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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  March 17, 2017 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT

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your key demographics were old people and older people. they believed you when you said you cared about them. there's nothing more lowlife than lying to the elderly. you should know that, you're 70. don't you hate when it people lie to you and say things like, i'll try it to make it down next week, i'm on kayak and there's no flights. >> seth meyers' point of view there. that's "last night" for tonight. the preview of the confirmation hearings is this sunday. i hope you'll join us. stay tuned. "all in with chris hayes" is next. >> an international incident caused by an angry president's tweets. >> i don't think we regret anything. >> tonight, the president's refusal to accept reality as he'ss the german chancellor and picks a fight with an ally instead of backing off a baseless fox news claim.
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>> that was a statement made by a very talented lawyer on fox. then, who's buying the hard sale on trumpcare? >> those folks were no, mostly noes yesterday and every single one is a yes. >> one of the republicans who says the president convinced him will join me live plus, new reporting that preet bharara was investigating the architect of trumpcare before he was fired. and about those budget cuts -- >> we can't spend money on programs just because they sound good. >> the growing outrage over proposed budget cuts. >> we consider that to be a waste of your noun go out and do that. >> as the president heads for the links. >> everybody always wants to go to the southern white house. >> when "all in" starts right now. good evening from new york, i'm chris hayes, president trump's utterly unsupported claim that president obama wiretapped trump tower during
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the campaign -- an allegation that began with speculation from a right wing talk show host has ascended from angry morning presidential tweet to full-fledged international incident and president trump amazingly isn't backing down. today the president met with german chancellor angela merkel. the two leaders sitting for this pretty awkward photo-op where reporters and merkel herself asked trump if he wanted to do a hand shake -- as is standard in such situations -- the president just ignored the request. later the two leaders emerged to give statements and take questions. merkel pointedly opening her remarks by noting it is "better to talk to one another and not about one another." trump was asked twice by german reporters about his claim that president obama wiretapped him and he responded by doubling down, referencing divert reports that obama administration had tapped merkel's cell phone.
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>> as far as wiretapping i guess by this past administration at least we have something in common perhaps. >> before we get to the rest of the president's answer, let's take a moment to remember how we got here. it was a couple weeks ago that right wing talk show host mark levin speculated president obama mounted a "silent coup against trump" using, and i'm quoting again "police state tactics." breitbart wrote up the allegation which was picked up by rush limbaugh. now the author of the breitbart story told chuck todd how he heard the claim. >> it was late at night and i was washing dishes listening to mark levin's show from earlier in the day. i thought wow, that's amazing. i had seen these articles but nobody put the case together the way levin had. >> pollack's article circulated to the president. he went on to tweet the explosive allegation that
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president obama wiretapped his phones at trump tower during the campaign while, we should note, also calling president obama a "bad or sick guy." the claim of wiretapping went beyond what levin and pollack alleged, there was no evidence for any of this. but it was an allegation from the most powerful person in the world, the president of the united states, so it couldn't be written off as a right wing fantasy. as sean spicer unsuccessfully fought reporters' demands for truth, congressional investigations got under way but pretty much every player inside the white house said there was nothing to back the president up. >> we don't have evidence that took place. and i don't think there was an actual tap of trump tower. >> with the white house
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flailing, fox news channel judicial analyst andrew napolitano who dabbled in the past with 9/11 trutherism came forward with a theory of his own. >> three intelligence sources have informed fox news that president obama went outside the chain of command. he didn't use the nsa, he didn't use the cia, he didn't use the fbi and he didn't use the department of justice, he used gchq. what the heck is gchq? that's the initials for the british spying agency. >> that utterly explosive claim also likely would have been lost to the right wing fever swamps but for the fact that sean spicer amazingly took to the white house briefing room yesterday to read napolitano's claim verbatim to reporters. "britain's gchq, the u.s.'s closest allied intelligence service then denied the ridiculous claim it helped
