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tv   MSNBC Live With Craig Melvin  MSNBC  February 7, 2018 10:00am-11:00am PST

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deal and now it's going to be up to the house and the president as they are still negotiating a short-term deal to keep the government open for the next two weeks. that does it for me. tomorrow we have an extensionive interview with joe biden. peter alexander is up next. >> must-see tv. good afternoon. for my friend craig melvin, in the last 15 minutes on the senate floor, leaders announcing they have reached a bipartisan government funding deal. that means that on the senate side they will be able to avoid a government shutdown. it o would fund the government for two years. right now, obviously, all eyes are on the white house where we expect a press briefing to get und underway in 30 minutes. that's been set for 1:30 this afternoon. we'll hear what sarah sanders has to say just a day after president trump himself said that he would love to see a
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shutdown, if he doesn't get his way. specifically on immigration. let's begin with our reporters. h hallie jackson is in the briefing room. garrett haake is on capitol hill. let's set the table for this hour as we anticipate hearing from the white house a short time from now. fiscal conservatives may not like the idea of more money being spent. democrats have express ed some f their concerns as well. so what are the real challenges that are next? >> none of these negotiations happen in a vacuum. so the house and the white house news it was in the works. and at least some of the leadership on the republican side has been broadly supportive of it. we heard from nancy pelosi who preempted this agreement saying it was not the kind of thing she could support because it doesn't deal with the issue of dreamers. there are a lot of liberals who
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in the house in particular who feel like they have not gotten the same kaind of assurances frm ryan that democrats got from mcconnell that immigration would be dealt with in an honest and open way. there will be conservatives who say why are we spending all of this money. particularly on domestic programs. i talked to one senate republican yesterday who said we need to spend this money on defense. i don't like the idea we're going to spend potentially hundreds of billions of dollars more on domestic programs that we don't need. that it being said, there's broad support for this deal in the senate already. and i think -- i don't want to step on halle's toes, but the idea this was not worked ob in a vacuum. the white house has been valved in this process. it seems u.n. likely from the hill the white house would want to step on b a deal that gets so many prerogatives and so many
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issues they care about moved a little closer to the finish line. >> the white house was involved in this process given the fact the president even as they were approaching on the senate side this deal that they have announced was suggesting that frankly said let's have a shutdown. here is specifically what the president said that caused all that controversy within the last 24 hours. >> i'd love to see a shutdown if we don't get this stuff taken care of. >> we don't need a government shutdown on this. i think both sides have learned that a government shutdown was bad. it wasn't good for them. >> why would anyone love to see a shutdown? >> i think he's making a case that border security is special to our country. >> that was the legislative affairs director at the white house. what has been the white house response to these questions, the criticism of the president appearing not only to be call
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ing for a shutdown but to not even understand what was going on on the hill. >> the president was really on an island. as you noted, the white house was involved with the news of this budget deal with putting this together, as you just explained what's in it. let me give new reaction. i got off the phone with with a white house official who said the white house is excited that they have met our demands to fully fund the military. that's why likely secretary mattis is going to be hear in the briefing room in 28 minutes from now. a white house official confirming the defense secretary will be appearing here likely to talk about word of this budget deal, what it means for the military. but to talk about another headline that i know you'll cover later, which we have reported on the mill military parade. when it comes to this budget deal, the indications are from inside the west wing they are
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optimistic about this. the president may have said he would love to see a shutdown. almost nobody else in the white house believes that to be the case. you saw the backtracking and the walkback not just from sanders in this room 24 hours ago, but mark short earlier today. activity here in the briefing room as folks are in and out from the west wing as we get ready for that briefing in 25 minutes or so from now. >> i want to ask you quickly. to be clear for our audience, the president said he wanted a shutdown if he didn't get his way on immigration. immigration is not a part of this deal. >> that was never the expectation though. at least for what we heard from our sources.
