tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN September 24, 2019 12:00am-1:00am PDT
movement of young people who want action on the climate crisis. she and other children filed a complaint today against five of the worlds leading economies. they say the countries violated their human rights by not taking enough action to stop the climate crisis. and if her forceful words aren't enough, check out this moment when she sees president trump walking by. one heck of a glare. look at her face. all right. thank you for watching. "cnn tonight" with laura coates is in for d. lemon. also known as the upgrade. and it starts rai now. >> this is the upgrade. thank you. greta, first of all, i got to reassess my life choices, chris. that's a force to be reckoned with. more power to her. would you have had that presence of mind at that age in that moment about an issue like this? it's amazing. >> i was wearing velcro sneakers at that age. >> let me tell you something about her. let me tell you something about
greta. you cannot replace the passion of youth. when they feel, they feel. you'll see later on, i'm older. with the teenagers they can exaggerate the feelings. when they feel they feel deeply. this kid feels betrayed. she's not alone. our kids look to us to do the right thing and it's hard to see that happening on that issue right now. this girl, remember, she started out with a handmade sign. she didn't want to travel. she was somebody a year ago no one heard of. she's the face of the movement. she has a lot to say about the notion that how dare you look and ask for the hope of children. i mean, powerful, powerful words. thank you for your show tonight. as always incredible. this is "cnn tonight." i'm laura coates sitting in for don lemon. our breaking news, president trump reportedly ordered acting chief of staff mick mulvaney to hold back military aid for ukraine for at least a week before his call with the ukrainian president.
that was first reported in the "washington post." much more in a moment. that is what we're hearing from the president of the united states is right out of the trump playbook. unsubstantiated smears, ignoring the facts and leaving himself just enough wiggle room. listen to what the president said over the past few days about his conversation with the president of the ukraine, a conversation so concerning a whistle-blower is trying to make a complaint about it to congress. a complaint the white house and the doj are trying to bury. >> did you discuss joe biden, his son or his family? >> it doesn't matter what i discussed. somebody ought to look into joe biden's statement because it was disgraceful. >> the conversation i had was largely congratulatory. was largely the corruption taking place. was larkly the fact that we don't want our people like vice president biden and his son
creating to the corruption already in the ukraine. >> if you don't talk about corruption, why give money to a country that you think is corrupt? one of the reasons the new president got elected is he was going to stop corruption. so it's very important on occasion you speak to somebody about corruption. >> there was no pressure whatsoever. i put no pressure on them whatsoever. i could have. i think it would probably, possibility been okay if i did. >> probably, possibly would have been okay if you did. quite a progression over a few days. it doesn't matter what i discussed, but corruption. why would you give money to a company you think is corrupt? i didn't put pressure on them, but i could have and it would have been probably, possibly okay. let's not forget, ukraine needs our help to fight russia which has already seized crimea. and then there's the president
attorney. rudy giuliani. sources say the president was disinterested in ukraine. that is until giuliani got him fired up with efforts to investigate biden. a source close to the white house says the president has been seething for months and that giuliani has been, quote, egging him on. in early may he planned a trip to kiev to urge the then president-elect of ukraine pursue an investigation of biden. giuliani telling "the new york times," quote, we're not meddling in an election, we're meddling in an investigation. then saying, quote, there's nothing illegal about it. somebody could say it's improper. saying he planned to urge ukraine to continue the investigation, quote, because that information will be very very helpful to my client. one day later giuliani abruptly cancelling his trip to the ukraine. saying this. >> i'm not going to go because i think i'm walking into a group of people that are enemies of the president.
