tv New Day With Alisyn Camerota and John Berman CNN April 10, 2019 5:00am-6:00am PDT
>> yes, clarify is this -- >> so -- >> if you wish to leave, you may. >> actress lori loughlin facing more charges in that college admissions scandal. >> those who didn't strike a deal with prosecutors ran the risk of facing more charges. >> this raises the anti and says plead now. this is "new day" with alisyn camerota and john berman. >> good morning, everyone. welcome to your "new day," it is wednesday, april 10th. 8:00 in the east. we do begin with breaking news because cnn has just learned that attorney general william barr has assembled a team at the justice department to look into the origin of the fbi's investigation into those potential ties between the trump campaign and russia in 2016. we will have much more on that. meanwhile, mr. barr returns to capitol hill in just two hours, this time before the senate. there are still many unanswered questions, among them has mr. barr spoken to the white house about the contents of the mueller report. barr also told lawmakers they
will get only a redacted version within a week, but congress vows to issue a subpoena for the full version of the mueller report. >> but, wait, there's more. the irs is likely to miss a deadline today, will almost definitely skip the deadline intentionally to turn over the president's tax returns. treasury secretary steve mnuchin sparred with democrats over the release and revealed that treasury lawyers they have been coordinating with the white house on this matter. during this hearing mnuchin said he is not afraid of getting fired over the president's tax returns and notably got into a very tense, awkward exchange with the chair of the committee maxine waters over the hearing's length. i want to get right to the breaking news. cnn is live on capitol hill. i get the sense that the attorney general is now doing a much more skpree hen sieve investigation into the investigators. >> reporter: that's absolutely right, john. this is a notable move by the attorney general that we're learning this morning, thanks to
my colleagues evan perez and laura jarrett. according to a u.s. official they say that barr has assembled a seem at the department of justice to review how the fbi's counterintelligence probe and looking into the ties between the trump campaign and russia first began back in 2016. now, this is notable because it seems to suggest of course that bar is looking into a similar line of inquire hey that we of course have heard from many republicans up here on capitol hill looking into the origins of that probe. this is also something that bill barr when he was up here on capitol hill testifying yesterday seems to allude to. >> i am reviewing the conduct of the investigation and trying to get my arms around all the aspects of the counterintelligence investigation that was conducted during the sum remember of
summer of 2016. >> reporter: the u.s. official told my colleague that barr's work is separate from the ongoing investigation that they are already conducting. this will likely be a big line of inquiry in addition to many, many unanswered questions that bill barr will face up here on capitol hill today. second day of questioning, this time senate side. back to you guys. >> thank you very much for explaining that breaking news. joining us to talk about all of this we have cnn contributor bean in a golodryga as well as jake sherman and an muhammad ali palmer, co-writers for "politico" playbook. let's start with this. bianna, this breaking news, the justice department is already doing an investigation into the origin of the fbi's investigation into any sort of russia ties. the inspector general and, in fact, that report is due out in may or june, so why would attorney general bill barr need to do more than that? >> like i told you off camera i
think the president should be very happy with his new attorney general. he came in unphased, very seasoned, this isn't his first rodeo, his second time in the job, and he had clearly heard loud and clear what the president had been asking for, an investigation into the investigation. he didn't reveal anything new other than the fact that they were also looking into in addition to the inspector general, obviously i'm assuming the president had been watching and probably was pleased with what he heard. >> under the sessions/rosenstein justice department i got the sense that they were doing just enough to shut some of the republicans up on this issue, the freedom caucus and others who were saying the investigation is flawed, tainted, investigate the investigators. they were doing just enough to sort of allay their concerns. what i can't tell is if this is significantly more than that, jay. >> i don't think we can tell that, either, to be honest which point. i think a lot of the theories that the freedom caucus -- i have had a conversation with a member of the freedom caucus
about this and he kept saying to me why isn't the mainstream media covering some of these scandals about the investigators? they have gone down so many rabbit holes trying to find corruption in all these -- and confirm their theories and they have not been able to and they have an ally now as a.g. who is going to probe and going to go deep here and try to find evidence to back up their theories. >> certainly is giving credence to some of the concerns that a lot of republicans and the president have publicly stated for a long time, saying we are going to look into this. i think bill barr is a serious person so he's going to command that agency to do that. >> and also muddies the waters, right? one could argue that the initial barr memo was the best news that the president was going to get, once we get this report, over 300 pages, there may be some damaging or embarrassing information that comes out. if you counter the mueller -- the mueller report with an additional investigation into the russia investigation, then that does seem to balance out
the news that will be coming out from the attorney general. >> look, republicans have been saying -- i mean, we hear the talking point on our program all the time, they say that it was all about this shoddy dossier, that that's why the investigation was started. whereas, if you look at the timeline from the fbi, there were all sorts of strange things that began happening in 2015, in the spring of 2016 that raised -- that piqued their interest, namely, i mean, some of them, george papadopoulos saying that he knew that dirt was going to be coming out on hillary clinton, told it loudly, drunkenly at a bar, so much so that australia was concerned about it and called their counterparts in the u.s. we have a timeline that spells out all the strange things that the fbi thought were happening. the request he is does bill barr not think that the ig's report which we might see next month is going to be good enough? does he not trust his own ig's report? why does he need to do more?
