tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC December 27, 2017 7:00pm-8:00pm PST
>> christmas is here. play in the snow. grab a friend's hand and don't let go. i'm the most big league guy i know. christmas is here. >> i will live in silence. >> i'm the best part of the year but christmas is here. >> he'll freeze the diamond. >> he's the best part of the year. christmas isn't fun. at least when you're not a real human. oh, why can i not know love? why, creator, do not join us? j y? one time i just want to feel the wind on my face. >> huh? can a robot be unhappy? the guy is suffering. he might die. have a look at the electrical feed. it's probably wrong. look into it for me and my little guy. >> he deserves more and means an uncannily accurate bad lip read.
now it's time for "the last word with lawrence o'donnell." ari melber is in for lawrence tonight. fly. >> joy, are you having too much fun? >> too much! >> oh, i want to wish the best to rachel. i can't give her what you gave her. >> nope! >> you know, do you know this expression? more life? >> i do. >> i want to have more life and -- and more joy. >> oh! >> would you be willing to come on this show because there's a thing i want to talk to you about. >> okay. >> who's the most admired person in america according to americans. would you be willing to come over to the sunset. >> i'll be right upstairs. i'll head up. >> this is a real thing. joy, i'll see you in a minute. >> fly. see you soon. she has more fun and better at it than me. it looks fun over there. joy reid will be on "the last word" in a minute. a real news story, i cou indica
that the donald trump legal team is bracing for something more, something apparently worse coming out of the mouth of michael flynn. that is the key takeaway in a report that's making waves even on what might be a quiet weekend in washington from "the washington post." trump lawyers saying they're looking at plans to depict flynn as a, quote, liar, seeking to protect himself if he accuses the president or senior aides of any wrongdoing. one person helping craft the strategy describing flynn as not lowing. he said it himself. he's a liar. the strategy apparently been in the works since flynn's news first broke that he would be cooperating. he signed a legal cooperation agreement with special counsel mueller and that, of course, has been public for sometime. why is this breaking now? "the post" reporting the administration has spent time here strategizing how to neutralize flynn in case flynn makes any claims. this is very clearly a shift for
president trump. if you watch the news and you probably do if you're watching this you will note that he has publicly and repeatedly done something very different from "the washington post" report of this new legal strategy. donald trump was praising mike flynn even after firing him. >> michael flynn, general flynn, is a wonderful man. i think he's been treated very, very unfairly by the media. i think it's very, very unfair what's happened to general flynn, the way he was treated and the documents and papers that were illegally, i stress that, illegally leaked. >> i do feel badly for him. he served the country. he was a general. this man has served for many years. he's a general. he's -- in my opinion, a very good person. >> well, i feel badly for general flynn. i feel very badly. he's led a very strong life and i feel very badly. >> he may not be feeling badly
tonight. donald trump turning on mike flynn would be a significant change in the probe and i say regardless of where this probe heads. we don't know what mueller has or will find. recall "the daily beast" in may saying they were warning trump about reaching out to flynn and a couple weeks ago trump wasn't ruling out a possible pardon for flynn. >> about michael flynn, would you consider a pardon for michael flynn? >> i don't want to talk about pardons for michael flynn yet. let's see. >> you don't have to be a lawyer to say there's a long way from publicly saying you'll see to pardon someone and having the lawyers tell "the washington post" someone sa terrible liar. some of flynn's family members thinking about that clip i just showed you saying donald trump should pardon flynn. this was a tweet taken down and posted by one of flynn's brothers calling for just that. meanwhile, new indications from an interesting report of yahoo! news reporter that mueller's
probe is deepening. he report that is in just the last few weeks, mueller's investigators questioning rnc staff about the party digital operation that worked with the trump cam tony to target voters in key states and seeking to determine if the joint effort was related to the activities of the russian trolls and bots. joining me now is noah shackman of the daily beast, tim o'brien author of "trump nation" and msnbc contributor. noah, the saying used to be are you bought or not? the bots on the one hand can seem like a relatively trivial thing although they have certainly had impact in various countries and yet bob mueller doesn't look at this as trivial at all. why not? >> because there's a lot of evidence what happened digitally on twitter and facebook, one of the decisive moves in the campaign and who controlled the bots? bought the bots?