>> why would it be helpful to his client? hmm. because he's trying to get a foreign government, in this case ukraine, to investigate the democratic front-runner and his son. all the while holding up $250 million in promised aid from congress in the meantime. by the way, it's over the objections of members of both parties in congress. i thought we collectively agreed that asking a foreign nation for opposition research is a problem? but more on that later. and then, of course, there was giuliani's very, very heated exchange with chris cuomo just last week. in the space of less than a minute, denying then admitting he asked ukraine to investigate joe biden. some say a who ordered the code red moment. >> did you ask the ukraine to investigate joe biden? >> no. actually i didn't.
i asked them to investigate the allegations that there was interference in the election of 2016. by the ukrainians for the benefit of hillary clinton. for which there already is -- >> you never asked anything about hunter biden? you never asked anything about joe biden in his role with the prosecutor? >> the only thing is get to the bottom of how it was that the appointed dismissed the case against -- >> so you did ask ukraine to look into joe biden. >> of course i did. >> you just said you didn't. >> now, a lot of this could be cleared up if the white house would release the transcript of that call. but the president, well, he says this. >> perhaps you'll see it. perhaps you won't it. it depends on what we want to do. >> one trump adviser telling cnn, quote, this is a serious problem for us. he admitted doing it.
but a source telling gloria borger the president isn't bothered the. he's not worried and he likes joe biden. he sure has a funny way of showing that. now as i said a lot of this could be cleared up if the white house would release the transcript of that call. maybe that will happen right after the president releases his tax returns. and let's remember, the intelligence community inspector general suggested to the house intel committee behind closed doors that the whistle-blower's complaint raised concerns about multiple actions. now, we don't know whether all of them involve the president. we don't know because, as i said, the white house and the doj are trying to bury the complaint. that leaves the president and his allies free to repeat unsubstantiated allegations and smears. right out of that old trump playbook. let's get to the breaking news. joining me from "the washington post" and also josh dossy on the phone.
i'm glad to have you here. i'll start with you. let me ask you this, what are you learning about president trump and why he held this military aid back days before calling the ukrainian president? >> well, that's the question, right? he holds the military aid back. about a week later he then has this phone call with the ukrainian president in which he's now openly saying there was discussion about whether or not to investigate biden. the question i think on the minds of many people watching this is were the two connected? certainly the white house, various senior administration officials are saying, no, there was no quid pro quo here. everything you may be thinking is not actually the case at all. the aid was a separate issue that was being discussed maybe in the seem time period but on a very separate track than anything that had to do with that phone call. try to tell that to people on capitol hill, especially democrats, they are connecting a lot of dots right now and this is one more dot to throw into the mix that is going to potential inflame tensions between congress and the white house about the -- what was
contained in that phone call. this all kind of is related potentially to the substance of the whistle-blower complaint they're still trying to get out of the administration. the fact that this all happened around the same time period raises new questions about that timing and how that's going to play out is probably not going to be with lawmakers just letting this go without asking a lot more questions. >> i mean, josh, the connect the dots game isn't all that hard. of course congress wanted to know why the aid they appropriated was being delayed. tell me, josh dossy, what did the administration officials actually tell them about the delay? >> well, the administration said that they were conducting an interagency process, looking at corruption in the ukraine, they were looking at whether europe should be doing more, they were trying to decipher what they should do. what we reported tonight was about a week before the call where the president encouraged the investigation of hunter biden he instructed his aides, mick mulvaney and others who then went to the state
department, went to dod, went to interagency officials and said we're going to put a hold on this money. now, what the administration says is they were doing the legitimate policy review process and trying to decide if the aid should continue, but as my colleague just said on air, the question is, how closely related were these two things? these discussions started in june, according to the administration. then in july they decided to halt this aid. and all the while, the ukrainians were trying to get a meeting with the president. they were asking legislative officials later, chris murphy who went over to ukraine, why is this aid being held up? they were perplexed. what we're hearing from the administration is they were trying to decide whether this aid was legitimate or not, but what others are wondering is why the time was so close, why one week did the president decide to cut that aid and then the next week ask for an investigation? >> i mean, how unusual is it for the office of management and budget to be in charge of
