Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES Date: July 24, 2017 Guest: Jennifer Rubin, Evan McMullin, Chris Murphy
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST: - from harm`s way. If it comes to it, he will test his constitutional prerogative to do the same for himself and no one can say with certainty what Trump will do next yet to say that he will do what is necessary to keep him in the White House is a slam dunk. And that`s HARDBALL for now. Thanks for being with us. "ALL IN" with Chris Hayes starts right now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on ALL IN.
JARED KUSHNER, PRESIDENT TRUMP`S SENIOR ADVISER: Let me be very clear. I did not collude with Russia.
HAYES: Denials on the White House drive way.
KUSHNER: I had no improper contacts.
HAYES: What the President`s son-in-law just confirmed about his Russia dealings. And Congressman Eric Swalwell on what he plans to ask Kushner next. Then,
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, should Jeff Sessions resign?
HAYES: Is the President about to fire his Attorney General?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: How do you take a job and then recuse yourself?
HAYES: New speculation on a possible replacement.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know who you are!
HAYES: A new questions about pardon power.
ANTHONY SCARAMUCCI, WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: He brought that up. He said - but he doesn`t have to be pardoned.
HAYES: And the countdown to confusion.
TRUMP: For the past 17 years, ObamaCare has wreaked havoc.
HAYES: The unprecedented deception and deflection as Republicans prepare it take a health care vote that no one can explain.
TRUMP: The first rule of medicine is, do no harm.
HAYES: When ALL IN starts right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Good evening from New York, I`m Chris Hayes. Today, multiple reports that people within the President`s inner circle are considering firing the Attorney General. That reporting comes amid an increasingly strange barrage of public utterances by the President himself. Washington Post reporting just within the last hour that President Trump and his advisers are privately discussing the possibility of replacing Attorney General Jeff Sessions and some confidants are floating prospects of who could take his place where he would resign or be fired according to people familiar with the talks. Members of Trump`s inner circle including White House officials have increasingly raised the question among themselves in recent days as the President has continued to vent his frustration with the Attorney General, the people said. Today the President`s new Press Secretary was asked about Session`s appearance today at the White House.
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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are some reports that he was at the white house today. Can you share any information about that?
SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: Sure. I can confirm he was at the White House but he did not meet with the President while he was there today.
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HAYES: Sanders confirming Sessions with a was indeed at the White House today. That assertion coming after new White House Communication Director, Anthony Scaramucci, seen in the background of that shot reportedly said, President Trump and Sessions and I quote here, need to speak and determine what the future of the relationship looks like. The regret President Trump expressed last to New York Times about his Attorney General was quickly followed by a Washington Post report that during the campaign, Sessions had indeed discussed campaign-related matters with the Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak according to U.S. intelligent intercepts of Kislyak. That contradicts quite squarely Sessions` public statements about those very same conversations. Then this weekend, President Trump weighed in again tweeting, "So why aren`t the Committees and Investigators and our, of course, beleaguered AG looking into crooked Hillary`s crimes and Russia relations." Note, no such Hillary Clinton and Russia relations crimes exist. And earlier today, and at a photo op with outgoing White House interns, the President was again asked about his Attorney General.
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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, should Jeff Sessions resign?
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HAYES: Washington Post also reported that one person close to Trump said the President asked him about how firing Sessions would play in the conservative media and the names being considered his replacements are reportedly Senator Ted Cruz and Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Earlier today, Giuliani told CNN, there is no truth to a similar report that he was under consideration and crucially he defended Sessions saying Sessions was right to recuse himself. I`m joined now by Democratic Congressman Eric Swalwell of California, Member of the House Intelligence Committee. Congressman, your reaction to the notion the President may indeed fire the Attorney General.
REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D), CALIFORNIA: He should go, Chris, for other reasons not because he hasn`t been loyal to the President. Because he has had a problem, I think, being loyal to the amount of forthcoming information that you have to give to the Senate. Twice when he was asked about contracts with Russia, he didn`t disclose them. He participated in the firing of former FBI Director James Comey. I think for those reasons, he should go. But also, Chris, you know, some people say why would you want to get rid of him? He`s recused. When isn`t that better than who Trump could put in. Actually, now is the time for Senate, especially Republican Leaders there to put a check on this Presidency, to put a true law enforcement official in there. No relation top President`s campaign and allow this investigation to proceed.
HAYES: So, this is interesting. You are in line with a call made by the Congressional Black Caucus today that Attorney General Sessions is unfit to serve. The top law enforcement official in the nation should resign from the position immediately. As the saying goes, fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. The concern expressed by Democrats which you just alluded to is, of course, this would be the first set in Dominos to get rid of Mueller which many people believe is the President`s ultimate goal and he has shown in relieving James Comey of duty, he`s willing to do something like that to stop the investigations that he views as unfair witch hunts.
