tv MSNBC Live With Craig Melvin MSNBC April 3, 2017 10:00am-11:01am PDT
facebook and twitter. katie is up next here on msnbc. >> good afternoon to you. i'm in for craig melvin. kicking off a two-hour block on msnbc. and it's a busy news day in washington. going nuclear. it's a senate showdown over neil gorsuch. will republicans make the ultimate rule change and altar the senate forever? special envoy, president trump's son-in-law jared kushner is in iraq on behalf of the president. but with no previous experience, what is he doing there? and trump's big week. right now the president is meeting behind closed doors with the egyptian president at the white house. he's also scheduled to meet with key leaders of jordan and china later this week. but we start with president trump's supreme court nomination, which is now in jeopardy. judge gorsuch is expected to advance out of the judiciary committy at any moment, however,
democrats now have 40 votes to filibuster a final vote. republicans have suggested if they didn't get an up or down vote they could trigger what's called the nuclear option. that strategy would put gorsuch on the supreme court, but it could also destroy the filibuster, as well as harm the consensus building relationship that our founding fathers had envisioned for the body. reports and analysis from new york with our correspondents. chief legal correspondent ari melbor. chris, where do we stand on the democrat's filibuster, and are they ready for the republicans potentially to go nuclear is>> reporter: they're almost expecting it. a number of them have said that's where it's heading and we've never seen anything like this. it's unprecedented. it's got a lot of people upset. the tensions are very high, and
right now with 40 democratic votes, saying yes on a filibuster, they need just one more. 41 will do it. and sitting in the seat behind me in this hearing room is chris kuhns. he's the democrat from delaware, and he is going to be making his decision public sometime probably within your hour. he along with ben cardin, angus king, bob menendez from new jersey, those are the four senators we have yet to hear from. but the one on this committee is chris kuhns. this has been a highly politically charged couple of hours so far, breaking very severely down par lines. on one side, you have the republicans who say there's never been anyone more qualified, that he's a judge's judge. on the democratic side, not only concern about the way that this came to be, of course, the rejection of marriage gek garla
president obama's nominee to the supreme court, but repeatedly bringing up cases that they say he ruled in favor of the big guy and against the little guy. almost every democrat bringing up the case that a truck driver who abandoned his rig in subfreezing temperatures because he feared for his life, and it was neil gorsuch who said that the company was right to fire him. and we just heard from al franken, who said there's not a single person sitting here who wouldn't have done the same thing that that truck driver did. and so right now, the big drama is waiting to hear from chris kuhns, will he make it 41 and will he bring this filibuster to conclusion and then that means will it bring the republicans to a position where they go nuclear? katie? >> you just heard chris lay out really well the complaints the democrats have on judge neil gorsuch. how do they feel about forcing
the republicans to go nuclear and to decide to do away with the 60-vote consensus to confirm a judge and just make it a simple majority, are they okay with that? >> reporter: there's two things going on here. first, there's the senate as an institution, which has teen a lot of deterioration. democrats are very angry about how republicans treated marek garland. it was democratic leader harry reid who made the decision to go nuclear on other judges. so basically all federal judgeship nominees with the exception of supreme court nominees. that was the decision democrats made. they pulled that trigger. so essentially republicans are saying well, you get what you signed up for. we're going to do the same thing to you. that's what lindsey graham told me earlier today. take a look. >> certainly it's the end of bipartisanship on judges. >> mitch mcconnell the leader is prepared to go nuclear sneer >> oh, yeah. we're not going to have a
tradition of the senate where they get the judges and president trump can't get his. >> reporter: so that's one side of this. the other side, what's driving democrats? that's all about politics, and it's all about this liberal democratic base that is just so fired up and angry at donald trump. you're seeing it kind of across the board. and democrats like chris kuhns, they're opening up their hometown newspaper and seeing full-page ads saying vote no on gorsuch. so the democratic groups are activated. anybody, any democrat that's worried about a primary is going to be likely to come down on the side of this filibuster, of doing this. the only democrats you've seen who have said you know what? i'm not going to support the filibuster, i'm going to vote to break the filibuster, are democrats who are in incredible jeopardy in deep red states coming up in 2018. joe mansion in west virginia, heidi heitkamp, joe donally, the
