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tv   At This Hour With Berman and Bolduan  CNN  December 19, 2016 8:00am-9:01am PST

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hello. i'm john berman. kate bolduan is off today. it is election day in america. at least for the most elite college in the land. the 538 members of the electoral college are meeting today in state capitals across the country. all 50 of them and washington, d.c. they will cast their ballots for president and vice president today. here's a little preview. donald trump and mike pence, they are going to win. right now electors in arkansas, illinois, oklahoma and south carolina are voting, with 12 more states meeting in the next hour. the overwhelming expectation is that almost every single one of the electors will vote for the candidate who won their state. in some cases they are required to by state law.
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but, but there is the tiniest whiff of drama in this traditionally ceremonial process. some anti-trump protesters are fighting to convince republican electors to switch their vote. one elector has already vowed to break his pledge but it would take nearly three dozen more to defect in order to keep trump from the white house which honestly, frankly, it is just not going to happen. want to go first i believe to harrisburg, pennsylvania, where the state's 20 electors right now are going to cast their votes just a short time from now. sara sidner is outside the capitol there. good morning. >> reporter: yes, in about 50 minutes the 20 electors will be inside the house chambers, they will be sworn in and they will make their vote. now, i have talked to quite a few of these electors, two in particular. one of whom is an immigrant from india who came here and said i have been able to live the american dream, he's a lifetime republican and has been supporting the republican cause all these years and it's been
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almost 30 years since republicans in this state won when it comes to a presidential election. so he says this is a very serious duty and he's going to do what the electorate has asked him to do. here's what he said about the experience of being elected or being put in place as an elector. >> i was a nobody. and that came from a third world country. and i'm making a difference. it's not by a handout. it's by hard work and loyalty. i am so honored that mr. trump picked me to be on the elector, one of the 20 electors, and this is making history for me. >> reporter: making history for
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him personally and his family but also making american history. he's absolutely certain he's voting for trump but he has paid a price. he has been getting tens of thousands of e-mails, letters, even phone calls all night long, and he says he's now being protected by law enforcement, a plain clothes officer is following him around because some of those letters contained threats. but he says he has read some of them and he's simply not swayed. he says he's seen nothing between the election and now that would sway him from voting for donald trump. and he's talked to the other 19 electors here and says they're not going to change their vote either. >> sara sidner. unfortunately, a lot of stories like that, people receiving threats as they head to cast their votes today. jessica schneider is at the state capitol in michigan. what are you seeing? >> reporter: well, like you said, several people receiving threats including one elector here in michigan saying he, too, has received death threats. despite that, all 16 electors here in michigan are expected to
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gather here at the state capitol for that 2:00 p.m. vote. all 16 are in fact expected to cast their ballots for donald trump. this is largely a ceremonial process. it's being run by the republican party right here in michigan. it will be presided over by the republican governor, rick snyder. everything begin at 2:00 p.m. all these electors were voted at the state political party back in april. all of them loyal party activists. of course, we have seen several protesters here, nothing massive, just about a dozen protesters who have been circling the capitol for about the past hour. the vote starting in a little under three hours. like i said, that elector, one elector in michigan receiving death threats. also of note, michigan native michael moore posting to facebook that he would actually pay the fine for any elector who decided to vote his or her conscience and actually go rogue on this vote. however, michigan just one of 28 states that does have a faithless elector law which means all electors here are
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bound. i talked to republican party officials here. they say they do not expect any problems. they expect all 16 electors to cast their ballots for donald trump. however, they do say if there were to be a problem, it actually wouldn't be a problem because any elector who does not cast their ballot here in michigan for donald trump would simply be replaced. john? >> that's what the state law says in that state. jessica schneider, thanks so much. jessica was talking about a michigan elector who had been receiving threats. that man is michael beneri, one of 16 electors in that state. he joins us now by phone. thanks so much for joining us. why don't you tell us what the last week has been like, how much pressure you have been receiving and the nature of that pressure. >> yeah, thanks for having me, by the way. i appreciate it. unfortunately, the divisiveness of this political cycle bled over into the weeks following the election and i have just received thousands and thousands of letters, facebook messages, e-mails begging me to change my vote to hillary clinton or another republican.
