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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  February 9, 2018 9:00pm-10:00pm PST

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roads, bridges and electrical grids. big thinking takes big bucks and that may not be in the offing either. that's our broadcast tonight. brian is back monday. good night from nbc news headquarters in new york. i thought for sure this week we would get a reprieve from friday insanity because we had so much thursday insanity with last night's inexplicable government shotdowutdown, which happened between midnight and 5:00 in the morning. i figured all the people whose job it is to make insane news on friday in the trump era, i figured they would be tired. they were up all night, nope. this is an incredible news day, particularly into this evening. we got a lot to get to tonight.
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some of the latest breaking news this evening is the white house deputy chief of staff is leaving that job. his name is jim carol, he's been deputy chief of staff to john kelly in the white house and hasn't been there i think like two or three months but he's already leaving. the news about the deputy chief of staff comes amid disputed reports that the chief of staff himself may be on his way out, as well. the news about john kelly having offered resignation comes after the, in fact, resignation of rob porter, who worked very closely with john kelly. the resignation followed news reports that made public the reason why mr. porter had been unable to obtain a permanent security clearance during his 13 months in the white house handling all papers that crossed the president's desk. domestic violence allegations against porter by his two ex wives, allegations he denies, the allegations were conveyed to the fbi as part of the background check procedure for the security clearance application along with corroborating evidence from
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porter's ex-wives that included an emergency protective order taken out against him in virginia by his second wife and photograph evidence of injuries he says were inflicted on her by her then husband. that is is exactly the kind of thing that can keep you from getting a permanent security clearance. not having a permanent security clearance is the reason you shouldn't be able to have that particular job of being white house staff secretary handling classified information as routine matter every day in close contact with the president. nevertheless, once that information about those allegations from his ex-wives was given to the fbi, that was reportedly conveyed to the white house, to the white house counsel, don mcgahn. don mcgahn is emerging of every trump administration scandal. honestly, he's in the middle of all of them. mike flynn and russians to firing james comey to the domestic abuse staff secretary guy and everything in between don mcgahn is in all of it.
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so the allegations from porter's ex-wives made to the fbi, those were conveyed to white house counsel don mcgahn because he is the human siv through which all trump administrations must flow. that information from the fbi was reportedly conveyed to john kelly who has now according to the "new york times" and abc news, he has now reportedly offered to resign from the white house. now as i mentioned, those are contested reports. john kelly himself denied to nbc news' kelly o'donnell he offered resignation but there are mult multiple source reports that he has offered that resignation. clearly, his continuing tenure in the white house is very much in question. including some unusual and direct evidence obtained by "the
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washington post" today that at least someone from a senior staff member in the white house is trying to shove hard to get john kelly out of there. we're going to be talking with beth from "the washington post" later on in the hour tonight about that knife in the back reporting that the washington post has just done. honestly, we had thought the possible resignation of yet another white house chief of staff would be the big political news story but it's friday, don't count your chickens after they are hatched and laying eggs of their own and raising baby chicks. no counting. it's never over if it's not friday. i should tell you this news that the deputy chief of staff is leaving the white house, john kelly's deputy chief of staff leaving the white house, that makes him actually the third deputy white house chief of staff to leave the trump administration and they only got there 13 months ago. have we tried to even -- did we make -- did we try -- look, we squeezed them in in yellow front there. reince priebus, another deputy white house chief of staff and now yet another deputy white house chief of staff. we need a bigger wall.
