tv For the Record With Greta MSNBC June 8, 2017 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
you have been staying tuned for what happened next. anyway, that is all for nit. for the record with greta starts right now. all yours, greta. >> and thank you, chuck. is president trump now under investigation for obstruction of justice? >> was general flynn at that time in serious legal jeopardy? and in addition to that, you say the president was trying to obstruct justice or just seek for a way for mike flynn to save face given he had already been fired? >> general flynn at that point in time was in legal jeopardy. there was an open fbi criminal investigation of his statements in connection with the russian contacts and the contacts themselves. and, so, that was my assessment at the time. i don't think it's for me to say whether the conversation i had with the president was an effort to obstruct. i took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that's a conclusion i'm sure the special counsel will work towards to try and understand
what the intention was there and whether that's an offense. >> and one question that might be at the heart of all of this -- >> why do you believe you were fired? >> i guess i don't know for sure. i believe -- i think the president fired me because of the russia investigation, something about the way i was conducting it the president felt created pressure on him he wanted to relieve. i didn't know that at the time, but i watched his interview. i've read the press accounts of his conversations so i takes him at his word there. it's my judgment that i was fired because of the russia investigation. i was fired in some way to change or the endeavor was to change the way the russia investigation was being conducted. that is a very big deal. >> fired fbi director james comey accusing the trump administration of lying. comey also said he didn't trust president trump. that's why he took notes when he met with the president in
private or spoke to him on the phone. >> although the law required no reason at all to fire an fbi director, the administration then chose to defame me and more importantly the fbi by saying the organization was in disarray, that it was poorly led, that the work force had lost confidence in its leader. those were lies, plain and simple. i was honestly concerned he might lie about the nature of our meeting so i thought it really important to document. >> one way we might know who is telling the truth or not is if there are tapes. the question of tapes? well, that came up today. >> look, i've seen the tweet about tapes. lordy, i hope there are tapes. >> do you believe there were any tapes or recordings of your conversations with the president? >> it never occurred to me till the president's tweet. i'm not being facetious. i hope there are. i'll consent to the release of them. >> first to cnbc's aman jabbers
who was in the comey hearing today. tell me your thoughts. >> this is absolutely going to come down to trust. who do you believe at the end of the day because we don't have the tapes you were just talking about. weon't have any documents other than those written by comey himself that haven't been released tthe publicet. so, for now you've got to see whether you you believe comey, the g-man, or trump, the president of the united states, ultimately one of them is not painting an accurate picture about all this. the white house forced to defend itself today. we saw sara huckabee sanders come out in an off-camera gaggle. they didn't put any spokespeople on camera today. sara huckabee sanders came out and said, the president is not a liar. that is bad news for a white house when you have to have your spokesperson come out and assert the president is not lying, but they also said the president's private lawyer, that comey said things today that were not true, including things about what the president had told him inside the white house. so, someone here is not telling the truth, and politically this is going to be a big debate and
politics being as tribal as it is, people are going to make up their minds largely on where they approach the politics of all this. >> aman, thank you. >> you bet. >> with me bill crystal editor at large, former assistant director. bill, first to you. jim comey, former fbi director, says he doesn't now for sure why he's fired but he assumes it's the russia investigation based on statements the president has made. yet he also told the president on three occasions, he confirmed today, the president wasn't under investigation. your thoughts, why was he fired? >> because of the russia investigation. trump was obviously obsessed with this. for me the thing that hasn't be folkcused on was the o on one dinner. he has a million things to do. acting attorney general sally comes over to brief the president, you have a problem with mike flynn. white house counsel talks to
trump. what does he do, calls comey on for a one on one dinner. why does he do that in what is the innocent explanation of that except that he wants to basically see if comey is going to play ball with him, he wants to see where the investigation is. he wants to do something that he's really not supposed to do as president of the united states. did he do something, you know, credit i criminally wrong, is it an impeachable offense? mueller will figure that out. what we learned today in my view is trump's intention was not honorable. >> what if he's not under investigation, why would he fire him? is he worried about somebody else? >> he was not under -- you're a lawyer. he was not a target at that time of the investigation. >> he would be later? >> sure, they're investigating michael flynn. we don't know what trump and flynn discussed. we don't know what manafort and trump discussed. there was an investigation going on that could well lead to him and it freaked him ourt. that is why he had this extremely unusual one on one dinner and two weeks later the unusual moment where he asked comey to stay after he asks
everyone leave the oval office and they have that al qaewkward office one on one. >> we'll talk about it more later. he admits that he disclosed to a professor at columbia university the fact that he had a memo and that that was then given to some of the "the new york times" porters. why didn't he do it himself? why dide use a cut out? >> good question. in my mind there are leaks, and there are leaks. there are national security leaks, sensitive information, classified, perhaps we saw some of that earlier this week. and then we have leaks that are designed to identify corrupt actions in a boss, somebody higher than you, or an organization or part of an organization -- >> this is after he was fired, may 9. this leak through a cut out -- he had no fingerprints on that leak until today, none. but he decided after he was fired, by trump, to use a cut out in new york to leak something and frankly his old job was to investigate leaks. >> it is.
