Skip to main content

tv   Americas News HQ  FOX News  February 27, 2017 11:00am-12:01pm PST

11:00 am
knew, they were not. most of you probably saw chairman nunez's comments this morning. he was very clear number one that he reached out to us to say i've been telling people, and then we shared that information with him. but he came to us to share that he equally had that issue brought up to him. he was briefed and felt, quote, no evidence that the story was accurate. so, the answer is, you know, we have continued to give reporters information and sources that went to the accuracy or lack there of, of a report that was in a newspaper. and i think, you know, i think chairman nunes said it's interesting how we literally were engaging with the press saying, if you have a question about the sourcing on this, obviously when brought to our attention we said, it's not accurate as far as we know. but then most of you and your colleagues would say, of course
11:01 am
you're saying this, but who else could corroborate this? our job was to, when informed, share sources who had equally come to the same conclusion that "the times" story was not accurate. >> you don't think there's something odd about the white house press secretary getting the cia director on the phone? asking about an investigation >> no, no. respectfully you're using words like "knocked down." hold on. reporters coming to us saying there is a story out there, what's your take on it? and our answer was, we don't believe it's accurate. but obviously that's our take on it. reporters were saying to us, well, is there anybody that you can point to that can substantiate this claim? this all started with the fbi coming to us, bringing it to our attention saying that the story in "the times" was not accurate, that it was, in fact, bs. we just said that's great, could you tell other reporters the
11:02 am
same thing you are telling us? i would think other reporters would think that would be a helpful thing, to get the story straight. all we sought to do was to actually get an accurate report out. again, i think chairman nunes this morning, over and over and over again, made it very clear that no evidence has been brought to his attention to suggest that that reporting was accurate. so respectfully, i think it's interesting that i'm being asked what's appropriate when what we're doing is to encourage reporters to engage with people who can corroborate whether something is accurate. >> should there be a special prosecuteer? >> i would say a special prosecutor for what? >> the russian connection. >> right. i guess my question -- >> it was part of the campaign. sessions was part of the campaign. >> jonathan, we have now, for six months, heard story after story come out about unnamed
11:03 am
sources, saying the same thing over and over again. and nothing's come of it. right? we've heard the same people, the same anecdotes. we've heard reports over an over again. as chairman nunes made it very clear, he has seen nothing that corroborates that. at what point do you have to ask yourself what are you investigating? >> where's the interference? >> i think the house and senate have looked at it. you know as well as i do the intelligence community has looked at it. there's a big difference. i think russia's involvement has been investigated up and down. so the question becomes at some point if there's nothing to further investigate, what are you asking people to investigate? chairman nunes spoke very clearly today when asked over and over and over again about all of this and said he has seen nothing that leads him to believe that there's anything there. the president has spoken forcefully time and time again that he has no interest in russia. he hasn't talked to people in russia in years. yet you keep asking -- i say you
11:04 am
collectively -- to try to find something that seemingly, at least the reporting that i'm seeing in different organizations suggests that there's nothing new that's being reported. it's the same stuff over and over again that we've heard for six months. the question becomes what do you need to further investigate if there's nothing that has come out? >> do you not deny there were no contacts between the russians and -- >> i can -- >> that's what an investigation would look at. >> my point is that you had the intelligence community look at russia's involvement in the election. you had the house and the senate both do the same. and so what i'm trying to acertain is at what point -- how many people have to say there's nothing there before you realize there's nothing there? i can't say -- all i'm saying is the people who have done the investigating about russia overall and its activities in the united states, specifically now with respect to our
11:05 am
election, haven't provided anything to lead me to believe or should lead you to believe, and i continue to see reports coming from media sources saying when they checked in with law enforcement or intelligence community sources. there's nothing more than has been previously reported over and over again. so at some point you do have to ask yourself what are you actually looking for? how many times do you have to come to the same conclusion before you take the answer? that's what i'm saying. mara? >> just to follow-up, did you personally reach out -- >> i'm not going to say what we discussed internally. we did our job about making sure that when people had -- reporters had questions, we let them know what subject matter experts were available to discuss the accuracy of a newspaper story. mara? >> i'm sure people will come back to the budget question, which is during the campaign, the president said he was not going to touch medicare, social security. treasury secretary repeated that. sounds like the director was
11:06 am
leaving that as an open question. >> no, no. >> i wonder what's the state of the promise? he won't touch it for current retirees? anyone paying in? >> what the director made clear is how it works. the budget is dealing with the top line discretionary numbers. policy decisions are not part of the budget. that's what he was being asked. i just want to be clear. >> what's the promise? >> it is clear. as you point out, he had made the promise. he stands by the promise. >> what is the promise? current retirees? >> i will follow up specifically on that. the president made clear it is not his intent to do. he wants to focus on the discretionary side. entitlement reform, with respect to the programs he mentioned, he stands by his word. brett lucas? >> an executive order on religious freedom.
