tv PBS News Hour PBS July 10, 2017 6:00pm-7:01pm PDT
captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruff: good evening, i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour tonight: the russia file-- donald trump, jr. defends a meeting last year with a russian lawyer who promised damaging information on hillary clinton. then, inside putin's russia-- understanding the traditions shaping the country, part one of our week-long series. and, health care battle from two perspectives: in washington, republicans continue efforts to repeal and replace obamacare. in rural virginia, residents reflect on their medical needs right now. >> we keep thinking, well, is it ever going to get better? is anybody going to help these forgotten people? they're waiting out there like something you would see in a third world country. >> woodruff: plus, a rookie revolution in baseball ahead of the home run derby and tuesday's
lives. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: and individuals. >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff: it's the latest revelation in the story that's consumed much of the trump presidency so far: russian meddling in the 2016 election. and, this time, it involves the president's son. john yang begins our coverage. >> yang: the white house officials said today that donald
trump junior's meeting last summer with a kremlin-connected russian lawyer was just business as usual. president trump's counselor kellyanne conway. >> this was standard operating procedure for the campaign. let's focus on what did not happen in that meeting. no information provided that was meaningful. no action taken. nothing. >> yang: "the new york times" first reported the june 2016 meeting between donald trump junior, then-campaign chairman paul manafort and trump son-in- law jared kushner and natalia veselnitskaya. the president's son said he had been told that veselnitskaya had damaging information about hillary clinton, who had clinched the democratic nomination just days before. the meeting came as some republicans openly talked of trying to deny mr. trump their party's nomination at the convention. donald trump junior on saturday initially described the session as a "short introductory meeting" to discuss u.s. adoptions of russian children. but yesterday, faced with "new
york times" reporting on the purpose of the meeting, he acknowledged he was told the lawyer "might have information helpful to the campaign." he said: "the woman stated that she had information that individuals connected to russia were funding the democratic national committee and supporting ms. clinton. her statements were vague, ambiguous and made no sense. it quickly became clear that she had no meaningful information." in an off-camera white house briefing, principal deputy press secretary sarah huckabee sanders dismissed the controversy. >> don jr. took a very short meeting from which there was absolutely no follow up. don jr. did not collude with anybody to influence the election. >> yang: today, donald trump junior said: "obviously i'm the first person on a campaign to ever take a meeting to hear info about an opponent... went nowhere but had to listen." he also said he'd cooperate with the senate intelligence committee's investigation of russian meddling in the
election. in moscow, a spokesman for russian president vladimir putin said the kremlin knew nothing about the lawyer or the meeting. all this comes amid continued confusion over just what came out of the president's meeting with putin last week at the g-20 summit. administration officials had hailed the creation of a joint "cyber security unit" to guard against election hacking. republican senator lindsey graham called it a dumb idea. >> to forgive and forget when it comes to putin regarding cyber attacks is to empower putin. and that's exactly what he's doing. >> yang: hours later, the president appeared to reverse course, saying that a u.s.- russian cyber security unit "can't happen." for the pbs newshour, i'm john yang. >> woodruff: john will be back, with a closer look at the donald trump, junior story, right after the news summary. in the day's other news, the head of nato demanded that russia withdraw its troops from ukraine. secretary general jens stoltenberg addressed the
parliament in kiev, and said europe and the u.s. are united in support of ukraine. >> russia, and you know this better than anyone else, is trying to destabilize ukraine through its support of the militants in the east, its cyber attacks, disinformation and not least by the presence of russian forces in eastern ukraine. this must end. >> woodruff: officials also announced that talks will begin on a plan for ukraine to join nato by 2020. a new cease-fire in southwestern syria, brokered by the u.s. and russia, appears to be holding, for now. opposition groups report relative calm across three provinces, despite some sporadic fighting in places. meanwhile, a u.n. envoy opened the latest round of syrian peace talks in geneva today. iraq's government has declared final victory in the battle to recapture all of the city of
mosul, from the islamic state group. the u.s. coalition today welcomed the announcement and offered congratulations. p.j. tobia has our report. >> reporter: the iraqi national flag flies in western mosul tonight, after security forces finished off the last isis holdouts in the old city. >> ( translated ): we are holding their flag upside down and our flags are fluttering on the river bank. >> reporter: prime minister haider al abadi visited mosul yesterday, and he returned tonight, formally declaring victory over the militants, known in arabic as daesh. >> ( translated ): our victory today is a victory against darkness, brutality and terrorism and from here we announce to the entire world the end, the failure and the collapse of the mythical state and the daesh state that was announced here in mosul three years ago. >> reporter: but that victory has come at great cost. five months of aerial bombardments and house-to-house fighting have left much of western mosul in ruins.
