tv CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield CNN May 20, 2017 11:00am-11:31am PDT
>> what's funny is people coming up to me and saying this is the weirdest thing they ever seen before. yeah, i notice it ranks right up there. ♪ hello everyone, thank you very much for joining us, i am fredricka whitfield. it is a story of russia's foreign minister announced that it never happen. during his meeting with russian officials earlier this month, president trump admitted he fired james comey to ease pressure on the russia investigation. he called comey, "a real nut
job." shimon is joining me right mow. now we are hearing from james comey and former fbi director is fired. he will be testifying before public before the intel committee. what prostroke avoke all this? >> comey has been in the news a lot. he wanted to be heard. he was going to tell his story just like he did when he testified where he went on this whole rant of the hillary clinton's investigation and where he felt nauseous and all this other stuff that he said. you know, comey in the right setting is not afraid to voice his concerns and opinion and talk about what was going through his mind. the key here for docomey is goi to be, he's going to have to explain why he did not come to
folks in congress sooner. why he did not come to congress sooner? that's a question we don't know. in the friends that we have talked to and people that have talked to comey since he's been fired, they have told us that at the time, comey did not feel that president trump was trying to influence him when they met in the oval office and there were those words "i hope you can let this go" sort of intimating of giving flynn a break. friends did not think that comey felt it. these friends that we talked to don't feel like there was an influence here. the problem that they do think that trump has had -- he does not know the proper channel how to communicate with law enforcement and the fbi. you have to go through the department of justice. in the end, comey never thought
he would get fired. somehow educate trump on the proper channels instead of dealing with these kinds of things. >> we know all these questions will be asked. presumably he's doing this while being transparent with the news special counsel bob mueller as well. so that all of these investigations are able to take place simultaneously. all right, shimon, thank you very much. the world is watching as this boom over the white house. the president's taking his first steps in diplomacies over seas. quite the greeting there, the king of saudi arabia greeting the president and a ceremony
right there. this hour, the first lady and the president is attending a banquet. we also heard from the president, he had some comments a short time ago after his immedia meeting with the prince. >> that was a tremendous day, i want to thank everybody. a tremendous investments in to the united states and our military communities. the community is very happy, we want to thank you to saudi arabia. hundreds of billions of dollars of investments into the united states and jobs, jobs, jobs. >> all right, now in the midst of a wind storm of cnn senior, g jim acosta is traveling with the president right now. what's going on as they are in the banquet there? >> reporter: besides the sand storm sweeping through the location right now, the
president has arrived to dinner with king salmon. wilbur ross was doing a traditional sword dance and some of the pomps and circumstances that we have been seeing all day long. the saudis are proud of the fact that president trump has made their country of the first stop of president of the united states of the first trip over seas. during that news conference that shimon was talking about moments ago with respect to the investigation of trump campaign ties with russia. tillerson did not answer questions that was asked about all of that. he basically said he did not have any information to offer on that. the foreign minister talked about some of the areas they
have in common. one interesting comment we heard is the phrase "drain the swamp" was used. it is a speech that the administration have been pointing to over the last couple of weeks as one of the most important speeches of donald trump's presidency and one of the things that we'll be looking for tomorrow fredricka, is whether the president uses that phrase of radical islamic terrorism is a phrase that he used time and time again out of his campaign trail and in joint sessions earlier this year. hr mcmaster said he should not use that kind of language and he did that anyway.
>> this news conference that i have tried to ask secretary tillerson whether that'll be in the speech. he did not answer that question. several officials said the speech is being worked on. a lot of effects are going through this critical speech that he's delivering to the muslim world tomorrow, fredricka. >> jim acosta, thank you for enduring that wind and sand storm. no joke in that region. we don't want you to get swept away. appreciate it. still ahead, the president is slamming in as the single biggest hitch hunt of politicians of american's history. his words. the appointment of robert mueller to investigate the collusion of russia. we'll be right back.
