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tv   At This Hour With Kate Bolduan  CNN  January 16, 2019 8:00am-9:00am PST

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hello. i'm kate bolduan. we start with breaking news this morning. american service members on patrol in syria killed in a possible suicide blast claimed by isis. i want to warn you the video we're about to show is horrifying. it happened in the northern town of manbij near the turkish border. there's surveillance video of the moment before the explosion. you see a busy market area, people walking down the sidewalk, including what appears to be a young boy walking into frame. then the sidewalk explodes. ice is claiming responsibility. in claims responsibility, says that a suicide bomber carried out the attack. the spokesman for the u.s. fight against isis says they are still gathering information as we speak. we have yet to confirm the exact number of casualties, but we do know u.s. service members are among the victims.
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in northern syria, clarissa ward. what are you hearing there? >> we're hearing exactly what you just said, that a number of u.s. servicemen on regular patrol in the town of manbij were killed by some kind of explosion. isis claiming responsibility for it. we were just in the town of manbij the day before yesterday, which is a town that was under isis control until about september 2016, at which point the kurdish-led syrian democratic forces took control of the city. we found the u.s. base right there on the outskirts of the city flying the u.s. flag. a number of u.s. servicemen are based there. there's also a regime and russian presence just about ten minutes away from the city. listen, the difficulty you have
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with towns like manbij is even when you clear them out, even when you talk back the territory, it is very difficult to deal with sleeper cells. we have been hearing from a number of commanders, kurdish commanders and others, that this is the problem they're facing now on the ground in a lot of territory that they currently hold. the difficulty of trying to deal with the mentality of the people trying to root out those isis sleeper cells that tell exist there. manbij is a town of 100,000 people. it's a large town. we were just by this explosion two days ago. there's a large market there. that makes it a very tough target for a group like isis if it is confirmed that isis was responsible for this. >> so chilling to think you were there just two days ago. thank you so much. we know that you're safe and careful, but now more than ever
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please be careful. let's go to the white house to get some reaction. abby, these will be the first deaths since the president announced the withdrawal about a month ago. are you hearing anything from the white house yet about this? >> that's right, kate. this is a time of enormous term oil in the president's policy toward syria. this death comes at a really sensitive time when the white house is trying to sort out exactly what the process is going to be. shortly after the news of this death broke, we did get a statement from sarah sanders saying the president has been fully briefed and will continue to monitor the ongoing situation in syria. for any specific questions she is directing you to the department of defense. the department of defense is without a leader now after james
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mattis left. the reason for james mattis's departure is this policy in syria. president trump has been saying that isis is defeated. listen to what he said shortly after making this announcement that you would pull troops out of syria. >> we have won against isis. we've beaten them and we've beaten them badly. we've taken back the land and now it's time for our troops to come back home. >> reporter: a central disdpe t disagreement with his military leaders was that claim. just minutes ago vice president mike pence is speaking at a conference right now. shortly after this news broke, he said that isis has been defeated and the caliphate has been destroyed. there's no backtracking from the white house on that claim.
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again, this death over in syria really calls into question whether that is true and whether there are pockets, as the president was briefed in iraq. his military leaders told him when he visited iraq that isis is not totally defeated, they are still a problem in the region. it seems this death will put a finer point on that situation on the ground in syria. >> what, if anything, does it do to the consideration of the withdrawal they are planning out right now. thank you so much. joining me is republican congressman adam kinsinger of illinois. thank you for coming in. >> you bet. >> we don't know all the details. clarissa ward is on the ground.
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we do know that men service members have been killed and we know that the pentagon is preparing to have to notify these families of the horrible news. what's your reaction right now? >> it's tragic and our prayers go to the families sitting by on this pending notification. this is the mess of war, terrorists. this is why people sign up to go destroy the people that would do stuff like this. we may have liberate ed territo that isis held, but isis and terrorism and radical jihadism, the idea is that if you retreat from it, it will grow. you have to win the next generation of muslims to understand that this is wrong so they can reject it within their own religion. similar to how we won the cold war. there was a military component, but there was a social component.
