MTP Daily, Transcript 7/31/2017
Show: MTP DAILY
Date: July 31, 2017
Guest: Susan del Percio, Aditi Roy, Leonard Lance, Eric Swalwell, Nick
NICOLE WALLACE, MSNBC HOST: All right, on that worrying note, that`s going
to be it for us. Steve Schmidt, Keir Simmons, Anita Dunn, Bryan Lanza. We
did (INAUDIBLE) Jenna Johnson earlier from “The Washington Post.”
That does it for this hour. I`m Nicole Wallace. “MTP DAILY” starts right
now with the fabulous Katy Tur in for Chuck Todd. Hi, Katy.
KATY TUR, MSNBC HOST: Hey, Nicole. You were supposed to get rid of all
the breaking news last week.
WALLACE: Sorry, sorry. I saved some for you.
TUR: Thanks a lot.
If it is Monday, another one bites the dust.
(voice-over): Tonight, communications failure. White House communications
director Anthony Scaramucci is out on John Kelly`s first day as White House
chief of staff.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, U.S. WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: The
president certainly felt that Anthony`s comments were inappropriate for a
person in that position.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: And general chaos.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I predict that General Kelly
will go down, in terms of the position of chief of staff, one of the great
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: We`ve got an inside look at how President Trump operates and how a
White House should operate.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER CAMPAIGN MANAGER, DONALD TRUMP: The thing that
General Kelly do is try – is not try to change Donald Trump.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: Plus, Senate Republicans health care effort crashed and burned. Can
a bipartisan solution rise from the ashes?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: I don`t think it`s over until we fix health
care. There`s also a possibility for, sort of, a bipartisan traditional
through the committees over the next six months to do something.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: This is MTP DAILY and it starts right now.
(on camera): Good evening, I`m Katy Tur in New York in for Chuck Todd.
Welcome to MTP DAILY. General Kelly meet general chaos and general
After just six days on the job White House communications director Anthony
Scaramucci resigned today. He was ousted on General John Kelly`s first day
on the job as White House chief of staff.
The White House`s initial statement suggested that Scaramucci resigned.
But just moments ago, at the White House press briefing, it sure sounded a
lot like – a lot like he was fired because of that obscene and profane
interview he gave to “The New Yorker” last week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANDERS: The president certainly felt that Anthony`s comments were
inappropriate for a person in that position. And he didn`t want to burden
General Kelly also with that line of succession.
As I think we`ve made clear a few times over the course of the last couple
of days to several of you individually, but General Kelly has the full
authority to operate within the White House and all staff will report to
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: But the White House would not definitely come out and say that
Scaramucci was fired.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did General Kelly ask him to leave or did the
president ask him to leave? Did he volunteer his resignation or how did
that come about?
SANDERS: I`m not going to get into the process, tick tock. Look, as we`ve
said several times before, what matters most to us is not who`s employed in
the White House but who`s employed in the rest of the country. And we`re
focused on the president`s agenda of growing the economy, creating jobs,
and that`s what we`re going to do and that`s what we`re going to be focused
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: So, as you heard in that first clip, Kelly, now, has full control
over the White House operation, which is reeling right now. He takes over
for Reince Priebus, who resigned late last week which is an ironic twist of
fate because Scaramucci wanted Priebus ousted. He called him a paranoid
schizophrenic in that “New Yorker” interview.
The announcement that Scaramucci was hire – was being hired just 10 days
ago is what prompted White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer`s resignation
which isn`t actually effective until later this month. So, will he still
President Trump said today there is, quote, “no White House chaos.” So, if
that isn`t chaos, what on earth do you call it?
My colleague, Stephanie Ruhle, spoke to Scaramucci last night. He did not
sound like he knew this was coming. I spoke to Scaramucci this morning.
He said he was in the bunker, trying to de-escalate the tension surrounding
It begs the question, what exactly changed between last night and this
morning? Chief of Staff John Kelly is walking into a five-alarm fire of
political, legislative and foreign policy chaos. And his boss has a well-
established tendency to want to fan the flames rather than trying to put
them out which is why the single biggest question right now is this. What
is Kelly`s mandate?
And here`s something we don`t say often. President Trump did something
you`d expect him to do. He shook up his staff in an attempt to reset a
struggling operation. But as this president has shown us time and again,
you have no idea what comes next.
I`m joined by NBC`s Kristen Welker from the White House to try and figure
it out. But first, Kristen, was Anthony Scaramucci fired or did he resign?
Which is it?
[17:05:05] KRISTEN WELKER, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, NBC NEWS: Oh, I
think he was certainly pushed out, Katy. There`s no doubt about that.
Look, I think a couple of things happened. You had the fact that there
were a number of people opposing Anthony Scaramucci coming on board in the
first place, from Steve Bannon to the outgoing press secretary Sean Spicer.
And, of course, Reince Priebus who now no longer part of the
administration. So, I think that`s the first part.
Then, you have that explosive interview that he gave to “The New Yorker” in
which he had that profanity-laced rant unleashing things that we can`t
repeat on T.V. against Reince Priebus, against Steve Bannon.
I got the sense, initially, the president was OK with it. But I think
there was a backlash that was mounting within this administration,
including within some of those within the president`s own family.
