For the Record with Greta, Transcript 3/29/2017

Jackie Speier, Eugene Robinson, Howard Fineman, Lindsey Graham, Robert Dietz, Karen Tumulty, Jonathan Swan, Tina Brown, Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Show: For the Record
Date: March 29, 2017
Guest: Jackie Speier, Eugene Robinson, Howard Fineman, Lindsey Graham,
Robert Dietz, Karen Tumulty, Jonathan Swan, Tina Brown, Debbie Wasserman

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, MSNBC HOST: Thank you, Chuck. And house intel
Chairman Nunes under fire and it`s getting hotter and hotter and hotter.
But the senate intelligence committee is making news today on its Russia


SEN. RICHARD BURR (R), NORTH CAROLINA: We have devoted seven professional
staff positions to this investigation. To date, we have made 20 requests
for individuals to be interviewed by the committee. As we stand here today,
five are already scheduled on the books. The only individual who`s
publicly been identified to date is Jared Kushner. And the committee will
conduct an interview with Mr. Kushner when the committee decides that it`s
time for us to set a date because we know exactly the scope of what needs
to be asked.


VAN SUSTEREN: And the committee leaders vowing to work together and let
the facts lead the investigation.


UNINDENTIFIED FEMALE: Having served as an advisor on the Trump campaign,
can you say hand over heart that you can oversee an impartial and serious

BURR: Absolutely. I`ll do something I`ve never done. I`ll admit that I
voted for him. We always hide who we vote for, that`s part of the
Democratic process. But I`ve got a job in the United States senate, and I
take that job extremely serious. It overrides any personal beliefs that I
have or loyalties that I might have.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: I have confidence in Richard Burr. We, together with
the members of our committee are going to get to the bottom of this.


VAN SUSTEREN: But over in the house investigation a tad bit different, in
fact real different, more division and increase scrutiny on Chairman Nunes,
a topic the senate leaders punted on.


BURR: We`ll answer anything about the senate intelligence committee`s
investigation. We will not take questions on the house intelligence
committee. We would refer those to the house intelligence committee.


VAN SUSTEREN: Now every single Democratic member of the house intelligence
committee is calling on the Chairman Nunes to step down today. He says no


they`ve done very little to even look through the documents that the
intelligence agencies have provided. So, I think at the end of the day
here, we`re going to get to the truth and we`re going to find out who`s
actually doing a real investigation, and you`ll find out that we are very
much doing an investigation and have been for a long time.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Are you worried about being able to work with Mr.

NUNES: Look, I mean, we`re always concerned about this and we always want
to keep the committee bipartisan, but at the end of the day, we`re going to
do an investigation with or without them. And if they want to participate,
that`s fine. We don`t even know who their witnesses is that they want to
call, so I would encourage you guys to go and start to follow them around
and figure out who they want to bring in and interview.


VAN SUSTEREN: And then there`s this. Just moments ago reporters caught up
with Chairman Nunes again.


UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Who at the White House gave you access to the intel?

NUNES: Guys, there`s nothing – there`s nothing to report. I appreciate
the attention, though. Thank you.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Did the White House know – did the White House know
about the intel before you briefed them on it?

NUNES: Thank you, guys. I`ve answered all the questions over and over


NUNES: Probably the following week.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Were they involving Trump associates?

NUNES: Well, we`re not going to get into the witness list at this point.
It depends who wants to come freely. Some people volunteer to come freely,
so obviously we`ll do interviews with those folks. But, yeah, we`re
looking forward to getting the information.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: How are you doing this with the committee Democrats
calling for your recusal (INAUDIBLE). How are you moving forward?

NUNES: We`ll continue to work through this. I think there will be active
participants will be by guess. Thank you.


VAN SUSTEREN: With me Congresswoman Jackie Speier, Democrat from the great
state of California who serves on the house intelligence committee. And
she is calling for Chairman Nunes to resign as chairman of the committee.
Nice to see you, congresswoman.

REP. JACKIE SPEIER (D), CALIFORNIA: Great to see you, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: Now, you take us a step forward, some say that he should
recuse himself from the investigation. You go one giant step further. You
want him to step down from being chairman of the committee.

SPEIER: I think it`s very hard when he has put in place all of those staff
members of the committee, and then we`re going to have a separate chair for
the investigation into the Russia connection, and we`re going to have two
chairs operating down there. I find it really complex and I don`t think it
can happen.

VAN SUSTEREN: When you go to the substantive aspect of it, does it play
into any of the events of the last week? I mean the fact that he got this
call and he goes to the White House. He won`t tell the source. And then
he has a press conference the next day. Then he runs down and talks to the
president, then he has another press conference and now he won`t tell us
any of this.

SPEIER: So, at first you`ve got to begin to wonder if the house
intelligence committee is an oxymoron now. Because.

VAN SUSTEREN: You saw what the senators did. They didn`t even want to
talk about it.

SPEIER: I know.

VAN SUSTEREN: They were like house what? We don`t know anybody on the
house side. Who?

SPEIER: So, you know, the crumbs were laid last week when the president
said there will be something coming out in the committee next week. This
in my mind was orchestrated by the White House and Nunes was part of the
deal from the beginning.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Prior to two weeks ago, you worked with him,

SPEIER: Yes. That`s what`s so interesting.

VAN SUSTEREN: What`s he like?

