CBS News' Face The Nation, 12/10

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Sunday, December 10th

From Senate resignations to the controversy surrounding Roy Moore -- it was another whirlwind week in Washington. An analysis of these stories and more on this week's "Face the Nation."

00:46:48

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Today on face the nation president turns controversial decision. It's recognized. Real sparks violent protests in the Middle East. Plus forced resignations over sexual misconduct rattle congress. As word begins to clean up a messy tax bill in the rush to get it to the president's desk by Christmas. There is Gary. And concern for American citizens' safety overseas. As criticism from US allies over the administration's plan to move to US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Threatens to further deteriorate the view of the US role around the world. We'll talk to UN ambassador Nikki Haley back at home members of congress pushed three of their colleagues accused of sexual misconduct out. But with two days until the senate special election in Alabama we'll accused child molester Roy Moore feet end. I did not date underage women I did not. Molest anyone back and so these allegations. Democrats are hoping Doug Jones can turn out the African American. And are attacking wars character and think about it. As Roy Moore ever looked you in the night and told you the truth senate Republicans still refuse to support more but the president is Paul and campaigning near Alabama and recording a robo call on horseback. So get out at the steroid. Or. We'll talk to Maine's Republican senators Susan Collins. And the number two Democrat in the senate Illinois Richard Durban. About the politics of sexual misconduct in congress and efforts to clean up sprawling tax bill that is sparked more questions than answers. We'll also have planning and analysis both foreign and domestic on all the news this week it's just ahead on face the nation. Good morning and welcome to face the nation I'm John Dickerson. We wanna begin with a look at the reaction of the president's decision on Jerusalem CBS news correspondent Seth Doan reports. This is the entrance to the Old City of Jerusalem Damascus Gate has historically been a flashpoint for violence. It is column today what additional security. Is in place and there is a worrying development this morning. Unrest is pushing beyond Israel's border. I'd done today security forces fired tear gas and used water cannon. To push back pro Palestinian protesters in front of the US embassy in Beirut. And demonstrators threw objects and lit fires to register their finger over prison trumps recognition of Jerusalem as the capital these real. In Cairo the re series diplomatic blow back at an emergency meeting of Arab League foreign ministers who criticized mr. Trump's decision. Saying it threatens to push teachers to budget increase of violence chaos and bloodshed. After days of clashes protests continued. While funerals for some of those killed in Gaza revealed that dangerous mix of anger and grief. Israel's military announced today it destroyed what it called the significant terrorist tunnel. In the past Hamas is used tunnels to move weapons supplies in to carry out surprise attacks. Today the military wing of Hamas made an ominous statement. Saying that the next few days would prove to the world what a mistake the US decision had been. And warned not to underestimate the will of the Palestinian resistance. We turn now to UN ambassador Nikki Haley she joins us from New York welcome madam ambassador I wanna start we've seen the violence in response to the US. Decision on the embassy. There's a lot of tension in the Middle East with all that's going on and all that the US has to deal with an air why was this a priority and in America's national interest to make this move right now. Good morning John well first of all this is a move the American people have asked for for 22 years and six months ago the senate of overwhelmingly again. Asked for the embassy to be moved and I think you have to look at the fact that every presidential candidate. The Republican or Democrat has all said that Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the embassy should be moved. President child the only one had the courage to actually do that and so. What this does is basically do what we do and almost every other country which is. Put the embassy in the capital city and Jerusalem is where the prime minister is the president and the parliament the Supreme Court it makes that's far embassy be there. Given all that's happening in the world lies in a priority to do this right now. And why those and why is it worth paying the price of the increased violence. It because it's the right thing to do it is absolutely the right thing to do and look for the last 22 years everyone around every president has said. Just wait just wait just wait and president talked to knock or wait anymore but explain why it's the right thing to him. It's the right thing to do because it's just reality Jerusalem as the capital of Israel they have said that when the American people say they want something. It is it's their wells that were supposed to follow. Biting in this case of the US is. The critics believe changing its its role its its stepping in more forcefully on the side of Israel on that that sends a signal that he's not gonna make things better so. Explain how we get from this move to a better outcome. And and whether this isn't all this violence isn't going to delay a better outcome. All first of all I think that that when you recognize the truth when both parties recognize reality peace comes and that's just. And that's just the true reality of the situation we are living and the reality that Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. But if you notice when the president spoke he made it very clear he didn't talk about boundaries he didn't talk about borders he didn't get into any of that. Because the final status of Jerusalem is between the Palestinians. And the Israelis it's not for the Americans to decide so we are doing what we do in every other country Israel should be no different. And then