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Scarborough Grills Sen. Cotton On Trump Wiretapping: I Have Seen No Evidence


MSNBC: Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) discusses meeting with the president on immigration, the GOP plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, why he says the party is moving too fast on health care and Trump's tweets. SCARBOROUGH: Speaking about when he's wrong. Obviously, his tweet on Saturday morning talking about Barack Obama tapping his phones at Trump Towers — BRZEZINSKI: (INAUDIBLE). SCARBOROUGH: Everybody in the intel community has said that is not the truth. You are, obviously, on the intel committee. I'll ask you what everybody was asked yesterday. Have you seen any evidence whatsoever that Barack Obama ordered any wiretapping on Trump Tower? COTTON: I have seen no evidence of that, Joe. But I would also say, a lot of the anonymous sources in the media are stating things that — that are very precise and not exactly the full picture either. When, for instance, the president spokesman denies that either the president or a White House official, quote/unquote, "ordered surveillance," that doesn't really deny very much if you understand how the foreign intelligence surveillance court records. SCARBOROUGH: Right. COTTON: It's a judge that would order those things. And it's the attorney general or her agent that would file that application. SCARBOROUGH: Right, so the president — COTTON: So I — these are — these are — SCARBOROUGH: So the president was obviously wrong on his face, first of all, saying that — you're exactly right, saying that Barack Obama ordered the wiretapping was ignorant of the president. I totally agree with you on that. But getting — then let's take it to the next layer, and that is the FISA court. Do you — does anybody in Washington, D.C. have any evidence that the FISA court ordered the tapping of Donald Trump's phones in — BRZEZINSKI: Trump Tower. SCARBOROUGH: Trump Tower? COTTON: Well, Joe, I'll simply say that the intelligence committee conducts regular oversight of the FBI and Department of Justice FISA court applications, as well as FISA court activity. And it's part of our broader view of Russian's malign activities to try to undermine confidence in our political system last year. SCARBOROUGH: Right. COTTON: I suspect — I suspect that we'll be looking into these matters. These are — these are knowable facts and we hope to learn them and we hope to be able to share them with the American people and share as many conclusions as we can, consistent with the protection of our capabilities. SCARBOROUGH: But, Tom, don't you — don't you — don't you know right now, Tom, though? I mean everybody else in the intel — I mean that's spoken out said there's no evidence of this. Can you say this morning that you've seen no evidence that — that the FISA court ordered Trump Tower to be tapped? COTTON: Well, again, Joe, you know, when you're talking about what the president said on Twitter, he's only dealing in 140 character tweets. Now, what — what general — what General Clapper — so what general — SCARBOROUGH: Right, but then you took it to the next level. And so I'm just asking — COTTON: Yes, let me say, what General Clapper said over the — SCARBOROUGH: Let's go to the next level and if he did know what he was talking about he would have said the FISA court ordered these. I'm asking you, as we take it to the next level and agree that he was ignorant in what he said in his tweets, if you take to the next level, then just a question about the FISA court. Is there anything evidence anywhere, from anything you have seen, that the FISA court ordered the tapping of Donald Trump's phones at Trump Towers at the end of the election? COTTON: Joe, again, let me be precise in the language here. I have seen no evidence of that — of such a FISA order. However, as General Clapper said over the weekend, as I believe General Hayden has said on your program, it is not uncommon to have what's known as incidental collection on any American citizen. SCARBOROUGH: Right. Oh, sure.

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Gayle King to Planned Parenthood: Do You Ever Think About Ending Abortion To Stop Funding Fight?


CBS NEWS: One part of the GOP proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act would cut federal funding for any organization that provides abortions, with a few exceptions. The provision would essentially defund Planned Parenthood if it continues providing abortion services. Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards joins CBS This Morning to discuss how the federal money is used now and why she thinks the proposed policy is a "war on women's healthcare." This Morning co-host Gayle King asked Cecile Richards if the thought has ever passed her mind to drop abortion services, especially since they claim it counts for less than 3% of the services they provide. "There are so many people that think when you you think of Planned Parenthood, you think of abortion, and yet as you point out only 3% of the services offered at Planned Parenthood involve abortion. Do you ever think well maybe we should let the abortion part of our practice go rather than to list losing all of those money?" King asked. "Well, of course that's sort of what I guess the president has said," Richards replied. "We just feel it's really important, Gayle, that 2.5 million women come to us every year for health care services and they depend on high quality, affordable care that includes family planning, cancer screenings, wellness visits. For many women, we're their only doctor." "We also provide access to safe and legal abortion," she added. "And we just simply won't turn our backs on American women."

