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NEW DAY

West Virginia Teacher Strike Heads Into Day 9; North Korea Vows to Halt Nuclear, Missile Tests if It Holds Talks with U.S.; How Will Trump Respond to Ex-Aide's Televised Meltdown?; Texas Primary Kicks Off Midterm Elections; Trump: 'Not Backing Down' on Tariffs. Aired 7- 7:30a ET

Aired March 6, 2018 - 07:00   ET

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


DALE LEE, PRESIDENT, WEST VIRGINIA EDUCATION ASSOCIATION: We have to make sure that this conference committee report is signed before we're going back into the classroom.

[07:00:07] CUOMO: And we know that at least one of your U.S. senators is getting involved, as well. We have Joe Manchin on the show later on, senator from West Virginia, to talk about why he thinks this strike needs to end and what needs to happen to make that happen.

So Dale Lee, thank you for your perspective. Appreciate it.

LEE: Thank you very much.

CUOMO: All right. And thanks to you, our international viewers, for watching. For you, "CNN TALK" is next.

But for our U.S. viewers, we have major breaking news about North Korea. Let's get after it.

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

CUOMO: All right. Let's go. Good morning. Welcome to your NEW DAY. It's Tuesday, March 6, 7 a.m. here in New York, and we do begin with breaking news.

South Korean officials announced that the North is willing to halt nuclear and missile tests if it holds talks with the United States.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: This big development comes as North and South Korea prepare to hold their first summit in more than a decade next month.

CNN's Andrew Stevens is live for us in Seoul with all of the breaking details. What have you learned, Andrew?

ANDREW STEVENS, CNN ASIA PACIFIC EDITOR: Well, the key to this at the moment, Alisyn, is that North Korea is prepared to talk to the U.S. about denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula. And that has always been a red line.

North has said repeatedly, "We are not prepared to talk to the U.S. about denuclearization." They weren't even prepared to talk to South Korea about denuclearization. And we had that reinforced just as early as a few days ago.

The North is now saying -- and this is coming from the Blue House, which is the equivalent of the White House, if you like, Blue House here in Seoul, and they've just put out this statement, saying that the North is expressing its willingness to talk to the U.S. in an open open-ended dialogue on discussing the issue of denuclearization and normalizing relations between the U.S. and North Korea.

And during that time, as you point out, the North has clarified that it won't resume any -- any provocative action, including, and it spells this out. There will be no additional nuclear tests. There will be no missile tests while those discussions are ongoing.

The other thing here, of course, is the two leaders of the North and the south have agreed to meet. They will meet towards the -- towards the end of April. It will be a summit between the two. This is all trying to get to warmer ties between the two Koreas, obviously, it is -- it is the meetings I've been having in Pyongyang and the move the North Koreas sending down as high-level delegations to South Korea for the Olympic Games is now having a real impact on relations not just between North Korea and South Korea, and the U.S., Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Andrew, thank you very much for that breaking news.

So President Trump, of course, is sure to face questions about all this today. All the breaking news out of North Korea and about the bizarre televised meltdown of his former campaign aide Sam Nunberg. Nunberg is the angry about a grand jury subpoena, requiring him to turn over thousands of e-mails and documents from his days with the campaign.

So Abby Phillip is live at the White House following all of this. Abby, what's happening there?

ABBY PHILLIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, good morning, Alisyn.

All the stuff going on around the world, it is the special counsel investigation that continues to make headaches for this White House. It seems very much that this investigation is taking its toll on some of the Trump associates, principally right now, Sam Nunberg, who has pledged, apparently, that he is not willing to cooperate.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIP (voice-over): Former Trump campaign aide Sam Nunberg threatening to defy a grand jury subpoena to testify this Friday and daring Special Counsel Robert Mueller to arrest him.

SAM NUNBERG, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN AIDE (via phone): They want me over at the grand jury. Screw that. Why do I have to go? Why? For what?

PHILLIP: Mueller's team has subpoenaed all communications Nunberg has had with ten different individuals since November 2015, including President Trump. Nunberg later signaling that he may be open to complying.

NUNBERG (on camera): I was thinking, to save time -- I've been advised against this -- maybe I'll give them my password, my e-mail password. Because what do I have to go --

ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: So then you're going to comply?

