Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

White House: No Immediate Danger from Reservoirs; White House: About 100,000 Homes Affected by Harvey; White House Discussing Whether to Move Dream Act Deadline. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired August 31, 2017 - 15:30   ET

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


[15:30:00] TOM BOSSERT, HOMELAND SECURITY ADVISOR: Here we go. Sir, you're on. Go ahead.

GREG GROOGAN, FOX 26 REPORTER: Greg Groogan, Fox 26 in Houston.

BOSSERT: Greg, we got you loud and clear.

GROOGAN: We have, in the Houston area, Army Corps of Engineer reservoirs that are frankly failing -- flooding, examining that situation, is the administration considering adding additional sources to the --

BOSSERT: I think -- did everybody hear that question? I think just to repeat it in case we're not wired up right here, I think the question, good one, was that people in Houston are worried about the two systems, the two reservoir systems that the Army Corps of Engineers maintains. They've been pictured on television over topping. They've been in a controlled release environment, allowing a lot of water through the affected populated areas of Houston and you want to know if they're safe and if there's any additional funding need. Was that the question? OK. I'm going to answer that question. I think that's a yes.

So, the answer is, and it's just so happens that earlier this morning, almost just before I came out here, I was in contact with the General Semonite in charge -- commander of the Army Corps of Engineers and three answers here. First, he's got engineers monitoring those systems right now for structural integrity. So, what you don't want to have happen is water come over the top and then eat away at the other side of the wall and have the structural integrity undermined in that fashion that we've seen in previous events.

As of an hour ago, there was no structural integrity determined by any of the engineers that are standing there watching the facility and so that means that nobody's in immediate damage or I'm sorry, in immediate harm's way of damage and additional property loss. But then, lastly, the question is, do we need any additional money to shore those facilities up? So, I would turn and answer that a little bit differently. We're not going to get into a position of saying they're safe or not safe, or asking for more money or not right now. What we'll do is continue the controlled release. The reason a controlled release is good is it's the alternative to an uncontrolled release. So, it seems, if you're dumping more water on people that don't need more water, but if you don't do that, you'll end up with the structural integrity failure I referenced a moment ago.

So, as soon as the water goes down and is rapidly going down right now, we're still going to have flooding for some time. But the big, large, heavy masses of water that are going down and out right now are flowing in a way that will allow us to get in and do an engineering assessment over the coming days and weeks. And if there was structural integrity problems cause by the coming days and weeks or by the storm, we'll assess that and put together responsible number, estimate for repair, and then we'll put it forth to Congress. And then very last on that, we'll do it in a way that thinks through a mitigation perspective. You just don't want to rebuild it to the way it was before and have it undermined again.

So, when you put federal dollars into a project like that, you want to make sure you do it smartly so that the next storm doesn't cause any structural problems. So that's the way that process will go. It will take a little time for the engineers, but the good news right now for the people in Houston is that both of those reservoir systems are holding up and there's engineers sitting there watching them on a 24/7 basis. Thank you for that question and thank you for doing what you're doing down there. Hope your home hasn't been affected. All right. Do I have another question?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lot of friends.

BOSSERT: Is there one more? All right. Sarah, you're on.

JUSTIN STERNBERG, KTRK, ABC REPORTER: Hi, this is Justin Sternberg with KTRK, ABC out of the Houston. How are you?

BOSSERT: I'm doing well.

STERNBERG: What will you guys do differently -- I mean, we've had disasters all over before. How do you reassure the people of Texas that real help is coming and it's coming quickly?

BOSSERT: How do you reassure people that help is coming and help is coming quickly. Well, there's a real short answer to that. We send help and we send it quickly. I don't mean that glibly. When we get requests from the governors and mayors, we send in as much as they ask for or more to make sure they're there to meet those needs. The reassurance parts comes in the pudding, the proof is in the pudding. So, if we're not getting to where he need to get, we need to hear that. And I'm not immune to criticism and neither is Brock Long and neither are the local officials there.

