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tv   Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  March 29, 2017 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT

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xfinity watchathon week starts april 3. get unlimited access to all of netflix and more, free with xfinity on demand. happening now, breaking news. most important probe, top republican and democrat on the senate intelligence committee revealing new details about their russia investigation. promising to get answers about moscow's contacts with the trump team. will the bipartisanship last? division and delay. house committee intelligence says the next russia hearing won't happen for about a month amid partisan turmoil and accusations that is acting as a surrogate for the president. i'll talk live with the commit oo's top democrat, congressman adam schiff.
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american troops in iraq are fighting in an unprecedented way. in an attempt to praise u.s. forces with the facts on the ground. and back in the spotlight, hillary clinton urging democrats to resist the trump agenda in her post partisan speech since the election. tonight new speculation about clinton's future and her daughter chelsea's political ambition. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer, you're in "the situation room." >> this is cnn breaking news. >> breaking news this hour, the leaders of the senate intelligence committee are promising their investigation of russia's election meddling will go wherever the facts lead including any potential involvement by the trump campaign or the president himself. republican richard burr and mark warner speaking out on the eve
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of the panel's first hearing. they say they are getting unprecedented access to secret information as they review thousands and thousands of documents and look to interview at least 20 witnesses. including the president's son-in-law, jared kushner. burr also suggesting that the committee has reached out to fire national security adviser michael flynn. the senators repeatedly expressed their bipartisanship. all a stark contrast to the turmoil and partisan division that stalled the house intelligence committee's investigation into russian meddling. chairman devin nunes telling cnn that next open hearing won't happen until after the easter recess. democrats accuse nunes of trying to provide political cover for the president. tonight the white house insists there is nothing problematic with nunes's contact but least one house republican now joined with democrats in calling for nunes to recuse himself from the entire investigation. i'll talk live with the ranking
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democrat, congressman adam schiff is standing by along with analyst as we bring you full coverage of today's top stories. first to man u wrath u, they are playing out least right now very differently. >> no question, wolf. on the house side thane vest gags essentially ground to a stand still over to the role of devin nunes. criticism about his handling of the investigation and calling him to step aside. something he is rejecting to do so far. leaders are trying to show they are doing a bipartisan inquiry, deep dive into russia and ensure the public that they will come to consensus. >> the leaders of the senate intelligence committee vowing to answer this fundamental question. did the trump campaign coordinate with the russians? to meddle in the elections? from what you have seen so far, can you definitively rule out
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there is no coordination whatsoever between trump officials and russian officials during the election? >> we would be crazy to try to draw conclusions from where we are are in the investigation. i think mark and i have committed to let this process go through before we form any opinions. and i would hope that that's what you would like us to do. >> and refusing to rule out if there are any direct links between russia and the president. >> and we won't take a snapshot in time and make any observations on it but we know that our challenge is to answer that question for the american people in our conclusions to this investigation. >> the committee plans to interview 20 witnesses. including jared kushner president trump's son-in-law as well as other trump associates. and suggesting that michael flynn former trump national security adviser could face questions over his contacts with the russian ambassador that led to his firing. >> i think it's safe to say that we have had conversations with a
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lot of people. and you would think less of us if general flynn wasn't on that list. >> the senate leaders saying the panel will go wherever the intelligence leads. >> i said it was the most important thing i had ever taken on on my public life. i believe that more firmly now than even when we started. >> gaining more prominence now that the house investigation is on gridlock. at least one house republican has lost confidence. >> the house is in a situation where the issue has become overly politicized. they are getting into a stalemate position, a bit paralyzed. senate is moving on a better trajectory and we will have to rely on a report on the russian meddling in this election. >> while the senate is moving forward the house inquiry into trump campaign ties with the russians now effectively on hold and made democratic accusations that chairman devin nunes can't run a credible investigation because of a sate of recent
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controversies, including cans aelg public hearing and after briefing the president on surveillance on the whus grounds and before talking with democrat on the panel. tonight nunes tells cnn he is done answering questions about the controversy. vowing to move forward with public hearings but not before easter. he wants a ranking democrat adam schiff to approve of a private briefing with fbi director james comey. >> i'm not going to answer any more questions about this. you guys have answered -- asked all these questions. i've been very, very clear with you. >> how are you doing this with the committee democrats calling for your recusal and adam schiff not even agreeing to james comey coming to public hearing. how are you moving forward? >> we will continue to work through this. i think they will be active participants would be my guest. >> but democrats say nunes must go. >> the only way for the house to move forward and be credible is for the speaker to put someone else in the chair.
