tv MSNBC Live MSNBC March 19, 2017 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT
i'm richard lui in new york city. james comey is set to face the house intelligence committee on monday. he also had surprising words about alleged trump campaign ties to russia. >> there is circumstantial evidence of collusion. there is direct evidence, i think, of deception. that's where we begin the investigation. >> and a new provocation from north korea. it says they have tested a new engine. how michael whitehouse responded to that and what role china may play along the way. and federal immigration
officials are told to back off and stop stalking undocumented immigrants at california courthouses. first, less than 24 hours before james comey is set to testify before the house intelligence committee, congressman adam schiff saying he's seeing evidence to suggest collusion between trump associates and russian entities during the 2016 campaign. that goes against past statements from both former director of national intelligence, james clapper, and former cia director mike morell. both officials say they have not seen any evidence to suggest collusion. today, devin nunes echoed that finding. >> i'll give you a very simple answer. no. >> no evidence of any collusion? >> no evidence. >> and this is after getting information from the fbi -- >> up to speed on everything that i have this morning. there's no evidence of
collusion. >> tomorrow, director comey will be pressed on that very subject. it's going to be the first time comey will comment on any potential investigations that his bureau may or may not be conducted into trump's campaign associates. the house intelligence committee is one of four bodies believed to be conducting active investigations into russia's interference in the election. the associated press reports that the senate intelligence committee asking roger stone, former adviser to donald trump, to obtain any documents that could be related to its investigation into russia's interference in the 2016 election. and then there's the second issue comey will have to address. the president's yet unproven claim that former president obama wiretapped the trump tower. on friday, there was a request for information related to the president's claim. representatives from both sides of the aisle said today they have still seen no evidence to
support that. >> once again, no evidence to support that claim. >> have you seen any evidence that president obama ordered an illegal wiretap of president trump? >> george, no, i haven't. >> do you know of any evidence to support that allegation? >> jake, not that i've seen and not that i'm aware of. >> was there a physical wiretap of trump tower? no, but there never was and the information we got on friday continues to lead us in that direction. >> joining us now to discuss this is msnbc contributor and national reporter for "the new york times," paul singer, correspondent for "usa today." so this statement by adam schiff where he says circumstantial evidence related to potential collusion here, there is a new set of words. what do you make of it? >> i don't know if he actually meant to say that there was circumstantial evidence mainly
because what he was talking about was the president that put this out there, some people on fox news that have pedalled this theory but in reality there's no actual evidence. i would be surprised if he would say that he has seen circumstantial evidence that wasn't just people saying this out loud. >> your thoughts on this when you look at it, paul? >> i don't know what circumstantial evidence he's talking about with respect to collusion. the interesting thing from comey is where the fbi is on their investigation with russian contacts from trump supporters before the election and whether or not the trump supporters had any idea who they were talking to when we get into t. when we get into the wiretap thing, that's a slam dunk. >> are we going to be spending the majority or we watch what is happening very fervently.
the questions will be about the russian connection and not about the wiretap? >> i think that's what is going to happen. democrats and republicans want that to be what this investigation is about and what this hearing is about because mainly even if democrats continue to ask about the wiretapping claims andant to go to the credibility of president trump, what they want to do long term is cut away at whether or not this is someone who they can trust and whether or not he has conflicts of interest that need to be reported on and looked at. i think russia is what that is. that's where we have seen people have to resign and have seen people with public statements out there about what was going on with russia. so i think there's more intrigue and they see more value in talking about russia than wiretapping claims and while it may be in their best interests to say the president said this, it doesn't go a long way for the agenda that they want to push.