SPEIER: He was easy to work with. It was a bipartisan committee. We`ve
worked closely together. It`s like there`s a Dr. Jekyll, Mr. Hyde that`s
taken place here. He is different. He has become pugnacious, and silent,
and surreptitious, and all of a sudden he is not consulting with the
ranking member in terms of having a hearing, not having a hearing, and also
we`re reading about it in the press.

VAN SUSTEREN: I don`t get a sense that he`s consulting with other
Republicans on the committee either. I mean, I see the divide between the
Republicans and Democrats, but I don`t have a sense talking to Republican
members that he`s telling them any of this information.

SPEIER: Well, the one thing we know is that after we had the hearing and
the bombshell was let out by Director Comey.

VAN SUSTEREN: Which was?

SPEIER: Which was not only were they investigating the relationship of
Russia and their intervention in our electoral process, they were looking
at the coordination that might have been going on between the Trump
campaign operatives and the Russians. That was a huge bombshell. And
after that hearing when the Democrats were all developing the links with
Russia within the Trump orbit, and all of the Republicans were talking
about leaks, they then, I think, decided at that point they were not going
to have the next committee hearing that was supposed to be public. And
they all met in.

VAN SUSTEREN: Are you saying all the Republicans or seen Nunes?

SPEIER: No, the Republicans met together.

VAN SUSTEREN: So you think they`re all in this sort of secrecy Cabal for
lack of a better word?

SPEIER: Well, I think they`ve kind of circled the wagons. I think they`re
all going to defend Devin for the near term. Because, you know, they`re
hooked to his star right now, or lack thereof.

VAN SUSTEREN: He`s getting barbecued. I`m usually sympathetic to people
getting barbecued. I always feel sorry for the underdog, but he could end
this. This is self-inflicted wound. He`s the one that`s put all this
sinister, sneaky, mystery, wrapped this all in this mystery. So he could
end all of this and just tell us.

SPEIER: But he hasn`t, and I don`t think he intends to. And I think the
Republicans think that they can just weather the storm. We`re going on
recess for two weeks and by the time we return, he`ll be able to just
resume his activities. I don`t think it`s going away. Certainly the
people that are calling my office are not pleased with what`s going on.

VAN SUSTEREN: When was the last time you spoke to him?

SPEIER: Well, at the hearing.

VAN SUSTEREN: And he is friendly, nice, everything?


VAN SUSTEREN: Congresswoman, nice to see you. Nice to see you.

SPEIER: Thank you, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: The house investigation into Russia was once again a big
part of the White House press briefing. Spokesperson Sean Spicer, the
press secretary, faced a barrage of new questions about Chairman Devin


UNINDENTIFIED MALE: One of the reasons there`s this question about
Chairman Nunes is he hasn`t told his own committee members what he knows,
how he learned about it, and what the substantive importance of that is.
So we are also curious about that. And among the things that might be –
or might shed light about that is how he got here, who he met with, and
what he learned. We`re trying to figure.

are questions for him.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: The members of the very committee themselves say they
don`t know.

SPICER: Fair enough.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: . what was being discussed?

SPICER: Right.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: How is the process going forward? How is that a
workable process?

SPICER: The answer to that question is that`s a question for Chairman
Nunes. How he conducts himself with his members, when and where he shares
things, et cetera, are issues for him and the committee and the House of
Representatives, not for us.


VAN SUSTEREN: Eugene Robinson is a columnist for the Washington Post, and
Howard Fineman is global editorial director from the Huffington Post.
Howard, now even the White House doesn`t want anything to do with Nunes.
He said if you have a question call Nunes. Nunes won`t answer any


VAN SUSTEREN: What Nunes, right.

FINEMAN: He`s the guy who was on the White House grounds the other day
looking at top secret information, courtesy of someone, we don`t know who.

EUGENE ROBINSON, THE WASHINGTON POST: They`re treating him like a fence

FINEMAN: Right. And you can`t jump the fence at this point. You have to
be escorted in by somebody. You have to be validated by somebody to get
into the White House. Even a congressman can`t just waltz onto the White
House grounds to go to a secret place to look at secret documents. So
somewhere there`s a record of who it was, who asked the guy who come in.
The problem that Nunes has is the problem that Gene and I have seen and you
have seen in Washington forever. It`s probably not whatever the original
Russia story was about what Paul Manafort or the others were doing. I
don`t think looking at the evidence that it`s about Donald Trump`s campaign
directly coordinating with the Russians. It`s about what the White House
and its fellow travelers do to slow down or try to stop an investigation.
And you put Nunes right in that narrative right now.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, it`s kind of – it`s not fair to guess and to be
suspicious in all these things, but he`s put us in that position. When I
looked – when I dissected what he said, he said that someone was unmasked
who was on the transition team. So the first thing I thought, well, guess
who was on the transition team? He was, he was, he was.


VAN SUSTEREN: But was it something that he said and he doesn`t want us to
know about it? I don`t know.

ROBINSON: Well, that`s the question. One of 20 questions we could sit
here and ask about this, right? But that`s like one of the first
questions. Look, is there going to be a house investigation or not

VAN SUSTEREN: You saw what the senate thinks about the house.

ROBINSON: Exactly. And at this point you have to say not. Because
whatever he does at this point has no credibility.

VAN SUSTEREN: Do you even want a house investigation at this point? I
mean, you`ve got the senate investigating it, and we had two adults coming
out today, right?

ROBINSON: They sounded like total adults.

VAN SUSTEREN: Total adults.

