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White House Press Briefing; Climate Change Deal. Aired 2-2:30p ET

Aired June 02, 2017 - 14:00   ET


[14:00:00] SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: By prioritizing the Department of Justice funding to law enforcement agencies that is used to hire veterans. It's critical that we support our veterans and the loved ones of those who have paid the ultimate price while protecting our communities. The president's glad to be signing these important bills today. And there will be a pool spray at the top of that shortly.

Also in Washington today, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos visited The Eagle Public Charter School this morning to show the administration's support for inclusive school environments and celebrate the launch of the Department of Education's new Individual with Disabilities Act effort.

At the State Department, Secretary Tillerson met this morning with the foreign minister of Brazil and is departing for Sydney, Australia, this afternoon, where he will join Defense Secretary Mattis to participate in the 2017 Australia/United States Ministerial Consultations. Prior to his arrival in Australia, Secretary Mattis will attend the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, where he will deliver remarks and meet with regional allies and counterparts to discuss security issues.

With that, I'd be glad to take a few questions.


QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

I want to ask about the push for the travel ban to the U.S. Supreme Court. Is it fair to stay that one of the reasons that the president wants to keep this going is obviously now we have a full court impaneled, but also because it gives the White House perhaps a chance to build on some momentum, especially if you look back at yesterday. It would appear that his base was very pleased with what the president decided to do. Is that part of the calculus? And I'd also like to ask as a follow-up about the Exxon pipeline. Can you give us an update on what's happening with that in terms of jobs and development?

SPICER: Yes. I think that what we've said with respect to the executive order in question has been fairly consistent since its implementation and the first court action. So last night we asked the Supreme Court to hear this important case and are confident that the president's executive order is well within his lawful authority to keep the nation safe and protect our communities from terrorism. The president's not required to admit people from countries that sponsor or shelter terrorism and until he determines that they are properly vetted and do not pose a threat or risk to the United States it's pretty consistent what we've talked about.

I don't have an update on - are you talking about in terms of production for Keystone?


SPICER: I don't have that at this time.

Zeke (ph).

QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

You were asked earlier this week about the president's personal views on climate change and whether or not he believes it's a hoax. You said you haven't had a chance to have that conversation with him. Now it's been 48, 72 hours. What does the president actually believe about climate change? Does he still believe it's a hoax? Could you clarify that since apparently nobody else at the White House can.

SPICER: Yes, I have not had an opportunity to have that discussion.

QUESTION: Don't the American people deserve to know what the president believes on such an important issue?

SPICER: I think that Administrator Pruitt pointed out that what the president is focused on is making sure that we have clean water, clean air and making sure that we have the best deal for the American workers.

Blake (ph).

QUESTION: Trent (ph).

SPICER: Trent (ph), sorry.

QUESTION: No worries.

Quick question for you on - related to the Paris climate agreement. Why does the president feel it's important to continue to introduce carbon emissions and export clean energy technology?

SPICER: I think he understands the importance of clean air and clean water, as I just mentioned, and a healthy environment, but also doing so in a way that provides the American workers and our economy a way to grow. But, obviously, as Administrator Pruitt pointed out, that we've got a lot of technology that we can export to other countries and help them.

QUESTION: Just a quick question as it relates to climate change. Very simple definition of climate change. Is it a change in the earth's weather patterns? The EPA administrator said today that he does feel there is some value to the studies that say that the earth is warming somewhat. Does the president share the EPA administrator's thoughts on this topic and why is the administration sort of backed away from using the words "climate change"?

SPICER: I don't - I have not - as I mentioned, I have not had an opportunity to specifically talk to the president about that.

Amon (ph).

QUESTION: Thanks, Sean.

Yesterday the president painted a pretty dire economic picture of the United States if we're to stay in the Paris Accord, saying it would be disastrous for the U.S. economy. And yet dozens of the top CEOs of American corporations lobbied the president in order to stay in the Paris Accords. Why would the president argue that this is bad for the economy if all of those CEOs are saying, you know what, we need to do this? Is the president right about the economic forecast and all those private sector leaders wrong?

