Skip to main content

tv   CNN Tonight With Don Lemon  CNN  July 19, 2017 11:00pm-12:00am PDT

11:00 pm
we are out of time thanks for watching see you tomorrow night. time to hand thing over to don lemon, "cnn tonight" starts right now. have a good day night. >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. breaking news tonight on two huge stories. this is cnn tonight item don lemon. president trump on fire about the russian investigation unloads on his own attorney general, the fbi director he fired and the special counsel investigating all. listen to what he tell "new york times" about jeff sessions. >> sessions should have never recused himself. if he was going to he should have told me before he took the job and i would have took somebody else. >> he gave you no evidence at all? >> zero. so jeff sessions, takes the job,
11:01 pm
gets into the job, recuses himself. i then have -- which -- which frankly i think is very unfair to the president. how do you take a job and then recuse yourself? if he could have recused himself before the job i would have said, thanks jeff but i i'm not going to take you. >> president also accuses fbi director james comey of using that as leverage over him. and issues a warning to the special counsel, rob mueller by delliving too far into his family's finances. this comes as we learn tonight, dates are set for don jr., paul kushner and paul man in order to testify under oath in the investigation. plus this, senator i know mccain, patriot, war hero facing another battle tonight,
11:02 pm
diagnosed with brain cancer. our doctor has exclusive news on that. let's get to that interview with president trump joining me now on the phone is new york time's correspondent maggy habermann. you conducted that interview. blockbuster i think is too small a word for this interview. the president blasting his attorney general over russia. is his position in jeopardy? >> i think that the president has been very up set with jeff sessions for quite sometime. my colleague peter baker who was one of the people i conducted the interview with along with michael she mitt. we have thought a while ago that he has not -- fru straights with sessions and believes he would not be in this situation had
11:03 pm
sessions had not recused himself over russia i think are very real. i think he knows he cannot fire the attorney general. i do think his anger is sincere and genuine, i'm not saying it's necessarily where it should be. but if anything i think he may be, and i'm speculating here, trying to make it very hard to jeff sessions to remain on the job. remember, jeff sessions offered to re-sign in a halfhearted away several weeks ago. he has already been uncomfortable and put into a bad position. i think you can see a scenario where the president who, doesn't like to fire anybody under the best circumstance but he knows it will be problematic right now to fire the attorney general in these investigations. it's creating a situation where it's untangible for sessions to remain. >> it goes on to say, he says if he would have recused himself before the job he would have said thanks jeff i'm not going
11:04 pm
to take you. it's extremely unfair. that's a mild word to the president. the question is here, is he trying to force session's hand. you said maybe he is sending a message to jeff sessions but no comment from jeff sessions tonight? >> no i think jeff sessions is not a bare knuckles fighting. i can see him leaving and/or deciding to stay on and believe he's doing the right thing for country but staying on. >> can we go through some of this, i want to talk about jeff sessions, comey and rosenstein. he also faulted mr. sessions. mr. sessions said he had not met with any russians even though he met at least twice with ambassador serve yay sis kislyak. he gave his bad answers to the president and he gave some
11:05 pm
sample questions to which what should have been simple answers but western. so he wouldn't happen with that testimony. >> no, there are a lot of people that jeff sessions -- simple questions about what was your contact. so i think it's not surprising that the testimony is frustrated and upset by that moment. i think what's more remarkable is hearing him being so hopely critical on the record saying he wouldn't have chose him. >> but isn't it interesting, everyone thought it was behind us, because we asked if he had confidence in jeff sessions at the time during that questioning and one he had to recuse himself. and he said yes, everyone at the warehouse said yes, and called it fake news. apparently, even though it's been months ago, sometime ago that looks like it was not true. >> i don't actually remember them saying yes, forgive me if
11:06 pm
