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tv   Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  June 28, 2017 2:00pm-3:01pm PDT

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bill. you can follow me on facebook and twitter o or @thelead. we actually read them. thanks for watching. happening now, breaking news. immediate threats. president trump's national security adviser warns the threat posed by north korea is, quote, much more immediate now. and he says the president has asked for military options to stop north korea's nuclear weapons threats. a mysterious promise from president trump for a friday deadline looking for a compromise behind the scenes. some democrats are complaining about the role the president is playing. saved many lives? the u.n. ambassador said the trump administration saved many
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men, women and children after warning them of an assad attack. did they really heed the president's threat. and blaming obama. after accusing the former president of spying on him and other criminal acts, president trump's relationship with him has become so toxic, the two have not spoken since na inauguration day. it's the first time two neighboring presidents have ended their relationship. we're following breaking news. deep concern inside the white house about the nuclear threat posed by north korea. national security adviser general h.r. mcmaster saying, and i'm quoting, the threat is much more immediate now. he revealed president trump has asked for a range of options,
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including military action, to deal with the kim jong-un regime. we're also following the scramble right now by senate republican leaders to overcome deep division inside the republican party over its bill to repeal and replace obamacare. after postponing a vote on the measure, majority leader mitch mcconnell now trying to win over conservatives who think it doesn't go far enough and moderates who see it as too severe. also this hour. escalating hostility from the white house over the news media. once again the secretary's office barred live tv coverage for the daily press briefing hours after president trump launched new twitter attacks on what he calls the fake news media. senate intelligence committee chairman richard bird told cnn he asked the fbi for memos, memos of detailed conversation between fired fbi director james comey and his confidantes.
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he also asked for details from president trump including his request to drop the investigation into michael flynn. congressman jim heinz of the intelligence committee and others are also standing by. let's begin with the breaking news on north korea. barbara starr is working this story for us. barbara, the administration clearly very concerned and issuing some stark warnings. >> reporter: the warnings, the language is changing everywhere, wolf. good evening. president trump a couple days ago said north korea might have to be dealt with rapidly. now we know why. two officials are telling me that military options for north korea have recently been updated and will be ready, are ready, to present to president trump if needed. every north korean missile test, the possibility of an
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underground nuclear test all being awatched constantly to se if he launches something capable of reaching the united states. h.r. mcmaster brought all of this out into public view. >> the threat is much more immediate now. it's clear that we can't repeat the same approach -- failed approach of the past. the president has directed us to not do that and to prepare a range of options, including a military option which nobody wants to take. there is a recognition that there has to be more pressure on the regime. and i think what you'll see in coming days and weeks are efforts to do that. >> general mcmaster making it clear the administration still looking for a diplomatic solution. china threatening north korea. but something has significantly changed in the military equation. a defense official tells me
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north korea has made recent advances in its ability to disguise what it's doing, to be able to launch missiles, conduct an underground nuclear test very quickly, very rapidly without the u.s. having the kind of potential advance warning it might have had in the past. all of this, wolf, tonight adding to the equation, adding to the worry that the trump administration may be the u.s. administration that finally has to deal with north korea. >> officials have told me now for several weeks that the north korea threat isn't, for all practical purposes, the national security threat facing the united states right now, even more so than isis and other terror-related issues. barbara starr reporting from the pentagon. now the significant challenges facing the senate republican health care bill. let's go to cnn ryan nobles who is on capitol hill with the very latest. ryan, this is clearly an uphill battle for the senate republican
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leadership. >> reporter: that's a good way to put it, wolf. in many ways the senate leaders are back to square one as they look for a path to passage for some form of health care reform. for senate leadership, that means attempting to bring w wayward republicans back into the fold, but for senate republican moderates, it means opening the door to work with democrats. tonight mitch mcconnell's message to senate republicans is clear. it is time to come together. >> this should not be accepting to anyone. anyone sitting on the sidelines and accepting the status quo won't bring relief to anyone. >> reporter: republicans are av anxious about the direction of the health care bill. >> i think it's very difficult because while there is significant opposition to the health care bill here in the senate, the opposition comes from various quarters and
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idealogical spectrum is really wide. fo >> reporter: for moderate susan collins, cuts to medicaid and women's programs are definite. but they're looking for less direction of health care. >> they get to keep the obamacare subsidies, they get to keep the obamacare regulations. we promised to appeal. why don't we make the bill look a little more like an appeal. >> that