NUNBERG: Then I would comply, yes.

BURNETT: So now you're saying you might comply?

NUNBERG: I have no problem complying in itself. What I'm not going to do is sit, Erin, for 15 hours.

PHILLIP: Nunberg, who says he's already spoken with Mueller's team once, making a series of explosive claims about the investigation.

NUNBERG (via phone): Trump may have very well done something during the elections with the Russians.

They know something on him. Jake, I don't know what it is.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: They know something on him?

NUNBERG: Perhaps I'm wrong. But he did something.

PHILLIP: At other times Nunberg insisting that the Trump campaign did not collude with the Russians.

NUNBERG: The idea that we were the Manchurian candidate? Gloria, we were a joke. Everybody was laughing at us. The idea that we were colluding with the Russians? Give me a break.

PHILLIP: Nunberg also making this unsubstantiated claim about President Trump's knowledge of a now-infamous June 2016 Trump Tower meeting between Don Jr. and Russians promising dirt on Hillary Clinton.

[07:05:04] TAPPER: President Trump says he knew nothing about the meeting. Do you -- do you think that that's true?

NUNBERG: No.

TAPPER: You don't think that's true?

NUNBERG: No. It doesn't -- and Jake, I've watched your news reports. You know it's not true. He talked about it the week before.

PHILLIP: Nunberg seemingly referencing these remarks from two days before the meeting.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I am going to give a major speech on probably Monday of next week. And we're going to be discussing all of the things that have taken place with the Clintons. I think you're going to find it very informative.

PHILLIP: That speech never materialized.

REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA), RANKING MEMBER, INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: Was that because the Trump Tower meeting didn't produce what he hoped it would produce?

PHILLIP: The ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee telling CNN he hopes to interview Nunberg about the claim, but the Republican leading the committee's investigation signaling otherwise.

MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So your expectation this is winding down?

REP. MIKE CONAWAY (R-TX), INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: I said earlier, we're closer to the end than we are to the beginning.

PHILLIP: Earlier in the day, the White House rejecting Nunberg's allegations.

SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: He hasn't worked at the White House. So I certainly can't speak to him or the lack of knowledge that he clearly has.

PHILLIP: But inside the West Wing, sources tell CNN multiple officials were closely watching Nunberg's free-wheeling interviews, calling them "bizarre" and "nuts."

Nunberg even attacks the White House press secretary in another interview.

NUNBERG: If Sarah Huckabee wants to start debasing me? She's a joke. OK. Fine, yes, she's unattractive. She's a fat slob. OK, fine. But that's irrelevant. Her -- the person she works for has a 30 percent approval rating.

PHILLIP: CNN's Erin Burnett asking Nunberg very directly about his mental state.

BURNETT: Talking to you --

NUNBERG (on camera): Yes.

BURNETT: -- I have smelled alcohol on your breath.

NUNBERG: Well, I have not had a drink.

BURNETT: You haven't had a drink?

NUNBERG: No.

BURNETT: So that's not --

NUNBERG: No.

BURNETT: So I just -- because it is the talk out there -- again, I know it's awkward. Let me just get -- give you the question, so you can categorically deny it. You haven't had a drink today? NUNBERG: My answer is no, I have not.

BURNETT: Anything else?

NUNBERG: No.

BURNETT: No?

NUNBERG: No. Besides my meds.

BURNETT: OK.

NUNBERG: Antidepressants, is that OK?

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIP: Now, we should note that Sam Nunberg was actually fired from the Trump campaign in 2015, but clearly, he is still making headaches for this White House.

Meanwhile, on that North Korea news, we've reached out to the White House for comment on it. We will get back to you as soon as they have some reaction. The president as recently as this weekend talked about North Korea and about what he would say to their willingness to reopen talks.

He's also going to be having a press conference later this afternoon with the Swedish prime minister. We'll keep you posted on all those developments, Alisyn and Chris.

CAMEROTA: Abby, thank you.

CUOMO: All right. Let's bring in reporter and editor at large for CNN Politics Chris Cillizza. His head may pop off this morning. This will be good. And CNN political analyst David Gregory.

