tv Inside Politics CNN May 8, 2018 9:00am-10:00am PDT
prepared before every trip. all of this comes as 24,000 pages of additional documents were released by an advocacy group called the sierra club. as we go through them, the "new york times" has found that it was actually pruitt's desire to be shielded from the public that was driving the secrecy and not the security concerns, as we had previously known, kate. >> much more to come. sara, thank you so much. and thank you all so much for joining me at this hour. "inside politics" with john king start now. thank you, kate, and welcome to "inside politics." i'm john king. thank you for sharing your day with us. there is breaking news on several fronts today. the president is poised in just two hours to walk away from the iran nuclear deal. the tug-of-warov over how to do that continues until the very end. plus the new york attorney
general is resigning today after being accused by four women of beating and choking. a convict who closed the primary campaign with race-baiting ads is among the republican candidates in west virginia. the president says don blankenship is a problem. blankenship says he's more trumpy than trump. >> it's real sad that the pressure on the president and the misinformation and the untruths that he's been given would cause him to suggest that you vote for two guys that have failed you. because i will not fail you. if i get to d.c., i will never forget who i represent and where i came from, and i can tell you, i am more capable of representing you than anyone you've ever sent to the u.s. senate. >> that man right there, don blankenship, part of a giant test today of the midterm election mood and of the trump effect on american politics. right now voters in four states, indiana, north carolina, ohio
and west virginia heading to the polls to weigh in on key questions playing out in both political parties. lynn r liberal intensity, for example, being tested in the ohio primary for governor. they also have a fascinating tea party versus gop showdown. but the biggest test in this day is in west virginia where it's donald trump versus don blankenship. ex-convict, coal executive, people worry he could unseat joe manchin. trump tweets, urging voters to reject blankenship and pick from the other republican candidates. not only did blankenship go to jail for deadly safety mine violations, he has made race-based language. he is not shy about questioning the president's political judgment. >> again, we all really like
president trump's policies, but we know that he doesn't get things right. i mean, he recommended that people vote for a guy that was basically accused of pedophilia in alabama. >> with me on this important day to share the reporting and their insights, cnn's dana bash, jonathan martin of the "new york times," bloomberg and kaitlyn collins. flee three main candidates in west virginia. if you talk to the campaigns, they are very, very nervous that don blankenship's, i'm not a politician, i'll vote with trump, and i hate mitch mcconnell might work. >> obama persecuted me which i think has been his get out of jail free card, no pun intended, in this primary by the fact that he's explaining away his imprisonment saying it was a plot by the last democratic president who you voters in the
state really don't like at all, which i thought was a pretty effective comeback to these charges. but yeah, they thought he had faded in the polls. this was a lot of money spent against him in the last few weeks, but he has made his way back. as you well know, when you have a three-person race and two of the candidates are hitting each other, guess what happens? the third candidate in the race tends to rise, and that's what's going on out there. the other two candidates in the race going after each other and blarng blankenship has crept up there. >> and the very same mood exists out there. the question is this is one of those seats. if you look at the senate map, there were 10 states republicans say these are our targets, but there's really four or five when you look at the map and you say republicans have a really good chance in what should be a tough year. mitch mcconnell will walk away from this if blankenship wins,
right? trying to tell republicans don't spend money there? >> i think it's likely just for moral and personal reasons he will try to do that. but you're exactly right, this is probably the most vulnerable democrat, maybe in the top three, in joe manchin. he is so popular there. just like tindiana, republicans are tripping over themselves to put a giant bear hug around donald trump because he is so well liked among republicans in alabama and west virginia. i spent a couple days with him week before last down in west virginia, and just on the point that you were making, jonathan, on the fact that he makes his argument about why he was in jail, which he notes was a misdemeanor, not a felony, is because he was set up by politicians like joe manchin, like barack obama, even throws hillary clinton in there. this is what he hands out at his rallies and at his events.
