Audioburst Search

Mueller concerned Barr created confusion about report

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Now, it's time for the last word looking so Donald heaving arts racial, you weren't going to sleep anyway K whether it was really big hearing coming up tomorrow come on now. And with the news today. I mean, I mean, even if even if you're only talking international news, I probably wouldn't have slept today with the number of things that have broken over the course of the day and the drama behind them and the promise that more details are going to be coming out within the next twelve hours, which means the overnight. It's just. Here's here's what I could spend an hour talking about that we won't because we're gonna talk about what's actually developing what we know in the news. But but William Barr himself, the what was he thinking like, that's that's an hour of TV right there. What was he thinking? He knew he knew that we were at some point going to know about this letter. And and in government when you want someone in government writes a letter to someone else in government, it's not because they're trying to communicate with that person. Receiving the letter K never it's I need this letter to live after this moment. And so Robert Muller knew what the life of this letter was going to be Robert Muller knew. There was going to be a night like this that was about this letter. But most importantly, William bar new, and he still went out there and said all of the things that he said and actually gave these answers in house and Senate testimony about I don't know Muller's. Okay. I don't know. What muller? Thanks. Yeah. My new thanks, and I will say I mean, this is coming out ahead of that testimony tomorrow before the Lindsey Graham, led Senate Judiciary committee, and who knows what that's going to be like bar is very capable at spinning stuff. I would not be surprised if he wanted this out ahead of that testimony and that friendly environment. So he can spend his testimony particularly under Republican questioning spinning out his own yarn about how this is all some anodyne thing, and nobody needs to worry about it. But boy does this call the question as to whether or not Muller needs to testify and one of the most important things that wrote today, maybe that late breaking story from the Daily Beast that the Justice department won't allow Muller to set a date for his testimony in the house. Molars? Testimony is worth ten thousand times what bars testimony is worth at this point. And that question is called more than ever the limit living. Read you something Rachel that the great Michael Beschloss tweeted while you were on tonight and William Safire. Who was a columnist for New York Times and Republican he worked he was into politics to write for Richard Nixon's, nineteen sixty eight campaign. So he knew Bill Safire new all the Republican players. You know, all the players, but the Republicans he knew them very well in one thousand nine hundred ninety two thanks to Michael Beschloss. Bill Safire's column refers to then attorney general William bar, then attorney general William bar as the cover up general built Bill Safire was quite the phrase maker, and that was his view of William bar. Then how do you think they found William bar for this game? They Google cover up. John. Who is famous for cover up as attorney general, right? Okay. Rachel, go home and sleep. I will do beg your Rachel. Thanks senator. Elizabeth Warren is going to join us later in this hour, and it's on a day when she's enjoyed a significant bump in the polls, including one poll where she comes in second behind Joe Biden, just ahead of Bernie Sanders in third place. We will get her reaction to what you'll Biden said today about impeachment at the end of the hour. We will take a look at what the outlaw Trump White House got away with today in the White House driveway, Kellyanne Conway, actually broke the law in the White House driveway on video in front of a group of reporters who didn't seem to notice that she broke the law, and that might be because there is so much other seemingly bigger potential lawbreaking going on in and around this president of the United States. I tonight we go to the breaking news about the break between special counsel, Robert Muller. And his boss attorney general embark, and we begin with new video tonight of the attorney general not telling the truth about special counsel, Robert Muller. Muller's support your conclusion, I don't know whether Bob Muller supported my conclusion. The video is of course, not new, but our knowledge our understanding of that video is completely new our knowledge that the attorney general was not telling the truth that is what's new tonight. We also know tonight that the eternal general did not tell the truth about the special counsel in the house of representatives. Reports have emerged recently general that members of the special counsels team are frustrated at some level with the limited information included in your March twenty four th letter that it does not adequately or accurately necessarily portray the reports findings do you know what they're referencing with that. No, I don't. Two weeks before William bar answered those questions in the house and the Senate he received a letter from Robert Waller, washing post read that letter today and broke the news about it tonight this way special counsel wherever as motor the third wrote a letter in late March complaining to attorney general William P bar that a four page memo to congress describing the principal conclusions of the investigation into president. Trump quote, did not fully capture the context nature and substance of Muller's work. According to a copy of the letter reviewed Tuesday by the Washington Post, the timing of the leaking of this letter on the eve of the attorney general's testimony tomorrow to the Senate Judiciary committee will surely change the dynamic of what was already expected to be a highly confrontational hearing that will include three democratic candidates for president in the committee's questioning of the attorney general Amy klobuchar. Cory Booker and Kamala Harris, the Washington Post quotes. Robert Muller's letter of complaint to the attorney general saying the summary letter the