Now, before we get to this circus of Nunberg, let's deal with the implications of this breaking news out of North Korea. David Gregory, at first blush, you've got to say congratulations to the Trump administration. They were able to move the ball here. You know, maybe North Korea is not telling the truth. Maybe they won't really do this, but even the suggestion, even the potential offer is progress, is it not?

DAVID GREGORY, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: No question. I mean, this is a big deal, potentially; historic, potentially. But I think the caveats do apply when you're dealing with a leader Kim Jong-un, what he's actually prepared to do, how much of this is theater, how much of it is real.

But we do know that the Korean regime has long feared that it would be wiped off the map, that they would be invaded. And so getting security guarantees would go beyond what was the last big deal was back in the '90s during the Clinton administration, when they were allowed to produce weapons-grade plutonium, but to have peaceful purposes to have nuclear reactors to get international aid and these kinds of things. But to actually get security guarantees if they were to denuclearize would be a very big deal.

And Chris and I were talking before the program this morning. Again, this is one of these potential Trump presidency moments, where you have an opportunity present itself, and it could be this is his own brand of diplomacy is to produce something unexpected and quite significant. So we're at the beginning of this now.

CAMEROTA: It sure looks like it, Chris Cillizza, because even if -- let's say that they don't sit down with the U.S. for talks because Kim Jong-un is so unpredictable. And who knows? They're still having a summit with South Korea. That hasn't happened in ten years. So President Trump did shake it up and change the status quo.

CILLIZZA: Right. I mean, we have seen glimpses -- this is to David's point. We've seen glimpses of what Donald Trump's unorthodoxy can produce. Now, we've seen a lot of negative, I think, consequences of it, but it's clear that his willingness to say things like Little Rocket Man and, you know, fire and fury.

[07:10:03] Remember these are his rhetoric toward North Korea. Whether that has had the effect, whether it's behind-the-scenes, more traditional diplomacy has had some sort of effect, whether Kim Jong-un has just changed his mind at the moment, and maybe he changes back. Doesn't really matter.

Look, I think with President Trump you always have to consider this. If this happened with Barack Obama or George W. Bush, no matter how they got here, you would say this is a significant opportunity for historic achievement.

CUOMO: Right.

CILLIZZA: We have to take that at its face. Sorry, David.

GREGORY: No, no. Sorry. What's also clear is that the North has deliberately provoked this new Trump administration with weapons tests.

This, of course, goes back, you know, many, many years back to the Clinton administration, back to the early Bush administration, was 2002 when they started to reverse their agreements under that Clinton framework, going through to the Obama administration.

So the North has provoked with its tests but has not really been -- been willing to deal. And that's what's significant.

But there is a script here, right? So the South has been pushing for closer ties. A lot are talking about reunification. And don't forget China. China has always been the key player here. China can turn the lights on and off in Korea. And they don't want a flood of -- they don't want a failed regime there because of what it would mean in terms of Korean refugees coming from the North into --

CUOMO: They don't have completely shared interests with the United States, either, right? I mean, the South is really motivated by those economic avenues. China, you know, has somewhat of a labor situation and has a border issue. They are not as hard line as the U.S. is, obviously.

GREGORY: And they don't want a U.S.-backed unified regime in government in Korea.

CUOMO: That's right. That's right. There's somewhat of a naked preference there, as well. And then you also have to look at, you know, no matter how this comes to be, you have to give credit to the administration.

CILLIZZA: That's right.

CUOMO: Now, there is the question of whether or not this is happening because of Trump's unorthodox, chaotic or any of the other benign words we use to describe what seems to be unexplainable in his behavior sometimes; or it happened, Chris, despite it.

CILLIZZA: Right.

CUOMO: Even with his provocations, the State Department has been working hard on this. Tillerson has been trying to use diplomacy. They've been trying to shield themselves from exposure to Trump's rhetoric a lot. So maybe this happened despite it.

CAMEROTA: It's still the administration.

CUOMO: No, he still gets the credit.

CILLIZZA: And that's --

CUOMO: It's a little bit of a window into how hard is he making it on his own people to get this kind of progress?

CILLIZZA: Right. And that's what we don't really know. I mean, we do know that remember, Donald Trump tweeting out that, essentially, Kim Jong-un was a lost cause to Rex Tillerson. Don't waste your time with that.

