tv CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin CNN February 27, 2018 11:00am-12:00pm PST
falsehoods. >> you need direct authority of the president. >> to do some specific things. >> there are some things i have the authority and am acting in that authority. >> essentially we've not taken on the russians yet? we're watching them intrude on our elections, spread misinformation, become more sophisticated, try to achieve strategic objectives you recognize and essentially sitting back and waiting? >> i don't know if i would character it as we're sitting back and waiting but i will say it's probably -- again, i apologize. i don't want to get into classified. it's probably fair to say we have not opted to engage in some of the same behaviors we are seeing. >> jeff zeleny joining us from the white house briefing room. the brief something scheduled to start right now. really, any second.
i wonder how the white house is responding. we'll hear this in the briefing to admiral rogers' really extraordinary testimony. >> good afternoon, brianna. the white house has not responded to the testimony we're hearing on capitol hill. that is one of the topics i expect we'll hear from sarah sanders. this is the second time this month alone that the white house has been faced with the leader of their own intelligence community on capitol hill saying they've not been given any directives from this white house on how to combat cyber attacks in russia. this is the second time in as many weeks this is feeding into the narrative, the question here. the president spent so much time talking about the russia investigation, calling it a wich hunt again but has fa spespent less time talking about what he will do about that meddling.
on both the house and senate side, under testimony by republicans and democrats saying yes, they have no doubt at all that russia meddled in the election and intend to do it in the 2018 and perhaps 2020 elections. we have not heard what the white house specifically intends to do about that. we'll see if we do today, brianna. >> tomorrow marks two weeks since 17 students and staff were gunned down at a school in parkland, florida. it seems the push for major gun reform is diming as congress is back in session. let's take a listen to what the house speaker said today. >> we shouldn't be banning guns for law-abiding citizens. we should be focusing on making sure that citizens who should not get guns in the first place don't get those guns. we see a big breakdown in the system here. in this particular case, there were a lot of breakdowns from local law enforcement to the fbi getting tips that they didn't follow up on to school resource
officers who are trained to protect kids in these schools and who didn't do that. that, to me, probably the most stunning one of them all. there's a lot we have to look at. what we want to do is protect people's rights while making sure that people who should not get those guns do not get those guns. >> it appears that the president, as well, is stepping back from a gun proposal he seem to be amenable to. >> reporter: brianna, the president has been all over the board on this. in the wake of the shooting in parkland, florida he did talk about the idea of raising the age limit for some guns to the age of 21. after having lunch with top leaders at the nra, he did not mention that again. there seems to be some confusion as to what the president's priorities are in terms of gun policy. we've talked about arming school teachers, other school officials.
he has not been talking as much, at least every other day, about some matters like raising the age limit, which, of course, is controversial to the nra. we'll see what comes of that. the president is one person who is different in this gun debate. he says he wants to be the person to get something done. he says he wants to do something his predecessors have been unable to do. we'll see if he leads the charge on that. he is scheduled to meet with lawmakers tomorrow at the white house to talk about guns. there's plenty of reason for skepticism. it basically sounds like doing anything except something directly on guns. as you know, brianna, students from parkland are on capitol hill. i remember those sandy hook students and their parents on capitol hill in 2013. it seemed like this city was on the verge of doing something rather dramatic on guns. that did not happen. we'll see if it happen this is time. president trump a new actor in this, new player in this. he says he wants to do something. we'll see if that comes to pass.
