tv The Lead With Jake Tapper CNN May 30, 2017 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT
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 arrest. what does the breathalyzer have to say?
welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. the russia investigation by the fbi and by the house and senate intelligence committees is proceeding at full speed and so is apparently the refusal to cooperate for many key figures closest to president trump. today is the deadline for fired national security adviser michael flynn to comply with subpoenas issued by the senate intelligence commit, and just a couple hours ago we learned trump corporate attorney, michael cohen, known as the president's political pit bull will not corporate with congress to provide information and testify. now this is all happening as presidential son-in-law and senior white house adviser jared kushner comes under increased jewett think for his meetings with russians and his alleged attempts to set up secret back channel communications with russian leaders. this swirl of information presumably prompted the president to alert his supporters to believe none of it, tweeting, quote, it is my opinion that many of the leaks
coming out of the white house are fabricated lies, made up by the fake news media. whenever you see the word sources say in the fake news immediate yeah, and they don't mention names, it is very possible that those sources don't exist but are made up by fake news writers. fake news is the enemy. the goal here, it is a has been more months now, is to discredit any legitimate news reports based on firsthand accounts from within president trump's own white house and his own administration as i know firsthand since i've spoken with people in his administration who have talked to me only agreeing to do so if they were not named. sometimes they did so to defend president trump. sometimes they did so because they were concerned about president trump's behavior, but they were always 100% real people as are the background briefings that the white house repeatedly sets up in which unnamed presidential advisers provide information and often fawning prose to reporters.
president trump is not the first president to hate leaks. the obama white house not only criticized media outlets for using anonymous sourcing, they went after whistleblowers and leakers using the espionage act more than every single previous president combined. the obama administration threatened to jail reporters for not sharing their names of their sources. you know, mr. trump's not the first one to express frustration about this, but this is the same president who just this morning re-tweeteded this story from a white house-approved channel, fox, a story that reads, quote, a december meeting between jared kushner and russian ambassador sergey kislyak focused on syria, a source familiar with the matter told fox news monday, a single anonymous source that the president sent out to his 30 million followers. the president, i think it's fair to say, is not only inconsistent about the use of anonymous sources, he's not a particularly good judge of them. as the unofficial head of the
birther movement which saw him oregon that president barack obama, the first african-american president was born in africa, citizen trump provided this investigative journalism, quote, an extremely credible source has called my office and told me that barack obama's birth certificate is a fraud. in president trump's world that lie is try and the purveyor of that lie is extremely credible and that's really all that needs to be said on this subject when it comes to president trump criticizing what is true and what is false, consider the source. cnn correspondent jessica schneider joins me now with the latest on the russia investigation. sources are telling cnn about intercepts in which according to sources russian officials talked about the trump campaign during the election. what did they allegedly say? >> reporter: in those intercepts, jake, russian officials claim to have derogatory information about then candidate donald trump and some of his associates. that's according to two former intelligence officials as well as a congressional source. now, these conversations with
picked up in the midst of the 2016 election and a source tells cnn that the supposed derogatory details were financial in nature. now the conversations were picked up by u.s. intelligence, and they showed that the russians believe they, quote, had the ability to influence the administration through the derogatory information, but the sources do warn that the russian claims could have been exaggerated or even made up as part of that disinformation campaign that they carried out throughout the entire election. now all this as the white house friends off questions about reports that jared kushner pursued a secret communication channel with russian officials. the fbi we now know is scrutinizing the meetings between kushner and the russians. kushner met with russian ambassador sergey kislyak in trump tower in early december and in mid-december he told kislyak to meet with the chairman of the sanctioned bank gorkov. now sources defending kushner
said his meetings with actually to discuss military strategy in syria and the talks did involve former national security adviser michael flynn. today white house press secretary sean spicer, he responded with this. >> you're asking if he approves of an action that is not a confirmed action. that being said i think secretary kelly and general mcmaster have both discussed in general terms the back channels are appropriate part of diplomacy. >> reporter: meanwhile, donald trump's personal attorney michael cohen is refusing to cooperate with the senate and house intelligence equipmentys which have called on him to and over information and to appear. cohen called the request, quote, poorly phrased, overly broad and not capable of being answered, and then said it was irresponsible that the request itself was even leaked to the press by the committee. cohen is the second trump associate to deny a request from congressional investigators. michael flynn, of course, refused to comply with a senate subpoena and house request last week, and that was through his lawyer. >> jessica schneider, thank you so much. with the second person close to
president trump refusing to cooperate with investigations into whatever happened with russia what, is the next move? we'll talk to a member of the house intelligence committee next. stay with us. ries all the time. am i going to pass away like my mom did? and so you know this is something that's important. losing my mom to heart disease and then being diagnosed myself. it's like a war we're trying to fight against these diseases. resilience is in my dna. i won't die like my mom. it's a big challenge, but the challenge in it of itself is really what keeps me going. i could really make a difference in these people's lives. that would be my dream. at crowne plaza we know business travel isn't just business. there's this. 'a bit of this. why not? your hotel should make it easy to do all the things you do. which is what we do. crowne plaza. we're all business, mostly. ♪ whoa that's amazing...