If you believe -- and I don't -- if you believe that Donald Trump as the greatest chess master in the world, you can say, well, he was giving Tillerson some space to do these things behind the scenes. That all these bluster over here was giving Tillerson room. I don't know. I do think Alisyn is right, though.

I mean, broadly speaking, this is something we have not seen in quite some time. It is a chance for Donald Trump to be president when something historic happens. Can he win? Can he take a win? He -- I have always thought he's his own worst enemy. He struggles to win when a win is possible, when his administration or he has set up a win.

Can he execute here with the only obvious caveat that we're dealing with Kim Jong-un and no one knows what he's going to do.

CAMEROTA: I mean, it's also possible that the economic noose was tightening and that it's harder for Kim Jong-un to fire off missiles, so he parades them down the street, but it costs a lot more money to fire them off.

GREGORY: That goes to -- that goes to the point of the administration has cranked up sanctions rather than doing something else. I, for one, who have been raising this specter of a deadly encounter on the Korean Peninsula would certainly praise this administration if they can get to a point where diplomacy and sanctions worked. That would be a rigorous process with some unpredictability with -- you know, whether he charted out this path or not, even to get to this point, I think, the administration deserves praise. Because we have to understand what we are potentially facing. Some kind of armed conflict with the North is something that nobody wants.

And I think a lot of people feared the impulsiveness of the president. So even to get this to point, I think we have to be happy.

CUOMO: You respect the step, and you see it for what it is. Remember with the Iran deal, you know, how many different partners it took, how much time, how much negotiating. You know, we're at the beginning of a very long road. But maybe we're at least on the path.

Another topic: Nunberg. Chris Cillizza, I found it very amusing and insightful what you were writing about him last night. What do you make of this guy? Do you believe that there's any chance that he knows much of any of the topics he's spouting off about?

CILLIZZA: Not really. I think that what Mueller -- the reason that Mueller subpoenaed -- wants to subpoena all of his information that set Nunberg off is because he's trying to create, define, check the universe that existed in that 2016 campaign. Who knew who? Who worked closely with who? Who was in close sort of cahoots with who?

[07:15:22] I don't -- I don't think Sam Nunberg is the secret key that unlocks this entire thing. I think he -- the reason he's got so much irritation is the willingness to outright reject today the subpoena from Mueller and to say, "Hey, media, here's the subpoena. Here's what he wanted." For people who would say you shouldn't cover this, I would say this is something who work for Donald Trump's campaign. This is someone who was subpoenaed by a federal grand jury.

CUOMO: With the law.

CILLIZZA: Right. A federal grand jury. Yes, I mean, well, he invented pretty much everything that Donald Trump did right in that campaign, according to him. But this is not someone -- you know, this is someone involved in an active special counsel investigation who did work for Donald Trump.

CAMEROTA: Right.

CILLIZZA: Do I think that Sam Nunberg was, as he presents himself, sort of the genius behind the scenes orchestrating everything and is the key to knowing whether Donald Trump did anything wrong or not? No. I mean, he's pretty comfortable saying that. That doesn't mean we shouldn't cover what he says.

CAMEROTA: Well, but David, do you think that Sam Nunberg has a clue as to the focus of the Mueller investigation and what he's asking for from Nunberg?

GREGORY: Well, I mean, what we learned from this in the middle of the circus is that is him, that 12-hour -- maybe it's a shorter time frame -- circus that is Sam Nunberg, we get, you know, a look at documents coming from the special counsel in terms of what he's actually looking for.

So it gives a sense of interest of scope. It's still pretty broad if you -- if you consider what the special prosecutor is asking him about. And you know, these are peripheral players.

But you know, to cover this as a -- as a live event is harder, because you don't get a sense of the context. But of course, any investigator is going to start with peripheral players to see what they know and go up the chain. And also, you know, there's two other points to make about the circus atmosphere, which is, you know, as someone who covered the O.J. Simpson trials --

CILLIZZA: You mean a circus.

GREGORY: There are always figures like this. Google Kato Kaelin in terms of, you know, the figures who get involved and who want media attention and all the rest. It doesn't necessarily mean that they're insignificant, but they become -- they become part of the process.

CAMEROTA: The spectacle.

CUOMO: I mean, look, at the end of the day, what are we really learning here? One, we're learning that this "I only hire the best thing" is just a very -- very hollow thing.

