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Trump's Promised Deportation Sweep Set To Start Today; Temperatures Rising As Democrats' Family Feud Escalates; Rivals Step Up Attacks On Frontrunner Biden; Labor Secretary Is Latest Top Trump Official To Quit. Aired 8-9a ET

Aired July 14, 2019 - 08:00   ET



[08:00:28] PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN HOST (voice-over): A coast-to-coast deportation blitz.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: They came in illegally. They have to go out. They have to leave.

MATTINGLY: President Trump's new crackdown on illegal immigration starts today.

Plus, an ugly inter-party feud.

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): I said what I had to say. I'm not going to be discussing it any further.

MATTINGLY: Can the speaker and full liberal firebrands forgive and forget?

And Joe Biden under attack from top rivals but still hesitant to return fire.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The last thing we need is form a circular firing squad.

MATTINGLY: INSIDE POLITICS, biggest stories sourced by the best reporters, now.



MATTINGLY: Welcome to INSIDE POLITICS. I'm Phil Mattingly. John King is off today.

We begin this Sunday morning with the coordinated crackdown on illegal immigration the President Trump says will start today. It's a roundup targeting migrants who entered illegally and who judges already ordered to leave.

A senior immigration official tells CNN the operation focuses on at least nine cities, Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and San Francisco. The operation will target migrants who came to the U.S. recently. But

officials warn others could be caught up in the sweep. California's governor with this advice to anyone here illegally.


GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM (D), CALIFORNIA: I just want to say to folks that are anxious about a knock on the door, when we talk about knowing your rights, no abras la puerta. Without a warrant, you don't have to open the door. Without a warrant, you do not have to open the door.


MATTINGLY: Now, the goal of the blitz, according to homeland security officials, to send the message to migrants considering coming to the United States, that the country does not have room for them.

The vice president Friday asked by CNN if some children will come home to find their parents gone. Well, he wouldn't say no.


PAMELA BROWN, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: What happens if the child is at day care or summer camp, the parent is arrested. Is that child going to go home to an empty house? What's going to happen?

MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Pamela, I -- I am very confident that the American people recognize the way forward to deal with this crisis of illegal immigration is to enforce our laws and to enforcing court-ordered deportation orders.


MATTINGLY: CNN's Rosa Flores is in Chicago where ICE agents have been mobilizing.

I guess, Rosa, to start, lay out the big picture in terms of your understanding of what the administration is trying to do here.

ROSA FLORES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, the administration is saying they are focusing on newly arrived immigrants and also criminals. But, Phil, there is widespread fear because, as you know, during the Obama administration, hundreds of thousands of people came out of the shadows, gave the U.S. government their address to apply for DACA, for example.

And even during the Trump administration, after family separation at the border, thousands of parents, family members, gave their addresses to the U.S. government to claim those children who were separated at the border. So there is widespread fear. And what's happening is advocacy organizations are trying to educate the undocumented community. I talked to advocates here in Illinois, in Iowa, in Florida. They are all doing something a little different.

But in a nutshell, they are having know-your-rights workshops. They have set up ICE hotline for when they see an ICE raid. And they're also coordinating community response teams to deploy to those raid areas, Phil, to make sure people know their rights.

MATTINGLY: Rosa, you're in Chicago. You have been spending the weekend with an undocumented mother worried about deportation. Tell us what that has been like?

FLORES: You know, we have been following her story since 2017. She has been checking in with ICE about a decade. Everything had been fine until President Trump took office. That's when ICE told her she had to show up to a federal building with a plane ticket and her bags packed with a one-way ticket to Mexico.

Well, now she's in the church and has been here two years, Phil. She hasn't left the church for two years. Of course this weekend, extremely stressful for her. She's been looking out her window worried that ICE is going to knock on her door.

MATTINGLY: Yes, there's the policy. There's also the personal here.

Rosa Flores in Chicago, thank you very much. Keep us posted on that.

All right. Joining us now with their reporting and insights, Seung Min Kim of "The Washington Post", CNN's Jeff Zeleny, "The Wall Street Journal's" Michael Bender, and Lisa Lerer from "The New York Times".

[08:05:06] This is a complicated issue, again, on the policy and the personal grounds. But I also think it is important to point out kind of -- the almost dual track here that the administration is going on, which is the almost psychological effect they are attempting to have here when it comes to enforcement of immigration.

