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tv   The Mueller Report What You Need to Know  MSNBC  July 21, 2019 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT

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it's a document that divided the country, a chronicle of how russian operatives hacked into our political system. >> we had a hostile foreign adversary influence the outcome of our election. that should be chilling for every american. >> a 22 month probe asking whether future president was part of a plot. >> russia, if you are listening -- >> he was clearly saying that the president attempted to obstruct justice. >> the mueller report has been a best seller. yet, very few people have actually read the whole thing. so on the eve of robert mueller's historic testimony, our experts poured through all 448 pages. >> how far can a president go? >> and boiled it down to what you need to know. >> the mueller report is going to form the first rough draft of the history of the trump era.
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and you know who knows that? >> fake news, guys. fake news. >> donald trump. hello. i'm ari melber. on wednesday, bob mueller will give his highly anticipated testimony before congress. mueller is only speaking under subpoena. he already said the report is his testimony. we have gone through all 448 pag pages, scouring the report. in this hour, we present an in-depth look at the mueller report. i'm speaking out today because our investigation is complete. >> special counsel robert mueller made his first and what
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he hoped were his last remarks into his probe into russian meddling, potential obstruction and the mueller report. >> we chose those words carefully and the work speaks for itself. >> mueller resisted demands to testify before congress until two congressional subpoenas compelled them to agree. he will appear on wednesday. mueller's testimony comes in the shadow of the first person to see the long awaited report. trump attorney general william barr, who took the unusual step of summarizing mueller's report weeks before it was released and again when it came out, shaping public perception and defending donald trump. >> the deputy attorney general and i concluded that the evidence developed by the special council is not sufficient to establish that the president committed an obstruction of justice offense. >> the attorney general has characterized the report as saying there was no obstruction. yet, we know from the report that there are at least ten
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examples of chargeable offenses of obstruction of justice by this president. >> i think it was certainly the attorney general's expectation that if we could get out ahead of the report, if he could mischaracterize it in a way that supported the president's narrative, the report wouldn't make as much of an impact. >> amid all the partisan noise swirling around the mueller report, the question remains, what's actually in it? the document is a daunting 448 pages. the result of 22 months of intense scrutiny by a staff of 19 lawyers and 40 fbi personnel. together evidence the team issued more than 2,800 subpoenas, more than 500 search warrants and interviewed close to 500 witnesses. 34 people and three companies were indicted or convicted of charges ranging from meddling in our election to witness tampering to lying to the fbi. about 10% of the document is hidden from public view through
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color coded redactions. >> the four redactions from the report were personal information. the second one is grand jury information. the third was investigative techniques. >> and harm to future investigations or harm to ongoing investigations. >> mueller acknowledges early on in the report that his search for answers was hampered by witnesses who were less than truthful. >> the investigation established that several individuals affiliated with the trump campaign lied to the office and to congress about their interactions with russian affiliated individuals and related matters. those lies materially impaired the investigation and russian election interference. >> trump himself refused to sit for an interview. and according to mueller provided incomplete and imprecise written answers to a series of written counsel questions. throughout the 20 responses the president provided, the report states trump stated he did not
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recall or remember or had an independent recollection on more than 30 occasions. >> it's clear they did not find everything that they wanted to find. there were questions that were unanswered. >> it's got flaws, but it's likely to be the only official word we're going to get. >> mueller broke the report down in two volumes. volume one explores two questions critical to our democracy. how russia attempted to influence the 2016 election and did the president or his campaign conspire with russia in the process? the second volume addresses another question that's just as explosive, whether or not the president obstructed justice. >> there was no obstruction. it was a complete and total exoneration. >> volume one begins with a sobering description of russia's
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attempts to influence the election. the russian government interfered in the 2016 presidential election in sweeping and systematic fashion. >> we had a hostile foreign adversary influence the outcome of our election. that should be chilling for every american. >> mueller reveals how the russian influence operation pursued its goals on two fronts, social media propaganda to disrupt and divide the public and a series of sophisticated cyber attacks on democratic party cyber systems. >> it was the cyber warfare and information equivalent of cruise missiles shot at this country. >> investigators traced the social media operation to this office building in st. petersburg russia. the ira was actually a russian troll farm with close ties to the kremlin. it's mission, churn out fake
