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tv   Dateline  MSNBC  September 15, 2018 2:00am-3:01am PDT

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qualified people than me, bunches of them, thousands. and rand paul replied, was ist das attorney general? i am hans. no opinions. i leak that hans .
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>> they appeal to cooperate and special counsel robert mueller. by doing so. paul manafort agreed to conspire justice. he also avoids a second trial in
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federal court. the deal he signed with prosecutors orders him to and we quote cooperate fully, truthfully and forthrightly with the government in any and all matters as to which the government deems the cooperation relevant. you may recall president trump was sympathetic to manafort during his first trial, praising him for not breaking under pressure from the feds. >> one of the reasons i respect paul manafort so much is he went through that trial -- you know they make up stories. people make up stories, this whole thing about flipping they call it. i know all about flipping for 30, 40 years i have been watching flippers. it almost out to be outlawed. it's not fair. >> tonight they spoke to the president about manafort's plea deal. they report trump denied the manafort case had anything to do with him saying, quote, i got hit with an artificial witch hunt that should never have happened. the plea deal also says manafort must forfeit several properties,
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including homes in [ lynn, manhattan and hamptons in new york and will give up his apartment in trump tower. manafort's attorney offered this explanation for his client's decision. >> it's a tough day for mr. microsoft, he accepted responsibility and he wanted to make sure that his family was able to remain safe and live a good life. he's send responsibility and this is for conduct that dates back many years and everybody should remember that. >> interesting note about manafort's family's safety. we'll get to that later in our discussion. as for reaction from the president's legal team. rudy guiliani appeared on sean hannity's program earlier this evening. >> the plea agreement has and the cooperate agreement has nothing to do with the trump campaign the reality is no evidence of collusion. all you had to do is look at the plea. the plea is to crimes that have to do with manafort's past.
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no involvement with president trump, no involve him with the campaign. no involvement with russia. >> there is also this report in the "new york times" about trump's former lead counsel, quote, john dowd, mr. trump's former lawyer, e-mailed lawyers representing other clients who have been drawn into mr. mueller's inquiry that mr. manafort, quote, has no info on president or campaign. we should be crystal clear here, no one has any idea what john dowd is basing that on. earlier on this new yorker, harvard law professor alan dershowitz, who while not working for trump has been accused of being a cable news water carrier for the president of late says the white house should be alarmed and adds that any possibility of a pardon now seems remote. >> he'd have been much better off pardoning early rather than waiting until these are raised. i don't think we will see any kind of a pardon at this point. >> as as to what manafort can
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offer mueller et al. remember he was at the tower meeting, having done business in that part of the world and worked for a number of powerful russian, himself, he has been if business with roger stone a key figure if all of this who has not been called in yet. tonight, nbc news is reporting manafort has already had initial conversations with the mueller team. it's a lot to talk about the end of a long week. lets bring in our leadoff panel friday fight, mike at schmidt, "new york times," washington correspondent. josh ger stein, barbara pittsburgh quaid a former u.s. attorney for the eastern district of michigan around jeremy bash former chief of staff at cia and pittsburgh former chief counsel for the house intel committee. welcome to you all. josh, you were in court for the entire first manafort trial. you were in the courthouse for what happened today. put this in perspective. how big a development this?
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>> oh, it's a pretty significant development microsoft had put up such a strong fight up to this point i remember at that first trial, he had no fewer than five lawyers present fighting that case for him. so for him to make this abrupt about face with this trial coming down on him, we're giving three weeks of testimony, a lot of it probably having to do with issues of foreign influence to his kyes to you craneian ol g-- oligarchs. it could have been important for the trump campaign, the trump white house, while the plea is definitely bad news for the president, you know a trial would have been pretty bad news for him as well. >> michael, looking back on your interview with donald trump. i think this was in december. the direct quote was i've always found paul manafort to be a very nice man. and i found him to be an
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honorable person. paul only worked for me a few month, he worked for ronald reagan en, his firm worked for john mccain and bob deal and far many republicans. the short period of time the president is fond of using it, will is no one he is willing to zoons himse distance himself from. how critical is this in your view? >> at a very basic level, mueller could not end his investigation without talking to manafort. so even if he does not have the goods on a lot of other people, he was in the trump tower meeting as you pointed out and if you are mueller, you need to talk to enyou can that was there. because you have to turn over every rock to make sure when you close up shop you have looked at all the leads. so whether he has a ton of evidence that leads to other prosecutions or not, this is just an important thing to check off the box.
