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tv   CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield  CNN  March 11, 2018 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT

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hello and thanks for joining me on this sunday. i'm pamela brown in for fredricka whitfield. a lot going on today, despite five guilty pleas and more than a dozen indictments, including against russians, president trump tweeted his lawyers, quote, have shown conclusively, there was no collusion with russia. well, it's just the latest inaccuracy that he's been hurling after his nearly 90-minute vent session on the stump. he not only cited some fake news, fake facts, could we call it, but also delivered some really insight on what his 2018 campaign trail may look like as republicans face midterm elections. the president unleashed, improvising more than an hour of
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praise about his tax cuts, his looks, 2020 campaign, and much more. but he only spent a little bit of time, only a few minutes, actually, on the republican that he was supposed to be promoting. and he also slammed multiple democrats, the press, and past presidents, but take note of the soft touch he took with north korean dictator, kim jong-un, who's expecting to meet with president trump by may in an historic diplomatic first. >> -- came to my office, after having gone to north korea. and seeing kim jong-un, and -- no, it's very positive. no. after the meeting you may do that, but now we have to be very nice, because let's see what happens. let's see what happens. >> now let's go straight to cnn white house correspondent, boris sanchez. and boris, tell us the backstory to the president's appearance. it did not go as aides had expected, but i guess that is no surprise, in a sense. >> reporter: that's really no surprise, pamela.
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i spoke to one white house official who told me that the president did about five sentencing of the remarks that were prepared for his speech in pennsylvania saturday night and then he just went off, attacking some of his favorite targets, the media, hillary clinton, elizabeth warren. he added a new line about a rumored 2020 opponent, oprah winfrey, saying that he knows oprah's weaknesses. then he kind of pivoted and gave us something unexpected, his 2020 campaign slogan, keep america great. i'm told that was not in the script. one white house official did not expect that to come out last night. and then the president went a step further and promoted the idea of pushing for capital punishment for drug dealers. something that initially got a mixed response from the crowd. but overall, it appeared to be positive. you're right, though, in noting that the portion of his speech in which he dealt with north korea was different than what we've heard from the president before. one white house official telling me the president actually consulted with advisers and
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aides about the language that he was going to use in that part of the speech. we should note why he was in pennsylvania last night. he's campaigning for rick saccone, the house candidate for pennsylvania district 18. there's going to be a special election tuesday. it is a district that the president won by more than 20 points in 2016. so republicans are hoping that the president's popularity transfers over to saccone. we should note, i was told that there were portions of the speech that dealt specifically with pushing for rick saccone as a candidate. the president apparently ditched those and started to improvise, calling saccone a hand msome that would likely vote for items on the president's agenda. he had saccone say a few words and took the mike back. it boils down to the president's popularity. swirling controversies the in the white house, not only on churnover in staff, but the
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russia investigation. we'll see if the president still holds that kind of popularity in these districts as republican strategists and insiders are telling us that this race on tuesday, right now, is a toss-up, pam. >> and we'll have to wait and see what happens, but this certainly appeared to be a president who was on the campaign trail during that speech. boris sanchez, thank you so much. and president trump says the world is watching tuesday's special election in pennsylvania's 18th congressional district. republicans scram tobbling to s the gop house seat in pittsburgh's working class suburbs, a district trump easily won by nearly 20% in 2016. well, this tight race now too close to call, pitting gops rick saccone against democrat first-time candidate, connor lamb. last night, president trump touted, quote, handsome rick saccone. >> and connor lamb -- lamb the sham, right? lamb the sham. he's trying to act like a republican so he gets -- he won't give me one vote.
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look, i don't know him. looks like a nice guy. i hear he's nice looking ping i'm better looking than him. i do. i do. i do! and he's slightly younger than me. slightly. no, i heard that. then i saw, he's okay. he's all right. personal personally, i like rick saccone. i think he's handsome. >> well, all right. in the latest monmouth poll, saccone holding a slim 3% lead, well within the poll's margin of error. and just today, saccone picking up a key endorsement. that would be the pittsbur"pitt post-gazette" editorial board writing, quote, saccone is equipped to be a strong and independent vote for the 18th. i want to bring in jason carroll there in waynesburg, pennsylvania. jason, you've been speaking with voters. what are they saying on the ground there in terms of how this race is going to turn out in these crucial hours? >> reporter: well, clearly, this race is going to come down to a lot more than just looks, pamela. that's very obvious.