we're gonna continue to support the peace process you know courage brief leadership what you saw what you saw courageous move by the president. And of course any time you have to use courage anytime you have to go against the status quo you're gonna have people saying the sky's falling. But the sky's not falling is anything what we're gonna see is. Both sides are gonna come to the table they're gonna decide what date bank Jerusalem should look like and we're gonna support that process. No cars people and the rebuttal would be that aggressive moves in the Middle East and often cause the United States. A lot in in blood and treasure let me ask you this question on a negotiating standpoint one of the criticisms as the president gave up a bargaining chip. They could be used in negotiation. Another view is the president is now given the Israelis something and now he can ask something from them in return which of those two do you subscribe to him. For near one of those is right the president took Jerusalem off the table. That's what he did because that something that we have always people have said you set as a bargaining chip let's be clear the last 22 years. That was a bargaining chip and it got us nowhere closer to peace what he did was taken off the table Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Take that off the table tell both sides to come together and say OK you decide how you wanna split up Jerusalem you decide if you're gonna create boundaries or borders there. And let them decide they're going to be naysayers John that say you shouldn't do that she shouldn't do this. But they also thought that they also question the president when he first decided to strike. For chemical weapons in Syria and that was true leadership they said the same thing while we started to push North Korea and pushed sanctions and that was true leadership this again will go down in history to show. He made the move that finally got the two parties to come to the table and it's okay for naysayers but we know at the end of the day this is the right thing to do. Let me ask you about North Korea Lindsey Graham a South Carolina senator said the US should start moving civilians out of South Korea what's your response to. Well I think we're watching North Korea very carefully and if you look at the last ballistic missile launched. It had advanced quite a bit compared to the missile before. And it's it's a concern and what we will tell you as North Korea is the biggest threat we have right now. But we're not gonna let that stop bus we're gonna continue to be forceful we're gonna continue to have the international community join us says they have. We're gonna make sure that we do everything we can't to denuclearization North Korea. Let me ask you about a domestic issue here there's a cultural shift going on in America right now he sought three members of congress. Who kicked out of congress because of sexual. Behavior and misdeeds. You are the first woman senator South Carolina what do you think of this cultural moment that's happening. I you know I am incredibly proud of the women who have come forward I'm proud of their strength I'm proud of their courage and I think that. The idea that this is happening I think it will start to bring a conscious to the situation. Not just in politics but then in a we've seen in Hollywood and in every industry and I think the time has come. Of course I'm wrong you're the governor first governor of South Carolina given that consciousness how do you think people should assess the accusers of the president. Well I mean it is in the same thing as women who accuse anyone should be heard they should be heard and they should be dealt with and I think. We heard from them prior to the election and I think any woman who has felt violated or felt mistreated in any way they have every right to speak up. And is the election mean that's a settled issue. I you know that's for the people to decide I know that he was elected but you don't women should always feel comfortable coming forth and we should all be willing to listen to. Ambassador Nikki Haley thanks so much for being with us okay thanks done. And we wanna turn now to Maine's Republican senator Susan Collins welcome senator we have some important tax business to get to but I wanna stay with this. This question of dead the have revolutions going on in the way that sexual. Assault is being dealt with this week the Republican National Committee supported Roy Moore you do not support him you say you believe his accusers. Your colleague Republican and SaaS wrote this I believe the women. And the RNC previously did to what's changed or is the party just indifference. In different your Republican. What do you think about the RNC supporting him. I'm disappointed. That the RNC. Has to resume can support it right more. I think that's a mistake. I would point out candidate I did not supporter. Mr. Mori even prior to these allegations of sexual misconduct. Because I was concerned about is anti Muslim comments his anti LG BT comments. And dolls so most important of all he'd been removed twice from the Alabama Supreme Court. For failure can follow lawful judicial orders. You all so with the news about Al Franken this week you called for him to resign or you close Sergey year are you close of the Democratic Party on these issues and you are the Republican Party. I think Republicans cared jazz since matches Democrats. About sexual misconduct and sexual harassment. There's a new awakening. In our country. Bet this is heard phase said whether we're talking about Hollywood or Wall Street or the media or Capitol Hill. And that's why I am joining a bipartisan. Group of senators who are trying to look at our own procedures. On Capitol Hill to ensure. Bad allegations. Of sexual misconduct involving members or staff. Are dealt with seriously. Last question on this before taxes. On the question of procedures the senate might have a decision to make with Roy Moore if he's elected. Here's Sonny I'm trying to work through who with the president there were these accusations. They were adjudicated in the for in the in the election the White House said so the voters knew about the man they voted for him and