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CNN TONIGHT

Trump's On Health Care; Trump Cover On Time Magazine More Than A Dozen; Trump Notice an Irish Journalist. Aired 11p-Midnight

Aired June 28, 2017 - 23:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[23:00:49] DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Surprise, that's what President Trump is promising on health care. But with the bill so unpopular, will the surprise be on him?

This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon.

Health care are hanging in the balance. And the president is already kicking off his reelection campaign tonight at his own hotel in Washington. Too soon? Well, we'll see.

Plus, President Trump has a chilly relationship with most reporters. But there's at least one he seems to get along with. What she thinks of her moment in the Oval Office spotlight. Let's get right, though to our panel.

CNN's -- let's get to Bob Cusack, the Editor in Chief of The Hill, CNN presidential story Douglas Brinkley, author of Rightful Heritage: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Land of America, CNN political analyst, April Ryan and political commentator Mike Shields. Good to have all of you on this evening.

Bob, I'm going to start with you. Here is a president talking about health care today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Health care is working along very well. You can have a big surprise with a great health care package. So, now, they're happy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do mean by big surprise, sir?

TRUMP: So, you're going to have a great, great surprise.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Bob, what's he talking about?

BOB CUSACK, EDITOR IN CHIEF, THE HILL: I don't know Don. I mean, he is a master marker. And obviously, this bill is not popular. It didn't get the votes this week.

And remember, Trump had some momentum this week. I mean he in Georgia 6th District. Republicans won, he got a big win at the Supreme Court. So, what was going to pass, maybe he was going to pass this week. However, the votes are just not there. I don't know how they get there because I think Susan Collins is a firm, no. I think Rand Paul is a firm, no. And then you got to get Dean Heller, who's up for reelection. I think maybe if they had one more Republican senator, they could get this done. It's awfully hard right now.

LEMON: Yes. But, you know, what he was doing, right. There are so obvious, it's like, you know, the guys here in the studio when they say, can we go home now. Yes, guys, you can go home. Are you happy? But the truth is, we can't go home until the show is over, right. So, I think he's just having a little fun with the media there.

April, is this administration are we -- we're always waiting for the next big thing. You're always telling the next big thing.

APRIL RYAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes. The next big thing after health care understand will be tax reform and infrastructure. But just like health care, the devils (ph) and the details and it's about the CBO score on this president does not mind busting a budget. But you have people who in the Republican Party who are physically conservative and they're very upset about that mets. That's part and parcel or part of the problem with health care. We don't know what's next, what can you do to actually fix this.

I mean, you know, Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act as its official title is. Had some issues in each three tweet, one big issue, our deductibles very high. But this, you know, its knock millions of people off. What will he do to fix this? The House and Senate they'll both will hurt people. We have to wait and see. He's a carnival barker right now. We have to wait and see when he lets the curtain opened to see what he has to say.

LEMON: It was very surprising to me. I don't know if you guys saw Congressman Peter King on the show just a little bit earlier saying, maybe they're going to have to work and actually tweak the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, that the votes aren't just aren't there. And the Senate, the votes just aren't there in the Congress. What do you think about that Mike Shields?

MIKE SHIELDS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think you're watching legislating. And I think that hasn't happen in Washington for so long that everyone is sort of freaking out every single time there's a twist or a turn going through it. I mean look, the House, the House bill failed at first and then it passed. And every single step of the way, you sort of reach a brinkmanship of, oh my gosh, it's not going to pass. And this person is angry. And that person is angry.

Then they come to the table. They're all negotiating a pasturing after it passes the Senate or go to a conference committee and will through the same cycle again of seeing., oh my gosh. There's always going to a brinksmanship of thing that happens when you're negotiating something as big as this.

But I think --

LEMON: What do you think of Peter King saying that, you know, maybe it's not a full repeal and replace. Maybe it's just tweaking it.

[23:04:59] SHIELDS: Well, I don't agree with him. I think that you're going to have repeal. I mean, if you're getting rid of then individual mandate, if you're getting rid of all the taxes if you're fundamentally changing the Medicaid policy in Obamacare, that's not Obamacare anymore.

And so, I think -- and look I take you back to 1996. John Lewis went to the well of the floor of the House during the welfare reform debate. And he said, they're coming for the women. They're coming for the children and million new orphans on the street. The same sort of things Democrats are trying to say now about this Medicaid change in the Health Care Act.

And what happened? We don't even talk about welfare reform anymore because it was such a huge success. And I think, when Republicans get away about talking about -- from talking about numbers. I mean the House bill increases Medicaid spending by 20 percent.

When we get -- we're never going to have enough percentages -- numbers to fight on Democrats. And we start talking about in the moral terms of making people have a work requirement to get some of their benefits not having Medicaid expanded beyond the poor but just making it a government run program.

And once we start talking about those things, it gets a lot easier to get senators over the finish line. I think there's a huge amount of weight on their shoulders to get this done. And I think they will get it done.

