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tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  November 2, 2017 11:00pm-12:00am PDT

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$100,000 to help continue their work. you can go to cnnheroes.com to vote for the hero that inspires you the most. i'll announce the winner with my friend and co-host kelly ripa on our live tribute show sunday december 17th. thanks for watching "360." time to hand things over to don lemon. "cnn tonight" starts right now. breaking news on russia. on about five different stories to do with russia. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. the white house would like you to believe the russia investigation is wrapping up, nothing to see here. but this is no nothingburger. let me tell you. this is a great big heaping serving of very uncomfortable questions for the president's inner circle. there's a lot here. sow may want to get a pen and a piece of paper and take some notes. remember way back in february when president trump said this? >> how many times do i have to answer this question? >> can you just answer -- >> russia is a ruse. i know you have to get up and ask a question. so important. russia is a ruse. i have nothing to do with russia. to the best of my knowledge no
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person that i deal with does. >> well, we have breaking news tonight. just coming in to cnn to direct -- that directly contradicts what the president said there. more on that in a moment. plus there is trump son-in-law jared kushner, a senior adviser to the president, under the magnifying glass right now. cnn has learned investigators are asking in witness interviews about kushner's role in the firing of fbi director james comey. kushner has been turning over documents to robert mueller's team. and then there's attorney general jeff sessions. who is not exactly at the top of the president's christmas card list this year. his former colleagues on capitol hill want to know why he somehow neglected to mention his role in discussions about a proposed meeting between candidate trump and vladimir putin. sessions reportedly rejected the meeting idea, but he never mentioned anything about it in multiple congressional hearings. then there is former trump campaign foreign policy adviser carter page. are you keeping up with this?
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he spent almost seven hours today talking behind closed doors to a house intel committee panel testifying he mentioned to jeff sessions he was traveling to russia during the 2016 campaign. >> it was great to have this discussion and have the opportunity to testify, and i'm excited about the positive impact of this in the future. >> and there's more. there's president trump's pick to be the department of agriculture's chief scientist, sam clovis, who withdrew his nomination today. there are plenty of good reasons for that including his history of racially charged and ho homophobic comments. not to mention the fact that he is not actually, you know, a scientist. but sourses tell cnn that the real reason just might be his connections to, wait for it, the russia investigation, which the president says he knows nothing about. all of that came out just today. and there is more.
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president trump still has that infamous russia dossier on his mind, telling a radio show he thinks the fbi used the dossier for wiretaps. >> well, i think they did. i think they did because when comey came up to see me, what he did is he showed me the dossier. that was what he was showing me. the thing he showed me was the dossier, so i think they did use it. and i think they shouldn't have been allowed to. >> so it's thursday now and so let's not forget that it was only monday, just a couple days ago, that we learned former trump campaign chairman paul manafort and his deputy rick gates are under indictment and former trump campaign foreign policy adviser george papadopoulos pled guilty for making a false statement to the fbi about contacts with people connected with the russian government. so nothingburger? not so much. lots to discuss. breaking news on multiple fronts in the russia investigation. i'm going to bring in now -- chris cillizza, cnn politics
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editor at large. jim acosta, senior white house correspondent. manu raju, senior congressional reporter. and evan perez, senior justice correspondent. as i said, there's a lot to discuss this evening. good evening to all of you. jim, you first. you have new reporting on george papadopoulos, who just pled guilty to lying to the fbi. and a trump campaign adviser contradicting what the white house told you. what do you know? >> that's right, don. and you'll recall yesterday we were reporting that there were sources in this meeting with the president, then candidate trump, senator jeff sessions and george papadopoulos, this former campaign adviser, who apparently during this meeting pitched this idea of a meeting between then candidate trump and russian president vladimir putin. that's that photograph we've been seeing time and again that was posted by the campaign. you can see donald trump in the room. you can see george papadopoulos there. now, the person who is seated in between george papadopoulos and jeff sessions at the end of that table, you can see it on screen now, j.d. gored. he's a former national security official with the trump campaign.
