investigating flynn. that's it. that's donald trump's entire defense against obstruction of justice. and as james comey's account makes very clear, this is the
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story of two men alone in a room. and now, one of them has to be lying about what was said in that room. i hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting flynn go. he's a good guy. i hope you can let this go. now, donald trump says he never said that. so, who's lying? james comey or donald trump? one of them must be lying. james comey has already given his testimony under oath and he did it in a televised hearing where everyone could see his demeanor, memory of details and everyone could make a judgment about james comey's credibility. and donald trump has now testified on twitter. i never asked comey to stop investigating flynn. donald trump said that because he knows the obstruction of justice case is closing in on him thanks to his own tweeting. and the time to offer his defense against that obstruction charge is right now.
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and his only defense is that james comey is a liar. but because donald trump and donald trump's lawyer know that there is no american who has publicly told more famous lies than donald trump, they're going to need another defense. when it comes to a question of who do you believe, james comey or donald trump? and so the president's lawyer has declared that it is impossible for the president to commit the crime of obstruction of justice, even if you believe james comey because the president is justice personified. john dowd told mike allen of axios, the president cannot obstruction justice because he is the chief law enforcement officer and has every right to express his view of any case. and, john dowd called me ignorant and arrogant. not the first person to do that. and actually it wasn't
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specifically me. but everyone including everyone in the news media and the legal community who took the trump tweet to be an admission of obstruction of justice. john dowd said the tweet did not admit obstruction. that is an ignorant and arrogant assertion. joining us now, harry mitman, former u.s. attorney and former deputy assistant general at ucla. also with us, judge sugarman from fordham university. and professor sugarman, there's so much to unpack in what's going on here. but first of all, your legal reading of the tweet that "the daily news" interpreted as an admission of obstruction of justice. how would that tweet play in an obstruction of justice investigation? >> there are two pieces here. first of all, it is the third confession. it doesn't matter if we believe
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trump or comey. we have to believe trump with lester holt and what he said on may 10th that he fired comey because of the russia investigation. but one important factor with the dweet is this excuse that trump wrote wit the help of a lawyer, courts treat confessions written with the assistance of lawyers more damning, not less damning f. a layperson writes it by themselves, it can be interpreted as a mistake so this excuse they have come up with is backfired because a court will give that more cdability or more damning. and so that's -- puts trump in even worse shape. >> professor litman, i want to get your reaction to this, to -- you have a choice here. donald trump wrote this tweet about this case or donald trump's lawyer wrote this tweet about what is the essence of the obstruction of justice case
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against donald trump. is it -- i just find it inconceivable that a lawyer would have written a public statement like this for a client in a criminal investigation. >> totally sunning. first, jed is right in terms of the difficulty it places him in but what they're trying to do in getting the fingerprints off is keep it from being an admission but as jed points out it doesn't matter if the lawyer wrote it. if trump adopts it, it becomes his statement but to your point, it's just inconceivable either way. i don't care how stupid you think dowd is. to actually have written this gratuitous tweet seems impossible but the not have written it and then to fall on his sword you know mueller's going to be all over this and we're talking about actual criminal conspiracy liability for dowd. almost a certain disbarment.
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it is just even more inconceivable to think he would have gone ahead and done it after the fact. either way you look at it is just completely puzzling. >> let me go back over what you just said about disbarment. i've been wondering about disbarment myself. malpractice. tell me what would be -- what would lead to disbarment as a result of this tweet. >> if he says that -- fit's not true, if it's somehow not he who wrote it, he who wrote it, stunning. if it is not he and lied about it, mueller will pick it apart and turns out to be a lie, we are talking about criminal liability. same kind of liability that flynn has and certainly we are talking about a bar association coming in and saying, you're finished. one more thing we're talking about, by the way, is a probable change at the top for trump's counsel because you can't be both a witness and a lawyer in the same proceeding. he's made himself a witness now. it looks to me as if dowd's got
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to go and there has to be somebody else at the top. >> yeah. i'm glad you got to that. professor shugerman, i'm wondering about that. there's things lawyers can do to step across the line to be witnesses and surrender attorney/client privilege under certain conditions. is this a situation of attorney dowd to find himself under oath with the special prosecutor about the authorship of that tweet? >> potentially and i think the other question here is the credibility of all of this. i mean, first, if dowd is telling the truth here, that he wrote it and wrote it without trump's permission or knowledge, then why is dowd not fired yet? i mean -- >> yeah. >> i think the biggest problem is if what dowd is saying is correct, how come he isn't fired immediately? the whole story here is incredible. literally not credible by anyone.
