tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN November 27, 2018 7:00pm-8:00pm PST
i know that those in positions of power want to keep that power. but if we have, god forbid, situations like we saw last sunday, and if it's worse as the numbers get worse and the concentration of all those emotions get worse, we need people that we can count on to tell the truth. and i hope that that happens for this country. that's all for us tonight. thanks for watching. cnn tonight starts right now. >> thank you, sir. a lot to get to, so i'm going to move it along. i'll see you tomorrow. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. breaking news. early results coming in in the u.s. senate runoff? mississippi. republican senator cindy hyde-smith has the lead over the democrat there, who is mike espy. there are still a lot of votes to be counted. you might be wondering why all eyes are on this mississippi race tonight a full three weeks after election day. well, the answer -- three words. the blue wave. the blue wave that swept democrats into power in the house, and it stands right
now -- as it stands right now, democrats have picked up 39 seats in the house of representatives. that is the biggest gain in the house seats by democrats since watergate. but even that fact doesn't really capture what happened in these midterms. the cook political report has been keeping a tally of the votes cast for either party in house races across the country. and according to their latest count, democratic house candidates got over 9 million more votes than republican candidates. that is the largest margin in the history of midterm elections. democrats lead republicans by 8.1 percentage points. that's a bigger lead than republicans had in wave elections in 1994 and in 2010. and beyond the house, democrats picked up seven governorships, even winning in kansas, a state the president carried by almost 21 points and unseating republican scott walker in wisconsin. they picked up 332 state
legislative seats across this country, and that could still grow. since his press conference on november 7th, the president has insisted without evidence that he and the republicans had a good election night. make no mistake, there was a blue wave in america. plenty to discuss now. mr. john king is here. john, good evening to you. give us the latest. >> big blue wave in america, but perhaps not in mississippi tonight in the final contest of the 2018 midterms. let's just look, don. we're at 55%. the incumbent republican, she was an appointed senator, but she's the incumbent now. cindy hyde-smith with 55%. you see it here. mike espy, the democrat, former congressman, former bill clinton cabinet member, just shy of 45%. so almost 52,000 vote margin for cindy hyde-smith as you look at the map, and it's filling in. here's one safe bet. this will get just a little bit closer. why? this is mike espy's old congressional district in the western part of the state. you see all the blue. this is the most democratic part
of the state, a heavy african-american population. the problem for mike espy is he needs to not only run up margins here, they're pretty good, 72% in this county. 67% here with half of the vote in. he needs to not only run up those margins, he needs to turn out. one other thing, if you look at the espy campaign, they're saying we'll get closer here because hinds county, a little more than half still to be counted. this is just around jackson that espy is running up there. if you're in the espy headquarters, you're saying, okay, that's not great. it's going to get a little bit closer. the question is can you get it close enough? is the democratic turnout in the western part of the state going to be enough and that's a big challenge. let's look in the jackson suburbs. this is a pretty respectable showing in madison county. 44%. down here closer to jackson, you have affluent suburbs we saw in the alabama win last year for the democrats in the south. we saw throughout this blue wave
year in house races. the president struggles with republican voters, especially moderate women, in the suburbs. so that's a respectable showing. is it enough to get mike espy over the finish line? that's how we'll count them up as we get closer. you move over here and see a much bigger win in the eastern jackson suburbs. it's more conservative territory, cindy hyde-smith doing what she needs to do there. one more quick point about mississippi. this is one of the places the president visited, cindy hyde-smith running up pretty good numbers here. why do we say that? this is three weeks ago. we're here tonight because there were four candidates three weeks ago. so 48%, 20%, 68%, right? the republican vote in this area three weeks ago. let's come back. remember, 68%. she's getting just shy of that now. did the president help? a lot of those chris mcdaniel voters not fans of cindy hyde-smith. at least the president will be able to make the argument he got those tea party voters who might not love her to realize you got to come vote today. we're up to 59% now. 59% as the map fills in.