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he now tells us, don, on the record that then candidate trump listened to george papadopoulos's pitch for a meeting between then candidate trump and russian president vladimir putin in the words of j.d. gordon, quote, "he heard him out." now, from what we understand from our reporting, and my colleague manu raju has been on this as well, at the time senator jeff sessions shut down that idea at the meeting, and it's believed according to our sources that at that point george papadopoulos decided to go on his own and try to set up some of these meetings, contacts between the campaign and the russians. i can tell you, don, from talking to j.d. gordon earlier this evening, he also wanted to put out something of a brief statement because there have been some questions about what senator jeff sessions, attorney general jeff sessions now, does or does not remember from that meeting. j.d. gordon telling me earlier this evening he doesn't fault senator sessions, or attorney general sessions now, for not recalling things because that meeting was so long ago. but j.d. gordon telling us on
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the record tonight don that then candidate trump heard out george papadopoulos as he made this pitch about a meeting with vladimir putin, don. >> jim acosta, so many questions. but i'll let you go now. thank you very much. i know you need to get ready for the big asia trip tomorrow. safe travel. now to evan perez. cnn, evan, is learning that jared kushner has learned -- has turned over documents relating to the firing of fbi director james comey to special counsel robert mueller. what do we know about these documents? >> well, don, just a brief correction here. the sources tell us that kushner has voluntarily turned over documents that he had from the campaign and the transition and that these related to any contacts with russia. now, the documents are similar to ones that kushner gave to congressional investigators. and this comes as investigators have begun asking witnesses about kushner's role in the firing of fbi director james comey. now, we've heard different accounts from sources. some say kushner was the driver of the president's decision. others say that he simply didn't oppose it and it was something that the president had already
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made his mind up about. now, sources close to the white house say that based on what they know, don, kushner is not a target of this investigation. >> all right. so manu, i want to bring you in now. in addition to jeff sessions' role in all of this has come back up because it seems like they may have been entirely truthful again -- may not have been entirely truthful again about his dealings with russia. what do you know about that? >> well, a number of members on both sides of the aisle i've spoken to who sat on the senate judiciary committee, senate intelligence committee, who had a chance to question jeff sessions about any russia connections, any communications that have occurred between trump officials and russian associates during the campaign season. when he did testify, you will recall, don, he said that he didn't recall a lot of those conversations. he said that he denied having certain contacts. but now in light of this george papadopoulos news in particular
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papadopoulos news in particular on monday when those court documents were unsealed, showing that there was a pitch for this putin trump meeting and jeff sessions we're told from a source in the room was there. a number of lawmakers are saying, well, how come you didn't close that during your testimony? particularly democrats, don, of course are going after him, probably not surprisingly, pretty aggressively saying that he should amend his testimony, come back and testify again under oath. but even republicans, though, don, are raising some questions as well. i talked to judiciary committee chairman chuck grassley who said he's still getting briefed on the whole situation regarding papadopoulos and what sessions may have known and said, quote, "i'm looking into it." senator john cornyn who sits on two of the key committees said it's a logical question to explore. about what sessions said compared to what he said under oath in front of the committee. so clearly these questions are not going away, don, in light of what we now know from this week and what jeff sessions said
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under oath. >> absolutely. chris, i want to bring you in now. we just heard the president say in a radio interview that he believes that the steele dossier is made up, fabricated and false. the fact is some of it has been substantiated. some of it has not. and that he thinks the fbi used the dossier to order fisa warrants. what's your reaction to that? >> well, i mean, he says a lot of things, most of which are either provably false or wind up being false. some of which to his credit are more accurate than you might think in the moment. but again, i think what he's trying to do here, and i don't think this is any piece of particularly keen political insight, don, i think it's pretty obvious he's trying to change the conversation. he tweeted tonight about why isn't the justice department looking into the revelations that donna brazile made in a piece in politico about the dnc being sort of tilted in hillary
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clinton's favor. so he's going to try to move the conversation off of ground like what manu, jim and evan just outlined, which is nothing that happened today, with the exception of the brazile story, but none of that as relates to the russia investigation is any good at all for donald trump. whether or not as evan noted, jared kushner not a target of the investigation according to sources, but still moving it closer to a person who can't simply be dismissed, right. that's been trump as m.o., oh, carter page, don't really know. mike flynn, lied to the vice president. paul manafort, he was just around to help us with delegates. well, jared kushner is his son-in-law. so it's hard to dismiss him. i think he is doing a classic shiny object, look over here. the real story is x when in fact -- and look, bob mueller will continue to pursue the legal course here. and i think that's the real