I am told the first lady was very bothered by what she had heard. Ivanka
Trump, even though she was a supporter of Anthony Scaramucci. I had
conversations with top officials here who said, frankly, it`s a disgrace
that someone who uses that type of language should be allowed to serve in
the west wing.
And then, enter General John Kelly. There was a lot of questions about who
was going to report to John Kelly? Who would report to President Trump?
I think that he wanted to make it very clear, he wanted to set the tone off
the bat that this is a reset and a restart, if you will. And I think he
found those comments to be unacceptable. And I also think he just want to
take things in a different direction.
So, we`re trying to drill down on some of the timeline and some of the
facts, but the bottom line is there was a mounting sense that Anthony
Scaramucci was standing in the way of the president`s agenda in those 10
short days since he had been announced, instead of contributing to it and
pushing it forward – Katy.
TUR: It`s interesting that you say the family had turned against him.
Because you`re right, it was Ivanka Trump who sat down in the Oval Office
with her father and Anthony Scaramucci last week for about an hour, hour
and a half. And decided that he was going to come on and be the – or two
weeks ago now, the communications director. So, she was intimately
involved in getting him hired in the first place.
Kristen Welker at the White House. Kristen, thank you very much.
WELKER: Thanks, Katy.
TUR: I`m joined by NBC News political analyst Andy Card who was White
House chief of staff under President George W. Bush. Andy, good to see you
one more time.
ANDY CARD, POLITICAL ANALYST, NBC NEWS: Great to see you, Katy. Thank
TUR: Let`s try to flush out what exactly is going on. Anthony Scaramucci
gets ousted on the very day that John Kelly gets sworn in as chief of
staff. Hard to argue that John Kelly wasn`t the one who decided to move
CARD: I`m sure that he was invited to resign. It may not have been his
TUR: Which is, basically, saying resign or we`re going to fire you.
CARD: And that`s not inappropriate. That`s the way the White House should
function. People should have a chance to resign. And so, I think he was
given the opportunity to resign, and he took it.
But I think it also demonstrates that the new chief of staff is coming in
with authority that is relatively clear. And some were questioning whether
or not he would have that authority.
I think he earned respect before he came to the White House, and he`s been
given permission to command respect at the White House.
TUR: So, what is his mandate now?
CARD: Well, according to what we`ve just heard, it`s likely that everybody
in the White House will maybe not report to the chief of staff, but they`re
going to report through the chief of staff to the president.
TUR: What does that mean? Does that mean if Ivanka Trump or Jared Kushner
or Steve Bannon want to go meet with the president, they`ve got to go to
John Kelly first or if they do meet with him, they (INAUDIBLE.)
CARD: It`s kind of a technical thing. If you`re a commissioned officer at
the White House, special assistant to the president, deputy assistant to
the president on the highest level, assistant to the president, you are
appointed by the president. Not by the chief of staff, but by the
But it`s appropriate for the president to say, I`m appointing you, but I`m
expecting to have you work through the chief of staff.
TUR: This –
CARD: That`s the discipline.
TUR: – White House is unlike any other. And most of that is because this
president is unlike any other and he thrives on chaos. That`s the way he`s
always operated. That`s the way his campaign operated, transition up until
Who`s to say that John Kelly is going to be able to instill order within
Donald Trump when everybody else has failed before him?
CARD: I think the jury is still out on that. But I know that generals
don`t believe in leadership by chaos. By definition, they are asking young
men and women to follow tactical commands made by a general. And those
commands will not be followed if they`ve been ordered in a climate of
So, I think the generals, in particular, understand how important it is to
have a clear understanding of the strategic direction you`re heading in and
the tactical decisions that have to be made to get there.
TUR: That`s John Kelly.
CARD: That`s John Kelly.
TUR: Does the president –
CARD: And he understands that.
TUR: – believe that? That`s the question.
CARD: I believe that John Kelly is educating the president to the
realities of how real leadership has to function.
TUR: Do you think he`ll listen?
CARD: I`m hoping that he will. Now, it won`t be perfect and I think the
president will continue to reach out to the American people through his
ability to tweet. I`m just hoping that he`s very careful with the words
that he uses and that there`s a decision to understand the consequence
before the words go out.
[17:10:15] TUR: So, what if Donald Trump decides to tweet early tomorrow
morning late tonight going against something he saw on cable news or
deciding to denigrate the Republican Party for not pursuing health care the
way that he wanted them to do that? What does General Kelly, now I guess
civilian John Kelly who`s chief of staff, do with a president who has his
own microphone and chooses to use it as he has chosen to use it?
CARD: Well, I hope that he walks into the Oval Office, shuts the door and
says, Mr. President, I we need to have a candid conversation. I was
blindsided by something that you did. It doesn`t help me help you if you
blind side me every day. I`d ask you to exercise a little more discipline.
If you feel strongly about something, tell us. We`ll talk about it. And
then, we`ll help you find a way to communicate the way you want to the
American people because that`s really important. Your ability to
communicate with the American people is very important.
TUR: Is John Kelly taking a risk with his reputation by taking this job?
CARD: I think General Kelly, first of all, understands what he`s doing. I
don`t think that he`s going into this with his eyes closed. I think his
eyes are wide open and he knows that he has earned great respect and great
honor and the gratitude of a nation.
TUR: Will he lie on behalf of the president?
