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the rachel maddow show, transcript 8/28/17 flooding inundates houston. - in a heat pump

by:HICOOL     2019-09-01
the rachel maddow show, transcript 8/28/17 flooding inundates houston.  -  in a heat pump
Show: rachel maddow SHOWDate: August 28, 2017 guest: Carol Leonnig, Jim BlackburnRACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC anchor: Good night, Chris.
Thank you very much.
Thank you for joining us this hour at home.
We were on the fourth day of the hurricane.
Crisis off Texas coast
We continue to focus on developments in Houston tonight, where rainfall continues to fall and local authorities have to make tough decisions about communities and areas they may condemn, deliberately flooding further for greater benefit.
Today and tonight, Houston has let a lot of flooding flow out of flood control reservoirs into areas that have been fatally submerged.
They have been doing so to mitigate the threat that those reservoirs and dams may fail due to the huge amount of water.
With the start of the entire Texas National Guard, thousands of Americans were hurt tonight and it's hard to exaggerate the size of the Texas crisis.
Houston is the fourth largest city in the United States.
It is also the fastest growing major city in the United States.
Although Houston has suffered catastrophic flooding in the past, including flooding caused by hurricanes, the rapid growth and spread of the Houston area has created even worse conditions for such storms.
It also creates seemingly insurmountable challenges to try to get people out of harm and try to save them when the effort to get them out of harm fails.
Let's continue watching the story tonight.
We will receive a live report from Houston in a moment.
Tonight, we will also talk to an expert who is an expert on what options Houston currently has.
What options do Texas have now to deal with what has happened over the last four days and what may continue to deteriorate in the next 48 hours.
At this point, they have some very painful decisions to make and understand what options they have and what consequences their decisions may have.
This is a very difficult thing.
We will cover it in detail tonight.
Today, we also saw a series of breaking news, some shocking breaking news about the Trump Organization and the Trump campaign, about Russia's relationship with Russia when it attacked the United States. S.
Last year's presidential election
Carol Leonig, one of the Washington Post's investigative reporters, made the story public over the weekend and today.
Carol Leonig will stay with us in a short time.
We also have some news tonight about Trump. Russia dossier.
Files prepared by former British MI
Last year's agent Christopher Steele
The Russian file of charges against Donald Trump, released by "Buzzfeed" in January, caused a stir.
The person who commissioned the file described it as a roadmap to investigate whether Donald Trump colluded with the Russian attack.
The person who commissioned the file also supported it and said the file was correct.
These files are now back at the center of our understanding of Trump --
Russian investigation
Later this evening, we will reveal a little bit on the show.
But you know, the day our public first got to know the archives was actually before the election.
It was Halloween on October 31, 2016.
Mom Jones magazine's David Corn is the first person in the country to release the news.
A former Western intelligence officer has collected a series of intelligence reports that could be very harmful in terms of Donald Trump's relationship with Russia.
David Cohen reported on Halloween that the FBI had seen the findings and was investigating them.
Similarly, the report of October 31, 2016.
No one knew what to do.
I wish I knew what to do.
I hope we all have it, right?
It was not until January, a few months later, after the election that the file itself was published, and we all learned how serious the matter was, as David Corn described it in October.
But on the same day that David Corn published the story, right, it seems very important to recall the story now, but we didn't really get it at the time.
On the same day, there was a story that was hard to understand, and it landed like this.
It was written by Franklin Ford at slate. com.
He wrote a long article on Halloween describing an unusual computer interaction Bank between a computer server at Trump Tower and a computer server at a Russian bank called Alpha in Moscow.
The content described in this Slate article is a bit difficult to understand in its sense, but the detailed report is that there is an unusually high server-to-server traffic between these two servers in Moscow and Trump Tower.
There are no reports on the contents of these communications.
I mean, there are multiple competing explanations as to why these services might communicate with each other, but, to be honest, no one has ever explained the importance of this information.
Because of this, because it doesn't have a clear bottom line, I think the story will eventually disappear in public awareness.
For whatever reason, Trump's computer server and Alpha Bank's computer server talked to each other during the campaign.
