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tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  March 27, 2018 12:00am-1:00am PDT

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she tells me she wants to sue, too. new developments tonight on russia. president trump kick being out 60 russian diplomats in the wake of the poisoning attack on a russian former double agent living in the u.k. let's bring in cnn contributor frank bruni of "the new york times" to discuss russia and a whole lot of things. we're going to get to stormy daniels and other things. are you surprised the president took the action against russia with the diplomats? >> yes, i am a little bit surprised because it's not consistent with his stand away from russia attitude to date. but i think he had to do something. so, this is inconsistent. this doesn't match with tough words about putin. he felt compelled to do t. >> are you surprised we didn't her directly from the president? he didn't bring this issue up about meddling when he spoke directly with putin last week on the telephone. >> he advertises the things he wants to draw attention to and he's not drawing attention to this. he is falling in line with what is correct, with what's expected. for once he's acting in concert with allies if a little bit kind of later than some of them as
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opposed to saying we don't need them, we stand alone. i don't think this is something he did or the administration did with enormous enthusiasm. >> according to general michael hayden it was done in coordination with european union -- >> which is a heartening sign. hayes shown contempt with the european union. >> he is working with them. >> that is good for us. >> i want to play this exchange. this is white house press secretary raj shah. he was asked about the white house's credibility. watch this. >> can you speak to the white house's credibility, why should we in this room, more importantly the american people trust anything this administration is telling us? >> well, our job as a press office and as an administration is to give you the best information available to us, most accurate information in a timely fashion. sometimes the dynamics of fluid in any given situation. you mentioned some personnel matters. facts and circumstances change. we continue to give you guys the best information that we can as quickly as possible.
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>> there are many examples, a number of examples of the ones i'm go to give. i'll give you a few. they said that the white house said that the president had mcmaster, you know, confidence -- mcmaster had the confidence of the president. the next minute he's out, right? and then they say trump is going to sign a spending bill then he threatens to veto it. can you believe anything coming out of the white house? how can you believe it? >> i don't say this lightly. i don't think you can and i think the keyword to what he just said was the best information available to us. if the information available to you is subject to change at a moment's notice, if it is subject to the president's whim, if you're not getting complete information, if everything is shifting sands, then what is the meaning of what you're telling the press at a given moment in time? i think he gave away the game right there when he said the best information available to us which in this instance is terrible information. >> i think sarah sanders said something, i could be wrong. i thought she said something similar about the best information that was available to them. you were a white house reporter. >> i was.
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>> at what point is a press secretary obligated to resign if they know that they are telling lies on behalf of the president of the administration? >> there is no legal obligation. that is an impossible question to answer. that's really between a press secretary, communications director and his or her conscience. i would think that at a certain point if you know you're pedaling falsehoods or you're getting information that is so terrible that you wind up saying things that are instantly proven false or change a moment later, i think at a certain point you become so demoralized, you become so worried about the degree to which you're serving the country you go away. i don't think we have the highest moral caliber of people around donald trump. i mean, that's the fact. >> did you see my facebook -- they continue to stay there and do it. so obviously -- >> right. >> maybe it's just a job. this is a job and my job is to say what the white house says. >> there is probably some sort of corny belief every president deserves to be served and served faithfully and that's what i'm doing. maybe the bigger question shouldn't be asked.