department sent to congress and released to the public late in the afternoon of March twenty fourth did not fully capture the context nature and substance of this offices work and conclusions. Muller wrote there is now public confusion about critical aspects of the results of our investigation. This threatens to undermine a central purpose for which the department appointed the special counsel to assure full public confidence in the outcome of the investigations are Muller's letter made a key request that bar release the four hundred forty four page reports introductions and executive summaries and made some initial suggested reductions for doing so according to Justice department officials the Washington Post reports that Justice department officials were quote taken aback by the tone. On of Muller's letter, the very next day William Barr wrote another letter to congress this time saying that has earlier letter was not intended to be a summary of the mullahs report chairman Jerry Nadler of the House Judiciary committee, which has jurisdiction over the department of Justice and the impeachment process issued a statement today saying that he shares the concerns expressed by Robert Muller in his letter to the attorney general chairman Nadler says the special counsels concerns reflect our own the attorney general should not have taken it upon himself to describe the special counsel's findings in a light more favorable to the president. It was only a matter of time before the facts caught up to him attorney general bar also should not have withheld this letter from congress for as long as he has. I have demanded a copy from the department of Justice. I have asked that it be delivered no later than ten o'clock tomorrow morning. The attorney general has expressed some reluctance to appear before the House Judiciary committee that this Thursday. These reports may. It that much more important for him to appear an answer our questions, the department of Justice has also been reluctant to confirm date for special counsel, Robert Mueller's testify given the evenings reports I will press the department to schedule that hearing without delay. And joining us now by phone is democratic Senator maisy Hirono of a why she's a member of the Senate Judiciary committee and will be questioning attorney general William bar tomorrow. Senator Geraldo, thank you very much for joining us tonight. And a part of our reporting should include that you have now tonight sent a letter along with some of your colleagues about eleven fellow senators have signed it to the Justice department inspector general asking that the inspector general the Justice department on the basis of what you've learned tonight and other issues investigate William bars handling of the mullahs report. What are you hoping to hear from the inspector general about that? Well, let me clarify that. I sent. Letter before this bombshell was dropped tonight about the letter that Muller sent to bar about the his concerns about what bar said, and it's for page letter. So he just events even more concerns to the requests that we sent to the IT. So what I hope to get is where the I g to take on the investigation and to tell us when we were the other whether or not this attorney general is acting impartially as the people's attorney general not the president. So all of the indications are that bar is acting as the lawyer for the president. What are you? What do you want to ask the attorney general about tomorrow's hearing? I serious concerns already. Whether I was going to get any kind of unvarnished truth from bar, and this is before this that are of the information regarding dense letter came forward clearly bar has lied to both the house and the. Senate committees because he was asked knowing full well that Muller did not agree with how bar characterize the his report in the four-page bar letter knowing that he's still testified before both the house of the Senate to indicate that he really didn't know how you know bar felt about the four pager. So that's a lie. It's a lie. This call it what it is. So I know whether he's going to be with I'm going to get anything that that is not more spin from this person. I fully intend to lead us. My seven minutes to make concerns known. However, and do you expect any Republicans tomorrow to be troubled by what they've learned now tonight about Robert Muller's objections to the way William bar, characterized the mullahs report, I would be very surprised if any of them step forward with raising any concerns because they have not expressed concerns up to now knowing full well that bar edition. For this job, and all of his subsequent actions have indicated that he is not impartial impartial. And therefore, he should not be attorney general as far as I'm concerned if he wants to be the president's lawyer he should have taken the job. Will you be focusing your questions tomorrow on the disagreements with Robert Mueller? And they said whatever questions I will ask him. I have no idea where I'm going to get a straightforward answer. And I'm not particularly interested in giving bar more minutes to to spin. He he he's not forthcoming and he wasn't forthcoming during his hearing. And that's one of the major reasons that I did not support him for attorney general's position. And you look at it in his previous tenures attorney general, and you noted that he was called the cover of general he had recommended pardons for people who are involved in Iran-Contra. So his past record as Turney journal was already concerning, but his recent actions only lent further to my concerns. This is not a guy who's gonna be impartial. As you quite to the contrary. Senator maisy Hirono. Thank you very much for joining us by phone tonight. We really appreciate it. We'll be watching the hearing tomorrow and joining our discussion now are two democratic members of congressman of congress congressman Roger Roger increased him worthy of Illinois is a member of the house oversight and the house intelligence committees. And Kearns Monroe comment of California. He's a member of the house oversight committee Carson kind let me start with you your reaction to this new development that Robert Muller expressed basically immediate disagreement with the way William bar characterized. As