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tv   MSNBC Live With Hallie Jackson  MSNBC  January 18, 2018 7:00am-8:00am PST

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the clock. congress set to vote on another short-term spending bill. lawmakers now have less than 38 hours to avoid a shutdown. as of right now it's not clear they have enough votes. conservatives want more money for the military. democrats demanding action on d.r.e.a.m.ers. complicating all of it, president trump, leader mitch mcconnell saying he has no idea what the president wants in an immigration deal. already this morning, a confusing tweet from the president about the infamous border wall. also on the hill. facebook fighting back. lawmakers furious about how the social network acted on threats posed by foreign governments. this morning facebook's head of global policy speaking only to nbc news. we're outside the beltway talking to voters today. you don't evangelicals feel after a year of the trump presidency. 81% of born again christians voted for the president. you'll hear what they're saying now but we do want to begin with that drama on capitol hill and
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nbc's casey hunt has been tracking all of it. so let's start with what we can expect. we anticipate we're going to see a vote later on today maybe this evening in the house. is it going to pass and where does it go from there? >> reporter: that's right. we are anticipating the house is going to vote. they'll walk off the vote of the house around 8:00 tonight we think. leadership has been projecting confidence about this vote and we don't see that in every situation. there has been some concern about what the freedom caucus house conservatives are going to do and mark meadows was on "morning joe" this morning saying, leadership doesn't have the votes for this but the reality is rarely does leadership telegraph when they think that things are going to be okay. we're not necessarily anticipating major drama tonight in the house, although we want to make sure you never want to completely count out the drama that could happen there. house conservatives again want more military funding. democrats, however, worried about inclusion for daca recipients. this of course has been the
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major drama playing out in washington for the last week and that's where our major questions are because as soon as assuming this does pass the house tonight, it's going to head over to the senate side of the capital and that's where things could get really dicey. mitch mcconnell, sent that message to president trump yesterday saying, look, we need to know what the president is going to sign here so we expect that conservative democrats, like joe mansion who you see there on your screen could potentially be democratic yes votes for this c.r. but we're also hearing that senator lindsey graham and mike rounds, republicans, plan to vote no on this because they're concerned about military spending. that means that mitch mcconnell is going to have to come up with 12 current democrats to try and support this and considering that many, especially, the more progressive democrats in the chamber are starting to come out and say, i can't get behind this c.r. because it doesn't include protections for those d.r.e.a.m.ers who have a lot of questions about whether they'll be able to stay here legally starting on march 5th. they're saying no.
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very real possibility right now that the government could shut down on at midnight overnight friday into saturday. >> i want to follow-up with you on that point. i was talking to a white house official yesterday who said he perceives there's a one in four chance the government shuts down. based on your conversation with sources, based on what you just said, is it looking more likely than not that the government could shut down at this hour? >> reporter: i think it's certainly a very real possibility. some democratic offices are doing preparations for a shutdown, messaging how they would start to talk about this and they didn't do that in december. we had a pretty hard deadline then, everybody wanted to go home for christmas. you don't have that motivating factor here. the conversation about that obsensety and the racist language that the president used in the meeting last week has empowered democrats and also put a lot more pressure on them from their base who really doesn't want to see them working with this president and doesn't understand why they wouldn't be willing to draw a line in the sand even if potentially means a
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shutdown. that blame game you can already hearing it start to play out. that something's that signals there could be a shutdown. one thing i haven't mentioned chip, a six year extension for the children's health insurance program including in the c.r. skpengted to hear republicans talk a lot about that. if, in fact, democrats do vote against this c.r. and the government shuts down. >> great reporting. no doubt they are using chip to try to turn up the heat on democrats to get behind this legislation and keep the government open. thank you for all of your great reporting. i want to head now to the white house and peter alexander. the president's heading to the pentagon today and then to pittsburgh but right now no planned visits to capitol hill and the potential government shutdowns at stake. what do we expect him to do here? >> reporter: the president has been m.i.a. on this effort to avoid a government shutdown. the white house has said
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publicly that it supports the c.r. but notably today the tweet you just put on have a difference of opinion with house republicans on that children's program. it should be part of a long-term solution not a 30 day or short-term extension. high ranking republican aid telling us within the last hour or so it's not clear the president entirely understand how this works. the chip program is a six year reauthorization as presented by the house bill right now. that's only complicating things. the house rules committee bars any amendments being made to this c.r. being put forward by the house right now to be voted on tonight. one of the challenges facing this white house right now, it's the communications challenge. the chief-of-staff and the president appearing to undercut president trump over the course of the last 12 to 24 hours with some of his comments noting the president has evolved on the issue of immigration. here's part of what john kelly said on that topic last night. take a listen.