i'm misremembering. my memory is the responses i don't think they did response. where the president has confidence with jeff sessions and he declined to answer the question. i don't think this is a departure. >> let's talk about comey now because he made charges against the former fbi director james comey accusing hip of using salacious details to show the president has something on him. he said is the president now saying that the then fbi director threatened him. >> i think threaten is not the word but certainly trying to use what he had to retain his job. >> to retain his job. >> yeah. he wanted to help his job. he was telling the president, you know, what he had in his possession. >> that it was leverage over him he was trying to use it as leverage. mr. trump says he believe mr. comb my tolded him about the
11:07 pm
dossier to make clear he hadding to to hold of the president. in my opinion to think he had it out there mr. trump says, as leverage. yeah mr. trump says, in retrospect he thinks it have leverage. the president took on something as well by the special counsel in digging into his money. as for mr. mueller's investigation would across a red line if it expanded to look at his family's finances beyond any relationship to russia. mr. trump said, i would say yes. he would not say what he would do about it but i think this is a violation. look, this is about russia. so is he making the case here the possible of firing robert mueller? >> it's a great question don and we tried pressing him repeatedly whereless on there and what he'd
11:08 pm
be willing to do. he wouldn't go there and i think he was cautiously not going there. what he's doing is something i think you and i have both soon him do over many years which is keep his options open. he very rarely will rule something out. he doesn't always rule something in. i think he likes having the option open of potentially firing mueller regardless of how dangerous of proposition he may know that is. >> so he's unhappy with mueller, he's un-happy with comey and sessions, he's unhappy with rod rosenstein, he's also unhappy with who is a former federal prosecutor. said he was from baltimore. he was upset rod rosenstein was from baltimore and he didn't know that. why was it upsetting to him bah it was a democratic city? >> yeah. he questioned the political
11:09 pm
meaning not overtly of rod rosenstein. the president tends to boil things down to politics and people chose other sides. >> let me read here, it says the president also expressed discontent with when mr. sessions recused himself he said he was irritated to learn where his deputy was from. there are very few republicans in baltimore as odom nat democratic city. it seems like a strong thing for someone to say. >> yes, it does. >> the reason i said that because andrew mccain who's the acting fbi director as well, he suggested he too has a conflict. mr. mccabe's wife. he -- and it guess on to talk about that in governor who was a close friend of hillary clinton and bill.clinton and on and on.
11:10 pm
so who was he happy with? anyone who was close to the investigation and people he appointed and people he hired he's not happy with them already and it's just six months in. >> i think look -- as i said for him in his mind jeff session's recusal was an original thing. he's very frustrated. remember, there was a whole -- what set off that whole scene of events where he was tweeting about his phone being tapped by president obama. days earlier he venued in his frustrations that jeff sessions had recused without they willel. it is not a prisurprise to me t he feels this way. >> as usually maggy great reporting.
11:11 pm
thank for joining me i appreciate it. i want to bring in laura, borger and jeff zeleny. where do we start here. we were suppose to talk about -- i thought the big day was about healthcare and the president was finally going to get something done. also made in america, here he is stepping on his own message. i'm not sure why he gave this interview but it is an interesting interview gloria. what do you think of this? the most fascinating thing to me is the department of justice has become political. how is that? >> well, first of all let's talk about jeff sessions as you were talking about with maggy. i think it's very hard for him to in his job. i don't know how he does it. he's suppose to have a press conference tomorrow on another subject and i'm wondering what's going to happen at that. you have a president who has not only expressed no confidence but he's expressed anger in his
11:12 pm
attorney general. this man, by the way, was the first person to endorse -- >> first senator. >> donald trump in the senate was there from day one, was a close adviser and very important to hem. and the loyalty's gone out the window because jeff sessions felt, after he miscommunicated, if you want to call it that, with his testimony in the senate about meetings with russians, that after that he had to recuse himself. this gives you as eye-opening look in how donald trump have people working for him. sessions and rod rosenstein and andrew mccabe, they work for him in his mind and not the american people. because the grievances that he stated against all of them, in particular against jeff sessions was how could he do this to me.
