tv CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin CNN May 30, 2017 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
like the president releasing classified information in the oval office. >> andre, you tell me how it's fair that the president can bash anonymous sourcing and retweet a story, based on an anonymous source. >> i don't have to defend that. it's legitimate to point out. >> what else do you think? >> i think the congressman references angela merkel, i think it's a good thing, as a taxpayer and u.s. citizen and said, hey, your friends in a beer joint keep paying this tab and i've been paying the tab for a long time and realized it's not the u.s.' role to continue to pay everybody else's bill and so we all were supposed to be in this together and that's the whole purpose of what was put together many decades ago and fulfilling a campaign promise to
the people of this government that we're going to be judicious and prudent in how we spend and use your taxpayer dollars. we've got to address this. we can't continue to pick up the tab, especially wealthy countries. i'm happy donald trump is doing this. i'm happy angela merkel recognizes it and i thought it was quite positive. she said we realize we are not going to continue to pick up. >> do you think we're reading too much into this or taking angela merkel out of context as sean spicer and andre are saying or are the war of words legit? >> no. because the context is this. on the same trip, president trump has tried to strengthen his bond with saudi arabia and has said we're now going to work more closely with egypt we know what he's done on syria and
turkey and the context is he's withdrawing u.s. leadership. those in western europe that we stand with, we can work out the financial situation with nato and, of course, they should contribute more. since 1949, it's been an alliances that provided for the security of the international community, including the security interests of the united states. president trump continues to disrespect that. he did it on the campaign trail. he's continuing to do it as president. >> gentlemen, appreciate both of you. congressman jolly, andre bauer, thank you. we've got to keep going. all right. top of the hour here on cnn, we begin with breaking news, the white house responds to exclusive cnn reporting on this investigation into russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election. two former intelligence sources telling cnn that russian government officials discussed having potentially derogatory information about then presidential candidate donald trump and two of his top aides.
this, as one of president trump's personal attorneys, michael cohen, declines an invitation to provide information and testimony to both the house and senate intelligence committees who are conducting this russia probe. why? michael cohen says it was overly broad and impossible to answer. let's go to jeff zeleny. first, the news or lack thereof when he was pressed on jared kushner? >> that was the news. that's a central question here at the west wing and sean spicer went through a litany of basically a recap of all of last week and when it came time to answering these tough questions about what is going on with this investigation, he had few answers and then ended the press conference fairly abruptly. but it's the central question here of if the president knew about this back channel of communication, that his
son-in-law and now senior adviser set up, that's the central matter hanging overall of this. this is the question and this is sean spicer's answer. >> to the issue of the russia probe, i'm wondering if you can tell us when the president knew -- whether the president knew at the time that jared kushner was seeking to establish back channel communications at the russian embassy to the russian government and if he didn't know at the time, when did he find out? >> i think that assumes a lot and mr. kushner's attorney has said that he's volunteered to share with congress what he knows about these meetings and will do the same if he's contacted with any inquiry. >> did the president discuss it, though? >> i'm not going to get into that. but what your question assumes is a lot of facts not substantiated by anything other than anonymous sources being leaked out. >> does he approve of that action? >> you're asking if he approves of an action that is not a
confirmed action. >> again, sean spicer not saying that this didn't happen but also importantly not answering if the president himself knew about those discussions before he was sworn into office, brooke. so from there things went a little south, talking about fake news and clearly sean spicer expressing the frustration that this president believes any grievances being aired again about how he believes he's being treated improperly, unfairly, et cetera. and again, he ended the briefing and it seemed to me to be a bit more abrupt than a lot of people were expecting. >> jeff, thank you. jeff zeleny for us at the white house. and we also have this, increased scrutiny, the president's son-in-law and his ties to russian banking executive and here is this exclusive
reporting. simone, what do you have? >> back in december when kushner met with his banker sergey gorkov, we didn't learn about it until march. we've learned that the fbi has been krscrutinizing that meetin. certainly they are looking at it and want to know what that meeting was about. it's still not really clear to u.s. officials and to those of us in the media what this meeting was about because back in march a statement was issued basically saying it was about a business, sort of a personal business. as you know, white house officials and other officials have recently said that the meeting was sort of a way to be a direct communication with vladimir putin. this is being scrutinized by the fbi. from a counterintelligence
perspective, they really want to know, was it this man, was sergey gorkov sent there to wage some sort of influence or was it more to just get knowledge about what the campaign was thinking and what the president was going to eventually do with russian sanctions. >> all great questions waiting for some answers. shimon, thank you so much for your excellent reporting. let's hold all of these russia-related questions into our nexting isment. i want to bring if former kgb agent and author of "deep undercover" and also with me is amy pope. great to have both of you on. jack, we'll get to this bank meeting in a second but on the derogatory information that they had on the president and his inner circle, do you see that as
legit and not edxaggerated information, is that a threat? >> we're stepping into a realm of unknown. it gets to a point where we are speculating on top of speculations. you don't understand one thing about the russians and it has not changed in history, that they are trying to play everybody that they are dealing with. >> how do you mean? >> play means, you know, you throw stuff out, you throw information out, see how you can confuse everybody. and this has been the game, their game since they got involved in the u.s. elections and with this hacking and so forth. >> but this has been going on, you know, since the soviet area, jack. >> absolutely true. but now they have a whole lot more powerful instruments, such as the internet.