SPICER: I think the president took a lot of input from a lot of individuals and there were other sectors that were very concerned about the implementation of it. And, frankly, I think there were some companies and some organizations that are among those that you mentioned that while they maybe wanted to stay in, also expressed concern about the target levels.

But at the end of the day, the president's number one priority is to get the best deal for the American people. This is who they elected last year. This was - I think one of the things that we've got to remember is that the president was very clear on the campaign trail about his position on this, but he was also clear that he was going to negotiate the best deal for the American people. And if you look at all of the deals that we have, whether it's the trade deals or Paris, the president's made it very clear that he's committed to getting the best deal for America, America's workers, America's manufacturers.

QUESTION: Sean, who's going to replace Elon Musk and Bob Iger on the president's advisory board?

SPICER: I don't know at this point.


QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

The president's critics are claiming that that - you know, pulling out of the accord will lift China as a global leader. Do you agree with that sentiment? What does the White House have to say about that?

SPICER: I don't - I don't think - I think part of the reason that the president said it was a bad deal yesterday is because countries, including China, were not making substantial progress in reducing their carbon footprint. They weren't doing enough and America was carrying the weight - the load. So I think by negotiating a better deal, hopefully we can get a better result for our country and the world.

John. QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

Yesterday, President Macron of France delivered a sharply worded speech in English attacking the president on the climate change decision, saying it is bad for all of our children, and he specifically called on scientists to come and move to France. What's the president's response to President Macron?

SPICER: I think that the president has made clear since day one that his job is to protect the interests of this country and our citizens. As he said yesterday, he was elected to represent Pittsburgh, not Paris.


QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

"The Washington Post" has reported that the administration is considering returning these properties in Maryland and New York to Russia.

SPICER: Uh-huh.

QUESTION: What is the reason for that and what would the White House have to see before giving back those properties?

SPICER: The State Department issued comments on that earlier saying, quote, "the U.S. and Russia reached no agreements. They're projecting negotiations further along than they are." So I - the State Department's the lead on that and they've been very clear where we stand on that.


QUESTION: Has the president been following the Kathy Griffin meltdown and does the family want a personal apology (INAUDIBLE)?

SPICER: Does what, please?

QUESTION: Does the family want a personal apology from Kathy Griffin after the beheading photo?

SPICER: I think - yes, the president and the first lady and the Secret Service have all made it very clear their view on those thoughts.


QUESTION: Sean, you know, it's been a matter of curiosity in this town for a couple of days now. Is the White House going to invoke executive privilege to prevent James Comey from testifying before the Senate Intelligence Panel next week?

SPICER: That committee hearing was just noticed and I think, obviously, it's got to be reviewed.

QUESTION: So is that - that's not a "no"? SPICER: No, I was just saying, I don't - it literally - my

understanding is the date for that hearing was just set. I've not spoken to counsel yet. I don't know what - what that - what they're going to - how they're going to respond.


QUESTION: Two questions, Sean, one on the tax bill and one on the debt ceiling. In the Rose Garden yesterday, the president said something about our tax bill is moving along in Congress very well. We've heard something about a bill being drafted in House Ways and Means. Is that what he was talking about or what tax bill was he referring to?

SPICER: The - I think, as you know, he - Secretary Mnuchin and Director Cohn were here and couple of weeks ago laying out the broad principles of what they look to see in legislation. They've had several discussions, both in the House and the Senate, bipartisan and industry groups, and I think that the reception that the president's initiative has received in both chambers is moving along very well with leadership and rank and file members.

QUESTION: Then on the debt ceiling, we've been getting some mixed messages from administration officials on whether you'd like to see a (INAUDIBLE) or whether you'd be - can you explain what the president's feeling is on whether he'd like to see riders attached on a decrease in spending or whatever? What is his view on that?