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except the one thing that we know is that this tweet is consistent with a lot of reporting that it was widely known in the trump white house in the transition that flynn was compromised so the most credible thing is what is in the tweet. if we know that mcgahn knew it, probably pence knew it and trump knew it. and that's part of this obstruction case that's becoming more and more a factual mountain of evidence. >> and harry litman -- >> very important point. gates explained it to mcgahn. it's very hard to imagine that that wouldn't have been passed along to pence and trump. >> you're talking about white house counsel and very clear was told that michael flynn had lied and lied to fbi agents and the likelihood of the white house counsel not passing that off to the president in any other presidency there would be a 0% chance of that. in trump world, who knows? harry and jed, thank you both
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very much for joining us tonight. >> you're welcome. coming up, new developments in the mueller probe and new developments in the paul manafort case. and also, roy moore and the big turnaround in the republican party from mitch mcconnell to donald trump to the republican national committee. now they're all on board with roy moore for senate. ost everytg so we know how to cover almost anything. even a "red-hot mascot." [mascot] hey-oooo! whoop, whoop! [crowd 1] hey, you're on fire! [mascot] you bet i am! [crowd 2] dude, you're on fire! [mascot] oh, yeah! [crowd 3] no, you're on fire! look behind you. [mascot] i'm cool. i'm cool. [burke] that's one way to fire up the crowd. but we covered it. talk to farmers. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪ but he's got work to do. with a sore back. so he took aleve this morning.
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special prosecutor robert mueller's office says paul manafort has violated a court order by ghost writing an editorial about his political work in the ukraine. according to court filing as late as november 30th, 2017 matter of fact and a colleague ghost writing an editorial in english regarding the political work for ukraine. manafort worked on the draft with long time russian colleague of manafort's based in russia currently and assessed to have ties to a russian intelligence service. the filing also says on the evening of november 30th, the government alerted defense counsel to the defendant's efforts and were assured that steps would be taken to make sure it was no longer going to be published. the special prosecutor's office is using the editorial in its argument against the agreement it made with paul manafort last week to loosen the restrictions on his bail. also, "the new york times" has obtained information from some trump transition e-mails
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concerning russia. the re mails from k.t. mcfarland and who other memberses of trump transition team talking about an outreach to the russian government in the aftermath of sanctions by the obama administration. the e-mails show that k.t. mcfarland and others in the transition team knew that flynn would be speaking to the russian ambassador to the united states about the sanctions. in the e-mails, mcfar labd says president obama was trying to box trump in diplomatically with russia to limit his options with other countries including iran and syria, russia is key that unlocks door she wrote. she also wrote that the sanctions over russian election meddling were intended to lure trump in trap of saying something in defense of russia and were aimed at discrediting trump's victory by saying it was due to russian interference. if there is a tit for tat escalation trump will have difficulty improving relations
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with russia which has just thrown usa election to him she wrote. joining us now, chuck rosenberg, former counsel to robert mueller while he was the director of the fbi, also a former chief of staff to james comey while he was director of the fbi. chuck rosenberg, an analyst and max booth, for national security stud dis and a former foreign policy adviser for mccain, romney, rubio. max, i want did go to you first on this last part of the k.t. mcfarland e-mails where she says if there is a tit for tat escalation trump will have difficulty improving sanctions. your interpretation of that? >> well, i think it's ambiguous. give k.t. benefit of the doubt. you can read it as a confession of guilt realizing that the russians threw the election to
