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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  January 29, 2018 1:00pm-2:00pm PST

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this is such an honor to be a part of this. >> we will play out my full interview on tomorrow's show. we'll be live from washington, d.c. ahead of the president's big night. thank you so much for being with me. let's send things off to jake tapper right now. leading the rush investigation could be hazardous to your career. president trump fired james comey. he ordered the firing of robert mueller and sources say he has contemplated getting rid of the deputy attorney general now that the deputy director of the fbi is stepping down two months later. what is driving the pressure to clean house? then at any moment, the members of the house intelligence committee could release a controversial memo alleging the fbi broke surveillance laws in the russia investigation. releasing it would be extremely reckless and the fbi director
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went to check it out this weekend. will it show bias or a hand fisted political stunt? and fact checking the president's bizarre claims about climate change plflt president, despite what you may believe, the polar ice caps are not growing to new records. good afternoon, everyone. welcome to "the lead." stunning even his colleagues, deputy director mccabe resigned today. president trump asking who he voted for. according to the "washington post." by noon today, mccabe had exited the j edgar hoover building in downtown washington. sources say he had been at the fbi for 22 years and was set to retire in march, had no plans to leave today as of last friday. one source saying he was removed by the trump administration after public pressure by the
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president. that is a charge white house press secretary sarah sanders denialed this afternoon, saying the white house was not involved in the decision making process on mccabe. adding to the mystery of this all is the controversial memo written by house intelligence committee devin nunes, republican of california, which alleges surveillance abuses by the fbi of the trump team. in all the back and forth between justice department and congress over this memo and between republican who's stay public needs to see the nunes memorandum sxoe democrats who say it is misleading, the fbi director, christopher wray, went to capitol hill yesterday to read the memo. the big question, did that have anything 22nd mccabe's departure today? president trump has for years expressed concern in speeches and twitter saying that mccabe could not be fair given his wife is a democrat in virginia and took money from then governor
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mccall you have, friend of the clintons. er his wife lost the race but that was not enough for president trump who publicly questioned why mccabe had not been fired. last month tweeting, he is racing the dlok reticlock with benefits. 90 days to go. democrats saying this is part of the president's undermining institutions. we have reporters to cover every angle of this developing story from the rushing investigation to the justice department to the white house. one thing seems to be clear one wail or the other. if you are in any way investigating president trump and his team for possible collusion with the russians, or possible obstruction of justice, whether you're james comey or robert mueller or deputy attorney general rod rosenstein or now former drekt are director andrew mccabe, it is clear your
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job might be on the china. i want to start with you as a former fbi agent and the former chairman of the house intelligence committee. your response to andrew mccabe today? >> the plot thickens for sure. a couple of things could have happened. mccabe is under an i.g. investigation into his visit down to richmond to visit with the governor and those things. so that is happening. having to do with his wife's legislative race. >> yes. to 73 there is any improper behavior. so strzok and page, the two e-mail investigations, are also under investigation for inappropriate behavior, by the way. snow one really knows, the 50,000 now being recovered. you'll have a pretty good idea. the i.g. will be able to go through those. >> the missing text messages, 50,000, and document a better conclusion. >> yes. so people are making the stretch that those e-mails are directly related to what may be in the
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memo which might be related to the fisa warrant request. that's what this is about. somewhere in the campaign, the fbi, the department of justice decided they had enough information to go to a judge in the fisa court and say that page was, could have been either witting or unwitting an agent -- >> carter page. the former campaign aide. >> yes. so there are a lot of plates on sticks. they won't necessarily all tie together. why today? why all the mystery? somebody could have had a long conversation and say this is distracting and you have to deal with an i., good investigation. you're taking away from the bureau's work. today you have enough leave to cover you until the day you retire. >> so take your vacation and call it a day. how do you see it? >> i think it is really disturbing that the president attacks people who are investigating him, or part of investigation. and then they're resigning.
