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tv   CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin  CNN  July 19, 2017 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT

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these kinds of plans could save you in out-of-pocket medical costs. you'll be able to choose any doctor who accepts medicare patients. and there are virtually no referrals needed. so don't wait. with all the good years ahead, look for the experience and commitment to go the distance with you. call now to request your free decision guide. this easy-to-understand guide will answer some of your questions and help you find the aarp medicare supplement plan that's right for you. hi there, i'm brooke baldwin, you're watching cnn. i'm talking about 24 hours now after this health care bill
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collapsed, president trump hosting these frustrated republicans at the white house and demanding they stay put, stay in town until a new plan is in place. the only problem is that it's not spirentirely clear whatsoev what that plan would look like and we are now starting to hear from these senators about what went down in the meeting. but first, let me play something for you. this is the president of the united states just as the lunch was beginning. roll it. >> we're close. i think we're a lot closer than people understand, and we have to pull it through. so important. but we're in this room today to deliver on our promise to the american people to repeal obamacare and to ensure that they have the health care that they need. we have no choice. we have to repeal and replace obamacare. we can repeal it, but the best is repeal and replace, and let's get going. i intend to keep my promise, and i know you will too.
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obamacare was a big lie. you can keep your doctor, lie. you can keep your plan, lie. it was a lie directly from the president. you can keep your doctor. you can keep your plan. 28 times he said it. 28 times. and it was a lie and he knew it was. and now it's hurting this country irreparably. i'm ready to act. i have pen in hand, believe me. i'm sitting in that office. i have pen in hand. you never had that before. you know, for seven years, you had an easy route. we'll repeal, we'll replace, and he's never going to sign it. but i'm signing it. so it's a little bit different. but i'm ready to act. for seven years, you promised the american people that you would repeal obamacare. people are hurting. inaction is not an option. and frankly, i don't think we
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should leave town unless we have a health insurance plan, unless we can give our people great health care. because we're close. we're very close. we have no democrat help. they're obstructionists. that's all they're good at is obstruction. they have no ideas. they've gone so far left, they're looking for single payer. that's what they want. but single payer will bankrupt our country. because it's more than we take in for just health care. >> and then there was this moment where president trump called out senator dean heller of nevada who was seated just not right of the president. senator heller was the key "no" vote in that first version of the senate bill. watch this moment. >> the other night, i was very surprised when i heard a couple of my friends, my friends, they really were and are -- they might not be very much longer,
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but that's okay. i think i have to get them back. that's right. i refuse -- well, no, you didn't go out there. this was the one we were worried about. you weren't there. but you're going to be. you're going to be. look, he wants to remain a senator, doesn't he? okay. and i think the people of your state, which i know very well, i think they're going to appreciate what you hopefully will do. >> let's begin there, dana bash. cnn chief political correspondent. it's like you look at senator heller's sort of smile. he's like, i need to be smiling because i know the cameras are on me but i'm really not finding this very funny kind of smile. >> he's like, does anybody think that there is a mechanism for this seat and for the floor to open and i can just get sucked down. if there is, can somebody tell me how to push that button. no question. and it was a smart tactic, just sort of, you know, strategically, politically, to put dean heller next to the president in the first place because he's a very key guy
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here, in terms of whether or not he's going to come on board. the reality is that the person who has the most influence with dean heller is not the president of the united states at this time. it is the governor of his state, governor sandoval, who is enormously influential because in nevada, they took money from the federal government, they expanded medicaid, and it's one of the states where obamacare is actually, all things considered, working pretty well. so, that's the dynamic with dean heller. he should be calling -- the president should be calling governor sandoval maybe more than the senator. but regardless, brooke, this was a tactic, a president, a strategy that we have not seen that people even inside the administration have been pulling their hair out, asking, why are we not being more aggressive in trying to define this bill, trying to define the politics, maybe try to put a little fear, if it is possible, into
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republicans who are bucking the republican leadership, reminding them, you know, you voted for this and you -- you campaigned on this, i should say, over and over again, repealing and replacing obamacare. now it's time to step up and do it. whether or not it is going to be successful, who knows? it could be too little too late. but at least the president is getting the message and there is no doubt in my mind that there are people who have been begging for this kind of presidential presence on this, who finally got their wish. >> so then with the presidential presence, how much will that actually influence some of these republican holdouts? >> reporter: unclear, because of the, you know, question of when this happened, and whether it's too little too late. when you already have people like lisa murkowski of alaska, susan collins of maine, and even -- and those are sort of on the more moderate side of the spectrum. on the other side of the spectrum, rand paul of kentucky