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story. trump is making a political response to what is bob mueller's sort of march legally speaking forward. and everything will be determined on what mueller finds. the politics of what trump is trying to do right now will be changed inevitably by what mueller ultimately finds. we're all sort of just waiting on that. >> deflection has been a tactic even before it became the administration when they were -- >> yeah. i mean, that's something he's done -- that is a tried and true -- it's not just donald trump. candidates do it. >> this one is on steroids, though. this time it's on steroids. manu, cnn is also just learning that former foreign policy adviser carter page confirmed in closed door testimony that he did tell jeff sessions about a trip to russia during the 2016 presidential campaign. this is what sessions said about that just weeks ago. >> you don't believe that surrogates from the trump campaign had communications with the russians. is that what you're saying? >> i did not and i'm not aware of anyone else that did.
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and i don't believe it happened. >> what else do we know about carter page's six-hour testimony? >> well, he was asked about a trip that he took to russia back in july of 2016, and this is a speech -- a trip that he took to give a speech in moscow. he said it was unrelated to his efforts on the campaign. but he was asked if he told anybody about that trip to russia, and it turns out he did tell jeff sessions. he was at a dinner of the trump national security team in which jeff sessions headed, and towards the end of that dinner carter page went up to him and he informed him that the next month he was going to russia. now, carter page says this was just in passing. he told me later that, you know, he just mentioned it to him once and that was the only time they discussed the issue. but it really is, again, once again, don, raising questions about why didn't jeff sessions
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disclose this when he was asked repeatedly under oath about his various russian contacts. did he just forget this as well? the justice department declined to comment about that, but clearly this is one of the two things that have come up in the last couple of days that sessions will have to answer for, don. >> evan, the president was just asked in another interview about why the justice department isn't going after a prosecution of hillary clinton. here is what he said. >> the saddest thing is that because i'm the president of the united states i am not supposed to be involved with the justice department. i'm not supposed to be involved with the fbi. i'm not supposed to be doing the kind of things that i would love to be doing, and i'm very frustrated by it. >> so evan, what do you think this says about the president's understanding of the relationship between the president and the justice department? >> look, it's got to be very tough, right? this is a man who used to run a company and he's not used to being told that, you know, you can look at the cookie jar but
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you can't touch it, right? and so that's what's happening here. i can get that kind of frustration, but he does. he has to stay out of this stuff. he tweeted today about demanding a death penalty for the suspect in the new york terrorist attack this week and that's just not something you do as president. because you know what? the defense lawyers are going to bring that up and it's going to make it harder for you to get what you say you want, which is the death penalty. so, look, the problem for the president is that he does have to stay out of the way of the justice department. they have to figure out what they're going to find. and, you know, he made a huge mistake by firing james comey because we wouldn't be here without any of that. >> thank you. i've got to go. >> just very quickly to evan's point, just remember, think of trump as a conservative pundit as much as you think of him as a politician. >> of course. >> he says and does things driven by sort of punditry, what he says on television, he reads and reacts to them. he says controversial stuff and doesn't feel he needs to back it
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up. to evan's point, it's gotten him into trouble a million times, but on things like this alleged terrorist should be given the death penalty. he says stuff and then lets other people who work for him try to figure out what it means. can we even do this? >> he sees stuff on television but he doesn't do his actual homework about what the facts are. >> that's right. >> thank you very much. when we come back, lots of uncomfortable questions tonight for team trump. will more members of his inner circle be caught in the russia web, and how close is the investigation getting to the president himself? my name is jeff sheldon, and i'm the founder of ugmonk. before shipstation it was crazy. it's great when you see a hundred orders come in, a hundred orders come in, but then you realize i've got a hundred orders i have to ship out. shipstation streamlined that wh the order data, the weights of ,
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you've heard president trump say it over and over, russia is a ruse, i have nothing to do with russia. that's a quote from him. but an increasing number of people who work or worked for him are contradicting that assertion. here to discuss, cnn legal analyst laura coates, cnn legal commentator ken cuccinelli. john flannery, a former federal prosecutor for the southern district of new york. good evening.