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>> the president had this understanding of what was in this and out of this. but when you look at folks on capitol hill and his own aids, they wanted to separate that out. that was supposed to be separ e separate. that was the intention was for these things to be separate. >> i think that's driving a lot of the headlines later in the week. not to mention monday the white house is going to be switching gears and rolling out the infrastructure plan. right in the midst of this thorny discussion. they will say they can walk and chew gum at the same time, but there's a limited amount of ka tall for presidential priorities. >> it feels like we should be buying our cans of worms in bulk considering all the challenges to keep up with the latest headlines. >> the senate republican and democratic leaders spoke about this deal on the senate floor.
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>> it's extensive negotiations among congressional leaders and the white house. no one suggests it is perfect, but we worked hard to stay focused on serving the american people. >> budget deal doesn't have everything democrats want. it doesn't have everything republicans want the. but it has a great deal of what the american people want. >> robert costa joins us. kelsey, let me ask you about nancy pelosi. it seems like the senate is all. wrapped up. they are in pretty good shape. the challenge is the house side. nancy pelosi revisiting this issue of immigration which with 36 or so hours to go could be the real stumbling block. >> it's important to note in
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that statement she released this morning. she talked about her own vote. she didn't promise that democrats in general would be voting against this bill. i think it's trying to walk a tight rope. two years of a brink of monthly fights over spending. it would be nice to get other things done. >> we're watching a live picture of nancy pelosi on the house floor on this issue. paul ryan is waiting to hear where the president stands on all of this. obviously, there are a lot of democrats who view this issue of daca as the issue they are going to be judged by, the way they stand on it.
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>> z they are pressuring the establishment. liberals are upis set for having failed to stand up stronger to president trump on this issue of the young immigrants and the daca program before. the last shutdown didn't go well for them. whether they will try to find a way to say, look, mcconnell's promise if paul ryan makes something similar will be good enough to move past it is the open question e. one thing that's striking about this is how they are saying how disconnected the president seems from this. yesterday saying i want a shutdown. and basically the members of the senate on both sides saying they are ignoring the president. the staff might be doing one thing but the word of a p president are ignored and the member of the senate can ignore them with no consequence. >> not just ignore d but they felt irrelevant to the
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conversation that was faking place on capitol hill. what are you hearing about the critici criticism? where he's threatening the shutdown when he should have opinion taking some credit for a deal that was in the works? >> in a sense, they are set iti up the fight to come on daca. having a solution for those who are dreamers. they are saying to the republican base that the president is still going to take a hard line as those immigration talks continue. but there's an awareness inside the west wing that this is a congressional deal patched by the leaders of congress and that his involvement is about setting the stakes for the next fight, not get. ing involved in this fight. >> where do you think the deal stands? we heard all sorts of bills have been proposed. the white house has been critical of those suggest ed frm mccain, graham, durbin, a bunch of them out there.
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where does that stand? >> it's a matter of finding what a neutral starting ground would be. they don't have a lot of time because mcconnell's deal would have them start voting on something as soon as friday. they talk about a general idea of a neutral bill, but they haven't identified what that is. it's not the dream act and probably not the white house framework. those would be used as the two polar opposites. >> i know you have written about john kelly and the role he plays in the white house. the wisdom that he was the disciplinarian. pu i think what we have come to see over the course of the last three, six is, nine months is how similar he is is in his thinking when it comes to the president. hard line views as they relate specifically to immigration. what struck you as we heard from john kelly in his own words speaking about how some of those didn't sign up for daca would be protected by the proposal from
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the president were too lazy. >> it's very interesting. john kelly is more than just one thing. he's a disciplinary in the white house. that means he doesn't share the strong views. that's a real important area for him. his views that he expressed yesterday are a reflection of what he believes. the question is were they aan attempt to blow things pup he didn't intend to create the disrupti disruption. but clearly we learn more and more that john kelly is this president's chief of staff. they are not, in fact, look iin at odds with the other. >> what do you think is the impact of those comments? you presume they can only complicate what's already a very complex ask challenging process. >> it makes it even more difficult for a compromise because democrats will look at