The mayor has stood up and tang a great deal of smart criticism but he's also taken a great deal of smart action. And from my perspective, what you have to do is hold us accountable and what I think this president's doing, President Trump is holding me and Brock Long and Elaine Duke and the rest of his cabinet accountable. And when we're not telling him what he wants to hear, he's getting right down to the governor and finding out if we're doing it right from his perspective. So that's the answer. I think it's pretty straightforward. Is there anything that's unmet from a needs perspective right now that you want to inform us of? If you do have something, I'm 20 yards from the president. We'll take it to him.

[16:05:00] STERNBERG: I mean, not as of yet, but there's a lot of communities that have been devastated here, and there's going to be a lot of needs really quickly.

BOSSERT: Yes. Let me pick up on that and use that because that's a great point to wrap up my remarks here today. We are still in response mode, and that means lifesaving, life sustaining. There are still people up to their waists in water. There are still the elderly and the infirm that require our immediate attention. There are still hospitals in need of evacuation and relocation. We've activated all those forces from DoD and from HHS to move those patients, but we're soon going to move into a long, frustrating recovery process.

The important message for me to leave to the American people and to the people of Texas and Louisiana at that point, is that we're not going anywhere. And all this talk about supplemental funding, it's about having the money in the reservoir of cash -- sorry to use that pun -- of having that money in the fist, for us to use to help you and rebuild and get back into your homes, back into your jobs and get your kids back in their schools. That's what makes America great. We're going to have Houston and taxes bigger, better and stronger then it was before the storm. And the resilient nature of the American people is just awesome. I couldn't be any more proud to be in this job and I thank you for your time and attention. That's going to be the last question. A local gets it. I'm sorry. And I appreciate your time. Thank you.

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Thank you, Tom. Finally, before I open it up for further questions, I wanted to be sure and highlight a major step forward in the fight against ISIS. Earlier today, the Iraqi Prime Minister declared that after a nearly two-week-long military operation, the city of Tal Afar, fully deliberated from ISIS militants. This victory represents the loss of a very important ISIS stronghold, the hometown of a number of top ISIS commanders. We congratulate the Iraqis on achieving this big milestone and will continue to support them in their fight to take their country back from radical Islamic terrorism. And with that I'll take your questions. Jeff.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One follow-up on Tom's remarks. He said that the White House would be putting together supplemental. Do you have a sense of when you will submit that to Congress? And then secondly, can you confirm reports that the president has leaning towards or deciding to end DACA and what are the ramifications of that for the Dreamers.

SANDERS: I'll take the first question in terms of supplemental funding, as Tom said, we're working with Congress. We're not going to get ahead of Director Mulvaney. He is working with him around the clock to make sure that process moves forward quickly and effectively.

In terms of DACA, echoing, again, on what Tom said earlier, final decision on that front has not been made, and when it is, we will certainly inform everybody in this room. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: In January, the president said that Dreamers

shouldn't be worried. So, can you stand here today and say DREAMERS should not be worried.

SANDERS: Once again, when we have a final decision, this is under review. There are a lot of components that need to be looked at and once a decision is made, we will certainly let you guys know. Glenn --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah, there's a specific report out by Fox that talks about -- that says, essentially, a decision is made to roll back the program by the end of this week and that there will be provisions allowing Dreamers who are in the country right now to stay until their work authorization expires. Are you specifically denying that report?

SANDERS: No offense to your colleague from Fox News, but I think I'm a little bit better informed than they are in terms of when the White House has made a decision and as I just said a moment ago, it has not been finalized and when it is, we will certainly let you know.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Two questions on Glen. Can you talk about the time line here? You've got these states that have said September 5th is when they will be getting this court action, that's obviously the Tuesday after Labor Day. So, does that mean that some decision will be coming down tomorrow before the holiday weekend. Can you at least talk about the time line for this, for those folks who are wondering what their status is going to be here?

SANDERS: Again, I'm not going to get ahead of something and be presumptuous when a decision hasn't been made. We don't know when the final review is going to be completed. So, it would be disingenuous for me to create a false time line that simply isn't workable.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you guys aren't even --

SANDERS: There are a lot of conversations around the time line and when that has to be made and again that hasn't been fully reviewed and vetted and decided.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: More on Harvey, Sarah. There's obviously been a huge outpouring of support for people all around the country for the victims of Harvey. You've seen people lining up to volunteer. You've seen people donating tens of millions of dollars. Can you speak to what the President and his family have done regarding donation for Harvey relief, personally?