three democrats most likely to lose their job because of the way their states are. so that is really what is underscoring this. democrats didn't necessarily -- chuck schumer didn't go into this, wanting to have this fight on this nominee. he wanted to wait a little bit, rim l that's what his aides said, and have this fight when the balance of the court is at risk. but that is not tenable for democrats. >> the senator that you were just speaking about, chris kuhns, is speaking right now at judge gorsuch's hearing. let's take a listen. >> cases like diddi iadia iadia versus wainwright that say all are entitled to counsel. cases that decided that is the law of our land that loving couples can affirm their commitment in marriage, whether they are opposite or same sex. there are other signature cases like judge scott, that have left
stains on our history that outlasted the service of any one justice. since justice scalia passed away in february of 2016, i have reflected on the importance of our supreme court and the senate's responsibility to evaluate the president's nominee to fulfill the vacancy. just over 25 years ago, i was myself a law student intern on the senate judiciary comttee nomination unit for then chairman joe biden. at that time, i heard from then long-serving senators a record of grievances of misunderstandings, of wrongs committed, one party against the other in a variety of confirmations and hearings in the bush and reagan administrations and before. and i'm struck that half of the committee serving here today hasn't previously participated -- >> there you have it, giving his opening statements today. he is the all-important vote right now. all eyes on him. he could be 41 votes, enable
thing filibuster to go in on judge neil gorsuch. let's talk a little more about "the nuclear option." it's an inelegant term, but one that could change the makeup -- not makeup of the senate but the way the senate works going forward. how important is this for our democracy to keep this in tactsome >> it's a big deal and only being tested because there is a big fight to be had over the future of the supreme court. fleetwood mack said it only thunders when it's raining. and this is the thunder. the nuclear option is just making these confirmations advance by a majority vote rather than a supermajority. we spoke to a law professor who said democrats did already go nuclear for those lower level appointments. the precedent set on that day
applies to the supreme court filibuster reform, and that tail end is the biggest deal here. to your question about democracy, some wonder whether changing a lower court nominees what the dems did, that leads to this week a change on supreme court nominees, so it's just 51 votes and ultimately there's the legislative filibuster, does that die? >> which would mean this country is going to be in party lines until such a time that greater consensus is able to break past this ideology that we're stuck in? >> potential polarization, but others point out the filibuster wasn't used as frequently. on the one hand, it's been used to slow things down and been used to stop other reforms. i think the largest point here that should be made in fairness to president trump is, he did run on a bare knuckles political
strategy, the republicans said they were going to hold on to that seat -- >> hold on. the senator might be announcing something right now. >> i appreciate that judge gorsuch is an intelligent jurist and engaging writer. i admire his commitment to being a good fathero his daughters and good husband tois wife and a good mentor to his clerks and agree with many of his decisions. but i believe that my role in evaluating his nomination is more than reviewing his resume. it is more than recognizing he is smart and charming. and i have to do more than think about a large number of consensus decisions, because the law is shaped by circuit courts and even more so the supreme court by a handful of very significant signature decisions. and thus, i must follow my predecessor's practice in considering judge gorsuch's philosophy. and its impact on the
constitutional rights of others. even those very different from himself. that's why my question at judge gorsuch's hearings focused on his view of american's rights to privacy and liberty to make their most personal life decisions. at the hearings, i focused in on a case written by judge gorsuch, hobby lobby, which for the first time allowed for profit companies to refuse to provide thousands of employees access to family planning based on the for profit corporation's religious beliefs. i laid out in great detail why i viewed that as not just an overreach, but that is wildly outside the context of the dictionary act and of previous law. but i thi i can summarize ts best by quoting thehief judge's dissent in that case. she said that judge gorsuch's view was "nothing short of a