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he has to talk to them. he was running the campaign at such a critical time when there was contacts with the russians and there are huge issues here about what the president knew about those conversations. paul manafort can answer. >> i know you are not john dowd's spokesperson, he seems to be filling that role himself, what on god's green earth he seems to be talking about mueller has no info on the president or the campaign in. >> i don't know, i am not john dowd. i struggle to understand him sometimes, what i do know about john dowd is he had conversations with manafort's lawyers last year about a pardon. >> that is something mueller himself is looking at the questions of pardons, how they were using them to stop people from doing exactly what manafort has done here, cooperate. now the president as dershowitz points out is in a much more difficult position to pardon manafort. because if manafort is talking as he has been to the government and the president comes in to give him this, that is clearly trying to impede an
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investigation. john dowd would take the argument that because the president's the head of the executive branch because of article 2, he can do whatever he wants. >> barbara mcquaid, put your former fed hat on the you are a member of the mueller team, how significant is today's news? >> well, i think it's incredibly significant. of course, mueller and team notice more about what we do about what has happened already. my guess is there would have been some conversation with manafort already to assess the topics he is able to deliver to cooperation before they secure the deal. you don't give away cooperation light lightly. they've capped his sentence in the district of colombia to ten years. they didn't need to do that. they had a strong case, very strong likelihood of winning at trial. in order to give that up, they fell they were getting something of value. twa usually happens is a lawyer will come in and say here are
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the topics he can talk about. there are reports manafort. had meetings with prosecutors already. they likely know the areas he is able cover. now, it will take many hours over the coming days, weeks, even months to sit down and go over in excruciating detail all of the things he knows. think mueller is in very good shape and knows paul manafort has things of value he wants to know about. >> under the heading of manafort and the russians, our mutual friend and veteran said the following on the air with nicole wallace this afternoon, this certainly got our attention. >> he has the history with russian organized crime, intelligence service. i actually believe there were russian intelligence officers promoted the day manafort told them i got the campaign chairman job. i'm in charge of the campaign. today those same russian intelligence officers if my
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prediction is correct are scurrying for cover. >> sow have paul manafort deep in debt offering to work for donald trump for free, also let's not forget his attorney mentioning the safety of the manafort family. this is like afloat full of red flags, jeremy. >> first, on fights like these, we have to harken back to foreign principles, why do we have a foreign policy that skews to undermine nato the g7, eu andment national institutions russia fears. programs it's because russia's agent of influence, paul manafort, who is doing the kremlin's bidding let's not forget in advancing the agenda of yanukovych and that political pare, paul manafort was in charge for a brief time of the trump campaign. he, of course, not only had a handle in the russian -- the republican national convention, which had a platform that was
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mysteriously changed towards a pro-russian position. he, okay, also was present when the russian delegation showed up at trump tower. i just want to make sure everyone understands, that trump tower meeting, brian, was not random russians coming off the street to your hillary clinton as described, it was a russian government dell gax coming to him saying we have already hack hillary clinton's e-mail and the e-mail of her campaign and the democratic committee. we're going to operationalize it. this meeting is about what we will get if return, sanctions relief. also on the issue of the safety of the family, i think with paul manafort working for the u.s. government, there is concern that the russians might target him and particularly his family. >> barbara mcquaid, if are you the lawyer for djtj, donald trump jr. or jared kushner, mr. abbie lowell, what are you thinking tonight? >> it is concerning, certainly those lawyers have talked with
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both of their clients of what happened at that meeting, will understand why they have exposure. no doubt, paul manafort will be asked many questions, he will be shown document, e-mails, notes and whatever they have about that meeting to try to understand what happened and so if they have any exposure about what happened there, i think they may be in trouble. that includes any false statements they have made in their testimony before congress. >> michael schmidt, i'd like to get your ae recollection from harvard professor lawrence tribe, his political persuasion i agree is on the left. he has enjoyed his economics as a commentator on our times, he tweeted this, out of the blue, anyone recall who hand picked pence as trump's vp? paul manafort. and recall who led the squirrely transition? mike pence, watch what untoms as manafort tells mueller all he knows. what on earth could he be talking about there?