Look, 2,000 people, that's a lot of people that they're projecting, but there's 1 million people estimated in the country with deportation orders. So, it's not the entirety of the 1 million. So, there seems to be a psychological effort here. So, there is also the political as well.

Is that kind of read of things coming out of the White House, Michael?

MICHAEL BENDER, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Yes, totally. Not totally -- I can't sit here and tell you what's going to happen today. It could be anything from nothing today to, you know, thousands of people rounded up.

But one thing we have seen from President Trump is that it's probably not going to go very smoothly. Information from the Muslim ban at the very start of the administration was racked with chaos. We've had multiple government shutdowns over trying to build a wall. Now, the family separation issues and the detention issues we have seen at the border that you alluded to earlier.

And this is definitely -- the one thing we know for sure is Trump sees this as a clear political win for him. He tried to push it unsuccessfully on Republicans in 2018 midterms. That backfired a little bit. But one thing we've seen over the last couple of weeks is the campaign

fundraises -- a number of fundraisers, there is a Harvard Harris poll that asked people simply, should the census be allowed to ask if you're a citizen? The Trump campaign pulled that question almost word for word, put it in multiple fund-raising emails for the last couple of weeks which, again, is they see this as a win for their own base at the very least.

MATTINGLY: Yes, and you bring that up. And we'll get to census in a sec. But, Lisa, take a look at this poll from June. It asks Trump voters, where the policy currently stands, 48 percent of Trump voters polled in this Fox News poll say it has not gone far enough.

So, yes, there is a psychological piece of trying to keep people from coming to the United States from Central America, but there's also the political piece too, where the president has made that he thinks that this is a winner, and his base, his voters clearly want more.

LISA LERER, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, THE NEW YORK TIMES: That's right. I think this is an election the president and advisers believe it will be won or lost on whether he can motivate his base.

The question that I'm wondering about is whether achievement still matters, or it matters for the president? Does he have to accomplish some of these goals? Does he have to do something to deal with the problem that his supporters see of an increase of, you know, immigration as a country or just looking like he's fighting the fight and fighting really hard against whoever the enemies are, the media, Democrats, judges. Is that sufficient to keep his base with him?

And I think that is a little bit of app open question. And that is what we are seeing play out now.

MATTINGLY: Yes, it's interesting. You know, we showed the vice president's interview with Pamela Brown, part of it. Part of that was taking a tour of different facilities, one that had adult males and one that had children.

And, look, full disclosure, the one that children, the children that were speaking to the vice president said they were taken cared for. When you look at the video, and I will show you some here, going through an overcrowded, almost jarring video of males that were in a facility, some were unsettled. Some horrified. This is driving the debate.

But it's also kind of a Rorschach test to some degree where if you are a Trump supporter, you see this and say, yes, these people should be going home. The reason it's overcrowded is because it's a crisis because they haven't gotten the policy changes they want, and if you're not a supporter, you look at this and think it's horrifying, isn't it?

SEUNG MIN KIM, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: And you look at these striking, really unsettling images. And I think that puts everyone, especially in Congress, into their own kind of partisan corners. The Trump administration, the president, the vice president on down,

are going to use what's going on and the border challenges there to say, this is why we need tougher immigration laws. We need to close these so-called asylum loopholes. We need to make it easier to support these children and families more quickly back to Central America.

Democrats will point to this and say, this is why we need more funding. We need to have a more generous immigration policy. You have Democrats going very far to the left, going as far as to say, they want to decriminalize border crossings because of what's going on. You want to roll back the policies of the Trump administration.

So, while the images are very noteworthy, I mean, how much it changes the debate in Washington is hard to tell.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Any talk about 2020 and going to the left, that's what the president's point is. He is trying to engage Democrats.

There is a very liberal left-leaning discussion going on inside the Democratic presidential primary that may benefit the president in the general election year. This is all a little bit.

But in reference to the question of, does achievement matter, that is an open question. Now, he is the president. He is in charge of all of this, and it's happening on his watch.

So, the blaming is difficult. But there is no question he is trying to, I believe, engage the Democrats.

[08:10:05] And that's working to some degree.

MATTINGLY: Yes. Look, you bring it up. As hard right or as aggressively as the Democrats have gone, Democrats seem to have done -- do the exact inverse.

