tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN September 20, 2019 8:00pm-9:00pm PDT
don lemon. we have five big headlines in the hour ahead. a source telling cnn president trump pressured ukraine president in a phone call back in july to investigate joe biden's son. we have all the details for you. also tonight the united states sending additional troops to saudi arabia following the attack on the oil field. and in the 2020 race, the count down is onto the iowa caucus. democratic candidates attend a steak fry. as the attacks ramp up. also ahead the patriots fire window receiver antonio brown amidrape allegations. a young african american terrorized by white supremacists. she took them on and won. >> the fact i'm able to still speak out against it, is the part that drives them crazy. i love it the most. that gives me strength. because every time we think
about how activities are happening non-stop around the country and world. that's the fuel for me. so long as they'll keep going we have to keep going too. >> we'll get to that this hour. first the big picture. president trump pressured ukraine president to investigate joe biden's son. here to discuss, susan glasser. ryan and michael isikoff. i'll start with you. the wall street journal is saying the president pressured ukraine president about eight times in the call. is this an abuse of power? >> if as reported, it certainly an abuse of office. the president is using his office as president of the united states to pressure a foreign leader to give him ammunition against the political opponent. it's hard to find something quite as serious as that up to now. the question is, it's the ball
game is that transcript of the phone call. we can have press reports of it and former officials describe it. until we see the wording in the transcript, i'm not sure -- that's needed to move the ball forward. so the question is, how are we going to get the transcript? we can wait for somebody in the intelligence community to leak it. we can let adam schiff go forward with the trying to get that complaint from the inspector general. i'm not sure that schiff is going to be able to make it public. he's bound by intelligence community rules. that he all this would be classified behind closed doors. seems to me the only way we'll see that transcript which isn't the ball game is for the house judiciary to go to court, as soon as possible. subpoena the transcript. and hope to get a federal judge who will say i can't rule on
this without actually seeing the document. most likely under seal. but that moves us closer to seeing what was actually said in that phone call. >> let's bring ryan in. if reported if this is true, is this an essence the president colluding with another country to win the 2020 election? haven't we been down this road? >> it's worse he's attempting to collude. there's no evidence the ukraine leader was on board with this or agreeing. imagine the position that he was in. the president of the united states dangling foreign aid in front of him when his country is has been invaded by russia. is constantly paranoid about putin's intentions in the region. and not only does he have trump befriending pumping up putin in all sorts of way, then he has
the american president pressuring him to essentially help his reelection campaign. with perhaps the understanding that the u.s. is not going to back ukraine if he doesn't. so it's the president attempting to get that collusion. we don't know exactly what the ukraine response here was. it's even worse than the russians coming to the united states and trying to get the trump people to do things. as michael said, this is the definition -- if this is all true, this is the definition of abuse of power. it's using your office not to benefit the united states. but to benefit yourself. and win an election. >> the writing has been on the wall for quite sometime. this president has been obsessed with ukraine. >> that's right. first of all it's an out growth of his own obsession with 2016 and the russian intervention.
interestingly the wall street journal reported there were two requests that rudy giuliani and trump were making of the ukrainen. one to investigate joe biden's son. and the other was to investigate what role ukraine may have played in what he thinks is trying to fuel the charges against paul manafort and the russia collusion narrative. and the other part doesn't get as much as attention. it goes to president trump mind set in his obsession. i want to make the point that even what we already know is absolutely pretty mind blowing. without the transcript. i agree that it's important to see how explicit to the aid for example the arms funds. now, even if he wasn't, what president trump already said, what rudy giuliani already said. they were sending the preside
president's personal lawyer privately and publicly demanding an investigation of the opponent. this is extraordinary. he's already been publicly demanding that ukraine investigate his political opponent. this is unprecedented in and of itself it seems to me already. this is without knowing what the whistleblower allegation. >> alleged in the interview. >> we're so -- this is a trump moment we can't process this. because actually it's so big that words and comparisons defie it. the idea of a president going to a foreign power and demanding that they get involved in our election. we already know that part. >> i know you want to jump in. let me play this and you can respond. this is what president trump said about the call in the oval office. >> did you discuss joe biden's son or family. >> it doesn't matter what i discussed. somebody ought to look into his
statement. it was disgraceful. >> it doesn't matter. the president says no evidence. biden's threat to with hold to the aid in ukraine was retaliation for the prosecutor investigating biden's son. who worked for ukraine gas company. does he fear biden is the biggest competitor? >> in july he did -- trump has been relative will silent about biden. since this period. he hasn't actually weighed in as much in the democratic primary. a lot of people around him saying stop talking about joe biden. you're helping him win the primary. every time he hit biden, it helps him. every other democrat defends biden. i think this is a legacy of the summer when trump was obsessed with biden. but -- let me leave it there.
