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tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  January 18, 2018 11:00pm-12:00am PST

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the situation is taking too long and it's very complicated but that's the way d.c. works right now. thank you for being with us, watching this in real time. don't forget, i will be there with allison tomorrow morning on "new day" starting at 6:00 a.m. "cnn tonight" with don lemon, the man, starts right now. here's the breaking news. the house passes a short-term bill to avoid a government shutdown for now. the senate is a very different story. this is "cnn tonight." i am don lemon. the clock is ticking. you see it right there on the right of your screen. and it all comes down to what the senate does. if they don't pass this bill, the federal government will shut down in a little under 26 hours. but remember, this is a bill that simply kicks the can down the road, funding the government only until february 16th, when this whole thing could start all over again. so here's where we stand right now. senate republicans desperately
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trying to find a way to get the 60 votes they need to pass the bill. but without some democrats voting yes it's just not going to happen. so here we are. let's get right now to our man on capitol hill earning his pay this week and doing a great job, senate congressional correspondent phil mattingly. so phil, the house voted to avoid a shutdown but the big question now is what's happening in the senate? what's the latest? >> reporter: the partisan battle lines are officially being drawn. there is no resolution in the near term. there is no real possibility for a pathway forward as things currently stand, don. just to give you a taste of what's happened in the last 30 minutes, senate majority leader mitch mcconnell brought up the house-passed bill, said he wanted a vote now with a simple majority threshold. senate democratic leader chuck schumer objected. senator chuck schumer said he wanted to have a 60-vote threshold he knew was going to fail on that bill to shut it down. senate majority leader mcconnell objected. we basically are at the point right now where each side knows there's no clear pathway forward
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in the senate. senate majority leader mcconnell can't get 60 votes right now for what the house passed. senator schumer knows there's no chance at least at the moment that senate majority leader mcconnell is going to move off his current position that the house-passed bill is the only thing he's willing to move forward. where does leave it us? you nailed it best with the timeline we have left. 26 hours. there will be no more votes tonight. there will be a vote everybody knows is going to fail tomorrow morning. and then this is like the shruggy emoticon moment basically. i've talked to senate republican aides, i've talked to senate democratic aides. nobody knows exactly what's going to happen next. basically, everybody is digging in. everybody is spoiling for a fight. democrats believe this is their moment to have that fight on daca. they recognize there's a severe trust deficit with the white house, with senate republicans, and republicans are saying we've got a short-term funding bill, we can keep the negotiations going, just join us. so to kind of sum up everything right now, we are absolutely at this point headed to a
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government shutdown. there is no resolution currently in sight. and whether or not the two parties, the four leaders, the white house will actually get into a room and try to hash something out, that, don, still remains a very open question. >> you're right. the shruggy emoticon moment, you're exactly right. eh, who knows? no one knows at this point. phil, thank you very much. i appreciate that. i want to bring in now cnn senior white house correspondent that is jeff zeleny. jeff, thank you so much for joining us. what is the white house position on all of this? they're thinking a tweet might solve everything? >> reporter: well, don, a tweet will certainly not solve everything but you can expect some tweets will likely be coming in the morning. but watt tweet -- the white house hopes to send out about tomorrow night at this time if the senate passes something. what the white house was saying earlier is they still are hopeful this can be resolved and if the senate would happen to vote and approve some type of stopgap measure the president could send out a tweet or a simple old-fashioned e-mail announcement as others have done
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saying that he will sign this bill at some point over the weekend. so they are hoping they can -- if there is a shutdown to minimize the disruptions here in the service of the federal government. but as phil was just reporting, it is absolutely unclear. that tweet will not come if the senate does not vote on this. so the question tomorrow is how will the president engage on this? will he engage with chuck schumer? will he call his old friend from new york, or at least acquaintance, and try to get him in a room and deal with this? are there the democrats who are from red states like north dakota, indiana, west virginia who are up in this midterm election year? will they move on this? so a lot of moving parts in the next 26 hours or so almost here. but as phil was saying, no certain end to this. and the white house is a little bit of a bystander at this point of this because they've lost a lot of credibility with those senate democrats. the question here is both sides realize the politics is not good