and my only supposition is today that his avenue at that time was through the media. there was still confusion in d.o.j. as to who's got what piece of russia and who doesn't. and jim comey as we heard it today, his goal was get a special counsel on this case. and the media was the means to do that. >> but he wouldn't do it himself. he had somebody else. all right, bill, is there any -- in all the times your experience of the white house, is it unusual to have a one on one? usually every time i see anyone moving around washington they have six aides. and the president has met with former director comey at dinner alone in the oval office. apparently tossed everybody else, alone. that has always struck me as unusual. >> very unusual. it's not that he was a close friend, secretary of defense, secretary of state they had to discuss policy questions. there was an ongoing investigation. the white house counsel had been briefed before the was a prlem with the white house national security advisor whoed been close to trump during the
campaign. he calls up comey who he barely knows. i think comey assumes, if i were in that position, i would assume maybe he's having all the law enforcement people over, you know, ten aides over, introduce themselves to all of us who are hold overs who are going to be there awhile. it's a one on one dinner, very unusual. >> the express language according to director comey it was not incriminating, it was a nod and a wink. are you going to be loyal, the nod and wink to do something else. >> also rater on, i hope you'll take it easy on flynn or whatever he said. the hope as opposed to order. trump is experienced. he's a 70-year-old guy. he's had his share of getting close run-ins with the law. he's careful about this kind of thing. i don't buy the argument he's innocent, he doesn't know washington, it's so mysterious how you try to wave someone off without ordering him to. trump would have thought that through and careful what he said. maybe there is not criminal offense or impeachable offense. we know what was in donald trump's mind.
what was in donald trump's mind i would like to slow down or reverse this russia investigation. >> ron, the former director got a little heat from some people for not stepping up stronger when the president would say something. i actually -- i was sort of sympathetic that he was caught off guard and said something like, yeah, he's a good guy, or something to mike flynn. as you watched it, what did you think? >> i would agree with your assessment of it. i'm trying to put myself in that moment. here i am, relatively junr fbi director although very experienced, with a new president of the united states and a feeling out process. and how momentous is it as i'm hearing these words and trying to process, what does he really want from me? and, so, i'm not too shocked that he just tried to find a middle ground and walk away from the conversation as opposed to give him the heisman and say, this is inappropriate and go on his way. and maybe with the hope that the president would not come back to
him with a second request or a deeper request. >> but it's sort of interesting, he did jab attorney general sessions by saying that he was certain that he would recuse himself because there was something else going on that i can't talk about, which of course in our minds run wild. likewise he did the same thing with former attorney general loretta lynch. he was suspicious, one was meeting with bill clinton on the tarmac, another we'll talk about later in the show how the investigation, whether it was called investigation matter. then he said there was something else that i can't talk about in open. so, he was also sort of jabbing at least, you know, some night think he -- might think he's trying to settle a score. >> he is trying to settle a score. he took the knife out of his back and glided it between the president's ribs. >> why loretta lynch when obama
w -- obama's attorney general? >> he is a by product of clinton investigation and what happened last july fifth that he we, in the minds of many, too far in his public assertions about hillary clinton. in the minds of too many that she should have been recommended for indictment. and then committed himself to this course of action that ended up last october in him trying to correct the record and he made reference to to that today. >> how do i correct the record? how do i tell the president, you're not the subject of an investigation that's new investigation? if that changes tomorrow or next week, what do i do then? and i think part of this was comey not wanting to replicate the trouble that he had since last fall. >> did comey do himself a favor today? >> i think he was impressive, but again, i think comey may have mishandled certain things in july or october or today. it doesn't really speak to the question of what donald trump did and what he knew when he knew it. >> of course he's very close to bob mueller the special counsel. this is a very cozy town. everybody knows everybody in this town, which is sometimes
doesn't always make for the best solutions. >> mueller, as you know, is going to really investigate. so, trump -- >> that's what everybody says. everybody loves everybody in the beginning. >> one can be a drama critic and give comey eye b plus, b minus. at the end of the day the facts are going to be the facts. >> the problem is there are two people in the room alone. that's the problem. >> no, but people would have said other things contemporaneously. >> we got a sense of the atmosphere. this is largely two dimensional. we have the paper version and the newspaper version and now we have j coy. but there is a third dimension. what does donald trump look like as witness? >> i don't know if we'll ever hear directly from him. we may hear from his tweets. gentlemen, thank you. coming up former director comey saying he would be happy for his now infamous memos to be released. will they those memos be released and back up the allegations about the president? plus president trump firing back through his team.