You take a look at some of the things that Democrats on the campaign trail have been talking about -- government health care for undocumented immigrants. You saw the hands come up during the debate. Decriminalize unauthorized border crossings. You've seen a number of candidates get behind that.

Obviously, the progressive movement very heavy towards abolish ICE. It's almost been where one side goes, the other goes the polar opposite in a more aggressive manner.

Bender, you brought up the census issue. And, Lisa, this dovetails of what you're talking about. Is it enough to just fight? Or do you have to accomplish something?

Somebody who wants to play to his base so much, take a listen to this quote because it's been a big question. Did the president back down on this? Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: Not only didn't I back down, I backed up because -- anybody else would have given this up a long time ago. The problem is we had three very unfriendly courts. So the printing has started, and we're already finding out who the citizens are and who they're not. And I think more accurately.

So when I heard this I said I think that's actually better. I think what we're doing is actually better.


MATTINGLY: No, he did back down.


MATTINGLY: The plan B is so much better than plan A.

BENDER: His quote there, there are kernels of truth in there. There are ways for the government currently to figure out people who are citizens and people who are not citizens without this question in the census.

He is incorrect in that he backed down. We heard Attorney General Bob Barr explain in a pretty detailed way that they didn't have time to prosecute this question and that the census, which is, you know, a very important piece of information throughout several government agencies for health reasons, political apportionment, that was at risk of being delayed if they were going to push this question further.

But to your point earlier on what gets solved here, Trump will keep fighting. It is very important for the base to see him fight. But where do any of these immigration issues get solved? Especially, as you are pointing out, the administration brought reporters to the border, right?


BENDER: I mean, these are images they think are helpful to them, that Democrats see the exact opposite. When everyone is in their opposite corners here, there is not much middle room left for a compromise.

MATTINGLY: Yes, immigration the last 10 years. I would note the census question, the answer ended up being what the census professional, not political staff, recommended from the very beginning. Go figure.

All right. Up next, a Democratic family feud on Capitol Hill.


[08:16:23] MATTINGLY: Long simmering tension between the progressive and establishment wings of the Democratic Party continues boiling over this weekend. It's a schism that breaks down along both ideological and generational lines.

A fight over how to use their House majority to rein in President Trump, the major players, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the so-called "squad" of four firebrand freshman women: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, and Ayanna Pressley.

They and their allies spent days hammering Democrats for approving a border funding bill they believe gives President Trump too much money without enough restrictions. Pelosi took the four and many others in the caucus to task with a series of public and public swipes, questioning whether their influence extends much beyond their Twitter feeds, while pleading for party unity.

You've got a complaint, Pelosi said at a closed door meeting, you come and talk to me about it. But do not tweet about our members and expect us to think it's just OK.

And now, it's pretty much only spiraled down from there. Ocasio- Cortez questioned whether she was singling out the squad over race -- a charge that prompted President Trump, of all people, to speak out in Pelosi's defense.

The House Democrats' official Twitter feed then took a swing at Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's chief of staff, perhaps a bit ironic given that Pelosi comment behind closed doors. And on the stage, at the progressive Netroots Nation conference yesterday in Philadelphia, Congresswoman Omar said she and allies have no intention of backing down.


REP. ILHAN OMAR (D-MN): There's a constant, I think, struggle oftentimes with people who have power about sharing that power. And we are not really in the business of asking for the share of that power. We're in the business of trying to grab that power and return it to the people.


MATTINGLY: The court really perfectly encapsulates what a lot of the new members, particularly the new progressive members feel. But I guess the question I have right now, Seung Min, is Democrats hate "Dems in disarray" narrative, it's mocked universally.

I was on the Hill all last week. This is -- this is real.

KIM: This is very much in disarray. I mean, can you remember the last time a formal house Democratic caucus called out a staff member so publicly like that? I can't. It seems unheard of.

A lot of this I think is coming from two fundamental different world views, one on Pelosi's end and one from the squads about how power works. I mean, you and I covered Nancy Pelosi. She is acutely focused on how to count votes. How many counts does one member bring?

That's what she was told to when she told the "New York Times", that says there are only four votes. That's the extent of their influence. That she's a master vote counter. That's what matters to her. But for these members of the squad, I mean, they have gathered their

power through the outside following, and the movement that they have been able to create. So, they see their power in a fundamentally different fashion, and that's where the clashes coming in right now. I mean, we're talking about the immigration fight that happened a couple of weeks ago.