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media content to attract and influence american audiences. >> they want to create upheaval and they want to sew discord and create a violent conflict of views where people feel democracy is eating itself from within. >> the ira employed hundreds of russian millennials who trolled the internet day and night. >> alex stamos was facebook's chief security officer during the operation. >> they hire young russians with western language skills who then study western society by watching television, watching movies and reading our online postings and then try to turn around those issues and amplify them. >> as the presidential election approached, internal ira documents showed the russians had taken sides. >> throughout 2016, ira accounts published an increasing number of materials supporting the trump campaign and opposing the
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clinton campaign. >> it is very likely that putin and the russians assumed, like the american political establishment, that donald trump wasn't going to be elected president, that hillary clinton would probably win, but if they could weaken clinton, if they could undermine her credibility, that would serve their aims when she became president. >> pages 14 to 35 of volume one meticulously detailed ira details. they created fake hashtags and posts on twitter. >> they created content in favor of trump and against hillary clinton. if you think hillary clinton was a criminal, they gave you that information. if you thought donald trump was your savior, they gave you that information. >> once the russians had created these personas in groups, they began promoting fake trump
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rallies. >> people showed up at rallies thinking they had been organized by fellow americans who were trump supporters. >> events that showed the unprecedented reach of the russian social media campaign. but as volume one of the mueller report reveals, fake rallies were one thing of the russians far-reaching plan to undermine our democracy. coming up, imagine if you wound up in the mueller report. victims of the russian cyber operations tell their stories. >> it's the strangest thing i ever been involved with. this comes out using my dad's picture for trump. i would not agree to that. >> they very selectively leaked day after day after day contents of my e-mails and some of the other people in the campaign who had been hacked. the campaign who had been hacked. wow!
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we know from volume one of the mueller report that the russian influence operation exposed millions of americans to fake social media content intended to disrupt and confuse. >> 126 million americans may have seen some form of this information. >> without realizing it, some americans even got caught up in the russian operation. as described on page 31 of the mueller report, in october 2016, russian trolls used this photograph of a west virginia cole miner to promote a pro-trump rally led by a fake
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group called miners for trump. >> the thursday that the mueller report was released, i got a call from my daughter. >> labor photographer took the portrait back in 1976, and it made the cover of "time" magazine. >> she said, dad, did you know you were on page 31 in the mueller report? i said, i had no idea. >> ronny is the son of that miner, lee, a staunch democrat. >> strangest thing i ever been involved with. this comes out using my dad's picture for trump. him or neither would i agree to that. >> it documents how that type of russian propaganda spread, including donald trump who shared and retweeted posts from those russian accounts. >> the report actually says that the president himself was
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retweeting posts by russian media propaganda officers. >> the one that i love is ten underscore gop that's putting out all sorts of wild stuff including wild conspiracy claims, making digs at the clinton campaign. >> on october 15th, a dig cal media director for the trump campaign retweeted@tengop, tell the truth. according to the report, @ten gop was actually controlled by russian trolls. >> it was retweeted frequently by donald trump's campaign. >> kellyanne conway, michael
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flynn, they all retweeted this phony russian troll account. amplifying its message. they were being played by the russians. >> at the same time that the ira was flooding u.s. social media, the mueller report describing a second flank of the russian interference operation. sophisticated cyber attacks aimed at democratic targets and run by the giu, russia's equivalent of the cia. >> they are trained as hackers using the full scale power of a foreign government to break into the computer of a private political group. >> 29 pages of the mueller report detailed the russian hacking and dumping operations of two gru military intelligence units. 26165 specialized in hacking computer networks and stealing
