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MTP Daily, Transcript 7/18/2017

Guests: Heidi Przybyla, Will Hurd, Ruth Marcus, Alfonso Aguilar

Show: MTP DAILY Date: July 18, 2017 Guest: Heidi Przybyla, Will Hurd, Ruth Marcus, Alfonso Aguilar

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The son going into a meeting hoping to obtain information from a hostile foreign power that just a week later gives us the WikiLeaks disclosure and the -- and the --

GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: I wouldn't have -- I wouldn't have -- I wouldn't have done the meeting. And I think that -- you know, I don't think it can be any clearer than that. I wouldn't have done the meeting. If you want to use a lot of other adjectives, that's up to you. But my view is I try to be dispassionate about this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You wouldn't call it --

CHRISTIE: I would -- what I would call it was you shouldn't have taken the meeting.

NICOLE WALLACE, MSNBC HOST: All right, it's going to have to be the last word.

CHRISTIE: That's what lawyers do. They tell what to do and what not to do.

WALLACE: Lawyers are still going.

We're way over our time. Thank you to Gov. Chris Christie, Bret Stephens, Harold Ford Jr.

That does it for this hour. I'm Nicole Wallace. "MTP DAILY" starts right now with Katy Tur in for Chuck. Hi, Katy. Sorry about going over.

KATY TUR, MSNBC HOST: No problem. That was a riveting interview you did with the governor right now and a riveting debate. And we're going to have more on Russia in this hour so stay with us for that.

But first, if it is Tuesday, another plan bites dust.

(voice-over): Tonight, the GOP's biggest campaign promise hits not one, but two more dead ends.


SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R), KENTUCKY, SENATE MAJORITY LEADER: It's pretty obvious that we don't have 50 members who can agree on a replacement.

SEN. LISA MURKOWSKI (R), ALASKA: We should not repeal without a replacement.

SEN. SUSAN COLLINS (R), MAINE: Let's try to get bipartisan support.



TUR: So, where does that leave the fate of your health care? Plus, Trump country trouble. Our new poll shows just how tough it's been to sell the Republican health care plan to the president's biggest believers.

And the Trump Jr. meeting guest list comes further into focus.

This 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.

It has been a stunning day. In less than 24 hours, we've seen the Republican plan to repeal and replace Obamacare collapse. We've seen a plan B and we've also seen that collapse, too. We have brand new results from our NBC News-"Wall Street Journal" poll of Trump counties out right now with new insight into why this effort may have imploded so spectacularly. More on that in just a moment.

But we begin with President Trump today at the White House basically giving up on his Republican Congress.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm certainly disappointed. For seven years, I've been hearing repeal and replace from Congress. And I've been hearing it loud and strong.

And then, when we finally get a chance to repeal and replace, they don't take advantage of it. So, that is disappointing.

So, I'm very -- I would say I'm disappointed in what took place. It will go on and we'll win. We're going to win on taxes. We're going to win on infrastructure and lots other things that we're doing.

But the way I look at it is in 2018, we're going to have to get some more people elected. We have to go out and we have to get more people elected that are Republican.


TUR: We saw seven years of promises derailed in mere hours. Last night, the Senate's health care bill was killed due to a lack of Republican support when two more senators announced their opposition to it. The White House says President Trump was caught off guard by the news.

So, McConnell and the White House went to plan B, urging the caucus on a bill to repeal Obamacare now and replace it later. Similar to all those symbolic repeal votes they took when Obama was still in office.


MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The Senate actually passed the very same bill in 2015 and sent it to President Obama's desk and they should do it again. Inaction is not an option. Congress needs to step up. Congress needs to do their job. And Congress needs to do their job now.


TUR: As the White House made its case, Republican senators were already revolting against it.


COLLINS: I'm going to oppose the motion to proceed. I voted against this approach in 2015. And I do not think that it is going to be constructive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator, where are you on the motion to proceed on this repeal and then replace?

MURKOWSKI: I'm not there. An indefinite hold on this just creates more chaos and confusion.

SEN. BILL CASSIDY (R), LOUISIANA: We have to play that through and I'm still playing it through.

SEN. ROY BLUNE (R), MISSOURI: My guess is that we're now headed toward normal committee activity that will take 60 votes on the floor.

SE. ROB PORTMAN (R), OHIO: I'm concerned about something that would simply repeal and its impact on costs and choices in health care.


TUR: At least three Republican senators quickly said they wouldn't even allow the plan to be debated. Others signaled resistance, too.

Ultimately, those three no votes are sufficient to kill the bill but before it even sees the floor. In reaction, McConnell and his allies fired right back.