11:07 am
will that still come? if it does, will it extend beyond the legislative -- >> i'm sorry, what? >> will it extend beyond the johnsons? >> i think we've discussed executive orders in the past. for the most part we're not going to get into discussing what may or may not come until we are ready to release it. >> i'm sorry. just one more. the issue of tax reform. is there any concern there won't be enough reserve for that? >> i'm not gonna get into specifics of tax reform today. the president has made clear that we'll have an outline of a plan very soon. what i will say, he talked about the concerns that he has with current and regulatory tax policy that benefit people from
11:08 am
moving out of the country and shipping products back in while shedding american workers. he will continue to fight for policies that promote manufacturing and job creation in the united states and supports american workers. so i don't want to get ahead of the exact nature of policy. he's been seeking a lot of input. he's going to talk today with speaker ryan and senator mcconnell. i know that both the joint session, state is repeal and replace. i'm sure some discussion of tax reform will probably come up. we're continuing to move forward and meet with them. >> on the isis strategy. can you get to the timetable now that you are receiving it, what happens. there's a report you're asking for $30 billion on top of the 54 in the budget for defense spending. is that true? does that cover the new exit strategy? >> thank you. right now literally that principles meeting that i mentioned is happening as we
11:09 am
speak. secretary madis was coming over stpargs the isis plan. part of it was to make sure that he fully discusses the recommendations that he's making and seek the input and feed back of the other principles downstairs. that can help guide where we go, how we go. right now the focus is on the budget. then we'll go from there. >> thank you. two brief questions. first i read your statement thursday briefing to governor malloy of connecticut. he said, quote, sean didn't read the thing that i said. he said in connecticut they are already working to get criminals who are in the country illegally out. his objection was to going into warming centers and schools where officials might frighten the children. your response on that? >> again, i was asked specifically what the comments
11:10 am
were with respect to sanctuary cities. i would reiterate, that i'm not here to pick a fight with the governor. the reality is that there's a difference. whether or not what he wants to do with state funds, maybe -- without knowing the exact nature of what he's funding, it's difficult. the question i was asked at the time was on how we would be handling it. the answer, whether it's connecticut or california is that the president's executive order and the president's commitment is to make sure that tax dollars are not used to support programs that are helping people who are not in the country legally and who are not citizens entitled to them. >> one more question, sean. 58 years when presidents have gone to rome they've always met the pope going back to when president eisenhower met the
11:11 am
pope. one year ago this week candidate trump had a disagreement with this pope and an exchange of words. when he goes to rome in may for his first european trip, will he meet with this pope? >> that's a great question. i would be a huge fan of that. but i'm not gonna -- i don't think we're at that place in the planning process to make an announcement on any visits with the pope. >> two budget questions. mr. mulvaney said it doesn't add to the current budget but did say it wouldn't significantly drop from that. is the administration comfortable putting something forward that might rack up deficits of potentially hundreds of billions of dollars? >> i'm trying to understand the question, if you can help me with it. >> he said it wasn't going to add to it.
11:12 am
he didn't necessarily say it was going to cut from it either. if it doesn't cut from it, it could potentially be hundreds of billions in deficits. >> correct me if i'm wrong, he said it doesn't add to the baseline deficit, right? that continues to be the goal. as we continue to work through the process, it can work both ways. we can identify further savings and reductions working with the agencies and departments. but we're going to make sure the top line number we maintain as close to that as possible. this is the beginning of the process. we send the kwrub to the department or agency. give them some ideas of how we came up with it. then they come back to us and either justify why a particular program or office or what have you needs to stay in existence or why maybe not the reduction that is offered. it's a back and forth process that will occur over the next few weeks. >> let me ask you to what nancy
11:13 am
pelosi said. she put out a staple and said, five weeks into his administration president trump has not introduced a single jobs bill. your reaction to that would be what? >> we've created a lot of jobs. he's continuing to work with congress on repealing and replacing obama care, tax reform. fundamentally both of those two items alone i think can help spur a lot of economic growth. the meetings we've had with the ceo's, the health insurers, there's so many things that are job killing and it can be done to promote a better regulatory and tax climate that leads to job creation. that's one of the biggest problems. people in washington aren't necessarily talking to job creators. what is the impediment that you have to hiring more american workers? to manufacturing or to building here? the meetings and the actions that the president has taken on
11:14 am