>> well, no, a couple things. susan is right. the fact that rudy giuliani was going over there meeting with the ukrainen officials making the same argument. and demand that they investigate. as the president's personal lawyer. was he's acting as an extension of the president. he's the personal representative. that gives credence to the report the president himself was making the same nand his personal representative was already making of the ukrainen officials. it's -- the totality of that is i totally agree with what she said. is stunning. the question is what do you do with it, how do you move it forward. it's so important. the transcript is going to be
like the tapes were during water gate. if the congress can get a hold of them. if they can be made public. they could be the smoking gun. >> the time line here, president trump spoke with ukraine president the day after robert mueller testified before congress and the resignation of the former dni dan coats was announced three days after that. one day after mueller is that shameless? >> president trump is obsessed with the investigation of him. and has been from the beginning. he has a sense that a grudge against ukraine is how various sources have described it. he thinks they're against me there. and i'm trying to reopen relations with russia. and it's also in the same period throughout the summer leading up to the g7. the president once again said that russia should be readmitted
to the g7. even though they continue to be at war through the proxy in eastern yukraine. they have continued to take over the crimea peninsula. this isn't just some random foreign country he's intervening in. the significance of this is unbelievable. the aid that president trump is holding up is cited by republican allies and people in his own administration. as the only significant evidence that actually the trump administration was standing up to russia. and appears trump doesn't support that. and of course he doesn't really support his own administration policy towards russia. >> michael, the pentagon announcing it will send additional troops to saudi arabia after the president slap new sanctions on iran. do you think the response is enough? >> look, i think that -- it's not clear exactly how many troops are supposed to be a
modest amount. but what's pretty surprising for that is in is the president trying to withdraw from the middle east. and bring troops back. that's been consistent all along. and now he's having to reverse that by sending troops in. it is a total reversal of where he's been trying to go. but, why did this happen? this has been blow back for his policies. to impose sanctions on iran and scrap the nuclear agreement. so in some ways his hard line stance against iran has under cut what he was trying to do in the middle east. withdraw troops. >> thank you all. something different about michael. i can't put my finger on it. >> for now. >> all right. hairy. see you.
>> what was the 70s thing? >> wolf man. >> no. >> it was a show with a wolf. thank you all. things are heating up in iowa. 11,000 people expected for the democratic party steak fry in des moines. tomorrow and 17 presidential hopefuls will be there. we'll tell you which top candidate is going after another. that's next.
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quote -- no bottom to trumps willingness to abuse his power. what you think of this? >> i think it's true. of course why wouldn't he? he hasn't been held accountable for anything. they stretch limits. stretch the limits of executive power. a lot of people in congress are thinking about rewriting the laws and the constitution. they just the founders never imagine somebody would test the guardrails like the president. he keeps pushing it further. >> rudy giuliani admitted you heard -- that is still just egregious in itself. >> for sure. but again, will it bother trump supporters? i doubt it. >> biden is a front runner. democrats don't have a nominee yet. no matter who it is, how are they going to fight the president. his campaign tactics are scorched earth tactics.
>> i think with you don't try to beat him. you do something completely different. let's say pete buttigieg or warren or harris. just the trump isn't used to. biden he gets. you can see that contest. and see how trump would handle it. and deal with it. he's not good at dealing with the unknown. some of the candidates are interesting and different and it will be interesting. >> it may throw him off. >> the iowa caucus is closer each day. candidates are starting to really focus on the state. starting with a big steak fry this weekend. what are people saying there? >> i think that people are looking for someone who can beat trump. and it's interesting because i have been having conversations with people who i consider progressive. and feminist and women who are asking questions like do you think america is ready for a
woman president? there's this great sense of fear that the person has to be able to beat trump. that's the most important element. and at the same time that's playing out there's a really interesting surge in sort of identity group politics where there was an lgbtq forum. for the presidential candidates in cedar rapids. a youth forum on sunday. a steak fry tomorrow. there's something else which is a progressive group around economic reform. there are a lot of groups getting jazzed and excited about this race. ones that identify as a minority in some way. and another sector people are worried that if it's a minority it can't win the mainstream. it's interesting. i think they're going to be looking for who wows the crowd. and fires them up. to the extent they want to turn out to vote. >> interesting. things got heated and off track at biden's iowa climate town
hall. a woman accused him of siding can insurance companies. he told the audience member she has a good candidate in bernie. and he said this. >> if you're willing to pay and i respect you, if you're willing to pay the extra taxes and you think you get more for that. that's good. but let's acknowledge. it's going to cost a lot of money. >> there he goes after senator warren. who has been taking some heat from some of the other candidates over support from medicare for all. and how she'll pay for the plan. you were in iowa this week. what are people saying. is there a momentum for warren? >> no question. crowds are huge. a lot of energy and momentum. i was always important as we know the first contest that happens. it's more important this time. new hampshire is also traditionally important. not as much as this time.