CARD: I cannot imagine that John Kelly would lie on behalf of anyone. I
never thought –
TUR: Would he sanction his staff to say things that maybe weren`t true as
we saw Sean Spicer did when he came out and talked about the inauguration
CARD: Everything that I know about General Kelly – he worked with some
remarkable people. Leon Panetta, Bob Gates, right at the top of the list.
He worked very closely with Congress when he was the liaison to face
Congress from the –
TUR: Well, Trump is a different – so different.
CARD: He can do that. No. But I think that he will bring John Kelly`s
discipline and character and I`m going to say honor. And that, hopefully,
will help the president recognize just how noble the responsibility he has
The Oval Office is a special place. President Trump is coming to recognize
that. Today, he had an event that demonstrated it with the medal of honor
TUR: Very few people in this country can say that they know what it`s like
to be in the Oval Office. And know what it`s like to be in the Oval Office
telling the president something he needs to hear when he doesn`t want to
hear it. You are one of those people who can say that.
Andy Card, thank you very much for lending –
CARD: Thank you, Katy.
TUR: – all of your expertise to us, here at MSNBC, today throughout the
hours. I hope you get some time to rest now.
CARD: Thank you, Katy.
TUR: We`ve heard the same piece of advice from people close to Trump,
whether it was Trump the candidate, the nominee or the president. Let him
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEWANDOWSKI: The thing that General Kelly should do is try – is not try
to change Donald Trump. Chuck, as you know, I say you have to let Trump be
Trump. That is what has made him successful over the last 30 years. That
is what the American people voted for. And anybody that thinks they`re
going to change Donald Trump doesn`t know Donald Trump.
ANTHONY SCARAMUCCI, FORMER U.S. WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: The
president himself is always going to be the president. I was in the Oval
Office with him earlier today and we were talking about letting him be
himself, letting him express his full identity. I think he`s got some of
the best political instincts in the world and perhaps in history.
KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR, DONALD TRUMP: We`re going to make sure Donald
Trump is comfortable about being in his own skin, that he doesn`t lose that
authenticity that you simply can`t buy and a pollster can`t give you.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Why would I change? You
know, if you have a football team and you`re winning, and then you get to
the Super Bowl, you don`t change your quarterback, right? So, I`m not
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: I`m joined now by Sam Nunberg who was one of Mr. Trump`s first
political consultants, who`s an advisor to the campaign. He`s also one of
the few people who knows what it`s like to be hired and I`m sorry, Sam,
fired by Trump.
SAM NUNBERG, ADVISOR, TRUMP CAMPAIGN: Three times.
TUR: Three times, multiple times.
So, Donald Trump, you heard him right there. Why would I change? Why
would he change now with John Kelly in charge?
NUNBERG: Well, change in terms of what? Change his public when he`s at
these campaign events? I don`t think, necessarily, he should change if
he`s speaking to his people, that base when he`s at those events.
Now, if you`re talking about changing dynamics of the White House, changing
the way things are operating, I think this is a very good step.
Look, you have John Kelly who is not – I assume would not go into this
position unless he had certain parameters which were accepted by him.
TUR: Like what?
NUNBERG: As far as I understand from public reporting, I haven`t spoke
with anybody in the White House, they`re not going to have such a walk-in
policy. They`re not going to have – they`re going to have more order
there. They have more people –
TUR: So, you, Sam Nunberg, won`t be able to just walk into the Oval
NUNBERG: Right. I won`t be able to walk into the Oval Office. But what
I would say, though, is that that`s a good thing.
NUNBERG: You know, whether or not – look, one thing I did say and I said
this to you privately all the time. No matter what you think of Reince, no
matter what you think of Sean, they had a very tough job.
Those first six months of working for Donald Trump while he`s president of
the United States, the first citizen president, somebody who`s elected
who`s never held government office was going to be very difficult.
And I think Mr. – I think President Trump realized that they had to make
an adjustment. It`s going to be an adjustment, by the way, that, I hear,
applies to everyone, including Jared, including Ivanka.
TUR: Including Steve Bannon?
NUNBERG: Including Steve Bannon.
TUR: So, everybody is going to have to, at the very least, according to
Andy Card, go through John Kelly is what it seems like.
[17:15:02] Are you – do you think, from what you know, of the folks in
this White House that that is an adjustment, that`s a change that they are
going to be willing to make, in order to sow order in a place that has been
chaotic, to put it nicely?
NUNBERG: Well, I – well, I think a lot of the chaos came from these
factions that were inside the White House. And if they`re able to operate
more as a team, when – if you have to make adjustments.
Remember, you had a lot of RNC folks coming in. You had a lot of folks in
the private sector coming in. Frankly, a lot that weren`t involved with
his election, may not have even voted for him in this general election.
And then, you had the people like Steve Bannon and those people coming in,
too. And I think bringing somebody in like this, like John Kelly, who`s –
you know, his experience in the military obviously shows that he can be a
leader. I think we`ll see.
TUR: What`s Donald Trump`s deal with military leaders? Why is he so
differential to them?
NUNBERG: Well, he always talked to me about that he went to military
school. And he went to military school, it seemed to him that, you know,
he was able to bring some order that he was – you know, he`s written about
this publicly. I`m not just saying it. That his parents thought he needed
a little more discipline. He excelled there. And he respects their
And so, I think that also with his term – in terms of him with that and in
terms of this idea that, you know, he looks at himself like the boss, the
NUNBERG: A general type that I think this is going to be a good change.
