Corker, Flake loom over White House press briefing

Trump's Twitter feud with Sen. Bob Corker and a blistering floor speech from Sen. Jeff Flake overshadowed the issue of a tax overhaul.
15:57 | 10/24/17

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Transcript for Corker, Flake loom over White House press briefing
Everyone and welcome to the briefing room at tectonic stage in Washington politics B movies. Not once but to immunize these and others. Now coming out and denouncing president felt about our language as you've ever seen joined today by an aerial sparks political Porter here at ABC. And also by tariff on Mary Mitt you're ABC if you let us welcome. Learning and I involvement in premier. We're also joined up on capitol buy it by Mary Bruce. Who has been watching all these developments chasing around after these senators as the date all has gone on. Wow is the word of today Mary but let's start. We Jeff Blake at ski sticky heat on the senate floor we just heard the White House there official word is that these are petty insults. That we're hearing but. What was it like up there seemed like about us tense and is reading a moment you can imagine yet. Teddy is not the word that that I think getting on appears using to describe this this is and it's down ending. Many ways possibly game changing moment appear on the hill certainly one that will go down in history of having city. Top Republican senator going on to the senate floor. And delivering a blistering indictment of the leader of his own party laying out why he feels he half stet. Ernie can no longer stay in the senate that he will not be running for reelection saying that he can't be silent but that could amount to complicity warning. His colleagues that they can no longer expect the president to changes behavior that. Just around the corner the president's behavior may change that that is simply not going. To happen and look right after these really remarkable speech by senator flaky hurt the Republican leader Mitch McConnell come out and rain. Jeff Blake you heard Senator John McCain no surprise coming out in praising Jeff flake so Wald the White House may think that this is just another you know jab from Jeff flake that is simply not. Case that here. Our let's talk about this because look what a moment from jet like the White House official word is no big deal here Friday it looked nothing to see let's move on intact. Surface that this is a moment of unity that's capital base. Gently at the heat and they say he really. My eyes you know the problem and I don't think McCain but quirk error I texted. Senior administration official and sent that. He Donald Trump's use tax from the likes McCain Parker lake they're further proof that the school art establishment partners. Couldn't deliver for the American people just hate that stance and instruction out there L that's. So he thanked the reading and you know he's hoping that he's got some really strong conservative candidate he hires. And and Mary Alice you heard enough from gently until you struggle we people well. Gray and it's nothing to say that they're looking at a conservatives that just as a conservative I mean we're not about someone who votes. Are very strict party line two votes for some the most extreme conservative. Member you have policies that this White House ever put out of Republicans apt. Doesn't with the speeches about Florida and talking about politics or policy he was talking about the president the man. In the White House and his behavior so much of the White House and yelled distant to some dissidents and Jon Karl. At the White House today is. You with two different views her friend from SARS and a right there one is these are petty insults don't worry about in the second as. Actually the president is pursuing unity all the time job which we'll pick which one is right. I hit a typically loaded question. I just. I it will say it that one of the things that Serra said that really struck me he was her re action. To this remarkable speech by senator Slade a speech by senator flick it was. Quite different in told from what we've heard from Bob Corker wolf highly critical of the president no question about that. But. But play was not issuing a personal attack he wasn't even talking directly by name about the president. Was literally meant we know what he's like but it was. You know was it was the it was a more. A formal speech at awful speed to sweep of history speech. That they that the kind of speech that. Did that we've seen over the years in the senate floor maybe not by a senator of the of the president's party attacking the president but. She said the it was on the bidding of the senate floor that much of the language. Its editor flicks he was on the fittings on the senate war but that was. That was an extraordinary. Attack on lake and on the speech he gave which again was not a personal attack. And coming from the spokesperson for a president. Who is been known to well you know right. It's not about them yes. Yet some some things that maybe late not at all. Let's which. John before we let you go it's not about worker real fast he Yuxi announced. All the while back that he wasn't running for reelection he seemed go really fired up today in the case he made a Good Morning America and the halls of the capitol saying this is not. Acceptable behavior for the president at the institute more minds listened to this John he. You're from Bob Corker saying I. Not sure that this guy the