both regulatory and other matters have helped spur creation. you heard these companies come in over and over again, the automakers, the airlines, sprint. the list goes on and on. of people saying to the president because of your agenda, because of your vision, we're willing to commit to hiring additional people to manufacture more. that's how jobs are created. it's not through the government. too often it's the government regulations that stifle and prevent job creation. i think president, as a businessman, fully appreciates and understands how this works and what some of those impediments do to creating jobs and to growing the economy. i would just say that you haven't seen anything yet. it's going to continue to be the case. >> is the concern of the administration that a large scale military buildup will lead to some sort of arms race with other countrys? >> no. i think when you look at the state of some of the
11:15 am
infrastructure of the age of some ships or planes or hardware that exists, you recognize that we need to rebuild a lot of these things. the size of the navy has gone down significantly. there are new needs and new planning. when you look at the commitment that you have to make not just in one year but several years for a lot of these programs, ships and tanks, even weapons systems, they don't get built in a month or a day. you have to make a commitment to make the investment because of the time that it takes to procure them, to build them, the research and development that goes into it. i would suggest to you that this is the first step in making sure we make the commitment to our military that especially over the last few years has not got the funding it needs to get off life support. there are a lot of things being taken care of in the military where they're just continuing to -- they're not putting the systems and the projects in place to allow the military to
11:16 am
keep up with the times. that's the problem. >> -- said the government owes my son an investigation. on behalf of the president of the united states, is the president open to an investigation into the raid in yemen and the father of ryan owens called that a stupid mission. is it something you'd like to communicate to him about that mission that might persuade him otherwise? >> yeah, thank you. let me walk through it slowly. first of all, i can't possibly imagine what he's going through in terms of the loss of a son. i can tell him on behalf of the president, his son died a hero. and the information that he was able to help obtain through that raid, as i said before, was gonna save american lives. it's going to protect our
11:17 am
country more. he made a sacrifice for his country. he was on his 12th deployment. i know his wife, when she spoke to the president, knows that he did this because he loved it. he cared about our nation. and the mission was successful in helping prevent a future attack or attacks on this nation. it obtained a lot of information that will help keep us safe. with respect to his request, it is standard operating procedure for the department of defense to under go what they call a 156 review. that review in this case is three pronged. because there was a fatality and loss of life, there's that. because there were civilians involved, that's another. then third is because there is hardware, helicopter, that was damaged. that is separate. in fact, there will be three reviews done by the department of defense because of the nature of this.
11:18 am
but again, i can't stress enough that on behalf of the president, on behalf of the nation, we express our condolences, extend our prayers to him during this time. >> you said it is standard procedure. is there anything in particular that the president is curious about in this mission, in that it was brought to him, he authorized it. does he believe there is nothing that he's particularly curious about in the way either of the helicopter was damaged, fatality, civilian casualties? >> well, number one i walked through the timetable previously. in terms of how long this had been planned for. dating well back into the previous administration. their recommendation at the time was to wait for a moonless night. that night wasn't going to occur during president obama's administration. when general mattis got into the
11:19 am
department of defense, he was briefed up on the status, made aware of when the next night would be. we went through the process to make sure that we continued to believe that the mission, the way it was going to be conducted and the results of the mission would be worthy of action. the conclusion continued to be as it was prior. that we should move forward. as i mentioned before, i think you can't ever say when there's most importantly loss of life and people injured that it's 100% successful. when you look at what the stated goal of that mission was, it was an phoergs and intelligence gathering mission. it ap achieved its objective. i would express our thoughts and prayers and condolences to all of the people and chief owens family and friends, his ship
11:20 am
mates, but it's something that, as a seal who has been deployed 12 times, he knew that this was part of the job. he knew what he was doing. so we were very comfortable with how the mix was executed. we'll let the department of defense go through that review process. see where that leads us. i think to get ahead of the three separate reviews being done by the department of defense would be irresponsible. >> real quick. as you are aware, to the defense sequester you to get 60 votes in the senate because you have a separate domestic sequester number. are you confident with these numbers and this heavy discretionary spending proposed you can get to 60 votes to change the law? without that change in law the proposal is just that. it doesn't become law?
11:21 am
>> i think that when it comes to our nation's security specifically our nation's military, i don't think that it's a partisan issue. i think senators from across the country, whether you're talking about florida, whether you've got an army installation or navy base, you understand the state of repair that many of our planes, ships and other hardware are in. i think there's a bipartisan commitment to give the military and its members the equipment and the tools it needs to succeed and protect this country. so i do feel country. april? >> sean, i have a couple of budgetary questions for you. one, at the press conference, president trump talked about the six states. what is the investment when it comes to that? >> that's a good try.