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>> good evening. >> ken, i have to get to the commercial, so tonight don't get into a fight with these guys and then take us to -- >> me? i never get into fights. >> so, laura -- good evening by the way to all of you. president trump continues to say the russia probe has nothing to do with him and yet a lot of people in the president's orbit are under scrutiny. cnn is learning that jared kushner has turned over documents to mueller's team. this comes as investigators are asking about kushner's role in firing comey. is an obstruction of justice case in the works here? >> i think you'll seeing the really beginning stages of mueller's team saying look, we don't buy there's nothing to see here, folks. and in fact, it would be really almost negligent of him if he did not look into these issues because a lot of these issues are self-inflicted wounds by the president of the united states. remember, mueller's charge was actually to look at things related to the collusion in the campaign, but you've got the post-campaign actions by the
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president and members of his team, perhaps, that have engaged in behavior that makes mueller's team suspicious. for example, the different versions of what happened or the reason why trump decided to fire comey, was it because of a memo, was it of his own volition. you have the lester holt interview. and now you have a question of look, all the things the president has done to try to dissuade the public into believing that he is involved somehow, has pointed those fingers at him. i don't know if it's going to pan out ultimately, but it's very difficult for mueller to ignore it. >> yeah. to be clear, john, all right, so sources close to the white house say kushner is not the target of the investigation, he's voluntarily turning documents over. what does that say to you about the direction of the probe? >> well, there are a couple of definitions in the justice department and it distinguishes between a subject and a target. a target is someone you have enough information to indict. a subject is a person under investigation. and i think i'd be more likely to levitate if he's not a subject of the investigation given what mr. trump, his son
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and his son-in-law have all done at various times in connection with those disclosures we have. so i think he's certainly the subject of investigation and i doubt his counsel is telling him that he's free and clear. >> yeah. so ken, "the new york times" had reporting a couple months ago about mueller having obtained an early draft letter by president trump and stephen miller about the reasons for comey's firing. it was never sent. but it was given to the deputy attorney general rod rosenstein. given what we're learning about kushner, do you think other top aides are being looked at too? the web appears to be getting bigger. >> the point laura made is a good one and that is that as a simple matter of thoroughness for mueller, this is a process he needs to go through, right? given what is out there publicly. i don't think there's any surprise that these documents were requested. i don't think there's any surprise they were turned over voluntarily. and i think you will see more requests like that simply to
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fill out the information that they feel they need to make a decision. could it ultimately lead to charges related to this information? of course it could. but it also could eliminate the prospect of going down that path. and mueller has to do that too. as most prosecutors make their prosecutorial decisions and it's over. that is not going to be the case here. every decision to proceed or not proceed, whether it's to get information or to advance charges, will be second-guessed after the fact and mueller knows that he has to run this information to ground. so i would have been shocked if he didn't request this material. >> all right. stick around, everyone. when we come right back, president trump says he's frustrated he can't be more involved with the justice department and the fbi. in fact, he thinks it's sad. will the president ever learn?