[16:10:00] SANDERS: Yes, I can. I had a chance to speak directly with the President earlier and I'm happy to tell you that he is -- would like to join in the efforts that a lot of the people that we've seen across this country do and he's pledging $1 million of personal money to the fund. And he's actually asked that I check with the folks in this room since you are very good at research and have been doing a lot of reporting into the groups and organizations that are best and most effective in helping and providing aid and he'd love some suggestions from the folks here. And I'd be happy to take those if any of you have them. But as I said, he'll pledge, proudly, $1 million of his own personal money to help the people of Texas and Louisiana.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sarah, previously, the President had said that he may return to Texas and may also go to Louisiana over the weekend. Do you have an update on the President's travel schedule? We know that Vice President Mike Pence is there today. And if the President is going, where might he go, and will he meet with the evacuees while he's there?

SANDERS: The president and the first lady will be traveling both to Texas and Louisiana on Saturday. The specific cities and locations are being finalized. Hopefully we'll have that information for you later today. I believe as of right now, tentatively, he plans to be in the Houston area of Texas and possibly Lake Charles, Louisiana. But again, you know, varying on conditions that may change a little bit. That's a tentative plan at this point.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you working on tax reform. Yesterday the President went to Missouri to push for tax reform. He has said the administration has said they'd like to see a bill before the House of Representatives in September. But there's differences between where the administration is and where House GOP leaders are. Do you still expect that to happen in September?

SANDERS: As we've said before, this is going to be a big priority for the administration. Certainly, moving through the fall, the biggest part is that we make sure that we get it right and that we provide tax relief to middle class America and that we help Americans across the board. That's the goal, and if we can do that by September, that would be great. Blake --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah, picking up on that, with the president hitting the road yesterday, he made it seem as if this should be a simple bipartisan fix. However, Democrats are saying that there should not be tax relief for those who are the wealthiest 1 percent of earners. Does the president believe that the wealthiest 1 percent deserve tax relief?

SANDERS: The president laid out clearly what his big priorities were yesterday. I'll be glad to repeat those. Permanently reducing tax rates, encouraging entrepreneurs to invest, simplifying the process, incentivizing American companies to bring back jobs and profits. The president is focused on helping all Americans across the board. The biggest priority he has is on helping middle class Americans and making sure more of those people keep more of their money.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The White House think working with Democrats on this is reasonable or likely? I mean, they're already laying down the marker for where they stand. You just said for all Americans, presumably that includes the top 1 percent.

SANDERS: I would love for Democrats to want to help all Americans. I don't know why they would ever want to be against that. Certainly, helping more Americans have more money that they worked hard to earn in their pocket. I don't know anybody that would want to be against that. So, hopefully they will be reasonable and want to come to the table. Matthew -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have a tax reform question but first, just quickly about that charitable donation. Will that be coming from Trump personally as opposed to the Trump foundation or the Trump organization?

SANDERS: I know that the president, he said he was personally going to give. I don't know the legal part of exactly that, but he said his personal money. So, I would assume that comes directly from him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On tax reform if I may. Secretary Mnuchin said earlier the administration is going to release a blueprint on tax reform that will go to Congress. When can we expect that? How much detail will that go into. And how is that a change from letting Congress take the lead on actually drafting the legislation?

SANDERS: Again, as both members of the administration and the president have said, our job is to lay out the core principles, the primary pillars that we want to see in tax reform. It's Congress's job to legislate. So, we want to work through that process and allow them to actually do their jobs. We're going to do our jobs and lead the conversation, set the table, set the priorities, and let them do their job and legislate, get it pass sod ted so the president can sign it. John Decker --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When will we see that blueprint.

SANDERS: I think we've been laying out a lot of those principles. That's the foundation and we'll continue to add to that. John.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thanks, Sarah. Is this push for tax reform the priority for the president and the administration right now? Have you put the repeal and replace effort to the side for the moment to focus exclusively on your tax reform proposals?