for mike espy to pull off a miracle when these counties come in, not only the margins, the turnout has to be huge. possible? yes. bet on it? i wouldn't. >> so you showed us where espy needs to run up the total if he stands a chance. but i got to ask you, we're looking at usually a ruby red state. to have these sorts of numbers, what does it say about what's going on, john? >> look, this is not just the president. she's not a great candidate. as you've talked about for the last couple of weeks, she said some pretty horrible things, at least from a national perspective. we're going to see tonight how the verdict goes on some of these racially charged comments in mississippi. she has a state that's republican party has become more tea party. she's more establishment. so it's not just president trump. but if you have a ten-point race, let's assume it gets a little bit closer. republicans will celebrate that. that means they will have 53 seats in the united states senate next year. easier for the president to get a new attorney general. easier for the president to get other nominees confirmed. however, in mississippi, she's
on the ballot again in two years if she wins tonight. this is to fill the remaining term. t this is not an overjoyous night if this is the margin that holds up in the state of mississippi. a win is a win, don't mistake that. but it's another sign even in mississippi, you just talked about the big blue wave. the republican party has problems just about everywhere. >> let me ask you this, then. you said the republicans, they have problems just about everywhere. let's talk about overall because not a lot has gone well for republicans in terms of the house since election day. so catch us up on where we stand right now. >> sure. let me come out of here, and let me close this out. this is our house map. this is the big house map if you look at it right now. these are the called races. there's one left out in california where the democrat has actually pulled ahead. we're not ready to call that tonight. the democrat has pulled ahead in recent days in another republican district. right now 234 to 200. 435 seats for there's one left.
that's 42 pickups minus three. a net gain at the moment of 39. 39 for the democrats. that's a blue wave. that is a blue wave, and it could get to 40. so what do we do when we look at this? number one, the democrats are winning everywhere, not just wiping out the republicans in new england but picking up a seat in oklahoma, picking up seats out -- a seat here in kansas. that's one way to look at it. let me show you something else, don. republicans, the reason ronald reagan, george h.w. bush, then george bush, the republican party of those days was anchored in the suburbs, including suburban women who cared about low taxes, schools, crime. let me show you something about what happened in this election. let's bring this out and take a look. number one, let's look at the big 2016 to 2018 flips. these are the republican held seats or the democrat held seats if it's red. these are seats that flipped from one party to another. now let me bring that back out and show you this. let's collate in now the top suburban districts. of the 39 the democrats have tonight, maybe 40 when that california race is done, the pickup, right? look at this, democratic
pickups, more than half of what the democrats are getting are these suburban districts and they go coast to coast. coast to coast the democrats have taken away the suburbs, which are fast growing in the united states, which are where most competitive statewide elections are won. one quick point, orange is literally the new blue, as in orange county, which used to be ronald reagan rock red republican. the california republican party, we talked about the national republican party. this republican party in this state has been in trouble for a long time. it is just on life support after this cycle. >> orange county traditionally very conservative. thank you, john. appreciate it. we'll get back. we're going to keep following. listen, it's not over yet. it ain't over, as we say, till it's over. let's bring in harry entin, mark preston, and nia-malika henderson. the numbers are what they are right now. again, until it's called, it's not over yet. mark, give us your thoughts on how things are looking in mississippi. >> a couple things. we shouldn't be surprised by what we're seeing as the outcome
right now. we know mississippi is a rock solid red republican state. having said that, though, there are major red flags being put up. john just discussed those and talked about how democrats are winning across the country. let me put this in perspective when we talk about changing demographics and how things can change in the country. if you look in the south right now and you look in georgia, you look in texas, you look in florida, you saw three states where democrats almost won major seats, whether it be a senate seat or a governorship. what did all those candidates have in common? they were absolute long shots to even be in contention for those seats, and they were all minorities. you add mike espy to that list as well. you now have four candidates. let assume espy does lose, who were very, very close. why is this a problem for republicans? it all comes down to math. you need 270 electoral votes, don, to become president of the united states. let's just say in a decade these demographics change a little bit, and we see that georgia,
texas, and florida flip and they become democratic states. all you have to do is add in california, which we know is very liberal, new york, which we know is very liberal, and you are only 103 electoral vote as way from being the president of the united states. that's with only a handful of states. >> let's continue to talk about mississippi. i want to bring harry in. does espy have a path to victory right now? >> i don't see it based upon everything that i'm seeing that. shouldn't be a huge surprise, right? the polling average heading into this runoff had hyde-smith leading by mid single digits. based upon the votes left out, we should see espy close the gap. but look at the results that occurred earlier this month. you try and predict them based on whether or not the incumbent is running. that would have predicted hyde-smith would win by seven percentage points and that's looking like what we'll end up at this point. >> you are the political forecaster but just to me as a
person who sits here and sort of is a moderator of the political debates, to see this -- these sorts of numbers in mississippi, as i said to john, it's surprising to me. >> i think it is somewhat surprising insofar as this is a state where a democratic senate candidate hasn't won since 1982. i democratic gubernatorial has not received a majority of the votes since 1987. you have to go all the way back to the '50s for a democratic presidential candidate to receive a majority of the vote. so the fact that espy was at least somewhat closer than you might have expected given the first rounding of voting when the democrats only added up to 42% of the vote does indicate to me that some of hyde-smith's comments might have hurt her. >> let's dig in a little more about that. listen, if she does inwith,win, is a win. her cements aboomments about at public hanging, do you think these dog whistles had an impact? >> marginally.
