tv The Lead With Jake Tapper CNN July 13, 2017 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT
thanks ana. the president suggests meeting with a hostile nation for dirt on your political opponent, just politics as usual. the lead starts right now. president trump goes to paris as the republican senator says he wants the president's son to testify. the doover of the do over. updated health care legislation, it still might not get enough votes and most senators are finding out what's in the bill at about the same time you are. plus he says he's no hero, but he served in the company of heroes. why the first leading soldier to earning the medal of honor since vietnam is giving it away.
welcome to the lead, i'm jake tapper, we're going to begin with breaking news in the politics lead as president trump today soaked up all the pageantry of his visit with the french president in paris. there were major happenings here at home concerning the investigation into his campaign and russia. and on the issue that could make or break his domestic agenda, health care reform. the updated version of the updated bill that could not get enough votes in the senate last time is now out. we'll have much more on that coming up on the show. meanwhile, the president's son now has the attention of the united states senate. the republican senate judiciary chairman chuck grassley of iowa now says he wants donald trump jr. to testify. cnn senior white house correspondent jeff zelny is traveling with president trump in paris. today the president again defending his meeting with that lawyer who has been linked to the kremlin. >> reporter: jake, he did
indeed. mounted a fatherly defense of his son saying he's a good man, but a legal defense, it was not. he did say that zero happened in that meeting. it was standard practice and procedure. but the reality is, jake, it is not standard, that's one of the reasons that senator chuck grassley as you said, a republican, the chairman of the judiciary committee wants to talk to the president's son next week. now all of this happened as the president defended it, he didn't call it fake news, or a hoax. a change of scenery for president trump. on a whirlwind trip to paris. yet no escape from the russia cloud hanging over the white house. at a press conference today alongside french president emanuel macron. a defense of his older son. >> son a great young man, he's a fine person, took a meeting with a lawyer from russia. it lasted for a very short period. and nothing came of the meeting. >> reporter: that meeting
between donald trump jr. and russian lawyer natalia who was described in an e-mail to trump's eldest son as a russian government lawyer is now part of the investigation into whether the trump campaign colluded with the kremlin to interfere in the 2016 election. >> i think it's a meeting that most people in politics probably would have taken. >> reporter: but many disagree. republicans, democrats, and mr. trump's own nominee to lead the fbi says the russian offered to take down hillary clinton and in the trump campaign should have raised red flags. >> zero happened for the meeting. and honestly i think the press made a very big deal over something that really a lot of people would do. >> reporter: never mind the press, it's congress and the jus disdepartment now trying to learn more. attended not only by the president's son, but his son-in-law jared kushner and paul manafort. republicans are calling on donald trump jr. and manafort to testify next week on capitol hill. deepening russia investigation comes as the president visits
europe for the second time in less than a week. this time invited by president macron to celebrate bastille day and the entry to world war i. >> it's a necessity to work together. >> reporter: they pledged cooperation in today's fight against terrorism. >> we also renew our resolve to stand united against these enemies of humanity. >> reporter: mr. trump received a stately welcome with one hug and pat on the back after another. it's the fourth time the two men have met. a relationship that began with this tense handshake in brussels in may. a striking tap of two new presidents who have swept on the world's stage in different ways. trump, 71, and macron, 39, separated by a generation and much, much more. president trump's decision to withdraw from the global paris climate agreement hung over the meeting, but macron still pressed him on the issue in their closed door meeting at the palace. >> our occasional disagreements are nothing compared to the immortal bonds of culture,
destiny, and liberty that unite us. >> reporter: the pageantry was striking considering how often mr. trump used the city of light as a punch line. >> i have friends that used to go to paris. they say no, paris isn't paris. >> reporter: and since taking office. >> i was elected to represent the cities of pittsburgh, not paris. >> reporter: yet he sung a far different tune today. flattering paris and the new french president whom he once rooted against. >> i really have a feeling that you're going have a very, very peaceful and beautiful paris. and i'm coming back. you better do a good job, please. otherwise you're going to make me look very bad. >> reporter: now jake, the president has said he will be flexible on foreign policy and other matters, perhaps this is one of the latest examples of that. he is soaking up the limelight here in paris, the city he
