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tv   Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  November 9, 2017 2:00pm-3:00pm PST

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the twitter account, jake tapper cnn is the facebook account. i'm jack tapper, i turn you over to wolf blitzer in the situation room, thanks for watching. happening now, breaking news, russian offer. president trump's former body guard testifies that back in 2014, he rejected a russian offer to send five women to donald trump's hotel room in moscow. the aid says he took it as a joke and that president trump laughed it off as well. more trouble. shocking allegations against roy moore. the republican nominee for the alabama senate seat. the washington post reports he initiated sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl when he was 32. and three other women gave similar accounts. moore denies the allegations, but republican lawmakers say if they're true, he must step
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aside. planned disagreement. a controversial house republican tax plan makes it through committee as senate republicans unveil a tax plan of their own. will the two chambers be able to resolve their differences and send a bill to the president? and alternate universe. after president trump taunts kim jong-un's regime and criticizes life in north korea. we're getting exclusive reaction from inside north korea where people tell cnn that life there is great. i'm wolf blitzer, you're in the situation room. this is cnn breaking news. >> we're following multiple breaking news stories. president trump's former security chief has told congress that he rejected a russian offer to send five women to donald trump's moscow hotel room. the incident occurred in 2013 when then private citizen donald trump was in moscow for the miss
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universe pageant. keith schiller testified that he took the offer as a joke and that trump himself laughed it off. we're also just learning that white house senior policy advisor steven miller has been interviewed as part of the special council's russia probe, the highest level aid working at the white house to be questioned. miller's role in the firing of the fbi director james comey was among the topics discussed. also breaking, lawmakers are reacting with shock to an explosive report that roy moore, the republican nominee for the alabama senate seat allegedly engaged in sexual conduct with an underaged team. the washington post reports moore initiated a sexual encounter with a 14-year-old girl when he was 32. three other women told the washington post that moore also pursued them. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell and other top republicans say if the allegations are true, moore must step aside.
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moore calls the report, quoting now, a desperate political attack. and a powerful house committee passes the republican tax plan and sends it to the floor on a party line vote. as senate republicans release their own version of a tax bill with enough differences to set the two chambers up for a dramatic showdown in the coming weeks. i'll speak with white house legislative director mark short and our correspondent specialists and guests, they are standing by with full coverage. so let's begin with the stunning testimony from president trump's former body guard and aid, keith schiller, who told congress this week that back in 2013, he rejected a russian offer to send five women to donald trump's moscow hotel room. let's go straight to cnn's senior congressional correspondent manu raju. what are you learning. >> president trump's long time confidant keith schiller testified quietly that he did reject a russian offer to send five women to private citizen
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trump's hotel room to moscow for the miss universe pageant. now this is according to multiple sources from both parties who told this to my kreeg. now schiller who was trump's body guard testified that he took the offer as a joke. that's according to two of the sources and the way up to trump's hotel room that night, schiller told the businessman about the offer and trump apparently laughed it off. now earlier, this is according to his testimony from earlier this week, now after several minutes outside of trump's door which was shows practice as trump's security chief, he left, and did not know what happened after that. >> why did the members, mano, even bring this up? >> the members raised this because of the salacious allegation laid out in the dossier that was compiled by former british agent christopher steele. now some of those allegations in the dossier have beener haved if i, but those salacious accusations about trump's activities in moscow have not been verified. and lawmakers wanted to know if in fact the russians had dirt
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about trump just at the same time as they were meddling in the u.s. election. schiller said he had no knowledge of that, wolf, but during the closed door hearing, house lawmakers walked through a daily caller article which raised some of the allegations about trump's moscow trip from the dossier and discussed an alternative story involving schiller's role in rejecting the russian offer of sending prostitutes to trump's room. now we are told that schiller denied one allegation in the story that the offer came from women, from aguilar, the son of a russian billionaire who was closed to putin and who worked with trump to bring the pageant to moscow. schiller testified that someone in the group with aguilar did raise the matter during a meeting that happened around lunchtime. now aguilar's attorney told he earlier he has no knowledge, his client has no knowledge of the matter and the white house itself, wolf, declined to comment while schiller's attorney criticized the leaks
