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tv   The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell  MSNBC  March 15, 2017 10:00pm-11:01pm PDT

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no word on whether they will get these answer they're looking for. but at least somebody is asking in an official way. and in a bipartisan way, which we're not used to seeing. i still don't understand the baseline truth that undergirds this whole mist, but at least we're starting to get more clarity about the right questions to ask. maybe soon we'll get answers. that's it for tonight. we'll see you tomorrow. good evening, lawrence. >> as you complete that description of where we stand in the investigation, i am for one am choosing a hopeful attitude to the direction they're going. they do seem to be on a steadier course toward reasonable investigative techniques. >> and, you know, adam schiff had previously said that he was very worried. >> he was worried. >> that the fbi wasn't cooperating, the fbi wasn't handing stuff over to them. he now he is much happier with their cooperation, and they came up with this joint set of questions for the agencies about wiretaps. it seems like they're taking steps. >> and then there is the lindsey graham side of it which is also moving in a way who knows where we're going to be next week. >> lindsey graham always lets me down.
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>> he's got sheldon whitehouse, the democrat moving with him. >> that's true. >> that's why this is a unique situation for lindsey graham. so rachel, i'm choosing hope. you can't take it away from me. not tonight, not right now. >> i leave you hope. good night, lawrence. we have breaking news we're monitoring tonight. we're monitoring the reaction after a federal court blocked donald trump's revised travel ban. we also have breaking news on the craziest claim ever made by donald trump in the white house. the famous donald trump tweet about president obama tapping his phones. donald trump has just revealed the two specific sources for the information that he put in that tweet. we have that now. >> i said wait a minute, there is a lot of wiretapping being talked about. >> we don't have any evidence that that took place. >> did you ever give him any reason to believe that he was wife tapped by the previous administration? >> no.
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>> any evidence that president obama wire tapped trump tower? >> i want to know, was there any surveillance at all with a warrant or without a warrant. the longer it takes to answer that question, the more suspicious i get. >> so now you to decide. are you going take the tweets literally, and if you are, then clearly the president was wrong. >> don't forget, when i say wiretap, those words were in quotes. >> in a democracy you have to take things like this seriously and literally. >> it deeply concerns me that the president would make such an accusation a without basis. >> let's see whether or not i prove it. >> we have breaking news just developing in the last hour. we have the answer. president trump has finally revealed the sources for the most troublesome tweet of his presidency. this is the tweet. "terrible, just found out that obama had my wires tapped in
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trump tower just before the victory. nothing found. this is mccarthyism." tonight he was asked how did he find out about the wiretapping. >> how did you find out? you said i just found out. how did you learn that? >> well, i've been reading about things. i read january 20th a "new york times" article about where they were talking about wiretapping. there was an article. i think they used that exact term. i read other things. i watched your friend bret baier the day previous where he was talking about certain complex sets of things happening and wiretapping. i said wait a minute, this is a lot of wiretapping being talked about. i've been seeing a lot of things. >> and so there it is. there is the answer. the president of the united states read it in "the new york times" six weeks before he tweeted it. and in his tweet he said he just found out. just found out.
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but tonight he said he found out in "the new york times" six weeks before he tweeted it. in that same interview, he called "the new york times" dishonest media. he said that in the very same interview with the president of the united states said he relied on "the new york times" for intelligence and did not receive any intelligence about that wiretapping accusation from anyone in his own intelligence agencies. >> if every intelligence agency reports to you, why not immediately go to them and gather evidence to support that? >> because i don't want to do anything that is going to violate any strength of an agency. >> because i don't want to do anything that is going to violate any strength of an agency. if you're trying to make sense of that sentence, you can stop now there is nothing in that sentence that makes sense. donald trump simply chose to provide words after the question mark of the question. the words have no relationship to the question.
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so the president had two sources of information for that tweet. one was "the new york times." the article the president relied on, instead of relying on the fbi or the cia carried this headline in the print addition. wiretapped data used in inquiry of trump aides. the lead sentence says american law enforcement and american intelligence agencies are examining intercepted communications as part of a broad investigation into possible links between russian officials and associates of president-elect donald j. trump, including his former campaign chairman, paul manafort and former senior american officials said. it is not clear whether the intercept communications had anything to do with mr. trump's campaign or mr. trump himself. the times goes on to report mr. manafort is among at least three trump campaign advisers whose possible links to russia are under scrutiny. that times article says the fbi is leading the investigations.
