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tv   MSNBC Live With David Gura  MSNBC  December 23, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PST

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we are at the top of the hour which means i'm out of time. happy holiday to all of you and to my friend morgan rad forward to whom i toss the baton right now. >> happy holidays. hello, i'm morgan radford at msnbc headquarters in new york. mattis is out, shanahan is in. the president is kicking jim mattis out the door at the defense department so what do we know about the new secretary who is taking over, and why the president wants it done now. and increasingly alone, suspicious and spending more time watching tv, that's how white house staffers characterize the behavior of our commander in chief, but is the era of containing the president over. plus trump's border wall is already working, unfortunately it's only separating republicans and democrats. standing on opposite sides of a proverbial wall, can a deal be reached to put americans back to work with cash in their pockets in time for the holidays? we begin with breaking news.
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president trump announcing deputy secretary of defense patrick shanahan will become the acting secretary of defense in january. now, with that the current defense secretary, james mattis, will be out of a job, that's two entire months early. the news coming just days after mattis publicly rebuked the president in his resignation letter. so let's go now live to the white house with nbc's geoff bennett. jef geoff, why push mattis out two months early? >> reporter: our reporting is that it's not the letter that upset president trump, it was the coverage of the letter that did it. courtney could you bey who covers the pentagon for us sources tell her that president trump wrist ld at this narrative that mattis was effectively the last adult in the room. the president bristoled at this notion that it was jim mattis who was last seemingly uncompromised high profile member of this administration
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who could rein in or act as a check against some of donald trump's more gas testify and isolationist impulses. here is the tweet president trump sent earlier today. he said i am pleased to announce that our deputy secretary of defense patrick shanahan will assume the title of acting secretary of defense january 1, 2019. patrick has a long list of accomplishments. he will be great. this followed a tweet the president sent that was highly critical of jim mattis. he said when president obama fired jim mattis i gave him a second chance. some thought i shouldn't. i thought i should. president trump did, in fact, let jim mattis go, it had to do with the fact that mattis had ruins on iran that were far more hawkish than those of president obama. ma 'tis' tenure ends at the end of the month. it was supposed to end sometime in february. stepping in is patrick shanahan, he was tapped by president trump in april 2017 to work in the
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administration as deputy sec def. he has a background in mechanical engineering, he was an executive at boeing before he joined the administration. since he has been part of the administration he has been the guy leading the charge to help create the space force which president trump wants to see as the next an newest military branch. that i'm told is how shanahan got on president trump's radar. >> geoff, hold on. let's talk about all of these departures. we will now have an acting secretary of defense, an acting attorney general, no u.n. ambassador, no interior secretary, no deputy at dhs and we will even have an acting epa administrator. is this really a sign of a deeper problem? >> reporter: it's a coincidence and, yes, it does point to a much deeper problem. michael beschloss, we called him up for context and he says, for a candidate who billed himself in 2016 as a manager par excellence, donald trump has a
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surprisingly large number of vacancies and temporary officials at high levels of his administration, a phenomenon we haven't seen in modern time. so this is a vulnerable time for this administration. you have all of these cabinet members in acting positions at a time when the federal government is shut down for the third time in the year under president trump's watch. so when the president likes to refer to his administration as a well oiled machine, well, this is just yet another data point which points to a very different conclusion, morgan. >> a phenomenon we haven't seen in modern times indeed. nbc's geoff bennett at the white house. thank you so much. i want to bring in former four star general and msnbc contributor barry mccaffrey along with former ambassador and msnbc contributor christopher hill. general mccaffrey let's start with you, what can you tell us about patrick shanahan? >> i have worked with him directly. i think it's good news.