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coming out and saying that this bill, which the president was referring to, the one that seemed to be dead 24 hours ago, or 36 hours ago, the republican plan to replace obamacare, that they have problems with it. they're already out there. so, it just depends on where they think the sort of politics are and more importantly, whether the republican leadership and the white house can give them a way to save face. there you see another, shelley moore capito, lisa murkowski, susan collins, and these are three, who, never mind the replace bill, they have said that they don't even want to go with just to repeal. so, the question -- i mean, this is a true test now and the president has put himself out there and whether or not he has the juice to make them worried base on what he said today, which is, you should vote at least to get on this bill, that's going to be -- that is currently, because of his comments, being put to the test. >> let's listen -- speaking of these senators, they're
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meandering out of this meeting here. senator johnson. >> completely supportive of that. these markets are collapsing. he made a strong case for repeal and replace, and so again, i completely support and i thought this was a really good lunch, good meeting. >> you guys were fairly far apart on replace before that was scrapped. what's going to change this time around? >> i really do believe that 5 the republican senators, the vast majority of us don't have the exact count but probably 50 or more when we ran for election, we told our supporters, our voters that we were going to repeal obamacare and replace something that worked better. and i think we take that commitment very seriously. and i think it's good to remind us all of that. and to do everything we can to move forward to get a result that's going to continue to improve what our health care system is. >> were any new policy options put on the table? we saw the public part of your guys' meeting but behind the
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scenes, were any new policy options put on the table or agreed upon. >> not agreed upon but it was pretty wide ranging conversation, that's good, and we'll continue those conversations tonight and into the weekend. thanks. >> senator ron johnson with our correspondent there on the hill, phil mattingly, with that, saying it was a good lunch so there you have it at least for you. dana bash, thank you. health care certainly not the only thing on the president's mind today as we're learning more details about the june 2016 meeting at trump tower. so this russian lawyer at that meeting is now telling cnn that she is ready to tell her story to the u.s. senate with a few conditions. here she was speaking earlier to a russian government-backed tv network. [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> we are also learning even more about this eighth individual who was in the meeting. ike kaveladze was tied to this money laundering investigation involving nearly $1.4 billion that passed through u.s. banks. now, kaveladze was actually never prosecuted, and he currently works for the russian billionaire who originally requested this meeting with don junior. so let's go to our justice correspondent, jessica schneider, who's been working this angle of the story and so this whole money laundering investigation, what more are you learning? >> reporter: right, so brooke, kaveladze was investigated back in the year 2000 and it was part of that potential billion dollar money laundering scheme that was tied to russian brokers, and that is really what's raising some red flags for lawmakers. in fact, former michigan senator
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carl levin took to his facebook page to spell out his concern here. he talked about the congressional probe that he led in the year 2000 that asked the government accountability office to look into how foreigners establish u.s. corporations with hiding ownership as a way to launder money through u.s. banks. so, levin says that the investigation looked into, quote, numerous corporations and bank accounts established by irakly kaveladze on behalf of people in russia. and then he continued on to say that kaveladze, he actually set up 2,000 corporations and bank accounts where, quote, the owners of those accounts then moved some $1.4 billion through those accounts. now, kaveladze, he did, at the time, speak to investigators, and he said he knew all of the entities for whom he set up the accounts, so saying that they weren't just shell corporations, but former senator levin at the time he called kaveladze the poster child of this practice, setting up those shell companies, and then last night, though, kaveladze's lawyer said,
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and he reiterated that kaveladze did nothing wrong. >> what mr. kaveladze did back 20 years ago was absolutely, unekw unequivocally legal. there was never any allegation of him alleged in any criminal activity. >> was not charged. >> certainly was not charged with anything criminal and regulatory and did absolutely nothing wrong. the focal point of that gao report was about the banks onboarding of client accounts, account opening documents and that kind of issue, a compliance issue. he has never been implicated in any wrongdoing whatsoever. >> like his attorney said there, kaveladze never criminally charged as part of that money laundering investigation but lawmakers really saying that's beside the point, including senator mark warner. he says the mere fact that kaveladze was inside that june 2016 meeting with donald trump jr., given his, quote, colorful past, senator warner says that raises the stakes even more as
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these investigators continue and plow forward to find out exactly what transpired in that meeting. >> jessica, thank you. jessica schneider in d.c. we're going to talk more about this eighth man, whether this is becoming a follow the money investigation. also, a secret sit-down or conversation between president trump and russian president vladimir putin. why didn't we know about this, and why didn't another american join the conversation? and the story of two russian spies living life in a new jersey suburb deep undercover. stay right here. this is cnn. for your heart... your joints... or your digestion... so why wouldn't you take something for the most important part of you... your brain. with an ingredient originally found in jellyfish, prevagen is now the number one selling brain health supplement in drug stores nationwide. prevagen. the name to remember.