brianna? >> jeff zeleny, we'll be right back to you when the white house briefing does begin. on capitol hill, another member of trump's inner circle is appearing before the house intelligence committee. we're learning where hope hicks is not answering questions about her time in the white house and the transition. i want to get straight now to cnn correspondent manu raju. is hope hicks pl s using the sa playbook as other white house staff? >> it seems she's doing the same thing steve bannon is doing, when he would not discuss matter notice transition and after he left the white house, saying he was trying to preserve the president's right to exert executive privilege. sounds like hope hicks is doing the same exact thing. this testimony, which is ongoing, has not been complete in the sense she's not answered
a number of these questions about the transition and about her time at the white house. now, in particular, democrats are frustrated here. i've not heard much frustration from republicans yet. republicans are frustrated at bannon but have not yet expressed that same concern about hope hicks. democrats, on the other hand, say she should be subpoenaed for not answering questions they want to see answered. this is what congressman mike quigley told me moments ago. >> are you satisfied with what you're hearing in there? >> i am less hopeful to get to all the answers. >> reporter: why? is she asserting a privilege in there? >> they're following the orders of the white house not to answer certain questions. >> reporter: that includes the transition and time at the white house? >> right. >> is there any real-time communication with the white
house like we saw with steve bannon? >> i don't know. >> she's answering some questions just not about the transition and after the inauguratioinau inaugurati inauguration? >> yes. >> so right there shows the difference in the way this committee is dealing with hope hicks versus steve bannon. when bannon did not answer those questions, brianna, they issued a subpoena on the spot to compel him to answer those questions. they have not done that with hope hicks to this point. we'll see what the committee ultimately decides to do. they threatened to hold bannon in contempt. we're not getting the sense that republicans are willing to do that yet for hope hicks but some concerns that she's not answering the questions post campaign season even though she was one of the president's closest confidantes, has
first-hand knowledge of things that happened, could shed light on the comey firing, for instance, misleading letter to the public after the trump tower last year. democrats in particular frustrated that they're not getting the answers they want from this testimony so far, brianna? >> manu raju, covering the halls there. thank you very much. dana bash, david chal iian. she's really not saying a whole lot on the things that are most interesting to members there. as we heard from mike quigley there, it's interesting. she's not asserting privilege. in a way it's an outright refusal. it's not actually within the white house jurisdiction of
asserting privilege. it'st sounds like she's following orders of the white house not to answer certain questions. >> it's effectively executive privilege but not officially and not technically so that there's no formal way for the republicans, who control congress, to fight that, if that makes sense. having said all that, that is exactly what she's doing and it is not unprecedented. not just with the trump administration, we saw steve bannon say he wasn't going to talk about conversations that he had inside the white house while he was a white house employee. we've seen in past administrations, it is kind of classic that presidents feel that they have a right to talk to their staff in a private way and that congress doesn't have a right to infringe on it. when it comes to bob mueller, which is a probe of the justice
department, that's different. she has talked to the mueller investigation for hours and hours and hours. >> she answered questions? >> whether she answered them fully we don't know but she was there for a very, very long time. >> what do you think about this, david? >> i think what you see here is the invitation to see from the administration, does congress really want to fight me on this? right? the next step would be if congress wanted to make a big deal about this, then maybe they would actually invoke executive privilege and as we've seen in the past go to the courts and battle that out whether or not each of these aides are within that zone of communications that many presidents feel that they have with their top aides. it is night and day, just worlds apart, the mueller investigation from what's happening on the hill. the mueller investigation is dealing with criminality. and the hill is trying to investigate with an went wrong with the election. >> speaking of which, so donald
trump, after not talking for a couple of days on twitter weighs in, calling it a witch hunt. however, there have been 20 indictments to this point. many of those involve president trump's campaign and his transition team. the transition, of course, pastor time period that hope hicks is refusing to talk about, which wouldn't, i believe, even be covered by executive privilege. again, witch hunt. he gaesing after the investigation again. >> absolutely. he is taking huge strides, sometimes in all caps as we saw today, to discredit this investigation, to push past any doubt that he is absolutely in the right. we've seen him do this on twitter. we've seen him do this in speeches. anything that would give the idea that he has been wronged. he just doesn't want to acknowledge. he points fingers and says look what they're doing to me this isn't fair. >> let's talk about guns, dana. we heard from one recognize
today, talking about there's actually other republicans who quietly share an opinion in dealing with weapons like we saw in parkland florida. but you heard what speaker ryan said where president trump is now, backing away from something where it seemed like he might support. where is this debate? >> nowhere. absolutely nowhere. >> it's going nowhere? >> unfortunately it looks like it's following the well-worn path of other almost debates after other horrific massacres. they're talking. we've heard more talk from a republican president than we ever have about going up against the nra and doing more to keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn't have them. >> sarah sanders is at the podium. >> white house initiative on historically black colleges and
universities. johnny c. taylor jr. is the former president of the thurogood marshall college fund and ceo for society of human resource management. the president previously signed an executive order promoting excellence and innovation at hbcus. he believes this initiative will advance america's full human potential. with today's announcement he continues to demonstrate his commitment to hbcus. before taking your questions i want to take a moment to highlight the historic obstruction by senate democrats, an issue that represents a threat to america's interests and security. compared to the four previous administrations, this senate has confirmed the fewest nominees. 73 fewer confirmations than the next closest administration. half of president trump's nominees are still waiting for confirmation in the senate. the obstruction is so out of control even some senate democrats believe it is inappropriate.
