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tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  March 10, 2017 7:00pm-8:01pm PST

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the white house this year, they will be 47 years old and the 47th first lady. >> breaking news dozen of u.s. attorneys abruptly fired by the trump administration. this is cnn tonight i'm don len lemon. dozens of prosecutors told to clean up their desks in a move that one source says, quote, could not be handled any worse. what's behind the surprise. plus a handful of counterintelligence ags agents working in the shadows. secret briefings on capitol hill, but what do we know about russia? now a week after president trump's infamous wiretapping accusations the leaders of intelligence committee teg cnn they still haven't seen any evidence to back up the president's claims. let's get to our breaking news.
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the fire fg dozens of u.s. attorneys. joining me is cnn legal analyst, laura coats, attorney stewart kaplan a former special agent with the fbi. good evening to you so glad that all of you could join us this evening. it was a total surprise to the u.s. attorneys who were fired tonight, many of them are shocked, some are traveling on government business now. how was this handled? >> you know, it's not particularly strange that a new administration has called for the exist are or the hold over u.s. attorneys to actually resign in the usually happens at the beginning of every administration. what is odd is the abruptness, and of course you're dealing with a president who has some pending lawsuits across the united states which makes people kind of raise their eyebrows and thoink themselves, is this about a personal rebuke or is this about a professional administration trying to simply clean house to have people in place who will continue their policies or certainly look at their policies. i think it's very shocking this
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terms of the abruptness but not in terms of the overall plan to transition. >> stewart, it is not unusual for a first-time president -- for a new president i should say to clean house but why the back your bags and get out kind of tactic? is there a message behind the politics here? >> we have a president who has a specific agenda. i think he's made it very clear. and when we just talk about the immigration policy that he is steadfast on implementing, he wants to make sure that the lead federal law enforcement officers, that being each and every u.s. attorney and keep in mind there is 93 of them throughout the united states, that they're going to adhere to his policy. and i don't read into the abruptness of it. you know, in fact, ironically jeff sessions was forced to resign going back when janet reno became the attorney general back in 1993 when bill clinton was elected. so i don't necessarily see it as being so abrupt. i think it was just a matter of
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when it was going to happen and it just happened today. >> okay. so, john, this comes less than 24 hours after fox news personality shawn hannity a friend of the president said this. >> now for weeks we've been warning you about the deep state obama held over government bureaucrats who are hake bent on destroying this president, president trump. tonight it's time for the trump administration to begin purge these sab bahtors before it's too late. >> is this the president having a knee jerk reaction to a news story. >> i think it's a plan. shawn hannity is kind of his troll and those two have been trading information and patting each other on the back since the campaign. the real question, whose decision is this? just take new york where the u.s. attorney was told where he
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was perceived to be investigating democrats that his job was secure. now he's gone. i think it could have to do with the deutsche bank, a foreign bank in which our president is $3 million in debt and that bank is under serious investigation in the southern district of new york and it's also under investigation in the uk for money transfers rub bells or dollars and dollars for rub bells. so it's curious to see which u.s. attorneys will be persisting in obvious and this which ones won't. if it's sanctuary cities, new york is one, because some people are being told we're going to keep you the. so we look at a number of maybe 46 but then we're selecting which ones concern us. i think that's a critical question to ask any u.s. attorney and these people are not inside trying to overthrow the gofrm.