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unfortunately, in some of those, i have received death threats. i had people that have talked about putting a bullet in the back of my mouth, burning my family, sending me pictures of nooses. it's been a pretty despicable frankly experience from getting letters from people like that. >> simply no place for that in this system. the michigan state law, let me read it. refusal or failure to vote for the candidates for president and vice president appearing on the michigan ballot of the political party which nominated the elector constitutes a resignation from the office of elector, his vote shall not be recorded and the remaining electors shall forthwith fill the vacancy. doesn't matter whether or not you vote for donald trump, he will get all 16 electoral votes in the state of michigan. that's what the law says. let me ask you this. if the state law did not say that, would you have been tempted to switch your vote? >> no. not at all. i don't think any of the other electors would have done that either. we were nominated at our state
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conventions in august to be electors for donald trump and mike pence. we were then put on the ballot as trump and pence electors. to change our votes going into this meeting would be completely deceptive to the voters of michigan. millions of people voted for us as trump/pence electors, so i don't think there's any precedence for it. i think it's absolutely wrong. i know there's an elector in texas talking about it. i think it's shameful. he went through the same process and i think it's deceptive to do that to the voters. >> some electors wanted to be briefed on the intelligence on the russian hacks into the campaign process. you feel you should have been privy to that information? >> no. absolutely not. i think there's no precedence for giving national security briefings to presidential electors. let's not forget a lot of these things are rumors. we are not getting a clear picture. i believe the "new york times" that reported on this was an
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anonymous source which also claimed the rnc was hacked into which is not true. >> we don't have to argue about the nature of the intelligence. the cia has said clearly they believe the election was hacked and the russians were part of it. the fbi actually shares that view. what they say and agree on is that the motives behind it could have been many but one of the possible motives was to help donald trump. even if it wasn't, the overwhelming intelligence we are being told right now is that the russians were behind the hacks. i do get your point that a briefing for the electors was unnecessary. let me ask you this. you are active in politics, active in republican politics. this is something no doubt you studied. you are a college republican, i should tell our viewers. do you think that the electoral college process as written in the constitution and the twelfth amendment, do you think it does allow for electors to vote their will? >> no. i think what it allows is for states to make these decisions. the constitution lays out the process for the electoral
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college and then gives the power to the states. what these states are saying, the process, let's just pretend michigan doesn't have this faithless elector law. in michigan, the state law says that each political party will nominate a slate of electors at theirconventions. they will be listed on the ballot for a particular candidate. i think that what michigan law says, taking out the faithless elector, is that our electors are chosen by popular vote and those electors by nature are already bound to the republican candidates in this case. i think it's very much constitutional what we are doing right now and i think going against the will of the voters would be going against state law, absent a faithless elector law. >> michigan elector who will cast his vote for donald trump today, congratulations on being part of this american process. thanks for joining us. >> thank you. thanks for having me on. president obama makes a big
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admission about why he leaves his party lost the election. an admission many democrats are still refusing to make. first lady michelle obama responds to being labeled a quote, angry black woman. what she says was the reason behind it. we are learning the fate of 47 orphans who begged to escape aleppo as bombs fell around them. we will tell you what just happened. stay with us. jack knocked over a candlestick, onto the shag carpeting... ...and his pants ignited into flames, causing him to stop, drop and roll. luckily jack recently had geico help him with renters insurance. because all his belongings went up in flames. jack got full replacement and now has new pants he ordered from banana republic. visit geico.com and see how affordable renters insurance can be.