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coming out of a academy. >> what else did schiller said? >> he did not give the committee a whole lot. lawmakers questioned him for hours, wolf, about trump russian connections, advisors, meetings with russians and he claimed he didn't know much since he was in charge of security for candidate trump and not policy, plus he was asked about what he knew about the firing of fbi director james comey given it was him. keith shiler who delivered that letter to the fbi, deliver the news about the firing, but wolf, he said he was not involved in the deliberations and didn't give the committee much to go on. >> i want to stand by, there's more breaking news we're getting right now. word of another trump soerkts being interviewed by the special council's white house. pamela, who's the latest person now to appear before the special council robert mueller? >> well wolf, we've learned that white house senior policy advisor steven miller has now been interviewed as part of the special counsel robert mueller's
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russia probe. this brings the probe into the inner circle of the white house. trump's inner circle in the white house because miller is the highest level aid that we know of. that is public, that has been interviewed by robert mueller. we have now learned, and he's been by trump's side from the campaign up until now, and in key moments that we know that robert mueller has been investigated, has been investigating, including a march 2016 meeting with george papadopoulos, the campaign volunteer who according to court filings offered up in that meeting to set up a meeting between vladimir putin and donald trump. and steven miller was also there during a weekend in bedminister when the initial memo was written to fire james comey. he's a key foreign speak to as a witness in this investigation. >> gloria, you've been doing reporting on this as well. why would federal investigators want to talk to steven miller? >> about the firing of james comey. there is this weekend at bedminister that pamela is talking about that is very
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important. that the president went there and he decided at that weekend to fire james comey. and we're told, of course, that he wrote some notes down, and it was steve miller who worked with the president or drafted this memo about why comey should be fired. that memo has been handed over to the special counsel, so miller is a person, i think, makes a lot of sense, you'd to want talk to him about what was the president thinking? what was -- what were you thinking about this? how did the president decide? what were your conversations with the president, particularly as they look into possible obstruction of justice in terms of the firing of the former fbi director. so in a way, he's, you know, he's somebody who had a front row seat to the president's mind in this case. >> certainly did. you know, it seems mano that this investigation, robert mueller, the special counsel's investigation is heating up, indictments last week, guilty
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plea last week, and all of these most recent developments. >> yeah, no question. i think that pamela and gloria's reporting really shows is that the mueller's investigation is only just beginning. or at least it's not anywhere near conclusion, despite these charges that came out last week. there are a number of key witnesses that he is still yet to interview. a lot of them that he wants to go forward -- to explore particularly in terms of obstruction, this issue, potential russia meetings that occurred during the campaign season. i think there is going to be a lot more of these senior level white house days in particular and former aids who also meet with muler. >> but by the same token, muler is mindful of the impact of this investigation has at the white house. we've heard from sources that it has had an impact on business dealings with foreign leaders and so i do think that while it won't necessarily dictate where this investigation goes, i do think muler is mindful and they want to be, you know, as
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efficient and expeditious as possible in getting these interviews done and at least wrapping up the part of the probe that directly impacts them. >> and you know, this is very difficult for people who really inside the white house. we should say, that you have people who know they're going to be interviewed, they've had to hire lawyers, they're spending money to do this, they're siloing myself off to any discussion of the russia investigation, the president is of course very concerned about the russia investigation. he's called it a hoax. so i think with whatever legislative agenda they have, today was the day that, you know, tax reform is going to be unveiled in the senate, and you have all of these other issues that complicate their lives, and complicate their personal lives as well. >> i want all of you to stand by. much more on this shortly. but there's other breaking news that we're monitoring. truly explosive report from the washington post that roy moore, the republican nominee for the u.s. senate seat in alabama allegedly engaged in sexual
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conduct with young teenagers when he was in his 30s. republican lawmakers say if the allegations are true, moore must step aside. moore calls the report a desperate political attack. let's go to jason carol, details, what are you learning, jason? >> well wolf that the allegations are true, very disturbing. four women spoke to the washington post alleging when they were teenaged girls, roy moore who was then a 32-year-old assistant district attorney at the time had sexual contact with them. one of the accusers, lee corkman says in 1979 when she met moore when she was 14 years old, she told the post he met moore in court when she was with her mother during a child custody hearing. she said later, she says she had two encounters with moore, one where he kissed and hugged her, a second where he partial i undressed her and allegedly guided her hands to his genitals. the age in consent then and now is 16. the boast spoke to three other women who say when they were