senator amy klobeche are. said i don't believe we should be holding nominees hostage. enough is enough. we need people who are qualified to fill these important positions in our government. we'll be highlighting specific qualified nominees who, as the senator said, being held hostage by senator schumer. take for instance the president's nominee to serve as ambassador to germany. harvard educated experienced diplomat was the longest serving u.s. spokesperson at the united nations. he was nominated in september of last year. he was reported out of the senate foreign relations committee with bipartisan support. he is waiting to represent america's interests and be our country's top voice in a g7 country. in short, senator schumer's hyperpolitical delay on mr. grenell puts america's foreign policy interests in jeopardy. the senate should move to confirm him immediately. we'll continue highlighting more of these examples of democrat obstruction in the days ahead.
finally on a lighter note i'm sure you all remember 11-year-old natalie dalton, offering to cook for the president. she and her 8-year-old cousin will be coming to work with the white house kitchen staff. we look forward to hosting them. with that i'll take your questions. jonathan? >> the head of the nsa, mike rogers, has said he has not been granted any additional authority by the president to confront russian cyber intrusion interference with our election systems. why has he not been given that authority? >> look, just this week, they announce announced that $40 million is being given to begin providing immediate support to private and public partners that expose and counter russian and chinese propaganda and disinformation. we're focused on looking at a variety of different ways. as i told you last week,
department of homeland security secretary nelson met with a number of state, local and federal officials working on ways that we can best prevent things like this in the future and we're look at a number of different options and we'll continue to do that over the coming week. >> admiral rogers has the agency that could go and confront russian intrusion at the source and he hasn't been given the authority. in fact, he says that the russians haven't paid a sufficient price to make them change their behavior. he is the one with the power and means to do it. all he needs is a presidential directive. >> i agree with the premise of your question. it's not just one individual. it's looking at a number of different ways. >> he is in charge of cyber command. not give him the authority? >> nobody is denying him the authority. we're looking at a number of different ways where we can put pressure -- this president, as i told you last week, has been much tougher on russian than his
predecess predecessor. let's recall that this happened under president obama, not under president trump. the president is looking at all the different causes and all the different ways that we can prevent it. as we find different ways we can do that, we're implementing them, like you see with the money allocated by the state department, as you see with the conversations that the secretary from dhs is having, we're going to continue looking at different ways to combat it. i imagine that will be certainly a big part of it. i can't speak to anything further on it right now. >> this is not about the past. it's about protecting intrusion in the next election. he said he needs authority and hasn't been given to it. >> i can't speak to that specifically. we're taking a number of steps to prevent this and looking at a variety of other ways to implement over the coming weeks and months. >> just a housekeeping one on clearances. oversight committee requested details from the white house
about still pending clearances amongst the white house staff and the judicial committee sent a letter over today. i'm wondering if the white house is going to -- plans to comply with those requests i know you've been hesitant to release that information. >> i haven't been hesitant. i've been very clear that we don't discuss security clearances. that's not changing today. it didn't change yesterday, not going to change tomorrow or next week. >> so you're not going to comply with the request? >> i didn't say that. i said i'm not going to discuss security clearances with members of the press. that's not been different at any point in the administration. >> are you going to comply with those requests? >> i'll let you know when we've had a chance to review that and make a decision. >> the president is supportive of energy producers and it seems
as though the issue here is whether the president or the white house supports waivers. >> there's a lot of differing views on this issue. we'll continue having conversations. he met with senators cruz and grassley and toomey to discuss this and to continue that conversation. they have a productive meeting and we'll continue to work with not only those members but others as we go through this process. >> two questions, different topics. if i could return to something we talked about yesterday, the president's support to raise the minimum age from 18 to 21. he talked about it with the students from marjory stoneman douglas. didn't mention it at cpac or the governors. >> to be fair, i was with him at the governors and none of them mentioned it either in a two-hour discussion. >> he had support. wayne lapierre and chris cox, the nra remains firmly opposed