ROBINSON: And meanwhile, you have the real investigation going on with the
FBI, right, which is, as you know, has – you know, they have – they`re a
bit more serious about this. And if you don`t think they act adult, ask
the people that they`re hauling in to question.

FINEMAN: I think the adults if there are any in Washington, and that`s
always an open question, have decided that the house investigation is
hopelessly corrupted, because of Nunes going over to the White House
looking at the stuff and then telling Donald Trump about it. That`s not an
independent investigation.

VAN SUSTEREN: And not telling us.

FINEMAN: And not telling his own people.

ROBINSON: Not telling the committee.

FINEMAN: So it`s not bipartisan. So the senate, which may be in the
process, by the way, of getting rid of the most characteristic senate
procedure of all time, which is the filibuster.

VAN SUSTEREN: Which Harry Reid did, in all fairness.

FINEMAN: Totally. Which Harry Reid began the slippery slope of that, I
agree. But the senate still wants to preserve the idea that the senate is
the independent cooling saucer and deliberative body of American politics.
And if they give up the filibuster, they`re going to say that Burr and
Warner, two southern paragons of deliberativeness, are going to actually do
a thorough investigation. And there`s some competition between the house
and the senate here. The house has been turned into a hopelessly
parliamentary operation where nobody in the minority has any authority
whatsoever. If you`re going to reserve – preserve any bipartisanship in
Washington, any independent assessment of the idea that facts exist, that`s
at least for now what Burr and Warner are saying and that`s powerful.

VAN SUSTEREN: You know, Eugene, it`s become so weird in this whole thing,
this whole thing with Nunes. And so, it`s so – it`s easy for me to roll
my eyes, that this is fundamentally extremely serious. Extremely serious
we get to the bottom of all of this, and the world is watching.

ROBINSON: Exactly, the world is watching. Serious questions have been
asked and they need to be answered. As Howard said that there`s no
grievous underlying crime here.

FINEMAN: Well, grievous, but not necessarily related to the White House

ROBINSON: But we don`t know.

FINEMAN: We don`t know, we don`t know.

ROBINSON: We don`t know.

VAN SUSTEREN: I think it`s – you know what, I don`t think this is fair to
the American people that they played – that they game us like this. I
don`t think that`s fair.

ROBINSON: It`s not fair to the American people. I hate making this
comparison, but it`s actually apt in this occasion. It`s the Watergate
comparison. It was about something that happened in the 1972 campaign.
And ultimately it was about the cover-up.

FINEMAN: It wasn`t the crime. That is – if you`re going to ascribe –
Greta, if you`re going to inscribe in marble in one of these buildings out
here, a phrase that deserves to be remembered forever, is that it`s not the
crime, but the cover-up. The other thing I would say is this is not an
Atlantic City gambling license hearing. OK? This is big stuff involving
the highest level of potential corruption of the American political system
by a foreign country. You`ve got to take it seriously.

VAN SUSTEREN: And to all of you watching from Atlantic City and you think
it`s real important, Howard Fineman, I`ll give you his e-mail address at
the next break. Thank you, gentlemen.


VAN SUSTEREN: Still ahead, will the White House reveal who talked to
Chairman Devin Nunes last Tuesday night, and who then let him into the
White House and why? And why late on Tuesday night did he go? New
pressure tonight to let the public see those all-important and telling
White House visitors logs. Senator Lindsey Graham is here to talk about
the Russia controversy. And then, next big Capitol Hill fight and one
certain to be a bruiser, the Supreme Court. Plus, Democrats on the attack,
accusing the Trump administration of trying to sabotage Obamacare, some
fiery moments today in a dramatic hearing. Also, she is back, former
secretary of state Hillary Clinton, 2016 Democratic candidate, she just
stepped back into the spotlight, and Senator Bernie Sanders demanding an
overhaul of the DNC. Is the Democratic Party still feeling raw from their
election disaster? We`ll talk about it with former DNC head Congresswoman
Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Stay with us.



SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY), MINORITY LEADER: Judge Gorsuch, we believe,
does not belong on the bench. If Judge Gorsuch fails to earn 60 votes and
fails to demonstrate he is mainstream enough to sit on the highest court,
we should change the nominee, not the rules.

UNINDENTIFIED MALE: The only reason he may not get there with 60 votes is
because of the political fear that dominates that building.


VAN SUSTEREN: Well, buckle up. The Russia controversy is not the only
fight we are watching. Thirty Democrats now saying they will block the
vote for President Trump`s Supreme Court pick, Judge Neil Gorsuch, when he
comes up for a vote next week. In response, Republicans firing back,
warning Democrats they will take a page out of former senate majority
leader Harry Reid`s playbook, and may change senate rules using the so-
called nuclear option and scrapping senate tradition and approving a
nominee for the full senate vote with a simple majority. That would be 51
votes. Democratic senator Joe Manchin has not said how he will vote, but
he does have a message for Republicans.


SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D), WEST VIRGINIA: We need to come together as a body
and save the country, save the bodies we can, which is a 60-vote cloture
rule. If Republicans will take off, I`m going to do the nuclear option
because Harry Reid did it. Harry Reid was wrong. What he did was just
absolutely dead wrong.


VAN SUSTEREN: With me, Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican from South
Carolina, and a member of the senate judiciary committee. Nice to see you,


VAN SUSTEREN: All right. We`re going to have a fight next week, aren`t

GRAHAM: Looks like it.