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the chief of staff's comments. they will wonder is this a white house we can deal with on immigration. they continue to take this hard line position, talk about immigrants in ways that many people say is derogatory, if if not racist and feeds into stereotyp stereotypes. it poisons the well on capitol hill as these talks continue. >> the white house certainly will be pressed about this. sanders within the next 15 minutes expected to walk in the briefing room to take questions on this particular topic. all of you, we thank you very much. we are waiting for the white house press briefing to begin. scheduled to start at 1:30 today. we're just learning this hour that the defense secretary will be there. likely touting among other things the additional defense spending to come out of this senate deal just announced in the last several minutes. also a nightly topic. the marching orders with plans underway for a military parade. the president wants to roll through the streets of
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washington. plus politics after pelosi. the secret conversations among democrats in the house about whether pelosi should stay in charge. nancy pelosi on the hill as we speak. if not, who would replace her. >>. i think i'm worth the trouble. plaque psoriasis, little things can be a big deal. that's why there's otezla. otezla is not an injection or a cream. it's a pill that treats psoriasis differently. with otezla, 75% clearer skin is achievable after just 4 months, ... with reduced redness, thickness, and scaliness of plaques. and the otezla prescribing information has no requirement for routine lab monitoring. don't use if you're allergic to otezla. otezla may cause severe diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting. tell your doctor if these occur. otezla is associated with an increased risk of depression. tell your doctor if you have a history of depression or suicidal thoughts, or if these feelings develop. some people taking otezla reported weight loss. your doctor should monitor your weight and may stop treatment.
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we're back live. president trump wants to show a
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of his military might. they are looking if possible dates for a military parade. the last major parade of its kind in washington was back in 1991. the president then george h.w. bush following the end of the gulf war when u.s. forces drove the iraqi army out of cokuwait. pentagon correspondent hansny kols has the details and the reaction. walk us through what defense officials are saying about this idea. do they view this as an order from the commander-in-chief or take a look and get back to us. >> order might be a little strong. the official language that came out was request. some called it a directive. he let his intentions know, his wishes known to the pentagon. he was talking to top generals. there in the tank. officials are saying that the president wants to do this, we'll do it. this is a planning organization here. they are constantly doing all kinds of planning. this is frankly probably one of theizier ones they have. go to the president with a menu
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of options and what to see on the parade. this is an easy one for them to do. they are kpcomplicated planning options z, but this one is pretty easy. i think where the question will go from here is on to cost. the pentagon does have a lot of money on community outreach. it bases all across the country on how to get more involved and a lot of times that does involve parades. let me jealousy here. it's rare to get secretary mattis on camera. you are getting him at the white house so that's a big. deal. he drops by here a lot in the mornings for gaggles. they are not on camera. we'll see him on camera, which is pretty rare in front of a press audience. listen to how he tries to preserve his ability to influence the president. >> let me put you on the spot. we'll be in the briefing room.
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what's among the primary questions posed to him moments from now? >> now that you have a budget deal, the question is a little less relevant. but officials here at the pentagon have been warning about a shutdown and what it would go to military readiness and the ability to pay out bereavement costs to death benefits. we saw that a couple weeks ago. it was president trump who came here to the pentagon and said you need to have a deal. otherwise you're going to not have military readiness. mattis has been on record saying that. that's the entire line. this affecting training and readiness. that's among the key questions. it's a fair question to ask how much this is going to cost. in the context of all this budget control act. what will it cost and is it money well spent. >>. thank you very much on this very
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topic. i want to bring in a congress y'all reporter for the military times. talking about superior air power, you're talking about the philadelphia eagles. congratulations on your hometown pride. that is the topic of the cost. within the last hour, they are celebrating they have come to a deal. it would erase the sequester cuts. if they say a bad message in the wake of that wi see participation in the parades. so there's some money for this. if we're talking a blowout, something that costs in the tens or hundreds of millions of
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dollars, folks are going to ask. is this what we should be doing with our money. or are there real training and issues where this would be better spent. >> among the people asking that question, dick durbin from illinois. here's what he said earlier. take a listen. >> let's put money into the quality of life of military families who sacrifice with our men and women if uniform. and let's make sure that we are doing something to stop the waiting lines at veterans hospitals. that's a good way to put taxpayers money investing in our troops and veterans instead of the amusement of the president. >> widely we agree that americans should do a better job of celebrating service members, the men and women who dedicate so much of their time and lives and sacrifice their lives serving to protect our country. but do members of the military broadly believe, do they support the idea of a parade? do they think that's -- >> it will be interest ing ing e how it's presents. we have heard a lot of chatter about the veterans never really getting to have that parade. 1991 we had the gulf war vets