11:22 am
i think the director -- part of the process was to start that process where we're going to the various departments, whether hud or dot and giving them that top line number and then hearing back. i don't want to get into a specific number with you before we get too far down the process. i think that's a conversation that we're going to have with the agency and then we will have subsequently with congress when they start drafting their resolution. >> he talked about health care. he talked about education. he talked about, continues to talk about chicago and law enforcement. so you don't have any kind of budgetary numbers? health care is one of the line items for this budget. >> that's right. i'm not saying we don't have numbers. i'm saying we're not giving them out. that's a big difference. you're going to do a good job frying. as the director noted on this, they have come up with top line
11:23 am
numbers based on their going through each of these agency's budgets saying hey, there's a program here. in some cases maybe they give them more, maybe less. part of it is to begin that process with the departments and agencies to figure out what those investments are. maybe it's repurposing existing funds in a different way. it's not necessarily a zero sum game. there is a way the department can reallocate money to a program that might end up benefitting because there's an out of date program or office that that savings could be applied to something. but i don't want to get ahead of the process right now, only to say that we are at the very beginning of it. >> president is going to seize 80 plus presidents with the vice president. some are very concerned as to what this executive order looks like. they are waiting to hear the commitment before they say i'm
11:24 am
all in. what is the commitment that this president is trying to make when it comes to ensure i guess the future or deal with some funding, research projects or moving it out of the department of education to the per view of the white house. what is the commitment he is going to give? >> i don't generally speak about executive orders until they are finalized. i will just say that one of the things i think there's a commitment from this white house to do is to look at the various resources throughout the federal government that support hvcu's. for example the department of defense has rotc programs. are they being properly -- is that funding being properly executed and spent? there's programs within each of the departments, department of education, department of housing and urban development, that affect grants or programs or direct funding that go to hpcu's
11:25 am
for various things, whether it's construction projects or teaching programs or mentorship programs. whatever it is. they expand throughout the entire government. i think that what we are committed to doing is ensuring that there is a high level understanding and commitment that goes straight to the president of how we harness those resources within the government and make sure that they're doing what they're supposed to be doing. it's one thing to have them, right, spread throughout the different departments. it's another thing to make sure that there's a direct pipeline to the president of the united states that those programs are being executed in a way that's benefitting the future of hpcu's and the various projects and teaching that goes on there. >> so what are you saying? there's going to be a piece that will go through the agencies to make sure there is some kind of commitment to hpcu's and contract like let's say engineering for some schools or
11:26 am
research for other schools? >> i think i'm going to stick to waiting until we announce it. i anticipate it very soon, how's that? i want to give myself a little wiggle room. >> budget related question but on infrastructure. the president has repeatedly, including today again, called for major infrastructure plan to the tune of a trillion dollars, roads, bridges, tunnels. can you explain where that money will come from? how it fits into the budget that's under review right now and what the timeline for that project would be? >> that would be part of a longer term discussion that we're having with congress. the president got in office 30 some odd days ago. the idea of getting a budget referred to as a skinny budget to get the government to continue be if funding. i understand your point. the president continues to talk about the state -- >> he said it was a priority for him. >> it is. we have to make sure that it's
11:27 am
done right. that we work through congress. there's obviously a funding mechanism to this. we've already talked about things like comprehensive tax reform that could add to that discussion. and so i just -- i understand what you're asking, in terms of how this will be funded and when it will be coming and the pay for it, but we're working with congress. that probably comes outside the budget. >> how does he square that with the need to tighten the belt? >> in the same manner that we're presenting the budget. we're talking of adding $54 trillion, billion dollars. thank you. appreciate the help. but we're looking to add that to defense. so what it means is that we have to fine reductions in savings. that same kind of discussion would have happened with respect to infrastructure. not necessarily the savings
11:28 am
piece but the funding piece. there's several ways. i know there's a lot of discussion private/public partnerships that he has started to have a discussion with in terms of the funding mechanism. all i'm trying to get at is there are various ways to do this funding without just relying on the american taxpayer in terms of additional taxes. there are spending reductions, there are other funding mechanisms. i think in due course we will get around to that discussion. >> he mentioned today that as he drives through the queen smith town tunnel and the lincoln tunnel, he worries about ceiling tiles falling. is there a specific incentive he was talking about where people have been injured or is that just a fear of his? >> i don't know. i'll ask him. i'm sure secret service will take care of that. alexis? >> sean, question. first one health care. because the director was signaling the complete budget would be maybe ready early may
11:29 am