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>> i don't know this shows the difficulty the president is in. >> why? >> mueller has manafort. manafort is 69-years-old and doesn't want to spend the rest of his life in prison. he has now agreed to do everything he can to help mueller and to prove to mueller that he is aiding and helping them get to the bottom of all of this that is just a dangerous place for the other side to be in. because even if manafort you know is completely truthful or he could even push things ahead to try and prove his worth here. that's just a dangerous spot. >> josh, i could not help but think of the young law associates who have been working 12 and 24 hour shifts, both with manafort's defense team and for the government of the united states, preparing what was going to be a very documented and display-heavy trial. all that work was for not. they knew that of course, going in, is the one ray of sunshine
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if you're donald trump the fact that there's not going to be the drubbing of daily trial coverage? >> right, remember, brian, how deeply that earlier trial seemed to irritate president trump to his core. he seemed genuinely angered by the fact that it was getting so much press attention. we saw regular tweets from him. there were reports coming out from the white house that he was obsessed with the attention it was getting. so who knows how the president would have managed to get through it, another trial the trial would have been coming a few weeks in advance of a congressional mid-term election. i do think that the issue of a pardon here is not completely off the table. we did see the way that this deal is structured to try to reduce some of the incentives the president might have to try to move forward with a pardon. it makes it still a possibility for state officials to bring charges against manafort if that happens. but i within rule it out as simply as a professor dershowitz did. i still think there is a chance trump out of spite or mercy out
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of a desire to give the back of his hand to mueller and his deputies and leiutenants might well do a pardon after the election. >> does this mean the chance of this being a witch hunt is greatly decreased? >> near zero, brian. look, i think it's clear that the president faces significant exposure. because the individual who has the most knowledge about russian influence operations and who has the most knowledge about what the campaign was doing is now working for the special counsel. >> an embarrassment of big names to help us start our broadcast after this busy day on a friday night. all four of these guests have agreed to stick around and come back. coming up for us, he has gone from being willing to take a bullet for the president to talking to the feds. the news today on michael cohen from a reported worry broke the story. later the state of play for the kavanaugh court nomination after
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a tough allegation surfaces. the 11th hour just getting started on the end of the week friday night. this is an insurance commercial. but let's be honest, nobody likes dealing with insurance. which is why esurance hired me, dennis quaid, as their spokesperson because apparently, i'm highly likable. see, they know it's confusing. i literally have no idea what i'm getting, dennis quaid. that's why they're making it simple, man in cafe. and more affordable. thank you, dennis quaid. you're welcome. that's a prop apple. i'd tell you more, but i only have 30 seconds. so here's a dramatic shot of their tagline so you'll remember it. esurance. it's surprisingly painless.
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according to a new report robert mueller's team is talking to another former trump associate, emily jane fox of "vanity fair" is reporting michael cohen is talking to mueller's team, but the extent and purpose of the talks not entirely clear. she writes, quote, it is a remarkable reverse am from a year ago when cohen told me he would take a bullet for the president, but cohen has now been squeezed financially, emotionally and legally in a way he could not have imagined. since last month, his primary concern has been his family him he had expressed to friends that he was willing to share what he knows, both because he wants to be on the right side of history and to spare them. as one long time friends of cohen put it to me, he doesn't feel he needs to go out of his way to protect trump anymore, particularly trump has gone out of his way to hurt michael.