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this morning the whole world order might be unraveling with democracy being destroyed. seasons greetings from john mccain. those strong warnings come from the republican senator over russia's election related hacking. senator mccain is pushing for a special select committee to
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investigate the alleged cyberattac cyberattacks, pressing his case here on cnn. >> no doubt they were interfering. no doubt it was cyberattacks. question now is, how much and what damage and what should the united states of america do. and so far, we have been totally paralyzed. this is serious business. if they're able to harm the electoral process, then they destroy democracy which is based on free and fair elections. >> want to bring in cnn senior political reporter manu raju. there does seem to be agreement at the senior levels of the republican party inside the senate that russia hacked into the campaign process, but not necessarily agreement on exactly how to deal with it. >> that's right. senior republican and democratic senators are amping up calls for a more sweeping investigation into what happened in the election with russia. now, mccain along with republican senator lindsey graham are joining democratic
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senator jack reed and the incoming democratic leader chuck schumer saying there should be a select stand-alone committee looking explicitly at this issue of russia. that committee would have a much broader authority to investigate all aspects of the intelligence, even more so than the existing national security and foreign policy committees on capitol hill that already plan to dig into this russian issue next year. last week, at a press conference, i asked senate majority leader mitch mcconnell why he's not backing select committee. this is what he said. you talked about an investigation. do you support a separate bipartisan investigation, a commission in any way, or do you want to do this through the intelligence committee? >> we are going to follow the regular order. it's an important subject and we intend to review it on a bipartisan basis. >> now, mcconnell saying regular order can be interpreted as him saying he does not want a special committee, because looking into this could create
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problems potentially for donald trump. critics believe that the republican leadership wants this buried and behind closed doors so it won't be a distraction for trump. mcconnell believes this can be done through the intelligence committee which is read by senator richard burr which last week promised a wide-ranging investigation to hear testimony from obama and trump officials but that will happen in classified private settings and democrats are worried the findings will never be aired publicly. so expect a lot of pressure for a select committee in the beginning of the new congress. >> one point. we heard from john mccain. he's the chair of a powerful senate committee, armed services, so in theory, if he doesn't get what he wants out of the intelligence committee, could he not hold hearings himself? >> he will. he plans to do that. the difference is he will not have access to the wide scope of intelligence information that's under the purview of the intelligence committee, not under the purview of the senate armed services committee. remember, there's 17
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intelligence agencies that do not report to the senate armed services committee. it would be difficult for him to get some of that intelligence information. so if there's a select committee, they would have presumably access to all of that intelligence. so that is the reason why there is this procedural dispute happening right now. the one that could have a lot of significance. >> the mechanics are very important. thanks so much for explaining exactly why. appreciate it. so far, president-elect trump has refused to publicly accept the notion that russia hacked into the campaign at all, especially that it was done to help him wub. the clinton campaign is refusing to say the election was free and fair. this is campaign chair john podesta. >> you believe this was a free and fair election? >> well, look, i think the russians clearly intervened in the election and i think that now we know that both the cia, the director of national intelligence, the fbi, all agree that the russians intervened to
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help trump and that as they have noted this week, nbc first revealed that vladimir putin was personally involved with that. so i think that people went to the polls, cast their votes, hillary clinton got 2.9 million more votes than donald trump, but donald trump is claiming the electoral college victory and tomorrow, the electors get to vote. >> you didn't answer the question. you believe this was a free and fair election? >> well, i think it was distorted by the russian intervention. let's put it that way. >> let's discuss this. democratic strategist, matt bennett, harlan hill, donald trump supporter and margaret hoover, cnn political commentator, veteran of two republican presidential campaigns. i want to start with you. the trump team including the incoming chief of staff reince priebus publicly refusing to sort of accept what is now accepted by republican leaders in the senate and stated clearly
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by cia and fbi officials that they believe russia hacked into the election. listen to reince priebus yesterday. >> i think he would accept the conclusion if these intelligence professionals would get together, put out a report, show the american people that they are actually on the same page, if there is this conclusive opinion among all of these intelligence agencies, then they should issue a report or stand in front of a camera and make the case. >> politics, that's what we call muddying the waters a little bit. why not just say yes, we have seen this intelligence, the cia and fbi seem to think russia hacked into the investigation and we think something needs to be done about it? >> it seems clear, that seems perfectly reasonable, but it seems clear that reince, who is representing his boss, the president-elect of the united states, are incredibly uncomfortable acknowledging any sort of meddling from russia because they think it somehow diminishes the legitimacy of their win. that's what's very clearly at
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stake here. so it seems to me there's a lack of ability to de-link two things. one, that russia interfered in the elections and two, that it had any outcome on what ended up happening with the election. that's actually what needs to be investigated. but i don't think one needs to interfere with the other. i think donald trump and republicans could acknowledge that both things, russia interfered but then get to the bottom of whether it actually had an outcome on the election. i think that's what they're most worried about. >> there was no more vocal supporter of donald trump during the election than you. no more strenuous supporter of donald trump during the election. but we have spoken about this. you think that the russian hacks into the election system is something that needs to be investigated. >> the alleged hack -- >> you're backing off now. >> i think it should be investigated but i actually have not seen a shred of evidence to prove that the russians were behind it. i have seen reports and claims of a secret investigation by the cia -- >> you do know you have seen the october 7 memo from the dni and homeland security -- >> i have it right here.