radical revision of first amendment law, as well as the law of corporations. and that such views were unsupported by the language of the supreme court's free exercise jurisprudence." in his concurrence, judge gorsuch advanced a broad theory under which an employer could avoid complying with any law to avoid complicity in the wrongdoing of others. i pressed judge gorsuch to give me a limiting principle to this new theory, but was left in the end with more questions than answers. i also asked judge gorsuch about his understanding of core constitutional provisions that protect reproductive rights and marriage equality. in his 2006 book "the future of assisted suicide and euthanasia," he was critical of individual rights to make their own end of life decisions and
asserted "all human beings are valuable and the intentional taking of life by private persons is always wrong." his book, and other comments, suggest a very narrow interpretation of a key precedent, an absolutely central case to addressing personal liberty and reproductive rights pro-tutected under the 14th amendment. the supreme court has continuely relied on this precedent for 25 years to protect the freedom of many, including most recently the freedom of same-sex couples and to support marriage equality. on each of these issues, judge gorsuch avoided responding concisely and thoroughly to questions. as detailed by senator feinstein, he avoided responding to questions that many other nominees nominated by republicans and democrats, have not just answered but answered
squarely. he told me that the casey decision remains an open question in many ways. he would not agree that the right the privacy extends to women having autonomy over their reproductive choices and protecting privacy over consulting adults. this and many more left me concerned he har vbors a restrictive view. i don't think these and other issues are just narrowly partisan. i think it is unfortunate if we lead the public to view members of the supreme court as red or blue pegs deciding cases along partisan lines. because there are many, many cases that are decided not along partisan lines but lines that are narrowly legal. in fact, i think in 60% of the cases decided by the court, they are unanimous.
indeed, several justices nominated by republican presidents have appreciated extly thispot, the important role of 14th amend due process. and have take an far more restrained view of their you dish role than judge gorsuch's record would suggest. his record show asten den si to searchingly -- a willingness to revisit long settled precedent and promote actively changes to the law. as others have discussed, he has insisted the chevron doctrine should be reviz sited. for me, more troublts, he suggested stricter access to the courts. it is based on these and many
other concerns i have detailed in my questioning, my questions for the record and in further statements that i've made that i will ultimately vote against judge gorsuch's nomination today. still, i share the view of many that judge gorsuch is a talented, experienced jurist. i understand why all of my republican colleagues will support of him as well as some of my democratic colleagues. i cast my vote well aware he will receive the required votes to advance to the full senate. we are at an historic moment in the history of the united states senate. thanks to actions, decisions, even mistakes made by democrats and republicans over recent years, over many years, we have eroded the process for reaching agreement and dishonored our long traditions of acting above partisanship, especially when it comes to confirmations for judges and now justices. i said last week it would be tragic if this confirmation
process leads the senate republicans to abolish the 60-vote threshold. let's be frank, the majority leader has assured us he will abolish this threshold. i don't agree with that approach, but like it or not, that is the reality. on thursday, the full senate will participate in what's called a cloture vote. it's one of the senate's many long traditions. though many americans may not know exactly what it means, it means that we are done debating. and we are ready for the final vote. and almost always a combination of democrats and republicans are required for us to get to cloture. so on thursday, we'll be voting to decide whether we are ready to finish debating the confirmation of judge gorsuch. i am not ready to end debate, so i will be voting against cloture, unless we are able as a body to sit down and find a way
to avoid the nuclear option and ensure the process to fill the next vacancy on the court is not a narrowly partisan process, but an opportunity of both parties to weigh in and ensure replacing a judge on the court who can secure support from members of both parties. the reality requires us to consider what both democrats and republicans are doing to this body and to consider republicans and democrats have done to erode the trust tha has long lasted between us. and to consider whether we ca stop the momentum towards abolishing the traditions that make this senate unique and important. democrats are still furious at the way judge garland was treated last year. but the traditions and principles that have defined the senate are crumbling and we are poised to hasten that destruction this week. so for my part, i hope and pray that we can yet find a way together to find a solution.
thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. >> there you have, senator chris coons announcing that he will not vote for judge gorsuch, he will not confirm him. and he also said he's against cloture. so he will not vote for cloture. he said he would like to see more debate on this, so that mitch mcconnell does not invoke the nuclear option. he said it erodes the senate and he would like to see a nominee that can gain support from both parties. ari, it is a bit confusing. he did give a definition for cloture, but explain it to us. >> democrats have achieved the filibuster of judge gorsuch, many people arguing it was payback for the treatment of barack obama'sherric
garland. so he's going to vote against cloture, that is the technical word how to cut off debate. that's 41 votes, that is a live action filibuster. as soon as it's tested on the senate nofloor, and mitch mcconnell has said he would change the rules, basically cutting it off saying you're fi filibustering. we're changing the rules that a minority can no longer block nominees. >> harry reid did this several years ago. >> the democrats started this for federal appeals court judges -- >> and they knew full well they could be laying the ground work for republicans to do the same if they got control of both houses. >> if mitch mcconnell changes the rules on the supreme court, as he vowed to do this week with this breaking news that the
democrats are filibustering, it would be a huge deal and done by the ma joyty. but yes, it is a bipartisan tradition. you can trace it back to harry reid or senate republicans. you can trace it back to the treatment of judge bourque. there is much bipartisan blame to go around. the escalation that democrats point to is it was unusual to not have a hearing or vote of any kind for garland. republicans saying that was up to the voters in the election. now we see, as a political manner, that strategy working. what i was mentioning is senator coons creating the democratic filibuster, donald trump did run on this. he did put out a transparent list and picked a name from that list. so republicans are cheering this as the first big victory.
but the question now is, how do the republicans try to move on the floor? how nuclear do they go? they said they're ready to. >> he's got to get votes to support him going nuclear p mitch mcconnell, right? >> that's right. he needs a republican majority and a ruling of the chair. i think the big headline here is republicans united about backing up donald trump. the president himself said this is a reason he got elected. democrats saying now you have to. democrats united here, in achieving 41. this was not something when we woke up this morning that was necessarily going to happen. >> i find the inner workings of the democratic process fascinating. i wouldn't call it boring. >> how about dry? >> theresa, you clerked for judge gorsuch and you were listening. you heard the senator cite his decision on hobby lobby, the
book he wrote about suicide and youth you do you believe this is a nominee that isn't main stream enough for the supreme court? >> i disagree that judge gorsuch isn't main stream enough for the supreme court. i think his record bears that out. i am a democrat, and i do support him and i clerked for him and worked by his side for a year. he decided cases based on an agenda -- if we had done that, we would have seen that. he looked at the facts and law and applied it with an open mind in every case. >> do you feel like he's the victim right now of a particularly divided political process? >> perhaps so. i think a lot of the resistance to his nomination have to do
with things that have nothing to do with him, the president that appointed him and the treatment of judge garland before him. i would hope that people put that aside and look at his record. i think they'll see a really fair and independent judge. in fact, i think senator just confirmed this, 97 of t cases at judge gorsuch decided, he was -- those decisions were unanimous. that means all three judges agreed and those judges could have been appointed by democratic or republican presidents. so this is someone that is in the main stream. if he isn't, the 10th circuit is not. >> the democrats do have the votes they have to filibuster. where does it go from here? >> a couple things. first of all, from the broadst possible perspective, if mitch mcconnell, the senate republican leader, makes a decision to go nuclear, it will change the process for supreme court
nominees going forward. it's going to make the process less dramatic. in the past, if you had somebody that was unacceptable, the blocking of a nominee would be something that was a bipartisan affair. clearly that is going to change, and mcconnell has all but said he's going to do this. he's going to confirm judge gorsuch. so what is that going to look like? what you're going to see is a very complicated set of votes over the next couple of days. when this nomination is reported out of the committee today, mitch mcconnell starting tomorrow will be able to file the motion for cloture, to essentially say i want to stop debate thing and vote on it. that will happen on tuesday, we expect. then a lot of the drama will likely take place on thursday. they have to wait a day before this motion, again, we're down into the dry rules of the senate, but that cloture motion will come back up again onl