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>> there are places where a wall would not be realistic. there's other places we think about 800 miles additional wall to include the 600 that are already in place, the fencing would suffice. >> and mexico's not going to pay? >> we have some ideas on how things like visa fees, renegotiating of nafta and what that would mean to our economy, so in one way or another it's possible that we could get the revenue from mexico but not directly from their government. >> reporter: clearly, unsatisfied, unimpressed by those comments by his chief-of-staff he tweeted on several occasions this morning early in the morning about the topics that the wall is the wall. it's never changed or evolved. we need the wall for the safety and security of our country. we will need the wall to help stop the massive inflow of drugs from mexico now rated the number one most dangerous country in
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the world. if there is no wall, there is no deal. a lot of people may be saying, wait for a moment. mexico is the number one most dangerous country in the world. the state department did note that mexico, at least five states within mexico states that aren't close to mexico city or cancun where american travelers go is as dangerous as yemen, syria and afghanistan but that did turn the heads on the president's tweet. >> important fact check, peter as you continue to track all of the very dramatic developments at the white house. appreciate that and we'll break it all down now. michael steele former spokesman as well as senior adviser to the jeb bush 2016 presidential campaign, also here is our panel for the hour, aalexandria medical cannon as well as zeke miller. thanks to all of you for being here. michael, i have to start with you because you're no stranger to budget battles.
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>> lived through a few of these, yes. >> read the tea leaves for us. where is this headed? is there still time avert a shutdown given they still need 12 democrats. >> there is time. if there's a shutdown and it will be a choice on the part of chuck schumer. the bill will pass the house. there's nothing that anyone objects to that's actually in the legislation. no one objects to funding our troops or keeping the government open no one objects to expanded funding for the opioid crisis or the chip program. what we're talking about here is holding all of those things hostage on an unrelated issue on immigration and i don't think, i don't think, senator schumer is going to be willing to do that this time. >> obviously republicans pointing the finger at democrats. you're saying they're holding this hostage over immigration and republicans control the house and senate. obviously the white house as well and we're approaching that one year anniversary of the president's inauguration. are you concerned and is there real concern within the
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republican party that republicans will bear the burden for this? >> yeah. i think there's a certain element of the base of the republican party who believe that democrats shutting down the government to protect illegal immigrants would be a political mistake for them. i don't tend to agree with that view. i think it would be chaotic and a mistake. at the same time, we have majorities in the house and senate to pass this bill. i'm fairly confident of that. the question is whether you're going to be able to clear that 60 vote threshold in the senate and that's up to senator schumer and washington democrats. >> and things always get a lot tougher in the senate. >> always. >> let's take a listen to what mitch mcconnell had to say about where things stand right now. >> i'm looking for something that president trump supports and he's not yet indicated what measure he's willing to sign. as soon as we figure out what he is for, then i would be convinced that we are not just spinning our wheels going to the issue on the floor. >> alexi, he's talking about the
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immigration portion of this fight which is not included in the short-term spending bill. but it does underscore a potential divide and miscommunication between the white house and leaders on capitol hill so how much does that complicate efforts to keep the government open? >> the communication is always a problem as we've seen with this administration and even in congress, right? republicans and democrats tried to work together on a daca deal. they agreed among six bipartisan senators. trump and the white house effectively shut it down after they decided it wasn't good enough. that will certainly be an issue. i'm hearing from various democratic aids on the hill who work with senate leadership and other senators that they don't, frankly, see this getting to 60 votes. they're holding strong in their opposition to this. i think because of the daca thing to start with. >> and zeke, i was talking about peter alexander the fact that the president's going to the pentagon today, then he goes to pittsburgh. we haven't really seen him dig deep in terms of going to capitol hill, having -- he did have lawmakers but the talks fell apart.