releasing aid that congress appropriated and that the pentagon and the state department was supposed to manage? is this odd to you? >> it was odd to people on the hill to see that that was what was happening and the fact that there were these directives being put out that would basically put the aid on these short term just a few days at a time holds so no one quite knew when it was coming out and you couldn't get people at the state, dod, the pentagon, normally in charge of handing out and doling out these funds to be able to give you an answer because they don't have anything to do with the process. adding to the confusion is the fact that lawmakers and committees were told in late february and then in mid to late may that the money for ukraine actually would be going out the door but then the money never did go out the door and nothing happened. as the summer wore on, people on the hill started to get worried that it wasn't happening and it wasn't happening because omb didn't want it to be happening right then. so this added really to the sense that this was an
unorthodox way of working with ukraine aid. i mean, look, the united states has been sending military aid for ukraine for about five years now. it's been increasing over that time. it's to help ukraine stave off russian aggression and back the ukrainian military against the russian-backed separatists they're fighting in their eastern provinces. it's always been a pushback and forth between white house and the congress about how much goes out and when, but it's never been this late and it's never been thing opaque in terms of how it's being done. that alarmed democrats and republicans on the hill. >> thank you for your reporting. excellent. so much for the power of the purse. lots to discuss now with evan mcmullin, juliette kayyem and max boot, who is the author of "the corrosion of conservatism: why i left the right." thank you all for being here tonight. i can't think of a better panel for this discussion. let me start with you for a second, max. what is your reaction to the
breaking news now from "the washington post"? >> well, the timing is highly damning, laura. i mean, this is a pretty clear case of president trump trying to extort a foreign leader to interfere in a u.s. election on his behalf, and the fact that he put a hold on this aid to ukraine a week before calls up zelenskiy and badging him eight times to investigate joe biden, the democratic front-runner. i mean that is fishy as hell. that is highly suspicious. i cannot imagine an innocent explanation for this, and the spin coming from the white house that donald trump cares about corruption and ukraine is just laughable. remember, donald trump is pals with some of the most corrupt dictators in the world. people like erdogan, putin and, and sisi. the notion that he cares about corruption is laughable. what he cares about is framing his political rival on trumped up, so to speak, charges of criminal corruption. that's what he was doing,
misusing the power of the presidency and this seems to be the straw that broke the camel's back. democrats are finally realizing this guy really needs to be impeached if the facts are as they seem to be because otherwise he will continue violating the law in order to stay in office. >> max, wonder if everyone has that same camel threshold you do. it doesn't sound like everyone's on board yet. evan, listen to this reporting. the administration officials were instructed to tell lawmakers that the delays were part of an interagency process, but to give them no additional information. a pattern that continued for nearly two months until the white house released the funds on the night of september 11th. evan, does that sound like the officials were told to lie to lawmakers about why the aid was being held back? >> well, it does sound very suspicious. on its face. but i think the dates here really matter, going back to the timeline here, so they released the funds on september 11th.
or the eve of september 11th. but what happened a couple of days before that? well, the i.g., the intelligence community i.g. had reported to adam schiff, had gone around his bosses who had decided they weren't going to share the whistle-blower complaint with congress, he had gone around his bosses on september 9th to inform congress that there was the complaint. so you can imagine after the administration had told other officials, you know, senior administration officials had told others in the executive branch that they were to sort of offer very little details about why the hold was there, that was maintained for almost two months. then all of a sudden on september 10th or 11th they go and release those funds. well, i think it's because there was a moment where they realized, oh, my goodness, now adam schiff and the house democrats understand what the ploy is here, what the scheme is and we got to get rid of this and we got to move this money. so they held it as long as they
could and when they got caught, they moved it. that's my read. >> juliette, i'm dying to hear your thoughts on this. also, three senior officials, juliette, spoke out to "the post" for this story. why would they do that? are they worried how bad this could be for the president, the whistle-blower? this can't be the president's only concern now, is it? >> no, i mean, i think the fear you're starting to see out of the white house is two-fold. one, clearly some people were told to lie to congress, so people will start watching out for themselves because as we know donald trump has no loyalty. i also think that there is another issue here. very few people know what's in the whistle-blower report. maybe perhaps donald trump and the people along the chain of command. and i think that's why donald trump has all of us focused on this stupid transcript idea, which i think is just absolutely ridiculous and no one should talk about it anymore. it is the whistle-blower's account of a variety of instances that donald trump may not know what's in that. in other words, there is probably worse stuff in that