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wiretap trump. the british press citing intelligence sources reported the u.s. made a formal apology to britain, though the white house claims officials only explained that spicer was simply pointing to public reports and not endorsing a specific theory. >> reporter: was there any formal apology made to britain? >> we reiterated the fact that we were reading media accounts. >> reporter: do you regret making the allegations? >> i don't think we regret anything. we literally listed a litany of media reports that are in the public domain. >> that brings us back to the president's press conference today where he was asked about the white house repeating napolitano's claim. >> we said nothing. all we did was quote a certain very talented legal mind who was the one responsible for saying that on television. i didn't make an opinion on it. that was a statement made by a very talented lawyer on fox so you shouldn't be talking to me,
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you should be talking to fox. okay? >> okay. not long after that, fox news weighed in with what was essentially a rebuke of its own analyst. >> fox news cannot confirm judge napolitano's commentary. fox news knows of no evidence of any kind that the now president of the united states was surveilled at any time in any way, full stop. >> brian: to trace back through this rube goldberg machine of apparent nonsense, the white house sent congress on a goose chase, created an international incident with britain and dragged in angela merkel all because the president sent an angry tweet sourced to an unproven right wing radio rant and can't even admit right now that he has nothing to back it up. i'm joined by ambassador wendy sherman. during the clinton administration special adviser to north korea policy at the state department. ambassador, all i could think while i was watching this happen is what is going through angela merkel's head as her own
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reporters from her own country asked the president of the united states about his claims the country's closest ally was spying on him? >> i actually think that everybody's being very nice by saying she looked bewildered. i think she was appalled to have the president of the united states do what he thought was clever and quite frankly was probably not only talking to the press in the room but talking to germans and people in her country reminding them of a very difficult time in the relationship which has since gone by which he handled very, very well, forthrightly, privately, carefully, understanding all that was at stake at the states woman that she is. so looking at the two of them together through that press conference it was very awkward, very uncomfortable. they were trying to find places for common ground because this relationship is crucial. angela merkel, the chancellor of
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germany, the largest economy in europe is really now the strongest leader in europe. exports an enormous amount to the united states. creates hundreds of thousands of u.s. jobs. this relationship is very critical to us, helps out in security and i think it was a very, very tough go. >> let me ask you this. there is a sense in which the president comports himself in any diplomatic situation kind of like a bull in a china shop. there was from the very beginning calling -- taking a phone call from the president of taiwan or arranging a phone call with the president of taiwan against the u.s. one china policy and the way he conducted himself with merkel today. convince me that that matters. convince me the violations of protocol, the bull in the china shop, the awkward cringe-inducing joke about an incredibly sensitive moment in the u.s.-german relationship, that that means more than just aesthetics. >> i think what matters most here is credibility and when the
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president does this tweet, not only accusing the former president of the united states of being a felon, which he's, of course, not and there is absolutely no evidence to support what the president said, so that's bad on its own terms but in diplomatic terms, in terms of our standing in the world it undermines the president's credibility. so when he has to say we really do have a serious situation in north korea president xi and we actually have to do something or he tweets as he did today about north korea and people begin to wonder what's real, what's not real, what should i believe? what should i not believe. >> it occurred to me there might be some moment when the u.s. counterintelligence discovers that some foreign adversary is bugging, say, the president or some ambassador or something and the u.s. has to charge that entity with doing that. it's going to be a little hard to believe them after the president has charged britain with spying on president obama. >> indeed. you know, the president is an unusual president, as we all
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know. angela merkel herself started as an outsider, a physicist, he wasn't a politician, an east german. so she understands being an outsider but she has learned to become a states woman and learned to become not only a leader of her country but of europe. in my view it's time for the president of the united states to be the president of the united states. >> ambassador wendy sherman, appreciate your time. >> thank you. joining me now, evan mcmullin, independent candidate for president in 2016 and former cia operations officer and former house gop policy director. what does it mean to the relationship between the u.s. and britain that this is now escalating to the point where a sort of set of layered fabrications or mistruths have engaged britain in unbelievably violative conduct. >> i does two things. it undermines the credibility of