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trump but reading in the wider context, may be saying this is the impression of president obama wanted to give. so, i wouldn't necessarily say this is a smoking gun but certainly evidence that even in the trump campaign folks realized how bad this thing looked given the fact that trump was so you bick wous to putin and then helped donald trump. reeks of a quid pro quo and she understood how bad the whole thing looked. >> we need more context on the e-mails and "the new york times" not yet provided. chuck rosenberg, i want to go to what happened today in the manafort case and this very unusual situation where the special prosecutor feels that there's been some violation of their agreement about what manafort's behavior can and cannot include while he's awaiting trial. >> yeah. no. it's an interesting development,
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lawrence. here's why. the judge was quite clear. folks can't try this case in the press. at least the parties can't try the case in the press so her expectation is no one was going to comment pursuant to the order. and then this happened. turns out mr. manafort having an article ghost written to appear in the press and to potentially influence folks about what he did or didn't do. so the government did absolutely the thing that it ought to do. you bring it to the court's attention, number one. and you move to set more stringent conditions of release. >> max, to go back to the e-mails, there's -- what is very clear in those e-mails is the trump administration, the trump transition team was interested in having substantive communication with the russians and other governments. having been warned specifically by the obama administration not to do that, not to undermine
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current policy, and it doesn't seem like a difficult constraint to live urn. you're going to have the powers in three weeks or four weeks. when's the urgency? >> well, exactly. and, you know, if you listen to what trump and others say now is, it's no big deal and what every transition team does and that flynn was well within the rights but if that's the case then why on earth would mike flynn lie to these fbi investigators? i mean, is he a compulsive liar telling the lies when the truth would serve him better? i know mike flynn. i don't think that's the case. i don't think he's that stupid and lies for no reason. there's clearly a reason and we know, lawrence, what that reason is. because clearly, we're seeing the evidence emerging now of a quid pro quo between the trump campaign and the kremlin and these conversations are only one small part of it. we have seen other parts come into public view. for example, the infamous meeting in june of 2016 between the kremlin emissary and the
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high command of the trump campaign where trump jr. said i love it because he thought the russians to give him dirt on hillary clinton. you have seen the data points come together and this is the latest data point of all of these highly suspicious and most likely corrupt contacts between the trump campaign and the kremlin. that's why mike flynn is lying about it. not because it's the normal incoming adviser doing the outreach with other countries. >> and, chuck rosenberg, i want to stay on that point. the president's tweets suggesting that it's a shame that mike flynn lied to the fbi because he really had nothing to lie about and everything was honorable. you have a -- that leaves you with mike flynn did the stupidest thing to do under the circumstances, surely mike flynn knew that lying to the fbi was a crime, a very, very, very high risk choice that he was taking. and the president is saying he
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took that chance for absolutely no reason. >> yeah. in my experience, lawrence, i was a prosecutor for a long time, people tend to lie for one of two reasons. number one, protect yourself. number two, protect someone else. max's point about, you know, and i know he's just musing here, whether or not mr. flynn is a compulsive liar, that doesn't make sense to me. my guess in the end is reason number one or two. self or others. that's why people lie. >> but what -- chuck, just to stay on that, you're sitting across from fbi agents. you know that the chance you're taking now could put you in prison. that's the big reason people don't lie to the fbi. at that point, they decide whatever i'm trying to protect it isn't worth it. >> logical and rational, lawrence, and people do it all the time. 1,001.