SWALWELL: Yes. And Chris, I would see this as this should be the first set of dominoes to have Republicans in the Senate show some courage, to show that we are a co-equal branch of the - that Congress is a co-equal branch government with the Presidency and that we are not helpless to what this President wants to do to obstruct the investigation. That`s what I would like to see and that that would be the opportunity if Jeff Sessions was fired.
HAYES: Speaking of the investigation, today, Jared Kushner, President`s son-in-law, Chief Adviser, gave some - I wouldn`t call testimony, I guess answered some questions to Senate Intel Committee, will have some more little later in the show about his comments but since I have you here right now, you`re going to be speaking with Mr. Kushner tomorrow in a closed Session. Can you explain for me because I`m unclear about how this all ended up? He is not under oath but he`s going to talk to you and he can`t lie to Congress and lying to Congress is a crime nonetheless, right?
SWALWELL: Yes. I wish it was in public. I wish he today raise his right hand for everyone to see and there are fair questions out there about just the number of contacts that he and people on the Trump campaign had with Russia. And Chris, if you just take a step back, you`re running for President of the United States, you need votes in the United States. Why this campaign had so many meetings, not just with Russia, but just with any country. Why would you spend so much time doing that? I think it is fair to ask.
HAYES: Jared - one thing Jared Kushner said today that I would like to get your response too. He said I had no improper contacts. He said this on the record outside the White House. It seems to me that there`s a case to be made, that the meeting itself with the Russian lawyer, with the variety of Russian nationals, the express purpose of which was to trade information from the Russian government on Hillary Clinton would itself constitute an improper act. Do you believe and or trust what Jared Kushner says about these things?
SWALWELL: Tomorrow, what we must do is corroborate what he has said or be able to discredit what he has said because he like others in the Trump administration have shown by their own failures to disclose that we can`t take them at their word. And so, that`s our job now. It`s to test and develop the evidence and then make a report to the American people.
HAYES: What is your theory Congressman of why it is that Jared Kushner left off those meetings with Russian Nationals? Why it is Jeff Sessions apparently obfuscated or deceived about the nature of his interactions, first the existence of interaction with Sergey Kislyak and then the nature? What is your internal working mental theory about this right now?
WALWELL: Yes. Well, my gut tells me that if this was only one person who failed to disclose one contact that there are a lot of innocent explanations as to why that may be. But to have so many people who have so many contacts with Russia that were not disclosed and have only been acknowledged once overwhelming evidence is presented tells me that we better keep probing because this don`t look like coincidence. But again Chris, our job is to get - you know, through all this evidence and make a report. Again they may just be a thousand coincidences but until we can ask all of these witnesses questions after reviewing all the documents, you know, I still have a lot of questions.
HAYES: All right, Congressman Eric Swalwell, thanks for making time tonight.
SWALWELL: My pleasure.
HAYES: Joining me now, Barbara McQuade, she`s a former U.S. Attorney from Eastern District of Michigan, Professor of law at the University of Michigan and Matt Miller, MSNBC Justice and Security Analyst, former Chief Spokesman at the Justice Department, let`s return now Matt to the news that is crossing from the Washington Post in the last hour which bolsters other reports and utterances by the President himself that Jeff Sessions job may be on the line. What do you make of that?
MATT MILLER, MSNBC JUSTICE, AND SECURITY ANALYST: I think it`s very clear that the President is trying to push the Attorney General out. I think there can`t be any doubt of it after that tweet today. You know, laws week it could have been blowing off steam, this seemed deliberate today. And honestly, I think Jeff Sessions should go. We saw him you know, earlier this year compromised the Department`s independence, the most sacred thing at the Justice Department when he signed off on firing Jim - firing Jim Comey. And then in the last few days, the way he`s responded these attacks have been very telling.
These weren`t just attacks on Jeff Sessions and Rod Rosenstein and Bob Mueller, who the President all attack last week as well. These are attacks on the rule of law. They`re attacks on an independent Justice Department. And Jeff Sessions` response to that was to hold a press conference where he just said he enjoys working for the President and looks forward to continuing. The Attorney General needs to stand up for the independent rule of law for this country and tell the President he`s not going to stand for that. And if he won`t do it, he should go and we can find a new Attorney General who will.
HAYES: Barbara, one of the - one of the most remarkable things in the President`s public statement about Jeff Sessions was essentially calling on his own Attorney General to investigate his former Campaign Adversary Hillary Clinton, his opponent in the Presidential Campaign. What do you make of that as a former Prosecutor in terms of the norms of independence that have traditionally pertain to how U.S. Attorney and how the FBI conducts their job?