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for either of them. so senate democrats are certainly holding fast on this. we'll see what a day brings. oftentimes friday in washington on capitol hill something happens and the logjam breaks here. but there's no clear path at this point. as of now the president scheduled to fly down to mar-a-lago tomorrow evening. he has this big one-year anniversary with the celebration, of his inauguration plan. if there's a government shutdown will he go? the white house has not answered that tonight. >> speaking of tweets, thank you very much, i appreciate that, jeff. tweet from the president causing a lot of consternation earlier in the day. we'll talk about that. let's bring in nia malika henderson, senior political reporter. chris cillizza cnn politics editor at large and kirsten powers cnn political analyst. good to have all of you on. house scrambling to get the votes and they got it done. on the other side the senate democrats holding firm against this cr, this continuing resolution. we're going to talk blame game
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in just a second. but what is the way forward here? >> shruggy emoji's a good way to put it. look, i think there's not an obvious way that this house bill when they put it up for cloture, meaning it's got to get 60 votes tomorrow morning, i see no way that that happens. you've got -- >> it sounds like every expert we have on, all of our political folks here, are at a loss for words. you guys who do talking for a living, you're at a loss for words. like we don't know. >> i mean, look, i would say i think because of the relative unpredictability of sort of what happens if the government shuts down in terms of where the politics go, my guess is there's a very short-term continuing resolution, like a week, maybe less. but i see no way that this all the way to february 16th thing happens. there's no way. you've got rand paul against it,
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lindsey graham against it. you're talking about 12 democrats would be needed to cross the aisle. it's just not happening. so basically, we're going to have this -- this happens a lot in the senate. we're going to have this process that we all know how it ends and that's going to be with cloture failing and then it's going to be a where do we go next. my guess is the next will be a short-term continuing resolution. but i'm not convinced that that is a definite either, don. >> let me ask you this, and i just want to get everyone's opinion quickly. do you see the government shutting down or do you see them reaching an agreement? chris. >> 60-40 reach an agreement. >> what do you think, nia? >> 50-50. that's sort of a cowardly -- >> you're the shruggy emoji. >> come on, nia. >> the big surprise here, chris talking about unpredictability -- >> before you -- let me just say, kirsten, what do you think? >> i think it's -- if i had to guess there would maybe be a brief shutdown. but i don't think -- maybe over the weekend kind of thing and
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they come back would be my guess. >> nia, go on. >> the surprise here is that the democrats seem to be sticking together here. john tester was just on with cuomo. this is a guy from montana, a state that donald trump won by 20 points, and he is voting against this saying this is not something he can support and he feels like the republican leadership needs to get it together and they can't just be doing these quick fix measures. and the fact that democrats can have him still in their corner and looking at a government shutdown essentially over daca and any number of things is a pretty surprising thing at this point. so that's why -- and i think another thing starts to kick in too. donald trump is set to not only celebrate his anniversary of his inauguration but he's also got to deliver a state of the union. right? on january -- how do you give a state of the union if the government is going to shut down? >> the state of our union is -- >> shut down. yeah. so we'll see.
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>> kirsten, you said you see a short shutdown, like a day or so? is that what you said? >> maybe over the weekend. i just don't see how they avoid a shutdown. the democrats are very dug in on this and you already have a couple republicans who say they're not going to vote for it. so where do the numbers come from? unless the republicans completely change their plan, which they seem also pretty dug in on this idea of the schumer shutdown. they're really out there with their talking points. so they're trying to shift the blame to the democrats. and we can have a separate conversation about whether that's fair or not. >> and we will. >> but i just don't see unless something magically happens by tomorrow night, i don't really understand how they're going to avoid a shutdown. >> so you don't think they can get the 60 votes? >> no. i don't see it right now. unless somebody changes their position. >> let me ask you about this, kirsten. the president dropped -- because we mentioned the tweet, right? and i asked jeff zeleny, it can all change with a tweet. but this morning he dropped this off-message tweet and essentially had to be schooled by speaker paul ryan for 90 minutes.