>> i think a d.c.'s inspectors general are viewed with a bit of skepticism from the top of the department almost in every agency. i think that's kind of a truism. i do think the difficult thing here is no one is stipulating from the same set of facts. there are facts as we see them about how this investigation started and then there's facts some of the president's allies as they see them. when you're working with two distinct sets of information you won't be able to come up with a coherent solution. >> i will also say what we learn about obstruction from the mueller report itself may serve as a counterargument to the notion that this was a flawed investigation. it doesn't get to the 2016 aspect of it, but it gets to the idea that the president wanted to stop it perhaps in february, march, april and may of 2017, the steps he took, the firing of james comey and why the fbi was so concerned about that and then ramped up their investigation. maybe this is something to counteract what we're all about to find out about obstruction.
>> and don't count out what we could be hearing from the inspector general as well. remember, he didn't handle the mccabe incident with kid gloves. he said that there was reason to fire mccabe and pursue an investigation as well. so we have yet to hear from him. i think the news out of yesterday's hearing with barr in addition to the inspector general was also aware of this and following it. >> so what did you hear yesterday with bill barr? what was your take away? >> i mean, listen, he clearly is going to do things his way. i mean, i think he was a very stoic and wanted to answer what he wanted to do, was very comfortable doing it. you see sometimes government officials wither under hard questioning and that was not the case in this instance. >> it's a guy who has had a career, right, a guy who has had a past, so he's not looking to make a name, it doesn't seem to me. it seems like he's going to stick to his guns and proceed as he wants, not wither up
political pressure as anna said. that's for the president good, for congress, for democrats in congress and perhaps people who are seeking the most amount of information about our president, right, this is information that should be presumptively public except for grand jury information, that might be a bad thing. >> so bill barr not a witherer. >> right. >> bill barr is not a witherer, but he did, i think, whether it was inadvertent or not open up this big new door about the possibility that the white house has been coordinating within the last week to ten days about the mueller report. so let's play this exchange with nita lowey. >> did the white house see the report before you released your summarizing letter? has the white house seen it since then? have they been briefed on the contents beyond what was in your summarizing letter to the judiciary committee? >> i've said what i'm going to say about the report today. i'm not going to say anything more about it until the report
is out and everyone has a chance to look at it. >> so that's not a wither, but it is a dodge. i mean, its not answering a question about have you been talking to the white house about the report. justice and the white house told us they didn't speak prior to the release of the summary, but what about since then? what does it matter and what's the implication, bianna, if they have been talking about it over the last few days? >> the white house also said that they hadn't been speaking. look, this was an opportunity to give a clear definitive yes or no full stop answer and did he not do that. he has command of the room and he was able to say i'm not going to go there and let's move on, but at the same time it does raise questions at least from a partisan perspective as to what the white house knew about the report, when did it know it and what did they know about the drafting of the four-page memo. you know, you had barr seemingly want to acknowledge his independence by stating i gave mueller the opportunity to review these four pages, in a way of him saying he trusts me enough to say i didn't need to do that.
you could interpret that the other way in which mueller doesn't want to put his fingerprints on this right now, but you did have barr open the opportunity and open the door for future debate, which, of course, we're going to see here. >> so today is the deadline that the house ways and means committee has set up to get six years of president trump's taxes and it is up to steve mnuchin or the lawyers at the irs to hand those over, though the legal code seems to suggest that that is exactly legal, you can do that, you can ask for it and you can receive them. so steve mnuchin was testifying yesterday and he got into this back and forth with congresswoman maxine waters. it seemed as though steve mnuchin's internal time clock had run on on wanting to be there, so watch this. >> i've sat here for over three hours and 15 minutes, i've told you i will come back. i just don't believe we're sitting here negotiating when i come back. we will follow up with your office. how long would you like me to come back for next time?