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that's how we're going to win here. retreating from a fight against isis is only going to send the wrong message and pour fuel on the recruiting efforts of isis. >> we know what the president said back on december 19th. he said very clearly, we have defeated isis in syria. and mike pence saying isis has been defeated even today. this is one of the reasons why they have cited they are pulling troops out of syria because they say they have defeated isis. it doesn't necessarily make it so. isis claimed responsibility here. do you think this attack will convince the president to change course on the withdrawal? >> i don't know. i certainly hope so. i hope through this terrible tragic situation he understands this is a terrorist group that he may want to leave but they're not going to quit the fight. there's always a saying in these groups that america has the watches, but we have the time.
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we'll never be defeated on the battlefield. where we can be defeated is at our heart and our will. this is going to be a long-term fight. this is probably going to take more decades so that we defeat them militarily but also they're rejected within their own ideology. if you're a recruiter for isis you say they pushed back the caliphate but they left, we won. it's not our choice whether or not to fight terrorism. that's decided for us. our choice is where we fight them. i'd much rather fight them overseas than here at home. >> the president's announcement to withdraw troops from syria, do you think that contributed to this attack today? >> no, i'm not going to say that. i do think the announcement to withdraw was wrong and it could have fuelled isis recruiting efforts because they can say, look, we defeated the united states.
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but this was contributed by a very evil person or people with no regard for human life that would do this against american soldiers, that would walk into cafes with innocent children and blow themselves up all in the name of what they think their god represents. this is a cancer that needs crushed and it needs rejected within the ideology of islam. >> i do wonder -- you say this is a boon for recruiting for isis, this announcement. are u.s. troops less safe after the president has made this announcement? before today there has been only two u.s. deaths killed in action in syria since the campaign began there in 2014/2015. do you think we're going to see more of this now? >> i don't know. agai again, i do know this. i know when america retreats, chaos fills a vacuum. we were critical against
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president obama for leaving iraq. you have to maintain that same level of criticism then when it's the president that's of your party or anything else. this is a fight we have to lean forward on. the american troops are very very able to defend themselves in a fair fight. but when you send somebody to walk into a crowd and blow themselves up, that's a tough thing to defend against. >> i do wonder, congressman, another one of the reasons the president cited getting troops out of syria is he didn't want to have to make any more calls to the family members of those killed in action. that's exact ly what the president is going to be preparing to do again right now. >> america doesn't retreat. when you sign up to be president and swear in as president, you take on the mantle of having to do tough things like this. you will make decisions that will get americans killed or injured. you will have to make these
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cal calls. that's what happens when you're the greatest country in the world that's the target of these people. i couldn't even imagine having to do that part of the job, but it's what you sign up for. >> thank you. >> take care. coming up for us, the record breaking government shutdown is taking a growing toll on americans coast to coast now. airports in disarray, u.s. service members are now going unpaid, and the white house says it could get a lot worse. plus, can the government shutdown shut down the state of the union? that might be what happens. what nancy pelosi is asking for. my experience with usaa has been excellent. they really appreciate the military family and it really shows. with all that usaa offers why go with anybody else? we know their rates are good, we know that they're always going to take care of us. it was an instant savings and i should have changed a long time ago. it was funny because when we would call another insurance company, hey would say "oh we can't beat usaa" we're the webber family. we're the tenney's we're the hayles, and we're usaa members for life.