>> it's done once the answer is had, is what you're agreeing with paul on this. how far might they be able to get? because director comey could be tight-lipped and may not even admit that there is a potential investigation that is ongoing. he may say, i cannot answer that. >> would you actually hope he does not say much. if there is a significant and serious fbi investigation going on, you would hope that he would reveal very little about it so they could continue it with some seriousness. keep in mind, for the republicans on the panel, one of their major agendas is to raise the question whether the fbi is leaking the information to the press. who is leaking classified material? their interest is to keep as little of this in public as well and to move away from topics about were the trump people talking to the russians and more to how is the fbi handling this investigation, are they doing it properly. >> yeah. >> we will see whether they are willing to have an open
discussion about how deeply the fbi is going into that probe right now. >> we've been looking at the probe and the questions that are going to be coming up from democrats and republicans here that are on the hill. they've got to cover a little here. how aggressive do they need to be to walk away from tomorrow's hearing and they look like they are asking the right questions that are above board here? >> i think they need to be fairly aggressive. this is really a moment that a lot of people, including not only lawmakers but really the nation as a whole has been waiting for. there have been so many questions swirling around russia. both sides, republicans and democrats, need to look like they are putting this issue to bed. >> and you know, we just had a survey question on our last show here, paul, and the question was, will tomorrow basically put both issues to bed? the thought was no. seven out of ten say no. this is not going to be the end,
paul. >> no. these things never die. they will go on for months and months, who talked to who, do we have more information? as long as there's another e-mail. this is what we've heard from hillary clinton, another e-mail that we haven't yet seen, that will launch more stories three weeks from now. it's going to play out for quite a while. >> what's the worst situation that will play out just on that day? >> in the worst situation, it's that really there is no answers or that there is an answer but that james comey can't say more about that and they hint at seriousness but they can't say what is going on, which i think is what is going to happen. for republicans, this goes on and on and on and for the democrats, it's the same thing. they want to tal about other things licyse. the worst case scenario will
happen and that's that it's going to continue on. >> viewers on c-span tomorrow will see what is happening. one of the viewers most likely will be the president of the united states. and what the response might be. >> right. it will be very interesting to see what the tweet storm looks like tomorrow afternoon, maybe around 7:00, 8:00, after fox starts to do its analysis, to see whether the president's analysis matches the fox news analysis, which is what we frequently see happening. if he's smart, it's a good day for the president to take off of twitter and let the story play itself out and move the ball to the top if he wants to talk about the affordable care act repeal or higs budget or something like that. >> you'll both be watching with me on msnbc, all of that testimony on the hill tomorrow. appreciate you both. thank you. >> thanks. immigration agents are stalking california courthouses and looking for people to deport. she wants it to stop.
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welcome back. the chief justice for california supreme court has a message for immigration and custom officials. and that's to stop stalking undocumented immigrants outside courthouses. on thursday, chief justice wrote a lettero attorney general jeff sessions and secretary john kelly saying courthouses should not be bait in the necessary enforcement of our country's immigration laws. joining us to discuss this is the chief justice. why are you doing this and are you seeing this consistently across all of the courthouses that you're alluding to? >> thank you, richard. yes, i am doing this because i'm
concerned about local public safety, state public safety in california and i'm hearing statements from court leaders and attorneys and free legal aid entities across our state that this is happening in the courthouses of california. >> what jurisdiction does your call have, if any at all? >> nothing. i realize, of course, that federal immigration and enforcement tactics by i.c.e. is a federal call. however, i'm asking to consider the consequences and to ask them to refrain from this activity because it endangers public safety in california. >> you've heard the critics. the question is why is a chief justice, if you will, making a statement that can be seen as political? >> it's not political. the judicial branch in california, we work very hard at reaching out to vulnerable communities, particularly ethnic communities to come to court and report their concerns. they are victims of crimes.