It's interesting, but we don't know what that means, and there doesn't seem to be any other significant connection between Donald Trump and bank Alpha.
Such an interesting story, we really don't know what that means, and the whole thing goes to the back of the stack in terms of the issues with Donald Trump and Russia.
Maybe the entire Alpha Bank server is just a coincidence or some technical glitch.
The story was released on slate on October 31. com.
A week later, Donald Trump won the election.
And then, while he was president
The Elect, the next strange and inexplicable thing that appears, involves the Trump world and the Bank of Russia.
One of Trump's son's many contacts with Russian officialsin-
The law Jared Kushner did not disclose his request for security clearance, a meeting he attended during the transition at Trump Tower, where he hosted the head of another Russian bank
Jared Kushner met with the head of a Russian bank called VEB bank.
VEB Bank is a bank, but it is actually only an entity of the Russian government.
The leadership of the VEB bank was personally selected by Putin, especially the connection between the VEB Bank and the Russian intelligence service is not subtle.
Sergei golkov is the person who Jared Kushner met at Trump Tower during the transition.
He is a graduate of the FSB Academy, which basically means he went to the KGB graduate school.
VEB bank is also a cover group for a large Russian spy gang arrested by the FBI a few years ago.
It was a Russian spy operation, and the FBI found that Trump's foreign policy adviser, Carter Page, was basically the target of these Russian spies willing to attack.
At least he's a source of information for those Russian spies who are looking for information from Americans, helping them spy on the United States from their base camp in New York is ostensibly working for VEB bank, but they are really spies.
So, for some reason, the Alpha Bank server communicated with the Trump Organization.
What does that Russian bank have to do with it?
Then during the transition, for some reason, Jared Kushner met with the head of the VEB bank.
What does that Russian bank have to do with it?
Shortly after Trump took office, there was an inexplicable, seemingly random intersection between the Trump world and another Russian bank.
The next one we learned is the largest bank in Russia, a bank called Sberbank, which is announcing that they have hired new lawyers to handle a complex civil case on their behalf, the case was filed with the Federal Court of New York.
Why is this a federal civil case in New York?
It's a long story, but in this case, Sberbank surprised everyone.
When they announced that they had chosen a new lawyer for this long, complex and possibly very expensive case, they made a lot of money in legal news, they say their new lawyer will mark katzvitz, Donald Trump's private lawyer, right?
Marc Kasowitz was supposed to be responsible for President Trump's legal representation in the Russian investigation.
If you are the chief lawyer for the president of the United States to coordinate legal defense, he faced a major counter-intelligence and criminal investigation by the FBI during his tenure as president, which you are responsible
You think he's too busy to deal with other clients, right?
But, you know, from another point of view, if there are Russian interest groups that are particularly concerned about knowing what's going on with Trump --
Russian investigation
The conversation with an undercover lawyer could be convenient.
Customer privileges of President Trump's chief counsel-
Who knows about the Russian investigation?
Maybe it's just a coincidence.
What are Russian Lawyers for the big Russian banks and the president doing?
Maybe the Alpha Bank thing is just a coincidence. Maybe the VEB-
The Jared Kushner meeting was a coincidence.
Maybe the Sberbank thing, the Russian lawyer who hired Donald Trump, maybe it's just a coincidence.
Perhaps these have nothing to do with President Donald Trump or whether he has some sort of illegal financial or other relationship with Russia, this explains why Russia attacked our election and tried to manipulate it. I represent him, right?
Maybe none of these banks are connected, Alfa Bank, VEB bank, Sberbank, and maybe these are all related to whether Trump and his campaign team know or are involved in Russia's efforts to undermine our election.
I mean, if you want to talk about Donald Trump in person and specifically, to be honest, until today, the only suspicious bank relationship we know about him is not with any Russian bank, but with Deutsche Bank, right?
As the name suggests, Deutsche Bank is not a Bank of Russia, and until today it is still a bank that Donald Trump owes hundreds of millions of dollars.
Deutsche Bank is the bank that has been dealing with Donald Trump in business for years, and none of the other major banks will.
Deutsche Bank is a bank that continues to lend hundreds of millions of dollars to President Trump, even if he cannot repay some of his previous loans.