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the other important thing to remember here is we live politically in an intensely intensely tribal country. so, there is a belief in a lot of these people that even if in a moment, at a given moment i'm telling a falsehood, even if i'm bending the truth to flatter this president, i am keeping the democrats at bay. i am doing what is necessary for our team to win. that's a lot of the thinking in politics today and i think that thinking is really prevalent among the people who decided to stick with donald trump. >> stormy daniels, that saga, headlines like the president, the porn star and the play mate, is this a new normal? >> well, for the trump administration it is. the ratio of "melodrama" to governing since he took office is completely out of whack and like nothing we've seen certainly -- we have to go back to the clinton days. i'm not sure even it's even fair to bring those up, but we should. there was a period of bill clinton's presidency we were talking about stains on blue dresses that was just as toddery as this. donald trump got here faster. it has a feeling of defining the very man and administration in a
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profound way. >> did you find her story credible? you watched i'm sure. >> i did. i watched several times. no, i watched it once, i watched it again. i found her much more credible even than i expected to. for a bunch of reasons. if you had read right beforehand, which i did, the 2011 in touch interview, she never contradicted herself. where she went to the same details, they were consistent. but more important, in an era when people are so quick to play the victim card, she refused to define herself as a victim. there was nothing politically correct about her interview. she refused to present herself in a flattering light. i mean, she made clear that there are many flaws in her character. she made clear that she was sticking this out and keeping in touch with donald trump for totally selfish reasons. there was nothing about that interview where she was saying, i'm wonderful, i'm a victim, et cetera. and i think that lent her enormous credibility. >> that gave her credibility. >> i think so, didn't you? >> people were comparing the interview between her and mcdougal.
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mcdougal was much more sympathetic -- i shouldn't say sympathetic, much more relatable character, right? and stormy daniels i found, listen both women said it happened. i believe them. but i thought that she had more credibility because she didn't make herself out to be some victim or she didn't want you to make her some sort of -- that she was polyannaish. she knew what she was getting into. >> i agree. there was a real frankness to everything she said. i didn't find myself saying i love this woman, i feel badly for her, any of those things. who pulls details like spanking sp shark week out of the thin air. i can't ploobelieve we're talki about this. those have the feel, i can't believe we're talking about this, 2018 united states of america under donald trump. those have the feel of authentic details to me. >> and the phone calls. >> and the phone calls.
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>> and that match what karen mcdougal say the two woman don't know each other. and the daughter. >> to this day i just can't get past the way he talks about ivanka, both the way he talked about her to howard stern in the past and the way he talks to other women about it, it's just not normal. >> why do you think it register -- there was a panel on with women who were trump supporters and they were making excuses for his behavior like he's changed somehow. >> i watched that segment. my jaw was on the ground because they did not seem to be talking about the donald trump whom we have all been reading about and reporting on and getting to know over the last two years. >> we know -- >> i chalk it up to the triblism i mentioned before. they have made a decision they are on team trump. probably lifelong republicans. they probably have issues with the democratic party so they are going to see everything in the most positive light possible and they're going to rationalize and explain away any evidence that doesn't fit what they want to believe. that was an absolute stuntion, stunning couple of minutes of tv. >> people believe what they want to believe.
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i also think of it is cognitive disnance. people don't want to be proven wrong, that they made a decision that maybe was not the best for them or someone is not who they want them to be. >> right. but in this -- you're totally right. but in this case they are having to ignore such an avalanche of evidence. how many women have come forward? how much of the story similar depending on the different category of cases? it really takes an enormous force of will to continue to believe that all of this is just a phrase you've never heard before, fake news. >> what bill clinton did was awful and it was. and he paid the price for it. he was impeached. but it's not the same with him and somehow they rationalized that which is to me just beyond anything. i want to ask you, this is about rob porter because "the new york times" is reporting the president still talks to him. he wants to bring him back. that's his former aide accused of the terrible things, abuse of his wife -- girlfriends and wives.
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do you think that -- is there still trust inside the white house that he's speaking to -- what is happening here he wants to bring back rob porter, a character like that? >> i doubt he ends upbringing him back for a whole host of reasons including the fact he didn't have a security clearance. he was in a job where it's best served by one. that he's talking to him makes utter psychological sense. donald trump is a very isolated president. he doesn't have that many people who he was -- who he's close to who are still in his service. rob porter was someone he was comfortable with. he takes emotional comfort from him so he reaches out to him. that's been consistent in trump over time, since he's been in the white house. he wants and needs to be comfortable. we've constantly heard he met with someone he was considering for the job, he didn't have personal chemistry, he didn't feel the right way about them. that was a drag on it. he prizes and values his own comfort. if it's going to make him feel more comfortable to talk to rob porter, even though he left the white house, donald trump will
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call rob porter. >> thank you. stormy daniels fighting backs, suing the president's attorney and so-called fixer. does she have a case? and what about her friend who tells me she wants to sue michael cohen, too? racing isn't the only and with godaddy, i'm making my ideas real. with godaddy you can get a website to sell online. and it will look good. i made my own way. now it's time to make yours. ♪ everything is working just like it should ♪ (i've done every night isince i was a kid,hing empty my pocket change into this old jar. it's never much, just what's left after i break a dollar. and i never thought i could get quality life insurance with my spare change. neither did i. until i saw a commercial for the colonial penn program. imagine people our age getting life insurance at such an affordable rate. it's true.