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come down. there hasn't been that moment because these wars don't have that kind of end. so if it's framed as secelebratg those veterans, i'm sure a lot of veterans will say that's a great way to do it. it's a great way to remember what we have done. but if it's more of a show of just military might, if it's disconnected, i'm not sure how it will be received. >> how involved -- we don't know what the proposal would be, but how involved would it be for them to prepare for a military type parade. it's one thing to go to your fourth of july parade in your local home community when you see those who serve at a nearby base or veterans in that community who help carry the flag down the street. but if you were to bring some of that military might of any kind, how challenging would that be? >> there's a significant military presence. in terms of bringing some troops in, bringing a marching band, people, that's not an issue. but if if we're talking about flyovers, bringing in tanks and
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actually rolling them down the streets of d.c., there's a the lot of costs associated with that. not the most complicated thing the military has to deal with, but it will be seen as a distraction from actual military priorities. >> the president was moved by the french parade when he was there. you could see how much he enjoyed that moment. he talked about it when the two men were together with the french prime minister a separate time. broadly speaking as we focus on this, is there a conversation that's being had had about the appropriateness of something like that in the united states. for some reason i think there's been a secular sense of the military and day-to-day lives should be separate. is that reasonable or not unreasonable to say we should do something like this. >> the question is how it will be receive issed. there's a lot of conversation about the disconnect between civilians and the military and how much do we understand what their sacrifices are, what they
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go there u pu. baa lot of folks will say this doesn't help bridge that divide. this is showing off big equipment, showing off flashy tanks and planes. it doesn't really explain to you the sacrifices the families make. so it could help bridge that, but it could backfire and make the military into a prop of sort. >> there's great. concern between the back and forth the president used talking about north korea. when people think about military parades, they think about what you have witnessed in russia. r more recently in north korea. a sincere concern about the impact of a parade? >> that's a concern that's going to come out of the pentagon. how do we present this so it doesn't look like some sort of tribute to the president. if they are going to do this. they want to present it as recognizing the military, recognizing the sacrifices of the troops and fwifing the
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country something to be proud of. >> a e reminder to all of us whether there's a parade or not it's worth us better celebrating those people who serve on our behalf. nice to see you. hope you get up to the parade in philly. enjoy this time. the white house press briefing should start a few minute was. you can see everybody gathering. the trump administration said they are excited about this word of a deal to fund the government for another two years. that deal just announced by the top democrat and top republican senators. we hope to hear more from the white house position soon. plus the man behind the trump dossier. a new report looking at his resume and what motivated christopher steele to go to the fbi about trump. today we're out here to test people's knowledge about type 2 diabetes. so you have type 2 diabetes? yes i do. true or false... type 2 diabetes more than doubles your chance of dying from a cardiovascular event, like a heart attack or a stroke.
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there live. that should happen moments from now. new developments for this moment in the russia investigation. we learn more about the probe and the so-called steele dossier. christopher steele, the former british agent, has become a flash point in the investigation. and president trump tweeted this morning on another aspect of this investigation all caps he writes, new fbi texts are bomb shells. we want to bring in nbc news intelligence and national security supporter and national political reporter mike memly. the president referred to 400 pages of these text messages released by the republican. the senator from wisconsin, ron johnson, who serves on the affairs committee and homeland security. context is key. the president refers to a bomb
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shell. do we have any context as he begin this is conversation? >> let's step back. this is all stemming from we had in july of 2016 then fbi director jim comey announced he's not bringing any charges in the clinton investigation. you have a lot of republican committee chairman interested in doing an evaluation of was this handled carefully. highly politically sensitive. the justice department's inspector general has been reviewing this. during the course of his own investigation, he's discovered these texts from lisa page, they were two fbi officials involved in a romantic relationship. they churned those e-mails over to congressional chairman last month. we saw initially you'll remember ron johnson. he was talking about the secret society. >> which he backed off. that was just based on two pages of texts he released.