i called it a manifesto. he suggested that was probably a word he wouldn't use because he said only bad people write manifestos, but it's a pamphlet, very detailed explanation that he penned in jail about why he was wrongly imprisoned. and again, it feeds into the notion of the deep state, the institutions, the establishments, and that is something that played very well for donald trump, and don blankenship has a lot of baggage, obviously, with the mine explosion that killed 29 miners, but he also has a lot of pluses. like you said, he doesn't have a congressman or attorney general in front of his name, and he's got deep pockets for spending. >> i went down to west virginia to cover some of the problems at the mines in his company, and those miners are going to be in joe manchin's ads if he wins this nomination. i'm sorry, whatever your thoughts of mitch mcconnell,
people who worked in those mines, i remember what conditions they said they worked in. i'm not a lawyer, i'm not here to judge the jail thing, but he can talk about others as much as he wants. those miners are going to be in those ads with joy manchin saying, i lost my friend, i lost my brother, i lost my -- >> they thought they were rid of don blankenship last week. it was only polls over the weekend that came out showing him creeping up. this could be a long history of republicans shooting themselves in the foot by nominating extreme candidate who can't win. joe manchin should be at the very top of the list. donald trump didn't win as many state points as he won in west virginia. people like cheryl engel who talked about who's who. what is it about voters that are attracted to this kind of scorched earth burning mentality that is okay overlooking things like molesting and kill coal
miners? >> to that point, the president waited until the last day -- maybe they didn't see the poll, maybe they didn't trust the poll -- but a lot of people are saying, mr. president, if you're going to get involved, why did you wait until the very last day, election eve there? there are others who say, you can't trust that judge because he's a mexican, or has said other things during the campaign that he has essentially given the green light for people like don blankenship. listen to this ad against mitch mcconnell. his wife has been around for decades. she's an asian american. running against the establishment is a trademark of a lot of campaigns, but listen to this. >> captain mitch mcconnell has created millions of jobs for china people. while doing so, mitch has gotten rich. in fact, his china family has given him tens of millions of dollars. mitch is swamped running false ads against me. i will ditch joe manchin and mitch for the sake of the kids. >> this comes up with campaigns,
it has forever, but normally you say look at the fringe guy, look at the extremist guy. and you try to say, are they taking two points, three points, or five points away from the other candidates? this guy could win the primary. >> but his campaign against mitch mcconnell is effective outside washington, d.c. we saw it in alabama. mitch mcconnell's approval rate throughout the united states is actually quite low. that's something roy moore used. he ran against the establishment in washington. i covered that senate race and i was shocked how people could name him in things he's done and go after him specifically. don blarnkenship has used this terrible language, and i think people dislike mitch mcconnell, and i don't think it will turn off as many people in d.c. as they think it will. >> before you jump in, i just want you to listen to joe manchin's take here. joe manchin is the democratic
governor. he has navigated his state as it turned from blue to red. he wants don blankenship to be his opponent. >> reporter: he talks about cocai cocaine. >> if that's what he's into, he's working hard and invests all his money. >> would you be opposed? >> every opposition is tough. >> even him? >> even him. every opposition is tough. >> he got a little smile in there. >> you notice he didn't say, that's racist, don. find another way to say it, don. >> no, because he wants to run against him. here's the issue having just been down in west virginia. i covered him in his previous race when he won the senate seat. his endorsement now is very different than the one he made
of hillary rodham clinton. she is so popular there and that has turned off so many registered republicans or those who would have voted for joe manchin before and are turned off by that. that is a singular issue. >> the president won by 42 points. we'll be here all night counting the votes. up next for us, president trump poised to tear up the iran nuclear deal. how will he do it? the words will matter. we'll find out in a little more than an hour. efining what nutrition can do. because the possibility of a longer life and a better life is the greatest possibility of all. purina pro plan. nutrition that performs. your company is and the decisions you make have far reaching implications. the right relationship with a corporate bank who understands your industry and your world
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deal. conservatives like marco rubio and tom cotton say there is no middle ground, mr. president. walk away. it's a flawed deal. >> that deal was a very bad deal for the united states. it gave all kinds of concession, it gave billions of dollars in sanctions relief, and it didn't ultimately stop iran from getting a nuclear weapon. >> listen here the former secretary of state john kerry says withdrawing would be a drastic mistake. >> to play your hand and get out, take away some leverage, give them an excuse to go do other things, that's good negotiation? please. it doesn't make sense. the president calling this the worst agreement negotiated ever, et cetera, clearly doesn't make it the worst agreement negotiate ever. i challenge anybody to find an agreement that's tougher than the one we have in place now. >> the politics of this, the