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MSNBC’s Ruhle vs. Sen. Warren: Why Didn’t You Do Anything About Working Americans When Dems Held WH For 8 Years?


Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) speaks on the nature of Donald Trump economic plans and the future of corporate America in an interview on MSNBC. MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle asked Elizabeth Warren why income inequality "failed to get significantly better" after eight years of Democratic control of the White House. "Why has income inequality failed to get significantly better in the last eight years?" Ruhle asked. "You know, that's a big part of what's going on here, is that it's policy set right here in Washington that, over and over and over, help those who can hire armies of lobbyist and those who can hire armies of lawyers," Warren said. "The policies here are for the billionaires, they're for the bankers, they're for the giant corporations. They get the tax breaks. They get the regulatory boosts. They get the great deals in Washington." "But Senator, you guys were in power for the last eight years," Ruhle said to the Democratic Senator. "Why is it that it didn't work for those good Americans you were working for?" From their exchange: STEPHANIE RUHLE, MSNBC HOST: Joining me now, Massachusetts Democratic senator, Elizabeth Warren. Senator, welcome, thank you for joining me this morning. You are a fearless woman who every day is out there fighting, fighting for the little guy and you have put regulations in place or worked to put regulations in place over the last eight years to protect that exact person. And many of those forgotten Americans, they believe that President Trump has the answer. So what are they missing? SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), MASS.: You know, President Trump tapped into something important and that is that families are feeling a lot of pressure. And a lot of folks are feeling angry, angry that a young person can't make it through college without getting crushed by student loan debt, angry that wages have stayed flat and that expenses have continued to decline for housing and health care. Angry that it's really tough to retire in America now and be able to keep a roof over your head and groceries on the table. But what Donald Trump has done since he got into the White House is he's turned over the keys to government to the billionaires and the bankers and basically said, run this government the way you guys want to make it work better for you. A problem is not that Washington doesn't work well enough for the billionaires and the bankers, it's working just great for them. Our problem is it's not working for working families. RUHLE: Why? Why has income inequality failed to get significantly better in the last eight years? Because we look at the last 45 days, President Trump is surrounded by those CEOs, who have been complaining the last eight years. Why is it good times for them? WARREN: You know, that's a big part of what's going on here, is that it's policy set right here in Washington that, over and over and over, help those who can hire armies of lobbyist and those who can hire armies of lawyers. The policies here are for the billionaires, they're for the bankers, they're for the giant corporations. They get the tax breaks. They get the regulatory boosts. They get the great deals in Washington. And regular families, just people who are trying to put it together day by day by day, they are the ones who get left behind. RUHLE: But Senator, you guys were in power for the last eight years. Why is it that it didn't work for those good Americans you were working for? WARREN: Let's be clear about what it means to be in power. The Republicans had a blocking position. When they didn't have a blocking position, we got the Affordable Care Act through and when they didn't have a blocking position, we got through the Wall Street reforms. But once they had a blocking position in the Senate and then in the House, we couldn't get the minimum wage increase. We couldn't get increases into Social Security. We couldn't get a more progressive tax bill. So look, I don't want to try to shuffle off all the blame. I think there's plenty that we can do, we should have done, we must do in the future on our side of the aisle. But let's be very clear. The Republicans have made their part of the agenda 100 percent obvious. They are here to make sure that Washington works for those at the very, very top. And they have done a great job of that. Warren said a "rising stock market" does not necessarily mean the economy is good for everyone. She said while we may be setting stock market records and indicators like the GDP keeps going up, "they're not all of the indication about what's happening." STEPHANIE RUHLE, MSNBC: Well, the stock market is certainly working for people at the top, at least the last — in the last couple of months. This is the first market-moving president we've ever had, calling out specific companies, discussing those companies, meeting with them during the transition time. And now we're in a position where he can use someone like Carl Icahn, one of the biggest, most predatory investors out there, to help advise him on regulation. Who is he going to be choose to be regulators? How do we address the fact we have a market-moving president? I mean, Martha Stewart went to jail over lying about timing and information that she had. You know, insider trading is a big, big deal and we have someone who can send out a tweet and move a stock in seconds. SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN: Right. And let's be clear. There are a lot of giant corporations right now who are just rubbing their hands, saying that what's coming for them is that the cops are going to be taken off the beats. There's going to be less regulation and that they're going to get even more tax breaks. So they think the world looks pretty great with Donald Trump out there. And every time he sends a tweet, they're just happier than they were the day before. But that rising stock market covers a lot of other problems around this country. Incomes are not going up for working families but expenses are. Students trying to get an education are taking on an additional $100 billion in debt to try to get that education every single year. Seniors are retiring with — Social Security for many of them is the only thing that stands between them and poverty. And Social Security stays stuck at much too low a level. The way I look at this is, yes, it's true. We're setting records in the stock market. GDP keeps going up and those are important economic indicators of how America's economy is doing. But they're not all of the indication about what's happening. We need to look at the lived experience, family by family across this country. Warren responded to Trump's tweet on International Women's Day about his "respect for women". She said talk was cheap. On International Women's Day, join me in honoring the critical role of women here in America & around the world.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 8, 2017 I have tremendous respect for women and the many roles they serve that are vital to the fabric of our society and our economy.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/839433678275153921">March 8, 2017