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he pleaded last week to charges in manhattan court, during his allocution, he said he violated campaign finance laws at the direction of a candidate for federal office. the next day president trump accused cohen of making up stories to get a deem him joining our conversation tonight the aforementioned emily jane fox senior reporter for "vanity fair" who happens to be the author of the book that came out this year "born trump, inside america's first family." still with us, michael schmidt, barbara mcquaid, jeremy bash. emily, what has michael cohen's life been like these past couple of weeks? >> it is a much quieter existence for him, both because he has had to stop talking after he pleaded guilty in august and talking to friends, associates, people who he had been speaking to, even in a run-up to what happened in august. there is a sense in the world
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around michael cohen that something was happening, that something serious is going on and people around him started talking about, well, he must be talking to robert mueller. as i reported today, that has been the case. it's unclear what those conversations have been like, how serious they are, how far down the road they have been. but this is a man who, i interviewed him last labor day weekend and to say that his life has turned in a stunning what i is such an under statement. this is someone who was out in the hamptons for the summer and he faced eight counts, he pleaded guilty to his family was in some sort of legal jeopardy that he, you know, tried to avoid it by pleading guilty, financially. he is incredibly squeezed and he is now staring down who could be years if prison should the judge sentence him to that in december. so it's just a real stunning
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your honor. >> a couple points, your book points out how intermeshed he was with all things trump and the family. football two, he defined himself based on his job for donald trump. he thought he might parlay it to a white house job. he wore it every day like an outer garment. and is it simplistic or too scorceseian to say she watching other deals, other developments and says i know the guy very well and was his lawyer a long time. >> he has raised his hands saying, hey, come talk to me, i'm willing to tell you everything that i could possibly tell you that would be useful to you. i don't know what he has that is useful. people close to michael cohen said to me today there is probably nothing robert mueller does not know but he certainly could be a corroborating witness for them. but, yes, this has been someone so closely intertwined in the trump organization with president trump and with his three adult children who mass
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worked with him and cleaned up many of their messes, so to say that he has nothing of value would be completely incorrect. he knows his family very well. he knows this business very well. he knows how they operate. >> jeremy bash, the lawyer if you, what does it tell you acted cohen's value to th-- about coh? >> he says he conspired to get donald trump elected. that would be the second effort to get donald trump elected illegally the first one of course being the effort by russian intelligence, but look i think michael cohen has a lot of information, including as emily jane fox alluded to, the business practices, more in particular the.laundering practices of the trump organization, that will be highly relevant and highly interesting to prosecutors and at the origin of the capitals from russia indeed to the special counsel. >> michael, we've got woodward, anonymous, manafort and now we have cohen.
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just in the space of the last few days. you know enough about the west wing to at least speculate about the mind set of the boss and those around him. >> well, but let's look at the longer list. >> oh, yeah, i was leaving some out. >> these are the people working for mueller, the former deputy campaign chairperson the former national security adviser, his former personal lawyer. those are huge pieces. that's really. we lose sight constantly in this story. >> we do. >> because every day it's another development that just amazes us, but to think of those folks as if you were playing chess, you had lost so many pieces to the other side. i mean, mueller is moving here in a very systematic direction in taking down and knocking folks off. and the interesting thing has been how the president has not really done anything besides complain publicly about it. and he hasn't had the, at least
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the political capital in his mind to go ahead and fire him. but this is clearly moving only in a bad direction. >> a great point. we are terrible at taking a pret and reassessing. we have become quite good at adding another face to our graphic. we are running out of room on the screen, hey, barb, other than the fact that mueller doesn't intend to take september off after all, what are you looking for? what have you learned about the larger effort? >> well, i think today's development certainly is a beg one with paul manafort. i think what we might see next is a focus on roger stone. pfrt and stone themselves were partners. there have been a lot of witnesses brought to grand jury to talk about him. that links up to wikileaks, g
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gucifer 2.0, manafort could be helpful in that regard. >> emily because have you written this book on the family at large, have you donald trump jr., have you jared kushner. they have to be sweating. >> i don't think that this is an easy evening for anyone in the trump family. you also forget that ivanka and jared worked -- ivanka and eric worked very closely with peekal cohen. there is no -- owe with michael cohen. there is no person immune currently working with robert mueller will say, do and knows. i don't think any of them could be resting easy over the last couple of months, but particularly this evening. >> i know an ominous note when i hear one. i will bring the conversation to an end on an ominous photo. emily jane fox, barbara pittsburgh quaid, jeremy bash our thanks to you all. coming up an update on this storm we have been covering for
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days, which will be impacting lives for days to come. that photo about sums it up.