i've told you i will accommodate you. >> i appreciate that and i appreciate your reminding us of the length of time other secretaries have been here. this is a new way and it's a new day. >> well, the -- >> it's a new chair and i have the gavel at this point. if you wish to leave, you may. >> can you clarify that for me? >> yes. clarify is this -- >> so -- >> if you wish to leave, you may. >> okay. so we're dismissed, is that correct? >> if you wish to leave, you may leave. >> i don't understand what you're saying. >> you're wasting your time. remember, you have a foreign dig any tear in your office. >> i would just say that the previous -- when the republicans -- they did not treat the secretary of the treasury this way, so if this is the way you want to treat me, then i will rethink whether i voluntarily come back here to testify which i've offered to do. >> mr. secretary, i want you to
know that no other secretary has ever told us the day before that they were going to limit their time in the way that you are doing. so if you want to use them as examples, you have acted differently than they have acted and as i have said if you wish to leave, you may. >> if you would wish to keep me here so that i don't have my important meeting and continue to grill me, then we can do that. i will cancel my meeting and i will not be back here. i will be very clear. if that's the way you'd like to have this relationship. >> thank you. the gentleman, the secretary, has agreed to stay to hear all of the rest of the members. please cancel your meeting and respect our time. >> -- my foreign meeting. you are instructing me to stay here and i should -- >> no, you just made me an offer. >> i didn't make you an offer.
>> you made me an offer i accepted. >> you're instructing, you're ordering me to stay here. >> no, i'm not ordering you. i'm responding. i said you may leave anytime you want and you said okay. if that's what you want to do, i will cancel my appointment and i will stay here. so i'm responding to your request. if that's what you want -- >> that's not what i want to do. >> what would you like to do? >> what i've told you is i thought it was respectful that you would let me leave at 5:15 which is the current period of time -- >> you can go anytime you want. >> please dismiss everybody. i believe you are supposed to take the gavel and bang it. >> please do not instruct me as to how i am to conduct this economy. >> she will handle her gavel how she wants to. >> you are steeped in the doing of capitol hill, have you ever seen anything like that? >> never in my even tire life. he seemed like a kid tofs fed up and wanted to go home and take his toys with him. it's pretty stunning. maxine waters had clear control of the room there, she came off i think very commanding and i
don't quite know what he was thinking honestly. >> mnuchin has -- and we document this in our book -- has a disdain it would appear for congress. he said at various points throughout the last year, you know, you're keeping an important person here when he was in a meeting with republicans, when he tried to get republicans to raise the debt ceiling, there were a line of people lined up in september 2017 and he said, actually, i have to go, i have an appointment, leaving them omb director mick mulvaney to answer questions. here is the thing, congress has an inordinate amount of power over this administration, over any administration. congress controls the purse strings and to do that seems incredibly short sighted to a committee that has direct oversight over mnuchin, controls his budget. >> and an industry that is super concerned that maxine waters has taken over and is anti-banks and anti a lot of the industries. to have a contentious relationship is not going to be helpful. >> he is not acting.