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data. 74455 was responsible for dumping or distribution. together they hacked the democratic national committee and democratic national campaign computer systems and dumps hundreds of thousands in stolen documents and e-mails,-raising opposition research. >> this is watergate. they are breaking into and carrying out a cyber burglary. >> three days before the democratic national convention on july 22nd, 2016, the russian operation with the help of wikileaks dropped a political bombshell. >> this weekend, wikileaks released nearly 20,000 e-mails, some of which seem to confirm what a lot of people had suspected, that the dnc was playing favorites with hillary clinton over bernie sanders. >> on page 45 of the mueller report, private messages over twitter between wikileaks and
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russian operatives revealed an interest in causing conflict in the democratic party. >> wikileaks explained we think trump has only a 25% chance of winning against hillary, so conflict between bernie and hillary clinton is interesting. >> we had outside forces like wikileaks that were trying to p perpetuate dysfunction and discord between two people who should be coming together and unifying the party. >> inside the dnc, which is supposed to be neutral on these matters, the thumb was on the scale for hillary clinton. >> that's where you've got your split between bernie sanders supporters and hillary clinton supporters and the u.s. news media ate it up. >> next thing i know, i've got, you know, bernie bros, trump
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supporters, just crazy people calling me and saying every word you can imagine and then hanging up. it felt very violating to me. we were all on edge after that. >> but the dnc hack was the tip of the iceberg. the russians were just getting started. coming up -- >> they very selectively leaked the contents of my e-mails. the contents of my e-mails y veh. at the lexus golden opportunity sales event. lease the 2019 rx 350 for $389 a month, for 36 months, and we'll make your first month's payment. experience amazing. hi. maria ramirez! mom! maria! maria ramirez... mcdonald's is committing 150 million dollars in tuition assistance,
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robert mueller's report lays out in unprecedented detail the scope and scale of russian interference in 2016 election. >> the russians hacked our election and created a tsunami of content in favor of trump and against hillary clinton. >> president trump rejected the idea that russia played any part in his victory. >> russia did not help me get elected. you know who got me elected? i got me elected. russia didn't help me at all. >> again and again the president has said his campaign had no ties to russia. >> i have no dealings with
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russia. i have no deals in russia. >> but the mueller report documents meetings and links between russians and some trump advisers. >> one thing certainly significant was the number of ov overchurs that russian officials made to people in the trump campaign to try to make inroads and establish relationships. >> pages 80 to 95 deal with george papadopoulos's role, including what prompted the fbi's probe to begin with. p he bragged in may 2016 about his contacts with russian intelligence. >> he had a personal contact with an australian diplomat. >> mueller found over 30 meetings by well over 30 people
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associated with the trump campaign meeting with russians. so this is not a one off with george. this is a deliberate strategy to get help from any corner, even an adversary. >> it also documents the mueller campaign's interest in russia's hacking operation. >> part of the report that i find quite interesting was the section that dealt with the russian intelligence efforts to try to collect hillary clinton's e-mai e-mails. >> at a press conference in 2016, candidate trump asked russia to get his opponents e-mails, a potential crime which the trump campaign later said was a joke. >> russia, if you are listening, i hope you are able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. >> page 49 in the report documents russia did not take it as a joke. it appeared to act on the request immediately. >> within approximately five hours of trump's statement, gru
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officers targeted for the first time clinton's personal office. after candidate trump's remarks, unite 26165 created and sent malicious links targeting 15 e-mail accounts at the domain. >> that particular attack wasn't successful. heavily redacted passages in volume one indicated the trump's intense interest regarding clinton's hacked e-mails. john podesta was hillary clinton's campaign chairman. >> we still don't know the full extent of connections between agents of the trump campaign and the russian government or russian actors because so much of that information is redacted. >> page 54 of the report shows how close mueller got to a potential election conspiracy, recounting candidate trump and rick gates, a top aid, coordinating plans to benefit
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from russia's e-mail crimes. >> according to gates, by the late summer of 2016, the trump campaign was planning a press strategy, a communications campaign and messages based on possible release of clinton e-mails by wikileaks. >> candidate trump told gates that more releases of damaging information would be coming. >> very significant statement here telling us that candidate trump had knowledge that there were indeed wikileaks efforts to release information that wikileaks was in possession of stolen data and that more of that would be released by wikileaks. >> but then as page 58 of the report recounts, in early october, audio from the now infamous access hollywood interview with trump was leaked to the media. >> and when you are a star, they like to do it. you can do anything. grab them by the [ bleep ]. do any of that.