killed in the fighting, and nearly a million fled their homes. it's estimated that around 1,000 iraqi soldiers have died were killed in the campaign. "the new york times'" rukmini callamachi was in mosul this morning. she says despite the claims of victory, there was still isolated fighting. >> that it's accurate to say that most of the city is now under iraqi control but there is definitely a pocket of resistance here in western mosul. >> reporter: and isis is far from a spent force. it still controls areas across the syria-iraq border, key towns in iraq and most of syria's deir al zour province. indeed, in the syrian city of raqqa, the islamic state's self- declared capital, the battle is just beginning, as u.s.-backed militia fighters ring the outskirts. meanwhile, back in mosul, grim work awaits. >> everywhere you go in the old city, if you catch the wind in the wrong direction, you smell the horrible smell of decaying bodies. >> reporter: for those still living in mosul, the immediate
concern is digging out and piecing together their shattered city. for pbs newshour, i'm p.j. tobia. >> woodruff: back in this country, congress returned to work today, and got a warning from president trump. in a tweet, he said he can't imagine lawmakers would "dare" to take august off, without passing a health care bill. senate republicans remain at odds over replacing obamacare, with no resolution in sight. the number of american adults without health insurance has increased by two million this year. the "gallup-sharecare well-being index" reports the uninsured rate in the second quarter was 11.7%. that's up from a record low of 10.9 reached at the end of last year. thousands of people in the western u.s. and canada are awaiting word to go home, after wildfires chased them away. one fire in southern california has charred more than 45 square miles and burned down at least 20 buildings.
to the north, in british columbia, more than 200 fires burned over the weekend, and more than 2,000 firefighters mobilized. president trump has again lit into the man he fired as f.b.i. director. he accused james comey of illegally leaking classified information, based on a report cited by fox news. in fact, the report does not make that charge. comey has acknowledged letting a friend leak a memo about a conversation with the president, but he denies it was classified. and, wall street had an up-and- down day. the dow jones industrial average lost five points to close at 21,408. the nasdaq rose 23 points, and the s&p 500 added two. still to come on the newshour: inside putin's russia. our week-long series begins by exploring what drives russian patriotism. how the health care battle is playing out in virginia's coal country, and much more.
>> woodruff: now for, a closer look at the meeting donald trump, jr. and other trump campaign officials held with a russian lawyer last summer, and back to john yang. >> yang: for more on the russia file i am joined by mark mazzetti, washington investigations editor for the "new york times," and john sipher, a 28-year veteran of the c.i.a. who was based in moscow in the 1990s. he's now with the consulting firm cross lead. john, mark, thanks for being with us. mark, the defense from the white house from donald trump, jr. is nothing came out of this meeting, no useful information as far as they're concerned. but in the broad scope, in the context of what's going on now, this investigation into russian meddling into the election, what's the significance this
meeting even took place? >> i think the significance is that it shows that the trump campaign was at least open to the idea that russians miffed some damaging information about hillary clinton and that they agreed to have this meeting because -- kind of on the promise of that. it was sort of a hastily arranged meeting in june of last year and donald trump, jr., the president's son, brought in the campaign chairman and also jared kushner, his so son-in-law, and there was at least a belief there might be something interesting here. with all the investigations and the speculation about collusion with the russian government, i think this is the first time we saw the trump campaign was amenable of getting something from russians that might be damaging to president trump's opponent at the time.
>> yang: the whiteout said it member amenable to meeting somebody with opposition search. this reasonable? >> there is opposition research all the time in campaigns. sort of the revolving story about this meeting, several months ago we asked donald trump, jr. about any meetings with russians he may have had during the campaign, he said absolutely none and certainly not on any sort of policy dimension. then on saturday, we put the question to them about the meeting and the answer was, well, it was primarily a meeting to discuss adoptions as it related to the russian ban on adoptions after what's called the magnitsk, which was passed in the united states which the kremlin is very angry about. sunday, the latest story is they had damaging information about hillary clinton. so we're still trying to get to the bottom of exactly what was produced and why and what came out of it.