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he lobbed a huge grenade into the whole thing, right? >> yeah. well, look, i don't think he's been particularly helpful to the republicans in this process. and it's because of his lack of interest in policy and the details. you would think he would have a little humility about that. it's not something he's particularly knowledgeable about. and we see this across the board. but instead he puts himself out there in the middle of these fights saying things that i think make things very difficult for the republicans. >> does he know what's going on? >> you know, he seems to want to have a lot of executive time, right? at this point. watching tv, then tweeting in response to what he sees on tv. this idea that he's a great negotiator or you know, he can close a deal. and you saw lindsey graham trying to appeal to his ego that way, right? basically saying come on, donald trump, you're the only one who can close this deal. but he seems largely unengaged at this point.
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>> kristen, a similar thing happened with taxes. >> yeah. the issue here with -- and by the way, the health care repeal attempt too. he's not someone -- he's a unique combination in that he both doesn't know all that much about policy and he's uniquely incurious about what he doesn't know. no one goes into the presidency knowing everything about every issue, right? but most of them read and sort of try to bone up on it. i think his belief is i know what i need to know, everybody said i didn't know enough to be elected president and i won. you can never get away from -- that's why he continues to talk about it. he talked about it in pennsylvania today. you can never get away from for donald trump that formative experience of everyone said i was going to lose the presidency and i won. and that affirms -- i think he takes a lot of wrong lessons from that victory of sort of why he won. and one of them is i don't need to know anything other than what i know, sort of a closed universe. and as a result you get things like this where he just kind of
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blunders into it because he doesn't know -- >> if i got something and everybody's expecting me not to, that would make me bone up and study more just to prove, i got this, let me show you. >> not if you were convinced that anyone who criticized you had an agenda because they hated you, that it was not legitimate criticism. and that's what he believes. >> well, the best way to prove that wrong is -- >> it's not right but that's what he believes. >> kirsten mentioned we're going to talk about the blame game. so then of course the blame game, here's the president. >> i really believe the democrats want a shutdown to get off the subject of the tax cuts because they've worked so well. >> i keep asking this. republicans control the house, they control the senate and the white house. why is he talking about tax cuts, kirsten? what is that? >> i don't know. you want me to explain it? i can't explain it. but i do think -- i'm a little torn on the blame game thing because i do think it's true, the people who usually get blamed are the people who are in
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control. that's just the way that it works. >> who are in control, you said. >> yeah. in control of the government. and in this case the republicans is in control of everything. the only place i'd say i'm a little unsure about that is basically the problem is what the republicans are offering is basically a continuing resolution that also has something the democrats like. granted it's not the permanent fix that they like but it is still an extension of a program that they support. and you know, should continuing resolutions be used as vehicles to get your policy preferences in? i'm not sure about that. i certainly was very critical of republicans when they did it with barack obama in terms of trying to take things out that were supportive of obamacare. i think ultimately probably the republicans will win -- or will lose the fight because they're in control. but i also think they have a fair point that i don't know that the democrats have a right to hold this up because they want an unrelated program to be included in it. >> let's talk about the house democratic leader, nia, nancy pelosi.
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had in-some choice words about including chip as a bargaining tool. watch this. >> this is like giving you a bowl of doggie doo, put a cherry on top and call it a chocolate sunday. this is nothing. >> that's quite an image. >> yeah, no, i wish just let's stay away from that. but yeah, this whole idea of chip. and republicans obviously thought democrats, you vote against chip at your peril. but democrats come back and say they've been trying to push chip basically since the fall when it essentially ran out -- >> despite the doggie doo, is she right? >> in terms of -- her argument is essentially they're only giving chip six years and she wants it to be ten years, which is what other democrats want. and apparently, if you give ten years it saves more money than the six years. so that's what she's saying. in terms of chip. but listen, i think democrats
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have at least in their favor that this is what their base wants. in the same way that in 2013 that is what the gop base wanted too. they wanted republicans to stand up to the democratic president. and guess what happened in 2014. there was a blowout for democrats after republicans shut the government down. republicans did really well in 2014, and it was a referendum in 2014 on obama. and i think that's what democrats are hoping, that this is going to be some sort of momentum and generate obviously attention and enthusiasm among their base, and they already have the enthusiasm much more than republicans do. >> kirsten, i know you want to get in. oh, no, it's chris. let me ask you before you respond, but quickly if you can, are voters going to remember this do you think by the time the mid-terms come? >> again, two quick things. one, we're overthinking the shutdown. republicans control everything. people do not follow this as closely as we do. i think that's a very simple argument for democrats to make.