i think the major way they had an impact is it drew the national spotlight to this campaign in mississippi and also allowed mike espy to make a closing argument about why people should vote for him, which is to say that essentially cindy hyde-smith wouldn't be good for mississippi's reputation. obviously it's a deep south state and has struggled to embrace sort of this new south reputation. so i think that in some ways was a good thing for his candidacy. but i think in the end, we're going to see a state do what a state like mississippi would do, which is to say we're going to see a very racially polarized electorate, likely 80% of white voters in mississippi are going to pull the lever for cindy hyde-smith, and over 80% of black voters will vote for mike espy. that's just how mississippi is. everything in that race in terms of politics, everything in that state in terms of politics has often been about race, right? i mean white people fled the democratic party and became
republicans over the issue of race. so if you're a mississippian, you're sort of used to this language around race and dog whistling and signaling around race. but in the ernd, nd, it will li be the same outcome here. but certainly some warning signs, i think, for republicans in this state, and certainly i think probably some regrets that they did put forth cindy hyde-smith, who is a weak candidate and likely ended up in this position because mississippi is a state that has never had a woman before cindy hyde-smith represent them in congress, either in the senate or in the house of representatives. so if she wins tonight, she's going to make some history tonight. >> mark, a win by smith would mean that we're looking at a 53-47 republican majority in the senate, and the president went down there, campaigned hard for her as he did for many red-state senators. is this senate his red wall? >> well, it certainly -- i mean he's going to need the senate. he's going to need mitch mcconnell to have as much
breathing room as possible to try to get some things done. but nothing is going to get done unless house democrats and senate republicans can actually come together on some issues. it doesn't appear that they can. but you can never say never. so operationally, this win is more important for someone like mitch mcconnell because he needed that extra republican senator. now, we all know that president trump is going to be tweeting and talking about how he delivered this race to cindy hyde-smith. what's interesting about her is that she entirely embraced trump. i mean she might as well have been like trump woman, right? i mean that was her whole campaign. >> wasn't her bus something like the maga bus that she drove around in? >> she went hard. he'll look at that and say, look, she embraced me. she won. mia love didn't embrace me. she lost. doesn't make sense. doesn't make it true. but that's the reality of what he's going to say. >> i want everybody to stick with us for the latest results on the senate runoff in mississippi. as we've been saying, the vote counting is under way, and all
of this is happening as the president is doubling down on his assault on the truth tonight. wait until you hear what he is saying now about his own administration's climate change report. (honking) when your craving strikes, you need your wing nut. ( ♪ ) no one can totally satisfy a craving, quite like your wing nut.