We're going to be having a lot more fights in the coming weeks as tensions intensify over impeachment, over climate issues. There are a litany of other issues just hanging out there but haven't yet been accomplished.

MATTINGLY: Yes, there's natural tension because there's different bases of power and I think there's different goals. The idea is to keep them reigned in for a singular focus and clearly. You see how personal the attacks get.

There was another Maureen Dowd column who found herself right in the middle of all of this. Rahm Emanuel, former House Democratic whip, former chief of staff to President Obama, not a huge friend of progressive sometimes, says that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's chief of staff, who's been at the center of this as well, is a, quote, snot- nosed punk. You should be so lucky to learn from somebody like Nancy, who has shown incredible courage and who has twice returned the Democratic Party to power.

[08:20:06] And then you have Waleed Shahid from Justice Democrats who told "BuzzFeed": The base of the Democratic Party looks a lot more like AOC and Ayanna Pressley than Nancy Pelosi or Chuck Schumer. I think the base of the party wants bold leadership right now and they might start wondering what other House leadership might look like.

There's a brushback.

ZELENY: No question. I mean, look, the base of the Democratic Party, the voters that we see at rallies and are voting primaries are not -- it is not the same as the Justice Democrats and people on Twitter. It is a different universe. That is I think that sometimes isn't recognized.

Rahm Emanuel there is an old school Dem in every way. But he knows how to win elections. He has won several himself and has been a part of that. He believes this shift in the party is bad for Democrats overall and it will help re-elect the president.

We will see about this. I think this -- and this is something that Speaker Pelosi has dealt with many, many things. She knows how to deal with the president. She knows how to do a lot of things.

I'm not sure where this fight goes. It is not in her interest to see it kept alive. Sit shocking to see the disrespect for these younger members to her speakership.

MATTINGLY: No question. I think it's also surprising that staffers are getting involved in this as well. I do want to make -- someone made a brass attacks point where Speaker

Pelosi is coming down. Speaker Pelosi is speaker of the house because she has a majority. The reason they have the majority, comes here. What you're looking is 2016 how Clinton or Trump did in various districts. What I circled is kind of the middle ground. The new members of the Democratic caucus are coming from plates that either Hillary Clinton won by five or less or President Trump won by five or less.

Those are the majority makers. That is the reason Speaker Pelosi is currently speaker of the House. That's where her votes are when she wants to move something forward.

Now, take a look at those four progressive members. They are way out on the other side. They come from safe districts, very blue districts. And at least at this point in time, they aren't bringing votes to the table to demand changes in things. And that's I think more than anything else what guides the speaker of the house.

LERER: Right. And there's something ironically about this whole thing because for decades, Nancy Pelosi was the San Francisco firebrand that was the star of every Republican attack ad. And now, she has become the patron saint of moderate Blue Dog Democrats. I mean, it's all changed very quickly.

And I think there is a piece of it which we haven't mentioned, which is generational. You have this leadership of the Democratic Party that is in their 70s, upper 70s in the case of leading two presidential candidates. And then you have a young generation that's very eager to beat down the doors. Some of it is ideological in where they think the party should go in terms of immigration, like we were talking about earlier in the show. But some of it is also, you know, this idea of new leadership and how much representation, a more diverse representation matters.

MATTINGLY: Yes, look, don't get it twisted. These folks, the progressives were sent here to break things and change things. That's what they're trying to do. The question is do they have the votes to force that to happen?

All right. Up next, Joe Biden under attack from his primary rivals. Is he ready to finally return fire? And what about the voters?

Jeff Zeleny with some New Hampshire residents after a Biden town hall.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For me, Biden is the guy who can walk across the aisles and bring people together. I think part of the message is our country is fractured and it needs to be pulled back together. And I think he's that guy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But he's not my number one choice, because I would rather see a younger, fresher female face.


[08:26:56] MATTINGLY: Joe Biden remains the early 2020 frontrunner. But his shrinking lead in the polls and a shaky performance on the campaign trail are certainly complicating his general election-focused strategy.

CNN poll of polls shows Biden at 25 percent, down 7 points since the end of May. Both Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren are up eight points jumping into a three-way tie with Bernie Sanders for second place.