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these are very serious lawyers who do civil and criminal cases and represent the government and have been probably assistant u.s. attorneys before. >> we'll talk about the people who were asked to stay -- but go ahead. i'm sorry. >> i mean, don, look, i disagree. when you look about the politics that have played out in new york city more recently with respect to the u.s. attorney who has clearly crossed party lines to prosecute one democrat after another and you had bill de blozio investigation and the comb mow investigation, certainly it would have seemed to me or in trump's best interest to keep them in place. i'm not necessarily sure that the u.s. attorney in the southern district is going to step down. >> i don't see it that way. while he asked for the redsic nations, it doesn't mean he has to accept it. >> john. >> well, one of the things -- i'm sorry, excuse me. go ahead. >> one of the things that you're missing is of course the idea that, yes, the president could
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choose not or jeff sessions could choose not to accept resignations, but it's the timing of the sean hahn mitty comment in contention with the statements from sean spicer today about this deep state. if it were a presidential administration strieg to clean house in a benign sense in a way to show they're trying to have u.s. attorneys in place who are going to be harsher on drug offenders and other things that jeff sessions has talked about, that's one thing. however, the timing of it to come so quickly almost insinuates that people who are obama-era appointees are going to be in a compromise or undermine this administration. interestingly enough one of the u.s. attorney is supposed to do is be the objective enforcer of the law and that if the congressional laws stand, that's what they're enforcing. so it's a little inn insultion to career attorneys and certainly to u.s. attorneys who are being removed not because of
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a normal transition but because of an implication that they are somehow trying to corrupt or undermine this administration. >> i'm wondering also, too, john, you were -- i mean, say it plainly. do you think that he's putting people in there favorable to him that this is saying -- >> oh, absolutely. >> he has something to hide. you mentioned deutsche bank, you mentioned him owing money by your assessment. >> it goes right to his constitutional clause. he has $300,000 to 170,000 of that goes -- he's done nothing to separate himself from these things. he have a president with a built-in conflict. also the head of the justice department who has his own set of conflicts and then what is he doing? purifying the department of people who are some of the most outstanding lawyers in america. u.s. attorneys, republican and democrat, don't go into those offices usually accept to serve the public. they're giving up all sorts of other benefits because they really want to serve our
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country. and we've ever had past presidents who's continued them and they've worked with them when they had investigations. this is exactly the opposite. had this is kuting them off at the legs, leave your keys on the desk and get out of the building. we don't do it that way in the past, so you have to question why we're doing here. and if it's based on all right state paranoia, what kind of government is that that we run our government out of atmosphere, we don't trust the people who have been working for us for four and eight and six years doing the most complicated litigation in the world, it's just amazing. >> there does seem snob paranoia here especially when there have been so many leaks and asking people to turn over their cell phones and media saying they're woog to track down these leaks i said it of how to fix the problem and where the laekds came about. >> i'm sorry, but run the government well and you won't have these leaks. do what's honest and what's right. the problem 4re78 with our government is that it's
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perceived to be corrupt by everybody except the alt-right and ditto heads that follow trump's tweets. that's not the way to run a government. we go from one crisis to another. here we are on friday talking about another messup and every other day we have something. that's no way to run a government. >> it's late but not that late we can't use those words. two of you mentioned the people who were asked and called back. the president had to call back the acting deputy attorney general and the man nominated to be deputy a.g. and asked them to stay on. what zw this is a about his thinking, the thinking that went into this? laura. >> well, obviously he is somebody who's aware that a lot of his appointees are not getting through with the speed that he anticipated. and, remember, these u.s. attorneys have to be confirmed by the senate, they can't simply just be somebody that he appoints and says now you go and do the job. they have to pass the muster and so the people that they're talking about right now, deign a ben ta who is eastern virginia
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u.s. attorney who stepped in when sally yates stepped down when she was fired by president trump to replace the travel ban and restepped in and willingly said he would enforce that law. and you've got rosen seen it who is the person who has been called on by prior attorney generals in the past, handled white water, worked for kenneth starr who has been the long-serving u.s. across different administrations. so he does have some faith in the ability of u.s. attorneys to be objective across party lines and that politics doesn't really have all the place of it. but it does show there may be a lack of foresight and long-term planning as well that these people are going to leave a void across the country, across 46 different divisions of u.s. attorney's offices where they're going to have to have somebody who's acting in their stead. and acting in their stead will also kind of slow the judicial process for a lot of people. >> i wonder what happens to all these cases the prosecutors are
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working on, is it irresponsible to leave them midway through. we'll get to that on the other side of this break when we come back. the deep state and what sean spicer said about it today. is back red t with 9 lobster dishes. try succulent new lobster mix & match or see how sweet a lobster lover's dream can be. there's something for everyone and everyone's invited. so come in soon. how to brush his teeth. (woman vo) in march, my husband didn't recognize our grandson. (woman 2 vo) that's when moderate alzheimer's made me a caregiver. (avo) if their alzheimer's is getting worse, ask about once-a-day namzaric. namzaric is approved for moderate to severe alzheimer's disease in patients who are taking donepezil. it may improve cognition and overall function, and may slow the worsening of symptoms for a while. namzaric does not change the underlying disease progression. don't take if allergic to memantine, donepezil, piperidine, or any of the ingredients in namzaric. tell the doctor about any conditions;
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>> breaking news, all the remaining obama era u.s. attorneys abruptly told to resign. joining me michael kroully he ask a seep yore foreign affairs for plit co.