LEMON: The issue according to Peter King and to Susan Collins in much, it's Medicaid. And they don't want to take Medicaid away from so many people who have it. And basically, I think what they believe is that this particular bill is detrimental to Trump's own voters, meaning Republicans as well. And they're just not onboard with it.

But Douglas, I want to you bring you in because the president tweeted this today, he said, some of the fake news media like to say that I am not totally engaged in health care, wrong. I know the subject well. And want victory for U.S. Do you think the president knows this subject well?

DOUGLAS BRINKLEY, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Of course not. What he knows is how to count Senate votes. And he knows right now, he has nine Republican Senators opposed to the health care bill. That's a real hurdle for him.

But we just heard about going back, Don, to 1996. So, what about 1993 when Bill Clinton try to grab the scrap of the neck of health care and then blow up on him, it wasted entire year and led to the Gingrich revolution in '94. I'm saying that's it's a cautionary note to Donald Trump betting all of your legislative agenda for your first year on repealing and replacing Obamacare particularly when you're trying to gut the Medicaid system by billions of dollars. It's not sellable.

And you only have right now about 12 percent approval rating for the Senate plan that's, you know, 85, 87 percent of the American people think it stinks. That's not a good hand that the president is holding right now.

LEMON: Well, let's talk about the -- here are the poll numbers. And they are decimal as you said. "Fox News" poll has 27 percent of people in favor of it. NPR has 17 percent approval rating. Suffolk University USA today poll shows 27 percent support, while 40 percent of the people where unsure. At the same time nine senators have now express their opposition to this bill. And I don't see the momentum Bob Cusack going in the direction of getting thus past at least not at the moment.

CUSACK: No. I mean, Don, this is astonishing. I mean, Obamacare is the reason at least partly that the Democrats lost the House and then later, the Senate. The party, the team that is united usually is winning. And Democrats unbelievably are actually united on Obamacare. And Republicans aren't.

Now, they have control of the House and the Senate. But watch the July 4th parades because Democratic activist will be going after Republican House and Senate members in confronting them. And they -- they really could be YouTube moments. And that's going to be -- that upsets a lot of Republican aids right now. They don't know what's going to happen next week.

LEMON: Well, if the polls are accurate, I mean this is not Democrats. You're talking about activist maybe just in the moment going after. But if these polls are accurate it may not -- if they have town halls which I'm not sure they're going to do, may be they will hold off on having them for -- so that they do have that YouTube moment.

CUSACK: And they're not having them right now. Most members, Republican members are holding off on town halls because they know how volatile it will be.

[23:09:14] LEMON: I know you all want to weigh on this. We'll discuss when we come back. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: And we're back now with my panel. I want to continue this conversation about health care. Hey, Mike Shields, do you think that Republicans are going to hold town halls over this health care bill next week when they're on recess?

SHIELDS: You know, I don't know. I think -- I mean there's one aspect of this which is the security a lot of the members feel right now. And, you know, the town halls they've had the past, I advise them not to do it. I think it just becomes political theater. The citizens that actually want to show up and be able to ask a question just get drowned out.

But I want to get back to the question you're asking about the polling of this thing. You know, it isn't really where the polls are now. It's where the polls are going to be in the future that you need to worry about. The election isn't tomorrow. And if Republicans don't fix this problem, I mean, one-third of all counties in United States don't have -- they only have one insurance carrier because of Obamacare.

And we just saw down, you know, as you know as a strategist on the Karen Handel race down in Georgia. The House bill happened, that vote happened in the middle of this race. And we think, it was a huge help to Karen Handel to have that happen because she talked about the bill in the right term. She talked about how Obamacare is failing, how it was a bill that was designed to address costs, its only costs has only gone up. People are being denied care because they can't choose the doctor that they want.

When Republicans talk about it, not only this will actually increase the polling --

LEMON: That election was before this particular goal came out. And this is particularly --

SHIELDS: No. The House vote happened in the middle of the --

LEMON: The House bill you're talking about not the Senate bill.

SHIELDS: Yes.

LEMON: OK.

SHIELDS: All right.

LEMON: And listen, I want to move on now. I just want to get you to weigh in on that because I'm just wondering, I'm wondering what people are going to be saying these lawmakers, you know, at the supermarket, at the diner, at the Deli when they go out at these parades. What they're going to be hearing from people. And it's, you know, I wish I have to wear body cams, I mean not tongue and cheeks, because I really like to know what people are saying.

So, let's move on. Someone talk about this, I found this very interesting. This is Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates. She was appointed by President Obama but fired by President Trump. She spoke about examining the rule of law yesterday, was at the Aspen Institute. Here's part of what she said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[23:14:56] SALLY YATES, FORMER ACTING ATTORNEY GENERAL: Bob Mueller is going to be deciding whether or not crimes where committed. They could be used for prosecution or for impeachment. Surely, that's not our bar for them. And that's not the standard of conduct that we're looking for from our president or our administration. I mean it shouldn't just be whether you're committed a felony or not. It should also be whether or not you're observing the kind of norms that we've been talking about here today that are so essential to really the fabric of the rule of law.