they want to protect themselves. they come as families and individuals and come to court to report crime. they cooperate with law enforcement. they come to court to be safe. therefore, courts have a responsibility, i believe, as judges to mitigate fear, ensure equal access and due process. if people are afraid to come to court and protect themselves and their community, then we're essentially chilling justice. >> you were alluding to in your statements that you've made up until now, there are i.c.e. agents stalking undocumented immigrants. do you have any numbers related to that or reports of that specifically? >> i have reports from several different counties. i have reports from attorneys. i have a report from judges. i'm also hearing about it from other states and i've been reading about it from other states. i just had to say something, about the effect of this. >> what do you want to have happen next? >> i'd like to see a response, make a reaching out for us to explain the consequences of
these enforcement tactics and for really courts to be placed on 2011 policy that found sensitive areas and sensitive areas where enforcement tactics are not really pressed and that would be hospitals, churches and schools. and i believe that courthouses should be on that same list of sensitive areas. that is, enforcement for immigration doesn't happen there unless in exceptional cases. >> have you seen data that indicates an upswell of cases related to undocumented immigrants coming to your courthouses? >> we have certainly seen and we've heard reports of this happening and i've seen an i.c.e. communication that points out that i.c.e. is in fact coming to the courts intentionally for several reasons that serves their purpose. they are using the courts because, for example, when someone comes through a court system in california, they come to a court and they are screened for weapons. when i.c.e. makes the arrest, they know that the person doesn't have happens. also, we know that they come
there because they believe that's where they'll find felons. so we are objects to the concern that this enforcement tactic is going to affect public safety in our communities. people aren't going to come. they are not going to report. they are not going to cooperate. >> chief justice, thanks for your time today. i appreciate it. >> thank you. next, just days after secretary of state rex tillerson visited seoul, south korea, there are reports today that north korea has tested a new high-thrust missile engine. we'll see what happens with the white house, next. and now, i help people find discounts,
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xi jinping. matt bradley has the latest. matt? >> reporter: the new news today, a new missile engine test. these images were taken yesterday but aired today. north korean media is calling this a miracle that the u.s. and allies are going to be referring to it as a huge new problem. that's because this new missile engine could be attached to an intercontinental ballistic missile. he's going to be facing off a new administration in washington, one whose meeting has ramped up the rhetoric with more bell lees could tea, especially from donald trump himself. rex tillerson was here in seoul in the last couple of days and says all military options are still on the table that could
include a pre-emptive strike and denigrated the past 20 years of what he called failed policy which has not prevented them from having nuclear capabilities. with these war of words going on across the pacific, it's hard to know where this is going to lead but it's clear that china is going to be the divisive action here. rex tillerson was in china and they have urged the u.s. to be as calm as possible in their approach with north korea but donald trump is determined to confront the north koreans, especially on this nuclear issue. it's a dangerous moment and it's going to be even more dangerous moving forward. richard, back to you. >> matt bradley in seoul, sou. and what we're learning about the impact of the original ban on refugees, especially muslims into plus, judge neil
into thr . three u.s. soldiers have been shot by an afghan on the base. the afghan soldier was shot and killed. james comey is set to testify before the house intelligence committee tomorrow. it's the first time he'll comment potentially on any investigations that may or may not be ongoing into trump's campaign associates. we'll be watching that. the white house has signaled an impending legal showdown over president trump's revised travel ban. the notice comes after federal judges in hawaii and maryland halted the ban's enforcement. hours before it was scheduled to be implemented on thursday. opponents claim it would discriminate against muslims, deeming it unconstitutional. so the question that is being said, what impact might the original executive order, which included iraq, have had.
vox crunched the numbers and found that all refugees fell sharply, 17.3, during that ban. joining me now is ari melber, host of "the point" starting in just a little bit here. the question out there was, did it unfairly target muslims coming to america? that data seems to show that the numbers went down precipitously compared to other groups. >> right. that's not a surprise to others who followed this. it further documents a natural consequence of focusing on regions that are muslim dominated or a muslim majority. legally, that doesn't end the question. take a different example. say, after 9/11, you pick a freeze only on saudi arabia, it would also that have co consequential issue but not targeting them. >> you've seen folks that are refugees and they are in limbo
despite it being fairly clear that these two judges in these two states saying it is not in effect, the second travel ban. why might they be in limbo? >> you have the overall problem of the administration of these programs which are not just the simple turn them on and off. there's planning around what is expected to happen and it's fair to say it's been relatively chaotic throughout. the big difference here, though, is that we will know reasonably soon, within weeks, whether the appeals courts or the supreme court will reverse this. if they don't, it will become clear that the blockage will become the new stas quo until a trial on the ban. >> how strong is that case, do you believe? >> it's fascinating. because the case was supposed to be much stronger the first time around because there were so many problems. we reported on that. that's not what a good policy looks like regardless of what ideology you bring to it. >> right.
>> there are some of the shots that people remember. this was supposed to be a narrower ban but the question is whether something higher than the ninth circuit court of appeals wants to intervene. does the supreme court turn the switch back on. this would stay blocked until a tirl of t trial of the merits. >> when we look at different cases against the second travel ban. you have a show coming up starting in 30 minutes. it's going to be a man named neil gorsuch. >> there is. "confirmation clash." the reason why we're doing this is there's so much different news, as you know. tomorrow is, in many ways, one of the most consequential days of the trump era. because his pick could decide the travel ban, abortion rights, citizens united, guns, economic questions. this is the guy. who is neil gorsuch.