Even after he filed a lawsuit against Deutsche Bank for not paying it back, it was an arrogance.
Some aspects of Donald Trump
Deutsche Bank's relationship seems to have been unable to explain the boundaries of normal financial transactions.
On the surface, at least, Deutsche Bank seems very generous to him and very tolerant to him.
It turned out that Deutsche Bank also provided hundreds of millions of dollars in loans to Jared Kushner in last October, just before the election.
Jared Kushner personally secured the loans, which made it more unusual for him to fail to disclose these loans from Deutsche Bank in his financial disclosure statement, hundreds of millions of dollars.
Deutsche Bank has also been plagued by its legal responsibility for a multi-billion-dollar Russian money laundering program in Moscow, London and elsewhere over the past year.
But you know, after today, the Deutsche Bank money laundering case in Russia will no longer be considered as the most worrying case for President Trump's contact with Deutsche Bank --
Russian investigation
Because there is the Alpha Bank on the server, the VEB bank with the Carter Page connection, and the Jared Kushner meeting.
Sberbank hired Trump's Russian lawyer.
All these Russian banks have played a strange new role in American politics.
There is also one bank, Alfa Bank, VEB bank, Sberbank.
There's another bank called VTB.
A large bank in Russia.
It's not as big as Sberbank, but it's really big.
VTB Bank is approved by the US government. S.
Because Russia invaded Crimea, the government.
The bank was approved by the United States. S.
Because the bank is seen as the Russian government, the government sees it as a punishment for Crimea.
This is a branch of the Russian government. S.
What the government thinks of them
In fact, if you go to VTB's website tonight and click on VTB, they will tell you in precise mathematical terms how they are controlled by the Russian government.
The Russian government owns and controls 60 countries.
9% of VTB Bank, the majority shareholder of VTB Bank is the Russian government with 60 shares.
9% of voting shares.
In simple English, that means Putin runs VTB.
Putin controls the bank and controls the bank's behavior and spending.
It wasn't until last year that we knew that VTB Bank had been lining up until the middle of the presidential campaign and promised to provide hundreds of millions of dollars to build the Trump Tower in Moscow.
The Russian government intends to do the deal.
In fact, even if it is not known that the money for the deal will come from the Russian government, it is still a huge bomb.
This is not some of the old deals that people may have forgotten in the past.
This is not what Trump did in his 90 s, it collapsed.
It was the work he did during the campaign, as he announced that he would run for president, months before he ran for president, when he was running for president with all his might, he tried to reach the agreement with the Russian government in Moscow.
Quoting Carol lenick's story about this in the Washington Post, citing "as negotiations progress towards the construction of the Trump Tower Moscow, trump made many supportive comments about Putin during the campaign, distinguishing himself from his Republican nominee rivals.
Remember a few weeks ago, Trump warned in an interview with The New York Times, "if Robert Mueller wants to investigate any of his business deals, because obviously these personal financial interests or commercial transactions have nothing to do with Russia, will they cross the red line?
Well, now that we know his business, the Trump Organization, and even during the campaign, has something to do with Russia, you know, we should probably see this coming.
Back in May, we should see this when Donald Trump's lawyers start hiring their own.
Michael Cohen is always a lawyer for Donald Trump, sometimes his private lawyer, an executive and lawyer for the Trump Organization.
When Trump started flirting with the president and running for president in the last election cycle, Michael Cohen was his top leader, most of the time his only political adviser.
Michael Cohen is very, very close to Trump and Trump's business.
He is Trump's lawyer, and he did hire his own lawyer this spring.
Then he confirmed the Trump commission.
The Russian incident required him to give evidence and hand over the documents to these committees.
Michael Cohen's response to these requests is no, I won't.
The Commission then summoned him to testify and handed over the documents.
As far as we know, he will testify to the House Intelligence Committee next Tuesday.
But apparently today he handed the documents to the House Intelligence Committee, some of which, along with a long statement on them, were handed over to certain journalists and publications after handing them over to Congress.
Just a little reading between the lines, it seems like what's happening here is not Michael Cohen handing things over to Congress, which leaked it.
I'm not talking about direct knowledge.