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anyway, while we await news of whether the president is about to fire another chief of staff, as well, yet, another deputy white house chief of staff is gone. and no sooner did that news arrive "the washington post" broke news another staffer resigned this evening and in his case, the second white house staffer in two days to resign because of domestic abuse allegations. now, this is not the same story as rob porter, the white house staff secretary who left office yesterday. this is a new white house staffer who you may not have known of before tonight, his
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name is david sorensen. we think he's in his early 30s. he was previously a spokesman for the republican party in maine and a top policy advisor to paul lepage in maine. "portland press herald" describes him as having a quote reputation as an aggressive and sometimes combative political operative. when he came to the trump white house, it was in the role of a speech writer. his ex-wife claims he was violent and emotionally abusive during their turbulent two and a half year marriage and specific allegations are startling and dark. sorensen allegedly, quote, ran a car over his ex-wife's foot, put out a cigarette on her hand, threw her into a wall, grasped her menacingly by the hair while alone on their boat in remote waters in an incident that left her fearing for her life. there was a photo of her hand bearing the scar.
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as was the case with rob porter, whose ex-wives shared their allegations of domestic violence with the fbi as the fbi conducted a background check, mr. sorensen's ex-wife described her ex-husband's behavior to the fbi last fall as the fbi was conducting a background check for his white house job. again, according to the post, he denies these allegations and says he was the victim here. he was the victim of domestic violence in the marriage, not the perpetrator but despite those allegations and his denial he did anything wrong, mr. sorensen resigned today, just after another senior white house official resigned under similar circumstances. what else will happen before the end of this hour? i can't tell you but we're not even to the biggest news of the night yet. the white house also put out word late tonight, within the last couple hours, and they released this letter from white
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house counsel don mcgahn to announce it, and this letter says that the white house will block the release of a classified memo created by democrats to rebut those allegations made by republicans in the house last week about the fbi's counter intelligence investigation into the trump campaign and russian interference. again, the bottom line here is that the republicans prepared a classified memo about the investigation to make the investigation look bad. the white house took the totally unprecedented step of declassifying that memo and releasing it to the public a week ago after today. democrats said we would like to have our say on this matter, too, because we think what the republicans are saying about this classified information isn't true and misleading and we can explain the truth. they produced their own memo about the same subject matter that had to go through the president, as well, if it was going to be released to the public, had to go through the same channels. the president did release the memo. he made the evaluation tonight on the democratic memo and that
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one is a no. yes to the republican classified memo. that memo started to seem like a side show. forgive me, it has started to seem like a stupid story. all right? a week ago we got to see what the republicans were so excited about having declassified it and releasing it to the public. there were lots of problems with the memo. it didn't prove their point. let me tell you why that stupid side show story of the republican memo may be the most important thing in american politics and governance going forward. because that memo is the stupid and yet super dangerous thing that explains what is actually the most important news that has broken tonight and i say that knowing that there has been a lot of big important breaking news tonight. out of everything going on right now on this incredible news day, this is a big one. earlier this evening, "new york times" first to report that the number three official at the justice department is stepping down. her name is rachel brand.
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she was appointed by donald trump and confirmed by the senate and has only been in her job nine months but she and the justice department announced she's leaving the justice department right away. and she is going to work for walmart. now, this is not the same story we've been seeing with the exodus of justice department and fbi officials since the president and white house and trump supporting republicans and conservative media have started picking them off, zeroing in on law enforcement officials by name and attacking them as bias and partisan and insufficiently pro-trump. the president and his supporters in congress and conservative media have already have gone after a lot of senior law enforcement officials, fired or forced out are the fbi's director james comey and deputy director andrew mccabe and fbi chief of staff. just this week we learned that
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the head of counterintelligence at the justice department who had also been singled out and hounded by the right wing media is, too, leaving his job. david said to be leaving for personal reasons. we learned thereafter that an assistant director is also leaving. he's the assistant director for public affairs. whatever you think of the leadership of jeff sessions at the justice department and chris wray at the fbi, we've seen senior officials targeted by name one by one and picked off, all either fired or leaving. all that reporting that sessions had said hey, you need to clean house here and the white house chief of staff contacted the justice department on issues like that, you may want to clean house here, they have been cleaning house. what just happened today with rachel brand, this is a different thing. rachel brand as i said was a