the personal laura cuesing comey of lying. he says the president never asked him to let the flynn probe go. president trump's former campaign manager lewandowski to talk all things comey, russia and what is going on now in the white house. stay with us. >> do you believe the russia investigation played a role? >> in why i was fired? >> yes. >> yes, because i've seen the president say so. what confused me when i saw on television the president saying that he actually fired me because of the russia investigation. dear predictable, there's no other way to say this. it's over. i've found a permanent escape from monotony. together, we are perfectly balanced. our senses awake. our hearts racing as one. i know this is sudden, but they say...if you love something set it free. see you around, giulia
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it's my judgment that i was fired because of the russia investigation. i was fired in some way to change or the endeavor was to change the way the russia investigation was being conducted. that is a very big deal. and not just because it involves me. >> former fbi director james comey saying he was fired to
change the outcome of the russia investigation, and then a short time after the comey testimony ended, president trump's outside lawyer pushing back. >> mr. comey's testimony also makes clear that the president never sought to impede the investigation into attempted russian interference in the 2016 election. >> and former director comey saying this about the question of obstruction of justice. >> i don't think it's for me to say whether the conversation i had with the president was an effort to obstruct. i took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that's a conclusion i'm sure the special counsel will work towards to try and understand what the intension was there and whether that is an offense. >> well, it is at this point a he said, he said and one u.s. senator today asking former director comey why he should be believed. >> i think people should look at the whole body of my testiny
because, as i used to say to juries whei tked about a witness, you can't cherry pick it. i like these things on this, on this he's a dirty rotten liar. you have to take it all together and i've tried to be open and fair and transparent and accurate. a really significant fact to me is, so, why did he kick everybody out of the oval office? why would you kick the attorney general, the president, the chief of staff out to talk to me if it was about something else? and, so, that to me is, as an investigator, is a very significant fact. >> alan dershowitz is a constitutional law schooler and professor emeritus at harvard law school. and ari is msnbc's chief legal correspondent. let me go first to you, alan. i'll ask ari the same question. what did you think about today? >> well, i think comey made a very significant statement today. he said he believed the constitution authorizes the president to tell the director of the fbi who to develop, who not to investigate, who to
prosecute, who not to prosecute. he's 100% right about that constitutional analysis. i've been making this point now for weeks and virtually everybody has disagreed with me. today comey agreed with me. and, therefore, if that's right, it really doesn't matter whether it was a request, a hope. the president has the authority to tell the director of the fbi to stop an investigation. he also has the authority to pardon flynn and stop the investigation. jefferson did this, lincoln did this, kennedy did this, roosevelt did this, and other presidents have done it. president bush the first pardoned casper wine berger in a situation where he might have testified against bush. in fact, the special prosecutor in that case, walsh, called it a cover up. nobody suggested at that point obstruction of justice. we have to get obstruction of justice off the table. the second important point i get out of this was that it now turns out comey is a chicken who is afraid of seagulls.