SANDERS: As the White House, I don't think you ever get to exclusively focus on only one issue.

[16:15:00] It's certainly one of the top priorities for the administration. Moving into the fall. But as we've said many times before, we can walk and chew gum at the same time. And we plan to push through a lot of different things throughout the fall. John --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just one thing, Sarah, if I may. On repeal and replace, as you know, you received no Democratic support in either the House or the Senate. As far as tax reform is concerned, are you expecting a different result? Do you think you can get Democrats to support some sort of legislation that comes forward from both houses of Congress?

SANDERS: As I said a minute ago, I would certainly hope so. I don't know why any Democrat would be against wanting to provide tax relief for hardworking Americans, particularly those in the middle class. I think it would be a very sad and a big mistake. John Gizzi --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Sarah. Just one question.

SANDERS: Just one.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just one. Politics. The president gave a very strong endorsement through Twitter of Senator Luther Strange in his bid for nomination in the special election. The runoff is coming up in September 26th. There have been published reports that the president is backing away from that endorsement and not taking sides, which would make him the first Republican president in 47 years not to back an incumbent Senator for another term. Is he as committed to Senator Strange or has his position changed since the original primary?

SANDERS: Due to the legal restrictions that I have, I cannot answer anything political from the podium. So, I'd have to leave that to outside folks and the president himself to answer that. Catherine --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mentioned today in interviews that -- was asked about plan to put Harriet Tuchman on the $20 bill. He was vague in answer. During the campaign, the president called this pure political correctness. Is the administration reversing those plans to change the $20 bill?

SANDERS: I'm not aware of any policy change. I'd certainly have to check into that. Peter --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah, on DACA --

SANDERS: Sorry, I promised I'd come back to you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- on DACA, in February, the president said he would treat Dreamers with heart. Does the president stand by his statement to treat Dreamers with heart?

SANDERS: Absolutely. The president stands by his statement. Right now, this is currently under review, both from a legal standpoint, primarily. And until that review is complete, again, as I answered before, we don't have anything to add further on that front.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Would resending DACA be treating Dreamers with heart.

SANDERS: Again, I'm not going to get into a back and forth until decisions been made on this front. Let me come to him. And if I have a problem --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'll go right after Chip then, right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To Russia for a moment. The decision --

SANDERS: See, he's jumped in there for you. Team work.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- the announcement today by the State Department on closing three facilities in this long tit for tat that has been going on with Russia. A lot of analysts now say the relations between the U.S. and Russia are at the lowest point since the Cold War. Do you agree with that and if so, whose fault, is it?

SANDERS: Right now, we're requiring the Russian government to close its consulate general in San Francisco, a trade annex in Washington, D.C., and a trade annex in New York City. These closures have to be completed by the September 2nd. We've taken a firm and measured action in response to Russia's unfortunate decision earlier this year. And we want to halt the downward spiral and we want to move forward towards better relations. We'll look for opportunities to do that, but we also want to have equity in the decisions and anything beyond that, I would refer you to the State Department.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are relations worse than they've been since the Cold War or at least in decades.

SANDERS: I don't think so.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is the president determined to improve our relations with Russia? Can you respond --

SANDERS: And as I just said, we're going to look for opportunities to do that, but we're also going to make sure that we make decisions that are best for our country.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah, thanks. Senators Grassley and Graham revealed today that they have evidence suggesting that former FBI Director Comey made a decision to not charge Hillary Clinton several months before the investigation actually wrapped up and before they interviewed Hillary Clinton. Does the president know about this and does he believe that that adds weight to his decision to fire Comey?

SANDERS: I'm not sure if he is aware to that revelation, but if it is as accurate as they say it is, I think that would certainly give cause and reason that Jim Comey was not the right person to lead the FBI and hopefully all of your colleagues will follow suit in covering that story. Zeke --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just want to bring up tax reform real quick. Based on the president tweeted out about the core principles, one of those presumably the effects whatever the tax cut is on the budget.

[16:20:01] Has the White House taken a position on whether the tax plan needs to be revenue neutral or is the White House willing to accept a tax plan that would -- that would essentially raise the deficit. The president's talked a lot about the deficit over the course of his campaign and the White House. So, is he laying down the marker there?