sanders and warren are from neighboring states. it's already baked into the pie that expectation one of them will probably win that state. it makes whoever wins iowa that more important. you can arguably say who ever wins iowa will run the board and take it. it will be the launching pad. there's so much heat and energy there particularly from progressives. and that's where elizabeth warren is getting her lift. >> so goes iowa so goes the country? >> highly likely. >> cnn reporting kamala harris looking to reframe the presidential bid by setting expectations high in iowa. telling fellow senator i'm fing moving to iowa. how much work does she have ahead of her. >> she's got a quite a bit of work ahead of her. there was a recent poll of iowa
voters. rural voters. and it placed her at something like 5%. it was low. she was not even in the top four or five. she knows she has her work cut out fer her. she hired 70 more people and ten new field offices. she's serious about iowa. she really wants to connect with iowa. and win iowa. we'll see what happens. so much has to do with debate performance. she has a good debate and the numbers surge and people think she has a bad debate and numbers go down. she especially seems to be kind of held responsible for her debate performance. more than any of the other candidates. i'm not sure why that is. >> one last thing. the circus on show time back on sunday 8:00 p.m. you spoke with a republican challenger. >> donald trump he has a comfort level with debt that you and i don't have. because we didn't have a daddy
to bail us out in a pinch. it's not the experience of the american taxpayer. the chinese won't bail us out. we're walking away from a financial hurricane. >> what do you think? do you think the republican challengers will breakthrough? >> trump has a hugely popular. republican party has favorable ratings within a party. there's two ways to run. unopposed and scared. you have to take it serious. there's three different guys. one from illinois and northeast. and south. former governor and congressman. talking about issues that the president has abandoned. debt and deficit and free trade. which are traditional republican issues that republicans care about. they'll get sticks and throw stones. that's why the president is trying to shut down the primaries including south carolina. >> thank you both.
>> happy birthday, mom. >> thank you so much. >> you'll get points for that. >> if i can add a pitch. the des moines register will be releasing a next iowa poll tomorrow. over the candidates stand. cnn des moines register poll. look for that around 7:00 p.m. >> that will be big. >> thank you for that. >> should be interesting. we'll be right back. they give us excellent customer otservice, every time.e. our 18 year old was in an accident. usaa took care of her car rental,
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star wide receiver dropped today by the patriots amidaccusations of sexual assault and midconduct. it's investigation is continuing. joining me now. good evening, thank you for joining us. i want you to listen to coach belichick. dodging questions about brown. hours before the team released him. >> i don't have any comment on anything off the field. situations. or questions on that. so i'm not getting into that. i have already addressed this. so we're going to get ready for the jets. i'll be happy to answer football questions. i'm done with the rest of it. so, yeah. i'm good. okay? thank you. >> what do you think about how this played out isn't t? >> that's typical. he was even a little sharper
than usual. the patriots brought this on themselves. belichick is mad about the questions that journalists are asking. valid, good questions. especially 2019. especially in the era of me too. look at the owner and complain to him for signing this guy. this is the reality of the nfl. we're seeing this cross roads. to me we are seeing the national football league colliding with public opinion. and with me too. and with the need in the country to listen to women. and the good news is antonio brown is gone. and the nfl is saying it continuing the investigation and issued a warning about if another team signs him, lookout. he could be on the commissioners exempt list. it's a good day listening to women. they are having trouble dealing with the new reality. >> he sent the interesting thing is he sent these text messages.