11:13 pm
it's not fair to the president. when actually, the right thing to do for the american people was to recuse himself. but he blames sessions for the eventually -- all of the things that eventually led to the appointment of special counsel mueller whom he also believes is conflicted. and in some way, because people who work for him have given contributions to democrats over the years that they're out to get him. just jeff sellzeleny i'm going read a bit and i got a question for you. investigations dominating the conversation, he said that as far as he knew he was not under investigation himself, despite reports that mr. mueller is looking into whether the president obstructed justice by firing comb my. i don't think we're under investigation he said, i'm not under investigation. for what we didn't do anything. so he insisted to the times he's not under investigation but he,
11:14 pm
and others of the administration and his family have hired lawyers as parts of this investigation. so what do they really think at the warehouse? do think they they're not under investigation and hiring lawyers for the fun of it? >> well, don you clearly know what's on the president's minds. one of rare interviews he gives it seems it does come around to when he is or is not under investigation. that has been a particular question he's addressed many times. in an interview he did a few months ago with lester hot of nbc news, wanted to make clear he was not under investigation. of course people have hired a lawyer here. his son-in-law has, his son has, his former campaign manager has. >> his own lawyer has. >> he has. the reality is, this is much -- he hasn't called it a hoax recently, but we obviously still think he thinks that. but look don, the reality is
11:15 pm
there are a lot of inquiries going on in this town tip timothy. and we're going to see next week, paul manafort, the former campaign chair and the president's oldest son donald trump jr. has been invited to testify before the committee. we'll see if they accept that invitation. if they don't they can always subpoena them. and on monday jared kushner taking to the intelligence committee behind doors. yes, they've hired lawyers because this investigation is a full speed don. >> do you think part of reason for giving this interview because they're going to be testifying or they're going to be in front of the --? >> it's a great question. i'm not sure why he gave this interview on a day where he's supposed to be turning the page to focus on healthcare.
11:16 pm
republican senator sat with him today and asked him to become more active in selling the idea of healthcare. not the specifics but try to get red state america, trump america if you will, on board with this. then he gives the interview and completely changes the subject. once again i'm not sure if it's to get ahead of that i don't think so. it was earlier today before those invitations wen out to appear next week. i don't know why he did it. >> i kept reading, did he realize this was being recorded. it's fascinating to me. so laura, you about legal expert that you are, if you were jeff sessions what would you be thinking? how could you on? >> the attorney general serves at the pleasure of the president and i'm no longer pleasing you sir. but you also has a man who's ambitious and that's jeff
11:17 pm
sessions. but imagine what he's actually asking. he is the president of the united states is saying, had i known that the attorney general of the united states was not going to be a -- of president i would have found a different puppet. imagine what that would feel like to the morale of the department of justice. in a twisting way, jeff sessions also betrust his credibility by manager somebody who's at odd with the united states of the russian pro. he followed the advice of his counsels and he's followed suits with that --. imagine, even that did not please and appease the president of the united states. >> he's saying that about everyone, the acting head of fbi, the former, about mueller. he's saying that about everyone whose investigating him or who does not fall in line and praise
11:18 pm
him. he's saying there's some me fair yus attention there. >> this is the scapegoat. the city of ballamor is the scapegoat that the reason why this president is as paranoid as he is. >> that's a great word. >> it's so profound in this case because you have somebody on the one hand t president saying this may have been the issue, i'm not saying who is the actually culprit, it should be investigated. but anyone who tries to vil fie me simply must be against me and contrary to patriotism. very bizarre. >> gloria, so can you imagine tonight, none of the representatives are on, but i'm sure the morning show zsh make sure you tonight in to noon day by the way, they're going to have to explain what the president meant by the interview and somehow call it oh the
11:19 pm
president somehow didn't say what he didn't say, it's fake and not real and the media's out to get him for putting his on words back in front of him. what must the advisers saying tonight? >> look, i can't imagine their happy. the president today gave before his meeting with republicans, before his lunch, if you go back and you listen to that, he had a lot of talking points in front of him that were supplied by his staff who finally got him to talk about healthcare reform and why their version of healthcare reform, how that would help the american people. they have not had a message about that previously, that i have been trying to get this to come out of the president's mouth, to talk about this. he gave a sort of deference of their -- defense of their healthcare proposal. then you fast forward or back
11:20 pm