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that's one. two, will they remember? i think nia's right, the democratic base will remember. and it's already, you've already seen lots of results, not just polls but you've seen the alabama special election, virginia governor's race. 34 state legislative seats in the country going from republican to democratic since 2017. largely the result of a democratic enthusiasm edge. so yeah, i don't know that it changes all that much. this is still going to be a referendum in november on donald trump. but i actually think standing up and fighting, even if it means the government closing to nia's point probably plays well with a democratic base who you can't be too anti-trump for the democratic base. >> that's what i was thinking. that's sort of what the base, the democratic base wants for democrats, or lawmakers to fight donald trump and if they don't they'll remember that more than a government shutdown. thank you very much. appreciate all of you. when we come back, much more on the breaking news.
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the house passes a bill to keep the government run forget a month. but the shutdown threat is far from over. we're going to look at some of the major road blocks which stand in the way of a deal. you won't see these folks at the post office. they have businesses to run. they have passions to pursue. how do they avoid trips to the post office? mail letters, ship packages, all the services of the post office right on your computer. get a 4 week trial, plus $100 in extras including postage and a digital scale. go to and never go to the post office again.
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breaking news. the house passes a bill to fund the federal government for the next month. the vote, 230-197. but with the bill's chances in the senate bleak, the shutdown still remains a major threat. here to discuss, david axelrod, cnn's senior political commentator and a former senior adviser to president obama. and mark mckinnon, a former adviser to george w. bush and john mccain and the executive producer of showtime's "the circus." good evening, gentlemen. mr. mckinnon, you first. so we're careening toward a government shutdown possibly. does it benefit anyone, republicans, democrats, the president? >> no. i mean voters generally take it out on congress in general. although in all the government shutdowns we've had in the last 20 years or so have all been blamed on republicans.
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and even in those circumstances they didn't have all three branches of government which they do now. so i think there's a high likelihood that most people will blame the republicans because they perceive that they are in power, not just perceive but they are. and so i don't see why -- and i think that's why democrats may push this over the limit because historically they blame republicans and now with holding all three branches of government there's a good chance they'll blame republicans. >> it seems like republicans, david, are telling the american people there cannot be funding for chip and the dream act at the same time. what's the truth here? >> well, the truth here is you're dealing with a rubik's cube, don. you know, the freedom caucus which has the republican caucus in the house by the short hairs won't agree to the kind of compromise that the senate bipartisan group came up with on daca. the senate needs -- in order to pass anything through the senate, you need some democratic
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votes. and it's very hard to square those things. so you've got this rubik's cube. and then you've got the president, who's approaching this rubik's cube with all the sophistication of a tic tac toe player and sort of blundering into the middle of this and complicating the situation as he has for the last ten days. and so you know, you've got a mess on your hands. and it really -- there is -- i think even though i agree with the fact that republicans will bear responsibility for this because they are the governing party, they run all the branches, and therefore it's likely to spill onto them, i'm sure there's a little bit of trepidation on everyone's part because the whole thing looks like a bloody mess and there's going to be a lot of just consternation among americans if the government shuts down. >> i think you wanted to say something, mark. looks like it, i should say. did you want to say something? >> i want to say in a larger context, don, one thing that's interesting is when the government shuts down lots of
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personnel don't get paid. but you know who does get paid? members of congress. that's in the 27th amendment. which i think we should change. but that just goes to a larger problem, which is we have these continuing resolutions because congress won't do its main job, which is to pass a judgment. a budget is a blueprint for the government to work. and it's been months since the house kicked over something to the senate. that's why i supported with the organization no labels a measure called no budget no pay, which means if the congress doesn't pass a budget they don't get paid. and i think that would go a long way toward eliminating these stopgap measures that we keep having over and over and over again. >> listen, i want to ask, politico is reporting, david, about the president's tv habits may be partly to blame because he sent out this morning the tweet not necessarily understanding what was going on. that's according to two white house aides. that's before the president shot off that tweet. the ryan deal was being discussed on "fox & friends." is executive time, you know, quote unquote, is that getting in the way of policy here?