VAN SUSTEREN: And, you know, it`s sort of interesting. All these
Democrats have said they`re going to vote no for the Supreme Court for
Judge Gorsuch.

GRAHAM: Right.

VAN SUSTEREN: But in 2006 when he was put on the federal court for the
tenth circuit, a lot of these Democrats, including Chuck Schumer, voted
yes. So what happened between then and now?

GRAHAM: Well, he`s had ten and a half years of being a judge. And from
what I can tell is he`s been a good judge. The American bar association,
which is a pretty independent organization, gave him the highest rating you
could receive. Well qualified. A 900-page report, you can read it if
you`d like, they interviewed 500 lawyers, clerks, people who know Judge
Gorsuch who say that he was one of the most outstanding judges in the
country. He is reasonable, he is mainstream, he`s conservative, and I
think a home run pick by President Trump.

VAN SUSTEREN: The Supreme Court says that you`re supposed to provide to
the president advice and consent.

GRAHAM: Right.

VAN SUSTEREN: What does that mean?

GRAHAM: I think it used to mean that Scalia got 98 votes.

VAN SUSTEREN: That`s interesting because Judge Gorsuch is probably farther
to the left.

GRAHAM: Well, I think he`s certainly no more conservative than Scalia.

VAN SUSTEREN: How much of Ginsburg on the far left?

GRAHAM: Ninety six.

VAN SUSTEREN: Ninety six, OK.

GRAHAM: So Strom Thurmond voted for Ginsburg. I voted for Sotomayor and
Kagan, now why? Because I thought they were qualified. Now I didn`t vote
for President Obama. I didn`t vote for President Trump. I didn`t vote for
anybody in 12 years. But when it comes to the election, once it`s over, I
think my advice and consent should be given not because I would have chosen
somebody different, because they`re qualified. When you look at the
Hamilton Papers about this, he says the role of the senate is to knock out
the unqualified, favoritism, somebody would favor one state over another, a
special relationship to the president, some family member, not to
substitute your judgment for that of the president, and not to substitute
your philosophy for that of the nominee. That`s my view.

VAN SUSTEREN: It`s what some sort of amusement, I guess, that Senator
Harry Reid change – he invoked the nuclear option for appeals court judges
and for trial court judges, allowing for just 51 votes instead of the 60 to
cut it off. And now it looks like is that going to happen with the Supreme

GRAHAM: It looks like we`re headed that way. See, I was in the gang of 14
back in 2003, I can`t remember when it was. The first Bush term they
wholesale filibuster almost all of his judicial nominees. We came up with
a gang of 14 that said when it came to the Supreme Court and judicial
nominees there would be no filibuster unless there were extraordinary
circumstances. That held until 2013 when Harry Reid changed the rules for
circuit court and below. And now here we are. All I`m saying is.

VAN SUSTEREN: It`s called the shoe is on the other foot.

GRAHAM: Well, Sotomayor and Kagan got cloture. I can`t in the life of me
believe that Gorsuch is less qualified than they are.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You`ve said you didn`t vote for Obama or Trump.
Who did you vote for?

GRAHAM: I voted for Evan McMullen. I wouldn`t know him if he walked in
the room.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right.


VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Let`s move on to something else. You presided
over a hearing today on Russian efforts to undermine democracy. A Putin
critic testified about having survived two attempted poisonings apparently
at the hands of the Kremlin.


UNINDENTIFIED MALE: Doctors estimated the chance to survive at about 5
percent. And both times, the reason for this poisoning was named as
undefined toxin.


VAN SUSTEREN: Why did you have this hearing?

GRAHAM: Well, I wanted to make a case that Russia should be punished for
what they did in our election, as well as what they`re doing in their own
country, the Putin regime, not the Russian people. This man is an anti-
corruption dissident inside of Russia. He`s been poisoned, near death
twice. There`s a list of a dozen people who died mysterious deaths who
oppose Putin. The judiciary has become a joke. To them is a rubber stamp.
And Putin is trying to break the back of democracies throughout the entire
region, and now France and Germany. And he interfered in our elections.
To my Republican colleagues, it was Democrats today it could be us
tomorrow, so I want to punish Putin. I want sanctions against the Putin
regime for what he`s did here in our election and what he`s done all over
the world, including his own backyard.

VAN SUSTEREN: Are you a former – or you`re on the other side of the hill
in the house. What do you make of this whole Nunes controversy?

GRAHAM: It`s a mess. You know, Trey Gowdy is a guy – he had a good
suggestion to Schiff. Give us the witnesses you want to interview and
let`s interview them. I don`t like what Nunes did going down to the White
House, seeing something nobody else saw. I think that`s a breach of trust,
and he`s got to repair the damage. I don`t know if he can or not. Burr
and Warner today were very reassuring to me. I`m working with White House
and Leahy. We just had a hearing about Russia. We`re going to get to the
bottom of this.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why do you think Nunes did that?

GRAHAM: I really don`t know. I don`t know if he couldn`t – the pressure,
maybe he thought he should go down.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why isn`t he talking now and explaining it? Because the
reason you and I are talking about this is because he won`t end it.

GRAHAM: All I can say is that the best thing for the house to do is see if
they can get an agreement with their Democratic colleagues to call
witnesses that Democrats believe are relevant to finding out what we have
in Russia.

VAN SUSTEREN: He canceled the hearing though with the Clapper, Yates and

GRAHAM: Well, a public hearing may have should have been canceled, but
behind closed doors is probably the way to do this. The bottom line is
restart the process.

