tv Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN June 19, 2017 2:00pm-3:01pm PDT
and twitter @jaketapper. that's it for "the lead." i turn you over to wolf blitzer who is in the situation room. have a great day. happening now, breaking news. end of the week, the white house now says it is possible president trump will have appearance by the end of the week on whether there are oval office recordings more than a month since he hinted there may be tapes with his talks with fired fbi director james comey. new flynn questions. top democrats want more documents on former national security adviser michael flynn, saying he failed to disclose a 2015 middle east trip that was followed by a saudi russian nuclear deal and failed to give details on another trip. senate blockade. furious democrats are vowing to block all senate business in response to republican secrecy in drafting obamacare replacement bill.
will gop leaders hold a vote without hearings and without saying what's in the mystery bill? an american detainee dead. otto warmbier, the virginia student who was held in north korea for nearly a year and a half, has died, according to his family. he was returned to the united states in a coma. he had been sentenced to 15 years of hard labor for allegedly stealing a propaganda poster. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. >> breaking news, amid another round of mix the messages in the russia investigation, the white house now says, and i'm quoting, it is possible there may be an answer by the end of the week on whether the president has made secret recordings. it's been ten days since the president promised an answer and well over a month since he hinted in a tweet that he may have tapes of his conversations
with fired fbi director james comey. that's about all the white house is saying, refusing to answer most questions on the russia probe even as a lawyer for the president contradicts president trump's own declaration that he's being investigated for firing comey. and first on cnn, top democratic lawmakers are now demanding more documents on former national security adviser michael flynn. they say he left important information out of a security clearance application, failing to disclose a 2015 mideast trip that was followed by a saudi-russian nuclear deal. and there's a showdown on capitol hill this hour as democrats vow to block business in the senate over republican secrecy in putting together an obamacare replacement bill. senate gop leaders won't say what's in the bill. even many republicans don't know the details and they're pushing for a vote by the july 4th recess without holding any -- any -- hearings.
i'll talk to democratic senator sheldon whitehouse of the judiciary committee. our correspondents and special guests, they're standing by with full coverage of today's top stories. let's begin with the mixed signals coming from president trump and his lawyer on whether he's under investigation in the russia probe. and a possible answer on whether the president recorded his talks with fired fbi director james comey. first let's go to our cnn white house correspondent jim acosta. so mum is the word, i take it, at the white house, jim. >> that's correct. a white house briefing was postponed to sidestep questions on the russia investigation. >> mr. president, are you under investigation? >> reporter: no surprise that president trump offered no answers on whether he's under investigation on the russia probe, though he had this to say to the president of panama. >> the panama canal is doing quite well. i think we did a good job
building it, right? we did a very good job. >> even though the president raised the specter that he's under investigation himself when he tweeted "i'm being investigated for firing the fbi director from the man who told me to fire the fbi director. witch hunt." one of the president's personal lawyers, jay sekulow, widely insisted the president is not under investigation. then he all but admitted i can't be sure. >> no one has been notified that he is. >> you don't know whether he's under investigation or not. >> reporter: a contradiction he repeated on cnn. >> why you don't pick up the phone and find out is a little odd. if i hired you, i would want you to make that phone call. >> you haven't hired us because we represent the president of the
united states. >> reporter: in a white house briefing room, there was a camera where secretary sean spicer provided more non-answers. special counsel robert mueller, spicer said, i think the broader
point here is that everyone who serves the president should serve the president. spiceer said, i will
tell you i believe the president commented in the next couple of weeks. it's possible that we have an answer on that by the end of this week. >> he has been asked about those tapes, and if they exist they be produced. >> jared kushner is touting the administration's innovation of government services. >> by modernizing these systems, we will needfully improve the lives of tens of millions of americans. >> reporter: kushner is now seeking additional attorneys for his own legal team after discovering his personal lawyer once worked with the special counsel. that personal lawyer, jamie gore gorlick, said in a personal statement, we advised mr. kushner to obtain the independent advice of a lawyer