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>> well, look, the absence of any real study of materials -- the president that i worked for, the president mark worked for did their homework and they understood the fundamentals of what they were dealing with. if you get your first morning briefing from "fox & friends," that can lead to a lot of disastrous results. remember, it was just last week that the president screwed up on a fisa vote in the house because of something he saw on tv and ended up running -- tweeting something that was completely counter to the position that his administration and the republican leadership had taken. so yeah, i mean, there are consequences to a president who does not do his homework, who watches television all day and tweets all day. and i don't think -- that's not a partisan point. that's an observation from someone who has worked with a president and understands how complex the job is and how much work you actually have to put into it to make intelligent decisions.
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and we're beginning to pay a big price for that. >> all right. i want both of you to stay with me. much more ahead. when we come back, in the middle of all this a source telling cnn that the president is furious with his chief of staff after john kelly said his boss was uninformed. take a guess how that went over. we'll discuss. next. ♪ i thought i was managing my moderate to severe crohn's disease. then i realized something was missing... me. my symptoms were keeping me from being there. so, i talked to my doctor and learned humira is for people who still have symptoms of crohn's disease after trying other medications. and the majority of people on humira saw significant symptom relief and many achieved remission in as little as 4 weeks. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers,
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in the trump white house tonight a top aide to the president in his crosshairs over comments about the border wall. back with me now david axelrod and mark mckinnon. mark, cnn's reporting that president trump was, quote, furious after chief of staff john kelly told fox news that his views on immigration had evolved but the president put on a good public face. watch this. >> he's great. i think he's doing a great job. i think general kelly's done a really great job. he is a very special guy. >> the president made sure to tell his followers on twitter that his views hadn't changed on
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the wall. why do you think kelly spoke out, mark? >> well, because it's the truth and it's obvious to anybody. in fact it's obvious even if you look at the tape of donald trump himself. you go back and look at what he first said about the wall, it was going to be a big beautiful wall, it was going to be ten feet higher than whatever he said originally, and over time reality has set in and it's not going to cost as much, it's not going to be as extensive, there's going to be transparency, rivers, there's going mountains, which is what we all knew from the very beginning. so john kelly was just saying what was obviously to everybody, except maybe some of trump's base. but i think it's just telling the truth. and by the way, most people give john kelly very high marks. and so i think he was just doing what a good citizen would do, which is just tell the truth. >> but mark, what you said about the rivers and the mountains, everyone said that from the beginning. the president said today that i've said that, i've been saying that for three years. he has not been saying that for three years. >> i know. >> he's been saying a big beautiful wall with a big beautiful door and all of a sudden -- and he says everybody
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knows, it everybody knows it. >> and there's plenty of tape to support just what you're saying, don. you know, the signals have been so mixed starting with the daca meeting and that he would sign anything. next thing we're going to get is that mexico's going to pay for the children's health insurance program. that will be the next thing. >> all right. david, this is from dana bash's interview with senator lindsey graham. she asked him if he thinks the president is racist. he urged her to do it. >> yes, he did. >> you could be the pope and criticize him, it doesn't matter. he'll go after the pope. you could be putin and say nice things and he'll like you. here's what i've found. he's a street fighter. it's not the color of your skin that matters. it's not the content of your character. it's whether or not you show him respect and like him. >> so before that, though, usually people don't want to talk about this. and he said to her, why don't you ask me if he's a racist. why don't you ask me the racist question. so he wanted to answer that question. then he responded by saying, you know, it doesn't matter, as long as you like him or compliment him. he's a street fighter, not a racist.