MCCONNELL: Sometime in the near future, we'll have a vote on repealing Obamacare. Essentially, the same vote that we had in 2015.

SEN. PAUL RAND (R), KENTUCKY: If you're not willing to vote the same way you voted in 2015, then you need to go back home and you need to explain to Republicans why you're no longer for repealing Obamacare.


[17:05:07] TUR: But with the Republican strategy in freefall, President Trump today looked to insulate himself, politically.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I think we're probably in that position where we'll just let Obamacare fail. We're not going to own it. I'm not going to own it. I can tell you, the Republicans are not going to own it.

We'll let Obamacare fail and then the Democrats are going to come to us and they're going to say, how do we fix it? How do we fix it? Or how do we come up with a new plan?


TUR: Here is what the president is saying. Don't blame him or his party for not being able to pass their own legislation. And don't blame him or his party when the health care system collapses. Even though they're admittedly allowing that to happen.

But, believe it or not, that might be the more palatable option right now, for Republicans politically. That's how poorly the GOP's health care plan was viewed by its own members.

According to our new NBC News-"Wall Street Journal" poll taken in counties that Trump won, a mere 12 percent of voters say the House health care overhaul, which closely mirrored the Senate's version, is a good idea. Even among Trump voters in these counties, the legislation was viewed positively by just one in four.

I'm joined now by -- on Capitol Hill by NBC's Garrett Haake. Garrett, so there was a plan A that collapsed, a plan B, that collapsed. What happens next?

GARRETT HAAKE, CAPITOL HILL CORRESPONDENT, NBC NEWS: Well, it sounds like Mitch McConnell is going to try to go plan B one more time. They have made it very clear they want to try to get a vote on this measure to repeal, delay and then replace this bill.

Mitch McConnell knows that vote will fail, but it seems that he wants to get these Republican senators, the three that we know about and any others who might be out there, sort of smoke them out and determine exactly who is actually against repeal, at this point.

And then, Katy, they're going to work backwards. The health committee, which is the health committee that would oversee this bill had it been done through the normal committee process, announced today they plan to hold hearings. At least on shoring up the insurance markets which is one of the, sort of, more urgent needs of anything that would be a repeal or a fix of Obamacare.

So, it's clear at least some people in the Senate don't intend to follow President Trump's advice or his call to let Obamacare collapse on its own and see if Democrats will be left holding bag. Some lawmakers here are apparently making moves to address some of these issues proactively.

TUR: So, we have Senate Murkowski of Alaska, Senator Collins of Maine, Senator Capito of West Virginia who have said that they are not comfortable not voting on anything that doesn't have the plan for repeal -- for replace already in its language because they're not comfortable just delaying this for another two years.

They're not confident that anybody will come to some sort of agreement. How is Mitch McConnell going to find a way to convince them that they should trust that this caucus which hasn't been able to come to a decision up until now, while the president has all this political capital would be able to do so later on.

HAAKE: That's a fantastic question, Katy. And they just don't have that answer. They don't have it after seven months of this Congress. And they don't have it after seven years of discussing what Obamacare replacement would look like. But I think that's part of the reason you're seeing people -- everyone from those three senators you mentioned.

So, even John McCain at home recovering from his surgery was one of the first people to respond to this in a statement that said, look, we need to go through the committee process. We need to find out what people want.

And the Republicans are just as committed as ever to repealing Obamacare. But it's very clear, and those poll numbers demonstrate it, they have failed at coming up with a palatable replacement that even their own voters will say, yes, you know what? You're right. This is a better plan forward.

TUR: Garrett, what does this mean for Mitch McConnell's leadership?

HAAKE: Well, the Republican senators I spoke to today still said very much that they still trust him. I talked to Lindsey Graham about this kind of at length this afternoon. He said, look, this is the U.S. Senate. People are senators from their states. And some of these people, and you see it with Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins, they take their state responsibilities very clearly.

So, there's not -- and that that's the opposition here. Not that they don't trust Mitch McConnell, not that they are, you know, pushing back against his leadership per se. But that they take these state issues more seriously than being a part of the GOP caucus, you might say.

So, there's big call or pushback against Mitch McConnell's leadership so far from in the chamber. But you do hear that frustration a little bit on the Hill and you certainly heard it today from the White House.

TUR: Garrett, what about the White House? How do Republican senators feel about the White House's effort to get this done?

HAAKE: They are very careful not to openly criticize the president for this, Katy. In my experience, what I'm hearing -- you're not hearing people say, we wish the president was doing X, Y and Z. They're trying to -- I think they know that the president can't necessarily be the chief salesman for this, especially when you consider who those no votes are.