But Biden standing atop the polls and new vulnerability makes him a big target and his rivals certainly are not holding back. .


SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We're on a debate stage. And if you have not prepared and you're not ready for somebody to point out a difference of opinion about the history of segregation in our country -- then you're probably not ready.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D-VT), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If you voted for the Wall Street bailout, if you voted for the bankruptcy bill, if you are taking a kind of moderate approach, not dealing with the real issues facing poor people or working people, are you going to create that excitement? You know what, I'm going out and I'm voting for that guy.


MATTINGLY: Until now, Biden has mostly let those attacks just go unanswered, focusing instead on attacking President Trump.

On Friday, however, Biden accused some of his rivals of not telling the truth about what Medicare for all really means.


JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Now, Bernie has been very honest about it. He said you have to raise taxes for the middle class, end all private insurance. He was straightforward about it. And he's making his case --

REPORTER: And others?

BIDEN: Well, so far not.


MATTINGLY: Jeff Zeleny was on the trail with the former vice president.

And I guess that's the question right now. You have to draw distinctions in a big race, particularly when it's this fall, when the target is on on your back. What's your sense right now about where the vice president is in this


ZELENY: He is inching up to doing it. He hasn't quite done it yet. But you know that's where this is headed. And he said, look, I asked him directly there if Senator Harris has been forth coming about her health care plan.

MATTINGLY: Actually, wait. We have that sound. We'll play that sound. Take a listen.


ZELENY: Has Senator Harris been forthcoming enough about her ideas to abolish private insurance or not?

BIDEN: I'll let you guys make that judgment.


MATTINGLY: So, that's no, but he didn't say no.

But the question is -- I mean, what I was struck by spending a couple of days with the former vice president is that he's still very comfortable where he is on this. But he's defending Obamacare as he wraps himself in every bit of Obama that he can. He talks about health care a lot. And he says that, you know, it's not the moment to start from scratch.

And when you talk to voters, there is a sense out there, even those who don't necessarily favor Joe Biden's policies and he's not their first choice, they still him as an acceptable alternative.

So, I think the big question for Biden, he's doing more interviews this coming week, he's campaigning more. July has been much more muscular, if you will, how he shows up in the debate at the end of this month here on CNN. That is the question for his candidacy going forward.

[08:29:58] But he is beginning to draw distinctions but doesn't necessarily want to get in the mud specifically with all of these folks because he is still the front-runner.

MATTINGLY: Yes. It's that debate -- it's also just the entire month of July. If you look at CNN poll, end of June right after the debate, the electability argument which has been the vice president's kind of key component of his campaign, his numbers closed up a lot.

You had voters prioritize beating Trump -- Biden 23 percent. Harris, 18 percent. Elizabeth Warren, 18 percent. That wasn't the gap that we saw.

Now again, it's been a month since that poll. There's going to be another debate but is that a problem for him?

LERER: Oh. I mean, of course it's a problem. That is the fundamental central argument.

MATTINGLY: I asked a probing question.

LERER: I mean I think it is important to emphasize how much this is a shift in strategy for the former vice president. Jeff and I were both there during his opening events in Iowa and in New Hampshire. And he was not taking questions from the press. He was just coming in doing maybe what -- a rally a day.

It was a rose garden kind of strategy for someone who had not been in the rose garden for eight years. It was really an interesting choice. But he wanted to present himself as the closest thing to the establishment pick and come in there and sort of do it that way.

And now there is definitely a recognition among his team and among him that that is not working. That he needs to be more aggressive. And I think as Jeff points out, the question is whether he starts going after people by name. Does he hit back hard in the debate? Does he go in for some kind of an attack on some of his rivals.

And there's a risk to that. There is a risk of sort of losing the sense that he is the frontrunner in the race. Although I don't know how you have a frontrunner when you are so many months out from the first round of voting but --

MATTINGLY: There's one thing -- and not to shift entirely off Biden but what I was really interested in and there was a poll that came out from Reuters that showed what everybody's second choice would be.

And we all have I think in our minds just kind of a narrative of what the lanes are. And if you're not voting for x, then you would certainly be voting for y.