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and even though you've seen the endorsement that rick saccone just got, it should also be noted that connor lamb also got the endorsement out here today from the united mine workers, given all the talk that we've heard from this president about the maining industry, there was some thought that perhaps rick saccone would get that endorsement, but not the case. look, very clearly, this is al referendum on the president. you've heard it being said over and over again, how well the president did in the 18th district. and there was some thought that would immediately transfer over to rick saccone. not the case. and that's got a lot of folks within the gop worried. it's got a lot of people from the democrats excited, although cautiously. there was some thought that bringing in the president would somehow give a boost to rick saccone, but not to all the voters we spoke to out here today. >> it was just the same over and over. he's a con artist. conning people. but it was more about trump than it was about rick saccone. rick saccone is just a trump
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puppet. you know, we need better. we've got to get rid of this stuff and bring in real people like connor lamb that's going to actually work for the people. >> reporter: so, certainly, the president still enjoys a great deal of support throughout the 18th district, whether you're in the rural part of green county, where we are right now, or just outside of pittsburgh in suburbs like mt. lebanon. so he still enjoys a great deal of support. but the question, pamela, what it's all going to come down to is which party is more fired up? and we're going to see come tuesday. pamela? >> okay, jason carroll, thank you so much for that. and the president also talked about his upcoming high-stakes meeting with north korean leader kim jong-un. listen to what president trump said about it. >> hey, who knows? if it happens, if it doesn't happen, i may leave fast or we may sit down and make the greatest deal for the world and for all of these countries.
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including, frankly, north korea. >> and i want to bring in republican congressman will hurd of texas. he serves on the house homeland security committee, the intelligence committee, and the oversight committee. congressman, thank you for coming on. >> hey, tpamela, it's always a pleasure. >> so i want to talk about this upcoming meeting that is expected to happen. defense secretary jim mattis has said the potential for misunderstanding remains very high. what do you think of the white house approach to this meeting so far and what would it take for you to view the meeting as a success? >> well, pamela, first and foremost, among the things i learned as an undercover officer in the cia is that when people are talking, you're not fighting. so the potential for talks is a good thing. but all the work that has been put into getting the north koreans to this point, working diplomat lically with countries like china, putting a lot of our
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lame elements of the seventh fleet into that region, making sure that sanctions are working on north korea. those kind of things need to continue. and the preparatory work that needs to happen before this kind of meeting is just as important. if the president of the united states meets with the president of a rogue nation, the outcome needs to be pretty spectacular and in this case, the only thing that would be spectacular is a north korea agreeing to denuclearize the korean peninsula. >> and do you actually see that happening? >> i'm cautiously optimistic. one of the things -- kim jong-un is interested in one thing. and that is dying of old age in pyongyang. he wants to stay in power. and we had to change his calculation from saying -- he used to think the only way he would be able to stay in power if he had nuclear weapons. and now we need to get him to think that he's not going to
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stay in power if he continues to pursue nuclear weapons. so, we have to be cautiously optimistic, but we have to continue working diplomatically, because kim jong-un knows that we are probably one or two round of sanctions away from preventing north korea from being able to consume any kind of energy. if he can't import energy from china, which he gets about 98% of his energy from china, then he's not going to be able to fight a conventional war. he's not going to be able to make sure that his nuclear weapons has fuel. and so this is something that he knows is close to happening. and one of the reasons why i think you're happening this reaching out to not only the u.s., but the south koreans. so we all -- it is in the benefit of the entire world to resolve this issue diplomatically, but the end goal must be a denuclearized korean peninsula. >> all right. i want to move on to the russia investigation. top intelligence officials say,
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congressman, that russia is already trying to influence the 2018 midterms. however, right now, there was $120 million allocated to fight russian meddling, just sitting at the state department that's going unused. does that concern you? >> well, i don't know the reason why those funds aren't being used. i do know in a place like the department of homeland security, they're working with various secretaries of state to make sure that the infrastructure that goes around elections, you know, are -- that their cybersecurity is proper. we're working to get some more funds for some of these states -- >> right, but that's homeland security. that's what we're doing here to try to deter the attacks. but that's not stopping the russians from trying to infiltrate our systems. and mike rogers, as you know, testified that the president has not given the command to counter some of these russian cyber attacks. >> well, a key -- there's a thing called the national
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intelligence priority framework, which ranks all of our adversaries around the world and who's supposed to collect on it. russia is very high. i know that our intelligence communities are collecting on this. what specific actions that may or may not have come from the president's mouth. the intelligence community is collecting on russia. but there's a broader question here. and the state department is not going to be able to handle russia disinformation alone. how do we counter this russian disinformation? who's responsible for it? when it comes to the elections, elections are under the control of secretaries of state. and you know, we have 10,000 different election administrators. we do need to be having a broader conversation around countering russian disinformation. but we also need to be accounting, we all learned when we were in school, don't get into a car with a stranger. unless it's an uber driver. bewe need to learn, why are you
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sharing information on social media if you don't know where it's coming from? now, that's the long game. that's something that we feed to make sure is part of our culture and how we use social media. but we need to make sure it's very clear what the public sector, what the private sector, what the media, what academia should be doing in handling russian disinformation. >> but do you think the president should be doing more, being more outspoken about russian election meddling? >> maybe he should. but we've got to remember the people that are tasked with this, that care about this issue, that are trying to make sure that we're resilient to russian disinformation is working on this. you know, i'm proud of the works that the folks in the intelligence community are doing to try to collect this information. but we could be doing a better job of sharing information between the private and public sector. when you look at the u.s. social