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he is a very, very experienced high technology guy from boeing, two masters degrees from m.i.t., his dad was a vietnam veteran, you know, the family is a family of service. he's dealt with military programs for much of his 30 years in technology, so he understands very complicated issues like missile defense. i think it's good news. you know, basically right now mr. trump just fired secretary mattis, gave him a week to get out of the pentagon. we ought to be -- feel lucky we've got a guy like shanahan in office. i can't imagine someone with a political future who would be willing to join this administration. so i think this is a good news appointment. >> and that's interesting. you say you can't imagine anyone with a political future actually wanting to join, but, ambassador, i want to play for you something that the white house press secretary sarah
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sanders told me colleague hallie jackson just on thursday. take a listen. >> the president has a great deal of respect for secretary mattis. he's going to stay on for another couple of months. i think that's a great indicator of the type of cooperation they have. >> ambassador, what is with this about-face? what could have possibly changed in just three days? >> well, it's pretty clear what happened was the letter that general mattis sent to the president. he also put out publicly, it's unclear whether the president knew that was going to happen, and more fundamentally the reaction of the public especially on the congress and in particular among republican senators and congressmen was pretty severe about this. so i think the president realized the news cycles were dominated by this in the last couple of days and so the president decided he will show him, he will get rid of him within a week. so, again, it is an example of the fact that it's not just chaos, but it's also chaos set in motion by essentially one
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person. by the way, i think this shanahan will be an extent interim secretary, but i think one has to remember that the job he's been doing is essentially forced structure, it's not so much policy issues of what should -- should the pentagon be engaged in syria or whatever, that goes to john rude who is the undersecretary of policy and he is very much of a john bolton protege. i think the overall effect of this is that we're going to see more people with very sharp views about the world sort of handling policy for the president. >> ambassador, you mentioned sharp views of the world and syria. general, i want to get your take on something else. i want your reaction to this tweet from the president this afternoon. if we can pull that up. he tweeted, i just had a long and productive call with president erdogan of turkey. we discussed isis, our mutual involvement in syria and the low
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and highly coordinated pull out of u.s. troops from the area. we also discussed heavily expanded trade. is the president essentially trying to protect himself from republican criticism? is he here now justifying his decision to pull out troops and suggesting that he does, in fact, have international support? >> yeah, of course. i mean, i think this whole thing started basically with a one on one phone call with erdogan who has ended democracy in turkey who is a terrible nato ally who is waiting to crush the kurds in syria for that matter inside turkey. this is just a government by impulse, but his impulses aren't to be -- in coordination with our long-time allies, nato, germany, france, the uk, but instead to be in close coordination with some of these dictators. i think it's unheard of in
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modern times to have a president that is this uneducated on the issues and who is so unwilling to listen to the professionals at state department, treasury, defense, cia, be educated and read their materials and take their complex briefings. it's almost become a rogue operation. once kelly is gone, the chief of staff, which essentially his tenure is over, who is in charge? and the president of the united states can pick up the phone and call our nine combatant commanders and give orders to them and they're going to carry them out unless they're patently illegal. it's almost like ivanka and jared kushner and the president home alone at the white house. >> i want to go back to something you just said when you said who is in charge, and of course, expressing concern about the possibility of ivanka or jared playing a part in the direction of the military, if, in fact, there is a vacuum. ambassador, do you say that you still feel that with shanahan
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taking over or someone else? >> well, again, i think mr. shanahan will have to do his old job as well, which is force structure in the pentagon. there is no question he will be an adult in the room, but the real question is is he in a position really to stand up to this sort of lineup that general mccaffrey just went through. i think chances are he's not. i think we're going to see a lot of john bolton, i think we are going to see a pentagon that's more in line with bolton's views and, frankly, you know, i think the whole problem has been that also really an audience of one. some people have figured that out and figured out how to work with the president as a sort of audience of one. i think secretary of state pompeo obviously has a very good relationship with the president, but it is very hard to figure out, very hard to kind of understand which way to break on these issues so that the
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president doesn't come after you. so shanahan certainly will have quite a learning curve ahead of him. >> and the question is if shanahan if, in fact, do that. thank you so much for joining us this sunday. we appreciate your time. >> good to be with you. coming up, day two of the government shutdown is in full swing as lawmakers high-tailed it home for the holidays. will incoming acting white house chief of staff mick mulvaney offering an ominous warning about just how long this all might last. s warning about just how long this all might last for a minute, or two actually, i've got to tell you something. with the capital one venture card you earn unlimited double miles on every purchase, every day. my credit card only earns double miles on airline purchases! well, you earn double miles on this and on everything with the venture card. thanks! hey, by the way, how'd you get in here? same way you did. cross-checking. nice. what's in your wallet... oh, c'mon!