i mean the idea that he would not tell the press about these memos and he would have some law professor serve as a surrogate to leak information, the last person in the world who should be leaking information is the director of the fbi. and third, i think that comey gave an explanation for why he was fired because of the russian thing. remember that president trump three times said to him, i want you to continue the investigation. i want you to get it out. get it out that i'm not a subject of the investigation. he repeatedly said, get it out. comey didn't do it. so, i think comey was fired because he refused to accept a presidential order to get out the information publicly that he was not a subject of the investigation. that was a proper request from the president. you can't have obstruction of justice when the president didn't commit a crime. nixon committed crimes. he told his underlings to lie to the fbi. he arranged for hush money to be paid to witnesses. none of that is alleged against
president trump. >> all right. let me go to you, ari. same question, what do you think about today? >> what was most significant was that jim comey, unle many other participants in this drama, was willing to come out der his own name, under oath, and testify. he also has some background materials. i didn't find it all that notable whether he used other people to distribute things. a lot of senior owe fishlfficia accustomed to having aides so to speak. what he said was backed up by other officials at the fbi that this effort to stob the flynn investigation was problematic so much so they took all these extra steps to try to deal with it. reading from director comey, because this is the new factual information that's interesting. they were as shocked and troubled as i was, referring to other fbi officials. they were all experienced people who had never experienced such a thing. so, they were very concerned and the conversation turned, what do we do with this information? he went on to say that he believes the special counsel
will look at the totality of this and donald trump's words as well as the firing and the context of any investigation that could include obstruction. it's certainly too early to know where the special counsel investigation leads. that is bad in some sense for the white house because you have to see what happens. it's also good in some sense for the white house because it could ultimately lead nowhere and vindicate them. i think anyone who thinks they have a handle on where that investigation is going to lead in six or 12 months has a better crystal ball than i do. >> well, i have a pretty good crystal ball because i listened to comey. if comey is right, that the president has complete constitutional authority to tell a director of the fbi to end an investigation, it would be wrong to do it. it would be immoral, politically wrong. but if he has the constitutional authority to do t you don't need a crystal ball to conclude any reasonable prosecutor would conclude what comey concluded, there was no crime committed. the reason he didn't go to the justice department not because there was recusal, not because
there wasn't a permanent deputy attorney general, but because he knew there wasn't a crime and you don't go to prosecutors to report conduct that's wrong or in violation of justice department rules. you go to prosecutors if you believe a crime was committed. comey didn't believe a crime was committed then. i don't believe he thinks -- >> that's not what the record states. it may or may not be that crimes were committed. it may or may not be that pardons would be issued. the constitution gives broad pardon power. the former director did not talk about a conclusion of a crime. that would indeed be appropriate. he is a witness to events currently under investigation of the fbi and special counsel. that is an open process. it will be up to them, not any individual witness to ultimately decide whether a factual predicate exists and recommend such to the d.o.j. >> forget about factual predicate. the constitutional predicate doesn't exist no matter what the facts are. unless they can show what nixon did, bribing witnesses not to testify, telling people to
testify falsely, if all they can demonstrate was that the president exercised his propers constitutional authority to fire comey and tell him to stop investigating flynn, there is no constitutional basis. forget about the facts. no constitutional basis to go forwarth any investigation. >> i appreciate the recommendation to forget about the facts. i'm not in the business of forgetting about the facts, professor. the facts matter. the facts matter from a journalistic sense, they matter from a legal sense. you are referencing a constitutional power that does exist, which is ultimately which could result in the pardon power. that doesn't obviate the factual process as it unfolds right now. >> adam, i'm going to give alan the last word because he's our guest at msnbc. >> always happy to be with him as a guest. >> i think that we should take the issue of obstruction of justice off the table and focus on what we really care about, that is, did the russians try to influence an election. did they succeed in influencing an election. was the trump campaign involved in that.
that's the issue. not whether the president obstructed justice. that's a distraction and we should take it off the table. >> i know i'm just a guest as well but i would have to throw in there, i would echo what the professor is saying about that search. that is an important search. but that could also unveil crimes. take the president out of it. it is a crime under federal election law to take a thing of value f value from a foreigner. if that occurred, whichever party, that is something people are going to care about. >> i want to point out there was one lawyer who didn't have to have the last word. i wasn't even in this discussion. anyway, thank you both. >> thank you both. >> thank you. >> you heard, now fired fbi director james comey say what is in his now famous memos. but do we have to rely on his word? why can't we see these memos? why can't we read them for ourselves? that's the way to know for sure what's in them. the senate intel committee making big demands from comey. what about this shocking accusation? >> the administration then chose to defame me and more importantly the fbi.