SPICER: I think both Secretary Mnuchin and Director Mulvaney have weighed in on this. This is something that we're going to work with Congress on. So we're not there yet. It's something that our team is going to continue to work with them on.


QUESTION: Thanks, Sean. Two questions. Number one, when we heard the administrator talk about his decision on the Paris Climate Accord, you said it's not a signal that the U.S. wants to disengage on climate policy. So what are the steps that the administration is taking to engage internationally on climate? And, secondly, as you well know, climate has been a key part of cooperation between the U.S. and China. Will you try to replace that very important sort of intersection of interest with something else? Will you continue to do some technological cooperation (INAUDIBLE) for example with the Chinese? Do you have any thoughts on that?

SPICER: Well, this is a decision that was just made yesterday afternoon and I think the president is going to engage both with domestic stakeholders. He mentioned in the speech yesterday, he looks forward to talking to leaders in both parties about a way forward and reasonable ways in which we can engage in that and then he'll obviously talk - continue to talk to world leaders. But that's a - that's a process that has to evolve.


SPICER: What's that? QUESTION: And then China, the relationship with China, the point of

cooperation, have you guys put some thought to how you'll manage, because the model was, you manage tensions with China and the U.S. government by having areas of cooperation and this was previously an area of cooperation. There's obviously other areas that the White House is working on now with China. But do you envision some other cooperation on the area of climate with the Chinese government?

SPICER: Well, the relationship that President Trump has established with President Xi has been quite remarkable. He's talked about it very clearly. And it's a model in which they'll continue to build their relationship and talk about issues, whether it's this or North Korea or other areas, economic areas that they're going to work together on. So I think that the great thing about this issue is that the relationship that the president has and continues to build with President Xi is one that will allow them to move forward.

QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) thank you, Sean.

In a recent statement by Senator McCain, he said that Vladimir Putin is a greater threat to the United States, to the security to the U.S., than ISIS. Has the president had any conversation with you about that comment?

SPICER: No, he hasn't.

QUESTION: Sean, thank you.

Secretary Mnuchin has said that he wants the debt ceiling raised before the August recess, that was brought out (INAUDIBLE) by then (ph). This morning he wants it clean as well. This morning, Gary Cohn said that the administration is willing to do whatever with Congress to get it passed before August (ph) and the Freedom Caucus has said they want spending cuts. So what does this look like? It doesn't sound as if the Treasury secretary is going to get a clean bill. What's the administration willing to take as far as spending cuts to get the debt ceiling raised?

SPICER: I mean I was - I think that was the nature of what Jen was asking. And I think that is a conversation that our team is going to have with congressional leaders and other stakeholders, Freedom Caucus and other members about what it's going to take. I think there's bipartisan recognition that we need to get that done. And so Secretary Mnuchin, Director Cohn, Director Mulvaney and other members of the team will continue to work with congressional leaders to figure out what it takes to get it done.


SPICER: Sean, could you tell me, how is the president dealing with the fact that there are several mayors, many mayors, from a bipartisan group, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, who are against the president's withdrawal from the Paris agreement. How does this president move forward with what he's saying about making coal great again and taking the - walking away from the economics of clean energy and then walking out of Paris when you have mayors who saying, we're going to continue with the Paris agreement?

SPICER: Well, if a mayor or a governor wants to enact a policy, that's - and then on a range of issues, they're accountable to their own viewers and that's what they should do. We believe in states' rights. And so if a locality, a municipality or a state wants to enact a policy that their votes or their citizens believe in, then that's what they should do.

QUESTION: And one other question.

SPICER: But I will say that with respect to elected officials, there was, I think, a large contingent of officials at every level of government that were very pleased with the president's decision yesterday and applauded him for that.

QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) bipartisan agreement, Republican and Democratic mayors (INAUDIBLE).

SPICER: And we have some bipartisan support for it.

QUESTION: OK. And then last topic (ph). There are numbers of reports (INAUDIBLE) nooses have been found at the museum, the new museum that the president toured, the African-American History and Culture Museum, and also there was very negative (INAUDIBLE) worst words you can say, spray painting on the LeBron James (ph) (INAUDIBLE). What is the president saying about this specifically as people are saying for the last 130 plus days, people are feeling that there has been a divide that has perpetuated from this White House.