the trump white house tonight continuing its assault on the truth. its strategy of just refusing to accept the facts when they don't fit with the president's world view. of refusing to accept what the members of his own administration tell him. trump sitting down for an interview with "the washington post" today. summing up his feelings about his own administration's climate report. 1,656 pages of facts, science, and really frightening predictions about what could happen as temperatures continue to rise. the president saying, quote, one of the problems that a lot of people like myself, we have very high levels of intelligence, but we're not necessarily such believers. you look at our air and our
water, and it's right now at a record clean. so a report by 13 federal agencies, written by 1,000 people, including 300 leading scientists, one that lays out the real danger to americans and our economy if global warming continues -- this president just doesn't believe it. listen to what sarah sanders said today. >> it's not based on facts. it's based on -- it's not data-driven. we'd like to see something that is more data-driven, that's based on modeling, which is extremely hard to do when you're talking about the climate. >> this president and his white house, they think that they can just dismiss the overwhelming consensus of the scientific community that climate change is caused by human activity, and their assault on the facts continues. this is the national security adviser john bolton's answer. you have to listen to this if you didn't see it live today. his question on whether he has even listened to the tape that
captured part of the murder of "washington post" journalist jamal khashoggi. >> no, i haven't listened to it, and i guess i should ask you why do you think i should? what do you think i'll learn from it? >> well, you're the national security adviser. you might have access to that sort of intelligence. >> how many in this room speak arabic? yeah. >> you don't have access to an interpreter? >> well, you want me to listen to it? what am i going to learn from -- i mean if they were speaking korean, i wouldn't learn anything more from it either. >> an interpreter would be able to tell you what is going on. >> i could read a transcript too. >> you don't think it's important to hear that as the national security adviser? >> i'm just trying to make the point to everyone that says listen to the tape, unless you speak arabic, what are you going to get from it? >> no one in that room is the national security adviser but him. isn't that kind of his job to listen to that? i suppose that it is no surprise that john bolton doesn't want to
listen to that tape. it might reveal the horror of what this white house is willing to tolerate from the saudis. neither does his boss. >> we have the tape. i don't want to hear the tape. no reason for me to hear the tape. >> the president continues to make excuses for mohammed bin salman even though his own cia has concluded the saudi crown prince personally ordered khashoggi's murder. and sarah sanders falsely claims to cnn's jim acosta that the intelligence community hasn't given them enough information. >> on khashoggi, you said that was not true, that he doesn't believe the cia. he said the other day maybe mbs did, maybe he didn't, the crown prince. >> and we haven't seen definitive evidence come from our intelligence community that ties him directly to that. >> but in the face of all that, the white house press secretary
insists this president has faith in his own intelligence community, even though he regularly ignores and contradicts them. >> the president has a great deal of faith in the intelligence community, and certainly in the team that he has assembled around him. >> this is the very same president who stood next to vladimir putin in helsinki and said he didn't see any reason russia would interfere in our election, taking the russian president's word over his own intelligence chief. >> my people came to me, dan coats came to me and some others. they said they think it's russia. i have president putin. he just said it's not russia. i will say this. i don't see any reason why it would be. >> fact. it's russia. and then there's the russia investigation. the president on his favorite rant tonight, falsely claiming the investigation is a witch
hunt, which is not true no matter how many times he says it. the numbers prove it. three people have been sentenced to prison. six have pleaded guilty. 35 people and entities have been charged with a total of 191 crimes. but it's not surprising the president is on that rant again tonight, or ever. in the wake of a report in the guardian today that former trump campaign chairman paul manafort had secretly met several times with julian assange inside ecuador's embassy in london, including around the time he took the top spot with the campaign. manafort has strongly denied ever meeting with assange, calling the report, quote, totally false and deliberately libellous. and we'll have a lot more on that in a moment to tell you about. but it comes after special counsel robert mueller accused manafort of repeatedly lying to
his team and to the fbi. the president's attorney, rudy giuliani, tells cnn that trump has been upset for weeks about the treatment of manafort. giuliani suggesting that manafort is being punished by being put in solitary confinement. the president himself was blunt in his tweet just a few months back, attempting to defend manafort by comparing his treatment to al capone or, as he said, alfonse capone. but the fact is -- again facts. manafort is in solitary for his own protection, and facts matter. truth matters despite this president's continuing assault on the truth. a lot to dig into. david axelrod, ryan lizza, and april ryan are all here. stay with us.