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what are you anticipating from this president over the next 36 hours? >> we certainly seen it on twitter so far a little taste of that and it hasn't been the most effective messenger. that tweet was not entirely aware of what was in this package that's being formulated. and it's a problem for john kelly who made a big show last night about how his job is to make sure that the president is informed and updated on policy. the president's largely delegated this process. the tax bill, left that to paul ryan and others to get it across the finish line. he's doing that here on the c.r. the question is can his aids contain him and keep him informed enough. >> that's a great point. michael, let me just turn back to you. obviously this immigration battle isn't going anywhere. >> definitely not. >> and you have democrats saying, we want to get this done now.
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if it doesn't get done now, why will it get down in four weeks? the ultimate deadline is in march, in early march. that's when daca expires. >> let's be honest. i want to see some sort of agreement to get this issue addressed. i think most republicans and virtually all democrats -- >> majority of americans want to see that. >> i think the president dealt a huge setback to those efforts last week with his comments in that meeting blowing up the bipartisan agreement. so i think in some ways we need this 28 day extension for cooler heads to prevail, people to get back to the negotiating table and actually come to an agreement that works and protects these folks. >> all right. thank you so much for a great conversation. you guys stick around. facebook leaders speaking out about accusations they haven't done enough to combat this spread of false information on the site. the changes one top official says the company is making to keep your facebook feed more secure as we head into another election season. we'll be right back. mom,
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today a top facebook official is speaking out defending the social media platform in an exclusive interview with nbc news against claims made by three silicon valley insiders who say facebook is damaging american democracy. they claim the company isn't doing enough to explain what happened on the platform during the 2016 election but today that top facebook official says they've made significant changes to defend against
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misinformation. jolene kent joins us with more of that exclusive interview. so what is facebook saying? >> thank you so much. as you know these top tech titans have been testifying on the capitol hill. we got an exclusive interview that was response to our reporting allegations that facebook did not do enough to protect its users in the lead-up to the 2016 election when there was allegations of russian meddling and this is what the facebook executive had to say. >> reporter: on capitol hill, tech giants facing tough new questions. exclusives from facebook, youtube and twitter grilled will by lawmakers about the threats posed by foreign governments, extremist groups and false information. >> our democracy is at risk here. we've got to figure out how to get this done and get it done right and quickly or we may not have a democracy up to hear you out. >> reporter: social media now a battleground used by terror groups and governments like russia to pedal propaganda.