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teenagers back in the late 70s and early '80s, they too allegedly had sexual encounters with moore, moore's campaign, wolf, calling the allegations, quote, garbage. part what have they called the democrats attempt to discredit him. moore himself saying in a statement, calling the allegations, quote, completely false and a desperate political attack. >> jason, i know you had a chance to peek with the accusers's stepfather, what did he tell you? >> richard wells spoke to him by phone this afternoon, he says the family stands by what was reported in the washington post. he also says that lee is a very strong woman and that women are often stronger than men and this is an example of that. then wolf, when i asked him if his family was concerned at all about any possible fallout from all of these allegations, he said, quote, we are not worried about any fallout. >> jason carol working that explosive story for us as well. much more on that coming up. also breaking, the house
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republican tax plan has now made it through a powerful committee, senate republicans unveil their own version of the tax bill. phil mattingly is joining us, couple milestones, but a lot further to go. walk us through what has now happened. >> reporter: no question, wolf, for years the idea of getting a large scale tax overhaul through any committee, let alone on to the house or senate floor seemed to be an an nat ma. today, they did. as you noted, it's only one step. there's no shortage of potential hurdles sitting right in front of lawmakers of rest of the way. continue for the republican tax plan, one major step forward in the house. >> the sbil passed, the committee is adjourned. >> reporter: as the gop proposal unveiled in the u.s. senate underscores just how many differences still remain. >> in 30 years, tax reform again -- >> reporter: the house ways and means committee approving their
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version of the tax overhaul. the bill on track next week. >> we ran in 2016 on doing this tax reform. the president ran on doing this tax cut and tax reform. so this is about fulfilling our promises to the american people. >> reporter: but even after late changes to the bill, bringing in line with budgetary targets still major differences from newly released senate counterpart, the house collapses individual brackets from seven to four with the top rate of 39.6%. the senate, seven brackets, the top rate, 38.6%. the house bill makes immediate a corporate rate cut to 20% from 35%. the senate bill faces that cut-in over a year. the house bill allows the state and local property tax deduction up to $10,000. senate bill, repeals that entirely. the house bill caps the mortgage interest deduction for new mortgages at $500,000. the senate bill, leaves that untouched. with each difference, republican
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members and no shortage of lobbying interests fighting to keep their own preferred route alive. potentially imperilling the bill each step of the way. gop leaders in both chambes brushing off the differences. >> and yes, the senate bill's going to be different than the house bill, that's the legislative process. what's encouraging in all of this we have a framework that we established with the white house and the senate, and these bills are being written with inside that framework. >> reporter: democrats are unified with their opposition to the bill and the entire process. >> why don't we do it where there's a the at least opportunity for people to review it. let's do it very fast. very fast. speed of light, in the dark of night, and that backgrounds would add even their own members. what an insult to the intelligence of their own members, what an insult to the intelligence of the american people as they make an assault on the middle class. >> reporter: as top gop targets for potential bipartisanship
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hand the gop path so far. >> we're not involved at all. on the senate side, maybe being a conservative democrat, fiscal conservative democrat, not even the asked is to to sit down by republican colleagues or senators. i don't think that's the right way to do it. >> reporter: for now aids tell cnn they remain on track to complete the bill by president trump's request, christmas. even one aid acknowledged to cnn, quote, there's no shortage of land mines in front of us to blow up at any time. wolf, just to lay out how this is supposed to go moving forward, the house floor, the house republicans are supposed to take that up next week. the senate committee process will start next week. senate should vote on something, the week after thanksgiving, then they'll try and reconcile and it's worth noting, each step of the way there are potential problems, i can tell you behind the scenes right now. house gop aids making clear, they're working one to one with members trying to give them detail dad that about the bill in their districts. for their constituents. really trying to make the case that hey, we get it.
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you might have a problem with individual provision or even a couple. overall, this bill is a winner. their ability, wolf, to be able to convey that message and convince their members with that message will determine whether or not it passes the house next week, but also the senate in a couple weeks and if gop lead verse their way, by christmas, congress all itself, wolf. >> yeah, a lots at stake for the politicians. enormous amount at stake for the american people right now with these potential tax cuts. phil matingly, thanks very much. we're going to be speaking right now with the director of legislative affairs, mark short. i want to get your reaction to this big tax cut, the house version, the senate version, all the days breaking news, let's take a quick break. we'll have our conversation right after this. >> thanks, wolf.