but the story certainly has continued to change. young mark, wha -- >> mark, what do we know about this attorney and how this came about? >> she she is an active attorney in the united states on the legal side but also the lobbying side to try to repeal the magniitsky act. she knows people in washington and her lobbying and legal interests are in line with those of the kremlin. she is well connected back in russia with family connections, and we know the meeting was brokered by a man named rod gold stone, a record producer and it was brokered because mr. gol
mr. goldstone works with somebody in russia who's a pop star and whose father president trump worked with in 2013 during the miss universe pageant. so there is a complicated cast of characters but it involves an associate of president trump, jr., goldstone arranging this meeting with the law yarned these connected people back in russia. >> yang:. john sipher, you know how these russians work, a well-connected lawyer from russia, a another connection, this pop star's father, a real estate developer with ties to the kremlin. are there warning signs? how does this work in terms of how the russians work? how does this fit in with how the russians work? >> i would look at it as part of a much larger mission the russians were involved. we realize there was a cyber piece to this. there was a piece to try to make hillary clinton look bad. e've seen some reporting that suggested or tried to get into voting machines, a number of
these things, but the thing the russians are focused on here would be the human aspect. so this lawyer was clearly tied to the kremlin, this act and the attack by putin, bill brauder involved with the death of mr. magnitsky was involved with the kremlin so she has connections with the russians. so the idea is she came to ask about hillary clinton. the substance of the meeting is less important than putting out what they wanted to talk about. they were testing the trump campaign, are you willing to talk about things you shouldn't talk about. when given the choice to make the right or wrong decision, are you willing to do that? as an intelligence officer, what i'm willing to do with anybody i'm targeting and looking at is can i put them into small, compromising positions? can i make them make choices that might be the wrong decision so the next time i might try a
business opportunity for you or something to put you in a position so i can get more information from you. >> yang: so the very fact donald trump accepted this meeting, the russians achieved a goal there? >> absolutely. this is exactly what they wanted to do is to see if they were willing to do this. i wouldn't be surprised if mr. trump or jared kushner were sort of ignorant of how the russians worked and stepped into this without realizing how they were getting into but mr. manafort knows, he spent a career working in russia with bad actors around the world, he would understand taking this meeting would be a signal to russians that, hey, we're willing to play ball here. >> yang: donald trump, jr. says he did not tell manafort about the substance of the meeting, invited him to come but didn't tell him about the context. >> what within interesting for f.b.i. and those doing the investigations is what happened subsequently, what further and future meetings with the russians took lace and how they
were orchestrated by the campaign. >> yang: john sipher, mark mazzetti, thank you both for talking to us about this. >> thank you. >> woodruff: this week we begin our weeklong series inside putin's russia. with support from the pulitzer center on crisis reporting, special correspondent nick schifrin and producer zach fannin traveled to more than a dozen cities, conducted 40 interviews, and were arrested twice. they will report on russian proaganda, russia's opposition, russians who join isis, and the tense relationship with the u.s. but the first story explores a new russian identity. it's a combination of religion, old russian traditions, and rediscovered patriotism. this new identity helps explain how people in today's russia thinks, how president putin acts, and why he remains
popular. we begin in the southern city of krasnodar. >> reporter: it is sunday morning in russia's conservative south. more than 70% of russians are orthodox christian. and under president vladimir putin, the church has been revitalized. archpriest ivan garmash is known as father john. he tells parishioners there's only one way to be a true christian. and he says being a true christian is the only way to be a true russian. >> ( translated ): the state and my faith are united. they can't be separated. the values of the church and the state coincide. >> reporter: in russia, faith is patriotic. the orthodox church criticizes liberal western values as heresies, while orthodox priests bless russian weapons and endorse putin politically and personally. the president's faith increases his popularity. >> ( translated ): he is a religious man, and he takes part in the divine worship with the
people in churches. what the president is doing, what the government is doing, of course we support it. because he acts conscientiously and truthfully. >> reporter: today's reenergized orthodox church helps create pride in a shared religion. and historic russian symbols, like cossacks, help create pride in shared traditions. 500 years ago, cossacks became the russian tsars' henchmen. they were famous and feared and helped police the russian empire's borders. the soviets persecuted them. today's russia restores them. cossacks fills krasnodar's streets at an annual parade. they believe russia should be governed by tradition, rather than the rule of law. >> ( translated ): only the nation that has kept its traditions and honors them more than the law deserves respect. the strength of a nation is in its traditions.
>> reporter: for 17 years, vladimir gromov led the regional cossack army. he revitalized this event, and helped get the cossacks state sponsorship. president putin awarded him the order of friendship medal. gromov considers putin the custodian of russian pride and stability, preventing the chaos of the 1990s. >> ( translated ): if it wasn't for president putin, russia as a state would be struggling through the toughest times now, and possibly may have ceased to exist. only putin has saved the state from total collapse. >> reporter: and in return, cossacks do what they feel saves putin. >> putin will teach you to love the motherland. >> reporter: during the 2014 olympics, the band pussy riot performed a song that disparages putin. centuries old tradition of vigilante violence. last year, cossacks doused the main opposition leader alexei navalny and attacked his staff.
and in kaliningrad, when a small group of demonstrators demanded the government change its foreign policy, they were surveilled and a cossack beat up 63-year-old protester yevgeniy greishen. he lost 80% of his eyesight. >> ( translated ): if the regime can't suppress civil protest through legal means, they punish the people through affiliated associations, like the cossacks. the regime acts through them. >> reporter: why have the authorities cracked down so much? >> ( translated ): in russia, statehood comes first, and human rights come last. they use any means to prove the state is the most important. more important than a human. >> reporter: the idea that the state is more important than the people is actually not new. russians have long had a collective identity. >> we consider ourselves to be the part of the whole. to be russian it is, it means to share the same cultural and historic identity.