president seeing secretary kerry so aggressive out there in recent days has pushed the president. we've seen this on twitter. the most important part of this is the substance. this is the president of the united states about to walk away from a signature achievement of president obama. the president said this is a terrible deal, but how he says what he's about to say is incredibly important. is he just going to rip it up, impose sanctions across the board? is he going to impose some sanctions and maybe create room for negotiation? what are we expecting? >> or will he specifically leave the door open for the european allies who are signatory to this to keep on keeping on with the a ryan y -- iranians, which are a huge part of it as well. from our reporting, from kaitlyn and our colleagues at the white house, is certainly that he will talk about imposing the oil
embargo, but it looks like he possibly will go farther than that. he believed it on the campaign trail. he was very adamant about this, that he can do better. that ripping it up, starting with a clean slate is the only way to go, despite big time allies, macron from france, merkel from germany, even boris johnson from great britain a couple days ago begging him not to do this. >> and the governor of iran saying, sorry, we signed a deal after months and months of negotiations. you walk away from this, we're on our own. >> and the two pushing him to stay in or at least continue to sign the six-month waifvers as e has in the white house. rex tillerson in the white house, gone. h.r. mcmaster gone, and replacing them are people who top wanted to rip this up from day one.
>> the chancellor from germany was here, left disappointed. president macron from france, left disappointed. there was a phone call between president macron and president trump. we don't have exact details what the president is going to announce, but that leaves one to believe it's going to be more dramatic than, i'm going to impose some sanctions ask thnd we have a few months to think about this. >> president macron came here to keep the president from ripping up that deal. that obviously didn't work. the question going forward is what is the white house going to do about this? the president has long said this is an insane deal, he can't believe the united states got into this, but he hasn't said what he's going to do differently. he has said he believes he's the person who can change it. one of the sticky points that he doesn't like this deal is because it came about when barack obama was in office. it's not a surprise to anyone, but the question is what does he do going forward, what language
does he use which is important because this is a capricious president who can change his mind on a moment's notice. he'll have months before these sanctions actually go into place. >> kim jong-un is watching as well. if you're kim jong-un what do we think about, do i sign a deal this week and how long does it last? but to your point the president said this during the campaign. for all his talk, the president is a big interruptor. there are some republicans who opposed it and said, i didn't like it at the time, but now we're in it. don't break it, let's just try to fix it. >> the details will matter enormously. there may be a way -- he may decide he has to rip it up and that there's no middle ground as some of his allies on capitol hill are saying, or he might find a way to put his own stamp on it and say, i've fixed it. it's not a bad deal anymore. if he does pull out of the deal or changes it, parts of iran will change, too. the president of iran will face
backlash from his advisers to back out of the deal. >> wendy sherman, another top state department official in the obama administration, says she thinks that's his goal here. that this will cause so much turmoil in iran that the government will collapse. she calls that naive. but she thinks, as the people are telling trump, this will cause more turmoil in iran where you will be the change agent. >> and there are people able to do things in 20 or 30 than they could right after the deal. proponents of the deal said if you take it away, they will start that path now. >> you're right, there is turmoil in iran, a lot of turmoil. even though they now have a lot more cash than they did because of the deal that happened two years ago. unclear if that means that there will actually be regime change. that is something that, you know, people have been striving for for a generation plus, but there is a turmoil there. >> that's why the president thinks he's right, in the sense
the same people who told him to stay in the iran deal told him "unlocked: fire and fury" was nuts. stay tuned. what the president says in the next hour will be incredibly important and the world is watching. is it giuliani's presidential turn in the white house? the president not too happy with his new lawyer because of his tv spree. ellyfish. in clinical trials, prevagen has been shown to improve short-term memory. prevagen. the name to remember. with dell small businessout your technology advisors you get the one-on-one partnership you need to grow your business. the dell vostro 15 laptop. contact a dell advisor today.