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in the midst of so much russia news, none of it good for the administration, president trump is talking about hillary clinton. back now with my legal panel. so john, president trump is in a new interview tonight and was asked why the justice department hasn't done more on leaks and hillary clinton. here is his response. >> the saddest thing is that because i'm the president of the united states, i'm not supposed to be involved with the justice department. i'm not supposed to be involved with the fbi. i'm not supposed to be doing the kind of things that i would love to be doing, and i'm very frustrated by it. >> he says that he's frustrated that he can't interfere more with the justice department and the fbi. i mean -- >> there's a balanced way to present it, right? >> well, that's what he said. >> his friends are the heads of turkey and russia and he has the
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ambition every despot has, which is to interfere with prosecutions, to pick out the people that are compromising his life even for the misconduct he's done. ken has this felicitous view of what prosecutors do like a checklist, despite the fact we've had the indictments and plea that we have and we have a hydra-headed monster in which every time we have an allegation something else comes out that tells us more about the misconduct of the white house and its underlings. >> listen. just because ken, i know you take issue with it, let's just play it again and let the viewer decide. >> the saddest thing is that because i'm the president of the united states i am not supposed to be involved with the justice department. i'm not supposed to be involved with the fbi. i'm not supposed to be doing the kind of things that i would love to be doing, and i'm very frustrated by it. >> okay. so ken -- >> so he's frustrated by it. what's wrong with that? the justice department isn't like any other cabinet office. it has deposited discretion that the president can't interfere with.
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and he can't touch. and he's frustrated by that. but that obviously states that he understands there's a difference here than everywhere else in the government. that strikes me as the kind of acknowledgment you'd like to see, even if it's phrased in his unique president trump way. >> that's outrageous. >> he said what's wrong with that? what is wrong with that? >> nixon felt that way. >> your interpretation, ken, is generous and certainly does a very benign interpretation of what he said. but i think the irony here is that while the president of the united states is frustrated, that frustration has certainly not acted as a muzzle or a type to censor him in any way. >> that's true. >> and although he may be frustrated, he oftentimes speaks about issues in a way that i think undermines the public's trust and confidence in the justice system and also really blurs the line between what the government really intends to have, which is those three coequal branches of government. it's not intended to be one
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fluid government where the president can dibble and dabble. there are directives for each branch of government. and while it's frustrating he certainly should not diminish that or undermine that particular delineation. >> it's a confession that his impulse is to be lawless -- >> executive authority. >> no, he's not. >> these are all within the boundary of executive authority. it's not like he's trying to usurp courts or the legislature. he's expressed great frustration with the legislature. which is something reported on heavily here. >> that's not what he's talking about. >> he fired jim comey -- >> if you heard that, it doesn't sound like he wants to be able to do what you're saying? >> absolutely. >> yeah. >> absolutely. he wants to determine if they can investigate him. that's number one. or his friends. and that's why he fired the prosecutor in new york. why he fired yates when she came and talked about flynn. why he fired comey when comey was investigating him. >> the obama acting attorney general. >> excuse me. obama? i think you're trying to confuse the issue -- >> sally yates is not a trump
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hire. >> and so he should be able to fire her because she's not and it didn't have -- >> yes. >> -- anything to do with the fact that she said flynn was dirty. and he had to resign that same month. he did it the day after she briefed the white house. >> i wish we saw this indignation -- >> i think you see it in mueller. >> gentlemen, gentlemen, if i may. there is an adult in the room. if i can say this to you, he also fired yates not simply because of michael flynn. he fired yates because she refused to back an executive order, which is really many people argue those can be usurpations of legislative authority, ken. and the idea that the executive order was unconstitutional in her mind about the travel ban which ultimately never actually saw full implementation. >> right, which was totally out of line on her part. >> well, let -- that may be your interpretation, but your statement was that the president of the united states in his executive prerogative can do what he will and his frustration
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is somehow never trickling down into any other thing. and that's really not the truth of the matter. >> that isn't what i said either. >> i'm not going to quote you verbatim, but the gist of what you were saying is in fact that. but i think the larger point we all can agree the president of the united states certainly does have executive prerogative to do a lot of things but what he cannot do is usurp the authority or try to undermine confidence in the system that he is supposed to be leading. >> okay. let ken respond. go ahead, ken. >> yeah, look, sally yates didn't defend a defensible legal position that the president wanted to take. that is not a position an attorney general can properly take. having been one, i had to defend things i didn't like. it's part of the job. the only way you can do that -- >> even if it's unconstitutional? >> -- is literally if no argument can be made in favor of it and then your option as the u.s. attorney general is to resign. that isn't what she did. she didn't do the honorable thing. >> oh, the honorable thing.