than in the single foam phone co ukraine. so we need to focus on what is, in fact, in the whistle-blower account because that is likely to have all the connective tissue that we're wondering about or trying to connect the dots on. so i just think we need to focus on the whistle-blower's account. i just want to add one more thing, part of what culpability is is how did the person or in this case a country, ukraine, what kind of position did they feel like they were in? in other words if you're ukraine, if you're the head of ukraine, you clearly believe that donald trump is holding up the money because he wants you to not investigate biden's son, he wants you to make stuff up on biden's son. we know from contemporaneous reporting that he had mentioned things to at least one senator, that he believed that's why it was being held up and they're pressuring, going around washington, d.c. trying to figure out what is going on. why aren't we getting this money? it was clear their perception of what donald trump was doing is
as important as what we know donald trump was doing. they believed they had to get stuff on biden's son to get the money to flow, and it was only the whistle-blower that sort of blew this -- blew it out into the public. >> and by the way -- >> laura, could i -- >> go ahead. >> could i build on that for just someone second? i think it's absolutely right we need not focus solely on the transcript. it is important. but the wider whistle-blower complaint. i think we actually need to expand the scope of what we're looking at and congress needs to do the same. >> evan, i want to hear why. everyone's staying with me. i want to hear why you want to expand it and how so. i want to talk about the president's outrageous claim in republicans did theis what he thinks would happen. they'd be getting the electric chair right now. i want your thoughts, juliette, evan and max, right after this. you don't live in one corner... ...fragrance shouldn't either. air wick's new technology releases fragrance upwards and outwards, unlike glade.
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on military aid to ukraine. this is days before calling the ukrainian president and pressing him to investigate joe biden and his son. that first reported by "the washington post." which also reports tonight on growing calls among house democrats for impeachment. back with me. evan mcmullin, juliette kayyem and max boot. i'll go back to you. before the break we were talking about juliette's point about the transcript maybe a bright shiny object and not to look at that too closely among other things that may be happening. how do you want to build upon it, evan? >> we just need to broaden the scope. and look at other players in this or potential players. for example, vice president pence met with president zelenskiy in poland in september. the next day he did a press conference. pence did. and asked did you bring up biden? and you have to read or watch his response.
it's long, he's sort of using this -- he says yes we talked about corruption but we didn't talk about biden. i really feel like he talked about biden, and i think we need to go back to that, we need to understand who else in the administration has been a part of this and then lastly, just remember that in ukraine there is a convergence of many different interests. putin's interests, trump's interests. trump wants to see a peace deal there so he can justify his relationship that's inexplicable and inappropriate and alarming with putin. putin wants to have his -- some sanctions relief. ukraine is looking for aid. you know, trump is looking to attack biden and to help manafort. i mean, there is just a lot going on there and we need to be looking at all of this right now as a part of this. >> fine point. you know, juliette, i got to ask you, biden was really angry about the attacks over the weekend. listen, fellas and gentlemen -- juliette, everyone there. listen up to what he actually
has to say. >> we should be looking at trump. trump's doing this because he knows i'll beat him like a drum. >> well, he's angry but also making the argument that trump fears him most. what do you make of that? is that true here, juliette? >> i think trump lets people get under his skin and in this case it was biden. he's willing to play tough. at least from the polling at the moment the calls were happening, biden was the front-runner. i want to make it clear to everyone what we now know. i know everyone's talking about connecting the dots. we now know that donald trump has only run for office twice, and in both instances he has either helped, assisted, aided, flirted with a foreign entity to go after his -- his competitor, the person he is running against. so the idea that this is somehow going to stop, that somehow trump is tame, that trump won't do everything possible to win in 2020 is now bogus. this man, the president, will do anything, including directing a foreign power to make up