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# 1 in case you had any doubts, here's pretty clear indication stormy daniels is not going to back down any time soon. just hours after millions of people heard her tell her story on 60 minutes, porn star is suing the president's attorney for defamation, and now one of her friends wants to sue cohen, too. want to bring in now cnn legal analyst mark geragos and a rib a martin. the author of make it rain. martin, you have to get a book so i can promote it here on tv. >> mine has been out for five years. let's promote ariba's. >> thank you, mark and don. >> so, it's been a busy 24 hours. mark, this is for you.
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especially in this stormy daniels saga, we are now learning she is suing president trump's personal attorney michael cohen for defamation. does she have a case? >> yes, she probably does have a case. i don't think that it's going to get thrown out on a demur, but it may get compelled into the same arbitration. remember, judges, when they get these cases and understandably they're over worked, so the simplest thing is when you've got an arbitration agreement and anything that arises out of the arbitration agreement, especially here where the other party has already compelled you or tried to compel you to arbitration, i think that's where it ends up. i mean, it's great for prolonging the story, but ultimately it's going to end up in arbitration. >> and i just spoke to stormy daniels's friend a little earlier in the show, elana evans said she too is planning a defamation suit in which cohen denied elana's story, from then on he laid the path to call her a liar.
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does she have a case, mark? >> yeah, i believe if she can show that they demanded it and that they can literally trace the fact or the quote to him and he's, in essence, calling her a liar, she's got an arguable case. part of the problem is, though, what are the damages at this point and then that's something that you have to focus on whether it's a lawyer or the client. you've got to run through and say, look, anybody can sue anybody for anything, but what ultimately at the end of the day are your damages? what damage did you suffer, how do we quantify it and that's always something i think people tend to ignore. people love to say i'm going to sue somebody, i want $10 million, and then you ask them, well, what are you basing that on? well, i saw ply brother's gardener who got $5 million for this, that or the other thing. none of that matters. judges are the gate keepers. you have to be able to prove that you were damaged and be able to quantify it.
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>> for me that means two hours every night of talking about this stuff. so, ariba, during the stormy daniels interview on 60 minutes, daniels claimed she was threatened by an unknown man in 2011 who told her to drop the trump story. i think it was scary, but what if anything, is there a legal significance of this claim? >> well, she doesn't really know who that person was. so it's going to be difficult for her to make any kind of criminal charges. she can't real i go into a police station and say, i was threatened by someone because she doesn't have the person's name. it's not clear she can even identify the person. and it's not clear that she could even go into civil court or do anything. i think what we're seeing here today is just this story that trump says is false, mushrooming and growing and the president and his team is giving this story life. why is michael cohen saying he's going after stormy daniels and he's going to take a vacation on the money that he's going to get from her? i don't understand what the trump's end game is.