ward, to an interview that he gave to the "new york times." and it is full of grievances, it's dominated by russia, although they one out of their way and say they did hit an array of issues. there's no unspooling this. the president said what he said. and it is very clear to me that he has no confidence in his own attorney general that he's angry at his attorney general, and i think it's very difficult to see how those two operate in the future. and i wonder what jeff sessions is thinking of doing tonight, because i don't think he has a lot of great choices in front of him. because what the president said to him is you could have avoided all of this for me. now if jeff sessions wants to get up and answer a journalist question who's clearly going to ask about this and say i'm my own man, i have to do what's good for the country, good for him. but you know to --
11:21 pm
>> don, one other thing to add with what gloria was saying. today the white house was trying to get republican senators back on board. republican senators liked jeff sessions he's one of them. he is now certainly aggravated, you know, republican senators who was trying to sort of appease and wen over ahealthcare by say g this about jeff sessions. it's a very sort of odd set of events here. in many ways i think it can strength the attorney general as laura was saying earlier, it shows he is his own man in this are the here. tomorrow about a fascinating day wen sessions return to work. >> and robert mueller can't be fired by the president of the united states. if rosenstein tries to do so he has special protection with congress. he has to do it for a reason. and congress can hold a full
11:22 pm
hearing to find out whether or not the reason was in fact sound. it can't be as the president tries to air a grievance and certainly thing are cut. >> thank you very much. stick around. when we come back. american heroes, jeff sessions diagnosed with brain cancer. we'll have the latest with dr. sun jay gupta who spoke with the senator's doctors. (baby crying) ♪ fly ♪ me to the moon (elegant music) ♪ and let me play (bell rings)
11:23 pm
11:24 pm
breaking news to report tonight, americans may be divided over the russian healthcare battle. tonight prayers for john mccain. senator jonathan mccan has always been a fighter. melania and i send prayers to john mccain. senator and -- get well soon. let's spoke with dr. sanjay gupta who spoke with his daughter doctors, gloria joins me as well. sanjay tell us what you know. >> remember he had this operation on friday don, he was having a blood cot removed from his left eye. that blood clot was within his
11:25 pm
brain and they moved a portion of the bone there to get to the brain. we found out over the last few hours now that that blood clot was caused by a brain tumor. some people may know that term but that is an aggressive cancer, a brain tumor and an aggressive cancer. i talked to the doctors, they say he did very well from the operation, they feel like they removed all of the tumor. he was sent home the next day and has been recovering at home. but with this particular type of tumor it always required a follow-up treatment. that's a discussion that john mccompany and his family are having right now with his doctors. everyone's thinking about him and rooting for him. i think they're thinking right now the best course of action going forward. >> i know you're not his doctor but when something like this happens what is the usual prognosis? >> well, you know it's tough.
11:26 pm
it's an aggressive brain cancer. if you look at numbers alone, average survivals around 14 months. this is the same type of tumor that senator ted candy and beau biden had. but there are people with treatment who do survive longer. 10% of people will survive five years and longer. it's tough to put numbers on this sort of thing but that's the data you'll read if you look at the literature around that tumor. >> we talked about this but friends became concerned. after senator mccain's recent question of director james comey. let's listen to that moment and we'll have a conversation about it. >> in the case of mr. comey, you -- the president comey -- no, sir. >> the case of president trump, you -- an ongoing investigation.
11:27 pm
you're going to have to help me out here. in other words we're complete the investigation or anything that former secretary clinton had to do with the campaign's over and we didn't have to worry about it anymore. >> with respect to circumstance -- i'm a little confused senator. >> so sanjay we discussed it at the time we didn't know what we know now. i asked if it was related he said well he stayed up late watching a baseball game do you remember? do you think it was realized to the tumor now knowing what you know? >> well, i asked his doctors again today, and they sort of say the same thing. it's possible that that's this tumor and the blood clot could be related. the reason they hesitate and the reason i hesitate with you asked me earlier in the week because this portion -- this part of the brain is not really responsible for speech or your able to remember. what senator mccain was kplaening about to his doctors when he showed up on friday it
11:28 pm
was a routine exam. but when asked, he said look, identify been feeling tired for the last few months. this blood collection according to surgeons has been there for a week. it's possible that maybe a haeck or something like that or it's possible as the doctors say it could be the fatigue compounded by the fact that he stayed up all night. now we know what was happening, what caused that breeding inside his brain that much is clear for sure don. >> sanjay stay with us. gloria there's been a tremendous outpouring of affection and prayers for the senator. and a very moving letter from his daughter megan. it said it won't surprise you to learn that in all this the one of us who is the most confident and calm is my father. he is the toughest person i know. the cruellest enemy could not break him.