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and essentially offering his cliff notes into what we have seen here. trying to gin up this idea that the fbi was biassed against president trump and then candidate trump and may have been conducting this investigation into the way to try to benefit those. >> as n those cliff notes, there's one that got his attention. here's that text. we'll put it on the screen acknowledging we have no context for this. but this is the neighborhood that we now live in. it says, yes, because potus wants to know everything that we are doing. the time frame, the clinton e-mail investigation at that time had wrapped up. it would be reopened about a month later. president obama just days later would warn of the wild, wild west in terms of cyber security and the dangers about that in a meeting that he had with vladimir putin. so talk to us about why this could be meaningful. >> in dealing with these conversations that are happening between page and stroke, they
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are also talking in other meetings. so it's hard to know what they might have been referring to. it stands to reason, and i was covering the obama white house at the time. let's revisit the time line. in july, comey comes out and announces he's end iing this investigation. president obama at the time traveled overseas within a week. we know how scrupulous he had been in avoiding publicly anything to do with the investigation. he's usually spending august in martha's vineyard. at that point, it's a concluded investigation, he wants an update from comey and other fbi officials about what exactly transpired. that could be what what wer looking at here. we reached out to see. >> it could have been about hillary clinton or china, we have no idea based on the information we have. to you, ken, your take away on the plitization of this episode and what it really says about republicans' criticism of the fbi right now.
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>> what it says to me is the fbi is made up of human beings. these two particular human beings seem to have behaved somewhat imprudently by engaging in some biassed behavior on a government phone. but it doesn't support the notion of a deep state conspiracy to help hillary clinton and donald trump. his campaigns was under investigation during the election. that didn't happen. and voters went to the polls not knowing that fact. >> let me ask you about the investigation that we were teasing just before the break. this is what republicans have focused on. the committee chairman was asked this morning why he wants a further fbi investigation of christopher steele. here's what grassley said. >> either he lied in london or he lied to the fbi or the point was that if that did happen, then this is something the fisa
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judges should know before they issued a warrant to track american citizens. >> talk about this focus on christopher steele and whether there's any indication that he has lied to authorities. >> this is a confusing thicket. this grassley memo does allege that steele misled the fbi about his contacts with reporters while he was both briefing the media and talking to the fbi. my reporting suggests that steele has told friends he did not mislead the fbi, but the bottom line is neither the grassley memo or nunes memo really speaks to the credibility of the underlying steele dossier. >> i'm sorry to interrupt. i want to take our aud yens to the front row of the briefing room. jim mattis taking questions. >> how bad would that be? >> shutting down the government would be very damaging to the military for all the reasons i just cited about a continuing resolution. but then aggravated by the
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shutdown itself. it just paralyzes everything that we do if we go into that other than the ongoing act of operations at sea and there the troops will continue to fight, the ships will stay at sea, but the bottom line is trainings delayed the impact just ripples through the force and it doesn't just happen today. it ripples on as people who are not flying are no longer gain ing the level of still that you and i would associate with them a year from now when they are promoted. >> you mentioned you have been spending the last day and a half on capitol hill. this is the senate arrangement. do you have any sense if a house leadership on the republican side is equally receptive as you are? and also the navy said the funding problems are not maybe a direct cause, but attributed to
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the deaths of seamen in the south china sea. can you say if in th money is provided all of the problems associated with training, maintenance that have been plaguing the military will be eliminated? >> i'm optimistic that what the house did earlier this week and what the senate did today can come together this week and give us the budget that then enables us to carry out our responsibilities. by ours, i mean all the leaders in the department of defense who will address the issues you just brought up. obviously, a lot of work goes into the execution then, the quality of the training, but you can count on us. we'll earn your trust on this. we'll spend the money wisely. >> mr. secretary, if i can ask about the review. cause for smaller yield to be added to our arsenal here saying there's no such thing as a
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tactical nuke every time a weapon is used. it's a strategic game change can er. how does this new posture review add to global stability? many people believe if you have smaller nuclear weapon, you might be more inclined to use it. >> the member that what we're talking about here is the nuclear deterrent. and in that, we believe that some nations could miscalculate one particular. that nation could assume that if they used in a conventional fight a small yield bomb, we would not respond with a very large yield bomb. our response to this is to make a small yield pom and say don't miscalculate. it's a deterrent. deterrent is dynamic, it changes from year to year, decade to decade. we have to address deterrents in its current construct. so we do this. the idea is to raise the threshold. don't even think thi about
