Skip to main content

tv   Counting the Cost 2019 Ep 49  Al Jazeera  December 9, 2019 7:32pm-7:58pm +03

7:32 pm
we will suspend i just know how long and it will suspend its until they're not there presently will suspend the committee will stand in recess for 15 minutes i will announce also that we've been in session about 2 and of hours after the conclusion of the testimony of the cross exams will be about another 2 and a half hours will probably stay the recess and then before the commencement of the 5 minute. round of questioning. i would ask that people are made to sheets whether to with this is or given an opportunity to leave i would remind people in the audience that if they leave it made it have this seats back when we reconvene the committee will we will still be says it will reconvene in 15 minutes. and then we have a recess for 15 minutes so as you heard mr nablus say there chairman of the house judiciary committee it has been intense it has been testy there have been a lot of motions tabled you can hear the republicans complaining that the democrats
7:33 pm
just want to take a recess so that they can hold a press conference outside this is partisan politics in play the house judiciary committee we're hearing legal statements today from washington a statement from the legal teams from both sides essentially summing up everything we have heard in the last at my count it's been 76 days since the impeachment inquiry began or the process began. and one line that stands out for me from today certainly from the democratic lawyer who said it simply the facts are clear donald trump put his own political and personal interests above the nation while steve consta the republican lawyer talked to the democrats obsession with impeachment saying they believed if they didn't impeach then president trump would simply be reelected jaimie joe counts our correspondent up on capitol hill today just the tone of the whole event today heidi i mean i know we've seen plenty of conflict in
7:34 pm
the hearing so far but it feels like it's coming to a head today between the 2 sides. that's right this is really ratcheting up in the heat between the 2 sides we saw that by the republicans many style tactics in a way you saw them. trying to get votes on these points of order at 1 point one member even suggested that statements that were impugning the president's motives and that suggested he was disloyal to the nation that parliamentary rules of decorum actually required that such statements not be made in this type of hearing to which the democrats responded that that assertion was simply ridiculous as that gets to the very heart of the accusations that trump is facing now in this impeachment now we heard from the democratic counsel who went through the highlights of the findings of the intelligence reports that have concluded after
7:35 pm
hearing from 17 witnesses over weeks of testimony and looking at that 1st hand evidence from the partial call transcript between president trump and ukraine the conclusion of the intelligence report was that the president did put his own personal interests above those of the country which is at the very heart of this impeachment inquiry and then today the democratic counsel broke that down even more perhaps lame the grounds for what this judiciary committee. will now decide upon which is which articles of impeachment innocence which political charges the president would face in his upcoming trial and the way that this was broken down today by the democratic counsel was abuse of power the trail of national interest and a corruption of elections and kemal that last point corruption of elections is particularly important in the democrats' argument for why they are proceeding with the this
7:36 pm
impeachment which is such a breakneck pace despite the criticism from republicans and even from some constitutional scholars that this is too much of a rush that it is irresponsible well to that criticism democrats have responded that there is this upcoming u.s. presidential election which is in less than a year and because the very accusations that faces is that he is corrupting those elections by inviting foreign interference in them democrats say that's why he must be impeached before those elections can take place bus necessitating a quick pace that we are seeing unfolding course republicans see a problem with that they say 1st of all that the president has not committed impeachable offenses they said there's been no clear evidence of a nefarious motive even on the phone call itself and they're accusing democrats of pushing for it because in their words of this obsession the democrats have had
7:37 pm
since day one of trump taking office and trying to undo this duly elected leader of a country and republicans are arguing against this impeachment in general and saying that the american people should have their say whether or not trump remains in office only at the ballot box next november and heidi also even just trying to slow it seems sort of proceedings down today you a lot of motions called for and and even the fight go back to what doug collins the ranking member said earlier that the whip. this was impugning the president and speaking to the motives and character of the president which i mean that's kind of what this is all about isn't it. trite and you know what else this is all about this is political theater unfolding before our eyes and not only is the president up for re-election coming november 5th some of the senators are as well and the reality is president trump remains a very popular president among his republican base in this country he the president has himself cited polling numbers of
7:38 pm
a 95 percent approval rating among those republican voters and so what the senators who are also are is rather with these house of representative members who are also in republican districts what they know is in a way they're playing to the audience of the president who we know has been watching and tweeting and they're also playing to those potential republican voter risks who will also decide whether these republican members of the house are up for reelection and whether they are adequately defending the president indows voters' eyes and in court of course in the president's eyes himself. on capitol hill thank you and stick around going to recess is in session but we may yet come back to you we'll check in though at the white house in the meantime though his kambli how could a white house correspondent hi kimberly i mean we are not in a position today where we're necessarily learning anything new however when the whole taste is presented as it is today how does the president come out of that looking and how has he responded through his favorite medium today.