president itself is fit to be president of the United States. Well it in. Brilliant more profound than that said he's responsible for the meaning of America I mean this is. Donnelly not. Fitting of the office but doing lasting image. But in the country that's yet to figure way to tore up his attacks country or he suggested he may be taking it worked world war. 30. I mean it's I can't kits for enough anymore he's already got this thing dialed up to eleven. Like you do it as far as corker during the launch today the president was not alone with a Republican senators then I'm told the worker. You know quirk reports was there doing his colleagues analyst you've been in the Mansfield room where they have the Republican want to that's not a particularly big room. And hopeful there was there was no mention in in in in the remarks. Senator corker obviously everybody knew everybody knew he was there but no mention either agree or condemn what he says. It was late got done with his speech a speech that the White House has just told us what's on the bidding of the senate floor. Mitch McConnell got up to praise Jeff flake. And to say that Jeff flake. Has always been a great team player and a great team player. So you know I I don't know how much more. Dysfunction we can out between. The Republican. And Republican leadership in congress and the Republican president but. What it's really hard to overstate what we thought. Then we'll John Carl is a great team player we thank you for being here we also give you bonus points that Spinal Tap reference very well played yes. That's up on Capitol Hill Mary Bruce before we let you go you were you're chasing around after Bob Corker seem like he was popping up all over. Capitol Hill today at the little media's from everywhere you went what was your take away from the message not just from corporate but also his colleagues it is like many were running to denounce what he had to say about president. Yell at the what lottery and now around three round four of court corker verses from and once again we're seeing his Republican colleagues not eager to take sides here. And as John mentioned there was need love on the menu today but not a lot of talk about lunch about this feud. Between corker and the president but look the big question remains. Do these feuds hinder the Republican agenda the president. With our peer to spend today trying to rally the Republican troops behind tax reform it was supposed to be all about unity. How far we have come from that intention. And the question is whether all of these fights make it harder for Republicans to unite behind parents are part back I asked. Leader McConnell that very question is about an hour ago right before flake in at a made this announcement. And Mitch McConnell insists noted that they'd all of these sideshows and distractions don't have a real impact. On the agenda because he claims at the end of the day they are the same goal here that Republicans want to reform. The nation's tax noted that they are still gonna stay laser focused on that regardless of the tweaked and that mudslinging all of the name calling. But it's hard to see how this doesn't become a bigger issue looked Republican that you're gonna be talking about that they wanted to gotten out what they wanna get done. Yet this is dominating the conversation back at one of their top Republican Tommy looked as in not a middle school lunchroom. They didn't get together in his meeting today and hash this out there trying to get back on message that man. During daylight as it is really hard to see how they're gonna do that. It you know we need like this in the middle school lunchroom spent but very late night direct. Yeah exactly Barry gross let you get back and Pittsburgh is appreciate you you'd be here let's yeah. It's it's just nothing distracting it's also getting some answers in this White House they need to work now. What this president will back which hurts tax reform he'll sign went well can't. Yeah and I'll actually looking for answers like that tax a lot of centers and that. That made it pretty that there are just no policy specifics discussed. At all while this White House is really banking on the fact that. You know public favorability for congress is lower than in the White House and they think that they can just keep punching congress. And making them seem now to evil thoughts guys have done nothing for you for the past whenever 50s60s and here isn't. They can bank on that and that turned taxi ride to reelection I mean we'll see how long it actually works slower but. It doesn't hurt that does that congress doesn't hurt them even more accurately McCain and clearly Hebert elite numbers for trump our thinking by. That's how they're processing this whole. The war this was supposed to be date rally the troops and I for the last best option they have to actually get something done it seems they went. Ways away from that we witnessed with his Wendell attack corporately. And authentic it back at the White House and that it. Still felt a change really quickly Republicans start and close the holiday. And they're going home and something to celebrate. They are totally freaked out at any moment to talk to voters and saying we controlled Washington free air and Aslan and done we're seeing more and more than turning on this White House. If they like they are defending. Absolutely sort of production list here so let's talk about the political impact of these these two men. Retiring