tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC June 22, 2017 9:00am-10:01am PDT
thank you for watching this hour of msnbc live. >> i'm ali velshi. >> and i'm stephanie ruhle. now to washington, d.c. for "andrea mitchell reports". >> the big reveal, people in wheelchairs saying they rely on medicaid being hauled from a protest outside mitch mcconnell's office moments after mcconnell's see celt healcret h bill is revealed. >> the president said the senate bill needed heart. the way this bill cuts health care is heartless. the president said the house bill was mean. the senate bill may be meaner. >> obamacare is a disaster. it is dead. totally dead and we're putting in a plan today that is going to be negotiated. we would love to have some democrat support, but they're obstructionists, we won't get support, we won't get one no
matter how good it is, we'll hopefully get something done, something with heart. >> coming up, our prognosis, brand-new polling from nbc news just out showing what most americans think. and where the votes now lie. plus, reaction from republicans, can the democrats peel off the three republican votes they need to stop this bill? >> i can't speak for the whole room and you're going to get, you know, 51 different -- 52 different -- i'll be 1, 51 different opinions. >> and good day. breaking news here on capitol hill, i'm andrea mitchell in washington, where the secret is out. senate republicans finally unveiling their draft of the bill to deliver on their long held promise to repeal and replace obamacare. the proposal largely mirrors the house bill including deep cuts to medicaid, big tax credits for the wealthy. reaction from democrats has been swift and fierce with only one week to go until a vote, they say. democrats are turning up the pressure hoping to peel away the
three republicans they need to defeat the bill. more on that in a moment. and the first look at our brand-new poll numbers from our nbc news politics team on how americans feel about the health care debate. and joining me now is nbc's casey hunt on capitol hill, peter alexander at the white house, and, you guys, the reason i was looking around, this is it. you have it now. something we just gotten from the senate republicans. casey, first to you, already we're seeing very strong reaction back and forth. how do they explain how they can have a vote next week when the congressional budget office accounting of how much it would cost and whom it would help, who it would hurt, who would lose their insurance, all of that won't come before next week. >> honestly, we're still having a hard time getting foam answer our questions. i had more republican senators run the other way from the cameras than towards us to talk to us about this health care bill. and quite frankly, the people we
have talked to have been skeptical. senator pat roberts of kansas who could generally be considered a reliable vote with mitch mcconnell and others who have been working on writing this bill said it is the best possible vote, but under very difficult circumstances. nobody out here selling this bill this a real way. i just spoke to senator rand paul who said that this doesn't feel like it repeals obamacare. that is a warning shot from one conservative at this point. he said that there is go to be a joint statement coming out in about an hour from himself and some others. we're not sure who they are. of course, it might make sense it would be people like senator ted cruz, senator mike lee, two of the other conservatives who have expressed concern about this. i don't want to get ahead of ourselves here because we don't have that 100% nailed down yet. obviously, if the three of them had problems with it and it was to the point where they said they couldn't support what they saw in public that would mean mitch mcconnell would not have enough votes to pass this bill.
again, we're just trying to kind of gather reaction here, we're still getting a lot of people saying, hey, i'll go back to my office and read this thing. there is enough in it that there is concern. i want to try and track down senator susan collins and lisa murkowski to ask them about the planned parenthood provisions. it looks like this does defund planned parenthood that is something they had previously said might be a nonstarter. so, again, just trying to gather reaction initially here in the first hours after this has been released, but so far i would say more skeptics and more potential problems than there is praise. >> and, casey, interestingly, on the conservative side, as well as on the moderate -- moderate republican side, ron johnson telling our cameras that he does not call this obamacare repeal. i'm an accountant, businessman, not repealing obamacare, what he and rand paul seemed to be talking about. at the white house, peter alexander, the president has just spoken, he was much less
involved in this. taking sort of a back seat, maybe mike pence and others, on his behalf. but he is now going to be selling it hard. >> i think you're right. i think tactically we have seen a difference in terms of the way this us w the white house. the first go round, they had a series of meetings, a lot of phone calls, they shared all of them with reporters here. this time around, while he has been updated by his legislative affairs team, that's about the extent of our knowledge in terms of the relationship he's had and the effort to develop this. i was in the east room for a meeting that was scheduled to be a demonstration of some new technologies meeting with top business officials from around the country here and it was obvious from the president's remarks that he expects this bill to change before it becomes final. there was no ringing endorsement, in his words. it is going to be negotiated. he added to me it is going to be very good. that was the extent of his comments today.