11:29 pm
the progression of political life could not bend him. so he is meet g this challenge as he has every other. cancer may aflipped him in any ways but it will not mac him surrender. nothing ever has. it's so emotional gloria. a lot of people are upset by this tonight. >> yeah i think that was beautifully written and stated. there was a tweet tonight from sleeve scalise who we know who shot months ago and he was saying praying for my friend john mccain. this is a man who is a lion of the senate, he ran for the presidency twice, who has been known to work across party lines. he's angered people in his own party, angered people of the other party and i can say as a journalist he's one of the people i've had the most fun and learned the most from covering.
11:30 pm
he calls us those jerks right, but he has -- there's a joy for him in his career and in his political life. and dana bash and i earlier this evening were talking to people who worked for and with him. and they say that he's been on the phone talking about what are we going to do about healthcare, what are we going to do next, how are we going to handle this and that. and over the july 4th brake he was in afghanistan. and that was the 10th time he's been there since 9/11. so, this is a man who's not going to sort of throw in the towel and say okay fine. he's going to fight it. >> he's served the country in so many ways, he was a prisoner of war. and he sometimes throw the word hero around but this is a person who is truly an american hero we wish him the best. sanjay and gloria thanks too
11:31 pm
much i appreciate it. president obama tweeting about this quote, john mccain is a greet hero. cancerdown know what it's up against. give it hell john. down know wh against. give it hell john. know what it against. give it hell john. e know what i against. give it hell john. s know what i against. give it hell john. n know what i against. give it hell john. ' know what i against. give it hell john. t know what ip against. give it hell john. whoooo.
11:32 pm
i enjoy the fresher things in life. fresh towels. fresh soaps. and of course, tripadvisor's freshest, lowest prices. so if you're anything like me... ...you'll want to check tripadvisor. we now instantly compare prices from over 200 booking sites... ...to find you the lowest price... ...on the hotel you want. go on, try something fresh. tripadvisor. the latest reviews. the lowest prices. there are the wildcats 'til we die weekenders. the watch me let if fly. this i gotta try weekenders. then we've got the bendy... ... spendy weekenders. the tranquility awaits. hanging with our mates weekenders
11:33 pm
and the it's been quite a day... ...so glad we got away weekenders. whatever kind of weekender you are, there's a hilton for you. book your weekend break direct at hilton.com and join the weekenders.
11:34 pm
yogig-speed internet.me? you know what's not awesome? when only certain people can get it. let's fix that. let's give this guy gig- really? and these kids. and these guys. him. ah. oh hello- that lady. these houses! yes, yes and yes. and don't forget about them. uh huh. sure. still yes! you can get it too. welcome to the party. introducing gig-speed internet from xfinity. finally, gig for your neighborhood too.
11:35 pm
we're back now, president lashing out at staff. we're here with the panel. so, let's -- this -- it's a blockbuster story. no one is spared, sessions, comey, mueller, rod rosenstein isn't spared. what's going on, what did you think of this interview? >> donald trump is obsessed with this investigation and very much resented the fact that attorney general sessions recused himself, though he did what the justice counsel advisement advised him to do.
11:36 pm
why is donald trump is worried about this investigation, i always go back to that. he's worried about what they can find. he's not ir rangsly worried about this investigation, he knows there's a real problem i believe with respect to the situations with russia, the financial dealings. you see how he -- when maggy haeberman -- saying oh you ber not look at the financial stuff. if you've lived a straightforward life with nothing to hide you don't sew, oh my god, don't look at the financial sufficient right. >> so many people in this country, all americans are affected by healthcare, right. that was the big story of the day. the person that's affected most by this investigation is donald trump. why is he focusing on the thing that affects him rather than the thing that affects the people he is supposed to be serving? >> because in his mind everything is about him.