railed against so often. now, of course, it's beneficial for him as well as the new french president as we speak, jake, they are having dinner together in the eiffel tower. jake. >> jeff zelny in paris. for more on the role of the u.s. on the world stage, let's bring in sbrast chan gorka, he's a deputy assistant to the president. thanks for joining us. i'd like to start with issues relating to russia. by a vote of 98-2, the u.s. senate passed a bill that would impose new sanctions on russia. now the house is talking about making a few technical fixes having to do with licensing, but the trump administration's made it clear that you have broader concerns about the legislation. if the house passes the bill and keeps in the part that basically lays out congressional review over the president before he can lift any sanctions on russia, will president trump veto it? >> i'll leave the president to make that decision. the fact is, we've seen some positive movement with regards to the relationship between our two nations. the fact that we have a
ceasefire now that has been effective for more than five days, the president just announced in paris the extension into another region for a new possible ceasefire. these are all very positive signs. so, let's not prejudge, let's not steal anybody's thunder. these are the two most powerful nuclear nations in the world as rex tillerson said just last week, we should have better relations, let's see if it's possible and not prejudged. >> we'll get to the ceasefire in a second. i do want to ask you last year the barack obama administration received compound in maryland and new york of the russians because in the view of the national security apparatus, they were being used for intelligence-related purposes that might have plausibly connected to the interference campaign by the russian government. the trump administration is considering returning those compounds to russia. why? >> well, look, because we, we want to give collaboration, cooperation, a chance. the fact is we may not share the same philosophy, we may not
share the same type of statesman view of the world, but the fact is there are some issues of common concern. and if we see good faith, remember, more than 400,000 people have been killed in syria. that is horrific. if we can see acts of good faith come out of the kremlin with regards to things such as a ceasefire, then perhaps there is a chance for what rex tillerson wants to see happen which is an improvement in relations between our two capitals. >> i guess one of the issues that a lot of people on capitol hill were republicans as well as democrats are wondering about is why the possibility of a reward when there is still this issue, this cloud of russia's election interference hanging over the relationship, as you know, leading trump administration intelligence officials were recently asked before the senate intelligence committee if russia interfered in the u.s. election. they were asked as a basic yes or no question, here's their response. >> i do, yes, sir. >> yes, senator.
>> yes, i do. >> yes, i do. >> yes. >> yes. >> those aren't obama holdovers, that's president trump's intelligence officials, yet president trump a few days ago said nobody really knows for sure who interfered in the election. why does president trump continue to second guess the assertions being made by his own intelligence chiefs? >> jake, i'd ask you the question, do you wish us to have bad or deteriorating relations with the nuclear power that is the russian federation? in who's interest is that? >> well, it's not really up to me, but i guess -- >> i'm curious, i'm curious. >> one of the points is -- well, we don't dole out rewards, the united states doesn't dole out rewards to countries because they possess a nuclear weapon. we're not doing -- >> that's not what i said. >> we're not going to reward china or pakistan -- >> that's not what i said. let's go back to the president. to the president. as he was actually leaving the
press conference, a reporter shouted out, what about the kremlin? what about relations with russia? and the president gave a very, very important answer that really has shaped the prague in atism of this administration. remember, we're not looking to create new enemies. that's a very dangerous way to look at the world. and the president said, in theory, i would like to have better relations with russia, it's is a geopolitical nation. but he went on to say, right now, back then, it doesn't look very likely. and if that's the case, so be it. so he's a prague in atist, he's the most successful real estate magnet in new york. he looks at the world as it is. that was the last eight years of disastrous i'd logically-tinged lack of statesmanship out of the white house. we look at russia as a country we don't have perfect relations with, we don't even have better
relations with than other nations, but perhaps they could improve. do we wish to escalate matters with russia? i don't think that's a good idea, jake. >> you don't think it's weak at all to let russia go after having interfered in the 2016 election with no punishment at all? >> the last thing you could say about donald j. trump after the last 35 weeks is that he's weak. look at what we've done in afghanistan -- >> so what's the punishment? >> look at the 59 -- >> so what's the punishment for russia? >> look at what we did at g20. let's. >> reporter: i'm asking about russia. >> i will. look at g20. we sat down, the president had a two hour and 15 minutes discussion with vladimir putin. he pressed vladimir putin on multiple occasions with regards to the question of election tampering. the president was not in a court of law. he pressed, he pressed, the president of the russian federation denied, and at that