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former hurricane florence is now a tractor-trailer, the problem with that otherwise good piece of news is it has no apparent plans to go anywhere
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quickly. >> that ubiquitous radar loop is relentless, spoke after spoke, spinning off that hub soaking rain bands, hitting the same places where it has hitting 24 hours. if some communities along the coast, there is nowhere for that water to go. rescues have been going on all day, they continue tonight and into the morning. power outages are widespread, beach erosion is severe, there have been structural failures. sadly the death toll from the storm has risen to 5 as of our air time tonight. moorehead city north carolina one place on track to break the record for hurricane rainfall at 24 inches, 2 feet of water on top of what they already had. back with us tonight as he was for our live coverage last night meteorologist bill kierans, hey, bill. >> good evening, brian. we're maybe halfway through this story. i mean, it's absolutely
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incredible. usually at this point the storm goes inland, now we're like, okay, what happened? how bad was this? we have done it with the surge and the wind. now we have to get through the water issues with the rainfall, with this storm and they're going to last into the middle of next week in some cases. there will be flu homes going under water on tuesday of next week as the rivers continue to rise and that water flows down towards the coast. there are some of the pictures from when we had the surge problems the worst of it we have been saying with pamlico sound, the trent risks up to washington had some problems, too, on the tar river. the newburn area, there are the water rescues taking place. they were having people volunteering to line up and bring their boats in to help people. at one point they had 150 people on a waiting list to get rescued the storm continues to spin, the moorehead city, atlantic beach, emerald isle. >> that band has been sitting here, pounding them, 36 hours now, that itself where the two feet of rain has happened.
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we have a flash flood emergency. we alsoville i still have occasional tornado warnings through the region. everywhere in red is under a flood warning, which almost all of eastern carolina at this point. >> that will continue to be a big issue as we go throughout the rest of the storm. over here, i will show you the storm path. as we go throughout the next two, three days, it slow drifts through south carolina, up through the mountains on sunday. we could have flooding problems there. if i was to tell you that charlotte, north carolina, one of the biggest cities in the east coast is going to get 15 inches of rain over the next three days, that would be a big story all by itself. it hasn't begun there yet. >> that could be a huge issue and story as we go through the weekend. here's our future radar. this predicts where the storm will be. we spin it into areas of central portions of south carolina. this is as we go through noon saturday, notice heavy band of rains sitting near the wilmington, jacksonville area. by the time we get to midnight,
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watching that heavy band, maybe shifting finally away from wilmington, jacksonville into fayetteville. the charlotte area picks up very heavy rainfall right through sunday morning, we get to the heavy rain an asheville and boone up here in the mountains, it takes serious issue to get landslide concerns, sunday it moves out the rainfall predictions, brian, this storm is behaving pretty much as expected. it was not a week ago we first started saying north carolina, south carolina have to deal with the hurricane. the intensity wasn't right. we were saved from the wind damage the surge was as bad as we thought it would be the rail the dire predictions of two, three, maybe four feet of rain, they're coming true, you know, it's an unfolding story, we're not done yet. there is still a lot of destruction to be done. there is a lot of people that have dry homes now that when these rivers come up in the days ahead, their houses willed into,
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there will be few tragedys to come. >> after another long day's journey, tonight, bill kierans,py friend, really appreciate it. coming up for us tonight, the president's choice for the supreme court denies an 11th hour allegation of sexual misconduct. an update on the story and his prospects when we continue. m
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. less than a week of the vote of the judiciary committee to send it to the full senate judge brett kavanaugh is on the defensive. today he is denying sexual% conduct allegation dating back to when he was in high school. the allegation first surfaced in a letter sent to california democrats including ranking judiciary committee member diane feinstein, a report published in the "new yorker" today details it this way, in the letter,