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trump appointee and had only been in the number three job in the justice department for nine months. she's had a distinguished legal career, including having been a supreme court clerk but it was a gigantic promotion for her. when she got that job as the russia investigation was exploding into a crisis for this presidency, once she got that gigantic job given where she was at in her career, she became something else besides the number three official in the u.s. department of justice. she became the trap door underneath robert mueller's special counsel investigation of the president and his campaign. and that's because robert mueller gets to run his own team, gets to run his own investigation but he doesn't have total independence and free reign under the regulations, mueller needs permission for important advances in his investigation. so if he wants to do something
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big and open a line of inquiry and if he wants to bring charges against a person, he can't just do that on his own and own say so. he has to advise the person overseeing his investigation at the justice department. he has to advise them in advance of his plans to do it and basically has to get their permission. the person in the oversight rule for the investigation is trump's appointed attorney general rod rosenstein. funny, republicans who have been targeting him call him rosenstein. the same way they call the democratic party the democrat party. it's rosenstein to the extent they care. in theory, when there is a special counsel, the person who is supposed to oversee the special counsel's investigation, the person supposed to provide oversight is supposed to be the attorney general. the top person in the justice department can't be true in this case before mueller was appointed, attorney general jeff sessions had to recuse himself from all campaign related
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matters including the russia investigation following public reports about his own contacts with russian officials during the campaign, which he had conveniently forgotten about when asked about them under oath during his confirmation hearing. so jeff sessions' recusal from the russia investigation in particular, that has been a repeated target of the president's anger and condemnation. the president tweeted about it and spoken about it to reporters, multiple news organizations reported about the president's continual expresses of anger to jeff sessions and about jeff sessions for having recused himself from the russia matter. the president has been quite blunt about the fact that recuse he thinks is unfair to him because he expects the attorney general to be in position to protect him from something like this russia investigation. at some point, though, president trump and the white house i think woke up to the fact that the way they were treating the attorney general in this matter struck people as not the way law enforcement is supposed to work
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and at some point, i think they came to the realization that attorney general jeff sessions resigning and being replaced by somebody who wasn't recused or attorney general jeff sessions trying to unrecuse himself from the russia investigation would be at least politically impractical or possible criminal justice by the president. at some point they try to stop getting sessions out of there and zero in on another path to shelter the president from the russia investigation and zero in on rod rosenstein instead. according to four sources familiar with the situation in recent weeks, the president has been venting about rod rosenstein who oversees mueller in the special counsel investigation. at times trump gripes about wanting rosenstein removed. one source says the president makes comments like let's fire him, let's get rid of him.
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the president has targeted the attorney general for removing himself from overseeing the russia investigation. the president has then targeted the deputy attorney general who is overseeing the russia investigation. and that's where it becomes really important that we have had this whole nonsense about this republican memo. this -- forgive me, dumb republican memo attacking the fbi and justice department for how they have been conducting that investigation. and i know you feel like i'm so sick of hearing about the memo because i know that memo seems ridiculous, right? there is all this hype from the white house and congressional republicans. there were weeks of unbelievably over the top hype on the fox news channel about that bombshell memo and how it would up-end everything and it would end the mueller investigation and result in mueller himself being indicted and trump would be declared innocent. they had all this hype and when the thing arrived and we got to see what it was they were so excited about, the whole country had a collectively where is the beef moment. this is what you were excited
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about? well, now tonight we know what all that hype was about. it wasn't about what was actually in the memo. i mean, on the surface in terms of what was actually in the memo, the memo was basically nothing important. it was -- well, i should say there was no relation, there was no relation between how excited they were about the memo and what was actually in it. that memo undercut its own claims. the whole point of the memo at large was to say trump foreign policy advisor carter page should have never been at the fbi. it was when he was bragging about working with the kremlin. you would hope that that would interest them.