I'm talking about reading between the lines.
The way the wording and description in the report tonight is that Michael Cohen handed these things over to the House Intelligence Committee and in doing so provided some information and statements to reporters
Before investigators themselves start chewing on the information and publishing it in their own way, it is better to adjust the information themselves.
The best rotation is still very bad in this case.
The bottom line we now learn from the Washington Post and The Times is that while Trump has publicly insisted that he has no deal with Russia, but he was repeatedly questioned about why he was so active with Putin and Russia throughout the campaign.
He never wanted to mention that apparently no one in the Trump Organization or the Trump campaign thought about five months in the presidential campaign, the Trump group is actively pursuing the construction of the Russian government's agreement to fund a huge real estate project in Moscow.
These negotiations included the signing of a letter of intent to move the project forward on October and October 2015 by Trump.
Michael Cohen said he spoke directly with Trump at least three times on the project.
Michael Cohen, who we know now, also wrote directly to the Kremlin on last January.
He wrote to Dmitry Peskov, Putin's spokesman, asking the Kremlin to directly help him restart discussions about the construction project, which he said was stalled at the time.
Another Trump organizing figure involved in these negotiations is one of the people we talked about earlier named Felix Satel (ph).
He's Russian. born ex-
Con was convicted of a $40 million mafia connection pump and dumping stock program.
On 2013, Trump claimed in his affidavit that if Felix Sather was sitting in that room that day, he would not be able to recognize him.
It's hard to believe Felix Sather has been in contact with the Trump organization for years.
He took a trump card and called himself a senior advisor to Donald Trump, even if Trump said he wouldn't recognize him if he was in the room.
He said it in 2013.
Apparently 2015, Felix Satar was recognized again as he was working with Michael Cohen to try to get the Trump Tower to Moscow and Trump was signing a letter of intent to move this forward.
I think Michael Cohen has to testify to the House next week.
He handed over the documents to Intel today.
His strategy to do so is to try to rotate what he handed over in the best way possible.
It still looks bad.
It also seems to try to downplay the importance of Felix Sather and his involvement in the project, especially the comments by Sather in the email
It has now been emailed to Congress and some journalists.
In it, Felix Sater boasts that property deals in Moscow will eventually lead to Donald Trump becoming president of the United States.
Quote "our children can be president of the United States and we can design it.
I will involve all of Putin's teams.
Let me manage this process.
Felix Sather wrote the letter to Michael Cohen.
Quoting "Michael, I arranged for Ivanka to sit in Putin's private chair at the Kremlin's desk and office.
I know how to play.
We will finish it.
"Michael Cohen's strategy to release these documents to the media before handing them over to Congress involves his play down whether Felix Satel will really take them seriously.
He issued a statement saying "in the course of my business dealings with Mr.
Sater, he sometimes uses colorful languages and is easy to sell.
That is, when today's Times goes to check out Felix Satar's bragging, he can show Putin's side in the deal.
He has a close relationship and is able to arrange for Ivanka Trump to sit in Putin's private chair and at the desk of the Kremlin office.
When the New York Times aired today, the reaction of the Ivanka team was not entirely on the brand.
Ivanka Trump told The Times that when she was in Moscow with Felix Satel, she actually only briefly visited the Red Square and the Kremlin, but she insisted "as a tourist.
"I have to say, though, that she doesn't seem to have a completely typical travel experience because, quote her," she said, she might be sitting in Mr. Putin`s chair.
"But maybe it's just a coincidence, or all the tourists in the Kremlin can't sit in Putin's chair.
Alfa Bank, VEB bank, Sberbank and now VTB Bank, which is what the Russian government has agreed to provide hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for the Moscow project at the Trump Tower, which no one has acknowledged before today.
This happened during the campaign.
It's probably a coincidence.
Many things have happened today.
There are many things happening in the news.
Carol Leon will join us next. Stay with us. (
Business break)MADDOW: Trump-
The Russian investigation is based on three issues. One is U. S.
The Russian government intervened in the presidential election in an attempt to help Trump win, the intelligence agency said.
Second, there are allegations that the Trump campaign colluded or helped Russia intervene during the election.