7:39 pm
yeah well we did have some question about whether or not the president would weigh in from the sidelines and he has not disappointed with that regard now while we didn't see the level of what some would call witness intimidation or tampering as we saw during the testimony of marie yvonne of it the former u.s. ambassador to ukraine that happened in the middle of last month during her testimony the president tweeting well she was speaking we have seen the president weighing in mostly repeating much of what we've heard from him in the past and that is that he believes this is a witch hunt that this is also something that comes down to one phone call he said read the transcript he also pointed out a graph from one of the local or rather news networks here in the united states pointing out that this was the best economy in a very long time in the united states saying best economy ever it's not clear if
7:40 pm
the u.s. president is watching these directly but he certainly is aware that they're going on and has been responding were whether this makes the president look good or bad really comes down to whether you're a democrat or republican in the united states as the polling has mentioned this is a deeply divided country and in fact what we're talking polling the republican chair has tweeted out that she believes this is backfiring on the democrats that the polling in some of those key swing states that helped the president win back in 2016 that many are not buying some of the democrats' argument so the president could make the case that this is helping him but it really comes down to personal interpretation thanks for that kimberly how is white house correspondent. we've got chris adelson also with us in our washington studio he's an assistant professor of government at the american university's school of public affairs whilst we wait i think we've still got about 7 or 8 minutes left on recess so
7:41 pm
a good chance to talk to you then chris i know it's been a you know a lot to listen to and a lot to take in today but what's your feelings out of what we've heard today when it is all presented together in this fashion or i think it's important to keep the big picture in mind we know what's going to happen with you know close to certainty one can never predict the future a certainty but there is no evidence other than that the following will happen and there is evidence of fine weapon the house will impeach along partisan lines. the senate will not remove the president from office and he will be free to continue what's been documented as mr goldman said the close of his statement this is an ongoing attempt and the president has made that clear publicly he's publicly called on ukraine to interfere in the action his behalf publicly called on china to do the same and i respect him to take other efforts to continue to find ways to help him gain reelection so that's a very dangerous situation for the country are our system is really failing here
7:42 pm
because congress is not taking the action that it can and should to remove the president from office based on these very serious allegations and so what is being achieved then i think it's a really good point you make the fact that and i've reminded viewers of this for a long time that yes with a republican controlled senate he is very very unlikely to be removed from office what does this whole process achieve does it help the democrats weaken him in an election year or does it actually just strengthen his base in an election year. well with this republican senate he's very unlikely to root for office it's important make that point in a functioning government for instance in 1904 when president nixon was forced to resign from office the republicans made clear to him if you stay we will remove you it's not just any republican senate it's this republican senate republican senate that has made clear it is with the president no matter what so as to the point of
7:43 pm
these hearings i don't see it mainly from a political perspective i think it's just essential when the president makes clear publicly and much of this the witnesses keep saying that for the democrats makes keep saying this is much this is undisputed and that's correct we know the president's grants that the president said read the transcript the transcript is very bad for him it doesn't help him and he's publicly called in other countries to help so it to me it's not a political decision it's a constitutional necessity if we have a functioning democratic system with free and fair elections the president cannot be allowed to sabotage those elections the democrats have no choice how that plays out politically i don't know james madison said in the federalist papers that the people are the primary check in government power there will be an election the republicans are you know have said this should be decided by the people it will be because republicans in the senate there's no evidence right now anyways that they will take any action so the people decide and what the people are going to decide is whether we have a functioning constitutional republic with free and fair elections it's
7:44 pm
a very dramatic moment for the country. gerry not the chairman of the committee and then daniel goleman later the democratically that both made a point about the president's personal lawyer rudy giuliani who has been in ukraine pretty much trying to dig up more dirt and the president's been saying all a hope he finds something more. i mean what does that represent is that i mean all this evidence is talking about stuff which is already happened but actually possibly it's all still going on right now. it is going on right now on your i think you bring it up it's hard to keep track of all the details here but that's a particularly astounding $11.00 is no longer surprised anymore by what comes up but one can still be shocked and we there are reports that rudy giuliani was in ukraine as you said just last week continuing this effort to get ukraine to do what was the president was trying to get them to do to say something that will undermine joe biden in fact this is so bad that apparently there are reports that attorney general barra has said that this is not helping the president that rudy giuliani is
7:45 pm