VAN SUSTEREN: You think he can restart this? Do you think Chairman Nunes
can have – can regain credibility?

GRAHAM: We`ll see, I don`t know. What he should do, in my view, is tell
everybody who he met with and what he saw. He doesn`t have to tell you on
TV, but tell his colleagues on the house intel committee, Republican and
Democrat. Here`s who I met with and here`s what I saw, I think he should
do that.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why wouldn`t he do that?

GRAHAM: I don`t know.

VAN SUSTEREN: Don`t you think that`s odd?

GRAHAM: That is odd. So Trey Gowdy, I think has got the right approach to
try to restart if you can. Give us some witnesses you think are relevant
to what happened with Russia and the Trump campaign and let`s start
interviewing them. I don`t know if they can repair the damage or not. I`m
pleased where the senate is at. I want to find out what happen with
Russia. If there are ties between the Trump campaign and Russia, the FBI
is looking at that. Do it without political interference. The Russians
interfered in our election. It wasn`t some 400-pound guy on the bed. When
it comes to Trump, he is the president. He won the election. I want the
investigation to go wherever it needs to go. The reason I am supporting
Gorsuch, I think he`s an outstanding choice. All I`m asking Democrats to
do is respect President Trump`s choice like I respected President Obama`s
choice by voting for Cloture and passage of Sotomayor and Kagan. So I
don`t want to set the election aside. There`s no reason to invalidate this
election. But there is a reason to investigate what Russia did.

VAN SUSTEREN: And we have all these investigations going on, including
Comey`s with the FBI.

GRAHAM: Well, that`s what I want to make sure we don`t cross over into.
The FBI is looking at a counterintelligence maybe criminal investigation.
I want to steer clear of those guys. I don`t want any politician to
interfere with the FBI`s ability to look at what Trump operatives may have
done with Russia. I don`t know if there`s any evidence at all, but I want
the FBI to look at it.

VAN SUSTEREN: Did you see the story where it said that General Flynn met
with Turkish representatives and there was some conversation, Wool Woolsey
was there.

GRAHAM: About kidnapping the guy?

VAN SUSTEREN: The guy in Philadelphia or Pennsylvania.

GRAHAM: I don`t think you could sell this as a book or a movie.

VAN SUSTEREN: Nobody will believe it?

GRAHAM: It`s pretty bizarre. So when you get really confused, go back to
the basics. Burr and Warner have a process where they`re going to call
witnesses, most of them behind closed doors, which it probably should be,
and I hope the house can get back into the process of actually collecting
evidence rather than finger pointing. Now, listen, what Nunes did was
wrong, but Schiff and some of his friends turn into prosecutors every time
they`re on TV. They give a damning indictment of circumstantial evidence
linking the Trump campaign to Russia. At the end of the day, I don`t think
that`s appropriate either.

VAN SUSTEREN: Senator, nice to see you. Hope you come back. Lots to talk

GRAHAM: I thought you want to talk about Gorsuch.

VAN SUSTEREN: Next week. OK, I`ll see you next week. Anyway, nice to see


VAN SUSTEREN: Ahead, what the NBC investigative unit is learning about the
house intel chair`s White House visit. Who let him inside, and who did he
speak to, and who gave him information? Also, Democrats accuse the Trump
administration of trying to sabotage Obamacare. That`s ahead.


VAN SUSTEREN: Tomorrow the Senate Intelligence Committee holds its first
public hearing but on the House side there are still more questions than
answers. Who did Chairman Devin Nunes meet with at the White House? How did
he get there? Who let him in? The White House didn`t offer any answers.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you have any information to live up to the
commitment you made here on Monday to provide more details about how that
happened? In the process you just told us that, again, is above board and
totally appropriate?

SPICER: I don`t have anything for you on that at this time. But again, I
don`t –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you looked into it?

SPICER: I have asked some preliminary questions. I have not gotten answers
yet. The fascination is with what door did he come in, who did he meet
with, how did he get in as opposed to what I think it should be and
ironically it`s not when the shoe is on the other foot as what`s the


VAN SUSTEREN: With be Ken Dilanian, NBC national security correspondent
and Robert Dietz, former senior counselor to the CIA director and a former
general counsel at the NSA, the National Security Agency. Ken, first to
you, do you have any information, any idea, you know, who he met with, why
he met there, who let him in? Do you have any more information tonight?

suspects, Greta, but nothing we`re ready to report on the air tonight.
What`s important to understand, though, is that Nunes says he went to the
old – the Eisenhower Executive Office building, which is a stately old
building in the White House complex to the west of the White House itself,
to a secure room.

Now, he`s sort of portraying this like he got this stuff from a source like
meeting deep throat in the parking garage, but there are limited number of
people that have access to a secure room to view classified information at
the White House. And former White House officials have told us that any
White House official could learn in five minutes who signed Nunes into the
White House. So, it`s absurd that the White House is suggesting that
somehow this is difficult information to come by.

In fact, that used to be public information under the Obama administration.
Thus far, it has not been public under the Trump administration. So, we
don`t know where he got the information, but there`s a limited number of
people who are cleared to see this intelligence.

After all, this is about intercepts, sensitive, highly classified
intelligence. And you know, the bottom line is this thing has really blown
up the House investigation and he`s lost the confidence of Democrats,

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, Bob, what do you make of this? I just look at
this and I just – I don`t know what to think.

your view. And I agree, by the way, with Ken`s point. It`s not as if
anybody can wander into the old executive office building and then check
people in. So, clearly this is a knowable issue. I am really puzzled by it.