report this is not a complex legal issue is actually commonsense. If a law student engaged in this kind of dishonesty, they would be kicked out for academic fraud, if a lawyer engaged in this kind of dishonesty they would be disbarred billboard needs to resign. And he needs to resign tomorrow. But I think he knew that he was going to have to resign. And he said it was worth the cost. Of up few skating and giving the president breathing room. And he intentionally took that hit to put a false narrative out there presidential candidate, Helene Castro has also called for a bars. Resignation. Carson Christner, the your reaction to this breaking news tonight. Well, I think that at this point, it's all the more reason why we need the full unredacted Muller report, we need this letter. I don't want a summary of this letter from Mr. bar. I want the letter from Mr. Muller. And then finally, we need Mr. Muller to testify himself, as you know, the house intelligence committee has also requested his testimony. The fact that the Justice department may be standing in the way of him testifying is yet another act of obstruction in my opinion. And now we need to vindicate our rights to investigate whether that means going to court or not let's listen to more of William bars. Testimony with Charlie Crist. Did you contemplate having the special counsel's office help you with the preparation of your March twenty four th letter or did you? We offered to have Bob review it before putting it out, and he declined I didn't ask you about reviewing asked. If you thought about having them help prepare the March twenty four th letter. I mean, they they didn't know I didn't think why not because it was my letter. Karston kinda when you watch these these answers take on new meaning well, and he's trying to be so slippery and trying to opt his skate, but it's not gonna work. I mean, the American people have common sense, they know that he went before the Senate, and he lied. I mean, he said that Bob Muller didn't give him any indication of disagreement that is just untrue. And at some point we have to distinguish fact from spin truth from untruth, and this is as obvious cases, you can get what can Jerry Nadler due to get Robert Muller's testimony. If the journal standing in the way, well, huge subpoena, Robert Muller and again from supreme court's down to lower courts. They've all said that a congress has the right to investigate be. They have the right to issue subpoenas and see they have the right to hold people in contempt. And so I think those are. All rights that now we have to exercise because at this point. We know that the president has already challenged power of the purse by declaring an emergency with regard to spending money on a border wall. And now he's challenging a right of oversight. And he's not the king. He's the president. And the president is accountable to the people and to the representatives representatives, namely in congress, and a constant kind of the the standoff that we're seeing here is something that we really haven't seen the was very kind of a brief version of this during the Nixon investigation. But what was what was so unique is so unique about the Trump administration is it seems impervious to political pressure because it was in fact political pressure that forced a lot of the cooperation from the Nixon administration. It also forced certain forms of cooperation out of Bill Clinton when he was being investigated political pressure is always benefactor in every other administration during any investigation. It doesn't seem to be. Factor here. They don't seem to care at all about the political pressures. You're right. I mean Sam Irwin who was chairing. The Senate select committee famously threatened to send the sergeant at arms to get someone Nixon's White House aides and that shamed them enough that the White House aides complied. But here you're talking about an administration that has no shame. I mean, if people view being held in contempt as a badge of honor as opposed to a career ending embarrassment than what do you do? My view is similar to Representative Krishna birthday. There's only one person who this country will trust. And that's Bob Muller. We need to bring him in front of congress. Let him tell the facts on live television. And I think that's the only thing that's going to resolve this and Muller's complaint to bar was that a what what bars summary? Did was it undermined? It undermined the public confidence in the special counsel. And that's what the special counsel is all about. That's right. He complained about the fact that it didn't capture the context nature. Or substance of the Muller report apart from that he had no problems with the bar summary, apparently. But the point of the the point of this whole situation is that at this point. We don't want anymore filters. We want the Muller genuine draft. We want the full unredacted report. We want Mahler on the hill. And we want this letter before us by by ten AM tomorrow morning. I think Mr. Nadler is asked for Ivan is very reasonable. I think we should have it tonight. But no more filters. We don't want Washington Mars sought but congress hasn't yes, we are joined now by Neil, cut theology. Justice Martin veteran former acting US solicitor general and on MSNBC legal contributor. He wrote. The Justice department rules governing the special counsel Neil, very eager to get your reaction to what we've learned about the communication now between Robert Mueller and attorney general bar. Thank you Lawrence. I guess my reaction has Diaz meal. I mean like, I can't even imagine where to start. I mean, it's not just the fact that there are disagreements between bar Muller. We kind of knew that it's not just the gravity of the disagreements, and it's not even just the fact that Muller decided to go to paper to create a historical record to me, the most significant thing, and you just started to get at at in the end of your segment is this line from the Muller letter, which the Washington Post is reporting the board letter threatens to undermine the central purpose for which the department appointed the special counsel to assure full public confidence in the outcome in the investigations that's a quote from Muller's letter to bar, the Washington Post on