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if not that, what should interest them? the republican memo into a giant scandal was nonsense. in terms of the hype and buildup it's a dud. we know what that was about because the president we learned today in the washington post, he doesn't read his presidential daily brief. he doesn't like anything written in terms of sources of intelligence but does like to get his information from the fox news channel. there are further reports fox news channel personalities may have actually directly helped coordinate strategy with the white house around the release of that memo. so if you want to know what the president and the fox news channel thought was important about that memo, it's not hard to find. they were pretty blunt about it. >> rod rosenstein, you need to explain your role in all of this and specifically if you were involved in extending this fisa warrant and, frankly, rod rosenstein needs to be fired. >> what now deputy attorney general? did rod rosenstein know? and when did he know it? he has a lot of questions to start answering. >> rod rosenstein according to the fox news channel is the point of that republican memo. all of that hype, all of that
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consternation, this will be the biggest thing, it's going to be watergate times a thousand, their whole takeaway from that republican memo is rod rosenstein must be fired. now, in its substance, rod rosenstein has no role in the plot of that dumb memo. the fbi is part of the counterintelligence investigation. >> caller: the russia attack on the election and whether the trump campaign conspired on it after carter page left the campaign. they obtained a warrant. it was then renewed. then it was renewed again. then it was renewed again. rod rosenstein was one official who signed off on the final renewal. republicans haven't even alleged anything specifically wrong about that final renewal or specifically about rod rosenstein's role on signing off
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on it, but as long as you don't bother reading it and watch fox news to count on them to tell you what is in there, it's clear what that memo was designed to do is set up rod rosenstein to be fired. as they prepare to release the memo, they were able to report based on multiple sources that was the white house strategy behind taking this extraordinary and unprecedented step to declassifying that information and release it to the public. as "the washington post" said among multiple news organizations that got this story, it was seen as something the memo was something the president saw as quote key to making changes at the justice department particularly pushing out rosenstein who oversees mueller's investigation. the whole point of the nonsense about the republican memo was to try to kill rod rosenstein, to try to get him out. to create a pretext, to create a political environment that would be expected that the president would fire him. and just tonight the president said that the democratic
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rebuttal to that republican memo can't be released. the whole point of that whole exercise was to lay the groundwork for the president to fire rosenstein who oversees the investigation. if he did fire rosenstein, not like jeff session would be in charge. that would elevate the next person at the justice department to become the new official in charge of overseeing mueller and that's a very important hands on role. right? mueller has to come to you if he wants to bring charges against somebody new. he has to come to you if he opens up a line of inquiry. anybody in that oversight role is in a position to say no, to any of those requests for mueller or to deny resources to the investigation, there is really one person in government who's legally in a position to kibosh it, the special counsel
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and the senior justice department official who oversees the mueller investigation, who right now is rod rosenstein. they laid the groundwork to fire him. if they fire him, the next person that would step up and have the job is the number three person in the justice department who is rachel brand who tonight without warning quit. in october 1973, it wasn't a standoff and a list of nonsense accusations against the surveillance warrant for a guy who said he was working with the kremlin. it's whether or not the president has to overturn tapes to the oval office. the president said no. special prosecutors said no, really, you have to give them to me. president responded by firing the special prosecutor. the way he did it was telling the attorney general to get rid of the special prosecutor. attorney general said no and resigned. it elevated the deputy attorney general. the president told the deputy attorney general fire the special prosecutor. the deputy attorney general said no and resigned.
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the next in secession there was number three person, sole lister -- that would be the next person in the line of succession that the president may be teeing up, noel francisco. why is rachel brand out? how close is rod rosenstein to getting fired? if that happens, do we expect that's the start of the end of the russia investigation? stay tuned. the night is young.