information about the family of his most likely competitor. >> yeah. >> if i could -- >> well, whether you call it impeachment or whether you call it illegal, call it what you will, you know, he's -- this is -- he's batting .100 at this stage. >> i want to ask you, you know, trump is acting like the diplomats in this case would actually pursue something far more extreme than the impeachment you're talking about, juliette. if the tables were turned, the president actually had this to say about what he thought democrats would do. >> if a republican ever did what joe biden did, if a republican ever said what joe biden said, they'd be getting the electric chair by right now. >> max, the electric chair? really? >> well, this is industrial-strength gaslighting on the president's part. he is emptying the propane tank. he has been caught red-handed doing something that i believe constitutes a high crime and misdemeanor, misusing his
authority. to the point that juliette was making, this is actually worse than what happened in 2016 because in 2016 he was still a private citizen when he said, russia, if you're listening, inviting russia to hack our election. right now is the president of the united states. he has sworn an oath to preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the united states. by all accounts he is betraying that oath. he is betraying the people of the united states. he is perverting american foreign policy to serve his own political interests and trying to throw a smokescreen by lying and smearing joe biden. even though there is not an iota of evidence that joe biden did anything in ukraine. in fact, joe biden was fighting corruption in ukraine, he was trying to get rid of and did get rid of a corrupt, dirty prosecutor who was not cracking down on corruption. so everything that trump and giuliani are saying about biden is a lie, including the words "a" and "d." everything is a lie. do not listen to the word that they are saying. they're trying to cover up the fact that donald trump has been
caught committing another impeachable offense. he is the most corrupt president in our history. >> absolutely. >> this could be the most scandalous act he has ever committed. >> max boot, i need you to form an opinion and be more clear before you come back on the show. thank you for joining today. we'll be right back. e plug. it cleans away odors and freshens for 1200 hours. [deep inhale] breathe happy with febreze plug.
oh, and it wasn't the 2016 election, it was anticipation of the 2020 election. oh, and the opposition research, well, it wasn't about hillary clinton, it was about joe biden and one of his sons. this time there's no special counsel. no robert mueller to question. no doj or fbi officials to disparage. just one whistle-blower. this time, the president is boldly speaking out and defending his actions. why wouldn't he? it's his m. to deny and deflect. and knee-jerk nonchalance is outrageous. democrats in congress including nancy pelosi have been reluctant to use impeachment powers. which is funny because they were quick to repeat the nixon era mantra, no one is above the law. >> nobody is above the law. not the president of the united states. >> no one is above the law. that includes the president of the united states. >> no one is above the law. including president of the
united states. >> nobody is above the law. >> say it with me now. nobody is above the law. well, let's unpack that statement. now, we have three co-equal branchs of government. one makes the law, unenforces the law and one interprets it. the founding fathers envision the system of checks and balances no one branch could rule like a king. when the law making body with the power to impeach a president is -- to the point of paralysis, about how to deal with the president who breaks the law that it makes. well, so much for checks and balances. so much for coequal branchs. and so much for the symbolic or real power or weight of the impeachment. now, we don't know what the din whistle-blower complaint is all about. we don't know about the instances the complaint identifies. we don't have the transcript of the president's call with the ukrainian president.
here's what we know. congressman a law that required dni to give congress the whistle-blower complaint. in this case the doj said feel free to ignore that law. we know that congress made a law appropriating funds to the ukraine. the president said i'll hold on to though funds. to those funds. the constitution says foreign government shall not interfere with our elections. the president said let's ignore that one too. when congress fails to use the constitutionally mandated oversight to even address the president's behavior, well, it sure sounds like he's above the law to me. so now what form that oversight takes is up to congress. no one wants to engage in an exercise in futility. but the question before them now is whether or not to impeach the president. impeach the president.
whether to do so. now, it's a momentous decision that should be made, frankly, outside of the narrow constraints of partisan politics, but since when is the separation of powers or one branch laughing at congress' power, since when did that become a partisan issue? frankly, every members of congress, republican or democrat or independent, they should take it seriously when the president tells you your power is imagi imaginary, that you don't want count, your laws, well, they mean nothing. the question to congress tonight is, what are you going to do about it? breaking news tonight on speaker no place -- she's been behind the scenes as democrats prepare for their big meeting tomorrow afternoon. out moving into our new apartment. why don't we just ask geico for help with renters insurance? i didn't know geico helps with renters insurance.