and how they were coordinated is really the key issue. it may be the key issue that unlocks how much the russian fifth in the trump campaign activity proper interlinked. >> you think about the way that the digital world has exploded through this campaign. and you have a large background in that as well as politics. there are digital footprints to things that are different. watergate was a physical break-in and fingerprints and led to something. the idea here is that there could be, what? records, flash drives, targeting data that would basically pinpoint who may have been in on this operation? >> yeah. look. i don't want to speculate too much about exactly what kind of data may or may not have been there but it's true that, you know, there's no place to hide on the internet and everything does leave a kind of footprint. >> tim, no place to hide and as "the new yorker" put it on the
internet no one knows you're a dog if you're a dog and so-called fake accounts and trolls and fake identities of ideas of something behind the veil. >> well, and i think i think it's part of a fact pattern that bob muler is trying to assemble that's going to be i think parts of a three-legged stool. the first is collusion. the foundational reason for his investigation. the second part and i think the more dangerous part is obstruction of justice. and the third part of this would be any kind of financial quid pro quos that would exist between the kremlin and trump. and i think those are driving forces behind anything that mueller's going to look at and in that context bots and rigging facebook or at least fine tuning facebook to aid the trump campaign is part of all of that. >> here's the question we can't answer and anyone in this wants
to answer and that is why does it seem like everyone close to trump is freaking out this week? >> i don't think that they're necessarily freaking out this week. i think they're freaking out all along and i don't think they're on message together. donald trump is probably the worst client you could have if you're an attorney because he's never on message and he doesn't do what he's told. and if the lawyers themselves are gearing up to smear mike flynn, i don't think that meres that the president's on board with that strategy necessarily. >> he could undercut it. let's show something about kushner and then go to you, noah. kushner and potentially more exposure searching for a crisis pr firm for press inquiries, a step taken by people who believe they could be facing criminal charges. now, that lawyer abby lowell and who i have spoken to insists something to see here and yet again i would disagree slightly with tim's analysis. i have spent months covering
this case. where people are in the white house on the same note and we're cooperating. >> yeah. >> a lot of republicans, outside of what you might call the extra fever fringe, a lot of republicans were holding their fire. now you've got everyone from ken starr to bright bart eitbart tof congress taking on the fbi. >> the shift is now to smear the fbi and the mueller operation. and i do think that if you're seeing some extra concern i think it's because of the financial front more than the digital front perhaps. you know, kushner's not just facing problems in the mueller probe itself and also facing additional legal pressure about us, loans from deutsch bank which is sort of famously russia friendly on a property basically to buy the old "the new york times" building and prosecutors here in brooklyn looking into that, too. >> right. >> he's not just -- >> particularly because of the timing of that loan, too. >> a month before the election.
>> right. >> so it's -- not just facing sort of mueller pressure. he's also facing pressure in brooklyn and who knows where else? >> well, and this goes to something i want to play now which is congressman francis rooney. you know, in our jobs here, we talk about people and sometimes we talk about what they say on tv. i'm not a big fan of, you know, taking shots at someone for a poorly chosen word. i think that happens to all of us if we're being honest. but you have congressman rooney here coming back on. he said this about the purge of the fbi yesterday which is really stalin-ness language and then asked about it on cnn and we have to question. trump is trump. we have to question if other members of congress and leaders taking us down a road of purges of our nonpartisan law enforcement. for viewers, play it. take a listen to francis rooney. >> are you sure you want to be throwing a word like purge around? >> well, it might be a pretty strong word.
i'm not maybe the most nuanced political person in the world coming from a career in business but i'm pretty frustrated that all the things that have come out by the strzok and or and may or may not have taken place in the deputy general's macabe -- >> tim, your view on that? >> i think i think it's very disturbing that we're at a point in time that the law and order party in the united states, the gop, is fairly flagrantly both undermining and taking pot shots at law enforcement official who is are in the midst of a very well heeled and logical investigation, something that law enforcement should be undertaking. bob mueller's doing what he's charged with doing. proceeding by the books. >> her's what i don't get and throw it out to both of you for a final thought here. part of our job as journalists to listen to all sides and then figure out what's logical and fair versus when's rank lies.