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>> -- which talks about it. the language is quite clear, they -- >> what they say is that -- >> read the top line. >> it says consistent with the methods and motivations of russian directed efforts. that's not conclusive at all. that says this looks like the russians could have done it. that doesn't say we have any evidence to substantiate this claim. this is what hillary clinton used in the debate -- >> let's not talk about hillary clinton. let's not talk about hillary clinton. >> isn't it important to discern whether or not it was the russians? >> i support an investigation. >> wouldn't it be great if the incoming chief of staff and the president-elect said hey, let's investigate -- >> i understand why they're not doing it. because it feels like, this smells like an attempt by the democrats and mainstream media to undermine the incoming president. that's what this feels like it's designed to do. >> is john mccain trying to undermine the incoming president? >> i think he is. john mccain and lindsey graham are incompatible with donald trump. they are neocons. >> mitch mcconnell trying to underline the incoming president? >> throughout the nominations
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progress, those three were probably the most vocal adversaries on the republican side. >> in the current climate that makes no sense. now the republicans have the house, the senate and the presidency. they have absolutely no interest on hurting the incoming republican president. they have policies they want to get through, too. >> they want to steamroll donald trump. they think he could present a force that changes the very dynamics within the republican party, the very agenda of the party away from corporatist interests back to populist message. >> give me a break. look, this is exactly the problem with trump and his supporters, they see conspiracies around every corner except for the corner where there actually was a conspiracy. 17 intelligence agencies have determined the russians were attempting to influence this election. if that isn't a shred of evidence or quite a bit more than that, i don't know what is. i think john mccain is exactly right. there's nothing more dangerous to our democracy than for a
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foreign power, a hostile foreign power, to be trying to impact our elections. it is insane to me that the trump people are somehow suggesting that we don't even look into that. >> in all due respect, 17 agencies have not provided a shred of evidence. zero. >> that's not how it works. these are intelligence agencies. they don't come before cameras and make these kinds of presentations. what has to happen is the elected branches of government, including the president-elect and his team when they get to the white house, have got to cooperate with this and the elected branches of government are the ones who will make the determination. intelligence agencies provide the evidence they are able to gather and then the policy makers are the ones who make the ultimate determination. that's why the investigation is so important. >> when 17 agencies come together and say something, you may not see the evidence. they have a reason for saying it. all this does is foment a lack
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of trust in the intelligence agencies. it doesn't help -- >> hang on. at the risk of letting you off the hook, when you are talking about fomenting mistrust in our process and everything else, matt, what about what john podesta said, where he refused to say this was a fair and free election? >> also foments mistrust. >> doesn't that foment distrust in the system? president obama was asked that directly on friday at his news conference. he used careful language but he clearly said there's no evidence at all that the electoral process, meaning the ballots and wh what not, that anything was affected there. >> right. i think i fall closer to where president obama is. i certainly understand john's instinct to argue that the very close election where the russians were involved may not have been ultimately free and fair but i think john would also agree that there was no evidence whatsoever that actual voting was impacted by this. it's very hard to disaggregate
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why someone goes to the polls and casts their vote a certain way. but i think it is clear that the russians were trying to get people to vote a certain way and if that's what they were doing, we need to know that. >> doesn't the way he answered that, though -- >> it smacks of being a sore loser. like be graceful in your loss. hillary clinton was graceful in her loss although i know a few days ago, she also was delving into theories about russia's interference. the truth is, democrats haven't been able to sort of own up to the fact and entirely embrace the fact they for the first time in about 30 years lost white working class non-college educated voters who swung for donald trump. >> that's not true. >> it was free and fair. it foments distrust in the system. that's not good for moving forward. let the president-elect have his moment of grace in coming into the office. >> matt? >> first of all, it's just not the case democrats haven't accepted that. there is widespread acceptance, one, of the fact donald trump won the election and will be president and two, we got killed among a very important sector of
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the electorate we need to do better in. if we are talking about grace, i think you need to be gracious winners as well as losers and i don't think we have seen much grace coming out of the trump team either. >> let's hope that as we head into the new year we get grace from both sides. >> indeed. >> thanks so much. really appreciate it. as electors across the country make their votes official, they are doing it right now, one historian says there are still five mysteries about this election, including who leaked the "access hollywood" tape. plus a man hunt under way for a driver who shot and killed a 3-year-old boy in an act of alleged road rage. hear what happened when the boy was riding in his grandmother's car. achoo! ...answer it. with zicam cold remedy. it shortens colds, so you get better, faster. colds are gonna call. answer them with zicam! zicam. get your better back. now in great tasting crystals.