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so the number three official at the justice department is out in a surprise move tonight. the woman who, among other things, was next in line to supervise the russia investigation after deputy attorney general rod rosenstein. justice department confirms the next person in the line of succession now that rachel brand has left would be noel francisco. boy, am i willing to bet he's been googled more times than his entire life before now. he was nominated by president trump last march and senate
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confirmed him in september, all but one democrat voted against him before he joined administration he was best known for representing bob mcdonnell when the supreme court overturned the conviction on multiple corruption charges. mr. francisco clerked for supreme court justice antonin scalia in the george bush administration and argued against obamacare in the supreme court. so a president increasingly frustrated with a special counsel investigation into the russia matter, the number three justice steps down. the solicitor general next in line. this is a movie we have seen before as a country. i was 7 months old the last time it happened. i feel like i'm 700 years old watching it happen again. joining us now is a senior fellow at the brookings institute and editor in chief of
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"law fair" and here tonight for his expertise and he considers rachel brand to be a friend. thank you for joining us tonight. >> thanks for having me. >> so obviously everybody jumps to the furthest conclusion upon hearing this. did you expect her to leap and leave under these circumstances? >> no, it took me totally by surprise. as i think it did a lot of people but i actually talked to her this evening and i, you know, she assures me that number one, she was not forced out. this has nothing to do with the russia investigation. she wasn't looking to leave. she had an offer come from walmart that she felt she pass up. and so i think on the surface here, there is nothing untoward. it is very sudden and it's very early in her tenure so it's, you know, it's a bit of a surprise that way. i think the major significance of it, to be honest, is the one
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that you identified in your opening segment, which is the hollowing out of senior justice department leadership in the chain of command with respect to the mueller investigation, normally you and i wouldn't talk about the associate attorney general, much less the name of that person. and the reason we're sitting here talking about rachel brand tonight is precisely because of the possibility that the president would remove rod rosenstein and whoever is in that seat would become responsible for the mueller investigation. >> because that's not just a theoretical prospect, because there have been shots across the bow from conservative media, conservative members of congress, from the president himself both directly by name and obliquely talking about senior justice officials all being terrible, i mean, ms.
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brand has to know that her resignation comes amid the possibility that he will be fired and amid this targeting of senior law enforcement officials by the president and amid his real efforts to pressure the russia investigation. in your conversation with her tonight, was she conscious about the consequences of her leaving
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specifically in that regard? >> so i don't want to go into the details of the conversation. i think it's fair to say he's aware of the political environment that she's been operating in and that what is going on around her. look, i think this is a dangerous moment in the senior ranks of federal law enforcement and that chart you put up earlier of the number of people who are no longer there is a -- you know, is a really sobering list of first rate people who aren't there anymore. i think, you know, adding rachel brand to that list is upsetting. those of us who are friends of hers and wish her well are i'm sure i'm not the only one who's relieved on her behalf she will not be there when, you know, when the apocalypse comes but i say as a citizen of the country i feel better knowing that she's there and that list of hollowed out positions that are no longer in the chain of command to protect the integrity of the special counsel investigation makes the position that rod rosenstein occupies more important by the day. >> editor in chief of "law
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fair," thank you for your time tonight and particularly for talking to us a little bit about what rachel brand had to say tonight. thank you. >> thanks. >> we'll say on that point that he just said about him being relieved as her friend, that she won't be there when the apocalypse comes, i can imagine believing that as her friend but i got to say, her leaving in some ways maybe the thing that brings on the apocalypse is her leaving cleared the way for the president firing his way to end the mueller investigation. she saw it comes from a distance, let down the drawbridge and took off. stay with us.
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it's a busy news night. very. we've been following breaking news about the latest departure of a high-level staffer at the white house. in addition to the deputy chief of staff that resigned today which is a separate story, we got word david sorensen left. he becomes the second white house official to leave in as many days following serious allegations of domestic violence, allegations which he denies. "the washington post" was first to break this story. southern she said she did not report allegations to police because of his connections to law enforcement. she talked to friends and co-workers about the abuse.
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the post reports one of her friends helped her create a bank account outside of her control she could use to escape the marriage. sorensen allegedly ran a car over his ex-wife's foot, put out a cigarette on her hand, threw her into a wall and grasped her by the hair while alone on a boat in remote waters off of maine's coast in an incident that left her fearing for her life, and the post says she provided the post a photo of her hand bearing a scar from what she said was the cigarette burn inflicted by him. in addition to the photograph evidence, she provided records of text messages and he mails when he berated her with vulgar language. he's denying the allegations and says he was the victim in their relationship. before coming to the white house, mr. sorensen worked for paul lepage. one of his jobs was overseeing domestic violence policy. sorensen said he stepped down not because the allegations were true but he didn't want the white house to have to deal with thumb of this distraction.