maybe the only opportunity we get to pose questions to him on this topic today. but, again, remember this is a president who had promised since the start that he would repeal and replace obamacare, so as you and casey were just discussing, if there was pushback right now on the idea this isn't a full repeal of obamacare, won't be the frustrations and criticism from democrats who are upset with the process in general, but from some republicans who say this doesn't go as far as he had promised from the start. >> peter alexander and casey hunt starting us off and on capitol hill. police are currently removing protesters in wheelchairs outside of majority leader mitch mcconnell's office. the protesters are from a nonprofit group called adapt. and it is pretty extraordinary these pictures. we had people being carried out by capitol police, clearly they are under orders to clear the hallways. it is not their fault. but this is what they're being told by house leadership. and senate leadership to do.
this is clearly outside of senator mitch mcconnell's offices. a brutal image for republicans and supporters of this bill, frankly. joining me now is connecticut state senator ted kennedy jr., who is newly elected chairman of the board of the american association of people with disabilities. i know you've been active in it a long time. >> i have. >> good to see you. >> thank you, andrea. thank you for having me on your show. obviously what you've seen here on capitol hill is the reaction to people with disabilities, millions of people with disabilities are very alarmed and upset about the current health care reform proposals now being forwarded by the republicans because they eliminate a lot of the protections for people with disabilities and they cut medicaid in a dramatic way that people with disabilities need to live their everyday lives. >> now, not only are you a life-long activist on behalf of health care as, of course, your father was the chief legislator
for decades on this subject. you are a person with a pre-existing condition. >> that's right. i mean, i was diagnosed with bone cancer when i was 12 years old and that really became the dominant focus of my life is to advocate on behalf of people with disabilities. now incoming board chair, the american association for people with disabilities, we're meeting this afternoon figuring out how to organize and resist these current proposals that will impact 12 million children with disabilities. millions and millions of people living in nursing homes, and the dramatic impact it is going to have on my home state of connecticut. eliminating between 500 million and a billion dollars in annual funding. and that's why i'm here in washington, raising this issue as an important issue. >> you had the best medical care in the world when you were 12, but you lost your leg to cancer. >> yes.
>> and you lived your life, you know, seeing what your father did, the passage of the americans with disability act. i remember it well. i was covering the senate at the time and there were huge protests because people with wheelchairs could not even get into the people's house. they couldn't get through the steps and that led to legislation which changed the way all of us live, ramps and cutouts and sidewalks. >> well, you know, we made big progress. i was there in the rose garden appla applauding, standing ovation, giving george h.w. bush a standing ovation. for years, disability rights have been bipartisan. you know that. and -- but that's changed recently. and that is what is so concerning is that we're at a critical point now in the civil rights movement for people with disabilities. >> let me just say, having covered the house and the senate, i recall very early in my career in 1989 when i was up there on the hill, they passed catastrophic health insurance and then we had the
extraordinary images of the head -- the most powerful man on the hill arguably, ways and means chairman dan rostenkowski getting hit with protesters banging on his -- the roof of his car in illinois, in chicago, with canes back in 1989. and they ended up repealing a bill that had been passed, had taken two years to pass it. they repealed that bill. the power of these kinds of images is not to be discounted in this kind of debate. >> i think that my friends and colleagues from adapt, which are clearly the organization that has sponsored these -- this kind of resistance to these changes, we're just going to see more and more of that as people realize that this isn't just an issue that affects people with disabilities and their friends and their families, it affects every single american and what is so surprising, you commented at the beginning part of your show how this is being pitched as a financial bill, well, i will tell you that the reason
why many of the businesses in my home state of connecticut are alarmd by this is because medicaid funds, home and community-based care, under the obamacare expansion, and that benefit is approximately about $18,000 a year for personal care attendants, the average benefit, compared to about $120,000 a year, it would cost to keep somebody in a nursing home that is why the business community is supportive of these types of programs and that is why we need to fight and make sure that people understand what is really at stake here. >> wanted to play just -- to remind all of us what happened back in 1998, this was -- 1978, excuse me. 1978. your dad, about universal health care. >> together we can provide decent health care system for the benefit of the people of this land. we can make health care a basic