with appropriate experience as to whether he should condition with us as his counsel. >> sean spicer has confirmed that the white house is looking to move spicer into a different role in the west wing, a move that would create a new opening for the white house press secretary, the person who stands behind this podium during these briefings when they are on camera, wolf. we would hope for better treatment from the next white house press secretary than we got today. sean spicer took a question during this off-camera briefing from a russian reporter and not from cnn. wolf? >> jim acosta at the white house briefing room. jim, thank you very much. there's more breaking news right now. otto warmbier, the university of virginia student who was held by north korea for nearly a year and a half has died just days after being returned to the united states in a coma. let's bring in our chief national security correspondent jim sciutto. jim, what have you found out about this? >> we learned in just the last few moments based on a statement from his family, a sad statement, saying that just after 2:00 this afternoon,
warmbier died. i want to quote from that statement now. when otto returned on june 15, he was unable to speak, unable to see and unable to react to verbal commands. he looked very uncomfortable, almost anguished. though we would never hear his voice again, the countenance of his face had changed, he was at peace, he was at home, and we believe he could sense that. extreme concern for the family. he was held for 19 months in north korea, accused by north korea of stealing a propaganda banner from the hotel. that challenged by fellow travelers on his trip. i went to north korea with an adventure travel company. wolf, he was captured there as he was leaving pyongyang by flight. he was taken away. it was a couple years later that they accused him of this. there was a tearful confession by warmbier there that was presumably under duress. it was a couple weeks ago that the state department learned of
his medical condition, that he was in a coma. he was returned, sadly, close to his death and today we learned that he did die. >> the trump administration has to make a major decision what, if anything, does the u.s. do about this as far as north korea is concerned? >> that's exactly right. in effect north korea detained a young american without cause, and he died. not in their custody, but he was returned very close to death, and by any measure, north korea responsible, in effect, for his death. i've reached out to the white house for comment. how are they going to react to this? we haven't got that yet but it is a big test for the administration going forward. >> it sure is. the president's former national security adviser, michael flynn. you're learning that key members of the house of representatives now are demanding more information about some business dealings he may have had involving russia and saudi arabia? >> that's exactly right. in an undisclosed foreign trip.
this is not the first time we've heard of questions going to the fired supervisor, michael flynn. from the house oversight committee as well as the democrat on the committee for foreign affairs, elliott engel. i'm going to quote from that letter because it raises a specific trip that the democrats say, that general flynn did not file a report when it comes to the security adviser. it says, quote, first it appears general flynn failed to disclose a trip he took to the middle east in the summer of 2015 to pursue a joint u.s. russian business venture to develop nuclear facilities located in and financed by saudi arabia. to be clear there, the trip to saudi arabia, but russia involved yet again here, a deal between saudi arabia and russia to build a number of nuclear power plants there. this is based in part on a story that appeared in "newsweek" with some details of this trip, but also on testimony from general
flynn that he gave in june 2015 before the house committee on foreign affairs where he referred to a trip that he had just returned from at the time. but when they looked at his form that he submitted before he became national security adviser, he reported a trip later that year, in october of 2015, but not crucially this trip in june. and as you know, wolf, we talked about this a number of times on these security clearance forms, you have to report all of your foreign travel each trip by date, who you met with, et cetera, and they're saying he did not report this trip. they also say he did not report any of the foreign officials he met during some seven years before he applied for this security clearance. i've reached out to his lawyer. he would not comment. this is michael flynn's lawyer. he would not comment on the letter. he did confirm that he has received the letter. i reached out to democrats on the committee. they said they reached out to the them and they refused to sign on. but the staffers said they did
not have an opportunity to see this letter before it was released. >> if you're not honest on these forms you're trying to get security clearance, that's a crime. >> that's right, you are to report all foreign travel as well as contacts with foreign officials. joining us now, democratic senator sheldon whitehouse. he's a key member of the senate judiciary committee. nice to have you with us. >> good to be here. >> what would be the appropriate u.s. action to take in response to the death of otto warmbier, the university of virginia student, as a result of his treatment by north korea after 17 months in a prison, hard labor. he returned to the united states in a coma and is now dead. >> i don't know exactly, but it certainly looks as if his condition and his ultimate death was caused by the brutality of the north koreans, and there needs to be a sanction for that of some kind. they simply cannot be allowed to seize americans, brutalize them
