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Faith Nation: October 5, 2018

Faith Nation: October 5, 2018 Read Transcript

(upbeat music)

- By the fact that, nationprocess is not a trial.

But certain fundamental legal principles

about due process,

the presumption of innocence and fairness

do bear on my thinking.

And I cannot abandon them.

- That was the voice and person of

Senator Susan Collins of Maine

explaining why she was voting in favor

of Judge Kavanaugh to be confirmed

as the next Supreme Court Justice.

Welcome to Faith Nation, I'm John Jessup.

- And I'm Jenna Browder.

Thank you so much for joining us.

Well she not mincing words,

she came out very strong

for why she will confirm Judge Kavanaugh.

- Now Collins was one of four key Senators

that we've been watching to see

exactly where theconfirmation vote may fall.

Senator Collins of Maine of course,

Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia,

Senator Flake of Arizona,

and Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

Now so far what we know is Senator Collins

is going to vote yes.

Senator Manchin has also announced

that he will be voting yes,

a red state Democrat from West Virginia.

Senator Flake apparentlywill be voting yes.

He has spoken to reporters.

We have not heard an official statement.

And by all appearances,

it looks as though Senator Murkowski

may be a no vote.

Because earlier today she voted against

the procedural vote to endthe debate on Judge Kavanaugh.

- That's right and todaywe have team coverage

of all of the developments.

We have Ben Kennedy at the White House,

Abigail Robertson up on Capitol Hill,

and joining us now here on set

is our Chief PoliticalAnalyst David Brody.

Thank you so much for being with us David.

- [David] Thanks guys.

- David, just first offI wanna get your thoughts

on Senator Collins and her speech there

on the Senate floor.

What did you think?

- It was passionate.

I've really never seenher quite that passionate.

It was well thought out.

It was really just a full throttle defense

of Judge Kavanaugh from ajudicial perspective for sure.

So that was big.

Look I think what'sinteresting in all of this

is think about it Judge Kavanaugh

look he's gonna be on the Supreme Court.

I mean he pretty much has the votes.

He does have the votes.

But I think it's interestingthat Susan Collins,

the moderate from Maine

that's gonna put JudgeKavanaugh over the top.

It's Lindsay Graham whohad his viral moment.

He's the bipartisan guy that's taken hits

from conservatives for years

who played a big role.

And Jeff Flake, the anti-TrumpSenator from Arizona.

And Trump needs his vote,

and Flake apparently is a yes too.

So once again, strangebedfellows but they all work

and Judge Kavanaugh I saylooks to get confirmed.

Look he has the votes

but dot, dot, dot there'sSaturday at five p.m. Eastern,

that's apparently whenthe vote's gonna be held

so we'll see.

- Let's bring in AbiRobertson on Capitol Hill.

Abi was there any indication whatsoever

leading up to SenatorSusan Collins's speech

on the Senate floor as towhich way she would lean?

I know it was quitedifficult for reporters

to find her earlier in the day.

- Yes, Susan Collins was literally hiding

on the Capitol today

to avoid protestors as well as the media.

She was keeping hervote very tight lipped.

We did have some indication yesterday

after she saw the FBI report,

she said that she foundno corroborating evidence.

And in her floor speech,

she mentioned how just thatpresumption of innocence

is just so fundamentally important

to this nomination processand just to our country.

And yes so it was a huge, huge vote today,

huge announcement.

And I think that people needto realize Senator Collins,

she's had a very rough couple of weeks.

There were over 3,000 coat hangers

that protestors sent to her office.

Her staff have been harassed.

She really is just constantlywalking around the hill

covered either in protestor or media.

And so this is a big decision that she

definitely did not take lightly.

- Yeah, Abi a roughcouple of weeks for her

and so many other Senators up on the hill.

A lot of protestors there today I know.

You were talking about how some of them

were yelling at both Republicansand Democrats actually.

- Yes, yes, it was very interesting

when that vote happened thismorning on the Senate floor

I was in one of the media scrums

as Senators came back throughinto the Russell Building

which I'm standing in now.

And the protestors wereyelling at Senators

of both parties because they didn't know

if they were Democrats or Republicans.