Third, our current president has absolutely denied that he has any relationship with Russia, which is problematic.
Except for the beauty contest he held there.
His deal with Russia and his statement have aroused interest in the investigation because investigators need to figure out if he has some sort of compromise on Russia.
That means investigators need to figure out if Russia has reservations about him.
What do they know?
Do they have documents on what he did that he didn't want them to reveal to the public?
This is the essence of being compromised, right, appreciated, in which case, for some secret reason, you feel the need to please foreign forces, or at least not to say no when they call.
So, it all boils down to these simple things, and it turns out that Russia is interfering with the election to help Trump win.
The Trump campaign is said to have helped in this ongoing investigation effort.
Our current president says he has nothing to do with Russia, nothing to do with it.
That's why it's a huge bomb.
Trump executives have asked Putin's aides to help with business deals.
Executive of Trump real estate company e-
During his stay in the United States, he emailed Putin's private spokesman. S.
Last year's presidential campaign was to seek help to advance the Trump Tower development project, which stalled in Moscow.
This is according to a document that Trump organized a senior executive to submit to Congress today. He is also Trump's private lawyer, who served as Trump's political adviser at the beginning of the campaign.
When he asked Trump to sign a letter of intent, the Trump Tower in Moscow will be funded by Russia --
Government-run banks
No one thought about this before.
Now we are joined by The Washington Post reporter Carol Leonig.
Thank you so much for being here, Carol.
It's nice to have you here.
Carol Leonig, staff writer for The Washington Post: Rachel, it's great to be here.
So, congratulate you on your scoop.
You guys broke this story yesterday about the Trump group trying to build the Trump Tower in Moscow early in the campaign.
It seems to me that what you reported in this story and what the president said to him and the Russian exchange seemed very inconsistent.
Do you think what you can report really contradicts the president's description of his own way of trading in Russia?
I don't think it's a terrible absolute lie.
I think it shows that when he was a presidential candidate, he was not right about how eager he was, let his Trump Organization and his executive vice president seek a potentially lucrative deal in Moscow.
There is a lot of debate about how valuable this is to him.
But I think there's something bigger behind the story we broke on Sunday night and the news story we broke this afternoon.
I think the fabric here has something bigger and you will only learn it when every piece comes up, but the bigger thing is Michael Cohen, Donald Trump's third son, A long one
Ellie is a friend of the times, not his son when he was born.
But while the man is working, negotiate an agreement in Moscow to develop and license Russia-
His born friend said, hey, the president can be elected if we reach an agreement.
It will make him look like an incredible negotiator who is so great.
Hey, I have a connection in Russia and I can get Putin to start saying something nice about this, you know, a bit far away Republican hope.
Then, we learned in the recent story, in the meantime, Michael Cohen
Donald Trump's time ally is reaching out to extremely high targets
Putin's good friend said I need your help.
We are stuck and we want to finish the deal-Carol Leonig, Washington Post investigative journalist and staff writer:-I hope you can help.
It's Cohen.
Donald Trump's time ally is in touch-he is Putin's super good friend.
Say, I need your help. We`re stalled.
We want to finish the deal.
We know how it works in Russia.
You have to go to Putin.
We hope to get your help.
So it's completely different from what the president said, and I'm not interested in Russia.
I have no deal.
There's nothing I can do there.
Rachel maddow show host rachel maddow: when Felix Sater linked the deal to Trump's chance to become president, is it clear to him why he thought the two things were linked together
You just mentioned that he said, wow, it really makes him look like a great negotiator.
I know I'm not sure if I understand his arguments or why he thinks these things are interrelated.
Obviously, it is very provocative to see someone saying that we are doing this deal, which will lead to Trump becoming president.
We are doing this financial deal and he won the election.
But I really don't understand why he connected the two ideas?
LEONNIG: it could be an incredible exaggeration.
Maybe someone did something different.
But remember that Putin is angry with the United States at this time. S. .
He has a bit of an opinion about his revenge mission.
He also wanted to look like he had some sort of moderation.
Looks like he thinks he can create
In a hostile relationship with Donald Trump, Trump is a presidential candidate who breaks the tradition.