right for all, not just an ann expensive privilege for the few. >> well, i don't need to tell you how long this battle has been going on. >> it certainly has. >> your family -- let me just close by asking you about patrick, another big piece of this are people including senators from ohio, senator portman and others, concerned about how it would affect the opioid explosion and what patrick has done as an advocate for mental health and drug help and rehabilitation and how it would be affected by this bill. this is a huge bill. >> i really admire my brother patrick for raising this and making this part of ur national conversation. not just mental health parody and access, but this opioid addiction and how do we think we are going to address this opioid
addiction that knows no political boundaries by cutting the very programs that these recovering addicts need to get clean. >> state senator ted kennedy, ted kennedy jr., always great to see you. >> thank you so much for having me on your show. >> thank you. and joining me now is another man from connecticut, democratic senator chris murphy, member of the senate health education, labor and pensions committee that ted kennedy sr. led for so many decades. senator, welcome, thank you. have you had a chance to read this? >> i've started to read it. it is going to take a while for all of us to get up to speed. it looks as if it largely mirrors the house bill. in some ways it is more evil. in some ways it is even dumber than the house proposal. it seems as if it goes deeper into medicaid with even worse cuts, which as my friend ted kennedy mentioned will require states to kick seniors out of nursing homes, to end coverage for millions of low income children all across the country.
it doesn't seem as i take a first look at it to have a requirement that individuals buy insurance, which frankly makes any protection for people that are sick, it just doesn't seem like it works. and i just think it is an absolute monstrosity of a bill at first glance. we'll learn more as the day goes on. >> and do you think you can get the three republicans? there is some criticism from -- we heard from ron jonsson, rand paul, some conservatives don't think it goes far enough to repeal obamacare. >> i think mcconnell doesn't have the votes today. what i worry is happening is that a bunch of republicans over the course of the afternoon are going to express concerns, then republicans are going to draft a couple of meaningless whitewash amendments that those senators can claim as victory, which gets them back on the package. there might be some political theater that will play out between now and next week. so i wouldn't give my republican
colleagues too much credit if they raise concerns today. that may be prescripted. you certainly do have senators from states with big medicaid populations, more moderate leaning states that are going to bristle at the notion that millions of people are going to be kicked off of health care and premiums go up for everybody else and you have rand paul and ted cruz and others that don't see this as going far enough. mcconnell has a thin needle to thread, but probably some theater that plays out today, tomorrow and through the weekend. >> what is the timing? do you think they'll end up backing down and not using the july 4th recess as a deadline or will they just go to the floor without the 50s so they can say they voted for something? >> i think mcconnell is going to the floor next week. it is in keeping with how he conducted this process so far. he knows this bill is a loser for republicans. he knows people out there in america hate this proposal. why? it makes no sense. doesn't solve a single problem in our health care system. it kicks millions of people off insurance, it jacks up rates for
everybody else, all in order to fund a massive tax cut for the wealthy. he knows that the longer this is out there in public, especially now that there is tax, the less popular it will get. the more protests will happen as is happening around the corner from senator mcconnell's office. he's going to jam a vote next week. we asked on the floor for amendments to be considered with an hour of debate, just give one hour of debate per amendment. they wouldn't agree to that. they're going to rush through amendments next week, two minutes of debate on each amendment, so they can get this thing over and done with before the american people can catch up with the facts. >> and, in fact, the process argument or the process debate has a much less resonance with the public in terms of you having time to argue about all of this. then the headline that they can put out online, on twitter from the president, we have given you -- we repealed obamacare and given you something better. >> i think the american public already has figured out that this isn't better.