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and ronald kessler the author of the "the first family detail". ron, start with you. tonight the attorney general jeff session as fired all the u.s. attorneys and one law enforcement officer says it couldn't have been handled worse. some learned about it through news accounts. what do you think of that? >> well, they should assume that of course when a new president takes over their job is finished and there's no nice way to fire people, you know, if they're fired, you know, it doesn't help to have a lot of advanced warning given that they already had the warning that donald trump was elected president. but, you know, i just like to give you very briefly la donald trump really is like, having known him for two decades, having been a friend, judge list. i first met him when a did a book on palm beach which i called my mid life crisis i right before the fbi, cia and --
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>> we have a short time, i don't mean to be rude by quickly, please. >> okay the. on the way down on his plane with my wife pam donald imitated the nasal constricted tones of the blue bloods and condemning his club mar-a-lago because it admits blacks and jews. because there are places that will not admit blacks and jews. >> ron, what did this have to do with firing the attorneys? >> well, i'm trying to give you something more beyond the latest news, but. >> we're here -- that's what we're here. >> it's your show. >> that's what we're here to discuss, though. >> okay. >> so i'm going to move on to michael. today sean spicer was asked about this so-called deep state people who have worked for the government administrations. listen to this. >> i think that there's no question when you have eight years of one party in office that there are people who stay in government affiliated with, you know, joined and continued to aspouse the agenda of the
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previous administration, so i don't think it should come as any surprise that there are people burrowed into government during eight years of the last administration. >> so is the president trying to get rid of people who could oppose him or people who opposed him? >> yeah. >> it's not normal to fire attorneys, it's just the abruptness of it. >> what spicer is talking about is larger, this idea that there's a conspiracy, that the federal bureau rackcracy is out to get this president. you might say when trump came into office and compared the intelligence community said there were echoes of nazi germany he wasn't making me friends and you could understand why there would be a bad reaction. but i think there's a supposition there that the leaks about these russian investigation dollars in particular are motivated by some signed of partisan ana muss, that these are people like barack obama doesn't consider the possibility that there really is something untoward happening, that these investigations are turning up troubling evidence that this
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administration has shown no sign of wanting to take seriously. and i think they're frustrated. so certainly there are people in this bureaucracy who don't like donald trump, doesn't help that he compared them to elements of nazi germ mip but they're churning up facts and nem don't seem interested. >> but is it a figment imagination or an alt-right conspiracy nearry. >> it's what people are calling the deep state is a term that are just a bunch of bah ram obama loyalists trying to get this president out. >> several add administrations honored the obama administration. >> some of them put the lives on the line to kpekt collect intelligence and protect this country and that is just bad for the country to have the president at war with the intelligence bureaucracy, it doesn't help anyone at the end
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of the day. >> kimberly, the president has been driven crazy by looekz leaks. is this friday night massacre meant to stop those leaks? >> it certainly seems to be part of it. i've spoken to white house officials and trump administration officials who do believe that in the national security council and beyond that there are obama holdovers who are putting out this damaging information about them. what they don't seem to realize is, as michael was saying, there's these professionals who don't like what they see and feel like this is their right as american citizens to speak out. and they know people like me, people like michael, and they reach out and share what they think needs to be set right. so there is a little bit of truth to these accusations, but to call it the deep state means that they are ignoring the fact that you've got these professionals who once things get going in what they believe
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is the right contribution, they'll settle down and get to work. >> ronald, here's a chance for you to talk about the president's personality here because among those let go is manhattan u.s. attorney. he was called to a meeting within president clekt elect trump during the transition. he was asked to stay. let's listen to it and then we'll discuss it. >> president-elect asked presumably because he's a new yorker and is aware of the great work that our office has done over the past seven years, asked to meet with me to discuss whether or not i'd be preparedtor stay on as the united states attorney to do the work as we have done it independently without favor for the last seven years. we had a good meeting, i said i would absolutely consider staying on. i agreed to stay on, i have already spoken to senator sessions who is, as you know, just nominated to be the attorney general pet also asked that i stay on and so i expect that i'll be continuing to work. >> so is he well known for