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president trump and his administration and not just his credibility but more specifically his and their judgment. that's critical as the united states play a leadership role in this alliance and other alliances, our allies in europe are now looking at our leader, questioning his judgment. the second thing i would say, the lack of care with which you see president trump handling our relationship, the relationship of the united states with germany and with the uk demonstrates his lack of concern for those relationships, especially when you compare it to the way he handles his relationship with vladimir putin. we know that he's very careful not to say anything that would upset vladimir putin, that would upset opportunities for him and the relationship of vladimir putin. he's been extremely careful for the past year on that front. but now you see him doing silly things like not shaking angela
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merkel's hand as he sat next to her or accusing gchq of tapping his phone on behalf of president obama. these things undermine our relationship with our most critical allies. >> i want to put up this chart so people get a sense of how attenuated the chain of custody of the information that has led to this is. this is how basically a rant by mark levin ended up as a set of questions to the president in front of the german chancellor. there's a real issue what about investigation the president gets. this is someone who has access to the full might and power of the intelligence gathering apparatus and he seems to choose other sources of information instead. >> it's hard to know what is going on here.
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either he's almost child look in his ability to be provoked or he just doesn't care. if we remember back -- this has been the key story for far longer than it should be, ten days or so, at the time it broke we were all wondering what the extent of the relationship with the attorney general sessions and others in the trump campaign, what were the nature of their relationships with the russian government. these are much more serious issues that deserve more attention and now we're talking about the silly accusation that president trump made a week and a half ago and it's unfortunate. >> and actual staff labor hours have been devoted on both sides of capitol hill, in both committees and staff hours of the fbi. a whole set of machinery engaged to attempt to get to the bottom of an allegation the president tweeted. >> at a time when those two
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intelligence committees should be focused on what the russians did to undermine our election and the potential connections, inappropriate connections between the trump team and the russian government. so i don't know if he did this on purpose or not, it's hard to say. either he's too easily provoked or he's trying to distract one way or another. it's reckless, it does enormous harm to our country's interests and it's not making us look good and i think it's damaging our most valuable relationships overseas. >> evan mcmullin, thank you. >> thank you. still ahead, president trump is now insisting he has the votes to pass trumpcare next week. i will talk to one of the congressmen the president says he flipped single-handedly today that have two-minute break. al ss when a fire destroyed the living room. we were able to replace everything in it. liberty did what? liberty mutual paid to replace all of our property that was damaged. and we didn't have to touch our savings. yeah, our insurance won't do that.
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president trump is projecting a lot of confidence about the fate of the republican health care bill despite the fact it's been met with criticism from nearly ever
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interest group, all the democrats in congress and a large group of both conservative and moderate republicans. the president met with a group of skeptical members of congress from the conservative republican study committee. he says he was convinced to vote everyone for vote for trumpcare and he didn't stop talking about it all day. >> all of these noes or potential noes are all yeses. every single person sitting in this room is now a yes. we met with 12 pretty much noes, 12 noes or semi noes. no yeses. 100% of the noes were yeses. some were strong noes, some were noes and some were mixed. they went from all noes to all yeses and we have a lot of yeses coming in. it's all coming together. these folks were noes, mostly noes yesterday. and no every single one is a yes. >> just a few problems for that, justin amash, a member of the republican study committee "it's absolutely not true that conservatives have flipped to
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yes on the health care bill." congress mark meadows of the house freedom caucus who bedevilled john boehner when he had the job as speaker said "there are 40 no votes" according to his account, enough to defeat the bill. perhaps most importantly the bill is bleeding votes in the senate day by day. rand paul is a no, susan collins of maine came out as a no and dean heller of nevada said today he cannot support the bill in its current state so the specter that appears to be looming over the house that republicans will be forced to go on the report and vote to kick people off health insurance only to have to watch the bill die in the senate. joining me now, one of the republicans who will be asked to take a vote on the health care bill, republican congressman jim banks, indiana's third district, a member of the republican study committee who was in the meeting with the president this morning. my understanding is you are a tentative yes if there are changes and i'm reading your statement here. what are the changes you're looking to see in the bill to get you to yes?