point, you have to move on because -- >> why? >> people are dieing in syria. that's why, jake. do you not care about the devastation -- >> of course, i do. >> well, we've got life and death -- >> russia is killing some of those people. >> and we've got life and death issues, and if we can create a ceasefire, which we did, with rally, with jordan involved, that's what we have to do. we have to move on. we have to move on in the interest of u.s. national security and saving innocent lives. >> well, i want to move on to the ceasefire, but i will say, just because you say you have to move on and not punish russia doesn't mean that you actually have to do it. i know you want to talk about the ceasefire. let's talk about the ceasefire. president trump today mentioned the ceasefire in one region of syria. he said he was working on another ceasefire in a different region. >> we're not -- again, we have to be careful. it's only the fifth day. we're going to go into a region that is still violent, still problematic, but we are buoyed
by the last five days of the successful ceasefire. we're not going to go into details. it's fresh, very fresh. we have to consult with all of those involved, but at the end of the day, we're talking about a ceasefire that has to gradually increase the territory of the peace has to increase until at the end of the day, it's not just about saving lives, it's about some kind of political resolution. so again, this is not the obama white house, we don't give our game play away, but we are interested in expanding the zones of ceasefire safety. >> coalition military officials have made it clear that they're not going to have any role in monitoring the first ceasefire that you mentioned. so, without then monitoring it, how do you guarantee that bashar al assad won't violate the ceasefire. >> i think we guarantee it by continuing to do the very powerful things that we've done already. remember, this is an administration that in just 24 weeks has managed to support the iraqi liberation of mosul.
that's determination. we've used cruise missiles against assad. we sent a clear message, the vice president, the day after the cruise missile strike asked me personally, do you think the world got the message that we sent to syria? and i said to the vice president, yes, mr. vice president, the whole world got it. assad knows that determination of president donald j. trump and he knows this is not a man to test. >> but there's no way to monitor it is what you're saying. >> we're not here to solve everybody's problems in the front line, the president said -- >> but you have a ceasefire, you have to monitor a ceasefire. >> doesn't have to be us. it can be other actors. >> let's move on to the fight against isis. defeated in mosul, major accomplishment for the iraqi and coalition forces, we need to consolidate the gains, ensure the victory stays a victory. what specifically is the plan to stabilize mobile? is the u.s. planning a long-term stay behind force there? >> the president was clear all through the campaign. and he's reinforced this after january 20th, that we are not
here -- this is not the bush administration and this isn't the obama administration that cut and run. we are not here to fight other people's wars for themselves. he thinks it's fundamentally un-american to invade other people's countries and occupy them. what we're interested in -- and that's why riyadh was the pivotal moment, he went into the land and he said to the raid, more than 50 arab muslim leaders, you have to sort your situation out. you have to drive the extremists and the terrorists from your places of worship, from your communities, we are here to help. we will stand -- >> right, who's going to maintain the peace though obviously? >> local, local actors. >> who specifically. >> right now, these are the details that we're working out, the nsc with our colleagues, with our bilats, liaison services, it is a matter of process that we are dealing with, as we speak right now, jake. >> winning the peace is almost as important as winning the war. >> absolutely.
>> one last question, the "new york times" is reporting that white house strategist steve bannon has asked forces behind two giant defense contracting firms, specifically eric prince and steven fineberg to pitch a plan to increasingly privatize the u.s. waging war in conflict in afghanistan, how is that not a conflict of interest? to have people who could stand to make billions of dollars on privatizing a war, pitch it, to general mattis or others? >> well look, i'm not going to confirm any details of meetings that are taking in confidence, but if you look at eric prince's track record, it's not about bilking the government, it's about the opposite, it's about saving the u.s. tax payer money. it's about creating indigenous capacity. this is a former operator, this is a man who hires former operators, first tier, special operations forces, retired individuals, not to go and fight there, instead of somebody else. but to help the afghans, to help
local indigenous forces protect their own territory. so this is a cost-cutting venture. we open the door here at the white house, the outside ideas, why? because the last eight years, in fact the last 16 years, jake, to be honest, disastrous. the policies that were born in beltway by people who've never worn a uniform, people in the white house like ben rhodes, they helped create the fire storm that is middle east and isis today. we are open to new ideas because the last 16 years have failed national interests and the american tax payer. >> there were plenty of people who wore a uniform who advised president obama and president bush. >> not people as influential as ben rhodes who had a master's degree in fictional writing. >> retired. >> that is disastrous. >> i'm sure he'd put his graduate degree against yours any week. >> any time, glad to debate him on your show. >> top democrat on the house intelligence committee adam schiff will join us to respond.