11:37 pm
and the reality is, you can sit there and criticize the media and those for talking about russia russia russia but the best way to get them to stop talking about it is to stop talking about it yourself and give an interview to the fork times become healthcare. and what you're doing to do to repeal and replace obamacare and bring members of the senate together. this is his mo, when someone stands up to him he publicly criticize them and shames them hopefully in to submission. you go back four months ago when sessions recused himself in this case, he had no choice. it's improper for hip to be investigating a campaign that he was part of. and optics move forward to investigations what he was part of. so i think the president needs to get in his head the russian investigation has nothing with him winning the presidency he won fair and scare. if there's nothing to
11:38 pm
hydrocodohide, don't shy away from anyone who shine it is light on it. >> why is i everyone's fault? the president in this administration have they not made critical mistakes that they're not accepting responsible for? >> well, this is the mo of this administration, when something goes wrong there's fake news. when there's an investigation it shouldn't have been. i was on the hill all day today talking to my former colleagues and this kind of stuff drives them crazy. a few hours ago, the republicans house members were saying there's going to be a meeting tonight in the senator, the president's going to be our message, we're finally going to get repeal and delay, whatever it is we're going to get it bind us. a few hours lair they're talking about healthcare.
11:39 pm
>> before your final point, today wasn't it sort of. i'm going to win these guys over and get the healthcare bill through, wasn't what this was supposed to be? that's not doing that? >> yesterday he threatened a senator heller from nevada, that's not a way to win somebody over. this is an administration who wants to move beyond a reasonable doubt beyond the russia story and it's the president who keeps blowing smoke -- >> make your thinker point and i want to play this by heller? >> no. >> this is what president trump was talking about. senator heller is seated next to him on the left of the screen. watch his reaction as the president goes on. >> the other night was very surprised when i heard of couple
11:40 pm
of my friends, my friends, they really were and are, they might not be very much longer but, you didn't go out there, this was the one we're worried about you weren't there but you're going to be. he wants to remain the 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. >> bill? >> look donald trump is narcissic if my opinion. i wish senator heller sort of said i won my state, you didn't win my state and i work for my people of my stay. trump does not go after everyone the way he's obsessed with russia and the way he wen after sessions today. trump is unhappy with the staff.
11:41 pm
you get leeks that he doesn't like this or that reince priebus is in trouble. >> alice, that is a good question. why is that alice? >> well, clearly he has it in his head that the only people are bringing up the russian investigation because their influence and interruption in the campaign affected the outcome of the election and he isn't the president of the united states. >> nice alice. maybe he also has in his head that his campaign did thing wrong and that there's fire beneath that smoke. >> but for as a journalist it didn't have fig to do with his son meeting with the russian lawyer. michael flynn having to resign with his attorney general having to recuse himself and on and on and on. doesn't have anything to do with that, it's just that he thinks it's undermines his credibility
11:42 pm
as president to thinking that he didn't win fair and scare? >> i think it's both. one thing he wouldn't say publicly is that it undermines his victory. but clearly there's a lot of smoke here and right now it's turning into fire. the more he continues to point the fingers and try to intim those trying to investigate this. the optics are really bad. >> steve, the president dismissed questions about his second undisclosed meeting with vladimir putin by saying it was only 15 minutes, it contradicts things there. it was an hour long meeting. why would the president say something that could so easily be proven false. >> well, because this president is use to saying thing that could be proven false. facts and truth don't necessarily get in the way of this president. that is how he operates and that is part of the problem. when you're in politics and you know something you say can be
11:43 pm
dizzy proven, don't say it. he hasn't learned that lesson yesterday. >> nauthank you all. when we come back president trump seems to be picking a fight with his own attorney general. all this as he marks his first six months in office.