You know, the president can't speak to Lisa Murkowski's -- or I'm conflating people here. Can't speak to Susan Collins' voters in Maine and convince them that this is a good plan for them.

[17:10:00] So, you know, Mitch McConnell's drawing a line in the sand. He said he's not going to change the rules of the Senate. He wants the Senate to get to get thing done. And so, it seems, at least for now, they're happy with President Trump keeping his distance.

But, look, historically, big things don't get done on Capitol Hill without presidential leadership. Sometimes, they don't get done even then. But it usually takes the president to push big things like this over the finish line, and we have not seen that from this White House on this bill.

TUR: Garrett Haake, thank you very much.

I'm joined now by a member of the Senate Democratic leadership, Patty Murray of Washington. She's a member of the Senate Health Committee which Garrett just mentioned will be holding hearings on health care.

Senator, thank you very much for joining us, first off.

SEN. PATTY MURRAY (D), WASHINGTON: Well, nice to talk to you, Katy.

TUR: Wonderful. And then, secondly, we know you oppose the GOP health care bill. We know that you're not going to get on board with those as they stand right now. But what are the Democrats doing in order to come up with a solution to fix the areas of Obamacare that are not working as smoothly as people might have -- might have wanted?

MURRAY: Well, I'm glad you asked that because Democrats have been clear for a very long time that parts of the ACA that aren't working as well as we would like them to, we want to work on solutions to that. We've offered a number of positive steps to take that.

But let's be clear, since the day after the election, this administration has said, we are going to make Obamacare fail. All way up until today which is what the president has said. They have not been working to make it work. They have been working to make it not work.

TUR: What are the --

MURRAY: But on top --

TUR: I'm sorry.

MURRAY: -- but on top of that, we have now spent the last seven months going through this debate about what they would replace it with and they have not come up with something that is not only sellable to the American public, but that would actually work.

TUR: What are those fixes that you have offered, Senator?

MURRAY: Sure. We've talked about making sure that the payments are paid to the -- to the market so that it is secure. And this president has said he's going to have lawsuits, not make the payments. He's making that uncertainty in the market create problems.

We have talked about offering public options in places where there aren't enough options for people to buy insurance. That will help bring the cost down to American families.

We are more than willing to debate all of those in between and to offer those as suggestions. But what I would say to my Republican colleagues now is what are -- what is the choice you're going to make? Are you going to join with the president and continue to create chaos and work to make Obamacare fail? Or work with us to get the market re-stabilized after the last seven months of uncertainty. And we are willing to work with you if that's the route that we can take.

TUR: So, I was talking to a health care expert a little bit earlier today, and I asked her what the fix was for Obamacare. And she said, ultimately, without strengthening of the mandate, you're not going to get anywhere on this. The Supreme Court doesn't really agree with the mandate. Given that, is single payor the only viable option at this point?

MURRAY: I think there are a number of options. And I think the challenge we've had is because we haven't had any hearings. We haven't had any debate. This was a bill written in a back room by 13 men, as we all know.

We haven't had those options out in the open so we can analyze them. Get scores. See what the -- how the market would respond to them and be able to put forward good positive ways to create a strong stable market for all the counties in country.

TUR: So, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirstin Gillibrand, others all say single payor is the way to go. Does Democratic leadership agree with them?

MURRAY: There are a number of people who are talking about a lot of options. One of the things I've talked about a lot is the public option that allows people to be able to have different options. There are people who are talking about allowing people to buy into Medicare at a younger age. And, of course, there are other options as well.

Again, none of those have had public hearings or debates. So, we know what we are voting on, what the impact to the market would be, what the cost to families would be. And that's what I'm hoping we can now all really focus on as we move forward because health compare is so important to families.

TUR: Yes, no doubt about that. But you say that there are a number of people with a number of options. But my question specifically was, does Democratic leadership agree with the more progressive wing of the Democratic party right now. Remember, that they're the wing that's getting a lot of attention at the moment about having single payor health care.

MURRAY: I think we're all willing to have a conversation. But what we want to know is what will be the impacts of that and the implementation of it. The cost to families. What it would mean, in term of people who have health care today.

And we don't have the answers to that because we've never had any hearings. The American public deserves to know what they are getting.

And what our problem with the Republican alternative has been so far is that we only know what we know. And that is that millions of Americans would lose their health care coverage and that they would give a tax break away to many Americans that are in the top one percent.

[17:15:12] And that they would cut Medicaid and cut off insurance for so many people. We are not for that.

TUR: Senator, let's take a listen to Chuck Schumer a little earlier today.