>> amy, this doesn't mean the president was compromised in any way, does it? >> it doesn't mean that. it means that there was a conversation that was overheard about whether the president or his team was compromised but if it is in fact true and if this is a legitimate conversation that was intercepted, that's a reason for pretty significant concern because of course it means the russian would have leverage over u.s./russian policy and that is a big deal. >> jack, according to this breaking news, shimon was reporting on this breaking news between jared kushner and this russian banker and the bank says it was all business and the white house sources on background saying essentially that this was all about potentially setting up a message to vladimir putin, maybe about
syria. what's your read? >> i've said this since i've been asked these questions. every time you do business with a major figure, a major economic figure out of russia, you're doing business with somebody who was there by the grace of vladimir putin. so to what extent there is a direct connection or a loose link, we don't know. but trust me, i think our business people need to be better prepared when they're dealing with russians. >> so you're saying this russian banker would have had to have had the green light from his friend vladimir putin to then blessed to have this meeting with jared kushner? >> not necessarily the meeting per se but there is a connection. you understand, this is an olygopoly. >> thank you so much. >> there's a ruling class in russia and some senior politicians and the major economic players and they are
all in cahoots. so, you know, and players don't necessarily all get their marching orders on a daily basis from the top. their intelligence is enough to do there but they all go back to big boss vladimir putin sdpr but would y it would be russia with this confidant and this banker as the in-between, potentially? >> and that is unfortunate and that's why i believe mr. kushner is unqualified to operate in this realm today based on the history that he has and the insurance experience he has and international affairs. >> the other piece of the reporting, amy, i'll pose this to you, is that these discussions centered on the president or then incoming president's finances. that's at the heart of this.
>> right. i mean, look, there are so many pieces of this that raise questions. if to the extent that there's information that the russians believe that there's derogatory information about the president or his team or involves his finances or his son-in-law who is going to be a senior adviser to the president once he gets into the white house is then having meetings with a banker connected to a foreign adversary, there are so many different pieces of this that are troubling that really need to be untangled so that we can fully understand what's going on here and what interests may or may not be compromised and what concerns the american people should have about the way we're running the government today. >> again, just to reiterate what you hear from the white house on this, jared kushner is ready, willing and able to cooperate with any questions that congress has. amy pope, thank you. jack barsky, thank you very much. >> you're welcome. >> thank you. we have candid new details on the president's mindset.
a friend tells cnn he's becoming, and i'm quoting, emotionally withdrawn. what that means. we'll discuss it. also, a republican says he called immigration agents, he called i.c.e. to round up protesters and then a scuffle breaks out between these state representatives. we'll talk live to the one accused of threatening that republican. and new details just in on the dui arrest of tiger woods. how police found him and what happened during his breathlyzer test. ♪
the president retweeted this morning an article about that back channel that was based on an a anonymous source that there was an effort to set up a back cham, that t channel, the russians suggested it and it was to talk about syria. was the president not confirming that there was an effort in the facts that i just said? >> that speaks for itself. >> you said first of all the article was based on anonymous sources. >> which it is. >> but the fox article that the president retweeted was also based on anonymous sources. why is the source that they used more credible than the ones in "the washington post" article? >> again, i don't think -- there's two issues at hand. the dossier that is largely the basis of this was largely discredited in the first place.