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welcome back. the probes into any ties between president trump's associates and russian officials continues to expand. for more i want to talk with congresswoman jackie spears, a democrat from california. congresswoman, thanks so much for joining with us. let me start with the fact that president trump's longtime personal attorney michael cohen was asked and declined to provide information to the house and senate intelligence committees investigating any possible russia ties and told cnn that the intelligence committee's request was a, quote, fishing expedition and i added, quote, i declined the invitation to participate because the request was poorly phrase, overly broad and not capable of being answered. what's your response, and what can you tell us about what your committee wants to asking sk him? >> well, i think that, first of all, his request -- the request
has been made and he declined it and in all likelihood there will be subpoenas issued that he'll be compelled to respond to, and this is not a fishing expedition. this is furthering our review on whether or not associates of the trump campaign were in coordination and/or collusion with the russians who were attempting to turn the election. >> do you have any information that suggests michael cohen was talking to any russian officials during the campaign? >> i -- i'm not at liberty to say, but we certainly have been -- it's been reported that he has had meetings with those who were trying to broker a deal on ukraine and the lifting of sanctions. >> a source tells cnn that jared kushner wanted to set up some sort of secure line between the presidential transition and the kremlin for direct communications. administration officials say basically having two countries communicate is a good thing. what are your thoughts? >> well, first of all, he was
not a person in mother to do so as part of the administration. this was something he was trying to set up in december, and the fact that he -- it appears he wanted to even have the setup in the russian embassy shows a great deal of naivety, and if something is being hidden. so i'm very troubled by that particular conversation and what was being suggested. >> do you think it's premature for the democratic national committee to be calling for president trump to fire -- to fire jared kushner given the fact that he hasn't even given his side of the story yet to your committee, to the fbi or t anyone? >> i think he should be given the opportunity to talk about his side of the story but there's the request of whether he should continue to have security clearance during this area of probing.
>> the fbi is why kushner met with a russian banker who has ties with russia that happened during the presidential transition. the bank says the meeting was about financial issues and the white house says he met with the officials on official white house business. the whose press secretary today didn't do anything to clarify. do you have any idea why this meeting took place ? >> why would this meeting take place with a banker from russia that has had sanctions imposed on him? why aren't you meeting with bankers from other european countries? the problem with all of this is that all roads lead to russia, and the question we have to keep asking ourselves is why. why is this fascination or this relationship with russia so tight in the trump administration? why is it that president trump has never said a negative word about president putin but is
lashing out at our closest allies in europe at the g7 and afterwards? >> cnn's reporting that sources say that intercepted conversations during the campaign show russians discussing having potentially derogatory information about then candidate trump and aides of his, perhaps derogatory information that's financial in nature. it's not clear whether the information was real or they were boasting or whether it was disinformation, but on these intercepts the russian officials believed they could use the information to influence president trump and then citizen trump. do you know anything about this story? >> well, all i know is that the putin playbook has been around for a long time, and -- and it's all about getting kompramat, getting stuff on individuals to be able to use something against them, and it wouldn't surprise me if they had derogatory information on the president.
they were certainly trying to go drum up derogatory information on hillary clinton and certainly through the dnc did a major dump of e-mails and texts about her campaign in an effort to impact the election. >> congresswoman jackie spear, democrat of california, on the house intelligence committee. thanks so much for your time today. we appreciate it. >> thank you. the white house top messaging man is leaving after just three months on the job. is a bigger staff shake-up on the horizon? then the unusual circumstances that led to the arrest of tiger woods. what he told police after they found him sleeping behind the wheel. bp engineered a fleet of 32 brand new ships with advanced technology, so we can make sure oil and gas get where they need to go safely. because safety is never being satisfied.