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. >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. here's our breaking news, and it's a projection. cnn projects republican cindy hyde-smith is the winner over democrat mike espy in the runoff senate race in mississippi. mr. john king is here. this is the final senate race of the midterms, and it goes to cindy hyde-smith. >> it goes to cindy hyde-smith, don, in a state president trump carried by 18 points two years ago. cindy hyde-smith at the moment a little over ten-point margin there. so republicans will say a win is a win. democrats will say they made a pretty good run here. now, we're calling this race because we've gone through this, and there is no way. cindy hyde-smith will win this race. i will say it's possible the margin will get a little bit closer as the final votes come in. why do i say that? you see a lot of gray here in
the western part of the state. there's blue all around it. this is where mike espy's old congressional district was out here. democratic areas that have yet to report. but they're pretty small. you look down here, jefferson county, less than 1% of the state population. adams county, just over 1% of the state population, and so on as you look out here at these democratic counties. cindy hyde-smith by running it up in these red areas here. this is biloxi where president trump was on the eve of the runoff. neighboring counties here, 60%. so in places where the president visited -- he was also in tupelo last night. nearly 70%, more than two-thirds of the vote there. only half in. so cindy hyde-smith could get more votes here as well. it is a double-digit margin right now. in the end we know it will be a win for the republicans. there will be a lot of talk about whether that's a weak win. cindy hyde-smith will have to run for re-election in two years. she's finishing an uncompleted senate term so she'll be back on the ballot. but this is the big picture as
we have one house race still 20 count. we now democrats have a net gain of 39. republicans will find this as their only solace. 53 republican seats come january. there are currently 51. so they will have a net plus two. six to eight weeks ago, some republicans thought they could get plus four, plus five. they didn't get that. they will get a plus two. president trump, majority leader mitch mcconnell, will have some more space, if you will, to deal with in the republican family as the president nominates a new attorney general, perhaps as more judicial nominations come through. so the trump agenda will have an easier path in the senate. the irony is of course when we look at that house blue wave, the trump agenda will face a dead end, roadblock, full stop in a democratic house come january. >> john king, thank you very much. you can get a little rest now. as we said, this is the last one to be called. but there's still more to do. john, thank you. i'll see you on inside politics tomorrow. thank you, my friend. so, listen, a big week for the mueller investigation, also
in the wake of this stunning climate report at the white house tonight. president trump also giving an extraordinary interview to "the washington post" full of false claims, including doubling down on that climate change -- on his climate change denial. let's bring in david axelrod, ryan lizza, and april ryan. good evening to all of you. there will be lots of analysis to come on the race down in mississippi, but i want to talk about this "washington post." let's start with this. david, the president is telling the post, i have a gut, and my gut tells me more sometimes than anybody else's brain can ever tell me. okay? so he was talking about his annoyance with the fed, and then on climate change, and he says that he has a very high level of intelligence though he's not a believer. you're calling that absolutely ludicrous, right? >> yeah. well, it is absolutely
ludicrous, and if you go on to read his quotes on this, they're completely incomprehensible about, you know, garbage in the ocean and a whole variety of things that have nothing to do with climate change. look, i have a pretty substantial gut myself, but i know that on issues like this, scientists are almost unanimous, virtually unanimous, on the situation, and his scientists are unanimous on this issue. the fed was set up to be an independent body, and his nominee was acting, as far as i can see, responsibly in how he was handling his role. and the president is trying to shift blame because of what gm did yesterday. now, the truth of the matter is that his trade policies had as much to do with what gm did as anything else. you know, their costs have gone up a billion dollars because of the tariffs that he's placed on the materials they need to build their cars. but basically they made a
long-term bet. my question is what is the business community thinking tonight, some of whom have been very supportive of him as he talks about meddling with the fed, as he condemns gm for their business decision? you know, i think what he thinks is that his base wants him to hit somebody. they don't want him to take any responsibility. they don't want him to say that there were reasons that this happened, and so he's chosen the fed to blame. >> it's interesting what you said because when you read his quotes, you wonder does he actually know what climate change is? there's a difference between climate change and the environment and the ocean. both are very important, but it seems like he's muddling the two and getting it confused, and it's all jumbled up and he's not exactly sure what he's talking about. but i digress. ryan, let me ask you this. it is no secret that president trump thinks he knows best about
just about everything. take a listen to this. >> when you look at the trade deals -- and nobody knows it better than me. nobody knows more about construction than i do. nobody knows the politicians better than i do. believe me. nobody knows more about environmental impact statements than me. so a general gets on sent obviously by obama. he says, mr. trump doesn't understand. he knows nothing about defense. i know more about offense and defense than they will ever understand, believe me. i know more about isis than the generals do, believe me. >> believe me. listen, that same sentiment comes through in "the washington post" interview when he's talking about his, quote, high levels of intelligence, ryan. >> yeah. look, he's spent his whole career with that kind of bluster, right? i mean that's always what -- i grew up in new york in the '80s and, you know, donald trump was on the front pages of the tabloids all the time. so i remember this from my youth, this kind of ridiculous bluster. didn't expect it to be in a
president, especially with trump. but, look, just to get back to the main theme of the segment about the lying, i mean we talk about trump lying every day, and we've all noticed that in the last six to eight months, his amount of lying has increased, right? he's got, you know, full-time fact checkers working in overdrive every day. and why is that? why does he lie more than he ever has? why is the lying getting worse? i think the obvious answer is because he gets away with it, right? you know, you have democrats calling him out. you have the press calling him out, but his own party explains it away and frankly doesn't really care all that much. and until that cracks, until people in his own party consistently care that the president of the united states is a liar and lies every single day to the american public,
until they step up and on a daily basis put some pressure on him not to do it, there's no reason for him not to be who he is because he believes he has succeeded with that strategy. >> this is a whole other show, but mark my words. we'll be sitting here maybe two, three years, maybe a little bit longer, who knows. a democrat may be doing the same thing, god forbid, and you'll watch these same republicans, many of the people who are in the briefing room, many of the people we see on television. you're going to watch their heads blow off when a democrat does the same thing. i'm telling you, karma is a you know what because it will happen. mark my words. april, speaking of the briefing room, jaw-dropping moment a couple of times in the briefing room. one was with john bolton, but sarah sanders dismissed this climate change report. bolton got testy over the khashoggi murder tape. the white house's assault on the truth on full display.