not helping the president what it is though is it's really brazen i think what the president and mr giuliani are doing is they're basically saying we're going to do this is anyone going to stop us and the answer so far is no thinking about the republican argument as well we heard steve cost of a lawyer saying this before talking about the democrats basically being obsessed with impeachment bringing out the comments in the past of congresswoman. richard it to me but was i was going to say a lot of it is risky to sleep and the idea that well if we don't have the president then he'll just get reelected is that an effective strategy by turning this into a you're trying to get rid of the elected president rather than the president might have done something wrong. to me it seems like a distraction just as your correspondent for the president is tweeting today that the economy is great it's sort of like if my wife accused me of having an extramarital affair and i said but i'm making a lot of money it's
7:46 pm
a non sequitur so you know whether there will be whether this is an effort to overturn an election or whether the economy's doing great is beside the point the question is did the president betray the country i'm sorry to use such dramatic terms at it's hard to use anything else by trying to use his office to pressure a foreign country to help him politically that's the central question one can tell you know when you don't have a substantive response i think you turn to other things to try to distract whether it's you know the economy's doing greed or democrats just want to undermine this president that's not really the issue. you called it a very dramatic time for the united states it certainly is what's your feelings on what it's actually doing to the public because kimberly how could a white house correspondent made the the very potent point that it really just comes down to who you vote for if you're republican or democrat it feels like the public's views are not necessarily going to change just because people are so
7:47 pm
entrenched on their sides of the political divide. i suspect that's right i'm not an expert in those issues so i can do is look at polls and election results i'm not seeing anything that's changed now that's not necessarily great news for the president he's been consistently unpopular even on election day 2016 he won 40 percent 46 percent of the vote not a majority our system allows somebody to become president without winning a majority or even a plurality of the vote and since the election his approval ratings have been very consistently in the low forty's 4142 percent sometimes a high thirty's sometimes as high as 43 percent to my knowledge never above 44 percent so again because of our system in the electoral college he can win reelection without being popular but people who like the president are with him no matter what people who don't like him are really not with him so. you know that doesn't guarantee anything i think i'd suggest is probably an election that looks
7:48 pm
a lot like 2016 a very close election that the president could win but he might not so i'm not sure it's necessarily great news for the president but it's it's also not great news for people to want to see him lose it it suggests to me that probably will see something similar to 2016 chris adelson thank you so much for your time and your patience with us i'm sure we'll talk to you again a little bit later on the 15 minutes are up recess is over and we do start to see some of the committee members returning to the chamber whilst we wait for proceedings to restart we'll go back to heidi to castro on capitol hill heidi who's coming up next. i'm also actually we're going to be hearing again from the republican counsel steve castor in this next bit of the hearing what he'll say differently now from what he has already said of the opening statements and now he's going to focus more and the republicans defense against the accusations of
7:49 pm
this ukraine scheme and it's interesting we saw from democrats leading up to the. sort of. an expectation of what republicans might say are its defects trump that this aid the security a $400000000.00 from the u.s. team was eventually released well democrats already countered that saying that it wasn't released though until congress caught wind that there was there was this whistleblower report about trump's call with selenski another likely point of defense from republicans would be that trump has been anti-corruption that this was his motivation in asking for the investigation into his political rival joe biden well democrats have also counter that saying that for this phone call with between trump and zelinsky trump was given talking points that focused on anti corruption in general and in fact he didn't go into any of that was the testimony from
7:50 pm
previous witnesses and including the very person who put together those talking points saying the president didn't use one of them that was focused on ukrainian anti corruption also republicans have said have said that there is no crime of there's no victim and they have repeatedly pointed out to the president of of ukraine a lot of there's a linsky saying that he never felt pressure from trump and that he's not the one that's you know saying that he was victimized and trump himself is also denying that there was any pressure however democrats have also said to that that there was quietly concerns expressed by lower level ukrainian officials which was documented at the time in contemporaneous e-mails and texts in which ukraine just quietly asked about that money that was being withheld in total it was withheld about $55.00 days before it was ultimately released and finally president trump and his republican defenders have said that he himself has denied that there was ever
7:51 pm
a quid pro quo. explicit exchange saying. me these investigations into political opponents and only then will i give you what you want which was that white house meeting with trump for president alinsky and the money for ukraine and trump did say on a phone call with ambassador gordon song lynn who was sort of the go between person between him and ukraine on this he said to some that there was no quid pro quo however the democrats say it doesn't have to be explicit to count as quid pro quo and in fact that the conversation in which trump denied a quid pro quo to someone happened immediately after press reports erupted in the united states that brought all of this ukrainian scheme to light and in fact right after trump deny the quid pro quo he went on to say that he still wanted the lewinsky to do what he asked get on a public box and announce these investigations that ultimately served only one