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the section of mr. flynn pled guilty is one of the most used sections in all of the federal code. it happens all the time. so, your point's a fair one, a logical point. your point's a rational one. that's why people lie and my guess why he did, too. >> we have k.t. mcfarland exposed in the e-mails of not telling the truth publicly of contacts after the hearing. senator corey booker of new jersey asked her in writing, did you ever discuss any of general flynn's contacts with kislyak with general flynn? in writing, i'm not aware of any issues or events described above. we know that is a lie. >> frankly, based on the statements, she would be well qualified to serve in the trump cabinet doing pretty much the exact same thing that jeff sessions did and, oh by the way, the same thing that everybody
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connected with trump did. a fast quote here of cnn just recently. at least 12 trump associates had contacts with the russians in the campaign. there were at least 19 face to face interactions with russians or kremlin-linked figures. at least 51 communications. meetings, phone calls, e-mails, et cetera. and how many lies have there been about the meetings and communications? there is no innocent explanation for this, lawrence. there is no innocent explanation. they have not provided one. there's a reason why they're lying and everybody from mike flynn to mcfarland to jeff sessions to kushner and donald trump jr. and donald trump himself they're all lying trying to cover something up. we don't know the full extent and obvious it's pretty bad and has to be if they're willing going to jail for five years, the penalty for lying to a fbi agent. >> coming into focus. max booth, thank you. chuck rosenberg, thank you. coming up, breaking news tonight. the republican national committee has decided to jump back in to the alabama senate race in support of alleged child molester roy moore.
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remember when the republicans said roy moore was on his own? remember when every republican except steve bannon abandoned roy moore? well, that was then. and now, the president has officially re-endorsed roy moore. mcmitch con knell gone from saying roy moore should not be elected and step aside to saying that that's up to the people of alabama. and tonight, breaking news from the republican national committee, it has recommitted itself to help fund raising for roy moore who stands accused of
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child molesting by an accuser who republicans senator jeff flake says is more credible than roy moore's vague denial of those charges. today, one of the women whose story was told in "the washington post's" original reporting on roy moore, the reporting about him dating high school girls when he was an assistant district attorney, one of the women found additional evidence that helps confirm her story. debbie gibson was 17 and briefly dated 34-year-old roy moore. today, she says that when she was unpacking christmas decorations last week she came across an old scrapbook from the senior year of high school. in it was a handwritten graduation card from roy moore. according to "the washington post" the slanted cursive handwriting immediately reminded her of another woman, beverly young nelson claiming that roy
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moore sexually assaulted her when she was 16 years old. last month you will recall she displayed the high school yearbook signed by roy moore in the same handwriting. debbie gibson says she wasn't sure about making her new discovery of the handwritten card public until she heard roy moore say this last week. >> specifically i do not know any of these women nor have i ever engaged in sexual misconduct with any woman. >> i don't know any of these women. that's the line that really upset debbie gibson who says that she not only openly dated moore when she was 17 but later joined him in passing out flyers during his campaign for circuit court judge in 1982 and exchanged christmas cards with him over the years. roy moore made a e gee gous
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mistake to attack that one thing, my integrity. debbie gibson also said this. >> i felt like this was the first thing i have seen that i know personally for a fact to be a lie from his mouth. and he's spewing the lie from the pulpit of a church. he did not perpetrate sexual misconduct toward me or ever claimed that. but i know now for sure that he is a liar. beverly, if you are watching, leigh, if you are watching, i believe both of you. >> joining us now, neera tanden, president of american center for progress. i want to have you comment on the evidence that emerged today with this new card with the handwriting on it, matching the handwriting by most appearances that appeared in that high school yearbook that the -- one of the other girls obtained -- he signed her yearbook when she was in high school.