SPICER: Well, I would respectfully disagree with the premise of that. I think we need to denounce hate in any form, in any act and this president made it clear from election night to his inauguration that he wants to unite this country and move it forward.

Kaitlin (ph).

QUESTION: Thank you.

Did Secretary of State Rex Tillerson endorse withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement?

SPICER: I'm not privy to the conversations that individuals have with the president.

QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) he wasn't at the announcement yesterday?

SPICER: I don't know.

QUESTION: OK. Secondly, can you clarify the nature of the conversations that Jared Kushner had with Russian officials and a banker in December? And what was the date of the meeting with the banker?

SPICER: I cannot. And as I've mentioned the other day, that we're focused on the president's agenda and going forward all questions on these matters will be referred to outside counsel, Mark Kasowitz (ph). QUESTION: But how can you not answer questions on it when the

president himself tweets about it?

SPICER: I just - all - we're focused on his agenda and all - going forward, all questions on this matter will be referred to outside counsel.

Jill. Jill.

QUESTION: Thanks. Personally (ph) (INAUDIBLE) responding to any of those questions. I don't know where you guys are in actually finding spokespeople or people who want to respond to those, that would be helpful.


QUESTION: And then two things. Do you guys have any update on the search for the FBI director?

SPICER: As I mentioned yesterday, I guess, a couple days ago, the president continues to meet - has met with some candidates. When we have an update on that, we'll let you know.

[14:15:01] QUESTION: OK. And then you said that you hadn't talked to the president yet about whether he still believes that climate change is a hoax. Can you - would it be possible for you to have that conversation with him and then report back to us at the next briefing?

SPICER: If I can, I will.


QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) that you and the administrative folks (ph) can't say where the president stands on this climate change. Does this mean that members of his administration helped the president make this decision to withdraw from the Paris Accord without knowing where the president stands, without knowing whether or not he thinks climate change is real?

SPICER: My understanding is that individuals gave the president advice on the deal at hand, then he made a decision on what was best for the country and our people on the merits of the agreement.

QUESTION: Sean, we know that the president heard a lot of points of view on this, on both sides of the issue, and there was an impression, maybe a false impression, that it was a difficult decision and that he was wavering. In the end, though, yesterday, he was emphatic about getting out of the agreement. In the end, was this an easy decision or was it a close decision?

SPICER: I honestly don't know. I mean that's what the president is the ultimate decider and when he comes to make a decision - when he comes - gets the information that he's required, he lets us know that he has a decision and he announces it.

QUESTION: And one other thing. The - there's a lot of talk about renegotiation. Why renegotiate? The United States has the authority to simply reduce the targets. Why not just do that?

SPICER: Because the president believes that it is in our country's best interests to renegotiate the deal.

QUESTION: Sean, the president signed a waiver yesterday that delayed his campaign promise to move the embassy to Jerusalem. I know you've said that this was to not hinder any sort of peace deal. But how confident can his supporters be that this is a campaign promise that he's going to keep?

SPICER: I think when the president signed the waiver under the Jerusalem Embassy Act and delayed moving the embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, no one should consider this step in any way to be a retreat from the president's strong support for Israel and for the U.S./Israel relationship. The president made this decision to maximize the chance of successfully negotiating a deal between Israel and the Palestinians, fulfilling a solemn obligation to defend America's national security interests. But as he repeatedly stated his intention to move the embassy, the question is not if that move happens but when.

QUESTION: But he promised during the campaign to do it on day one. I mean is there a time frame now for when he will do this?

SPICER: He understands. His ultimate goal is to get peace and, as I said, it's not an if it's a when.


SPICER: Franchesca (ph).

QUESTION: Thank you, Sean. Following up on Caitlyn's (ph) question and then I have a second thing after that, is it still the administration's position, though, that Jared Kushner was in the meeting with the Russian banker as a representative of the transition, representing the president-elect?