So they were just yelling at them,

it's not too late to change their vote

without even realizingthat some of the people

they were yelling at were Democrats

who had in fact already just voted no

on the floor to proceed to the vote.

So they are all over the hill today.

It's very tense.

- Ben Kennedy I wanna ask you,

you're there at the White House,

what was the reception to the news like

once the White House heard the news

that Susan Collins was definitely gonna be

voting in favor of JudgeKavanaugh's confirmation?

- Well John no doubt theWhite House is confident

Judge Brett Kavanaugh will get confirmed

on the high court come Saturday,

Press Secretary SarahSanders said earlier,

look the President supports his nominee

and wants to see him get confirmed.

We feel great about where we are at.

And when asked if theWhite House is concerned

or think they have the votes

she says we sure hope so.

I think we should

and especially afterhearing Senator Collins

say that she is for sure a yes vote,

the confidence level continues to rise

right here behind me.

Now Sarah Sanders spokemoments ago on the North Lawn,

take a listen.

- Okay Ben and I thinkwe are having trouble

with that bite but we'llwork on getting that.

Ben talk to us a little bit about

okay I understand we do actually have

that sound bite.

Let's go ahead and roll that.

- Mr. President, I will voteto confirm Judge Kavanaugh.

- [Jenna] All right thatis Senator Susan Collins.

- Well that of course that wasSenator Collins saying yes.

As for Sarah Sanders whatshe talked about earlier

was essentially JudgeKavanaugh's qualifications.

And why he is the frontrunnerfor President Trump.

And we have not heard fromPresident Trump on camera today.

His schedule has manyclosed pressed events.

But following that cloture vote earlier,

President Trump did take to Twitter saying

that he is very proud of the US Senate

for voting yes and toadvance the nomination

of Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

Now we know he did reachout to lawmakers this week

to no doubt stump forhis high court nominee

and as David was just talking about,

look the vote's not until tomorrow

and it's still too close to call

and that's where Vice President Mike Pence

would come in.

He is standing by thisweekend to see if he is needed

to break that tie.

- Yeah, that's a good point Ben.

David let's bring you in here.

You know we saw JeffFlake a couple of days ago

get pushed into anelevator with a protestor

and that really did weigh on his decision

to call for this FBI investigation.

Do you think we seethat again with Collins

with some of theseothers this time around?

- I don't think so.

I think this is pretty much a done deal.

Though, Ben's right inthe sense that they better

have Pence around this weekend

in case Jeff Flake decidesto take an elevator ride.

Because you never know what's gonna go on.

Seriously I mean, I'mtelling you there's like

been twists and turns every day in this.

And I have a feelingbefore tomorrow Saturday

five p.m. eastern,

I get a sense there's gonnabe one last twist and turn.

It's kind of like the horror movies

where you think the person that you know

the killer is dead andthen all of a sudden

wait, they're not deadand they grab the leg.

I kind of feel like we'restill waiting for that.

We'll see.

- You know Abi,

I wanna if we can go backto Abi on Capitol Hill

because there was some concern I know that

Ben had just mentionedthat Vice President Pence

is on hand.

There was some concern whether they'd have

enough Republicans to votebecause there is a Senator

from Montana I believe whowas going to be out of town

because of his daughter'swedding this weekend.

- Yes, this actually makes me so sad.

So Senator Steve Danes from Montana,

his daughter is getting married.

So he's had to stay here this week

to be around for all these votes.

They said that he is willing to come back

tomorrow night if he is needed.

And so the vote,

we can expect it aroundfive p.m. tomorrow.

And if Steve Danes is needed to come back,

we are told that theycan keep that vote open

through the night to give him a chance

to attend his daughter's wedding,

to walk her down theaisle and give here away,

and then fly back to Washington.

They can leave the vote open

so that he can cast hiscould be critical vote

on the Senate floor tomorrow night.

- You know Abi and John and Jenna

it was interesting to watch Susan Collins

give that speech whenshe was most passionate

when he talked aboutthis gang rape allegation

against Judge Kavanaugh.

She was livid at something like that.

Well let me think about that.