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following multiple breaking news stories right now. the house republican tax plan has made it out of committee even a senate republicans unveil their own tax plan with some major differences. and there's also an explosive report in the washington post alleging that the republican candidate for the u.s. senate seat in alabama, roy moore, engaged in sexual conduct with a 14-year-old girl and other teens when he was in his 30s. republican lawmakers say if the allegations are true, moore must step down. step aside. we're back with march short, he's the white house director of legislative affairs. you've got to work with the senate and the house. what -- what does the president believe if these allegations against roy moore, for example, are true, accurate, must he step
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aside? >> wolf, let's step back for a second and recognize that these are serious allegations. if true, there's no path forward. let's be cautious here of allegations that arise 38 years later, a month before election day. so, i think we need to let the facts come out, find out what the truth is, and go from there before we jump to conclusions. >> because there's been like 30 people the washington post interviewed, including these women who are now adults who were girls at the time. you've read the article. >> i saw the story, and i've also seen that roy moore denied the allegations, let's see where this goes. certainly if it's true, it's extremely serious and there's no path forward. we need to see if that's true. >> if he does have to step aside, what is the procedure for getting a republican candidate to challenge the democrat because what the election son-in-law a month away? >> election's a month away. and i think remember that the president supported luther strange in that primary. i think what'll happen is that there's options for write-in candidates and there's also options for lawsuits about a path forward. i don't think we should begin
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going down more of a chance to defend himself and his character. >> if he does step aside, you want luther strange to emerge? >> i'm not going down the hypothetical. we allow him to a chance to defend himself. >> but if you do confirm it's true, because these 30 sources of the washington sources have all come forward to make these allegations, if you confirm it's true, you would want him to step aside. >> that's a big if clause, wolf, it is, but yeah. >> how do you con official it though? how do you determine who's lying and who's telling the truth? >> i think the voters of alabama deserve to know the truth and the voters of alabama will demand more information, more facts to figure this out. >> so you believe that the truth eventually will emerge -- >> yes. >> and if the truth is against him, he should step aside? >> if that's happens, wolf, but i don't think we should be jumping to conclusions that the point. we should allow that process to play out. >> all right. let's move to another critically important issues, taxes right now. two versions have emerged.
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how do you reconcile these? >> we start with the framework, the white house, house of senate working together. there's certainly pieces where i disagree. look, we all know from schoolhouse rock, the house passes a bill, the senate, then there's a conference report. that's the conference that's going to play out. we look forward to the house taking this up on the floor next week, that's the next step in the process. >> let's see where the white house stands on the issues where there are differences. the senate wants to delay the cut in corporate tax, the corporate tax rate from 35% to 20%, they want to wait until 2019, the house version says it should happen right away. where does the white house come down? >> there are a lot of trade off that members have to make in these decisions, wolf, we are anxious to see tax relief as soon as possible. we think that's what's needed to make sure the economy gets growing faster than it already is. we know it's turning around, it's turning the corner because of the regulatory relief that we've provided, now it's important to get tax relief into middle income families and
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corporations that are no longer inverts and going overseas. we to want see it as soon as possible. >> let me press you on the differences, the house version, the past committee, house version four income brackets, senate version seven income brackets, what do you think? >> naturally, we've said all along, one of the objectives is to simplify the tax coat. a preference again is to have as few as possible, but there's going to be tradeoffs the senators have to make. and there are other things that we are providing that we find attractive. we are excited about the process, excited where the senate is going with theirs and the market they have planned for next week and the progress the house is making. a very sensitive industry in some of the states like new york or new jersey. >> i think what we said from the start, we were trying to clean up the tax code and believe there's a lot of states that
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well-managed that do not have high, local, and state taxes and should not be subsidizing in that have higher state and local taxes. we also recognize the challenge that poses to many members in the states of new york, california, new jersey. and so, we're comfortable at the compromise the house made, also with the senate plan that i think is where we started our process. >> because it sounds like you're much more comfortable with the house plan than the new version that the senate -- >> i don't think that's true. i think that there's trade-offs again that the senate made that we're very pleased with. >> you want a full repeal of the estate tax which is in the house version or a partial repeal of the estate tax? >> the president said from the start that he believes that people who are taxed their whole life shouldn't also have taxable event. i think that's a fair principle. >> and all four major differences you come down on the house side, we'll see what happens when they negotiate the senate. clearly, you know, bottom line as far as middle income, middle class, you can't guarantee that everyone in every income bracket