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>> now on the senate side, i talked to chairman richard burr after the press conference. while they are looking into the financial ties of president trump and to the issue of russia he would not say whether or not they will try to get donald trump's tax return, something that some democrats want. they say that's not in the scope of their committee. now on the house side devin nunes saying it wouldn't confirm whether or not a white house official allowed him on the white house grounds to look into surveillance information that he publicly revealed last week and discussed with the president of the united states. even sean spicer earlier today not saying whether or not that came from the white house. he is saying he does want to hear from james comey and a bipartisan agreement to brief the house intelligence committee and there's no bipartisan agreement yet. not for the briefing to take place, wolf. >> manu, thank you. man u wrath u up on the hill. and standing firmly on the house intelligence committee devin
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nunes and credibility of his russian investigation. but administration appears unwilling to clear up any of the mysteries surrounding nunes's claims about surveillance of the trump transition team or unusual review of information on white house grounds. let's go to our senior white house correspondent jim acosta. jim, you and other journalists continue to press the white house press secretary sean spicer on this. >> that's right, wolf. it is becoming a daily ritual on the white house press briefing. reporters ask officials what they know about devin nunes's mysterious trip to the white house. and aides to the president don't seem to have many answers. white house secretary sean spicer has reminded by reporters that earlier this week he offered to look into nunes's visits and provide new details. he said he had nothing new to share. i did press spicer on whether he knows the identity of the person nunes met with during the mysterious white house visit. here is what happened.
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>> do you personally know who the source chairman nunes's information is -- >> no. >> so that narrows it down somewhat. spicer saying the white house supports nunes in his role leading the investigation but that question is about how nunes is conducting the investigation. those questions are best directed to the chairman and members of the house, wolf. >> we are also learning about a new official role in the white house for the president's daughter, ivanka trump. tell us about that. >> that's right, wolf. white house confirmed ivanka trump will be serving as an unpaid employee with the tigtle of special assistant to the president. ivanka releasing a statement saying she decided to take on the official role to avoid conflict of interest. we can put that up on screen. she says in the statement i have heard the concerns some have with my advising the president and my personal capacity while voluntarily complying with all ethic rules. i'll instead serve as an unpaid employee in the white house.
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subject to all of the same rules as other federal employees. throughout the process she said i have been working closely and in good faith with the white house counsel and my own counsel and for the unprecedented role. and this may raise questions about whether or not when is violating federal nepotism roles. her father is the president. and her husband, jared kushner, is a white house adviser. but the president's legal team, white house counsel, lawyers for the president, long maintained that law gives him broad discretion to name his own team of advisers. so whennes this questions comes up with eivanka trump's hiring here i would bet wolf that would be the explanation we get. >> jim acosta, thank you very much. earlier this week, an extensive interview with devin nunes joining us with the ranking democrat on the intelligence committee. congressman, thank you for joining us. >> good to be with you. >> we have lot of questions.