>> reporter: for years, tv- fixture and firebrand alexander dugin inspired the kremlin's ideology. he says russia's collective identity comes from patriotism, projection of power, and respect for the ruler. putin's tapped into all three... connecting today's russia to its imperial grandeur. >> patriotism is organic, it is not artificial. for us, empire, or state, is n something additional or artificial because it is our breath, our skin, an organic way of life. >> reporter: today's kremlin uses that patriotism to try and unite the population and convince them only a powerful state can protect them from enemies. and enemy number one is the u.s. >> america is on the brink of a revolution. >> reporter: dugin and the kremlin accuse the u.s. of humiliating russia by expanding nato to russia's borders and supporting revolutions in former soviet states and satellites. dugin advocates fighting back by attacking the west with asymmetric war. you talk about introducing
geopolitical disorder, actively supporting dissident movements, extremism, racist, sectarian groups. this seems much more than just-- >> it's exactly what you do. you are supporting separatist group, you're supporting any kind of nationalism, including russian nationalism which is against putin. my words, are the mirror what you are doing. it is mirror and you are frightened so much because you are doing the same thing against us. >> reporter: in ukraine, that philosophy was weaponized. in eastern ukraine, russia helps local separatists who fight against a ukrainian government that's pro-western. and in 2014 in crimea, russia helped install separatist leaders who rushed through a referendum that led to crimea's annexation. the day of annexation, putin gave a speech combining religion, patriotism, and
imperial history. he said the west had been subjugating russia, and russia was finally demanding respect. >> ( translated ): if you compress the spring all the way to its limit, it will snap back hard. russia is an independent, active participant in international affairs; like other countries, it has its own national interests that need to be taken into account and respected. >> reporter: it's impossible to overstate how transformative eastern ukraine and here, crimea, have been to recent russian memory. after the crimea annexation, putin's popularity spiked to nearly 90%. suddenly, russians told pollsters they considered themselves once again, a superpower. and russians all over the country mobilized. that's denis solomin in 2014, fighting in eastern ukraine. he's a former soldier who was working a mid-management retail job when he quit and crossed the border. >> ( translated ): now we hear that behind us, there's an intense battle. mortars and shells are raining
in our direction. >> reporter: solomin went to war because of that collective russian identity. he believed the ukrainian government was attacking ethnic russians. >> ( translated ): those people who were under fire, i identified them as russian people, who need protection by those who can at least hold a weapon. >> reporter: what was it about them, that you felt "i need to help them"? >> ( translated ): those are the people with the same culture as mine, the same language, the same worldview. >> reporter: he was convinced of that by propaganda. in may 2014, dozens of pro- russian separatists died in odessa, ukraine. >> ( translated ): it probably became the pivotal moment. there was a lot of information about how people were simply getting beaten and killed. >> reporter: russian media exaggerated the attack, even using an actress to play a victim. we know she was an actress because she appeared in unrelated, pro-russian stories, as three entirely different people. that disinformation campaign convinces the kremlin's critics the new russian identity is
manufactured, and a product of deception and repression. sometimes, that repression shows up in masks, guns and camouflage. those are special forces surrounding 66-year-old ilmi umerov, in the jacket and jeans. umerov is a leader of the tatars, a muslim minority in crimea. he and other tatars fight the russian annexation. in response, many tatars have been jailed on questionable charges, and umerov was thrown into an insane asylum. >> ( translated ): so all this together we call one big act of intimidation. the purpose is to silence some, and keep others ignorant to turn them into zombies so they think the same thing. these are the necessary conditions in order for the people to be loyal to their government. >> reporter: but do you acknowledge that that is the majority of the population who feels that way? >> ( translated ): of course, of course. we can't say that this is a stupid population, or stupid people. they are just living in a constellation of fear. and the propaganda machine rolls over them like a steamroller.