thursday. it's going to be very confusing to watch. because when they get the nuclear option, what you think you're seeing is going to be the opposite, the people that want to have the nuclear option invoked will be voting no. whereas those that don't will vote yes. so it's going to look opposite. you may see democrats go down to the floor, try to hold protest motions. you'll see a lot of back and forth. once we get to that point, you'll start to know that this is ultimately the vote to change the rules. then we expect a final confirmation vote that will be easy and straightforward. it will be a 51-vote threshold. so they need 50 republicans to vote yes. obviously mike pence could break a tie, although we don't anticipate any republicans voting no on neil gorsuch. republicans have worked hard to create this sense that it's up
to democrats whether the nuclear option happens. that's not necessarily the case. if there were a couple of republicans that objected, mitch mcconnell might not have the votes he needs. but we have no indication that's the case. lindsey graham said president obama got his nominees. graham said i voted in favor of ending debate on these nominees and voted in favor of the nominee. we're not going to say president cannot have his nominee. so we are on track to make this big rules change and it seems like that would likely set a precedent going forward and make it so next time the presint picks a supreme court nominee, probably not going to be a lot of questions whether they're confirmed or not. >> all except the nominee the republicans refused to have a hearing for, president obama's nominee. >> as long as the white house
and senate -- >> i'm going to have to cut you off. we're just getting tape playback of president trump's meeting with egypt's president al sisi. let's take a listen. >> okay. thank you very much. terrible. happening all of the world. absolutely a terrible thing. [ inaudible ] >> you could see donald trump and his closest advisers and cabinet members sitting across the table from the egyptian president and his delegation. he was asked by a reporter, you could hear it, about somewhat happened in russia earlier today. of course, a bombing at a subway station in russia, and he said it was "a terrible thing."
kristen welker is at the white house. before we get to this meeting we just saw, does the white house have any reaction right now to the 41 votes that democrats have to filibuster judge gorsuch? >> reporter: well, they've been prepared for that to happen, katie. no reaction yet, althoug we're working our sources here, and we'll get to that as quickly as possible. this has been a critical focus of the white house, of this president, of this administration from the very day that president trump nominated judge neil gorsuch. senior administration officials have accompanied judge gorsuch to capitol hill as he's met with various senators, helped really prep him significantly for his confirmation hearings. then of course, they were bracing for this very thing, president trump talked about the importance of confirming neil gorsuch. when president trump has been asked about whether or not the
senate should go nuclear in the past, he said yes, i think they should. ultimately it's up to leader mcconnell, but he has said he would back that. effectively giving leader mcconnell the green light to do that. this president needs a win, particularly after a rocky past couple of weeks. >> kristen, thank you. and thank you to our team of analysts and reporters. just a reminder to viewers, senator chris coons announced he would not aport judge gorsuch, which means the democrats have 41 votes to filibuster judge gorsuch. now the ball is in mitch mcconnell's hands and the republicans, do they go nuclear? we'll be watching to find out how that plays out. this brings us to today's microsoft pulse question of the day. should democrats use their political capital to try to block judge neil gorsuch's supreme court nomination? the pulse is open.
cast your vote at pulse.msnbc.com. president trump meeting with the egyptian president at the white house today. the first of three meetings he has with world leaders this week. that's after the break. ♪ ♪ everyone deserves attention, whether you've saved a lot or just a little. at pnc investments, we believe you're more than just a number. so we provide personal financial advice for every retirement investor. there's nothing more than my vacation.me so when i need to book a hotel room, i want someone that makes it easy to find what i want. booking.com gets it. they offer free cancellation if my plans change. visit booking.com. booking.yeah.