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i want to go through some specific questions raised. fbi official, as you may have heard, told cnn that james comey hasn't received an official request from your committee to testify. chairman nunes, spokesman for chairman nunes said director comey would not come to testify before the committee without a formal request. that has to be signed, not just by him, but also by you. nunes said you refused to sign that invitation. is that true? >> it is true the chairman wanted me to agree to hearing at tuesday at 10:00 instead of the open hearing. we weren't willing to do that. we found out about the canceling of the open hearing in a very round about way when the agencies reached out to us and said, what do you want us to come talk to you about on tuesday. we had to say, what hearing on tuesday. we have an open hearing on tuesday. so that's the request that we got. we made it clear the majority, we're happy to have director comey come back in closed
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session. but not as a substitute we were supposed to have with clapper and bendian arendan and yates. now we have the white house saying we would like sally yates to testify. we would like it hear what she would say. there is no obstacle to having her come in except a decision by the chair to not reschedule that hearing. what we have proposed for days, still waiting for a response from the chair. is let's schedule both hearings. >> is there stalemate now? he won't let this open hearing take place with clapper or brendon and yates that was scheduled for tuesday unless you sign a letter inviting comey to come and testify mibehind close doors before the house intelligence committee. is that the stalemate right now? >> that's one of the issues as far as the hearings are concerned. we propose, let's do both. we're more than happy to do both and waiting to hear back on that. where does the committee go from here? not just on the hearings. here is the challenge we face. we have a chairman who got
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information on the white house grounds that he won't share, not just with democrats, but with his own committee. and i just don't know how to conduct a credible investigation if you have let alone one person but the chairman of the committee who is saying i have seen evidence but i won't share with anyone else. what are we to make of that? the problem is, this doesn't sound like a whistleborou know . the whistleblower would want democrats and republicans to see the evidence. instead we have on the white house grounds, a real cloud over the investigation. it isn't enough for us to go through the motions of the investigation, we need to do one credibly. i don't know how to do it credibly under the circumstances. >> for all practical circumstances, this open hearing with three witnesses, former officials during the obama administration, intelligence officials, and acting attorney general, that is not going to -- that is not taking place any time soon? >> we have asked the claire to
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reschedule it. >> what does he say? >> he won't respond at this point. we're trying to get an answer. we thought we had a good compromise. we will do the closed hearing first. if that's the issue, we can dot closed hearing first. do it on tuesday. do the other hearing on thursday. i think they don't want the open hearing. they saw how it went on monday and they don't want it hear what sally yates has it say. notwithstanding what sean spicer says, the white house doesn't want it hear what sally yates has to say. but the country ought to hear from her. what were the facts that led up to michael flynn's firing hp how long did the white house know he lied about the conversation with the russian ambassador. this secret conversation wasn't just about anything. it was about at least reportedly sanctions that obama administration imposed on russia over russian hacking design to help donald trump. >> are you talking with devin nunes?
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how are you communicating? are you meeting? you used to have a very good relationship with him. >> we did. this has been i think very tough, very tough on all of us. there is someone i worked with for years. but i have to be able to represent. >> you're not even talking with each other? >> we are schedule to talk tomorrow. i've asked for a meeting with the chair. h >> has he agreed? >> as far as i know he has. >> what time is the meeting? >> i don't know what time. we asked for a meeting today. we got one tomorrow. i hope we can get back on track. but the chairman has to find a way to lift this cloud otherwise we need someone else to preside over this. i think we do need someone else to preside over this if we are doing this credibly. >> i know you and your democratic colleagues were very upset by that meeting he had at the white house last week. you saw that as what collaboration between the chairman of your committee and
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the white house staff, president specifically trying to protect the president changing the subject. is that right? >> i don't know what circumstances are. i do know that apparently the white house told the new yorker looked to talk about incidental collection. that is before the trip to the white house. then you have the evening trip to the white house. we don't know who he met or what he saw. we only have the chairman's word -- >> did you see the same document he saw at the white house? >> none of us have. that's the problem. democrats haven't seen it. republicans haven't seen it. we only have the chairman's word for what it stand for. the president of course claiming that what the chairman has seen somehow vend case him. we can't conduct an investigation that way. that's not sustainable. it's not credible. i would love to plan a way for us to get back on track. but i'm not willing to say something is legitimate if it is