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK, SENATE MINORITY LEADER: The door to bipartisanship is open right now. Not with repeal but with an effort to improve the existing system. The door is right -- open right now. Republican leadership only needs to walk through it.


TUR: So, skeptics say, hey, listen. House Democrats were on the House floor after the House passed their version of the bill and they were singing, hey, hey, good-bye. Skeptics says that the Democrats don't really want to work with Republicans on this. They want to watch Republicans flounder.

So, prove the skeptics wrong, Senator, and tell us --


TUR: -- where exactly the Democrats are willing to work and negotiate with the Republicans. What issue exactly are you willing to come to the table for?

MURRAY: I think that's a really important question, Katy. And what we have seen is that the Republicans have come forward not with a way to assure people have lower health care costs or that we have a market that works.

But with plans to give a tax break away, to cut Medicaid and take health care away from many Americans with disabilities, kids with disabilities, senior citizens, and a system that would not work.

We want them to say, we're not going down that path anymore. We're not going to cut Medicaid dramatically. We are not going to give tax breaks away. We're not going to work to make Obamacare fail.

We want to work with you to provide health care assurance for all Americans that they will have health care when they need it, that is affordable, and quality and provides them what they and their family needs.

TUR: Senator, I ask all high-profile Democrats that come on this show and talk to me who the leader of the Democratic party is right now. So far, not a single person can give me a name. Can you give me a name today?

MURRAY: Look, I think what's important right now is that, as Democrats, we work together to show the American people we are on their side.

TUR: So no?

MURRAY: We have done that --

TUR: You can't give me a name?

MURRAY: -- through health care. I will tell you that what's important is that we allow a lot of ships to sail so that we can say who the leader of the party will be that we all get behind and we need to listen to them.

But what's important right now today is for Democrats to continue to show the American people we're on their side. Again, when it's -- comes to health care or when it comes to fighting against tax cuts for the wealthy, or when it's moving to make sure that Americans get the jobs and the security that they deserve.

TUR: Senator Patty Murray, thank you very much for your time.

MURRAY: You bet.

TUR: And we've got a lot to dissect with the panel ahead. Plus, the one thing we know President Trump wants when it comes to health care.


[17:20:00] TUR: Welcome back.

Republicans in Congress have gone through a number of versions of their health care bill. And, so far, nothing has made everyone happy.

But while Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell have had trouble appeasing all the factions in their caucus, they do have one thing going for them. One critical person has remained with them the entire time. President Trump wants a win and he has indicated he'll sign whatever he's given.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Repeal and replace. I am sitting in the Oval Office with a pen in hand waiting for our senators to give it to me. We have a president that's waiting to sign it. I have pen in hand. I'm sitting in the Oval Office right next door, pen in hand, waiting to sign something and I'll be waiting.


TUR: But the president is left with nothing to sign. And as Garrett mentioned just a few minutes ago, some critics say the president hasn't done enough on his own to sell bill. We just found out the president will do a rally in Ohio next week, but he hasn't held any kind of nationwide tour with rallies in states with on the fence senators.

He never gave major speech outlining why the various Republican proposals were the right policy. He never held a health care town hall. And we haven't heard that he ever personally reached out to any Democrats to even try to get them on board. So, what are the next steps from here? We're back in 60 seconds.



DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: When we win on November 8th, we will be able to immediately repeal and replace Obamacare.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And there's going to be a period if you repeal it and before you replace it when millions of people could lose --

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No, we're going to do it simultaneously. It will be just fine. That's what I do. I do a good job. You know, I mean, I know how to do this stuff.

It'll be repeal and replace. It will be essentially simultaneously. It will mostly likely be on the same day or same week but probably the same day. It could be the same hour.


TUR: Welcome back to MTP DAILY.

Let's bring in the panel. Heidi Przybyla, MSNBC Political Analyst and senior politics reporter at "USA Today." "Washington Post" columnist and deputy editorial page editor, Ruth Marcus. And Alfonso Aguilar, the President of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles.

Heidi, let's start with you. The president made a lot of promises on the campaign. He's made a lot of promises up until this point. They're going to repeal and replace. The repeal is going to come. Replace is going to come immediately. Maybe repeal now and replace will come later. Don't worry, we'll have universal health care for everybody. I mean, does it matter what is sent to his desk?

HEIDI PRZYBYLA, SENIOR POLITICS REPORTER, "USA TODAY": It was going to be better. It was going to be cheaper. And it was going to cover everyone. And then, he essentially handed it off to Paul Ryan and patted him on the back and said, good job. Get back to me with something. I want to win. And that's how this went down.