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"the new york times" report that donald trump read, which he says provoked his tweet six weeks later, says that his fbi director comey is in charge of this investigation. donald trump didn't ask the fbi director about it. in this case, the "new york times" was good enough for the president of the united states, even though he said tonight that same "new york times" is, his words, dishonest media. the other source, you heard donald trump cite was bret baier on fox news the very night before donald trump sent out his tweet. and here is how bret baier provoked that tweet, according to donald trump. >> there is a report that june 2016, there is a fisa request by the obama administration foreign surveillance corps to monitor communications involving donald trump and several other campaign officials.
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then they get turned down, and then in october, they renew it. and they do start a wiretap at trump tower with some computer and russian banks, and it doesn't show anything by reporting. have you heard that? >> well, again, and like i said, none of us in congress or anybody i know in congress has been presented with evidence. >> so bret baier checks the idea of wiretapping trump tower with paul ryan, and paul ryan, who says he received a complete brief on all of this in january, paul ryan says nope. no evidence of that. and donald trump is watching. now who are you going to believe if you're donald trump? bret baier's request or paul ryan's answer? and so that's it. mystery solved. no need for any more investigations. donald trump sent the tweet based obviously on what bret baier said the night before. he is now reaching back six
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weeks to "the new york times" story to pretend he was diligent enough to use two sources for his tweet. so he has now publicly confessed to accusing president obama of committing a crime without any proof. he has once again publicly confessed that he is unfit for the office of the presidency. hoe violated his oath of office with that tweet. and he is so thoroughly ignorant of the meeting of his words of oath of office that he does not understand that he confessed tonight to violating his oath in which he pledged to faithfully execute the office of the president of the united states. this will not be met by outrage. there won't be a word of outrage about this on fox news. a cnn anchorman might arch an eyebrow and twitter will interpret that for what it is. there will be perhaps outraged editorials in "the new york times" and "the washington post" that are largely ignored.
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and for the most part, the mainstream of the american news media will continue to define deviancy down, all the way down to the trump level. what would have shocked and outraged them in any other presidency will be cause for smirks or nothing at all. because donald trump has actually won in his battle with most of the news media. he has pushed them beyond outrage. they believe the sophisticated way to prosecute donald trump now is to just get used to it. to just get used to how deviant he is from all of his predecessors. they have defined deviancy down for donald trump. can there be anyone among us who doubts for a second that impeachment proceedings would already be under way in this republican house of representatives if president barack obama had tweeted
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anything like that during his presidency? they would have impeached him in the house and sent him to trial in the senate for lying to the american people, for violating his oath of office. for accusing a former president of a crime that president did not commit. defining deviancy down is a phrase coined by daniel moynihan in an essay in the american scholar inspired by the 1895 text the rules of sociological method. defining deviancy down in certain areas of our culture, when we do that, we risk some of the values we want to encourage. now for donald trump, the news media and the political class are defining deviancy down to
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the point where not just our political culture is at risk, but the country is at risk every day that it has a president who so blithely and ignorantly violates his oath of office. president trump's deviancy demands outrage. now i know outrage can be exhausting. it can be repetitive in the case of trump news. and i know outrage can be uncool in a world where the professionals are never outraged. but if we lose our outrage, if we get used to president trump's deviancy, then deviancy wins. in the face of the outrageous, what choice do you really have? in outrage, at least, there is hope. joining now nick former chief of staff to joe biden and al gore. former senior aide to president obama. nick, your newspaper it turns out was one of the two sources that donald trump and n his
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tweet says he just learned this. learned it from your newspaper six weeks before he tweeted it. >> look, i'm pleased that he regards us now as a reliable source. >> he does. >> he cites you and in the next breath says that you are not -- what did he call you? not fake news. he used another phrase tonight. >> well, it's always something. >> dishonest. >> it's important to read the stories closely if you're going to read them. and the stories talked about he was not actually wiretapped. there was some kind of eavesdrop organize wiretapping in some type of counterintelligence between russian officials or spies and trump associates. now it is normal and typical for our intelligence community to be tapping and listening in on those people on the other side. the question is, if you're on those calls too, what's going on? and i think what we're seeing here is an effort to move the conversation away from what those conversations were about and to the appropriate of those conversations. >> let's listen to what the attorney general said today.