most of the publications here refused to even publish it in the first place. so again, i'm not going to get into c in into confirming stuff in an ongoing investigation. >> joining me is philip rugger. speaking of your paper, philip, let's begin with that question. i thought it was an excellent question that francesca was asking. why is it okay for the president to retweet an anonymously resourced fox news article and take that as gospel and yet rip sources in your paper? >> it was ridiculous and i would point out that i was on the foreign trip with president trump and several of the reporters wanted to be quoted anonymously. so this administration is just
trying to kind of have it cute here and play it both ways but they use anonymous sources to conduct their own business. >> for people watching at home -- and they don't know how this works, if you're on this trip and talking on background to someone within the white house, let's say you're in riyadh, that's a source from the administration that you're allowed to report out. these are sources from the white house. i just want to make sure people at home understand that. >> that's right. and when a source is anonymous, it's not that they are made up or fake or anything like that. it's that there are officials in the government and for whatever reason -- and usually we disclose that reason in our stories -- they are not permitted to speak on the record because they don't have permission to. these are people people, real sources with real information. >> thank you. i think that deserved repeating.
and speaking of what sean spicer was saying in his description of that middle east speech and how, you know, amazing it was, according to sean spicer in the white house, i thought it was noteworthy that instead of quoting people and quoting current leaders in that part of the world, he was playing out quotes from tv pundits and like newt gingrich and james woolsly and jane harmon. what did you make of his choice to do that? >> that's what his boss is reading and watching. he's a media consumer. he loves -- he doesn't love it but he watches the critics and consumes the critics. sean spicer is regurgitating what his boss likes. he sees these snippets and they pull them together and validate the position. but i think bigger picture, sean spicer also read the quote from merkel, which has been taken as
a bigger critique of the president where he read the quote from her and it didn't sound as bad, actually. she never mentioned trump. we as pundits basically have interpreted that through analysis as a slight against trump. this is a break in the alliance. but i think when trump supporters inundate my inbox and have a complaint, that's your analysis but really she didn't mean that and that's your interpretation, your bias. and i think that is something that we have to wrestle with as journalists, as we provide analysis, we should be fair and really provide the context that is analysis and not exactly what she said. >> point taken. point taken. 100%. philip, back over to you on your piece from today on how the president consumes intelligence. tell me about that. >> yeah. so ashley parker and i have a
piece at "the washington post" today that gets at this. we talked to the cia director and we wanted to talk about how president trump consumes intelligence. he would rail against the intelligence community and refused to take the briefings offered to him but there's been a real evolution. he goes to intelligence briefings every day now. he likes it. he wants the information in little nuggets. he likes visuals and maps, anything to help him visualize what is going on around the world. he doesn't like the long memorandas that explain an issue. he wants to get to the history of the point. >> but he's taking it in as more of a visual means. >> and not always recognizing the nuances of the information that he's receiving. >> david, finally to you, on some of gloria borger's amazing
reporting today where she's been talking to sources and friends of the president and the president made a quote/unquote nonoffer of the fbi job to his friend chris christie, he said, you don't want it, right? they are having two potential contenders at the white house today, right. what does that tell you about the state of play of finding a replacement for comey? >> i think it's a big struggle and i think, frankly, chris christie would be, you know, very problematic to go up to the senate and get confirmed because if you talk to democrats, they want something -- and frankly, some republicans say this, too. they want someone nonpolitical, someone not tied to trump, not necessarily loyal to trump but loyal to the institution. so i think that's what the problem with joe lieberman was, with, frankly, democrats and i think you'd have the same problem with chris christie was up there or rudy giuliani or any circle of friends from the trump
land, you're going to have that opposition. so i think he would do himself better to go out of the political range and try to really pick someone that isn't necessarily loyal to him. i mean, look, he wants to fix someone that he can trust but that's the fine line here for this pick and that's why i think he is really struggling with it. >> two contenders today, gentlemen, excellent conversation. philip, david, thank you very much. >> thanks, brooke. a fight erupts between lawmakers after one republican says he called immigration agents to round up protesters. we'll talk live to one of them who was accused of threatening that republican. i guess i was born with a crayon in my hand.