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i know i'm getting the best price every time. now i can start relaxing even before the vacation begins. your vacation is very important. that's why booking.com makes finding the right hotel for the right price easy. visit booking.com now to find out why we're booking.yeah! welcome back. you're watching cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. all these new questions now emerging about this meeting between donald trump jr. and this russian attorney as we're learning these new details about this eighth previously undisclosed person in the room. his name is ike kaveladze. and one former senator says the russian-american has a murky
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history. if you go back to 2000, he was actually linked to this $1.4 billion money laundering investigation. he wasn't charged or prosecuted at the time. mike rogers is with me now, host of cnn's "declassified." he's also a cnn national security commentator, former republican chairman of the house intel committee. so, mike rogers, good to see you. >> great to see you, brooke. >> on this kaveladze bit, so we know that he now works for that russian oligarch who originally requested the meeting with don junior. but to know that this individual, and again, he wasn't prosecuted, but to know he was in the meeting, does that concern you at all? >> well, you know, if you look at the cast of characters around that table, it concerns me a little bit. you know, the e-mail that should have sent flags up everyone's pole is when they said that they had information from the government, from the russian government. that should have been the first, hey, wait a minute, this is not just a normal political meeting where somebody comes in and says, hey, i got some dirt on your opponent. this is a whole different level.
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and so when you start looking at who was in the room, it's clear to me that this was more -- at least from the russian perspective, was more than what the face of the meeting was. i'm not sure on the american side. i think they probably went in thinking, oh, this is going to be great. clearly, to me, the russians were dangling something in order to see if there was some way they could spot or assess somebody in the meeting that they might be able to follow up with this. so i'm sure the investigators are focusing on that piece of it, was there a follow-up, did they recommend the russians recommend that they meet someone else that they go talk to someone else or could we get another meeting or i have some information, some other information i'd like to drop off. all of those things become more important for the investigative team, i think. >> we were trying to get context of the report at the time, looking at the shell companies and money laundering so i talked to the ceo of the gao, the government accountability office, who was at the helm at the time, talked to him last hour. this is what he made of the
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meeting. >> candidly, from my standpoint, it looks like that meeting that is getting a lot of press attention, that people were saying it was for one purpose and it was obviously for something very, very different. >> do you think this is becoming a follow the money kind of investigation? >> well, again, if you know how the russians operate, you know, it was -- it is -- >> not intimately, i don't. >> yeah, well, that's a good thing, probably. but it's very plausible that the russian intelligence services saw this as an opportunity to get in a room with important people in the campaign for the president of the united states and either figure out a way to get closer to them or try to recruit someone or something else. i mean, again, when you look at all of the players and how they got there, how they got asked to be in the room, who asked them to be in the room, you start scratching your head a little bit and thinking, boy, these russians are pretty clever, and
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they are, and they're, again -- the americans could have walked in the room with absolutely no ill intent whatsoever. but i'm not sure that the russians walked into the room with the same intent. >> under the russians are pretty clever file, mike rogers, let's talk about your cnn original series, airs on saturday, the entire first episode is about the spies next door, operation ghost stories, where this is all about russian spies infiltrating the u.s. and trying to, you know, seemingly live these normal american lives before being busted. take a look. >> christopher metsos, now in possession of what we believe to be $250,000, meets richard murphy, passes him almost half the cash to sustain his operation. ♪ >> and then gps shows that metsos's car traveled approximately 80 miles north of new york city to a small rest stop. the final portion of the money
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is buried at the base of a pole underneath an inverted brown bottle. agents in new york set up cameras to monitor that drop. the implement of that camera became a whole new case, separate code name. we didn't know how long that would be there. >> but we had to be ready to document that whenever it happened. >> the whole role of intelligence agencies is to be ahead of the game and not to be surprised. if you are surprised, then the chances are that you failed to do your job. >> yiekds. tell me more about the story, mike. >> oh, it's just a great story. so there were actually a number, about a dozen of these russian intelligence officers who were trained in russia, came to the united states. what they did is take on american-sounding names and really assumed the identities of americans. could have been your neighbor. you never would have known it.