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not. i hope we can find a way to get this investigation fully moving again for our part as democratic members. we are plowing ahead. continuing to review the documents and making our witness list and planning to go forward. >> as of right now, you don't even know what documents were that he reviewed at the white house. do you have any reason to believe that chairman and the source he had at the white house broke any rules by going through those documents? >> i really don't know, wolf. all i do know is that the source within the white house compound raised a question about whether this is being done credibly or whether it is being done in concert with the white house. and given that it's associates of the president who are some some respect subjects of this investigation, that just can't be credibly continued this way. >> you and the chairman have the
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same clearance, security clearance? >> yes. >> you can see the same level of classified information. >> yes. >> do you have the required security clear uns to go over to the white house and review these sensitive documents? >> of course. >> have you no doubt that what he saw he was cleared to see. >> well, what he saw he is absolutely cleared to see. he is cleared to see anything as far as i can tell. the issue is not whether he has clearance. there are two issues here. the issue is why is this only being shared with one member? and why is this not being shared with the rest of the committee? there are other issues that have been raised about whether he can discuss publicly as he has material that was classified. but the issue i'm most concerned about, wolf, is we need to do this investigation. it is too important not to. i don't think it ought to be just a senate investigation. and the question is, how do we get this back on track? and i do think regardless, it does underscore the need to have a fully independent commission
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analyzing this. >> and as far as clearance, his source at the white house, do you believe that the source at the white house, do you know, first of all, do you know who the source is? >> i do not know. >> you probably have suspicion but don't know for sure, right? >> i don't know. >> do you know whether or not that source had himself the clearance or herself the clearance to share that information with the chairman? >> again, i don't know who the source is so i don't know what clearances they have or had. but i can say that the cirques he circumstances here are so irregular. if this is information that someone wanted the committee to have, why hasn't it been presented to the committee. i can only conclude that it really doesn't show what it's being purported to show. but again we're all speculating because the chair hasn't been willing to share it with democrats or republicans on the committee. and that's just not sustainable. >> you said he is not sharing that information because he is trying to protect confidential
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sources, sources and methods. you heard that argument made here in "the situation room" the other day. >> sources and methods are what they do in the trade craft. not what the chairman does on meeting with someone on the white house grounds. that may be protecting something, but not protecting sources and methods. >> chairman nunes told bloomberg that he wrote down what he described as the identifying numbers these documents so he could request access for them formally for the rest of the committee. has he shared those numbers with you? >> no. and i don't know what those numbers refer to. i also don't have any representation that he asked the agencies, who would be the custodians of the records, to provide them to the committee. again we're all speculating. this is exactly the problem. we shouldn't be speculating and it isn't just me. republicans on our committee don't have any more idea what this is than i do. if we're doing a nonpartisan bipartisan investigation we
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can't have a chairman freelancing this way. >> you still want him to recuse himself? >> i think it is in the best interest of the investigation. because i don't know that the public will have confidence in an investigation led by the chairman, given the actions of the last week. >> you don'ty there is any way can you fix it? >> i don't know. i suppose if the chairman can claim on whoe talk he talked wi maybe there is a way of disspelling this. but i don't know. i think the fact we have gone this long now, over a week, and none of us have still seen the documents raises profound questions that only he can answer. >> congressman shif, there is more to discuss bp we have it take a quick break. stay with us. ole nuts, and natural flavors from the very beginning. give kind a try.
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we're back with congressman adam schiff. now in turmoil as the parallel probe in the senate is moving forward. chairman devin nunes says the hearing probably won't hold any hearings until after the easter recess. that's almost a month away. do you believe he is trying to delay any serious progress in this investigation? >> it certainly is deeply disappointing if that's the pog he is taking because there's no reason to delay the hearing that we had scheduled for this week. as we were talking about earlier, if this is all about trying to avoid sally yates testifying. the public is in favor of it. there is no reason it put it off. i think in addition to sally yates' testimony we will learn from clapper and brennan about