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we're back with breaking news, special council robert mueller who was investigating the russia case has brought on a senior fbi official who oversaw the hillary clinton e-mail server investigation to help manage the ongoing probe. that is according to two u.s. officials briefed on the matter. joining me now to talk about this and much more is the top democrat on the house intelligence committee, congressman adam schiff of california. thanks so much for joining us, congressman, as you just heard. white house advisors sbrast chan gorka acknowledged they're considering returning the compounds that have been seized in december. he wants to do it or the white house is considering doing it to give collaboration and cooperation a chance. your response? >> i think it'd be a terrible mistake. these are facilities that the russians were using to spy on the american people. why on earth we'd want to give them back, reward the russians for their continued denial of their involvement in our election, it makes no sense whatsoever. i don't know why this supposedly
con sue mat negotiator that they want to build up our president to be would go into that discussion with putin number one, conceding even before he got into the meeting the idea that we have no idea whether the russians were responsible when in fact we know all too well and even to ask putin those questions, did you do it, vladimir, suggests we don't know that he did it. that is, i think, among the worst negotiating strategies, not the best, that didn't project strength and in fact projected weakness and to go further, i think the russians would interpret and quite correctly as another sign of weakness. this is why it's so important for the congress to step up to take up in the house, the bill that passed in the senate 97-2, to prevent this president from taking unilateral actions to reward the russians for their continued hostility. >> let skme you, gorka in the interview made it pretty clear that the trump administration is not going to punish russia at
all. >> they were told the russian wanted to help donald trump's campaign and was willing to give them dirt on hillary clinton which they were only too happy to receive. so perhaps the very first people in the country that got the message about the intent of the russian government in terms of interfering in our political affairs was the first family itself. that should have informed the president going into that meeting along with everything our intelligence agencies have said, and for the president today, jake, to defend donald jr. by saying, first of all, well this attorney wasn't a government attorney when that's
how she was purported to be, and to go on to say, well, lots of people would have take than meeting, is the equivalent of saying lots of people do unethical things, and so we did too. and we're okay with that. it's not okay. and for the president of the united states to suggest that american people should accept the help of a foreign hostile power to interfere in our elections that somehow that's okay, that's appalling. wlp it's illegal is another question. but it ought to be appalling to anyone with ethical standards. >> you hypothesized a couple days ago in a press conference that the meeting, assuming that there was no intelligence or information shared, which is what don jr. and the lawyer in question say, that it might have been what intelligence officials call a dangle. a way to susz out, see if the trump campaign might be interested on dirt about clinton from the russian government. do you have any knowledge of other meetings that took place after that one that would have
been follow-ups to it? >> you know, i can't comment on what evidence we've been presented. certainly we want to find out if there are other meetings, that's very much a part of our investigation. but, you know, i think this is exactly what's taking place here. the russians used their cutouts to deliver messages to find out information, to see who'd be willing to work with them, to see who'd be willing to engage in an elicit relationship. and here are the messages that the russian government got back, they got a message back from the president's son. as part of your effort to help my father, we also got a message the following month from the president himself then candidate trump, speaking openly saying, hey russians, if you're listening, hack hillary clinton's e-mails, you'll be richly rewarded. so clearly the message got back to moscow that the trump campaign would welcome their help and indeed, the trump
campaign got their help with these daily dumps of information damaging to hillary clinton. so that's a pretty vivid portrait and one that's deeply disturbing and obviously we have to take precautions to make sure this never happens again. >> congressman adam schiff, thank you so much, appreciate your time, sir. senate republicans unveil the revised bill to repeal and replace obamacare. what's in? what's out? all that next. what in real time?stomer insights from the data wait, our data center and our clouds can't connect? michael, can we get this data to...? look at me...look at me... look at me... you used to be the "yes" guy. what happened to that guy? legacy technology can handcuff any company. but "yes" is here. so, you're saying we can cut delivery time? yeah. with help from hpe, we can finally work the way we want to. with the right mix of hybrid it, everything computes. on a perfect car, then smash it into a tree.