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Sen. Kaine: We Crossed A Rubicon When Flynn Resigned, A Turning Point


Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) said once National Security Adviser Michael Flynn resigned "we crossed a Rubicon" on investigating President Trump's appointees. From Wednesday's Morning Joe: STEVE RATTNER, MSNBC ECONOMIC CONTRIBUTOR: Senator Kaine, obviously, the Intelligence Committee has got a big job ahead of it now looking at all this. And you hear different things from different of your colleagues about the extent to which the fact that it's a Republican majority will or won't allow it to go ahead with a really full, in-depth kind of investigation that you would do. What's your view about that? Do you think the Senate Intelligence Committee, with a slight Republican majority, is going to give us a full and fair inquiry into this situation? SEN. TIM KAINE: Steve, I think it cannot now be turned back, even though I think the majority will probably make some efforts to slow it down and the White House wants it stopped. But we crossed a Rubicon when Gen. Flynn resigned because what the Republicans were saying before that is oh, it's sour grapes about the election, guys. That's so last year. Get over it. Well, when Flynn resigned — this is the sitting National Security adviser, the nation's chief security adviser to the president has to resign, not for the campaign but as security adviser lying to the vice president, maybe lying to the FBI. And now you have the nation's chief law enforcement official, Attorney General Sessions, caught up in clearly false testimony. We need to get him back before the Judiciary Committee so we can ask him the questions that we would have asked had he not given false testimony when he was before us for his confirmation.

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‘Morning Joe’ Panel: Despite His Lies, Trump Supporters Stick By The President


The Morning Joe duo opened Wednesday's show by taking at shot at FOX News Channel's Outnumbered, or as Brzezinski referred to it, "people with long legs and short skirts talk about how people feel about the news." Outnumbered ran a segment on Tuesday to highlight Brzezinski's "emotional" reaction to Trump on Monday's show. "Mika was very upset a couple of days ago," Scarborough said in defense of his co-host. "She was signing off, I think it was end of the week, saying she was crying. She wasn't crying. I know like — I know the emotions of Mika, and so do the viewers. She wasn't crying. She was pissed off." "Well, they decided yesterday that she wasn't pissed off," Scarborough said. "That I might have been too emotional," Brzezinski said. "But, seriously, isn't that something?," Scarborough said, pointing toward his co-host. "People said she was crying and tearing just because she was upset! That isn't sexist there." Outnumbered is a show hosted by 4 female anchors and 1 one male guest. Following the commentary, the panel talked about the war of words around President Donald Trump's claim that his campaign was wiretapped by the Obama administration. The show also hosted a 'Crisis, Credibility, and Claims From The President' panel that featured Washington Post columnist David Ignatius. Steve Rattner, Mike Barnicle and Mark Halperin also participated on Wednesday's broadcast.

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GOP Rep. Meadows: Karl Rove Wants Us To “Dupe American People” With Obamacare Replacement


Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) criticized the Paul Ryan Obamacare replacement plan and said the Republican bill amends the Affordable Care Act, it doesn't repeal it. He also criticized Karl Rove for wanting to "dupe the American people." Meadows also criticized Karl Rove for wanting to "dupe the American people." He said the bill, which he called smoke and mirrors, "is certainly not what we promised the American people." "This bill is just Obamacare in a different form," Meadows told FOX News on Wednesday morning. "If you just look at the bill text, the very first paragraph says it amends the Affordable care act, it doesn't repeal it and so the American people want us to repeal it and replace it with something that is different and certainly I want to drive down those healthcare costs. Let me tell you what I've seen of the plan so far, it does nothing to actually lower healthcare costs and premiums for hardworking American taxpayers." "If Karl Rove wants to bring out his whiteboard and we want to debate it back and forth on healthcare, I welcome that," the Congressman said. "If that Karl Rove wants to look at Tom Price's bill, he needs to look at Section 2 and Section 3 of the bill that I endorsed. It repealed the mandates, it repealed the insurance mandates – it actually did what we're promising the American people." "This is not Tom Price's bill, this is certainly not what we promised the American people. Karl Rove knows that – this is smoke and mirrors when we suggest that we're gonna dupe the American people, we're gonna do this bill behind closed doors and roll it out and expect the American people to believe it. Let me just tell you, they're smarter than that and they understand that this is just Obamacare with a different label," Rep. Meadows said.