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if this didn't happen, why are you hiring lawyers, filing lawsuits and going to great lengths to protect something that didn't happen in the first place? and even the white house said, well, look, lawsuits get settled all the time when there's no underlying action. that's true, but rarely do lawsuits get settled for $130,000. that's not nuisance value. that's not $2,000 or $5,000. that's a substantial amount of money to settle for something that didn't happen. and who knows where this goes from here. we keep -- now she's filed for defamation. there is a cease and desist letter from trump's lawyer. so, this just seems to have no end in sight. >> who are you telling? i'm like, i'm trying to keep up with it, the new developments tonight. so, i want to play this. this is stormy daniels's attorney michael avenatti calls this a smoking gun. watch this. >> it's an e-mail that michael
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cohen sent to my client's former attorney and michael cohen inserted the subject, as pp versus dd, nda. now, why is that important? first of all, your viewers already know that pp basically were the initials for the alias of my client and dd are the initials for the alias for mr. trump. mr. cohen in this document that he drafted listed the subject as pp versus dd, meaning my client versus donald trump nda. i'm confused. i thought what mr. cohen has told the american people and what mr. schwartz has told the american people for weeks now is that donald trump was never a party to the agreement. donald trump didn't know anything about the agreement. >> so, mark, is he right? does this prove that donald trump knew about the hush agreement? >> there is something in the law called an adoptive admission where if your lawyer goes out and says something you can
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arguably say that that is inferred to the client or that's adopted literally to the client. i don't know that this rises to that level, but i can see the argument. i frankly was more intrigued by the argument back and forth between michael cohen's lawyer and michael avenatti earlier today which i was hoping you were going to play a clip of. i've been sending that to anybody who wants some entertainment value tonight. >> remember last week when he brought out the picture and they started arguing? i felt sorry for jeffrey tubin sitting in the middle going, then he made the testosterone comment. right on, buddy. so, listen, there are a number of similarities, ariba, in the stories between stormy daniels and karen mcdougal talking about the daughter, comparing the daughters and all sorts of things. what did you -- does that lend credibility to either of these
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women? >> i think the level of details that both of these women gave gives credibility to both of their stories. but what was interesting to me, karen mcdougal told this very personal emotional story. it was clear she was in love with donald trump and she believed that he was in love with her. there was this 10, 11-month relationship where she said they saw each other multiple times every month. i didn't get that from stormy daniels. stormy daniels had this kind of bad-ass attitude. we had one sexual encounter. i wasn't attracted to him. it wasn't very good. he wanted to do it a second time, but i wouldn't allow it to happen. and she seemed really emboldened to fight back. and it was clear they didn't have the kind of emotional connection that karen mcdougal believed she had with trump. so, two different relationships, although i think both very credible because both had details that no one would have. i don't think anybody could make
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this up unless you were there and unless these incidents actually occurred. >> so, mark, real quick because i've got to run, though. is there any in-kind campaign contribution, what is your assessment of that? >> look, if you wanted to make a case you could clearly make a case that this was an fec violation. having said that, as a practical matter, it's not going to happen with this -- fec as presently constituted and with the d.o.j. under the president's leadership. they can argue about that. they can say that robert mueller will deal with it. i doubt that. i just think that would be too far afield. so, no, i don't think that this is an fec violation. and building on ariva, i'll close with this, it's interesting to me, i agree with her with the assessment of the two women. it is interesting to me why they spent so much attention or squash if you will stormy who was the one-time wham! bam,
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thank you ma'am whereas karen mcdougal was an 11 or 12-month relationship. it's perplexing to me. a lot of it is perplexing. >> if it didn't mean anything, why 130,000 -- quick, quick, quick. >> i disagree with mark. i think the fec is a brilliant strategy. >> when i get my own company, i'm going to sign you up. you're awesome together. thank you very much. the first lady so far silent about the lawsuit women are bringing against her husband. will she be forced to address the allegations eventually like another first lady did? we're going to tell you what melania trump has in common with hillary clinton next.