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some news just in. a big, big development out of north carolina involving the controversial law over trans-gender people in bathrooms. let's go live to nick valencia. >> reporter: this was a surprise move this morning by the charlotte city council which voted unanimously to rescind their ordinance which added rights to the trans-gender community to choose the bathroom of their choice, not what was corresponding to their gender identity on their birth certificate, i should say. this is the first step that will lead to state democrats that will lead to a full repeal of house bill 2 and we expect a special session to be called tomorrow. the governor-elect, roy cooper, releasing a statement a short time ago saying senate leader phil burger and house speaker tim moore assured me that as a result of charlotte's vote, a special session will be called
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for tuesday to repeal house bill 2 in full. the outgoing governor, pat mccrory, also releasing a statement in part that read this sudden reversal with little notice after the gubernatorial election sadly proves this entire issue originated by the political left was all about politics and winning the governor's race at the expense of charlotte and our entire state. as promised, governor mccrory will call a special session. i mentioned that this came as a complete shock to many including those in the trans-gender community. the fight was over their right, so to speak, candace cox, i just got off the phone with her and she said this came as a complete shock but a welcome one because she said i believe we are headed in the right direction. sources on the ground tell us that some in the gop were desperate to get this law repealed. house bill 2, because it's cost the state millions and millions of dollars, tens of millions of dollars, many entertainers have
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pulled out from performing there because of house bill 2. we should mention the ncaa which hosts some games, championship games there in charlotte and in the state, they decide what they are going to do for the next six years in march so many people, they are telling us the gop leadership desperate to get house bill 2 repealed before that happened. we will keep an eye on this and try to get you more details as they develop. big breaking news this morning. >> nick valencia, thanks so much. we have more breaking news. this out of turkey. word of an attack on the russian ambassador to turkey. pretty horrifying pictures here. this apparently happened at an art exhibition in the capital of ankara. details next.