Katy, I think this says a lot more about Trump's leadership than it does McConnell's. Because remember the promise of Trump. You know well. You were on the campaign trail. He was supposed to be a transformative political figure because he's not an ideologue.

TUR: Yes.

PFRZYBYLA: He would come to Washington as a businessman and he would bring people together to get things done. But what we've learned from this exercise was that he either doesn't have the discipline or the knowledge, the policy expertise to navigate those threads to thread that needle and to bring people together.

And so, what happened was he essentially outsourced this very important policy item to the very establishment that he ran against and completely abandoned this populist mantel that, essentially got him elected.

TUR: It's clear he's not an ideologue because he's jumping around on all sides of this issue. First, he was for the House health care bill. Then, he thought it was mean. And -- but the question I'm having, Alphonso, is why was he so on board with having the Senate Republicans do whatever they could to get something passed.

[17:25:00] After all, you know, he did say he wanted health care for everybody on the campaign trail. Then, there's also just this poll where - - which shows that even in places that Donald Trump won with his own voters, that this was not a very popular deal.

Look at this, good idea, 12 percent. That's it. Bad idea, 41 percent. No opinion, 45 percent. And this just among his voters. Only 25 percent could say it was a bad idea.

So, why is the president so hell bent on getting this done at the expense of his own personal promises?

ALFONSO AGUILAR, PRESIDENT, LATINO PARTNERSHIP FOR CONSERVATIVE PRINCIPLES: Because I think he's desperate for a win. He has to really accomplish --

TUR: But what does a win mean if it's -- I mean, is it just a win in legislation? What about the people who are affected by this legislation who lose their health care?

AGUILAR: Well, I agree, but I think many would agree that passing something is better than not doing anything. Doing away with many of the regulations from Obamacare individual mandates. That's a step forward. I think he wants to get something done to show that he can win, that he can govern and start improving things.

Now, having said that, look, I don't blame only Trump. I think there's so much that he can do. There's a reality here and that's that within the Republican caucus in Congress, there's a great deal of ideological diversity. There are divergent views on how to deal with health care.

If you accommodate moderates, you antagonize conservatives. And if you accommodate conservatives, you antagonize moderates. It's very difficult to achieve consensus. But at some point, Republicans in Congress have to govern, have to come together and pass something.

And I have to say, Donald Trump was meeting last night with a group of senators. He had been making calls. I don't know what more he could have done, in terms of Congress. I really blame Congressional Republicans for an inability to actually get something done and pass legislation.

TUR: Hold that thought, Alfonso. I want to come back to it.

Ruth, passing something better than passing nothing.

RUTH MARCUS, COLUMNIST AND DEPUTY EDITORIAL PAGE EDITOR, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Well, that's been -- you know, that's been the, sort of, to be or not to be lady or the tiger question of health care, both for congressional Republicans and for the president.

On the one hand, this is all they've campaigned on. They want to win. They need to deliver on what was their core promise to voters.

On other hand, the more they looked at the consequences of what they were doing, the impact on people who would lose coverage, higher premiums, less coverage, medical -- you know, incredible Medicaid cuts, the more problematic it became.

And I think that, you know, which is -- which is worse? Passing or not passing is a very difficult question. And it actually helps explain why they couldn't get to passing something.

TUR: So, this president is the most transactional president we've certainly ever had. Probably one of the most transactional politicians we've ever had. That's the way that everybody describes him. Even those in his inner circle.

He doesn't care about ideology. He is all about getting things done. He's called himself this wonderful deal maker.

So, alfonso, if that is -- if that's the case and if the Republican caucus is so varied in their -- in their ideologies, why not go down the middle? Why not say, hey, listen, we have to find a better system of health care in this country. Obamacare isn't working.

Let's work with the moderate Republicans and the moderate Democrats to find something brand new. We're not necessarily going to call it repeal because we know that is a bugaboo for the Democrats and they won't sign on for it.

But we're going to find a way to come together. After all, he is supposed to be the deal maker. People elected him to get things done in Washington. And not just to work with the Republicans.

AGUILAR: Look, the problem is that you're assuming that Democrats want to work with Republicans. Look, this began when Obamacare was passed. It was ran through Congress without consulting, without any Republican votes. So, they began this.

And I don't see a genuine effort by Democrats to really want to sit down with Republicans to work on something. Again, I don't think this is over. I think it's going to take time.

You know, legislative process is a messy process. I think we have to give it time.

However, what I would say is that let's start working. Let's start debating on other pieces of legislations like tax reform. We can't --

TUR: You can't get tax reform without getting the tax cuts from this.