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will see a tax reduction. >> wolf, with the joint committee nonpartisan organization is they affirm that every middle income family, let's say middle income and america, they define as 59,000 dollar income. every bracket would get a tax relief and that those in the middle income would receive tax relief for about $1,182 on average. we believe this tax splan providing tax relief for every income bracket. >> when you say bracket on average, that doesn't mean everyone in those brackets, especially for some of the bigger states that have state and local tax deductions right now if they lose that, will wind up saving money. >> wolf, as far as a tax reform plan that we have $1.5 trillion to work within, we are not simply handing out dollars. the problem america is not that people are taxed too much, the problem is that we spend too much dollars, that's why we have a deficit and that's why we have debt. our effort is to lower the tax rate for as many people as possible with our focus being on middle income families. >> but you don't believe people
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are overtaxed right now? >> i don't think the problem in america is that people are taxed too much. i do believe that people are overtaxed. that's why we're pushing for tax relief. >> i'm still a little confused. let's talk about what happens in 2027 when many of these tax cuts that you're supporting right now are sunseted, they go away, and people will wind up having to pay a whole lot more. you comfortable with the sunset provision where you're only having these tax cuts for a limited period of time? >> i think our preference is not sunset, we work within certain budget restrictions of the $1.5 billion we have to work with which is why we made provisions. >> president trump repeatedly says that this is the biggest tax cut in american history, but it isn't, you know that. >> i think that this will be the biggest corporate tax relief -- >> corporate -- but he just says it's the biggest tax cut. >> wolf, i think there's a lot of different variations as to what the numbers will show. it'll generate enormous growth for america, and we do believe
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it is one of the largest tax cuts in american history. >> take a look at the chart and put it up on the screen. the analysts have taken a look at the biggest tax cuts, the reagan tax cut, 2.89%, truman again, obama, 1.78, donald trump tax cut plan right now is 0.9%. of the gdp. >> we are happy to have an argument as to whether we have the top, second, third largest tax cut. that is a positive angle for us, as a percentage of gdp -- >> percentage -- it would be -- >> if you're looking at absolute dollars, it would be the largest. so it depends on the way you're -- >> but if it's a percentage, it would be the seventh largest. i want the president to be very, very precise when he makes a bold statement like that. >> we're being precise with absolute dollars. >> the president says he'll be a big loser, check with his accountant, if all of these tax cut goes through. that's not necessarily true though. >> it is try -- >> look at the estate tax.
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>> he's saying that in many cases, if we get rid of the deductions, the wealth yes benefit from, then those individuals will not be getting the same sort of tax relief that middle income families will be getting. >> if the estate tax is completely eliminated, and let's say he is worth $10 billion, which he says forbes magazine says he's worth $4 billion which is less, even if you're with $4 billion and you don't pay the estate tax, 30%, 40%, this family is going to save billions of dollars. >> the reality is that most families in that income bracket have attorneys and accountants who have protected them from the estate tax. the ones who are hurt the most, are midwest farmers and those passing on businessing. we have stories of people that were damaged and bank loans -- >> only those farms are worth more than $11 million. >> it's different than what you're alleging regarding the president. the president will be damaged because they're not the same level of tax cuts for those. that's what he said he wanted. this is what's best for our
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country. is to make sure we provide middle income tax relief to make sure jobs come back into america. >> you've got a lot of work ahead of you. we'll see what happens. always good of you to come here into the situation room. thanks for joining us. >> thanks for having me. coming up, there's more breaking news, stunning testimony for president trump's former body guard and word of another trump associate being interviewed by the special counsel's office, this time a key member of the white house inner circle. prudential asked these couples: how much money do you think you'll need in retirement? then we found out how many years that money would last them. how long do you think we'll keep -- oooooohhh! you stopped! you're gonna leave me back here at year 9? how did this happen? it turned out, a lot of people fell short, of even the average length of retirement. we have to think about not when we expect to live to, but when we could live to. let's plan for income that lasts all our years in retirement. prudential. bring your challenges.