Michael Avenatti, Stormy Daniels' lawyer

was the one that brought that up.

So you know you've got Michael Avenatti,

Dianne Feinstein, I meanthis is a cast of characters

in the Democrat partythat is really kind of

walking through thehall of shame right now.

I mean really, it's true.

And the question then becomes,

not to get too far ahead of ourselves

but midterm elections,

let's remember there wasa motivating factor here

even if Kavanaugh is confirmed.

Because remember ifDemocrats take control,

what's gonna be the firstthing they're gonna do?

They're gonna try toimpeach Judge Kavanaugh.

So Republicans must get out and vote.

That's the way Trump's gonna say it.

They're gonna have to get out and vote

or Democrats are gonna go after Kavanaugh.

- Well what I would liketo really quickly bring up

speaking of Kavanaugh.

He gave his own, if you will,closing argument last night.

Writing in the WallStreet Journal a response

to a number of critics who'vequestioned his temperament

including a former SupremeCourt Justice John Paul Stevens.

He penned this op-ed addressinghis passionate defense

at last week's hearing.

Writing, I might have beento emotional at times.

I know that my tone was sharp,

and I said a few thingsI should not have said.

I hope everyone canunderstand that I was there

as a son, husband, and dad.

- You know what's interesting about that

is that we just haven't seen a

Supreme Court Nomineedo something like that.

I think it just speaks to the idea

that we are living in a very unusual time.

David we've never really seen anything

quite like this.

This process just really remarkable.

- That's right.

There has never been something this close

before in Supreme Court history.

And one of the reasons is because

you needed 60 votes, now you don't.

And here we are.

In a crazy time in Washington.

- Well David, Abi, Ben thank you so much

for your reporting on this.

Our team coverage continues.

- And joining us now are Rick Cline,

ABC News Political Director and

David Brody Chief PoliticalAnalyst for CBN News.

Both of you, thank you for being here.

- Thank you.- Thanks.

- What a day, what a week.

Rick, make sense of this for us.

Just your overall thoughts onwhat we've seen take place.

- I've been saddened by the state

of our politics, generally.

I think whatever side you line up on,

I think last week withChristine Blasey Ford

and Judge Kavanaugh,

it was searing, it was emotional,

it was topsy turvy and I think

that the speed to which everyone fell back

into partisan grooves wasreally striking to me.

Because it felt like the country

was having this conversation

and then partisanship reigned once again.

And so to see these deepdivisions in the Senate,

a place that I've covered for a long time

and I know of the friendshipsand the partnerships.

It just seems very remote from that now.

It seems like we are atsomething of a low point

for Senate operations and a disconnect

from a country that isobviously very divided

but I think looking to findsome areas of common ground.

- Do you think nominationand his entire process

makes the country a bit more polarized?

Especially if he's viewedas a tainted judge,

as someone who doesn'tlook he is impartial

and doesn't have the judicial temperament.

Does is stain the courtand the perception overall

of what the court is supposed to be,

an arbitor of justice?

- I think you've seen thecourt slide in that direction

of partisanship for a while now.

But the era where a Supreme Court nominee

like Judge Scalia could get 98 votes

or even 93 votes I believefor Ruth Bader Ginsburg,

or even in the 60s or 70s.

It seems so foreign now.

It just seems almost impossible to imagine

that you're gonna see anything other

than essentially a partyline vote going forward.

I'm kind of dreading covering the

next opening that happens

with the other partycontrolling the Senate.

Because good luck with that,

given these partisan grooves.

But yeah, I think thesedivisions they've only worsened.

- [John] David?

- Yeah, no I agree with all of that.

And I have to say now youhad Ruth Bader Ginsburg

talking about Trump being a faker.

You know we have that.

We have John Paul Stevens coming out,

a retired Supreme Court Justice

talking about Kavanaugh and that.

You know he wouldn't confirm Kavanaugh.

So there's just this wholepall over all of this

and I think it's been frustratingI think to a lot of folks.

But look this is the five four decision.

And I know they tell about John Roberts

being the swing vote,the new swing vote, true.

But this is it.