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>> that's right, chris. this morning we had an opportunity to dialogue with the president and talk about a number of conservative changes we can make to the american health care act to make it more palatable to conservatives like me to move it forward. one of the most significant provisions is a true block grant program to the states to give more flexibility to states like indiana to administer these programs on their own without the red tape and bureaucracy of the federal government. if we can do that, cap the expansion of medicaid, protect the pro-life provisions in the american health care act then we'll go a long way towards making this more possible for conservatives like me to support the bill. >> so do you have yeses on those? >> i was -- i was a maybe, i want to meet the commitment and promise i made to the voters in my district that i would vote to repeal and replace obamacare. i did not feel like the american health care act fully met that commitment and believe this legislation is still far from
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the framework of what i had hoped to be able to vote on as a conservative in this congress. but if we make the promise -- if we make the changes that the president promised he would support this morning in the oval office, as a conservative i can get closer than what i was before. >> do you think the affordable care act was passed too quickly? >> i wasn't a member of congress then. >> sure, you were in the senate, though. >> i was just ten weeks into the job on capitol hill. i didn't have the opportunity to participate in that debate or follow it closely as i was a state senator at the time. what i do appreciate about the american health care act is that the speaker and the house leadership have gone at lengths to make this a very transparent process. >> congressman, you're going to vote on this on thursday, that's 17 days from the day the bill -- the text of the bill was introduced. there's been not one public hearing with witnesses called, one-fifth of the economy is
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health care, you're looking at a 64-year-old in your district who makes $26,000 a year who will see his premiums go to $14,000 a year. why the rush? why 17 days to reorder one-fifth of the american economy? >> chris, i believe the process over the past ten weeks since i was sworn in as a new member of congress has been transparent, we have had a very healthy and constructive debate -- >> right, but i'm asking about the pace -- >> on the way to repeal and i are place. >> i'm asking about the pace, not transparency. it's going to be 17 days if you guys vote on thursday. 17 days between the text of the bill with all the details, the complications, in fact the president himself said health care is complicated and i think you and i would agree, it's complicated, 17 days from introducing a piece of legislation to a vote, why rush so quickly? >> chris, i don't think we can rush quickly enough to meet the promise that remade to repeal and replace obamacare. as we watch obamacare literally collapsing in on itself with a
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number of providers leaving the health care exchange, we've got to do something, we've got to do it quickly. i believe we have to move forward on this piece of legislation and find a way to make it better. >> i want to ask you what you make of this line in the cbo report because i've heard in from you and your colleagues that's collapsing. it said "the non-group market would probably be stable in either areas, the american association of actuaries says there is no death spiral." it seems strange to me that you and your colleagues reiterate that obamacare is imploding more to a death spiral when the experts tasked we value waiting that say that is not true. >> on election day, on november 8, the voters chose republicans to lead based on a commitment and promise that we would repeal and replace obamacare. >> that may be true, congressman, but that's not responsive to the -- it's a question -- i get that and obviously that's the case and you and your colleagues control the house and senate and also the white house. but it's a specific question
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about the actual state of the insurance market which isn't something that voters determine one way or the other. that's a fact about how those markets are functioning and the association of actuaries and the congressional budget office agree that it's not imploding so i'm wondering why you and your colleagues say it is. >> chris, what is clear is that the replacement proposal that we are debating in the congress today with some significant changes that we can make that we discussed in the oval office this morning could result in a health care program in this country that will work for far more americans than what we have under obamacare with rising premiums, fewer choices for the american people, over a third of the counties in america only have one choice to choose from in the exchange and i believe that if we repeal obamacare and replace it with a patient-driven program based on free market and conservative principles like we are moving in the direction of especially with the changes we discuss with the president this
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morning, we will come up with a program that works better for more americans than what we have under obamacare. >> a logistical question. those changes will be made and the bill text will be published, we'll see that and then you'll vote on thursday, is that the sequence? >> when we get back to washington next week it's my understanding that a manager's amendment will be proposed in the rules committee which will address the commitment that the president and his team as well as house leadership have agreed to make sure these conservative changes to move this forward to gain more support from conservatives in the house. that's what it will take to get my vote to move this forward would be to see those changes made. i'm hopeful that occurs at the end of the next week. >> one of those changes is a medicaid work requirement. i wonder if you'll come back to talk about the medicaid work requirement. i'd love to talk to you about it next week. >> chris, i believe that's one of the most significant changes. i'd be happy to talk to you about that. >> congressman jim banks of indiana, appreciate it.