and the president today describes how complicated he's discovered that the health care repeal and replace has become. can you describe when it is that the president would present his framework for an overhaul of health care? is it going to be included in the budget so that we can see it before stphaeu >> i don't think you're going to see it in the budget. that's not the appropriate vehicle for it. i think you would drive or at least the leading option before i get locked into something, is to add obama care to the fy17 budget process and put it through reconciliation. i think he has also been very clear that he wants this outlined within a matter of weeks and that we continue to have these discussions with house and senate leadership, ways and means and similar finance on the senate side. so when he talks to speaker ryan and leader mcconnell today, i'm sure that conversation will
11:30 am
continue. >> just to follow up on health care. is not every ingredient in the affordable care act happen in reconciliation? that's why i was asking about theme the elements of it. >> there are several pieces of obama care. some can be done with executive care, some with 50 votes. there are certain things that have to be done certain ways legislatively to create a comprehensive and wholistic approach. we're aware of that. we're working with the house and senate to make that happen. >> all right. the immigration executive order, travel ban. is the president going to address the american people and congress in his speech tomorrow night and specifically describe and defend the immigration ban? and when will we see the revised executive order? >> we're not going to -- i would not anticipate the speech being
11:31 am
a defense of legislation and executive orders. i don't think many previous presidents have gotten through and used that as a legislative walk through. but you will hear about his commitment to immigration and his desire for border security and what it means not just about keeping the nation safe, but what impact it's having on the economy. so you will hear a lot about immigration tomorrow night. he will talk about why it matters and the goal we have and why we should come together. hold on. caitlin? next order i think we should have it out probably middle of this week. looking towards the middle of the week. we'll have further updates as we get through the schedule. our goal today was to prepare for the joint session. caitlin? >> gerald ford in 2015
11:32 am
identified $125 billion in wasteful pentagon spending. how can you justify adding $54 billion to the defense budget? is that going to go to hiring soldiers or contractors? is the president concerned with wasteful spending at the dod? >> of course he is concerned. i think there's a big difference between rooting out waste and fraud in various programs and offices and understanding that when you're talking about adding to the fleet or increasing airplane costs, that can't be driven just through those. the commitment you have to make to purchase some of those very needed upgrades to our infrastructure and to our arsenal and to planes, ships, doesn't just come through that. because even if you could start to really identify it you wouldn't make the financial commitment that needs to be done to build the ships and planes in particular that need a substantial investment on the front end. john? >> if i could follow-up on
11:33 am
alexis question. 9th circuit court of appeals -- just in the last few minutes. do you plan to continue defending your first executive order in court? what's the purpose of doing that as opposed to simply rescinding it and then rendering that case moot? >> i haven't been able to read my phone while this has happened. i appreciate it. with all due respect, i would ask that i be able to get back to you tomorrow after we consult with the counsel's office and it goes through the reading of what the court has said. give me a little time, let me get off the podium. >> the question still standing. >> i understand that. i think the president has made a commitment to continue to defend what we did. hold on. because this is the strategy that he believes that we have the authority vested in u.s. code. i talked about this extensively
11:34 am
in the past. i think that if you allow me, once we get done with the briefing, i will follow up. >> some of us are trying to understand. if you have a new order that addresses the concerns of the many courts that have weighed in on this, why continue to defend an executive order? >> because we were right the first time. it's not a question of proving a point. it's that the manner in which it was done in the first place was what we believe and continue to believe was the right way to address this problem. while the second executive order attempts to address the court's concerns that they made, the goal is obviously to maintain the way we did it the first time because we believe that the law is very clear about giving the president the authority that he needs to protect the country. so, just dropping that is not necessarily a prudent thing. part of it is for us to recoupe,
11:35 am
figure out what the court has said and assess the strategy. i don't want to get ahead. you're reading it to me now. i would like the opportunity to read it and have a lawyer read it. go ahead. >> thank you. is there anything -- [ inaudible ] >> when can it be lifted? i think we have to go through the process to lift the sequest sequester. some of the things we have seen at jewish cemeteries, look, we have to work with law enforcement at the local and state level. i will leave to it the justice department to comment further on what additional steps can be made. as has been pointed out, one of the things we can do is speak from this podium to make sure every american understands what our values are and that that kind of behavior and activity is
11:36 am
wrong and won't be tolerated. and the highest levels of government denounce it. so i think it starts there. i think there's a law enforcement component that i would ask you to touch base with. >> on the budget i understand this is a blue print. i understand the president has previously said he doesn't want to touch entitlements. but why does he think it's the right move to break with years of republican orthodox, house speaker paul ryan has said any sensible long term budget needs to include -- >> i think the president understands the commitment that was made to seniors in particular. and that's a sacred bond and trust. mara asked this earlier. let me get back to you on the specifics, but he made a commitment to the american people. one of the things the president continues to get high marks on is regardless of whether you voted for him or not, he is a man of his word. he has followed up on the promises that he made to the