AGUILAR: Well, I know that a lot of people felt that tax reform is dependent on health care reform. But I think we're going to have to, at the same time, start debating tax reform.

Because, if not, we may end up this year without any legislation. And I think tax reform is essential to get the economy running to get the economy to grow at an over three percent -- at over three percent.

[17:30:00] TUR: Heidi, quickly. Do you buy that, that Democrats didn't want to work with Republicans, period, on this president? No matter what the president did, they weren't going to support him in any way.

PFRZYBYLA: No. Katy, the strategy from the beginning was not to work with Democrats because they chose to do it by this procedural move called reconciliation which means that you can do it on a party line vote because Republicans are very invested. Remember, they got about eight years invested in this of saying that Obamacare is utterly failing and that it must be repealed.

It must be ripped up by its roots. Democrats know that is not true. That is not true based on studies by impartial group like the Kaiser Family Foundation. And we're talking about in terms of their alternative is millions of people losing health care versus working on the flaws in Obamacare which is that you have this individual market where a small number of people, a few million people and to them it means a lot, they are paying a lot more for their health care, that that needs to be addressed.

But the reason why this never happened from the beginning was ideological because Republicans couldn't support Obamacare, they didn't want to see a real mandate and the reason why it can't work or isn't working, the problems that we have right now are structural because there isn't a real mandate that requires everybody to be in including the sick and the unhealthy.

TUR: All right. Heidi, Ruth, Alfonso. Stay with us. We're going to have more time later on. Don't worry. Still ahead, the Russia connection. New details about who else was in the room when Donald Trump Jr. and the Russian. You are not going to want to miss that. Plus, we've just learned that President Trump had a second, you heard me right, a second meeting with Vladimir Putin at the G-20. What happened in that meeting? Stay with us.


TUR: Next on "MTP Daily," new details about who attended Don Jr.'s meeting at Trump Tower. But first, Hampton Pearson has the "CNBC Market Wrap." Hi, Hampton.

HAMPTON PEARSON, CNBC WASHINGTON BUREAU CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Katy. We had stocks closing mixed with Netflix helping to lift the Nasdaq into record territory and Goldman Sachs weighing heavily on the Dow. In fact, the Dow lost 55 points. The S&P gained just a point. The Nasdaq added 30 points. Shares of Netflix jumping more than 13 percent with an all-time high.

The company said it added 5.2 million total members during its second quarter. Goldman Sachs fell however after reporting a 40 percent drop in second quarter bond trading revenue. It's the top and bottom line quarterly results still topped trader's expectations. That is it from CNBC, first in business worldwide.


TUR: Welcome back to "MTP Daily." NBC News has confirmed the identity of another person in that June 26 meeting at Trump Tower with Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, and Jared Kushner. So we now know of eight people who were in the room. According to a source with direct knowledge of the meeting, an American-based employee of a Russian real estate company was there.

He reportedly was there to represent Emin and Aras Agalarov, the Russian developers who hosted the Miss Universe pageant in Russia in 2013 and who helped arrange the meeting along with publicist Rob Goldstone. But it's where the information came from that might hint at a big development in the entire Russia investigation. Here's what I mean.

The developers' lawyer confirmed he received a phone call from a representative of special council Bob Mueller over the weekend. They want to interview him but no date has yet been set. That could mean if nothing else the special council was looking into this meeting at Trump Tower. And also breaking today, Ian Bremmer, a friend of the show, was the first to report of a second meeting between President Trump and Vladimir Putin at the G-20.

The White House confirms NBC News that the president did speak with Putin towards the end of what they're calling a couples only social dinner. There is no read out of that discussion and no staff or cabinet members attended that dinner.

Joining me now is Texas Republican Congressman Will Hurd. He sits on the House Intelligence Committee. Let's focus on Russia specifically that meeting between Don Jr. and the Russian lawyer. Congressman, there has been a discrepancy on when the intelligence committee found out about this. When did you guys find out about the meeting?

REP. WILL HURD (R), TEXAS: I think most of us found out at the same time it was being published in the press. But what happened is Robert Mueller is going to be talking to everybody that was probably in that meeting. He is going to decide whether there was any violation of the law and how this fits in the broader criminal investigation.

TUR: You've said that you wouldn't have taken that meeting, the one that Don Jr., the Paul Manafort, the campaign chairman, veteran of the campaign, and Jared Kushner were all in, the senior advisers to the candidate Donald Trump. Are you worried at all that had this could turn out to be criminal?