and send them home in a coma to die. that is not acceptable. and i think all across america, there are a lot of broken hearts for the warmbier family. >> what would you like to hear from president trump? >> well, i wish i had more confidence in him, but i think, to give him credit, he responded very decently to the shooting of representative scalise and the others at the baseball game, and i'm hoping that he'll respond in an appropriate fashion to this. >> we're standing by for white house reaction to this very, very sad news. senator, the president's lawyer, personal lawyer, jay sekulow, is reverting back to the original explanation by the white house that president trump was only sort of following his own justice department's recommendation in firing fbi director james comey. does that argument stand up in light of the president's own public comments, including his
statements to lester holt of nbc news? >> i think a lawyer creates a problem when he makes assertions of fact that run directly contrary to things that his client has actually said in public that everybody heard him say. so both as to the rationale for firing comey and as to whether or not he was under investigation, you now have a lawyer denying things we've all heard out in the plain air. so i don't think we can get these people in front of a situation where they're under oath quickly enough. a lot of this nonsense disappears when people have to be under oath or speaking to a judge with their license to practice law potentially at risk. >> as you know, jay sekulow, the private attorney representing the president sent mixed messages about whether the president is or is not under investigation. first of all, would he be in a
position to know for sure? >> at some point the department of justice would let the target of an investigation know that they were a target. but there is a lot that can be put together before that's the case. and it is clearly the case that the president is the subject of an obstruction of justice investigation related to his comments about letting flynn go. i mean, that is a preemima faci case out of their mouths. i think anyone would say, okay, you have a case, let's button it down. i think they're in the button down phase of this investigation. knowing what obstruction of justice law is, to say the president is not under investigation, it just doesn't make any sense at all. >> that's your conclusion, senator, correct me if i'm wrong. has someone told you from the office of the special counsel that he is under investigation as part of an obstruction of justice case? >> no, i'm not getting any
inside information out of the office of special counsel. this is just looking at what he said, putting it against the law related to obstruction of justice, and understanding that basically he has made out a complete case of obstruction of justice, and that is enough to have an investigation go forward. put it the other way around, the office of the special counsel would be der ricelict in its duf it were not investigating the president for that. >> the office said they can clarify whether or not there are tapes of conversation with the fired fbi director james comey presumably by the end of this week. why has the president left this question unanswered for so long? what's the issue here? >> it doesn't seem to make any sense. it could be that like with so many things he says, he begins with a lot of big talk that has nothing factually behind it and there are, in fact, no tapes, but we'll have to wait and see. we do not know. it doesn't make a lot of sense.
it's not what one would consider to be normal behavior. >> he himself raised this issue back on may 12th. he tweeted this. he put it on the screen. he said, "james comey better hope there are no tapes -- tapes in quotes -- of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press." a lot of people saw that as a potential threat from the president to comey. >> i think it's -- it is a threat. i mean, bear in mind this is a guy who comes out of a new york developer business world where you bully people and try to push them around through your lawyers. he's never been up against anything like the department of justice or a special counsel before, so i think he's just reverting to form r aand trying make nice and go to a private dinner and bully when he doesn't get his way. that's his manner, but it doesn't work against the department of justice. >> why haven't you, your committee, subpoenaed the tapes,
if there are tapes? >> we've requested them and we're waiting to see what the responses are. >> it's one thing to request, it's another thing to subpoena, as you well know. >> well, the chairman controls the subpoena, seweo you'll need ask senator grassley about that. >> you want him to do it, don't you? >> i think it makes more sense. >> stand by. there is more information coming into "the situation room." we'll take a quick break and be right back. hey dad, come meet the new guy. the new guy? what new guy? i hired some help. he really knows his wine. this is the new guy? hello, my name is watson. you know wine, huh? i know that you should check vineyard block 12. block 12? my analysis of satellite imagery shows it would benefit from decreased irrigation. i was wondering about that. easy boy. nice doggy. what do you think? not bad.