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thanks so much for joining us and welcome back, i'm morgan radford. it's day two of the third government shutdown just this year. the nation's capital thrown into chaos over funding for the president's border wall. 380,000 employees will be furloughed and 420,000 more will work without pay in areas that are considered essential. now, negotiations continue today but the president calling off
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his annual christmas trip to mar-a-lago, trump's incoming acting chief of staff mick mulvaney appeared on fox news this morning to say there is no end in sight. >> the next pay period that is impacted is january 11th. i think that is -- it's very possible that the shutdown will go beyond the 28th and into the new congress. >> so let me bring in matt gorman, a former nrcc communications director and former spokesman for jewish and mitt romney. we also have doug thornell. republican lawmakers like senator pat toomey are saying this is much ado about nothing, but what will it take for trump to agree on a deal that the, in fact, refund the government? >> thank you for having me, first of all. the only thing that matters is whether president trump and leader schumer can agree on a deal. that's what matters. whoever -- whatever opens the government will need democratic votes through this senate.
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so unless that happens everything else doesn't mean anything. let's take a step back. it's in each side's interest at the moment to dig in and prepare for a longer shutdown. obviously president trump can show his base that he's committed to funding the wall and leader schumer and speaker designate pelosi over in the house can show that they're willing to fight president trump and really make sure that their basis are riled up as they go into the next congress. that's what matters right now and i think that's why i wouldn't be surprised, as you said, that this shutdown lasts into the year. that's where republicans are dramatically losing their leverage as the new congress takes over on january 3rd. >> will it be thursday, will it be january 3rd? but the question also, doug, i'm wondering, incoming acting white house chief of staff mick mulvaney says the white house is offering to open the government for less than $5 billion in funding for a border wall. what i'm curious about is after going to countless trump rallies during the midterms his base is fired up about this, singing songs ahead of the rallies.
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will they feel like this is essentially a cop out? >> well, it's good to be with you. remember that it wasn't just building the wall that trump promised, he also promised that mexico would pay for it. he has failed to get mexico to pay for it. so in part that's why we're here. the only person who wants a shutdown and who got a shutdown was the president of the united states. it wasn't nancy pelosi, it wasn't chuck schumer, it wasn't mcconnell, it wasn't paul ryan. we are where we are today because trump failed to get mexico to pay for this wall and now he's having a temper tantrum about t he's getting a lot of pressure from the right for last week when he showed signs that he might be willing to pass -- support a shorter term cr, continuing resolution, to keep the government open. he caught a lot of pressure from his right flank. that's where we are today. this is not about -- this isn't about the house or senate, this is about one person in the white house who is basically having a temper tantrum.
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>> it's interesting you call it a temper tantrum because we heard him say over and over again that this was something that he wanted. matt, how worried should the president about be the new congress? >> look, i think that these next two years of president trump's first term are going to be dramatically different from the first two years and i believe dramatically harder. not only will he be running for reelection with democrats across the country campaigning against him and getting much of the press attention, he also as you mentioned before have numerous cabinet and staff vacancies to fill and speaker pelosi will be at the other end of pennsylvania avenue with a democratic majority in the house looking to investigate and possibly impeach him. so that's very different than what we saw in the first two years of his first term whether there was united control of congress for the gop, he essentially had his pick of cabinet secretaries and vacancies and he wasn't running
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for reelection. he was fairly popular at the beginning among broad swaths of the electorate. this will be harder for him this last two years and i believe he knows that to be. >> doug, you said this is essentially all on him, this government shutdown, but many are saying that this shutdown was caused by conservative media voices putting pressure on president trump, but at what point do we say who exactly is advising him on this shutdown? do you really believe it's just him, doug? >> he has a lot of acting people now serving in key roles, chief of staff, secretary of state, ag. that's just not the way to run an administration. i think there's something really broken in this white house and in this administration and it's causing real damage to the country. the fabric of this country. starting to hurt the economy. we're seeing that with the stock market plummeting as it did last week. so, you know, hopefully he has -- you know, that there are people that are actually in permanent positions, you know, matt brings up a good point
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about he's going to have to, you know -- he's going to have to hire a bunch of people for important roles and, you know, i don't know who is advising him right now. i hope it's not fox news, but it seems to be that when, you know, fox and friends and a lot of the shows on the right raise concerns about positions that the president takes he sort of back tracks. that's what we saw last week. i don't think democrats and even some republicans on capitol hill know what the position of the president is on this matter. they didn't know in the middle of last week because he sort of was all over the place. it's hard to negotiate with someone like that. >> i think with a lack of consistency that's why there's so many concerns about the leadership. thank you for joining us this afternoon. >> thank you. merry christmas. >> merry christmas to you. let me bring in mike vikera live on capitol hill. the politicians are gone. >> it's a little lonely as you can see behind me. just us and the ghost of