And so while, I have total confidence in Bob Mueller and his ability to conduct this investigation. I don't think that we should just be putting all of our hoax and well -- that will tell us whether anything bad happened here because there's potential. And I don't know what the facts are, so I'm not drawing conclusions about what he may ultimately determine. But, you know, there are facts here that would -- should be alarming to us as a country that falls short of facts that would establish a basis for impeachment or for prosecution.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: And Douglas, briefly, just to remind the viewer, Sally Yates was fired by President Trump after she was instructed -- she actually instructed the Department of Justice not to defend the travel ban in court. What's your reaction to these comments?

BRINKLEY: Well, look, she's angry at Donald Trump. She despises him. He fired her. The Aspen Institute, you're trying to be in ideas that's where were you get ideas across. And she's reminding us that one of Donald Trump's curses I think he's brought to Washington is the shrinking of the power of the presidency.

People used to really look up to the executive branch. And now, every day, Donald Trump seems to be doing something to make it look smaller. I mean we -- today in the new cycle, we have a picture of a president of United States that made fake time news magazine covers to post in clubs around it. What message does that give young people?

Now, I'm not saying other presidents didn't have low moral standards. Nixon clearly have problems. Bill Clinton have problems. But Donald Trump seems to be shrinking the presidency and the respected American people. And now, he's operating in about 30 percent and the 36 percent in the polls.

LEMON: How significant is it Bob that the former A.G., acting A.G., how significant is that she's speaking out at us -- about a sitting president like this?

CUSACK: Well, I think it somewhat significant. And she's a respected figure. But at the same time, Don, I mean, Donald Trump won 306 electoral votes. Sally Yates won zero. He was elected by this country. Now, he may pay a price, the polls are certainly not good for him right now. The midterms, a lot of people are saying that the House is in play. And that would mean loosing two dozen seats or more. But at the same time that you have a lot of people within the beltway that are going after him, he is unconventional president. And we're going to have to get used to that.

LEMON: I have to ask you April is, has the bar of acceptable behavior been lower because you cover presidents, you covered many presidents, and you cover on a daily basis, do you think the standards of changes of the bar been lower?

RYAN: Watching for the last 20 years, yes. I watch Bill Clinton as his lowest lows. It was never like this. I've seen George W. Bush as his lowest lows. It was never like this. And Barack Hussein Obama at his lowest lows, it was never like this.

What's unfortunate now, there in watching what see, there are serious issue on the table. And what's happening now it's more of a partisan issue. One side says this, the other side says that. And people don't see the issues for what they are. And the press is now being attacked because we are reporting that there is an issue. It is about the fact that Russia did indeed do something in the election. They try to tamper. They did tamper with the election.

Now, the question is, was there collusion? You know, that still a question. Those question marks are still there. Then you also have the possibility of obstruction of justice. You have the Russia investigation. You have Michael Flynn. You have questions about this exchange between the president and Former FBI Director James Comey. Then you have the firing of James Comey. And then you have also other who have brought in to this web of an investigation to include the president son-in-law Jared Kushner. So, you know, these are facts that I'm talking, this is not partisan.

And unfortunately, now, I mean, we are seeing a totally different day. And just tonight alone, this president, I mean, other presidents have tried to walk away from any of the bad objects of possibility of impropriety. This president tonight, travel to Trump International, his hotel for fund raiser with the chief of stick (ph) at $35,000. And you have people on the side saying, shame, shame. That would not have happened in other administration.

[23:20:05] LEMON: Mike Shields, have to get in. Do you think the bar of acceptable behavior has been lowered?

SHIELDS: No. I don't. And I think first of all, Sally Yates sounds like who knows that the president didn't do anything wrong. And that Mueller is going to exonerate him. And now, she's falling back on. Well, they didn't do anything wrong. But we should talk about the norms. I mean look, there are millions of Americans, they look at Washington D.C., they look at the elites here, they look at people in the news. And they don't relate to them because they don't think any of us understand what their life is like.

And they are not the most refined people. And they don't always use the best language. And they elected a president who speaks to them and speaks like them. And the more that we criticize him for this sort of behavior, the more that those voter say, that's the guy that I sent to Washington. I'm glad he storing it up. I'm glad he's offending everybody.

LEMON: Mike, can I ask you this. And I don't mean to cut you off. But it sounds like you're saying, yes, the bar has been lowered. And that it's acceptable if to people who --

SHIELDS: Well, I don't know who is setting the bar.

LEMON: -- are not refined behavior. I don't -- what is --

SHIELDS: I don't know who is setting the bar. If the bar is being set by --

RYAN: Presidential, what is presidential?

SHIELDS: Right. I mean if the --

RYAN: The bar is presidential. What is presidential?

SHIELDS: Excuse me. If who decides what is presidential is the American people then he won. And who decides what is presidential are the media and people in Washington D.C. that he's never going to live up to that standard. And we're going to criticize him for that over and over and over again here Washington D.C. and ignore the accomplishments that he's having as president of the United of States which the people will see.