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>> reporter: the ad has come down, but heller approached the president at the senators meeting at the white house. this upheaval in the gop has given democrats an opening and they are taking advantage of it by calling on senate republicans and president trump to start over on health care and to vent in the process. >> if my republican friends cut medicaid, highly unpopular with
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the american people, abandon tax cuts, highly unpopular with the republican people, we democrats are happy to meet with them in the white house to talk about how to improve health care for the american people. >> reporter: the wheeling and dealing continues tonight for senate republicans behind closed doors, even though they know they won't get a vote this week. there is still some faint hope that the broad outlines of a plan can be agreed upon before they leave for the july 4th recess on friday. wolf? >> it's going to be really, really tough. we'll see what they can do. ryan nobles on capitol hill. thanks very much. all of this clearly a major setback for president trump who campaigned extensively on repeeling and replacing obamacare. let's go to correspondent jim acos acosta. jim, there is a lot at stake here for the president. >> reporter: president trump is not sounding so sure about victory in the health care
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debate as he conceded today getting a bill out of the senate may be more difficult than he thought. the white house is not giving up on the effort, but once again, officials expressed that confidence off camera. after once promising americans more winning than they could stand, president trump appeared to be bracing for a potential defeat on health care. >> i think we're going to get at least very close, and i think we're going to get it over the line. >> reporter: one day after senate republicans delayed a vote on the obamacare repeal bill, tweeting, some of the media likes to think that i am not totally engaged in health care. wrong, i know the subject well and want victory for u.s. a jarring reality he encountered in a meeting with gop senators. >> it's very tough. every state is different, every senator is different, but i have to tell you the republican senators had a really impressive meeting yesterday at the white house. we had close to 50 of them.
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we have 52. we need almost all of them. >> reporter: later in date, the president was jimmying up some suspense on the issue without elaborating. >> we could have a big surprise with a great health care package. >> reporter: during the campaign, then-candidate trump insisted repeeling repealing ob would be simple. >> you're going to have great health care and it's going to be so easy. >> reporter: now they're noting their opposition right outside the west wing. >> it doesn't go far enough to fix it. i'm on the conservative side of this bill and i think we're going to work together to make it better. >> reporter: support of the bill, below 20%. democrats are calling on the president to host both parties at the white house. >> president trump, i challenge you to invite us, all 100 of us, republican and democrat, to blair house to discuss a new
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bipartisan way forward on health care in front of all the american people. >> reporter: asked about that, the president did not knock down the idea. >> i need to find out if he's serious. he hasn't been serious. >> reporter: the president will try to rally his supporters at a private fundraiser at the trump hotel in washington to say that, yes, he is running in 2020. even if the white house didn't want to comment on the optics of the event. the white house did try to have it both ways today on its continued practice of holding briefings off camera. sanders complained that reporters would not have covered the immigration officials at today's briefing had the white house not invited them to the briefing room. but because the white house is keeping up with this policy of no cameras being on during those briefings, those officials ended up receiving less coverage. wolf? >> they certainly did. very quickly, the president is heading tonight down the street from the white house to the new
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trump international hotel on pennsylvania avenue for, what, a campaign fundraiser for his own reelection, is that right? >> reporter: that's right. and they're saying this is in part that they want to make sure there's no challengers going after the president in 2020, which is amazing they're thinking about this five or six months into office. but wolf, one thing we should point out earlier today, the white house was insisting that the fundraiser would be off camera, not open to reporters at all, and then later on in the day, perhaps yielding some of this pressure we've been bringing on this white house. they agree that pool coverage would be part of this fundraiser tonight, so at least we get some sort of sense of what the president is saying tonight. make no mistake, this is obviously a very big problem from an optic standpoint for the president just a few blocks away from the white house. he is holding a fundraiser at his own hotel. that's certainly going to raise a lot of questions in this town from people who think he's already not putting enough
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separation between himself, the white house and his hotel, wolf. >> he's already thinking about the reelection three and a half years to go. thanks very much. we're going to have a lot more on all of these stories. we're also standing by to speak live with an influential member of the house intelligence committee. congressman jim heinz will be joining us right after this. hi, i'm joan lunden with a place for mom
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breaking news. the president's national security adviser general h.r. mcmaster speaking only moments ago calling the threat posed by north korea, and i'm quoting him now, much more immediate now. mcmaster revealed president trump has asked for a range of options, including military action to deal with the kim jong-un regime.
