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tv   Erin Burnett Out Front  CNN  September 25, 2019 4:00pm-5:00pm PDT

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misinformation. >> this important note, stay with cnn for the ukrainian scandal and jake tapper and anderson cooper anchor a special at 11:00 p.m. eastern. to our viewers, thank you very much for watching. erin burnett "out front" starts right now. "out front" next, breaking news. the whistle-blower complaint is out tonight and in the hands of lawmakers and they're reading it and hear what they say is in it and president trump on the defense saying he never pressured ukraine's president for dirt on joe biden. unfortunately the transcripts show that he did and elizabeth warren calling the transcript calling it a smoking gun and what does cory booker make of it? he is out front. let's go "out front". >> good evening, i'm erin burnett. the whistle-blower complaint is in the hands of congress this hour, the same report that has rocked trump's presidency making him only the fourth president in american history to face impeachment.
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members of the house and intelligence committees are going in a secure room to read it and here is what chairman schiff just said after emerging from that room? >> i found the allegations deeply disturbing. i also found them very credible. the complaint was very well written and certainly provides information for the committee to follow up with other witnesses and documents. i think that what this courageous individual has done has exposed serious wrongdoing. >> schiff, of course, is the democratic chair of house intel and it is not just democrats now, republican senator ben sasse telling reporters after seeing it, republicans ought not be rushing to circle thing with wagons saying there's no there there when there is a lot troubling there. and remember, and it is important as we go through all of the layers of this that it was president trump's pick, his appointed intelligence inspector general who called the
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whistle-blower's report urgent and credible, and now this firestorm is clearly weighing on the president. today he held his first press conference since house speaker nancy pelosi launched an impeachment inquiry, he was unfocused and lacked energy and it is not the usual bombastic trump and he rambleed for 24 minutes before he even took a question and here was the call with the president of the ukraine. >> it was a joke. impeachment for that when you have a wonderful meeting or you have a wonderful phone conversation? >> so we have five pages of it, declassified and here's why trump thinks it was wonderful. ukraine's president tells trump in the call, quote, actually last time i traveled to the united states i stayed at the trump tower. he then tells trump, quote, you are a great teacher, end quote. he even says of a wished-for trump visit for ukraine, quote, we can either take my plane to
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go to ukraine or we can take your plane which is probably much better than mine. okay, the power dynamic here is clear. the kind of sucking up to trump is clear and why trump loved that call equally clear, but trump also loved the call for other reasons, deeply personal ones. the reasons at the heart of his possible impeachment. president trump says again, back to the transcript, the united states has been very, very good to ukraine. i wouldn't say that it's reciprocal, necessarily, because things are happening that are not good, but the united states has been very, very good to ukraine. you can hear him saying it. it's not really a subtle hint from the president who at the time of that call was holding up helpeds of millions of dollars in military aid to ukraine, a country that relies on that aid and after those hints and after ukrainian president zelensky brings up u.s. military support trump asks for his word, a favor, quote. i would like you to do us a favor, though, because our
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country has been through a lot and ukraine knows a lot about it. he goes on, quote, there's a lot of talk about biden's son, the bidens stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that. so whatever you can do with the attorney general would be great. biden went around bragging about it, but he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it. it sounds horrible to me. so if you take this at face value for one second the president of the united states asking a foreign nation which relies on the american aid which he personally and specifically controls, which he had put on hold and tells him to work with his attorney general and by the way, he also says multiple times with his personal lawyer, rudy giuliani, to investigate his top 2020 rival at the time joe biden and his son, it's a problem. it's the president, seeming to use the power of his office to help himself and in a way that would influence an american election and of course, we note there's been no evidence of wrongdoing. caitlan collins is out front in new york and the president did
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look beaten down today. if you watched the entire press conference he was not his usual self. what is his mood right now? >> reporter: erin, he was incredulous as he walked into the press conference, he thought after the call with nancy pelosi when he felt confident that she was not moving in this direction and then he watched her announce that she was launching the formal impeachment inquiry and that is what shocked him because announcing that he was going to release the transcript of his call and announcing that officials were working on behind the scenes on releasing the whistle-blower complaint that this would get democrats off his back and instead it's done the opposite and today you saw after the transcript was released it really fueled these calls for his impeachment and now you see the president essentially reckoning with what to do going forward here because this is not the path that white house officials thought it was going to happen after they released this transcript thinking it was going to clear the president and then after he laid out in his own words showing the damning
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conversations that he had with the ukrainian president. now some people inside the white house are questioning how wise it was to release that transcript even though people like the attorney general with bill barr who was named with rudy giuliani's the president's personal attorney and they're wondering how wise of a decision it was and right now they're questioning where this is going to go if this whistle-blower's complaint comes out because based on what the team is reporting, they are now considering tightening this impeachment probe to be limited to the president's conduct during the call with the president of ukraine and they're left wondering where they're going forward from here as the president is spending one more night in new york, going to a fund-raiser tonight and one more in the morning before returning to face these problems back in washington tomorrow. >> caitlan, thank you very much. live here in new york and i want to go to democratic congressman peter welch who supports impeachment who received the whistle-blower complaint today. i appreciate your time.