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>> the access hollywood tape comes out of donald trump saying things that i shall not repeat. >> most people i guess that would have been game over. >> about 45 minutes over, john podesta's e-mails were released. >> they selectively leaked day after day the contents of my e-mails and some of the other people on the campaign that had been hacked. it kept the e-mail story alive during october. >> the timing of the dump effectively took attention away from trump's access hollywood embarrassment. >> it shows a clear awareness on the part of the russians that they needed to create a distraction to prevent that from hurting candidate trump. >> although the report presents insufficient evidence of a criminal conspiracy between the trump team and the russians on the e-mail hacks, it does focus on the actions of a key trump campaign official. paul manafort discussed a plan to allow russia to control a
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part of eastern ukraine with a pro-putin associate. and manafort also attended a june 2016 meeting at trump tower. >> we know that russians were there. and we know why they were there. >> donald trump jr. said if it's what you say, i love it. let's meet. they showed up for the purpose of receiving disparaging information about hillary clinton. and the idea that they were willing to accept that help is incredibly unpatriotic. >> as with so much of the trump campaign, you have questions about intent. was this an inept campaign that was leaning toward corruption for many americans who read the report the answers to that question are blurry. >> but the revelations found on pages 50 and 51 are clear and couldn't be more alarming. russian hackers didn't just attempt to sway public opinion. in 2016 they actually tried to influence the results of local elections by penetrating voting
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systems. >> the gru also targeted private technology firms responsible for manufacturing and administering election related software and hardware such as voter registration software and electronic polling stations. >> takes it down to a local level and suggests there might have been a capability of manipulating vote counts, which clearly would have been far more serious than anything else. >> beyond identifying evidence, mueller says he didn't look into the success or failure of the russian intrusions since other law enforcement agencies were on the case. so after 199 pages of findings, what is robert mueller's conclusion on the trump campaign's role in russian election meddling? >> so the most important part of the report to me is in part one, section four. with respect to russia providing assistance to the campaign in assistance for any sort of favorable treatment in the
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future based on the available information, the investigation did not establish such coordination. >> mueller finds no chargeable conspiracy between the trump campaign and russia. >> it concludes that we weren't conspireing with the russians to swing an election. so the mueller report should be seen, even by the critics and the nay sayers, as the conclusive, definnive, authoritative word on the mueller administration. >> it's good news for the white house, even if volume one of the report didn't go as far as donald trump and his attorney general claimed. but volume two caused an uproar still reverberating through the halls of congress and beyond. coming up -- >> he has this korleane understanding of power that you are with him or you are against him. t you are with him or you are against him. oh delicious. or delicious... or fun. ♪
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the hour's top stories.
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the puerto rican governor announced on sunday he will not seek re-election as the fallout from those leaked messages lingers. protests calling for the governor to resign from persisted for a week. robert mueller set to testify on wednesday. his report presents substantial evidence that trump is guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors. now back to the msnbc special "the mueller report." while volume one of the mueller report had good news for trump, volume two unloaded the bad news, substantial evidence of obstruction by the president, raising the question, how should our democracy respond to evidence of interference with the rule of law? >> our system is based on a certain assumption, and that is that investigations will be permitted to play out without
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interference by the public and specifically by those being targeted by the investigation. >> mueller documents ten episodes of possible obstruction by the president. in some he suggests there was not a clear case of obstruction. but in other key examples, mueller finds, quote, substantial evidence. >> article two of the constitution gives the president broad powers to run the executive branch. it doesn't give him authority to act corruptly, but it doesn't give him authority to obstruct justice. >> the report presents a series of dramatic encounters and events, revealing a president increasingly angered by an investigation he cannot contain. >> you see him reacting and trying to gain control of the situation. >> trump lost control through a key event, the recusal of a hand picked attorney general. >> i have now decided to recuse myself. >> it handed oversight to