to this idea for raising the age to long guns. the president said if they're not always with you, sometimes you have to fight them. is he willing to take on the nra on this idea of raising the minimum age for buying a long gun? >> the president still supports raising the age limit to 21 for the purchase of certain firearms. we're meeting with certain members of congress tomorrow and expect that to be a topic of discussion. he knows that everybody doesn't necessarily agree. we're not going to get into the details on the specifics of what we will propose but expect that to be part of the conversation tomorrow. >> question number two, unrelated topic, jeff sessions confirmed a few minutes ago that he will open an investigation into fisa abuses during the election, the president clearly has been expressing that he believes that sessions should look into this. is the president happy now that sessions is opening this investigation? >> haven't spoken with him to determine his feelings. as you said it's something he has clearly had frustration
over. so i imagine he certainly supports the decision to look into what we feel to be some wrong doing. we feel that's the role of the justice department and we're glad they're fulfilling that role. margaret? >> you talked about nominations and how slow congress is to move. do you have a timeline on when the white house will name a nominee to be ambassador to south korea? >> i don't have a timeline and i don't have any personnel announcements on that position specifically. >> then the question i have again going back to admiral rogers, he said we are not where we need to be or want to be on cyber. does the white house, does the president plan to hold national security counsel session to discuss specifically these conce concerns about having a menu of options to respond to cyber attack and one specifically in relation to russia? >> in terms of a specific meeting, i don't know that the date is set but i know there are constantly conversations going
on within the administration on this topic and we'll continue those. i'll keep you posted on the president's schedule. >> so far on russia and cyber attacks? >> i know he has been briefed on it in terms of specifics, beyond that, i'll have to check and get back with you. jordan? >> thank you, sarah. did anyone from the white house sxrukt hope hicks not to answer questions from the house intelligence committee about her time in the white house? >> as always the case ooirm not going to comment on any individual's interactions with the committee. we are cooperating because, as the president said repeatedly, there is no collusion. i would refer to outside attorney force that. >> this idea of citing executive privilege for conversations that took place during the transition period. we're told that's exactly what hope hicks, the communications
director, cited and is refusing to answer questions posed to her relating to the transition period s president aware, is the white house aware that no federal court at any level has ever granted that privilege pertaining to the transition period? >> just because we ask the question in different ways i'm still not going to comment on any individual's interactions with the committee. i'm also not going to comment on leaks from what is supposed to be a confidential setting. there continues to be zero evidence of collusion and we hope these investigations wrap up shortly. steve? >> what margaret was asking you, the state department in south korea is retiring. how does that impact the diplomatic process? >> i don't have any specific announcement ons it at this time. >> as you consider tarrive ivrt
and still on steel. >> i don't have any specific readouts from his meetings at this point. >> thank you very much, sarah. house speaker ryan today disagreed with the president on arming teachers and said he thinks it should be up to locals whether teachers should be armed. what's the president's response from not having support from the leader of the house? >> this is something that will continue to be part of the discussion with state, federal and local officials as well as law enforcement. the president will be meeting with bipartisan lawmakers tomorrow and that will be another one of those topics discussed and we'll have further specific policy announcements later this week. >> without the support of speaker ryan, how can this get any traction in the house? >> again, this is part of an ongoing conversation, something that the president still supports. it's something that he knows