so not false equivalency but to take all theories seriously. there are theories in the trump campaign world is one is something did something wrong and the president didn't and will be exonerated. that's a reasonable theory. what doesn't strike me is reasonable that the theory that the fbi which very publicly announced all of its thoughts and suppositions about hillary clinton during a presidential campaign and then had a trump investigation that it kept completely secret to the point no one knew about it and nothing leaked until after the investigation and the same fbi now in the tank against donald trump. i can't as a fair journalist understand how that's a fair theory. >> not just the fbi that trump has taken on. he's attacked the federal judiciary, the media, any organization. >> does this theory hold up in
any way for you? >> no. i don't think it holds up at all. not at all. the reason they're attacking the ogss because there's something there. >> in the closing days of the campaign, comey felt the need to reopen the hillary clinton investigation because of pressure of agents within the fbi. if anything, i mean, from what i know of bureau guys, they tend to be more republican, more -- >> that's right. >> more inclined to an administration, not less to it. so i think the theory's just kind of nuts. >> noah, thank you for joining us. i'll be talking to you in a second. coming up, president trump losing to president obama in a big national survey that could make donald trump's obama derangement issues more pronounced. later, when's trump exhaustion? do you have it and could it have midterm indications? (daniel jacob) for every hour that you're idling in your car,
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we have more legislation passed including the record of harry truman. a listening time ago. we broke that record so we have a lot to thank. >> hard to hear a little bit but it's not true what president said just there. historians, fact checkers rebutting that false claim of president trump. he said it today and made the same claim last week when he signed the tax bill. here is the actual deal, mr. president. a lie is still a lie no matter how many times we tell you and
we'll show you why you should know it's a lie. 94 bills signed since taking office, historic low compared to his 9 press december sos and topping harry rue than record, untrue. take it from the truman library saying we don't have a figure but 240 to 250, according to statutes at large. congress passed 292 bills in the session. you could sub frakt from january to april, a few vetoes and that figure. they're as we say in the weeds. the weeds showing donald trump was not telling the truth. what about his other achievement as the most unpopular president in the history of national polling? well, according to a new gallup poll, there's insult on top of injury because americans in a separate question apart from approval separately named president barack obama today as the most admired man. this is the tenth time of that honor and obama won all eight
years president and 2008 of course coming into the office. this also marks the first time since 2008, ouch, donald trump, a sitting president didn't top the list. and here's another little factoid. americans voted hillary clinton the most admired woman 16th year in a row because maybe people and not the electoral college are involved in this poll. more joy, joy reid working late and back with me, tim o'brien. joy, i want all the feelings, all of your analysis. >> all the feeling. >> of this. >> yes, yes. >> but these polls are funny because as you know they often follow the president. >> yeah. >> billy on the street and puts a mike in people's face on camera and name a person. the president. >> right. >> but that tendency has run into a brick wall for some reason this year. >> it's interesting. no matter which way you look at the poll, as true admiration or
name i.d., it is going to drive donald trump insane either way. tim's a better expert on dromp's psyche and the fact is donald trump is either less popular and loved by -- than barack obama and drives him crazy. negatively obsessed with obama or less well-known than barack obama. >> that also hurts. >> painful. >> on the women, because the kay gallup asked this, most admired man and woman. hillary clinton up there. michelle obama behind her. behind her, oprah winfrey, elizabeth warren and angela merkel. you think about alabama where women and specifically african-american women were so key to changing the state red to blue. what does it say that so many of the women on this list, this question to both of you, seem to be of the left or center left persuasion? >> well, i mean, i think we'll find out what that means when the midterms roll around. you can set your watch right now to how long it takes for donald trump to start tweeting about
this poll. because i agree with joy. i do think it drives him nuts and he is ranked below a woman he -- a woman he defeated in a presidential election. and the president he succeeded. this kind of stuff grates at him. and it's right where he lives. and he'll dismiss the polls as lacking credibility. he tends to cite polls that favor him as being more credible than those that don't but it drives him nuts. >> gal loup is sort gallup is a standard. not lefty public policy poll and going to hurt. i have to acknowledge beyonce bae on the poll. number ten tyked with melania. tied with beyonce. it's significant. the admiration that people have for people like -- more than three. rice and nikki haley.