11:44 pm
11:45 pm
11:46 pm
our collaboration with pg&e is centered around public safety. without pg&e's assistance, without their training we could not do our mission to keep our community safe. anytime we are responding to a structure fire, one of the first calls you make is for pg&e for gas and electric safety. it's my job to make sure that they have the training that they need to make the scene safe for themselves and for the public. it's hands-on training actually turning valves,
11:47 pm
turning systems off, looking at different wire systems all that training is crucial to keeping our community safe and our firefighters safe. together, we're building a better california. this week president trump marks his first six months in office and tonight the breaking news is on russia and investigation into this administration. a story that's had tremendous impact on his domestic and foreign policy agendas and there is no end in sight. here to discuss nicolas chris state of and james woozy. so much to talk about gentlemen. this interview from the "new york times" is jaw dropping, saying he would have never
11:48 pm
appoint appointed -- the president saying he never would have appointed jeff sessions had he known-going to recuse himself. >> the big take away was him reserving the right to fire bob mueller as the special counsel. that would even be more of a national trauma than firing jim comey and there'd be nothing since the saturday night massacre firing cox. it would -- >> he seems to think mueller is somehow compromised or is -- >> or maybe making too much head way. he particularly mentioned the finances as a potential red line that he didn't bob mueller going in his finances and i -- i mean i -- at a time when there are such serious national questions about ties with russia, than to even talk about potentially
11:49 pm
firing him, just roughly kind -- >> and before we go, i want to get some specifics into this interview. what did you think of this interview tonight? it is quite stunning as to what he is saying and suggesting about some of these people. >> yes. it's almost as if there's nobody at the top levels of justice in the fbi, and throw the baltimore for good measure, that he's not worried about or opposed to or, it was really kind of an across-the-board blast at everybody pretty much in this part of government. and it did not happ him at -- help him at all in of course trying to put a healthcare plan together and certainly isn't helping him get people thinking that they understand and appreciate his point of view with respect to russia or anything else. it's really very negative effect
11:50 pm
and very bad decision to go this way. >> what's interesting to me, >> what's interesting to me it appears that he is undermining institutions that americans had confidence in. because he is undermining the justice department, obviously the fbi and part of that. he is undermining all of these institutions. he tries to undermine the media as well. and it seems like a deliberate campaign, because everyone, he goes down the line in this interview. in one of those he talks about james comey, right. he accused the fbi director james comey of trying to leverage that dossier and trying to keep his job. that sort of salacious dossier that came out. in my opinion, he shared it so i would think he had it out there, mr. trump said, as leverage. as leverage? yeah, i think so, mr. trump said in retrospect. your reaction to the claim that the former director comey
11:51 pm
actually testified the exact opposite of that. >> i think your point about institutions is really important because i think fundamentally what distinguishes president trump from other presidents is a systematic assault on institutions since he took office, since before then. and obviously the media is one example of that. but judges and the law are another example, the intelligence community. and i think there is in a broad sense a battle between these classic american institutions which are mounting these investigations which are indeed pursuing him and president trump. and i must say that i -- i am more confident now than i was january 20th that these institutions really do remain strong, and that in the long run, they will write president trump's obituary rather than the other way around. >> talks about the array of
11:52 pm
issues they covered but kept going back to the fact that he wasn't under investigation. i'm not under investigation. for what? i didn't do anything. but there are a lot of people at the white house and him. he has hired outside counsel. a lot of folks at the white house, even his own personal attorney has hired an attorney. but he keeps going back to the fact that i'm not under investigation. my family is not under investigation, not that i know of. i didn't do anything wrong. >> defensive a little bit. look, he is clearly under investigation. there is an investigation that seems to involve him about russia, and there is one about obstruction of justice. and we don't know the details to this point. there are really serious questions. and what we know in the public arena does not explain our policy to russia. even the latest meeting between trump and putin, even if it was as simple as the white house says, simply going over and having this conversation with putin rather than with angela merkel. why not with prime minister may, our traditional ally?