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that role since president trump was elected. it is common practice in washington when the policy and leadership are being questioned to blame the communications staffers. cnn's sara murray joins me now from the white house. sara, the main message had a we're hearing that off the record, on background, is one of frustration. >> reporter: well, that is certainly true, but if you look at the on-the-record message today from sean spicer he says the president's only frustration is with the news media, that the president is pleased with his staff, that the agenda is moving full speed ahead, but, of course, sources are telling us things are not quite so rosy in the west wing and now one top staffer is heading for the exit. as the trump administration struggles to find its footing amid a cloud of controversy, a senior official is stepping aside. communications director mike dubke submitted his resignation may 18th though it's unclear when he'll serve his last day in the white house. his upcoming departure comes as speculation about a broader staff shake-up reaches a fever
pitch. >> thanks for having me back. >> reporter: former trump campaign hands like davidy bossi are playing coy about whether they may soon be headed to the west wing. >> i'm not going to say there's something sitting on the table for me to pick. it's an ongoing conversation. >> reporter: as jared kushner, the president's son-in-law, faces scrutiny in the fbi's russia probe, sources tell cnn he isn't going anywhere, and that for now sean spicer's job is also safe. the press secretary re-emerged in front of the camera for the daily briefing today, his first since mid-may and insisted the president's priorities are on track. >> the president's legislative agenda is in full swing. >> reporter: but in the chaotic west wing crisis management is putting the brakes on the agenda. trump venting on twitter tuesday said the u.s. senate should switch to 51 votes immediately and get health care and tax cuts approved fast and easy. dems would do it, no doubt, but both of those issues are slated
to move through a process that only requires 51 votes. the biggest problem has been getting republicans on the same page. meanwhile, the president isn't making key decisions that lie within his control. he hasn't named a new fbi director, though he's interviewing two candidates today. he hasn't made a decision whether b whether to send additional troops to afghanistan, and he hasn't announced when the u.s. will remain in the paris climate accord. fresh on his heels to a trip to nato and the g7 with trump privately criticized german officials he took his goal in public tweeting we have a massive trade deficit with germany. plus, they pay far less than they should on nato and military. very bad for u.s. this will change. this as u.s. allies like german chancellor angela merkel are suggesting america is no longer the world leader it once was and it's time for europe to step up. >> translator: the times when we
could completely rely on others are to a certain extent over. i've experienced this in the last few days and that's why we europeans must really take our fate into our own hands. >> now despite the not only public but also private frustrations between the president and german officials, sean spicer said the relationship between the president and angela merkel was fairly unbelievable. jake? >> sara murray, thank you so much. preventing the north korea nuclear nightmare, a look at the critical missile test just conducted minutes ago. was it successful. say with us? you more ways to hep reduce calories from sugar. with more great tasting beverages with less sugar or no sugar at all, smaller portion sizes, clear calorie labels, and signs reminding everyone to think balance before choosing their beverages. we know you care about reducing the sugar in your family's diet, and we're working to support your efforts. more beverage choices. smaller portions. less sugar.
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than they should on nato and military. very bad for u.s. let's bring in cnn's frederick pleitken. must of this began last week when president trump blasted u.s. allies over their nato operations and this is a totally legitimate issue, but the needling has continued. how has been taken in europe? >> reporter: i've covered emerkel since the year 2000 and she doesn't really come out as forcefully as she has saying europe needs to take its destiny into its own hands. it certainly was a wake-up call the last week with president trump there at the nato summit and also at the g7 in italy when he made some of those remarks about germany and trade and also about the nato allies. one of the things that really angered a lot of european leaders, especially the italians, was also the things regarding the paris climate accord. one of the things that the italian prime minister referenced was, look, we simply don't see eye to eye with the u.s. on the environment at this point in time and that's why this situation is so difficult.