now he's president. Why wouldn't that same standard applied to Roy Moore of the voters Alabama know exactly what has been in alleged if he gets elected what business is the senate have telling about. It's around I think that's the tough question. If the allegations are known prior to the election which they've worked in the case of Al Franken for example. Then we have a very tough decision to may. About whether it's our role as senators to overturn. The will of the people. Now it I think it's a different situation of the allegations are not known or if they occur. Well the person sitting in the senate. Let me go on taxes you voted for the senate tax cut bill but you seem to be having qualms questions about this conference report wary when things. I always wait until the final version of the bill is brought up for us spoke for I make a final decision on whether or not to support it. They're major differences between the house and senate bills. And I don't know where the bell is going to come out I also obviously care very much. About amendments that I was successful and heading in the bill that particularly help. And middle income families and I'm also concerned about agreements that I had. Let me ask you at two of those agreements one is on Medicare you've got agreement. From leader McConnell and Paul Ryan that there would not be these automatic Medicare cuts afterwards. Paul Ryan seemed to suggest maybe he wasn't a a party to that agreement what's the nature where where things stand on that agreement. I have written correspondence. The head in memorial license fee agreement. That the port percent cut in Medicare that could go into effect will not go into effect. I would point out that that flies and wait sixteen times it's never been implemented. But I don't want seniors to have the anxiety of wondering whether the tax they'll somehow is going to trick her cat. In Medicare I'm absolutely confident I cavity in writing a statement by eight both Mitch McConnell and speaker Brian. There with a waving of the so called pay go rules let me ask you about seniors and seniors in Maine the other thing you got a commitment on as I understand it is that. There would be legislation that would come up before the end of the year dealing with these cost sharing payments there's a piece of legislation sponsored by Alexander and Murray. What's happening without because in the house Republicans are being told that that's not gonna be a part of anything before the end of the year which means. Without those questioned payments premiums are going up for me and seniors. I had a lot of conversations. Not only but my colleagues in the senate but with my colleagues on the house side. And to with the White House had tacked to the president three times about this issue. And once again I have no reason to believe that that commitment will not be cut that capped. After all who wants to see. Health insurance premiums become more unaffordable than they already are for individuals who are buying insurance in the individual market. And our two bills since one that I have put Bill Nelson and the Alexander Murray hill. Will have to exert downward pressure on premiums and make it more portable. There is one critique of that though that. That and you and your legislation in could help the condition before this tax bill which has the removal of that individual mandate and the basically these fixes won't be enough. For those people will see higher premium increases we have a. Brand new study that just came out last week by app earlier respected. Consulting firm that says it will more than not sat. The repeal the individual mandate and keep in mind that the individual mandate fines. Fall disproportionately. On low and middle income families to 80% of those fines. Are paid by families who make less than 50000 dollars a year. All right senator I'm afraid we're gonna have to leave it there. Thank you so much for being with us thank you Jack. And will be back in one minute to hear from the number two Democrat in the senate Richard Durbin. Joining us now is senate democratic whip Richard Durbin he is in Springfield Illinois welcomed senator I want to pick up on something that senator Collins said about the face that choice that senators may face. If Roy Moore is elected in Alabama. And the question is what what business is the senate have in overturning the will of the people of Alabama if he's elected. Senator Collins says that's a very tough decision what's your sense of. Well John I can tell you this first the decision is to be made by the voters in Alabama on Tuesday. And I hope that they will do the right thing in terms of defining their standards and values when it comes to the people representing them in Washington. But we have heard from Republican senators first who have suggested that if Roy Moore and it ends up being elected to the senate. He would face close scrutiny investigation even removal from the senate once he arrives I agree with senator Collins is too complicated issue. But I will tell you this we face the reality this past week I've known Al Franken for over twenty years he has my friend. He was on the floor of the senate announcing his resignation I said just a few feet away from him so that was the worst in his political life. It was a somber feeling it was a reality and I hope the voters of Alabama appreciate that reality when they make the decision Tuesday. Let me ask you about a political critique of the democratic party's pressure on Al Franken that led to his resignation Dahlia Lithwick writes in slate. A piece that says. Morality is no longer its own reward. What we get in exchange for being good and moral morally right is now nothing argument that the Democrats have a standard that leads Franken to go in the Republicans. Are gonna art of the Republican committee supporting more the president's supporting more and that essentially Democrats are are on the high road but it's a politically. Bad road to be on. I can just tell you your interview with Susan Collins. Demonstrates that's not true there are Republicans who feel very strongly about this issue and upsets so. I think of board do than we can establish a national standard nonpartisan standard when