I was particularly puzzled by Congressman Nunes going down to the White
House to kind of brief the president, I suppose. The problem, of course, is
it tends to undermine the credibility and independence of a Hill hearing
and I think that`s really unfortunate.

VAN SUSTEREN: What could be the kind of information? I mean, in looking at
it, you`ve been inside at the CIA, at the NSA, what is sort of the universe
of possibilities that this could be?

DIETZ: Well, I`ve given that a little thought. I don`t have any magic
answers. It could be explaining how, if this is true, how people close to
President Trump and the campaign, how they might have been picked up had
they been communicating with foreign folks.

VAN SUSTEREN: And what would be so secret about that?

DIETZ: Well, as you know, under Executive Order 12333 and (INAUDIBLE) 18
and so forth, mineralization, in other words taking out U.S. person
identities is standard operating procedure and it obligatory. It can be
broken in two circumstances. One is if there`s evidence of a crime and, B,
for some reason you need that identity to make sense of the foreign
intelligence. It could be that whatever topic was addressed by the foreign
person, say a Russian, that President Trump was told that.

VAN SUSTEREN: Ken, what are people frustrated within the intelligence
community on this? What`s sort of the thought on this whole drama as it`s

DILANIAN: Well, they`re just mystified by what Nunes did, you know. And as
Bob knows better than anybody, incidental collection, particularly if it`s
foreigner to foreigner surveillance where that is about Americans, that
happens every day. I mean the NSA is listening to foreign embassies,
they`re communicating back to their capitals. Particularly this was during
the transition –

VAN SUSTEREN: So why would this be such a – I mean so why would Nunes
want to even hide this? You could – you could mask some of the thing and
just give us a little more information and call off the dogs?

DILANIAN: Well, exactly. And he back tracked, don`t forget. At first Nunes
said Trump and his aides had been monitored and then he said, no, in fact I
can`t be sure they were monitored. It might have just been communications
about them. You know look, the theory by Democrats is that this was all
just a ruse to give Trump some cover for his bogus wiretapping claim so
that he could say, see, there was surveillance in Trump Tower and this is
the evidence of it.

And the best – the best evidence of that, I guess, is that Donald Trump
didn`t need Devin Nunes to give him this information. He runs the executive
branch. He could get it any day of the week. Just order every surveillance
report put on his desk that has his name or the names of his aides. That`s
not how it happened.

DIETZ: This does not vindicate him.

DILANIAN: Exactly.

VAN SUSTEREN: Gentlemen, thank you. The mystery goes on. Thank you, both.

New tonight, President Trump`s daughter, Ivanka, and something that hasn`t
happened since the Eisenhower administration. And thought health care was
off the agenda? Think again, what chief strategist Steve Bannon is doing
behind the scenes.


VAN SUSTEREN: We are back with some big news from the Trump
administration. Ivanka Trump is now officially a government employee. She
is joining the White House as an unpaid advisor. Her title is, besides
daughter 2, she`s now assistant to the president.

And Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was grilled today at the
hearing on Capitol Hill. Democrats peppering him on the future of Obamacare
and whether he planned to sabotage it.


REP. ROSA DELAURO (D), CONNECTICUT: Will you continue that effort to
disallow advertising to let people know about enrollment?


DELAURO: But what will you do?

PRICE: As I`ve said, we`re committed to making certain that every American
has access to affordable care.

DELAURO: So you will continue to do the advertising? You will do

PRICE: We`re committed to making certain that American peole –

DELAURO: You`ll do advertising?

PRICE: I wouldn`t commit to any specific entity.



VAN SUSTEREN: Well, the White House is turning its focus back to health
care in a push led by chief strategist Steve Bannon. Last night the
president was very confident.


to make a deal on health care. That`s such an easy one, so I have no doubt
that that`s going to happen very quickly. I think it will actually, I think
it`s going to happen, because we`ve all been promising, Democrat,
Republican, we`ve all been promising that to the American people. So I
think a lot of good things are going to happen there.


VAN SUSTEREN: Karen Tumulty is political correspondent for the “Washington
Post” and Jonathan Swan is national political reporter for Axios. Karen, I
guess thinking positive. The president says it`s going to be the easy one.

today at the White House briefing was saying he was being facetious when he
said that.


TUMULTY: But obviously if they`re serious about restarting this, it`s
going to have to be in a totally different way. It`s – I think what
everyone learned is that you can`t rush this, that you have to sort of sell
it in the country and explain to the country exactly what you`re trying to
achieve here. And so however they go about this, it`s not going to be
another, what, 18-day deal.

VAN SUSTEREN: You know, Jonathan, I sort of think this is the Pollyanna in
me, the half full in me, it might be still of a good thing because now the
Republicans and the Democrats may work together because the Democrats don`t
want to fail and they don`t have that hung around their neck as Obamacare
failing and collapsing and the Republicans wants something – you think I`m


VAN SUSTEREN: OK, all right.


VAN SUSTEREN: All right. I`m trying to find some good tonight for all of
us. I`m trying to make the viewers at home feel good.

SWAN: I had lunch with Nancy Pelosi yesterday and I did not get that vibe.

VAN SUSTEREN: You did not get that vibe.

SWAN: No, to say the least.

VAN SUSTEREN: So who picked up the bill?