there are a lot of differing views on. it's one of the topics that we expect to come up tomorrow. and we'll continue to have that discussion. the number one thing we're looking at is every possible action that we can take that helps it protect the safety and security of school kids across this country. we're going to look at everything we can. a lot of those things that you guys brought up today will be part of the discussion tomorrow. and we expect to have some specific policy proposals later this week. steve? >> sarah, today the white house announced that it's cutting about $8 million in aid to cambodia for what it calls recent setbacks to democracy there. can you talk about what went into this decision and specifically why just cambodia and why there's been recent set backs to neighboring thailand. >> genuine will of the cambodian
people. these setbacks compelled the united states to review that assistance. based on a review, the government will suspend or curtail several systems. i don't have anything further at this point. >> two questions on two different topics. first, does president trump believe that the governor of missouri, as you know, has been indicted, should resign? >> i haven't spoken to him about that. >> can you get back to us on that? >> my guess is that he would refer to the people of the state of missouri but i haven't spoken directly with him. >> the president is the leader of the republican party. obviously, the governor is republican. >> i haven't spoken with him. >> can you get back to me on that? >> sure. >> the president is having several meetings, as you mentioned, with lawmakers in both parties on other topics. will he be talking to them about immigration? his deadline that he set, march 5th, is next monday. congress is nowhere near doing anything about that. that still the deadline?
is he encouraging them to get something done? >> absolutely he's encouraging them to get something done. that's why he laid out exactly what he expected to see in a proposal that would not only help solve the daca problem but also provide border security. the president went above and beyond. it's sad that democrats aren't willing to come to the table, get something done and do their job. the president is still hopeful and we'll continue pushing forward. >> what's going to happen on monday when the deadline comes? >> we're still hopeful that something happens on this and congress will actually do its job. oliv olivia? >> thank you, sarah. i have a couple for you as well. north korea policy, does the president plan to replace him? >> i don't have any personnel announcement as this the time. >> has the white house staff
been briefed on the dos and don'ts, including campaign literature? >> cabinet and senior staff have been and i believe a paper memo was distributed to all staff. i have to verify that to be sure. i know that both cabinet and senior staff have been briefed on upcoming midterm elections and what they are allowed to do and not do. >> thank you, sara. does the president believe someone on the no-fly list because of suspected terrorist activities should be able to buy a gun? >> we haven't spoken about that specifically and have no policy on that front. >> i don't want a policy announcement. >> i don't want a policy. >> i said i haven't spoken with him about it. i'll have to get back to you. >> john? >> thank you, sarah. two brief questions. one, i know it's been announced that the president -- >> i noticed that, too. you're moving up in the world, john. it scares your colleagues.
it's making them nervous. >> such great timing. >> thank you. thank you, sarah. >> you're welcome. >> lot of support, john. >> reverend billy graham's funeral is this friday. we know the president will attend. it's been determined he will make any remarks, eulogies or just there as a mourner and family friend? >> i'm not sure on the specifics. i do know he plans to attend there as well as head to the capital tomorrow for that stop. but in terms of specific remarks, i don't have any comment on that at this point. >> my other question is that the president's two immediate predecessors did a lot to build and expand the faith-based programs within the white house and throughout the executive branch of government. many governors followed that example. among them, your father. it has been said that this president has not followed
through on that, that there is no faith-based office within the white house now. your reaction? >> look, i don't think an office is what determines the faith of the administration. i think that we have a number of people -- that's something that the president has a faith council and advisory council that regularry come to the white house and meet with. but i think in terms of whether or not you have an office doesn't determine the faith of the administration. i think we probably have actually more people front and center, speaking openly about their faith and advocating and helping build on that foundation than probably any previous administration has. francesca? >> thank you, sarah. you said you expect to have policy announcements. are you saying the white house will a specific list that will be detailed or outline of the specific policies that the