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another official with no tries to trump. sessions is one of trump's earliest campaign endorsers and met with a russian diplomat, which led the doj to urge for his recusal. nevertheless, trump viewed the decision as a betrayal. >> the president said he wanted an attorney general who would protect him the way he perceived robert kennedy and eric holder to have protected their presidents. the president made statements about being able to direct criminal investigations saying words to the effect of, you are telling me that bobby and jack didn't talk about investigations or obama didn't tell eric holder who to investigate? >> he has this corleone-like understanding of power that you are with him or you are against him. he wanted an attorney general who would carry out his will
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exclusi exclusively, to the exclusion of the task of the attorney general which is to enforce the laws of the united states, whether or not the president agrees with them. >> the report states the president directed former campaign manager to deliver a message to the attorney general. trump dictated a statement for him to read and calling for a limit to the special counsel's jurisdiction. >> our potus is being treated very unfairly. he hasn't done anything wrong. he didn't do anything wrong except he ran the greatest campaign in american history. i am going to meet with the special prosecutor to explain this is very unfair and let the special prosecutor move forward with investigating election meddling for future elections so that nothing can happen in future elections. >> he is trying to restrict the
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investigation, to wall off his own conduct and the conduct of his campaign. >> he told mueller he never delivered the message directly, but tried to execute trump's plot by passing the task to someone inside the administration. white house aid rick dearborn who also never followed through. the apparent failure does not take trump off the hook because endeavoring to obstruct justice is a crime even when it doesn't work. >> the obstruction of justice statute only requires an endeavor, an attempt to obstruct justice. >> in a similar context, mueller examines a private interaction between the president and fbi director james comey. >> comey had been at the white house for meetings with national security officials with the president and after the meeting the president clears out the room and says he just wants to talk to comey alone. >> comey recalled that trump
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brought up michael flynn. >> mike flynn had been fired as the national security adviser after questions were raised about his contacts with the russians during the transition. >> according to comey in volume 2, page 40 of the report, the president said i hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting flynn go. >> comey does not commit to any of the investigation, but when he goes home that day, he writes a contemporaneous memo about his meeting with the president. >> trump was more direct that spring. the report says the president asked comey to publically announce that he was not under investigation by the fbi. comey didn't oblige and trump fired him in may. >> firing an fbi director is politically a very difficult thing to do, especially because the fbi director is supposed to be in his post for ten years.
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and free of white house influence. so here was trump in the middle of an investigation into his campaign trying to get rid of the person leading that inquiry. >> i don't know whether the president was motivated by an entirely legitimate pure reason, an improper reason or a mixed motive. all i know is that he has the constitutional right to fire jim comey. >> the fbi chief's exit set the stage for a major turning point in the investigation. >> we now have a special counsel to head the russia investigation. the man chosen for the job is not just any lawyer. he is robert mueller. >> trump reacted to this bombshell twist by saying, oh, my god. this is terrible. this is the end of my presidency. i'm f'd. according to notes mueller obtained from an aid to jeff sessions who was in the room. >> history could tell you you are almost always screwed when
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one is appointed. it took a big chunk out of bill clinton. it led to richard nixon's resignati resignation, marched reagan's second term. as a matter of historical record, he was correct. >> i know that i'm not under investigation. me personal lichly. >> throughout the spring of 2017, trump appeared to take so las in the belief that he was not under investigation and according to the report had been given private assurances by the fbi. by june 14th he found out that was no longer true. >> the latest breaking news story of the night is the washington post report that special prosecutor robert mueller is now investigating the president for possible obstruction of justice. >> federal investigators had to expand because they kept hearing from witnesses about how the president in their view was maybe trying to intimidate them or pressure them to do certain
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things to end the investigation. >> coming up -- >> explosive information about the saga of don mcgahn. >> this is one of the most significant episodes of obstruction of justice in the mueller report. obstruction of justice in the mueller report i switched to liberty mutual, because they let me customize my insurance. and as a fitness junkie, i customize everything, like my bike, and my calves. liberty mutual customizes your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ if you have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis, every day can begin with flakes. it's a reminder of your struggles with psoriasis. but what if your psoriasis symptoms didn't follow you around? that's why there's ilumya. with just 2 doses,