he's been there for a long time, the president is a fan of his, maybe he was doing this for an audience of once, but juxtapose that with what we saw with barr yesterday and you have a neophyte versus congress versus one who is seasoned and i still want to know who his important meeting was with. >> an official from bahrain. it is interesting that the constitution is so inconvenient for steve mnuchin that he's not willing to give congress -- >> i feel he's overscheduled. he's making too many meetings in one day. >> that is the lesson here. >> thank you. >> thank you all very much. we're following some breaking news right now, benjamin netanyahu appears poised to win a historic fifth term as israel's prime minister. he is calling it a, quote, great victory, but his top challenger is also claiming victory. let's get to oren liebermann live in jerusalem with more. what's the status at this hour. >> reporter: prime minister benjamin netanyahu's path to victory is becoming clearer and clearer as more results come in. at this point more than 95% of
the votes have been counted and allow the made to head is close between benjamin netanyahu and his rifle, benny gantz, a few thousand votes separate them, the path to putting together a coalition, making a government and being in charge of a government that looks firmly in netanyahu's corner. it's something like 65 to 55 pro netanyahu, netanyahu has said he has the support of the crucial right wing parties he needs to form a government and that's what it will take for him to secure not only a fifth term in office but to become israel's longest serving prime minister this summer. his opponent seemed to have realized the situation he is in, gantz has said the odds are against him. one major question, of course, who else's support does netanyahu have? of course, president donald trump. in the last two weeks of the campaign gifting netanyahu major political victories, coming out as almost blatantly campaigning for netanyahu, for example, in recognizing israeli sovereignty in the goal land heights, allowing secretary of state mike pompeo to visit the western wall
in the old city behind me with netanyahu which was unprecedented. trump has clearly at this point come out in favor of netanyahu and that holds a tremendous amount of weight here because trump is more popular here than he is in the u.s. john, there are still some numbers to come in, those could shift the favor even more towards netanyahu. we will keep you posted as they come in. >> orren lieberman in jerusalem. thank you very much. already 18 democratic candidates in the 2020 race but there can be only one nominee. some of the candidates who have jumped in might appear to be long shots. some people say they have no chance to win. so why do they get in? what drives these people to get in the race? we're going to speak to a former presidential candidate who has faced these questions next. and for me, there is only one choice - crunch. ♪ delicious 100% real chocolate embracing the lightness of crispy rice. crunch. the chocolate bar all americans love.
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which has new information about the investigation into the president's role with the hush money payoffs to stormy daniels and karen mcdougal. let me read the lead paragraph of this article. the manhattan u.s. attorney's office has gathered more evidence than previously known in its criminal investigation of hush money payments to two women who alleged affairs with donald trump, including from members of the president's inner circle. they talked to hope hicks who was the white house communications adviser and an adviser to then candidate donald trump -- >> one of the closest people in his inner sanctum. >> and keith schiller talk about inside the inner sanctum, his body man guard for a long, long time. those are the two interviews we know about. there is the implication that the southern district of new york had gathered a lot of information about the president's role in this, specifically the president's role in this before the public became aware of it when michael cohen pleaded guilty to this issue last fall.
joining us now to including this is elie hoenig who did work in the southern district of new york. this article and i couldn't get through it because it was just published a moment ago seems to suggest that the southern district has a lot of evidence, conducted a serious investigation into specifically what the president did and knew about these hush money payments. >> right. well, this is what the southern district does, right, they get a threat and they pull on until the sweater is completely unwound. we had some indications of this, the southern district is already on record you will remember from the michael cohen plea as saying that individual one, donald trump, candidate one i think he was called in the cohen case was the one who directed kobe to make the payments. now i think what they're trying to do is, a, flesh out just how much did the president know by going into his inner, inner sanctum, people like hicks, and, b, who else was involved? there's no question these payments were made, but the remaining questions are who knew
about these payments and were they for a campaign-related purpose? >> a couple other things that jump out at me, keith schiller, so the president's long time bodyguard, security chief, investigators have learned of calls between mr. schiller and david pecker, he is the chief executive of the "national enquirer's" parent company. why is the head of security calling david pecker. they also possess a recorded phone conversation between mr. trump's former lawyer michael cohen who we know said he had lots of reported conversations and the lawyer who represented the two women. so what is said on there? what were they negotiating? i think it's also interesting that hope hicks and keith schiller both of whom the president very much liked and wanted to keep around him in the white house are both gone, they both left, against the president's wishes. so now you can see a little bit more about them having to protect themselves. >> i think the circle of knowledge is going to expand here. this kind of transaction is a complex transaction, it involved
a lot of different people and a lot of different layers within the president's orbit and i think we're going to see that. i want to hear that tape. that tape something that jumps out at me. you can cross-examine a witness all you want, you can say you are not telling the truth, but a tape is a tape. smart defense lawyers one of the first things they will ask you is do you have a tape. hope hicks is uniquely situated to be a potentially devastating witness here. she had access, she's in the room when the big conversations have been made, and she has pretty good credibility. she hasn't gone out there too badly and damaged her credibility. i think she can be brought along as an effective witness. >> since they had jobs in the white house, the president liked having them around, when you get a call from the southern district of new york and you have to go testify does that tell you i better start distancing myself from the job i have. >> you have to have priorities and as much as people might like their jobs, the southern district always poses a major threat. if i was advising a client i would say let's deal with the
potential criminal stuff first. >> what this report does tell us is how much more the southern district might know and how much more work they have done specifically investigating the president than we have previously known. i agree the keith schiller element of this, phone calls between schiller and pecker is huge. even if the southern district has determined that the president broke the law, even if they have determined that they have a clear case against him, what they will do with it. >> they will not indict a sitting president. i know there has been speculation maybe they will, maybe they will find a way around it. that is long standing doj policy, goes back well before this administration. as independent as the southern district is, historically, they will not go absolutely rogue and simply defy a policy, but they can indict the president when he is out of office. they can potentially even issue a grand jury-type report publicly or potentially even refer it over to congress for appropriate action and they certainly can indict people very close to the president in his inner circle, in his orbit.