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lowering the threshold to a conventional fight and es escalating it to one small yield nuclear weapon strategically changing the game and then think our choice is either surrender or suicide. >> do you have cost estimates? >> we're aum aware in this country of the president's affection and respect for the military. we will send the options up to the white house for decision. >> you laid out the argument for funding the military. why you think this. why divert time, energy, financial resources to the pl planning? >> again, i think what my responsibility is is to make certain i lay out the strategy
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and make the argument for the oversight of congress to make a determination of fully funding this as far as the parade goes, the president's respect, his fondness for the military i think is reflected in him asking for these options. >> the war closer with north korea than it was at the time of the administration took office? do you support any kind of meeting or communication between vice president pence? >> penmike pence is able of mak that call while he's in korea. as far as the situation with korea, it's firmly in the diplomatic lane. we have seen much stronger diplomatic action. the last three resolutions
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unanimous and how often do you see france and russia, china and the united states, great britain all voting unanimously. that make it is very clear this is firmly in the diplomatic lane. thank you very much. due to the timing, we'll jump right into questions for today. >> immigration with nancy pelosi on the hill s that something the president would like to see? >> i think we have made clear that the. budget deal should be a budget deal and members of congress like nancy pelosi should not hold our military hostage over a
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separate issue. we laid out what we would like to see and that's something that nancy pelosi should support and hopefully she will come on board. we can get this budget deal done and then we can focus on getting immigration deal done. >> the committee to this madge 5th dead line for daca or extend? >> look, we are hopeful that we will make a deal with congress. and we'll see what happens after that. but our goal is to try to get something done. we don't want to keep kicking the can down the road. we have laid out a plan that addresses everybody's concerns and meets those needs. >> look, we applaud the steps forward that they have made, but we're going o to need to see what's in the final bill. we're happy with the direction that it's moving.
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particularly that's away from the crisis budgeting. we'd live to move forward, but we want to see the final components. we're supportive primarily because it meets several of the things we laid out including end ing the crisis budgeting and also helps meets the needs of defense spending. >> can you clarify the sfats of rob porter and if the president has confidence in him? >> two statements. as has always been our policy when it comes to security clearances, we don't comment on them. i'm not going to change that today. rob has been an effective in his role as staff secretary. and the president, chief of staff have had full confidence in his abilities and his performance. rob has put out a statement it, which i can read to you now.
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i think it will address some of those other questions. these outrageous allegations are simply false. i took the photos given to the media 15 years ago and the reality behind them is nowhere close to what is being described. i have been truthful about these claims, but i will not further engage publicly with a smear cam page. my commitment to public service speaks for itself. i put duty to country first and treated others with respect. i am deeply grateful to have serve d in. the trump administration and will seek to ensure a smooth transition when i leave the white house. >> he is going to be leaving the white house. it won't be immediate. he is resigning from the white house, but is is going to stay on to ensure there's a smooth transition move iing forward. >> less than 18 hours ago the white house released several statements praising rob porter's service. he's very close with the
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president. why would the president accept his resignation if the president thinks he did nothing wrong? >> that was a personal decision that rob made. and one he was not pressured to do but that he made on his own. >> can we claer up the security clearance. >> i'm not sure why this is complicated. we have addressed it quite a few times. in many circumstances, as is always been the policy of the white house, we don't discuss security clearances one way or the other. >> can i ask about the democratic memo. we understand the chief of staff kellie said this memo is different in terms of the content than the republican memo was. general kelly said it's not as clean as the gop memo was. republican who is have read the memo are saying it contains a substantial number of references to sources and methods. my question to you, do you believe the white house is being
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put in a difficult position by the minority forcing you to make redactions or hold back this memo to draw contrast with your treatment of the gop bill? >> i'm not going to make speculatio speculations. we're going through the process that we went through with the republican memo. we're going to continue to do that. once that's completed, we'll have something further to add. >> can you clarify the president yesterday said that he would like to shut the government down if he doesn't get funding for the wall. is that no longer operative? he's going to support a two-year spending bill without funding for the wall? >> as i said yesterday, the focus for us is always been to get a budget deal. we have also laid out with the priorities in legislation. we expect to see that we do want to made no secret the president wants funding for the wall. he wants border security.