angela merkel saying essentially there's a 6-1 situation within the g7 on that topic right now. so there is a lot of frustration in you're. there's also some who see it more likely. there were some views of the nordic country who took a picture likening themselves to that orb picture that you had with president trump and the saudi king, but generally there is quite a bit of frustration right now here in europe as -- as the white house is perceived to be quite negative towards many european countries. jake? >> french president emmanuel macron, he had a couple of interesting interactions with president trump during the trip, including this tense handshake that we're showing right now. white-knuckled and macron would not let go and another time macron walking straight towards a group of world leaders, looking like he's headed for president trump and then he veered off to angela merkel and -- and goes through the crowd and finally gets to president trump. clearly emmanuel macron trying to send a message to the
president. >> reporter: certainly, and the strange thing about it he's completely open about it saying, yes, i did all of these things on purpose. the never-ending handshake was because he didn't want to show any sort of weakness in front of president trump. in fact, he compared president trump to recep tayyip erdogan of turkey and to vladimir putin saying these are all leaders who see international relations as power politics, as a balancing of relation, so he felt that even in gestures he couldn't give an inch and that's why he did the things he did, including that never-ending handshake which he himself was quite awkward for him as well, jake. >> fred pleitgen thanks so much and jen psaki, let me start with you, former communications director for the obama white house. a lot of issues that president has with germany and angela merkel in terms of not paying enough on defense, according to nato obligations and in accordance to the trade issues. these are issues president trump shares with president obama and previous president. his supporters might say, hey, at least he's bringing it out in
the open. president obama didn't get results. >> president obama did get results n.2014 germany and a number of european countries pledged to contribute 2% of their gdp by 2024. that's in process. right now germany is paying for about 15% of nato's operating budget. the united states pays for 22%. should shedo more, yes, and they have pledged to do more over the next ten years but issue here is that german leaders, long been one of our strongest partners in europe, through obama and through bush, are questioning whether the united states is a strong ally anymore and whether the united states has has much influence globally anymore and that should be a concern to anyone of either party. what do you think, moll? is this tension between the united states and europe overstated or is president trump actually really sticking his finger in people's eyes? >> i think he is, but i think that's the point. what he promised was to be unpredictable. what he promised was to disrupt the status quo a little bit and
that includes some is our traditional alliances which is going to trouble people who believe in those traditional alliances and clearly troubles the europeans, but i think as you were saying he would say that this -- if you don't show people you're serious about being willing to upset that ale cart, you are not going to make as much progress, so i do think that in the minds of the president and the administration it's not necessarily a bad thing to set people on edge a little bit. >> david, president trump was much friendlier to the saudis and the egyptians than he was to traditional american allies, germany, france and italy. that might upset a lot of people. >> i don't think that should be seen as troubling at all, and let's just go back to jen's comment briefly about the world not taking this president seriously. president obama that drew a red line in the sand on the use of chemical weapons in syria, walked back -- walked it back, our allies and our enemies saw
that. this president took a much stronger stance, and i think that was really evident. as far as -- as far as visiting the saudis and paying close attention to what's going on in the middle east, that's a very important part of world. it always has been. i don't think he's paying less attention to nato. where are you going to start in europe and the middle east? he decided to start in the middle east. i don't think there's that much that we should be paying attention to. >> jen, do you want to respond? >> i think president obama hasn't been president for four months. we didn't solve the syria crisis. trump hasn't solved it either. i think there are people who came out and said they were happy to see that president trump went and took military action, but we have seen no plan since then. these aren't my criticisms, criticisms from european leader,s and they were very specific. let me finish. some of the specifics were about the paris climate agreement and about arming in conflict which is something that came out of the saudi arabia trip, allowing them to use weapons. >> when you talk about -- >> let me finish.
>> okay. there were specific concerns. these are concerns that president trump can address or not address. he'll have another opportunity at the g-20 in july. >> you're talking about global leadership. global leadership in times of crisis. president trump in that instance took a very specific stance. it was completely opposite of what president barack obama did, and i think was widely praised for it. >> i want to turn to another issue kind of in the mop culture sphere, and i want top warn you out there, especially if you have kids, you might find what we're about to show you a little bit graphic. not an actual photograph but let me show you right now, a depiction of kathy griffin who does work for cnn on new year's eve showing a bloody donald trump head. it's pretty disgusting, and i can't imagine how anybody would think that's appropriate. donald trump jr. is out there saying this is now considered to be acceptable discourse by the left, molly. >> who is saying it's acceptable discourse? >> don trump jr.