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the volvo xc90. the most awarded luxury suv of the century. no collusion, no obstruction. thank you very much. thank you. >> mr. president? >> of all the evidence of potential obstruction presented in volume two of the mueller report, some of the most dramatic episodes involve the president's effort to get his white house counsel don mcgahn to control the probe. >> mcbegan is a conservative lawyer who came into the administration to try to overhaul the federal judiciary. he was distracted constantly
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from that mission by president trump's fury and frustration with the inquiry. >> mcbegan became mueller's star witness talking more 30 hours and earning 157 citations in the report, more than any other witness. >> mcgahn is telling mueller throughout hours of testimony that he was pushed to the edge to try to help not only defend president trump but manage the mueller investigation and to wipe the tracks clean whenever there was conduct that was questionable. >> in volume two on page 85, mueller drops a bombshell. the president tried to get the special counsel fired, the brazen act that undid richard nixon's presidency. and the report source is impeccable, don mcgahn who testified that after trump learned he was under investigation, he called measuring gahn at home on
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saturday june 17th and told him mueller has to go, adding, call me back when you do it. under oath, mcgahn knew it was an order to fire special counsel robert mueller. >> the job of the white house counsel is not to serve as the attorney for the president but rather for the office of the president, to preserve that office in its integrity. and don mcgahn stood up and said, i'm not firing the special counsel. >> as a skilled lawyer, mcgahn also knew acting on the order could put himself in trouble. >> he was not going to compromise what was a completely remarkable reputation for excellence by participation in something he did not deem correct. >> that'vening, he called trump's top aids at the time, ryan priebus and steve bannon to announce his resignation. to avoid involving them in a potentially illegal order,
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mcgahn told them he didn't say trump's words, but that he was resigning instead of carrying out trump's request to do crazy [ bleep ]. they talked mcgahn off the ledge. things subsided until -- >> "the new york times" out with a story of the president's demands of mcgahn. >> january 2018 we reported that trump had asked mcgahn the previous summer to have mueller removed as the special counsel. that story set off trump. >> do you want to fire robert mueller? >> fake news. fake news. >> in public the president denied them. but volume two, page 119 of mueller's report provides evidence that trump demanded that mcgahn say the times reporting wasn't true. >> shortly after the story
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break, the president's personal counsel said mcgahn wanted to make a statement denying he had been asked to fire the special counsel. but mcgahn stated that aspect of the story was accurate and he therefore could not comply with the president's request. >> those are powerful words when they're brought to life, that the president of the united states asked someone to lie for him in a way to obstruct the investigation. >> it is probably the most serious example of the president attempting to obstruct justice. but once again, mcgahn refuses to do what trump wanted him to do. >> according to the report, the president kept the pressure on mcgahn. page 115 of the volume two details how in early february. trump asked his aid to tell mcgahn to create an official record, a letter for the white house files that he never directed mcgahn to fire the special counsel.
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>> asking people to change their stories either orally or in writing is evidence of consciousness of guilt. >> he also toldcgahn, spoke to mueller's team, also said something to the effect of, if he doesn't write a letter, then maybe i'll have to get rid of him. porter delivered the message but mcgahn again refused to change his story or create what he considered to be an untruthful record. >> creating a false document, this is at the very heart of obstruction of justice. to me this is one of the most significant episodes of obstruction of justice in the mueller report. >> the standoff between trump and mcgahn reached a dramatic conclusion the next day. >> ultimately, there's an oval office confrontation between the president and mcgahn. and the president says, i want you to correct this, i never told you to have mueller removed. and mcgahn doj policy precludes
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removing for obstruction or anything else. as well as other evidence in president trump's favor but declines to conclude whether he committed a crime or not. >> while this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him. >> i object to that language because no prosecutor exonerates anyone. >> mueller was hired to make these difficult calls. and he didn't do it. >> mr. trump came out immediately and saying, it was almost a slam dunk, that there was no collusion no obstruction of justice. well, that's not what it says. and that's why i think it is important for people to have a better appreciation for what the
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special counsel's team actually uncovered and what their findings are. coming up, will robert mueller's testimony finally resolve the debate? >> there's a big difference between the written word and a big difference between people's opinions of what those words mean and actually hearing from the witnesses themselves, which is why we think it's so important that mueller testify. grab some pens.