BARBARA MCQUADE, FORMER U.S. ATTORNEY OF EASTERN DISTRICT OF MICHIGAN: Well, it reminds me of the outcry that we heard during one of the debates when then candidate Trump said that you know if he became President he would order his attorney general to investigate Hillary Clinton. It`s completely improper, it`s completely inappropriate. The Attorney General and the Justice Department must be completely independent of the political whims of the White House. And that`s why there are such strict channels of communication set up, about what they can even talk about or when they could be together. So, I find it entirely inappropriate.
HAYES: I want to play for you what the President said about recusal - Jeff Sessions` recusal, which seems to be the sort of source of much of his ire. Jeff Sessions can`t essentially oversea presumably perhaps manipulate, control, direct, the investigation into his campaign. Here is him expressing his frustration last week to the New York Times. Take a listen.
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TRUMP: Well, Sessions should have never recused himself, and if he want - if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and I would have picked somebody else.
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HAYES: Do you believe Sessions` recusal was proper and do you think his dismissal would lead an improper manipulation to the current investigation, Barbara?
MCQUADE: Well, the recusal is proper. If you look at the Justice Department Ethics Guidelines, there are a number of reasons, if you have a financial, personal or political relationship with someone you are supposed to recuse. So I believe that it was appropriate for him to recuse. I think what`s really going on is that President Trump confuses personal loyalty to loyalty to the mission of the job. He sees the Attorney General as his personal lawyer when in fact, it is the Attorney General of the United States.
HAYES: You know, Matt, this is where - it`s interesting that you say Sessions should go. Obviously, Sessions is probably, of all cabinet figures, the one who draws I think the most opposition arguably from Democrats, from folks on the left. He was - he was fought vigorously for confirmation. But don`t you worry that essentially the political expediency of getting rid of him in this moment would be tacitly colluding with the continuing efforts of obstructing an ongoing investigation in plain sight by the President of the United States?
MILLER: You know, I think the President of the United States will continue to try doing that whether Jeff Session is the Attorney General or whether someone else is. He doesn`t need to fire Jeff Sessions to end the Mueller investigation. He has other ways to do that. We`ve talked about it on the shown before. He can withdraw the regs and just fire himself. So if he wants to do that, he`s going to find a way to do it. I think probably, ultimately that`s what he`ll do. But - so, you know, we have to ask ourselves, should we allow an Attorney General or do we want an Attorney General to stay in office who`s already shown that he`s willing to compromise himself for the President? I think the answer to that is no.
And you know, if he leaves on his own accord, then the President will obviously nominate someone else, the names that were floating in that Washington Post story, Ted Cruz, Rudy Giuliani, both people who made very similar comments to the ones Trump had made it up prosecuting Hillary Clinton, comments that ought to be disqualifying for an AG. We have a debate about who the next person ought to be and I hope it would be someone - I hope Republican Senators would stand up as they did to some extent with Chris Wray and (INAUDIBLE) that someone with personal integrity.
HAYES: Barbara, finally to you, there`s conversation about pardons which is obviously a power vested in the President by the United States Constitution. The President twitting, well, all agree U.S. President has the complete power to pardon. Why think of that when only crime so far is leaks against us. Fake news. The first part of that, Anthony Scaramucci confirming that he discussed pardons. Where are we? It seems that we have kind of come off the access constitutionally and are kind of spinning out into a vast dark universe of unchartered territory.
MCQUADE: Well I found it really interesting that President Trump is talking about the power of pardon during the very week when he`s got Jared Kushner, Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort providing statements to Congress. So I`m not sure what he saw the connection as there. But yes, in fact, he does have the power to pardon anyone but except himself, I believe because the Constitution does say, except in matters of impeachment. So I do not believe that the President can pardon himself.
HAYES: All right, Barbara McQuade and Matt Miller, thank you both.
MILLER: Thank you.
HAYES: Coming up, Senator Chris Murphy joins me to talk about tomorrow`s vote on a Republican Health Care Bill that no one, no one, has seen. And Jared Kushner speaks. What the President`s son-in-law just confirmed about his dealings with Russia after the two-minute break.
HAYES: President Trump`s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, one of the most powerful individuals in America made rare public remarks in the White House today where he insisted he did nothing wrong hours after effectively confirming months of media reports about his numerous undisclosed contacts with Russian nationals during the campaign.
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KUSHNER: Let me be very clear. I did not collude with Russia nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so. I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds for my businesses. And I have been fully transparent in providing all requested information.
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HAYES: Today Kushner spent two hours answering questions posed by staffers on the Senate Intelligence Committee about his contacts with Russia. Ahead of that closed-door session this morning, Kushner released a lengthy statement in which he acknowledged attending that now infamous meeting organized by Donald Trump Jr. in which a Russian lawyer offered dirt on Hillary Clinton that was built as coming from the Russian government. He admitted having four meetings with Russian officials during the campaign and transition period despite not disclosing a single one of those meetings on his security clearance form under penalty of perjury for omission. And Kushner detailed his effort to set up a secret communications line with the Russian government during one of those meetings.