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if you'd have told me three years ago... that we'd be downloading in seconds, what used to take... minutes. that guests would compliment our wifi. that we could video conference... and do it like that. (snaps) if you'd have told me that i could afford... a gig-speed. a gig-speed network. it's like 20 times faster than what most people have. i'd of said... i'd of said you're dreaming. dreaming! definitely dreaming. then again, dreaming is how i got this far. now more businesses in more places can afford to dream gig. comcast, building america's largest gig-speed network. the white house says first lady melania trump is spending this week at mar-a-lago for a previously planned spring break stay focusing on being a mom and working on upcoming projects. it was just last week she tweeted this smiling picture with the president in snowy washington. and since then we have seen two
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block buster interviews with women who claim they had affairs with donald trump. which gives melania trump something in common with another first lady, hillary clinton, who had to face accusations against her husband, president bill clinton. cnn's senior national correspondent alexander marquart has more. alex? >> reporter: good evening, don. before bill clinton and donald trump became president, their wives, hillary and melania were well aware of the allegations concerning their husband's inif in the white house, both women have had to deal with the embarrassment caused by their husbands' behaviors. for all the similarities, to far they have been treated very differently. and while hillary clinton was never one to shy away from the spotlight as this scandal rages around the current white house, melania trump has fled it. they are two women whose lives and careers couldn't be more different. but hillary clinton and melania trump now share something few other first ladies have had to so publicly endure, their husbands as presidents accused
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of cheating and sexual assault. >> and you had sex with him? >> yes. >> as the bombshell interview with stormy daniels aired, melania trump was at mar-a-lago with her son. today her spokeswoman told cnn she's focused on being a mom and is quite enjoying spring break at mar-a-lago while working on future projects. so far melania has been spared the relentless criticism that hillary got, largely from conservatives, for staying with bill after the monica lewinsky scandal. bill's past behavior a regular target for trump on the campaign trail as he took aim at hillary. >> she's married to a man who was the worst abuser of women in the history of politics. >> he even invited four of clinton's accusers to the same debate with hillary where he claimed to have tremendous respect for women. >> i have great respect for women. nobody has more respect for women than i do. >> reporter: that claim coming right after the infamous access hollywood tape whose language melania called inappropriate, but defended. >> i don't know that person that would talk that way.
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and that he would say that kind of stuff in private. i heard many different stuff, boys talk. the boys, the way they talk when they grow up and they want to sometimes show each other, oh, this and that and talking about the girls. >> reporter: now after the allegations from stormy daniels and play mate karen mcdougal, silence from the tweeter-in-chief, silence from the first lady, silence from the clinton critics and silence from hillary herself. >> i'm very strong. people, they don't really know me. >> reporter: what melania trump is feeling tonight is anyone's guess, but the last time she was asked what she thought about her husband's troubling behavior, she had a stark message. >> oh, melania, oh, poor melania. don't feel sorry for me. don't feel sorry for me. i can handle everything. >> reporter: don, of course it is unclear whether at the time
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melania trump said she can handle everything whether she even knew about stormy daniels and karen mcdougal or whether any of it would ever come to light. one good reason for her silence may be her young son. today the first lady's communications director tweeted, quote, while i know the media is enjoying speculation and salacious gossip, i'd like to remind people there is a minor child whose name should be kept out of news stories when at all possible. and, don, we are respecting that tonight. >> all right. thank you, alex. i appreciate that. perhaps the dad should know that, too. i want to bring in now cnn contributor kate anderson brewer, women grace and power of erlij america's modern first ladies. i said that because if these allegations are indeed true, it is the father bringing this into the spotlight and not the news media. we should keep the kid's name out of the spotlight. it's not the media's fault it is being brought up, it's the father's fault. there is talk about the connection between melania and hillary clinton.
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what melania now has in common with hillary. you write in part many first ladies have had to endure their husbands' infidelity although they were carried out well below the radar. that was before cable news and social media, you write. the glare of this media is not anything previous first ladies had to deal with, glare, the more and more prevalence of social media. how do you think she's handling it, melania trump? >> it's interesting, she's really retreating into herself. she's very private. she didn't expect any of this. i think it is especially humiliating for her because it's so personal. and to have all these personal details out there in the open in a way that fdr famously cheated on eleanore roosevelt, the ken difficulties are a great example of this where there was this gentleman's agreement not to drag this out into the public realm. and now it's all there for public consumption. as you say, president trump kind of brought that on himself because there are charges of hypocrisy because he kept
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talking about the clintons and bill clinton's behavior. so now you have to point the finger at president trump. >> one difference, melania trump -- she said there, and people -- she said, do not feel sorry for me. these were after some pretty strong allegations, talking about the access hollywood tape. so, she doesn't want people to feel sorry for her. i wonder if it's different because she hasn't spoken out as much as hillary clinton did. days after the reports emerged about monica lewinsky and the sexual relationship with monica lewinsky, she stood firmly by her husband. a week after the first allegations hillary sat down and did an interview with nbc news where she launched a full-throated defense of bill. melania, on the other hand, has not spoken so much about it. >> the irony of this is these two women could not be more difficult. hillary clinton even went to the hill, talked to democrats and pleaded with them before the impeachment vote to support her husband because she was a politician herself, and she cared deeply about his program. she had led his health care overhaul effort.