SPICER: As I said to Caitlyn, we're focused on the president's agenda and going forwarding all questions on these matters will be referred to outside counsel Mark Kasowitz (ph).

QUESTION: Well, something maybe you'll answer directly. Does the president still have confidence in Jared Kushner?

SPICER: Absolutely.

QUESTION: Thank you, Sean.

One of the ethics (INAUDIBLE) at the White House will be supplied to all White House appointees concerning discussions with the news media and retroactive. Was that aimed at - did White House have Steve Bannon's communications with Breitbart News in mind? Was that applied retroactively to address those communications and any response to Director Shab's (ph) claim that if you need a retroactive waive, you have violated a rule? SPICER: Yes, that's correct. There's two pieces to that that are

important. One is, remember, this didn't have to do with the law or regulations. This had to do with the president's pledge. His ethics pledge. So he only - he is the ultimate decider on that. This isn't with respect to a law or regulation.

And that what we discovered was that several individuals on staff had previously worked for media organizations. And in order to continue having those discussions and advancing the president's agenda and priorities, it was important to make sure that all individuals had the opportunity to be able to speak to the media about what the president was doing to make the country stronger.

For what it's worth, today happens to be national leave work early day. I hope you all get a chance to participate if you - maybe you can go home, if you participated in national donut day and go home a little early and work it off. But with that, I hope you get to take advantage of that day.

Have a great weekend. Thank you.

QUESTION: Are you going home early?

ANA CABRERA, CNN ANCHOR: You've been watching the White House briefing. The administration defending the president's controversial decision to pull out of the Paris climate deal. That was the focus of this press conference. We heard from the EPA administrator, Scott Pruitt, followed by Sean Spicer, the press secretary. Most notably, they - both still refusing to say whether President Trump believes climate change is real.

Let's go first to CNN political director David Chalian.

On that note, David, why does this administration continue to not answer the question?

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: It's confounding, Ana. It really is even more confounding, of course, because here we are in the week that this White House made - this president made his biggest move on the issue of climate change and for days now this White House is unable to answer a fundamental question about his beliefs about climate change. In the past, he has called it a hoax. Does he believe that man contributes to the changing climate on the planet? They can't answer that. And not only - they don't even attempt to. They just say that that's not important here. That the focus has been just on Paris. That's what Pruitt said over and over again.

What is more astounding is that the president's press secretary, this is the person who is supposed to be able to communicate to the American people through reporters about the president's thinking, his decision making, can go into the Oval Office and say, hey, boss, let me understand this so I can go out and explain it. Well, he can't because he just said that he has not had the opportunity to speak with the president on whose behalf - on whose behalf he speaks, has not had the opportunity to speak with the president about his fundamental belief about the central policy issue that dominated the president's week. It makes no sense.

CABRERA: And I want to bring in Jim Acosta, who was just at that briefing. We heard Jim Acosta asking questions about the science, in fact.

And, Jim -


CABRERA: This administration continues to deflect when it comes to the issue of climate change, which, of course, is at the heart of the Paris climate agreement.

ACOSTA: Right. That's right, Ana, and they've had a good 24 hours to come up with an answer to this question, does the president believe climate change is a hoax, does he believe climate change is real, and the White House, even after having 24 hours or so to come up with an answer to this question, and this questions' been asked before for days, weeks, months, for a very long time now, just does not have an answer to that question, and it is kind of astounding because when you look at the preponderance of evidence, when you look at what the scientific community says all over the world with almost near 100 percent certainty that the planet is warming, that climate change is occurring and that human activity is contributing to that climate change, you heard not only from the EPA administrator, from the White House press secretary, top officials who spoke to this yesterday, it is really sort of a stunning lack of answer to what is a critical question and it appears, you know, that this White House, this president, made this decision very much for political reasons. That they wanted to keep a campaign promise and that they wanted to keep a campaign promise that they believe to be essential to some of these very key battleground states with their eyes focused to 2020. As incredible as that may sound, that is how a White House works, no matter who's in office. There are always operatives inside an administration who are always looking to - to the next election, to the midterms and so on. So it is kind of incredible to hear that.