cnn has learned speaker nancy pelosi declined to say tonight whether she would fully endorse initiating an impeachment inquiry when she meets with committee chairman and members of the democratic caucus tomorrow, but she left little doubt the ukraine developments had dramatically escalated the standoff with the president. joining me now, former clinton white house press secretary joe lo lockheart and former congressman charlie dent. glad to have you both with us. speaker pelosi telling cnn tonight, quote, we will have no chance other than to reference an impeachment inquiry. with the ukraine issue something seems to have changed. >> i think person personally for me, everything that's happened to now is looking backwards at
what trump did back in 2016 and 2017. that i thought could be decided at the ballot box in 2020, but this is now about corrupting the next election, and for me this was crossing the red line. i think what you've seen tonight, particularly with "the washington post" op-ed from seven freshman members with national security backgrounds, these were the moderate members of the caucus that nancy pelosi was trying to protect. because they're in republican districts. this is how the democrats took back control of the house. they now have come out. so literally the dam has broken. i think what tomorrow's meeting is about is not how -- not if to impeach but how to impeach. whether you set up a select committee because judiciary committee has become a circus. so i think it's not if now, it's how you do it and i think pelosi's not going to tell you until she's ready but i think she's decided. >> so let me ask you, charlie, the democrats should not set themselves on fire over this, but a short while ago, as joe mentioned, seven freshmen democrats posted an op-ed in
"the washington post" about president trump's call to ukraine's president saying these allegations are stunning. both in the national security threat they pose and the potential corruption they represent. and it took on the administration's refusal to actually turn over the complaint, saying this flagrant disregard for the law cannot stand. to uphold and defend our constitution, congress must determine whether the president was indeed willing to use his power and withhold security to persuade a foreign country to assist him in an upcoming election. if these allegations are true, we believe it represents an impeachable offense. speaker pelosi is calling top democrats to talk about whether the time has actually come to impeach trump. how do you feel? is this the tipping point now? >> well, before we start talking impeachment, i really think it's imperative they get the dni, the whistle-blower and the inspector general in there to answer some questions. i want to get all the facts. look, speaker pelosi i think has
been handling the impeachment question right so far. she knows that this is fraught with peril. in many respects, i think donald trump is trying to egg the democrats on, he's trying to goad them into impeachment because he sees some political benefit to that if he can rile up his base. and i'm not a donald trump fan. i've been very critical. i just say be careful, let's get all the facts. this looks terrible what the president has done here, you know, withholding aid and military assistance to the ukrainians while at the same time pressuring zelenskiy to conduct an investigation into the bidens. it's a terrible look but i think they have to be very deliberate, very thoughtful because up until this point i think these investigations have looked somewhat feckless of the president. >> optics versus deliberation. i mean, joe, here democratic congressman jerry connolly of virginia said this to cnn. this weekend, all i hear at home is when are democrats going to get tough? we are looking weak. so, joe, what does it say if the diplomats don't act on this? i mean, is it about being
feckless? they have wasted an opportunity to show their strength in their impeachment ability? >> well, i expect them to act on it. if they didn't they would be betting on letting the public decide in 2020, but i think what tonight and the next couple of days are going to show is nancy pelosi's wisdom. which is going into impeachment -- i agree with the congressman that this is fraught with peril, political peril, but sometimes you have to, you know, take the risk. but going into it with a divided caucus is -- makes it much harder. she has slowly brought the entire caucus together. and now they will go in this united, and that makes them much stronger. >> we'll have to see what happens. thank you. i'll be right back. diarrhea?! new pepto diarrhea to the rescue! its three times concentrated liquid formula coats
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at a recent house judiciary committee hearing on policing practices, conservative author and political commentator heather macdonald claimed that racial bias in police shootings of african-american men is overstated. i want you to watch closely the reaction of the man sitting next to macdonald. his name is phillip atiba goff. >> also told we're living through an epidemic of racially biased the police shootings of black men. this too is false. a study published this august in the proceedings of the national academy of sciences is just the latest research undercutting the media narrative about race and police shootings. >> joining me now, phillip atiba goff, the man whose reaction in that hearing went viral.