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speaking to reporters in the oval office, the president greeted the egyptian president warmly. >> i will tell you president al sisi has been somebody that's been very close to me from the first time i met him. we agree on so many things. i just want to let everybody know, in case there was any doubt, that we are very much behind president al sisi. he's done a fantastic job. >> we lost william cohen unfortunately to the extended judge gorsuch debates and hearings. but we do have nbc's amon. i know you lived in egypt for a while, certainly under this regime. you know the area. you know the players. talk to us about why this is such a big deal. this is the first time an egyptian president has been to the white house in quite some time. >> yes, since 2009. it's seen as a reset from both le leaders. donald trump has wanted to reach out for some time. he met with president sisi when
he was still a nominee. so it gives you a sense of how much he values that relationship with egypt. egypt the largest arab country. important for theite, in particular with donald trump's agenda of trying to counter terrorism and fight islamicic radical extremism. so these are points that he sees the president of egypt as being a strong ally. from the egyptian perspective, they want m support from the american government economically and militarily as they go about what they do in that country. >> "the washington post" says egyptian security forces have jailed tens of thousands and committed human rights abuses, including the torture of critics and opponents. president obama did not invite sisi to the white house. >> particularly for that reason. >> what does it mean to see donald trump invite him, are they more focused on combatting terrorism?
>> critics are saying president trump is turning a blind eye to the human rights violations. there is an american currently being held in egypt on trumped up congresses. you did hear president trump talk about it. there is this american first agenda, but when it comes to american citizens in egyptian jails, president trump didn't address it. perhaps he did in private, but you have a president who has cracked down on the freedom of the press, and you now have a president in the united states who is not critical of those issues, at least publicly or raising them publicly. so that is one of the points. but the egyptian president would say his country is fighting a war on terror, the country is being destabilize. they're fighting isis. they want the united states to
designate the muslim brotherhood as a terrorist organization. so there's going to perhaps some political bartering on theseissu. the fact that they're having this meeting is a first step. >> is it a stable regime over there? >> as anything is stable over in the middle east. if you look at the number of terrorist attacks that have increased in egypt. economically it doesn't seem to do very well. they're trying to reset that, as well. so it's very difficult to gauge right now what you mean by stability. are we talking political or security wise? i think there are some questions about that. president sisi feels very comfortable in his position. up for re-election a couple of years from now. >> appreciate your time. thanks for being here. more now on the supreme court nomination of neil gorsuch. 41 democrats are on the record of being against ending debate. chris coons became the latest, and that is the magic number needed to filibuster. republicans had suggested they may go nuclear as a result.
and up end rules meant to increase consensus building in the senate. joining us now to discuss is my panel. the democrats are saying no to judge gorsuch. they have the 41 votes they need to filibuster him. do you think this is a good idea? >> i don't think any of this was a good idea going back to the time when the republicans blocked president obama's nominee last year. i don't think the democrats have a choice at this point. they're doing what they have to do. but i think it's just unfortunate that we're in this situation, and that president trump and the republican side in the senate didn't come together with the democrats to try to work together to find a nominee that could get through. i also think it's a little
disturbing as an american citizen, that mr. gorsuch has been unwilling to answer specific questions. i think this is a very sad day if the republicans use the nuclear option, as you called it. and it's a sad day the parties couldn't come together to have a better process here. >> congressman, do you believe that mitch mcconnell could try to go nuclear to make it a simple majority to confirm supreme court justices? >> well, first let me say the senate is a strange place. the 60-vote rule has been overutilized by both sides. i asked a colleague of mine how do you like being in the senate? he said, i love it. i can kill anything. so the answer is, gorsuch is qualified. he should be the next supreme court justice. and they shouldn't use the 60-vote rule to deny him that opportunity. >> david jolly, what do you think? >> ari was right when he said