i do think there is a decent chance they are working towards that as well. >> go ahead. >> there is a paragraph that describes the questions to hope hicks here, it says in the months after the raid -- this is the raid on cohen's office, who he tell room and home -- investigators interviewed ms. hicks and mr. schiller. this he asked ms. hicks p her contacts with mr. pecker the ceo of american media, publisher of the "national enquirer." prosecutors also asked at least one other witness whether ms. hicks had coordinated with anyone at american media concerning a journal article on november 4th, 2016, days before the election, that revealed american media had paid $150,000 for the rights of former playboy model karen mcdualel's story. "the national enquirer" never ran an article about her allegations a practice known as catch and kill. so coordinations between hope hicks and david pecker as well. >> hope hicks could be in trouble here, too. first of all, if they're asking
they probably already know. if prosecutors are asking they probably already know the answer to the question. hope hicks is not necessarily in the woods -- out of the woods. if she was involved in coordinating this, if she was involved in the effort to make the payments and she understood these were being made for a campaign-related purpose to silence these women in the run up to the campaign she could have liability, too. that doesn't necessarily mean she's going to get charged criminally, sometimes as a prosecutor you have someone who you think is a good witness and maybe the conduct isn't clear enough and that's where you end up with things like an immunity deal which i believe ami already has from the southern district. you have to make that decision as a prosecutor. is this person somebody i need to charge or am i satisfied to turn them into a witness against others. >> allen weisselberg, he's not as well known to the general public, but he was the chief financial officer at trump organization since fred trump. he has been described to me from people on the inside as being as close as the family member, so the person right outside that first concentric ring.
so he knows everything, people have said, because he had to sign every one of the checks or knew which checks were going going out. allen weisselberg also testified before a grand jury last summer. he too received immunity as we knew meaning his words wouldn't be used against him as long as he told the truth. since then prosecutors have examined discrepancies between his account and mr. cohen's. mr. cohen told them mr. weisselberg had a deeper involvement in the hush money payment to ms. daniels than mr. weisselberg has indicated. >> the biggest mistake you can make if you're in allen weisselberg's shoes is to lie and get caught in it. allen weisselberg got lucky to get immunity because from the sound of it he could have been charged. that decision was made let's have him be a witness. if it turns out he lied to them that agreement gets ripped up and he is right back in the soup. he could end up getting charged, too, if they have definitive proof that he was dishonest. >> about keith schiller investigators were aware he had
spoken by phone to mr. pecker and wanted to know if schiller ever handed the phone to mr. trump. journal could not determine whether investigators ever learned the answer to that question. >> if he did then that's going to go right to the president's knowledge of this whole scheme. >> elie, thank you for helping us digest in article. just crossing us right now, a much bigger investigation than we had previously known. according to the "wall street journal" into the president's specific role in the hush money payments to stormy daniels and karen mcdougal. we will have much more. stay with us. how do you determine the durable value of a business in the transportation industry without knowing firsthand the unique challenges in that sector. coming out here, seeing the infrastructure firsthand, talking with the people behind the numbers creates a different picture. once i know what a business is truly worth, we can make better informed investment decisions. that's why i go beyond the numbers. ♪
it is official the democrats now have the largest presidential primary field in modern history, this week congressman eric swalwell became the 18th candidate to join the field, one more than the 17 candidates who ran on the republican ticket in 2017. doesn't count joe biden who we expect will get in very soon. joining us now one of those 2016 republican candidates, former senator from pennsylvania rick santorum, now a cnn senior political commentator. this is a conversation i wanted to have with you for eight years since i covered your presidential run in 2012. >> okay. >> when you look at this field of 18 democratic candidates, the question i think people ask is
does every one of them really think that he or she has a chance to win? >> no. i think that people run for different reasons. i mean, if you look just even the last go round in the democratic party, bernie sanders i think when he originally got in i don't think he really felt he was going to win, but bernie is someone who is driven by a set of issues and trying to move the country in a direction and sees this as a platform to get those policies. now, obviously he did almost win and i think he has a legitimate chance of winning this one, but i don't think that's why he got in in the first place. people run for different reasons. they run because they have an agenda or ideas they want to promote, maybe they want to promote themselves and put themselves up for, you know, a cabinet position or whatever the case may be, some may feel like it's their destiny, they've always wanted to do this and now when you have 20 candidates, you never know, lightning could strike and things could happen. there's all sorts of reasons people are in and there is some
legitimacy in that with that big of a field something weird could happen and you could have that moment in the sun where you actually could take advantage of a moment. look at, you know, the mayor of south bend, he had a moment and no one would have ever thought that he had a chance and all of a sudden he's now in the discussion. >> so what you're saying is those people from 0 to 1 percent they think something might happen, there's something -- it's not impossible. >> it's not impossible. i'm living proof of that. look, i ran in 2012, you know, having the last time i ran for elected office, you know, i lost and actually lost pretty badly in 2006. i went out there and i ran because i had some issues and things that i thought were really important to try to change the focus of the republican party and i thought i could deliver that message effectively. it turned out to be true because a lot of things happened that sort of aligned for me and i was able to win the iowa caucuses.