>> former campaign manager cory lewandowski is here with a response from the trump world. . [woman] so beautiful. [man] beautiful just like you. [woman] oh, why thank you. [burke] and we covered it, november sixth, two-thousand-nine. 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 ♪ and it's also a story mail aabout people and while we make more e-commerce deliveries to homes than anyone else in the country, we never forget... that your business is our business the united states postal service. priority: you ♪ dynamic performance, so you can own the road.
mr. comey, you encouraged the president to release the tapes. will you encourage the department of justice or your friend at columbia or your friend of mueller to release your memos? >> sure. >> james comey agreeing congress should also see the famous memos he made of his conversations he made with president trump. will you and the rest of us ever see these comey memos? what's in them? who has read them besides comey? those are some of the big questions raised by today's hearing. and also today comey's testimony provoked another new mystery. why did attorney general jeff sessions recuse himself from the russia investigation? now, comey stunned us all when he suggested there may be classified reasons why he can't tell. here's what happened. >> what was it about the attorney general's own
interactions with the russians or his behavior with regard to the investigation that would have led the entire leadership of the fbi to make this decision? >> our judgment, as i recall, was that he was very close to and inevitably going to recuse himself for a variety of reasons. we also were aware of facts that i can't discuss in an open setting that would make his continued engagement in a russia-related investigation problematic. >> now, comey also testified about, well, maybe even threw under the bus, former attorney general under president obama loretta lynch. he claims there is classified information that prompted him to ignore the former attorney general and go around her in a clinton e-mail investigation. >> i want to know was she going to authorize us to confirm we d an investigation, and she said yes, b don't call it that, call it a matter. and i said, why would i do that? and she said, just call it a
matter. >> were there other things that contributed to that that you can describe in an open session? >> there were other things that contributed to that. one significant item i can't. i know the committee has been briefed on. there's been some public accounts of it which are nonsense, but i understand the committee has been briefed on the classified facts. >> later today, a former official who worked for loretta lynch who wrkd at the justice department tells nbc in 2015 she suggested he refer to the clinton investigation as a matter to confirm or deny the existence of a investigation. that was a long-standing justice department and fbi policy. that person telling nbc that at the time comey did not contest that decision. ned price is former senior director and spokesperson for president obama's national security council and robert deets is former senior counsel at cia and former general counsel at the nsa. bob, i think that when comey
said that the attorney general wanted to refer to the clinton investigation as a matter and not an investigation, that he was suggesting that the fix was in for hillary clinton by this attorney general. and i would be furious if i were the attorney general. so, now you have some strange bed fellows because you're going to have trump and the attorney general, former attorney general of the united states saying that when fbi director comey talks to you, he gets it wrong. >> well, i think that's a little unfair and overstated. >> she's not happy about this. >> no, i'm sure. >> wouldn't you be furious? >> well, i'd be upset probably. >> i'd be furious. >> you would be. >> i'm a hot head. >> it seems to me you're making a lot of the distinction between a investigation and a matter. >> no, i'll tell you why. because he said, what he testified toy threason he dede to go alone at the july 5 press conference and not consult the attorney general of the
united stas was three reasons. one, loretta lynch meeting on the tarmac with bill clinton. something classified that had our imaginations running and third because she instructed him to call the clinton investigation a matter, not an investigation. so, he made it very important. >> bear in mind, he said there were three factors. >> those three. >> yes, but they're not necessarily of all equal weight. >> all right. >> greta, the most interesting one to my mind is the one we don't know about, and i think it was the oblique reference to this washington post article we have discussed before, that alleged that the russians had introduced some sort of documentary evidence alleging there was some quid pro quo between the department of justice and the clinton campaign. the same washington post article said the document was actually a fake, there was no such coordination, no such quid pro quo, but that it nonetheless factored into director comey's decision to take over this matter, this investigation. >> we don't know for sure that's it. we do know -- ned, you don't agree, my hair would be on fire
if i were loretta lynch and i've now got him out there saying that i was trying to basically, first of all, we have the thing on the tarmac. that was bad. i c i concede that. the second is when they're trying to get on the same page and matter versus investigation, he's making her look like the fix is in. i'd be furious if i were loretta lynch. >> director comey said himself it is an extraordinary step for the federal bureaof investigation or the department of justice to go out and to confirm an investigation. it makes perfect sense in that regard that you wouldn't call it an investigation unless you're ready to cross that -- >> he's mad at her for not calling it an investigation. that's my point. >> it seems before we get really ripped about this, we ought to know more of the facts. for example, i'd like to know the one that he didn't talk about. >> i would, too. i would concede that, too. what did you think of his testimony today in >> i think it was excellent. just as they often say doctors are the worst patients, litigators are the worst people