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prosecuting corruption cases and respected by many. so my question is and you mentioned his personality and he's fair and all that. why tell him he is stay and then can him just a few months later? >> well, obviously sessions came in and he had a different opinion. these are political appointees, every administration has the option of replacing political appointees. the fact is that some 90% of the federal employees who contributed to the last campaign contributed to hillary clinton and this is something that every administration faces. are the bureaucracy, first of all, doesn't like change. that's true in any organization, but especially in the federal government where they can't be fired. and secondly, they do tend to be on the liberal side and the administration wants people who are more consistent with their own -- their own approach. but one more point about donald, which i think will help explain
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a lot of his tweeting and some of his provocative comments, and that is i interviewed norma forder who are was his top aide for 26 years. when she joined him he had only five other employees. she knew him better than anybody on both the business and social side. she would deal with the girlfriends that were calling all the time, she was in charge of a lot of contracting. and she said that there are two donald trumps. one is the trump who makes these provocative comments, outrageous comments in many cases, according to her, in order to get attention for his brand. when he first start the there was no such thing as a real estate brand and this was a way to get media attention on his brand, trump meaning luxury and prestige. but then there's the real donald trump, she said, and that's totally the opposite. and you see that over and over again when people who criticize
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him then meet with him and they emerge, for example, the head of the hispanic chamber of commerce called for a boy cost all of his properties, you remember when he first started running. then he met with him, he emerged, he told cn, in my god it was amazing i spent over an hour with him, he listened he was not full of it, and now this person is on his hispanic advisory counsel zblil so what are you saying? >> so in other words, if you understand this, i think of it as a compass to donald trump, he on the one hand has this stick of making these comments on twitter to get attention. on the other hand -- >> okay. so then everyone has to sort of understand there are two drufrpz or different donald trumps. it's not up for people to understand donald trump, it's up for donald trump to understand the position he's in. when i was a child i did childish things. when i was real estatery are do relevant estate things. when i'm the president, i do
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presidential things. those things are not presidential. we'll continue to discuss. we'll be right back. this is the destruction of a cancer cell by the body's own immune system, thanks to medicine that didn't exist until now. and today can save your life. ♪ ♪
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the fbi, the house and senate intelligence committees
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all investigating the russia connection, but what do we really know? what do rereally know? back with me michael crowley, kimberly dossier and ronald kessler. so michael, to you, the white house insists there is no their when it comes to russia ties. you did some digging, what concerns you the most? >> well, look, i think fundamentally we sometimes lose sight of the fact that the russian government intervened in our election to try to affect the outcome. what did mike quinn say, what did jeff sessions say? and in this chart we did we showed the web of connections many of which on their own aren't necessarily damning but add up to a picture that gives pause. but i think people sometimes lose the big picture. the intelligence community has concluded there as a campaign to effect the election. and what you hear from the white
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house and people around donald trump, of course it had no effect they didn't hack into the voting machines, which no one disputes, but you really can't prove that it had zero effect if the and wikileaks. >> love wick kwi leaks. >> he was sanding up waving the e-mails around. he wasn't doulg doing that because he thought they would have no effect he was diagnosis that because he thought that might help him get elected. it would take time to go case by case. i think it's the totality of it in that context. there a ton, just to take kun one example, when he took his mississip ms. universe path gent to moscow in 2013, why would you bring it to moscow and heco sponsored it with a russian close to vladimir putin, has gotten big contracts from the kremlin. trump went over there for the
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path gent, putin sent him a note in an engraved box. that's one example of several where trump or people very laos to trump have very clear demonstrated relationships with people close to vladimir putin. and business is done in russian through these people. >> let's talk about michael flynn. we now know that he was working a foreign agent for turkey while working for the trump campaign. cn's learned that flynn's lawyer contacted the transition team before the inauguration and flagged his business dealings. the press secretary sean spicer was pressed on that today. >> attorney calling the transition saying that -- the terp that's in line to be the national security adviser may need to register as a foreign agent. that doesn't raise a red flag? >> it's not a question of raise a red flag it's the question that they gave them the advice they're supposed to. it is not up to them to make decisions as to what you need to do or not do. as you know there's certain