>> reporter: umerov may accuse putin of manipulating the population, but under putin, russia has revitalized the majority religion, brought back historic traditions, and projects power. so until there's an alternative, he's considered the creator, and will remain the caretaker, of the new russian identity. for the pbs newshour, i'm nick schifrin in krasnodar, russia. >> woodruff: we continue our series "inside putin's russia" tomorrow examining the use of propoganda by the state. and you can hear more from special correspondent nick schifrin on our facebook page, facebook.com/newshour. >> woodruff: stay with us, coming up on the newshour: minority report-- a conversation on the future of the democratic party.
its monday and our team is here to analyze the week ahead in politics. and, just before the all star game, baseball's best rookies. but first, as republicans on capitol hill try to repeal and replace the affordable care act, we're going to spend the next couple of nights hearing what patients and healthcare providers think should be done. our team visited west virginia and virginia, which made very different decisions about medicaid. west virginia did commit to expanding medicaid through obamacare. but virginia is one of 19 states that did not. the state's republican- controlled legislature voted against expanding the program to 400,000 more citizens because of concerns over costs. tonight, we visit a clinic in the western corner of virginia, a region that strongly supported the election of president trump.
>> my name is dr. paula hill. i'm a family nurse practitioner and clinical director at the health wagon. we are at the smitty clinic, in wise, virginia. we actually say that we're the forgotten virginia because we're down in the corner with tennessee and kentucky borders. and we're very rural, very mountainous and very isolated from the rest of virginia and a lot of ways the rest of the country. we have a high rate of heart disease, diabetes, and it's because of the economics here. >> all the mines and stuff is just about closed down. and there really isn't any jobs around here. my name is joyce campbell. i'm from wise, virginia. you know, i get $800 a month. and i am fortunate, i have an income coming in, with my social security. by the time you pay your rent, your electric, your water, your gas, you either have a choice of whether you want to buy your medicine, or whether you want to eat. >> the affordable care act, when it was enacted, it did help a
lot of virginians. down here in this part of the state, in far southwestern virginia, we did not benefit as much with the affordable care act because there are such dire economic constraints here. our patients couldn't afford the affordable care act. they couldn't afford $400 a month for a family plan. and where virginia did not expand medicaid, we actually didn't benefit any. it would have helped if we had expanded medicaid, it would have helped some of our residents, anyway, because there's a dire amount of poverty. there's people dying every day and dying senseless deaths because they don't have equal right to health care. >> my name is tina bean. i'm 59 and i live in haysi, virginia. i had congestive heart failure twice. i didn't have insurance. and that's when i started coming to paula, or coming to the health wagon. without the medicines and stuff, i probably wouldn't be here. when i heard about the obamacare a few years ago and checked it
and stuff, you could tell then that it wasn't gonna work. people can't afford it. >> they call it affordable care act. but it's not. and you know they said you could keep your doctors. you couldn't because your doctors wouldn't take the thing. they said you could go to the same hospital, but a lot of it was built on lies. if you really want to know the truth, and i think somebody one of these days is gonna give an account for it. >> my name is jeff tiller. i'm 47 years old. and i've worked in the coal mines for 29 years. they diagnosed me for black lung. they done chest x-ray. they also have found some nodules in my lung. >> we are overwhelmed here at the health wagon. we went to over almost 9,000 patients, and we have a staff of less than 20. every year we have an outreach
clinic event called remote area medical. and you'll see people waiting in their cars; they've been there since monday, you'll see them standing in line for dental care, for medical care, for vision. we have found people with dissecting aortic aneurisms that's had to be flown out. we've had patients have stroke right there in front of us at these remote area medical events. we've had brain tumors that have been discovered, lung cancers that have been discovered, and every year it's like this. we keep thinking, well, is it ever going to get better? is anybody going to help these forgotten people? they're waiting out there like something you would see in a third world country. >> the obamacare could have helped some people. i say it needs to be replaced. >> i hope that they can replace it. i know it's not going to be something they can do overnight. because the mess didn't come over night. >> when i first started hearing obama getting ready for obamacare, i thought that was great. he tried it.
we got it. does it have faults? yes it does. is it working? yes it is. and i know right there in my home town of people that's got insurance through the affordable care act. and you reverse it, they lose their insurance. >> if all of this goes through, i probably won't have anything. i don't know how i'm going to get covered. >> because of the pre-existing conditions? >> yeah, right. >> if the senate plan actually passes, there will be deep cuts to medicaid, even though virginians didn't expand, what they are paying out is going to be subjected to more cuts. then you have the preventive care that's being discussed that they're not going to be paying for anymore. just because it wasn't a perfect plan, it doesn't mean do away with the whole thing. why can't we build on it and repair it, not take it away and then start over with another plan that's not perfect and not ideal?