to testify. i'm sure he's prepped many, many witnesses. he took his own advice. his answers were crisp, clean. when an answer required a yes or no, he gave a yes or no and didn't elaborate. i thought he showed gravitas and open in his answers. >> ned? >> the big take way for me, greta, was that this hearing underscored i think the washington adage that it's not the crime, it's the crossover up. in the context of mike flynn and president trump's hope this matter could disappear, director comey on a couple occasions made an allusion to the fact that is something that the special counsel will have to look into, whether that was obstruction of justice. and i think that we can take this as a signal that bob mueller's -- the scope of his inquiry here will include not just collusion, but also obstruction of justice. so, even if president trump wasn't involved in the wheeling and dealing that may have led to this matter with the russians to come to fruition, i think there is a good case that director comey laid out today that we've heard other data points relating to, that president trump was indeed obstructing justice and
bob mueer it sounds like will get to the bottom that. >> we're learning something new right now, that jared kushner, of course jared kushner is going to meet tomorrow with the senate intelligence committee. so, we'll learn -- >> i would disagree slightly. >> go ahead. >> if i can. it seems to me, as you know, obstruction of justice is a crime of intentionality. and, so, i think it generally needs behind it something you want to cover up. and, so, i think that until we find what is it, if anything that president trump is worried about, that we really don't have an obstruction case yet. >> and i have to correct myself. i said jared kushner to meet soon with senate intelligence committee, not tomorrow. i don't know, we'll find out what soon means. soon, i hope. thank you both. >> thank you. >> absolutely, thank you. >> well, we still have not heard directly from president trump on comey's testimony, not even one tweet. but his outside lawyer is denying some of comey's claims. >> the president likewise never pressured mr. comey.
the president also never told mr. comey, quote, i need loyalty. i expect loyalty, close quote. >> former trump campaign manager cory lewandowski here, jim comey never reporting the president asked him to drop the flynn investigation. why not? a top democrat responds coming up. show you how behind schedule we are. yeah. are those the pyrotechnics that are gonna startle me from a distance? yep. and my impractical wardrobe changes, those all set? not even close. oh, this is obly going to shine in your eyes at the worst possible time. perfect. we're looking at a real train wreck here, am i right? wouldn't it be great if everyone said what they meant? the citi® double cash card does. it lets you earn double cash back with 1% when you buy, and 1% as you pay. the citi double cash card. double means double.
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why didn't you stop and say, mr. president, this is wrong, i cannot discuss this with you? >> that's a great question. maybe if i were stronger i would have. >> former fbi director comey under fire for failing to act on the allegation president trump put pressure on him when he said he hoped comey could drop the flynn investigation. and breaking news now. jared kushner will meet with intelligence committee staffers mid month. this is an agreement he made with the committee to provide them documents. joining me house whip steny hoyer. >> great to be with you. >> what are your thoughts about all this >> i told you, i'm one of the few americans that didn't have an opportunity to see the hearing. i saw clips of them. i think this is one step in what are very important steps we need to take. we need to keep in mind there are really two separate issues here. one is what did the russians do, who did they do it with, how
were they trying to undermine our democracy and western determine k democracies generally. what did the president know, when did he know it, what has he said, did he try to convince the fbi director to drop interest in flynn? that's obviously another part of the equation. greta, i think there are going to be a lot of shoes yet to drop. >> today director comey was quite hard, as he should be on russia, and it seems -- i don't think anyone is disputing russia is trying to meddle in our election. >> yes. >> what can we do? we talk about sanctions all the time. are they really effective? or is that all we can do? >> i think sanctions are effective and i think they have been effective, for instance, we had a meeting today about our sanctions on ukraine -- russia yarding ukraine. they had an effect. so, yes, sanctions can work. >> putin certainly seems to snub his nose at us. >> there is no doubt he has the intent to undermine western
democracies. he's interfered in almost every european election, certainly interfered in the french election, marine le pen did not win. that was his choice. and the western countries, the democracies, he wants to undermine western democracy and their ideals. >> why? >> he wants to make the world safe for auto cracys. >> why? >> to make himself look good and make russia look tougher. >> so we'll crank up the sanctions probably? >> let's find out what happened. frankly, we have a lot of problems with russia. i mentioned ukraine. i mentioned threats to other parts of eastern europe, syria. we have a lot of -- >> why do we have to wait? we know they've done something. why not get started? >> we are considering sanctions now,dditional sanctions for russia right now. and as a matter of fact, it is being discussed in the senate. >> next week? >> yeah. so, we are considering those now. when you say why not go now,