And they -- when they see us, when I us, I mean people not me obviously. But people in Washington D.C. and the media, when they see people in this zip code criticizing the president for being uncouth, they relate to it because they think, you know what, if I came to Washington, I probably wouldn't be invited to some meeting with a bunch of those politicians either. And so, I relate to this president. So, they have their own bar for what --

RYAN: Don, I'm --

SHIELDS: -- and he won the election because of it.

RYAN: If --

LEMON: Go ahead April.

RYAN: Don, it's not about being uncouth. It's not about being uncouth. And I understand what you're saying. The American public wanted something new. What they wanted, they didn't know. But they got something new. But the question now is, how much do you skirt around policies and procedures and laws.

People are concerned about what they are seeing. And what is that? If a president --

SHIELDS: Well, April, when you say people, who are the people?

RYAN: -- and people has --

SHIELDS: When you say people do you mean people of the media or --

RYAN: The critics. I mean, let's OK, let's go --

SHIELDS: -- the critics, right.

RYAN: Let's go to the tweets.

SHIELDS: The entire world.

RYAN: Let's go to the tweets. Let's go to the tweet about, yes, let's go to the tweet about Barack Obama wiretapped him. I mean, you know, let's go -- the press -- when he speaks the world listens, listens where it's matter. And this is not -- I'm not making this up. And the White House is trying to actually internally deal with this, trying to, I guess do damage control when this president is very real. And his reality and his realness sometimes gets him in trouble. He does it to himself.

SHIELDS: It gets him trouble with the people. He wants to be in trouble with which are the D.C. elites --

LEMON: But are you saying, Mike, that it's OK with the --

RYAN: They see you spinning, you're spinning. And that doesn't make any sense.

LEMON: Well, are you saying Mike that it's OK when you're talking misstatements and factual errors and flat out lies that it is OK because there are bunch of people who will accept it?

SHIELDS: What I'm saying is that when you -- the question was that, is the presidential bar have been raised or lowered? And I don't think the American people are watching this White House and watching the president of United States and their concerns about that.

RYAN: What about the issue about the take? What about the issue of -- I wish there was a take.

SHIELDS: April, let me finish answering the question.

RYAN: Go ahead.

SHIELDS: I think the American people want jobs. They are looking for the economy to be better. And they don't really care that a bunch of people in Washington D.C. care what a presidential bar is. What they want is someone who's going to actually serve them, help solve their problems and make their lives better. And the more that we talk about that and we talk about a tweet or what is a presidential and what isn't then they just think we're even more out of touch with what's going on their life.

[23:23:57] LEMON: OK. April, hey, April, I want you guys, and Douglas all of you, Bob stay -- stick around and Mike. We're going to continue this conversation. We're going to move on. But I'm going to continue this conversation at the other side of the break. Don't go anywhere. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: All right. So, I'm back now with my panel now, April Ryan, Bob Cusack, Douglas Brinkley and Mike Shields.

Douglas, you wanted to jump in. You're ready to get in here.

BRINKLEY: Well, you know, Don, I think the question is Donald Trump's from president six months and hasn't been a success when you're dealing with the Congress, it's basically as zero with the exception of Neil Gorsuch. What has Donald Trump done?

History is going to show, he made a mistake by not going after infrastructure first. This idea of repealing and replacing which the Republicans have been using as a mantra with no plan in place has let Donald Trump out to dry not once but about three different times now. Now, we're rushing into the 4th of July. He's doing an emergency meeting. Mitch McConnell is being hammered by just about everybody because he's pushing this without the boat.

As Donald Trump said, it's more work and it's harder than you think. And that's because Obamacare is starting to become a birth right like Medicaid and Medicare, like social security. And what people, some people didn't like was the Obama on Obamacare. But they like the care. And we're not going to be able to live 20 or 22 million people without health care. He will have an eruption not just on YouTube but all over the country.

And suddenly Donald Trump is going to be responsible for people that are sick now (ph). He had promised not to touch Medicaid and Medicare on the campaign trail. He reneged on that promise. So, I think it's a tar baby health care for him that this juncture may be better suited to shift gears into tax reform come to fall.

LEMON: Bob Cusack, did you want to get in this conversation?

CUSACK: Yes. Listen, I think it's going to be very difficult for Republicans going forward because either way, Democrats win. It has become as law. It's an unpopular. And as Doug was saying, taking away benefits is very, very difficult. And you just can't -- as Republicans, if they don't succeed, they just can't say, well, it's over, and we just have to move on. They're going to have to address this eventually down the road whether it's after the next election.

[23:30:02] So, Republicans are kind of stock on health care right now.

LEMON: Yes. And we can't get away from talk, we're talking about Sally Yates and whether the bar has been raised or lowered, we got away from that.

Mike Shields, go on.