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the company's say they're using new techniques to fight questionable contact. >> we work an a daily basis with law enforcement particularly the fbi and respond to any requests they have. >> reporter: for some it's russia's use of social media meddling that's the greatest threat. >> how can we know that you're going to get this right and before the midterms? >> reporter: facebook's head monica bicker sat down with nbc news exclusively. >> we have seen conduct that should not have been on our platform, things we could've caught earlier and we're sorry that happened. >> reporter: that apology following our interview with three silicon valley insiders who blasted the social network for not taking enough action. >> it's a living, breathing crime scene of what happened. >> reporter: what's your response to that? >> whatever people saw during the 2016 election that was from these russian accounts that we've now removed, it was unacceptable. >> reporter: facebook has now hired 7,500 people to investigate suspicious content but how facebook monitors posts on a platform filled with 2
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billion users is also being questioned. former facebook contractor sarah cats was part of a team that examined posts flagged by users in 2016. she reviewed more than 8,000 a day spending less than ten seconds per post. >> that's just too much content to keep track of so the more considered benign contact such as news stories are definitely not analyzed perhaps as closely they need to be. >> reporter: how easy was it for questionable stuff to slip through the cracks. >> incredibly easy. >> reporter: facebook is also telling us that they have hired 10,000 people, 10,000, to work on security measures inside the company as it relates to your news feed and that number is going to jump to 20,000 by the end of this year. >> incredible. it's a lot of people to have eyes on this and to be working on this problem. you've been tracking really every inch of this discussion and this debate, so what are you watching for next? where does this go from here? >> there has been a public
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interest in hearing from the ceos of these social media companies in particular facebook founder and ceo mark zuckerberg. i have heard from a source that he is willing to cooperate in the future but we are waiting to see if perhaps the next big step is mark zucker berg hitting the hill. we do not have that confirmed but that's something 2018 could bring. >> we will be watching for that fantastic interview. thank you for that. lexi and zeke are back with me to break this all down. just your general reaction to what you just heard and that point that jolene makes that mark zuckerberg might be called to testify about? >> i think we can certainly continue to see them testifying on the hill and she mentioned that they're hiring 20,000 humans by the end of 2018. that's a big jump. i think they're starting to see that we didn't figure it out in the moment and it's unprecedented, so how could they have gotten it right the first time. saying sorry is maybe not enough and that's why we'll continue to
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see them testifying. they're going to have to come up with answers and transparency especially as we approach the elections this year. >> absolutely. zeke, set the stakes here. do you anticipate there's going to be more congressional oversight over all of this. facebook saying, we've made some significant changes but the stakes couldn't be higher? >> it's hard to look back. they were getting away with just about anything they wanted to. the reason why there are no disclaimers on digital ads the way they're on television ads is because the tech firms have lobbied aggravating to congress against it. we'll see where those lobby dollars are. they're flushed with cash. are they able to withstand the push from lawmakers or will they push this half measures of regulation? what are they radiolowilling to and not willing to accept? lawmakers seemed to be inching
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out for something more and substantial. >> i suspect it's a pretty big debate. let me play one more sound byte from monica bicker who is the facebook executive. >> we're certainly cooperating with the ongoing investigations but i will say we know that a lot of false news and a lot of what we saw around the 2016 election came from fake accounts and these are the sorts of accounts that we are investing in technology to get better at detecting. this speaks to your point which is to some extent we're in unchartered territory because we've never seen this type of infiltration and because facebook is still in the scope of things relatively new particularly when it comes to this type of election meddling. >> i think one really telling thing is zuckerberg's new year's resolution. i'm going to learn man da rein. this year, interestingly it was basically a resolution to do his job, to address all of these issues.
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>> great point. >> the way that facebook has been less than a positive experience. it was ambiguous. it's no surprise that he was almost getting ahead of this and saying i'm going to do my job this year and focus on making sure this doesn't happen again. >> zeke, there's been so much talk about mark zuckerberg, will he run for president maybe. alexi brings up the critical point that he's very devoted to or dedicated to actually fixing this problem. how visible to you expect him to be as we get closer to the 2018 midterms. >> we saw this from all the techies last year. as it was mentioned earlier, these ceos were these titans of these new emerging industry, on the cover of magazines, glossy treatment by the media, now they're being forced to account for the election meddling, the disruption that they're platforms are causing whether it be labor markets global economics, things like that.
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they were moving fast and breaking things. they're maybe to having account for what that is. mark zuckerberg might be called in front of congress but that's not the role he's used to and it requires a change from him. >> this is an individual responsibility to be cautious about what you're clicking on to know a little bit more before you click and send and share. stick around. we have a lot more to discuss. new developments in the russia investigation amid reports that steve bannon could be back on the hill as soon as this afternoon. what the white house is saying about his testimony? and also, how soon robert mueller's investigation could wrap up. we'll discuss that after a quick break.