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what do you think of that? >> yeah, i listened to that earlier, the full -- i think the full thing was you could be, you know, black as coal or white as snow or whatever. and he'll -- look, i think part of what he said was absolutely right in that this president responds like a child to. >> flattery. >> signs of flattery. and he responds angrily to any kind of criticism. and we've seen that over time. the world has seen it. world leaders have seen it. they've all sort of decided how to play him in this context. so lindsey graham was absolutely right about that. does that mean that the president doesn't have attitudes about race that, you know, that animate him? i don't know how you explain the history of birtherism. that had nothing to do with people being nice to him or not nice to him. or the housing problem back in
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the '70s and so on. so there are two separate issues. does he have those attitudes? yes. but is he subject to flattery and will he respond to anyone who flatters him? clearly he will. >> yeah. mark, i've got a question for you later but i'm going pose this one to david again. i'm going to ask about some new "wall street journal" reporting about the stormy daniels story. president trump's attorney michael cohen reportedly used a private delaware company and pseudonyms to pay the former film star $130,000. it took place just before the presidential election in october of 2016. is team trump and the white house hiding something here, david? >> well, i don't know. maybe he knew that the tax bill would treat this kind of entity with great benefits and wanted to get in early, michael cohen, by creating this entity in delaware. look, it's obvious what happened. they wanted to make sure that this story didn't come out before the election.
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it's -- talk about unflattering. it's an unflattering story. and they made a payoff here. it's not clear where the money came from for this payoff. but that's what happened. and this is an interesting tidbit, though, that they went to the lengths of creating an entity in delaware as a pass-through for this payoff. so that you know, i think speaks to the degree to which they wanted to keep this whole thing way off the radar screen. >> mark, i really want to ask you about your piece in the daily beast where you talk about the dramatic story of a dreamer who unlike many of the kids in limbo was able to become a u.s. citizen. what the american dream can be. >> so often we don't think of immigrants in terms of actual people and their stories and their narrative, and some of them have amazing stories like angie pinero de jollos hart, she was born in moterrey, mexico, she was kidnapped and her mother was kidnapped and went through extraordinary circumstances, was freed after 37 days, and her mother left an abusive husband
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who was the cause of all this who took her to electroshock therapy and did all sorts of horrible things to her to try to erase her memory of why she hated him. so they fled to austin, texas where she got a ph.d. over 11 years to maintain her visa status so that her daughter could -- she and her two daughters could stay in austin, texas. and then one month before angie would have been a dreamer her mother got a green card. so effectively she's a dreamer. just by chance and circumstance of timing she missed that window. but the point is that she graduated from u.t. in three years, she went to work for google, then dell, now works for gm. she wants to run for governor in 15 or 20 years and be the first mexican-born governor of texas. so it's an american story. it's an american story that starts in monterrey. and i think she's just a great
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example of the kind of spirit that most immigrants bring to this country and we kind of lose that in the larger debate, i think. >> don, can i just say everybody should read that story. super powerful. and there are many, many other compelling stories like this which are going to be told if there is a solution to this daca standoff. and i don't think the white house wants that and republicans shouldn't want that either because these stories say everything. >> it's mark mckinnon's piece in the daily beast today. thank you very much, gentlemen. see you next time. when we come back, transcripts just released today of closed door testimony of the co-founder of the firm behind the infamous trump dossier and he is making some pretty serious allegations. we do whatever it takes to fight cancer.
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fusion gps co-founder glenn simpson, whose firm paid for the infamous trump russia dossier making some serious accusations about the trump organization in his testimony to the house intel committee. joining me now with more is cnn's chief national security correspondent mr. jim sciutto. jim, good evening to you. after the infamous bipartisan
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vote, the unanimous bipartisan vote, the house intel committee has released the transcripts from this fusion gps co-founder glenn simpson's testimony. what can you tell us? what do you know? >> there are a number of headlines, i think a couple big ones. one is that the ranking democrat on the intelligence committee adam schiff focused on in a statement tonight, and that is glenn simpson talking about allegations, and we should make it clear, allegations, there's no hard evidence of this, but allegations that trump organization was involved in money laundering with russians. and the point that schiff made is isn't that interesting in effect because that's the same thing that steve bannon said in michael wolff's book. he mentioned the possibility of money laundering. again, under questioning. he said he didn't have the evidence but signs, suspicions, et cetera. republicans in questioning by looking at this transcript, don, pushed back hard. they said okay, that's an allegation. what proof, mr. simpson, do you have of this?