right? which was surprising. reporting the text messages to a second accuser. the texts sent by brown encouraged a third party po research the accusers history and included a picture of her children. what charges could that bring? >> tampering with witness charge. if it's verified he sent the texts. there seems to be question about whether they're from him. it's really quite remarkable he's accused of raping one woman. who has come forward. filed a civil lawsuit and talks about three acts of sexual misconduct and the third making allegations of rape. the second woman comes forward. she's not filing a lawsuit or going to law enforcement. but wanted to make her story known about what happened to her when she was commissioned to paint a mural at his house and she alleges she gets threatening
texts. i think the nfl has to make a decision. why a new team would sign him in the middle of serious allegations. we're not just talking about sexual harassment. we're talking about the most egregious act possible. actual rape allegation. and yet he was signed. i want to commend nike. they acted quickly. in terps of ending the endorsement deal. more companies have to act quickly when the kind of allegations happen. it's important to note the league has a code of personal conduct and doesn't require you to be found gmt guilty in a court of law. it's not a same standard. you're making a lot of money you have to represent the organization. you can't do anything to tarpish the reputation. tarnish the reputation. hopefully it's a message to anyone who plays in the nfl the allegations will be taken seriously and there will be consequences for the conduct. >> if brown is signed by another
team. he could collect a salary. it would be ineligible to practice or play. under what circumstances would the nfl bench him even if he's signed? >> there's the commission exempt list. paid leave. in other words he can park someone on the the list whether it's michael vic or hunt or -- and figure out what's going on. it's done for a short period of time as they try to figure out what the truth is. the fact the nfl spent a week or so investigating brown to me tells me they maybe getting closer to a decision. again, the facts are out there. and fans and observers can come to a decision. this is not just one woman. it's to women. different place different time. different allegations and yet there's a similarity. once the n if, l makes a determination the commissioner would put him on the exempt list. which means you get paid but
cannot play. that's the decision a football decision. not a cultural or right or wrong decision. in my opinion it's a football decision. would a team want to sign him. knowing you have to pay him but not having him play for you. that's the gauntlet thrown down in the release that came out in the last hour. we're investigating here, and you might not have him if you sign him. the league -- that was a strong statement. rig rightfully strong. we're talking about allegations of rape. this is serious stuff. but, the nfl seems to understand now five years after ray rice. it's in the ball game in terms of making decisions. keep in mind 45% of the fan base of the league is women. skb girls. that other 55% should care as well. men. and boys. but this is important to the nfl and seem to be getting it now. >> thank you. i appreciate it. the democratic candidates hitting the trail and late night
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slow jamming the news with jimmy fallon. >> i'm committed to passing a green new deal. creating clean jobs and finally putting an end to fracking once and for all. >> mama kamala don't give a track. >> the next night. corey booker on jimmy kim el. >> is it true the primary reason you're run for president is give an excuse to move out of newark? >> and elizabeth warren on steven kol bert. >> let's quit now and do a selfie line. >> thursday night visit from andrew yang onset myers. >> i'll be the first president to use power point. >> bill clinton launched this modern day trend playing the sax on the hall show. and george bush and obama delivered top ten lists on the campaign trail. >> just for fun. issue executive order commanding
my fwrobrother to wash my car. >> the number one campaign promise. >> three words. vice president oprah. >> now more and nor campaigning is happen here on the late night stage. donald trump went this route before the 2016 election. he hasn't been back on late night since. democratic hopefuls have replaced him. >> are you going nuts? >> look. the reason i came on the show is because -- i'm not. >> you got insulted by the president of the united states. >> that's how you know you made it. >> a chance show laid back human sides. comedians can pose tough questions to. >> we have to talk about choice for women and reproductive healthcare. >> i live in a black and brown community below the poverty line. >> launching your campaign on late night is far from a.
ask gillibrand. who is no longer running. late night is about substance. not just style. >> how are you paying for it? are you raising taxes? >> so, here's how we'll do it. costs are going to go up. for the wealthiest americans. >> taxes. >> and hard working middle class families are going to see their costs go down. and. >> taxes go up? >> here's the thing -- >> here's the thing. i have listened to the answers before. >> for presidential want to bes it's about keeping it real and keeping it light. >> good enough for rosario. >> kamala is trying to get us
back to black ♪ >> welcome. how crucial are the appearances for a serious presidential candidate? >> more and more important. the the view primary the breakfast club pr mare. some candidates are the top two contenders have not gone on a sunday talk show for a serious interview all year. they have gone on late night. they see the value. think about politics. we talk about politics in our brains and the fight and the intelligence of it. a lot of politics happen in our heart and guts. and in the president trump reminded me of that. it's about connecting emotionally. >> does it translate into votes? these appearances. >> i have not seen political scientists prove that. these campaigns in some cases are desperate to get on shows. some lower ranking candidates like de blasio who got out of the race today. what's great about the last two
years we're seeing comedians ask serious questions. >> i said i have been saying this for a while. i said to jimmy kim el. we do the same thing. except with humor. they talk about trump and the same topics. they will put a comedic spin on it. >> he some some advantages over you. you have to study up and be prepared. >> they talk about trump and cover the news. but make people laugh. >> and kol bert says you're not alone. thinking this is crazy. >> who makes the next late night appearance. >> first black female student body president faced attacks and she's fighting back. she tells her story, next. banjo? (man) hey. go home.