SHIELDS: Yes. I mean, in terms of in terms of what the President covers. I mean it's amazing to hear historian said the President has accomplished anything. I mean first of all the regulation this President has slash have been absolutely historic. Manufacturers are saying they have the highest confidence that they've had in 20 years.

I mean -- the President signed a veterans a bill that speaks to whistle blowers. And President Reagan signature tax cut bill that was the hall mark of his campaign wasn't sign until August of his first year.

And so, we're watching the legislative process play out in front of us and there's a lot of ups and down of the health care bill and the House was supposedly dead and then suddenly a passed. I think, you know, the President of United what accomplishing a tremendous amount and he's focus on the economy and --

CUSACK: Where are two-thirds of the American people Mike, saying he's doing a bad job?

SHIELDS: Well, you know, I don't believe that those types of polls are actually what are significant. In fact I think the economy. You're talking a bunch of polsters they would tell that, that type of polling doesn't play any role. We just won an election again in Georgia where the President's national approval ratings where they are. And yet, we still won an election there.

And so, I think if you look at where the economy is going. That's probably going to base of the writing for the President of the United States.

APRIL RYAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: It was close.

LEMON: All right. I have to go. Thank you all. I appreciate it. See you soon.

President Trump still talks like a real estate mogul but does he have what it takes to make the deal of the lifetime. Here to discuss is Mark Singer the staff writer for the New Yorkers and the author of Trump and Me. And then CNN Contributor David Fahrenthold is a reporter for the Washington Post as well and Scott Jennings a former Special Assistant to President George W. Bush.

So good to have all of you. And Mark the President says that he is the king of the deal makers. You've covered him for 20 years. You just wrote a book about him. Is he the deal maker that he says he is?

MARK SINGER, STAFF WRITTER AT THE NEW YORKER: Well, there's no evidence that he's making any deals at the moment in Washington because what legislation has he passed and what initiatives has he taken. He's operating more like a CEO with a very distant relationship to the operation of the business.

And it's hard for me to recognize that deal making acumen in his performance as President.

LEMON: Do you think that because of all the, you know, the signing of the executive orders and the funfair around it. The people actually think that he's creating future of legislator.

SINGER: I certainly do.

LEMON: The chief of the legislative achievements.

SINGER: Yes, the same people who think that healthy (ph) is going to be great and everybody is going to covered and nobody is going to get off in Medicaid just because he says it doesn't actually make it real. So the ceremonies surrounding the executive order is a show. It's not about anything with substance particularly.

LEMON: David, it seems like Senators are telling the President to keep his distance for negotiation on the health care bill, in part because he doesn't know enough about the details. Can he cut a deal in the Senate without understanding policy?

DAVID FAHRENTHOLD, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: No, I think that's one of the thing that sets -- this deal making, a part of this attempt the deal making apart from what we did is a real estate broker, real state developer. And while the real estate he knew what the moving pieces where. He knew, you know, account. I give you this much for a square foot. I'll give this much off the loan.

He understood how to make deal because he understood of what he was trading. Everything we've seen are reporters of the Washington Post. We heard from Senators, is when he stalks about health care. He doesn't know what the moving pieces are. He doesn't know to how to make the deal because he doesn't know what he's dealing with.

Even when he was sort of twisting arms in the House bill. He would say to people not, OK, I'm going to give you this on community support payments or I'm going to take away this on essential health benefits. He was just saying it's going to be great. Sign on it's going to be awesome.

And then when the bill passed he called it need (ph). So I think without knowing with the moving pieces are, it's really hard for him to serve that deal making role. He just kind of get in mocks it up.

LEMON: Scott there criticism?

SCOTT JENNINGS, FORMER SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Well, I think what I'm hearing out of Senator Mitch McConnell's orbit today and tonight is that the President actually engaged and talking to senators about getting through agreement on health care.

He's engage with individuals, the staff at the White House has also engage in putting the legislation together. Now they can finally get enough votes to pass the Senate.

So, I think we can sit here and wonder about the President's deal making skills. But what's really happening based on what I've heard today is that he's fully engaged and he's being helpful in Mitch McConnell world in getting the 50 plus one necessary to pass this bill in the United States Senate.

I don't know that they would be able to get there if the President weren't engaged in it. So, it they ultimate get across the line. I think you'll find out in the tic tac afterwards that the President was helpful and pulling at least a few votes in.

LEMON: Peter King says he's not sure that it will be able to pass the Senate or able to pass the Congress Scott, and he's saying, well, maybe it's not a complete repeal and replace. He would like to people may be it's not. And may be he had to just negotiate a tweaking of Obamacare. Is that acceptable you think?

[23:35:09] JENNINGS: Well, I mean, it's possible that's the road this could go down. I mean right now we don't have a bill that's got enough support to pass. It's a full repeal and replace. I do think tonight it appears there some movement on the opioid funding front that's going to allay the concerns of the Senators from Ohio and West Virginia.

So at least that piece appears to be getting taking care of and some movement tonight. But there are still more to do. I also read tonight that health saving account issue may be getting resolved. That something that Rand Paul has raise.