>> yeah. don, today was -- we hadn't had a briefing in about a month, and today was very astonishing on several levels. and i just want to go to the khashoggi statement from bolton. for many who are in the intelligence community, that was a very thin statement because, one, if you are the national security adviser, you're advising the president of issues like this, world issues like this that have far-reaching ramifications. and we have seen video and pictures of presidents looking at horrific incidents in realtime. we, as americans, have -- remember those videos a couple of years ago, those horrible videos, the decapitations. and many people in the national security community watched these things to be able to inform the president of the united states
so he can make a well-informed decision, not a knee-jerk decision. and if you really want to dig deep in this, i think about an analogy someone gave me today. they said, you know, if he wanted to get a transcript, you know, that's fine. but, you know, to make the point that a person needs to see or be there to get the understanding of it, think about this. if president trump decides to go to a rally, let's say mississippi. the mississippi rallies he attended. he could have just sent a transcript, but we wouldn't have gotten the full essence of what it was if he sent a transcript versus being there. so to watch this, to give the president an understanding to make an informed decision, that's missing because it was done in arabic. it's very thin for people in the national intelligence community. >> yeah. the looks on the faces of the reporters in the room, i mean i'm sure it matched the people who were watching around the country if not around the world. my jaw dropped when i heard it.
thank you all. we've got the latest on former trump campaign chairman paul manafort to talk about, denying the bombshell report that he met with julian assange right around the time he joined the trump campaign. that's next. we're about to move. karate helps... relieve some of the house-buying... stress. at least you don't have to worry about homeowners insurance. call geico. geico... helps with... homeowners insurance? been doing it for years. i'm calling geico right now. good idea! get to know geico. and see how easy homeowners and renters insurance can be.
campaign, right wing conspiracy theorist jerome corsi sent an e-mail to former trump campaign adviser roger stone anticipating the document dump. according to the documents he wrote on august 2nd, 2016, this is what he wrote. word is friend in embassy plans two more dumps. one shortly after i'm back. second in october. impact planned to be very damaging. wikileaks released john podesta's e-mails in october. just a coincidence? also tonight, new information that paul manafort was keeping the president's legal team updated with developments on the special counsel? evan perez here to break it all down for us. evan, wow, this is a lot. good evening to you. how unusual is it that a witness cooperating with the special counsel investigation be allowed to go back, talk to the lawyers of a key player, in this case the president? is that basically like having an inside track on the investigation? something's wrong here. >> well, it kind of is. but i think in this case, the
mueller team certainly, i think, don, was aware that some of this was happening because rudy giuliani can't help himself and has certainly been talking to journalists and had made it clear that he was getting information from the manafort team. >> so they knew this, then? if they were watching the news, they knew it? >> i do believe they would have known this. by the way, in some of the other plea agreements that they've had, they have explicitly put gag orders into these documents. in this case they did not do that. so it seems to me at least that the mueller team was aware of this. i think what might have upset them, however, was that giuliani has been going on television, has been going in the media saying that manafort was not giving up anything on the president, that he was essentially not cooperating fully. and so that, i think, might have upset the special counsel robert mueller. >> evan, i want to talk to you about your new reporting tonight about a blowup between the president's legal team and the special counsel. >> well, yeah. right.