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"i just fired the head of the fbi f fbi, he was crazy." that's taking off. this is cnn's commentator, david." >> prosecutors suggest that a minimum of whatever that was swirling around president trump and his team all these months, there is a little bit of fire there and not just smoke. i am not going to guess on the legal particulars on whether he's going to be or anyone of his inner circle is going to be charged with obstruction of justice. in non legal term, enough reporting has come out just in the last week that suggests strongly that president trump has been trying to wave away or
bat away the everifforts of cons and the fbi of ties of his team and russia, republicans are breathing a sigh of relief that mueller has been appointed. now they can sit back and say we got to let this investigation plays out and democrats like the fact that it is moving toward as serious, intensive phase. but, what does the white house get anything out of it? they don't get anything out of it. you saw trump says this makes us look like a divided nation. >> and then, james comey will testify publicly. in this past week of all this investigation, we got to hear from benjamin on pbs, is it
anyone's view of james comey wants to get a sense of what the perception is like who's speak for james comey. before he would say yes, publicly, he's eager to testify. >> yes, that's right. we heard from james comey everyone though we'll hear more from him directly very soon because his friend benjamin went out there and talked about his perception. i think he used the word that come my was repulsed or disgusted by the interactions and the dynamic that trump reeling him in and not letting him keep the arm's length of
federal law enforcement. those are true shocking words for an fbi to say of a sitting president. >> the house and senate have their investigations ongoing as well. this testimony from comey, is there a feeling that he probably would have talked to bob mueller in some kind of a way that says if i testify in this forum, might it interfere with the investigation that you have going, might he gotten a green light from mueller before doing this. how will all of this coincide? >> yeah, that i don't know, fredricka whether or not come my and mueller have communicated about this. mueller of a 12-year fbi director and well respected on both sides of the isle, it seems to me there is a way for him to proceed this methodically.
director comey, he was not seen as partisan and a lightning rod. the question is mr. comey and mueller, both between one investigation, the special prosecutor investigation and also not stepping on the toes of congress. the point is partly of the process and partly just getting the american people the truth of what happened. we don't know that there was collusion between trump's team and russians. but, we do need to find that out. >> david swerdlick. thank you very much, good to see you. >> all right, with e'll be righ bark. back. n redeem loyalty points for a free night-instantly and win at business. beneful grain free is so healthy... oh! farm-raised chicken! mmm...that's some really good chicken. i don't think i've ever tasted chicken like this. what!? here come the accents.
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they hit an obstacle in their life, i hope to inspire on how to over come that obstacle. president trump is in saudi arabia right now. he says it has been a tremendous first day of his first over seas trip of his presidency. this venture to the middle east is raising new questions of how his business empire can also benefit. i want to bring in our cnn's national mj lee for more on this. >> hey, fred, you know donald trump also like to remind people that he has not been a politician for have long. so now as he's traveling abroad in his capacity as president, he's learning just how difficult it can be to avoid the perception that his diplomatic actions could affect his family business. >> donald trump arrive ing in
saudi arabia. the first stop in his trip as president, trump's hoping to use his nine day tour reset the controversies at home of his ties to russia continuing to swirl. >> the president's visit in the middle east is raising fresh questions of potential business conflicts in the region where trump has a long history. >> saudi arabia and i get along very well. >> trump's vast business empire expands the globe including apartment buildings and hotels and golf courses. >> according to his 2016 finance disclosures, he had dealings in more than two dozen countries and eight of them were all saudi companies. since election days, trump taken
steps to distance himself from his family's business turning it over to his adult sons. don and eric are going to be running the company. they are going to be running it in a very professional manner. they're not going to discuss it with me. again, i don't have to do this. they're not going to discuss it with me. >> trump's critics are not convinced that he severed himself completely from his baptist empire. the senator is writing this continue financial relationship raises concerns of trump's organization effectively past-through for income that violates constitution's two
emoluments clause. >> his son jared kushner has a long history of financial ties in israel. those past investments are also dry scrutinies. i did reach out to the trump's organizations today of the top lawyer telling me in an e-mail of potential business ties for r the organization have in saudi arabia, he wrote "none, we have no interests in saudi arabia." >> mj lee, thank you very much. all right, that's going to do it for me, thanks for being with me this afternoon, i am fredricka wh whitfield. much more in the newsroom, straight ahead. [customer] i can access the atm with just my phone?
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