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specifically were holding up porter's security clearance and again in november when an ex-girlfriend contacted about these allegations. four times mcgahn heard about these allegations against rob porter and did nothing for a full year while porter stayed on in the oval office, but at least don mcgahn didn't have the kind of day john kelly had. if there was a potential story about not getting a security clearance because of the violence allegations, that's a systems problem for the white house. that problem goes right to chief of staff john kelly. it's his job to fix that kind of problem before it blows up. white house chief of staff john kelly was brought in in july to make sure some kind of protocol gets followed. despite days of reporting kelly had known about the allegations
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against rob porter for months, this morning chief of staff held a meeting at the white house quoting "the washington post" he instructed senior white house staff to communicate a version of events about the departure of porter and said he took action to remove porter within 40 minutes of learning abuse allegations from two ex-wives were credible. white house senior staff are telling "the washington post" that john kelly at a staff meeting this morning told him to say things that aren't true about how he handled this thing about rob porter and domestic violence. adding insult to injury, that morning meeting with the stop the leaks john kelly by lunchtime was in print in "the washington post." joining us is beth reinhart with "the washington post."
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i really appreciate your being here tonight. it's been a remarkable day. >> pleasure to be here. >> thank you. so it's just, i have to ask you, i'm not going to ask you to talk to me about sourcing. there is a remarkable speed with which that white house staff meeting ends up in the post today with kelly reportedly asking white house staff to say things they did not believe were true and uncomfortable to be asked to say by the white house chief of staff. it is a remarkable circumstance you guys were able to report out today. >> yes, so john kelly's reaction to, you know, this, we know dates back several months, we know based on our sourcing that he was told by don mcgahn in september these allegations against rob porter were holding up his security clearance and apparently did not, you know, feel like that necessitated him doing any -- taking any action. so and then, you know, his reaction in recent days, he came strongly to rob porter's defense
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calling him a man of true integrity when the allegations first broke. and then even after the black eye photos shocked all of us, he said he was shocked about these allegations, even though he's known about them for months. >> white house officials, according to your reporting, white house officials don't believe john kelly's story that he took action as soon as he realized these were credible and within 40 minutes made sure this
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guy was out because he takes domestic violence so seriously. that's the story according to your report, he tried to sell to white house staff this morning. at least some of them rejected it and went and talked to the press about it. john kelly then later this afternoon came out and talked to reporters and gave that exact story. is there reason to believe his account that i turned it around in 40 minutes, that account isn't true, that white house staff were right to be worried it's a lie? >> well, the white house has been really inconsistent. one minute they are telling us john kelly is urging rob porter to stay because he's such a valued member of the staff. another moment they are saying he's resigning and were, you know, when things are starting to look uncomfortable, he was terminated, well, maybe not resigned. john kelly wants to, us to believe he acted immediately when we know that not to be true, that he knew about these allegations back in september. >> beth, one quick last question, we had conflicting reports whether or not john kelly said he's willing to resign as white house chief of staff. do you have any reporting on that tonight? >> i think we're still looking into that tonight. >> beth reinhart, reporter with "the washington post," thank you. busy night. appreciate you being here. the other big story from the white house tonight is the president's decision not to release a memo written by democrats on the intelligence committee.