HURD: Well, I wouldn't -- I agree with that statement, Katy. I wouldn't have accepted that meeting. Part of that is based on the fact that I spent 9-1/2 years as an undercover officer in the CIA and I dealt with Russian intelligence pretty much in most of my tours.

And this is -- the Russian intelligence is notorious for trying to set up, trying to get people in compromising positions. You know, I think I trust Robert Mueller to go over this with a fine tooth comb to determine whether there was indeed anything violating the law, but I would also like to get all these details out.

TUR: Yes.

HURD: Let's stop hearing drips and drab because this takes away from -- this is a distraction and it takes away from broader conversation we should be having like how do we be prepared for the Russians to do this again. It was clear the Russians tried to influence our elections. They are going to try to do it again in 2018. Do we have a strategy to deal with counter covert influence?

TUR: Yes.

HURD: And also we should be talking about other countries like China as well while we're focused on Russia. We know the Chinese have been involved in getting into our systems and the private sector as well. And we still believe that they should adhere to some agreements that were made under the last administration.

TUR: So you have brought up two things I want to follow up on. First that you want all this information to get out, Congressman. Do you think that the White House and that Don Jr. have been as forthcoming as they should be? Should there just be a complete list of everybody, every foreign national they might have met with during the campaign, the transition?

HURD: Well, I think that the public provision of e-mails is a pretty bold step. I think with folks that are current --

TUR: But we're still finding out who was in that meeting. We're still getting names (inaudible) as you say dripping daily.

HURD: When it comes to the Russia investigation, oversharing is probably a good thing. And that everybody should be reviewing anybody that was connected to the campaign or to the administration. Should be overshare when it comes to contacts with the Russians. I think that is not a bad place to be in order to prevent these kinds of reactions when information does come out.

TUR: So the other thing you brought was your 9-1/2 years at the CIA. I did a long piece about this meeting for Sunday night with Megyn Kelly and I talked to a former Moscow station chief John Sipher and he said that essentially this meeting to him given his experience in Moscow and his experience in the CIA looked very much like human fishing, like the Kremlin was trying to dangle something in front of the Trump campaign to see whether or not they would be interested in it and we found out from the e- mails that, yes, they were interested in it.

HURD: It is indeed a tactic that the Russians have used time and time again. Whether that was indeed the case in this specific meeting that we're talking about, we have to leave that up to Robert Mueller to try to investigate and understand the motivations behind the Russians reaching out. And I think that is an important thing to understand. But it does reek of Russian intelligence motivation and tactics.

And again, when it comes to Russia, they are not our ally. They are our adversary. And we need to treat them that way. And they are going to resort to asymmetrical warfare to try to undergerd trust in our institution. And we can't let that happen. And I think there are many of us that have been exposed to Russia trying to prevent that from happening in the future.

TUR: Congressman Hurd, thank you very much.

HURD: Thank you.

TUR: And just ahead, the two politicians that Americans like less than President Trump.


TUR: Welcome back. While President Trump is facing historically low poll numbers, a new poll shows his 2016 rival is fairing even worse. A new Bloomberg national poll shows President Trump with a higher positive favorability rating than former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Mr. Trump's favorability rating is 41 percent. Clinton's is 39 percent.

That is the lowest number posted by Clinton in the Bloomberg poll since 2015 in the midst of the Democratic primary fight. Of course the 2016 election is over, but President Trump still uses his former foe as a foil from the White House. He has tweeted about Hillary Clinton twice in the last week and several times since taking office.

The only person polled by Bloomberg with a lower net favorability than Clinton? Russian President Vladimir Putin. His 15 percent favorability rating is actually up five points since last year. Look at that. We'll be right back.


TUR: Welcome back. It's time for "The Lid." Let's turn to the panel. Heidi Przybyla, Ruth Marcus, Alfonso Aguilar. Ruth, let's start with you. The president had another meeting with Vladmir Putin. This is about this couple's only dinner. It seems to be from what we're hearing a one-on-one conversation with Vladmir Putin. We don't know the extent of it though. What do you make of that? Is that unusual?

RUTH MARCUS, COLUMNIST, THE WASHINGTON POST: So much for transparency. It seems pretty unusual to me. I cannot remember another time and maybe I'll be proved wrong, when the president of the United States had a bilateral meeting with a foreign leader especially a foreign leader as important as Vladmir Putin and it was hidden from public view in this way.

I mean, one minute last week the president is praising his son Don Jr. for transparency. And now every day we learn something else that we didn't know previously. If you're going to have another meeting with Putin, why would you want to keep it hidden? Why not just tell us about it? Things leak out any way. This is a lesson this administration has been slow in learning.