And I think what makesit even more intense

is that and this is theRepublicans and conservatives

will say this is that they believe

that the Democrats play book has been

tied to the judiciary.

That they have in essencebeen a legislative arm

if you will in air quotes.

As it relates to socialpolicy in this country.

So I think that makes the fighteven more toxic if you will.

- Now David do you think Democrats

really miscalculated here?

There's talk that Republicansare fighting harder

than they have in the past.

And in some ways maybe the Democrats

didn't expect this.

- Oh I think 100% they miscalculated.

I really believe that.

I think they thought that the Republicans

typically have caved over the years.

They just haven't had as muchas a stomach for the fight,

if you will and this timeit really backfired on 'em.

I really believe that.

And so I think going forward,

we'll have to see as to what the effects

of Diane Feinstein and how that

I think she really doesn'tlook good in all of this.

I think this has been tough for her.

And I think there could besome ramifications for sure.

- Rick you speaking of Diane Feinstein,

you wrote this morning aboutthe winners being losers

and the losers being winners.

Tell us what you mean about that

because I feel like this

kind of plays into our conversation.

- My sense in covering politics in 2018,

is that anger is thesingle most unifying force

galvanizing force you can have.

And if you lose a battle,

there's nothing betterto motivate your base

to go out there and vote the next time.

And by that I mean,

Republicans they gettheir Supreme Court pick,

the enemies Democrats are gonna say

well we gotta go do somethingto try to change this.

And if Democrats are able to block it,

you're gonna seeRepublicans, conservatives

re-engage in a major way in the midterms

where they've been kind of thinking okay

things are pretty good right now.

That is to me the most valuable currency

you can have right nowis that kind of anger.

So the stakes are huge,

not to underplay at all what it means.

As David says that swingvote on the Supreme Court.

But when you look at how thisactually motivates voters.

I don't know how it breaks down.

I also think it's unequal.

I think there's parts of the country

that this is gonna motivate Democrats

and parts where it's gonnamotivate Republicans.

And you're seeingSenators made calculations

based on that and I think you're seeing

races for the House and the Senate

tip in different directions.

- I would also say that I think that

this is a win no matter whatfor the Republican party.

Look if Kavanaugh's confirmed,obviously it's a win.

If he was gonna end upnot being confirmed,

you're gonna mobilize thatanger that voter base.

But look I think even withKavanaugh being confirmed,

I still think it helpsmotivate the Republican base.


A couple of reasons.

One, Democrats' dirty tricksis gonna be the playbook

that Lindsay Graham and Donald Trump

and Mike Pence they're allgonna be talking about.

And then they're gonna say hey,

and I don't know how Trump's gonna say it

exactly on Twitter butRuth Bader Ginsburg's

getting up there in age.

And I can just see it now.

Stephen Bryer so you gotta help me out,

'cause it's always about him.

You gotta help me out, Ineed a third, I need a third.

So I can just see thatkind of playing out too.

- Let's talk about the mediaand the media's treatment

of all of this.

Rick what are your thoughts?

Has it been fair?

What have you made especially

of some of the cable news coverage?

- Well we've never seen anything like it.

I think the idea that all this information

came in so late in the process,

and a lot of that was controlledby confidentiality concerns

and Senator Feinsteinand her handling of this.

It all happened very fast and very late.

And I think if this had happened under

the more normal process,

I think you'd have seena more solid vetting.

But it was a difficultthing for anyone to cover.

Because you're dealing with a lot

of he said, she said allegations,

a lot of rumors and innuendo.

To actually nail down solid things.

Look the FBI hasn'treally been able to do it.

So my sense is not to commenton anyone in particular

but our job was to try to figure out

what the truth was on these things.

I was proud on a lot of the coverage

that we did throughoutnot to try to get at this.

But there is something aboutthe extraordinary circumstances

of this that made itjust about impossible.

We still don't really know what happened

between Christine Blasey Ford if anything

and Judge Kavanaugh.

We'll never know that.

And it's frustrating forus that want answers,

but that's the truth.

And it's left to Senatorsto be judge and jury

on these questions.