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to which he answered he doesn't have the proof but adam schiff's answer to that is why won't my republican colleagues let us, let me, let the committee of the house intelligence committee look into these as part of its russia investigation? and just the way that committee is set up it's got a big advantage to the republicans in terms of resources, the chairmanship, et cetera. that's a pathway that the house investigation at least will not go down. now, robert mueller's investigation of course a different story. >> what more do you -- what do we know about robert mueller? what is he looking into these allegations about? >> there are indications he's at least looking into financial entanglements involving the trump organization. for instance, we know the documents, some of the documents that trump and others have given to mueller under request have included financial documents. not going back 100 years of trump. a few years, but really just in a year or two, particularly during the time of the campaign. we don't know that that's going
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to lead into anything criminal but at least it's a path of inquiry. and under that could fall an investigation of money laundering. the other point i would note about this testimony, don, is this. there's been a lot of attention on this dossier compiled by the former british agent. of course glenn simpson, fusion gps, was the firm that paid for that dossier. but he made the point in the testimony, one of the central allegations of the dossier was that there was a web of connections and communications between people in the trump campaign and russians during the campaign prior to the election that were suspicious and indicated the possibility of a conspiracy and that there was talk of sharing damaging information, helping -- the russians helping donald trump win that election. the point simpson made in his testimony is this. many of the revelations we've learned since then, for instance, the june 2016 trump tower meeting, george papadopoulos bragging to the australian ambassador that he'd been told by russians that they had damaging information on hillary clinton, that kind of
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stuff has borne out one of those central or at least indications some evidence of one of those central allegations of the dossier that there were these connections, these discussions. does that lead to evidence of an illegal conspiracy? we're certainly not there yet but we know it's something robert mueller is looking into. >> jim sciutto, thank you so much. when he we come back, new reports out saying the president himself is behind steve bannon's tightly lipped testimony in front of the house intel committee. is the white house controlling other people's testimony? we took legendary and made it liberating. we took safe and made it daring. we took intelligent, and made it utterly irresistible. we took the most advanced e-class ever and made the most exciting e-class ever. the 2018 e-class coupe and sedan.
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narrator: join parents and experts at a free online resource about learning and attention issues to help your child thrive. the house intel committee releasing its transcript with glenn simpson. i want to bring in laura cotes and richard mendez. and also renaldo mariotti. here's what the ranking democrat adam schiff had to say about the release of simpson's transcripts. he said, those transcripts reveal serious allegations that the trump organization may have engaged in money laundering with russian nationals, the same
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subject which mr. bannon described in his interview with the author of "fire and fury." if the trump organization did engage in money laundering with the russians, it would be with the knowledge or approval of the kremlin and constitute powerful leverage over the president of the united states. what do you make of the allegations of money laundering here? >> i think it's interesting, because simpson and his official conducted their own investigation and looked at a lot of evidence. i think a lot of viewers are wondering what does mueller know and see? what evidence does mueller have? i think with the transcript today tells us is potentially some of the conclusions that mueller could be drawing. so obviously the conclusions he's talking about respect themselves evidence. but he's drawing evidence from the conclusions he does see. if there is money laundering in the trump organization involving
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russian mobsters, that's very, very serious problem, and it's something that you could imagine being used as leverage. that's something when all of us were federal employees, we were asked about compromising details about ourselves. >> . >> what if these accusations turn out to be accurate? what sort of trouble could trump find himself? >> a great deal of trouble. you were talking about collusion, now you have corroboration. if you have corroboration in "fire and fury", or steve bannon's isolated comments and anything else and you have evidence that there is a foreign government who is participating in this way or that somehow the president of the united states or his campaign was complicit in actually accepting a bid, he finds himself in great legal pair peril in addition to issues that
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might be secondary to these issues. >> there's a report that president trump personally made the decision to limit the testimony of steve bannon while he was meeting with the house committee. what do you make of the allegation that president trump could be pulling the strings behind the scenes like this? >> if there's an assertion of executive privilege, and that assertion has to do with activities that occurred during the individual's tenure at the white house, not during the campaign, then that would have to be asserted by the president through his counsel. it hasn't been done. there is this bizarre middle ground where there is a suggestion that maybe at some point the white house will assert executive privilege. and therefore, the individual should, in this case, steve bannon, should not be compelled to give testimony at this time. it makes absolutely no sense for this to be accepted.