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coming up, a new report from propublica that recently fired u.s. attorney preet bharara may have been overseeing an investigation into hhs secretary tom price. the key question, did the white house know. the journalist who broke the story joins me ahead. [ ominous music ]
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all about the v.a. >> are you going to be at the meeting? why is the president holding the meeting of mar-a-lago? because it's the most convenient location. even though at the very moment the president said that he was already in a veterans affairs meeting with the veterans affairs secretary who shook his head know when asked if he was going to be at that meeting nearly one thousand miles away tonight. but late tonight the white house confirmed that meeting is not happening. apparently it's not so convenient after all. ahead, while the president chooses to spend money on weekend getaways, he is proposing drastic cuts to meals on wheels and next the report that the president's secretary of health and human services was being investigated by -- for his stock trieds by the u.s. attorney in new york at the time the president fired that u.s. attorney. next. anything meant to stand needs a stable foundation.
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we still don't know why president trump may have changed his mind about keeping the u.s. attorney for the southern district of new york, preet bharara. bharara met with the president-elect at trump tower and told reporters that trump asked if he would be prepared to stay on the job and said he had agreed to do so. bharara was later asked to resign along with 46 u.s. attorneys and while an across-the-board replacement of u.s. attorneys is relatively common for a new administration, bharara stood out because of the meeting with trump and, in fact, refused to resign and then he was fired. the day after bharara sent out this clue "by the way, now i know what the moreland commission must have felt like." that refers to a commission that was disbanded once the commission started to get to close to governor cuomo's
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allies. today propublica reports at the time of his firing bharara was overseeing an investigation into stock trades made by the president's health care that refers to the president's health and service's secretary tom price. during the confirmation hearings for price, numerous issues arose for price in his role has a congressman benefit countries he enriched himself in. price was also accused of lying, he failed to report the purpose and proper value that his stake in that company was a clerical error. so if in fact the president fired a u.s. attorney at the time he was investigating the president's hhs secretary. that's hugely significant. joining me now, the reporter for propublica who covers money in politics. you broke this story.
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this has not been previously disclosed that the office of the u.s. attorney for the southern district of new york, preet bharara, his office was looking into tom price's trades. >> and what's interesting is the office was looking into these trades when the trump administration decided to reverse course and not retain treat in the southern district. soon after he was elected preet met with trump in trump tower and was assured he was going to stay on. >> and then something happened. >> suddenly trump reversed course and has not explained that decision. >> we should be clear this is something -- there's some expertise in southern district, bringing insider trading cases and this would fall into their portfolio, right? >> right. they have a strong public corruption unit and like you said they handle securities, they know it well so it makes sense they'd be looking at this.