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jim himes of connecticut is joining us. he's a member of the house intelligence committee. congressman, thanks for joining us. >> good afternoon. >> you agree with general mcmasters' assessment about this threat from north korea requiring the president now to consider various options including potentially military action? >> well, it's not entirely clear to me what is different now than a year ago or a month ago. you know, for years now north korea has been a rogue state. they have ignored the world community in its demand that they stop their work to develop nuclear weapons and more importantly the ability to deliver those weapons. they keep testing missiles. so i don't know why today is so important. north korea is a very, very serious threat, but i got to tell you, though, the martial drumbeat here makes me very nervous for a bunch of reasons. number one, we've got an awful lot of troops on the ground in korea. there are hundreds of thousands
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of americans in korea and of course there are millions of south koreans in the greater seoul area. so this is a very complicated game, and it makes me nervous when you hear rhetoric begin to be ratcheted up, and the person who is hearing that rhetoric is not necessarily stable and calm. so this is -- i'm not quite sure what the white house's game here is, but i hope they know what they're doing. >> do you believe the president is equipped to handle a major north korean crisis while avoiding dangerous escalation, as you point out? >> reporter: it won't surprise you to know that i am not a big believer in president trump's extensive, deep, and nuanced knowledge of the situation in north korea or generally. i am heartened by the fact that mcmaster and mattis are around the president at this moment. i also have to say, wolf, that whenever everyone rattles the sabre that way, and the
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president rattle ld td the sabrt week with respect to syria, he needs to know that the conflict in the united states need to make it clear that any direct contact by our forces has got to be debate and approved by the united states states forces. that's very important. >> they're now warning that bashar al-assad is talking about a kchemical attack, and the u.s told them they would pay. nikki haley said this. >> what we did see was all the activity we saw prior for the april 4 chemical attack.
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i think for the president calling out assad, i think by us continuing to remind iran and russia that while they choose to back assad that this was something we were not going to put up with. so i would like to think that the president saved many innocent men, women and children. >> is she right, congressman? did the statement from the white house prevent another chemical attack? >> i guess i'm where she is, which is i would like to think that u.s. action forestalled a chemical attack. obviously we'll never know that for sure. we are not inside bashar al-assad's head. again, when you step away from this particular incident, and remember, years ago bashar al-assad did not abide by the threat of military action by a united states president to stop his atrocities. if you step back, the really critical issue here is we are effectively at war in syria today. we've got hundreds of troops on the ground. they are exposed to capture and other things there. and, of course, we shot down a syrian plane.