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and their job was to infiltrate organizations, try to get into government -- guess close to government officials, gain policy intelligence, and what was really fascinating about this one, brooke, is the russians were willing to go 20, 30, 40 years or more in this operation. it was the biggest fbi counterintelligence investigation in their history. it was so mammoth. >> that's crazy. >> and you can see the kind of techniques that they used in this episode on saturday to try to beat the fbi. and of course, being a former agent, you know that's pretty hard to do. >> we know who won. that is crazy, though. mike, thank you. we'll tune in. this is the original series "declassified, untold stories of american spies." it airs saturday, 9:00 p.m. eastern and pacific here on cnn. coming up next, this private conversation that is now going public. the white house facing tough questions after we learn that the president met with vladimir putin for a second time at the
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g20 summit. we'll talk live with the former ambassador to russia, what concerns him the most, if anything, about this mystery chat.
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all right, we want to come up on these live pictures here as you're seeing what seems to be people getting -- oh, did we lose the picture? people getting arrested, people sitting down outside of republican senators -- here we go. republican senators' offices up on capitol hill. the context of this. you can obviously hear them chanting something. a lot of these senators who just walked out of this luncheon over at the white house with the president where obviously the president is hoping for something to pull through when it comes to repealing and replacing obamacare. we know the math. it's not looking good so far. i think we're hoping for maybe a hail mary on this one, and so we're seeing these people, obviously, protesting what's going on with regard to health care in this country.
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and we've also learned that republican senators will meet tonight. again, this is just hours after sitting around a table for lunch with the president today, talking about their so-far thwarted efforts of repealing and replacing obamacare. so we'll keep our eyes on the hallways there up on capitol hill. but let's move on this. new questions as we learn that president trump and russian president vladimir putin had a second undisclosed meeting earlier this month at the g20. according to the white house, the who men chatted for nearly an hour. this second meeting happened hours after the first official trump/putin sit-down around midday on july 7 at g20 in hamburg, germany. later on, at this banquet filled with world leaders, president trump left his seat, walked over to president putin's table for this second conversation. apparently the only attendees of the conversation included president trump, president putin, and putin's russian translator. president trump did not have an
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american interpreter with him. president trump tweeted that nothing sinister happened during that second meeting. so, let's talk about this with former british ambassador to russia, sir andrew wood. mr. ambassador, nice to see you. >> good afternoon. >> i want to just hone in on the secrecy part of this. why do you think we, the public, didn't hear about this? >> well, in form, it had all the appearance of an unplanned meeting. that is, i would suppose and hope that president trump would take his own interpreter along if it had been set up in advance. whether he chose to initiate it in the first place to make a kind of gesture of encouraging a relationship with president putin, i simply don't know. what i do know is that you can't sit for nearly an hour and have a discussion, even allowing for translation, which is just
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pleasantries of one sort or another. so because it wasn't reported to anybody, and no account yet has been given as to what was said, the united nations can run riot, and that's always unwise to put yourself in that sort of position. >> i think that's precisely it. it's the imagination. we don't know what was discussed because of the lack of another american present, an american interpreter. i was talking to a former counterterrorism, you know, former cia officer, phil mudd last hour, and he's essentially saying, let's give the president a pass. this is a good thing for two presidents to engage in conversation. but how will we know the content of the conversation? >> well, you probably never will. the only person on the u.s. side was obviously the president himself. he will, i suppose, give an account of what was actually said to, for example, the secretary of state.