SWAN: She, well, her office. It was sandwiches for a bunch of reporters.

VAN SUSTEREN: I was just kidding. You know the answer to that. Anyway, so
where are we on this? So leader Pelosi says no.

SWAN: Here`s the thing. The situation hasn`t changed since a week ago. The
moderates and the conservatives still don`t agree on anything really. And
the notion that Steve Bannon is sort of with a cape on coming in to fix
this. I mean all he`s doing, and he`s told associates of his this, is
clearing some space so that moderates and conservatives can talk to each
other without the White House and leadership interfering too much.

He`s certainly not working on this in some sort of pivotal, save the day
way. And there`s no timeline. There`s no timeline for fixing this. There
needs to be a cooling off period. There was a report today that there was
going to be legislative moves next week. I texted a bunch of people in
leadership and they were all like well, that`s news to me, so.

VAN SUSTEREN: So, finished, Karen? It`s finished?

TUMULTY: I don`t think we`re going see anything any time soon. We`ll know
that they`re serious about it when they start bringing in some actual
serious thinkers on policy. And the fact that President Trump has spoken at
least on several occasions to Zeke Emmanuel who was also involved in
putting Obamacare together and is a deep thinker on this subject, those are
some good signs.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, my other idea, besides the one Jonathan just shot down
as a possibility, is I think I would bring in Senator Tom Coburn, a doctor
and Governor Howard Dean, a doctor, Republican and Democrat, and put them
in a room and see if they can try to battle something out. But anyway,
that`s – I`m desperately trying to find solutions for this and I`m not
very successful. Anyway, thank you both.

What happens to a country months after its voters stun the world and do the
unexpected? I`m not talking about President Trump, but that story is next.



wishes of the British people, the United Kingdom is leaving the European

minister is threatening to take this country in is both reckless and
damaging. And labor will not give this government a free hand to use Brexit
to attack rights, protections and cut services.


VAN SUSTEREN: Well, that passionate debate today in parliament about
Brexit. The U.K. is leaving the European Union. It`s going to be a divorce.
Today one of Britain`s top diplomats hand delivering the letter to
officially trigger the British withdrawal. Many see parallels between
Brexit and our 2016 election. A comparison embraced by Canada and then
President Trump.


TRUMP: The Brexit deal, I think when you talk about leave, you know, I
felt it was going to happen. And there is great similarity between what
happened here and my campaign. You`re taking your country back. Europe,
like the United States, has made tremendous mistakes over the last period
of time.

Call me Mr. Brexit.

Brexit was an example of what was to come. I said Brexit is going to
happen. I think Brexit is going to be a wonderful thing for your country.
It will ending up being a fantastic thing for the United Kingdom.


VAN SUSTEREN: With me, Tina Brown, founder and CEO of Tina Brown Live
Media. Nice to see you, Tina.


VAN SUSTEREN: Tina, is what`s going on with Brexit in London, is that akin
to sort of the populist movement that led to the election of President

BROWN: Well, there are definitely are similarities to that but actually I
would say that the similarities now are really a bit more to what`s just
happened with the health care bill because here have Trump saying it`s
going to be wonderful, it`s going to be great for Brexit. I think it`s
going to be about as great as the Republicans health care bill it turned
out to be.

But the problem is it`s so much easier to shout repeal and replace, which
is what happened with Brexit. The foreign minister now, Boris Johnson, he
was one of the prime Brexiteers, promised really – sold a bill of goods to
the British people. He said you can have free movement – the end of free
movement of peoples, the end of the immigration freedom, which has really
been very unpopular in the U.K.

And at the same time have access to the free market and people really
believed that was true. They thought that they could have their cake and
eat it too. And the fact is of course, you can`t leave the club and swim in
the pool. There`s no reason why Europe is going to accept that and they
will not get access to the free market.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well that`s exactly what Manfred Weber said, a German
lawmaker. He said, “If you leave the E.U., you lose the associated
benefits.” It could have been plainer about that.

BROWN: Of course. That`s not going to change. I think for some reason
there are people who think that`s a negotiating point. It is not a
negotiating point. It`s absolutely the one thing that all 27 countries can
agree on.

VAN SUSTEREN: And it`s sort of – I don`t know if you heard – I played
for you what the president of the EU said today, sort of a bittersweet
comment to the Brits. Here`s what he said.


We already miss you. Thank you and good-bye.


VAN SUSTEREN: That was sort of sweet. We already miss you to the Brits.

BROWN: Yes, but it`s extremely sad and extremely dangerous because Britain
now won`t be a part of these massive decisions as Europe is determining its
future at a time when there`s rising populous (ph) and when the world is in
chaos, how does it help Britain to be now truly little England again.

And not only that, of course, it`s going to trigger another referendum in
Scotland for its independence because even though Scotland did vote to stay
in the union in 2014, things are going to change radically in the next two
years. And when Scotland finds that it`s going to have tariffs slapped
under its whiskey, that`s going to change the entire attitude of the
business community and many others in Scotland and it will be, you know,
they just renegotiated they`re marriage vows and they`re going to have to
really re-examine them again. This is a disaster. This cannot be good.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why did this happen?

BROWN: Well, you know, the trouble is, is that very much like here, a kind
of rabid, you know, unhappiness with globalism and the digital disruption,
all of the things that affected people`s mind set here was the same in the
U.K. and parts of the U.K. and some London places or the most of England
which really had had been neglected by the Tory Party who kept on cutting
and cutting.