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and this is donald trump's own attorney general who could answer for him the question of was there any truth to his tweet. let's listen to what the attorney general said today. >> attorney general, did you have ever a chance to greet the president or did you ever give him any reason to believe he was wire tapped by the previous administration? >> look, no. >> ron klain, it's a very simple answer, no. we also have everyone else involved in the congress saying they see absolutely no evidence for this. and there is the president tonight on fox news saying i got it from "the new york times" and i got it from a question bret baier asked on tv the night before. >> yeah, you know, lawrence, like you i read the transcript of that interview four times. now i know it's in english, but it makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. he says he is going to talk more
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about this next week, or not. he's got further things to say, or not. he is happy with some condition, or not. it nikes sense. thing are two outrages here. we need to focus on both of them. one is the completely outrageous untruth that his predecessor, president obama launched a politically motivated wiretap against donald trump. there is zero evidence for that, and that is just come clearer every day. that is an outrage there is a second outrage here, which is there was reason enough patiently in all the other stories for law enforcement, not a political opponent, but law enforcement to be concerned about contacts between trump associates and the russians that they needed to do surveillance on that. and i think that outrage, what happened in this campaign between the russians and the trump campaign, we can't lose sight of that, and we can't let trump's craziness about this false charge distract from the knack there is something that happened here we need to know more about. >> so here is what tucker carlson said about, you know,
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why would you tweet something on information like that instead of something you can prove. his actual question was why not wait to tweet about it until you can prove it? here is donald trump's answer. well, because "the new york times" wrote about it. not that i respect "the new york times." i call it the falg "new york times" but they did write on january 20th using the word wiretap. why not wait until you can prove it and he says well, because "the new york times" wrote about it. which if you follow the english language logic of question and answer, he is saying the "new york times" writing about it is proof. >> look, i have noticed often that when the president is in trouble, he goes into word salad mode where he says a lot of verbs and nouns and adjectives and they're kind november a reversed order and it's not always coherent thought. the fact that wiretapping appears in the story is not proving what he says about the story. it simply doesn't. it's not how the language works.
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>> this goes to one of the dangers of a trump presidency. he doesn't understand what proof is, and he very clearly has demonstrated over the past several years he has no capacity to separate fact from fiction. he doesn't know what a regular issued birth certificate looks like in america when it comes to president trump's birth certificate, anyway. you have a president who is publicly incapable of distinguishing fact from fiction. >> yeah, lap, i think we don't know if he doesn't know or he doesn't care. and either is pretty bad when you're talking about a president of the united states. this attack on president obama, accusing him of a political crime on a war with watergate, perhaps even worse than watergate the way trump phrased it, that's an incredible attack to launch with no basis whatsoever. and whether or not trump simply didn't understand the story in "the new york times" or simply chose to lie about it, neither one of those is a good defense for launching that kind of a brutal assault on a former president of the united states.
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>> and nick, the way he goes through this, this interview, it's as if it's settled. this is just completely settled. bret baier, "the new york times," case closed. >> i'm sure bret baier would dispute that as well. look, there is an effort here to create a parallel narrative for his supporters to believe something different than what's going on, to distract people. >> when he says i learned it from "the new york times" and of course i don't trust "the new york times." there. >> are people in politics -- >> they have been through a lot of confusing stuff, i guess. >> look, if your guy in politics is saying something and he is your guy, you stick with him. it happens all the time. it's not just republicans. but man, that guy has it really good, donald trump. he has people who will believe whatever he says. >> nick confessore, thank you for joining us. ron, we're going need you on some other subjects. please stick around. tonight donald trump lied
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about me and the rest of the news media not employed at fox news. we will show you that live. and in the very act of showing you donald trump's lie about me and the rest of the news media, we will prove donald trump to be a liar once again. it's all on video this time. t t. it comes when your insurance company says they'll only pay three-quarters of what it takes to replace it. what are you supposed to do? drive three-quarters of a car? now if you had liberty mutual new car replacement™, you'd get your whole car back. i guess they don't want you driving around on three wheels. smart. with liberty mutual new car replacement™, we'll replace the full value of your car. liberty stands with you™. liberty mutual insurance. ♪ ♪
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i have to be nice, otherwise i'll get criticized for speaking poorly about our courts. i'll be criticized by these people, among the most dishonest people in the world. it's the phillips' lady!