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congressman, i know you have been in that secure room and you read the classified report. what was your takeaway? adam schiff described it. it's very compelling. it is detailed and it references many facts and people if we're allowed to pursue the investigation and we'll be able to corroborate the information that's contained in it. the other issue that really was a concern to me is how in the world did the director of national intelligence not transmit this incredibly important information as he's required to do under the statute and how in the world did attorney general barr issue an opinion that this was not subject matter that should come to the intelligence committee. those are disturbing actions by those gentlemen. >> i want to ask you about that for a moment because the acting director of national intelligence will appear before you tomorrow. first, when you say it's detailed facts and people who you would allow to pursue and you would speak to, we
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understand there were multiple instances in this report. is there anything beyond this call or is it focused on this one specific phone call for which we have all now read the transcript. >> it has to be clear through classification, but adam schiff really spoke for all of us. it was very detailed and very compelling and when we can pursue the investigation we're going to be able to run a number of feds that we can provide corroboration or not that the whistle-blower came forward with. by the way, my hope is that everyone will see this. i mean, this is information that the public is entitled to know. so my strong hope is that everybody, the press, the public will be able to see this and evaluate it themselves and they'll be able to do a full and complete investigation. >> do you believe that we will be able to see that soon? is this going to be released in the next day or so or mow? >> i will advocate for it. this was encouraging to me and
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basically a unanimous resolution passed that was condemning the withholding of that information from congress. so there's some awareness from my republican colleague and certainly on my committee and there's congressional oversight that's being thwarted when information by statute that's supposed to be given to us were denied access to it. >> congressman swalwell said there were new leads that you can investigate now as a results of his reading of this in the classified room and the whistle-blower does talk about other witnesses to this call. are there now more people that you want to hear from, congressman welch? >> i will. when this report is released and we do an investigation we'll want to follow up on the details to get corroboration or not. >> you mentioned the acting director of national intelligence joseph maguire and he's set to testify and appear before your committee tomorrow. what do you plan to ask him,
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congressman? >> the $64,000 question is why did you not follow the statute, he shall within seven days from receiving the report from the inspector general it's transmitted to the intelligence committee. by the way, this is the first time the inspector general had issued a report where he found that it was urgent and credible evidence and in the past, i think past dni directors had automatically turned it over even when there wasn't an urgency and credibility and the intelligence could be his own decision. >> before we go, i want to blame you the other side to this, not everyone is convinced and your numbers have surged, but not quite there. congressman tell us i gabbard, and her vote is not for impeachment and here's what she said after she read it today. >> when you step outside of the bubble in washington and you get to where most folks in the
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country are, i'm not a lawyer, but i think most people reading through that transcript are not going to find that extremely compelling cause to throw out a president that won an election in 2016. >> what do you say to congresswoman gabbard? >> well, two things. i disagree with her and of course, in addition to having read that transcript i read the full report today which other members of congress will hopefully be able to do, but second i agree with this, whatever we do on impeachment, we are determined in a couple of weeks to bring out a bill to lower prescription drug costs. we need an infrastructure bill and the house has been passing significant legislation. it's getting dumped and stonewalled in the senate, but the point is the american people want us to do things that are going to help their everyday lives. now this is a duty we have under the constitution so we can't ignore it. >> all right. thank you very much, congressman
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welch. i appreciate your time. >> thank you. >> out front next, president trump saying he will release a readout of the first conversation with ukraine's president. >> they're asking for the first phone conversation and i'll release that too, if it's important to you. >> plus just a handful of republicans speaking out about the whistle-blower's complaint. so will there be more? and according to the transcript trump said his attorney, bill barr, his attorney general, his attorney would be rudy giuliani, about investigating joe biden and the doj said bill barr knew absolutely nothing about that, and he was invoked multiple times in this call. does the doj denial add up? woman: what gives me confidence about investment decisions? rigorous fundamental research. with portfolio managers focused on the long term. who look beyond the spreadsheets to understand companies,