11:37 am
american people. i think that's important. i think we will continue to work with congress. but the president understands that we have commitments that we've made on the entitlement side in particular. especially on the senior side with respect to social security, that need to be maintained. so he's gonna keep his word to the american people. >> saying social security, medicare won't be there in a number of years? >> for right now i think the budget we're laying out deals on the discretionary side. you heard the president's priorities and commitment, especially when it comes to protecting this country. >> one more. is there an internal leak inquiry right now? >> not that i'm aware of. >> thank you very much. i have two questions. >> when president trump took
11:38 am
office, first official -- [ inaudible ]. >> what is the white house expectation of his visit? >> so the state counselor and for those not schooled in chinese government, is the basically the equivalent of our nsa director, nsc director, right? >> correct. >> the ambassador and the state counselor came today. they are meeting with hr mcmaster, and some others stat in on the meeting. they had a delegation of six people here. after the meeting ended, i believe state counselor was taken and had an opportunity to say hi to the president before he left. this is an opportunity to begin that conversation. hold on. everybody else got two. >> just this morning president
11:39 am
trump mentioned about his pick for ambassador to china. governor has really positive view on china. how confident is the president on the governor's mission to get support in the senate? >> i think he'll receive tremendous support, bipartisan support. senator graham is a true -- he has huge ties on both sides, one of the longest serving governors in iowa. i think that he has tremendous respect from both sides of the aisle not just for how he's handled himself as a governor in iowa, but his deep understanding and ties to china and china's economy and the chinese officials. i think he's going to do a phenomenal job representing our nation. he starts with an understanding
11:40 am
of the chinese government. that will serve our nation well. mara? >> lot of people voted for donald trump because they agreed that the u.s. was getting ripped off my china. after the election he made the call to taiwan. then he told fox news he said i don't know why we have to be bound by a one china policy unless we make a deal with china. then he reaffirmed the one china policy. so what did he get in return from china for doing that? >> he had a conversation with president chi. i'm not going to get into details. president chi's request. after a discussion, the president reaffirmed the one china policy. the president is not one to discuss hi negotiating tactics. >> did the american people get something? >> the president always gets something. >> what was it? >> follow-up. i noticed earlier today, not of
11:41 am
republican governors but not many democratic governors. is this administration trying to reach out to the other side of the aisle and compromise? >> absolutely. you saw the remarks during the pool opportunity. the president talked about some of the conversations he had with governor mccall from virginia in particular. they were here last night. they had dinner with their lives and husbands. it was an opportunity to talk to the cabinet and get to know each other and talk about priorities. it's interesting. i mentioned obama care. when one of the things that was brought up by the governors and i have to be honest, i wasn't picking which governors and thinking of party, but several commented on how they appreciated in terms of him seeking their input on not just health care, but infrastructure and medicade in particular and health care, other areas that fall into their wheel house. so i think just so we're clear,
11:42 am
the dialogue that exists between this administration and this president and governors i think is a very refreshing move forward. >> i want to clarify something that happened thursday and friday about the public enemy statement. are you saying that all of the press is public enemy? people who didn't vote for the president? just the people in this room? just bill maher and maybe warren beatty? >> i think the president made clear what he was referring to, the fake news and people who ascribe to pushing fake stories is where his target was. >> more than 60 democrats either boycotted or skipped president's inauguration. what kind of reception do you think the president will get tomorrow evening from democrats and the house and senate? >> i hope a very robust and
11:43 am
applause filled reception. the speech, as i mentioned, breaks down a lot of barriers that had traditionally been, political barriers in terms of areas where i think we should find agreement. that reaffirm the president's desire to unite the country and unite our parties that share common ground. the things that he's talking about, increasing the support for military, veterans, helping children get an education, those are things that, hopefully, we can all come together and think are shared american values regardless of party. i hope that we see a tremendous amount of support for the president and his policies and his vision tomorrow night. he recognizes the problems that our nation faces, but he also charts the vision forward. i think it's one that, if people are honest, that they will agree that it really isn't a political agenda as much as an agenda for
11:44 am
the country, and one to move us forward. i think that we'll have to wait and see, but i can tell you that i think it will be a positive move forward. >> couple follow-ups to the question about the isis review. day 30 of the memorandum the president signed. can you give us more timeline when specifically president trump will be involved? i know you mentioned the principles today. separately you mentioned secretary mattis is presenting the principles to the committee. just the military includes public diplomacy, efforts to tie it back. what got us here? where do we go from here? >> thank you. let me, if i phaeurb get briefed on who and what occurred in the meeting to the extent that it's available and i will be glad to get back to you tomorrow on that. i just don't have that information available.