again, those things can happen and particularly with a crowded field it's more likely to happen. >> i was one of the reporters back in 2011 and you face these questions all the time, you did interview after interview with people telling you you don't have a chance. >> right. >> it gets to the framing of this, just that interview i did with you in 2011. >> any doubts that you are the right man at the right time? >> no, i really don't have any doubts. i wouldn't be doing this. if i thought someone else could do the job that i believe i can do and be successful and winning this race, which i think i'm in the best position to do -- >> so it is interesting, you can see it there, first of all, we both haven't aged a day. >> not a bit. >> you have people telling you you have no chance, you have no chance. i learned a lesson then because i went and won the iowa caucuses at that point. you might as well let the voters decide who has a chance or not. >> i think in some respects i don't think any democrat would admit it, but i'm sort of the poster boy of the candidate that has no shot. i mean, there is no reason that i should have been able to win
11 caucus states against mitt romney, but i did because it was the right message at the right time. you know, it's a matter of having that message, having -- being able to connect with voters and having the resources to be able to compete. all of those three things have to happen, i had two of the three and that wasn't enough. >> what did you learn? when it started to happen there was some confusion in the campaign with what do we do now with all of this? what's your advice to these candidates if and when that moment comes? >> i just mentioned, you know, you have to have the right message, you have to be the right messen injury and you have to have the resources to be able to get into the fight. if you look early on here at this democratic primary, i mean, you're seeing remarkable resources flowing to candidates, some of whom are fairly obscure. that is, again, probably encourages more people to get in because there is a willingness on the part of the democratic contributor to take a shot on
somebody that's not the favorite, to fund people and, in fact, in large amounts of, you know, a diverse amount of folks. so there is even from my -- you know, my race in 2012 or in 2016, i think there is more possibility for a dark horse in this race to emerge than maybe at any time in electoral history. >> rick santorum, thank you for helping us understand this. a discussion i've been wanting to have for a long time. >> thank you. that was really candid and really interesting and i appreciate him saying all of that. >> it's interesting. you always wonder do they really think they have a chance? and he's like. no. no. there are' running for different reasons. >> and that's why today i'm announcing my candidacy. up next we have much more on our breaking news. the "wall street journal" is reporting just out this hour that the probe into those hush money payments by the president has gone much deeper into the president's inner circle than previously known. we will be right back.
>> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. >> okay. we want to bring you this developing story. the "wall street journal" has just put out an article reporting that federal investigators are looking into those hush money payments made by donald trump to those two women who alleged that they had affairs with him and they have gathered more evidence from inside the president's inner circle than previously reported. apparently prosecutors spoke with hope hicks, who of course was very close for years to mr. trump, as well as his former security chief keith schiller. they have some information about what those two may have been involved in. joining us now is john avalon cnn's senior political analyst and chris sicillizza.