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against president trump that the letter has now been classified. here's exactly what she said. >> the letter we read has now been classified by the president so i can't talk about it. >> it was -- it was a strange response and asked exactly what this means pelosi's office just responded to us that, quote, the administration retroactively classified the whistle-blower's letter. the white house says decla declassification of the complaint is under way and they didn't offer a timetable of the process. i want to go to our political reporter nia malika henderson and former attorney general ann melgram and former republican congressman from pennsylvania, charlie dent. ann, let me start with you. speaker pelosi comes out and said the president has just classified the whistle-blower report which was supposedly becoming public over the next day. what do you hear when you hear her say that. >> there's something that seems strange about that today for a couple of reasons. one they released today the transcript of the call and so we
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know there is information that could have been classified that's already been released and that's one points. the second point is it does feel strange to classify it now. it's gone through the inspector general process and gone through the dni and there are a lot of eyes that have been seen on this for the white house to then classify it feels very strange. >> david gregory, what do you make of this that this is now happening especially that this was supposed to be have been distributed much more widely. >> look, officially they can talk about certain secrets that they might want to withhold, that are appropriate from the intelligence community, but the more obvious take is this is the white house that's reeling from what i think even internally they thought was a pretty risky move to release the log or the summary or a partial transcript of this call, that they on the one hand can argue and spin which the president tried to do, and not very well, but now they're realizing if they're
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releasing everything how is it going to look? how is it going to be received and are they going to put republicans in a position where they have to confront it or simply spin their way around it to try to defend the president, something senator graham did. i think it is very curious and all of us are coming tomorrow that there will be a lot of pressure to come clean with everything. >> earlier in the show i laid out and i wasn't doing it to be funny. i was laying out some of the things that the ukrainian president said to trump on the call that weren't related specifically to the president asking a favor, right? in investigating joe biden and just noting that he stayed at trump tower and your plane is bigger than mine and you're a great teacher and the president, of course, asks for the favor. as you read the transcript of the call you heard ben sasse and others on the democratic side
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saying the report is deeply troubling. what's your takeaway? >> i think the transcript is very damaging to the president. he was using his office, official resources to get political information and did opposition research on his op bonent and what's worse is here he has beleaguered president zelensky who has with the russians to help him fight the russians and the president is dangling withheld dollars over his head. by the way, investigate the bidens and zelensky knows what this is all about. there may not be an explicit quid pro quo, and it is certainly implicit and i think this is very damning to the president. if a member of congress uses his or her official resources for political purposes and it could potentially become a criminal matter, too. what happens when the president does it? i think this transparency, i'm
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glad they released the report, but the transcript, but that certainly did the president no good in this case. >> no. he seemed shocked by that which i think is quite interesting that he read that. he seemed to read that incorrectly, in terms of what the reaction might be. instead, nia, he has gone back to his playbook from the russia probe and it's his go-to playbook and his playbook is to call something a witch hunt and he's called the ukraine story a witch hunt, we are now up to 20, sometimes on twitter and in front of the cameras. he's throwing it out there in front as he can and it sounds reminiscent of something else and here's when he had to say. >> they want to try and start another witch hunt. >> it's just a democrat witch hunt. >> it's just a continuation of the witch hunt. >> it's a witch hunt. i am leading in the polls and they have no idea how to stop me and the only way they think is through impeachment. >> the single greatest witch hunt in american history.