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president will not take the fifth in this case? >> how can i ever be confident of that? >> kaitlyn collins, this is your beat. god bless you. i want to read this from a cnn story. i think everything will burn out, a cnn white house official observed, calling rudy giuliani's iteration of the president. he doesn't talk to them before going on television. the white house staff is mad at the new lead lawyer because he doesn't talk to them before going on tv and not only talks about stormy daniels and bob mueller, he talks about the iran deal. the president is venting, but will he do anything about it? >> you never know if the president will actually fire someone, as we've seen in the past, but i think rudy giuliani may be the least popular person in the white house and he doesn't even work there.
the president is frustrated, not that the white house staff is frustrated, not that the national security officials are talking about north korea being detained on air. he did something he thought was impossible. he thought he would take this really aggressive mueller situation, and also stormy daniels, but he's not making things wrapped up any faster. he's very annoyed by the cable news coverage showing rudy giuliani is contradicting what the president has said in the past. also that clip of him that says the president could plead the fifth is something that irked him, we noted. privately he's saying, when is the last time this guy practiced law? maybe he's losing his faculties. they're really tough on rudy giuliani because they're never sure what he's going to say on air. >> if he told rudy giuliani to
go on television and say, yes, i reimbursed michael cohen for the payment. that's a significant change in the story the president had previously told the american people. to your point about the practice of law. giuliani says no one knows the justice department like i do. there is no question, we could show you his resume. he was an accomplished federal prosecutor in the '70s and '80s. this is one of the reasons the president hired him. yes, he's worried about a court of law, but the president thinks he's losing in the court of public opinion. so you have him on hannity, fox & friends, the "new york times," "washington post," buzzfeed, bloomberg, "wall street journal." you've had conversations with rudy giuliani since he's taken
this job. i don't think i'm breaking any rules saying that, have i? >> that was on cnn, one of the yokels they had on. i asked him about the fact the white house felt completely flat-footed -- this went back to last week when he was first on fox -- and his response was, i don't work for them. i work for the president. he's my client. even suggesting maybe it's not appropriate to coordinate with them. and even as recently as sunday after giuliani met with the president, he came away with a very, very positive view of their conversation. at least, that was what he was saying to myself and a few other reporters, that it was -- the president is pleased with where they are, they're on an offensive footing, they're on offense, and that they're feeling better, and that the president was going to maybe stay in his lane, focus on iran and north korea and not the legal strategy, and of course the very next morning the
president tweeted four tweets about the legal strategy giuliani said he wasn't going to -- can i just -- one fun fact. well, a fact. the dallas morning news reported a couple days ago that giuliani was going down to dallas -- he's there today, i believe -- and what he's doing -- this has nothing to do with the president -- he's attending a big party for a builder there to help them. it just so happens that builder three years ago built a house for -- stormy daniels. and the worlds all collide. >> the world do collide. that legal team led by rudy giuliani hope to decide by 17th whether to have this conversation with robert mueller. every day we swing a little different. the president's first impression was, what do i have to lose? mr. giuliani said he came into the case last month skeptical about letting mr. trump testify. giuliani said prosecutors seemed
reasonable about the ground rules. he said he came away believing that an interview had gone up in possibili possibility. a safe course for the president is to decline to testify, mr. giuliani said. >> after trying to discredit it, we know the president is becoming more confrontational and more forthcoming about his distaste and hatred of it. this could backfire if the public decides he's going too far and he should let robert mueller do his job without full frontal attacks. but if he does please the voters in his party, that would impact how congress handles this and how they respond. i can't stress it enough, it's probably going to be congress who has the last word. big question whether a sitting president can be indicted. >> we just have to point out that we're here on cable news
talking about the president's reaction of what's been said on cable, and a lot of times what's being said on cable is a reaction from previous things being said on cable. this is all presidency. it's a gift for the gods for cable news, and i think someone the other day said, you know, the journalist or whatever, has there been a better time, especially on cable tv, to cover something? you have rudy giuliani out there without a net, flying walendas saying whatever he wants to say. president trump says what he wants to, too. i think we lose sight of it sometimes, but rudy giuliani with no coordination with the white house, out there doing a media tour, saying whatever pops into his head. a sight to behold. >> we'll take it. coming up, the president cia nominee on capitol hill trying to win senate votes. a pro-trump group helping her. senators who might be up for
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topping our political radar today, two leaders with plenty of things to talk about. earlier today president trump had a phone conversation with his chinese counterpart, president xi jinping. the white house said the two talked about trade and about xi's meeting with kim jong-un. that meeting is today and of course it's ahead of that expected summit between kim and president trump. with those events coming up, the rhetoric dying down. a new poll showing americans are less worried about north korea now than they were last fall.