we knew that michael cohen and donald trump were involved in these payments. we've seen the checks from donald trump -- >> we've seen the receipts, yes. >> -- to michael cohen and there was a suggestion that allen weisselberg the chief financial officer might have been involved because in that taped recording that michael cohen made he might have been involved. prosecutors have interviewed hope hicks very close to mr. trump about these as well as speaking to keith schiller the former security chief. investigators learned of calls between mr. schiller and david pecker who is the chief executive of the parent company of "national enquirer." so -- i mean, in other words, it's much closer and maybe these two were somehow implicated. >> the key points are that schiller and hicks are incredibly close to donald trump both adds candidate and president in terms of shear day to day proximity. so the fact that they've been making calls to american media, this is donald trump's infamous
david pecker problem, and the catch and kill that they have been alleged to conduct with karen mcdougal, this all brings these figures closer together. and the issue is not just campaign finance, it's whether it was designed to deprive the american people of information that could have changed the result of an election. this is a significant ratcheting up and a reminder that the ongoing investigations of the president are significant, could have a significant impact on his presidency over and above the mueller report. >> and hope hicks in particular, chris, with as a campaign staffer. so the argument that this wasn't a campaign expense or a campaign concern if she had knowledge of or was connected to or involved in, that does raise problems. >> absolutely. and, look, let's go back to what michael cohen has testified to in the southern district of new york, has agreed to. remember, as part of his plea agreement they acknowledged that they believe the his allegation that he was directed and
coordinated by the president of the united states then candidate of the united states and president of the united states to do these things, to make these payments, that that was a fact, right? cohen was alleging it, but part of their plea agreement was, yes, we agree to that. so, you know, that's not just michael cohen's word against donald trump, that's a southern district of new york's word against donald trump. many people we've talked about this on this show before, many people said they thought the southern district of new york investigation was potentially more problematic for donald trump than the mueller probe. may wind up being the case. >> the article goes on to say -- you know, michael cohen as you guys know has suggested that he has a treasure trove of audiotapes and emails and texts, et cetera. here it says investigators possess a recorded phone conversation between mr. trump's former lawyer, michael cohen, and a lawyer who represented the two women. not surprising, but, of course, we need to know what's on that. so what is michael cohen saying? what's the lawyer saying? what are these negotiations
sound like? obviously prosecutors that is just gold for them, john. >> yeah, because that takes you well beyond the he said/she said of it or the he said/he said as it may be. this is about the circle closing because the more people who are in close proximity to donald trump in realtime towards the end of the campaign, the more it's going -- it's potential that donald trump directly knew about t we already have had some recordings, but these communications become really, really key and they've got them apparently. >> and, again, i just remind you prosecutors asked hope hicks whether she amassed a witness whether hicks had coordinated with anyone at american media concerning a journal article on november hadth, 2016, the first article that talked about the possibility of these payments. there are people having if hope hicks was involved in the spin around this article. >> john, just very quickly, remember there's so many untruths that are already been told. remember when this initially came out the "wall street journal" has done a ton of great reporting on this, they were the first to reported about these payments.
when it first came out michael cohen said it's nothing, i paid for it myself. when it was, i don't know where the money came from. then it was i got a home equity loan. i mean, there's so many things here that are fishy and, again, the southern district of new york in their plea agreement with michael cohen acknowledged they believe that donald trump directed and coordinated these payments, which donald trump absolutely says he did not do. >> it's in the context of the final days of the campaign which is so crucial. remember, he wins by 78,000 votes in three states and that last, for example, comey letter about hillary clinton seems to have had an impact on some polls. this is incredibly high stakes when it comes to determining in those final days and hours who becomes president of the united states. >> chris, john, thank you very much. all right. new york city officials are trying to stop this measles outbreak from getting worse. we discuss a controversial idea to get everyone vaccinated. next. hi. i'm brad. and my favorite treat is crunch.