11:53 pm
there is so much going on between this white house and russia that can't be explained except in the context of some other piece which we still don't fully understand. >> the people you mentioned would not need interpreters because they speak english, right? >> that's something too. >> ambassador woolsey, is he under investigation? >> i don't know. but i would assume that at least there are counterintelligence investigations looking at russia. and when those are the basis of a legal investigation, you don't have the same kind of approach toward anything that you do where there is a criminal investigation from the law. >> do you consider the news now about donald trump jr., would you say donald trump jr. is under investigation? because donald trump jr. certainly is a member of the family. he has the same name as the president. >> i think unless you have evidence of a crime. if the investigation is focused on the counterintelligence issues, it is not what most
11:54 pm
people mean when they talk about under investigation. it's not as if he is a target or a subject of investigation. he has come up, perhaps, in the discussions about -- >> comey has said they're looking into collusion, ambassador. >> well, collusion is an interesting word. but in and of itself, it's not a crime. the interesting thing here, the thing to focus on is there a real crime that has occurred, and is there an investigation, a criminal investigation of that sort of behavior. so far i haven't seen, that although i've seen a lot of what i would regard as not good judgment on the white house's part. >> what i'm trying to get at. i understand what you're saying. nothing has been proved or disproved. i get what you're saying be. you have to investigate it to figure that out, right? >> if you're conducting an investigation of counterintelligence in what the russians are doing, you don't have to charge anybody. it is -- that's what you would
11:55 pm
do if you had evidence of a crime. but it's not a crime to talk to somebody. it may be unwise, very unwise to talk to a russian and then not go talk to the fbi or not follow up on the procedures of filing what you're supposed to file. in a number of circumstances here, it's not a crime. but it may be unwise. those are two different things. >> i think we also need to look beyond donald trump jr. to jared kushner. donald trump jr. is interesting because the family. but this isn't a soap opera. this is about power and american politics. and jared kushner is -- he has power. and we know that he attended this meeting whose stated purpose was to collude with russia. >> i don't want to take up all of our time. know you want to say something about senator john mccain. >> in many ways he's, if you will, the untrump.
11:56 pm
and in many ways an unpolitician. i must say you and i, we've seen so many politicians and politics is often a courage-free zone. and john mccain exhibited that courage, maybe even more than those six years he was in vietnam. sometimes in politics in the most extraordinary ways. in 2007-2008 when he was seeking the republican nomination for president, and every republican primary voter wanted a tougher stance on guantanamo on torture. then to have john mccain speak up, take on dick cheney on behalf of those prisoners in guantanamo was extraordinary. it was courage. >> the courage of his convictions. what do you want to say about him, ambassador? >> he worked for graham calculator and me when we were secretary and undersecretary in the carter administration. and he also -- i was on the bus with him in '08 very early up in new hampshire. and he's a remarkable american
11:57 pm
politician. we all have flaws and john does too. but he is a brave man. he is a good man. and he is the sort of person that i'm proud to have as a u.s. senator. and i wish we had more like him. >> and we wish him the very best. thank you, gentlemen. we'll be right back. ♪ the sun'll come out tomorrow... ♪ for people with heart failure, tomorrow is not a given. but entresto is a medicine that helps make more tomorrows possible. ♪ tomorrow, tomorrow... ♪ i love ya, tomorrow in the largest heart failure study ever, entresto helped more people stay alive and out of the hospital than a leading heart failure medicine. women who are pregnant must not take entresto. it can cause harm or death to an unborn baby. don't take entresto with an ace inhibitor or aliskiren. if you've had angioedema while taking an ace or arb medicine, don't take entresto. the most serious side effects are angioedema, low blood pressure... ...kidney problems,
11:58 pm
or high potassium in your blood. ♪ tomorrow, tomorrow i love ya, tomorrow ♪ ask your heart doctor about entresto. and help make tomorrow possible. ♪ you're only a day away. i enjoy the fresher things in life. fresh towels. fresh soaps. and of course, tripadvisor's freshest, lowest prices. so if you're anything like me... ...you'll want to check tripadvisor. we now instantly compare prices from over 200 booking sites... ...to find you the lowest price... ...on the hotel you want. go on, try something fresh. tripadvisor. the latest reviews. the lowest prices.
11:59 pm
(upbeat dance music) (bell ringing)
12:00 am
this is cnn breaking news. >> breaking news tonight on two huge stories. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. president trump unloads on his own attorney general, the fbi director he fire and the special counsel investigating it all. i want you to listen to what he tells the "new york times" about senator jeff sessions. >> sessions should have never recused himself. and if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and i would have picked somebody else. >> he gave you no heads-up at all? >> zero. >> okay. >> so jeff sessions takes the job, gets into the job, recuses himself. i then have -- which

37 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on