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>> yeah, i mean, what we see just from this clip is that roy moore is a liar. he said he didn't know any of these girls at the time. he was obviously dating one of them. and -- and, you know, instead -- i mean, basically a classic response. he lied across the board. and now we are going to have more and more evidence that he was lying. that he lied and that these women were telling the truth. you know? she's documented evidence that he is, you know, a liar and i just -- i just want to say clearly to all americans that what's happening here is that you have a political party deciding to believe the person who did these horrible acts. and we are sending a message to our daughters across this
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country that when something terrible happens to you like this, some politicians think you should be silent. i mean, this is beyond politics. it is truly -- i have never seen a bottom like this. i have never seen an entire political party. i have never seen politician after politician, particularly the president of the united states, just reach for the gutter in order to get an extra vote in the senate. >> well, it's certainly isn't every republican. mitt romney tweeted today roy moore in the u.s. senate would be a stain on the gop and on the nation. leigh coverman and other victims are heroes. no vote, no majority is worth losing our honor, our integrity. speaking of honor and integrity gorks to mitch mcconnell and first reaction on video first asked about should roy moore step aside. let's listen to this.
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>> i did. i think he should step aside. >> do you believe these allegations to be true? >> i believe the women, yes. >> and here is mitch mcconnell yesterday with george steph nop louse. >> do you believe that judge moore should be in the senate? >> i'm going to let the people of alabama make the call. this election is going on a long time. been a lot of discussion about it thachlt'll make the decision a week from tuesday. >> neera, that's quite a change. >> yeah. i mean, obviously, they think vote on a tax bill or a budget or any one of these things is more important than, you know, what the moral standing of folks in the senate or what, you know, what we're telling our daughters. most fundamentally when the rnc decides to go back in today as it did today into this election, it's funding the moore campaign, it's funding efforts to have him win, i have to say, every single person who gives to the rnc is
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now supporting this campaign. there is no distance from anyone, anyone in the republican party who doesn't speak out against roy moore. >> neera tan den, thank you very much for joining us tonight. >> great to be with you. coming up, president trump has won nothing yet, the tax bill has not passed. i suppose that's breaking news. it was treated this weekend as if it's a done deal but a lot of legislation has gotten as far as this tax bill and then never made into it law. we'll be back with more on the tax bill. (amanda vo) i adopted scrappy
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ask your doctor about once-weekly trulicity. . [ chanting ] kill the bill. don't kill us. kill the bill. don't kill us. kill the bill. don't kill us. >> that was today on capitol hill because those people know what's really going on. contrary to popular belief it is not over. those protesters know that the trump tax cuts have not yet passed congress and they're not ready for the president's signature and, therefore, the fight is still on. on the tax cuts passed the senate on friday night, the republicans and the president tried to behave as if it was all over. but the house and the senate have now passed two very different bills.
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they must now merge those two bills into a single bill and then that bill has to pass through both the house and the senate in identical form and so there will be two more major votes on the tax cut bill and today finally even the president seemed to realize that. >> we have a final step to go and i predict we'll be very successful. talking about massive, massive tax cuts. we're now one huge step closer to delivering to the american people the historic tax relief as a giant present for christmas. remember, i said we're bringing christmas back? christmas is back bigger and better than ever before. >> it's not over. and gene sperling, a veteran of tax fights, will join us next. former economic advisers to both
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well, we now go into what i call the mixer, and the mixer is conference. and out of that, the house republicans and the senate republicans are going to pick something that will be truly spectacular. >> and that is the president of the united states not knowing what he's talking about. joining us now, jean spurlg, former director of the economic council for presidents obama and
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clinton. and, gene, president trump has never been in the mixer. he has never had legislation dealt with in a conference committee between the house and senate. this is the stage we're in now. the house and senate have to get together, produce a bill, but that requires two more votes, big votes. >> right. >> those protesters we saw in the halls of congress today know that there are two big votes coming up and they're trying to put pressure where it will be most effective not on republican house members and republican senators. >> no, that's right. we have seen an extraordinary amount of desperation as we have seen, which does make you feel like they would do anything. they would pass anything they could call tax reform. nonetheless, i think what you're seeing is that the strategy of paul ryan and mcconnell is kind of let's rush this so fast that by the time you vote on it, nobody knows what's in it. i think what these members are starting to realize is that's not the issue. the issue is when i'm up again in 2018, will they know what's in it then?