>> who is saying it's even discourse? i have a hard time bringing myself to care about something like this. i think it just speaks to the need to see themselves as a victim that they have, that they are constantly being persecuted. >> the trumps you're talking about. >> the trump people are constantly having to point to the elites who are looking down on them. of course, comedians and celebrities say dumb stuff and do dumb stuff and violence is not appropriate, but i just don't think that that's the source of president trump's problems. >> david? >> i think we've got much bigger issues to focus on than kathy griffin. >> jen, do you want to weigh in at all? >> agree with david. >> i do want to ask you, david, because there's a lot of speculation in the press about president trump maybe bringing you on board, which we would oppose because we like having you on this show as a matter of policy, but i could certainly understand why someone would want you. are you talking to the white house? >> no comment on that, jake. >> you have no comment. >> no comment. >> i'd be happy to keep showing
up here every day with you. >> well, we love having you. i do want to ask about molly's week on capitol hill because, molly, you spent a lot of time on capitol hill talking to republican congressmen. what are they telling you? >> you know, there's really a fatalism that's setting in. i think republicans, even republicans who, you know, didn't support trump in the primaries or even in the general election, there was a lot of hope whether he was elected because you did have unified republican government. there was a lot that they saw the potential for getting done. now that it's been four months, there's a sort of sense that they don't see progress on a lot of the issues that republicans care about, that conservatives care about. >> tax reform. >> things like tax reform, things like health care. it's stalled and the senate is basically not moving on it, and who knows where -- what big accomplishments this administration is going to be able to rack up, and so a lot of republican congressmen are sitting is around saying what if it doesn't get any better than
this, what if our whole lives for the next year and a half are just answering reporters' questions about the scandals consuming the white house thatty with don't want to answer for and aren't doing -- can't do anything about and they are not going to be having a lot of fun if that's the case. >> i think one of them compared it to the last seen in "reservoir dogs." what would you do theoretically, you don't work for the white house, but were you to call up to fork for leadership? what would you tell them? >> i worked for senator arlen specter. >> yeah. >> listen, i think there's a lot being done right now on tax reform. they are working dill gently to try to get a package together. on health care they are working diligently. there are lots of nominees being slow-walked by the democrats in the senate. the president today talked about, you know, reforming the rules on filibusters so that we can get some things moving. the democrats are doing a good job at slow-walking a lot of stuff. you know, tax reform. none of this stuff is easy. governing is not easy. it's very difficult. you'll need 55, 60 votes in the
senate perhaps, you know, to get this tax reform package through. it's a lot of work, and it's being done right now. things don't get done overnight, unfortunately. this isn't a tv show where it's all done in 22 minutes. >> jen, i want to ask you about your successor, mike dubke, who was -- i guess he's still white house communications director for president trump. you were that job for president obama, and i thought about you today because when i covered the obama white house i would remember there would be some awful thing going on bill that was flailing or the way that president barack obama was being criticized, maybe for syria, whatever, and -- and the inclination of people was always to blame the communications office. oh, it's jen psaki's fault or josh earnest's fault when in actuality it's the product being sold, not the ad pitch. >> yes, we used to joke we would get t-shirts made that says it's a communications problem. this are times when it is a communications problem and anybody who has ever served in
that job say i wish i could have done this better, this differently, but it's almost indicative of a larger problem, and whether that is not having policy to sell or accomplishments on the hill to sell and oftentimes it's a problem with the person at the top, so i hope for them and for america that they take a look at the larger problems in here. i don't know mike dubke, but from looking at the outside, it seems unlikely this is a mike dubke problem. it seems like it's a much larger internal issue. >> do you have sympathy for people who have your job but in the trump administration? >> absolutely. i hope i just sort of expressed that. >> you seem to be. >> yeah, and i think that you're only as good as the product you have to sell, and, yes, you can come up with wonderful tactics and events and language and talking points, but, you know, it's hard to sell -- it's hard to sell a product that isn't going to make it on the market. >> all right, david, molly ball and jen psaki, thanks one and all for being here. david, i'll see you tomorrow. >> hopefully. >> breaking news from the
pentagon. the u.s. military just conducted its first are test of a new interceptor missile. what is it successful? the answer to that crucial question next. then a top senate republican wants to investigate a company with ties to the kushner family business. that's coming up in our conflict of interest watch. stay with us. got it. rumor confirmed. they're playing. -what? -we gotta go. -where? -san francisco. -when? -friday. we gotta go. [ tires screech ] any airline. any hotel. any time. go where you want, when you want with no blackout dates. [ muffled music coming from club. "blue monday" by new order. cheers. ] [ music and cheers get louder ] the travel rewards credit card from bank of america. it's travel, better connected.