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the government shutdown
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enters day 26. now could the state of the union address be the latest thing on the chopping block? a short time ago we learned that speaker of the house nancy pelosi is asking the president to postpone his manned address planned address to congress for the end of this month. >> this is a housekeeping matter in the so we can honor the responsibility of the invitation we extended to the president. he can make it from the oval office. >> phil mattingly, what are you hearing about this? >> reporter: the rationale is that both the department of home land security and the secret service, who are crucial players in the security effort which is bringing the full government to bear given the shear number of vips and top level officials in the building for an address. those workers are not being
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funded. because of those restraints, speaker pelosi is saying it should be pushed off. the president has been planning that the speech writers working on this speech, if the government shutdown is still shut down are planning on taking this mantle and making it a major push to fund the border wall. another key point that need to be kept in mind is that speaker pelosi is the one who decides this. this isn't so much as ask as it is a tell. the speaker invites the president. yes they agreed on the date of january 29th. in order for a state of the union to occur, both the senate and the house need to pass resolutions to give it a green light. as of this moment, the senate and the house have not done that. speaker most has eer pelosi can whether or not this happens.
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right now nobody's seeing an end to the shutdown at any point in the near future. right now the gang of bipartisan senators has put together a draft letter they're circulating. inside that letter it says quote we respectfully request that you join us in supporting a resolution of three weeks to give congress time to vote on a bipartisan agreement that addresses your request. that letter was addressed to the president. it's still unclear how many people will sign it or whether it gets sent at all. there's no newly scheduled meeting of this group to meet. the idea of a short-term continuing resolution has been proposed to the president both
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by democrats and by senator lindsey graham. it has been rejected several times. it's unclear why anybody thinks this is going to shift. sources that i'm talking to don't have a lot of optimism right now. but people are talking and that's better than people not talking. whether or not that leads to anything, i think, is still very much an open question. >> things can change quickly especially if they get some democrats to sign onto this. then you have democrats on the record saying we're willing to go through regular order and have a conversation and debate th this. so you, of course, were spot on. when it comes to the letter from nancy pelosi to donald trump, she says that she suggests that they work together to find another date. but as you're laying out, she's not suggesting. she's telling him.
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>> reporter: can you replay the part where you said i'm spot on again? >> never. >> reporter: this is an initial offer to change the date or submit it in writing. then we can work together and get that done. but she is the ultimate decider on this. she is the one who decide whether or not a joint session of congress will occur for a state of the union. if she decides not to, it won't happen. >> is it wrong to say that nancy pelosi has said the state of the union address in the form that we know it, it's off? >> reporter: i think that's fair at this moment. the initial entreaty was let's work together and try and figure out a new date. to your point, things can happen fast. nothing has been happening for so long that perhaps this jars them to start talking again. we don't know what's going to happen next on this. yes, at this moment i would say if you're planning on spending
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the night in the capital in january 29th, you're probably not going to see a state of the union address on the house floor. >> no one's planning to do that other than you. i'm just saying. great to see you. coming up, the president's top economic advisor has a new warning on how the shutdown is hurting the u.s. economy. it's bad. but how bad is it going to get?
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a moment from now at the white house president trump will be meeting with a group of lawmakers in search of an end to the partial government shutdown. there is a big elephant in the room today. the white house economists now believe that the shutdown will be twice as bad for the economy than they originally predicted. the situation grows more dire with each passing day. according to the "new york times" the administration calculate that is the shutdown reduces quarterly economic growth by .13% for every week that it goes on. so far that means nearly half a percentage point of lost growth. and it is affecting real people in a very real way. the irs is officially now calling 36,000 furloughed workers back to work to process tax filings and refunds.