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quote, a woman alleged that during an encounter at a party, kavanaugh held her down and that he was attempted to hold her and she was able to free herself. she claimed kavanaugh and a classmate of is both of whom had been drinking turned up music to conceal the sounds of her protests and kavanaugh covered her mouth with his hand. in his strongly worded denial released by the white house, judge kavanaugh said quote i categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation. i did not do this back in high school or any time. 65 women who knew kavanaugh in high school are coming to his defense. they co-signed a letter saying, in part, through more than 35 years we have known him, brett has stood out for his friendship, character and integrity. a long-time kavenaugh friend who reportedly has identified in the accusers letter and who is said to have been in the room during the incident has talked to the weekly standard quoted as
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saying, it's just absolutely nuts. i never saw brett act that way. senator feinstein for her part is now being criticized for not coming forward with this information before kavanaugh's confirmation hearing. a sframt her office reads if part. it is critical in matters of sexual misconduct to protect the identity of the victim when they wish to remain anonymous and the senator did so in this case. feinstein says she passed the allegation along to the fbi which says it is not currently investigating this joining ut to talk about it is cameron keith and josh ger stein, he did not disappear, welcome to you both. tam remarks i'm curious as to what you are picking up and hearing the reactions to this allegation if either party around town. >> well, certainly the white house is taking this very seriously because this is when you have allegations looking this, this is a serious matter.
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but i think that people don't quite know what to do with it. because it's an anonymous allegation, it's different from this "me too" era that have come forward when you know who the accuser is and whether there are more details or it has been more fully vetted. but in this case the person making the accusation wants to remain anonymous, didn't really want to push the matter, so it's creating sort of a challenging moment certainly senator feinstein is experiencing the challenges of that on the other ends with members of her own party saying, well, why did we find out about this so late? >> josh, i keep saying about collins and murkowski, they're so interesting for a ton of reasons, starting with the fact that their states are the
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northern anchors on east and west of this country, starting with the fact that their politics are similar, both pro choice, republican women. col license apparently spent a good long time on the phone with kavanaugh today, purchasekowski is dealing with a constituency up there, i think my mouth took the night off a native alaskans, which is an important group for her as she casts her vote. they have asked her to vote no. and then there are complications around this letter this issue. the nominee when to the an all boys high school getting 65 women to sign on to a letter speaking to his character back then is an undertaking. >> yeah, it is. at the same time, there are 65 women as you say on the letter and so it seems like if they're saying that this was just organized very quickly that it can't be the case that they're all involved in some kind of conspiracy on his behalf. but it's a difficult situation.
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as tamara was saying the white house and kavanaugh, himself, i think, are involved in trying to push back on this i was watching a speech that kavenaugh gave a couple years ago down at the clinton library if little rock. he talked about the importance of rapid response in confirmation fights this is well before he knew he would be nominated to the supreme court. he stressed how critical it was to get answers out, to get rebuttals out in the same news cycle if at all possible. so i'm not terribly surprised that we're seeing that kind of a response with a forceful statement with the letter from women supporting him. they certainly knew in general terms that he was likely to face some kind of onslaught at various times in the nominateing process, even if they didn't know specifically about this individual allegation that's just come out in the last you know 48 hours or so. >> tamara, let me ask it this way, is there any indicator or person inside or outside the
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white house you will be look at to know whether the level of concern just went up? >> well, certainly, we'll be looking at susan collins, who had that lengthy phone conversation and has not said anything publicly since then. she had that long conversation with kavanaugh and i think the other thing to watch for is does the white house push backstop with the letter and with that statement from kavanaugh or does it keep coming? do they keep coming forward with more items, more character witnesses? and we just don't know yet. i think in part, the white house doesn't know at this point whether this is going to be more than what it seems right now, whether chuck grassley will find himself under pressure to change the time line in anyway. as it stands right now, the
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chairman of the judicial committee says the committee vote is going forward on thursday. >> yeah. all great points there both of our guests have agreed to stick with us just over a break. and when we come back, we will talk about the fact we are covering a president who is now in the puerto rico death toll denying business. an update on all of that when we come back. this wi-fi is fast.