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i think we should be concerned about that. we can have all these discussions but andrew mccabe had a 30-year career at the fbi. he has spanned democratic and republican administrations. every one seemed to think he was doing a good job until he is part of an investigation and then he is full fodder for republican attacks. and just to say a word about this nunes memo, you know, people might be surprised. nunes is supposed to be recused from this because people thought he couldn't run this investigation. now he's running what seems to be interference from the trump administration by discussing a memorandum poe has yet to come public. >> it looks like when look at who is heading the investigations, you had comey, direct or of the fbi, andrew mccabe, i'm not sure but he's going. to robert mueller, the president gave an order for him to be fired. we keep hearing the president
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wants to get rid of the deputy attorney general who has supervised, in charge of the investigation. we keep hearing that president trump is frustrated and at different points has clearly wanted jeff sessions to quit because he's so frustrated that sessions recused himself. it really does spell out a very clear scene. >> yeah. and it is important that we take bottom lien approach. right now, donald trump has two scalps. and many mccabe. you can disagree with his tactics, you can think they're disgusting or shameful. but i have a book coming up in which i look at the tactics, there bullying and why it works. it is called gas lighting america coming out may 1st. all the charade and circus we see a perfect example. one of the things donald trump is very effective at is floating out a narrative, a room orp, and making everyone else speculate what it could be.
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this is the perfect example. this time it is even bigger. he has the entire congress assisting him in floating these rumors. what will happen is that this memo will come out at some appointment but they'll get a week the a week and a half lead on the minority memo. where they'll have the first version out because they have procedural steps to far and feather anyone else in the fbi that they like. and people need to pay attention. it is working. >> stick around. i want to go to the white house. jeff, the administration, trying to avoid even acknowledging the president played this very active public trorole to get rif mccabe. >> the white house insist that had he was not involved in his decision to resign. when asked about this pressure campaign for months, this is what white house press secretary
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sarah sanders had to say. >> the only thing the president has applied pressure to is to make sure we get resolved so that you guys and everyone else can focus on the things that americans care about. that is, making sure everybody gets the rush fevsia fever out for all, that you're reminded there was no collusion. >> the russia fever out of the system is being investigated. we don't know if there was collusion or there wasn't. that's the point of the investigation. just to get a flavor of the president's growing ire and anger the at andrew mccabe, look at his social media feed on twitter. so many to go through. look at this in particular that shows you his feelings about andrew mccabe. the president said this. he said how can fbi deputy director andrew mccabe, the man
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in charge, along with james comey, be given $700,000 for wife's campaign by clinton puppets during investigation? so just a flavor of what he thought about andrew mccabe. so far the white house saying the president was not involved in this. was not pushed at all. it seems hard to believe that. >> all right. at the white house for us. let's be clear when sarah sanders refers to the community. full stop, fact. the intelligence community including the trump administration officials are seriously concerned that they'll do it in 2018, 2020 and around the world. now what we know about president trump and his team, being involved in that. we have no evidence that they were specifically involved but we have evidence that they reached out and we have evidence that people including donald trump jr. and george dp
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papadopoulos expressed an interest and we have two charges, indictments, of trump workers. >> we see donald trump every day, or seemingly he have day, attack the investigation. and we hear report after report of how he would like the fire the person who is leading the investigation. i mean -- >> mueller or comey or mckaeb or rosenstein. >> he's fired comey. he has apparently indicated several times he would like the fire mueller. they are targeting rosenstein. and i think from a normal person's perspective, if you are innocent of all charges, why are you attacking the prosecutors? another response a normal person might have is, let's resolve this and go quickly. i have nothing to hide. i'll speak to them. eye have my people speak to them why. are you attacking an institution like the fbi and department of justice?
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republican after republican after republican is attacking the law enforcement apparatus of the united states to cover for donald trump. it is bizarre. >> as a former fbi agent, this must bother you. there is this tarring of the institution. it is not just, some of those text messages are really bothersome and would pittsburgh the fbi official, the right move was taken when he was removed. you can't be saying things like that when you're investigating something. to just assail the entire fbi, that must bother you. >> completely. it undermines the work that they do. not only nationally but internationally. the fbi is in numerous countries. they're called league acts. they help law enforcement. they help foster a connection of terrorism information, espionage information, drug information. everything that we want to stop. slave trading. all of that comes under the purrview of the fbi. when you started degrading the
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fbi's credibility, domestically and internationally, it does start to have an effect. i'm not saying they might have information about it. clearly the two people in the texts exhibited poor behavior and should be punished. we should go after them and they deserve due process. that this is now a campaign is really harm have. now to me, the democrats aren't exactly innocent. they'll release their own secret memo. whatever comes out of these investigations, republican or democrat, the american public will be more skeptical about the o outcome and that's not fair. >> stick around. we have lots more to talk about. what legal impact might mccabe stepping down have?