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but again, those workers still aren't going to get paid while they're doing this work. that's also the case for 40,000 active duty members of the coast guard. it's believed to be the first time in u.s. history that any members of the u.s. military have gone unpaid during a shutdown. let's talk more about the real world impact. jessica, it sounds like private businesses in the face of the shutdown, private businesses are starting to step up to help. what are you learning? >> reporter: that's exactly right. what's important to remember is this is happening all across the nation. we happen to be in washington, d.c. right now. what we're seeing is renowned chef jose andres opening up this restaurant, a popup of sorts for any federal worker in the area. any federal worker can show their id and get a free hot lunch or dinner. they also have meals to take home to their families. they said they're expecting to
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serve at least a couple thousand meals just today. andres is known for going to disaster zones, hurricane maria and the california wivef wildfi. he said this is a disaster of a different kind but it is a disaster and he wants to do something about it. inside they're serving those hot meals. i also found out this doesn't work without volunteers. a lot of the furloughed workers are the ones inside cooking up these meals as their colleagues come through the line to get a hot meal. it is washington, d.c. but we have seen coast guard members in ohio who are baking bread because they don't want to buy bread. we've been talking to people who are now thinking about getting a second job. these are very real impacts for people's bottom lines. it's the uncertainty. these people don't know when they're going to get a paycheck again. it's one thing to plan for that. it's another thing to know that it has no end in sight. here in washington this is
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what's being done. we've also heard in other parts of the country that different restaurants are offering free meals to people with federal ids and their families. >> let's go from washington now to miami where rosa is. what are you learning about the impact on the coast guard specifically and why they're not getting paid? >> reporter: there's a lot of frustration. families trying to scramble to make ends meet. but it's important to point out the service that these men and women do. these brave men and women stop drug traffickers and human smugglers coming from from central and south america. they patrol our ports. during hurricane season these are the men and women that rush to rising waters and conduct dramatic rescues to take people to safety. instead of getting paid yesterday, they actually received notice. here is part of what that notice said. quote, today you will not be receiving your regularly
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scheduled paycheck. to the best of my knowledge, this marks the first time in our nation's history that service members in a u.s. armed force have not been paid during a lapse in appropriations. nearly 42,000 u.s. coast guard personnel are also active duty military. these men and women serve here at home and abroad. they have d.o.d. e-mails and badges, but their paycheck comes from the dhs budget and not from the d.o.d. budget. that's why they' ee're caught i this partial shutdown. their families struggling to make ends meet. service members are not allowed to talk to the media, but we have spoken to some outspoken spouses. take a listen. >> there's so much stress and it's not something that we should have to go through. i've spent so much time stressing about this, contacting people. at the end of the day we're a military family and yes we're
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proud to be here and serve, but at the same time it's a little disheartening to have to reach out to people for money or take community resources. >> reporter: here is the bottom line. the most powerful country in the world with the largest department of defense budget has tens of thousands of service members serving their country without a paycheck. >> it makes no sense whatsoever. rosa, thank you so much. really appreciate it. the 2020 presidential campaign coming up for us is just getting started, but it is already making history. kirsten gillibrand is the latest candidate to throw her hat in the ring.
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this morning the latest democrat to jump into the race for president held her first public event since announcing her decision. new york senator kirsten gillibrand wasting no time today to take on the president. let me play it for you. >> president trump has chosen to tear this country apart against all racial lines, all religious lines, every division, every line you can find. that is what we have to fight against. this is going to be a very
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different campaign because we're willing to take on those systems of power that do not want americans to have that opportunity. >> 2020 will now be the first presidential race in u.s. history to feature go female senators running for a party's nomination at the same time. right now three women have announced, gillibrand, warren and gabbard. that's not all because kamala harris and amy klobuchar are also being looked at as possibly throwing their hats into the ring as well. it's great to see you guys. chris, with every candidate that gets into the growing democratic field, the question is what's their lane, right? elizabeth warren is to the far left. joe biden is kind of the quintessential centrist.
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where does gillibrand fit in? >> that's the fundamental problem and the question she has to answer. she's not terribly well known. she's not joe biden or elizabeth warren or beto o'rourke with terms of name recognition. she's going to portray herself as a mother, someone who is looking out for the future of her young children, someone who has been a voice in the senate standing up for women and someone who won't be bullied by trump. there's a line in her announcement video that she released on twitter where she says i'm not afraid of him. you heard that echo in her announcement speech today. can she emerge as the distinctive fighter, the person who's going to stand up against trump in a field that's going to be massive, two dozen plus can'can' candidates potentially. >> we are looking at history already.