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>> i have to say during the price hearings every time a new disclosure happened about a different trade he was making, i was sort of amazed that these were legal to begin with because here's a guy who seems to be fairly actively trading in stocks in the medical industry who is deeply involved in health policy and medical oversight. what are the possible laws he could have run afoul of? >> in 2012 there had been some confusion about how strictly insider trading laws applied to members of congress so a new law was instituted that clarified that and priored prompt disclosure of trades. what stood out was one of the trades in particular. he bought stock in a medical device company and then introduced a bill that would have delayed regulations for medical devices and particularly would have hurt this company. it was one of the two companies
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that would have been hurt the worst. >> if the regulations had gone into effect. >> yes. >> so he staved off a regulation that would have caused a threat to the company in which he purchased stocks a few weeks earlier. >> attempted to, yes. >> and now i want to zero in on the question. >> his defense on that was this his broker made that decision and that he wasn't aware of it until later. but when he did become aware of it he didn't sell his stock. >> and the degree to which the broker was managing things on his own became an issue in the committee hearings and it was clear there were some trades he directly did direct the broker to do. so what was established in the committee was it wasn't just blindly being managed. he was telling them in some cases buy this, sell this. >> one occasion stands out. there was an australian company producing a drug for ms and price was one of a handful of american investors allowed to purchase that stock at a
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discount rate hi did so and the price of the stock has risen dramatically. that was one stock he did direct the purchase of. >> so your reporting suggests the southern district was looking into this the questions are how far along was that and the crucial is did anyone communicate that? did the white house have any reason to know the director of hhs was being investigated by the man they then fired? >> it depends on the detailed nature of the investigation in some cases yes, main justice does need to be notified. for example with a high profile person and obviously tom price is that. but it's not certain that they knew. but that's a question that we tried to get answered today when we reached out to the white house. we wanted to know was trump aware of this investigation when he made the decision to reverse
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course and not retain preet? they told us they were going to give us a response. wait five more minutes, five more minutes, we were waiting and finally we had to go, we haven't heard. >> this is a huge question. high profile investigationings have to get run up the chain, in this case, did it ever get to main justice and did the white house know? great reporting robert, thank you very much. >> thank you so much. >> still to come, amidst growing outrage over proposed cuts to programs like meals on wheels, president trump flies south for yet another weekend at mar-a-lago. plus a valuable st. patrick's day lesson for the president, that's tonight's thing 1 thing 2 starting next. (burke) at farmers, we've seen almost everything,
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rage, rage against the dying of the light. do not go gentle into that good night. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ thing 1 tonight, st. patrick's day celebrations in washington usually involve
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politicians wearing green, showing their love of irish heritage and participating in glorious pieces of political theater like the presidential shamrock ceremony. this year's traditional washington frivolity revealed a surprising amount of diplomatic faux pas beginning with the speaker of the house. >> i would like to offer a toast. to what our fore fathers have started and our children will continue, may the light always shine upon them. >> paul ryan's sorry-looking pre-poured pint of guinness with its pitiful lack of a frothy creamy top sent irish twitter into a tizzy. then there was a white house press secretary sean spicer who struggled with his irish pronunciation. >> this morning the president had a bilateral organization with theoiesearh kenny.
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>> and then there was the song written by an englishman played with scottish bagpipes. >> but the most remarkable thing didn't come from the president, it came from the man sitting next to him. that's in 60 seconds. afoot and light-hearted i take to the open road. healthy, free, the world before me, the long brown path before me leading wherever i choose. the east and the west are mine. the north and the south are mine. all seems beautiful to me. to take advantage of this offer on a volvo s90, visit your local dealer. at angie's list, we believe there are certain things you can count on, like what goes down doesn't always come back up. [ toilet flushes ] so when you need a plumber, you can count on us to help you find the right person for the job. discover all the ways we can help at angie's list.