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at a rally in nashville tonight, donald trump promised his audience that i would lie about him, and that i would lie about his audience. in fact, he promised that pretty much everyone who is not employed by fox news in the media business would lie about president trump and president trump's audience. and so i'm now going to show you about a minute of video that will prove the opposite. that will prove that donald trump is lying to the audience about me and about everyone else who doesn't work at fox. >> at the very core of obamacare was a fatal flaw, the government forcing people to buy a government approved product. there are few people, very few people. by the way, watch what happens. now, you just booed obama care. they will say trump got booed when he mentioned it.
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they're bad people, folks. they're bad people. [ booing ] tonight i'll go home. i'm turn on. i'll say listen, i'll turn on that television. my wife will say darling, it's too bad you got booed. i will say i didn't get moved. this was a love-in. no, no, they were booing obamacare. watch. a couple of them will do it, almost guaranteed. but when we call them out, it makes it harder for them to do it. so we'll see. it's the fake, fake media. >> okay. first of all, when you get home, your wife is not going to be there. she lives in new york. you live in washington. let's get that straight. boy, that video was just the easiest, i think, possibly the easiest proof of trump lie ever.
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it's right there within the video. all you have to do is show it. donald trump also said tonight that the republican health care bill is not a finished product. that there will be more negotiations with members of the house and senate. the danger that of is that just invites more and more and more negotiations with more and more and more members, and the bill falls apart, as all professional legislators know. in other words, donald trump now is committed to absolutely nothing in his own health care bill. it is all negotiatable. as he said the other night, his words, it's a big, fat, beautiful negotiation. joining us now, jonathan allen, head of community and content for sidewire. also joining us charlie sykes, co-host of wnyc's indivisible. charlie is also a msnbc contributor. so charlie, there is donald trump down there negotiating the bill with his audience, saying i
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know you've heard some things about it that are maybe a problem. this is not the way we've ever seen anyone get any legislation done. you don't do the negotiating publicly, and you don't admit to all these cracks in the wall. >> it was just a couple of weeks ago he realized nobody knew how complicated it was. nobody had any idea it was this complicated. >> he really did then just zoifrt. you could tell that was genuine discovery on his part. >> i don't think anyone is ever going to accuse donald trump of being a policy wonk or of know organize having much interest in the details of an incredibly complex piece of legislation. i did think it was interesting. you saw the trump world media started referring to this as ryancare as opposed to trumpcare. and when paul ryan came out to remind everybody, by the way, the president was behind all this. i think he realized you were about to have a bailout by the trump folks from this legislation. but, look, he is a man that has no fixed principles. he has no ideology.
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he has no real interest in all of this. what could possibly go wrong? >> jonathan, i remember there was talk before the administration got under way, and probably right up a little bit after that that republican legislators would live in fear of donald trump coming into their district and having a rally. if any republican legislator steps out of line and is not on board with trump legislation, air force one guess down to that district. donald trump has a rally. and that member of congress is in line immediately. of course, it looks like he would have to do that tonight in about 100 different congressional districts just to deal with the house, never mind all the senators involved. and no one, as far as i can tell, no one is afraid of donald trump in the house or senate when they come out and object to elements of this bill or say they are just outright opposed to it. >> well, that's the thing, lawrence. it would work to go to their districts or their states if their constituents supported this bill.
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but the overwhelming majority of americans don't support this bill. and if you look at three basic component, it's hard to understand why any republican would support it after a populist election put donald trump in office. you've got massive tax cuts for the wealthy. an $880 billion cut to medicaid. that's the health care services for the poor and disabled. and then essentially an obamacare-lite that tilts towards the young, healthy and wealthy and way from the older and poorer and sicker. none of those things match up with the pop liss rhetoric of donald trump on the campaign trail. and i think republicans right now are stuck between the no fixed principles, as charlie said with president trump and this dogmatic view of the world paul ryan has brought forward that wants tax cuts for anyone who is wealthy at any cost and wants to slash medicaid beyond all recognition. regardless of whether it's politically viable.
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i think these members are all jumping ship because they want to make sure they get reelect or at least have a chance to in 2018. >> let's listen to paul ryan on the radio today trying to share the credit for how this bill got written. . >> this is something we wrote with president trump. this is something we wrote with the senate committees. >> we wrote this bill with our friends in the white house and the senate. i talked to reince and bannon about this a number of times. we're all on the same page, absolutely, the president. >> we jointly drafted this legislation house, senate and white house. so we are working on this together. the president is all in on this. >> charlie, we're natural this together. >> obviously not. my good friend paul ryan, the president does not have your back on this. >> he wishes they were all in it together. >> the only way you get a piece of legislation like this through with strong presidential leadership. when the president is vacillating, he is sending mixed signals, you can see what the happening. the opposition is being emboldened rather than intimidated on all of this.