Kushner had excuses for all of this which included blaming his assistant for submitting his security clearance form before he had completed it and claiming he didn`t know the topic of the Don Junior meeting because he did not fully read his e-mails. Kushner stating in part, it was typical for me to receive 200 more e-mails a day during the campaign. I did not have time to read every one. We should note the subject of that was something like Russia-Clinton. It is illegal to lie to Congress but Kushner was not under oath today. He will be under oath tomorrow when he appears before the House Intelligence Committee.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump Jr. and Trump`s former Campaign Chairman Paul Manafort are now in negotiations with the Senate Judiciary Committee about answering questions in a closed Session and they will not be under oath. Now, this all comes as President Trump faces a big decision, whether to sign a bill with broad bipartisan support that including sweeping Russia sanctions package to punish Moscow for interference in the Presidential Election as well as sanctions on Iran and North Korea. The White House has long`s opposed the effort to escalate any punitive measures on Russia. And on Air Force One today, incoming Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders refused to say whether the President will sign the bill.
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SANDERS: The President wants to make sure that we actually get the best deal for the United States and so he`s very focused on that. But at the same time wants to make sure that sanctions on those three countries remain and you know, he`s going to study that legislation and see what the final product looks like.
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HAYES: Yesterday, the White House once again question the underlying rationale for the Russia sanctions. The interference in the election with newly minted White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci appearing in the Sunday shows to effectively offer up the Kremlin line on this issue.
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SCARAMUCCI: Somebody said to me yesterday, I won`t tell you who, that if the Russians actually hacked the situation and spilled out those e-mails, you would have never seen it, you would never had any evidence of them, meaning that they`re super confident in their deceptions skills in hacking. My point is all of the information isn`t on the table yet. But here`s what I know about the President -
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: Wait, wait, wait, Anthony -
SCARAMUCCI: Let me finish. All right, go ahead.
TAPPER: You`re making a lot of assertions here. I don`t know who this anonymous person is that said that if the Russians have actually done it we wouldn`t have been able to detect it but it is-but it is the unanimous -
SCARAMUCCI: How about - how about it was the President, Jake.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now, NBC Political Analyst Philip Rucker, White House Bureau Chief for the Washington Post and MSNBC Legal Analyst Paul Butler, former Federal Prosecutor and Professor at Georgetown University Law - School of Law. Philip, let me start with you. Kushner - I mean, the context today was quite remarkable. You just rarely see White House Advisers or Aides out in front of the White House with the Presidential seal giving an address like that. What did you make of that?
PHILIP RUCKER, NBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, you know, he wanted to make a statement. What he actually said at the podium there was not all that different from the 11-page statement he put out in writing earlier this morning but it was an interesting moment for the cameras there. Interesting both that would he have the White House background which is sort of the White House getting behind him even though this is a personal matter for him, something that he is working on with his personal lawyers but I think speaks to his really singular standing in the White House as part of the President`s family.
HAYES: He also had this comment, I want it play which seems very much directed from an audience of one, Philip, about the Russia - any look into what happened in the elections, an insult to Trump voters. Take a listen.
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KUSHNER: Donald Trump had better message and ran a smarter campaign, and that is why he won. Suggesting otherwise ridicules those who voted for him.
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HAYES: I would note that Nixon whooped McGovern in `72. Even with the Watergate stuff, might have won otherwise. The two were actually separate conceptually.
RUCKER: But Chris, the issue here is not whether Russia`s interference in the election influenced the outcome of the election. That`s not what these investigative committees on the Hill or with Special Counsel Mueller are investigating. They`re investigating whether Russia`s actions to influence the election were in any way coordinated with members of the Trump campaign or associates of Donald Trump.
HAYES: Paul, the statements from Kushner today, the few raise my eyebrows. One that he had no improper contact, the other he`s been transparent which seems at some level just facially untrue in the sense that he omitted four meetings of the security clearance form for months which were the once that are the subject of all this reporting.
PAUL BUTLER, MSNBC LEGAL ANALYST: Yes. That`s right. He`s doing a lot of blaming other people and excuse-making, so for those financial disclosure forms, well, he says, it wasn`t really my fault. My assistant filed them before she was supposed to. For the meeting with the Russians, it`s all Donald Junior didn`t tell me what it was about and I didn`t read the whole e-mail. So I think what he`s doing is following the likely advice of his lawyer. He`s saying, even if you are technically guilty of a crime like campaign fraud for soliciting a foreign operative, I didn`t have criminal intent. I`m too naive to have known what I`m doing which is a bizarre defense for someone who`s a high level top secret security clearance in the White House.