But short of that, all we know is that there's a long list of people that Mueller is interested in in terms of communications. It's really just about everybody we knew at the beginning with Trump. That's what this is. But anyway, we've got to jump --

CILLIZZA: Chris, could I make --

CUOMO: Go ahead. All right. Fine, go ahead.

CILLIZZA: One very quick thing to make.

CUOMO: All right.

CILLIZZA: This is not surprising. This should not be surprising. To your point, the "hiring the best people," the only people who would work for Donald Trump in the beginning, middle and even toward the end of that campaign are people who no one else in the Republican political establishment, Republican political class would hire.

So when you see Nunberg, people say how could this happen? I mean, it's inevitable that stuff like this happens, because you are dealing with people who just are not A-, B-, C- or D-list talents.

CAMEROTA: Guess what? They won. So now they are. I mean, you know?

CUOMO: That doesn't make you A-list talent.

CILLIZZA: No. I don't think that means --

CAMEROTA: I hear you. Maybe that's a stretch. They won.

CUOMO: Nunberg is not A-list talent.

CAMEROTA: They won.

CILLIZZA: They did win.

CAMEROTA: And so you have to -- they had some sort of secret sauce. Thank you very much, Chris Cillizza, David Gregory. Thank you.

CUOMO: The president is bucking Republican leadership with his tariffs proposal. A GOP congressman lays out the case against doing it this way. Next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[07:22:46] CUOMO: All right. Just getting a little information about the early voting turnout in Texas, because that's a big topic for us right now.

This is the state of Texas, kicking off their mid-term elections today. Their primaries start today. Texas Republican Congressman Jeb Hensarling chairs the House Financial Services Committee joins us now.

Always good to see you, Congressman. Thank you for taking the opportunity.

REP. JEB HENSARLING (R-TX), CHAIRMAN, FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE: Good morning. Thanks for having me.

CUOMO: So what do you make of this that the early turnout numbers for Democrats are about 2x what they were last midterm slate? Does that worry you, concern you, impress you?

HENSARLING: Well, no. The only thing that worries me right now is that my daughter just turned 16 and wants her driver's license.

CUOMO: First of all, congratulations. God bless. The best to her. That's a tough decision. I can't help you that. But what do you make about the election today, the primaries?

HENSARLING: Listen, Texas is not -- is not about to turn red, much -- I'm sorry, is not about to turn blue, much less turn purple. Clearly, we know that the Democrats have been energized. The real election comes in November. And I still believe that, due to the tax cut and jobs act, that we are seeing a growing economy. We're seeing the lowest unemployment in 17 years. Wages are up. We've seen the highest wage increase in almost a decade. And I think, ultimately, that's going to be reflected in the election in November.

So, the only thing I can say, though, is personally, I'm not running for re-election. CUOMO: Right.

HENSARLING: So I'm not paying quite as close attention to this as I once did.

CUOMO: You know, but Jeb, you're known as a listener. So the reason I ask is, while all those components that you put out there, let's assume, for the purposes of the discussion, they're all true. If we learned anything in the last election, it's that...

HENSARLING: They are.

CUOMO: Well, I'm giving you the benefit of it, because I don't want -- you know, everything can be parsed, right, in terms of what matters and why, you know. But let's assume everything is as you say.

One of the lessons out of the last election is you've got to listen to people on both sides, even if they're not your people. What does this dramatic uptick in voter turnout for Democrats mean to you? What can you learn from that? Or do you just dismiss it out of hand?

HENSARLING: Well, I'm not sure if I dismiss it out of hand. Again, as we know, these are the primaries. And, you know, I'm going to wait and see what actually happens in November.

But if some of your point is should we in Congress work on a bipartisan basis? I can only talk about my House Financial Services Committee that I have the privilege of chairing.

[07:25:09] And we passed multiple bipartisan bills, and we're trying to go to conference, or trying to go and work out a bill with the Senate to provide some relief for our community banks, our credit unions, our small-growth companies. I mean, we've got votes that took place on the House floor, 395-2, 417-0. So a lot of bipartisan work is taking place. I always try to listen to people and then do what -- what's best.