David Cameron, the prime minister, severely misjudged the idea that he
could win this vote after subjecting, you know, tremendous savage cut to
the British people at the time before he won in the next election. So, you
know, there was a great deal of discomfort and unhappiness that really
wasn`t being paid attention to and somehow Brexit became this kind of great
battle cry which was going to fix everything.

Everything was the fault of Brexit. Immigration and, you know, the fact
that you couldn`t get a doctor`s appointment and the fact that your
schooling was likely was down, it was all blamed on Brexit. Many people
didn`t know what Brexit was and the next day after it happened, they were
all Googling what is the European Union, you know. I mean it was a very low
information voter kind of situation.

VAN SUSTEREN: Tina, thank you for joining us.

BROWN: Thank you.

VAN SUSTEREN: Still ahead, Senator Bernie Sanders calling for a top-down
overhaul of the Democratic Party. This after a house clean at the DNC.
Former DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz on that, next.



HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: I am thrilled to be out of the


There is no place I`d rather be than here with you, other than the White



VAN SUSTEREN: Well, you know who that is. Former Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton with her first major speech since losing the election. For
months, Democrats have been looking in the mirror for answers, asking what
needs to change, and now a big change. The new chairman of the DNC telling
all staffers to hand in their resignation letters. It`s just the latest
shake-up for the DNC.

Last summer during the election, WikiLeaks exposed committee e-mails
showing staffers appearing to side with Secretary Clinton over Senator
Bernie Sanders. That led to the chairwoman of the DNC stepping down. And
with me is that former DNC chair, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz,
Democrat from Florida. And first I`d like to get your reaction
Congresswoman to Senator Bernie Sanders, what he said earlier today.


SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I), VERMONT: Clearly the Democratic Party needs a
top-down overhaul, and that top-down overhaul means that instead of
becoming dependent and being dependent on big money interest for campaign
contributions, it has got to become a grassroots party. It has got to start
speaking and acting and fighting for working people, for young people. For
us to capitalize that, and that`s the kind of party I think has to – the
Democrats have to create.


VAN SUSTEREN: Congresswoman, it sort of a little bit like what I heard
four years ago when the Republicans were doing an autopsy after they lost
the election in 2012. But is Senator Bernie Sanders right? Does it start at
the top and come down and if so, how do you do that?

REP. DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ (D), FLORIDA: First, let me just say I`m not
sure why the chair of either national political party asking for staff
resignations is news because it`s a pretty routine practice. It is
important for each chair to be able to, you know, shuffle the footprint and
make sure that they analyze their staffing needs. That`s all that this was.

VAN SUSTEREN: What about what Senator Bernie Sanders said. I mean, what`s
going on with the Democratic Party or what should go on?

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Well, you know, respectfully to Senator Sanders, we are
already a grassroots party. I mean, if we were not, we would not have been
able to help bring down the absolutely abhorrent health care repeal bill
that would have knocked 24 million people over 10 years off of their health
care that would have increased health costs astronomically for people who
are between 50 and 64 years-old, increased prescription drug prices.

VAN SUSTEREN: So he`s wrong?

SHCULTZ: No. It`s actually more like semantics. We all agree that we
should be and we are a grassroots party that focuses on making sure that we
can help people reach the middle class.

VAN SUSTEREN: I think, though, the Republican Party – there are a lot of
Republicans who voted for Donald Trump who would say, the populist movement
would say they`re the grassroots. They`re the Tea Party. I mean, everyone
is sort of trying to hijack that term.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Actually if you look at the facts, Hillary Clinton won
the popular vote. The majority of voters that went to the polls to choose
their choice for president chose Hillary Clinton and our agenda. So the
American people actually overwhelmingly agree with us and they proved it
again on Friday when the Republicans had to abandon their abhorrent health
care repeal plan because it hurt millions of people and it wasn`t even
something any could stomach.

VAN SUSTEREN: Robby Mook was on this show a little while back and I asked
him whether he thought Secretary Clinton is going to run in 2020 because I
think you know, the fact that she was (INAUDIBLE). I actually think that
she`s going to throw her hat back in the ring, but I`m probably dead wrong
but what do you think?

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: You know, I think Hillary Clinton did exactly – is
doing exactly what she should be doing, using her very strong voice and her
overwhelming popularity to help make sure that we can continue to advance
the dialogue –

VAN SUSTEREN: But do you think she`s got her eye on 2020? Do you think
they may look at this –

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: I think the last thing that Hillary Clinton is thinking
about right now is what she`s doing in 2020.

VAN SUSTEREN: You really think she doesn`t have any interest in 2020?

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: I think Hillary Clinton has an interest in doing what
she always has had an interest doing, and that is helping to make the world
better and to focus on making sure that government works to assist people
in making their lives better is isn`t an obstacle.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, nobody thinks she`s going to run in 2020. I`m the only
one who apparently who is suspicious that she is. Not that it`s a good
thing or bad thing but anyway –


VAN SUSTEREN: Anyway, thanks very much for joining us.

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: You`re welcome. My pleasure.

VAN SUSTEREN: And thank you for watching us. See you back here tomorrow
night, 6:00 p.m. eastern. DVR if you can`t watch live. Follow me on twitter
@Greta or check out my Facebook page, behind the scenes videos. In fact, I
just posted a video on my Facebook page about a movie that I want you to
see. I think you`ll love it. “Hardball” with Chris Matthews starts right


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