president would like to see in legislation on gun control, gun violence prevention? >> specific to school safety, yes, we expect there will be some policy proposals that will be out by the end of the week. as i've noted a couple yesterday that the president has already voiced the, cornyn legislation and the stop gun violence act. both are pieces of legislation that the administration supports. >> following up on that, though, you also said that before the president can support some of those things, he would like to see what's in the legislative text of those bills. we talked about universal background checks. one of the two senators at this bipartisan bill said that they're not going to put that forward until they're certain they have the president's support for something like that. so does the president support the idea of universal background checks and would he be willing to support senator manchin and senator toomey's legislation on
that? >> the only two specific pieces of legislation that we are announcing support for are the two i just mentioned. anything further will come later this week. the president, as i've said, expects to meet with a number of lawmakers tomorrow from both sides of the aisle. and we'll have some more information about specifics after that. >> i want to ask you what's happening in georgia as it relates to delta airlines. the background, as i'm sure you know, withdrew benefits for nra members and the lieutenant governor there is saying maybe there should be a tax break for delta. lieutenant governor said, quote, corporations cannot attack conservatives and expect us not to fight back. the narrow front, does the white house believe that conservatives are under attack in the state of georgia? and more broadly, does the government think a state government attacking a company
for retribution is a wise idea. >> we're not weighing in to other side bar conversations right now. >> i want to ask you about syria. but two quick clarifications. to justin's point when he asked about whether the white house will meet the deadline from house oversight. it sounded like you said you would let us know when you reviewed it. trey gowdy made that request two weeks ago. >> i said i'll let you know. >> will the president give the authority to mike rogers to seek additional authorityies about russia? >> i'm not going to get ahead of any specific directive by the president. we're looking at a number of different things that we can do to prevent this from happening. we'll be tough on russia, moving forward as we have been this first year. >> and, sarah, you're open to doing that? the president is open to those additional authorities?
>> what did you say? >> additional authorities. >> the president is open to looking at a number of different ways to make sure that russia doesn't meddle in our elections. >> does the united states have reason to believe that north korea is linked to syria's chemical weapons program? >> i don't have any comment. >> you were saying he is meeting with some officials. do you know who? >> we'll get back to you on the specifics. i know it's not the president. i can tell you that. >> the president mentioned that john kelly has a decision to make about jared kushner's security clearance. i know your policy on not talking about security clearances except in the case of kushner, you guys have talked about him quite a bit. has the chief of staff made a decision on john kelly and can you say what it is? >> as i said earlier, we do not comment on individual security clearances. we actually haven't commented on jared's, as you indicated.
we commented on his ability to do his job. he is a valued member of the team and will continue to do the important work he has been doing since he started in the administration. thank you so much, guys. have a great afternoon. >> all right. wrapping up at the white house briefing there. and some interesting headlines coming out of here as i bring my panel into this. let's talk about guns on this. sarah sanders was asked about the president seeming to back off a provision or proposal that he had previously supported, which was increasing the age limit to buy the kinds of w weapons that we saw the shooter use in parkland, florida. and now here she's saying he still supports raising the gun-buying age limit and also we're expecting to get some specific gun policy or school safety policy proposals coming out at the end of the week. do you take that to the bank when she says that he still supports this? >> i guess have you to. the fact that he didn't reiterate it when he spoke for, you know, sort of
extemporaneously about this issue yesterday was kind of odd. the white house is sort of trying to clean it up and there must be a reason for t you have to take her at her word on that. of course, the other piece of legislation they say they support is something that has been kind of hovering over congress now for the past month or two, which is fixing the system where the information goes in for the background checks to work properly. what you said about the sort of announcement that there will be other policy proposals later this week, that's when we all went oh, okay. we're actually going to hear specifics. again, we have been saying this but it bears repeating. paul ryan, the house speaker and other republicans made very clear not to come back to town, they don't want to deal with