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until just a few hours ago, gop leaders kept this draft closely guarded. only releasing a few headlines. now on paper, the actual provisions seem to address some of the major demands made by various senators, the question, of course, is will the changes be real today convince at least 50 senate republicans? that's the minimum number they need to support the final bill. cnn's ryan nobles joins me live from the hill. ryan, the vice president pence, says president trump's going to be working hard to get the votes needed. a lot of undecided republicans, specifically on the substance, how is this legislation different from the previous health bill that the republicans couldn't get enough votes to pass? >> jake, really substantively, it's not dramatically different, but there are a few key changes that republicans are mulling over right now, deciding whether or not it's enough for them to support this bill. and let's break down a couple of them. one of the big changes is, there is now going to be an option for folks to buy and purchase cheaper insurance plans that will also offer fewer benefits. these catastrophic plans that
are currently not available under the law. they also want to allow people to use their hsa payments or their allowance pretaxed to pay for premiums, that's something you're not allowed to do now. $45 billion allotted to combat the opioid they are keen on getting into this bill. this is one of the most important aspects of this bill, there aren't any dramatic changes to medicaid from the previous bill, and that's one of the reasons that a lot of moderate senators have been concerned, big and deep cuts to medicaid down the road that they're unhappy with, but moderates are happy with this provision. there will be no repeal of the obamacare taxes on the wealthy. there is one key senator who has been somewhat of a purity person when it comes to this. he wants to be a full repeal, and that's ted cruz. sounded a little bit different today after they emerged. take a listen to what they had to say. >> it's not the ideal bill i'd
like it pass. i suspect there may not be an ideal senator, but it does represent a bill that reflects the concerns expressed across the conference. that's how we actually come together and honor our promise to repeal obamacare. >> not necessary lay ringing endorsement, that could be the problem for mitch mcconnell to get those 50 votes necessary to get this bill passed. >> all right ryan nobles on capitol hill, thank you so much. president trump says most people would have taken the meeting his son had with that russian lawyer promising dirt on hillary clinton from the russian government. if that's true, and it's no big deal. why are we just learning about it now? stick around.
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we're back with more on the politics lead. president trump's defense of his son meeting with a russian government lawyer, that's what he thought anyway went global today. let's start by playing some of what president trump said during his news conference today when asked about this issue. >> i think from a practical standpoint, most people would have taken that meeting. it's called opposition research or even research into your opponent. i've had many people -- i have only been in politics for two years, but i've had many people call up, oh gee, we have information on this factor or this person or frankly hillary, that's very standard in in politics. >> now, as a matter of fact, what the president described is standard in politics, but coming from the russian government, that is not standard in politics, angela. >> it's not standard in politics, in fact, you've heard president trump supporters frequently over the last day or two cite an example of a dnc consultant meeting with a
foreign government, and the issue to me is, they talked frequently about this saying it's the exact same thing as russia, it's not, it's apples and oranges. this came from the top down. you saw it in black and white frankly in the e-mails that donald trump received and sent. >> and david, i know that it's a father defending his son, and i get that, i have a son, but, you know, first of all he called his son a kid or whatever, i think he's 39 years old. i mean, he's a grown man, but okay, you consider your son your kid for the rest of your life. there is kind of like an attempt to normalize this, and it isn't normal. >> let's rewind the facts here, i'm glad angela raised the issue of the dnc consultant of actually going to a foreign power, actual consultant on the campaign going to an dwaul -- >> she was a dnc consultant. >> the dnc was smart enough to have a cutout, they have a cutout, going, they have a cutout going to a foreign government, actual foreign government, okay, looking for dirt on the trump campaign on
paul manafort. someone who's coming down the pike. amazingly, her stock goes up dramatically right after paul manafort's named the campaign chairman. in this instance, okay, i'm not saying the meeting was a great idea, don jr. said if he had to do it again, he wouldn't. she's an alleged, alleged, has alleged contacts with the russian government, i mean, you just heard congressman schiff saying i'm not going to tell you anything that's classified, and he's saying that she's apart of the russian government. we know that's not true because if congressman schiff knew that for a fact, he wouldn't say it on national tv if he knew that for classified meeting. we heard from a b list publicist an e-mail saying she's tied from the russian government. don jr. was a family member. >> no, he was an advisor -- >> he was a surrogate. >> i was on the campaign at the time. >> can i say one thing, is it not significant that ukraine is an ally of the united states and russia is a geopolitical foe.