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i know! i know! i know! i know! when did brian move back in?
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brian's back? he doesn't get my room. he's only going to be here for like a week. like a month, tops. oh boy. wi-fi fast enough for the whole family is simple, easy, awesome. in many cultures, young men would stay with their families until their 40's. with tropical storm florence, president trump is a safe bet he was tuned in. trump has doubling down on sals claims that 3,000 people didn't die on the island.
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they a blaming the puerto rican government for being corrupt. remaining with us. tamara keith and josh gerstein. the president retweeted fema, we have created a rumor control page updated. during disasters, it's critical to avoid spreading false information. i wonder if that's the death toll on puerto rico watch does the npr style book say about an era where we are covering presidents denying death tolls on u.s. territories involving u.s. citizens? >> well, at this time we keep doing fact checks and at this point we check the fact before the statement and after the statement.
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it is an estimate, but it is an estimate that is the official number now. >> and it matches the number of families and entities that have reported missing loved ones, employees and friends.
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and josh, someone pointed out that given the pressures of the press coverage, given the wo woodward book and manafort and cohen all piled up on top of each other, president has no travel plans this weekend. weather forecast chance of showers each day. what must we expect over the weekend? >> it's going to be interesting to see if the president manages to hold at bay the twitter temptation, particularly on the manafort developments. we haven't seen any direct reaction from him. so his lawyers must be working overtime, i guess, to keep him quite about that, but the multitasking he is showing on the other front is pretty amazing. i saw something on the order of 30 tweets covering the situation in florence but as you say, you're quite right, he does seem to have the ability now to jump in on this question of hurricane
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maria and puerto rico would seem better spent on dealing with the emergency unfolding now than relitigating an almost from quite awhile ago but the president's attentions are diverted in the way they are. >> i can't thank you enough for coming on tonight. sorry to keep you late and thank you so much for adding for our conversation on a friday night. coming up for us, the first responders who drop everything in their own lives to protect and save the lives of others in harms way. there's been a lot of harm just this week. this is an insurance commercial.
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but let's be honest, nobody likes dealing with insurance.
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which is why esurance hired me, dennis quaid, as their spokesperson because apparently, i'm highly likable. see, they know it's confusing. i literally have no idea what i'm getting, dennis quaid. that's why they're making it simple, man in cafe. and more affordable. thank you, dennis quaid. you're welcome. that's a prop apple. i'd tell you more, but i only have 30 seconds. so here's a dramatic shot of their tagline so you'll remember it. esurance. it's surprisingly painless.
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the last thing before we go
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tonight there's a word about first responders. as we witnessed them this week just in the stories we have been covering. let's begin here in new york. the most somber day of every year in the fire service, this week's 9/11 anniversary and the number on the front of the fire hall here, the 343 members of the new york city fire department lost on that day 17 years ago. a death toll that grows larger every year with 9/11 related cancers. while the anniversary ceremony was underway, the fdny and nypd were packing up their search and rescue teams to deploy to the south, to the carolinas ahead of the storm. let's think of the firefighters in massachusetts where more than 70 homes were on fire because gas lines were apparently overpressurized. local fire chiefs said it looked like armageddon. some would not go out because
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they were gas fed. they responded from miles around. including from new hampshire. and then just today in wilmington, north carolina fire and rescue companies took a knee and gathered in the rain in prayer after their frantic rescue effort failed to save a mother and daughter. and every firefighter and police officer you see here is not home with their families. they're unable to attend to their own damaged homes. tonight while the rest of us sleep they'll be going out on rescues and saving the living of complete strangers. they are the definition of public service and this week has tested their limits. that is our broadcast on a friday night and for this week, thank you so much for being here with us, good night from nbc news headquaters here in new york.
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>> good saturday morning to all of you. it is no longer hurricane florence but in some places the worst is yet to come. widespread flooding and sweeping rain still going. downed trees leading destruction across north carolina. we have the latest on the causalities. florence pivoting west to the st


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