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>> only time will tell and none of the polls show him winning against any democratic candidate and that's not true. the witch hunt line it worked with muler and clearly hopes it work again. >> you heard him call it a hoax and at the press conference that democrats planned it while he was at the u.n. general assembly to take away from the good he was doing there and all of the those bilateral meetings. i think the problem with this and you also hear gop congressmen and senators essentially parroting this line saying this is a continuation of the witch hunt, the russia hoax. i think the problem that the president has as well as his gop allies is this a new set of facts and it's a very easy to understand set of facts, right? >> we got this memo of this call, the president bringing up aid to ukraine and telling the ukrainian president that there's no reciprocity that he needs a
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favor, this is an american president and he's using the power of his office to ask a foreign leader to interfere in a president election and it was after the mauler probe said there was no clugsz and no smoking gun. everybody said during the russia probe that you couldn't really find the president talking to russians directly and asking any political favors. >> we don't know what's in the whistle-blower complaint and there's likely more and it's troubling like ben sasse as well as mitt romney saying he finds it deeply disturbing, as well. >> go ahead, david. >> no, i just think it's also important that the only thing right now that's reminiscent of the mueller report is the idea of what's in the actual complaint. what do we not know? because we're focused today rightly on this log or the summary of the call and that's
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what we have to work with. there's a lot more that could come and if it somehow does not further the case politically it could be damaging to the democratic effort, but what is known is what the president admits he did and what's so revealing about his comments today in trying to swat this away, what did he talk about? he talked about democrats can't beat me. he e rhone owslrroneously claimd in the polls and that is what the sum total of what this call is about, to get a foreign lead tore investigate his political opponent based on things that are conspiratorial. >> that is the takeaway. ann, this is the transcript here because he wants the ukrainian to have follow-up calls with barr and his personal attorney rudy giuliani. that part, mr. giuliani is a highly respected man. this is the president speaking. he was the mayor of new york city and a great mayor. i'd like him to call you and i'll ask him to call you and rudy very much knows what's
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happening and he's a very capable guy and if you could speak to him that would be great. so today the doj says we know nothing about it. bill barr knew nothing about it even though his name was broad up multiple times. do you believe that? it sounds pretty clear that the president had talked to them. >> it feels to me, there are so many instances that barr and giuliani are mentioned together. it seems to me that the president feels very comfortable to say call my team. my team will talk to you and we don't know what was said to barr. if we unpack this, the first piece is if this were legitimately about corruption, there is no reason for the personal's personal lawyer to be involved in any way. >> that say very black and white thing. >> the second point is that bill barr sat head of the department of jufis, he not also trying to
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abuse the rule of lieu in the united states by having the head of the chief federal law enforcement agency working on his behalf to investigate a political rival. >> we'll take a break. another crucial part of this next ask senator mitt romney was one of the few to criticize the president trump's conversation with the ukrainian president. here he is today speaking out. >> we'll see where it lead, but the first reaction is troubling. >> and now two other major republicans are joining him, but they are still on a lonely island. senator cory booker is out front and what does he make about trump pushing ukraine to investigate booker's rival joe biden? [dogs barking and whimpering] [dogs whimpering] ♪
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breaking news, cracks e merging in the republican ranks after the transcript showed president trump repeatedly asking ukraine's president to investigate his 2020 rival joe biden and biden's son. here is republican senator mitt romney earlier today. >> this remains deeply troubling and we'll see where it leads, but the first reaction is troubling. clearly, if there were a quid pro quo that would take it to an entirely more extreme level. >> and the senate majority whip john thune told cnn after he read the transcript, quote, i don't like seeing that. it is not something i would bring up and senator ben sasse saying after reading the whistle-blower's complaint which he emerged from the room, republicans ought not be rushing to circle the wagons and say
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there's no there there when there is voubsly a lot that's very troubling there. and moving before they actually had the transcript. everyone is back with me now. congressman dent, let me start with you, though. the transcript deeply troubling according to those very senior republicans and according to democrat, but yet those republicans are very much in the minority, right? incredibly in the minority. how do you think that is? >> well, look, i think that this transcript is more than troubling. it's alarming. i would suspect that most republicans in congress would agree with me that it is alarming. they're not willing to say it publicly because they're all fearful of primary pressure and even members in the marginal republican districts and swing districts have to worry about primaries as well and that's what this is about and not just on this issue, but on every other issue from charlottesville to the tariffs and the helsinki debacle and why aren't more republicans speaking up?