TUR: So, John Kelly goes into him and says, you`ve got to stop tweeting.
NUNBERG: Well, I wouldn`t do that. I wouldn`t advise for him to stop
tweeting. Perhaps he would –
TUR: If you say, hey, maybe stop attacking the Republican Party. Hey,
maybe stop attacking people for their looks. Hey, maybe stop getting into
personal fights on Twitter.
NUNBERG: What I would say –
TUR: Hey, maybe stop doing any of the number of things that Donald Trump
tweets late at night or early in the morning.
NUNBERG: I think if you said to him, look, you tweeted something about
foreign policy. You tweeted something about North Korea, about China,
TUR: Or confirming parts of the Russia investigation that hadn`t been
confirmed by anybody in the White House.
NUNBERG: Something like that, I think that he could say that`s
problematic. I would wish you`d reconsider it.
One thing I will tell you, though. Everybody says to me, does he take
criticism? The president will hear what your thoughts are as long as you
say – as long as you talk to him constructively about it.
As long as you say to him, you know, Mr. President, let me just tell you,
some people may consider it this way. It`s open to interpretation that
way. Look at – look at what you`re doing here. I don`t know if this is
going to help us in the long run from what we want to achieve. You can
have a rapport with him like that.
If you come in and you say to him, you`re going to have to change. You can
no longer be the Donald Trump of the past. It`s just not going to work.
TUR: Is he sad to see Anthony Scaramucci go?
NUNBERG: Am I sad to see it?
TUR: Is Donald Trump sad to see it?
NUNBERG: Well, I`m sure he is. Look, this was a – this was a gamble.
You know, the real – the real tragedy of all of this between Anthony and
Reince was that Anthony just didn`t get in in the beginning. Had he got in
in the beginning, there wouldn`t have been this toxicity that there was
between Reince and him.
And there`s wouldn`t have been all these – it went to a lot of this White
House drama, too. And I think that, then, it wouldn`t have been, well,
Anthony is on the outside. He can look like the solution.
You know, Anthony is a very good man. I know that, you know, this last six
days, these were really out of the ordinary from the Anthony Scaramucci
that I know. And I`m sure he`s going to have a lot of success.
But just like the president, he had to adapt to this quickly and – you
know, the Ryan Lizza interview was a little problematic, especially for
people like me who wanted Anthony in there for a long time.
TUR: Was Donald Trump wrong to higher him in the first place?
NUNBERG: No, absolutely not.
TUR: Shouldn`t the White House communications director know when to be on
and off the record with a reporter –
TUR: – and what not to say?
TUR: So, is that a mistake in hiring him?
NUNBERG: That`s not a mistake in hiring him. It`s a mistake Anthony made.
The idea that – look at the massive success Anthony had in the public –
in the private sector. Look at – you know, he`s been T.V. before.
And, you know, Donald Trump is out of the box. This is an out of the box
administration. They needed somebody – it`s not going to work with
somebody like – I like Sean. Sean was put in a position where it just
wasn`t going to work because, you know, that –
TUR: Because Donald Trump didn`t trust him.
NUNBERG: Well, it`s – an RNC type background is not going to work. They
need to find a communication director that`s, once again, out of the box,
and get the –
TUR: Who is that?
NUNBERG: I have no idea. I know – I think Jason Miller would be great if
he would take it.
TUR: Jason Miller (INAUDIBLE.)
Sam Nunberg, thank you very much for coming in and lending all of your
insight to us.
NUNBERG: Thank you, Katy.
TUR: Coming up, this west wing has been compared to the reality show
survivor. So, will there be another contestant kicked off the island?
TUR: Welcome back.
Way, way back 10 days ago, when Anthony Scaramucci first stepped behind the
podium in the briefing room, it was a different surprise White House
departure that was making news. That was the day Press Secretary Sean
Spicer announced he would step down. And here is what Scaramucci said 10
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCARAMUCCI: I would love to have Sean here. Sean decided that he thought
it would be better to go. His attitude is, as Anthony is coming in, let me
clear the slate for Anthony. And I do appreciate that about Sean and I
love him for it.
But I don`t have any friction with Sean. I`ve never had any friction with
Reince. This is the White House, the United States of America. We`re
serving the president.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: That clean slate phrase made a reappearance today. The White House
press secretary`s office released a statement saying, quote, “Anthony
Scaramucci will be leaving his role as White House director. Mr.
Scaramucci felt it was best to give chief of staff John Kelly a clean slate
and the ability to build his own team. We wish him all the best.”
We are back with more MTP DAILY and more White House chaos in just 60
TUR: Welcome back.
The panel is here. Maria Teresa Kumar, President of Voto Latino and an
MSNBC Contributor; Nick Confessore, Reporter for “The New York Times” and
also an MSNBC Contributor; and Republican strategist Susan Del Percio.
Guys, it`s lovely to see you. I missed you all last week, especially you,
Susan. Gosh, 10 days, Scaramucci gone so soon. Nick, I felt like there
was so much more we could have heard from him from behind that podium.
NICHOLAS CONFESSORE, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: There sure was and the clean
slates are piling up so fast. They`re going to go to the moon pretty soon.