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he certainly should. on the other hand, when there was a much wider meeting, both sides gave rather differing accounts of what was agreed and what happened then. so the room for misunderstanding is huge. the other fact of the matter is that this was witnessed and taken as a signal by all the other representatives of the g20 at the dinner. i would also hope that there would be an authoritative account from the white house to the closest allies of the united states as to exactly what went on. otherwise, they will all be speculating. it's almost impossible to conceive that they didn't talk about, let's say, joint action against terrorism, i.e. syria, or that there was no mention whatsoever about ukraine, and secretary of state tillerson was going to kiev, and gave some
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very, to my mind, appropriate reassurances to the ukrainians. if there was anything different said or implied or understood at the conversation at dinner, that would be a serious matter. it just leads to confusion. >> right. and leading to a lot of questions indeed, sir andrew wood, thank you so much, sir, for your time on that. i do want to pivot back to health care. we've been showing these live pictures of protesters on capitol hill. m.j., who are these people, what is it they want? >> reporter: well, brooke, what you're seeing behind me, and, you know, we've been led a little bit down the hallway so we're not so close to the protesters, this is outside the office of senator pat toomey. more than probably about a dozen protesters sitting down outside the office to chant and basically to oppose the efforts by republican senators to revive
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this repeal bill. they are telling stories about how the aca, the affordable care act, has helped them get health coverage and already we have seen a number of protests. you'll see, in a little bit, a couple of folks being led away in handcuffs by police officers. there's obviously a lot of security and police presence right now. they're trying to make sure that nothing gets too out of hand, but the point, brooke, here is that -- senate republicans are returning from the white house after president trump really pressed them to continue working on this bill, that they shouldn't even leave town until they have a repeal and replace bill. well, some of these senators are coming back to their offices to these protesters telling them that getting rid of the affordable care act simply is not an option for them. obviously, a lot of heat and a lot of emotions, frankly, from some of these people who say that they would not have been
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able to get health coverage were it not for medicaid, were it not for the affordable care act. >> that's an important issue. it affects millions and millions of people in this country. m.j., keep your eye an what's going on there on capitol hill. this is in the way of this luncheon with republican senators and the president, and we have now learned that these republican senators will be holding a meeting this evening, talking about precisely this, health care. coming up, what u.s. satellites reveal about north korea's plans to launch another missile test. also, what u.s. intelligence is learning about north korea's plans to launch a missile from a submarine. we will take you to the pentagon next.
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north korea is making preparations for yet another icbm, this intercontinental ballistic missile test or intermediate range missile test in the very near future. let's go straight to barbara starr, our pentagon correspondent. tell me what is the new intel that the u.s. intel revealing. >> reporter: hi, brooke. what we are learning from u.s. sources administration officials is they are noticing new intelligence they're gathering from satellites showing that north korea is likely getting ready for another ballistic missile test. not clear at this point if it will be a second intercontinental range ballistic missile, another missile that could hit potentially the u.s., or something that could hit in the pacific or more regional missile, but it doesn't really matter much at this point. north korea continuing to make rapid progress on its missile program, according to u.s. officials. this latest intelligence comes from imagery, from radar satellites, radar intelligence
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that they are beginning to test the systems that they might have to use in an upcoming launch. so all of this getting a lot of attention because north korea is getting very capable, officials say, at being deceptive, getting ready for a missile launch but hiding its activity until the very last minute, making it very tough for the u.s. to predict what exactly is happening and if there is a second icbm intercontinental range test in two weeks. the last one was july fourth. actually the first time they ever did it. if there's another one two weeks later, this is going to be something that will be extremely unsettling to u.s. national security. >> deceptive indeed. barbara starr, thank you. coming up, more on our breaking news here. president trump refusing to give up on health care, telling republican senators in this closed-door luncheon today that inaction is not an option.
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also ahead, some people have called it the parole hearing of the century. o.j. simpson is ready to make his case for parole. we'll preview what to expect ahead of his big day tomorrow. you don't know this yet but in fifteen hundred miles, you'll see what you're really made of. after five hours of spinning and one unfortunate ride on the gravitron, your grandkids spot a 6 foot banana that you need to win. in that moment, you'll be happy you partnered with a humana care manager and got your health back on track. because that banana isn't coming home with you until that bell sings. great things are ahead of you when your health is ready for them. at humana, we can help you with a personalized plan for your health for years to come.