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received an apology. taylor doneson's life changed forever within hours of becoming an american first. doneson went from being elected american university's first black female student body president in its 125-year history to being plunged into a world of hate. >> i was on my way to campus. i was wearing an aka jacket and i ended up having to take it off because the hate crime literally had the letters of the sorority on the bananas. so me wearing the but down, that was me walking around with a target on my back. >> reporter: a still unidentified person committed the hate crime, stringing up bananas with nooses with initials the historic black sorority she belongs to. days later, she was under attack online by neo-nazis, spurred on by the creator of one of the most prolific neo-nazi websites. >> he told his many, many
followers to basically go get her. >> reporter: a hate-filled feeding frenzy when the website published her name, photo, contact information and social media accounts. the anti-defamation league was the first to warn dumpson. they emailed saying she had become a national target for hatred. >> i was home alone. the first thing i did was closed my blinds. i locked all the doors, turned all of the lights out and in the way that people tell you whether it's a hurricane or tornado warning, to crouch and get down. i rocked in a fetal position sobbing and crying to the point where i had to take a screen shot of the email and send it to my mom and dad because i couldn't talk. >> reporter: after months of harassment, she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress syndrome. >> i was terrified. i didn't know who these people were. i didn't know where they were. i didn't know if they knew where
i was already. >> reporter: dumpson decided to fight back. with the help of the lawyers committee for civil rights under law, she sued some of the people investigators could find who trolled her. she sued the website and a angland, its creator. >> what would you say to the andrew anglands the world? >> you picked the wrong one, somebody that wasn't going to back down. >> dumpson won her case. >> to the best of our knowledge, this is the first court decision in the country that has held that online harassment can interfere with public accommodations. >> reporter: the judgment equated online harassment with physical harassment. >> civil rights laws do not stop where the cloud begins. >> reporter: angland did not respond for comment. neither he nor a representative for his company showed up in court. the judge handed dumpson a default $725,000 judgment, and separately she received something almost no one does -- a face-to-face apology, not from angland, but from one of the
trolls. she agreed not to say his name or exactly the words exchanged as part of a restorative justice settlement. online especially, people want to snap back, right? they want to clap back. they want to attack, and that's not what you did here. >> i think that we always have the opportunity and the possibility to grow. for me it was really, really important to, even though you're a white supremacist, even though you're a neo-nazi, even though you think like this, i don't think you're always going to think like that, and i don't think it has to be that way. >> reporter: the man who apologized was the only one who came forward. he also promised to walk away from online hate and do community service. now, when it comes to taylor dumpson, she was accepted to law school. she's now a law student. but she says she doesn't disclose where because she knows she will always be a target. the hate has not completely stopped. don? >> sara, thank you so much. we'll be right back. okay, paint a picture for me.
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is up 16% in 2019. it is a complicated problem found all over l.a., but the epicenter of this crisis is in the downtown neighborhood known as skid row. and that's where you'll find this week's cnn hero. three times a week, every week, superior court judge craig mitchell wakes at 3:30 a.m. to try to change the lives of those struggling with poverty, homelessness, and addiction. his unique strategy? running. >> running is a mechanism for the participants to build relationships. this is the one time i'm at the front of the pack. lawyers, social workers, people from all different walks of life running with people who are recovering from addiction and homelessness. good job. we affirm. we listen. we support. it shows what open-minded people who really care about each other, how they can treat one another, and it's a lesson in and of itself.
>> to see how running can create a support network that helps people get off the streets, go to cnn heroes.com right now. and thank you for watching. our ca our coverage continues. thanks for joining us. cnn has learned that the president of the united states pressed a foreign head of state to work with his personal criminal defense attorney to investigate the son of a political opponent. when you strip away all the complexities surrounding it, including where it fits in the whistle-blower affair, there's one principal point to this story. according to the journal n a july 25th phone call, president trump in his official capacity asked the president of ukraine to do something in his official capacity that would benefit not this country, but president trump himself both politically and personally, citing sources familiar with the matter, the journal reports that he pushed the ukrainian president about eight times on that one phone call to work with rudy giuliani on a probe of joe