today, new polling, very clearly, the affordable care act is much more popular than the republican health care proposal. polls suggest that anywhere from 15 to 25% of americans like this proposal and the number is going down, not up. i think americans know what is happening here. this is all about a tax cut for the wealthy, for insurance companies and drug companies, in this senate bill, paid for by taking your health care away and jacking your rates up. so i think process doesn't matter as much as substance. but americans, especially those people in connecticut, they hate the secretive process and hate the substance of this bill. >> well, senator, thank you very much. and thank you for teeing up our next conversation because we have got the polls. we have got the brand-new nbc news/wall street journal poll just out this hour. thank you, senator murphy, thank you, ted kennedy. >> taking on health care and overhauling it is always a
difficult task. the house bill that was passed last month is in a very, very tricky place. let me walk you through some of the numbers. by a 3-1 margin, you have americans viewing the house republican health care bill in a negative light, just 16% think it is a good idea. that's down from 23% a month ago, 48% think it is a bad idea. it is important to note this is views of the house legislation, not the senate unveiled today, but many -- many similarities between the house legislation and the senate bill. now, as far as when it comes to views on obamacare or the affordable care act passed in 2010, that's above water for the third straight survey in the nbc/wall street journal poll. 16% believe it is a good idea, 48% bad idea. on the issue of whether republicans and president trump should continue their efforts, you have a mixed public. 38% says yes. go ahead and repeal and replace
obamacare. 39% say no. you have 20% who have no opinion here. but clearly the effort to repeal and replace obamacare is more popular than the house legislation. >> and when we look at the numbers, they have a tough road to climb. what are you hearing, chuck todd has been making some calls and i think he's been letting us know that so far they do not have 50 republicans on this. >> very interesting, in your interview with casey hunt already, rand paul seems look a no vote. our colleague chuck todd reported, according to one source he's hearing you could have three republicans maybe from the conservative side of things possibly rand paul, ted cruz, mike lee, all come out against it. if that is the case, and we're not even talking about the moderates who might have problems like susan collins or lisa murkowski, that's a tough play. andrea, do note that sometimes you can say i have -- i oppose this legislation, but give me a few more billion dollars or this, maybe i can come aboard. early signals aren't the death
nell, but certainly not an ideal place to start. >> as we saw with some of the house votes recently, you don't even know until way later what extraneous issues might be used to persuade one vote here and another vote there with the comment that, well, it will be fixed in committee. >> health care one of the toughest things to do in washington. >> mark murray, thanks. moments ago, republican senator bob corker giving his reaction to the new health care draft. >> what was the general reaction of folks in the room to that oral presentation, did people seem receptive? >> look, i mean, you know, there is -- whenever something like this is unveiled, there is the natural frustrations that people have. i think as people left there, i can't speak for the whole room and you're going to get, you know, 51 different -- 52 different, one, 51 other
different opinions, but, look, i think what people are doing now, what i'm getting ready to do, go back to their offices, go through the bill in detail and begin talking with folks like state insurance commissioners back home and those who conduct medicaid and all those things to see how it is actually going to affect our own citizens. >> joining me now is george w. bush's white house chief of staff andy card. thank you. thank you for standing by while we go through this incredibly large and complex legislation. you were in previous administrations, three republican as well, two republican before george w. bush. have you seen a bill this complex, released this way, with no cbo score, and a vote they say scheduled for next week before recess? >> i've seen a lot of bills that were dead before they were introduced, revived once the process kicked in.
and i think that's what is happening here. the status quo is not sustainable. the affordable care act as it currently exists is not sustainable. something needs to change. i don't think a full repeal of the affordable care act is sustainable or viable. so something needs to change. it is important for the senate to move something forward to start the process that will be a real process so people get around the conference room table and come up with a solution that will be better than the nonsustainable, affordable care act as it is currently being implemented. and the debate over full repeal, which is not going to happen. i think this is more about getting the process moving than it is about the substance of the particular bill. >> whatle is the impact of seeing people in wheelchairs being carried out by police on the orders of mitch mcconnell? >> those are terrible images.