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who knows where it's going go here. >> jonathan, when we think of the last big health care crusade we saw go through in the obama administration, you saw real party discipline, even among members who had problems with it, they were told to keep their complaints internal. and there was only one moving part that there was a big debate over. that was the public option. and it was will they or won't they on the one item. and they ultimately ended up losing that one item. this bill, as far as i can tell, every single element is in play there is a republican objection to every single element of the bill, from both the left side and the right side, but all republican objections. >> absolutely. every single provision of this bill, every single piece of it has some objection. the real contrast here i think is that the democrats under the obama administration, some of them are willing to give up their seats and knew that they would probably be giving up their seats in congress in order
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to give a benefit. in this case, a lot of republicans are being asked to give up their seats in moderate districts to take away a benefit from their own constituents or on the very conservative side to give away their seats because they're not being tight enough with the budget. and they're not cutting enough spending from entitlements. it's really a recipe for disaster. and a it's interesting to hear speaker ryan say that this was written with the senate and the president. because everybody knows president trump is not engaged in the details. reince priebus is not a policy wonk. and paul ryan had trotted out these plans in past budget years. so this was paul ryan's plan for years and years and years. and he is finally getting an opportunity to try to implement it. and it is falling apart on him so badly that senators are begging the house not to send it to them. >> and historically, keep in mind that republicans have never rolled back a major entitlement or social program before. they didn't do it under eisenhower. they didn't do it after the great society. what you have is something that
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is historically unprecedented. it is incredibly difficult. and once again, i think the republicans overpromised. i think for seven years they said they were going to get rid of this. not telling their base how incredibly complicated and difficult this is. and that is a party that has done much better in opposition than in governing. d i think that you're seeing this with all of this. >> the opposition is always the rhetorically easiest mice to be. thank you both for being with us tonight. take care. breaking news tonight from hawaii where a federal judge has blocked president trump's latest version of his travel ban. and donald trump was livid when he announced that to his audience in tennessee tonight. n? i could build a small city with all the over-the-counter products i've used. enough! i've tried enough laxatives to cover the eastern seaboard. i've climbed a mount everest of fiber. probiotics? enough! (avo) if you've had enough, tell your doctor
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breaking news tonight. president trump's revised travel ban was supposed to go into effect at midnight tonight. it will not. earlier today, u.s. district judge derrick watson of hawaii blocked enforcement of that travel ban. the executive order and the ruling applies nationwide. hawaii is the first state to file a lawsuit challenging the new version of the president's executive order. that order temporarily barred new visas for citizens of iran, libya, somalia, sudan, syria and yemen while also suspending the admission of new refugees. in his 43-page opinion, judge
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watson used donald trump's own comments and those of his close advisers as evidence that the new order was meant to discriminate against muslims. tonight the justice department issued this statement. the department of justice strongly disagrees with the federal district court's ruling which is flawed both in reasoning and in scope. the president's executive order falls squarely within his lawful authority in seeking to protect our nation's security, and the department will continue to defend this executive order in the courts. and here is how president trump reacted to the court's decision in announing this at his rally tonight in tennessee. >> a judge has just blocked our executive order on travel and refugees coming into our country from certain countries. the order he blocked was a
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watered down version of the first order that was also blocked by another judge. this is in the opinion of many an unprecedented judicial overreach. this ruling makes us look weak. we're going to fight this terrible ruling. we're going take our case as far as it needs to go, including all the way up to the supreme court. we're going win. we're going to keep our citizens safe. >> saying that the new travel ban is basically the same as the old travel ban was actually one of the arguments that the state of hawaii used in successfully arguing the stopping of the travel ban. we're going to have more discussion of this next with ron klain, who is someone who has actually helped choose supreme court justices. internet dial up sound hi, i'm the internet.
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here is more of what donald trump had to tell his rally audience tonight about the federal judge ruling in hawaii blocking his travel ban. >> this is a watered down version of the first one. this is a watered down version. and let me tell you something. i think we ought to go back to the first one.