HAYES: This is a really good point from Paul, Phil, which is that there`s seem to be a little bit of tension between the 11-page statement, which is basically, we`re all new to this and I wasn`t really paying attention. My assistant messed this up.
RUCKER: Fast-paced environment.
HAYES: Yes. It was just - things were just really coming at me, also, my portfolio includes bringing peace to the Middle East. I mean, there`s a little bit of tension between those two.
RUCKER: Well, his portfolio during the campaign grew sort of month to month. He was somebody who executed tasks for Donald Trump, then a candidate who had a really shoe string sort of rag tag campaign operation. And Kushner eventually became the liaison with all of these foreign government officials at the behest of Donald Trump the candidate and then the President-elect and now the President. And so he functioned in this capacity as a sort of the Secretary of State, if you will, for the candidate and for the President-Elect during the transition. And that`s where all of these contacts have come in.
HAYES: Well, Paul, there was one state in the Kushner operative that he meant to be exculpatory that I would like to you respond to as some on who is former Federal Prosecutor. Take a listen.
"The fact that I was asking about ways to start a dialogue after Election Day should, of course, be viewed as strong evidence that I was not aware of one that existed before Election Day." Do you buy that?
BUTLER: You know, again, it just - he just seems incredibly naive for somebody who`s portfolio is Foreign Relations. He says I didn`t even know the name of the Russian Ambassador. So this excuse of him just not familiar with Washington ways, I don`t think it`s going to be bought by Special Counsel Mueller. Moreover, there are other people who were in these meeting including Manafort and including Michael Flynn. Flynn is indicated, he wants to make a deal. So If Mueller is able to flip him, we`ll have another side of what`s going down in these meetings.
HAYES: Finally, Philip, I have to note that Anthony Scaramucci`s account of why it may not be the Russians, they`re so good at hacking, they would cover their tracks so well, we wouldn`t even know it was them, appears to come directly from the argument that Vladimir Putin himself made to the President in their meeting in Hamburg two weeks ago. Trump emerges to tell his aided that the Russian President had offered a compelling rejoinder. Moscow`s cyber operators are so good at covert and computer network operations, if they had dipped into the DNC systems they would not have been caught. They are now laundering essentially the Putin line about the culpability here.
RUCKER: I guess that`s what happened. I mean, Anthony made clear in that interview that his source who had been anonymous at the start of the interview was actually the President of the United States and that`s not unusual in dealing with these White House officials. They hear a lot of theories and explanations from the President and pass those along. HAYES: Yes, a lot of theories going on. Philip Rucker and Paul Butler, thank you for joining me.
RUCKER: Thank you.
HAYES: Next, why the details of the Republican Senate Health Care Bill are once again a complete mystery even to Senators who are scheduled to vote on it in less than 24 hours from now.
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TRUMP: You don`t hear this from the Democrats. They like to tell you just the opposite and they didn`t even know the bill. They run out, say death, death, death. Well, ObamaCare is death. That`s the one that`s death. And besides that, it`s failing so you won`t have it anyway.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: President Donald Trump made his pitch for health care reform today. We should note ObamaCare is not failing and nor is it obviously quote death. But speaking at the White House among people he called ObamaCare victims, the President listed his criticisms of the current American Health Care System.
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TRUMP: After an excruciating series of events and complications, Melissa and her husband found themselves just before Christmas emotionally and financially devastated, crying in a doctor`s office faced with yet another seemingly unplayable bill. When insurance wouldn`t cover the Atkinson`s care, they emptied out Melissa`s 401(k) to pay their bills.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: But as Sarah Kliff at Vox pointed out the most recent Senate Health Care Proposal would make deductibles bigger making the precise problem faced by that family worse. In fact, the Republican Health Care Proposals do not solve any of the health care problems they bring up with ObamaCare, from the cost of premiums to covering pre-existing conditions. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell knows that Republican plans for transforming American Health Care cannot withstand, sustain public scrutiny.
So he`s been keeping his efforts as secret as possible. Even with the vote on starting debates scheduled for tomorrow, no one has even seen the final bill. It`s a tactic aimed to avoid public discussion including the kind of protest and confrontations at town halls that help sink two previous attempts to undo the Affordable Care Act. In fact, McConnell is even keeping the bill secret from Senators themselves prompting widespread confusion about what the heck they`re even voting on tomorrow. After the break, Democratic Senator Chris Murphy joins me to talk about McConnell`s secret Health Care Plans.
HAYES: Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced today the senate will vote on opening debate on a health care bill tomorrow. And as of this hour, no one, I guess outside of Mitch McConnell, actually knows what is in the bill or what group of bills the Senate might even be voting on.