Felix Sather, this Russian again.
The born broker, who has long been in contact with Donald Trump, has introduced him to a fairly important Russian businessman since 2013.
This person said, look, it's good for Putin, it's good for you, Donald.
He told this to Michael Cohen.
You look like you 've negotiated with America's most powerful opponent.
This is also good for Putin.
He looks like his relationship with the United States has eased and he is very happy. S. .
MADDOW: this is such a strange misconception as to how the deal is going on.
That's-just understanding how news works and how people treat Trump.
Once we start to understand Russia's efforts to embed and participate in the elections.
This is a big problem, but the fabric here is absolutely amazing.
I have a feeling that there is a lot-it feels like we are starting to understand the beginning of this part of the campaign, a lot of coverage.
Carol Leonig from The Washington Post, thank you so much for your time tonight.
Once again, congratulate the scoop.
Thanks, Rachel.
MADDOW: Well, today's City of Houston has made some very difficult choices about how to deal with the absolute epic flooding that has swept through major American cities.
We have strict experts to ask about this question.
This story is in front of you.
In addition, the latest news of Houston Plus.
That little news.
We're going to take the Russian files out of context.
That's it tonight. Stay with us. (
Business break)
Houston, Texas is basically flat.
It is the fourth largest city in the United States.
50 feet above sea level.
Houston is located in a flat and humid part of the world, on one side is the Gulf of Mexico, and the whole city has a bay.
Since 1960, Houston has suffered more deaths and property damage from floods than anywhere else in the country.
The people of Houston have come up with ways to stop the water from winning.
Today, in this great storm, they tried a more desperate measure.
There are two dams on the west side of Houston that control the reservoir, which is basically designed to keep water away from Houston city and to prevent water from rushing to the bay where downtown Houston has been flooded.
This is what the reservoir looks like before the storm.
After the storm, the water level has risen high enough, fast enough, and officials fear that the dam itself will be overcome.
So in order to save the dam and continue to stop the large amount of water stored in these reservoirs, they open the overflow channel and let some water flow out of the reservoir.
In doing so, they flooded the communities on the road where they had to release the water.
They did not do it free of charge.
They did so to save the dam and more people.
It was a tough choice, not a mayor, not an engineer who wanted to do it.
However, this is probably the best choice for them in Houston today.
How do you deal with a disaster when it's not just happening?
Soon the nod is over.
What options does Houston now have to deal with the ongoing flooding?
What should they do in the next few days?
Next, we will have a person who will join us and his job is to solve these exact problems. Stay with us. (
Business break)(
Start Video Editing)
Male: Rosita Dimitrov'sph)
The family was rescued by boat this afternoon.
Rosita Dimitrov, a Houston residence: The house was flooded.
And rising too fast.
Unidentified men: they live west of Houston, where the Army Corps of Engineers are carrying out controlled releases in two reservoirs before the storm disappears.
This is to reduce the risk of destructive flooding and reduce the possibility of damage to the dam.
Dimitrov: We were all fine before they released the reservoir.
So everything happened very quickly this morning.
Man: You haven't been flooded before?
Dimitrov: No, no.
The water is rising, but we have not been flooded before.
So I know what they have to do to save Houston, but it really triggers and accelerates the process. (END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: what they have to do in order to save Houston.
This is the report from the MSNBC Evening News, which reported tonight on a family directly affected by the release of the two reservoirs.
Local officials today actually warned that even on the fourth day of the disaster in Houston, those who have not yet been flooded may find that, as the effects of the storm continue to intensify, and officials made tough decisions, flooding tomorrow or the next day.
It's Jim Blackburn with us.
Director, SSPEED Center, Rice University, Houston.
The SSPEED Center, founded ten years ago, aims to deal with severe storms and their impact on the Gulf Coast.
Professor Blackburn, thank you very much for joining us tonight.
I'm glad you were with us.
Jim Blackburn, expert in civil and environmental engineering
Director, SSPEED Center, Rice University: Oh, thank you, Rachel.
It is a real pleasure to be here.
MADDOW: Today, the Army Corps of Engineers decided to open drainage channels in the two reservoirs west of Houston and West of the city center.