it comes to the future relationships with women. This to me from Susan Collins of the comments gives me hope that. The Alabama voters will do the right thing and we're also seeing both parties coming to the same conclusion on this issue. Let's final question on the senator there's a criticism that it fat that Al Franken was pressure not just because the specific facts of the case that Democrats wanted to look good in comparison to Republicans what's your response. I can tell it was a painful process because of our personal friendships and relationships and with Allen's family. There was no political calculation here it was just a painful moment when we made a decision. Move forward in the democratic side I hope the Republicans will face that reality as well. On taxes senator what. Can Democrats do this is so moving into the conference committee in and that Republicans have the votes to pass it what's so what are democrats' tentative. Well did pass the senate there was only one Republican senator Bob Corcoran who voted no. Susan Collins made it clear she still waiting before she makes a final decision. I think others are in the same position Jeff flake from that example Arizona. Made it clear that bringing up this issue about doctor and the dreamers is critical to his boat when it comes to tax. So I can't assume where the Republicans will end but they have an awful lot to compilation and very short period of time. You mentioned tackle let's just off on a side road there on that a number of your democratic. That supporters colleagues would like use a Democrat to basically make funding of the government to keep that in movement to keep the government running. Would like he is you know make it contingent on doing something about daka William. Well I can tell you this we we don't wanna see the government shut down we wanna move forward a bipartisan fashion to solve our problems. We believe that doctor is central the president is someone who made this the issue September the fifth he is eliminated in the dark program and put in doubt. The future of over 780000. People in America. And we wanna get this done and accomplished 34 Republicans in the house came out last week and said do it before the end of the year. Senate Republicans said the same thing Lisa Murkowski yesterday. Tweeted that her own Christmas wish her greatest Christmas wishes to see this done. Doctor and the dreamer issue resolved this calendar year. It is within the power of the Republicans to get this done and to put together a package that we can pass we wanna stand by them work with them and get that. Nothing focuses the mind like a deadline now when using the deadline of the funding as leverage both for this and also the children's. Health insurance nine million children that still is yet to be dealt with you at one point said I'm not prepared to go home for the holidays until we get our work done. That suggests a little bit of use of this funding is it as a as a deadline but are you really gonna go that far. Well I feel very strongly about their many important issues Darko to me personally. The DREAM Act a very personal me an awful lot. But when we're talking about funding our government providing. The resources and programs that many middle income family issues across America. Dealing with the hope you're right crisis making certain that we take care of our veterans making certain that we have the money for biomedical research. These are there aren't aren't a part of the conversation and part of the dialogue as we close down this budget it is up to the Republicans to make a decision about what we will do I think we get this done right. Final question senator your on the Judiciary Committee there have been some questions raised about. IAA inspectors people working for this special counsel. One of whom sent disparaging tax about the president. And then another went to Hillary Clinton's victory party. And also praises blocking the president's travel ban. What's here how big a deal do you think this is that these questions are being raised. Let me say at the outset I have the highest confidence in Bob Mueller. I also have confidence that he has any questions about the motives and conduct of the staff he won't act on it decisively and professionally. He is moving forward on this investigation. I trusted if there's something that went wrong in terms the staffing I trust him to take care. Hard senator that's it we're out of time thanks so much for being with us and we'll be right back in a moment stay with us. Be sure to tune into tomorrow night CBS evening news which will feature Jeff Glor is interview with French president and Ann Womack crawl. Ahead of the one planet climate change summit in Paris this weekend and Jeff will anchor tomorrow night's broadcast. From the Elysee Palace. And we'll be right here with more face the nation state. Welcome back to face the nation for a closer look at some of the major issues we're facing abroad we turn to Cory Shockey who is that distinguished fellow at the Hoover institution. At Stanford University her new book is safe passage that transition from British to American hegemony. Michael O'Hanlon a senior fellow and director of research at the Brookings Institution is here and he of course is in Washington Cory let me start with you I try to get the UN ambassador to give me a sense of why now. On Jerusalem. Why now he. It's not clear why now. I laugh I fleeing the White House is hoping that it will push the peace process forward by. As Nikki Haley said taking Jerusalem off the table. I think that's unlikely to prove true. I think it's gonna make that peace process a lot more complicated because it doesn't look like today. And it doesn't look like they had anything not tough for Palestinians. And so it's surprising that other countries in the region care less in part because they need more cooperation from his room now than before. What's your view people see this violence what Powell. Should they see this big deal should be nervous what's the sense but I'm glad that you guessed it that way John because I think it's it's a median deal it's not the end of the world. President trump didn't say that. That East Jerusalem could never be the