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we've been showing you these different pirctures of protestes in and around the halls of capitol hill. this is actually the office of the senate majority leader mitch mcconnell, and clearly the protesters are now inside of his office along with a lot of people taking a lot of pictures here in the wake of this meeting with republican senators and the president. the president saying they're close, despite the math on this whole idea of repealing and replacing obamacare. let's go to kate litlan collins. the fact that the president sat around with dozens of these republican senators and says he has that pen, he's rtd eady to n this bill into law, what's his plan on selling this? >> reporter: so, legislative affairs director mark short just briefed reporters minutes ago at the white house, and he said that the president is open to
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selling the bill. he said that when senators were at the white house for that lunch today, that they expressed some frustration that the president hasn't gone out and done enough publicly to sell this bill, though he did call senators multiple times, even when he was overseas about the bill, he didn't do a lot publicly. you know donald trump loves his rallies but he never held any rallies or any solo speeches that were dedicate solely to health care so they said they felt he could have done more and mark short that's an option for donald trump going forward. some critics might wonder if it's too little too late now, we've already had several senators come out and say they're not going to support this health care bill. >> i know this has to be coming up in this white house briefing which is underway as we speak, again, you know, happening off camera. this is the third week in a row that we haven't been able to actually listen in and take this live on camera. what's the issue? what's the issue here?
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>> reporter: that's absolutely right and that's a great question. we have not had an on-camera press briefing since june 29. the white house has said they've justified these off camera briefings by saying they want the president's voice to carry the day, but they often have briefings when there are no public events scheduled, like last week. donald trump didn't speak anywhere publicly. that never was on camera for listeners to hear, but they're justifying these by not having them on camera, and they're also not letting the audio go live today either. they're saving it until the end and once it's done, then networks can air the audio with a picture of sarah huckabee sanders or sean spicer on camera. but other than that, we haven't seen them on camera. and we're not sure when we'll see them on camera again. >> thank you. >> reporter: you're welcome. eight and a half years. that is how long o.j. simpson has been in prison for his part in a 2007 armed robbery and kidnapping at a hotel room in las vegas. but tomorrow, the 70-year-old disgraced football star will ask the nevada parole board to set
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him free. simpson, we all remember, the famous acquittal back in 1995 of the brutal murders of his ex-wife nicole brown simpson and her friend, ron goldman. ashleigh banfield, host of hln's "primetime us" is there in carson city, nevada. ashleigh banfield, you talked to simpson's prison guard. what did he share with you? >> reporter: lots of things and most of them have to do with what's going to happen back there behind me tomorrow, what kind of prisoner he's been. by the way, brooke, you just said it. he's 70. that counts. if you are 70, that counts towards a good chance you'll get parole. he is clean living, he's been doing his education, he's been following his programs. he hasn't even had a write-up yet in nine years. not only that, he's got a plan for when he, you know, when he's going to leave, if he gets paroled, and all those give you a score, and look, they all say around here, he's going to get out. if that kind of an inmate doesn't get out, none of them
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should. the prison guard said a lot of other things as well, which make his spotless record even more remarkable. the kinds of prisoners he's been hanging out with, the cell mates that he's had, have a listen to what jeffery felix, his guard . and you were dispatched to be one of the people to watch over him carefully, and yet his first cellmate, correct me if i'm wrong, was a 6'9" serial rapist who laid claim to some 100 rapes. did they get along? >> yeah, they get along. his first cellie told me he raped over 100 women, and o.j. simpson o.j. simpson aand him g. his cellmate would cook, clean, and o.j. would just eat. they got along great over the years. >> and the cellmates also cooked
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and cleaned for o.j. and the deal was he would buy their comissary. he would buy the supply? >> that's correct. when you live with o.j. simpson, he has money coming in which most people don't. he would by the comissary. they would cook, they would clean. i would always call them his servants. i would say, how are your servants doing, o.j.? he didn't like that, but it is what it is. >> how about that. they all say the potential is there for him to get out. i'm sure we'll talk again tomorrow. thank you, ashleigh, ashleigh banfield in carson city. we want to go back to washington, though, we just learned huckabee sanders just wrapped.