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activities that fall under each of these requirements. as far as what the threshold is, the activities, who the funding source, et cetera, et cetera. is not up to nor is it appropriate, nor is it legal for the government to start going into private citizens seeking advice and telling them what they have to register or not. >> by the way, that was john roberts, kimberly, a fox news reporter who kept pressing him on this and sean spicer kept trying to avoid him and go on to other reporters, but john stood his ground. flynn was getting national security briefings with america's most sensitive secrets at the time he was working for the foreign entity. so should that have disqualified him to serve as national security adviser? shou that not alarming? >> well, let's back up. in terms of him work firing foreign entity, he was working for a turkish american businessman who has ties to the turkish government and that's why his lawyer, it seems with an abundance of caution, told him, you know, now that you're not a national security adviser, now that we know congress is going
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to be looking at every as spelkt of your life with an abundance of caution, you better register as a foreign agent, as having lob bipd. so those details are important. we have to remember back right after donald trump got elected. looking at mike flynn's background and who he worked for, they were trying to figure out, wow, we just won, do we have chart set snup who are we going to hire for these positions? >> it was a mad scramble. so in a sense you can see why this might have gotten lost in the shuffle. also, there were other members of the trump campaign who had worked for foreign governments like paul manafort, and who this is all sort of come out in the wash afterwards. it's going to be months of investigative reporting as we dig into where did many of these people work before they took on jobs with this campaign. so, yes, it's really -- it's concerning, i've talked to
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members of congressional staff who got lobbied by mike flynn in the run up to the election on behalf of they felt the government of furk i can because he was arguing that this radical cleric or this cleric that the tirkish government doesn't like had some sort of ties to islamic mill tanssy. so i think we're going to hear a lot more about it and sean spicer is going to have to deal with more difficult questions from the podium. >> speaking of that, poois spicer says that the president didn't know but certainly members of his inner circle did. what does that say to you, if anything, about their judgment? >> well, it says that certainly during the transition, which i think was mainly under chris christi who don't a very good job, they were not performing as they should have. they absolutely should have made sure that donald trump knew about this, this was unacceptable, this should have been full disclosure and it was
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wrong as vice president pence recently said, that it simply reaffirms donald trump's decision to get rid of michael flynn. so i think that, you know, definitely is a bad mark on the transition process. you saw the same outrageous behavior with petreaus. he was a wonderful general, wonderful cia director and he gichz classified to his lever and lies to the fbi and still covering up. he was on tv about a month ago and he was asked about lying to the fbi and he said, i didn't think at the time that what i was saying was false. well, what does that tell you? tells you he's still trying to cover up what he did because there's no such thing as i didn't think it was false at the time. he knew it was false. and. >> isn't than kind of what happened with sessions, though? >> no.
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i think that comment was totally in the context of the campaign with sessions. to me, that was a lot of nothing approximately. people can't remember every meeting they had. he had meeting with 25 ambassadors and, by the way, as far as meetings go, i wonder if michael crowley's chart included the 22 meetings that the russian ambassador had in the white house with the obama people. i wonder if it included an encounter that he had with nancy pelosi, a luncheon. so, you know, to just have a chart and show all these connections people know -- >> i'm out of time, ron. >> except that russia wasn't trying to elect the democrats, wasn't trying to elect pelosi or none of those people. >> well he was trying something. >> those people aren't in power. pelosi is not the speaker and obama is no longer in the white house. >> i do appreciate that you know the president and have perspective on him and when the conversation fits we'll have you on to talk about that aspect of it but on this particular
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subject these two segments that we did, we just didn't have room pore it. thank you for that and by the way i want to say that kimberly has a piece ought on article called "u.s. spies live in fear of trump's next tweet" so make sure you check out that next article. thank you all. russia's ambassador talked with a lot of people on team trump. lots of smoke but no fire yet. what does it mean for the relationship between the kremlin and the white house? modern life deserves a modern way to pay. it's sold out. don't fret, my friend. i masterpassed it! you can use it online and on your phone i masterpassed it. playing the hero: priceless don't just buy it. masterpass it. ...we believe your tax at srefund should all.year. long. don't waste it on a pricey wireless plan. lose the contracts, mystery fees and overages. switch to straight talk... get coverage on america's largest and most dependable... ...4g lte networks. for half the cost. that's right. half.
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the house intelligence committee holds its first public hearing on russia this month, but so far it's not at all clear that they'll be able to connect the dots. we have host of cnn -- and ambassador to russia. good to see both of you. the connections between the president, his campaign's and russia, so far there seems to are a lot of smoke but no fire. and this latest example is the connection between this bank in russia and a trump, you know, computer system somehow or server. but is all this just noise?