capital for Palestine he didn't make any other such. Declarations that were really out of what we all expect in any kind of a final peace agreement. Anyway of course the peace process you know corps he's totally right that it's. This is not helpful for the peace process it wasn't exactly going any place anyway. So I think there are bigger questions about what kind of leverage and we created with both parties and perhaps we need to think harder about that. But I don't see this as more than what my colleague that kind Sachs calls an unforced error and where it's not a tragedy. It's probably a mistake it probably complicates the atmosphere I'm not sure really changes the terms of any potential. Peace deal really impedes any negotiation that was having any momentum to begin. Let's talk now to about a place where an unforced error could lead to a tragedy which is North Korea Corey. Where what's happening right now Americans here. You know it's it perilous and then they kind of the issue goes away and then couldn't perilous again hashes and think about that. I I'm more concerns at about it now I I think what I hear out of the White House. Parallels pretty closely what the Bush Administration sounded like in 2003 in the runup to the Iraq War that they have leadership of North Korea is fundamentally erratic and untrustworthy. That retaliation. Is inadequate and as a strategy. And I think they're not thinking through quite careful we announced. For example what that Asia will look like geo politically if the United States engages in a preventative war that the Australians. Japanese and South Koreans don't want to and might not participating. Michael. Corey reasons 2003 this president has said that. The lead up to the Iraq War and the war itself as the greatest blunder in American history so parallels to that. That should make people are and this would probably be a hundred times more lethal for allied forces in the Iraq War. We have to care keep that in mind of what's in north Koreans Kelly detonate one or two nuclear weapons but they're over sole. And we have we have up to a couple 100000 Americans and so leave aside the issue whether. The families of American servicemen should come home to a lot of American civilians who just live their doing business. So if we gonna have a war in Korea the estimates are that one nuclear explosion over that densely populated city could kill about two or three times as many people as the Hiroshima or Nagasaki botnets. For one explosion. So anything that leads us towards a higher probability of nuclear war I think it's. Is probably a huge mistake but there is I don't wanna speed too scary there is one potential interpretation of what's going on that's a little more hopeful. Which is that the trump an illustration really doesn't have particular interest at the end of the day in launching a preventive war. But by creating the sense that they are impatient they're trying to persuade China to turn the economic screws more forcefully and try to get us in a better. Bargaining position. I'm not comfortable. With this situation because I don't know what if what I just say it's true and if the alternative interpretation is true that we could be in for a horrible war the worst since World War II. Learned the administration is painting themselves into a corner with their rhetoric even if it is just intended to make the Chinese more cooperative. If they have actually they're saying that the Santa slipping through the hourglass and we might have to act soon and the military option is the only option. If this doesn't work and that actually I think not only creates the Red Line at attach as a ticking clock to. But that the that the question two I agree a 100% with Corey question is what are the military options under consideration. All up preventive war is of course the extreme. There's also one idea that ash Carter and Bill Perry to former secretaries of defense of the Democratic Party wrote about ten years ago they're not necessarily articulating it now. But eleven years ago they they suggested that we shoot down. In North Korean ICBM launch. Before it either gets off the launch at a record gets out of the atmosphere and just deny North Korea the ability to really learn more about its missile. That's the kind of that's a very dangerous idea too because you don't know what North Korea's gonna do response but that's the sort of idea that may be in play here. Let me step back here for second and ask you all both a question about. The larger debt and build up of forces there is in the congress a request for even more money than the president has asked for for his defense budget Corey. What do you think will happen with that and do we need all this money. I'm skeptical that the congress is actually cannot pass an approach for an appropriations bill that would give the Defense Department. The 700 billion dollars that authorized us in congress have asked for. It looks to me much more likely that we will see a series of continuing resolutions. We're already a third of the way into the fiscal year so I am really skeptical. Both because of the ways that president's budget team this app zone so congress is going to be adding 400 billion dollars of her what the president requested. But I'm also skeptical that they can get deals on the other things like attack. My take I had the spending. At distinction between domestic and and national security. Looks to me like this is likely to drag on. And that's actually terrible for the Defense Department continuing resolutions. I have prevent them starting new programs that prevents that managerial latitude that DOD needs to use the money well. So rather than add borrow money I read it instead to give DOD the latitude. To do a lot more programmatic management I think that would help them a lot more. My clear thought a net I mean we're at a point here in December 2 and a half months into the new fiscal year we don't know if the defense budget is gonna be 600 billion dollars for this year. What 700 billion dollars that's a huge gap that's roughly the range of play. And Donald Trump is sort of in between. And his request I'm sort of in between myself the congress under Senator McCain and congressman a