it has to do with those e-mails that you were just talking about, jerome corsi. part of what happened here was the president's legal team learned about this potential plea deal with jerome corsi with the special counsel, and they learned that some of these documents that jerome corsi was going to essentially sign, don, really had a reference to the president, in which they said that someone was in touch with the president. and just the fact that it mentioned the president by name when no one else was mentioned in the document really upset the president and his legal team. keep in mind they were working on this take-home test, remember the answers, the written answers to the mueller questions that they were getting ready to respond to. this is just before thanksgiving, so they learned about this jerome corsi documents that sara murray got her hands on today, so they put a stop to it. they said, we are not going to respond. we are not going to send back the written questions to the
mueller team until we get a hold of what exactly is happening here. and i think this is what happened behind the scenes. there were these conversations with the mueller team to try to understand whether or not there was something else at work here. and really what it shows us is that they're getting all this information just as you talked about. they're getting this information from other sources, and it was affecting their own negotiations with the mueller team behind the scenes, don. >> interesting. evan, thank you. i appreciate your reporting. >> sure. i want to bring in now john dean and phil mudd. good evening, gentlemen. so let's get your reaction, john, first. your reaction to paul manafort updating the president's legal team on his contact with mueller. an attorney for paul manafort obviously. >> yes. "the new york times" reported this earlier, and it's kevin downing. that's the lawyer who was involved in this, and he's playing a very dangerous game. during watergate, the most experienced criminal defense
lawyer represented e. howard hunt. he ended up, because of doing just what this -- a very similar action, an unindicted co-conspirator and got himself in a whole heap of trouble. came within a hair's esso there's a line here, don. generally when you have a joint defense agreement, once your client is cooperating, you no longer are part of that agreement. >> does this mean, phil, that manafort was essentially informing the president about what mueller knows where he was claiming to be cooperating but actually lying? >> i think so. we're still missing just a quarter piece of the puzzle, don. i look at this, the cooperation between manafort and the white house, that doesn't surprise me. the question i still have, mostly in terms of that cooperation between the white house and the manafort team, centers on one key issue. we know the russians were involved in interfering with the
election. we know that partly as a result of the mueller investigation. we had the russian military intelligence indicted. we know that wikileaks was the party that revealed the information, the step beat had was, who was interacting with wikileaks. we know it's roger stone now. we also know there are conversations maybe with the ecuadorian president. we're still a quarter step away. does manafort or someone affiliated with him know that information of val wu was passed? did wikileaks tell manafort or somebody else, this is when we're going to release it, was there coordination between the parties. we're still missing that, don. >> so you know, evan called it the take-home test. we know the president's sent his written answers to mueller last week. do you think mueller was waiting to reveal manafort was lying till after trump submitted his answers? >> well, given the fact we know
this happened in mid-november, that they came up short and were not going to play anymore because of manafort's behavior and his disassembling, it looks like that's exactly what they did. they asked for a ten-day delay. during that is when the president completed his answers. i guess they didn't want to shake the tree or have anything come out that would scare the president and result in not getting those answers. they wanted him on record it appears. >> let's dig in a little more here on something, phil. the thing about there guardian report that are paul manafort wet with julian assange multiple times during the 2016 campaign, manafort strongly is denying that it. if this is true, if it's true, how big of a deal is that? >> i think it's huge. look, i'm suspicious of this. if manafort is lying, he's looking at the special counsel
knowing the special counsel has information like, what is manafort's travel schedule like? did we ever talk to the british? did u.s. authorities talk to the british and ask them whether anybody named manafort ever walked into the uk at that time? did other people who were interviewed talk about manafort travel or a series of visits to the uk to talk about assange? i'm suspicious of the report. don, if it's true, i mentioned earlier we're half a step away from determining that somebody involved with the campaign was getting information from wikileaks. if it's true, you'd have to persuade me with a lot of money that manafort didn't walk in there and conduct some kind of negotiation about getting information from wikileaks. why did he travel to london unless there was a deal. >> let me be clear, i'm suspicious of there report. show me the money. i don't see it yet, don. i've got see more. >> thank you, phil, thank you, john. we'll be right back.
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ingenious space- neat nest™ by fasaving design. all designed to stack and protect the lids, and the pan surface. farberware neat nest™. stacked & intact™ this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. breaking election news to tell you about. cn florida projects republican senator cindymide significant is the winner of the multiple sclerosis election defeating mike espy a former congressman and agriculture secretary. that is on the big revelation, a big revelations about the mueller investigation. the president, his attorney rudy giuliani says paul manafort kept trump's lawyers updated on developments with