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country over the last 200 years. ireland came to america because, deprived of liberty, deprived of opportunity, of safety, of even food itself, the irish believed. and four decades before lady liberty lifted her lamp, we were the retched refuse on the teeming shore. we believed in the compassion of america, the opportunity of america, we came and we became americans. tive duty 11 years. and two in the reserves. our 18 year old was in an accident. when i call usaa it was that voice asking me, "is your daughter ok?" that's where i felt relief. it actually helped to know that somebody else cared and wanted make sure that i was okay. that was really great. we're the rivera family,
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today, the president did what's become a habit in his young white house stint, he took a summer friday, escaping washington this afternoon for his luxury golf resort in florida, mar-a-lago. this comes after four prior summer friday trips down to palm beach, meaning he's taken five
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golf resort weekends in just eight full weeks as president. now obviously the president can spend his weekend as he pleases, but here's one reason why it's problematic to spend every other weekend at a golf resort nearly one thousand miles away, the administration's stated mission on budget cuts. >> when you start looking at the places that will reduce spending, one of the questions we asked was can we really continue to ask a coal miner in west virginia or a single mom in detroit to pay for these programs? the answer was no. we can ask them to pay for defense and we will but we can't ask them to continue to pay for the corporation for public broadcasting. >> last night i asked republican congressman tom mcclintock if that logic should be applied to the president's now-regular weekends in florida. >> that is one of the costs of the modern presidency and i've never begrudged a president to cost of security as he moves around the country. >> respectfully, sir, they have not all flown to their own private resort every weekend at the cost of $3 million, nor have they kept a separate residence in trump tower which costs $183 million a year.
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>> pardon me, but i remember the cost of obama trips to hawaii, they were enormous. >> to put barack obama's travel costs in perspective, the conservative watchdog group judicial watch estimates obama spent around $96 million on travel over eight years, roughly $12 million a year. politico estimates each one of donald trump's trips to mar-a-lago cost taxpayers $3.6 million, so roughly $18 million for five trips, meaning trump's spent in two months what president obama averaged over 18 months. but despite expecting a coal miner to fund the president's golf trips, trump's budget director made it clear they have no interest in extending that same generosity to, for instance, meals for the sick and home bound senior citizens. that's proving tough for members of their own party to stomach. we'll discuss that next. when you have allergies,
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find fast relief behind the counter allergies with nasal congestion? with claritin-d. [ upbeat music ] strut past that aisle for the allergy relief that starts working in as little as 30 minutes and contains the best oral decongestant. live claritin clear, with claritin-d. >> regarding the question as to climate change, i think the president was fairly straightforward, we're not spending money on that anymore. we consider that to be a waste of your noun do that. meals on wheels sounds great. that's a state decision to fund that particular portion, but to take the federal money and give it to the states and say, look, we want to give you money for programs that don't work. i can't defend that. afterschool programs generally, they're supposed to be educational programs, right? they're supposed to help kids who don't get fed at home get fed so they do better in school. guess what? there's no demonstrable evidence they're actually doing that. there's no demonstrable results they're doing better.
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>> the president's spokesperson almost gleeful. joining me now, dean baker, author of "rigged, how the rules of the modern economy were structured to make the rich richer." dean, you're a budget nerd and i've counted on you for budget commentary for years. i can't decide between two things. is this a standard republican budget or something different? it's somewhere in between. this is an extreme version of a republican budget. it's very mean spirited, they're going after programs that help lower income people. this has been done before. i'm old enough to remembering are. he did a lot of things like this. in the case of president trump, this seems so gratuitous, these are small programs, not a lot of money and they're very popular programs because contrary to mr. mulvaney, they do work.