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we expect to see that reflected. >> he said he wanted to shut the government down. >> the position hasn't changed. i addressed this yesterday. the president is making the point. the only people that have shut the government down are the democrats. we haven't shut the government down. we have laid out what we want to happen and we're working towards achieving those goals. >> the point he's making when you put it in the context is that if we are going to have that fight, it's a fight that the democrats started last time and they lost. we think that we would win again. we want a two-year budget deal and an immigration plan that fixes the problem and doesn't kick the can down the road. those are the two focuses and we're hopeful we'll get those done.
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>> it mentions the fact they oversee the probe. >> the president feels vindicated because he feels like the russia investigation has been politically motivated witch hunt for the last year. the memo vindicates the president's position that there was political bias. >> you said he's seen evidence. >> i've tolls youd he met with the attorney general to discuss the differences yesterday. >> just quickly. general mattis was say iing tha the president has affection for the military. but he has yet to visit iraq and afghanistan. wouldn't that be the ultimate way to honor the troops by going there rather than a parade? >> i think there are a lot of ways. nothing has been decided or locked in stone. this is in the early discussion phases. it's something the president is looking at not just a way that he can, but the entire country it come together and show support and honor our military. >> does the president have any concerns about these allegations
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raised against rob porter? >> ien haven't spoken to him about specific concerns. >> i haven't asked him that question. >> has he seen the seen the pho porter's your wife? >> i don't know. >> he's weighed in on twitter and done so quite a bit over the course of his first year in office. will we expect the president to continue to weigh on the fluctuations on the stock market going forward or will he let the market take its course? >> i don't think i'm going to speculate on what we may away in every day moving forward through administration, but the economy has been a big focus for the administration and it's something we'll continue to talk about. we have a very strong economy. we feel very confident in the direction we're moving and certainly the focus on the long-term fundamentals this administration has been vo-teching more.
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>> on the immigration deal, would the president be open to two pillars of what he put forward being part of an immigration deal, that being funding for the wall with mexico, and increased border security and a legislative fix for those daca recipients? >> we've laid them out. >> the text messages from fbi were called bombshells. don't believe there doe believe there's a conspiracy? can you explain his thinking about what he's seen in these text messages? >> it further shows that there is reason for all of us to have great cause for concern in this process. and we hope it's thoroughly looked at. >> quickly, are there more specific personnel changes he would like to see if he fbi? >> not that i'm aware of at this time. >> i want to giving you a chance
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to the propriety of the parade. a lot of people think it's not how the american military should be presented to the world. what do you think? >> look, as i said, we haven't made a final decision. the president is exploring ways he can highlight and show the pride we have in the military, the people that have served and sacrificed to allow us all the freedoms we have. the president is very proud of the united states military and all that they do on behalf of all of us. and we're simply exploring options. it's a way too far speculation when nothing's been decided and it's literally in a brain storming session. >> is it true that the report that the president essentially gave a directive to the defense department that this is something that must happen?