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>> she stayed and played politics and forced the president's hand. >> some of us think -- >> i'll give you the last word. go ahead. >> thank you. some of us think that that was a cover story, her not prosecuting the muslim ban, just as it was a cover story when they fired comey and they said it was about how he handled the hillary investigation. in both cases the president wanted them gone because he didn't like what they had to say and what they were doing. and that i'll bet you is what the special counsel -- >> she wouldn't defend a high priority of the president that was defensible. >> i've got to go. >> that's a good reason to fire somebody. >> thank you all. i can't go long tonight even though ken did last night. we can't do it. thank you very much. i appreciate it. when we come back, we'll go inside the gop's tax plan and tell you what impact it could have on your bottom line. we'll be right back. my name is jeff sheldon,
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house republican leaders releasing their long-awaited tax reform bill today and there is a lot in it that could affect you. i want to talk about it with grover norquist, the president for americans for tax reform and
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gene sperling, former director of national economic council for presidents clinton and obama. grover, you first. the plan is out and so are the knives. so let's go over a couple of the highlights here. the corporate tax rate is slashed from 35% to 20%, a very expensive cut. and the plan also cuts tax rates for individuals, reducing seven brackets to four. what's your response to the criticism that this is a gift for -- to corporations disguised as a cut for the middle class? >> well, first of all, when you don't take money from somebody, you didn't give it to them. you actually let them keep the money they earned. and there's not a cost to tax cuts. a tax cut is a pay increase. so you have to decide whether you're standing in the feet of the government or the american people. and lower taxes are better for the american people because they get to keep the money that they earn. the president obama said he was going to bring the corporate rate down because he realized that we're at 35%. socialist china is at 25% and we wonder why we have trouble
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competing with china. 15% in canada. 18% in britain, european average around low 20s. we're taking our corporate rate from 35 down to 20. of course, many states have corporate rates so that takes it up to about 25 on average. this makes us competitive with the rest of the world. if we don't bring the corporate rate down, we'll continue to hemorrhage companies that get bought up by other companies. as burger king was bought by a canadian company. it's a very important competitive question, job creation issue. if you're asking for how we deal with the middle class, the most important thing we can do is create more people in the middle class who have jobs who for the last eight years didn't have jobs because our taxes were too high. the growth was at 2%, which is pathetic for american standards since world war ii. we need to have stronger economic growth, and the corporate rate bringing it down, not taking as much money is important. >> all right.
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so listen, not pointing -- >> even obama admitted that. >> but brevity because i have a lot of questions to get to. >> sure. >> when it comes to these. gene, i want to bring you in. the bracket for the richest americans stayed the same, 39.6%. a concession to critics who said that the rich don't need a tax cut. but it also ends the estate tax in six years, repeals the alternative minimum tax. so is this still a plan for the rich? >> there's no question, don. you take the estate tax alone, this is a remarkable tax cut. they're going to spend almost $200 billion. every single penny is going to go to people with a couple with estate over $11 million. that's not quite middle class. they're going to have a special carve out rate for real estate partners and others they're going to call a pass through rate. it's going to go perhaps 88% to the top 1%. and then let's look about how the middle class is actually doing, don.