this. if you have the president putting out specific proposals and following up in a specific way, that's a big if, maybe things could change. he has to use his muscle. >> with the president seeming to back off this age limit increase, maybe actually as part of this package of proposals, that's in there but that's stolen the headlines today and become sort of the singular headline but it is something he may back off of when we see the more broad proposals coming from the white house and, as you said, dana, trying to clean up this perception he's back on this. but that doesn't necessarily mean it's dead? >> we don't have a lot of details and don't hear a lot of detail about what's in this package coming from sarah sanders. this is an issue that ten days since the parkland florida shooting, the president has cam out and has a lot to say about
how he wants to strengthen american schools, he wants to harden them, he says. engaged time and time again. even bring iing survivors in an experts to hear from gun violence. we haven't had a lot of clarity. we haven't seen a lot of legislative path toward something he says he can support that will actually pass in congress, as dana just noted. >> i was going to add, brianna, this new cnn poll was out a couple of days ago looking at the gun issue. that age limit, massive -- 71% of americans favor that across all partisan groups. majority of republicans, majority of democrats, majority of independents. perhaps they had lunch with the nra and sort of rolled him on this issue. that news coverage, donald trump wanted to stop. he wanted to go back to his
words yesterday when he was talking about this, that he's willing to fight the nra on certain things if he wants to. this seems to be a clear difference with the nra. he wanted to assert that difference still exists. you are right to be skeptical that this will be in some sort of legislation to congress and then on the president's desk for his signature. >> dana, are you at all of the mind that something could change on the federal level with guns or does it just seem there's no appetite for that? >> it seems there's very, very little appetite. extremely little. it's possible because of the fact that the president isn't letting it go and is continuing to talk about it. he has his press secretary continuing to lean in to the idea that he has specific policy proposals but that's the only reason, brianna.
>> nsa director on capitol hill today, juana. it was pretty extraordinary what he said, basically that he has not been directed by president trump -- which is a necessary thing in order for him to sort of really combat russian meddling. and i paraphrase here. but i think this is pretty much what he said. russia hasn't paid for what it did in 2016 enough or sufficient to deter it from continuing to act like this. sarah sanders asked about that. her answer was, well, you know, the president is not denying him, mike rogers, the nsa director, from dealing with the issue. that isn't entirely true. >> it isn't. this president is flouting everything that has been said by all members of the intelligence community that have been on capitol hill talking about this. this president still fails to publicly acknowledge them in the way we hear them say it cripples
their ability to fight these threats. you heard admiral rogers say how he doesn't feel like he has the authority to do that. if i heard sarah sanders correctly, she said she didn't have anything to announce on whether or not the president would give any more authority. >> she said she didn't want to get ahead of that, which seems, quite frankly, nuts. the president already basically -- congress passes sanctions, right? overwhelmingly passes sanctions that the administration chooses not to implement. they're very behind from what they say congress in a bipartisan way has want ed to d. >> his own cia director has said this is happening now. the 2018 elections are already under attack. so, get ahead of the president. we are behind as a country on this issue. it is no surprise to me in our brand new poll that 60% of americans say they're not confident that donald trump is doing enough to prevent foreign
interference in our elections and, you know why they're not confident? answers like that. not denying mike rogers from doing -- they're not proactive. this president cannot separate out some sort of questioning of his personal legitimacy as president in this russia investigation as fr the actual investigation and details we are learning about russia's meddling in our core principle of free and fair elections. >> you look at democrats versus republicans and independents, it's clear this is becoming political issue, right? his supporters also believe that when you talk about russian meddling, this is an attack on his legitimacy. >> that goes back to the witch hunt. the majority of americans believe this is a legitimate inquiry. you are absolutely right, brianna.