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these women are different where hillary clinton was in the fight, melania trump didn't want any part of it. so, i think that's why she's not speaking out. it's remarkable really the things she's done, not moving into the white house right away, cancelling the davos trip when these rumors started to filter out. i think that these subtle signs reading the tea leaves, it might not be as complicated as people think it is. i think what you see is what you get here. >> but she is still standing by her man. for now, it doesn't appear she's going anywhere. hillary clinton is till with her husband. they are still married. there's no signs they are going to -- so, in that sense, and i said this on the air last week, they are alike more than they are different. but the difference is i don't think this is what melania trump signed up for. she signed up to be a wealthy wife on 5th avenue who can shop up and down 5th avenue and madison avenue all day. her life is fairly private. she can hang out with her girlfriends on the upper east side, go to the beauty parlor, get her nails done. not this.
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it's out in public now. >> she rarely left trump tower. she was very much a creature of habit. she didn't go out and party a lot with friends and she loves to shop. whereas hillary clinton, this was a partnership. a lot of people would say in part it hurt her a lot that she didn't leave bill clinton. a lot of democrats and republicans thought it was a mistake. >> you said that melania trump and michelle obama are a lot more alike than people realize? >> i thought -- obviously they're two completely different women. all these women are very different so it's hard to lump any first ladies or compare them. but i think in the ways that michelle obama just kind of told things like it is, and she was very up front and very kind of -- i mean obviously more approachable than melania trump. but i think melania trump is radical in some ways by being defiant. by not, you know, talking about her husband in these gushing and glowing ways that other first ladies that done.
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she's standing by him but silently. >> do you think she's getting a pass that michelle obama and hillary clinton didn't get? >> it's a great question. if you write anything about melania trump, people come right out attacking her. a lot of people see her as an empty vessel and they can kind of -- all their hatred can be directed at her, that they feel about her husband. we don't know anything about her really. >> initially michelle obama was not a public figure either and she got holy hell in the beginning. people grew to -- they warmed up to her, but initially, especially one year in, they were writing horrible things about her. oh, my gosh, look, she wore a sleeveless dress. >> and she never sued anyone. i mean -- >> i think she is getting a pass. this first lady is getting a pass, especially the first lady did not get. thank you, kate. appreciate it. we'll be right back. but i'm not standing still... and with godaddy, i've made my ideas real. ♪
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all right. we'll talk about some of the issues now. want to bring in cnn political reporter, and simone sanders. hello, everyone. good evening, welcome to the program.