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so we continue to follow the news tonight that rachel brand has resigned at the justice department. she's the number three official at the d.o.j. and positioned in success, so if the president decided to fire deputy attorney
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general rod rosenstein, who's overseeing the mueller investigation, brand would have stepped up to take over that role. in that context, the white house said it will not authorize the release of a memo prepared by house democrats. a memo written in response to one written by house republicans. one that not just attacked the russia investigation but laid the ground work for the president to fire rod rosenstein. the democrats say that was misleading and that's why they say they wrote their own. don mcgahn said the democrats can revise their memo if they want to. but for now we have one republican memo attacking the russia investigation, declassified for public viewing, and a democratic memo that says the republican one is bunk and the white house says that one cannot become public. at least not in its current form. how are members of the intelligence committee going to respond. joining us now is congressman
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jim himes. thanks for being here, i appreciate it. >> good evening, rachel. >> are you able to give us any further understanding of why the white house isn't releasing your memo, why they've decided to hold this one back? >> rachel, i never believed we were going to see the democratic memo approved by the white house. i've never seen this president do anything in the interest of fairness or truth or accuracy. what he does is in the interest of his own -- his own case. and, you know, this -- this proves it. here's a white house when the fbi, you'll recall, ancient history a week and a half ago when the fbi and department of justice said it would be exceedingly reckless to release the republican memo, the white house said, no problem, let's do it anyway. however now they have classification concerns with the democratic memo.
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this has nothing to do with transparency, a search for the truth. this has to do with this week's installment coming out of the committee, or ron johnson or the white house trying to erode confidence in the fbi and bob mueller's investigation. >> in terms of the way the memo was hyped by conservative media, and then treated, do you believe that whole exercise was about trying to lay some political groundwork, some groundwork for the president to potentially fire rod rosenstein or take other action to shield himself directly from the mueller investigation? >> i believe that was part of it. there was a reason why senior officials, including rod rosenstein were named in the memo. it is guilt by association. one of the reasons i look forward to the democratic memo
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coming out because it will show how sloppy and how inaccurate the republican memo was. people have to look at the nunes memo and realize there was not much there. they hadn't made their case in any way, shape or form. and speaker of the house paul ryan and trey gowdy himself said this has nothing to do with the russia investigation or bob mueller. nonetheless, it does serve the purpose of creating doubt and uncertainty in a small percentage of our population which spends a lot of time on conservative media sites creates the sense that maybe the fbi is not on the up and up here. that's not the case. but if mueller comes out with some information that is not interest of this president, there will be people out there that said wait a minute, i've been hearing forever that the fbi is not on the up and up here. in as much as that was the objective, they've probably succeed. >> can i get your reaction to the number three at the justice department, rachel brand, has stepped down unexpectedly? we had reporting that she didn't
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feel under any pressure, or have anything to do with the russia investigation, even though it would have a serious effect on the russia investigation if in fact rod rosenstein wejected. >> unlike your previous guest, i exhibit have a chance to talk to her about her decision. she's an expert on 702 surveillance, something you talked about in the past. that program was reauthorized. i think what's interesting here is, and i'm not saying this is necessarily her position, but why would you want to be a senior president at the department of justice when the attorney general is not standing up for you in faces of the attacks by the president, and your reputation is being damaged. you scratch your head and say why would anybody who can make four times more in a private law firm, why would you stay there? >> thanks for being with us, congressman himes. much appreciate it. >> thank you, rachel. >> busy night tonight we'll be right back. coaching means making tough choices.
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we thought the major news out of washington for this news cycle would be that there was a freaking government shutdown overnight last night. then we thought the major news would be the reports that another white house chief of staff, this time john kelly, has offered his resignation. then we got word that the deputy chief of staff is leaving. then a white house speech writer resigned in the face of domestic
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violence allegations, which makes him the second white house staffer to leave in the face of domestic violence in two days. then we got news that an official at the justice department resigned without notice and without anyone i feel like i shouldn't leave the desk. but katy is sitting in for lawrence. >> i'd be happy to have you stay for the hour. it would be like the 2:00 p.m. hour where everything blows up mid show. >> you think that happens in the 2:00 paul manafort hour, i think it happens in the 9:00 p.m. hour. >> how about you do the 2:00 p.m. hour, i'll do the 9 p.m. hour one day and we'll compare notes. >> my birthday is coming up.