But the two attempts at repealing and replacing Obamacare having already failed, McConnell is scrambling to get something, anything on to the floor. As Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut tweeted, this kind of secrecy with less than 24 hours before an actual vote is bananas.
With me now Democratic Senator from Connecticut Chris Murphy. Senator, do you know what is going to happen in the United States Senate in 16 or so hours from now?
SEN. CHRIS MURPHY, (D) CONNECTICUT: I don`t know what`s going to happen. So far as I can tell this evening, my Republican colleagues don`t know.
There are three different versions of the bill that could possibly be up for a vote tomorrow. We`re going to ostensibly be voting on the House version, but McConnell could immediately bring forward either Senate version A or Senate version B. They are all an absolute humanitarian catastrophe for the country ranging from 23 million to 32 million people losing coverage.
And we also don`t know who will is going to be here for the vote. Rumors are they are working very hard to try to get John McCain back here to get them over the 50-vote hurdle with a promise that they will work everything out this week and next.
So whatever we vote on tomorrow, even if it is past the 50-vote hurdle, will be very different from what becomes the end product.
HAYES: OK, so to your point of not knowing what is going to happen, the vote tomorrow is a motion to proceed, which is to begin debate on this suite of bills. Rand Paul saying -- a reporter asking Rand Paul if we will vote to proceed on health care tomorrow. What are we proceeding to?
Susan Collins says she still don`t know what`s happening with health care, mentions she`s heard there might even be a third version of the BCRA. You said there were two possibilities on that.
So, on the case of John McCain, it is somewhat hard for me to understand how just a week ago there was unanimity in the United States Senate, sending their well wishes to a man who is 80-years-old, who is recovering from surgery for brain cancer. And now they appear to be lobbying his doctors to get him to fly to provide a crucial vote. Why can`t they just wait a week?
MURPHY: It all is a little unsavory and the brow beating that was happening publicly today of John McCain to bring him back really does not put Republicans in a very good light. But it shows how desperate they are to get this done.
You know, the base is starting rising up a bit. So the pressure from the Trump White House, from conservative talk radio, are scaring them. They are are putting a lot of faith in McConnell that he ultimately will be able to get to a product they can all vote for. But they are feeling a little bit desperate right now, not wanting to go home in August having accomplished absolutely nothing, and frankly having to listen to Donald Trump beat them over the head with that, blaming them for that inaction, not himself, over the course of the August recess.
HAYES: The gamble here seems to be McConnell promises everything to everyone to get on the motion to proceed, to get past that hurdle, and then plays the kind of legislative Thee-card Monty with a bunch of bills and you guys are all supposed to keep your eye on the one so you know which one you`re passing?
MURPHY: And perhaps make up ideas as he goes along. Over the weekend, this new idea was floated, a $200 billion fund to help states transition away from Medicaid, which just postpone the pain.
It is unclear how they ultimately land this thing. There still doesn`t seem to be a way to thread the needle between Mike Lee and Rand Paul and Ron Johnson who want this thing gone, and Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski and others who need Medicaid preserved. And he`s also got the pig problem of the parliamentary rulings, the biggest amongst them is the ruling by the parliamentarian that their version of the individual mandate can`t stay in the bill.
The entire bill falls apart from an insurance standpoint if they can`t put some pressure on individuals to buy. There`s threats coming from everywhere.
HAYES: OK, I think this is just really important, so let`s just take a second with this. The mechanism that`s in the bill currently is if you go without coverage you are locked out for six months. And the reason for that is they don`t want it to be possible, for somewhat understandable reasons, that you don`t buy insurance ahead of time,but you go in and you get diagnosed with something that would be very expensive you come from the doctor that day and buy insurance that day, which they have to sell you under the legislation.
So the way they deal with that, stop the death spiral is this lockout. The parliamentarian said that can`t be in the bill. So, my understanding is they may be voting on something that would very clearly destroy the entire nongroup health insurance market in America in the next few days.
MURPHY: And let`s take that the next step further, why is that? It`s because if there is no pressure on individuals to buy insurance when they are healthy then they will wait until they are sick and because of that dynamic, insurers will either exit markets writ large or will drive rates astronomically high because they will only be insuring sick people. They won`t be insuring healthy people. So the entire market would collapse if they don`t have some version of that provision in the bill.
So, this is a major problem for them that they will also need to solve in addition to the major political problems they need to fix in order to get to 50 votes.
HAYES: Now, meanwhile the administration is sort of acting to sabotage the existing Affordable Care Act and its implementation. You wrote a letter with Cory Booker and Brian Schatz, asking HHS Secretary Tom Price to provide information about the department using money allocated for advertising to essentially undermine the ACA. What is going on there?