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>> you know, you're exactly right. so far it's smoke e mostly smoke but no fire. but we begin with the kind of intellectual puzzle, had which is dump's view on foreign poll has been consistent his whole life. the rest of the world is skrooeg screwing america. as a real estate developer he took out ads saying the europe ians never pay their fair share, the japanese are screwing us, the rested of the world humiliates us, every book he's written that's exactly the position he's taken except with one country, russia. he thinks that germany brr britains and france are countries that screw us and we should be tough on them but poor russia is misunderstood. so there's in puzzle, it's really about one country. then you have the series of contacts with this one country. >> yeah. >> you do not have an equivalent
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set of contracts that trump campaign officials, friends have had with china, with germany, so, again, you have this puzzle of a country with which he has this one exceptional view with whom the campaign has had a series of unusual, perhaps unique contacts, and, as you say, maybe it's all smoke, but it sure say lot of smoke. >> but, ambassador, do we have a point here because you can't show the type of connections or as many contacts with other countries. if you look at the people associated with president trump through the course of the campaign, did you ask z that seem like an unusual amount of contract or normal for these other people? >> it seems kind of normal but behave no evidence at this point that anything took place it these contacts. i was more interested in the peculiar fondness for russia and treatment of russia like the
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only good guy among all these horrible players in the world that are doing us in. and so i'm more suspicious about where is the trump administration going with respect to its policy towards russia than about all these bizarre contacts and the computer server connections which we have to look into that, but i'm not -- not convinced there's a lot there. but, you know, particularly the relationship has gone way downhill for one big reason, russia has started carrying direct military aggression against its neighbors. it's occupying parts of ukraine, promoting this kind of insurgency there and lying about it claims it doesn't have its troops there. how do you have a normal relationship with a country that's behafg like gnat so you have to tackle these types of problems and not vooep sweep them under the rugging. >> i have to ask you this early on in this interview. you know huntsman is being tapped to be the ambassador to russia. what's that going to be like. what's going to be his biggest
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challenge? >> it's a very challenging job i can say. i was there in the early putin days when it was a little easier but some of the negative trends that we see today were already under way. i think it's maintaining yourself as a krabl person but being able to speak truth to power. view to often present a very unpleasant message to the russian leadership because we have so many things across the world where we're working across purposes. you have to be faithful to american values. you have to stay connected with russian civil society which is under tremendous siege, nongovernmental organizations have been shut down, the press has been muzzled, america has to stand up for these people as well. >> do you think that was a good choice? what do you think of the choice i should ask you? >> he's a smart guy, good ambassador to china. he knows nothing about russia but that's not a disqualification. many of the best ambassadors have been people who school
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themselves. the crucial question to being a great ambassador is whether you have a relationship with the president. i don't sense that ambassador huntsman has a soon to be ambassador huntsman has a relationship with trump. as far as i can tell, this is partly a way of further humiliating mitt romney by choosing the other prominent mormon politician in the republican party. maybe i'm wrong. but i think the paint the ambassador is make is actually very important, which is that the real shift that we have to keep in mind is russia has changed under putin, it's foreign policy has changed. russia went from in the 1990s and early 2000s talking about wanting to be a member of nato, wanting -- putin talked about seeing himself as a european country. russia's destiny was in europe. right now i think it's fair to say that the actions that ambassador was talking about, russia is the major spoiler in the international system. so what's -- >> what happened?