>> it helped the insurance company because they made all kind of money off of it. but as far as helping a lot of poor people, it didn't and it still isn't. we cannot afford the high cost like obama had there. there's no way that people in southwest virginia can handle it. now maybe up washington, or way up where there's money and jobs, you could. but there's neither money nor jobs here. >> they need to do something to help it. hopefully, the administration now, maybe they'll do something. >> washington, come to southwest virginia. >> come down here and look in their eyes. and don't forget where you came from. don't forget who put you in the position that you're in. >> check the people. go sit on the streets. bring your car and park it and look at the people that are hurting. and then if you've got a heart, you'll know what it needs.
>> woodruff: tonight we begin the first in a series of conversations focusing on the future of the democratic party. joining us now, the co-chair of the house democratic policy and communications committee, congresswoman cheri bustos of illinois. she's the only member of the house democratic leadership team from the midwest. representative bustos, welcome to the program. >> thank you, judy. >> woodruff: before we talk about the democratic party, having watched and listened to the report from virginia, such conflicting opinions about the affordable care act. how can you know the democratic party's position is right when people are so conflicted over it? >> i don't know if we're entirely right. i think the way we need to look at the affordable care act is, while it's made some tremendous improvement in people's lives,
there is a lot of work we need to do, still. prescription drug prices are too high and unaffordable for too many people, co co-pays, deductibles and premiums were too high for people. the folks just talking on the show demonstrated that. what resonated with me was, at the end of the story, you have people saying, come here, look us into the eye, talk to us, listen to us, and that is everything to do with what we need to do as democrats going forward, if we ever want to win back the majority in 2018, that's exactly what we need to do. >> woodruff: let's talk about that. you represent the 17t 17th district of illinois, northwestern part of the state. you won by what, 20 points last fall, reelection. donald trump also won by what just a fraction of a point, but he won. what was it in his message that appealed to your voters. >> we have communities all over the central and northwestern illinois, the area that i represent that have lost their jobs to outsourcing.
ag and manufacturing are the two economic drivers in my congressional district. so when you have people who lost their jobs, one example was the may tag plant in gillsberg, illinois. 13 years ago this september, may tag sent every one of their last jobs to mexico, yet, all these years later, the people who had these jobs still haven't we covered the wages to the same level as before. i talked to people who took outjob who have been outsourced and are working as a clerk in a grocery store making half what they did a dozen years ago. that's what resonated, when peek can harkin back to making america great again, that resonated with people who lost their jobs and aren't making what they did before. >> woodruff: so you're saying it's not enough for democrats to be against donald trump. it's clear democrats disagree with him on healthcare, on the russia story and on and on. what is it that democrats should be saying? >> i think we should be talking
non-stop about jobs and the economy. we have the right policies. we have a whole make it in america package that focuses on making products in america. we have job retraining programs. we have the right -- we have the right programs, but we talk about things that are more divisive than they draw us together. i think if we talk about our values and what we stand for as as many as, making sure that hard-working men and women have a chance to succeed. when i go home and listen to people, that's what they want us to focus on, not things that divide people. >> woodruff: is there a single message? a combination of messages? a vision the democratic party has that's not being spoken? >> what we're doing kind of a behind the scenes look at it. we are working with the senate, the house, making sure the democratic congressional campaign committee is informed about what we're doing, the senatorial democratic campaign committee, i'm told this is the first time we've all worked
together on this. in my role in policy communications, we have met with 150 of our democratic colleagues, all the major caucuses from the congressional black caucus, the progressives, blue dogs, the new dems and this is a very much bottom-up report, our coa colessens of ideas. this will be about jobs and the economy. when the congressional members go back home for the august work period, we'll be talk about jobs and economy and we'll be united on that. >> woodruff: that's the process, but in terms of the vision, what is the vision of the party for the country? when you say jobs and the economy, i want to mention something else you said to your fellow democrats, don't talk down to voters, make sure they know you respect them. what is the message there? >> the message is we may be members of congress. it just means we have a different job. we're no better, no worse than anybody else.
it's just a different job. i'm blessed by the fact i was a newspaper reporter and i have been in homes in some of the worst, the toughest neighborhoods of my region to, you know, the country club lot in life. so i'm comfortable talking to any of those people, and i'm also -- i know that i'm no better or worse than any of them. but back to your question about what is it about jobs and the economy, that we're going to make sure that social security is strong and will grow stronger. we're not going to cut benefits. that's not something we stand for. i gave my mom a call today and she said, what are they doing to my healthcare? she's 84 years old. we want to make sure medicare is strong and not facing financial difficulty. we want to make sure pensions people have paid into are not sacrificed. we've got all the right policies but we have to talk about that. >> woodruff: so is it a matter of not changing or cutting back on government programs? is that the democrat's idea?