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the tactics that were used in europe and tactics used here. it it will fill out what we got from directors comey and rogers last week. the chair and i committed before this degradation of our relationship to doing as much of this in open session as we could. i think that's important. the public got its best glimpse yet about why they should care about it. >> tomorrow when you meet with the chairman you will press for early hearing once again. open hearing with john brennan, james clapper, and sally yates. that could happen. they were toward testify on tuesday so that could happen within days. >> oh, yes. they are ready at any time. i think they are certainly not, prepared to come and testify. well you know certainly i will propose to the chair as we have for several days now, let's schedule both hearings. i have no objection at all to
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having the director, director comey, come back for a closed session. but of course one doesn't preclude the other. if the real intention here is merely to permanently cancel and not let the public hear from these witnesses, the chair needs to say so. otherwise, let's see if we can find a date. >> the ranking democrat on the senate intelligence committee, vice chairman, mark warner, he said at a news conference today that he had seen reports that what he described as russian troels, maybe a thousand, russian trolls, generating fake news targeted at specific states duringi during the presidential campaign. he mentioned wisconsin, michigan, pennsylvania. have you seen similar reports? >> we are certainly investigating how the russians used media trolls. how they used rt propaganda platform to disseminate information, to potentially raise stories, some real, some
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not real, to the top of people's social media. we want to know, that was done in a very sophisticated way, in a targeted way. how sophisticated were the russians in terms of what states they looked at. also this could implicate the issue of whether there was coordination between the trump campaign and russians. but that is certainly an area we need to investigation. >> senator warner said this is the most important investigation involving national security he has ever gotten involved in all the years of public service. do you agree with him? >> i do. i think probably in terms of our national interests, there are two other investigations that are of equal seriousness. 9/11 commission and the joint congre congressal investigation is that n that category. that largely preceded my time in congress or at least my time on the intelligence committee. but you have to go back it water gate to find something truly analogous and we need to find away to bring back that bipartisan ethic and commitment
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to this investigation which has ever much as much as stake. >> could senators and burr and warner in senate intelligence committee say they are opening to subpoenaing various individuals and agencies in the government and information. are you prepared to do the same? >> absolutely. from what we understand the majority is as well. if we are doing this in a methodical way as we should, we aught to be subpoenaing documents, obtaining documents, before we have a single witness, that is a witness to the event we're talking about, come in. so we are well prepared. >> very quickly, will you subpoena the president tax returns? >> look, i think we ought to investigate all of the russian instruments and we know things that the russians have done in europe is use financial entanglement as a way to skest influence over business people as well as political leaders. if we found evidence that used
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that here and with those tax returns rel stroont that then i think we pursue them but i wouldn't, you know, get too far ahead of that. >> will you subpoena white house visitor logs to try to determine with whom the chairman met at the white house to review those sensitive dock snmts. >> i hope the chairman will decide that he will not forthcoming on what he saw, who he saw it with, and whether they have any relationship to the white house. we do need to get to the bottom of it. otherwise there will be this permanent cloud hanging over our investigation. >> sounds like have you a very important meeting tomorrow face-to-face with the chairman. we will see where this investigation goes following that meeting. good luck. >> thank you. >> thank very. for coming in. >> you bet. >> adam schiff of the intelligence committee. we will take a quick break. much more right after this. your insurance company
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top republican and democrat on the senate intelligence committee vowing to work together to get it right as the panel investigates russia's investigation meddling and possible coordination with the trump campaign. let's bring in our political team and gloria that senate intelligence news conference we heard today was obviously very, very different than what's going on on the house side. >> would you say it is an alternate universe? >> yes. >> wolf, the ranking democrat and the republican got along. they seem to be on the same page
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about what they could investigation. mark warner the democrat clearly would love to see donald trump's tax returns and the republican burr did not but aside from that, they both agreed that committee, as warner said, will follow the intelligence wherever it leads. so they didn't limit themselves in terms of where their investigation would go. but what you didn't hear was either of these people going off on a tangent about unmasking people in documents or intelligence and rather they just kind of were stick together task at hand. >> you did chahear the chairmany they they are going through an unprecedent number of documents. they have 20 names of individuals. they want to call for questioning whether open or behind closed doors. that's reassuring to those who want answers on russia's meddling in the u.s. election.