MURPHY: Well, there`s two things going on. I mean, first of all, it is so perverse the idea that the administration is using money that is supposed to help people get insurance and they are using it to try to undermine that very insurance program by putting up online these advertisements trying to convince legislators to vote against the Affordable Care Act.
So, from a moral standpoint that`s pretty bankrupt, but from a legal standpoint there is a law on the books that says...
HAYES: You can`t do that.
MURPHY: That any administration cannot use public resources to try to lobby for legislation and they`re clearly violating that law.
HAYES: Senator Chris Murphy, thanks for joining me.
HAYES: Still ahead, President Trump lashes out at his Republican congress, now implying some of them even owe him for their 2016 wins. The public feuding ahead.
And one congressman trying to bring back the good old days of dueling is Thing One, Thing Two next.
HAYES: Thing One tonight, remember Texas Republican Blake Farenthold? Last time the congressman agreed to appear on this program was just days after Donald Trump`s Access Hollywood tape was released.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. BLAKE FARENTHOLD, (R) TEXAS: I think this was locker room talk that happened 10 years ago that he has apologized for. It was a private conversation. It was off the record.
HAYES: Congressman, if someone off the record said -- if someone off the record in a locker room -- this is not the locker room, this is a workplace, said I really like raping women. Would that be locker room talk?
FARENTHOLD: Again, it depends -- you don`t know the entire context...
HAYES: But you would be fine with that?
FARENTHOLD: I`m not here to defend Donald Trump. I don`t like what he said.
HAYES: If a tape came out with Donald Trump saying that, saying I really like to rape women, you would continue to endorse him?
FARENTHOLD: Again, that would be bad. And I would have to consider -- I would consider it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Congressman Farenthold`s answer generated a slew of headlines like this one and he apologized on Twitter shortly after the interview.
But Congressman Farenthold is no stranger to walk-backs. In fact, last summer in the wake of Trump`s attacks on a federal judge`s Mexican heritage, Farenthold acknowledged, Trump may have crossed the line there but I don`t agree with everything I say sometimes.
Today, Congressman Farenthold offered another bit of commentary he may come to regret, this time on Republican women in the Senate. That`s Thing Two in 60 seconds.
HAYES: Texas Congressman Blake Farenthold chimed in on the Senate Republican health care push speaking Friday he had an odd message for colleagues who disagree with him, specifically women who disagree with him, and he apparently thinks Alaska and West Virginia are part of the northeast.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FARENTHOLD: The fact that the Senate does not have the courage to do some of the things that every Republican in the Senate promised to do is just absolutely repugnant to me.
Some of the people that are opposed to this, there are some female Senators from the northeast. If it was a guy from south Texas, I might ask him to step outside and settle this Aaron Burr style.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: In a statement yesterday, the president accused his fellow Republicans to doing little to support him. Quote, it`s very sad that Republicans, even some that were carried over the line on my back, do very little to support their president.
Despite the fact that Donald Trump has had a rather complicated relationship with the Republican Party, its members in the House and Senate have, for most part, been willing to defend him.
Now, six months into the job, he has proven to be the least popular president ever in the history of modern polling, at least, according to Gallup. And for some context here, the average approval rating at this point of a presidency is 62 percent.
Yet, there is a paradox to the president`s approval rating, because in some states the president is in pretty good standing. He`s about 50 percent in 17 states, and he fairs best in West Virginia with an approval rating at 60 percent. That`s where he was earlier this evening speaking at the Boy Scout Scouts of America National Scout Jamboree.
The president was welcomed by Republican Senator of West Virginia Shelley Moore Capito who has expressed some reservations about the Senate`s health care bill, plan, to gut Medicaid.
And the president -- Capito went so far as to say in a statement last week, quote, I did not come to Washington to hurt people.
But tonight, in front of a crowd of adolescent boys, the president seemed to turn screws on backing the health care bill.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: You better get Senator Capito to vote for it. You have got to get the other senators to vote for it. It`s time.
You know, after seven years of saying repeal and replace Obamacare we have a chance to now do it. They better do it. Hopefully they`ll do it.
(END VIDEO CLP)
HAYES: Despite the threats over loyalty, we`ll tell you why Republican senators owe this president a whole lot less than he thinks. That`s next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Frankly, I don`t think we should leave town unless we have a health insurance plan, unless we can give our people great health care, because we`re close. We`re very close. The other night I was very surprised when I heard a couple of my friends, my friends, they really were and are, they might not be very much longer, but that`s okay. I think. I have to get them back. That`s right. I refuse -- well, no you didn`t go out there. This was the one we were worried about. You weren`t there. But you`re going to be. You`re going to be.