As far as I know, this is basically to protect the integrity of the reservoir and save more people.
The short-term result is that some communities face new or worsening flooding.
You studied these things.
You know what choice they have.
What did you do with the decision they made today?
Blackburn: Well, the decision was based on the fact that the dams were assessed by the Legion as two of the six most dangerous dams in the United States.
This is the case in terms of the risk of failure and the downstream affected population.
We 've never seen such a heavy rain before, and they 've made-I think it's a cautious decision, although it's very difficult to start putting water at the same time as filling the reservoir.
But I don't think the reservoir is for full load, it's really a tragedy because we need every ounce of flood control we have.
MADDOW: What tools do local officials have to use in terms of their flood control options?
As the storm continues, what decisions will they make today, tonight and tomorrow?
Blackburn: Well, I think we really have some of the toughest decisions.
To be frank, I think every coastal city will face these decisions in the future.
We have never seen such rain before.
On the other hand, Houston has never seriously considered many options before.
We have been dealing with floods from the perspective of quotation control, mainly through engineering solutions.
There are many non-structural alternatives.
We will have to come up with a whole new set of ways to solve these problems that need to be creative and need, you know, to really try to come up with new and different ways to solve them.
We cannot solve these problems by thinking about the way we have been thinking.
We must come up with better new ideas.
MADDOW: not only the size of Houston, but also its key location.
Like the Houston Channel, the refineries there and all the infrastructure there.
Some of them are in-when it is in danger, it can be very dangerous to human beings and other forms of life.
Given what Houston is and what is-what is the risk here, how is Houston making a better decision to deal with the flood?
A city with so many chemical and oil infrastructure is also the most severe flood in the United States, which is very noticeable.
Blackburn: Well, I think first of all, sometimes it's hard for officials to really imagine the scale of the storm we actually foresee.
But we have already foreseen that, for example, what has not happened in this storm, it will be a hurricane that has soared.
Maybe 20 to 25 feet people enter the Houston Channel.
I have been told by a few people that this is unrealistic.
If we model and come up with ideas that are unfolding, we will be accused of putting forward unrealistic future ideas.
So one thing I think is to make people really open
Because I think we are in an unprecedented period of risk with high temperatures.
The Gulf of Mexico is very warm.
This is the warmest ocean in the world and one of the warmest in the world. it is a virtual heat pump for hurricanes, which is a huge source of power for these storms.
Professor Blackburn, I read at ProPublica that since 1989 they have called it
A one-year storm, a storm that should happen only once in 100.
This has happened six times in Houston since the 1989 incident.
Are you saying it's not just a Houston issue, it's a climate change issue in terms of how we predict the scale of storms and floods?
Blackburn: that's exactly what climate experts have been predicting because our normal distribution of storms is changing and we're going to turn to more serious events.
I think this is what we see.
We met two 500-
In the past two years, there have been storms in some parts of the town.
I don't know what this storm is going to assess, but it's definitely beyond hundred. year storm.
I think the word "hundred"
Rain this year is barely meaningful today.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is the agency that provides these stormy meals (ph).
We have not yet reassessed.
Our strictness does nothing because it affects everyone in the United States.
I think Houston has the opportunity to be the leader in how the country responds to and deals with this unprecedented new storm.
But it requires all our creativity.
Jim Blackburn, partner.
Director, SSPEED Center, Rice University, Houston.
Thank you for helping us understand all this.
Sir, I am very clear about your arrival. thank you for coming. Yes, Blackburn. ph)
Thank you so much for taking the time, Rachel.
MADDOW: Thank you.
Okay, we have more tonight. Stay with us. (
Business break)
I rest on Friday night.
Sorry, I'm not sorry.
But at the height of the news Dam hurricane on Friday, we learned that President Trump was pardoning former Arizona Sheriff Joe alpaio.
It was Friday.
By late Saturday morning, new reports raised a whole new question for the White House.
The Washington Post quoted three sources in Saturday's report last spring, just months before the trial of Sheriff Arpaio's case.
The president is considering a complete reversal of the charges against Arpaio.