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documents from security adviser michael flynn? they say he left out information on his security application, failing to disclose a 2016 trip that was financed by a russian deal. senator, what's your reaction to the news that your colleagues on the house side are seeking this information on general flynn's work in saudi arabia, that he didn't disclose it when he's applying to renew his security credentials? >> well, if you draw conclusions as a prosecutor about what we can see from the flynn investigation, all the signals are suggesting that he's already cooperating with the fbi and may have been for some time. first of all, they had him dead to rights on a felony false statement for the statement that they took from him in the white house about his kislyak conversations. second, comey reported that one of the things the fbi does with cooperators is to get him to go
back and clean up areas of non-compliance, and flynn, who will never be hired by a foreign government again, went back and cleaned up his foreign agent register filings. third, all the subpoenas are one hop away from flynn. he's like the hole in a donut of subpoenas. finally, one of the more talkative people in trumpland has gone absolutely dead silent, and that's what prosecutors strongly encourage cooperating witnesses to do. so this would be just another bit of leverage for the prosecutors to make sure that he was cooperating and giving truthful testimony in order to avoid lengthy imprisonment. >> so it's your assumption, your conclusion, that he's cooperating with federal law enforcement authorities, but you don't know that for sure, you're just looking at the evidence and that's your conclusion? >> that's the conclusion from all the evidence and some experience in dealing with this. >> if he is cooperating, the
upshot is that could be a huge deal. >> it could be a huge deal, because who knows what trump has said to him, both during the campaign and during the early days of the presidency, and then apparently trump has been in touch with him after his firing from the white house to tell him to stay strong, which, in some circumstances, could be looked at as manipulation of a witness or obstruction of justice. >> that would be a major development, certainly, if that's confirmed, that he is now cooperating with the fbi, another law enforcement. >> the tea leaves all read that way. >> i see the evidence you're pointing to, of course, and i thank you for joining us, senator whitehouse. thank you, as usual. >> good to be with you. coming up, the white house says it is possible there may be an answer by the end of the week on whether the president has made secret recordings in the capitol hill showdown. furious democrats vowing to block all senate business in
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dana, the mixed messages coming from the president's personal attorney versus the president himself on whether the president is under investigation. it's pretty stark. >> it is stark. but the president's message came from a tweet which it's very difficult to say everything you want to say in a tweet. that's the main reason -- well, one of the many reasons, i should say, why his aides would prefer he not tweet so much, particularly on issues like this. never mind the political consequences but the legal consequences. clearly, he sent his legal adviser out to try to beat back the notion that he's under investigation, and the fact that it kra diktd the tweet that he was sending, which probably did come in response to the "washington post" article that said he was under investigation and he was kind of trying to play off of that. but it wasn't clear in the tweet. and when you're president of the united states, you have to be clear, period. >> these are official
statements, these tweets. that tweet, mark, "i am being investigated for firing the fbi director by the man who told me to fire the fbi director. witch hunt." he didn't say "the "washington post" is reporting that i am being investigated. he said it flatly, "i am being investigated." >> and he wasn't talking about rod rosenstein or mueller at that point. we weren't exactly sure who he was directing his ire at, mueller being, of course, the one who is the special counsel, robert mueller. the problem for donald trump, though, and i've been thinking a lot about this over the past couple days, is that he becomes very vague in his statements and they're very, very powerful. for instance, he talks about tapes, and you know, in the oval office. but he's very vague about that. we still don't know the answers to that. he talks about him being under investigation but then he puts his lawyer out there who then comes out and says, well, no, he's not under investigation. he puts his press secretary and deputy press secretary out there to refute things he wants them
to refute, and then he goes back skpre futu and he refutes them. it's just a mess over there right now. >> the president's personal secretary jade sekulow, said they can't prove he's under investigation. couldn't they call mueller or someone in the office of the special counsel and say, by the way, is the president under special investigation? >> what the heck would robert mueller say? he wouldn't answer that yesterday, not today, not ever. he will follow the facts. the facts may relate to what happened with russia during the campaign. i guarantee the legal team he put together, and it hasn't been that long, they don't know what the end of this game is. if he ever answers the question of whether the president is under investigation, no, don't worry about it, you're okay. if the facts take him somewhere else within a week or two, what's he supposed to say then? everyone thinks the president just picks up the phone and says, what's going on? >> comey testified on three
different occasions he did tell the president he was not under investigation. >> sure, that's before he got fired which is one of the facts, in my opinion, that leads the president to think he was under investigation. we have a lot of investigation since comey left office. i think there has been a lot of water under the bridge since then. >> the thing to keep in mind, the big picture here, is that every moment the president spends tweeting about this or sending his special adviser out to talk about it, we're talking about it because it's a big deal, because it becomes a presidential moment, they're doing that and not talking about health care or finding the people who voted for him jobs. you list the things that he ran on, and that is what is frustrating people who want him to succeed in the white house and over -- down pennsylvania avenue on capitol hill. they're tearing their hair out over and over and over again as they try to move the agenda forward, try to take another step, and then they're diverted and distracted by the