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>> joining us now, vince warren, executive director of the center for constitutional rights and ron klain also with us, served as a law clerk to supreme court justice byron white, chief council to the senate judiciary committee. ron, that part where he said it's a water down version that just got blocked. i think we ought to good back to the first one. the first one already having been blocked by the federal courts. >> yeah, somewhere tonight there are lawyers in the justice department slamming their palms into their foreheads because they went into court and they argued, oh, no, this new order is not the old order. and their client is standing there tonight telling a rally, oh, no it is the same thing as the first one. in fact, i want to go back to the first one that got struck
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down by a whole array of judges, both democratic and republican appointees. he is his own worst enemy on this. and the bottom line is this. this is an order that bans people from becoming refugees in this country because of their religious belief. and that doesn't make america safe, and it's not who we are as a country. and it's not promoting national security. and no wonder courts are striking it down. it's unconstitutional. four words, lawrence. sally yates was right. >> vince warren, your reaction to tonight's ruling? >> the justice department is really trying to say listen, just because we didn't discriminate against every muslim doesn't mean we're not discriminating against any muslim. and that's the core problem here. the court doesn't by that at all. >> so when they say look at all the muslim countries that aren't affected by this. >> i'm sure there are plenty of muslim countries that aren't affected by this. but the countries they are choosing are predominantly muslim. the president says we want a ban on muslims coming into the united states. case closed. the other really interesting pieces that donald trump says he is going to take this all the way to the supreme court again. if he does what he did last time, he is going to end up
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appealing to it the ninth judicial circuit that slapped him down last time. >> let's listen to what he said tonight about the ninth circuit. >> people are screaming break up the ninth circuit. i tell you what. that ninth circuit, you have to see. take a look at how many times they have been overturned with their terrible decision. >> ron klain, he just discovered the existence of the ninth circuit. >> yeah. >> but it's a big factor in his life because that's where these cases are all reside agent this point. >> yeah, i don't think people are screaming break up the ninth circuit. >> no. >> but more importantly, lawrence -- >> in fact, ron, for a second, that same crowd did chant "lock her up" when he referred to hillary clinton in the middle of this rant against the courts, trying to get them to chant break up the ninth circuit i guess the next stage. >> the point is donald trump wants to refight and refight his 2016 campaign. he wants to lock up hillary clinton. he wants to push his muslim ban. if he really wants to make us safe, what he should do is stop
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messing around with these ineffective and unconstitutional measures and do something like maybe hire people to work in the government. there are no appointees at the state department or the homeland security department. maybe he would like to do that instead of wasting his time on unconstitutional actions that don't make our country safer and just simply refight his campaign slogans. >> at a certain point, the president tonight reading from his teleprompter read the language of the statute. i think we have that. he read for his audience what the law says. let's listen to that. i guess we don't have it. but what he said was the law and the constitution give the president the power to suspend immigration when he deems or she or she. fortunately it will not be hillary. and that's when the crowd started chanting "lock her up." he couldn't even get through the reading of the statute. you know what he is talking about, vince. he says the law gives him the power to manage immigration this way.
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>> yes, the power of telephone executive. but it's not the power of the despot and the king. one of the things the president can't do is he can't discriminate. and he is not allowed to move this policy forward in a discriminatory manner. >> if for security reasons he names six countries in the world that they were going to control or restrict in some way immigration from for a period of time. if you could not find a religious discriminatory element in there, or a racial discriminatory element or some constitutional discriminatory element, would he have the authority to do that? >> he would have the authority as long as he has a bona fide showing of a security reason. the other point is there used to be seven countries and now there is six. it's like the sort of reverse agatha christie novel. how does that one come off? they're undermining their own arguments every time they water this thing down.
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>> shea tough client to represent in the federal court. ron klain and vince warren, thank you both for joining us tonight. really appreciate it. >> thank you. >> thank you. coming up, it seems like everyone was following the revelation of donald trump's 2005 tax return last night, including donald trump. he just in the last hour has responded. what was revealed last night on rachel maddow's show by david cay johnston. david cay johnston will join us with his response to donald trump's response. america's beverage companies have come together to bring you more ways to help reduce calories from sugar. with more great tasting beverages with less sugar or no sugar at all, smaller portion sizes, clear calorie labels, and signs reminding everyone to think balance before choosing their beverages. we know you care about reducing the sugar in your family's diet, and we're working to support your efforts. more beverage choices. smaller portions. less sugar.