11:45 am
>> [ inaudible ] >> is the president taking any steps to ensure that tax payers aren't saddled with tremendous cost considering he was so critical of his predecessor in that matter? >> well, gabi, the security for the president and first family is set by the secret service. as you know, they determine the security measures that need to be taken to protect the president, frankly, any president. so i'm gonna leave it up to the secret service to decide what security measures and steps are taken to protect the president. as you know, depending on transcending administrations. wherever the president goes they need to make sure the president and first family is safe. something that i think we rely
11:46 am
on the secret service to make those determinations. they continue to do a phenomenal job making sure the first family and the president and vice president are protected. we have full confidence in the decisions they make. so, thank you very much. we'll have a briefing later today on the -- what's that? i would look into the 6:00 hour. >> here? >> yes, here. i get to see you here again. i would plan on around 6:00. we'll have further guidance. i don't anticipate it being long. i think we're just going to walk through, off camera, the themes of the speech, take any questions and then try to get some additional information, depending on where the president is in his read through. >> no briefing tomorrow? >> no briefing tomorrow. if you don't want one, you don't have to have one. >> you said you would get clarification -- >> we will have something for
11:47 am
you, i promise. i will get it back to you. i'm sure you will see my face tomorrow. thank you very much. see you guys tomorrow. >> sandra: all right. that was sean spicer wrapping up his daily briefing. lot of stuff covered there. i'm melissa francis. right now though we want to point you at another news conference that is currently under way. see that there? that's the house intelligence committee ranking democrat member adam shipp. he is speaking on the investigation into any ties with russia. you heard sean spicer talk about this as well. he was responding to calls for a special prosecution on that subject. listen. >> -- is there a license call for a special prosecuteer? >> my question would be a special prosecutor for what? here's my -- >> it was part of the campaign. sessions was part of the campaign. >> jonathan, we have now, for six months, heard story after story come out about unnamed
11:48 am
sources saying the same thing over and over again. and nothing has come of it. >> melissa: in other words, is there anything there? this is after push back after the white house asked the intelligence committee to squash reports of contact between russia and the trump administration. chief intelligence correspondent katherine harrige is live with more. what have we learned? >> reporter: reporters were told that he has seen no evidence that any of president trump's associates had phone con tack with russian intelligence. congressman nunes said nothing he has seen from the agencies indicates that former trump campaign manager paul manafort who resigned, political adviser roger stone, who also left the campaign or businessman jeff carter had contact with russian intelligence. nunes was pressed on the issue this morning and whether those
11:49 am
connections exist. >> there's investigations that the executive branch of government does and there's tphfations that the legislative branch of government does. as of right now we have no evidence, but we will continue to ask an look for evidence not only on the three americans named in that story but also any other american that has contact with rush officials. >> reporter: nunes did not rule out calling president trump's associates to testify on the hill. as you see at this hour the ranking democrat on that very powerful committee is giving his own news conference. he said earlier today that he felt they hadn't had a full briefing from the fbi so it was premature to make any conclusions about what may or may not be a connection between the associates and the russians. >> melissa: in the midst of all of that did we learn anything new about the resignation of national security adviser mike flynn? there are a lot of questions there still unanswered. >> reporter: we did learn some new details.
11:50 am
chairman nunes said a phone call was picked up as part of routine monitoring of the russian ambassador. he said there was no evidence that there was an order from the previous administration to listen in on flynn's phone calls. however, he said there was a decision taken by the obama administration to unmask flynn's identity because americans have special protection when it comes to surveillance and phone calls involving american citizens. the congressman said only a very small number of people have the power tounmask him. >> there should be a record of who in the government knew about general flynn talking to the russian ambassador. from there we should be able to know who is in the realm that we need to talk to. we should be able to find out who within the executive branch knew about the initial conversation and then who went to who to get flynn's name unmasked. that should be a relatively
11:51 am
small number of people. >> reporter: when we say small, we're talking about less than half dozen people. in that category you have to think ab things like the fbi director or the attorney general, or the president himself or those closest to him. also on the issue of the leaking of transcripts between president trump and foreign leaders, the congressman said he this major crime has been committed, though he did not provide any details ability an on going leak investigation, melissa. >> melissa: great reporting as always. thank you. another huge pass today. obama care. let's bring in a democratic strategist an senior director of research for mercedes slap is a former spokes person for president george w. bush. mercedes, sean spicer said, guess what? it's gonna take awhile. americans don't want to hear that. >> yes, the american people are impatient. they want movement quickly. that's one thing president trump wanted to push forward quickly as well, which is let's get
11:52 am
washington moving. the problem is, in the gop, they are still trying to figure out how they're going to handle the differences. two top areas are, of course, medicade expansion where some governors want to keep it, even republican governors want to keep it in place, others don't. next refundable tax credit that is unpopular among conservative republicans. these republicans have to be bold, united and they don't have a choice. they have to succeed. >> melissa: jessica, we heard the insurance ceo's today with president trump. they were all saying hey, guess what, this whole thing is about to implode. at the same time our viewers are saying how is that possible? i'm paying more, i'm getting less. my premiums are huge. this is a mess. >> it's a mess that people like now if you look at the polling. >> melissa: i don't know about that. >> if you look at the pew polling, it's more favorable than it has. >> melissa: i can feel the audience screaming at you.