we don't like any of them. the truth is, the affordable care act is not working right now. something has to happen to fix that. something has to be done to address the real needs that are across america, the poll that you just cited says 38% wanted repeal and 39% want the affordable care act to remain. that's a tossup. it is just clearly that nothing that has been proposed is seen by the public as something that will work. and that means that the senators have to sit down and do real hard work. this is not -- this is probably the toughest issue you are to deal with as a member of the house or the senate right now, the changing of the health care law. then you get into changing the tax law. you can't get into changing the tax law without addressing the health care law, and that's got to be done and i think senator mcconnell recognizes that, that's why he's trying to do something that will at least force something to a table for which you can start to
negotiate. >> one could argue doing it with 11 guys in a room rather than letting susan collins or lisa murkowski in and not distributing it, briefing the lobbyists before his fellow senators, scheduling a vote before the cbo, there are a lot of things in play and according to chris murphy not even letting an hour of debate on an amendment next week. so these are all -- what could be called strong arm tactics on this bill to get it to conference. we don't know what is going to happen in conference. let me put one other thing out there -- let me just say this, andy, a lot of talk about how bad obamacare is. you can talk about all the problems with it, acknowledged by numerous people, you know, on all sides. but a big piece of this is the uncertainty, according to the hospital groups who have been writing to capitol hill, the uncertainty over what the polls look like, what insurance prospects will look like has been a lot of the reason why
insurers are pulling out of these exchanges on the state by state. because they can't do a business model. they don't know what is happening on capitol hill. >> there is uncertainty on all sides. that's why congress is going to find a way to give certainty to something that is viable. but you can't have a negotiation without sitting at a table. i agree. i wouldn't like to be one of the few people in the conference room sitting to negotiate. i guarantee president trump will have people that will want to participate and others will. the process of getting the affordable care act passed wasn't done with spotlights on it as it went through the senate. >> they had public hearings. they did have public hearings. >> and those public hearings are still valuable today because the information that was gleaned during those hearings can't be ignored as people deal with the challenges of health care today. we have real time information
coming in fritt stom states lik, where it is not working. states like maine that challenged and will try to find something that addresses their needs. there are real life hearings going on and the senators and members of congress understand that. just do something to start the process so that the uncertainty at least will see a path to certainty. right now, the uncertainty is there in the existing law. uncertainty is there in the proposed law. we need certainty, we need congress to step up and say there will be a solution. it will not be perfect. nothing has ever passed congress that was perfect. but we ned something that is perfectly good to come out of the process, which means start the process. >> andy card, thank you very much. coming to us from maine today. and moments from now, senator minority leader chuck schumer will be holding a press conference on the new republican health care bill. we heard him on the floor. we know kind of what he thinks. stay with us. this is "andrea mitchell reports" on msnbc. baa baa black sheep,
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the travel rewards credit card from bank of america. hey you've gotta see this. cno.n. alright, see you down there. mmm, fine. okay, what do we got? okay, watch this. do the thing we talked about. what do we say? it's going to be great. watch. remember what we were just saying? go irish! see that? yes! i'm gonna just go back to doing what i was doing. find your awesome with the xfinity x1 voice remote. well, meanwhile, the tweeter in chief can't seem to stop talking about russia. this
morning tweeting former homeland security adviser jeh johnson is the latest top
intelligence official to state there was no grand scheme
between trump and russia. but what secretary johnson actually said was he had not heard anything beyond what the house committee has seen and heard. and he left office, of course, january 20th. joining me is michael leiter, the former director of national counterterrorism and understand n nbc news national security analyst. where do we stand on the whole russia collusion investigation and what mueller is probably doing behind the scenes as he briefs both judiciary and intelligence to try to keep lanes deconflicted? >> contrary to what the president said, i don't think jeh johnson broke any new ground. he said what fundamentally every obama official has said, that at the time that they left, january 21st, they had not seen evidence of that collusion. no change in the story there. but what we see, i think, is a good professional investigation, unsurprisingly, going forward for bob mueller, which will focus on the collusion, but just as much now the obstruction of
justice issues. and meanwhile, the senate and the house moving relatively a pace on the deeper question of what do we do about the fact that the russians deeply interfered in this election? >> at least 21 states if not 39. >> absolutely. what we know from everyone both from jeh johnson, the obama officials and the officials who are still in the government is that russia was deeply involved in trying to affect the outcome of this election. and the president repeatedly is conflating collusion, obstruction, whether the russians involved and the tragedy in all of this is unfortunately i don't think he is focused on the big issue, russia involvement and protection in our electoral process in the future. >> lavrov spoke to tillerson today to try to explain why they canceled the meeting anticipated with a top official, tom shannon, to talk about the problems where you have got the russians buzzing our spy plane