earth, and it's significant because the whole point of the special counsel regulations when we wrote them back in nine hundred ninety nine was to say, look, you can never get the attorney general out of the process and our constitutional system. But. You can either ensure an independent investigation war, if the attorney general interferes in it that it's going to become public. And that is what we are seeing. Now, we are seeing interference by the attorney general becoming a matter of public record. And that means there's only one safe option, and that is what we into it in one thousand nine hundred nine and that is a congressional investigation that may culminate in impeachment. This has set up. Everything bar has done has now set up congress to have to investigate. They have no choice because there can't be public confidence. When you have an attorney general effectively superseding trumping the independent investigation by Bob Muller. The Washington Post is also reporting tonight that after attorney journal William Barr received Robert Muller's letter of complaint that the two then spoke on the telephone for about fifteen minutes. The Washington Post reports that in that call Muller said he was concerned. Media coverage of the obstruction investigation was misguided. And creating public misunderstandings about the offices work. According to Justice department officials and their call bar also took issue with Muller calling his memo a summary. We are joined now by David Frum. He's the senior editor for the Atlantic and the author of Trump Agassi's, former speech writer for President George W Bush and David your reaction to what we're now learning about Robert Muller's, very quick complaint to William bar about William bars. First public statement about the military or the New York Times, which got the story second has a line in his story that I think gives a piercing shot of light as to what this dispute is ultimately about the times got a comment from people around bar that would bar was angry at Muller about was that the mullahs report bar felt was written for congress and not for him. So why would that bother him? Well, because the issue of the Mona report is was there obstruction? And muller. Cassettes up facts at say, if this were anybody, but the president, obviously, yes, however, this department has rules that say I can't charge the president. And since I can't charge the president on. I'm going to follow this departments rules. Therefore, I'm not going to make any recommendations to anybody. I'm going to pass this over to the people who have the power and the right to make decision. And that is not you Mr. bar that is congress. And that is what bar was angry about the mother was forcing his hand. My taking a decision Muller wanted to make away from him and giving it to these gentlemen to say if you all think there's been obstruction of Justice than you have remedies. This department does not embarrassing. I am going to take the fact that I don't have a remedy to say there isn't a problem when there was a problem. Neil cut y'all to that point. It seems that that interpretation of the ball report. Then suggests that what William bar did was ineffective intercept it if the report was intended. Of to be delivered to the body that can make a judgment about obstruction of Justice. It. It was then intercepted by an attorney general who according to the department's own rules actually can't make a decision about obstruction of Justice. And then he made a decision about obstruction of Justice. Exactly. I mean, the whole thing is so snowflake he just like much of the Trump administration. They have all these like fake complaints. I mean, you know, how can bar- complain about Muller. Not reaching a conclusion got obstruction of Justice. That's after all what happened in whitewater with George skeets. What happened whitewater with Ken Starr? And it's what happened in Watergate with Joris ski. They just sent the material up to congress and said, you decide and I agree with David Frum entirely the whole idea behind that you can't indicted sitting president every scholar even the office legal counsel memos and even the Muller report. And all say the reason for that is because you have to impeach I you gotta have a congressional determination. I so how far can sit there and complain about this. When after all, it's what he wanted which was the non indictment of his boss. The president is beyond me. And then, you know, the special counsel regulations did exactly what we hoped they would do here which is four sunlight on bar if. He's going to interfere. We're gonna find out about it. And that's exactly what we're finding out tonight massive interference by the attorney general in an ongoing investigation of his boss. The president of the United States, and you cannot trust an attorney general who interferes in such a way with an independent investigation. The Olympia ask you one other point of interference with your experience in the Justice department, and that is a can the attorney general prevent William Barr from testifying because we have a breaking news report tonight and the Daily Beast saying that House Democrats told the Daily Beast they've been told special counsel Robert Mueller is willing to testify before them about his report on Russian interference in the two thousand sixteen election. But that the department of Justice has been unwilling to set a date for it to happen. Neil. A can the attorney general prevent William Barr from testifying prevent a Robert Muller from testing doing. I mean, no, I mean, these folks are at then Trump administr. Are so afraid of the truth is afraid to testify bars afraid to testify in the house of representatives on Thursday because he might get more than five minutes of questions in a row. And now they're trying to prevent according to the Daily Beast Muller from testifying it's not gonna work, and it's not gonna work because we wrote the special counsel regulations anticipating in various attorney general like what it evidently, it seems like we have and the failsafe was to appoint someone from outside of the Justice department. So Robert Muller was outside at the Justice department. He was brought in to be special counsel, but he can leave tomorrow, I'll leave government