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welcome back. i'm brooke baldwin. to now a very public breakdown of civility in a place literally built for civilized debate. it happened inside the texas capital on memorial day, the final day of the legislative session, basically a schoolyard shoving match broke out among several lawmakers right there on the house floor. in the backdrop, you have hundreds of protesters rallying against this new law in texas. republican matt rinaldi saw signs that some protesters were undocumented so he said that he
called i.c.e., he called immigration officials and then one lawmaker assaulted him while another threatened him prompting rinaldi to issue a warning that he would shoot his gun in self-defense. the accused lawmakers deny any assault. we reached out three times to speak with him but so far got no response from rinaldi. lawmaker accused of threatening rinaldi is poncho nevarez and another who says he witnessed the whole confrontation. gentlemen, thank you for coming on. >> thank you, brooke. >> let me bring with you, representative nevarez. what did representative rinaldi say to you that got you fired up? >> it's what he said to three of my colleagues in reference to the people that were in the gallery demonstrating against
senate bill 4. he said, i called ic..c.e. and we're going to get them deported. that's what got me fired up. >> did he threaten you personally? >> that came a little later. he did threaten me personally. >> what did he say? >> i didn't hear it. i think jessica can probably speak to that. i was actually walking away. >> what did he say? >> so i can tell you what i heard. it was a second incident where representative rinaldi was a direct threat, basically said, i'm going to put a bullet in your head. that was a direct quote. i'm not the only one who heard that. it's important to know the context. there's no excuse for that kind of behavior, last day of the session. but there's also been, throughout this session and previous sessions, dee monday
st demonstratives that puts our community on the defensive and i think that boiled up yesterday. certainly no one is proud of that but you can't be making threats to folks for their lives. we had spouses and kids on the floor yesterday. really unfortunate and embarrassed the the body and rinaldi owes the state of texas an apology. >> let's read this statement that they issued on facebook. "representative ramon romero physically assaulted me and other democrats were being held by by poncho who said they would get me on the way to my car. he later approached me and reiterated that i had to leave at some point and he would get me and i made it clear that if he attempted to, in his words,
get me, i would shoot him in self-defense." so representative nevarez, did you threaten him? >> i asked him to leave the floor. >> there's a difference between asking and threatening. which was it? >> well, the thing is this. representative rodriguez hit this on the head. that kind of stuff is not acceptable on the house floor and i have to own that. but we were provoked. i was provoked. the point in getting him off the floor, we can't be doing that kind of stuff on the floor. the further you get away from stuff like that, and i'm talking physically, walking to the side of the rail, walking to the back hall, these things tend to diffuse themselves. >> i understand. i want you to own it as well. did you threaten him? >> no. what i'm owning is if you look at the video, i got up in the guy's face. there's no need for me to do that. he dangled something in front of me and provoked me. but it doesn't take away from what started this which was this piece of legislation that gives people like rinaldi license to
feel like he can insult people and push us. and the fact is, we were provoked. i was provoked. they pushed us long and hard and they were pushing those people in the gallery and we're not going to stand for it anymore. we've had numerous occasions where a group, the democratic caucus, we've been pushed and pushed and pushed and, frankly, rinaldi is pushing and pushing and we're done with that. >> but gentlemen, you are elected officials. i mean, no matter which side of the issue you fall on, you guys nearly came to a full-out brawl on the house floor. what does that say to texans, what does that say to americans, children and the protesters there about civility. >> i would say, brooke, you're right. there's no place in politics or really in any walk of life to resort to any type of aggression or violence. i think we're all apologetic for