TUR: How do you make that argument for a clean slate just 10 days after
you say we`re beginning a clean slate?
CONFESSORE: It`s the only argument you can make. You know, there`s
obviously some personality problems happening in the White House now and it
all goes from the top, I think, frankly.
Look, I think the president has created an atmosphere in his White House
where there is no playbook for staying in his good graces or keeping him
pleased. And that is why it`s a leaky White House, frankly.
CONFESSORE: And that`s why there`s all this constant fighting back and
TUR: Is Kelly going to be able to put a lid on that?
SUSAN DEL PERCIO, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: For a while I think he will be
able to. And I think also – we keep hearing the word discipline and I
know that`s a popular word to describe it. I also think that he will be
I think the White House needs to get on track with hires, with moving
things along, moving their agenda. And I think he could be very helpful in
managing, basically, walk-in privileges with getting White House hires
TUR: So, what is the mandate? Just that he needs to control who goes to
see the White House? Is he in charge of getting the leaks together? Or is
he going to be in charge of getting Donald Trump, himself, on track?
MARIA TERESA KUMAR, PRESIDENT, VOTO LATINO: You know, they did a profile
on James Baker recently and he said that what you want to be in a chief of
staff is to manage the staff, not the chief. And in this case, I think
he`s coming in specifically to manage the chief, to manage Donald Trump.
So that the rest of the – the rest of the staff can actually do their
[17:25:04] That`s going to be incredibly hard, though, with the infighting.
And because he does not have the liaison to Congress, he`s going to have –
Kelly is going to have a really hard time actually connecting those dots
and making sure that they are walking front and center together.
TUR: I mean, but Reince Priebus had the – had the connection to those in
Congress and nothing got done. Ultimately, do you –
PERCIO: But he didn`t have the president`s respect and he didn`t have the
president`s full confidence behind him. When he spoke, he did not speak
with the authority of the president. That – no one knew – depending on
who you were talking to at that particular time was speaking on behalf of
I think that Kelly`s going to really need to show that he has the – he
speaks with the authority of the president in moving things forward.
TUR: There was a really interesting piece out about the final humiliation
of Reince Priebus. I think it`s a Molly Ball piece, correct me if I`m
But he says it`s his story in a way is the story of the Republican Party
itself. His initial weariness of Trump gave way to capitulation and then
enabling. He swallowed his private qualms for the sake of the team until
his turn to be the victim of Trump`s pageant of dominance finally came
publicly disgraced, dismissed in a tweet. That is Molly Ball at “The
Gosh, I mean, Reince Priebus really sacrificed himself and his reputation
for this job. Who`s to say that John Kelly is not going to be doing the
same exact thing, Nick?
CONFESSORE: It`s entirely possible. Look, as an important reminder, it
was Reince Priebus who set Trump with the small donor operation that was an
important part of his success in the main election. It was Reince Priebus
who convinced the big donors on the Republican side to not jump ship. It
was Reince Priebus who was the glue between this guy and a very nervous
establishment for a long time.
With Reince and Spicer gone and with more of their people perhaps gone in
the coming days, there is no more glue or connective tissue between the
traditional Republican Party and the Trump White House. It`s gone.
TUR: So, where does it all go? Does he go Democrat or does he go just
CONFESSORE: He goes Trump.
KUMAR: And what`s interesting is right before the show, I had a
conversation with someone that worked very closely with DHS. And when
Kelly was put in, they felt that he was going to basically steward that
ship. He was going to basically continue a lot of the dotted lines of the
In retrospect, they said he was basically a Trump yes man. And it will be
interesting to see if he will continue to be able to have the ear of Donald
Trump while doing the right thing for the American people.
TUR: What happens when Donald Trump says, you know what? I have bigger
crowds than President Obama when it`s demonstrably false or what happens
when he says there is voter fraud when there`s no evidence to support that?
What does John Kelly do, Susan Del Percio? Does he resign in protest
because he won`t be made to lie to the American public or does he – does
he do the yes man bidding and say, you know what? I`ll find a way to
deliver this message?
DEL PERCIO: Well, most of the time, the chief of staff isn`t responding to
Donald Trump`s tweets. But if he is put in that situation –
TUR: If he`s on “MEET THE PRESS” or he`s on any of the number of the
Sunday shows and asked that question?
DEL PERCIO: I think if it goes against any sense of personal integrity
that he has, he won`t go there. Or he`ll go there for a bit and then, you
know, if he has to on television, if he`s on “MEET THE PRESS,” he`s going
to answer the question in line with the administration and then they`ll be
the story of why he`s leaving.
Donald Trump has to start worrying about the folks who are going to leave
versus the people he wants to fire. Because that`s going to be the story
coming up, the people he loses.
So, if he does lose, for example, General Kelly, that`s going to be more
problematic than him firing Anthony Scuchamelli.
DEL PERCIO: Scaramucci, sorry, I forgot his name.
TUR: So, Reince lasted six months. What do you give – what do you give
CONFESSORE: You know, I can`t place bets on the air. It`s very hard for
me. I think – look, I think that the Marine Corps and the Trump White
House could not be more dissimilar. There is not a kind of esprit de corps
and unity you usually want to see in a White House in this White House.
CONFESSORE: You know, the lines of operational work and accountability you
normally see in a White House. You know, and, again, it goes back to
leakiness. When people are constantly afraid of their jobs and their
position and think they`re about to be on the losing end of a power
struggle, they leak.