service tomorrow, and the attorney general and the president will not be able to stop him from testifying that was our break glass in case of emergency option. I sure hope we don't have to use it. But everything that this isn't ministration has done to try and squelch the truth leads me to think we might have to cross up rich Carson Krishna Murthy. Rachel Maddow reported in the previous hour that. Hurt. Her staff contacted the specialty spokesperson for these special counsel's office. And once again, they said that that Robert Muller's departure is days away. But that's something. They've said. Weeks ago that it's days away. So it may be that. That's what we're waiting for in order for him to testify. It may be that. But on the other hand, I still think that Mr. Muller should express himself publicly on this whether he should testify or not I think that his taciturn nece at this point is perhaps counterproductive I think that on the one hand he has to show deference to the department of Justice. But on the other hand he is a special counsel. He needs six size them independence, and at least through his spokesman, he should express his desire to testify and make it known. And if at that point, the Justice department, formerly says, no, then he has to leave, but we have to remember, you know, the Trump administration is now trying to get even former officials from testifying preventing them from testifying such as Mr. Mcgann the White House counsel. Again, I have to say congress has the power to subpoena these people in their individual capacity and hold them in contempt in there. Individual capacity, and we have to vindicate are the right of the people to have oversight of this president and Don mcgann's, personal lawyer now has been showing some deference to the notion that the White House might still have control over the testimony of a former White House staffer I just want to bring in this new call for the attorney general's resignation. It comes with some weight from Senator Chris van Hollen because he is using the testimony that Robert Barr actually answer. Our regard gave to him in a Senate hearing as the reason he's saying tonight Senator van Holland is saying on April twentieth. I asked Barr to Bob Muller. Support your conclusion his answer was I don't know whether Muller supported my conclusion, we now know Muller stated his concerns on March twenty seventh and that bar totally misled me, the congress and the public. He must resign. So. The the calls for as nation increase as you sit here let off with one, but there's going to be more before this hour's out. I'm sure the irony is of all the obstruction Bill bar may have committed the gravest offence in obstructing Justice. And it's important to realize fob Muller is not Ken Starr. I mean, he was so careful he made a conclusion not to go after Trump on the collusion issue. He has been bended a bending over backwards to not go after the president. And that's why I think he has so much credibility, frankly, more credibility than people were Democrats or Republicans than we have on the committee. The American people have a sense of judgment, and they're going to look at this person as nonpartisan as having done his duty as putting country above party. And I think he's the only person really who can help us heal when he comes in front of congress David read at the beginning of the hour. Bill Safire's nineteen ninety. A to call them where in in Bill bars, I tour of duty as a turning general. A Republican columnists who worked for Republican president Richard Nixon referred to him gave him the label of cover up general in in those days. What does this do to the future of attorney general William bar? I think many people who are watching this program and listening to us tonight. Maybe feeling a little bit of anguish, maybe even some despair. And I think that they should know that we're here in the last hours before this damn cracks that the White House yesterday served a letter on Deutsche Bank saying we don't want you to cooperate with a congressional subpoena. That letter is you read it. I mean, I it's been a long time since I read law, but you read it anything this is poor work. But sometimes when you have no facts and no arguments on your side, the the best work, you can do is pretty poor in which they are saying Deutsche Bank, you can refuse the subpoena for a whole list of reasons that every supreme court case on the congressional subpoenas. Our says they cannot do they're going to try to interfere with other congressional subpoenas. But the law is clear would if congress can legislate on something lawfully, so they can't ask you to produce something that would violate your first amendment or fourth amendment rights, but if they can lodge late they can get the material they need where the information so you can legislate and the these cases are going to be lost. Trump administration is playing for time. They are hoping they can push this beyond November twenty twenty that will be up to the courts, but they are going to lose lose lose. And I think public opinions with us Lawrence. I think on this particular issue president site is all that. But what does that matter in the way this administration conducts itself, they don't seem that they've never cared about public opinion? They only care about Trump base opinion, which they have I think that this is all the more reason why we have to go to the mat on this particular issue. We have to go to the mat in exercising our right to subpoena and to potentially hold. Holding people individually in contempt with regard to this particular investigative right of congress. If we can't do this. We might as well, just go home. But Carson kinda it's my sense that this administration is happy to watch you use all those tools, and contempt and anything you want to do. Because the only thing they care about is how many days it eats up on the calendar. And they simply want to push this thing. They don't have to push it all the way to November of twenty twenty. They just need to push it well into twenty twenty so that the whole political community just kind of throws up their hands and said, okay, it's too close to the election for us to try to do anything conclusive anything like an impeachment procedure. And then you're