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>> no. he asked to look at different ways and options as the secretary said. >> sarah, to follow up on thinks text messages, does the president believe that former president obama was involved in the russia investigation against him which is alleged in those text messages? >> i'm not aware of that specific concern, but i think there is a lot within those text messages that gives us great cause for concern, and we wish they look at them thoroughly and investigate this process for fully. thanks so much, guys. >> you've been listening to sarah huckabee sanders, the press secretary of there behind the podium moments ago revealing breaking news for us right now. the president staff secretary, rob porter, has resigned his post. unclear when he'll be departing the white house. that timeline wasn't immediate. my colleague at the white house, hallie jackson, is there right
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now. to give context about this man, rob porter. there were allegations of physical and verbal abuse, allegations made by two ex-wives of porter. we should be clear nbc news has reached out to those women. we haven't independently verified those claims. he says among other things that these outrageous allegations are simply false. this is an bankrupt twist in a white house that's already seen plenty of transitions, many of them unexpected. this one, a guy who works routinely with the president. we see him often on travel as well. >> a couple things here. i'm dipping into your conversation. rob porter is leaving the white house. it's not clear when. that date is still being worked out as he wants to work on a smooth transition out of here,
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according to sarah huckabee sanders from the podium there. you're right in that -- listen, if you watch msnbc a lot you might not have heard about him a lot. he's not a public-facing person in the west wing, but he's one of the inner circle members of the president's group, traveling with him often. he sits there by the oval office. he's involved in speech writing, for example, on the state of the union speech. he's recently taken over a bigger role in that. he's somebody who talks with people on capitol hill. he came from senator orrin hatch's office. he was a previous intern at the white house. this is somebody who is very involved in the policy making and the interactions that the president has. just to give some background to him, it's not like he works with steven miller, but miller is a more well-known figure.
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we don't know yet who will replace rob porter. we do know he worked for senator hatch. there's a statement from senator orrin hatch. all of this is coming 15 hours after we first got the statements of support for rob porter from people including chief of staff john kelly. you heard you see ask sarah sanders what has changed since then, why did he accept the resignation if he believes he did nothing wrong. >> as important as this conversation is about his departure is, the conversation needs to be had about the vetting. we have seen at least as published by daily suggesting that was restraining order by one of these ex-wives. there are questions about his security clearance. how did they not know about this before he joined the team? >> number one, the white house
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won't talk about security clearances. sarah sanders repeatedly refused to answer that question. remember at the beginning of the administration last year when you and i were covering this and there were questions about security clearances, for example, for michael flynn. then the national security adviser before he was fired, what he did before he entered the white house team. there were a lot of questions about a number of people the white house was considering bringing on board. and the vetting question was one we asked repeatedly at the beginning of the administration. it's now rearing its head again with no clarity from the white house about how and when and what the deal was with porter's clearance. >> hans, we had a chance to hear from jim mattis about the defense spending that will be raised. he said we will earn your trust and spend the money wisely. one of the questions being
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raised about the spending of military money is this idea of a potential military parade. the white house and, frankly, the defense secretary said this is very early stages. what do you make of jim mattis' comments. >> we've been hearing this is in the preliminary stage. in some ways, the more significant parade comments came from sarah huckabee sanders. she seemed to be walking back this idea that there was a directive given by the commander in chief to his top generals two weeks ago inside the tank. sarah huckabee sanders seemed to be saying this is more of a request, a sort of feeler out there. that's not the way it was interpreted here. in some ways we may be seeing the beginning of a walkback by the white house of a formal afraid down pennsylvania avenue. they may just have some sort of event to honor soldiers and troops.
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in terms of secretary mattis, he made it very clear, peter, that he does not want to shut down and that puts a little daylight between him and the commander in chief he serves. a shutdown will hurt the military full stop. that seems to contradict what we heard from the president. >> rob porter is resigning for verbal and physical abuse by two past wives. the white house is saying it likes the direction of this new senate deal a deal that means we could be avoiding a shutdown. will democrats embrace it? will fiscal conservatives? that's going to wrap up this hour of msnbc live. my friend katy tur is joining me from new york with the latest. we had a busy hour, katy. a lot of news to digest.
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>> he was john kelly's right hand man. >> he worked closely with the president and john kelly and steven miller. there are reports he had been dating a woman, hope hicks, one of the president's closest behind-the-scenes allies and assistants. he was entrenched in that inner circle at the white house. >> not to mention the statements yesterday from john kelly holding up rob porter as a man with great integrity. we're going to dive into these and find out where things changed. peter alexander, good to see you. we're going to continue the conversation about that departure at the white house. staff secretary rob porter leaving after accusations about his past. also ahead, congress may have found its unicorn. our kasie hunt reports democrats and republicans reached a deal to fund the government for a full two years.


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