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we are effectively at war without a clear mission. it's not clear. you heard the sabre rattling against assad there and the white house is saying this is really about isis. not a clear mission and no debate and authority granted for this military mission by the united states congress. and again, that's a big deal. >> let me shift gears, congressman. as you know, president trump has accused former president obama failing to act on russian election meddling. but sara murray and dana bash are both reporting tonight that they are really trying to persuade him russia is a threat. why can't they persuade the president to take this russian threat seriously? >> i'm not sure i can answer that question on why you can't persuade the president of the united states not to take this threat seriously. we heard in the general's testimony that the chief law enforcement officer of the united states had not received a briefing on this issue. the reality is this
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administration is not taking the russia threat at all seriously. perhaps it's because this president happens to have a soft spot for russia. there's plenty of evidence for that to be true. he clearly regards any talk of russia as undermining his claim to the presidency of the united states, and that's why he's called this a hoax. this is why he has slandered people like jim comey, the media who report on this. this is a sensitive topic for the president. i don't disagree with the president that our last president, president obama, he did not do nothing, he did a lot, but he didn't do enough. he didn't do enough to let vladimir putin know that this would be met by painful retribution. president trump is saying let's return the sanctions and by the way, i'm not taking this seriously. what i strange message they're getting in the kremlin today. >> thanks for joining us. former clinton campaign john
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podesta testified in front of the intelligence committee yesterday about russia's election interference. he'll be among our guests tomorrow right here in the situation room. coming up, the toxic relationship between president trump and his predecessor. why has he shut down communications with the former president, barack obama? select tempur-breeze® mattress sets. find your exclusive breeze retailer at
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the future isn't silver suits anit's right now.s, think about it. we can push buttons and make cars appear out of thin air. find love anywhere. he's cute. and buy things from, well, everywhere. how? because our phones have evolved. so isn't it time our networks did too? introducing america's largest, most reliable 4g lte combined with the most wifi hotspots. it's a new kind of network. xfinity mobile. we're closely watching developments on capitol hill and over at the white house. president trump this afternoon predicting a big surprise is coming on health care. the senate majority leader mitch mcconnell has been meeting with individual republican senators in an all-out effort to try to come up with a bill that could
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attract enough votes to move forward. let's bring in our political specialist. why is it so difficult, gloria, for the republicans to get 50 votes? that's what they need to pass this legislation. >> where to start. first of all, to go back in history for recent history, they've never had to write a bill, wolf. they've only been against obamacare. they've been talking about repeal and replace for years, but they never had to write one. secondly, they've done a bill now that the popularity is somewhere between 13 and 17% in the country. they have a huge idealogical chasm among republicans about how involved government should be in health care. so it's very difficult to bridge that divide when you're dealing with an unpopular bill, and oh, by the way, they also don't have a clear and concise message about how their version of health care reform would help
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average americans. other than that, it's easy. >> chris, a lot of us remember the former republican house speaker john baynor saying they're not going to be able to repeal and replace obamacare, the republicans, because they're not going to be able to get their act together on new legislation. is mitch mcconnell learning the john baynor lesson? >> yes. i feel like during john baynor's speakership, the story was always this. john baynor would propose something that tried to split the middle of the conservative wing of the house conference and the sort of centrist wing. conservatives would refuse to sign up for it. baynor would say, if you refuse to sign up for this, we'll have to use another way. conservatives still wouldn't sign up for it. we're not there yet in terms of democrats getting involved. president trump says democrats have no interest in this, we'll go it alone. they'll go it alone until they
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can't go it alone anymore. nothing i've seen in the last 24 hours, and i defer to dana on this because she's been doing great reporting up there on it, but nothing i've seen from the nine folks who have said they aren't going before that version that mcconnell wanted to vote on this week leads me to believe that they have any wiggle room. it seems to me rand paul is almost certainly a no. rand paul is essentially, if you change 100% to reflect what i want, i'll be for it. okay. >> the most honest in that, i think, susan collins saying she is not. >> it was a 52-48 majority. they lose three, it's over. they can lose two, they can't lose three. dana, you and sara murray have been doing terrific reporting on what's going on in the white house with another sensitive issue. they're trying to work very hard to convince the president that russian election meddling represents a major threat.