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we're back with breaking news. andrew mccabe, the number two at the fbi, out. and there are conflicting stories about his exit. mccabe's departure may not have been his own decision? >> certainly he has tried to portray that this was his decision and that's certainly how the fbi has been portraying this. but as are jim acosta and others have heard, there are indications that he was forced out. we just don't know the entire story. it is clear to us, something happened. perhaps over the weekend or this morning, that brought mccabe to this decision. we don't believe we have the entire story right now. this suddenly came this morning in a meeting that mccabe had with his executives and he told them that today was his last day and he would be leaving by 12:00. he turned off his computer and
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left the building and hasn't been heard from since. and this was not something that the fbi was even prepared for today. we've had he no official statement from the fbi on this. usually when someone retired, there is some fanfare and none of that has happened today either. so we have a lot of questions that what went on. >> thank you. back to my panel. i don't know the reason why mccabe left today. donald trump junior on twitter today was suggesting very aggressively that the reason has to do with the nunes memo. now donald trump jr. is supposed to have recused himself from anything to do with government because he is running his father's company but he hears things. again, i don't know if it is true or not. >> i think it is telling that he don jr. is so xft this memo would work out in his favor. here's the thing. there is a big campaign by republicans and people in the white house to cast dirt on anything that surveillance may have turned up.
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so they're question go the methods for the surveillance. that's what everybody suspect that's the memo would say. the big lead-up is that there was information that shouldn't have been used to get the fisa information to wiretap carter page. so are republicans prepared to take he the stance defending carter page based on a memo written by devin nunes' staff who has not proven to be reliable after when it comes to tense matters. so i think this the extraordinarily shaky ground for republicans to put themselves on but that's what we keep seeing happen. >> to refresh everyone's memory, when carter page's name was announced, aus these republicans said who is that guy? now serving resting on a defense of carter page. we have statement of a statement, story after story saying the fbi dossier had nothing to do with the
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investigation. it came from intelligence allies. i think what we're seeing is a broad effort to run interference with the prosecution, or the investigation related to russia. and i find it bizarre that republicans are less interested in that than getting to the facts. >> all right. stick around. all eyes are on capitol hill. there could be a vote at any moment in release the nunes memo. you might take something for your heart... or joints. but do you take something for your brain. with an ingredient originally found in jellyfish, prevagen is the number one selling brain-health supplement in drug stores nationwide. prevagen. the name to remember.
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cnn justice correspondent taking a look at why they want to release a memo that the justice department does not.
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>> reporter: tonight tension between the white house. christopher wray was on capitol him to release a classified and controversial memo spearheaded by devin nunes which his committee is now publicly deciding whether to release. there was an extreme warning it would be extraordinarily reckless for the committee to make the memo public without such a review. the four-page highly politicized report drafted by staffers alleges the fbi abused surveillance laws when it used the steel dossier as part of the dice obtain a secret surveillance warrant on the foreign trump campaign adviser carter page, saying that page was acting as an agent for russia. the fisa judge who signed off on the wampblt wasn't told the dossier was paid for in part by democrats. the public to release the classified memo has ignited a
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firestorm of resistance from democrats and some republicans. >> my concern is whether it would compromise classified information. and that is a really serious matter. >> i think before releasing something like this, it should be carefully and thoroughly reviewed and the d.o.j. given the opportunity to respond. >> they are inclined to release it after the vote but the white house spokesman says the president will be advised before making a decision. >> he has the ability to object and say, i want to release or i don't want to release it. that's a five-day review period. if that happens, we'll have a whole national security review and look at this document and then make a determination. >> house speaker paul ryan isn't taking a side deferring instead to any vote that comes out of the committee. house majority leader is taking a strong stance.