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i hope and expect this to be the only time that i will speak to you in this manner. i am making that decision myself. no one has told me whether i can or should testify or speak further about this matter. >> despite his intention to let the report speak for itself, after subpoenas from house democrats, robert mueller is ready to talk to congress. but not everyone is looking forward to it. >> i don't think that serves any purpose, dragging bob mueller up if he in fact is going to stick to the report.
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it seems to me the only reason for doing that is to create some kind of public spectacle. >> the mueller thing never stops. there was no collusion, there was no obstruction, there was no nothing. how many times do we have to hear it? >> president donald trump has continued to paint mueller's scheduled appearances as part of a vendetta from his political enemies. >> it never ends. it just keeps going on and on. i've been going through this for two years, two and a half years. >> it took weeks of negotiations for mueller to agree to speak to the house intelligence and judiciary committees, in separate sessions. >> mueller says his testimony is the report. but his voice provides the report with political weight, legal weight. it's not just a text on a page. it's the story to be told by an investigator who was there day in, day out. >> is mueller's report an exoneration? as the president and attorney general believe? or a roadmap for impeachment?
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volume 2 page 8 of the report is a clear reminder of constitutional checks and balances limiting the president's power. >> the conclusion that congress may apply the obstruction laws to the president's corrupt exercise of the powers of the office accords with our constitutional system of checks and balances and the principle that no person is above the law. congress is going to have to investigate whether the president really abused power or not. but they have to dig into the intent. what was driving the decisions at the time? >> the calls for impeachment following mueller's testimony will definitely increase. it's just in the nature of the beast. the way the congress works. >> impeaching the president is an option the majority of democrats, including house speaker nancy pelosi, have declined to endorse. >> we decide whether this is the right thing to do for the country when we know the result, which is going to be the senate on a party line basis, of voting
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to acquit. >> outside of impeachment, president trump could be facing long-term repercussions if he loses in 2020. the statute of limitations for obstruction is five years. >> when a president is no longer sitting, he loses his immunity from prosecution. and so president trump could be charged when he leaves office. >> meanwhile, trump's new attorney general, william barr, is turning the tables, probing the origins of the mueller investigation. >> congress is usually very concerned about intelligence agencies and law enforcement agencies staying in their proper lane. and i want to make sure that happened. >> at a senate hearing in april, he suggested the russia probe itself may have involved improper methods. >> the mueller report wasn't necessary, because the mueller investigation wasn't necessary. and it's great that general barr and the department of justice is now investigating the investigators, because this country deserves to know how we got here in the first place. >> in a nation polarized by not only politics but by different views of the truth itself, bob
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mueller's voice could stand out for its authority. >> we don't trust our institutions anymore. we don't know if the attorney general's lying to us or not. we don't know when a president's telling the truth or not. we don't know if the fbi's corrupt or not. >> will mueller use his testimony to draw a line in the sand? or leave the bottom line open to interpretation? >> if i were asking robert mueller a question at his hearing, i'd ask him, why did you determine not to make a prosecutorial judgment? you were appointed to be a prosecutor. >> here's how i would ask the question. mr. mueller, if donald j. trump was not the president of the united states, would you have enough evidence to charge him with obstruction? >> and the report is my testimony. >> rob mueller is one of those guys who says, the thing speaks for itself. that's an honorable principle. it's just not a principle that really exists anymore in the 21st century. nothing speaks for itself anymore. he needs to speak for it. >> the mueller report in many
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ways is going to form the first rough draft of the history of the trump era. and you know who knows that? donald trump. it's narrative, it's dramatic, it's important, and it's in black and white. are you all ready to make a ruckus? >> this is a seismic political upset. >> she came out of nowhere. >> nobody wanted to talk to us. nobody in politics, nobody in the press. >> and took the capitol by storm. >> he's not in the russell building, he's not on the floor of the senate, and 800,000 people don't have their paychecks. so where's mitch? >> they're flummoxed, they're confused, they're bewildered by her. >> alexandria ocasio-cortez has garnered critics on both sides of the aisle.


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