>> we're not an ally of the trump campaign at that time or paul manafort. >> because he had done work in ukraine, go ahead, angela. >> and i just think -- i brought it up because it is outrageous, laughable that this is the defense used. number one, it wasn't just donald trump jr. in these meetings, it was jared kushner and paul manafort who of course was the campaign chairman. it also, the contact with the ukraine and the dnc consultant was about paul manafort, it wasn't about impeding on and fudging with our democracy of the election. >> sure it was, it was about knocking paul manafort out of election and participating, which they did. it was successful. >> and here's the bottom line here, there has been a number of people who have suspected, right, collusion, and now you have something in black and white that was leaked, only because donald trump jr. knew this story was coming out of the "new york times," damming. >> let many ask a question, trey gowdy who is a republican
congre congressman from south carolina, he had a take on this i want to play. >> yeah. >> the amnesia of people that are in the trump or bit, someone close to the president needs to get everyone connected with that campaign in a room. and say, from the time you saw the doctor until the moment you drank vodka with a guy named boras, you list every single one of those and we're going to turn them over to the special council because this drip, drip, drip is undermining the credibility of this administration. >> that is a very conservative republican from south carolina. >> listen, i don't agree with congressman gowdy one bit. i'm for getting every bit of that information, every bit of news you have and dumping it all, it's a bad strategy, i don't think it's a strategy at all. i think it was an oversight on someone's sf 86. >> security clearance. >> they corrected it, and they're being truthful and moving forward. >> but i think it's bigger than that, right, this is not about minimizing this, this is trey gowdy who led on benghazi saying
this. i think we have to acknowledge, it's not just about getting the information out, it's when the information comes out, us being able to say in a bipartisan manner, this information is problematic. that's what a number of house and senate republicans are saying, for whatever reason, trump surrogates can not fix their mouth to say that. >> which part is problematic? >> taking the meeting. what's also in the substance of the e-mail, the fact -- do you want me to answer your question? donald trump jr. saying, you know, i love it, especially if it's later in the summer. all of that is highly problematic, it's not ethical, and it is borderline illegal. if there is in fact a conspiracy here. it's a conspiracy to commit -- or to violate federal election law. that's the problem. >> so you are jumping and making a lot of assumptions. >> not at all. on the paper. >> conspiracy -- >> if it is -- >> violation. if i was 6'4" and handsome, i'd be a completely different person. if is -- >> we find you attractive. >> no, but you're assumptions are just huge.
>> no, my assumptions aren't huge. they're not assumptionings. >> they are assumptions. >> let's look at the legality. let's talk about the ethics -- was it unethical? >> i don't know. it's all based -- it's all based on your mens rea, what's going on in many your mind. i don't know what don jr., what he read in the e-mail, what he thought about in the e-mail -- at that time, russia was nowhere on -- >> angela, last word. >> russia is now in our sights because of actions taken like this, and his mens rea is clear, it's in black and white on the paper, and i think that we have to continue to stop acting like this is not a big deal, it is very much a big deal, if it wasn't, there wouldn't be two past ethics lawyers who served under barack obama and george w. bush who says it is unethical. he was the first living recipient of the highest award for valor. the spine spiring reason why this hero is giving away his medal of honor. stay with us. ♪ binders, done.