TUR: Usually, we would have been talking about – if it wasn`t just the
need for somebody to go in and get control over this White House. What
about all of the generals that are being put into place into what are
normally civilian roles?
Susan, is there a – or, yes, Susan, is there a concern that there is just
too much military influence right now within our government?
DEL PERCIO: That`s something that a lot of people are concerned about
because, again, a lot of these people with military backgrounds don`t
necessarily understand all the ways government functions and government
works and has the back and forth with people.
They`re not politicians. They`re from the institutional background. And I
think that is giving a lot of pause to people. And like we talked about
earlier, there`s no connection to the Republican Party.
Also, vice president Pence no longer has a couple of connections directly
into the White House with people he could put in.
TUR: Yes, what happens with Pence?
DEL PERCIO: And that`s – and that`s going to be very interesting to see
how that relationship goes forward.
TUR: Very quickly.
KUMAR: And there`s also a lot of speculation that the reason they moved
out Kelly to chief of staff is because Sessions might be moved over to DHS
and that freeze-up folks in order for him to be (INAUDIBLE).
TUR: Ongoing chess game. Checkers game. I`m not sure we can call it chess.
Maria Teresa, Nick, Susan. Stay with us. We have so much more to talk
about. Still ahead, how will the latest shake-up at the White House
reverberate on the other end of Capitol Hill? And is there new hope for a
bipartisan solution to health care? Stay tuned.
TUR: Still ahead on “MTP Daily,” can congressional problem solvers get a
bipartisan health care plan off the ground? That is next. But first, Aditi
Roy has the “CNBC Market Wrap.” Hi, Aditi.
ADITI ROY, GENERAL ASSIGNMENT REPORTER, CNBC: Hi there, Katy. Good to see
you. Stocks finishing mixed on Wall Street. The Dow closing at a record
high, thanks to strong earnings. The Dow gaining 60 points. The S&P lost
one point. The Nasdaq shed 26.
Boeing gave the Dow a boost share to the world`s largest planemaker rising
half a percent after announcing it expects a record number of aircraft
orders from India. The news comes about a week after Boeing posted better
than expected quarterly results.
Facebook and other tech companies pull the Nasdaq and S&P lower. Facebook
fell 1.9 percent. And that`s it from CNBC, first in business worldwide.
TUR: Welcome back. So what happens now after Republicans last week failed
to pass their health care bills? Lawmakers on both sides are taking this
moment to reflect on how to move forward. Late this afternoon, Reuters
reported that Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, the chairman of the finance
committee, believes senators, quote, are too divided to keep working on
health care overhaul legislation and that he and other senior Republicans
will take that message to the White House.
President Trump has said he wants Republicans to keep trying to repeal and
replace Obamacare, tweeting this weekend that they should demand another
vote before voting on any other bill. And also seeming to threaten pulling
what are called cost-sharing reduction subsidies that lower costs for
people with low incomes, calling them, quote, bailouts for insurance
But some lawmakers like Republican Senator Susan Collins yesterday on “Meet
the Press” have pointed out a move like that could wreak more havoc on the
current system. She is just one of a number of members of congress pleading
for a bipartisan solution to fix the problems with Obamacare. And this
afternoon, we saw one idea emerge when a group of what claims to be 43
house Democrats and Republicans called the bipartisan problem solvers
caucus release their own proposal aimed at stabilizing the insurance
Joining me now is a Republican congressman, Leonard Lance of New Jersey, a
member of the problem solvers caucus and also Democrat Congressman Eric
Swalwell of California. And gentlemen, it is wonderful to have you both on
at the same time.
I`m going to start here in the studio with Congressman Lance. You got a
proposal as part of the problem solvers caucus where you talk about
bringing those cost-sharing reductions payments under congressional
oversight and appropriations. You also want to adjust the employer mandate
from 50 employees to 500, so the Republicans will like, and repealing the
medical device tax.
Do you think that those things will be enough to fix the issues that are
out there with Obamacare?
REP. LEONARD LANCE (R), NEW JERSEY: I certainly think it`s a step in the
right direction,Katy. And I think that we should start from the middle and
work out from the middle. And I`m pleased to be a part of the problem
It is our attempt to say that this system needs to be reformed because
there certainly are challenges to it. And this was a give and take and not
everybody got what he wanted, but that`s the art of compromise. And I think
it`s a way forward.
TUR: You are somebody who I think needs to make an effort to work with the
other side because your district I think Hillary Clinton took it by just
one point. You live in a place where bipartisanship is necessary, New
Jersey. What about the others in your caucus who are from more conservative
districts who might not have that same impetus?
LANCE: I certainly think conservative colleagues of mine in the Republican
caucus will favor elimination of the medical device tax. It`s a very
onerous tax and to up the number of employees from 50 to 500 I think is
something that will be very attractive. And on the Democratic side, there
are portions of the proposal that will attract Democratic colleagues of
mine in the House of Representatives.
TUR: Let`s find out. Congressman Swalwell, anything that we`ve talked about
so far sound appealing to you, the CSR payments under congressional
oversight and appropriations or adjusting the employer mandate or repealing
the medical device tax? Any of those things work for you?
REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D), CALIFORNIA: Thank you, Katy and thank you to
Congressman Lance for putting out ideas rather than just seeking repeal.
No, I do like a lot of what Congressman Lance and his colleagues in the
problem solvers caucus have put forth, particularly congressional oversight
for cost sharing. I`m a Democrat who has voted to repeal the medical device
tax. That affects a lot of my constituent companies.
Also, Katy, I had a hike with your rep event this week and I took a hundred
of my constituents on a hike and Republicans and Democrats alike told me,
if there`s issues, fix it, but don`t get rid of it. And they talked about
what they`ve enjoyed as far as the pre-existing condition protections and
seeing their premiums go down in coverage that they`ve never had before. So
I think Leonard is on the right track here. Let`s sit down and talk about
what we agree on rather than just going right for the repeal button.
TUR: So a lot of house Democrats though including you are co-sponsoring a
single payer health care bill. If you`re starting from that extreme, do you
think Republicans are going to be able to come to the table? It`s like
Republicans saying that we`re going to repeal Obamacare, is it not?
SWALWELL: Well, no. I actually think that we should have a public option
also being considered. But no, I`m telling you right now, Katy, that I am
open to working with Republicans on whatever we can do to strengthen the
Affordable Care Act.
I should also point out that I think senate Republicans understand what it
takes to strengthen it because in their repeal and delay legislation, they
delayed the repeal of Obamacare for two years, and they prescribed as a
solution the cost sharing parts that Leonard talked about, tax credits for
small businesses as well as put in risk quarters (ph), so they actually
know how to strengthen the Affordable Care Act.
We just think that you should strengthen it, you know, all the way into the
future, not put a two-year deadline on it.
LANCE: Eric makes a very good point about pre-existing conditions. I`ve
held quite a few town hall meetings this spring, four. We may hold a fifth
one in August. And my constituents are uniform that they do not want any
change in the provision regarding pre-existing conditions. And I think that
that is a matter where we can agree and certainly the problem solvers
caucus agrees on that.
TUR: What about Orrin Hatch? You just heard him a moment ago saying that –
or I just said it, actually, as saying that Republicans are too divided to
find any sort of solution for health care and that they should just
essentially move on?
LANCE: I think we should move on to tax reform, but that doesn`t mean we
can`t do two things at once. I think the debate on tax reform should begin
and should begin immediately when we return to session in September, but
that doesn`t mean we can`t continue to work on health care.
TUR: Congressman Swalwell, are you concerned at all that those in your
party, those voters in your party who may say, I don`t want you to help
this administration get anything done? I don`t want anything that could
have potentially the label of Trumpcare succeeding?
SWALWELL: No. I think most of my constituents understand that if, you know,
there`s something wrong with the pilot, the whole plane goes down. So we
have to root for the success of the country and also we shouldn`t just let
him bludgeon the Affordable Care Act so that he`s so unpopular. This
actually hurts people if he`s able to do that. So, as Leonard said, we do
have to find ways to make it work.
And, you know, I am concerned about the counties, the bear counties as they
call them that have very little competition. And I think we can actually
find ways now to do that. Orrin Hatch, I hope, when he tells the White
House this, is met with a response of, okay, find ways to work with the
Democrats so that we can strengthen the Affordable Care Act. That would be
a positive result for everyone in the country.
TUR: Would you take that message to the White House if you were given the
LANCE: I would and I think this can be a win for the president and for the
administration, a win for the new chief of staff, General Kelly. I think it
can be a win for all of us in Washington. But most important of all, a win
for the American people.
TUR: Gentlemen, it was lovely having you both on at the same time and talk
about ways to find a solution rather than ways to keep the other side from
finding a solution. It was a true breath of fresh air. Thank you
Congressman Lance and Congressman Swalwell.
SWALWELL: My pleasure.
TUR: Meanwhile, we will be right back.
TUR: Welcome back. Recently, Chuck sat down with Academy Award winning
screenwriter Mark Boal on his new film “Detroit” which tells the story of a
1967 race riots in Detroit. In light of the subject of the film, Chuck
asked Boal for his take on President Trump`s comments on Friday where he
seemed to be urging police officers to be more rough in their handling of
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK BOAL, SCREENWRITER: It`s obviously an inappropriate thing to say and
very ignorant too. I mean, we have constitutional protections in this
country which are there for very good reason and you`re innocent until
you`re proven guilty.
And the reason you don`t want police officers making those kind of
determinations in the field is that they can make mistakes, and the movie
really documents the cost of that kind of prejudicial thinking.
And in the case of what happened in 1967, it led to triple murder. But I
don`t think that – even though I think maybe his remarks resonated with
some of his base, I don`t think that it would be – that that sentiment is
shared by police departments.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: The White House press secretary said today she believes the president
was making a joke when he was speaking to those police officers. You can
watch Chuck`s full interview with Mark Boal at meetthepress.com and you can
catch “Detroit” in theaters everywhere on Friday.
TUR: New graphics. Welcome back. In addition to the staffing chaos, here`s
what`s confronting the new White House chief of staff. The president`s
legislative agenda is a mess after the health care bill collapsed last
week. Relationships with Capitol Hill are souring. And there are dueling
foreign policy crises, one with Russia, the other with North Korea.