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xeljanz back now with a look at this morning's headlines. the trump administration is moving to block people from haiti for applying for temporary visas. it applies to seasonal and farm workers. the department of homeland securities, haitians have demonstrated high level of fraud and dispute with these visas. this comes just days after that immigration meeting in the white house when the president reportedly asked why do we need more haitians. take them out. in california the parents arrested for torturing their 13 children will be appearing in
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court today as new details come out about their living tips with the situation. they were fed apparently just one meal a day and allowed two showers a year. according to a law enforcement official with knowledge of the investigation. bail for david and louise turpin was set at $9 million each. just this morning. amazon announcing 20 locations as finalists for its second headquarters. cities making the cut including major hubs like washington, d.c. right here, new york, los angeles and miami and a few surprises such as ohio and indianapolis. amazon chose the 20 locations from a pool of 238 applications across the u.s., mexico and canada. back here in washington, we are following several new developments in the russia investigation which is seen a flurry of activity in recent days. another trump insiders, hope hicks is expected to testify before the house intelligence committee as early as tomorrow. congressional sources say former white house chief strategist
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steve bannon could return to the house intelligence committee this afternoon after a marathon session on tuesday in which he refused to answer certain questions about his time during the white house and transition. bannon says he was under instruction from the white house to remain silent by white house chief-of-staff john kelly seemed to be disputing that in an interview overnight. >> did the white house tell him to invoke executive privilege? >> no. >> no? >> no. steve has had very, very little contact with the white house since he left. i know steve a little bit, not very well, he was -- he left the white house in his head. he's certainly never returned to the white house and with the exception of a few phone calls here and there, very, very little contact with the white house. >> but a source close to bannon says he is willing to answer any questions special counsel robert mueller has when they meet face-to-face and we're hearing something similar from president trump's lead lawyer about a
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potential interview with the special counsel take a listen. >> the president's very eager to sit down and explain whatever is responsive to the questions -- >> do you have any fear of a perjury? >> no, i think it would be foolish to not proceed without considering that possibility. >> that, of course, ty cobb. i'm joined now by nick ackerman, partner at dorsey and whitney. and back with me alexi and zeke. i want to get your reaction from what you heard from ty cobb. i thought it was significant. the president's eager to speak with special counsel robert mueller. that runs very counter to what we heard from the president a week ago when he said he doesn't see any need for an interview because there was no collusion. what did you make of it? >> i think at some point they'll have no choice because if the
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president doesn't agree to submit to a interview under oath with a transcript being taken, the special counsel's office will simply provide him with a subpoena and i think it's pretty clear from u.s. v. nixon where this whole issue of executive privilege and the president's role with respect to a criminal investigation is that the court's will enforce that subpoena. so i don't think the president has any choice here. ultimately he's going to have to testify and answer questions relating to mueller's investigation. >> and just to put a fine point on this, we know that the president's legal team is also floating a number of compromises like the president submitting some written answers to questions. do you think that esat all a possibility? >> not even close. i don't think that the especially counsel is going to want anything but unvarnished testimony, under oath on a record.
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otherwise the evidence is not as strong, doesn't carry the same weight and it won't be as admissible as it would if the president actually testified under oath as he promised to do after the comey testimony. >> nick, i want to get you to respond what we heard from the chief-of-staff john kelly who said the white house never asked steve bannon to invoke executive privilege. he may have been using semantics there. that was never reported. what was reported is that the white house sort of said that was a possibility, but i know based on my conversations with white house officials, they did set certain parameters and wanted there to be certain parameters around what could be discussed between the house intelligence committee and steve bannon. so what's really going on here and if, in fact, bannon returns to capitol hill today, do you expect he'll answer questions. >> you're right. this is all semantics. what he didn't say is did the
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lawyers in the white house ask pannon, bannon's lawyer not to discuss certain areas. that's the big question. bannon wouldn't be calling up himself. the white house wouldn't be calling up bannon. it would all be done between and among lawyers. secondly, the area that he was asked not to testify to related to the transition period where there is no executive privilege, but that was the time period when mike flynn lied to the fbi. >> yeah. >> so bannon was involved with the president, he was involved with flynn at that time and i think what the white house is trying to do is to cover up whatever it is that they know bannon can testify to. >> and very quickly before i turn to my panel, corey lewandowski didn't answer a whole host of questions either. he wasn't subpoena by the house intelligence committee whereas bannon was. why wasn't he and can the committee compel him to talk?