we have his former clerk on the show who knows him well, conservative legal scholars who think he's great. we have civil rights leaders, law professors, pete williams fromnbc. i don't want to be overl promotional, but we have some of the greatest legal minds on all sides of this issue. it's going to be excited. 5:00 to 7:00. >> fantastic. >> richard, on your advice, i am going to dress up more and put on a time by 5:00 p.m. >> it's going to be a great show. i always watch it myself. thanks for stopping by. >> thank you. again, ari's two-hour special on the eve of the confirmation hearing for judge neil gorsuch. it's called "supreme confirmation clash" starting at the top of the hour on msnbc. more now on the issue of neil gorsuch, leading democrats are criticized about the newly released e-mails adding more fuel to the fire.
that raises questions about his role in helping the bush administration advance its policies on torture and the guantanamo detainees. the new documents could heighten concern about whether the supreme court will be an effective check against a check who appears bent on pushing constitutional boundaries. for more on this, teresa warden and jamiel waffer. what is neil gorsuch like? >> judge gorsuch is a remarkable person as a judge and a human being. clerking for him was an amazing experience professionally because you get to learn from the best and then also he pushed all of us to excel in our career gls do y s. >> do you a i agree with those
who say he may not be able to put this president in check? >> he puts politics aside completely. he doesn allow that to enter into his calculus whatsoever. he believes so firmly in the separation of powers and that system that our constitutional founders created and i think that will help to check any excessive power in any branch of government. >> theresa, thank you for that. jamiel, what is judge gorsuch like? >> he's down to earth. i knew him when i was a young man. i served with him at the justice department and then as one of his first law clerks. the thing you need to know about this guy, he's the kind of guy you want to have a beer with. >> and have you? >> maybe once or -- one or two. >> what did you learn from him? >> i learned about how to write very carefully, very cleanly. i learned about his views on
judicial independence. he's a firm believer in the judgment to be separate from politics. that's an important part of his philosophy that will come out starting at tomorrow's hearing. >> what do you make of those e-mails that we were just describing that put into some question about his thoughts on guantanamo bay and the issue of torture? >> judge geaorchas a senior official at the justice department and he was a lawyer for the government and you have to remember that was a time when president bush announced policy of closing guantanamo pay. the cia's program was coming to an end and there really isn't a lot there. this notion that somehow judge gorsuch was an architect of war on terror, that will come out
and tomorrow's hearing. >> you heard what was being said of our chief legal correspondent ari melber. there are some tough and big cases coming up and we're at a time when political debate is the soup du jour, right? we're going through it every day. is neil gorsuch -- is the judge ready for this, do you believe? >> i'm sure the judge will be ready for it. you know, there's going to be a lot of tough questions. >> yeah. >> and sometimes there may not be good answers because a judge can't prejudge a case before it becomes before him but judge gorsuch never approaches a case with a result in mind. he approach as case looking deeply at the facts beforehand and then deciding on what the law compelled him to do and that is to put politics aside completely. >> if you were to pick who he
may be like, who would that be? >> i think he's going to be a combination of the justices. i think he's going to have the sort of judicial philosophy of justice scalia. you'll see the cool collectiveness of chief justice roberts and you'll see a really cautious, careful judge, really a judge's judge. that's what you want from a supreme court justice, somebody smart, hardworking and rights for the average person so they can read and understand the supreme court's onions. >> theresa, jamil, thank you for your candidness as well as having a couple of beers with neil gorsuch. >> thank you. join ari melber for a two-hour special on this very topic. the battle over president trump's supreme court nominee on the eve of the confirmation hearing for judge neil gorsuch. don't miss that. that special is from 5:00 to
7:00 p.m. and fighting president trump's revised travel ban and why some are sitting on the sidelines this time. ♪ why do so many businesses rely on the u.s. postal service? because when they ship with us, their business becomes our business. ♪ that's why we make more e-commerce deliveries to homes than anyone else in the country. ♪ here, there, everywhere. united states postal service
(vo) try beneful healthy weight with chicken. with real chicken as the number one ingredient. thanks for sticking with us. joining in the fight against president trump's new travel ban in support of hawaii's restraining order, last month nearly 100 tech companies skroined forces to file an amicus brief against the immigration border calling that one an interruption on ongoing operations. like you said, the travel ban was halted and th58 tech companies have signed a brief supporting the state of hawaii's challenge to president trump. not much of a surprise because we already know they have been out there supporting it but the brief contains real-life