Look he wants to remain a senator, doesn`t he? OK.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That was the president last week apparently threatening Nevada Senator Dean Heller`s job unless he backed the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
Joining me now, Evan McMullin, former 2016 independent presidential candidate, former House Republican policy director; and Jennifer Rubin, conservative blogger for The Washington Post.
And, you know, I thought the moment -- I want to start with this Boy Scout speech, which was just remarkable and odd to me and I think unnerving to a lot of people. The president assembled in front of a crowd of Boy Scouts to talk about passing the health care bill and lobbying their senators.
A long disposition on his election and then basically gets a bunch of adolescent boys to reign down boos on Hillary Clinton. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO LCIP)
TRUMP: I went there because I kept hearing we`re 269. But then Wisconsin came in, many many years, Michigan came in. So -- and we worked hard there. You know, my opponent didn`t work hard there, because she was told -- she was told she was going to win Michigan.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Evan, did you find that as strange as I did?
EVAN MCMULLIN, 2016 INDEPENDENT PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Strange at least, chilling in another way.
I mean, look, this is the president of the United States. He`s speaking to America`s youth. He`s very much off topic in that setting there.
But this is what he does. I recall when he stood before the stars representing the fallen CIA officers at CIA headquarters and he spoke about his crowd size and his electoral college victory.
But in this case, you sort of see the power of leadership, especially over young impressionable minds where they don`t understand or don`t know and probably don`t care much about the details he`s speaking of, but in the moment they`re standing and they`re standing before the president of the United States and that kind of dynamic can elicit a response that is sometimes, you know, is, I think in this case, frankly chilling and inappropriate.
HAYES: Yeah, Jennifer, and the reason that it struck me as important or a microcosm of the sort of broader political atmosphere of the country is that he`s down there essentially to kind of intimidate Shelley Moore Capito, who he explicitly sort of threatens, right. He wants her to vote on Obamacare.
And the paradox of this president is that he`s broadly unpopular, but intensely popular ins certain pockets with an intense, intense emotional connection to his supporters that he is attempting to wield to keep Republicans in line who are scared of facing them in basically a primary contest.
JENNIFER RUBIN, THE WASHINGTON POST: Right. You know, I think the president has a big thing obviously about loyalty. He thinks the FBI director owes him loyalty, the Department of Justice owes him loyalty and senators owe him loyalty. And to some extent there is party solidarity. But I think what he fails to appreciate is that some of these senators actually care about their constituents and have obligation to the voters who sent them there. That thought doesn`t seem to register anywhere with Donald Trump.
And so everything becomes about him, about replaying his election, which I do find pathetic at this point, and as you say trying to instill fear or loyalty into Republicans who, by the way, were not carried on his back, virtually all of them exceeded his margins of victory in their states, sometimes by a considerable amount was as did, for example, Rob Portman in Ohio.
HAYES: Yeah, Pat Toomey, Ron Johnson in Wisconsin, John McCain in Arizona, Marco Rubio in Florida, all outperforming Donald Trump. You`ve become a very outspoken critic of the president and the way that he`s being sort of facilitated by House Republicans.
But there`s one way of looking at this, which is that the House and Senate Republicans are just using the president because he is a hand that will sign a bill, that the agenda they`re pushing through, particularly on health care, is no different than it would have been with a Marco Rubio or anyone else. This is the agenda they believe in. It`s an agenda you worked on when you were in the House GOP. And essentially they`re willing to look the other way because they want to see the agenda passed. It`s not the president`s sort of pushing them, they`re sort of using him to get what they want.
MCMULLIN: That`s actually true. And that`s a major grievance and concern that I have obviously, is that the agenda, which is important for conservatives in America, has caused them to overlook much deeper problems with this presidency, problems including selling out the sovereignty of the American people to choose their own leaders and hold them accountable through free and fair elections that are not manipulated by sophisticated foreign powers.
And this is more important than the agenda. It`s this kind of thing, the defense of our democratic ideals, norms and institutions that protect our most basic rights.
The left and the right should fight for their agenda. There`s nothing wrong with that, but we can never subordinate those -- our democracy, the basic ideals, norms and institutions that protect our basic rights to a partisan agenda. We just can never do it. And that`s what`s happening here.
HAYES: Jennifer, quickly. Are Republican senators making calculations on this vote tomorrow based on Trump or not?
RUBIN: I don`t think so. I think they can read the polls. He`s not all that popular. They have to look after their own constituents. They can see the bill is incredibly unpopular. I don`t think he`s going to change many votes one way or the other, and frankly his inability to talk to the merits of the bill make him particularly inept advocate for his own legislation.
HAYES: Which is why they`re trying to basically smuggle it in. Evan McMullin and Jennifer Rubin, thanks for joining us tonight.
MCMULLIN: Thank you.
HAYES: That is All In for this evening. The Rachel Maddow Show starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END