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>> no doubt is. certainly what we've seen over the past week between devin nunes and of course adam schiff unable to get together and honestly not even adam schiff's fault. it is devin nunes's fault for the break down of bipartisanship in the house. but what is interesting is the senate is following this idea here in washington that it's always a little bit older, little more mature. >> grown up? >> little bit more grown up than the house which tend to be a little bit more rockish and rowdy an partisan and more following that pattern certainly in this investigation. >> what did you make, david, of senator warner's comments about actually obtaining a lot of the documents they want because there could be complications? >> yeah. i think the way it was phrased, he wants to push but at the same time do it in that methodical way. not get ahead of themselves. because this he have this opportunity to do a do-over here, wolf. to do it in a way that speaks
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confidence not the sort of amateur hour that unfolded the last several dayes with congressman nunes and i think that's the way he wanted it. >> they are saying rebecca they are open to subpoenaing documents, individuals they said internationally, that's different. you can't subpoena something overseas. what might they be trying to access? >> in terms of overseas international subpoenas or information they would potentially want, you're looking at potential russian connections. investigations. >> you're not going to get those. >> you're not going to get those, no. i think that shows the limitations of the senate intelligence investigation because while they can subpoena documents domestically while they can call witnesses domestically, this is an investigation that goes beyond our borders and that's why the fbi investigation is going to be able to perhaps to accomplish a little bit more and reach a more of a conclusion. >> you did hear the vice chairman and senator from virginia say he would like to
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subpoena donald trump's tax returns but the chairman -- >> in fact the chairman came out and said let me get this out here. i voted for donald trump. it is interesting he sort of felt the need to say that although we might have surmised that beforehand. but yes, they do disagree on that. but back to your point about what they agree on is that there is always this kind of tug-of-war between the intelligence community and the congress. how much access will the intelligence committee give congress, who they do not trust, to their documents. wlaen you heard before both men today is you know what, we have to reach some sort of accommodation because we intend to make it clear to them that you can trust us but that we want to do this because it's important to the american public. >> mark, you heard adam schiff, ranking democrat in the house intelligence, just tell us a few moments ago, he's got a big meeting tomorrow with the chairman devin nunes. they haven't spoken to each
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other in days. they will finally get together tomorrow and see if they can fix it. can they? >> no. but how great would it be to be in that meeting and just, not even hear what they say, just the body language alone would really tell you where we stand. i think that we are hearing this from senate side, from senators that the house is basically broken right now. i mean, they have crossed the rube con, it's over. whatever find theg come out with right now it is never going to be fully accepted. this has fallen squarely if the lap of the senate. >> and no hearings scheduled in the house side for what almost a month. and there's a long time to go. you clearly heard adam schiff say thief got three witnesses, key witnesses, former director of national intelligence, former cia director, former acting attorney general, ready to testify. but nunes says not so fast. >> and it's hard to see what the incentive is at least on the surface for congressman nunes at
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this point. if there is something he doesn't want to come out, it is probably going to come out anyway. if there is nothing to see then why not -- >> he is clearly concerned that whatever the three witnesses say will be bad news for the president. >> clearly. it doesn't help his case he is being political. there is a political concern here. here is the difference between the senate and house side. everyone in the house is up for reelection next year. they are going to have to explain to their constituents why they did what they did. nunez as republican running has to explain why he either went after donald trump or didn't. burr and warner not up for reelection, that makes big difference. >> all right, everyone stand by. hillary clinton is back and she is on the attack with her most political remarks since losing the presidential election. >> we need to resist action tlaes s that go against our values as american. whether that is attacking immigrants and refugees, denying
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a new step back into the political arena publicly encouraging the president's democratic opponents to quote resist his agenda. that the kind of speech we
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haven't heard from hillary clinton since thshe lost the election. let's get more from our senior correspondent, brianna keiler. brianna? >> wolf, sources close to clinton stress to cnn her fiery comment last night don't indicate a more forceful jump back into the political fray, but you be the judge. hillary clinton making a rare appearance as she spoke at a diversity conference in san francisco. >> there is no place i'd rather be than here with you other than the white house. >> with her most political remark since losing the presidency to donald trump. >> we need to resist actions that go against our values as americans. whether that's attacking immigrants and refugees, denying climate change, or passing bogus laws that make it harder for people to vote in elections. >> clinton has largely been out of sight in recent month possess. she attended a gala in washington just days after her loss but with a more subdued