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the president has repeatedly vented his frustration with the justice department focusing his fury on jeff sessions over the past year and now the deputy attorney general rod rosenstein in the cross hairs. he oversees the russia probe. the president has been venting about rosenstein and has even vented the idea of firing him. and the nunes memo which discusses the carter page warrant cites rosenstein for his role overseeing the probe. and democrats are pushing back against this nunes memo saying it skews the intelligence and it is an effort to detract from the special counsel's probe. the top democrat on the committee, ad of a schif, has drafted his own competing memo and they could consider releasing that memo when and if the members vote tonight. >> thanks so much. one of the loudest voices in favor of releasing the memo is
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congressman matt gates of florida. the republican joins us next. stay with us.
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everything you need to go. ♪ expedia. moments from now, there may be a vote regarding the memo with devin nunes. joining me now, matt gates of florida who serves on the house judiciary committee. thank you for joining us. first your reaction to the news that now former deputy director andrew mccabe has left the fbi and also, i'm wondering, what is your understanding of why that happened today. >> i don't know. why i will say i think it is a step forward for the country. many of us have been concerned about the highest levels of the fbi and the department of justice becoming too susceptible to politics and political influence and i think we can all
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move forward to ensure we have the type of confidence within the institutions that our democracy would demand. i would caution against casting an entire imagine's career based on one moment or investigation. andrew mccabe has likely done many things for this country that we will never know about and he deserves our thanks even if there are things in the most recent days is that months that have given us concern. >> let's talk about the nunes memo. you've called for it to be released. a trump appointee says it would be extraordinarily reckless for the memo to be made available. >> he hasn't read the memo and there are very good reasons why you wouldn't want the fbi and the justice department to be the very next folks review this information. i think the best thing is to release this information into the public square and then let's have a thoughtful and thorough debate about the kind of country we want to have. the type of surveillance policy that's we think are important.
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the time of krobl rating evidence that should accompany fisa warrants. at the end of the day, we might get some bipartisan agreement out of this. if we can think of the existing political structure but whether or not we want political parties working in concert with our intelligence community to go after political parties or political candidates. i think we can all agree that we can do better and the release of this memo will be a good next step. >> you say there is a good reason to not let the fbi and the justice department see the memo before releasing it. what is that good reason? >> i can't go into the preens would confirm or denials the facts in the memo. i will say it does not include sources or methods. we try to be very cautious before releasing anything that could disclose a source or a method of collecting information. i think the intelligence staff that drafted this memo was very careful to ensure that it didn't include those things that would be redacted, based on what i've read, there are no redactions
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necessary. we should release the full memo and working to release an accompanying information and data. i think that's the only reason wasn't released sooner. therapy nunes and the committee wanted to vet that information and ensure we have the most credible product for the american people to review. >> i guess one of the things people who are hearing about the nunes memo have an issue is, if the problem is that in your view, in the view of other house republicans, the fbi has a bias problem at the leadership level, why would it be that releasing a memo that is supported only by republicans on the house intelligence committee and is being attacked by democrats as misleading and cherry sxikd highly partisan, why would that be the solution? are you not trying to solve a problem of alleged bias with the solution that is inherently biassed? >> the best way to sand off the
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rough edges of this discourse is to have free and open debated with asle facts before the american people as possible. if members of congress sit behind closed doors and snipe at each other regarding what constitutes a fact or a cherry picked fact, we don't really move the debate forward for the country. if democrats have ideas or data or information that they would like to have into the public square, so long as it doesn't threaten our national security or disclose methods, i would invite their contribution to the discussion. i don't think it is helpful to block the american people from being able to review it. when you read the memo, it will be pretty clear why democrats, particularly the democratic party, did not want it to come into the public light. and i hope we can move past viewing these things as republican or democrat glams identify facts had their entirety and then craft reforms would apply to both parties equally. >> you have said that special counsel robert mueller who of course is a republican should be fired because he has hired some
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top investigators who are democrats. by that same logic, could it not be said that attorney general jeff sessions who is a clear republican, has given money to republicans, or fbi director christopher wray, who is a republican and has only given money to republicans, they support the president should they be questioned because they're republicans as opposed to the democrats you would question? >> i take exception to your premise. it is not my belief that robert mueller shbl fired because people on his team have sveu viewpoints. my concern is the bias that any person could bring to any job steam manifest in this case in a conspiracy to undermine the president of the united states. >> how? >> you have pete strzok and lis page talking about an insurance policy. >> and strzok was removed. >> but before that removal, he was interviewing mike flynn.