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gunta became the first living recipient of the medal of honor since the vietnam war. one night in 2007, he ran into enemy fire to rescue a fellow soldier from the taliban. but the weight of the military's highest honor for valor may have been too much for him to carry alone. he took off the medal and gave it to his entire brigade. barbara starr has more on many hero's story. >> the whole time frame maybe lasted anywhere between like two minutes, three minutes, and five or six lifetimes. i don't know. >> reporter: in 2007, he went on a night patrol in the mountains of eastern afghanistan and stepped into history. >> the soldier as humble as he is heroic, staff sergeant. >> reporter: in 2010, receiving the nation's highest award for valor, the first living medal of
honor recipient since the vietnam war. >> he'll tell you that he didn't do anything special, that he was just doing his job. >> reporter: now a decade after that patrol, he has taken another extraordinary step. giving his medal of honor to his unit, the 1737rd airborne brigade where he thought it belonged. >> i am not here because i am a great soldier. i am here because i serve with great soldiers. >> reporter: the brigade's current sergeant major frank valez says his action left him speechless. >> the first thing that came to mind is are you sure you want to do that? and he said yes, sir, i think it belongs to the 173rd. >> reporter: the brigade posted video, capturing a moment of humble strength amid years of grief. >> i want this to stay here with the 173rd, the men and women that earn this every single day through their selflessness and
sacrifice. >> there was a few gasps in the crowd and then there was folks just going wild at his incredible, this just really happened. >> reporter: cnn first talked to him in 2010 about the battle. >> i think about it, and it hurts, but to say it out loud makes it that much more real. >> sal and his platoon were several days into a mission in the valley, the most dangerous valley in northeast afghanistan. >> reporter: suddenly, ambushed, there was gunfire from all directions. his friend, sergeant joshua brennan in peril. 22 years old, charged into a wall of bullets. >> crested the hill alone, he saw a chilling sight, silhouettes of two insurgents carrying the other wounded american away, who happened to be one of sal's best friends. >> reporter: brennan rescued by him died of his wounds.
>> this is where it gets rough for me. you know, every time -- every time i can try, i can try to explain it, and i can try to put it into terms so people can understand it, and the more i do that, talking about it doesn't help me. >> reporter: and now, a decade on, the medal of honor is back with the 173rd, the men and women that sal served with, exactly where he wants it to be. jake. >> what a remarkable young man. barbara starr, thank you so much. the death toll is rising, people are starving, and they're trying to escape a deadly political crisis. the growing refugee emergency in venezuela coming up next. (man vo) dad forgot how to brush his teeth. (woman vo) my husband didn't recognize our grandson. (woman 2 vo) that's when moderate alzheimer's made me a caregiver. (avo) if their alzheimer's is getting worse, ask about once-a-day namzaric. namzaric is approved for moderate to severe alzheimer's disease in patients taking donepezil.
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nearly 100 people have been killed in a wave of antigovernment demonstrations that started in the spring, and now more desperate venezuelans are trying to escape the rising violence and find food by crossing the border. and flooding into neighboring columbia. cnn's leila santiago reports from the border town. >> reporter: six-year-old natalie wants food. she's hungry. her mother hears, but she doesn't have anything to give her. the family of five sitting on a street corner in colombia made the journey from venezuela last month. asked natalie why she's here -- she says things are tough because of the president of venezuela. their lives here selling lollipops living day-to-day are an escape from political unrest, shortages, and violence. here, they can make money and eat. she says she's here because she has to make money for the hotel.
>> reporter: the family depends on the generosity of others in a place where some help, many don't, and most are too distracted to notice the little boy who hasn't had a meal today. the mayor says the town cannot afford to support what he calls an exodus of venezuelans, if anyone understands limited resources, it's freddie. these lollipops are all they have to sell and to eat. yet, with the little money he collects, about eight u.s. dollars on a good day, the family pays for a room and their meal. tonight, a few bread rolls, a few for his sons, and a few for complete strangers, another venezuelan family just like his. because at the end of the day, dad wants his kids to understand, this isn't what he wants for them, but it should be appreciated. this life they're living, he says, far away from home, no
money, no school, is still better than what many are living in venezuela, even if here they feel invisible. leila santiago, cnn, colombia. >> and our thanks to leila. that's if for the lead. i am jake tapper. follow me on twitter and i turn you over to jim in the situation room. thanks for watching. happening now, very standard, president trump goes to paris where he goes to great lengths to defend his son's meeting with a russian lawyer. the president says most would have taken the meeting calling it standard in the political world. summiting don. senate republican wants donald trump jr. to testify soon about his russian contacts. and warns he can subpoena paul manafort who also met with the russian lawyer. democrats are calling for action against jared kushner who did the same. dou