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>> they can compel him to talk but the problem is you find with this republican controlled committee they're the ones that issued the subpoenas. they decide who's going to be interviewed and under what conditions and for whatever reason they just do not -- they just haven't issued subpoenas to everybody that they should be issuing subpoenas to among them would be corey lewandowski. >> thank you for that. i want to get quick reaction from my panel. alexi, if steve bannon heads back to capitol hill today if and when he sits down and talks to robert mueller's team as nick ackerman was just saying, he knows a lot specifically about one of the key issues which is the firing of michael flynn. how concerned is the white house right now? >> i think they're concerned because they know that bannon doesn't have a lot to lose. he's burned every bridge he has. trump has come out and denounced him unlike hope hicks who will be very loyal to the president.
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she th they should be worried. i really wish i could answer that or i wish i could give you the answer to that but i can't. we could expect him to do some of the same. he has nothing to lose. >> zeke, how dangerous is steve bannon right now for the white house? >> absolutely dangerous. maybe not on capitol hill but when he talks to mueller. >> thanks. this weekend marks one year since president trump officially took over the white house on the anniversary of his inauguration, we'll talk to some of the voters who put him in the oval office and hear what they think of his progress after one year. [ click, keyboard clacking ] [ keyboard clacking ] [ click, keyboard clacking ] ♪ good questions lead to good answers. our advisors can help you find both. talk to one today and see why we're bullish on the future.
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president trump was elected with majority support from the evangelical christian community. now, one year after trump took office, raheema ellis went to iowa to see if the president fulfilled his campaign promises. and we are having some audio issues, we apologize for that. let's talk about the crux of what this package is going to say which is largely their feeling pretty good about where things stand right now. a lot of people elected president trump because they thought he was going to get things done. let me read you something.
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this was a compilation of the editorials that the "the new york times" pulled together. president trump has exceeded my wildest expectations. yes, he is embarrassing, yes, he picks unnecessary fights. i loved george w. bush but he failed on policy over and over again. if it takes putting up with mr. trump's brash ways to see things get done that is a deal i'm willing to accept. is that your sense that trump voters whether they were republicans, democrats or independents are looking at this first year and saying, you know what? there are some wins on the board. >> something i loved doing is talking to democratic senators talking to red states. they say this exact same thing. steel workers, coal miners, we're going to get our jobs back. he's going to bring back coal mining jobs because he says he will and does what he says. they still think he's embarrassing but that's not changing their vote. they do believe what he says.
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he just harps on these points over and over again and they're like, well, he's going to do what he says. he's a businessman. >> zeke, alexi points to such an interesting point which is that the president will tweet, we spend a lot of time talking about it and yet the reality is for the people who support him and maybe some of the people who didn't, they're not necessarily focused on that. they want to see action in washington. >> yeah. if you look at what the president was able to accomplish last year. a lot of this happened between the tax legislation, repealing the individual mandate, the broader deregulatory agenda at every level and then the changing in tone from the white house and the president. that has had an impact and had an impact. we all find ourselves sometimes chasing the shiny topic of the day. sometimes the president -- may be more people would be talking about it than some of the recent polls show.