thorn Berry and others. Has had to have proposed the 700 billion Annie saying north of 600 billion exceeds the Cold War average when you adjust for inflation. I do think we need a bit more money. But I think we need really is clarity and a decision. Because you can't do proper training maintenance you can enter into long term contracts you can't just do good custodians ship of the department offense when you're this far into the year and you don't know what your budget will be. All right that's it for another few thank you so much and we'll be right back to discuss the political news of the week with our political panel. We turn now to our political panel mauling Paul is national political correspondent for time magazine. Their person of the year was the silence breakers and meet to movement. Funny Chan is a research fellow at the Hoover institution and a policy advisor to that Romney and rubio presidential campaigns. We're also joined by CBS news White House and senior foreign affairs correspondent Margaret Brennan. And Adam Keefe who covers Capitol Hill for the Washington Post and is a CBS news contributor Margaret analysts are you on this question of Jerusalem. What do you make of this decision and timing out. While this appears to have been a significant foreign policy national security decision made primarily for domestic political reasons by the president of the United States. He is succeeded in touching probably the most sensitive nerve. Nerve and one of the most intractable conflicts in history. And this is gonna make for a complicated visit for vice president panned to pastor had to Israel and to Egypt within just a week herself. But what the president appears to be doing here. It's interesting with all due respect to the un ambassador who's talking to you about making this decision it doesn't do this thing she says it doesn't actually moved embassy in fact the president on camera signed a waiver. Keeping the embassy in Tel Aviv. And it doesn't for the moment decides. The fate of Jerusalem if you listen to the president's national security team who's an actually. We're still up for negotiation on the final status in fact if you ask me US diplomats. Where the city of Jerusalem is located they still won't tell you it's located in Israel would just tell you it's the political capital so it appears to be the kind of sleight of hands that allows the president to say he achieved campaign. Objective much like the Iran deal without necessarily changing things because any new embassy it's gonna take four years or more to harm it. That's and then moved back to domestic issues. It Molly let's go to to Alabama here we got a senate race gonna boot camp and come to its conclusion next week where you think things stand this race. I do not think we know how this is going to turn out there has seemed to be. A shift in the conventional wisdom. Toward Roy Moore you hear a lot of predictions that he is going to prevail having. Because the beginning of the accusations against him. I had has now is now several weeks in the rear view mirror and has and a lot of Alabama and have have had chance to sort of process that. But we have still seen polls that are quite equivocal. Especially in such a red state that's pretty remarkable. And what I have heard from my sources on the ground and I'll be in town and I ended in just a few hours. I is that voters are pretty powerfully conflict did you know these are voters who generally want to favor the Republicans. All other things being equal but you have to remember that one more even among Republicans isn't isn't very polarizing figure there's a lot of Albanians. Who see him. As an embarrassment to the states I bored just as not. The sort of person particularly considering these charges. That they want representing them so whether that is enough to put a Democrat over the top in state like Alabama it's very difficult to town. Money let me ask you about the reaction to the RNC's supporting Roy Moore this week the president's going more there were. There was some talk about in coverage and Republicans saying I'm I'm through with the party because they are supporting him now that can get over toward the end today's media environments so it's hard to know what the level. Real and this is outrage I mean obviously Benson asset which he said senator Collins thought was disappointed to. What's your sense of how big a deal this is outside of Alabama for them for the Republican Party. Where it is right now I think that it is a developing big deal with that makes sense as we go to 2018 this is not the last time we're going to see some version of this movie. In other words I think you're gonna continue to see this conflict between different parts of the Republican Party. And yes it's played on Alabama in a really concerning fashion a guy like weren't more clearly very flawed very problematic. But you're gonna have contested primaries potentially in states like Arizona maybe even Nevada next year. So this battlefield is just being. Up played out right now people are just kind of stepping on this battlefield so I think to the extent that we're seeing this in Alabama now we're seeing is a microcosm. Of the kinds of battles we're gonna see 32018. And for Republicans like myself it's very concerning because what we're seeing is a fundamental split and fracturing the party. That we've known as existed for some time but now is being played out in a very public way and being played out in elections that really do matter and have policy consequences for the last two years of president trumps administration. At least for its first term. Well and Ed that was that was the policy implications president trump was arguing for basically saying what whenever you may believe I want to Republican in that seat. Worked for him because remember in the last few weeks the presidential campaign he was around countries and Republicans you and I like me. But I hung out of appoint conservative Supreme Court justices and other conservatives to the court and work one in five voters showed up in the exit poll showed the Supreme Court was their top concern. More to make in the same exact argument and that may in fact and that working for him what I find