And take a look at some of these numbers. I was actually really interested by this. For Biden -- the second choice 29 percent Bernie Sanders. For Sanders -- the second choice 32 percent for Biden. For Harris, it would be Warren. For Warren, it would be Harris. I'm intrigued by that because I feel like that's not necessarily the way we have kind of formatted it in our heads. Is that --

KIM: And there's a certain gender break down there which I think is interesting because you've seen over the last couple of weeks how the two leading women in the race have really punched up and punched hard at kind of going after kind of who -- the two men who were perceived in those lanes.

I mean you saw Kamala Harris go after hard Joe Biden in the debates and continuing on as we just saw in that "View" interview. And obviously Warren has kind of been fighting for that Bernie slice of voters for some time.

And just going back to an earlier point with Joe Biden and how he will start kind of contrasting himself and going after people by name. Remember when he had to respond to kind of these attacks, he hasn't done it quite so well once. When Senator Booker said he needs to apologize for his comments on working well with segregationists, Biden's first response was Cory need to apologize. And when Kamala Harris went after him in the debate, Joe Biden cut himself off. Remember, he said my time was out.

So how do you start to create that contrast and how well you've he does this (ph) is a really open question.


LERER: And I also think look, women -- all the literature, everything we know about women running for office shows that they face a tougher path to viability. So part of what may be happening is voters are now looking at these two women after that debate and beginning to see them more as more -- as viable candidates.

And that is something that is very dangerous for Biden and Bernie Sanders because frankly they could have been benefiting from people's sort of innate stereotypes of women running for office.


LERER: And that may be sort of going away.

MATTINGLY: Yes. It's a race. And it's still early. And there is still a very big debate coming up at the end of the month.

All right. We've got a lot more here. Stay tuned on INSIDE POLITICS.


MATTINGLY: We have our eye on the Gulf Coast this morning where Tropical Storm Barry hasn't finished causing trouble in Louisiana. Even though the center of the storm came in on Sunday, it is moving very slowly. So heavy rain and flooding will remain a problem all day.

Forecasters also warn tornados are possible across parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, western Alabama and eastern Arkansas. Everybody, be safe.

We're going to transition to something else with politics -- back to what we discussed earlier, the feud between Nancy Pelosi and a group of progressive Democrats earlier in the show.

President Trump is again, weighing in this morning with some racially- charged language. I want to read this to you. Quote, "So interesting to see progressive Democrat congresswomen, who originally came from the countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world if they have a functioning government at all, now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful nation on earth, how our government is to be run.

Why don't they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us now it is done. These places need your help badly you can't leave fast enough. I'm sure Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to work out free travel arrangements."

All right. Let's get one fact first -- there's one congresswoman in this progressive group that comes from outside the United States that was a migrant. It's a very kind of impressive story of coming to the United States of America. That's Ilhan Omar.

The rest of the progressive congresswomen were born in the United States. I have no idea what on earth he's talking about other done it seems very out of line. But Bender -- you cover the White House and President. What --

BENDER: Yes. I'm not sure I understand. I've been sitting here on set while this tweet came out. But you can see where this is going to go. It's going to go a number of different ways.

For one, you mentioned Omar, right. Omar is from Somalia. Just because Somalia was on the list of Muslim majority countries that Trump wanted to ban immigrants from, that will certainly be a part of the story.

You know, to try to look at it from the eyes of the Oval Office right now and the (INAUDIBLE) this is one way -- Trump has wanted to solve some of these immigration issues by going back to the countries of origin.

Talking specifically about the caravans coming up through Central America and Mexico. He's wanted countries like Guatemala and Honduras to handle these problems within their own borders.

But that is going to be definitely overshadowed by just what you're talking about, this sort of racially charged aspect here of what sounds like go back where you came from.

MATTINGLY: Yes. And, look, she's -- Ilhan Omar is an American citizen. She was elected by the constituents in her district. There are a lot of issues, obviously some of them have been problematic inside her own party that she has had. But come on, man, come on.

[08:40:06] All right. Up next, another member of Trump's cabinet bites the dust.


MATTINGLY: President Trump has been in office for nearly two and a half years and his administration has seen unprecedented turnover inside his cabinet. Labor Secretary Alex Acosta is just the latest cabinet member to quit after coming under fire for a plea deal he made a decade ago with accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein when Acosta was a U.S. Attorney.

Let's go ahead and a take a look. I'm going to walk you through the magical mystery tour that is President Trump's cabinet.