I do think there were some other very important questions that were also not answered. First among them during this briefing, you heard it during Sean Spicer's portion of the briefing when he was asked whether the president will invoke executive privilege to try to block the former FBI director, James Comey, who was fired by the president, from testifying next week, Sean Spicer said that is being looked at. They did not - he did not give an answer to that question. So we now have, starting today, even though Sean Spicer noted it is leave work early day today, people are going to be focused on this question all weekend long, all next week as we head into this Comey hearing, whether or not the president and his legal team will determine at the last second that perhaps the president can attempt this. And so now, in addition to all of these other questions about climate change that weren't answered, we now have another very, very, very big question for this president that needs to be answered because it is critical as to whether or not we'll hear from James Comey next week.

Ana. CABRERA: The national leave work early day on a Friday, seems that to be a convenient excuse to get the heck out of there from the press conference -

ACOSTA: Doesn't apply to us, yes.

CABRERA: When we've had so limited access to this administration in terms of asking questions.

ACOSTA: That's right. Yes.

CABRERA: There have been limitations to these press briefings.

Let me bring in Stephen Moore. He's a -

ACOSTA: Well, the climate was getting warm in this room, that's for sure, Ana. Maybe that's why.

CABRERA: Oh, I can only imagine the temperature was going up. You could hear it in some of those reporters' questions, no doubt about it.

Jim Acosta, stand by.

ACOSTA: All right. Sure.

CABRERA: I want to bring in Stephen Moore. He's our senior economic analyst for CNN, also a Trump supporter. You also were an adviser of the president during the campaign. Stephen Moore, why can't his administration answer the question - the fundamental question about whether or not this president believes climate change is real?

STEPHEN MOORE, CNN SENIOR ECONOMIC ANALYST: I don't know the answer to that. But I will say this, that I think it's not fair to say that President Trump took this action for political reasons. Now, yes, he did promise this during the campaign. It was a very popular campaign pledge. And traveled around with then candidate Trump and when he talked about getting us out of the Paris Accord in places like Ohio and Pennsylvania and Michigan, it was -

CABRERA: Should they be able to answer the question, though, about climate change? That is what this is all about, is it not?

MOORE: Well, but, hold on. I don't know what his belief is on this, but I'll say this, it's - the fundamental issue here was - is, how is this going to affect our economy? We've done some really amazing research at The Heritage Foundation. A number of other studies that put the job losses between 500,000 and a million. We can't afford to do that. We have too many unemployed people in this country right now. We've got to make sure that we're protecting the jobs of our own gas workers, our steel workers, our coal workers. We just had a good report, by the way, today that there was an increase in mining jobs. So we're seeing a turnaround in the coal industry. Something a lot of people said couldn't happen.

[14:25:32] CABRERA: That's right, 400 mining jobs were added in the last month according to that jobs report today.

MOORE: Yes. And coal -

CABRERA: But also worth noting that the steel worker in - union from the steel workers actually came out yesterday speaking out against this move. We've also heard a backlash from a lot of different companies saying this was the wrong way to go economically.

MOORE: Wait - sorry, did you say that - I just want to make -

CABRERA: Go ahead.

MOORE: Did you say that the steel worker union came out against it?

CABRERA: A steel worker union came out against it.

MOORE: OK. Because I've talked to a lot of the steel workers and they are dead set against this because they know their jobs are very much in jeopardy.

CABRERA: Absolutely. No, I think - I think that is a controversial point.

Let me bring in, Jeffrey Sachs, because I know you have a different opinion on the economic side of things. Jeffrey.