TUR: We did see an image of Melania sitting next to Vladmir Putin. So I guess it makes sense the president might have wondered over there. Alfonso, are you concerned about the transparency of that?

ALFONSO AGUILAR, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, LATINO PARTNERSHIP FOR CONSERVATIVE PRINCIPLES: Certainly. I'm concerned how the White House is handling this whole Russia thing. I don't think they are being transparent, the case of the meeting that Donald Trump Jr. had with that Russian lawyer. I think they haven't been totally transparent and come forward. We get drips and drips of information coming out. I think it creates a terrible perception they are not being forthcoming.

TUR: Yes.

AGUILAR: Having said that, you know, we are -- we have a diplomatic relation with Russia. I see no problem with Donald Trump meeting with Vladmir Putin. The irony here is that when we look at our policy towards Russia right now, I would argue that it's tougher than the policy that President Obama had toward Russia. We stroke in Syria. We bump Syria.

I'm sure Vladimir Putin was hopping (ph) about that. At the G-20 Summit, President Trump said that he was looking at selling natural gas to central European countries. I'm sure Vladimir Putin is not happy about that. And he also said he is willing to sell an anti-missile battery to Poland. I'm sure Vladimir Putin is not happy about that. Nobody is talking about that.

TUR: But what about the Russian diplomatic compounds that we might be giving back? What about, Heidi, the Russian sanctions bill which has held up in the house that the president and the White House have said that they will not sign?

PRZYBYLA: Right. The reports are that the White House is heavily behind that lobbying effort to stop the sanctions bill which really breezed through in a bipartisan basis in the senate. He makes a number of good points but overall the one thing that Russia cares most about are those sanctions. The indication that we have based on the reporting is that the Trump officials shortly after the election, Mike Flynn, did discuss trying to lift those sanctions for Russia.

That is the most important strategic goal. And because of this firestorm, the Trump administration has had its hands tied and has been unable to do anything like that. The Russian compounds story would be another gift to the Russians that would be important to them because we know for instance that they were conducting a lot of their spy operation out of those compounds.

So I think for the most part, the Trump administration just had its hands tied because of this backlash to what we're now learning about what went on during the campaign.

TUR: So there's still a lot of news coming out about the Don Jr. meeting and people are still being forced to answer questions on it. Nicole Wallace had Chris Christie on just before this. Take a listen to their conversation.




WALLACE: You prosecuted people.

CHRISTIE: Where's the crime?

WALLACE: Is there a campaign fine? I mean, how do you know that nothing of value?

CHRISTIE: I don't know. I'm sure Bob Mueller is going to try to find out. But the fact is, what I do know as a prosecutor is, you don't prosecute people until you have the facts. My problem with a lot of what's been going on is that people are prosecuting folks before they know the facts.

(END VIDEO CLIP) TUR: Ruth, is the media prosecuting people before they know the facts as Chris Christie alleges? MARCUS: Well, I don't think we get prosecutorial authority. But I do think we do --


MARCUS: -- authority that is in the constitution to try to find out facts and the facts that have come out have not been very attractive for the Trump campaign or Don Jr. in particular. There was another part of that conversation that was very interesting with Governor Christie where he said, well, I wouldn't have taken that meeting. Well, you know, he don't, but I'm a prosecutor, he said, so I would have known that's a problem.

I don't think you need to go to law school or have years in a prosecutor's office to know it's a bad idea to have a meeting with foreign official or foreign attorney who is described as representing a foreign government. The fact that the president of the United States has so far been unwilling to say that, in fact he said that most politicians would have taken that meeting, that's just -- it's wrong and it's troubling.

TUR: Most politicians have said that they would not have taken that meeting. But ultimately, Chris Christie is right about one thing and Bob Mueller will figure out whether or not there's any criminality involved in this meeting. If "The Washington Post" is correct, it looks like Bob Mueller is looking into it the very least. Thank you. Heidi, Ruth, Alfonso. Appreciate your time, guys. After the break, it's great to throw like a girl.


TUR: In case you missed it, there was ease in Kasie's manor as she stepped into her place. There was pride in Kasie's bearing and a smile on Kasie's face. When responding to the cheers, she took a look around. No stranger in the crowd could doubt it was Kasie on the mound.

Mudville jokes aside. In case you missed it, NBC's own Kasie Hunt got to throw out the first pitch last night for her beloved Orioles. This is so awesome. We're going to give Kasie the credit for the O's 3-1 win over the Rangers. She got to hang out with the mascot too. Congrats to our pal, my buddy, our awesome road warrior Kasie Hunt.

That is all for tonight. We'll be back tomorrow with more MTP Daily. Have a good night.