>> i don't think government is the entire answer, but people want to know that the member of congress is going to washington and fighting for them, that we don't view that through the when is of it's all partisan and we can't work with republicans. my people in my district send me to washington and get the job done. i work hard, make a good wages special in comparison to a lot of families, they want me to fight hard and get results, and i don't think that's different if you're in strains, new york city or shifnlgt that's what people want in members of congress and what they deserve. >> woodruff: who is the leader of the democratic party right now? >> who is the leader? i suppose suppose it depends, on the shouse nancy pelosi, the senate chuck schumer. tom perez at the democratic national committee. >> woodruff: so it's a group of people. >> yeah, a group of people, but we also have young, emerging
leaders who, in time l take different roles. i'm proud of the fact i sit at the leadership table now. the fact that i'm the only midwesterner, i would like a little more company sitting around the table. i think we're practical in the midwest and i would like to see more of us sitting at the leadership table. >> woodruff: you were just named as democratic chairwoman of the heartland engagement committee. congresswoman cheri bustos, thank you very much. >> thank you, judy. >> woodruff: we appreciated it. >> woodruff: now it's time for "politics monday" with amy walter of the "cook political report," and tamara keith of npr. so, amy, tam, you've just been hearing what congressman bustos said, in fact she's still here at the table. amy, what do you make of that? are you hearing from the democrats where they want to
take this country? >> well, i will say this, every party that's the out party always struggles with this, who are we now that we're not in charge? democrats don't control anything. not just the white house. they don't have the house, the senate or the white house. it is, in every election is a referendum on the party in power. the republicans are porter parte in power. the 2018 election will be a referendum on whether they were able to accomplish what they said they were going to do or not. it's democrats job getting into 2020 and the battle is for who will occupy the white house. the standard message is who is the leader of the party? it will be the person they nominate in 2020 to be their nominee. that's many years away. republicans were successful in midterm elections in 2010, democrats were successful in the midterm elections in 2006, taking control of congress from the opposite party, not because they had a unified message, they
stood against the party in power. it was a referendum on that party, voters were not happy with the party in power and the out party benefited. i think there is plenty of time for democrats t to figure out wo they are but they are very divided ideologically, just like republicans. >> woodruff: tam, from your reporting on the hill, you're reporting from the white house, do the democrats feel like a force that's together who have found their voice? >> they have found a way to oppose the republican relationship. legislation. they not splintered when it comes to votes. part of that is due to nancy pelosi's ability to whip votes and chuck schumer have kept them together. there haven't been the defections particularly in the senate president trump hoped he would get. he brought some moderaterooms in red states who were up for reelection over to the white house. he sort of tried maybe to woo
them. it tinted work. they've not been in any way forced to have a wedge between them and the rest of the democratic party. >> woodruff: which, so far, amy, contributed to the fact the republicans were struggling to get an answer on health care. >> and this goes to the challenge, judy, which is, when you're a party that has been successful as republicans were successful in the last few years by being basically the party of no, right, they were against everything democrats and president obama stood for, that was successful to get them a political majority but not a governing majority. so now that they're in power, they're struggling with what do you do. they have fault approximately factions in the republican party just as democrats do, trying to get them all together to agree on something like a healthcare bill, super complicated, which is hard tore get them to agree obama is terrible. >> woodruff: tammy, you have been following bernie sanders
who is holding rallies saying what republicans is doing is wrong. how do you feel about that? >> bernie sanders wants medicaid for all, single-payer healthcare. but he didn't make a big thing out of it. most of the folks in the rally in kentucky was about the republican bill and what it would mean for people. sanders' message was really that the affordable care act, obamacare needs to be fixed, which is actually standing for something. it's not just no. it's yes. it's not clear the democrats can agree on what the six is. more people are quietly saying single-payer, medicaid may be better for all, but that is a long-standing divide among democrats. >> woodruff: but sounds democrats could be unified at least around that. >> but i think tam is right, that's going to be the bigger challenge in 2020 as the democrats try to figure out the
messaging on do we go fourth tore the left, talk about single-payer, medicaid for all, or do we try to fix what isent working in healthcare, and that will be the dividing line in the democratic primary. >> woodruff: the lead tonight tam, the new revelations about the trump campaign in russia, donald trump, jr. meeting with the russian lawyer and so on, we have been doing a lot of reporting. is this more of the same, or have we turned some kind of important corner with this information? >> i think it's hard to know where the corners are. this is a new person. this is trump trump, jr., now an involved in this whose name south there. he confirmed much of it on the record which is frit remarkable. he confirmed he arranged a meeting with top campaign officials and a kremlin-linked