Here are the 15 cabinet level agencies that you're looking at. And here is where President Trump started. You see a lot of familiar faces there -- some faces that are no longer there.

You want me to demonstrate that? I think this is important because you don't necessarily grasp how much the turnover has been until you like take a look at this original group and where we are now.

Watch this go through, you'll see some faces change. DHS has changed over. You also see three departments right now that don't currently have a face. That's because they have acting officials that are currently running them. You'll see that the turnover has not only unsettled necessarily the agencies themselves but also the administration as a whole.

You want to know why does a turnover actually occurred? This is probably the more problematic issue and that's not coming from Democrats. This is when I talk to Republicans on Capitol Hill.

It's the fact that a number of these departures were because individuals were forced out because they faced scandal or perceived scandal. Because they resigned -- at least based on the resignation letter, in the case of Jim Mattis -- the former Defense secretary -- out of protest.

[08:45:05] There were two that left amicably -- congratulations Ambassador Nikki Haley and McMahon. Two left amicably. Nikki Haley and business administrator Linda McMahon.

Now what are the total numbers here if you want a comparison of things? More cabinet-level turnover at this stage in Trump's term than any other of his predecessors going back to Ronald Reagan over the course of their first full year with nine leaving.

At this point in time President Obama had lost one cabinet official, two and a half years in. So it gives you kind of a sense of how quickly this has all turned over. That said, there's a lot of people who've left -- scandal, departures have been problematic, the President has been pushing people out.

At least now in Acosta's case, maybe that wasn't the case.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He's done a fantastic job. He's a friend of everybody in the administration. This is a person that I've gotten to know. There hasn't been an ounce of controversy at the Department of Labor until this came up.

And he's doing this not for himself. He's doing this for the administration. And Alex, I think you will agree. I said, you don't have to do this. He doesn't have to do this.


MATTINGLY: I think by all accounts it was an accurate representation of what happened. But it's not just -- I want to bring up a graphic of the White House, too. And Bender, this is where you live most days. Of all the departures that they have had -- five communications directors, three chiefs of staff, three national security advisers, three press secretaries -- they don't have briefings anymore so much of that matters -- three legislative affairs directors. Bender -- brass tacks here -- how much does this actually matter on the day-to- day operations at the White House and the administration?

BENDER: It matters hugely. And two quick points, I just wanted to bring it back to Lisa's accomplishments. It is hard to get anything done when you have this kind of turnover inside the executive office and at a cabinet level. And two -- this is one thing that not only sort of general Americans, middle of the road Americans but also Trump's base is turned off by.

When there is a sense of chaos inside the White House. Not his Twitter personality, which a lot of people kind of put up with. But the sense of turnover, the sense that things aren't moving as smoothly people get turned off and that's where you see Trump's numbers dip.

MATTINGLY: And I want to -- the real world implication of this. Take a look at what's going on at the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security where you have office after office after office filled by acting people, filled by people who aren't confirmed.

Seung Min -- you're on the Hill. You talk to Republicans who are, at least I've heard, are unsettled by this. Why?

KIM: They are. Because, first of all, it really diminishes their own role of advice and consent. I mean there's -- the President nominates, the Senate confirms -- that's just how the process works. But in a lot of these key important positions, especially dealing with national security and foreign policy, you want to send a message out to the world that not only does the President approve this someone but a majority or far majority of the Senate.

And when you're an acting official you don't send that message writ large.

MATTINGLY: Yes. Jeff -- we've got about 20 seconds left. What's your kind of read on things there?

ZELENY: The big thing is the Defense Secretary. The country can get along without a permanent Labor Secretary. But the fact that there are still acting secretaries in these very key positions it's a very unstable view internally and how the world is looking here at this government.

It is probably one of the biggest stories of this administration the fact that there are so many acting, shifting musical chairs.

MATTINGLY: Yes. One quick thing. The insults as to former cabinet officials that often come up as to why they might be gone.

Tillerson -- he was dumb as a rock. I couldn't get rid of him fast enough.

Mattis -- what's he done for me? How had he done in Afghanistan? Not good.

McGahn -- never a big fan.

Bannon -- Sloppy Steve has been dumped like a dog by almost everyone.

It's not easy to leave this place -- unconcerned (ph). Alex Acosta -- I guess he's going to win on that one. We'll see. It's the President's team, his prerogative.