and them trying to declare what is a no fly zone over syria. we have left this get out of control. >> i might not say it is out of control yet. >> i mean giving them way too much authority over what we do in syria. >> that is -- well, we did. and let's not play that all at the feet of the trump administration. truthfully, i think there is -- >> now what we're seeing is a rubbing up against each other two of super powers with iran and syria in the mix as well. this is a really volatile mix. i think things will settle down, but i don't think we should expect there not to be similar situations which at least run in danger of escalation for the foreseeable future as we step up activity in syria. >> long-term, the biggest story of the week may be leadership change regime change basically in saudi arabia. the biggest oil producer, and done at midnight our time, the
king suddenly an aging king suddenly anointing his 31-year-old son as his successor, giving him the defense and economic ministries which is always divided among the princelings in the family. he's now the supreme leader as soon as he takes the actual throne. >> this is a massive shift, and also one that we saw coming. the king's son commonly known as nbs, very young, very aggressive, we knew he was going to move into that crown prince position, but not exactly when. and this is at a critical time. a time when the saudis need to get their arms around reforming their economy. their population which is aging and a booming youth movement there. and i think he's probably pretty positive on those fronts. but much more complicated are saudi involvement in yemen, the conflict with iran, the burgeoning conflict with qatar,
and mohammed bin salman at the center of the aggressive saudi policy in the region and in that regard, this is going to be a very rocky time. >> and in fact he is largely responsible for those two very controversial steps, yemen has been going on for quite some time, but this new fact of qatar and the saudis lining up against them, the president of the united states siding with the saudis, and the secretary of state and secretary mattis trying to pull it back, doing the best they can to re-establish -- which just got a $12 billion arms deal from us in the pipeline last week. let me ask you about a new report today from the associated press, that we are standing back in yemen, but allowing interrogation which is basically torture of dissidents or opponents in yemen and watching what is going on with the saudis against these prisoners. >> the specifics of the report are deeply disturbing. real horrific torture in a
number of prisons by the am rautys who are tied with the saudis in trying to overthrow -- or defeat the iranian houthis. if these are true, the u.s. has to be extremely careful, not only is this counterproductive, but it runs very close to the line of some prohibitions against u.s. involvement in these -- this is really, really bad both politically and legally. and we have to make sure that u.s. officials are doing the right thing and then we have to be tough regardless of how important we think thing that fight against the houthis is in yemen that we have supported through two administrations, we have to be tough with our allies and say we cannot stand for some of these potential offenses. >> michael leiter, so great to have you here. >> great to be here. coming up, more on the breaking news from capitol hill and that striking scene, 15 people with disability advocates for the disabled arrested outside senate majority leader senator mcconnell's office, taken out as part of their
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the senate version of trump care is even meaner than the house bill. there is a lot to unpack in this bill. but its general outline is simple and very clear. and they're getting up and saying there is a draft, but i ask mitch mcconnell on the floor, you may have seen it, is there anything i said, which i'll say now, that is not in that draft, and he just sat down, didn't -- he didn't answer. so my guess is it is all in there. the bill takes dollars out of health care for millions of americans and puts them right back in the pocket of the wealthy. it cuts health care for those who need it most, just to give the tax break to those who need it least. senate republicans with this bill are proposing to defund planned parenthood, to drastically slash medicaid, which helps middle class families with loved ones in a nursing home and sends those dollars to the very richest
people in america. senate democrats have been pouring over the bill. now that it has come out from behind closed doors, and here are just a few of the things that this bill will do. first, it will cause health care costs for middle class and working families to go up. by cutting back on tax credits, and making americans pay even a bigger percentage of their income for their premiums, they're going to send costs soaring. second, the bill will kick millions off medicaid. by making even deeper cuts than the house bill. if you're a middle class family, with a loved one in a nursing home, the cost of that care is going to go up. third, it abandons people with pre-existing conditions. putting at dire risk maternity care, mental health coverage, by allowing states even more
latitude to get out of covering essential health benefits. fourth, it defunds planned parenthood, making it harder for millions of women to obtain the health care they need and deserve. now, why are they doing all this? to provide a giant tax break for the wealthiest americans. simply put, the bill will result in higher costs, less care, millions of americans will lose their health insurance, particularly through medicaid. it is every bit as bad as the house bill, and in some ways even worse. the president has said that the senate bill needed heart. the way this bill cuts health care is heartless. the president said that the house bill was mean. >> and joining me now is robert costa, washington post national political reporter and moderator of "washington weekend" and
msnbc political analyst. first of all, robert, the reaction initially at least and you can't predict how people will react after there is more time for pressure from all sides, lamar alexander, the head of the committee, just issued a statement pointing out all the ways he believes that this benefits people in tennessee, his state. so he's clearly all in. where do you see this heading? >> republicans right now are trying to sell the bill to the country, the most important sale is going to be on capitol hill. i'm told from my sources there that republican senators privately remain very skiddish about this legislation, especially with those senators who come from states that have significant populations on medicaid. and even some conservative senators are worried about the political cost of this legislation. that's why i'm at the white house today. will president trump reallymake a push for this bill in the coming weeks, a bill he called mean in a medium with senators. >> and we have seen the way the