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a family of four making 28,000, two full-time minimum wage jobs, gets zero. today you'll see in "the new york times" 13 million families are estimated to face a tax increase in year one. and what's really remarkable is that the typical textbook case that paul ryan put out today of the $59,000 family who he said would get $1,000 in tax relief, the analysis of their plan by david cayman reported mt "new york times" shows that by the time their plan is phased in their textbook $59,000 family of four will actually have a tax increase. >> okay. >> now, that is hard to sell when you're giving the kind of major tax relief we see through a special pass-through rate through state tax repeal and over a trillion dollars -- >> i said brevity. >> major companies. >> i know it's a complicated issue but i'm trying get as much in as possible. so please, don't take me as being rude. so grover, there are a couple of
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sticking points in this tax plan and two of them are opposed by a lot of republicans in affluent blue states like new york, new jersey, and california. the state and local tax deduction, meaning writing off what you pay to the state so you pay less in federal taxes and mortgage interest tax deduction. both of those will now be capped. why should those taxpayers and homeowners give up their tax write-off so corporation cans pay less in taxes? >> well, what you have in terms of the personal income tax, getting rid of the deduction of allowing people to deduct california's 13% tax increase on individual earners or high property taxes in incompetently run and corrupt cities, why other people in competently run cities and competently run states should be subsidizing incompetence and corruption strikes me as the answer is no. every city and every state should say to their citizens we're going to take your money and you're going to pay us for
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it. not uncle sam is going to take money from other states and subsidize your tax -- high taxes in our state. so what we're saying is we're not going to have taxpayers in one city or one state subsidize high taxes in other cities and states. it's just not happening anymore and it's a popular position, frankly. >> gene, i want to ask you this and this one is completely selfish. and it's for a military friend, okay, a veteran. and he says if you talk to any experts or any republicans who are proposing this plan you should tell them that capping the mortgage interest deduction will hurt veterans and their families who live in high-cost areas who under the va funding rules can take out loans of up to $636,000. what do you say to that, gene? is he correct? >> don, i think the problem is when you have tax reform where you're taking the resources and devoting it to middle-class families or you're taking resources and devoting it to
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jobs and infrastructure and things that can help that family you can talk about tax reform. but when you're asking upper middle class families, middle class families to pay essentially what grover is -- the proposal he's talking about in the state and local deduction would actually raise their state taxes effectively by 25% to 40%. when you're asking people in the middle class to take those type of hits or people who have high medical expenses or are relying on deducting their interest for student loans, you're telling them to take the hit. and you realize that you don't need to do this. it's not directed to middle class families. it's being done to fund a tax cut that goes overwhelmingly to the top 1% and to theest companies in our country and the most aggressive at planning to pay as little taxes as possible. >> gene and grover, thank you very much. it's got to be the last word. i'll see you soon. when we come back, the former interim chair of the dnc coming out with scathing accusations about her own organization's ties to hillary clinton's campaign. her bombshell accusations of rigging in the democratic primary. that's next. whoooo.
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explosive allegations from the former interim head of the democratic national committee. donna brazile in a forthcoming book says the system was rigged just like bernie sanders said.
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she charges that an unethical agreement was signed between clinton's campaign and the dnc to keep the party afloat financially. she writes the agreement specified that in exchange for raising money and investing in the dnc, "hillary would control the party's finances, strategy and all the money raised." brazile also writes that she promised bernie sanders that as head of the dnc she would investigate allegations that the party's nomination process was rigged against him. and here's a quote. she said, "i had to keep my promise to bernie. i was in agony as i dialed him. hello, senator, i've completed my review of the dnc and i did find the cancer, i said, but i will not kill the patient." end quote. so i want to talk about this now with cnn political commentator scott jennings, nina turner and hillary rosen. good evening to all of you. nina, you worked for the bernie sanders campaign. what's your reaction to this news? >> well, it's stunning, don, not surprising, because i and others
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from the bernie world from senator sanders' campaign was saying that something was wrong all along. but take no great pleasure in this. you know, the fact that you have someone like donna brazile, who was the first african-american woman to run a national campaign, a presidential campaign, ran al gore's -- vice president al and whether people what she's done professionally in her life at certain points, the fact she is pointing this out means that this is serious and that there is absolutely a crisis in the city. and this is not just about an emotional crisis between the sanders camp and thecliptens camp, but this is really about the economics and the revelation that one campaign, the clinton campaign was able to control all the economics within that and furthermore not just control it, but she also reflected on the fact that the dnc has been suffocated for the last eight