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christmas present. it's almost like being in a sensory deprivation tank, there's no one to offer any external stimulus. i and my crew we decided to go on an expedition to try too find some kind of information about what the heck is going on, if anything. oh, hi. yeah, it's christmas eve eve and not a creature is stirring here at the capital. i'm just trying to catch up on the news and kill some time. >> a quarter of the government is shut down because congress hasn't finished its work. the senate hallways are empty, how are the house's hallways. 800,000 federal workers who are directly affected are wondering when and if they're going to get paid and when they can come back to work. this is the place where reporters hang out to try to catch members of congress, but there are no reporters because there are no members of congress. they say that politics is a lot like kabuki theater. bob corker is home in chattanooga, he kind of agrees. >> this is a made up fight so
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that the president can look like he's fighting. >> pat toomey invoked another kind of theater, he's home for christmas in bethlehem, pennsylvania. >> this is really much ado about very little. >> senator schumer? senator mcconnell? speaker ryan? leader pelosi? is anyone home? senator russell, have you seen this leadership? have you seen the senators? mitch mcconnell, kentucky, majority leader of the u.s. senate. this is where his staff does the business of the commonwealth. mcconnell has an office back in the capitol. let's see. nobody home. nobody home here, either. this is the committee on appropriations. they are in charge of approving funding for the entire federal government. they try to do their jobs, but leaders both democrats and republicans don't want to put those spending bills on the floor because then their members
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would have to take tough politically charged votes that might be thrown back in their face during an election. i guess we don't need this today. one good thing about having no members of congress around to watch us, i feel like i'm home alone. happy holidays, everyone, and merry christmas. >> mike, you're looking a little lonely out there. looks like nothing was stirring, not even a mouse. that's mike vikara on capitol hill. coming up, the special counsel's report heading right into the hands of president trump's outspoken acting attorney general. what legal moves could trump make to stop the release of the mueller report? coming up next. release of the muelr lereport coming up next e're gonna steal , we're gonna need the element of surprise. go team. [ snow crunching ] [ load crunching ] [ whispers ] this is the loudest snow ever.
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we've had questionable characters like matt whitaker at the top. there's all the greater need for transparency here. >> that was the top democrat on the house intelligence committee, congressman adam schiff, stressing his concerns over acting attorney general matthew whitaker and the mueller probe. now, whitaker disregarded the advice of the doj ethics officials to step aside from
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overseeing mueller's russia investigation and it was all after he has been on the record criticizing the special counsel. this as nbc news reports that mueller's investigation could wrap up as early as mid-february. so joining me now now to discuss a ariana berg and cynthia ox knee, msnbc analyst. ariana let's start with you. you heard what congressman schiff had to say. if the president's legal team exert executive privilege to stop the release of mueller's report? >> it's a terrific question, very timely right now. under the special counsel regulations all that bob mueller is required to do is to provide a report to the acting attorney general or attorney general, whoever is in charge at the time, and if the reporting is accurate and it is february, it appears that it will likely be matt whitaker who is the one who
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he is reporting to. under the special counsel regulations, unlike the independent counsel regulations that were controlling under the kenneth starr investigation, there is no requirement that this report see the light of day. so it really will be up to whoever is supervising bob mueller's investigation to determine what and how much of that report is revealed and certainly if the most recent reporting is accurate, that president trump has been having these secret conversations with matthew whitaker as to what he would like to have done with regards to this investigation, then it seems he is certainly trying to have his hand in what's happening to the report. >> but with all of these variables, i'm most concerned about the timeline. cynthia, do you really think that mueller will finish by february? >> no, i don't think there's any chance he'll finish by february. he may issue some kind of
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interim report. the reporters from nbc news, ken delaney and -- both of them are -- i can't -- i can't remember who the second one is right this second, but ken delaney and the other are outstanding. >> tom winter. >> i'm sure that -- >> tom winter. >> i do not think it's a wrap up report. i don't think there's any way trump can block it even with whitaker in place. the only place in washington that doesn't leak is mueller's office but the department of justice does. we saw that this week when whitaker tried to intimate to the public that he was not going to recuse himself and neglected to mention that the ethics people at the department of justice wanted him to recuse himself. somebody leaked that, in fact, he hadn't told the whole truth. there are people inside the justice department that want us to know what is going on with matt whitaker. i predict it does leak. if it doesn't leak adam schiff and the house intelligence
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committee incoming chair has already said he will subpoena it. now, while we have to remove some things because there's grand jury material in there, once it's cleaned up and the grand jury feral is gone, it will get to the house. >> i want to go back to this notion of recusal. ariana, the doj ethics review of matthew whitaker found that his recusal would be appropriate but it actually would not be required. why is that? >> well, so under the guidance, the ethics rules, if there is a clear conflict of interest such as a financial or personal or political stake in an investigation, that's an actual conflict and it requires recusal. but there is another prong to the recusal inquiry, which looks at whether there is an appearance of bias. when there is -- the reason why it's important potentially to recuse yourself when there is an appearance of bias, which arguably there is here since matthew whitaker appears in his