president responds when he -- you know, reacts to things that are personal, where he sees people's reactions. saw that with the way he reacted to the chemical weapons, what he's been reportedly saying about otto warmbier affecting the north korea policy. this is going to get very personal. let's look at -- we have seen some of the pictures of the protest of people chairs, arrested. now some are talking after they were taken out. >> the senate and the house interest tryi inare trying to p trying to put us, the people with disabilities in a situation where we end up in nursing homes where we will die. >> we better win this. >> that's the kind of image in my experience in the past has led to congress backing down from things, including catastrophic health care and other legislation that already passed, was repealed, when
people, when activists get out on the streets and show real pain. >> the political imagery is going to have a place to play in this debate. what frustrates many republican senators who support this legislation is they believe that the gop has not made an articulate argument about what they're trying to do in phasing out the medicaid expansion under the affordable care act. it is being framed in the public debate. they're frustrated because it is framed as sweeping medicaid cuts. and they believe that if that's going to be how this bill is tagged in the public's imagination, they're going to lose political points and it may not pass the senate. >> let me share with you again, a reminder of our new polling from nbc news wall street journal this hour, only 16% thought that the house bill, which this closely mirrors, was a good idea, 48% opposed it. also the views of obamacare, pretty well divided, but you had
41% liking it, 38% against it. so that's pretty much an even divide, but above water. and finally, should congress and the president continue their efforts to repeal and replace obamacare, evenly divided, 38/39. mark murray is with us as well. the public reaction to all of this is very much in flux. >> and republicans are thinking about what their base wants. i just flew pack from georgia, where they had the special election and a republican won there. when i talked to voters on the ground, they were desperate more for tax cuts than obamacare repeal. do they want to see health care costs lowered in the ruby red republican areas? of course they do. but they're not rallying behind this legislation. that's the problem for these republican senators. they know the party wants repeal. but they don't particularly love this legislation and are not ready to fight for it in the grassroots. >> and we also have seen what people like rand paul had to say this morning. and he'll be a key vote. let's play that.
>> senator, your reaction to the health care bill. are you going to vote for this bill. >> we'll have a statement in about an hour. and my concern at this point from what i've been able to see so far, it looks like kewe're keeping obamacare and not repealing it. >> are you a no then? >> we'll have a statement in about an hour. >> to you think that will do yo enough to kill this bill? >> we'll see in an hour. >> mark murray is here with me. you are gone through all the numbers and robert is talking about how people will react to this. right now, it does not have strong support around the country, at least if it is similar to the house bill. >> andrea, the normal rules of politics are something usually gets introduced and make like break even type of situation and then after a big campaign, a lot of times the numbers go down.
it is starting out a really, really tough place. and that's even before you end up having big advertisements, before it would go into effect. that is when the big crash in public opinion on obamacare came in, after it started to be implemented. one thing that is worth noting, andrea, on our poll, when it relates to the house legislation, just how tepid the support it from republicans. they want to repeal, but when it comes to this house bill, maybe by extension the senate bill, there is 34% of republicans who actually think that the house legislation was a good idea. democrats firmly against t independents not happy with it at all. but very, very tepid and lukewarm support right now from republicans. >> and just to clean up one other thing out there, robert, i don't know what your reporting is and i'm hitting you with this cold, but jennifer jacobs is reporting that the president does not have tapes with jim comey. that's the other thing that the white house said was going to come this week. we don't know, it has been
inferred from things people have said and implied that the president was not taping, but i think we'll get definition on that. i don't know if you have a take on it. >> my sources here at the white house say that the president probably did not not record tho conversations with jim comey. he did make the threat. and they also have made reference to the president's remark the other day. he alluded to the fact that he probably didn't have tapes. he said the news about the tapes would disappoint many people. this is typical president trump throughout his career, talked about taping people at his office at trump tower. whether that's extended to the west wing, it doesn't seem like it at the moment. >> robert costa and mark murray, thank you very much. we'll talk to chairman of the homeland security committee mike mccall joining us next on "andrea mitchell reports." beyond is a natural pet food
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the fbi is now investigating wednesday's possible terror incident at a michigan airport. witnesses say the attacker, a 52-year-old canadian man alle d allegedly shouted allahu akbar before stabbing lieutenant jeff neville with a large knife. joining me is chairman of the house homeland security committee, michael mccaul. thank you for being with us, mr. chairman. we're seeing more low-tech incidents in europe certainly. we've had a rash of incidents with cars. now this knifing in michigan. what do we do about these lone
wolves and how to protect americans against these kinds of invasions? >> i think these are far more difficult to stop. the messages coming out of raqqa, syria, are not to come to syria and join the fight, but attack -- they call it the kufar in the back yard by any means necessary. that's why we've seen a spike in europe and we saw this recent attack yesterday in the united states. remember we're in the season of ramadan which is their holy season. for the jihadists, it's a season of martyrdom. the season ends on saturday, we're seeing attack by vehicle, by knife, by whatever means you can. so i think that's why you're seeing this happen so much. in fact, the killings have tripled this ramadan season compared to last year.