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so we know how to cover almost alanything.ything, even a "truck-cicle." [second man] how you doing? [ice cracking] [second man] ah,ah, ah. oh no! [first man] saves us some drilling. [burke] and we covered it, february fourteenth, twenty-fifteen. talk to farmers. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪ tonight president trump responded to the release of his 2005 personal income tax forms last night on "the rachel maddow show." the tax form was obtained by david cay johnston who will join news a moment. >> i have no idea where they got it, but it's illegal. and you're not supposed to visit. and it's not supposed to be leaked. and it's certainly not an embarrassing tax return at all, but it's an illegal thing. they've been doing it.
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they've done it before. and i think it's a disgrace. >> and here is the part where fox news explains to donald trump that it is not illegal. oh, no. sorry. that didn't happen. no one at fox news would ever tell president trump or fox news viewers that what the president just said is completely false. the president just spoke in his official capacity as president, offering his view of the law. and it's completely false. it is newsworthy when a president misstates the law, gets it completely wrong like that. but if you're a fox news viewer, you are not allowed to know that. at five minutes before 7:00 this morning, president trump tweeted this. does anybody really believe that a reporter who nobody ever heard of went to his mailbox and found my tax returns? nbc news fake news. donald trump has heard of david cay johnston. donald trump has threatened to sue david cay johnston.
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i don't know where they got it. this guy has been following me for 25 years. he is not much. >> i thought you said nobody knew who he was. joining us now david cay johnston, pulitzer prize winning journalist who founded, a nonprofit news organization that covers the trump administration. david, you've got donald trump's attention. and he is saying it's illegal, which we've already dealt with. we dealt with last night. completely false. it's sad, though, i find that fox news viewers get that information, they believe it. it's not contested in any way on the entire network. he is also saying he doesn't know you. of course he does know you. he has threatened to sue you. you've been covering his stuff for a long te.
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what do you make of donald trump's response tonight? this is the first time we've seen him on camera actually responding to this. >> i think i got under donald's skin. >> i think so. >> and in fact i would say his response suggests to me he is a afraid of the work that i'm doing. and he knows that i'm working on another book on him, and the stuff i have exposed about him in the past. >> this is for him a very good tax return. >> yes. >> it may be his highest earning year of his life. and that's why he is on everyone's suspect list for having sent this to you, including your own suspect list. >> yes. >> he was the first suspect you mentioned last night. >> that's right. i'm baffled sort of by his response except knowing donald, i'm not. because -- >> well, he wants to claim an invasion of privacy of some kind. >> he could have simply said yeah, i made a lot of money. i paid a lot of taxes. i'm glad that this adversarial journalist, weird dude as he
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called me, has now proven that to the world. but that's not donald. donald can't do that. that's not kind of guy he circumstances one of my theories about it from the trump side of the possible leakage is that tax day is coming, april 15th. it's the tradition for the president to release tax returns. now he has this out there. and what he has out there is a document that says hey, he pays taxes. it's a big number that he pays. it's a big income that he has. has the basic numbers that he wants on a tax return. and so when the discussion starts to occur, as we approach april 15th, everyone will be referring to these numbers. >> that's right. he is not going to release his tax return. and there are going to be demonstrations on april 15th all across the country in san francisco and some other places. they're going to have those chickens that were in china saying donald trump is chicken. i'll tell you what donald trump did tonight that amazed me.
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he inflated his own income. he said i had $250 million income and $100 million. this is trump math. this is how he gets in trouble with his business deals. >> i've heard other people on tv make that some mistake, not representing what that loss represents in the return. here is something that is in the itemized list that would be way inside here somewhere, the charitable contributions. they're not here. >> we do know that that year he made $600,000 contribution to his own foundation. mostly funded -- >> we know that a from the foundation records. >> from the foundation records. mostly his foundation was funded by what are essentially legal kickbacks. people doing business with donald, including nbc gave money to his foundation. that was the one year in the last i forget how many that he made a gift to his own foundation. >> and the likelihood based on what we've seen of his practices, if he gave to his foundation, he probably gave to no one else. so it may be that 600,000 was the total out of $150 million. >> which would be just
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immaterial. >> some tiny fraction of 1%. david cay johnston, thank you for your reporting on. this thank you again for breaking tonight, a federal judge blocks the president's travel ban, hours before it sets to take in effect. mr. trump fires back and second guesses his own strategies. >> tonight the president opens up against the former president, where did he get his information as lawmakers say there is no evidence. and with members of his own party over his healthcare, the president revoke making the case of paul ryan, it is now or never. "the 11th hour" begins now. good evening, i am ari melber, brian is under the weather tonight. within the next hour, the