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breaking news, president trump's former body guard testified before lawmakers that he rejected a russian offer to send five women to mr. trump's hotel room when he was in moscow back in 2013 for the miss universe pageant. that testimony touches on some of the most salacious and unconfirmed allegations in the dossier compiled by a former british intelligence agent on behalf of mr. trump's political opponents. paid for that dossier by democrats, the hillary clinton campaign and the dnc. let's bring in our experts to discuss this and more, mano, walk us through the keith schiller testimony about this russian offer back in 2013. >> well the reason why this was brought up, wolf, as you eluded to there, this dossier included a host of salacious allegations which are not confirmed. now there are verified allegations in the dossier that do not relate to mr. trump's
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activity in moscow during that 2013 trend where they were dealing with the moscow and miss universe pageant. now they were asked, keith schiller specifically about a daily caller article that touched on the dossier and talked about how schiller himself rejected the notion of having any women sent to trump's room. now what he did confirm is that a russian, unidentified russian, didn't know the person's name, didn't make that offer. send five women to trump's room. he did not tell trump until later in the day as they were walking back to their hotel room, schiller testified that he told trump about this, trump laughed it off, he waited outside trump's hotel room, left for the night, did not know what happened after that, but one piece of the puzzle here about exactly what happened in russia, schiller denied knowing anything that happened or do not confirm those allegations. >> we haven't confirmed these very dlashs details that are included in that dossier. >> no, and look, i think through the great reporting, look, i think what this tells us about
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donald trump is not all that much. i actually do think though it tells us a little something about russia. schiller thought it was a joke, testified that, trump thought it was a joke, they laughed about it. because they thought it was a joke, i would offer up, it does not necessarily mean it was. maybe it was a joke if they rejected it, but the point is it would suggest that russia was, and we know russia has done this to tried and true tactic to try to gather information to compromise people they may or may not be targeting. the fact that this -- according to schiller happened, would suggest that trump or associates of trump were in their sights. just quickly, that doesn't mean anything as it relates to trump, but i think it tells us something about russia and their intent. >> back in 2013, gloria, you're also doing reporting on top white house official still working at the white house in the inner circle who has now been asked to appear before the special counsel robert mueller. >> right, pamela brown, perez and i have learned that steven miller, who is a senior white
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house policy advisor has now been interviewed by the special counsel team. and this interview really brings that special investigation into the current inner circle of the white house. and what they really want to know about is miller's role in the firing of jim comey because he was in new jersey at bedminister that weekend with the president and drafted a memo at the president's request, and with the help of the president about why comey ought to be fired and the special counsel is very interested in getting an idea of what the president was thinking at the time, what they were talking about, and of course, the special counsel has a copy of that memo. >> the other breaking news, and there's a lot of breaking news today involves what's going on in alabama right now with the republican senate nominee. >> that's right, allegations that he was sexually with, as a 32-year-old, a teenager -- >> 14-year-old girl.
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>> 14-year-old girl and other allegations as well. look, the cascade of statements that we've seen from the senate majority leader on down about if true, he needs to step out, he just interviewed the affairs director mark short who said the same thing. the people in moore's camp are being incredibly, incredibly -- they're digging, saying, he's not going anywhere, and there's no reason to doubt that. just have to keep in mind that this isn't kind of your typical politics, even in the world of donald trump. he defied the establishment from the president on down by challenging the sitting senator who was appointed luther strange and he is the ultimate outsider. and it's going to be hard to see anything making him say you know what, i'm going to withdraw. >> plenty of sources in that washington post story, but more calls that quote the very definition of fake news. what do you think? because the republican
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leadership in the senate, they say if this is true, he must step aside. >> he's someone who did not listen to the republican leadership and the senate, in fact, ran against pretty aggressively against mitch mcconnell said he should get out, not be majority leader anymore. so he may not care what they think -- >> definitely doesn't care. >> mark short, the white house legislative director was just here, he said if true, the white house believes he should step aside as well. >> and look, the real concern for the republicans is they could lose this seat. i mean, we have not seen consistent polling in this state for this, we don't know where it stands, but some poll suggested it's close. if this really snowballs and becomes a huge story, which it is -- this could become devastating. >> and there are other questions right now about lisa murkowski who only is in the senate again because she launched a write-in campaign in alaska you can do that, in alabama, luther strange could do that. he doesn't have anywhere near the name id. >> is there a republican who lost. >> right, still a senator.
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and also there's a question about whether or not if he even won he could be seated in the united states. >> a lot of elections for a month or so from now. we'll watch this very, very closely. important note our viewers by the way, stay with cnn for more on this important conversation later tonight, 9:00 p.m. eastern, tune into a special cnn town hall tipping point, sexual harassment in america. coming up, the neighbor of republican senator rand paul is pleading not guilty to assault after allegedly tackling of the senator while he mowed his lawn sending him to the hospital. we have new information, we'll bring you the latest right after this. - [announcer] what if the vacuum head was reborn?