>> we should point out that it is not just muslim terrorism, the horrific incident at the congressional baseball game last week was home-grown, and an american with a semi-automatic rifle. there are threats from all sides. you're hosting a conference today on capitol hill. i'll be participating later today on the u.s.-china-korea relationship. you've heard from jeh johnson, madeleine albright, homeland security and our u.n. ambassador nikki haley today and others. this bipartisan conference, what are you hoping to achieve from that? >> we decided to put together the first capitol hill national security conference in a bipartisan, bicamera fashion with the senate as well to stress the fact that when it comes to national security and foreign policy our partisan politics should end at the
water's edge. as jane harmon always says, terrorists don't check our party affiliation. this should not be a bitter partisan issue. we need to unite i think in both chambers and in both parties to deal with the threats we see across the world, whether it be isis and the latest threats, whether it be north korea, whether it be china. i know you'll be moderating the panel on china. or the threats coming out of russia and iran. there are a lot of hot spots in the world. we need to be looking at this in congress through a bipartisan lens, not a partisan lens. >> the president has just tweeted that he did not have recordings with james comey. that may be a relief for those of you on the hill who have to deal with this. he says, whether there are tapes or recordings of my conversations with james comey, but i do not make and do not have any such recordings. this is something he started by
hinting on it and now on twitter trying to close that issue. >> i think we wish there were tapes so we can get to the bottom of what was said. now we're in a situation of the he-said versus she-said. i'm not sure where the truth lies on that. i was not aware that the white house -- the last time i remember the white house taping conversations was back in the nixon white house. of course, they took that out of the oval office for obvious reasons. >> a quick question on health care. the bill is out. you've done your work on the house side. do you expect the republican senate leaders will hand you a vote by next week? >> my understanding it's coming out. we're going to take a look at it. i don't know right now. i've been involved in the national security conference, so we are going to take a look at this bill, but it's my hope that
we can come together. we'll probably come together in a conference committee, is my guess, house and senate, to achieve something to provide a response to the failure of obamacare. i think we need to fix it. >> we've got to leave it there. thank you, see you later across the street in congress. >> look forward to it, andrea. >> and last night at washington's annual congresswomen' softball game. a field of dreams for bipartisanship and heroes. [ cheers and applause ] >> that's capitol hill police officer crystal griner, just out of the hospital right before the game, shot in the ankle. she had surgery. she was shot, of course, protecting members at the men's congressional baseball practice last week. she was part of steve scalise's detail, throwing out the ceremonial first pitch. i was there to help provide
color commentary with the women of the d.c. press corps, won 2-1, all to benefit women with breast cancer. that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." follow the show online, facebook and twitter. craig melvin picks it up right here on msnbc. >> good afternoon to you. craig melvin at msnbc headquarters in new york. unveiled and already in trouble, word from our political director chuck todd at least three gop senators plan to publicly oppose the health bill later today. we could get more reaction from wavering republicans some time this hour. if and when that happens, we will, of course, bring it to you immediately here. we've already seen some protesters, some in wheelchairs outside the office of republican majority leader mitch mcconnell. at least 15 folks arrested. some literally