- And I real quick will say that I believe

that we are living in adifferent media landscape today

obviously we are.

In other words,

not to defend the mainstream media,

but look it's gonna beout there on Twitter.

It's gonna be out there on other places.

And so ultimately you start to react.

They being the cable networksor some of the major networks

are gonna react to kind of

what the social media buzz is out there.

And so kind of as an inverserelationship right now

and you're watching Twitterkind of define the narrative

if you will, and I thinkthat makes it even harder

for the mainstream media networks.

- One final topic I'dlike for us to discuss

before we close.

Is the idea of civilitysomething that seems lost

in the art of politics today.

Abigail Robertson, ourCapitol Hill Correspondent

interviewed Kelley Paul,

wife of Senator Rand Paul who spoke out

because of what we're seeing playing out

across the landscape withSenators being harassed

or members of theadministration being harassed.

And I'd like you all to takea quick listen to the clip.

- Perhaps he didn't mean it so literally

but unfortunately,

I think there are alot of people out there

who are very angry and maybe unstable

and they take those kinds of words

and maybe take it to the next level.

- And of course she was talking about

Senator Corey Booker urging voters to go

and confront members of Congress.

I think she just hit on the same term

that you just said which is anger.

Is there any way that we in 2018

and looking beyond canreturn to an era of civility

where we can disagree,but disagree civilly?

- I sure hope so.

The signs out of Capitol Hillhave not been encouraging.

You had a Senator who wasconfronted in an elevator

and actually said it madea difference to his vote.

So maybe it's even encouragingthose confrontations.

But I believe, and I gotinto covering politics

believing this I still believe that most

not all but most of the peoplethat run for public office

are in it for the right reasons.

They're not gonnanecessarily be your reasons

or your reasons or anyone's reasons.

You're gonna have differentpoints of view on things.

But they're not bad human beings

by virtue of doing this.

And I think there has been atendency to lump everyone in

and think the other side is just evil.

And look President Trump bearsresponsibility for that too

because he says that on the campaign trail

on a regular basis.

But I think it's unfortunate.

And I think it's onereason that it's been sad

to watch the Senate this week

because ascribing these kindof nefarious motivations

to the other side is not productive.

- Well and here's how far we've come.

Here's how much we've turned.

Lindsay Graham you know Mr. Moderate,

Mister reach across the aisleand have coffee and danishes

and some vodka in whereverit was Germany with Hillary.

Now all of a sudden he's nowthis conservative icon and hero

that he'll be virally forever and ever.

So we've really seen a turn.

I mean if Lindsay Graham was doing that

that's why it meant something.

It wasn't just yourpartisan hack if you will.

It was Lindsay Graham.

And I think that kind ofgoes to the civility issue.

- We are living in somestrange times, no doubt.

- To say the least.

- I would agree with that.

- David Brody, RickKlein, thank you so much.

- Thank you guys.- Thanks guys.

- Well coming up,

new numbers show the unemployment rate

is at a record low.

We'll break down thenumbers and what it means

for the economy.

- The economy continues a steady climb

and unemployment falls toits lowest level in decades.

It now stands at 3.7%

that's the longest streakof hiring on record.

The President tweeted thatit's the lowest number

since 1969.

Earlier this year the President tweeted

quote we have accomplishedan economic turnaround

of historic proportions.

And joining us now fromthe Heritage Foundation

is Stephen Moore.

He's also a former Trump economic advisor.

Stephen you citing some ofthis news that's out today.

There was one publication thatwrites is there such a thing

as too much good news.

Your thoughts on that.

What do you make?

- I think that reportermight have been saying

he's tired of winning.


because the economycontinues to do better.

It's firing on all cylinders

and truly every time I think

the news can't get better it does.

This was a powerful jobs report.

It shows that hiring hascontinues at a record pace.

That 3.7% unemployment rate number

is actually a bit of a problem.

Because the unemploymentrate is now so low

that employers,

I gave a talk to the restaurantassociation the other day,

they were complaining tome we can't find workers

to fill all the jobs we have.

So in some ways,

this unemployment rate being so low

as low as since the Beatleswere still playing together

is kind of a double edged sword.