And with that, it is time for “The Lid.” The panel is back. Maria Teresa
Kumar, Nicholas Confessore, Susan del Percio. Nicholas, that sounds so
formal. OK, so North Korea, Donald Trump was asked about the missile test,
you know, testing a missile that could potentially reach Chicago a little
bit earlier today, he said they`re handling it, they`re handling it,
they`re handling it. What does they`re handling it mean?
KUMAR: That they just received the memo that this happened. No, seriously,
I think they are trying to – strategically, they`re trying to figure out
how to get out of the mess that they did of engagement and try to become
friendly once again with the Chinese. But they are blaming this all on the
TUR: Are they trying to get mad (ph) at the Chinese? Because the president
tweeted that China is, you know, greatly disappointing him, something to
that effect. He tried to use the carrot and now he`s using the stick?
NICK CONFESSORE, POLITICAL REPORTER AT THE NEW YORK TIMES: It`s back and
forth as Maria said. You know, we started out thinking if we engage with
the Chinese, we throw them a nice dinner and (INAUDIBLE) cake, we can get
more of them on North Korea. I think they fail to understand the basic
reality that China does not have an interest in peace on the Korean
peninsula, for one thing. Two, their own agenda –
TUR: Why not?
CONFESSORE: Because they want a divided Korean peninsula because –
TUR: It strengthens them?
CONFESSORE: – it strengthens them. Unified peninsula. We put (INAUDIBLE)
nuclear arm potentially. Actually bad for China (INAUDIBLE) territory, on
their borders. More importantly, you know, also has an agenda on trade,
where they`re constantly fighting with China.
CONFESSORE: And we saw the breakdown of the discussions over economic
reform with China recently. They haven`t really got a card to play with
here, I think.
TUR: Still, there`s a lot of talk right now about the first strike, that
America might make the first strike on North Korea. However, that might
look. The White House is refusing to say yes or no to that, only that all
options are on the table. Susan, what do you think of that?
DEL PERCIO: Well, I agree with Nick in that – you know, unrest in the
peninsula is a good thing for China. But they`re only going to go so far
until it`s really bad for them. The issue of, if it gets that close to a
first strike, China will have to take some moves against North Korea. They
don`t want to see that.
TUR: How do they know we are going to get close to a first strike? Do we
give them a heads-up on that?
DEL PERCIO: . has more information on North Korea than we ever will. They
have influence over the generals there. They fought them off for decades.
That`s one of the reasons why they can keep a certain amount of stability
or even change a regime if necessary. They can also stop by – there`s a
lot of options for China to take action.
The question is, when I hear the president say, oh, we`ll handle it.
Really? I mean, people have been trying to deal with this for decades. This
is not an easy solution. I think those kind of simple off-the-cuff comments
are really problematic. How we approach not just this problem, but how we
TUR: How are we getting peace in the Middle East?
KUMAR: Katy, I think this is more of the president projecting. Ronald
Reagan basically was able to shift the focus of American people when he
wasn`t doing so well at home. Is Donald Trump starting to basically prepare
himself and start projecting engaging in a country perhaps –
TUR: A war with Donald Trump?
KUMAR: When you get closer to the elections and people are afraid, they
feel their security is at risk, 99 percent of the time the American people
go after the commander in chief. I think this is his way of projecting is
there going to be North Korea now?
What other countries can it be? I think this is where we have to be very
wary. Perhaps (INAUDIBLE) Kelly and his ears are going to be helpful. But I
do not – I would not put it off the table that this is something that they
CONFESSORE: It`s certainly possible. The problem is, a strike against North
Korea or conventional attack on North Korea means instant death of
thousands of American troops in the DMZ (ph) –
KUMAR: I don`t think it`s North Korea but I don`t think –
CONFESSORE: Exactly. Deaths of thousands of civilians. There are no good
DEL PERCIO: The international policy, we can`t rely on our allies to have
our backs on other things where –
TUR: It`s so – it`s a reminder that there`s chaos in the White House.
We`re talking about this intrigue every day, who`s up, who`s down, who`s
getting fired, who`s getting ousted, who`s the next chief of staff, what`s
going to happen to so-and-so come Monday.
But ultimately, there`s some serious business going on, not only North
Korea, but look what`s happening in Venezuela, what`s happening in
Pakistan, Russia, talking about expelling a number of our diplomats. There
is serious stuff happening around the world. And with that, we have to go.
Thank you, guys. Maria Teresa, Nick, and Susan. After the break, Los
Angeles gets the gold.
TUR: In case you missed it, the traffic in L.A. is getting a lot worse in
about a decade. The city council president`s office confirms that Los
Angeles will host the 2028 summer Olympics. L.A. has been guaranteed either
the 24 or 28 games, but reached a deal with the International Olympic
Committee to take the later date with 24 games to Paris.
This will be the third time the summer Olympics will be held in L.A. They
also hosted the 1932 and the 1984 games. L.A. is my hometown. And I was on
hand for that last Olympics there. That`s me in the photo with my mom who
was covering the games at the time. Maybe I`ll get to go to the 2028 games
standing up on my own.
It seems early, but you can catch the 2028 summer Olympics right here on
the NBC family of networks. Be sure to set your DVR or whatever you`ll be
using to record television in 11 years. That`s all for tonight. We`ll be
back tomorrow with more “MTP Daily.” “The Beat” with my man, Ari Melber,
starts right now. Hey there, Ari.
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