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media statements to have prejudged the mueller investigation, when there is an appearance of bias it is best practices to recuse yourself and according to the letter that was submitted to congress, apparently senior ethics officials do think on balance because of this appearance of bias issue he should recuse himself. in an odd twist of events, which cannot be made up, apparently matthew whitaker had created his own sort of counsel of advisers separate and apart from the doj ethics folks who apparently have consulted -- he has consulted with and told him he doesn't need to recuse himself. >> i want to go back to something you just said earlier, cynthia, when you said that you predict that there will, in fact, be a leak. in a more traditional administration would whitaker listen to these got ethics experts? >> absolutely. whitaker in a second would listen and recuse. for example, loretta lynch
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recused after the unfortunate incident where she actually talked to bill clinton on the tarmac. >> right. >> eric holder recused in the investigation into senator edwards. ashcroft recused a number of times. no, yes, absolutely there would be a recusal. here not only is there the issue of the recusal in the mueller report because of the appearance of impropriety -- of bias, now we have the improper behavior with whitaker discussing with the president of the united states an investigation for which he is involved and his family is involved and whitaker and the president were talking about it. that enough makes whitaker a fact witness and is a second reason he should be recusing in the southern district of new york case. apparently he is not willing to do that and that tells us a lot about the motives of the acting attorney general. >> and it also makes it highly unusual. ariana, i want to turn quickly to william barr. senator dianne feinstein had this to say on twitter, she said
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we need answers as to why william barr proactively drafted a memo against special counsel mueller's investigation. there is no reason for a lawyer in private practice to do this unless he was attempting to curry favor with president trump. now, barr did, in fact, criticize the mueller probe in an unsolicited memo as grossly irresponsible. did he just essentially talk himself out of a job? >> well, i think what we're seeing here is a pattern where president trump is picking people to supervise this investigation who have publicly and clearly demonstrated hostile views to the mueller investigation. now, unlike matthew whitaker, bill barr is eminently qualified to hold this position and is certainly entitled to his legal views, however, there are many candidates who could -- could take this position and do it
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competently and capably, but it appears that the main reason why he was nominated for attorney general by president trump is because of this 19-page single spaced memo that he sent out only to rod rosenstein but also to white house lawyers which in effect appeared to be an audition for the job because he clearly stated he has very can a patience views of presidential powers in which most of the time he's not going to believe that president trump is capable of committing obstruction of justice merely by dint of the fact that he is the president of the united states. >> there is a lot more to discuss here, but so far we thank you for your time. ariana and cynthia, thanks for being with us this afternoon. coming up, president trump naming patrick shanahan as his new acting secretary of defense. we will talk more about shanahan and what all of this means for the u.s. on an international stage. stay tuned. the u.s. on an international stage. stay tuned of lumber and arms of steel ♪
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when people get older they do become more and more convinced of the fact that what they're doing is the right thing and it becomes harder to convince them otherwise. >> especially when they are president of the united states. >> so some laughter at the president's expense on a whiplash of a week. a new acting defense secretary named by the president today as the federal government remains shut down. with me now jay newton small a contributor to "time magazine" and dana millbank for the "washington post" as well as josh gerstein and a contributor right here at msnbc. jay, let's start with you. what was the most consequential thing to happen to the president this week alone? >> well, there's so many choices, morgan, it's hard to know where to begin. i would certainly say shutting down the government has to be up there. one of the things that really struck me was just how much people kind of yawned at shutting date of birth the government. it used to be that this was a huge deal that, you know, you would have the entirety of congress out there at midnight,
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2:00 in the morning, really, you know, biting their fingernails, worrying about how they are going to reopen the government and this week they shut down the government and everyone went home for christmas, they weren't even there -- 9:00 they rolled it up and were like we're not going to wait until midnight until the government shut down and everybody walked away. it is actually a really big deal, there are 800,000 who are not being paid right now and there's services that are going to start to be affected, particularly after the christmas holiday, that will become really just worrisome and troublesome as this drags out. so i think that even though the reaction was sort of one of just kind of no big deal, i think it is actually a really big deal and something that will haunt the president and i think congressional republicans for a while. >> and i think you're right, it is a big deal, but when it's the third time it's happened this year alone people don't really know what to do or how long this is going to last. so, dana, will the appointment of patrick shanahan now as the acting defense secretary on the global stage, is this going to help or hurt the u.s.?