it's political payback time. there's not going to be any surprise if mcconnell does nuclear. listen, gorsuch is very much a justice like john roberts who was the deciding vote to keep the a.c.a. he's emmentaleminently qualifie. but e past 75 days of failu from the trump administration have been at their own doing. the democrats have not had a win in the first three months of the trump administration. this is an opportunity to force mcconnell's hand to go nuclear and have a democratic win. >> so if we continue down this path, at what point do people step back and say hold on, we need to come to more
consensus -- more of a consensus going forward. we can't keep voting on party lines, the divisions in this country are only going to get worse. is anybody going to be big enough in the united states congress to do that? >> well, i hope so. and as you said, the stakes are going to get higher from here, because when another justice is appointed, and we don't know when that will be, that could change the balance of power in the court, and that could have a tremendous impact on everyday people's lives. so i certainly hope that there's a process in place where we can get a moderate main stream judge in there -- >> this is not a judge that's going to change the balance of power in the court. what real defense do the democrats have to block him? this is just somebody that will end up replacing scalia and keep the balance where it is, which is what many people said about judge gorsuch, what is the -- what is the impetus to block it all out? if mitch mcconnell doesn't go nuclear ansayhey advance
another judge, is there a hope it's going to be more moderate, that donald trump is going to do away with the list he put out and say i'm not going to use what i promised everybody and then said i'm going to find somebody the democrats like? >> i hope some good does come out of this. i agree with the congressman, it has not been a good three months for donald trump. and i hope he reflects on that. and the next time we go through this process, he works with both sides. i will say i'm seeing a glimmer of hope in the senate. i think the senate investigation with what's happened in russia has been surprisingly balanced and that the parties have worked collaboratively. i still think we need an independent panel there. but we can see that same spirit in this supreme court process. again, the stakes are so high next time. i hope people take a deep breath and do what's right for the country and not what's going to score points short term. but parties are locked in, but
we have an opportunity to do it differently next time. >> david, you're shaking your head. >> this is an opportunity for the democrats to show they are a legitimate opposition party, given trump's failures of the past three months. we were asking who is the democrat's next leader, elizabeth warren, bernie sanders, cory booker, is it still obama's party, hillary's party? this is an opportunity for the democratic party to now emerge. >> gentlemen, i appreciate all of your time -- >> the democratic party gains nothing by doing this. >> expand on that. >> well, they're opposing a very good nominee. they're being partisan. it's payback. the public knows it's payback. it's not about merit. just decide it on merit. is he qualified? yes. should he be affirmed? absolutely. >> christopher, robbie, david, appreciate all of your time. thank you, guys. new concerns over conflicts of
interest after details of ivanka trump and her husband's income and assets were made public. we'll take a look at possible ethics violations. (becky) i've seen such a change in einstein since he started eating beneful. the number one ingredient in it is beef. (einstein) the beef is fantastic! (becky) he has enough energy to believe that he can jump high enough to catch a bird. (vo) try beneful originals with beef. with real beef as the number one ingredient.
new questions today of potential conflict of interest with the president's most intimate advisers, her daughter ivanka and husband jared kushner. richard, so in these disclosures that we got friday night and over the weekend, it showedhat both ivanka and jared hold about $700 million in assets. both of them have said that they have distanced themselves from their companies. jared kushner resigned from more than 260 entities and sold off 58 businesses and investments and ivanka resigned with all of her outside companies, including those with the trump organizations. so what are the red flags here if >> they did not divest themselves from ownership of these businesses. so both ivanka and jared are going to have recusal in three broad areas where they're not
going to be able to participate in deliberations or anything else in the government. first is the and financial services. the real estate industry is very much dependent on bank financing, and a lot of what goes wrong in the banking industry has to do with what goes wrong in real estate. they're going to have to stay out of dodd-frank and business deregulation, both of them. second is tax reform. the tax form is full of goodies in the real estate industry, so they're both going to have to stay out of that because of jared kushner's ownership of many buildings and continued involvement in the real estate industry. third is trade. ivanka imports clothing from overseas, china and other countries. puts her name on it with a big markup. that's why jobs go overseas, because lots of people do that. we're going to have trade