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GOP Rep. Jim Jordan: Let’s Vote On The Exact Same Obamacare Repeal We Sent To Obama


On Wednesday's Morning Joe, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) said Congressional Republicans should introduce and vote on the "exact same" legislation that repeals Obamacare that was sent to President Obama when he held the presidency. Jordan called on his Republican brethren to "do what we told the voters we were going to do." "Let's do this right and, more importantly, let's do what we told the voters we were going to do," Jordan said. "That's why today I'll be introducing legislation which just says clean repeal. Let's vote on the exact same thing — 15 months ago, every single Republican in the House, every single Republican in the Senate voted on. We put it on President Obama's desk." Jordan, like GOP Senator Rand Paul, said the current 'repeal and replace' legislation being touted by Speaker Paul Ryan is "Obamacare in a different form" and keeps some of the taxes from the original bill. "Every conservative group out there is opposed to this legislation, because as I said yesterday and others have said, I think it's ObamaCare in a different form because we didn't tell the voters we were going to repeal ObamaCare but keep some of the ObamaCare taxes," the GOP Congressman said. "We didn't tell the voters we're going to repeal ObamaCare but keep and extend Medicaid expansion. And we certainly didn't tell the voters we were going to repeal ObamaCare but start a new entitlement."

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Rand Paul Rips Obamacare Lite: If You Want Medicaid For Everybody, At Least Be Honest About It


Sen. Rand Paul made his argument against the Republican plan to 'repeal and replace' Obamacare on Morning Joe panel Wednesday morning. Paul called for a clean vote on repealing Obamacare itself and then a separate vote for the replace plan, which he called "Medicaid expansion." "It is a conundrum and that's why we should vote on the one thing that we all agreed on," the Senator said. "About a year ago, we voted on clean repeal. We don't agree on replacement but we could have a separate vote on Medicaid expansion." Morning Joe regular Mike Barnicle asked Rand Paul if he believes President Trump is able to grasp and understand a law like Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act. Paul said, Trump understands it enough to know that he can not pass 'Obamacare lite' using conservatives. Paul said he said Republican leadership do not have the numbers to pass. Paul noted how much money is going toward Medicaid and how the Republican repeal and replace plan is essentially an expansion of the program that provides health care for those will low incomes and limited resources. He asked his colleagues to at least be honest and admit that is the plan. MARK HALPERIN, MSNBC SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Senator, I know you've got principled objections to this piece of legislation but so do some of your Senate colleagues like Rob Portman of Ohio, who thinks it cuts Medicaid too much. So how do you expect the White House to try to solve that Rubik's Cube of trying to win over your support while you've already got colleagues who think the bill goes too far? PAUL: It is a conundrum and that's why we should vote on the one thing that we all agreed on. About a year ago, we voted on clean repeal. We don't agree on replacement but we could have a separate vote on Medicaid expansion. And I am guessing Democrats and big government Republicans would probably come together and find that they will expand Medicaid. Many conservatives aren't going to vote for that because mainly it doesn't work. We're dishonest in the accounting. We can't pay for the current Medicare. It's $35 trillion in the hole. The current Medicaid is unfunded. And then we're going to add new entitlement programs to that? If you really want to have Medicaid for everyone in all these states, you should be honest with the people and you should double or triple the state income tax and double or triple the sales tax. Now I'm not for that but that's what it would take if you were honest. Instead we say, oh, federal government's going to pay for it. Federal government has no money. We borrow $1 million a minute. So it's just dishonest accounting. President Donald Trump tweeted Wednesday morning, "I feel sure that my friend @RandPaul will come along with the new and great health care program because he knows Obamacare is a disaster!" I feel sure that my friend @RandPaul will come along with the new and great health care program because he knows Obamacare is a disaster!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 8, 2017

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The More Trump Wins, the Angrier They Get


Conrad Black, New York SunThe frenzy of the Never Trump movement becomes more demented every week. This last weekend, former national-intelligence director James Clapper (no friend of Donald Trump) said that there had been no evidence of any collusion between Trump people and any Russians when, after months of investigating, he left office with the old administration 45 days ago. …

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