it does show there's a greater diversity of who people know and care about. >> and admire. >> that's not a good -- not good news for the republican party which is still essentially the party of older white america. >> right. and in terms of the people that they're putting forward. i want to play president obama's interview here, joy. you're big online. you're on tv and online and he did something that he often does. not cater or a bumper sticker. he kind of here at the end of the year. he used this discussion with prince harry and you know and covered and spent time around the obamas and i think thoughtful when he does do an address or a speech or an interview. he clearly wanted to make a point about the polarizing and anti-reality elements of the internet. >> one of the dangers of the internet is that people can have entirely different realities. they can be just cocooned in
information that reinforces their current biases. a good way of fighting against that is making sure that online communities don't just stay online. that they move offline. you find areas of common ground because you see that things aren't as simple as have been portrayed in whatever chat room you've been in. it's also, by the way, harder to be as obnoxious and cruel in person as people can be anonymously on the internet. >> you know, barack obama's a candid individual. both disdainful of what social media and the internet can and ran the most internet and tech savvy campaign we have seen in modern history and top ten tweets of the year because he's savvy about the way he uses social media to bring people together, to put forth this message of belief in the country and institutions and basically opposite way of donald trump and
more successful at twitter and also drives donald trump crazy. >> also, we are reminded yet again that barack obama is rational, classy, sophisticated and well spoken. and it's how we want presidents to be. whether you agree with him politically, ideologically or of the same party, there's a marked difference between the way the ex-president rolls and the way the current one rolls both online and offline. >> you know, there's a way, ari, in which barack obama is in a sense if you think of the presidency as a national avatar, obama is who we hope we are and donald trump is who we fear we are. right? something guttural about trumpism and playing to the base fears of other people, anger, rage, neediness, like core of the need and black hole inside himself is kind of what america fears like the crass part of ourselves is becoming whereas barack obama is the emblem of what presidencies used to be the eisenhower model. model of the presidency as aspirational.
>> above the fray. >> above the fray. >> yeah. you know, barack obama is not a guy when's going to freak out about where he stands in the gallup poll and comfortable in his own skin and very well aware of what his talents are. that's not donald trump. >> joy, you make a deeper point as you so often do that politics is not only about what we want to do with our resources, our country, right? but it's really who we want to be. >> yeah. >> and there is -- there is a superficial appeal to trumpism because it reminds me of the joker in "battman" saying you'r only allowed as good as you're allowed to be and maybe we should all be worse. that's appealing far moment until you say does everyone want to live in that environment? what some call lowest common denominator? >> trump is like the president he most admires, andrew jackson.
you know, andrew jackson was a horrible figure, venal quasi pollulist and indulged for violence and then teddy roosevelt busting up the trust and i think about eisenhower, fdr, the national dad to bring us back from the depths of the depression. donald trump doesn't want to be the models but andrew jackson and indulge the sense of violence and that's not healthy in a presidency. >> why you put it thinking about 2017, reflect on the year, so much menacing language, so much aggressive language. picking fights with individuals that before this presidency were considered off limits for good reason. gold star families and say at the end of the year think who we want to be off limits and not be normalized. joy reid, i'm going to say it again. it's what we do on tv, tim.