absolutely right. I mean, they're hope is that Trump becomes the Republican nominee, and then they'll say, oh, how unfair you can't disqualify the Republican party's nominee, and they just need to push this out till January til the Iowa caucuses. That's why the thing they're petrified of is someone coming before live television, the president understands that he didn't care if Don Mcgann was talking to Muller in a confidential four hundred forty eight page report, but the president understands television, and what he is scared of is Muller or Mcgann or these folks come and testify on live TV I mean, you saw the impact of the cabin off hearing where the president actually I thought that Christine Blodget Ford had won the day. And I think that's the only thing that can change public opinion. Neil cut y'all is there any a tactic available, but can somehow speed up these processes to kind of make the subpoena process. Move more quickly for the Democrats in the house. I do I think that they can rave have expedited proceedings if in quarter, if the administration decides the triumph block people from testifying the like, so I do think that that's possible. But I think Lawrence stubbing their to really fundamental issues apart from the politics or even the law. One is what does it say about us if we don't launch investigations and subpoena people right away. I think it just says that we're also in some sense not week and not afraid to afraid to get at the truth. And the other is what it says about them. Because even if they can stretch this out a little bit, maybe the leave in stretched out to next year's election cycle. There is now a damning historical record not just about the president. But about his attorney general Bill bar, and I used to walk down the Justice department on the fifth floor and seal those portrait's of legendary attorneys-general Griffin bell, and you know, Robert Jackson and people like that Bill bar will not be like that. There is no chance anymore. He has funded. Mentally sullied his reputation and his legacy with the way he's acted and in the history books. These folks will go down for what they are. And David from a whoever Donald Trump chose as his next attorney general. At that moment in time knew that he or she was going to take a very significant place in history history is being handed to that attorney. This was not going to be forgotten attorney general and Bill bar has seems to have had seems to have made his choice for history. Well, he may just have made a bad calculation people sometimes too. He may have thought maybe I can do this for a little while return to my law firm. Eat lunch in Washington. Be a big, man. A former attorney general is one of the greatest jobs in the American legal profession, if you don't disgrace yourself, and maybe it'll work, but there too many cracks in the dam. The emoluments case cracking just as we speak of the tax returns case they are able to slow that one down, but the deutchebanks subpoena Deutsche Bank wants to release those documents because Deutsche Bank has important reputational risk. They don't want to be seen as stooges for Russian money launderers. And I don't know that they are going to be able to resist having the the people in this White House case refuse subpoenas from congress from the house of representatives. Remember also only one house needs to vote to hold someone in contempt. Not both. End of the day, you know, Lawrence. The option is either to Percy proceed with our. Strategy of issuing subpoenas and holding people in contempt or doing nothing. That's it. And we can't afford to do nothing at this point. We we have to continue. And if there's some delay fine. But we have to do this for the purpose of our congress. We're gonna have to squeeze in a break and our breaking news coverage congressman Roque Khanna, congressman Roger Krishnamurthy, Neil Cutty. I'll David Frum. Thank you all very much for joining our discussion and starting us off tonight. Really appreciate it. And when we come back after this break, Elizabeth Warren was the first presidential candidate to call for impeachment of the president immediately. After she read the mullahs report and today, Elizabeth Warren's presidential campaign got a significant boost in a new round of polls. Senator Warren will join us next. Hi, it's Katy Tur want to keep up with MSNBC while you're on the go subscribe to the MSNBC daily newsletter. You'll get the best of what you've missed or in this unprecedented. Era of news, text MSNBC, two six six eight six six to subscribe. Impeachment has never been an issue in a presidential campaign before. But now it is and the new front runner in the democratic presidential. Primary was asked about impeachment today. Three new presidential polls show, Joe Biden with a strong lead and those three polls also have good news for another candidate. Senator Elizabeth Warren who finished in the top three in all of those polls in one poll, she came in second just one point ahead of Bernie Sanders, which is actually a statistical tie within the margin of error. Elizabeth Warren's move up in the polls has come after months of campaigning on a near constant roll out of new policy proposals. That have made her the recognized new policy leader in the campaign and her move up in the polls came after she announced in no uncertain terms that she is in favor of the impeachment of President Trump the day after the mullahs report was released two weeks ago. Here is what the new front runner in the democratic field. Joe Biden said about. Impeachment today. The mullahs report what was your initial reaction to the findings one. There was Russian interference without any question. Russian interference number one. Number two there elements of the report in the second phase of the report about seven or eight things are left undone. He was not within his purview investigative thought. The congress attempting to take that up and what the congress should do. And they are doing is investigate that. And if in fact, they blocked the investigation they have no alternative to go to the only other constitution resort. They have is impeachment. But my job. In the meantime, is to make sure he's not back as prison. United States America. We recorded our interview with Senator Warren