leaving isn't it obvious that it be different others here but I want to ask you Tara about the reaction and world but he even people. Over there they are already declare war on your time clerical establishment or any noises that this president thought about challenging gently. This is the second he retirement that force. Riots that says her source that the and you spent another day another scout another and that so much waiting in backed me you know they they thought that you. Senators like Flickr disasters this country because if you remember that they want the wall built and went. Senator like little squishy on the wall and casts and where has this EU because pretty. I and that is something that trump. Rail not outlaw the ball well and fleet is able for in getting the walls so you know this is going to be. Happy about the problem is how strong conservative candidate that and and crew are backing. Is if someone can really you know ring over the establishment as well as the far right and and take on democratic. In Gaza where the white work for this one because that was the retirements that are specifically people that are yeah. I thought or their moderates that sees that wall though that the change is coming Los let it ought to bury. Students. The right out Washington State law or premiering at about now you be old jets late to this list one question would be is. Where do you go actually and a I was lindros. House hours that accident that call off the where he would go to actually get things done it. People like these are leaving this couple who awful lot of people but it is the needs of the people you know certainly room lot of. It was the Ottawa got this question are. And the heat. Netflix announced and he was asked specifically about threats from me and said yeah element of the parties in Iraq for a long time and it has a history of nominating candidates who cannot win in the general election because freaked out at the idea of losing the senate majority. And we'd even think that we type. Let a long. House meeting were released aren't put things like that play an angry at old and we've politics here but if we're really talking about that kind of comes to coming into next year. We're gonna cover at least the White House. In territory thought like losing people whether you'll lakers. I think they're really banking on the fact that. That. I mean they're not execute. That's that they. They're gone they're looking to win but they're not thinking about I think those boats attempting to get Democrats on board to make up for these heart knows that McCain and worker and and flake. That's wishful thinking but growing sun. You know freebie isn't stuffed sausage or whatever bills to give to get it Democrats. On their side they actually claim they have a few. If they don't attacks are more they're all out ends of its own ads it. Democrats and some of the red state Democrats up for reelection are among those things front of the disaster competent well my piece of Republican. I and that their tent and it's not need Democrats have better luck to him or what let's wrap things up. Now it's easy Preston like cuts. What does this mean how does it impact in terms had a chance on tax department I I just think. What we heard on the senate floor. Pretty and is marketed as some might ask each over and over every single word uttered just enhance its knowledge they were armed on his own programming the next day and every single line of thought out he was trying to make at speech he had something to saint cleanly. Out and had you know the White House said it could try to dismiss this as petty. But when you're talking about India insists he isn't senator talking about the degradation. Of American institutions none of this is normal this is reckless and outrageous. Perhaps happened about another day another. Tart what did you learn other than its allotment. A well every day think there'd be happening at the last second meeting that flickered in the on the rundown this morning that we thought of the art corker all the time and it's just amazing how much political news matters right now out everything that missile in his three bucks a day actually took one more. Clark with the degradation of America that won't hear that right now. And to my mind that week that rise today to say it now that as a clarion call. T his party to the country because this is bigger than the politics of the moment. When you see guys like this like corker might like these are guys that have been around for a long time they tore the institutions Washington they are worried legitimately. About the presidency about the country the trying to wake people. And politics and they're really challenging their call it's what you do now if we had and there going to be loud. For the next until they that I mean is this week's finale but I am going to be a lot more economic think I think it's not. Exactly it may be on the morning shows that he said and then you can real you know it won't be the Democrats that sports matters anymore I think tapping his own party that's right. You're a you're left this congress or the campaigns that there Ellis park are on Larry thank you yeah expert in here while he's in his. Please don't download the ABC news out sign up for subscribe to coming out every weekday morning that this that's it for us here from the briefing room. On ABC's recline at.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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