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all right. we have breaking news in to cnn. i do want to warn you, the pictures we are about to show are very very disturbing. we are getting word of an attack on the russian ambassador to turkey. he was shot while at an art exhibition in the capital of ankara. again, this happened in ankara. i believe we have pictures. if we do have pictures of this scene, can we put them up so viewers can see? there's a map showing you where ankara is. ankara of course, the capital of turkey right now. we are getting this word the russian ambassador was shot in the capital. he's been taken to the hospital. why does this matter? we do not know who is responsible for this attack. what we do know is both turkey and russia are now intimately involved with the war raging in syria. in fact, on different sides right now of that war raging in
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syria. russia of course supporting the assad regime in that country. turkey has been supportive of the rebels, although turkey has different interests as well with some of the kurdish fighters that have been fighting the syrian regime. we did get pictures just a short time ago from cnn turk of the attack on the russian ambassador to this country right now. do we have muhammed lila? cnn's muhammed lila is on the border between turkey and syria. what can you tell us? >> reporter: well, we understand the ambassador was speaking at an art gallery when a gunman or several gunmen burst in. we understand he has been shot. we don't know the latest in terms of what condition he is in. all of this is coming from reports from state media. of course, now that the russian ambassador andrey karlov has been shot, this is a major crisis. we know there have been a number of terrorist attacks in turkey. in fact, just in the last few
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weeks there have been several big ones. of course, none of them have targeted foreign dignitaries, let alone someone of such a high status at the ambassador level. it's unclear how russia or turkey will respond. we are awaiting an official claim of responsibility for who was behind this very deadly brazen attack. >> there has been a great deal of tension between turkey and russia over the last 12 months over the war in syria, right, with planes being shot at, apologies being made, and of course, there are kurdish separatists who have staged some of the terrorist attacks inside turkey. if they in fact now are targeting russian officials, we don't know that they are, this would be a serious development. >> reporter: well, of course. there are so many question marks in this. the thing to remember is -- >> all right. we appear to have lost muhammed lila. he's on the syria/turkish
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border. you are looking at pictures coming in from cnn turk of this attack on the russian ambassador to turkey. he has been shot at an art exhibition. we need some answers as to who is responsible for this. it is an incredibly, incredibly tense location in this war with a lot at stake. we will find out details and get back to you. stay with us. so, mr. harris, we have your fingerprints on the safe. a photo of you opening the safe. a post using the hashtag "#justrobbedthesafe"
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our breaking news comes out of the turkish capital ankara. you are looking at live pictures from that city where the russian ambassador to turkey, andrey karlov, was just shot apparently while attending an art exhibition. we believe at this point he has been rushed to the hospital. we do not have any information about his condition. why is this important? turkey and russia right now both
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intimately involved in the war in syria right now. in fact, on different sides of that war though they have been negotiating for this cease-fire in syria for some time but there have been a number of tensions between these two countries over the last year or so. again, live pictures from ankara where the russian ambassador to turkey just shot and taken to the hospital. muhammed lila joins us live from the turkish/syria border. also with us is clarissa ward in moscow. i want to go first to muhammed right now to give us the latest information on what exactly is going on inside turkey. >> reporter: well, we understand that the russian ambassador, andrey karlov, may have been giving a speech when he was shot. we don't know how many gunmen were involved and of course, we don't yet have a formal claim of responsibility. we know there have been a number of terror attacks inside turkey just in the last few weeks, major terrorist attacks, in fact, but none of them have
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targeted a foreign dignitary, let alone someone as high as an ambassador. we were talking earlier about this. there have been some tensions in the past between turkey and russia but just in the last few weeks we have seen a lot of those tensions die down. president erdogan made a very public visit to visit vladimir putin and we know the two have been speaking on the phone several times, at least seven or eight times just in the last few weeks, hammering out this evacuation and temporary cease-fire deal in syria. so this comes at a very crucial time not just for turkey but also with everything that's happening next door in syria with the official sort of fall of aleppo and what happens to the militant groups, where do they go after that. so there are a lot of questions now about how turkey is going to respond and of course, the big question in all of this, the big wild card is how is russia going to respond. >> a lot of that will depend on who was behind this attack, if that information is ever known.
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clarissa ward joins us from moscow. november of 2015, turkey shot down a russian plane on the turkish syria border. it was an su-24 fighter jet. there have been tensions over the last several years, not to mention going back decades between turkey and russia but as muhammed said, of late the two nations had been negotiating on these cease-fire attempts in aleppo. >> reporter: no, it's extraordinary how much the relationship between turkey and russia has improved since the shooting down of that plane which was possibly an all-time low. we have seen russia and turkey cooperating really quite closely and i should say much to the chagrin of many rebel forces in syria who have started to feel like perhaps turkey was selling them out as part of this rapprochement with russia. as muhammed mentioned, russia and turkey working very closely together trying to broker this aleppo evacuation deal. there's a big summit here in
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moscow tomorrow that russia and iran and also turkey are taking part in as part of ongoing efforts to bring about an end to the syrian civil war. turkey's foreign minister is expected to attend that. certainly the relationship had made some dramatic strides just in the last six months, really, particularly i would say since the failed coup attempt against erdogan earlier this summer. we are getting a little bit more information about the ambassador who was shot. we know that his career began in 1976 as a diplomat. he served as the russian ambassador or then the soviet union ambassador to north korea. he later also served as the ambassador to south korea. he speaks korean, perhaps unsurprisingly, he studied at one of the most well-known diplomacy institutes here in moscow and was attending an exhibition called russia in the eyes of turks.