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jeff zelany, this republican luncheon had to come up. what were the headlines? >> brooke, i think the headline specifically was they want the senate to stay engaged on this health care bill. he does not want them to only vote on a repeal bill or repeal of the health care act but they want it replaced with something as well. he told the senators to stay here in washington until it's accomplished. interestingly, also, though, some senators asked the president, brooke, to become more engaged this this process. actually, mark short, the legislative affairs director here in charge of dealing with the senate and the house on this, he announced the president would step up his engagement on this, would likely sell this plan that he alone can use his megaphone, if you will, to sell this plan. he also acknowledged, and we're also learning from other sources, that there were some
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tense moments inside that meeting. and mark short, the legislative affairs director, acknowledged that and said the president would be more engaged. but also he said that in his view, republicans do not own this health care bill until they have a bill of their own that's signed. he said they do have a responsibility to fix health care. so brooke, i would say by and large a big change from 24 hours ago when the president was effectively saying, i don't own this, i'm passing the buck on this, acknowledging that they do have a responsibility on that. and then, brooke, several questions about health care to sarah huckabee sanders about that dinner at the g20 summit in germany between the russian president and the u.s. president, that meeting on the sidelines which happened for almost an hour or so. sarah sanders pushed back
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aggressively, saying the media is trying to make up something that simply isn't here. but brooke, she also said she does not know the topics that they discussed at that meeting. so that, of course, is still a question here, is what did they talk about at that dinner meeting? we simply do not know. brooke? >> we don't know because it was just trump, putin and the russian translator. there was no other american present, which is an issue in terms of what was discussed. let me take you back to health care, because on your point about president trump -- i remember we covered health care from the get, and a lot of these senators were saying, mr. president, just let us handle this, almost like a stay out of our way, we got this. they obviously didn't have it, so now it looks like the president is going to be more involved. the clock is ticking. the guy phil mattingly talking to senators. they're annoyed this thing will linger for five to seven days
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before they vote on it and we all know the math. how much does this president expect this to sell in the time frame? >> we did expect the president would be selling this more, he would go out there and drum up support for it. we haven't seen it. specifically in some of these red states. he and he alone can go out and just talk about the virtues and the values of some type of a new health care plan here. he has been reluctant to sort of be in on the details here. senator mcconnell did not necessarily want the president steeped in the details or working on that. but they did want him to trav travel -- improve the support for it. it is in single digits in some cases, in other cases 12% public approval for this bill.
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that is something some senators believe the president can do, is help urge some republicans to start supporting this. we'll see if that actually happens. between now and next week, he does not have any more travel on his schedule this week that's health care focused. we'll see about next week, brooke. >> staying on health care, jeff, we got -- cameras were able to roll for just the tip-top of this luncheon. we heard from the president, and the seating chart is fascinating, right? because sitting to the president's right is republican from nevada dean heller who was a no on the original version of the bill on the senate side. he then became this target of this pro-trump superpac ad in nevada. keep in mind, you're going to watch the man to our left, mr. president's right, there really
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were and are. they might not be for much longer. i think i have to get them back. you didn't go out there. this is the one we were worried about. you weren't there. but you're going to be there. he wants to remain a senator, doesn't he? okay. and i think the people of your state, which i know very well, i think they're going to appreciate what you hopefully will do. >> on that let me also bring in april ryan. she's a white house correspondent for urban networks. april, at that moment you sort of see this smile on senator heller's face, like this uncomfortable grin, i'm smiling, this is actually not funny. what did you make of that moment? >> you have to smile to keep from crying. the president, you know, the general thought is that the president basically said if you don't do what i do or say do, you're not going to be
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reelected. then another reporter asked on the other side of the briefing to mark short who was briefing sarah huckabee sanders about it, she said, the president doesn't give veiled threats. it all depends on who you ask. was it a veiled threat or a promise that the american people might let him go? >> let's talk about the press briefings in general. this is week 3, hasn't been televised. do you think televised press briefings are a thing of the past, april ryan? >> i don't know. we don't know what this administration has. one thing i do know for sure is the press secretary and the press office here, they don't like having the back and forth where they don't look so good. and they don't want that on television. and i do know -- sean came out the other day, was it monday, and he seemed much more comfortable. and i'm wondering if it also a
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comfortability factor. one thing for sure, they believe there is a lot of paosturing. they consider it grandstanding. when there are a lot of questions being asked, when you're standing at that podium, you have to expect it. yesterday i had asked something about the naacp. the president was invited to the naacp convention. they didn't have an answer for it yesterday. after my tweet, i said the naacp has not heard from him. after january they had a decline for the naacp convention next week. this is the first president in 20 years who has not gone to the naacp convention,. it's a part of america this president covers. people want to see and hear trl, been here for 20 years and hope i'll be here for 20 more years.
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people need to come back and see the body language. the body is truth. we need to stand people there to see what's going on in this white house. i'm brooke baldwin. thank you for being with me. "the lead" starts now. >> thanks, barack obama. from i alone can fix it to i ain't gonna own it. "the lead" starts right now. a day after saying let obamacare fail, the president invites every publrepublican ser to the white house. that's two strategies in two days. breaking news. a new "washington post" report says president trump is ending the program to arm syrian rebels fighting assad. that's potentially music to vladimir putin's