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tara, several employees at the department of interior have told cnn that the secretary ryan zinke have said on several occasions diversity is important or i don't care about diversity. what do you say? >> why are we surprised? i mean, this is the cast of characters that it's the c-team. this isn't exactly the cream of the crop here that's in this trump cabinet here. i mean, you know, you vote for a clown you're going to get the circus. this is what you get. ryan zenke, not only has he made comments like this, his spending habits and other things, the kanishiwa comment to an african-american congresswoman after they were talking about japanese internment camps. it's just a very -- trump supporters will say, you know it's not p.c. everyone is getting way too sensitive about these things. yes, there are some things you can take political correctness too far, but there is also a certain amount of
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professionalism that i think the american people expect from the cabinet members that they are not getting. >> simone, sen key said i care about excellence and i'm going to get the best people. we find we have the most diverse group anyone has ever had. sounds like he's saying diversity is a goal that takes care of itself. >> yeah, and we know that's not true because if it was, we wouldn't need inclusion and diversity initiatives. look, when secretary sen key says that with many people across the country, diversity means not having the best people. diversity initiatives equal that. we know that's not true. the problem here is that the folks in the trump administration and today it's ryan zenke, tomorrow we don't know who it is. clearly the secretary believes diversity does not -- diversity initiatives do not equal the best folks rising to the top and that's problematic. >> steve, does the secretary zenke get that different perspective in diversity, that diversity brings different
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perspectives, that the experiences of many different kinds of people contribute to excellence? it's sort of what simone just said. does he understand that? >> well, listen, don, i sure hope he does. his spokesman denied these comments, by the way. i hope that's true because i certainly don't agree as an hispanic, as a trump supporter, i don't agree with these sentiments if he indeed did say them. i will also say this to tara. when you call us a circus, you know, team trump or clowns, this man, number one, is a navy seal, all right. so, he deserves your respect. he's a cabinet member. two, he's married to a latina who i met at hispanic republican events. the idea that he doesn't have any idea about diversity or that he doesn't respect disparate voices i think is absurd just even in his own life. but again -- >> i want to. tara's back for a second, steve, for a second. pardon me. being married to a latina does not mean you can't be insensitive towards diversity
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issues and/or be diversity problematic. proximity because you're married to someone of color does not equal you can't be issued -- it does not mean you cannot have issues with diversity. just want to be clear. >> that's right. >> you pulled the latina friend card. >> i appreciate his service, but he also got in trouble as a navy seal, but go ahead. >> it certainly means that you're not some prejudice bigot. if you're willing to marry somebody -- >> that's not true. oh, my god, that's not true. that's a common misconception. i'm sorry, tara, go ahead, girl. >> here's the point. i will agree -- i think i'll agree with both of you -- all three of you, i'm guessing at this point. >> i don't know. >> don't bring me into this. i'm just asking questions, but go on. >> that the republican party has been, in my opinion, too white. it has been too traditional and we need to reach out. now, i think we're starting to do that and i think donald trump
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made a valiant effort in 2016 in trying to reach out to black and brown americans in saying that the democratic party -- >> how is that exactly -- >> for decades -- >> oh, my god. >> we don't only care about you in election time, we care about your prosperity and your security overall. and by the way, black and hispanic unemployment just hit all-time lows. so, i think we're starting to deliver on those promises which is more important to me than slogan -- if secretary zenke said these things -- >> simone and then tara. >> steve cortez, steve, black unemployment is still twice that of white americans. again, i am -- >> right. there is still work to do. >> i'm not giving cookies and pats on the back for just getting a little bit when black unemployment is still twice that of white americans. and just because you have proximity to people of color does not mean you cannot traffic in bigotry, racism or prejudice. >> that's right. also as someone who has worked with the republican party for 20
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plus years and -- >> you're a republican. >> yeah, i'm a republican, lifelong. i'm a conservative first. i don't know what the republican party is doing now. i'm still registered republican. i'm starting to question that. as a minority women that worked in republican circles 20-plus years, i can tell you there is a major problem in the republican party as far as being able to properly message conservative and republican principles to minority communities because people like a ryan zink ee and others who say things and do things insensitive to these communities, people look and say, you don't care about us. you only show up when it's time for an election. and donald trump going out there and saying, what the hell do you have to lose is not exactly outreach to the black and hispanic communities. i'm sorry, it's not. and, yes, you might have gotten a couple more percentage points than mitt romney or george bush did for the black vote, a measly 8%.
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that's still pathetic compared to where the republican party could have been and should be. we're working toward an actual policy prescription for minorities, not just making platitudes -- >> a quick break. we'll be right back. when i received the diagnoses, i knew at that exact moment ... i'm beating this. my main focus was to find a team of doctors. it's not just picking a surgeon, it's picking the care team and feeling secure in where you are. visit
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we're back now. american students calling on washington to change gun laws and make students safer. hundreds of thousands from coast to coast protesting this weekend. more than five weeks after the high school mass shooting in florida, but former republican senator rick santorum criticizing the marchers. >> how about kids instead of looking to someone else to solve their problem do something about taking cpr classes. they took action for someone to pass a law, not how his a individual deal with this problem. >> that's the first time i'm seeing that. did that happen? >> it's real. >> what did you think of that? go ahead, simone. >> you know, i think -- i do not like to speak ill of my cnn colleagues, don. but this just misses the mark.