lawyer because she was potentially offering damaging information about hillary clinton. that's something. it's not necessarily collusion and collusion isn't necessarily a vangs o violation of the law,n this ongoing drip-trip-drip, there is a big drip. >> theoretically what we should be talking about today is simply mct. this is supposed to be how we were set up this week. the president should be focusing all his energy and attention on that. instead, we're talking once again about russia. the other consistency, these are all self-inflicted. this is not something the committee or robert mueller, special prosecutor, brought up. this is coming from lack of transparency from people either during the campaign or ran cigs about their connections. >> woodruff: because they filled out forms that didn't include this latest information. >> now it looks like they have to correct and looks like
they're hiding something. whether or not, imagine in another world that did hay come from the very beginning and been completely transparent, even overtransparent, even anybody i met who has a russian-sounding last name, i'm going to put their name on a piece of paper and give it to you because you can never say i'm trying to hide anything. >> woodruff: and that hasn't happened? >> no, and it's a direct contradiction to what they'veside said on the record. >> woodruff: tamera keith, amy walter, "politics monday," thank you both. >> you're welcome. >> woodruff: baseball has reached the midpoint of its season, and it's turning out to be a most compelling year. many of the game's best players are in miami for the next couple of nights for the midsummer classic, the all-star game. things kick off tonight with the home run derby. jeffrey brown takes it from there. >> brown: another at bat, another home-run: balls are flying out of the park this year
at a record pace. and adding to the excitement: two of the biggest sluggers are rookies-- aaron judge of the new york yankees, and cody bellinger of the los angeles dodgers. tom verducci is an mlb network analyst, a senior writer for "sports illustrated," and tomorrow he'll be the fox-mlb reporter for the all-star game in miami. he joins us from marlins park, the site of the all-star festivities. tom, welcome to you. so, first of all, all those home runs, i've seen different these are, the changes to the balls, changes to the swing, what's going on? >> a little bit of everything. it's like baking a cake. it's not just one ingredient. there are many ingredients. if you talk to the pitchers, they will definitely talk about the difference in the baseball, that the baseball is actually wound tighter and the seams on the baseball are smaller, so if you have lower seams, you have less drag. you have less drag, that means more carry and more fly balls
are carrying out to have the ballpark. so you just brought up something, hitters know, now, to make money in the baseball, you have to do damage. you have to hit the ball in the air. so this generation hitters is all about launching the ball in the air and not necessarily hitting it on the ground for batting average. it more about the air or slugging. >> brown: speaking of this generation, we have these two new rookie stars, and they happen to be in very large markets, right? new york and l.a. what kind of impact are they having this year is this. >> yea, it's the perfect storm for baseball because it truly is the intersection of the two dominant trends in baseball. number one, the home runs we talked about and, number two, the influx of young stars in the game. baseball, traditionally, there has been a long learning curve. even when they get to the major leagues, the apprenticeship in the minor league, it takes a long time for players to establish themselves. what we're seeing, and judge and
bellinger are examples, hitters are becoming impact players almost as soon as they get to the big leagues. in society in general, we're specializing at early ages. these hitters are specializing in the art of hitting, locking in on their specific skills. so judge and bellinger have hit the ground running. and one more thing, bellinger, in a ball a couple of years ago, specifically changed his swing to hit more balls in the air. in other words, he's adopted to this revolution of fly ball hitters. >> brown: we have this overperforming team in the houston astros and the underperforming in the cubs. this continuing problem, the length of the games, something i noticed and probably a lot of the fans, why is it so hard to change that? >> it's not so much about length of game as it is about the pace
of the action, how quickly or not, as it is, is the ball put in play. it's all the time between pitches. so i think it is a priority for major league baseball going forward -- the game is strong now economically, but i think baseball is worried about a younger generation of fans who get turned off by the amount of down time in the game. in soccer, football, basketball, the ball is generally in motion quite often. baseball is going in the opposite direction. so baseball now is talking about some remedies, talking about, now, including perhaps a pitch clock, where a pitcher now would be literally under a clock to deliver his next pitch, say within 20 seconds. they tried that in the minor leagues, it definitely has worked in transportation of moving the game at a better place. now baseball needs a player's association to agree to that kind of change. as they say, negotiations are ongoing. >> brown: all right, tom verducci, enjoy tomorrow night's game and thank you so much for joining us. >> thank you.
>> woodruff: on the newshour online right now, we talk with a poet who writes about modern warfare and the effects of witnessing armed conflict from a distance. that and more is on our web site, pbs.org/newshour. and that's the newshour for tonight. on tuesday, and all week, our series "inside putin's russia." i'm judy woodruff. join us online and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you and see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century.
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