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he was engaged in other activity. you have people currently involved that defended the clinton foundation. with all the talented prosecutors we have, why would you go and include people who previously represented an entity that has such a close tie to one of the participant in the 2016 election is beyond me. so i think there is a mosaic of evidence here. not one particular donation or one particular party affiliation that illuminates tremendous bias that should stop this probe from going forward. >> one of the other issues at play is a lot of critics of robert mueller have been engage in the what seems to be speculative. for instance, last week there are the text messages between strzok and page. you just referenced them. they were released. there was a reference to a secret society. you, senator ron johnson, seized on it saying it was evidence of a conspiracy against the president at the fbi and d.o.j.
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you and others suggested that these missing texts were part of conspiracy. we've learned the reference to the secret society seems to have been made in jest when you look at the whole context. and the department of justice has recovered the missing messages. >> i would say that i was one of the first members of congress to say that i was skeptical the texts were in fact missing. i was citing back to a letter from december 13th that inspector general horwitz said that he was in possession of the text messages. i never held out the view that it was certain all the messages were gone. i believe there was a distinct possibility they were recoverable. as for the secret society comment, i don't believe there are any people he with cost zpu, wier
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costumes and rituals meeting. but beam bias? i think so. >> didn't you call at this time greatest since the immaculate conception in. >> that was probably not the best analogy i could have drawn. but i think it was an unfortunate coincidence, particularly when you look at the months that were covered. i think we'll learn a lot when we look at the text messages from the month of may. if there was a conspiracy, we would have seen evidence in the month of may. and i think we've seen evidence of the text messages so far of people getting zbet manifesting their bias in the false allegation against the president. >> people watching this all, days before the presidential next 2016, the fbi direct or came forward. he made an announcement that hillary clinton blames for her loss in the presidential loss. he said he was reexamining evidence in the investigation
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into her e-mail server. if you look at polls, it does seem to have had an effect. you're saying the same fbi that did that is biased against donald trump. it doesn't make any sense. >> it absolutely makes sense. if you take as a premise there were people at the fbi who fundamental will believed hillary clinton wobble president and they didn't want to make her mad, you could evidence that claim. not by what republicans have said but by what strzok and page said to each other. >> i'm talking about what many did ten days before the election. >> if there were people in the fbi, let's assume comey was one of them. you wouldn't want evidence to be sat on or not be disclose that had might be exculpatory. so i think that was a cya event. >> you're citing comey coming out ten days before the election saying he was resxoepg reexamining evidence in the fbi investigation into hillary clinton, you're saying he did
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that to help her? >> no, no. >> i'm not saying he did it to help her. i think he did it to help himself. i think he did it to have a narrative in the event these messages or e-mails that were on anthony weiner's computer, james comey didn't want that to be something that was dormant right before an election. so he released it into the public square. >> do you have any issue with him doing that ten days before the election? do you think that injected politics into the fbi? >> i think there's a lot that went on with mr. and many the decisions he made leading up to the mexico brings on scrutiny. i think it is part of why the president fired him. when we release this memo, we can have a thoughtful discussion about how an fbi director should act going forward. this is an event where mr. comey went rogue and did what he did withouter reference to the policies and procedures that should be followed in a serious
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investigation. >> thank you for your time. we appreciate it. >> thank you. breaking news on the sudden departure of andrew mccabe, he stepped down after pressure from the fbi director christopher wray, according to the "new york times." wray grew concerned about mccabe after reading an inspector general report on the 2016 investigations into hillary clinton's e-mail use and connections between trump campaign associates and russia. the "times" reports that write a suggested he be moved to another role but that would be a demotion since he is -- been jimmy's longest.