For workers it's a great thing.

One of the things Iloved about this report,

wages are starting to rise.

When you create a tight labor market,

guess what workers havemore bargaining power.

That's why we saw this week,

Amazon with 200,000 workersis increasing their wage

to $15 an hour.

The government didn't mandate that,

they had to do that to keep their workers.

So it's a very positive thing.

And let me say one other quick thing.

Some news reports, someof this was disappointing

because the numbers weren't as high

as we thought they would be.

Well it's true we only got 135,000 jobs

in the month of September.

But that ignores they revised upward

by 82,000 the jobs fromthe previous month.

So it was another 200,000 job report.

Just unbelievably positive.

- Stephen I like the culturalslash historical context

with the Beatles that youjust mentioned earlier.

- You guys were too young.

Who were they, right.

- We remember their songs, but yeah.

How much credit doesthe President deserve.

- That's my point right.

It's been so long since wehad unemployment this rate,

practically Elvis Presleywas still alive back then.

- How much credit does thePresident deserve for this

and more specifically

what policies are driving these numbers?

- Obama tries to take credit for this,

and says it's the Obama effect.

But the truth is I worked for Donald Trump

during the campaign.

A lot of our policieswere towards reversing

what Obama had done.

Whether it was the Obamacare

where we got rid of the mandate.

Whether it's the taxincreases, we cut taxes.

The regulations.

I think that more thananything, it's probably been

getting government offof the back of businesses

so they can do theirthing, hiring more workers,

expand their operations,build more operations.

That's what's really driving this is just,

businesses now feel that they can expand

and, you know, do theirthing without the government

taking up a baseball bat, and you know,

smashing them over the head.

- Okay.

- All right, Stephen Moore.

Thank you so much.

- Good news, right?

- Well, some believe that nineJustices of the Supreme Court

maybe have become the most powerful people

in the nation's government.

But why are they so important?

Paul Strand explains.

- Lawmakers pass thelaws, but it's the Court

that decides whether they'reconstitutional and can stand.

The executive branch executes those laws,

but the Court decides whetherit's doing it constitutionally

and the only way to go over its head

is to amend The Constitution which takes

3/4 of the states.

The court has the power of life and death.

Where is the execution withouta Justice signing off on it.

And if any citizen can gettheir case before the Court,

it can literally changethe courts of the nation.

Take Roe v. Wade where theJustices suddenly found

that the 14th Amendment right to privacy,

a woman can abort her baby.

60 million abortions followed.

Or gay marriage, it was illegalin almost all the states

except with one ruling, theCourt legalized it nationwide.

It's because of this kind of power

that the leanings of anew and ninth Justice

are so crucial, because right now

the Court's divided four leaning liberal,

four leaning conservative.

Paul Strand, CBN News, Washington.

- Thanks, Paul.

Well, a busy day here in Washington.


We saw this, we saw notjust forceful defenses

last week in the Kavanaughhearings with the allegations,

we saw some forceful,passionate speeches today

on the center floor.

- Absolutely, Senator Collins.

You know, I was surprised thatshe came out that strongly.

She is a more moderate Republican

but she unequivocally laid out her case

why she will confirm Brett Kavanaugh.

We'll still see about someof the others, you know.

It's not a done deal untilit's done, as they say.

- That is true, everyone will be watching.

I do think the two thingsthat Senator Collins

pointed out, that really motivated her

was her anger towardsthe folks who just wanted

to kind of make the decisionbefore it was already

set and cast.

And then also the fact that, you know,

we live in a judicialsystem where you're innocent

until proven guilty, so it's interesting

that those were the thingsthat really motivated

her decision to ahead and votefor Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

- Yeah, and of course, thisis such a passionate issue.

We see the protesters up there.

We see so many people just weighing in.

I will say, you know, inthis political climate,

if there is a silver lining at all,

I think, John, it's that so many people

are now engaging in politics.

They are paying attention.

So that really is a good thing.

They're becoming more civically aware.

- That's very true.

I don't think anyone can argue with that.

Well, that's gonna do itfor tonight's Faith Nation.

- Have a great evening.

(gentle music)


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