drive things into the ground. >> yes. >> joy just said, so everyone heard, yes, you do, ari. more life, more joy. joy, tim, thank you very much. >> thank you, friend. coming up, even trump supporters experiencing something that's called trump exhaustion. democrats think it could help next year. get awesomely fast wifi
that gives you coverage here, here and here. and it even let's you take a timeout. nooooooo! yes! amazing speed, coverage and control. all with an xfi gateway. where i could stand in the middle of 5th avenue and shoot somebody and i wouldn't lose any voters. okay? it's like incredible. >> who can forget that bizarre claim from donald trump about his popularity in 2016? recent elections in virginia and alabama suggest some of even his
voters in red america have had enough. in a new interview, joe trippy to lead doug jones to the improbable victory in alabama this month talks about what voters including republicans were saying about trump exhaustion. >> i think what's going on is trump, even with his own supporters who like him, he's created enough hostility and chaos that they don't want more of it. they can tolerate it with him but they don't want more. they really want people to work together. >> and that feeling of potential exhaustion or fed up with the chaos also evident not just in joe trippi's theory but trump voter who is spoke to emery university researchers in august. take a listen. remember. everything you're hearing from people who voted for trump. >> he has got to be his own worst enemy. he -- he -- he couldn't be any
worse at achieving goals in politics. >> everything he does is outrageous. he just doesn't have that soft touch. >> okay. >> to sell you on what he wants to accomplish. >> he's just -- he's let me down. >> he's such a flawed individual. he makes a travesty of the office. he's incredibly obtuse. >> that's a great word. >> an i voted for him. >> now back to democratic strategist joe trippi saying the energy could backfire. >> republican women started to move to us, younger republicans started to move to us, and the intensity among democrats didn't diminish. in fact, over time, kept building and building. trump's creating all of it. right? he's creating that energy among the base. at the same time, he's creating enough chaos and divisiveness
that republicans who would never ordinarily vote for a democrat, i'll vote for somebody who wants to try to find common ground and get things done for me even if they're a democrat. and trust me. a lot of people in alabama had to do that. right? that's, i think, a winning message in a lot of these swing districts. there aren't that many swing districts that are plus 28 trump out there. >> i'm joined by larry sabato of university of virginia center for politics and james peterson at lehigh university and host of the podcast the remix and a msnbc contributor. james peterson, remix the facts for us. do you think this trump exhaustion actually can win people over? >> i mean, it's clearly that's part of what took place in alabama, ari, that, you know, folks are exhausted with the
chaotic sort of coverage of the trump presidency. but also, the chaotic actions of this administration. that's everything from the russia investigation to the ways in which he interacts with the media, to the ways in which he tries to generate and or create policy. we have to remember that part of the big story in alabama is african-americans coming out to vote. so it's actually both of those things that i think are really, really important for 2018 midterm election that is there's a base and men and women, a combination of that paired with trying to appeal to folk who is are absolutely exhausted. w the trump administration at this time. >> larry? >> look. alabama was an extreme case because of an extreme candidate. i don't think how much of what we learned in alabama will really apply to other races in 2018. but, ari, one thing -- >> let me -- let me give you one and then go back to you. one of the most interesting
things for alabama as you know is the numbers guy was that to james' point american african turnout was higher than in an obama presidential year. is that something that democrats can mobilize? >> i think they can. whether they will depends on the candidates and how good the campaign is and every one will be different. what i was starting to say while alabama's an extreme case, virginia was not extreme in any way. contrary to roy moore and in contrast to roy moore, you had a mainstream republican candidate who at one time had been a bush moderate more or less, ed gillespie. he tried to run at least to some degree as the person he once was. he kept trump away. it was pretty obvious he didn't want to connect to trump and what happened? he lost in a near landslide. it was supposed to be a close race. what i think is more likely to
happen in 2018 is not what my friend joe trippi said. joe was describing alabama. it isn't that you will have a lot of republicans, ari, who will end up voting democratic. what you will have is a fair number of republican who is are fed up, who are turned off, who have had enough and they will not vote. >> right. >> that's where they're going to be. >> yeah. i mean, james, we talk so much about turnout because turnout wins elections just like defense wins championships. ask your dad. that's what dads always say. when you look at what larry is saying, disaffected republicans who may not love the democratic option but after two years of trump chaos, they are just not in the mood. >> yeah. we should distinguish of swing districts versus heavily republicans versus heavily democratic. alabama is not a swing state.