this has become a political -- he is fortifying, rallying his troops. >> but again, take a step back. he is doing this while his own nsa director, a member of his own intelligence staff. >> straight shooter. >> straight shooter is telling congress he needs help. sanctions is one thing, but to stop cyber warfare and it's not happening. >> important point. dana bash, david chalian, juana sumers. delta airline finds itself in a feud with georgia republicans over the nra. i'll be talking to one of those georgia lawmakers coming up. pure evil, a former neighbor who raised red flags to police describes to cnn what it was like living near the parkland
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we have some breaking news into the investigation into the mass shooting in parkland, florida, where 17 students and faculty were killed. >> reporter: investigators are telling cnn this massacre could have been much worse. the shooter fired off about 150 rounds inside stoneman douglas. now, our evan perez is learning
through a law enforcement official briefed on this investigation that 180 rounds remained in the rifle that the killer dropped. still no understanding or explanation for why the killer dropped that rifle and the rounds he had in it before trying to escape the school and blend in with other students. but we're also now learning that investigators believe he tried, at one point, to break a window, leading them to believe he wanted to use that as a sniper's nest. it's unclear who his target would have been in that case but, brianna, incredibly disturbing to learn more details of what the shooter had planned that day. >> what is this we're learning about something carved into the magazines that remained? >> reporter: yes. investigators telling us that swastikas were etched into the magazine that was in the rifle and those that remained. we had heard of anti-semitic sentiments that the student had
had. his mother had told police that she had been in contact with, that he had drawn swastikas and other nazi symbols on his backpacks. here, etched into the magazines, loaded in the rifle and others he was carrying with him. >> new details about the gunman in parkland, florida. kaylee hartung, thank you for that report. she'll stand by for us. first more red flags about the florida school shooter are being revealed among outrage that the authorities didn't do enough. the neighbor tells cnn that she had said he was going to shoot up the school. she says he brought his violent behavior to her doorstep. >> when he turned 12, everything started to change. he became more violent.
he destroyed my property. he stole from me. he stole from my kids. it was really the violence and the killing that got to me. he loved to kill toads. and i thought he was trying to kill my dog. and i knew he was dangerous at that point. >> kaylee, back with us. that neighbor, kaylee, what else did she say? >> that's right. she told our rosa flores that her worst fear became a reality on february 14th because she said i knew in my heart he was going to do t her son showed her an instagram post that the killer had put up. it was a foet off an ar-15-style rifle and caption about how he
couldn't wait to buy one when he turned 18. soon after there was another post where he said, quote, he would shoot up a school. with that information, she called 911. with that information, with warning of the threat she felt he posed, here is what officials then told her. >> i begged him and he basically told me that it was not an immediate threat. he couldn't do anything, he told me. i remember him leaving and me thinking my god, he is going to kill someone and i can do nothing about it. >> after that moment, when officials told her they would do nothing and she recognized she couldn't do anything more, she said she felt defeated. she was scared. she was afraid for her children. she did not want them spending any time around nikolas kroocru.
that call she made, one of the two being investigated for being improperly handled among the 23 that the broward county sheriff says were the calls they received in relation to the killer. we now know that number in discrepancy with the 49 official records show. >> there will be this question with that information she presented, something could have been done and yet it wasn't. kaylee hartung, thank you for that report for us. white house moments ago, saying whether the president still supports raising the age limit on rifles, like the one used in florida. stand by.
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top of the hour. i'm brianna keilar. law enforcement source tells cnn the shooting could have been much worse. after firing nearly 150 rounds, the shooter dropped his rifle, leaving behind what we learned was now 180 additional rounds of ammunition. he then escaped by blending in with students. we also now know that the magazines he carried had swastikas etched into them. that included the magazine that was in the rifle when he left it. it also appears the plot was much more calculated than first understood to be. investigators think he may have tried to break a window from inside the school in order to use it as a sniper's perch to shoot outside. authorities say the gunman couldn't break the window
because it is hurricane proof. at a window he could have fired to first responders and students trying to escape. there's no plantation as to why he stopped shooting when he did. josh campbell joins me. a lot of new details to start dissecting here. the number of rounds remaining when the shooter left. 180 additional rounds of ammunition. first thing that tells you is the damage could have been much worse but also perhaps, is this a way to read it, that part of his plan was maybe thwarted? >> that's a question we were asking even on the day of the shooting, as we tried to analyze what was playing out. you look at the latest reporting from our colleague, evan perez, with the number of rounds left. he had more than half the rounds left that were expended on the day of that tragic shooting. it's chilling in the sense that