All right. Our reporters share from their notebooks next, including the latest on Beto O'Rourke's faltering campaign.


MATTINGLY: Time now for our reports to share a page from their notebook to help you get out in front of the week ahead.

SMK -- you lead us off.

KIM: I'm going to be watching very closely for any signs of movement on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal. It is one of the top priorities of the Trump administration. They realize they have to get it done this year because it becomes infinitely more difficult in an election year.

So the President was touting the benefits of the trade deal in Wisconsin last week. Very important in these AG sates such as Iowa and Wisconsin, very important to his potential reelection bid.

But the fate of the USMCA really lies in the hands of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Now she's meeting with Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on Tuesday and that is going to be a meeting that's going to be closely watched for any signs of movement.

MATTINGLY: Clock is ticking.

Jeff Zeleny.

ZELENY: These are difficult days for Beto O'Rourke's campaign. We're just on the eve of the fundraising deadline for all the candidates to report their money. He's yet to report.

I'm told by a couple of top supporters familiar with his financial situation that it is bleak, the tally is bleak. And a few staffers have begun leaving El Paso, moving on to do other things.

He's still in this fight. He's still campaigning. He was out in New Hampshire over the weekend. But the question is how long is he going to be able to stay in this race. He's going to have to lean his operation if he wants to continue.

He has a lot of high-powered, high-paid staff members so there are discussions going on in El Paso, I'm told, at his headquarters sort of what the next step is. He's committed to staying in but it's not the summer he envisioned.

MATTINGLY: Yes. If you haven't reported your numbers yet, probably not a great sign.

ZELENY: Right.


BENDER: President Trump is in North Carolina on Wednesday. This is his first campaign rally since his kickoff last month in Orlando. He's not going to have Bob Mueller to tee off on. The congressional hearing scheduled for earlier that day has been postponed.

So what is he going to say? President Trump hasn't really made news at one of these events for months but his supporters keep packing them to the rafters regardless. I would pay closer attention as we move into 2020 to how long his fans keep showing up to see the greatest hits than any hypothetical national head-to-head polls.

MATTINGLY: Good question.


LERER: So this coming week, we will be a year out from the Democratic National Convention. So I spent some time looking backwards at Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan -- those infamous states that Hillary Clinton, of course, lost. And what is striking talking to Democratic voters and officials, politicians in those states is how much the party is infected with a case of PTSD from that election. That loss looms over the field. But at the same time there is really no consensus about why it happened.

So depending who you talk to you'll hear that Hillary Clinton talked about President Trump too much or not enough. That it was white working class voters or, you know, unmotivated, an inability to energize the base.

[08:55:00] So how these questions are resolved is really the terrain that the 2020 primary is being fought over and whether they are resolved is really the lingering question that Democrats will face when they get to that convention next year.

MATTINGLY: Yes. No question about it. One year. All right.

All right. I'll end with this.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin sent a jolt into (INAUDIBLE) bunch of talks this week when he informed lawmakers the U.S. may run out of cash at the beginning of September. And that is more than a month earlier than originally projected.

And it also came with a request -- raise the debt ceiling before the House leaves town for its summer recess July 26th. But even after five calls in six days between Mnuchin and Speaker Nancy Pelosi there isn't a deal yet. And the complications that all that shutdown talks weeks ago and inability to lock in domestic spending increases commiserate with those on the defense side, a White House negotiating team that doesn't always operate with a single voice, a Democratic caucus that we've seen is splintering over immigration, and a president that can be, shall we say, unpredictable in these types of talks haven't disappeared just because there is an earlier deadline.

Now I asked the Speaker this past week if she was optimistic the new dynamics and urgency would lead to a deal and a successful vote before that August recess. Her response, "I'm realistic". Asked what that reality is at this point, her three-word response to that teed up just how big this next week will be and what will short order be the biggest story in Washington and on always. "We'll see soon".

That is it for INSIDE POLITICS. I hope you can catch INSIDE POLITICS week days as well at noon Eastern.

Up next "STATE OF THE UNION WITH JAKE TAPPER". His guests include Democratic presidential candidate Bill de Blasio plus one of President Trump's top immigration officials Ken Cuccinelli.

Thanks again for sharing your Sunday morning with us. Have a great day.