trump won alabama by 28 points? but if you -- so virginia is very, very different. the reality is that the democrats have an opportunity to galvanize a base that's interested in making change politically and changing seats in the house and changing senatorial positions and if you can harness that, i think the way you harness that through black women and people of color, attaching it to the issues intersectional with the folks that vote most strongly democratic most regularly. when you combine that with the co-panelist talking about with disaffected with the trump administration that really in many ways is destroyed the gop brand. i think if you talk to republican insiders, none of them are happy with the ways in which trump represented the gop brand from the presidential office and so i think the combination of those ings where the democrats have an opportunity to make up some seats in the house and in the congress in the midterms. >> james, i think you make an
apt point, particularly about what unites people and intersectional. in alabama, jones ran a lot on c.h.i.p. health care for kids. this affects poor kids. >> that's a winner, ari. that's a winner. >> regardless of race. although there's overlap there. larry, let me read to you something from the ap. i don't know if you have friends oik loo blaming everyone else. >> i'm on a faculty, ari. i'm on a faculty. >> i thought this was a telling -- small detail and telling from the ap that might be bad news from trump. recently trump bemoaning the republicans' loss in alabama blaming jeff sessions whose departure of the senate to head doj necessitated the election. whether one likes or dislikes jeff sessions i could tell you he had zero role in that race. attorneys general keep a wide
berth from elections. but donald trump seems to think that the fact that jeff sessions went to doj created this issue and then i would point to -- i'm not telling you anything you don't know, larry. the reason jeff sessions went to doj is donald trump offered him the job. >> ari, we know one thing about donald trump. he always starts with the premise that nothing is his fault. then whose fault is it? he's pretty catholic, small "c" catholic about that. he'll attack almost anyone in or out of his party. that's utterly absurd. that kind of attitude is what turns off, again, moderate republicans, but it really energizes democrats and the one group we haven't mentioned, millennials. yes, they have a lower turnout generally than other age groups but that's been changing. trump is energizing them to vote. >> younger people. >> they're as anti-trump as any
other age group, any other age cohort that we have. >> they're always on the phones. >> well, that's how they communicate. >> why they see what's going on. >> they need to go to the polls. >> hard to get their attention. you know? it's a side point. >> tell me about it. >> larry, james, thank you for your insights tonight. there's a world leader that donald trump refuses to criticize and it looks like he's strong-arming his way to another term in charge of russia. what donald trump could be learning from vladimir putin's domestic politics. i just finish.
vladimir putin officially running for a fourth term at russia's president. today he submitted paper work in moscow to declare the candidacy. the victory a foregone conclusion banning all serious opposition. putin's russia is not anything approaching a democracy. but if putin needs someone to defend the leadership, here's someone who's been willing to do it before. >> putin likes trump. and he said nice things about me. he called may genius. >> if he says great things about me, i'll say great things about him. >> do you respect put snn. >> i do respect him. >> putin's a killer? >> a lot of killers, got a lot of killers. you think our country is so fairness? >> in all defense to putin, saying he's killed people. i don't know that he has. have you been able to prove that? >> put season a nicer person
than i am. >> this week the person, vladimir putin, took extraordinary steps to bar his only really truly well-known and serious opposition challenge exalexei navalni. you've probably heard of the opposition and the consequences facing. here is rachel maddow on this in february. >> he's a smart, charismatic opposition leader. funny and uncompromising in the way he stands up against putin and did well running for mayor of moscow recently and declared the intention to run for president next year against vladimir putin. obviously, that can't stand. two weeks ago a court in russia convicted him on random charges involving timber futures. when that hammer fell on him, one of our smartest russia
watchers said the trump administration notably said nothing. >> rachel was on that as soon as it happened so we're russia watchers who understood what the implication was. tonight, i can report that russia central election commission is now using that saying he cannot run against putin under the rules because of that conviction rachel was reporting on. to be clear, human rights experts and watchers of the region say this is clearly a plilt cli vote mated move to block the candidacy, not an actual real legal situation. i can show you, as well, this new video today and calling putin horribly afraid and calls for protests across russia on january 28th as well as a boycott of what is now a very one sided presidential election. what does all this mean for donald trump's strongman, the man he said the nice things about? we'll go next to someone on the