He quoted, "when the Minister of Justice, Jeff Sessions, asked the government if it was possible to revoke the criminal case against Arpaio, the president was told that it was inappropriate.
Shortly after, the New York Times published its own version of the story, citing four sources, who reported that the president had proposed not only with the attorney general, Jeff Sessions, and the possibility of withdrawing Arpaio's lawsuit with White House lawyers.
Okay, my question is
If the president asks. G.
White House lawyers if they can somehow drop the Arpaio prosecution, could that be a legal issue for the president?
Hey, I'm just asking where is the line between friends and getting in the way of justice?
We have some expert advice today. Former U. S.
Lawyer Barbara McQuaid, who is now the chief contributor to MSNBC.
You saw her many times on our show.
Tonight, Barbara McQuaid told us that if the president is trying to interfere with the prosecution that is being investigated for Comey's dismissal, it could be a separate charge that is obstructing the president's Justice.
It is conceivable that this can be investigated or pursued in this case.
She also told us that this is interesting "if Sessions or others explain to Trump that before Trump tries to do so with former FBI Director James Comey, it is inappropriate to interfere with criminal investigations, which may help to prove that Trump understands that his dismissal of James Comey is illegal.
"Ah, in other words, it may eliminate his defense of ignorance.
If the president is explicitly told that he is really not allowed to interfere in the criminal investigation of Joe apayo, and then, he is able to know clearly, he should not interfere with the FBI's investigation into Michael Flynn by putting pressure on James Comey.
That's what we heard from former federal prosecutor Barbara McQuaid.
We also asked Bob Bauer today, a former White House adviser to President Obama.
He cited the unusual nature of the apayor pardon before the sentence was imposed on Sheriff apayor.
He told us, "if the president faces impeachment on the grounds that stand in the way of the relevant, it will color his case because it is a pardon that does not meet the criteria for granting pardon in normal events.
"So, yes, asking again about the Arpaio pardon could be causing trouble for the president.
We also heard from a former senior Justice Department official, Walter Delinger, who led the Office of Legal Counsel under President Clinton.
Walter Delinger told us, "No president should interfere in criminal prosecution on behalf of friends or supporters.
It fundamentally violates the Equality and Justice stipulated in the law.
Walter Delinger is outspoken.
So it's clear that pardoning is a privilege for the president, but can the president try to withdraw the prosecution? Is that legal?
It turned out to be a good question.
So stay tuned.
We also have some exclusive new reports tonight about alleged Russian dirt files against President Trump, as well as a 10-hour testimony from a key figure while making the files.
We're going to tell this story next. Stay with us. (
Business break)
MADDOW: last week, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley was asked by a very stubborn, very smart voter at Iowa City Hall.
The problem he faces is the controversial archive of the first detailed collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
The person in charge of the company entrusted the file, together
Glenn Simpson, founder of Fusion GPS, recently spent 10 hours transcribing interviews with judicial council staff, all about Archives.
Ten hours of testimony.
After that, Glenn Simpson said he insisted on the file.
He also said that, citing this sentence, if the Commission so wishes, the record of his 10-hour testimony on file could be published.
At the town hall in Iowa, Senator Grasley told voters he insisted that if his committee voted to do so, he would be willing to publish the ten-hour transcript of his testimony.
What we can report tonight is
There are 11 Republicans and 9 Democrats in the judiciary.
We think it is possible for all nine Democrats to vote to release the record.
We reached out to all of them and all the Republicans on the committee.
Not one of the chairman's Republicans, Utah Senator Olin Hatch now tells us that he will vote to release that transcript.
Citing a statement given to us by his office, "senators, like President Grasley, think we should make it as public as possible.
He will vote in favor unless there are more unexpected developments.
That's what Olin Hatch's office says.
This is very interesting.
This means that if there is another Republican who voted to release that record, it means that the person who commissioned it gave ten hours of testimony to the file, and he absolutely supports the file, the ten-hour testimony may soon see the dawn.
This is really one thing.
Look at this space.
That's it for us tonight, we'll see you again tomorrow, and it's time to say the last word to Lawrence O'Donnell, good evening, Lawrence-it's a rush transcript.
This copy may not be in final form and may be updated.
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