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back with breaking news. in terms of this nunes memo, the question is whether fbi officials because they have this bias cooked the books to get the surveillance warrants for carter page. couldn't president trump right now declassify not tonight surveillance warrant but any of the follow-up information, follow-up documentation that the fbi needed to provide and clear all this up so we can see what the facts are? >> well, the actual application would have to have the court approval as well. but all the information leading up to that affidavit, absolutely. this is where republicans are on a little shake why ground here. if they go ahead and release the sxhoim they're trying to make the case that they use the
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information they knew to be wrong and didn't report it to the judge, that may in fact happen. you'll have five sources to corroborate the information or draw the picture for the judge so he and she can make the decision. so i think what they're going to find happen is, here's my five reasons why i think it was a bad warrant. over time you'll get the full aspect of what that application for a warrant was. and those are pretty thorough. and d.o.j. people sign off on it, senior leadership sign off on it. i doubt they based it on a single source of information, of which they had paid for which could be a problem for them. i'm not saying, here's the other piece. if they believe this is a problem, if they believe the fbi purposely misused information to go to the fisa judge, that is a serious, serious crime. it is not just a shouldn't have
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done that. it's a crime. my argument is rather than a memo, do a full investigation, talk to the witnesses. talk to all the sources of information in there or least look at who they were. >> one of the things that i think is difficult for these specific house republicans is that every few months, we get one of these things. whether it is the secret society thing last week or the uranium are one or unmasking or obama wire attempted trump tower, it turns out to be a big goose egg. so maybe it should be looked into. it is so often not true. >> here's the thing that makes me not believe that there's a huge bombshell. if house republicans had evidence there is a deep state coup that threatens to undermine our democracy, wouldn't you get the memo out? wouldn't you pleek to a
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reporter? wouldn't you not be playing hide the ball with this ridiculous hashtag game? wouldn't you have a responsibility to save our democracy and put that money out? >> as soon as possible. yes. >> to touch on that, we do know that releasing the memo has been pushed by russian bots as well. >> all right. thanks for being here. president trump thinks the ice caps are breaking records in growing. your brain changes as you get older. but prevagen helps your brain with an ingredient originally discovered... in jellyfish. in clinical trials, prevagen has been shown to improve short-term memory. prevagen. the name to remember. luckily, office depot®not officemax® is hereeart. to take care of you. ♪ taking care of business with print services done right. on time. guaranteed! expert tech support. and this week all dell pcs are
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we're back with our earth matters lead comfortable the earth be both cooling and
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heating? president trump seems to think so. he told peers morgan that. he said the polar ice caps aren't melting either. >> do you believe in climate change? >> that question is one the overwhelming ma circuit court of scientists worldwide have answered. yes. climate change is real. >> when the president was asked? >> there is a cooling and a heating. it used to not be climate change. it used to be global warming. that wasn't working too well. it was getting too cold all over the place. the ice caps were going to melt. they would be gone but now they're setting records. they're at a record level. >> this is a scientist. she studied the environment for more than 25 years. does she believe in climate change? >> that's like asking if you believe in gravity. i know from the facts as a
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senior climate scientist that climate change is real and it is affecting us now. >> now back to president trump. let's start with this part of his response. >> there is a cooling and a heating. it used to not be climate change. it used to be global warming. >> it's always been climate change is that global warming. >> as a scientist we tend to use the term climate change because there are all sorts of changes on the planet, including global average temperatures rising over the long term. that latter part is called global warming. >> the president has a theory as to why global warming isn't used as much in his view. >> that wasn't work too well. it was getting too cold. >> it is not getting too cold. the global average temperatures for the earth is warming and that's a fact. >> take a look at this heat map from nasa showing rising frms 1884 to 2016. according to researchers, 16 of the 17 warmest years on record have occurred within the last 20
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years. and lastly, how about those changing ice caps? >> the ice caps were going to melt. they would be gone. but now they're setting records. ? according to noah, last year saw the second smallest annual sea lion level. this shows how quickly the ice is disappearing. >> we're losing vast tracks of arctic ice. just because it is westbound time doesn't mean you can point to the ice and say climate change isn't happen. that's just gobbledy gook. >> see why they could face the facts. nasa said. no keep in mind they get funding from the federal government which is led by president trump. perhaps every scientist was busy
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today or perhaps telling the truth about climate change might put you at risk with the administration in terms of your job. thank you for being here. be sure to follow me. tomorrow is the state of the union. union. don't forget to watch. -- captions by vitac -- happening now, hasty depart you. the number two of the fbi steps down. secret memo. the house intelligence committee meets right now and may vote very shortly to release a secret republican memo alleging surveillance abuses by the fbi. why the justice department said that would be extraordinarily reckless. congressional warnings. president trump tried to fire him once. now lawmakers warning a move to get rid of the special counsel would be