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>> well, i think in the very short term it's going to hurt in the sense that we had already been expecting secretary mattis to stay on for a couple more months. he said he was going to do it. the white house said he was going to do it. now all of a sudden on top of the original shock that he's departing, he's departing essentially immediately. i don't think shanahan by himself would send shock waves. he at first blush sounds like more of a tech know democrat than an ideologue. i don't think he is an issue. he does seem to be an interim replacement. it compounds the notion that nothing is happening the way it was planned to happen, even the way it was planned to happen by this white house and that's true of the personnel changes at various cabinet agencies and the chief of staff, this announcement of a hasty pullout from syria and from afghanistan and, of course, the shutdown that we were just talking about. it conveys a sense around the world that america is just being
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torn apart by chaos right now. >> chaos is a word we've heard describe this administration since he took office, but, josh, why not just let mattis stay on until february? that's what was originally planned. why show him the door like this eight entire weeks early? >> well, i mean, this seems like kind of an alpha male thing, chest bumping by the president. he doesn't like the fact that mattis is getting all this press attention, mattis is clearly a very popular figure with the media and a number of people were out jajd at the way he was treated in this process. the president is effectively kicking mattis to the curb which is a bizarre thing to do with a general, but, morgan, the thing i find most shocking of all the decisions and all the things the president said this week was the tweet he sent out when he said that who is this fellow brett mcguirk who is getting all this attention after he also quit over the decision to pull out of syria. now the average person on the
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street may not know who brett mcgerk is, but he's been running the u.s. government's campaign against isis for three or four years now, traveling around the world, trying to build coalitions and the president claims that this has been a tremendous success that has administration has been better at driving isis into the ground than any other administration and the president doesn't know who is running this policy for the last two years he's been in office and for a couple years before that. if that's really true it's just sort of staggering and i imagine most of our allies around the world it would just leave them scratching their heads about who is actually in charge of anything in the u.s. government at this point. >> i think you hit the nail on the head when you describe it as staggering because that's the question we've within facing all day. who is actually pulling the strings and especially with this high level of turnover who is in charge? but of course a negotiation like this the big question is leverage. when we go back to the government shutdown, does the president really have any leverage in negotiations or is he really stuck between a rock
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and a hard place? jay? >> i think that's the interesting thing here is this sense of he got into this shutdown with this false sense of how he's on top or he has the ability to negotiate some sort of concessions from the democrats in congress and the political reality is he's out of juice. there is no real way for him to negotiate anything with the democrats in conks. it's completely in their interest to block him in this case. it's completely within their interest to say this is a ridiculous use of $5 billion. we could be using it in much smarter ways. your own republican congress has said that we don't want to spend this money in this way, the majority of the republican congress, and that there are other ways to do it. so i think that going into it he kind of underestimated the opposition at least in this case which is why we are in the position now where we have no end in sight for the shutdown. we have no way out of the shutdown right now unless one side folds amd and it's looking unlikely the democrats are going to do that because politically speaking it's all to their good.