president's own making. >> sean spicer, the white house press secretary, said today it's possible by the end of the week we'll have an answer whether or not there are tapes, recordings, of the president's private conversations with comey. why is this such a difficult -- it's been a month now since the president himself first raised the issue. why is it taking so long? >> it's ludicrous, the idea that he says or puts out there, hey, i may have tapes, i may not have tapes, and it's been a month that we don't know whether he does or he doesn't? i suspect he doesn't, and i suspect he's throwing up another smokescreen and he looks silly having done so. but the fact of the matter is, his inability to try to work with this investigation, to try to get it over quickly, could end up being his downfall when it comes to trying to get any policy items done. quite frankly, what history will look at him for when he leaves office, and really, to try to get this investigation going. >> phil, you used to work in law
enforcement, if there are tapes, maybe there's a possibility it could interfere disclosing the information that there are recordings in law enforcement or intelligence gathering. that's the only explanation i could even surmise. >> i don't think so. if there's tapes i'm going to fall out of my chair. part of the reason is people talk about conspiracy theories outside washington. inside the beltway, i can't remember a single secret after those intense days of 9/11, 2002, 2003, 2004. hundreds of people know about this stuff. and this hasn't leaked? i don't buy it. inc. the answer is more straightforward. >> you're thinking about a taping system. is that what you're talking about? >> yeah. >> this could also be him recording on his own. >> i think somebody would know. i think a more straightforward explanation is he stuck himself in a trap and now, as the tough guy, has to figure out, how can i say i never meant that in the first place? >> he's done that with several other issues including saying he's going to release his tax returns. he put himself in a corner, saying, "i'm going to release
them." never released them. he was accused of sexual misconduct. never has done so. >> we're meeting with a major tech representative who is at the white house right now. we're going to hear from the president coming up on that. also an american man has died just days after returning to the united states from north korea. otto warmbier held in detention for more than a year and a half, sentenced to hard labor for allegedly stealing a propaganda poster just arrived back in the united states in a coma. we'll update you. that's coming up. pieces of dna in every sample. with the microsoft cloud, we can analyze the data faster than ever before. if we can detect new viruses before they spread,
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breaking news, we're standing by to hear from president trump as he meets with tech ceos in the white house. we expect him to be asked about the death of the american otto warmbier just days after returning from north korean captivity. we'll have more on the breaking news in a moment. but right now there is a showdown unfolding up on capitol hill. furious democrats are vowing to bring senate business to a complete halt over republican secrecy in drafting a health care bill. senate republican leaders are pushing for a vote before the july 4th recess without even holding any hearings. so far no hearings and without disclosing what's in the poli ministry bill, at least so far. walk us through what the
democrats are planning. >> they're trying to use procedure to their advantage, and you said it, senate republicans are planning, according to gop aides, to have a vote next week. that is still the plan and that has certainly sparked urgency among senate democrats on kind of two levels. first and foremost, they haven't been involved in this process. as such they're going to try to slow things down in the senate. you can't get anything done if the senate can't approve on moving anything forward. they will try to shut down hearing committees, you'll have democrats taking to the floor about the process, decrying that process. minority leader chuck schumer giving us a hint of what we'll see later today. take a listen. >> why were my republican friends engaging in this farce of a legislative process? why were republicans willing to engage in such blatant democracy
in the senate? what are they afraid of? there is only one reason why republicans are doing this. they're ashamed of their bill. the republicans are writing their health care bill under the cover of darkness because they're ashamed of it. plain and simple. >> and wolf, there is a strategy behind what republicans are trying to do. they saw what happened in the house, obviously where a lot of these debates played out very publicly. the blowback was very fierce. that's the rationale behind it. to this point keeping everything behind closed doors, but that certainly has opened them to attacks from democrats, attacks that will only grow more fierce as date goes on, wolf. >> what more do you know of what could go into this republican senate bill? >> it's amazing when you see how little has actually come out. we do know one thing in particular. there has been a big sticking point on medicaid, both the expansion that the medical care act provided and also a growth rate in the program as well.
i'm told under consideration right now, according to two senate gop aides, is changing the growth rate in 2025, how it's currently calculated, how states get their funding, to a standard amount. it would reduce aid in the program by $8 billion over the next two years. the senate would move to a more dramatic shift in spending through this program. this is something that does not make moderate republican senators happy. senator rob portland of ohio has made it clear he's not happy with it. the proposal isn't final, but as you see things start to come out, you recognize how senators inside this conference, a conference very diverse idealogically when it comes to health care, are trying to position themselves as the calendar closes down and they move towards this vote. wolf, a very important point here, as this debate has been moving behind closed doors the last couple weeks, senators have kind of been hashing out their ideas.
that will be coming to an end. soon mitch mcconnell will make it clear it's time to vote. >> a majority of republicans in the senate. not a whole lot of flexibility as far as making sure those moderate republicans stay on board. phil, thanks very much. let's bring back our experts and specialists. actually, guys, i want you to stand by because we're getting more information that i want to discuss. we'll be right back. this is a story about mail and packages.