we're going now. >> i guess we are going now. especially since we have an election coming up soon, a midterm. >> we always have election. >> it's interesting you say soon. a year and a half from now almost, year and five months, and i guess that's soon. you know what i tell my members? look, you cannot solve america's problems in 24-month cycles. we have to get out of just thinking in 24-month psych lsz. >> -- cycles. >> always nice to see you. coming up, will president trump testify? cory lewandowski is next. summe, the lobster and shrimp you love are teaming up in so many new ways. like new coastal lobster and shrimp, with a lobster tail with butter and herbs, sweet, smoky bbq red shrimp, and shrimp crusted with...get this...cape cod kettle chips. or try lobster and shrimp overboard. a dish this good... makes you this hungry.
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my impression was something big is about to happen. i need to remember every single word that is spoken. and, again, i could be wrong. i'm 56 years old. i've been seen a few things. my sense was the attorney general knew he shouldn't be leaving which is why he was lingering. and i don't know mr. kushner well, but i think he picked up
on the same thing and so i knew something was about to happen that i needed to pay very close attention to. >> former fbi director comey today on trump asking jared kushner and others to leave the room at his white house meeting. and breaking right now, jared kushner will meet with senate intelligence committee staffers mid month. this is the first step in an agreement he made with the committee to then provide documents. cory lewandowski is former campaign manager. good to see you. >> good to see you, greta. >> jared kushner has agreed to a date with the senate intelligence committee. >>here is news about it other than jared said he's willing to cooperate and turnover any information they have asked him to do so. he's been very clear about that from the very beginning of any inquiries. and, so, he's fulfilling that commitment. >> now today, i'm sure you watched the testimony today in which the former fbi director comey made a lot of allegations against the president of the united states. and i'm sure you disagree.
i take it you disagree with those allegations. fair? >> i think the most important thing coming out of his testimony today was donald trump was never under investigation. he informed then president-elect trump and also president trump there was no investigation, and that's a very important factor which is being pushed by the mainstream media aside, but the fact is donald trump was never under investigation from the fbi. >> i have repeated, if it's any consolation to you, i have repeated the fact that that was and of course his personal lawyer has done that and we aired that. but why do you think that the former fbi director comey said he felt pressured by the president to drop or do something about the michael flynn investigation and russia investigation? >> what's very interesting and you heard a number of senators ask the former director this question, you know, did the president ever ask you to do something directly? he said, i hoped for. have you ever heard of someone being prosecuted for asking someone to hope forrin somethin?
he said not to the best of my recollection. marco rubio said why is it the only leak not coming out of the fbi was donald trump was not under investigation? and jim comey had no answered t under the penalty of perjury, u was that he is the leak in the department of justice. what we know, greta is he is the one that most likely leaked information to "the wall street journal" that ran a story on march 1st, which pressured then attorney general, current attorney general to recuse himself and said that in that sorry, there was hand-wringing at the fbi, that he is the one who probably leaked the undisclosed meeting between then senator jeff sessions and kislyak. and this is the reason, because there is no formal process to have an attorney general recuse himself from an investigation except for public pressure. and it looks like after "the wall street journal" story ran on march 1st, which was probably leaked by jim comey, this is when jeff sessions recused himself. and if you believe -- >> give me -- >> hold on one second. >> i just want to know his -- go
ahead but tell me -- >> jim comey said on february 15th that he knew that jeff sessions was going to recuse himself from the investigation. jeff sessions didn't recuse himself from the investigation until march 2nd. how could jim comey know two weeks in advance that the attorney general was going to recuse himself? it's because he's the one who was leaking the information. that's the only panel scenario. >> give me 20 seconds. what's his motivation for this? >> his motive is jim comey basically wants to do what is best for jim comey. he has lost the faith of the president. he's lost the faith of the individuals working at the fbi, and, you know, his reputation has clearly taken a hit on this because not just today but in his previous testimony in front of the house and the senate he had to go back and correct because he made misstatements then too. just because he's under oath today doesn't mean jim comey is tellinetrut >> thank you. hope you come ba. we'll back with bill chrisow and michael crawly joins us. >> i disagree with corey.