examples on the tech community after the implementation. after the implementation, foreign-born founders explored the possibility of moving a company outside of the u.s. and taking the company jobs with them. not a big surprise that some companies like lyft and airbnb signed on. the ceo tweeting that he would give free housing for any refugees and lyft pledged $1 million to the aclu. what's interesting is who is missing from this list, companies like microsoft, google, apple. after trump's first executive order, google's ceo put out this memo saying we're upset about the impact of this order and any proposals that would impose restrictions on google or their families and bringing great
talent to the u.s. tim cook said i heard from many of who are deeply concerned and it's not a policy that we support. like many of you, i'm concerned about the impact of the recent executive orders signed by president trump. and microsoft's ceo says they will continue to advocate on this important ptopic. now, what is interesting, it seems to be vocal due to the numbers that would be affected. there's a big fear for these companies and potentially could impact what trump plans to do in reforming what is known as the visa program that is noent bring in talent overseas with only a limited number of visas available. the tech companies rely on this but not many affected by the travel ban. to give you a scope and an idea of the scale of this, this information is from fiscal year
2013 and includes all seven countries in the initial ban so it would be smaller. for example, microsoft has a total of 3,770 workers here on the visa while only 12 from those seven affected countries in the original travel ban. going bell, 1,627 total. only 15 are from iran. next up, facebook has seven countries on the travel ban, six from iran and one from iraq. and airbnb with 15 employees t but .4%. >> samantha sellers, thank you so much. next, if the president is able to close the deal and overhaul the system. ♪ hey, bud. you need some help? no, i'm good.
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the secretary of hhs will dramatically reduce the price of the plans for the 40 and 60-year-olds and even with that we should be offering even more assistance than what the bill currently does. >> house speaker paul ryan admitting that changes need to be made to the current health care proposal to help older people. the move might be an indication that house republicans are paying attention to criticism and analysis of the new plan. for example, one analysis here, the kaiser family foundation found that clark county, nevada, a 60-year-old making $40,000 a year qualifies for a $4,380 federal subsidy under the health care act. under the gop plan, they would only receive a tax credit of $4,000. in northumberland county, pennsylvania, aca, $11,150 and under the gop plan, $4,000.
a big difference. with that data in mind, lawmakers on both sides of the aisles are making their cases in town halls across the country. >> under the aca, the funding for medicaid was going to change in a few years. >> you don't go bankrupt over health care in other countries. you shouldn't go bankrupt over health care here. >> we're going to repeal obamacare. >> joining us now, former chairman of the south carolina republican party. that's a lot of boos. >> richard, what a great time to be a congressman when you're dealing with health care at a town hall. the crowds are -- >> that's because you're not one at the moment. >> you're exactly right. you know, what republicans might be missing that a congressman
is, we elected over a thousand people all over the country because of president obama's health care bill. it's a tough thing to do. there are a lot of mysterious things going into the bill right now. i think certainly paul ryan probably has enough to pass it out of the house. it will take 214 votes and we've got 239 sitting congressmen. he'll get it out of the house but i think what you see today is not what we're going to end up with as far as health care and then we have a senate confirmation to have. >> we do. and i want to get over to emily. what makes you think you get to hughes speaker ryan who has the votes here. there are certain some that are saying it's not going to happen on thursday. >> i'll get to youmi ely in a
second. >> i've watched paul ryan. he's sent the signal that he's close to having the votes. my count is, he's a little off. by the time he gets there, he'll have the votes to send it to the senate. >> you think he can count votes. emily, do you think he can count votes? do you think he has them? >> it's very unclear whether or not he has the votes because paul ryan has done this to himself. republicans have done this to themselves. there's nothing more clearly identified with the current federal republican party than repealing the affordable care act. when it is in their hands and they have the opportunity to do it, they cannot put a bill together that does not kick older, sicker people off their health care or raise their premiums so much that it is totally unaffordable. ryan said let the free market take care of premiums. there's winners and losers. there's a lot of losers in health care. the way to not fix that is to
take away regulation. that is not the way to fix it. what republicans end up with in a bill -- by the way, this is their bill. they are going to leave people with unaffordable premiums, particularly people older and sicker, or if they make changes that constituents really want them to make, they end up with something that ends a lot like obacare and then they lose their base, which is the large block of about 70 republicans in the freedom caucus who have said this current iteration of the bill is too close to obamacare. so it's very unclear that they will be able to pull anything together and they have to start to question what does it mean for the message of the current republican party if this is what they have been hammering on for the last seven years. >> emily, for those on the left, some saying that they win either way here, whether the bill passes or does not. the question, though, is are democrats healed? are they ready to take advantage of a potential loss by the republicans in the house?