SANDERS: Not at this time. I don't have any further announcement on that front. Fred --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Sarah. Couple questions on Obamacare. Some governors today came out in favor of stainability approach, income cropped among some Republican in the Senate. I want to ask you, with the administration outright oppose any type of Obamacare bailout for insurance companies? SANDERS: I can't imagine that it would be something we would want to

be involved in. I would have to refer you to HHS specifically on that question.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And secondly, the president's tweeted -- talk about taking away the Obamacare exemption for members of Congress and staff, is there anything that would stop him from taking that action now? Something that could be done executively?

SANDERS: I think that is something he is certainly still considering. Alex --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He once said about last week, Saudi-led coalition in Yemen killed 42 civilians. Is the president concerned about humanitarian situation in Yemen?

SANDERS: Something that we're certainly keeping an eye on and I would refer you back to them for anything further at this point.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thanks Sarah. The Kuwaitis are saying today that the emir would be here next week to meet the president, I just wondered if you could confirm that. Then on the Russia diplomatic move, did the president initiate this?

SANDERS: This was a decision made by the president, yes. And on the Kuwaitis, I'm not ready to make an announcement on that, I'll have to check on the specifics of that. Sarah --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The president believes all options are on the table when it comes to North Korea and has seemed to indicate that military option is certainly among them, but is negotiating still on the table?

SANDERS: Absolutely. All includes all. I think that would certainly include diplomatic, economic, and military options.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just one quick follow-up. Since we are getting closer to Friday, can you tell us whether the president still has confidence in Gary Cohn?

SANDERS: Yes, the president is working hand in hand with Gary and the rest of his team on tax reform. As I've said several times earlier today, that's a big priority for the administration moving into the fall. And Gary is an integral member of the team leading that effort. April --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sarah, on that issue of -- this president is so set on trying to make sure that he replaces and repeals Obamacare. What's happening with the website? Is there still active enrollment on that website?

SANDERS: As far as I know, I'm not aware of any reason that it's not, but I'd have to certainly check into that. I'm not checking into the Obamacare website daily, so I'd have to look into that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're not actively encouraging people, you're more still saying repeal and replace?

SANDERS: I think that everybody in the country knows that Obamacare is collapsing. And that something still needs to be done. And the administration is still very much committed to putting a health care system in place that actually works. Because we know Obamacare doesn't, it's not sustainable. So yes, we're continuing to move forward and look for ways to help all Americans receive better care.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: HBC conference, is it possible -- I asked last time, can you give us the list because we're still hearing more and more from other colleges and universities in the HBC community, were saying they're absolutely not coming. And you say it's at capacity and you have a waiting list. Is there any way that you can share some of those names?

SANDERS: I think the Department of Education is housing that, but again, I will try to look into that. I meant to do that last week. Thanks so much, guys. Hope you have a great day.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: All right, so there's your briefing. Nearly an hour, we first heard from Tom Bossert and all things Harvey and the situation there. Hearing him say 100,000 homes have been affected. Mexico and Canada calling the White House offering up their own condolences and help as well. And he said this is the first time they've activated all the task forces since 9/11. Talking about price gauging and how that won't be tolerated and a lot of questions around just undocumented immigrants in the Texas area. And he was making the point, unless you've committed a crime, if you are an undocumented immigrant, you know, make no mistake you will get food, water, and shelter. So, questions around that.

And then of course hearing from Sarah Huckabee Sanders talking what the President and the First Lady heading back down to both, it sounds like Texas and Louisiana over the weekend. And the fact that the president will be donating a million dollars of his own money to the relief efforts.

Those are my headlines. I've got a panel standing by.

[16:25:00] Maeve Reston, let me bring you in first here on money. Because a lot of conversation with Tom Bossert, the questions around were around the requests he says that the White House will be putting together a reasonable request for emergency funding, followed by supplemental requests. Not worried about running out of money. How, how smoothly do you think that'll go with Congress?

MAEVE RESTON, CNN NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER: I mean, many times this does not go that smoothly with Congress. Because obviously, we have a lot of fiscal hawks out there who will be looking very closely at the supplemental. Looking for, you know, any extras that are tagged on. Remember during superstorm Sandy there was a huge debate over that bill which some people criticize as being a Christmas tree of spending.