So, again a lot of that work is taking place. Unfortunately, it rarely gets reported on various networks, including your own. It's mainly the controversy that -- that is covered, but there's a lot of bipartisan work that's going on. And right now over my shoulder in the United States Senate, as I think you know, they're supposed to take up a very important banking bill that we look forward to -- to negotiating.

CUOMO: We're going to talk about that. And the more that you guys do by working together down there, the men and women in D.C., the harder it is to just focus on all the reason you give us to criticize what's not going on down there. The tariffs first. Then we'll get to the banking bill. This is not conservative orthodoxy that you use tariffs --

HENSARLING: Not in the least.

CUOMO: That you use a tariff as bait to a trade negotiation because of the fear of retaliation. Do you believe the president will go through with this? And if he is seriously considering it, what is your message to him?

HENSARLING: Well, I've already sent a message to the president. I haven't had a chance to talk to him directly about this. But the president has got to be very, very careful here. And if he follows through with it, and it appears that he is, I've encouraged him to be very, very surgical.

I disagree with the president. I don't know of any trade war that ends well. That's not my reading of history.

I give the president great credit for the tax cut and jobs act. I give the president great credit for the regulatory rollback. I think that's helped bring us 3 percent economic growth where, for eight years, we suffered under 1.6 percent economic growth, roughly half our historic potential.

But my fear is the president is going to walk back a lot of the progress that he's made, and I don't see winners in trade wars.

CUOMO: When you say "walk back," you're worried -- apart from trade war, right, because look, he went off half-cocked, saying that a trade war would be a good thing, and we would win it. There is no historical precedent for that. Let's just write that off as, you know, a Trump-ish statement.

But in terms of the rollback, Republicans are making the case that we just gave a tax cut. Tariff is another word for tax increase.

HENSARLING: Well, of course it is.

CUOMO: Consumers are going to pay it. And our employees in this country, our workers, the number of workers who are in businesses that are going to be affected by higher prices for steel greatly outnumber those who are in the steel manufacturing business.

Are those points you agree with? And do you think they're resonating with the White House?

HENSARLING: Well, I don't know if they're resonating in all sectors of the White House. But again, I call on the president to pay very careful attention. I think I have the numbers roughly correct. But we may have 150,000 people employed directly in the steel industry.

But we have millions, millions who take that steel, and they fabricate it into something else. I mean, I've heard from two factories in my congressional direct in Texas. One makes shelving for customers like Wal-Mart.

CUOMO: Right.

HENSARLING: Another takes steel and turns it into small factory buildings and houses. And they both tell me, "This is going to send our prices up, and this could potentially cause us to have to lay off workers." And so, I'm hearing from the millions.

and then as you well put it, we've got,, you know, 300 million people who consume steel and aluminum. I mean, is this going to send up the price of a six-pack at a grocery store.

CUOMO: Right.

HENSARLING: Well, you know, it very well may, but we all consume this. And I'm afraid this is going to hurt consumers. I think it's going to lead to a net loss of jobs. And again, I give our president great credit for almost overnight bringing us back to 3 percent economic growth. But he is going to end up walking that back if we end up with a full global trade war.

CUOMO: Right.

HENSARLING: And already the E.U. is threatening retaliation. You know, we've seen this story before. We saw it about 15 years ago, I believe.

CUOMO: With Bush.

HENSARLING: In the Bush administration.

CUOMO: Uh-huh. And they had to roll them back.

HENSARLING: We lost...

CUOMO: And the World Trade Organization said that they were wrongful. And we remember Smoot-Hawley. You know, so there's a lot of history there. We'll see if you're able to get through to the president, and that will follow that.

Let's pick up one more topic while I have you. Make the case how, you know, I get that less regulation sounds like the panacea, especially on the political right. But some regulation exists for good reason, right?

HENSARLING: Of course.

CUOMO: And one of those categories has to be what happened coming out of 2008. I covered that financial mess very closely when I was at ABC News. The banks were out of control. You had no idea how they were using leverage. They were making bets they couldn't cover, and the American taxpayers paid the price. And they mostly got off scot-free.

So you put in these controls and restrictions to make sure that the banks can sustain their own risk. Now you want to roll them back. Why?

HENSARLING: Well, No. 1, it probably doesn't surprise you, I don't agree with your narrative. I mean, what we had was we had an erosion of traditional underwriting standards in real estate. A lot of that was driven by the affordable housing goals of --