father conroy suggesting in his letter that paul ryan's chief of staff told him he had to step aside in favor of a non-catholic. he
said any comments along those lines must have been mi misconstrued. he and paul ryan had a meeting this morning. >> wade good cup of coffee this morning. we're going to keep talking. the cia director back on capitol hill meeting with more senate support she needs for confirmation. there are questions about the cia she ran where there was torture. a pro tem group is giving an extra nudge. >> gina haspel has the experience to defend america in a dangerous world.
call senator manchin. tell him you support gina haspel for cia director. >> i think senator manchin is already a yes. that might have been money they could have saved for later on down the road. let's talk about the mystery of this showdown between the speaker and the house chaplain. they had a cup of coffee today. bless me, father, for i have as i understand. it's one week before my resignation, can we just forget about it? >> right? >> this is a strange one. >> it all started when the chaplain gave a speech on the house floor that was interpreted as an indictment of the tax laws. you know, consider what you're doing, who ends up getting this wealth, we share the prosperity, that sort of thing. there was a controversy there that was behind the scene fors a while. all of a sudden he's fired and it traces back to the speaker's office. he is asked to step down. he realized he didn't have to do it after democrats jumped to his defense and after a bunch of republican catholics in the
house as well said this was wrong. it just turned into a massive controversy for speaker ryan and i think he said, let's move on, let's undo it. >> this is what you've heard quietly from speaker ryan and members of his party. may have been more of a natural fit as chairman of the budget ways and means and wasn't a natural political leader. he said last month he was going to retire in the midst of a tough midterm year. where is the political kind of savvy there? and you see it again when it comes to the issue of the house chaplain. this is creating unneeded distractions for the party that just aren't helpful at all. >> it's just a few months away from having a guinness next to the former house speaker. the new attorney general resigning after allegations of assault and abuse from several
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today is new york attorney general's eric schneiderman's last day on the job. and it's because of something that could land the new york rising star in prison. four women detailed horrific allegations of physical assault and abuse of power. schneiderman insists he was role playing in consensual relation shi relationships, but his victims have horrendous tales. ilse most critical of president trump and he has put himself forward as a champion of the me too movement. one of the people who came forward to the new yorker put it this way, calling schneiderman a
dr. jekyl and mr. hyde moment. governor cuomo reacting today. >> the revelations were so shocking and disturbing to me that i immediately called for two things. number one, an investigation by an independent district attorney so there is justice for every woman in every situation. no one is above the law, no one should be afraid to come forward. >> a lot of politics to this because of the tense relationship between schneiderman and team trump and the trump family. let's get to that in a minute. this is a state attorney general who publicly passed anti-choking legislation, publicly went after har slvey weinstein and his company, publicly went out as a
champ in this movement, and these women put their names out there on public record accusing him of slapping them, beating them and saying, you know who i am. >> what is wrong with somebody like this attorney general, now former attorney general, who, okay, allegedly, but as you said, the allegations are very, very credible, can have such a, you know, kind of -- try to have such a boy scout look on life and he wants everybody to have a view of him as somebody who is a champion for women, even to the point where he goes to try to push laws against vet thing he's doing in private. and you wonder why there is an outrage out there in the whole country against people who are in power, who are part of the machines, whether it's new york or in red america.