JEFFREY SACHS, DIR. COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY'S CENTER FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: It's just unbelievable. Every word has been a lie for the last two days. So much ignorance and you have Stephen Moore and he is from the Heritage Foundation paid for by the Koch brothers that have engineered the whole story here. So it's just endless big money of the Koch brothers is behind this and Mr. Moore and his Heritage Foundation are - is a Koch brothers financed operation and this is corruption and it's so clear and it's disgusting after a while because they're all lying.

CABRERA: Jeffrey, this study was the National Economic Research Associates study that Stephen was just citing that we've heard from the Trump administration.


CABRERA: Why do you not believe that's a credible source?

SACHS: There are about 20,000 coal miners in this country out of 150 million people. This is so bogus, it's unbelievable. Everything that Trump has said is bogus. Every - the idea that he's given to the American people that somehow this is an agreement that is against America, that's biased against America, this is a completely symmetrical agreement in which all 193 countries have agreed to the same thing. They have agreed to submit national plans of action under a common framework. And so it's all a lie.

And the important things for your viewers to understand is, this is the future of their children and their grandchildren. And this man is wrecking the planet. And it's because of the oil, gas and coal interests -

CABRERA: Let me give you -

SACHS: That have funded - that have funded the Heritage Foundation, that have funded Stephen Moore and that have funded the 22 senators that wrote to the president last week saying to do this. This is a game. And it's a game against my children and my grandchildren and it's disgusting.

CABRERA: Stephen, I'll give you a chance to respond.

MOORE: Well, Jeff just needs to get his facts straight. We get less than 3 percent of our budget from the Kochs. So, Jeff, I don't know where you're getting your facts from, but what you just said is a lie.

SACHS: I know where I'm getting my facts from. You're on the take.

MOORE: Yes, well, we don't - we - right. Now, one of the points I think needs to be made here is that there's a climate change industrial complex that - this is a - this is a multibillion dollar movement now that, you know, Elon Musk, why is Elon Musk against us pulling out? Guess what, Elon Musk's two major businesses sold (ph) a city (ph) -

SACHS: And the Koch brothers are $100 billion, Stephen Moore, and you know it.

MOORE: Yes, but my point is that - yes, but the Koch - Koch brothers don't get any government money, Jeff, and Elon Musk gets $4.9 billion.

SACHS: The Koch brothers - the Koch brothers finance the Republican Party in the Congress, they finance the Heritage Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute -

MOORE: Yes, but they don't get any government money.

SACHS: The Cato Institute. We have been taken over and you have been taken over.

MOORE: I don't work at the Cato Institute.

SACHS: And I'm shocked that you are a correspondent for this network.

MOORE: But, by the way, I was on a couple weeks ago with Jeff Sachs and he said that the coal mining industry was dead. And we've seen a 16 percent increase just since Donald Trump was elected and we have more coal jobs today. So you're just wrong, Jeff.

CABRERA: OK, let me move the conversation forward here. I want to put in an opportunity to get our other analysts into the conversation.

So let's listen to Jim Acosta, his exchange with the EPA administrator, Scott Pruitt, and then we'll talk on the other side.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ACOSTA: Why is the arctic ice shell melting? Why are the sea levels rising? Why are the hottest temperatures in the last decade essentially the hottest temperatures that we've seen on record?

SCOTT PRUITT, EPA ADMINISTRATOR: We've actually be in the high - we've actually been in 80s (ph) since the late 1990s, you should know.

ACOSTA: (INAUDIBLE) - but - but, sir -

PRUITT: And - and -

ACOSTA: But, sir, so there's - when NASA says that 95 percent of the experts in this area around the world believe that the earth is warming and you are up there throwing out information that says, well, maybe this is being exaggerated and so forth and you talk about climate exaggerators, it just seems to a lot of people around the world that you and the president are just denying the reality. And the reality of the situation is that climate change is happening and it is a significant threat to the planet.

[14:30:03] PRUITT: Let me say this, and I've said it in the confirmation process, and I said it yesterday -

ACOSTA: (INAUDIBLE) arctic ice and the sea levels and -

PRUITT: No, let me finish. There is - there is - there - there - we have done a tremendous amount as --