earlier this evening before the breaking news of Robert Muller's letter of complaint to attorney general William bar here is that intricate. Joining us. Now, the senior Senator from Massachusetts Elizabeth Warren who is also the democratic candidate for president. Thank you very much for joining us tonight. Senator oh, thank you for having me. I'm glad to be here. I want to get your reaction to what vice president Biden said this morning about impeachment. So look I read the report, and she said, and what I got to the end of the report there were three things that were very very clear. The first is that a hostile foreign government attacked are twenty sixteen election with the purpose of helping gun. Trump. The second is Donald Trump welcomed that health and the third is that when our federal government tried to investigate after Donald Trump was inaugurated, he did everything he could to try to stop that investigation to try to derailed that investigation to try to send that investigation somewhere else and the actions that he took our will documented it's all right there in the report, I got to the end of that report. And I said, look, this is not about politics. This is about the responsibility of congress as a co equal branch of government. And I think it's time to open impeachment proceedings. Then there is a difference because the vice president is saying that the house should investigate. And then, but he's also saying if the president blocks the investigations, then they have no choice that actually puts him in a slightly tougher signing position. Let's say than the house leadership which continues to want to hold to the idea that it has not yet developed the information necessary for an impeachment hearing. Hook. I just don't know anybody reads that report and reads, the documentation of the president trying to get the White House counsel to fire Muller. And when Muller refuses to do that tries to get the press, president tries to get the White House counsel to lie about it. And when he refuses to do that, the president tries to get White House counsel to write a letter whine about it. And then when he won't do that the president castigates goes after the the White House counsel for having taken notes about what he had tried to get him to do it. And it's that way over into over and over through that report. There are ten separate instances that are fully documented there's plenty of testimony about it plenty of documentary evidence about it. There is enough. There that we should open the impeachment proceedings now in my view, you know, look opening the proceedings doesn't mean that you stop an investigation. It means that you can continue an investigation. But look that's how I read it. I read that report the Muller report. And when I get to the end, it is perfectly clear to me that what Donald Trump has done are peachable offenses, and that it's now up to congress to step up and stepping up in this case means opening an impeachment hearing on a blazer and pavement because you don't get onto the issues. But I just want us see one more thing you say that's how I read it. And it sounds to me that I'm hearing it. This is how I read it as a Harvard law professor as a trained lawyer, and I'm wondering if you feel as if you have certain advantages legal experience advantages in reading it over some of your colleagues now. No. I mean. Yes. Those things are all truth that I am. I am a lawyer in. Yes, I've taught in law school, but this isn't hard to read I really want to be blunt about this. I do not understand how somebody could read four hundred and forty eight pages of the Muller report and Moller lays out in pretty clear. Terms, exactly what the grounds are for obstruction of Justice. And what the documentation is for each piece along the line. This is not hard to follow. In fact, most of the pushback that I hear is about the politics of it. And and for me, this is a point of principle. This is about whether or not each person in the house, and then if the house votes it over to the Senate takes a vote and says that those efforts to obstruct Justice are okay, or they are not. And I. I think everyone in congress should be called on to take that vote and then to live with that vote for the rest of their lives, one element of the politics of it or the presidential politics. And there is a belief or I shouldn't let's call it a fear instead of a belief among some Democrats democratic strategists and some democratic officeholders both in the house and the Senate who worry that impeachment proceedings could help empower President Trump in his reelection campaign, especially if there's no hope of removing him in a Senate vote, and and you could be on the ticket running against President Trump for re election next September. Don't you don't you have any concern that the that some kind of impeachment process might actually help energize his campaign against the democrat in November? There are some issues that are bigger than politics. And one of them is whether or not a president of the United States is above the law. You know, I understand that in a dictatorship. Everybody's circles around the president and protects him, but that's not the way the constitution divides power in our country. It says that no one is above the law in that includes the president of the United States and the tool to make sure that the president is not above the law. The tool given to congress is an impeachment proceeding. This is serious. This is about a foreign hostile foreign government that attacked our election system and an investigation into that that was blocked by the president for his own political purposes. This is a moment when we have to stand up in congress. It's not a question of political party or the next election. It's about what we think is. Right. And I didn't go into this thinking, oh, great. Let's see if we can stir up a big impeachment fight. It's the conclusion I've reached by reading the whole report. And I I r- everybody to keep that report. I urge all of my colleagues to read that report and tell me how they can stand by and say, you know, that kind of behavior may be just fine in a president of the United States. It's not fine. No one's above the law. Not even the president. Thanks for Senator Elizabeth Warren and