this and we had families in attendance. the reality is, though, when you take it over the edge -- and i know he's not here to defend himself, he did not make a threat to premeditate and say he would put a bullet in my colleague's head, that certainly crosses a line that no one went to yesterday except for him. so i would agree with you, we're all a little bit embarrassed about what happened yesterday, frustrations boiled over. >> yeah. >> it was a long time coming. the reality is, he's the one that crossed the ultimate line by making that threat to use a gun. >> we just can't be having this happen when we elect you all to represent us, whether it's a state office or nationwide. but i truly do admire both of you for coming on national tv and talking about it. representative nevarez and rodriguez in san antonio texas, thank you. >> thank you. coming up, we do have more on our breaking news, the white house downplaying the war of words between president trump
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the u.s. german relationship right now and how important is that relationship to the white house and the president and the american public? >> i think the relationship that the president has had with merkel, he would describe as fairly unbelievable. they get along very well. owe has a lot of respect for her. they continue to grow the bond that they had during their talks in the g-7. any views not just germany but the rest of europe as an important american ally during his conversations at nato and
the g-7, the president reaffirmed the need to improve our transatlantic relationship. >> moments ago, sean spicer describing president trump's relationship with the german chancellor angela merkel as fairly unbelieve nable. i think he meant it like fairable unbelievable, like great. the president on offense tweeting, "we have a massive trait deficit with germany. plus, they pay far less than they should on nato and military. very bad for u.s. this will change." chancellor merkel is doubling down today saying there are more reasons than ever before to take our fate into our hands in europe. barry is a director of the center on international security at the atlantic council and special assistant to presidents obama and george w. bush on national security. barry, thank you so much for being on with me. and from what i've read about you, you know, you think that
we're just reading way too much into this perceived war of words, that it's not as big of a thing as people are making it out to be. >> well, maybe it's a little bit of both. i think i am very worried about the direction of the relationship the united states and europe and in particular germany as the engine of europe really need to be together. all of our major challenges in the word, you can go through the list, we need to work with the europeans politically, diplomatically, militarily on all of the big challenges. so we have to be in lock step with them and this is not a great sort of trend at all. it's quite wary. we don't want germany off on its own. history has not treated that kindly for anyone's interests. >> but then chancellor merkel's comments yesterday from this beer hall, you know, is sean spicer reading the entire quote in context, do you think people were taking her out of context
and overblowing this? >> well, no, i think there is some worry. i mean, from her first meeting in the white house where it was reported that white house officials happened officials handed her a bill of hundreds of billions, which is ridiculous because there's no such bill. we of course want allies to spend more on defense. we spend a lot. we want them to increase their spending to 2% of their global -- of their gdp but no one owes anything. we need each other. >> okay. and just quickly, moving to the cnn reporter today, barry, that the russian government discussed potentially derogatory information that then candidate trump and some of his top aides during the election and one source describes it as financial in nature. it could be edge xaggerated. >> it raises new questions but
doesn't provide any new answers and let's get to the heart of it. >> yeah. >> russia's foremost goal is run by a former kgb officer is to destabilize and reduce the legitimacy of the u.s.' political system and european political system. this could be very much part of their disinformation and influence campaign or it could be a fact. so we have to let the process play out in the united states and we'll see what comes. but i think we have to take anything russia says either from an intercepted communication or from a deliberate public statement. we have to take that with a large, large shaker of salt because they really want to destabilize us. >> barry, thank you for your insight. new details on this dui arrest of tiger woods, including what happened during his breathalyzer test. what medications were in his system and how exactly police found him. we have all of those details for you, coming up.