So you can see right now in imaginations that are going on. Individuals' senators are getting their issues taking care off that they've raise throughout the process, ultimate though we're still not there. I do think that Mitch McConnell and his leadership team we're working feverishly to get legislation that can be scored (ph) the CBO which will take a couple of weeks and then voted on before the August recess.

Ultimately if we get it done because the August recess, the delay will be oblate (ph). But we're there yet. And if we don't get there, the one thing that remain Don, is that health insurance premiums are still going up and the health insurance market is still struggling out there nearly half of all the counties in the United States have won or no carriers on the exchanges.

So, those are issues that have to dealt with whether this particular bill passes or not.

LEMON: And there's a lot to -- I'm sure there is Democratic person who could talk about that but there's not one, right? Who could tell you that, what they would say is that it's because Republicans and the President are not supporting the ACA.

And they're talking it down that people are afraid of it. And therefore, and they would also tell you that the CBO is saying that Obamacare is not collapsing that is a false argument.

JENNINGS: Well, they would say that. But the fact is that there have been threats leveled about not supporting the ACA. But they've not actually taken that step.

Number two, on the premiums. We've seem double digit premium hikes every single year since the exchange has came online. That predates Donald Trump being the President and this current Congress taking office.

And number three, is absolutely effect.

LEMON: Isn't that further (ph) for the Democrats argument then that it should be fixed rather than replaced?

JENNINGS: Well, I think it's further (ph) for the Republican argument that you can't fixed something that so irreparably broken. I mean, we're talking about 100 plus percent premium increases for people who are buying insurance on the private market. The other issue here, almost half of all the counties in the United States.

Pretty soon, we'll have one or no insurance carriers left in the exchange market. That is not a sustainable model for the future.

And so, even Democrats would have to agree that we can't really have a private insurance exchange market out there. If nobody wants to cover the people who live and half of the counties in the United States, so these are facts. They exist, they've been reported in major news outlets and they have to dealt with sooner rather than later. It's not getting better.

LEMON: We're hugging the time for the rest of folks here. I wish I had Democrat on here who could counter you.

Listen David, I want to move on and talk about are the first to report this story on, the President has a big time magazine cover, hanging in five of his clubs with headlines let say The Apprentice. The television smash, he is been on the cover 14 times legitimately. So, why hand up on the cover up there?

FAHRENTHOLD: That's a great question. This cover was hung up almost all the coverage you just showed were from his political careers, so their outreach (ph) sort of run the President in 2015. This cover showed up in his clubs between 2009 and 2014, a period when he only ever had one, that was back in the 80s.

So, I don't know why they did it. I don't know who did it. I don't know if Donald Trump knew this was a fake or if it. He too was fooled. He certainly displayed on his clubs along side real legitimate true covers of other magazine.

So, I don't exactly know the origins of it because the Trump organization won't talk about it. But here's what interesting about this. This is a person who have a lot of success in his life but has always we've seen the pattern of this charitable giving. He's posting about the sizes inaugural crowd.

President Trump often wants to take the truth as starting point and then add on, add on to that even when the truth for him is good. In this case his gulf clubs are great. They're incredibly successful, they're lavish, they're beautiful. Being at them, you know, OK, the guy who owns this club is a successful person.

But somewhere along the line they felt the need to add on to that, to add a trophy on top of that that was vaunted (ph) was earned.

LEMON: Mark, you know, having a fake cover. I mean it's a silly thing. The President has a history though of exaggerating his accomplishments. What does it say about him, his personality or his public persona?

SINGER: Well, it's a very useful metaphor. And it's speaks to obviously a deep sense of inadequacy that he has which in forms. I think every statement that comes out his month.

LEMON: Did you say is it a facade?

[23:39:59] SINGER: It's a persona. My understanding of Donald Trump over the years has been that you're not dealing with a normal person who has an interior life and it sort of emotion that you and I tend to experience. He prefers to exist.

So The Apprentice is what got him elected president more than anything. And there he's an actor playing a businessman on T.V. He's not negotiating real deals. He do real deal in the real estate business early on. Donald Trump loves leverage, that's one of his favorite things.

And you do, you need leverage, you need to have credit in the real estate business. But he's trying to leverage things that really aren't leverageable now. And it means certainly you can't apply those standards to politics.

LEMON: I want to play this. This is what he said about Time Magazine back in January.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Time Magazine and I have been on their cover like 14 or 15 times. I think we have the all-time record in the history of Time Magazine. Let if Tom Brady is on the cover. It's one time because he won the Super Bowl or something, right?

I've been on 15 times this year.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Scott, by the way, this was at the CIA Memorial Wall. The President is wrong by the way. Richard Nixon has the all-time record. He was on 55 time covers. Before he covers there's a lot. Why does he need to stretch the truth here?

JENNINGS: You know, I play a lot of golf and I've been in a lot of golf club houses and I've never been in one when somebody in there wasn't engaged and talking about a wafer (ph) that they we're telling or exaggeration.