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people view the economy doing much better than it was a year ago. but they're not saying the same thing about their country more broadly because the president can't get out of his own way when it's apple jobs, things like that. >> the frustration, though, is real when there's a potential government shutdown. we did get that piece cued up so let's roll it now. >> reporter: has the president lived up to your expectation? >> broken into character, character and policy. i think he's doing well in policy but the character is an issue at times. >> reporter: what has he done in character that's disappointed you? >> for instance, what was said supposedly in the oval office last week about other nations. that is contrary to what christ would stand for in the bible and what christians would be about. >> there's a lot of frustration both with him and with the press. a lot of sense of people are at the point where they just are beginning to not care. >> relationship matters and if everybody who disagrees with him walks away from him, then we
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just lost our voice too and that's not wise. >> reporter: let's talk specifically about daca and if there are people in your community who have concerns about what the president's position is on daca. >> there is a misnomer that this president is out to go into neighborhoods and tear families apart so in my vocation i have to be able to say, look, we're here to offer hope. i can't break the law. i can't -- i can't use my church as a sanctuary church but then i'm torn because i'm looking at families with the potential of being ripped apart. it's a real difficult place to be. i think we need more conversation around it. >> reporter: if you had an opportunity to speak to the president, what would you say to the president? >> i would appeal to his vanity. i would tell him you're not serving your ego well. go outside the beltway. do morallies. connect more with actual, everybody day people, the people that put you in the white house.
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what is it you want them to pressure weak republican leadership in congress to do this year? >> what do you believe the faith community would like to see from the president going forward? >> i think what would like to see religious liberty with teeth to it. >> reporter: what does that mean? >> if i own a venue and i believe marriage is between one man and one woman and a gay couple says i want to get married here my gay wedding at your convenievenue owner says n this venue because we don't celebrate that. >> you know what? we're going to criminalize abortion and stop this murdering of unborn people. >> what would you like the president to do? >> i would like him to follow the word of god. there is an answer in the bible for every issue and if he just follows that we will be blessed and that we can be a blessing to others. >> what a fascinating conversation. alexi, i want to get your broad reaction and one of the panelists says he wants to see
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the president connect with people more in the coming year. i thought that was interesting. >> it is interesting especially when we consider them messaging from the tax plan that this was a middle class miracle. that was his attempt to speak to these folks that man said elected him to office. it suggests, even though they're still supporting him, they're slowly starting to realize that maybe this guy doesn't represent our best interest and is doing everything in his power and with republican leaders in congress to help make our lives better. >> thanks, guys. stick around. the upcoming winter olympics leading to a historic break-thru between north and south korea as the countries show a plan of unity. it comes as tensions are still rising between the u.s. and the north. we'll have a live report from south korea coming up next.
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curtailing kim jong-un's nuclear ambitions. nbc news chief global correspondent bill neely is in south korea. what's the very latest there? >> reporter: first, the feel good factor. this is a historic sports first. they've marched together, north and south korea, at winter and summer games before, but never before have they had a united team. they'll have a women's ice hockey team. they'll play japan, the old colonial masters here. think how powerful and emotional a moment that game will be for people across both sides of the border. so, you know, we shouldn't underestimate this. policymakers aren't. they think this will make the whole negotiation over the nuclear deal more complicated. it's the nuclear deal that stands at the back of this. look, you know, north korea's nuclear ambitions haven't gone away. as japan said at the sanctions
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summit in vancouver, don't be naive. don't be fooled by this north korean charm offensive. for kim jong-un, this is a pr, a propaganda victory. he gets to show the soft face of north korea. his beautiful skaters. his cheerleaders. his orchestra. at the back of everything, you know, he still wants that nuclear weapon that can reach washington, d.c., and new york and the west coast. so the nuclear issue has not gone away. as rex tillerson, secretary of state, said, we will not accept a nuclear north korea. so, yes, south korea has got kim jong-un's athletes to the slopes and on the ice. the trick is can south korea and the u.s. get kim jong-un to the nuclear negotiating table? i have to say, kristen, really, the signs aren't good. first, the olympics and the feel good. >> the underlying challenges