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it's always for the same reason, but if i'm a republican i'm alarmed by when i'm reading in this stuff. >> so, nia, to the point congressman just said i want to play something else senator romney said today. >> i think it's just in human nature to see things in a way that is consist went your own world view and your sense of what's necessary for the preservation of your position of power. i -- i don't know why i'm not afflicted to the same degree as perhaps others are in that regard. maybe it's because i'm old, and have done -- >> he tried to make a joke there, nia, to the point he's making, congressman dent is making, i mean, are republicans putting politics over what they really think because it is about their political survival? their personal political survival? >> i think that's right, right? if you're lindsay graham you are up for a re-election in 2020. you want to stave off a primary challenge so you want to hug the president, but what is interesting here is you don't really see republicans coming
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out to defend the president and we know that this is a president that likes the echo chamber. he likes to see people on tv defending him. i think one of the reasons he brought up vice president pence today said vice president pence also had a phone call and maybe that will be released and that was as perfect as donald trump said as he's called with the president of ukraine. you wonder if vice president pence is in some ways being marshalled into coming out to defend the president because so far there aren't many people who are willing to outright and defend this president. lindsey graham, he was certainly out doing that. there was twitter activity of some house republicans saying there was no quid pro quo in this call, but no vociferous defense of this president. i think if you're this president you're going to increasingly find that. >> i want to talk about lindsay graham and i will say on a quid pro quo and it's explicit and implicit and it's pretty clear, we can all read between the
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lines and we can all hear him saying what he's saying whatever words people want to use, and to this point, though, the former fbi director jim comey, you know, obviously he and trump, no fan, he has been saying all of the way along and do this in an election and don't do it through impeachment. today he said we may be at the point when members of the house and senate cannot defend the constitution without acting. do you think he's right? as a lawyer, looking at the constitution and looking at that oath to be consist went that do they need to act now? >> i very strongly agree with that. and each before we saw the transcript of the call we are seeing the president calling a world leader for his own personal gain and this is public corruption and with talking with quid pro quos and you can look at constitutional violations and it is really important that this be investigated and that congress hold the president to account and, you know, let the facts be when they may and it's very important to have the
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process when we did all see what happened and there's no question in my mind that the president knows this needs to happen and we need to have more evidence and information. let me ask you about the person who is most loudly defending the president and that is lindsay graham. so here's what he said today. >> from my point of view to impeach any president over a phone call like this would be insane. >> unfortunately, it's completely inconsistent what he has said when he stood on principle and morality in 1999 about bill clinton. here's when he said then. >> you don't even have to be convicted of a crime to lose your job in this constitutional republic. if this body determines that your conduct as a public official is clearly out of bounds in your role, impeachment is about cleansing the office. impeachment is about restoring honor and integrity to the
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office. >> david? >> look, i think that contrast speaks for itself. i've covered senator graham for years, interviewed him many times, spoken to him many times. lindsey graham as a senator today defending trump and in the past is unrecognizable to me. i wonder what his political mentor john mccain would have said about these circumstances. his -- his an imus towards trum understand withstanding because that is who lindsay graham modeled himself after. we've seen it in other episodes and we see it here and he could legitimately believe that it's not an impeachable offense, but for him not to say that this is objectionable or an abuse of power is striking to me, and i think you have a lot of republicans, again, it's worth remembering and worth pointing out let's use the hillary clinton test or the barack obama test, if they had done this what would have been the republican
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response? it is so clear what it would be. so this is politics. this is protecting the president and circling the wagons because they're afraid for all of the reasons charlie dent said they're afraid and because they're taking their measure and they're very carefully watching how this is dealt with and what more comes out. even mitt romney who has a lot of integrity and has his own political power base is still being a bit careful and that's what they're up against at the moment. thank you all very much. tonight on cnn don't miss our special report and anderson and jake will host "the impeachment inquiry." up next, joe biden responding to the transcrypt for the first time of trump's conversation with the ukrainian president as 2020 incumbent cory booker responds to his take and we are getting testimony about the whistle-blower complaint from the guy who refused to hand it over, the act are director of national intelligence. we'll be right back. ♪ (music plays throughout)
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the most personal technology is technology with the power to change your life. breaking news. joe biden responding to trump's ukraine call. here he is moments ago leaving a fund-raiser in los angeles. >> your transcript is very revealing. >> joining me now 2020 candidate senator cory booker. good to have you tonight. elizabeth warren calls it a
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smoking gun, in her words. how would you describe it? >> well, it's very plain that this is a president that this is a president who was using his office, abusing his office to try to put pressure someone who really needs america. i've been out there in eastern ukraine in the region. i've met with their military and i've seen the challenges with the russian aggression and russian attacks and them losing fellow soldiers. this is a country that needs our help and this call, the president used the authority of his office and the power of the presidency not for national security issues and not for economic issues and not to help out an ally, but to try to use his office to get dirt on a political opponent. that is -- that is unacceptable in our democrat see. it's abuse of his power and it should lead us to a much deeper investigation. >> you're on the judiciary committee, senator, so i want to ask you about something else now at the center of this, the attorney general william barr. he appears to be at the center of this, as well, because