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of course, the real key here will be to try to find out who was responsible for this shooting. was it a turk, was it a syrian, was it possibly a member of a militant group such as isis? only once we have a better sense of who was responsible for it and exactly what the motivation was for it, whether it indeed is related to what's happening at the moment in syria, will we then get a better sense of how russia is likely to respond. >> that's the key here. we should say that there have been isis-linked attacks inside turkey over the last year. there have also been attacks linked to kurdish separatist groups in turkey over the last several years. we just don't know at this point who is behind the attack. that is something we are going to keep our eye on throughout the day. muhammed lila, while we have you with us, can you give us briefly a quick update on what's happening on the ground inside aleppo with the attempts to evacuate some of the civilians there?
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>> reporter: well, this attack comes at such an interesting time because today, the evacuations went on uninterrupted. over the weekend there were some problems and it was on again and off again. there were no evacuations over the weekend. but today was actually that first bright glimmer of hope after a dark period. the evacuations went on uninterrupted. turkish officials just today announced that 20,000 people had been evacuated from the eastern part of aleppo. these are people who had been under siege for several months. they were running short on food and water and many of them needed medical treatment. in fact, it was so dire that the u.n. announced 47 orphans had been rescued from eastern aleppo. they were in an orphanage. a number of them needed medical care and they are now getting that medical care. by all accounts, today was even according to people on the ground, a success because it was laying the foundation to get these people in these besieged areas out and possibly laying the foundation for some sort of tenuous or perhaps even fragile limited cease-fire. certainly a foundation you could
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build on moving forward. now that the russian ambassador has been shot and we just got word that he's in critical condition, being treated in hospital, the question becomes now not just what happens in turkey but how does this affect everything that's playing out in syria. because if it was one of these groups, for example, isis that has a presence in syria or one of the al qaeda groups that has a presence in syria, the question becomes not just what happens in turkey but the connection and the domino effect that takes place in the whole region starting in turkey obviously, but then obviously moving on to syria. >> let's just bring you up to speed. you are looking at live pictures from ankara, in the capital of turkey, where the russian ambassador, andrey karlov was shot multiple times. he's in critical condition. he has been taken to the hospital, the ambassador has. we will update you on his condition when we get it. as muhammed and clarissa ward were telling you, this comes at a critical time in that part of the world. both russia and turkey
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intimately involved with trying to figure out what's going on in aleppo and forge a cease-fire there. it is tenuous at best. this could only make things more complicated. we will update you on the latest information as it comes in. we'll be right back. type 2 diabetes. listen up. we're not professional athletes... but that doesn't mean we're giving up. i'm in this for me. for me. along with diet and exercise, farxiga helps lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes, lowering a1c by up to 1.2 points. do not take if allergic to farxiga. if you experience symptoms of a serious allergic reaction such as rash, swelling, difficulty breathing or swallowing, stop taking and seek medical help right away. do not take farxiga if you have severe kidney problems, are on dialysis, or have bladder cancer.
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all right. first lady michelle obama making news. this all part of what is being billed as her final white house interview. this with oprah winfrey. it's going to appear on cbs. and she talked this time about the fact she was labeled, as she put it and oprah put it, as an angry black woman dating back to the 2008-2007 election period. listen to what she said. >> when you were labeled that angry black woman, was that one of the things that knocked you back a bit? >> one of those things you sort of thing, dag, you don't even know me. you know? just sort of feel like, wow.