In fact if a had nickel for ever wafer (ph) I'd heard in a golf club house. I'd be rich man. You wouldn't be fine me tonight.

LEMON: Scott --

JENNINGS: And so --

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: This is the President we're not doing a fishtail.

JENNINGS: Well, he wasn't the President when the hung the covers up. And I will be perfectly honest with you guys. I think we've got Assad about the gases on people again. The North Koreans are trying to aim nuclear weapons at us and nobody can afford their health insurance.

And we're sitting here talking about what (INAUDIBLE) inside of a golf course.

LEMON: Well Scott, you should listen to other parts of the show. There's enough. There's a 24 hours news network. We can talk about all of that but we walk into gamut at the same time. There's plenty to go around.

JENNINGS: I hear you. But I think -- LEMON: What was your reaction? Scott, we're hugging the segment we'll assure of that.

SINGER: Our people are always making excuses for the President in attention, he's pure B.S. frankly. He's a salesman, that's we have here in the White House. We don't have a person who's even acting as functioning chief executive.

He's there to say that he is engaged in the politics of the health care law. Excuse me, that's a very recent development.

LEMON: All right, we'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[23:46:33] LEMON: So while the folks congratulating the newly elected prime minister of Ireland. President Trump noticed an Irish journalist in the Oval Office and had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Well, we have a lot of your Irish press watching us is now (INAUDIBLE). And where are you from? Go ahead, come here, come here. Where are you from? Should we have all of these beautiful Irish press. Where are you from?

CAITRIONA PERRY, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT FOR RTE: I'm from RTE news.

(CROSSTALK)

PERRY: Caitriona Perry.

TRUMP: Caitriona Perry, she has a nice smile on her face so I bet she treats you well.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: So here to discuss, CNN Political Commentator Alice Stewart and Matt Lewis as well as CNN Political Contributor Maria Cardona.

Maria, I know you feel strongly about the exchange, what's your reaction?

MARIA CARDONA, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: I just think that it is something that unfortunately for Trump reminds the American people what an ogling lecherous man he is. And this is something we saw throughout the campaign.

It is something he survive throughout the campaign, was able to become president despite everything that we say from the Access Hollywood tapes on down, all of the women who accused him of the sexually and appropriate behavior towards them, sexual assault event.

And this is just the kind of behavior that when see somebody who is in the Oval office as the leader of the free world and our commander in chief just, you know. Trump makes us think every single day. What he doing in the Oval Office when he acts like this?

It's just kind of blows it up even more, you know, puts the angle on it in a way that it's not helpful for Trump as he is battling a 35 percent approval rating. And supposedly trying to fix Americas problem.

LEMON: OK.

CARDONA: But in fact I really don't think that really concern.

LEMON: Well Alice, you say President Trump likes to complement people. And we shouldn't look too much into this.

ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: That's my view on this. Look, I agree with Maria, there have been a numerous cases where his behavior has been despicable and it is something that is indefensible.

But I look at this and I don't see this as something that is that terrible. I think he was trying to be lighthearted. He was on the phone. He knew the cameras were in there and he was doing this in a lighthearted way. And my hearts goes out to that journalist who felt uncomfortable in that situation.

I can image how she feels. But I look at this completely different. I think a lot, too much has been made about this situation. I think he was trying to be friendly and lighthearted. And I think --

LEMON: Do you think he was falling out of her appears or making assumptions about the quality of her work because of her look?

STEWART: I don't see that at all. And I could see him, people had beat me up over Twitter all night about this. But I could see him in the situation trying to friendly too a male journalist as well. I don't see this --

CARDONA: But he hasn't done it. That's the thing. He hasn't call out male journalist and telling they have a cute butt.

STEWART: I missed the part where he said that about this gird in this video tonight. That we're talking about here. I think he was trying to friendly. This is part of his nature. This is his personality and I believe way too much is being --

LEMON: He said nothing about her butt Maria or but I mean.

STEWART: I know. I'm making the comparison that he would never do anything like this at all if she had been a man.

LEMON: He does call out Jim Acosta.

CARDONA: Yes, but it's generally not quite as flattering as he was with this woman.

LEMON: So listen, the reported Twitted, that reported Twitter after the exchange calling it the bizarre moment when President Trump call me over during his call. What do you think? Do you think it's appropriate when the President on the phone with the world leader? Was this a fun moment? Do you find it offensive or what?

[23:50:11] MATT LEWIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I'm with Alice on this. I think this is much to do about nothing. I think, you know, I don't know political correctness run mock or something like that. So I don't think it's a big deal, number one.

Number two, I think this is a guy, you know, or a certain age. I mean --

(CROSSTALK)

LEWIS: -- Joe Biden has said and done a lot worst. And so as Donald Trump fro that matter. But look, I just think this is purely innocent unless there is something that wasn't on the tape and may be there's more that we haven't seen.

But based on what you just showed me, I mean, it seems perfectly innocent to me.

LEMON: Yes.