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according to the transcript trump said at least twice that barr would call the ukrainian president about investigating biden. ba they said barr denied knowing anything about this. do you buy that? >> this say time when we should seek truth and obviously i'm very skeptical about anything that comes out with this administration that has taken liberties with the truth that are extraordinary. i don't think i've ever seen an administration that lies this much to the american people, but i want to lead -- this is a sobering moment and we've seen the fourth time in american history and the impeachment process beginning and i think we've got to go where the facts lead us and right now the facts are pretty damning and we need a further investigation and what was barr's role in this and are there other conversations between ukraine and -- and the ukrainian leader and this president and what's the fullness of the whistle-blower's report. there's a lot more work that we have to do and i'm not confident that it will have any
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exculpatory evidence and we'll find more damning evidence as we go further. >> you're not pulling back from it, and you are clear it's where it goes and you want more details and more investigation first? >> no. let's be very clear because i moved to impeachment proceedings far more before nancy pelosi did. i swore an old to uphold the president of the united states and this president has not been allowing investigations and the checks and balances that were designed in our constitution and this was a president saying he was not subject to him and he would not people testify before congress and he wouldn't release documents that were subpoenaed and he was obstructing our ability to function as it was intended and that's why i was in favor of impeachment proceedings to begin and to let the evidence come out and i believe the american public should have the truth about these matters especially this one where we see such a blatant abuse of presidential power. >> the washington post-op ed
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today suggests this could hurt biden more than trump. trump will use an investigation to paint joe biden as a creature of the washington swamp while senate republicans will not remove trump from office, biden might decide they are distractions they do not need. they might do more to deny biden the presidency than trump. senator, do you think that you not name joe biden in this. >> no this is donald trump trying to do what he always tries to do to obscure his moral vandalism to make unsubstantiated accusations about other people. there is no there there. cnn has investigated and "the washington post" has investigated and there's no there there and stop trying to distract from the outrageous things we saw in his transcript. i can't imagine any republican or democratic president in the
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past, i just can't imagine in my lifetime seeing a president using his political power and using his leverage to try to pressure a vulnerable nation into doing his bidding to go after a political opponent. this is despicable behavior and i'm not going to let him do what he normally tries to do is to try to point pifingers of blame and try to dispratract people through his toxicity and his lies and this lies at his feet and the midwestern people deser deserve to know the truth about it. >> thank you tonight. >> this is the crucial moment about to testify about the whistle-blower complaint publicly and this is happening in just hours. so john king is next. (male announcer) don't miss the outdoor traditions sale
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breaking news. in just a few hours we'll have key public testimony of the whistle-blower complaint. the acting director of national intelligen intelligence, joseph mcguire will testify in front of the house about the complaint. out front now, anchor of "inside politics" john king. you covered the last impeachment proceedings for president clinton. maguire is coming. he didn't want to do this. he had been the guy who refused
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to hand over the report. this will be a huge day. >> it will be a huge day. why is the acting director of national intelligence so important? erin, all day long they've said the whistle-blower complaint, they have documentary evidence to press their case for impeachment but especially in the house. the hearing will be in the house. it is the most tribal. it's the broadway of tribal. democrats cannot expect any help from the republican side. there are some growing doubts among the republicans in the senate but tomorrow will be on the house. the key test, tomorrow is a laboratory of sorts. if they are going to sell over the next weeks and months to impeach the president, they need republicans and the president cannot say this is significant and this is a big deal. from mr. maguire the democrats
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need him to lay out the complaint. they're trying to get him to acknowledge he took it very seriously. they want him to say the person who filed it is not a partisan hack but a career person and they're looking to have a trump appointee help them build their case. it's a big test for the democrats. >> it's interesting, john, to the point you made. the acting director a trump appointee. so is the intelligence of inspector general. trump's inspector general says this is credible, urgent, passes it along to trump's other guy who begs to differ, refuses to hand it over. maguire is a huge wild card you say? >> he is. he's pretty much a national unkno unknown. we know how upset the president was when dan coats and other members would raise their hands
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and say, yes, the russians interfered. mr. maguire knows the democrats will be pressing him and the president will be watching him and he's an acting. the pressure is on him to disclose as much as he can. we'll see how much he says i cannot disclose. the pressure is on the democrats to ask the right questions, to build their case, to do it calmly to try to get people who have a trump pedigree to acknowledge the seriousness of the situation. >> and one thing before we go because you mentioned republican in the senate, right? the three that we've heard from who have expressed such concern, senior respected members of the senate, sas, thune, romney. you can't impeach the president for real. he can't leave office. is there any chance that happens? do you hear anything when you hear three significant voices starting to speak out to make you wonder or no? >> i think it's very important not to get that far ahead. you had first senator romney and senator sass. don't get out of your skis.