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>> this is the thing i think is fascinating. there's a sense in that they say programs for poor people or poor programs, so medicaid for years, you can cut medicaid because it's those people. >> not medicare, yeah. >> what's happened over the years is that the economic devastation of the financial crisis and downward mobility of huge swaths of might america particularly means there's lots of folks who voted for trump who on medicaid or seniors who are home bound on meals on wheels or hall rogers from kentucky who talks about the budget being draconian, careless and counterproductive. i think there's a mismatch between kwlo they think the voters are and who they really are. >> i almost feel like there's a bit of optimism in that trump being undone by his own banality. some of us feared that trump was going to be able to -- particularly when rubs decide deficits don't matter when republicans are in power that he would be able to shore up a new constituency by turning them
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into clients of the state he would cut things for people who didn't vote for him but lavish gifts on those who did. >> we heard a trillion dollar infrastructure and construction jobs as far as the eye can see. >> and there were things about that to support but, no, trump is doing what he always does, screw everyone who believes in him. he's much more of a con man than an authoritarian populist. so he's basically just stiffing people who thought they were going to get something from him. >> my favorite example is the appalachian regional council. it costs essentially nothing but does good stuff within a region of country that desperately needs ideas about reinvestment. >> it's kind of amazing, and as michelle was saying, these are his supporters, he carried them 3-1 and he's kicking them the
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face. also something that's been overlooked, big cuts in the budget to the labor department, the environmental protection agency and the internal revenue service. the big issue here is that these are enforcement agencies. you run the risk that trump might be negating the laws. laws on the books if the environmental protection agency doesn't have the money to enforce them, that becomes a joke. same with the wage and hour lawyers. the irs commissioner says we get $4 in tax revenue for every dollar we spend on enforcement so this budget cut costs us money. >> there was also this american first moment that i want to play the clip of on this st. patrick's day day and take a minute to recognize. this is mick mulvaney responding to question about a humanitarian crisis unfolding in africa. take a listen. >> reporter: the united nations says the world is facing the largest humanitarian crisis
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since the end of world war ii, 20 million people in four countries facing starvation or famine, yet you're cutting funding to the u.n., cutting funding to the foreign aid budget. are you worried some of the most vulnerable people on earth will suffer as a result? >> we're absolutely reducing funding to the u.n. and various foreign aid programs, including those run by the u.n. and other agencies. that should come as a surprise to no one who watched the campaign. >> this is a man named mick mulvaney celebrating st. patrick's day with shamrocks in his pocket just blithely dismissing a concern of a famine which is, of course, the thing that sent irish people here to this country, the famous irish famine that the world got together, the u.s. sent two naval ships to ireland. i was astounded by that moment. >> what did people say? hypocrisy is the debt vice pays to virtue? to me what's amazing is you're supposed to at least pretend to
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care about people dying en masse from starvation and they can't even put on a show of concern. >> dean, that was the whole thing yesterday. the performance by mulvaney, michelle put her finger on it. it was blithe and glib, like the joy he seemed to be taking in the whole enterprise. >> it was certainly that. one more thing that is really important to point out, this is pocket change for us. it's life and death for those people. we spend less than 1% on the budget on foreign aid. i should emphasize that, polls regularly show people think a third of the budget goes to foreign aid. if i thought a third of the budget went to foreign aid, i would be unhappy, too. it's 1%. you could make it zero and it doesn't affect your taxes. >> michelle goldberg, dean baker, thank you. next week will be a big week because i kick off my book tour for my new book "a colony in a nation" which you can preorder right now. i'll give you more info on what the book is about next week including where the title comes from but for now i'd say it's about law and order, race and policing and why the founding fathers would have been sympathetic to the grievances of black lives matter.
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starting tuesday i will be in washington, d.c., boston on wednesday then thursday in philadelphia. just the first few stops, check out our facebook for more details. some events are selling out. that'sfall this for this evening. the rachel maddow show starts this evening. >> congratulations on your book launch. i'm looking forward to talking about your book on my show on monday. >> awesome, let's do it. thanks for joining us at this hour. happy friday. if you have an image in your head for general douglas macarthur, it's probably this one, right? the iconic hat, the awesome sunglasses, before biden, right? douglas macarthur's sunglasses, obviously the giant corn cob pipe when he was the commanding general for u.s. troops in the korean war china sent hundreds of thousands of chinese troops over the border into north korea