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already there are three women in the race and there could be two more. what does this moment mean? >> well, as you point out, it's a historic moment. we've never seen a presidential field with multiple women running. hillary clinton was the first and only for a really long time. it's really difficult to understand how this is all going to play out, not only because i think the country's in a different moment in terms of our conversation about gender than america was even back in 2016 but also because hillary clinton is an imperfect test case for how gender plays in presidential politics because there's so much history there. she's been a public figure for so long and her political stature is really intertwined with that of her husband. so it's really difficult to separate out her gender from all those other factors. and i think it's going to be a much more robust conversation
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about gender. at the end of this primary at least we're going to have a deeper understanding about where the country is in terms of women in terms of breaking that highest, hardest glass ceiling. >> why are candidates like warren and gillibrand and gabbard jumping in so early? >> putting together a presidential campaign is a really hard and complicated thing to do. you can't really hire people or spend money or go travel with funds you're raising for that purpose unless you declare and get in the race. there are federal campaign laws around that. i think people want to build a robust operation. i think for gillibrand, she does not have a high name id. so there's an advantage for her getting in there, building an operation. she does have a pretty robust list of supporters because she has been involved with supporting female candidates for
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many years. she doesn't have the national name id of some of the other candidates. >> chris, also happening today bernie sanders is meeting with former campaign staffers who say that they have faced harassment and sexism during his 2016 campaign. his initial apology in some ways required a redo. let me play what he had said to cnn about this. >> i am not going to sit here and tell you that we did everything right in terms of human resources in terms of addressi ining that i'm hearingt women felt disrespected, that there was sexual harassment which was not dealt with as effectively as possible. >> with this meeting today, is he going to be able to move past this if he gets back into the race? >> i don't know the answer to that. he has a committed group of supporte supporters. this is a different time for candidates even than 2016.
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it's very different in terms of the culture and what people are going to be asking of their candidates. the fact that bernie sanders in his 2016 campaign was unaware at best of situations of sexual harassment going on in his campaign is of concern. his apology in which he essentially said, look, i was traveling around the country, i was unaware of it. that doesn't cut it. i think he knows it doesn't cut it. he's trying to fix this problem now. we'll see. 20 years ago, sure, maybe this would be, well, a blip on the radar. i'm not sure that we can dismiss anything of this nature. i know we shouldn't have done it then. i'm pretty sure that now it's a very different world that he is existing in. >> thanks, guys. really appreciate it. coming for us, speaker of the house nancy pelosi sent a letter to president trump citing
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security concerns. she is asking him to present his state of the union address either in written form only or postpone it to another day after the government reopens. what does this really mean? coming up. for a nasty cold, take new dayquil severe with vicks vapocool. [a capella] whoa! and vaporize it with an intense rush of vicks vapors. [a capella] ahhhhhhhhhh! new dayquil severe with vicks vapocool. when someone told me i hadorget what colon cancer. we had the follow up cat scan, which showed that it had gone to her liver. it was pretty intense, and we had to move pretty quickly. we needed a second opinion. that's when our journey began with
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now entering its 26th day the partial government shutdown is still the longest in history. a new wrinkle in the standoff now is the state of the union address. we learned that nancy pelosi asked the president to postpone
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his address to congress scheduled for later this month, or offer it in writing only due to security concerns. so what does this mean for the fight now between democrats and the president over the government, over the border wall? joining me is house majority leader sonny hoyer. do you have any updates for us? >> we're working towards -- we've cancelled the recess. we'll come back next week. we've already passed seven bills which would have opened up part or all of the remaining parts of government shutdown, put people back to work and more importantly, as importantly, pay them, give them a paycheck so they can put food on their table, can pay their mortgage, pay their car payment and live and not have great anxiety about not getting paid.