he's the co-founder and president of the center for policing equity. also joining, minneapolis police chief medaria arradondo. welcome to you both. phillip, i have to start with you because first of all, you now have become a meme. your reaction is what we were all thinking of. what do you mean you think this is fake and all some sort of ploy? what were you thinking? >> we were in front of the senate judiciary committee. we had all been sworn in to tell the truth under penalty of perjury. so when i heard someone saying that it was overblown based on the research, being one of the people who was an author of that research and who was a reviewer for the scientific community, i was just astounded because that's not what the research says, and the four different articles that she made reference to during the course of the hearing, that's not what any of them say. >> so what does it say because she seemed to think she knew exactly the right answer, and you were as clearly shocked as the rest of us were. >> yeah, first of all, let's be really clear. there are hundreds upon hundreds
of articles out there looking at racial disparity in policing, okay? some of them show evidence of bias. some of them just show evidence of disparity, just meaning that they're different but it's not clear why, right? but there's nothing that shows that white people are more likely to get shot and killed by law enforcement. that's not a real thing, right? so what the science is really clear on, we see that there are differences in the outcomes from law enforcement. some of that is the result of poverty. some of that is the result of crime. and some of that is a result of what police do. what we do at the center for policing equity, what we do in minneapolis is we try and help law enforcement figure out the portion of the problem that's theirs so that they can do something about it. and when i heard somebody saying that law enforcement has nothing to do and nothing to change, i was shocked in part because what i hear from chiefs all the time is that the only thing worse than lying about them and saying that they're deeply racist is lying about them and saying there's no bias in their profession because then they have to clear the record and say
they weren't trying to cover that up. >> it's limb >> it's almost like they were saying the race card is being overplayed here. chief, you are a police chief. not being honest about the existence of racism in policing doesn't help anyone. so what have you seen in the 30 years you've been on the force? >> well, first of all, thank you for having me here on the show tonight. it's an important conversation. so in my 30 years of being a peace officer here in minneapolis, we certainly understand and recognize that there is a history in terms of policing with our communities and certainly there's a history with our policing in our marginalized communities. race plays a factor and has played a factor and certainly bias has played a factor. so we have to admit that. we have to recognize that. but it doesn't just stop there. when i embarked upon as chief of police of a wonderful department here in minneapolis for transformational change, there were things i knew and things i didn't know.
but i needed to -- you know, there's a saying in policing that public safety is not just the absence of crime, but it's the presence of justice. well, as chiefs across this country, we have not really ever had a way to quantify how do you measure that justice. and so with the center for policing equity and dr. goff's team did is they hit the ground here and they were able to, by mapping the science of justice, they were able to help us. they were able to help me as a chief and fellow chiefs across this country recognize the important role that science and data plays and that we can all speak a very similar language if you will. >> and of course, phillip, i mean, people have to think about the idea -- justice sometimes is a feeling, but it's important to think about rachel as about behaviors and not feelings. i mean i am married to a black man who we have a camera in our car when we're driving. why? so he tells me in case he's pulled over alone, i'll know what happened to him.
that's the words, he's hoping i'll know because he knows about behaviors. why is it important for people to look about this and say it's not just about feelings, it's not just about a race card here? >> yeah, so, i'm so very glad that you said that. it's almost as if you were listening to my ted talk earlier. >> i wasn't, but now i will go back and listen to it, phillip, if that's what you're talking about. >> that is what i'm talking about. as a scientist, if we define the problem of racism just as bigotry, just as prejudiced feelings, then all the solutions are tied up in helping somebody else feel a different way. and i've been black for almost my entire life. there's the week i took off in college, but other than that, straight through. and that entire time i have never known any black community that took to the streets to protest hoping that racists would change their minds about us and love us more, right? people are protesting to stop violence, to stop voter disenfranchisement. they're protesting, they march in the streets to change behaviors. >> and, you know, that explains maybe the shock we were feeling when that woman said that,
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