>> democrats are raring to go. there's a difference between the democrats up for re-election this year versus the last couple of years since the affordable care act was passed. keep the affordable care act. no one is acknowledging that changes don't need to be made but key the law in place. we're not seeing democrats start to say, oh, i'm not sure, should we repeal it. everyone is in lockstep to keep it in place and then start another conversation about making changes. you can't have a conversation about fixes until repeal the law is off the table. >> a lot of numbers that have been parched so far looking at trump supporters in november 2016 shows that many of them, a majority of them will be hurt in certain categories compared to the clinton voters specifically. what's going to hurt donald trump the most wit regard to
his support group, his base here, whether it passes or whether it doesn't? >> well, i think what hurts is donald trump, to be a successful president, is going to have to win some of those 23 democratic seats that are up, not including bernie sanders and king which are independents in the count total. in ten of those states where donald trump had large margins in those senate seats, if this is a colossal failure, then our chance to increase the numbers in the senate are going to diminish and then his chance of being a very successful president is going to start ebbing and flowing. i agree with the other panelists on everything she said. this is going to be dangerous for the republican party to be dealing with. it's just as dangerous to have pushed it down the road a little bit and collapse around its own
weight. you start owning all of it and i think the president's tuned in. the question is what is will happen later this week and then exactly how you'll get it through the senate. mitch mcconnell is a pretty crafty guy. i'll be watching exactly what his body language is this week as it moves through the house. >> so you're going to be watching mitch mcconnell. emily, which members of congress or the house or the senate are you going to be watching? >> that's a great question. there's a lot of members of the house right now vulnerable and are starting to indicate whether or not they will support their bill. we have identified 32 republican members of the house that would not support the bill. these are not considered moderate republicans. if they lose support of very hard-core conservative republicans, i think that's an excellent indication. all right this morning they have lost fitzpatrick in pennsylvania on this bill and i think it's phased the fact that und the
current gop bill, about 43,000 people just in his congressional district would lose health care. once those conservative members are faced with tens of thousands in their district that are going to lose health care. look, of the town halls over the past weekend, of those 32 republican members that we've identified that are vulnerable in not voting for this bill, only one of them held town halls. that footage and booing of those town halls, those are not republican who is are even at this point considering voting against the bill. so the rotting away of support within the republican party and -- is going to be very deep and it's those that i'll be looking at. >> emily is right. you're going to have to watch how this goes the latter part of this week. the question is, you ho sold is he on this right now?
>> thanks for your time. >> thanks, richard. we finish with this. the duck walk made famous by chuck berry. his songs, "johnny be goode." he died on saturday. tom brokaw cherished his moment with berry saying this, "we were invited to duck walk at an iowa lobby." and here's our salute. one leg bent, one not. look to the side. uh-oh. very awkward duck walks. here's to chuck berry. that does it for this hour. i'm richard lui. catch me on social media at these handles. ari melber is next with the two-hour special of trump's
supreme court nominee confirmation. stay with us for that special, "supreme confirmation clash" that comes up right after the break. you have a great sunday. it just feels like anything is possible here in upstate new york. ( ♪ ) at corning, i test smart glass that goes all over the world. but there's no place like home. there's always something different to do like skiing in the winter, jet skiing in the summer. we can do everything. new york state is filled with bright minds like samantha's. to find the companies and talent of tomorrow, search for our page, jobsinnewyorkstate on linkedin.
find out how american express cards and services can help prepare you for growth at open.com. i consider the united states senate the greatest deliberative body in the world and i respect the important role the constitution affords it in the confirmation of our judges. >> i only hope that both democrats and republicans can come together for once for the good of the country. >> donald trump's plan to reshape the supreme court is hours away from its first test. his nominee, neil gorsuch, facing the toughest job interview of his life because this job is for life. will republicans be rewarded for their unprecedented move to block any vote on obama's court pick and will democrats fight or fold? it's the eve of confirmation hearings that could tip the balance on the court for a