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a public health emergency has been declared in new york amid the measles outbreak. the cdc reports 365 cases of measles nationwide, two decades after the disease was eradicated. joining us to talk about what's happening in new york and more we have chief medical correspondent dr. sanjay group da also dr. barbow the new york city health commissioner. thank you for being here. sanjay, great to see you. what is new york doing to try to curtail this? >> so i have declared a public health emergency because we have 285 cases of measles. with that emergency what we then are doing is requiring that all individuals who live in willi s williamsbu williamsburg, brooklyn, or work there get vaccinated for the measles vaccine within the next 48 hours. >> who you is that differently than what currently exists? >> so what we have done up until this point is enforce
regulations that are in place, mandating that children who are unvaccinated be excluded from schools. we have seen some improvement over the last several months, over 8,000 people have gotten vaccinated, as compared to the previous year, but we're still seeing way too many cases and we're concerned that measles has consequences and we want to avoid any bad outcomes. >> what if parents don't want to vaccinate their children? >> so part of what this order says is that a child who is unvaccinated and exposed to measles needs to be vaccinated within three days. what we're doing is providing parents with as much information as possible so that they feel good about vaccinating their children because we really feel that that's the best way to protect their health and safety. in the event that a parent chooses in spite of all of that information not to vaccinate their child within this outbreak, then they are at a potential of facing $1,000 fine
for every child that they have who is not vaccinated. >> is that the answer nationwide, sanjay? >> i think the idea of mandatory vaccines nationwide is larger issue. right now you're dealing with a public health emergency. i think the stakes are a little different right now because there is people who are becoming infected with measles that, you know, there's no need for that to be happening and the numbers as you know continue to spread. it's likely that this will be the highest year on record in the last 20 years in terms of patients with measles in this country. something we didn't talk about in 2000 at all because it was gone. >> i think we need to start the conversation with parents are trying to protect their kids. so let's just all accept i think that sometimes the parents who don't want to vaccinate are depicted as tinfoil wearing crazies. they're trying to protect their kids, perhaps they have bad information and i hate to open pandora's box but let's acknowledge there are occasional very rarely vaccine injuries and parents know that. >> yeah. >> so they're trying to protect
their kids. every time we pretend that vaccines are 100% safe while they have saved millions of lives we need to say i think that you can understand why parents are a little skittish about some of this. >> well, look, i mean, risk is a difficult thing to assess, i think, for the average person because, you know, when you hear about a single case of a problem -- look, the medical community acknowledges that there are risks to vaccines, i don't think they say it's 100% safe and there can even be serious adverse events, but they are rare. when people say one in a million chance of that happening, i mean, look, out of 10,000 people who take an aspirin, ten will be a bleed in their brain. taking tylenol is the most common reason someone ends up in the hospital for liver failure. you are more likely to get hit by a car crossing the street than you have to have an adverse event from a vaccine and yet no one is saying you shouldn't walk across the street. i mean, risk is a difficult thing to assess and i appreciate that we're not trying to portray people as wearing tinfoil hats and whatnot, but this is a really serious issue and i think
that anytime it's given this equivalency i'm trying to do the safe thing for my child, therefore, i didn't vaccinate, i just -- i don't think that's a very fair or safe even comparison. >> i think that's really important context. >> and i would add that very much so our approach has been to help parents feel good about vaccinating their kids because, you're right, all parents are trying to do the best for their children. we are working with community leaders, faith-based leaders, other trusted voices in the community that will be there to answer any questions at all. because sometimes, you know, people may not believe information that's coming from public health or from the government and we want them to feel good about protecting their children. >> well, this is -- we really appreciate you sharing the information with us here and we will see if new york becomes a model for how to tackle it around the country since we're seeing this outbreak that is so troubling. thank you, i really appreciate it. sanjay, great to see you as always. join dr. gupta as he journeys around the world.
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words, we all say things incorrectly but this one, you know, it came with an extra added little twist. >> please dismiss everybody, i believe you're supposed to take the gravel and bang it. >> bang the gravel, he said. bang the -- >> we should play the two-minute version. >> i was hoping we had the two-minute version. >> i think we needed to hear the whole wind up before he mispronounces it. >> he mispronounces gavel and says i need you to bang the gravel. i have nothing more to say, i would like this show so end as soon as possible so i would want you to bang the gravel. >> you want me to drop the gravel on this show. >> i would like you to bang the gravel. thank you. so steve mnuchin, that was -- >> how you do it. >> we feel you. >> okay. >> if you'd like to try it, i brought more gravel for you to bang and to drop the gravel on the show. >> all right. on that note, much more on the
breaking news regarding the "wall street journal" report on what the president knew about hush money payments to stormy daniels. that's next. ♪ well, it's wednesday and it's a big day, certainly on capitol hill. good morning, everyone, i'm poppy harlow. >> i'm jim sciutto. the "wall street journal" reports that federal investigators have interviewed two members of president trump's inner circle regarding its probe into hush money payments to two women who alleged they had affairs with the president. former white house communications director hope hicks and trump's former security chief keith schiller. also breaking this morning cnn has learned william barr has assembled a team at the department of justice to investigate how the fbi began its counterintelligence probe of russian interference in the election and any potential ties between the trump campaign and russia. expect par to be asked