interesting. And what will be very curious to track in the next few weeks is if he wins how quickly those that ethics investigation again how long does it end up taking. And what do they do. If it brings forward information suggests. Conduct unbecoming a senator Susan Collins who suggested name that would be difficult. You know. Thing to do to expel him. But the fact that there could be a secretive ethics investigation under way we'll just hang over the Republican Party on Capitol Hill. Over the course of most of your most likely and you know I even talking to a colleague who takes photographs for the capital he says. I suspect we'll do we wanna avoid getting in the elevator with them because they just don't wanna be associated with them. At all and those are the really it's the allegations that he denies it ranks of sexual misconduct he doesn't deny having said that homosexual activity should be illegal he doesn't deny having said that. Muslims should be allowed to serve in the United States congress so there. Things that are being set up here that not only highlight the divisions you talked about within the Republican Party some would say the fight for the soul and identity. But also position the Democrats here and that's what was so interesting with the Al Franken. Resignation. To come. Was that the Democrats seem repositioning themselves are in a round that identity of this is what we are knots we are not going to play those cultural. I'm intent to have Franken and as you say resignation to come we still don't know what the and data that is the money I wanted to connect something you said because. Mitt Romney who used to work for came out and on basically took the moral position above all other Republicans basically and said. There's no reason to support 1 morning and sustained on the party then Steve Bannon came back at him from the what did you make of that back and forth is common has had any lasting impact and what's his Mitt Romney sort of emerging here as something in the Republican Party put a name on it. Well you know he's sort of the that the sensible conscience of the Republican Party a lot of with a new look. Hillary isn't anybody cares about what Steve Bannon has to say as to the extent that he people people think he's a proxy for the president. To mix and the people think that's the dance expressing a point of view the president holds that's relevant otherwise he's just that a political pundit out there with another opinion. And the question really will be to what extent the president carries through this argument. If there is a senate campaign to be had in Utah for governor Romney for for example to what extent is the president willing to go out there and prosecute some argument. Against Mitt Romney or try to find somebody to run against and that's only way it becomes relevant otherwise. It's all just a bunch of blather as far as I'm concerned now it's very concerning blather. Because obviously what Bannon said was completely beyond that we'll be answered about governor Romney. But I think governor Romney is putting out their point of view that that needs to be articulated in the senate and the congress beyond the twenty team elections. Just so people aren't confused. Stephen and said that governor Romney ducked service in Vietnam is not a religious exemption you went over it was a missionaries and France. Which is strange thing to say given that his president. Trump had many many deferments from the Vietnam War let me. Molly switch do you quit and here on the question Al Franken who wrote about him this week can you say he really didn't wanna leave the senate. But he really didn't seem to mean if you saw. The farewell speech that he gave first of all it took a lot of pressure to get him to resign and what you saw was. I more than half of the Democratic Caucus had to come out publicly it wasn't enough you know we knew that there was there was pressure from behind the scenes. On senator Franken and he resisted that pressure and that was why his colleagues were forced to come out publicly all the way up to the democratic leader Chuck Schumer and then finally. Very grudgingly. Franken got up there on the floor of the senate and said he believed it was ironic. That he was resigning given the allegations against president com. And against Roy Moore this is a sort of what about is an argument of the kind that we sometimes you're trap make right. Why is it fair that your that your persecuting me look at what cricket Hillary did it's the same kind of argument. And and not only did he not. Apologize. For his alleged misconduct he should he he he took pains to clarify that he hadn't actually admitted to anything. And and and cast doubt on some of his accusers. So but he did it. He did exceed to this pressure there there's a lot of resentment and that. And and disagreement in democratic circles about whether this was the right thing to do a lot of Democrats talking about. Where they're setting the standard and and and whether it's fair Minnesota Democrats very sad to lose Franken the national party sad to lose someone who's. Probably the biggest fundraising draw for democratic candidates across the country. And so it and now you have a situation where given that Minnesota was quite close in 2016. Whoever the governor appoints to fill this seat is going to have to run again in 2018 and that could possibly be a tough race. We're gonna pause that there will be back in a moment with little more on Al Franken plus taxes stainless. And we're back with our political panel and senator Durbin said there was no political calculation in the Elmore and in the Al Franken decision do you buy that now on and off with. But it was a total political calculation. We know that the week before he resigned he was already facing pressure from his colleagues who were asked to hold off. And that the morning that the final allegations surfaced they all got together my email and text and phone calls and says this is that we got to do this. The party wants to make the Democrats wanna make a competency and professionalism argument in November. Believing that that is the way they can take back the house and the senate. They got to purge all these guys in order