is now confirming that. we're told that he passed his breathalyzer test, did not pass the field sobriety test. tiger woods apologized and acknowledged that he was on medication. police also say that they found him asleep at the wheel, stopped on the side of the road. his speech was slurred and slow as he told officer he just returned from golfing in los angeles. so with me now, elizabeth cohen, senior medical correspondent and joey jackson, cnn legal analyst and criminal defense attorney. elizabeth, first to you on the meds. apparently on the police report there's a list of several prescription drugs that he was on or had been taking. talk me through what they are and what sort of effect they would have on him. >> okay, brooke. let's go through them one by one. the first one on the left is celexex. interesting thing about that, we don't know what that is, not the name of a real drug. the second one is vicodin, contains hydrocodone, an opioid
pain medication and, of course, we've heard about those. torex, an anti-inflammatory and vioxx is lifted. don't know now he would have taken it all, it's been off the market for ten years. vicodin can cause lightheadedness, dizziness and decision and torex is associated with feeling dizzy or tired, so certainly many ways that all adds up, and then when you put those together, the situation can become even worse. brooke? >> all right. so that's the meds. what about the law, joey jackson. dui. in the eyes of the law. >> yes. >> is there a difference whether you're drunk or you're on prescription meds? >> there's a major distinction. so let's back up. obviously, you know, dui and dwi, driving under the influence, you want to prevent people from being on the roads being in a condition that's hazardous to themselves and the other and the law factors in. drugs are one thing. if you self-induce and you voluntarily take drugs and that
impairs your judgment or ability, but when you're on prescription medication -- >> when a doctor says here you go. >> a doctor says you've had back surgeries and knee surgeries, you have ailments that require medication, we're going to give them to you, and as a result of that you have some reaction which causes, as the fine doctor has just described, issues concerning drowsiness and issues concerning your ability, that's not criminal. the fact is that we don't send people to jail for following doctor's orders taking medication and having these conditions. i'll go one step further. in this particular case, seemingly he pulled over to the side of the road. now, in one report it suggests that he's blocking the roadway. in the citation it says he's on the roadway but on the shoulder. so we also encourage people, if you're not feeling well. >> pull over. >> if you're sleepy, pull over. get yourself some rest. that appears to be what he was doing and then you go into the issues in terms of his cooperation with law enforcement. he, you know, did the test, obviously didn't pass the field sobriety test and i have to say
those things are hard to pass under normal circumstances. stand on one leg, touch your nose, you know, and walk and turn and do all the rest of it, but i think based upon the prescription medication he was on, he certainly has viable defenses, and i really don't see this case going very far at all knowing what we know now. >> so just quickly, take us in the room as he's with, you know, his lawyer crafting the statement in this mea culpa, what would have that been like? >> i think you have to do that. when you're a star of magnitude you want to accept the responsibility. >> with a mug shot, of all poem. >> accept some responsibility and the issue becomes knowing that you're on medication, knowing that it could impair your judgment, your ability, make you sleepy, should you have been driving, that's one thing, but doing it in a manner where it's violative of law is quite another, and i would suggest to you knowing what we know now, you know, could you question his judgment for actually getting in the car that light at night and driving because of these medications, but to suggest that it's criminal or something else, i don't see at this point that that's the case. >> got it. joey jackson, thank you so much.
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what surprised me about running a company is really just the amount that you need to learn across so many disciplines. really as a ceo you need to make sure that every single part of the condition is being well taken care of. >> now to some breaking news, that the pentagon is launching a test designed to intercept an intercontinental ballistic missile. let's go to barbara starr live at the pentagon with more. barbara, what specifically is this in preparation for? >> reporter: brooke, this test is underway right now as you and i speak. a short time ago the u.s. military launched a missile from van den berg air force base in southern california. this is an interceptor missile. it launched fast and high. it's going up into the atmosphere, and it is going to try and knock out of the sky another mile of that the u.s. launched from far out in the pacific. that missile simulating essentially an intercontinental ballistic missile launch. the two countries that have that threat for the united states,
potentially, of course, north korea and iran. this is a test that the u.s. had long planned, but it takes on a lot of meaning right now with north korea -- tensions rising with the north koreans saying they are working to try to develop an icbm that could attack the u.s. this test underway as we speak. the two missiles have now launched just a short time ago, and we are awaiting, you're seeing some video of a similar test. we are awaiting right now the results from the pentagon. this is the equivalent of trying to knock a bullet out of the sky high in the atmosphere with another bullet, so we're waiting the results to see if this test is successful. it would be a huge step forward in trying to defeat the threat of an intercontinental ballistic missile launch against the united states. brooke? >> right, as you pointed out, timely and for two reasons, both because of, you know, goings on with iran and north korea. barbara starr, we'll stay really close to your reporting and find out how successful it was and
how far-reaching this ballistic missile test would actually be more the united states. barbara starr, thank you so, so much at the pentagon. >> sure. >> thanks so much for being with me. i'm brooke baldwin. let's send things down to washington, d.c. "the lead" with jake tapper starts right now. thanks, brooke. two top trump advisers refusing to comply with the russia investigation. "the lead" starts right now. cnn exclusive reporting that this the russian sources say were caught on intercepts bragging about possessing something damaging to donald trump and his campaign. was this just boasting? was it disinformation? or was it legit? firing back. for the first time the u.s. fires a missile capable of knocking down potentially a north korean nuke. was the test a success? plus, asleep at the wheel. new details about that disoriented looking tiger woods during his dui