Governor Chris Christie of course, in PolitiFact had debunked that to some extent saying there was a lot of misunderstanding about what was in the bill. I do think this will be a political football in Congress especially as you get further out from the storm often the need doesn't seem as immediate. Certainly, right now the White House says they are committed to getting the aid that's need. You heard an estimate being thrown around there by the Texas governor of over $100 billion. So that would be really amazing figure and we'll see where that ends up in Congress.

BALDWIN: So that's the potential political football in Congress. David Gergen, what did you make, just the questions about undocumented immigrants and will they or will they not have help or be sent home?

DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Good question. Let me say first of all, that Tom Bossert gave one of the most professional televised briefings that we've had during the Trump months in office. He made is clear that the government is mobilized and it's doing working on a wide array of fronts, I think he showed the proper empathy toward a lot of the victims. You have to give credit where credit is due. Beyond that, I did think the area that was vaguest and has a potential for a lot of heart ache is what immigrants are facing here. Let's say you're an immigrant with some sort of minor infraction of the law, maybe a car accident or something you've been charged or there's something else in your background, not a big, serious crime, but a minor crime. Do you go and get food? Do you go and get shelter and in effect come in out of the cold? And then be given a meal and sent onto a bus and deported. That's not clear from this briefing, and DACA decision, the Dreamer decision just around the corner. I think there is real fear in the -- I would assume, the Dreamer can be and many Latino families about just how this is going to work out.

BALDWIN: And that's the issue. We're even hearing from our reporters on the ground in Texas that some of these undocumented folks don't want to call in for help because that is their real fear that they will be deported. And David brought up DACA, Sabrina Siddiqui is also here. A political reporter for the Guardian and a number of questions about DACA. They were reminding Sarah Huckabee Sanders it wasn't just a couple months ago when the president said, talked about Dreamers, he would approach the Dreamer issue with heart and now you have the September 5th deadline that they're up against. And it sounded to me, and they didn't say a lot beyond the fact that the White House is still reviewing the policy. That's all we got.

SABRINA SIDDIQUI, POLITICAL REPORTER, THE GUARDIAN: Yes, they certainly didn't provide clarity on the state a so-called Dreamers. The young undocumented people who were brought to the country as children. And you know, decision is imminent according to the White House. Now Fox News was reporting that President Trump is poised to phase out the program. Sarah Huckabee Sanders would neither confirm or deny that reporting, which I think just adds to the concerns within the immigrant community.

You'll remember this affects as many as 800,000 young undocumented immigrants who, thanks to President Obama's deferred action for childhood arrivals policy, DACA are able to study and work in the U.S. without fear of deportation. And when you compound that with the number of undocumented immigrants who are currently affected by hurricane Harvey, I think that they really don't have a sense that this administration is willing to commit to providing critical services for them in the long-term as well as lifting at least for now the threat of deportation.

RESTON: And Brooke, just, you know, talking to some of my sources, there seems to be so much conflicting information about this coming out of the White House. I was talked to one source who's worked very closely with the White House on this issue and says that, you know, that person understood that a decision has not been made yet, and that the White House is under tremendous pressure. You know, the mayor's from all around the country calling in. So, it's very unclear where Trump is on this decision and what the political upside would be for him of ending the program.

BALDWIN: David Gergen, I have 30 seconds left. Tell me what the president really needs to do this weekend in Texas and Louisiana.

GERGEN: And going back make sure he doesn't interfere. But also, should be much more empathic and reach out to the people and show the kind of sympathy that's needed. And that's part if he comes right on top of the Dreamers decision on Friday any goes against the Dreamers. That's going to be really hard to do. Really, really hard. There's going to be a storm of protest if he comes out against the Dreamers on Friday.

BALDWIN: Yes. I'm out of time. Thank you all so very much. David Gergen, Maeve Reston, Sabrina Siddiqui. I'm Brooke Baldwin. Thanks for being with me. Brianna Keeler sitting in for Jake Tapper, "THE LEAD" starts now.