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july 4th recess. but the process has been shrouded in complete secrecy and angry democrats are threatening to grind the senate to a halt. we're back with our experts and specialists. what's the end game here for the democrats? >> for the democrats they're trying to shine a light on it and trying to signal to their supporters and people who are very, very unsettled by the notion of repealing obama care, even some republicans out there, independents as well, that they're on it. but the bigger question, i think, is before the blockade happens, something needs to be blockaded, you know, and the question is what is going to happen in those closed door discussions with republicans. can they come up with a deal? and it's still tbd. we talk a lot about the moderate republicans and trying to negotiate the idea of the medicaid expansion and, you know, kind of -- if that's going to be phased out, doing it in a
slow way so that governorers ha have a chance to pay for it in their state, and opioid, federal dollars for it. you have more conservative members. ted cruz, for example, made his name in politics by railing against obamacare and being the outsider. he's in these meetings. he's not necessarily going to sign onto something unless he's dpormtable with it. you have maybe five other republicans on the more conservative side who might not sign on and they can't afford to lose more than two or three votes or else this isn't going to happen. so, i think before -- the democrats are trying to get headlines. but before that happens it's a big question whether there is going to be a deal amongst republicans. >> how will the republican leaders justify one of the most important pieces of legislation affecting so many millions and millions of americans or health care, changing, repealing and replacing obamacare without allowing any hearings to even
take place before the relevant committees and letting there to be a real debate and dialogue? no one knows what's in this legislation. >> that's the beauty with the united states senate. you don't necessarily have to justify your actions because you are given so much power when you are in the majority. now, the minority has power as well, but in this case the majority will eventually win if, as dana says, they can keep all of their republicans together. listen, the republicans, when they're looking at this bill, aren't necessarily very happy with it, right? they're not saying, let's ride this one to victory in 2018 and beyond. what they're saying is let's just get through this and try to get it over with. and i do think the calculation would be hard on behalf of the republicans is, listen -- and republicans, i say mitch mcconnell and other republican leaders. we need to get past this hurdle or we'll get nothing done this year. >> let's talk about what happened in london a little, the vehicle attacking worshippers leaving the mosque did he end of ramadan, a dozen or so muslims
in london were injured. normally when the president hears about it -- this is a terror attack. but this was an attack against muslims not an attack committed by muslims. when there is an attack committed by a muslim, the president reacts right away. in this particular case as far as his tweets or statements is concerned, he's silent. he's being criticized for that. you understand why. >> i do. we have a bit of an issue. he's gotten sideways with the mayor of london. he went full frontal with the mayor of london. he forced the conservative lead in government, theresa may, that is somebody he should be allied with. any president when you see a loss of life with our closest ally, ought to be out there with a sentence or two saying, we're with you, we're with you for 16 years, we're with you for 200 years, we're with you for the next 200 years. i think he's got an issue here. we've seen an increase of hate crimes as well. that comes -- this comes within the context of an increase of hate crimes in the united states
against muslims and jews. he ought to be out there saying something. >> why isn't he? >> i have no idea. i mean, you point out a growing pattern that he's not -- he hasn't addressed in public statements on twitter where there are issues and incidents of terror attacks where it has been perpetuate against muslims. it's also -- there is also kind of a two-day delay to one or two day delay in the president of the united states reacting to the fact that seven members of the united states navy died in an accident. he tweeted out over the weekend he is monitoring the situation from camp david. it wasn't until mid afternoon that we heard anything from the white house about that. so, i think it's a broader issue of kind of trying to figure out how their communication strategy is working, when it's not the president himself tweeting what he feels in the moment. >> this is not that complicated. not a difficult statement to
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questions about the russia investigation. stopping the senate, right now democrats are ramping up the fight against health care trying to bring the senate to a grinding halt. look for republicans to end the secrecy surrounding efforts to repeal and replace obamacare. russian jet threat, moscow warns it will consider u.s. and coalition aircraft as targets in an angry response to the downing of the syrian war plane. what's the pentagon doing tonight to avoid a dangerous new conflict with the kremlin? and freed american dies. a college student who spent more than a year in a north korean prison dies just days after returning home in a coma. tonight, oto warmbier's parents are blasting the tortuous mistreatment of his son by kim jong-un's regime. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in ""the situation room"."