i think he comes across as an incredibly honorable man and republicans seem to be setting a pretty high bar for damning information about president trump. i mean so maybe he wasn't under fbi investigation before he fired comey. we don't know that he's not now. but we heard a story about a man that i think a lot of americans will find extremely troubling, and they'll be asking themselves whether this is appropriate behavior for a president of the united states. i mean greta, there's a legal question here of what laws trump might have violated, and that's a really important question. there's also a question of just character and temperament, and are you just shattering norms left and right in how you talk to law enforcement and intelligence officials? >> you know what i find so fascinating about today is comey's testimony has made strange bedfellows of loretta lynch and president trump in that they both had meetings with him, and he walked away with different impressions of what the meeting was. he said that president trump pressured him, and he says that
loretta lynch was interested -- that's my term -- calling it a matter instead of an investigation when it involved hillary clinton. now you've got trump and loretta lynch as strange bedfellows on this. >> has lynch denied that? >> she has not specifically denied it, but this is what it says. she suggested that she and the director should be consistent in their language and at the end of the meeting she asked if everyone was comfortable with using t tm "matter." no one including the director contested that view. >> so comey told the truth. comey may have made mistakes over the last year or three years he was fbi director, but i -- he's not the person who is currently in office. he was fired. the president had the right to fire him. comey has the right to testify. he was under oath. if people can show he perjured himself, they can do so. but i trust james comey more than i trust corey lewandowski when it comes to truth telling. and this talking point now
about, wow, he wasn't under direct investigation. what does that mean? richard nixon was not under investigation originally. john mitchell was investigation. then it turned out, guess what? they looked at the documents. they put people under oath, and richard nixon ended up being under investigation. >> i guess i take the loretta lynch thing -- maybe it's because i'm a lawyer, but your credibility is everything. what he was saying today is he was saying basically that the fix was in with loretta lynch vis-a-vis hillary clinton, and that goes right to the heart of her credibility, i thought. >> sure. it's damning characterization of loretta lynch. lynch has given a different account. but i just think it's a secondary question when you're talking about there's some possible collaboration between the justice department and a losing presidential campaign that doesn't involve any other figures here. and the incumbent president and a campaign that might have been manipulated by a hostile foreign vernment, i just think that on
a scale of one tote the trump estion is a ten, and the lynch question is a -- >> why does it hurt comey to have had a fight with the democrats as well as with the republicans? >> no, no, no. you're missing the point. it's that he walked away from a discussion having a very different impression of what transpired. that's the point. and you've got loretta lynch and president trump. i realize the trump thing is of far greater magnitude, but the point is he sits down, has a conversation with both these people at two different times, walks away, and they both have a different impression of what transpired. >> look, he's testifying to the best of his ability under oath. let's see what the -- >> they both have incentives to give different versions, and unless they're under oath, they're not going to come forward and say comey got it right. they're going to do their best to spin. so we can't assume his rkz --
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experience the exhilaration of the bold lexus is. experience amazing. so what is next? will we see former fbi director james comey testify again? the house oversight committee wants him. he already declined. the invite from senate judiciary but chairman grassley is open to subpoena comey, and will we see
president trump testify under oath? connecticut senator chris murphy saying, quote, the american people deserve to hear the president's side of the story in a similar forum -- under oath and open to the press. to be continued. thank you for watching. see you back here tomorrow night 6:00 p.m. eastern. "hardball" with chris matthews starts right now. witness for the prosecution. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. the president spent today in the defendant's box, accused of lying, of abusing power, of attempting to manipulate the fbi to protect himself and his people from justice. former fbi director james comey under oath today testified that president trump fired him to disrupt the russian investigation. >> take the president at his word that i was fired
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