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it's all to the president's good, too, because the base loves it. they love to see him as a puj list taking on the establishment whether they are republicans or democrats, but at some point you do have to reopen the government and function. >> and speaking of reopening and this billion dollar price tag, dana, the stock market reopens tomorrow for a half day and after last week's disastrous performance would a poor showing on wall street kind of force the president's hand to get a budget passed really at any cost? >> well, not necessarily. i mean, we've had several bad days. one bad or good day doesn't change things, but as the market sheds value over time and as there is volatility that's frightening investors, that over time puts pressure on the president to do something else. i don't think he is facing any immediate pressure. his people are happy, as jay pointed out, that he's causing chaos here. i mean we can all watch it and
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say it's really a manufactured crisis, that they are arguing over a few billion dollars, he's already volunteered to take the blame for the shutdown and now he's trying not to. so it is a little bit of silliness going on and it could be ended whenever he wants it to be, but i suss spkt he would rather have us talking about that than what's going on with the pentagon and what's going on with our allies around the world. >> many thanks to all of you for joining us. happy holidays. >> thank you. coming up, understanding the history of this moment, as the president deals with staff changes and investigations and a slowing economy, where does his fate stand? we will ask a historian who is predicting an impeachment. stay tuned. predicting an impeachment. stay tuned
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this is completely never before seen ground breaking type of week. is this week truly untr unprecedented? >> i don't think it's unprecedented, but i do think it's very dangerous. the real danger of the trump administration is not chaos. it's not incompetence. it's not impulsive decision making as bad as that is. it is rather historically that we have a president who has abandoned the promotion of democratic values and the collective security that have kept this nation and democracies all around the world safe and secure for more than 70 years. to understand what is meant by america first, you've got to go back to the late 1930s and early 1940s before pearl harbor. america first was a movement that opposed any american involvement in world war ii, even the supply of arms to the
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allies. if we had followed america first back then, the fascist powers in europe and in asia would have conquered every single democracy leaving the united states isolated and vulnerable and encouraging anti-semitic pro nazi moves in america. dwight eisenhower ran against taft because he thought a taft presidency would be world war iii. >> i want to go back to that notion of comparison. the truth is we're just about at the halfway point of president trump's term. you're saying this is dangerous. but how does it stack up to where presidents like clinton, bush, obama were at the same juncture in their tenures? >> i'm sorry, i lost you there. but -- >> can you hear me now? >> yeah. >> what is the difference now? if you look at a point of
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comparison to where president clinton, president bush was, president obama was two years in, how does it compare? >> well, if you look at where president bush was at two years, he was doing extremely well. we were still in the patriotic fervor coming out of the war against terrorism and he actually gained seats in his midterm election. a more apt comparison might be the embattled bill clinton at this point in his presidency when he faced the disastrous loss of both the house and the senate in the republican revolution of 1994, but this was primarily due to domestic disputes, not to a fundamental change in our outlook to the world. >> i want to interrupt you when you mention those domestic disputes. you were one of the earliest people to say donald trump will, in fact, win the presidency, but
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you also said he'd be impeached. final word, do you still believe that? >> he is absolutely going to be impeached. the democratic base is going to implicated in two felonies. there's clear evidence of obstruction of justice and we haven't heard anything yet from mr. mueller on financial crimes or conspiracy with the russians. it's going to happen. if it's bad enough he can even get convicted in the senate because republicans will flee from him if they think he is going to bring them down. >> well, you heard it here first. allen, thanks soch f much for joining us. coming up next, richard lui talked to a republican over the fate of the border wall. i didn't like something having control over me. i wanted to stop. the thing is i didn't know how.
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thanks so much for joining us. that's it for me. the news continues with richard l lui. >> hello to all of you. i'm richard lui. thanks for joining us this hour. standoff over the border wall or is it a fence or a barrier? gridlock keeping the government under partial shutdown affecting 800,000 federal employees until after christmas. president trump announces mattis is leaving early as he taps a former boeing executive to run the department of defense. market plunge. new reports the president
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discussed removing the chairman of the federal reserve, but it's not at all clear he has the authority to do that. we're going to begin with the partial government shutdown which almost certainly will continue through christmas and beyond. in a few moments, two members of congress, a republican and a democrat, will join us to talk about what it's going to take to try to end the shutdown. both want to get that done. first, what the white house is saying today about the shutdown and how long it might last. >> i don't think things are going to move to quickly for the next couple of days. i think it's very possible this shutdown will go beyond the 28th and into the new congress. >> the white house and senate democrats remain deadlocked over funding for the proposed border wall after saying he would shoulder the blame for the shutdown, trump now says it's the fault of the democrats, though the democrats say the ball is in the president's court. >> it really is in the president's hands to decide. he says it's an i

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