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where'd that come from? >> yeah. >> you know? that's the first blow back. you think, that is so not me. but then you sort of think, well, this isn't about me. this is about -- the person or the people who write it. you know? >> rinchght. >> that's what maya always used to say. >> it's so much about that, and then you start thinking, oh, wow. we're so afraid of each other. you know? color -- wealth -- these things that don't matter still play too much of a role in how we see one another. >> hmm. >> and it's sad. because the -- the thing that least defines us as people is the color of our skin. it's the -- it's the size of our bank account. none of that matters. you know this. >> yes, of course. >> you know, it's our values. it's, you know -- it's how we live our lives, and you can't --
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you can't tell that from somebody's race. somebody's religion. you know? people have to act it out. they have to live those lives, and so that was the blow back, and then i thought, okay, well let me live my life out loud so that people can then see and then judge for themselves. and that's what i want young people to do. just live your life. you know? >> out loud. >> live it out loud. >> all right. joining us now, cnn political analyst abby phillips. thanks for being with us. eight years is a long time in office. i think the michelle obama, a lot of people see now, and have seen publicly on the campaign trail over the last six months, very different than how she was in a way introduced to the country in 2007-2008. and this is a reminder that it wasn't easy for her to really enter that public arena. >> yes. she was very much reluctant
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inhabitant of the white house. a reluctant candidate's wife. she has been very public about her view of politics as being a little too cynical and bitter and she was on the receiving end of so much of that for a long time, and her description of sort of living out loud is really a reflective of what's happened, that evolution over time for her over the last eight years. i mean, schhe has kept her own sort of separate life separate from her husband's office. goes to soul cycle classes with girl friends. on vacation by herself and with her children and does this despite of critics and i've seen her on the campaign trail with hillary clinton in the final weeks and months of the campaign was the force that she brought with her to the stump. she didn't withdraw, because she actually wanted to be involved for a change in this presidential cycle. and she didn't do it in a sort of meek or quiet way.
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she did it in a very forceful way, and that sort of defined those feolks who called her an angry block woman in the early days of the campaign. >> if you forget that phrase, angry black woman, maybe people remember the image. michelle obama on the cover essentially dressed up as a terrorist. the images of the way discussed in some circles and it was an image that she worked hard, i think to break over the years, and then just friday, the president in his news conference was talking about some of the attacks, over the years, including her garden. joked about people criticize my wife for trying to grow nutritious food in the white house lawn. goes to show how split and partisan this country has become. >> right. that that point, so emergency of the krof -- so much of the criticism i believe the first lady and president felt was unwarranted. that cover you mentioned, sort of satirized as an afro wearing
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milita militant, was giving her husband a fist jab, probably the movie innocuous thing one could have done at that time but labeled a fist jab, a microcosm of the criticism directed at her, dispassionate observers look at it and agree, giving someone a fist jab does not make you a terrorist and that's an unfair criticism of her. she had to endure. there are many other examples of that. >> michelle obama speaking out with oprah winfrey. abby phillips, thanks so much for being with us. >> thank you. all right. we do have breaking news out of turkey right now. the russian ambassador to turkey is believed to be seriously wounded. he was shot several times, we
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believe, in capital of ankara. aundre karlov his name. no word on his exact condition. separate away to muhammad lila on the border. what can you tell us about this incident? >> reporter: john, he was attending an event organized by the russian embassy at an art gallery. the name of the event called "frosh stalingrad to comchuka" maybe there to deliver a speech. latest information we have from state media, state news agency, the gunman, reported in their words, he has been neutralized. dwoent know if that means still alive or shot dead. we do know just moments ago the ambassador was in critical condition. rushed to hospital in one of the best hospitals in the city. of course, many of the questions that we don't know right now is, this gunman, we understand he fired several shots, not just at the ambassador but other shots
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in the air, but we don't know the motivation behind this and critically, john, we don't know a claim of responsibility yet. that is so important, because russia in this country and in fact, in this entire region has no shortage of enemies. you have to look next door, the groups fighting in syria that have a gripe with russia because of russia's staunch support for syria's president assad. so the question is who is going to claim responsibility, and who is behind this, and, again, after that, how is russia going to respond? >> muhammad i should tell you we have a statement now from the state department here in the united states. john kirby said on the record we have seen reports the russian ambassador andrei karlov attacked by agunman in ankara. our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family. at this art gallery we got a picture speaking before he was shot. see

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