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don't start screaming impeachment but let's get the facts here. let's be thorough about this. let's do our jobs. i can tell you tonight, erin, i've spoken to senators and aides who say there is some there there and we need to answer these questions. >> and no doubt they're going to want to do it carefully and thoroughly but many of them are going to want to do it right and hopefully they'll do what's morally right. >> question of courage. will they come out and say so publicly because they understand what the president will do if they do. >> thank you very much, john king. next, how voters in a crucial battleground state feel about pelosi's push for impeachment. >> it will show people a president can't do these things and just get away with it. full of flavor. color. full of... woo! full of good. so you can be too. try our new warm grain bowls today. order now on doordash. try our new warm grain bowls today. yeah, i've had some prettyeer. prestigious jobs over the years.
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tonight more than 200 house democrats are now backing the impeachment inquiry, but are voters on board? well, it was announced yesterday miguel marquez went to the swing state of pennsylvania today to find out. >> reporter: quaker town borough, pa, voted for the president in 2016. today some of his supporters
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aren't sure. >> i think he's crossed the line. >> reporter: todd voted for obama twice. like bernie sanders in 2016 and then voted for donald trump over hillary clinton. you reluctantly voted in 2016 and in 2020 it's an open question for you? >> only because i didn't see another -- a better opportunity there. >> reporter: a chef at quaker town's carleton cafe, he says with impeachment democrats may be going a step too far. do you feel like it's over reaching right now? >> i think so. i think they are. i think they're -- they want him out, i'm pretty sure. >> reporter: third generation shoe store owner ralph mory became a democrat in 2008 so he could vote for barack obama in the primary. he voted for obama in 2012 and in 2016 he voted for donald trump. in 2020 he says no way. what is it about the president that -- >> the way he manages himself
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and that reflects on what our country is all about and our country is better than the way we're being perceived as. >> reporter: but he thinks impeachment will further divide an already hyper partisan country. >> i think it is ugly now. i think we should focus on not being ugly. >> reporter: hard core trump supporter roxy pixel says democrats will only harm they were selves in going after the president. >> in this town there's a lot of people who have turned. they say it's stupid. >> reporter: quaker town is part of bucks county, the vote rich philly suburbs. it narrowly supported clinton in 2016. in new hope, a democratic strong hold, many voters hearsay impeachment, about time. >> show people that a president can't do these things and just get away with it. >> i think that democrats need to show some spine. i think that it's a good way of showing power and what's right and doing everything by the law. >> so i have spoken to a lot of
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trump voters not only here in pennsylvania and across the midwest and all of those states that flipped from obama in 2012 to president trump in 2016. i have never heard them so open and candid about why they cannot support him in 2020. it is going to be a long, interesting year. erin? >> it certainly is. fantastic report on the front lines. anderson starts now. good evening. we began last night's program noting the day's historic significance. today is no different because we now have a rough transcript, not a verbatim transcript, provided by the white house of the president of the united states asking a foreign leader to investigate a u.s. political rival, joe biden. as far as we know, that has never happened in the history of the united states. also this afternoon, members of the house and senate intelligence committees got their first look at the whistle-blower complaint connected with the call. late today


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