to do that because you can't sit there and have alleged bad actors in your party. If you're trying to suggest that you would run the government better more broadly. I think viewers deserve to know this it's no secret for those of us who cover congress. That we have all in one or another been contacted by lawmakers or their aides in recent days privately asking. When Austin half who's next they are terrified of this storyline. And they know the consequences of it now could lead to much bigger problems for their party. Maybe for piece of legislation they're working on May be that chance of the party. Holding together through the elections by members in both parties aides in both parties very concerned that more to come and look. I think it's safe to say more is to come we don't know who exactly will be about. He will be carefully reported. But it shows you that they are so scared now because they realize so quickly people are disappearing to think about it. He's our guy who served for more than fifty years kicked out. We saw the party's top fund one of the party's top fundraisers kicked up a social conservative warrior Trent franks had to resign amid a lot of questions about his behavior. And and and we've never seen this kind of a purge not since the civil war. We're gonna switch to taxes here because this is a big thing that's happening to an the president wants it signed by Christmas what do you mean of his salesmanship of that tax cut bill relative to. Tom health care because the text of bill according to both the quinnipiac poll this week and Gallup. Has only 29%. Support in the country this is a president whose key Steelers as a marketer but that's not very popular for that legislation. Well he's marketing something that seems to be different than what is that the product he's selling. And the message from the president even just on two or his constant focus on the stock market in appears to be that he sees stocks and corporate profits as. A proxy for the success of this bill and ultimately his ankle even now on the campaign trail. And when he goes out to sell this he's talking about the benefits in the middle class into the working class who helped to support him. And it's not clear that these pieces at this point add up to a benefit for those people. And at this point though just to say that this would be a boost to corporations undoubtedly it would to take the corporate tax rate from 35 down to 20% and you're not legislating how corporation. Spends those profits. Right you're not necessarily forcing. Income growth you're not making that worker takes home more pay as a result you can't possibly force you also can't force broader employment so. This gamble of how this will ultimately pay off to the broader economic benefit of the country is something that the president seems to be focusing on what you culture gone on economics or something else. Money would need to make senator rubio who said Republican should go back and look at in nineteen. A 77 speech by grab President Reagan and not present then governor Reagan where he said the Republican Party has to worry about having a country club big business. Image. Well yeah I I think there's a there's a point that he's making right now senator rubio and senator leads. I had an amendment to the tax bill that would have made the child tax credit fully refundable which would have been a huge boon to lower middle class and lower. Income families and unfortunately that was voted down by the senate. I think that point of view those suggests that what we're seeing in the tax film out of Republicans this is more of a feature not a bug right that there actually looking. At lowering the corporate tax rate has been on the Republicans mainstream Republicans talked about now for years if not decades. And so this is actually relatively conventional text of the difficulty in selling it though is how do you translate a corporate tax cut into. What it means for the average middle class worker there is a strong argument be made that this tax bill's gonna boost growth which is gonna boost wages which is gonna go into the pockets of middle class taxpayers. But that's not really the argument you're hearing your during this is a middle class tax cut. So there's a little bit of dissonance in the messaging that they're gonna have to get straight but I think that it won't in in inhibit them from getting this bill through. And to the president's desk in a matter of weeks Mon thirty seconds do you agree and also do Democrats have any opportunity here to to take advantage of this tax process. Well if you believe that Democrats they are extremely excited about the political opportunity afforded by the tax bill. It is as you mentioned very similar to what happened with health care Republicans were sort of between Iraq and a hard place. They wanted to keep campaign promise particularly. To their own base that Republican primary voters who they told they were going to repeal obamacare. And reform the tax system. But the bill itself was broadly unpopular and it really is not clear whether what was worse for them politically passing the bill. Or not passing the bill given how disliked it is and so it but we do hear from Republicans is they feel they have to do this a because they think it's a good idea to cut taxes. And also because they're base will be so dispirited that they don't get anything done this first year I can and to think things going we're right back. That's a press today until next week for face the nation on John Dickerson. Today's guests were US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley Maine senators Susan Collins and Illinois senator Richard there. Executive producer of face the nation is Mary Hager senior producers are Jill Jackson as an ad for an excellent. Broadcasters directed by Brian Nelson. This nation originates from serious news in Washington for more face the nation where on line at face the nation dot com. And you can column face the nation John Dickerson and CBS radio news on Twitter instead Graham and FaceBook. Face the nation is also rebroadcast on our digital network. CBS N at 11 AM and 6 PM eastern and every Sunday.
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