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the next door neighbor of senator rand paul is pleading not guilty to assaulting the kentucky republican. breaking six of senator paul's ribs as he allegedly tackled him, but six days after the incident, it still isn't clear what sparked the apparent dispute between the two men. let's go to our correspondent drew griffin, he's digging for answers. what are you learning, drew? >> reporter: renée bouche pleaded not guilty and within minutes had slipped out a back door with his attorney, avoiding more than a dozen members effort media still trying to get one question answered, why did you do it? bouche is accused of blind siding u.s. senator rand paul last friday tackling him.
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landing him in court and the senator recovering from six broken ribs and fluid around his lungs. for 17 years, these two men have been neighbors, sharing this property line in a gated community just outside bowling green, kentucky. an investigation is continuing and the fourth degree misdemeanor assault charges could become much more serious due to senator paul's injury. >> the nonfinancial bond conditions include 1,000 foot stay away, 200 feet stayaway if he is at his home. >> reporter: he is a retired anesthesiologist and democrat who has posted anti-trump messages on his now shutdown facebook account. rand paul is an ophthalmologist and staunch conservative republican. that is enough to fuel right wing speculation senator paul was attacked for political reasons. the senator even piling on by retweeting two articles that raised politics as a motive.
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the attorney again >> this has absolutely nothing to do with any politics, any liberal versus conservative or republican versus democrat. it's just not about that. it's a personal dispute between two neighbors. >> attorney matthew baker says the motive was if line with what cnn has already reported, that the two men who share this long lawn have a long-standing dispute over landscaping. but senator paul's adviser, while not providing more details, said not true. as to reports of a long-standing dispute with the attacker, the statement read, the pauls have had no conversations with him in many years. the first conversation with the attacker came after senator paul's ribs were broken. this was not a fight. it was a blindsided violent attack by a disturbed person. >> they have not spoken to each other in years but i'm certain that you can have a personal
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dispute without having spoken. it has to do with the maintenance of each other's property and the disagreement that two neighbors -- two adjoining neighbors have had over that. >> wolf, the police came and interview interviewed rene boucher about the incident. for now, this is a local criminal matter in kentucky. no federal charges and no political motive as of yet. >> drew griffin, thank you. president trump, meanwhile, focused much of his speech on the neighbor to the north taunting kim jong-un's regime and cnn's will ripley is getting
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exclusive reaction. he's live from the capital of pyongyang. will, what are you hearing? >> well, keep in mind we're about to hear from citizens that were under the watchful eye of governorment miners. president trump's speech hitting a nerve. seething is how they are reacting. ordinary citizens did not even know that president trump gave a speech until a day later when he was already in china and their state media didn't tell him what they said but we did. in north korea, where the news is under strict government control, state media gave only a brief mention of president trump's speech at the south korean national assembly. no details of his scathing indictment of north korea's human rights and harsh words for their supreme leader kim jong-un. >> north korea is not the
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paradise your grandfather envisioned. it is a hell that no person deserves. >> reporter: heavy restrictions on flow of information, our government guides allow us to tell pthe citizens what was sai. when you say you have rights that people don't have outside of north korea, what do you mean about that? >> one example is our outstanding leader, kim jong-un, he's leading us to a better future. trump has no place to talk about human rights. he's a simple war maniac. >> reporter: her answers echo north korea's leading news, "war mongering filthy rhetoric spewing out of his snout like
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garbage. however, most live in poverty. >> reporter: do you agree with president trump that it's your government's policies? he knows nothing. here we have free education, housing, medical care. he was raised an orphan. his parents died serving the government. the united nations says most north koreans live without regular electricity, clean water and nutritious food. what about people who don't live here in pyongyang, people who live out in the countryside? even in western countries, there's a big difference between life and the capital and small
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towns. on 17 trips to north korea, i've never heard anyone criticize the government. there is zero tolerance for dissent of any kind. defectors testifying to the u.n. often paint a much darker picture of life inside north korea. but here, no deviation from the party line. this country is not hell. it's home. >> still, nearly two days after president trump's speech, no official response yet from north korea. wolf? >> will ripley reporting. coming up, president trump's former bodyguard tells lawmakers he rejected an offer to send five women to trump's hotel room in moscow back in 2013. [vo] quickbooks introduces jeanette
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