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i hope senator santorum comes out and caliphs his comments. this is peculiarity for many reasons. god forbid we ask legislators to do their job. perhaps senator santorum is now former senator santorum. >> i feel the same way, it was shocking to hear it for the first time. he responded via twitter, by the way, and he said my point on cnn "state of the union" is the same point i have made since the shooting, relying on government is a mistake. we have to focus on the shooter. here's an example. and then he attached an article about foster freeze, about shooters needed role models and contribute to certain organizations but he didn't address the cpr comment there, tara. >> let me say something about this. i think rick santorum has sometimes -- is a little rough
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with his answers. but i don't completely disagree with him in that the discussion seems to be always the pendulum swung to one side. and i got that people are very emotional and there was a tragedy and these tragedies happen. but it's a multi-pronged approach, and i think that the marchers, some of the rhetoric that it became, became very -- it was too much for a lot of law abiding gun owners in this country. and i understand that. and some of the rhetoric coming from some of the parkland kids was a bit much. i just think that some of them, you know, saying that the nra has the blood of children on their hands and all of this -- >> tara, i heard during the election i heard women -- there was this one woman who was
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killed in benghazi and no one criticized her because she was grieving. kids are going to say these things, they're grieving, but the majority of those kids -- >> you can't criticize the rhetoric because they're victims. >> so what? >> they're kids but we're elevating them where they're now making policy in america. >> they feel the same way most americans feel. >> most americans think we should have a second amendment. >> but those kids are not saying we shouldn't have a second amendment. they're saying that assault weapons -- some of the kids getting the most attention are saying pretty radical things. >> they're not saying that there should not -- that's what gun owners are saying, that is the extreme you're going to. those kids aren't saying get rid of the second amendment. they're saying there should be sensible gun laws, and that's how most americans feels. >> but they're not defining that. >> they want a assault weapons ban.
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>> that would not have prevented this. assault weapons bans, we already saw when they had them banned, they didn't have violence. i think they have a right to do this, but if you criticize some of what they're saying, then all of a sudden you're the bad guy. >> you are the bad guy. you are. you let them vent and you move on. you're an adult, you let them vent and you understand that you're an adult, maybe you do understand more than they do, but you let them vent. just as you let a gold star window or mother vent. >> to go by without pushing back. >> those kids aren't going to change the seamed. they're not lawmakers. >> they're not, but we're elevating elevating them. >> they deserve to have every elevation because of what they went through. i can't imagine what they went
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through. if i went through something like that, i would to be able to vent as much as possible. >> the discussion here has become whether they can be criticized or scrutinized for some of the more extreme things that people have said. and i think that there is some room here for scrutiny, that's all. >> i think emotion is totally understandable for people who've been through terrible things, whatever it is. and i'm not in any way demeaning that or demeaning their right to express their emotion, but emotion also should not guide policy. when it comes to policy, when you talk about an assault weapons ban, i hate that term. all guns by definition are assault weapons, so it's really a nonsense term. >> no, they're not. >> come on, now. we're out of time, i got to go. >> the so-called assault weapons ban was about cosmetics. >> we're over, we're over. i don't think the kids should be
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criticized. we should listen to them because we did not suffer the horrible tragedy that they did and we should let our lawmakers do their jobs. good night. thanks, everyone. good night. . . .
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all eyes on moscow this morning. how will vladimir putin respond after a coordinated global effort to oust russian diplomats including 60 from the united states. democrats have a new concern of 2020. the u.s. census will ask about citizenship status. this could have a big affect on federal funding and congressional lines. international intrigue building in beijing. a train t


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