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certainly, robert mueller would not accept this. and i don't think the, either the house or the is that tsenat committees should accept it as well. >> we saw corey lewandowski say that he was unprepared to talk to investigators. if it turns out that president trump is calling the shots, could that amount to obstruction? >> that's ridiculous to suggest that somebody who is coming before a congressional committee is unprepared to answer questions that are central to the inquiry. it just -- >> how could he get away, why is he allowed to do it then? >> this has to do with the leadership of the committee which has the authority to hold him in contempt if he doesn't answer the questions or assert a legitimate privilege. >> this seems to be some perverse game of hansel and
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gretyl. you see people saying listen, i'd like to wait and see if hint, hint, mr. president, hint, hint, you would like to acertificate tassert the privilege. this has never been done. if two people are talking and neither is the president of the united states, are you not particularly a member of the select. it is novel, perverse and it shouldn't stand. >> is this obstructive? >> it's highly improper. i don't know if i would go obstruction of justice, that far. it's a way for the white house to derail a congressional investigation. they're essentially saying, hey, you can't talk about anything related to your time in the white house, because maybe some portion of it may be privileged, or we may believe it to be
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privileged in the future. it's very overbroad, totally improper, they're going way beyond the scope. >> why are they being allowed to do it then, renaldo? >> because the republicans in congress aren't forcing their hands. and we saw it again today they issued a subpoena yesterday. it looked like they were getting tough with bannon, and now they've given bannon a bunch of time before he comes in again so this way the white house can get its crap together and decide what executive privilege it wants to assert and this will probably die down by then. >> hope hicks and steve bannon both had their appearances, they had to push back again. renaldo just mentioned that, do you think president trump could have had something to do with that or maybe his attorneys? >> perhaps the attorneys did or the office of white house counsel. we're not quite sure. but it's telling, there's a playbook being followed. because if what ban anthonon's
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that he's going to preemptively exempt himself from having to answer question, what do you think lewandowski or hope hicks will do, listen, i'm also going to preemptively do this. it really is nothing that has ever been done before, but the playbook is well-established. to be clear, the idea of whether or not a congressional desire to compel someone's testimony and hold them in contempt is not really just a republican issue. remember that the former attorney general eric holder refused to answer certain questions, and they tried to get a federal court to hold him in contempt and they declined to do so. so part of the issue here is that a congressional desire to compel testimony, when you've got a criminal investigation going on is really a lot of bark with no bite. until that changes, people continue to flout and tout the actual requirements. >> thank you all. when we come back, house voting to avoid a government shutdown and the deadline just about 25 hours away.
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plus, a new poll shows the world's approval of the american leadership is falling to historic lows. fareed zakaria weighs in on that, next. (vo) i was born during the winter of '77. i first met james in 5th grade. we got married after college. and had twin boys. but then one night, a truck didn't stop. but thanks to our forester, neither did our story. and that's why we'll always drive a subaru. this this this is my body of proof. proof of less joint pain and clearer skin. this is my body of proof that i can take on psoriatic arthritis with humira. humira works by targeting and helping to block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to both joint and
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this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. 11:00 on the east coast. live with the breaking news for you, the federal government could shut down in less than 25 hours. that's after the house passed a short-term bill to avoid a shutdown. now you know, it's really up to the senate, where republicans are desperately trying to find a way to get the 60 votes they need to pass the bill. to do it, they need to convince some democrats to vote yes. if that doesn't happen, it looks, and it looks like it won't, the lights could go out tomorrow. so our congressional and


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