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remain. bill neely, thank you so much for that great reporting. appreciate it. i want to bring in msnbc foreign policy analyst and the former deputy of defense for eurasia. and the ap's zeke miller. thanks for being here. >> thank you for having me, kristen. >> i think bill hit the nail on the head, which is that you do have the optics of these tensions decreasing, but the reality is, there's still a lot of tensions surrounding north korea's nuclear programs and ambitions. where do things stand? is this a step forward, the fact they're appearing at the olympics together? >> i think it is a step forward, kristen, because they're taking the temperature down. what president moon is doing very cleverly, he said, you know, president trump said that we can talk to the north koreans and we can have diplomacy, so i thank president trump for opening the door. i'm now going -- i talked to the north koreans, my diplomats talked to the north koreans,
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they're coming and we're having the olympics together in south korea. it's taking the temperature down diplomatically. again, as we heard from bill, the underlying dynamic is the same. you know, i was mentioning to you before we came on, we have three types of bombers landing in guam. we have our military deterrence force against north korea doing something reckless, is signaling to north korea we mean business. the sanctions are being tightened. we just had the conference in canada led by our secretary of state, basically telling the international community, we mean business now. now we have the sanctions on the books. let's implement them. i think what president moon of south korea is doing is giving some time now for the sanctions to take effect and lowering the rhetoric. i think what we need is just this less of a sense of urgency. i think that's where we getmiscf north korea or even the u.s. doing something by accident. >> less of the fire and fury
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rhetoric that we heard from the president. >> yeah. >> there is concern when i speak with u.s. officials about the fact that, yes, to your point, this is a lowering of the temperature, but could kim jong-un be undercutting the united states relationship with its key ally, south korea, by going to the olympics? >> i'm sure he's trying. that's why he's doing this. >> that's the goal, right sf. >> and that's what he's doing. there is a history of doing that. we had other south korean presidents who were more about a softer approach, meaning we give them economic incentives and they broke their commitments on the security and nuclear front. we don't want to go down that road, and i'm pretty sure we're communicating that strongly to the south korean president. i would hope this time around, the south koreans also understand the dangers of just, you know, caving to north korea. hopefully, this is part of a concerted effort which, you know, was laid out pretty well now by secretary tillerson in
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canada. >> absolutely. thank you for helping us understand where the stakes are right now. thanks. great conversation all hour long. really appreciate you being here. we will be right back with today's big picture. it's time now for your business of the week. ozobot says kids don't have to be passive consumers of electronic toys. they should be creators. they make programmable robots to get kids to learn to code. the business is taking off. watch "your business" weekend mornings at 7:30 on msnbc. >> sponsored by american express open. helping you get business done. f? purchase. let's do this. got it. book the flights! hai! si! si! ya! ya! ya! what does that mean for us? we can get stuff. what's it mean for shipping? ship the goods. you're a go! you got the green light. that means go! oh, yeah. start saying yes to your company's best ideas.
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for today's big picture, we're going out to california where people are still digging out from those devastating mudslides. these are firefighters taking a look under a bridge in montecito. the bridge is jammed, as you can see, with debris. just this week, crews have
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scooped up 7 million pounds from the wreckage. the photographer here, blake herman from santa barbara county fire. an important reminder, people are still digging out from the devastating mudslides. thanks so much for watching this hour of msnbc live. now, more news with ali velshi and stephanie ruhle. hi, guys. >> have a great day, kristen. >> you, too. >> i'm stephanie ruhle. >> i'm ali velshi. it's thursday, january 18th. let's get started. >> the scramble to avert a government shutdown. the deadline, tomorrow at midnight. >> huge drama on the hill. when we were walking out -- >> these are artificial dramas but yes. >> we still don't have the votes here in the house. i do believe that daca recipients will be protected, provided we have those other three parameters that the president has laid out on border security and chain migration and visa lottery. >> would you vote for the cr that is out there and floating around? >> no. >> i agree with


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