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>> it is time to get back to the "roundtable.
" we have christina bellantoni, nia-malika henderson, and eliana johnson.
eliana, i want to start with you.
has the president's fact checker been on vacation since he's been in office?
the president has made a number of incorrect statements over the last two weeks.
they've been so blatant and so egregious and he's been fact-checked.
he's continued to continue to make those statements.
>> he clearly has not gotten the message. he's made a lot of very, very egregious mistakes. i do think that the weekend was probably the worst for him in terms of making mistakes. he tweeted a number of times about the republican tax bill that congress passed. he said it was the biggest tax cut in history. that's not true. he claimed that the economy today is the best it's ever been. in fact, it is not. it's never been that high before. this is a president that is unable to take in information. he's unwilling to read intelligence briefings. he's unwilling to read his own briefing materials. so there is a lot of second-hand information that he's receiving from sycophants that are around him. i think this is a man who is just not interested in facts and he continues to make statements that are not true, despite the fact that they've been fact-checked repeatedly.
>> it's not just a question about facts.
it's also a question about psychology.
did he lie to himself?
did he believe what he says?
>> that is a great question because i think it's a big question with this president that he is a president that has become more and more insulated. he has fewer and fewer people around him who will tell him no. he's surrounded by yes men that tell him that everything that he does is the greatest thing in history. i'm sure that that's what he believes. i think it is just a question of how does that play into the fact that there's no acknowledgment of other people who say, you know, maybe this is not true?
>> we were mentioning that the white house is going to take the president on a tour this week. the white house is going to take the president around the country next week to states that he won in 2016. the president is going to be in indiana. he's going to be in mississippi. he's going to be in alabama. i want to ask each of you, what is the political calculation in taking the president to states that he won in 2016, christina?
>> i think it's terrible for them because it's just going to remind people how unpopular he is. these are not fertile ground for the republicans in 2018. these are the places where they are going to have to try to hold on to seats and they are not going to be able to do it if there's not a message from the top. the president is going to have to do something to connect with those voters. it is not just a matter of tax cuts and repealing obamacare, which aren't going to do it for him. this sounds like a stunt. it sounds like they are going to try to get some attention for the president by doing this tour. but i think it is a mistake and i think it will backfire.
>> nia-malika, what do you think about the political calculation in terms of taking the president to states he won?
>> i think for his own political well-being, it is better for the president to be at the white house and not out in the country. the country doesn't like him. it might be hard for the white house to find places to hold these rallies. he's going to be greeted by embarrassingly small crowds. you've seen it happen a few times. it's going to be more difficult than it seems. if you're a democratic candidate, you're going to use this as a chance to talk to voters in those areas and talk about what the administration has done to hurt people in those areas.
>> eliana, the president and his political operation, they are in a weird space. they are going to states that he won in 2016. they are using the tax bill as a campaign issue. they are going to hold rallies. the president is going to speak at some of the rallies. but the president's approval rating is abysmally low in those states, in the 30s. elizabeth warren is up in indiana. stacey abrams is up in georgia. democrats are competitive in a lot of these states. don't they have to do a better job selling the tax bill to voters in those states?
>> i think that they should be selling the tax bill. i think they need to do a better job explaining why they need to get behind this tax bill. they need to find a way to connect it to the voters. i do think that they would benefit from having the president down there. republicans in those areas are going to need help in 2018. what they've got are candidates that are struggling. but they have candidates that are struggling because the president is unpopular. so it's going to be harder -- the president is not going to be able to swoop in and fix it in the way he might like to think.
>> the president's approval rating did tick up a little bit this week. he's at about 38%.
>> but that's with a minus sign in front of it.
>> we'll get to that. i have a question. the president's approval rating did tick up a little bit. he's at 38%. a lot of that is, the base