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>> that's right, and sara murray and i have been told that the fact of the matter is it's not an easy task if you are in the administration to convince the president of the united states to focus on russia, not just that the intelligence was accurate in terms of meddling, but what do you do about it to prevent it in the future? and one official told sara murray that there is no evidence to show trump is actively engaging on the issue, that there are -- there's nothing on the schedule in terms of paper trail. readouts are briefing documents, nothing to indicate the president is convening meetings or roundtables on it. and separately i was told that the nsa director, admiral mike rogers, when he was behind closed doors a few weeks ago on capitol hill, he expressed his frustration to congress that he can't convince the president that this actually happened, that the intelligence backing up the russian meddling in the united states election was a leak. >> the fbi, the cia, james
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clapper. this is not like some people say this and some people say that, it's conclusive. and all those people, as dana and sara reports, have all said this is not going to be an isolated incident. the russians aren't going to say, okay, that was a good run. we're going to do more. >> but dana, isn't that because, and some people i talked to, isn't that because the president just takes this as an affront to his legitimacy as opposed to separating that personal affront that he sees apart from the real issues that could involve him and other politicians in the future? >> that's exactly right. i was told the same thing, that it's very difficult for him to separate this notion of the accusations of collusion with the reality of russia meddling. >> good reporting. everybody stand by. there's a lot more coming up. a very important note to all of our viewers out there. this is what you need to do.
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you can read chris's brand new newsletter. go to cn.n. read it tonight. good work, chris. increasing the antagonistic relationship, i should say, with the news media. from the president's twitter rants to banning live tv coverage of the daily white house briefings. your insurance company
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concerning developments at the white house for the second time in three days. live tv coverage of the daily press briefing was not allowed also today. president trump once again took to twitter to attack the news media. let's get insight from white house correspondents, the george w. bush administration. jim acosta, you're our white house correspondent. let's start with you, the president tweeting today expanding his criticism, this one this morning. the failing "new york times" writes false story after false story about me. they don't even call to verify the facts of the story. fake news joke. some of the fake news media like to say i'm not totally engaged in health care. wrong. i know the subject well and i want victory for u.s. apparently that was a response to the story from "the times" who complained at least one republican senator came away from the meeting with the
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president about doubts about the president's involvement in the health care bill. >> reporter: the president himself has been peddling fake news for some time now. he's one of the founding fathers of birtherism who indicated falsely that president obama wasn't born in the united states when he was born in hawaii. he alleged that millions of undocumented people were voting in the election and that drew the popular vote to hillary clinton. that was also fake news, wolf. he has, in the last six weeks, held out this hint that he had recordings of his conversations with jim comey when he probably knew all along there were never any such conversations. he could have ended that controversy weeks ago. he elected not to do that so he perpetuated fake news in that sense. i think we have to put this in
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the same prism that we put up many of the president's false statements. they're just not true. my understanding about that "new york times" story, i believe glen thrush tweeted this earlier today, no, mr. president, that is not true. he did talk to people at the white house. just like we do that. we talk to people at the white house before we put a story out. sara murray has an excellent story out now with administration officials being frustrated over this administration. we talked to administration about that. they cry over us using unnamed sources but the white house speaks anonymously to us all the time. the press has to understand that not only is the president playing games when he goes on twitter, he's playing games with the facts. >> he attacks not only the "new york times" but cnn. the #amazon "washington post" sometimes referred to as the
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guardian of amazon not paying internet taxes which they should. it's fake news. that tweet, april ryan, was presumably in response to a story from the "washington post" which documented fake "time magazine" covers featuring trump and several of his golf clubs. he seems to be threatening, at least in that tweet, the owner of the amazon owner jeff bazos higher taxes for something he doesn't like. is that a dangerous signal to send? >> it's a dangerous signal to send, it's dangerous all over. we have a president who wants to try to diminish the press, try to diminish people who are writing the facts, whether he wants to color them another way, we may color them a different way, and he wants to go against them and hit people at the heart of where they live and breathe and their pocketbook as well. it's a dangerous road to go down. it's a sad commentary when this is happening between the press