CARDONA: Well, then why was she feeling so uncomfortable. Why Alice if you really believe that this was --

LEWIS: She didn't seem uncomfortable to me.

LEMON: She didn't said -- Maria, she said the bizarre moment when President --

CARDONA: He said it was bizarre.

LEMON: Yes, but.

CARDONA: She said it was bizarre moment.

LEWIS: I think she wants publicity. I mean that's the kind of thing that you have to -- you want to give publicity. You go on Twitter and you say something, you know, that's what you say if you want to sort of like you have your 15 minutes of fame, I think.

LEMON: I mean, I don't --

CARDONA: Do you think he would said it, if he thought --

LEMON: I didn't that found the word bizarre for her to meet uncomfortable or sexes. Listen, I don't know. I just -- he was on the phone and he's like Oh, journalist is in the room, you know, she looks great or. He was wearing a nice suit or I like his neck tie.

He didn't talk about her butt or anything like that.

CARDONA: It was inappropriate moment coming from the President of the United States as he is doing an official call to another leader period. You guys, I can't --

LEMON: Would you rather that or would rather have to disclose information to Russian officials?

CARDONA: Well, this is -- absolutely agree with you 100 percent there Don that there are so many other completely horrible thing to just when a done the leader of the free world.

LEWIS: You know what.

STEWART: Maria.

CARDONA: You were talking in your last segment about how were lowering the bar. The fact that we're having this conversation and never anything is OK. That is part of lowering the bar for the President of the United States.

LEMON: Maria, I don't think anyone is saying it's OK. I think people are saying it's much to do about nothing. And it's really not that big of a deal.

CARDONA: That is almost the same as saying, that it's OK. That oh look, he's done much worst. We shouldn't even think about this. We shouldn't even mention this. No, this is not OK.

LEWIS: Let me ask you, what is wrong?

CARDONA: We have young children that are watching this man.

LEWIS: What is wrong with saying that somebody is --

CARDONA: And he is setting an example.

LEMON: One in the building today Maria.

LEWIS: What's wrong with saying that somebody is attractive?

LEMON: Yes, I went to building today and there was a young lady showing a very colorful blouse and I said, you look really nice today, you look very summering. She said thank you and I walk into the elevator and she walk out of the building. What's --

STEWART: And I think I saw her tweet that was really bizarre Don.

LEMON: Go ahead Matt, what are you saying?

LEWIS: No, you actually -- you made my point better than I would. It just what's wrong with saying like, it wasn't --

CARDONA: I will tell you what's wrong with it. It is context. Don, you were not in a public setting, you were not representing the United States of America on the phone with another leader of a nation. You were not the commander-in-chief. You were not in a room full of professional journalist men and women and you were not calling just that one woman and telling her she had a pretty smile. And saying that because she had a pretty smile, she probably covered the prime minister in a positive way, that's completely offensive you guys period.

STEWART: I think the outrage is so over blown. And I think people look at her tweet. She said it was bizarre. She didn't say she was offended or she was disgusted by. She said it was bizarre. As journalist going into the Oval Office, I'm sure she one idea of what engagement or this encounter was going to be like, you know, didn't include what happened.

But I think bizarre is a far cry from all the hypes that's being made about the situation.

CARDONA: Bizarre is not OK, when you are looking to have a normal encounter, professional encounter with the President of the United States that you are there to cover as professional journalist. Bizarre is also not OK. Again, lowering the bar.

LEWIS: He didn't say you look hot or anything -- at some point like the speech please. You literally can't complement somebody on that summary blouse, Don because --

CARDONA: You know what. No, no, no. You shouldn't compliment somebody when you are the leader of the free world.

LEWIS: What about when you tell him about?

STEWART: Oh, come on.

CARDONA: You know, when you are representing the United States and you are talking to a woman journalist from another country, you know, in even so and calling her out because she has a nice smile. Why couldn't he call her out because of the great piece she had written last week?

[23:55:00] STEWART: Well, I think if he said she had great piece. I think that would be a story. But I just think that the outrage is way overboard.

LEMON: Oh Alice, zing (ph) that was good. All right. How much time do we have left? I just want to say that, Alice you look nice in your white blouse.

STEWART: Thank you.

LEMON: You look very summery, you look great on T.V., you hair look great.

STEWART: Thank you.

LEMON: Matt, you're very handsome in your suit.

LEWIS: Thank you.

LEMON: You have necktie, I really like it. And Maria, I think you look great in red and also you're wearing wonder woman snicker so I think it fits all.

STEWART: That's right.

CARDONA: Don and Matt, I think both of you look really hot.

LEWIS: Thank you. I actually think that's a huge compliment. I wound not --

STEWART: That's not bizarre at all.

CARDONA: Alice you look really hot too.

STEWART: Thanks. You look beautiful.

LEMON: We've seen all offensive. Bye you all. Thanks. See you tomorrow.

STEWART: Bye

CARDONA: Bye.

LEWIS: See you.

LEMON: Good night.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)