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so we're going to come back from recess. we're not going to have it. and we're going to come back and on wednesday we're going to put on the floor full appropriation bills for the remaining part of the year which have already been essentially agreed to between the senate and the house. we hope that we can pass that. that assumes that we don't open up government before then. we would urge the president to open up government now because we have seven bills they could pass. >> it seems a safe assumption that things can change but it will still be closed when folks get back. >> kate, can i just make a point? >> of course. >> while people will be leaving, they are subject to a 24-hour call that any time we can in fact if the senate acts, if the senate sends a bill back to us, we will be prepared to pass it and open up the government. >> i did want to ask you that,
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because they're leaving on thursday, coming back on tuesday. that's the latest i heard. why let folks go home at all? >> because just having them sit here is not productive. and we want -- >> when republicans were in charge, i remember democrat after democrat saying we're here ready to work. why are we going on recess for a variety of reasons? >> we are here essentially. we want people going home talking to their people, talking to people who rely on the government for services every day and doing the stories.
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frankly, senator mcconnell who thinks this is a failed policy of shutting down government. kevin mccarthy, the minority leader said it is unacceptable that we have 800,000 people being unpaid. he is absolutely correct. mcconnell is absolutely correct. those two simply, as equal branches of government, ought to pass bills to open up the government which we passed >> let me ask you about the state of union. the speaker cites security concerns for wanting to postpone it. is this about security concerns or is this about not wanting to give the president a platform in the middle of this fight? >> i think this is about opening up government and saying we're not going to have business as usual as long as this government is shut down.
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to work so that the tax refunds can get paid. i think that's right that we want to get the tax refund sent out, but what is wrong is that we don't open up government and facilitate that happening. the president's trying to ease the government and stick with it. shutting down government must want be the strategy of negotiations in the democracy. i don't know any government in the world that shuts itself down. and the shutdown the government and shut down, and after he made an agreement with mcconnell and the united states.
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>> i do have another question about the state of the union. the letter from pelosi says that she suggests we work together to determine another suitable date. that's how she wrote it. the letter sounds like she'si asking him, but isn't she just telling him that this is off until the government is open? >> the speaker is the one who invites the president to speak in the joint session and she has said as long as the government is shut down we're not going to be doing business as usual, and -- >> the state of the union is off? >> the state of the union is off. >> what if the president -- i don't know, responds with no, he wants to keep the date. any chance that he could convince you otherwise? >> no. our response will be mr. president, if you want to open up the government the senate has seven bills they can use and we'll send an eighth bill
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tomorrow -- today to them that will include disaster relief and there are two disasters and the disasters that is caused by natural causes, natural phenomena and the disaster that has been caused by the president of the united states of shutting down government and locking out 800,000 people from getting paid the money that they have earned. >> congressman, leadership, you guys are not speaking, if you will, negotiating with president trump, but there are some democrats that are over at the white house meeting with the president, members of the caucus today. do you support them going over to meet with the president? >> a couple of them talked to me and i said, look, if the president of the united states wants to meet with a group as opposed to individually, if he wants to meet with the group, he's the president of the united states. i certainly have no objection to your going over and talking to him -- >> did you empower them to strike a deal?
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>> no. they don't have the authority to strike a deal and each of us have the authority to go and listen to proposals, but i know the message that all of them have sent out is the government needs to be open now and it needs to be opened first. >> congressman steny hoyer, thank you very much, i appreciate you coming in. >> kate, thank you very much. breaking news this morning. we have american service members in syria killed in a possible suicide blast claimed by isis. the shocking video of the attack coming in and the latest reports of what really happened. that's next. ♪ when cravings hit, hit back. choose glucerna, with slow release carbs to help manage blood sugar, and start making everyday progress. glucerna.
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the xfinity store is here. and it's simple, easy, awesome. ♪ welcome to "inside politics." i'm john king. a big breaking news day. thank you for sharing it with us. u.s. soldiers killed in a marketplace bombing in syria. isis claims responsibility for that explosion after president trump says isis is beaten and it's time for american troops to come home. the government shutdown is hurting the economy and a new power play from the house speaker nancy pelosi. she calls on the president to delay his state of the union address or just submit a report in writing if the shutdown isn't resolved this week. a new 2020 contender for the


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