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and the president, and wolf, we covered the white house together years ago, and this relationship with the press and president has been going on for years, and now it has come to this. it's a very sad commentary, but we have to see how it continues to play out. >> jeff mason, you're the white house correspondent, you're also president of the white house correspondents association. i know you're trying to fix these problems, working with the white house press staff. how is that going? because it doesn't seem like you're making a whole lot of progress. >> well, the progress has been slow, that's for sure, and we're frustrated by that. we're frustrated by the fact that, honestly, the access for journalists under the trump administration for the first several months of president trump's tenure was very good. i feel like there's been a dwich definite setback in that in the last few weeks, maybe kicking off his first foreign trip to saudi arabia, israel and europe in which he did not hold a press conference, and of course with the more recent developments
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here at the white house where the briefings have been not televised or at least not televised as regularly as they used to be. so it's a huge cause of concern for the press and the journalists that my association, our association, represents. and we're working hard every day to push for that to change. >> matt schlap, you're the president of the american conservative union. a lot of people are wondering, if president obama during his eight years in the white house had tweeted these kinds of attacks on conservative news outlets, a lot of people would have been outraged in the conservative movement. what do you think about the way president trump is dealing with the mainstream news media thus far? >> president obama wasn't that kind to some of your competitors and kind of froze them out for a period of time. i think what ari fleisher and michael curry said in their letters rings very true to what my point of view is. that is that the white house administration gets to set the rules as to how they want to
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engage the press on the white house compound, and the press has the right to be able to say and cover those types of policies as they wish. wolf, it won't come as a surprise to you that for decades now, conservatives have seen proof that there is a left wing tilt to the national media and to a lot of local media, and we just kind of take it in stride, and i tell you, when i worked for president bush, a lot of your friends in the press shop, when the cameras weren't rolling, they complained to high heaven about the bias in the press, but they were somewhat restrained when it came to doing that on air and on camera, and president trump has decided that he is going to call it like he sees it. and there is a lot of conservatives across this country who are saying it's high time that we called people out when they don't report things accurately. >> well, what about that, jeff mason? put on your hat as the president of the white house correspondents association and
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respond to matt. >> i think, a, any good reporter is reporting the facts. and i also think any good reporter or good news organization, when they do get it wrong, issues a correction. if they don't do that, there is absolute room for criticism, and that would be well founded. but the news organizations largely represented here in the white house press corps do just that. if they get something wrong, they correct it. when they don't, then i'll be the first to agree with the president or anyone else who says that they should do that. that is not the same as calling every story or television package or radio package that you don't like fake news. it's just not the same. and so i would push back against that assertion. >> let me let matt respond to that. go ahead, matt. >> look, i'm not trying to indict every reporter. i have a lot of friends that work for cnn who are on this show right now as well. but what i am trying to say is we all have to acknowledge that the chiron on the screen says trump hates the press.
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the nation has been at war for decades, and when we have to watch story after story of this investigation which actually weren't accurate about the russia investigation, the fact trump is their president, you look at that hard study and it's hard for you to put yourself in a conservative's shoes. when you look at the coverage, the overwhelming majority of kovrmg ko coverage is anti-trump coverage. he has to own up to those mistakes. they want to get the facts without all this shading. i think the american people deserve that. >> let me ask jim acosta to respond. go ahead, jim. >> reporter: i think that, and i asked this question of the president when he was running to win the white house, can you withstand the scrutiny that comes with being president of the united states? he didn't like that question.