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and they're thinking twice. i'll give you a few examples. one, you know, this is a tax legislation like i've never seen. they have targeted punitively several states that have lots of republican members of congress in them, like california, like new york. in california, 11 out of 14 house republicans voted for a bill that specifically penalizes people in california. it will raise taxes significantly. tens of thousands for many middle, upper middle class people and they voted for it and those 11 republicans have the margin to stop the whole bill. they are starting to feel that pressure. second thing we saw was, you know, trump ran on drain the swamp. when you're rushing a bill like this -- they were handwriting in provisions. there weren't any provisions. they were for cruise ships. they were for mortgage services, they were for auto dealers. these are the last-minute lobbying things that go exactly against everything trump said
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and the type of thing that outraged people. and i'll tell you one thing that has not got enough attention. donald trump ran on this wanting to locate jobs in the united states. if you look at the international provisions of this tax bill, the top international experts i know think this will not only create more incentive to actually shift more profits to tax havens, it's actually designed in a way that will encourage you to actually move jobs and operations overseas. i mean, this is a degree of hypocrisy that the more people get to know, the more people are going to have to think twice about their votes and the more they're going to have to fear that if they do let themselves get coerced into rushing this through, they're going to pay a heavy price come november. >> and you've been in the position of trying to persuade members of congress to vote on tax bills from an administration's perspective. you know how tough this is. what you always hear from them is what they are hearing from constituents. they will always tell you, especially within the same party, how much pressure they're
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under. and what i was getting the sense of this weekend was too many people didn't realize that this fight was still on. >> yeah, people need to realize you're going to read from pundits and strategists that they're rushing this because they want to get a win by christmas, or they're rushing it because they know roy moore or doug jones might vote against our seat in january. the reason they're rushing it is because the more people know what's in this bill, the more outraged they are. it already is a very unpopular bill. it just hasn't -- the republican leadership and trump know that if it hangs out long enough, if enough members of congress and senators have to be getting their bags in the airport and have somebody asking, hold it, why are you giving a major tax cut to corporations and i hear that 80 million americans, by 2021, within just a few years, are either going to get their taxes increased or are going to get no tax cut? i mean, it's an incredible accomplishment and in a perverse
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way. lawrence, i think if someone told you or i we could pay $1.5 trillion, free money, raise the deficit and we somehow did a tax cut that was going to raise taxes or not give a tax cut to 150 million americans by the time they were -- by the time this fully implemented, at the end you'd say either that's incredible incompetence or it's too blatent that they are beholding ento the top 1% of the largest companies. >> and this bill gets more unpopular by the day. that's why they have to get moving. gene sperling thank you so much. i appreciate it. tonight's last word is next. and you have the determination to keep going. humira has a proven track record of being prescribed for nearly 10 years. humira works inside the body to target and help block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to symptoms. in clinical trials, most adults taking humira were clear or almost clear and many saw 75% and even 90% clearance
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be hold >> tis i. hillary rod ham clinton. you, donald, have given me the greatest gift of all, sexual gratification in the form of your slow denies. you have no idea how long i've wanted to say this. lock him up! [ applause ] >> no! >> saturday night's kate mckinnon gets' monday night's last word. the 11th hour with brian
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williams is next. >> tonight we're covering several firsts in the modern history of the presidency. before he attacked and troeld and diminished the fbi this weekend, the president might have gotten himself in more legal trouble via twitter. however, as his lawyer sees it, it doesn't matter because the president can't obstruct justice because he's the president. also today, president trump endorsed roy moore despite allegations of sexual misconduct by several women. we'll go live to alabama to update the race. all part of the 11th hour on a monday night. and good evening once again from our nbc news headquarters here in new york. day 319 of the trump administration. this morning the president started his day with the response to the new reality facing this white house, that his former national security advisor has pleaded guilty now to lying to federal investigators. >> i feel badly for general flynn. i feel very badly. he's led a