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welcome back to "the lead." we have breaking news in our world leads. moments ago the pentagon successfully tested an upgraded missile defense system of an intercontinental ballistic missile, potentially from iran or north korea. on monday kim jong-un's regime conducted its third missile test in a woke which claims it's a major step forward in their weapons program. barbara starr, u.s. officials described this interceptor test
as a high speed bullet hitting a bullet with another bullet. how big of a deal is this? >> you know, jake, the pentagon noded a win and today they believe they got it. the latest information saying the test was successful. one target missile, if you will, launching from far out in the pacific. the interceptor launching from van den berg air force base just a short time ago. you see the simulation there. they hit over the pacific high outside the atmosphere. bullet hitting a bullet essentially, as you say, destroying what would be in the real world an incoming intercontinental ballistic missile. the north korean threat of such an attack is very real for the pentagon, so getting this system up and working with this new upgraded version that we're seeing tested today was a must win for the pentagon. now, let's be clear. this was a test, so the sensors, the technology programmed to really know what they are looking for out there, looking
for the target, maneuvering and hitting the target. in the real world it will be a very tough job. you're not going to know necessarily that the north koreans are launching. it will take a few seconds, minutes to determine a flight path of an incoming missile in the real world. the u.s. system would have to respond in reality very quickly, probably launch more than one missile, so while it was a successful test today, they are going to look at all the technology -- all the data and all the information and determine where they go from here. this system has had a spoelt record in the past. they know it may have worked today, but they face a real world threat. north korea right now the only country claiming it will develop an intercontinental ballistic missile to attack the united states. jake? >> barbara, tell us more about the two navy aircraft carriers that are expected to start training in the sea of japan this week. is that a message to north korea? >> well, you know, technically the pentagon says no, that it's something that they are just training, but they also will
tell you behind the scenes north korea will be watching all of this and is expected to have something to say about it. two aircraft carriers will be training in the sea of japan. they are going to be hundreds of miles at this point off the coast of the korean peninsula, but make no mistakes. two navy aircraft carriers, all their additional warships traveling with them, two submarines training together, even if it is a hundreds of miles off the coast of the peninsula of north korea, something kim jong-un
will be very aware of, and he may see a message in some of this, each if the u.s. military doesn't really want to admit it just yet. jake? >> barbara starr, thank you so much. turning to our pop culture lead. she promised her fans show would return and almost two weeks to the day since terror struck, she will. ariana grande has officially announced the date of her benefit concert in manchester, england. the pop singer tweeted this picture earlier today announcing one love manchester will be held this sunday, june 4th and will also feature artists such as katy perry and usher, pharrell
and more. all of the proceeds will be donated to families and victims to last monday's terrorist attack in manchester, one that stole the lives of 22 innocent people and injuring dozens more. ariana grande said that the victims will be on her mind and in her heart every day. brand new information coming in minutes ago about the tiger woods dui arrest. police say he could not even stay awake while talking to them. plus, more details about how they found the golfer and the condition of his car. stay with us. the average family's new, but old, home: it stood up to 2 rookies, 3 terrible two's, and a one-coat wonder named "grams". it survived multiple personalities, 3 staycations, and 1 tiny announcement. behr. number one rated interior paint, exterior paint and stain. protecting and perfecting since 1947. only at the home depot.