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tone. >> i ask you to stay engaged. stay engaged on every level. we need you. america needs you. your energy, your ambition, your talent. that's how we get through this. >> clinton made a customary appearance at president trump's inauguration but she also fweeted opposition to trump policies a couple times. like his travel ban. this is not who we are, she wrote in january. and last week she declared victory when house republicans failed no gut obama care. but she's mostly laid low spotted once hiking near her home in new york where it's new apparent she was doing more than getting exercise. >> there's a little mantra i've been repeating to myself lately. a little silly. the kind of thing that pops into your head when you take a lot of long walks in the woods. resist, insist, persist enlist. >> on tuesday she warned
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republicans will attempt another obamacare repeal. >> let me let you in on a little secret. the other side never quits. sooner or later they will try again. we will need to fight back twice as hard. >> clinton also addressed white house press secretary sean spicer's exchange earlier in the day with urban radio network correspondents april ryan. >> stop shaking your head again. >> april ryan a respected journalist with unrivalled integrity was doing her job, just this afternoon, in the white house press room. when she was patronized and aft. >> and bill o'riley. >> i didn't hear a word she said. i was looking at the james brown wig. >> one of your own california
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congresswoman was taunted with a racist joke about her hair. now, too many women, especially women of color have had a lifetime of practice taking precisely these kinds of indignities in stride. >> while clinton has been slow to get political, her daughter has not. chelsea clinton taking to twitter in a constant criticism of president trump spreading rumors she might run for office, which she tried to put it to rest. >> i'm not running for office. unless something changes. i'll answer that question then. but right now i'm not running for public office. >> right now, that being a caveat, she didn't say never, wolf. >> thank you. just ahead, the dangerous situation og in iraq. how does it square with the new head-turning remark by president
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trump? >> we're doing well in iraq. our soldiers with fighting and fighting like never before. and the results are very, very good, so i just wanted to let everyone know. hello, i'm an idaho potato farmer
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and i finally found our big idaho potato truck. it's been touring the country telling folks about our heart healthy idaho potatoes, america's favorite potatoes, and donating to local charities along the way. but now it's finally back home where it belongs. aw man. hey, wait up. where you goin'? here we go again.
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. tonight the white house is defending the president's surprising new remark that u.s. forces in iraq where fighting "like never been." sean spicer said mr. trump was remarking. the remark is raising eyebrows as there are civilian casualties after an american air strike. let's go to barbara starr.
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a somewhat different take. >> reporter: the military has not lessened its concern one bit about civilian casualties but pointing the finger at isis when they take human shields. >> we were doing very well in iraq. >> reporter: rash comments on the war in iraq from president trump. he may have meant them as more ral blooster in chief. but it seems a peculiar time. >> the really hard fighting occurred with the invasion of iraq in 2003, 2004, 2007. >> roiptd the comments come just after word of a formal investigation into u.s.-led air strike in mosul after more than 100 civilian deaths.
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the trump administration dropped 100 precision guided bombs of mosul last week according to the pentagon. one official said it's harder to attack isis. >> it's going to become more and more difficult. >> reporter: as the trump white house increases bombing and troop levels against isis in several countries, still no sign of a trump military strategy. >> i think there's the vague idea that you have to throw some troops at the problem, whether the problem is in iraq, syria, or yemen or some other place. roimt more u.s. troops are headed overseas. >> i think that is what you continue to see with all of these deployments right here. we are not -- we have -- one of our key principles here with our focus forward is to help our
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partners fight but not fight for them. >> in afghanistan, commanders want hundreds of additional troops. in iraq, another 250 are on if way. in syria, up to 900 are on the ground at any one time. in yes, ma'am in yemen, they're stepping up air strikes against isis. trump is facing calls for more troops to counter russia. >> a rejudge ent russia has turned from partner to antagonist. roimt more than 3,000 additional troops. trump has continued to defend russia. >> if we have a good relationship with russia, believe me, that's a good thing. >> a disconnect from his defense team. defense secretary james mattox says he's not ready. >> russia will have to prove
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itself first. >> reporter: u.s. and iraqi troops paying the toll over the years, woman. remember 30,000 u.s. troops wounded in iraq during the heavy fighting and more than 3,000 killed. >> thanks very much. erin burnett out front starts now. >> next breaking news. the house intelligence committee investigation into trump and russia in shambles at this hour. the fbi chief directly contradicting the committee chairman. has evan nunes lost all credibilit credibility? le. >> so what's happening? the father, once a devoted trump supporter now changing his tune. he's out front. let's go out front. good evening i'm erin burnett. breaking news, credibility breakdown. the fbi at this hour directlily

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