negotiations. she and jared are going to have to stay out of that because she is retaining ownership interests in companies that are importing clothes. >> richard, if they don't -- i'm sorry to interrupt. if thedon't stay out of any of those things you listed, from taxes, from trade, from dodd-frank, and they don't give up ownership, what happens? is there anyone there that would force consequences on them? is this something that would fall to jason chaffitz, potentially? >> it's a criminal offense if they put themselves in jeopardy of their economic position. there are a lot of career lawyers over there. this is not something that attorney general jeff sessions or a bunch of political people will be able to sweep under the rug. >> so this is not something jeff sessions would be able to -- >> no. absolutely not. >> expand on that. >> they're going to be career lawyers. they're going to say this is a crime, and they would prosecute anybody in the white house or
anywhere else if anybody commits a crime, and that is a crime, to participate in a government matter in which you have personally a financial interest. and this is a very broad disqualification for them, particularly with respect to trade, because every time there is a dispute that comes up, president trump is going to start talking about cutting out trade. and that's a big problem. >> richard painter, chief white house ethics lawyer under george w. bush. i appreciate your time, sir. >> thank you, kate. we'll have the stories on a developing story, next. then the chronic, widespread pain drained my energy. my doctor said moving more helps ease fibromyalgia pain. she also prescribed lyrica. fibromyalgia is thought to be the result of overactive nerves. lyrica is believed to calm these nerves. woman: for some, lyrica can significantly relieve fibromyalgia pain and improve function,
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new today, fox news is getting hit with yet another sexual harassment lawsuit. the network's paid political commentator, julie roginski filing a lawsuit against roger ales. he led her to believe a big promotion whould soon follow. this adds to the list of sexual allegations against him, allegations ales has denied in the past. nbc news has reached out to fox news and 20th century fox for comment but have not yet heard back. joining me now, media correspondent dave -- help me out, david. >> dave fokenflik.
z >> i'm sorry, i'm having a tongue-tied kind of day. >> the lawsuit involving julie roginski since 2011 said roger ales kept talking about her career advancement, dangled hosting the show "the five" which would lead to possible book deals or speaking tours and the like, and that he steered those very same conversations repeatedly to her looks, the fact that she was still single, the fact that she should date, in his words, according to the lawsuit. marrying older conservative men, which fits roger es to a t. he asked her out on drinks, and in an incident thatame to a head in late april 2015, he said, we should probably have those drinks not in public or we'll get into too much trouble and suggested they have private drinks in his office at fox news. so this was something she denied -- or refused his request
and that job never materialized. >> eric, this is certainly conspicuous timing. on sunday the "new york times" had a bombshell report that fox news paid $13 million to settle lawsuits against bill o'reilly, sexual harassment lawsuits. what do you make of the timing? >> well, i think the timing is instructive, but on some level, this place is such a cesspool of sexual harassment, there are bound to be coincidences. this place has been churning out sexual harassment lawsuits as readily as it does a tax on president obama and congratulations for donald trump. this is no surprise. this is a place that under rogers ales has really mistreated women and it's been very well documented. there were two dozen or so women who apparently talked about their problems with roger ales
and "the other five" with bill o'reilly. this is what you get when you don't clean house. >> david, bill o'reilly says he's a target because he's a high-profile and controversial figure. what does that -- i don't want to poke holes in his defense, but i certainly know a lot of high-profile controversial and prominent figures in the media, men in the media who are not faced with so many sexual harassment lawsuits. >> well, you know, bill o'reilly says he's doing this because he just needs these things to go away so his children aren't embarrassed. roger ales has denied all previous charges. within the last hour, his lawyer sent me a note calling julie roginski's account fiction. yet there are a lot of high-profile people who have not been accused of it and have not paid multi-million dollars to settle. roger ales paid millions and
millions of dollars out to women accusing him before. that should have been a red light for fox. >> david folkenflick -- did i get it right? >> you're getting there. >> i'm sorry. i should know better than this. thank you for being here. >> thank you. right now the senate is at deathcon 1. that's how the supreme court battle is described threatening to break up justices. chris coons gave his opinion that he will not confirm