we're back with our regular series conflict of interest watch. in a new cloud of scrutiny hovering over jared kushner's family's business, republican senator chuck grassly, chairman of the senate judiciary committee, is calling for a review of, quote, potentially fraudulent statements and misrepresentations. in his letter grassley does not
name the kushner companies, but he does mention a chinese company working to attract investors for a kushner real estate project in new jersey. let's bring in cnn's cristina alesci to help figure this out for us. how serious are the allegations for the kushner family? >> reporter: well, the optics aren't good. they are straight up bad. the kushner family business is now associated with a chinese company that a republican senator wants investigated for fraud. here's the background. kushner companies worked with this chinese firm to pitch eb-5 visas to local investors for an apartment complex in new jersey. now, as you and i have discussed this, visa program gives foreign investors a pathway to u.s. residency if they commit $500,000 to a job-creating project, but senator grassley says the chinese company may have gone too far in the pitch. in his letter he cites reports that the company falsely told investors that the kushner
development is a safer investment versus others just like it because of the kushner's proximity to the trump administration. now the chinese company also reportedly guaranteed green cards in its materials, and grassley says if the company used that specific language, it's fraudulent. you're not allowed to guarantee green cards under this program. now he's asking two government agencies to investigate, homeland security which oversees eb-5 visas and the s.e.c. which helps polices companies to finance investors. grassley never mentioned kushner's companies in the letter to these agencies but jared kushner's family took a lot of heat for attending these pitches in china, especially when jared's sister name-dropped her brother at one of the presentations and this story comes at a time when jared is under increased scrutiny tied to the russia investigation. jake? >> is the kushner family still working with this chinese business partner under this
cloud? >> reporter: that's a great question. it's unclear. i asked the kushner companies today, and it declined to community. jared officially as you know stepped down from the business, and he's in the process of divesting himself from controversial projects like the apartment building in new jersey, but the problem is that jared still has stakes in various other family projects and the kushner family has to be careful because president trump reportedly does not like the appearance of others profiting off of him. according to the "new york times," after jared's sister mentioned her brother in china, trump reportedly made snarky comments about about the kushner's family pitch. jake? >> cristina alesci, thanks so much. let's turn to our sports lead now. brand new details just coming in on the dui arrest of golf great tiger woods early monday morning in florida. according to the just-released police report the responding officer found woods asleep in the driver's seat of his mercedes, and he apparently nodded off during the encounter with police. woods' car was stopped on the
side of the road but it was still running and the car's turn signal was blinking, the brake lights were on, and there was notable damage to its body. let's get right to cnn's rosa flores live in jupiter, florida, for us. what happened when woods was approached by the police? >> reporter: according to these documents, jake, he was asleep on the wheel, and so police officers had to wake him up, and according to these new documents that we just obtained, like you mentioned, he fell asleep in the middle of the encounter with the police and then he had his head on the and rest or the head rest of that car, and so that encounter was slow, and according to the police his speech was very slow and slurred as well, but he did tell them that he was on prescription drugs which jives with the -- with the statement that tiger woods released.
as you know, claiming responsibility for all of this and saying that he was saddened by all of this and took full responsibility, and he knew that he was disappointing his family and his fans because of this, but he did take a breathalyzer test. that came back negative. in other words, he passed. there was no alcohol involved according to police, and now, of course, the big -- the big question is -- is what what happened? why was he behind the wheel? we do know he's recovering from his fourth back surgery, so he was on medication before, but why now? jake? >> what kind of condition was the car in? >> reporter: you know, we also learned that his car was damaged. the rims on the driver's side were damaged. the tires on the driver's side were flat. there was damage to the front bumper and to the back bumper, the rear right tail light was also out, and that's another big question, jake, because the
obvious question now is how did that happen? we know that he was stopped -- stopped on the right lane of the southbound lanes very close to his home, but what did he hit to damage -- that damaged his car, so it -- it just raises more questions. >> what kind of legal trouble might tiger woods find himself in from this encounter? >> reporter: you know, this is considered a -- a criminal traffic offense which if convicted carries up to six months in prison. now i talked to cnn legal analyst mark o'mara about this and says tiger has a pretty good defense that he could see, that he could probably get off the hook if not completely plead down in this case, and you're probably wondering why and how, and according to mark o'mara he says that tiger woods did everything in a he could to cooperate with police. he took his breathalyzer and gave a urine sample and -- and he says that that's probably going to help him out, and he told him that he was on
prescription drugs we we all know he was because of his surgeries. jake? >> rosa flores, thanks so much. be sure to follow me on facebook and twitter @jaketapper. tweet the show @theleadcnn. that's it for today. i'm jake tapper. i now turn you over to one mr. wolf blitzer in "the situation room." happening now, breaking news. alternate explanations. the fbi digs into jared kushner's meetings with russia's ambassador and with the russian banker linked to vladimir putin. a source says investigators want to learn why the bank and those close to kushner offered different explanations for the meetings. not cooperating. as a deadline looms for michael flynn to answer a congress a.m. subpoena, another trump associate is declining to cooperate with lawmakers. the president's attorney, michael cohen, says the intelligence committees are on a fishing expedition. trogity information. in a cnn