7:52 pm
purpose which in the democrats' ours was to damage the reelection damage the campaign of his reelection opponents and help the president politically in order to win re-election a year from now and else does to day high the. broadly speaking what happens the only sort of time limit here is a very vague before christmas. yes christmas is kind of a hard deadline here because today is the only public hearing that the judiciary committee has so far announced for this week perhaps it's the last one before these articles of impeachment are drafted that is the next major step these are basically the formal political charges that the president will have to that will be accused of during his upcoming senate trial so these articles of impeachment likely to be drafted even by the end of this week if not the beginning of next week that would
7:53 pm
then pass out of the judiciary committee for the full house to vote on before the christmas break. so we're looking at. a week from this friday as that hard that line to have these articles of impeachment drafted and to have trial of this fully impeached that's what the ultimate full house floor vote would be about yes or no for trump to be impeached it's it's important to remind our viewers i know we've been talking pietschmann seems at nazia for a few months now but in fact trump is not formally impeached until that final house floor vote which will come before christmas time ok on have full hill thank you very much still waiting for everyone to return from the recess. in the main time maybe will actually go back over well it's been a good 2 hours or so and listen to some of what was said from the legal team 1st of all the lawyer representing the democrats mary. he was the 1st to speak and really
7:54 pm
did set the tone for the whole proceeding president trump did what a president of our nation is not allowed to do it is why last week the constitutional scholar professor michael gary hart said if what we're talking about is not impeachable then nothing is impeachable president trump's actions are impeachable offenses they threaten all the of law they threaten our institutions and as james madison warned us they threaten our republic and we also heard from the counsel for the democrats daniel goleman who calls trump a clear and present danger. 2 days ago president trump stated publicly that he hopes that his personal attorney rudy giuliani has taken his seat again now kimberly we will be back with you later of course keeping an eye on how president trump reacts to all of this in fact so far he has been tweeting the likes of read
7:55 pm
the transcript and also talking about the current state of the economy. sort of diversionary tactic almost away from what is happening on capitol hill so what we're hearing today a reminder that this is the house judiciary committee it is essentially the arguments being put forward by the legal teams of both sides the republicans and the democrats the democrats of course the ones coming up with their own report a 300 page report which has been summarized by their legal team today as they try to put forward the case for impeachment and as our guest was telling us earlier it is highly likely that this will go to the house floor and that the president will be impeached when the time comes i did correspondent telling us that that is likely to come before christmas the democrats trying to push that through before christmas so that's jerry nadler on screen at the moment who he was talking about rudy giuliani's visits to ukraine last week saying it was
7:56 pm
a pattern of conduct that represents a continuing risk to the united states steve castor the republican lawyer says the democrats are just obsessed with impeachment and they say that if we don't in page then president trump would simply be reelected. taking a little while to get going in fact this recess there was and was contentious over whether the recess would even be taken because the republicans claim that the democrats would want to simply hold press conferences in the hallways outside to push their case further jerry nadler those said we're taking a recess because they've been going for a good 2 or 2 and a half hours already and they would be more to come possibly another 2 hours. i can't speak for that long so i'm going to bring in crude saddles that again whilst we wait for jerry nadler to study again it's one of those times chris where you see them come on screen anything while this is going to happen and it hasn't so my apologies when i do inevitably interrupt you when terry now that speaking but tell
7:57 pm
us more about what you think of what you've seen today and as it's been it's been a very intense sort of hearing today it has mainly what i've seen is as you said at the beginning not really anything new but the fact that it's not new doesn't mean it's not stunning we've heard a summary of a scheme by the president and as advisors to undermine an election by using the power of his office to pressure a foreign country to sabotage the u.s. election and we've seen republicans not with any substantive response as you said i think that's the right way to say it is or diversionary tactics both by the republicans in the committee and the president sorry. you're not really not there's not a whole can you sort of going back to where you going to go back to the house judiciary committee we'll talk to you get a 5 out the evidence gathered during our. impeachment inquiry at the outset let me say that the evidence does not support the allegations that my democrat colleagues
7:58 pm
have made and i don't believe the evidence leads to the conclusions they suggest i'm hopeful to add some important perspective and context to the facts under discussion today. the chief allegation that the democrats impeachment inquiry has been trying to assess.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on