joined us earlier, we prerecorded that interview before the breaking news tonight that has kind of taken over this hour, and after this break, we will take a look at the outlaw Trump White House the way the Trump White House actually breaks the law everyday and no one even bothered to mention it anymore because of all of the bigger stuff in the mullahs report. That's next. Bob muller. Support your conclusion, I don't know whether Bob Muller supported my conclusion. Joining us now by phone the Senator who asked that question democratic Senator Chris van Holland of Maryland, Senator thank you very much for joining us tonight. You have tweeted your reaction to the breaking news tonight about Robert Muller's letter. But please expand on that for our audience tonight. Well, war, what we saw in attorney general bars response to my question was another in a series of blatantly misleading comments in order to protect the president to serve not the attorney general, but as the service that cheap propaganda for the president and the Trump administration came on the heels of the four page letter where mischaracterized entirely Muller's finances specially with respect to obstruction of Justice. And I've been asking the attorney general not hearing it serious questions. I'm structured Justice. How he reached that conclusion? He did he repeated the answer though. So I simply ask them. He did Bob Muller agree with conclusions and the gave the answer you just played. And now, we know that he already received a letter from Bob Muller. Taking issues with the way, the attorney general characterize that conclusions. Yes, Bob Muller's letter to quote, it as an appears in the Washington Post says that the that what attorney general bar wrote about the mullahs report, quote did not fully capture the context nature and substance of this offices work and conclusions. And that's something that attorney general bar knew when he gave you that answer which seemed to I guess feign ignorance about Robert Muller's thinking on this. Exactly, right. 'cause he had no in the back of the mind his mind that he got this letter from Bob Muller, a witch is you just quoted sad that, you know, attorney general Mars conclusions. Did not have to. Son of Moller's work and conclusions. I asked him whether or not Muller had agreed with this conclusion use the same word that was the molar Letterman and barb clearly and deliberately I believe misled, you know, not just need with more, the congress and the public on this and more. This is a part of a pattern of behavior, which is why you know, when when the attorney general can no longer be trusted by the public. It's time with your turn of general to resign. And Senator when you ask that question, did you have any knowledge or information of about what the answer to that question should be? I did not I was growing very frustrated with the fact that the attorney general refused to let me know how he had reached a different conclusions with respect to the extract obstruction of Justice charge. Since over how he reached inclusion exonerate President Trump when when Muller and his report or had expressly, not exonerated Muller on dynamism, president of obstruction of Justice. And so when I was very frustrated with his refusal to tell me how he Barbie secular. I I just asked him if he had any reasonably that Moeller agreed with its conclusions. And I know I did not know that at that moment. The attorney general new and was already in possession of this letter to promote. I have to say when you ask the question. It seemed like a logical question to me at the time without any other surrounding knowledge about it. It's a normal question to ask a sender. You're not a member of the judiciary committee where William bar will be testifying tomorrow. But I have a feeling you're going to play a very large role in that hearing. I assume more than one of your colleagues will be quoting you be quoting that exchange. To the attorney general is there is there something the attorney general can possibly say that you think could reasonably explain the answer that he gave to you. I can't think of any plausible explanation Lawrence. But I do believe that this exchange that I had with the attorney general we'll we'll come up. I'm capita. My colleagues will pursue that line of questioning because it leaving everybody, you know, scratching their head about is response. But it, of course is patterns that we've seen from the attorney general very disappointing. But anybody who still believed that the turning general is active as the public's will air. I think had a wake up call from the ladder, and sort of this this lean exchanges. He had with me. Senators you share my view based on it's based on my experience in government. I know you have more experience than government than I do that. When when someone like, a Robert Muller writes, a letter like that to the attorney general it is for the attorney general, but the author of that letter knows that the letter is going to live in history knows that eventually that letter is going to be revealed to congress and knows that that letter on some news night. Like, this is eventually going to be the big story of the night. Yeah, I believe probably Muller was very disturbed and upset with the way. Three general characterized his report when the attorney general put together that a four page letter and Muller wanted his use Muller's us clearly documented there would be no any one of them. Temporary documented. For the reasons you're saying, this is an important historical record. And he wanted to go on record on this important question. Senator Chris van Hollen? Thank you for joining us on this very important that we really appreciate you. Joining us. Thank you Senator very much. Well, that is not exactly the program. We scheduled even at the beginning of this hour, a lot of things at the change during the course of that our including getting Senator van Hollen on the phone for us tonight, which we greatly. Appreciate Senator Chris van Holland gets tonight's last word. Hey, guys, Willie Geist here. Be sure to check out. This week's episode of the Sunday, sit down podcast where I chat with avengers endgame star. Jeremy Renner get it now for free wherever you download your podcasts.

Coming up next