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>> it's invading countries, it's, you know, interfering in democrat elections, it's setting up its alternative i'ddiology as it were. i think putin realized there was more power in spoking russia, the price of oil tripled and russia became much more powerful. they did feel betrayed by the west and all of these parts of the former soviet union started to assert their independence, like ukraine, georgia, mull dova. and that was absolutely unacceptable. he used force in the way that the western world could not accept. so we face a frontal challenge from the western frord russia more than any single country in the world, and the question is are we going to take it seriously or are we going to say we can just get on with russia it's a big misunderstanding. >> it probably didn't help that
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as secretary of state hillary clinton questioned legitimacy of his election, ambassador. >> yeah. the russians clearly had it in for hillary and that's high, as we saw, they not only hacked our election but they were targeting the release of leaked information to undermine her candidacy. because they saw her as promoting the kinds of forces that we saw in ukraine bring down the government, putin felt we were going to do the same thing to him. he's obsessed with regime change and despite his swagger he's feeling very insecure about his grip on power looking down the road. but you're right, we're facing a challenge that's going to change the whole international order that we've come to depend upon since the end of world war ii and it would be beautiful to cooperate with russia in fighting isis but we shouldn't do that at the expense of our values and principles. i would measure a new policy towards russia as one that actually solves the problems that russia's created in
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ukraine, restores respect for ukraine's borders at least in the eastern ukraine. >> i have to ask you very bluntly, why do you think president trump has an afin knitty for vladimir putin and russia? >> it's still a mystery to me. i think there's a couple things that ring true r one the attraction to a strong man, decisive leader who can be so desiessive because he has no checks and balances, no parliament to answer to. i think he's baht into steve bannon he's class of civilizations analysis of the world, battle between good and evil and for president trump and for bannon russia is on the side of the angels because it's a conservative country fighting political correctness and lgbt rights and all these things. things the president ran against in the election. so there's some afin knitty there that i don't fully understand, but that may be part of it, this clash of civilizations view of the world.
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>> thank you very much and i appreciate you joining us here. voo a great weekend. on the other side of this break we'll talk before b how he gained a unique perspective in an interview with vladimir putin. to tide pods. they're super concentrated, so i get a better clean. number one trusted. number one awarded. it's got to be tide won't replace the full value of your totaled new car. the guy says you picked the wrong insurance plan. no, i picked the wrong insurance company. with liberty mutual new car replacement™, you won't have to worry about replacing your car because you'll get the full value back including depreciation. and if you have more than one liberty mutual policy, you qualify for a multi-policy discount, saving you money on your car and home coverage. call for a free quote today. liberty stands with you™. liberty mutual insurance. various: (shouting) heigh! ho! ( ♪ )
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did vladimir putin use his power to elect donald trump? that's the question behind our new special report "the most powerful man in the world." i can't wait to see this. you interviewed dimitrii peskov. you ask him about the trump associates meeting with the russian ambassador sergei kisly kislyak. >> so what was it the russian ambassador sergei kislyak was talking to so many of donald trump's associates about? >> this is his job. he was talking about bilateral relations. he was talking about what is going on in the united states, so we have a better understanding in moscow. this is what has been performed by every ambassador of russia abroad, every ambassador by the
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united states abroad, including moscow. because the more the ambassador talks to people in his country of residence, the better job he does. >> did he have similar meetings with clinton campaign officials? because i don't know of any. >> well, if you look at some people connected with hillary clinton during her campaign, you would probably see that he had lots of meetings of that kind, but there were no meetings about electoral process. there was in no way it should be perceived as interference in the electoral process. >> do you believe him when he says there was no interference in the electoral process or the election process? >> there's 17 american intelligence agencies. they rarely agree on anything. they did not agree, for example, on whether iraq had weapons of
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mass destruction. 17 american intelligence agencies all agree with high confidence that russia tried to affect the outcome of the american election, and they issued a joint document which said, a, putin personally orderorder ed it, b, he did it because of the reason you mentioned in the last segment, which is he believed that hillary clinton tried to stop his return to power. remember there was a period where he was prime minister trying to come back as president. hillary came out in favor of russian demonstrations at the time. >> i have 30 seconds left here, but what can we expect monday night with this putin special? >> unbelievable program that everyone should watch. what we really try to explain is who is putin and what is he after. we've spent all the time talking about putin and trump, but what is putin's goal? >> what's interesting is president trump should be the
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most powerful man in the world, but because of his actions towards putin he's made putin the most powerful man in the world. >> i think that's true. i imagine the title of this documentary will give him no pleasure, but of course he doesn't watch cnn. >> he'll be watching monday night. trust. you can see "fareed zakaria gps" sunday. > > have a great weekend. thank you again. we'll be right back. but grandma, we use charmin ultra soft so we don't have to wad to get clean. charmin ultra soft gets you clean without the wasteful wadding. it has comfort cushions you can see that are softer... ...and more absorbent, and you can use up to 4 times less.
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together, we're building a better california. breaking news. anger mounting over the handling of the sudden firing of dozens u.s. attorneys by the trump administration. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. dozens of prosecutors told to


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