11:53 am
sorry. >> it's true. i can show you the data. things are changing this way. more that donald trump, president trump, i know they hate it when i just say donald trump, says we're going to repeal and replace it, but there is no replacement plan, americans get more scared and more angry. they show up at those town halls. there are concerned americans. the problem is republicans had what seven years to come up with a plan that would meet these expectation and they haven't done it. >> melissa: mercedes, the problem is he wants to keep everything that's good, get rid of things that are bad. that costs money. where is that money going to come from? >> well, i think that's one of the fundamental questions is where they're going to get the money to pay for this. i think that's why you are seeing discussions occur around the obama care tax which could be up to -- whether they keep it, what are they going to do with the savings of it. that's about $1 trillion. so i think for the republican
11:54 am
party, they're focused on making sure that there's increased competition, that you're able to lower the cost of these premiums. also the bigger challenge for them is ensuring that people aren't just dropped off of their health care. that's going to be those obstacles that republicans will need to fix. >> melissa: it will be tough. i have got to cut you off. we've got some breaking news. congressman is talking about his side of the argument on what is going on in this back and forth with russia. is there an investigation needed? where do you start it? that's what they're talking about here today. >> why hasn't the fbi given up the information to you yet? secondly, have you asked the senate if they want to do a joint investigation? >> well, i have certainly raised the issue of a joint investigation. and at this point, while nobody has exclusively ruled it out, neither have they welcomed the idea, there may be a few reasons
11:55 am
for that. it was a formula that worked very well post 9/11, given the mismatch we have had vis a vis the agencies and vis a vis the size of the agencies. we are seeing these massive agency. it would help if we did this jointly. the other part of your question? >> has the fbi been dragging their feet on getting you the information? you mentioned it several times here. you haven't gotten anything? you've asked? >> the chairman and i are requesting the director brief our full committee as he apparently did. certainly the chairman and i have preliminary discussions with the director. but beyond that, we need really to get a full debriefing on everything that the fbi has looked at. what have they investigated? and at this point, i'm not clear we're going to get that.
11:56 am
i don't have the assurances that i'd like to have from the bureau. now, i'll give you a sense of why. in an ordinary course of events the bureau doesn't talk about pending investigations. and the bureau doesn't talk about closed investigation. now, obviously, with respect to the clinton investigation, that policy was departed from and violated in extreme as we got closer to the election. so among other think, it's insupportable for the bureau to take the position we can't talk about any position from the trump campaign. at the same time, there is a strong institutional reluctance to discuss on going investigations, not on publicly, but even with congress. but here we have a bipartisan investigation into the establishment, it's been agreed to by the house and senate. it has the vast support of the republican leadership in the house and senate.
11:57 am
and if we're gonna take responsibility the fbi is going to have to, have to, be wholesome if their discussion of any investigations they are doing or have done. i haven't gotten that commitment yet from the director. we're gonna need that commitment in order to do our work. yes? >> earlier today chairman nunes was saying that if it turns out flynn in this discussions with the russian ambassador did say, you know, hold off on response to the sanctions that came from the obama administration right after christmas. he said we should be thanking him, not going after him, for having deescalating a bad situation. i wonder what's your take on that and how that affects going forward. hopefully having conversations with the committee. >> my perspective is this. again i goes back to the context in which flynn was talking to the russian ambassador. russia has just hacked into our
11:58 am
elections. they have just dumped information that was helpful to the now president of the united states. and in the period prior to the new administration coming into office, the obama administration levied sanctions against the russians. and then you have a conversation or conversations between flynn and the russian ambassador. what was the subject of those conversations? now, i would like to -- i have had a briefing. i have not seen any transcripts yet. ultimately i would like to view whatever transcripts exist, to be published, so the american public can see, given the american public was misled about that conversation. but the significance of that conversation is that, if it was of a nature to assure or reassure the russians that they didn't need to respond because the new administration would take care of it, then you have incoming administration affirmatively under minding sanctions imposed by the current
11:59 am
administration, the current being the obama administration. that's a serious business. when you add to it that the national security adviser flynn was dishonest about the nature of those conversations, that certainly shows at least i would say as a former prosecutor some consciousness of wrongdoing. if there was nothing to be concerned about, then why not be open and honest about the course of those conversations? why did mike pence go out on tv and find the need to reassure the country that they had not been engaged in under minding sanctions imposed by president obama. the final point i would make on this that i find deeply disturbing is, it's bad enough that mike flynn wasn't truthful with the vice president. it's even worse that the vice president then unknowingly misled the american people. but what is most troubling to me is the president was aware of
12:00 pm
all of this and he was okay with it. what only forced him back weeks later is when it became >> and the transcripts. you wanted to see them. raised the concern they were problematic because they were illegally released? >> whether -- whatever the leak investigation finds out in terms of who leaked forms about what flynn said, that's one thing. but nothing in that should prevent the congress doing its investigation from finding out exactly what was said in that conversation. again, i can't go into any of the specifics about how that conversation may or may not have been recorded. but i would not leap to any conclusion that there's -- there was ill legality involved on behalf of the intelligence agencies. again, whether it was leaked or not lea


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on