obviously he does not represent all politicians in new york, but the fact is this is not the first time we've had something that has been untoward among a new york democratic politician, and i think you just have to say, it just boggles the mind that somebody can behave like this, and unfortunately it's not the first time. >> what would help, a swift response from the governor and other democrats in new york nationally, but listen to the stories of these women and understand what they said they went through from a man who is the attorney general, chief law enforcement officer in the state of new york. listen as these women were told by friends and others, you cannot do this. >> a lot of their friends and family said, don't do it, don't speak out against him. he threatened people. he used his office and power
saying he could wiretap people, he could come after people. but ultimately those friends warned them out of talking because they thought he had too much power to do good for the democratic party. >> dear god, i hope that last part is misunderstood. >> i was struck by that story last night. it was preposterous as though eric schneiderman was going to somehow take down the trump administration and be the conquering hero for liberal america. it's new york state. there is not a lack of ambitious democratic politicians who would like to be the voice of the anti-trump movement and enjoy all of the publicity that goes with that. it just struck me as the weakest kind of pushback imaginable. but to dana's point, i think this and so many other stories like this help explain why you are going to see and are seeing in some of these primaries and special elections a surge of energy among female voters and candidates this year unlike anything we've seen for a long time. >> any continued surge of interest in people who don't
have titles. too many politicians and voters feel they have abused those titles. >> it's mainstream journalists who put out the stories. the president's eyes are lethal, but journalism matters and holding people to power to account for it. >> i don't know if they have a right to be. i think they found a sexual allegation they're not going to accused of sexual assault and some members of office are taking glee in this. it's horrible no matter what party you're in. they should all be condemned and none of these people should be allowed to hold office. >> amen to that. for the primary in indiana, the president has not weighed in, butter he he is a bigissu
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when it comes to their support of the president. >> the animals here are pets, not money makers, so excuse the humor. one of the cows is big mac. the pig, heaven bacon. there are crops up the hill, one reason beth henderson has second thoughts about voting for president trump. >> we're involved in an agriculture business, so yeah, tariffs is a big deal. >> it's much more than policy. >> i don't like his outbursts and his inappropriateness with the public and his scruples. >> what's scruples mean? >> his values and how he's so blase about some of his behaviors. it just doesn't bother him. >> what hasn't changed is her sense that washington needs big change. her husband recently joined the senate race but it got too expensive. the hendersons now support another outsider: businessman
mike braun. >> i just think it's time again to get someone else in there, new blood. >> braun's two opponents are republican congressman, cardboard cutouts to him in this primary of gimmicks and insults. >> i've been a lifetime businessman, conservative. >> he's neutral in the senate primary but he is the litmus test. >> i ask you to be a pro-trump conservative fighter to the united states senate. >> he now says he would be the most reliable vote for building the border wall and confronting sanctuary cities. >> he's another asset, a real key to secretary of state and has bone stawon statewide. >> who will be in the november electio elections? that's most important. >> he's a speech pathologist.
he doesn't like all the spending in washington but is still solid with the president. >> overall i think he's doing a great job. the economy is a great job. >> story's diner, a messer needs big turn drs oout and hopes this helps. elliott was leaning messer and is now undecided because the final debate was about loyalty to trump. >> they never mentioned my job, they never mentioned anything. >> her former job. candidate trump pushed carrier to a job in new mexico. but he did move a lot of jobs. >> you feel burned? >> i feel burned for a number of reasons. >> renee was here at sully's when she got the bad news. she's still looking, keeps her phone close for job alerts. >> he's not superman, he can't fix everything, but he could have stopped this.
he's so vocal and so verbal and so adamant. >> carrier has fewer jobs here now. >> i voted for president obama twice. i will say this about president trump. at least he brought it to the table. >> brian is skipping tuesday's primary. his hope for change fading. >> do you think that who you send to washington makes any difference? >> not anymore. no. i've kind of lost faith in that. >> his plumbing job pays $9 less, but he's thankful for the work and not sure if he'll stay in the president's blue collar base. >> he's a politician. just like one thing, he says and does another. if i was asked, do you support president trump, i would say yes, but i can't tell you i will tomorrow. it just depends on what gets done. >> indiana is the gop's most
promising 2018 opportunities this week and again in november, a big test of the trump effect. >> we'll be counting the results here tonight. stay with us on cnn. see you back here for "inside politics" tomorrow as well. wolf starts right now. i'm wolf blitzer. it's 1:00 p.m. here in washington, 7:00 p.m. in tehran. wherever you're watching, thanks for joining us. the world holds its breath as the president gets ready to decide the fate of the iran nuclear deal, a decision that will have a ripple effect from everything to iranian relationships to gas prices. he was a champion of the me too movement for now, new york state's attorney jena bankrupting