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years. we don't just lose 11,000 candidates for no reason. so this is not just about the bernie side or the clinton side. this is about the people who have been let down knowing this has been going on for a long time. >> this is interesting. because i said we had a big revelation, didn't everybody come to a determineination thate dnc did skew towards hillary clinton? and in her book hillary clinton said the dnc had no money, no operation, she'd to pour money into the dnc. are brazil and clinton basically saying the same thing but using different words? >> first of all, i have to say that democrats have to spend a second relitigating this primary fight could not be, you know, stupider. i don't think democrats across the country want to change --
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>> but it doesn't change the fact of what's happening. it's not illegal, by the way, but go on. >> heat me just say when you have the conversation we just had five minutes ago about this tax bill and where this country is going, that's what democrats need to focus on going forward. and we're going to take dona at her word, you have to read the whole excerpt. because the excerpt said hillary clinton bailed out the dnc financially and controlled the staffing of the dngs. but dona also said in that excerpt, that she went door-to-door at the dnc and could not find a single shred of evidence tat the actual results of the primary were tilted one way or another. and so we're going go to comment on the book we ought to go all the way and actually say that dona said she found no proof at all that the system was rigged. she just said that hillary clinton's money was holding up the dnc and she found that
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overwhelmingly offensive -- >> money that was gotten by -- i mean since you want to go there, this is really about a dnc that lacks accountability and transparency, period. and we can deal with more than one thing at a time. >> that's not rigging an election. >> we have to restore the faith and credibility of the democratic party, and statements you're making doesn't help. people are hurt by this revelation. to cover it up, doesn't help. the fact of the matter is the way this system was conducted, the dnc did not follow its own bylaws. so if we're going to have some truth talk now, let's talk about reform. we can talk about unity, but we've got to talk about reform. >> wait, let me start there because she just said what i characterized differently.
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what i will object to until the day we go out is that the voters in the primary chose hillary clinton not bernie sanders and that it nothing to do with any staff person at the dnc. and let's just move on and not keep relitigating this fight. let's do what we need to do for democrats together. >> hillary, that kind of sounds like the russia argument that the republicans are using on the other side and saying -- >> i'm just saying what dona said is the truth. >> okay, scott, i know you want to get in here. but before you respond. here's the counter point here. the sanders campaign signed the exact same agreement that the clinton campaign signed, the same agreement that the obama campaign signed. sanders isn't raise money for the party. so is it rigged if both candidates signed the same agreement? >> go ahead, i'm going to let him go. go ahead. >> look, i can't believe i'm going to say this out loud on actual television. i'm going to stand up for
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hillary clinton a little bit here and just say it is amazing to me what no one's pointing out that the proouns at the time, barack obama had left his democratic national committee in such a shambles that not only was hillary clinton having to fight off bernie sanders but she knew if she was going to get the nominati nomination she had to bail out the dnc. this really falls to me on the feet of barack obama, whose path of destruction through the eight years is completed by these brazil revelations. i have to say, don, i cannot stop laughing that the democrats are fighting amongst themselves a mere handful of days before the race. democrats in virginia are eating them alive today. this is amazing. republicans are laughing hard today. >> and criticism democrats will tell you off camera, because we
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often tell you what republicans will say. but democrats will say that's why the party's so weak right now because it was barack obama's party. here's my question. i have to go to the break, but many people say that bernie sanders wasn't a real democrat, that he was not really a democrat and so that's why he may have gotten the support of the dnc. >> i don't think that matters. wait until we come back. we'll be right back. hi, i'm the internet! you know what's difficult? adulting... hi, guys. i'm back. time to slay! no,i have a long time girlfriend. you know what's easy? building your website with godaddy. get your domain today and get a free trial of gocentral. build a better website in under an hour.
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accused of obstructing justice to theat the fbinuclear war, and of violating the constitution by taking money from foreign governments and threatening to shut down news organizations that report the truth. if that isn't a case for impeaching and removing a dangerous president, then what has our government become? i'm tom steyer, and like you, i'm a citizen who knows it's up to us to do something. it's why i'm funding this effort to raise our voices together and demand that elected officials take a stand on impeachment.
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a republican congress once impeached a president for far less. yet today people in congress and his own administration know that this president is a clear and present danger who's mentally unstable and armed with nuclear weapons. and they do nothing. join us and tell your member of congress that they have a moral responsibility to stop doing what's political and start doing what's right. our country depends on it. panel, nina, you want to respond of what i said that bernie sanders was not really a democrat, that he ran there senate as an independent and socialist and not part of the democratic party and she expects the party to get behind them when he

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