by evelyn farkas, former deputy assistant defense and a msnbc analysis. david, we go to you first because you are there in the action. how expected was this? you firs because you are there in the action. how unexpected is this? what are you hearing? what comes next? >> okay, well so remember that putin is saying it's a fair election. everyone who wants to can run as long as they don't have a criminal conviction, which he says is politically motivated and the european code of rights says it was politically motivated. but that notwithstanding the kremlin is saying this is a free and fair election. anyone who wants to that gets the petitions can do it. the fact is the kremlin doesn't want him to run because he's the one person call frg a lot of change. he's not the most popular guy
here, but he's got a lot of name recognition. the russians are already saying we're meddling in their elections just by commenting on how they're letting people run them. >> they can say what they want. we're reporting on it, not interceding, obviously. but it goes to the larger way vladimir putin does something that is also reminiscent of what donald trump does. walk us through what we're witnessing because putin obviously has to balance what we might call the appearance of impropriety with stopping someone early who he clearly sees as some kind of threat. >> right. there are these charges which as david said are considered trumped up charges against novalni. his crusade against the kremlin has actually hinged upon fighting corruption, and it's resonated. and not only that it's sort of
link said to youth in russia, the people who have grown up under putin. so 18-year-olds and around that age group who know-nothing more than their lifestyle increasing until recently. so those two things together have made novalni pretty effective. so the demonstrations he called for earlier this year, people came out in about 180 localities, i believe. he's not as interested in courting just the elites. he's trying to get more regular people out there. so putin won't even call him by name, and he says he's guilty of these fraud charges. he's allowed the daughter of the former mayor of st. petersburg of moskow, rather, his former colleague to run. she is probably -- there's a question about whether she's
really in an adversarial relationship with him, but she certainly knows she's not strong enough to beat him. >> so david, why is it important to putin to try to engineer the appearance of a fair election, and how do folks in russia view the putin-trump relationship now? >> well, exactly. the appearance of democracy is very important to putin. he thinks he's going to lead the legacy as the man who brought russia, you know, into the stable modern democratic world. now, when you ask people in the country do you believe that, they kind of shake their heads and roll their eyes but they say, you know, he's the only person now ready to govern russia. when you ask people in the kremlin why do you let him run, they say he's got no experience running, all he does is criticize people in power. i'm like oh, yeah no one like that ever wins a democratic
election in a country, right? it's very important for putin to give the appearance this is stable election, a stable country. we actually have the real thing, everybody. do it like we're doing it, and russians buy into the idea stability. >> this of course brings us to the island banomo. >> the fake island. >> it does not exist. but there were ones who tricked nikki haley into this phone call. >> one more matter is island binomo, it's not far from vietnam in the south china sea, you know. >> you know binomo? >> yes. >> and now this land makes the
situation in the south china sea even more intense. >> and we're aware of that and we've been watching that very closely, and i think we'll continue to watch that. >> yeah, so first of all lesson number one, if you don't know about something, just say you don't know about it and you'll like into it. she she'll handled herself well during most of the call. just to back up a little bit, the call was conducted by these two russian guys. for years they've bip doing these prank calls. it's sort of like howard stern except not as dirty and there's a political angle to it. because what they do is ask questions and they either want the person on the other end to embarrass themselves and embarrass their country. so a lot of people they've called are actually ukrainians or they've called to try to embarrass ukraine or their country. >> what is the core purpose of their satire. >> and they also illicit
information. >> what are they getting at? >> they're showing americans are ignorant, and we have a stereotype of russia, that we're always blaming russia for everything. they're showing we in fact are pulling strings with making our partner countries do things at our bidding. so they were pretending in that call to be the prime minister of poland. >> well, we're out of time but i feel we gave binomo enough time. i want to thank david filipov and evelyn, thank you. up next tonight "last word." to get our best offer of the year: zero percent financing for seventy-two months, plus an extra one-thousand cash back across a full lineup of ford cars, trucks and suvs. so hurry and save big on america's best-selling brand. it's the final days of the ford year end sales event with zero percent financing for seventy-two months plus an extra one-thousand cash back! see your ford dealer before jan 2nd and save.
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this one i have to defer on. >> harry or william? >> william right now. >> barack obama just not answering your questions when he chooses appropriately. tomorrow i want to tell you about one special thing i'm doing. i have a closing comment on 2017 and why we need more humphrey bogart. i will explain all if you tune into the beat tomorrow. and you can always e-mail me. that's our show. "the 11th hour" with brian williams starts now. tonight new details on donald trump's legal strategy. "the washington post" reports the president's team is ready to paint mike flynn as a liar. all while trump still isn't ruling out a pardon. plus no end in sight. it seems robert mueller's team is bringing in new witnesses. we'll reveal who's reportedly been questioned.