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he snapped at me during that news conference. it was may of last year. and, you know, i think that there are moments when this president is just really sensitive to criticism and he lashes out in this fashion. i think matt is right to some extent, but yes, the coverage can get a little too negative sometimes, and that happens during the obama administration. that happens during other administrations. coverage of the president is tough, but that's the territory we're in right now. but i think to paint everybody with a broad brush is just not the right thing. and wolf, what we're witnessing right now is just this erosion of our freedoms in terms of covering the president of the united states. the president has only held one full news conference since the beginning of his administration, and that was in february. that's way behind the average of other presidents in modern times. this issue of turning off the cameras in the briefing rooms. wolf, i could hold up my phone tomorrow and livestream that press briefing with sean spicer or sarah sanders, whoever comes
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in there, and that is just where technology is right now. to think that we're going backwards and not having things on camera to me is just preposterous. >> can i respond? i think the bipartisan letter from ari a lot of us look at them and sy what are the american people learning? what really is the press learning? jim, i can understand you want as much acsession as you can get. your freedoms are not being denied when the white house determines the method they want to brief the press. that is their first amendment right. >> they're our cameras and we should be able to turn them on. the white house is saying we can't turn them on. >> april? >> matt, with all due respect, when we do not hear the voice of the president, the briefing is needed. and that comes not from the press, but from someone who has authored a book about managing the press, managing the president's message and working with the press. her name is dr. martha joint
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kumar. and presidents, not just former president obama, but former president george w. bush, president clinton, they have listened to her numbers to find out the importance of what it means to deal with the press. for that interaction, that critical interaction to happen. matt, it is very, very important for not just the press to get it, but mostly important for the american people to hear what the president has to say. i learned a long time ago it's not just the voice, it's looking at the body language, seeing what the president says, how he says it, what he feels. it's not just a joke or just a -- what people might think is meaningless push. this is real. >> matt, go ahead. >> i just don't know why we're -- mike mccurry was bill clinton's press secretary. he's the one who decided to televise these daily. he said this is not helping us to get the stories we need. now, look, i agree with you the president should do press
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conferences. i agree with you that an administration that's not as open as the press would like has to suffer the consequence of reporters who are unctious about not getting their questions answered. this is for the white house to determine. april, i love you and respect you. the american people are not staying up at night worried about whether cnn or msnbc or fox can get another question televised. >> matt, there is a reason why the press was baked into the constitution, why there is a first amendment. it's not about us. it's about the american public. it's about the people to find out what's happening in their house, from the leader of the free world, from the man they elected. it is not about us. we are just the conveyors. we are the first line of the press -- >> hold on. i want to get jeff mason back in this conversation. you're the president of the white house correspondents association. you've met with sean spicer,
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sara huckabee sanders, the white house team. have you raised the concern all of us in the news media have about the president calling us enemies of the american people? because that is a very, very harsh statement and potentially very dangerous. >> well, that type of rhetoric is something that we have spoken about since he first said that and many of you probably were at or watched the white house correspondents dinner, and i addressed that then as well. that is rhetoric that we reject and is just not something that i think is helpful to the public discourse and it's not, again, it's just not something that's true. i also like to just jump in on the issue again of briefings being televised. respectfully, despite the position of mr. mccurry and mr. fleischer, it's 2017 and it is not only in the interest of the members of the white house correspondents association who cover television and radio -- television and radio correspondents need sound and need pictures to be able to tell the stories of this
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administration. that's one reason why we're fighting to that. but also it is in the interest of transparency and the public's at to watch the elected leaders they have put into office. >> matt, i know you agree, matt, that the news media, that american journalists are not the enemies of the american people, right? >> well, many of them are some of my closest friends, would have. no, i don't think they're the enemies, but you all have to own something else. look, i'm not a journalist. this is going to be easier for me to say. you have to accept that in poll after poll after poll the american people believe major news organizations are biased to the left, and i think you would do the american people a lot of good if you look at not just trump's polls, but your own poll numbers. you're suffering credibility because they feel like you have it against this president and against conservatives. and we should all stop that. >> part of the reason why those numbers are being driven down is the president is driving them
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down. >> no, jim. you have to own it yourself. you have to own your own actions. >> when he tells half the country that we're enemies of the people, how can you stand by that? >> joe, you're not my enemy. this is why it doesn't work. we're shouting at each other. i think you're a good man trying to do your job. i think the president is a good man. he has the right to set the rules as how he briefs the press. that's his right. >> on that note we're going to leave this conversation. i'm sure there will be many more down the road. good conversation, guys. thanks very, very much. there is more breaking news we're following. president trump asking for military options to use against north korea. tonight, there is national security advisor is warning of an immediate threat.
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happening now, breaking news. urgent threat, a new warning tonight that the danger posed by north korea is much more immediate. president trump's national security advisor publicly discussing his escalating concerns and preparations for possible military action. a little more time, the president predicting republicans will get their act together on health care and pushing the bill through the u.s. senate. gop leaders setting a new deadline as more members of their party reject the legislation and suggest mr. trump deserves some of the blame. in denial? sources tell cnn the president seems unwilling to accept the -- that russia's election meddling still poses a threat to the u.s. even though top advisors try to convince him. we are


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