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media companies and their research on how russia used their tool to try to influence the elections. all of that was research done by themselves. the federal government still hadn't shared the information that we have access to, in order to make sure that they're looking and turning over every single rock. this is something that the only way we're going to make sure that we're prepared to defend against this kind of disinformation is if the public and the private sector are working hand-in-glove on such an important issue. >> all right. congressman will hurd, thank you so much. >> always a pleasure, pamela. thank you. well, former trump campaign aide, sam nunberg, said this about complying with the special counsel investigation on monday. >> i'm not going to do it! i'm not going to do it. >> but then he went on to testify before a grand jury on sunday. and later said this whole thing is not a witch hunt. so what does that mean for the president and the russia investigation? plus, uk police are warning
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welcome back. i'm pamela brown. well, here's the tweet from president trump, denying a story that he's looking the to add to his legal and also dissing the need for special counsel robert mueller's investigation. the president says, quote, i am very happy with my lawyers, john dowd, ty cobb, and jay sekulow. they are doing a great job and have shown conclusively that there was no collusion with russia. and yet, that's not the conclusion from sam nunberg, who was fired twice from the trump campaign. and his guess may be better than anyone's, since he just spent six hours friday with the grand jury. >> i was there a long time and they have a lot of questions. did i ever hear russian spoke in the office? and then they asked, why did president trump support putin in
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syria. >> do you think it's a witch hunt? >> no, i don't think it's a witch hunt. there's a lot there there. >> joining me now, cnn political analyst, ryan lizza, and sabrina siddiqui, politics reporter for "the guardian." sabrina, ryan, thanks for coming on. first to you, this tweet to the president today, saying that his lawyers have shown conclusively that there is no conclusillusio russia. that's simply not true. there have been no conclusions on this matter. where is that coming from? >> since the very beginning, the president has dismissed this investigation as a witch hunt. he sees it as delegitimizing his victory in the election. but he has also refused to even acknowledge russian interference in the election. and he has dismissed the fact -- >> he's slightly acknowledged it. >> he's tip "todatoed around it back and forth, one day it happened, one day it didn't. but there have now been at least four officials indicted.
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and you have sam nunberg, his longtime mentor is roger stone, who had contact with julian assange, cofounder of wikileaks. that is where the hacked e-mails from the clinton campaign and the dnc have appeared. so what you have is this pattern of contacts between officials who have either associated with the campaign or with the president and moscow, you know, the extent to which there was a quid pro quo, we don't yet know. but the special counsel team has issued a series of indictments indicating that there was some, potentially, conclusion. >> and you have sam nunberg really changing his tune. on monday, he was saying, i'm not going to go before the grand jury, this is all ridiculous. and then on friday, after he spent six hours before the grand jury, he says, this investigation is no witch hunt. that this is actually legitimate. how is the white house reacting though, do you think? >> something happened in that grand jury that was so sobering to nunberg. because he came out and did this interview with abc and he seemed to take very seriously what
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mueller, the road mueller is going down, right? and it's one of the clearest takes we have on the kinds of questions that are being asked behind closed doors. the special counsel apparently asking things about policy decisions that the white house made and how they relate -- policy decisions about russia, and obviously, the line of questioning suggesting, is there any quid pro quo? is the president of the united states making policy with regards to russia because of something, some relationship? and that is kind of shocking, that that's the kind of questions that are being asked about the president -- >> it's not just about the campaign, it's about what is happening in the white house? >> absolutely. >> in terms of russia. and again, we don't know. this could mean nothing. they're just asking questions. we don't know what this all means, so we should always caveat with that. go ahead. >> yes. >> and sometimes lost in the discussion around who was having contacts with whom and what role did they play in the campaign is a series of policy decisions
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that involved at first, potentially, the lifting of sanctions against russia. the administration ultimately didn't go that route, but that's what michael flynn had discussed in the transition. the president in january delayed the implementation of sanctions against russia that were overwhelmingly approved by congress last year. the rnc platform changed during the 2016 campaign to no longer reflect support for ukrainian rebels' legal assistance towards ukrainian rebels fighting russian forces. so there were some changes, in not just the campaign's posture towards russia, but as a result, now the republican party's status. >> but what do you say to the administration who says, we have been really tough on russia. look what we did to russia and syria, for one? what do you say to that? the president himself tweeted that he's been tougher than his predecessor on russia. >> sabrina just laid out where donald trump has broken with the republican party over the last
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20 years with respect to russia. mitt romney, bun of the big debates he had with barack obama is he thought the democrats weren't tough enough on russia. so during his campaign, trump re- -- he changed the party's position on this issue and in office, he has taken a series of moves that are more accommodating towards russia than other republican presidents would have been. i think mueller is seeing all of that and saying, huh, is there a connection here? that's one of the big questions of this investigation. to the white house's point that, hey, we've been very tough on russia, i think most foreign policy analysts don't see it that way. they see him grudgingly accepting nato. nato is the sort of cornerstone of american security, and it toox mont took months and lots of back and forth before trump would affirmaffirm himself to nato. that caused a lot of concern in europe, to the benefit of putin. they haven't been able to
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substitute the sanctions that congress called for in a massive bipartisan vote. >> of course, the mirpadministrn says, these are allies, these would be sanctions against allies. they claim they're no longer doing business with russia. that is what they say about the sanctions. they say that the message is muddled. but i want to move on really quickly to what we just saw unfold in pennsylvania with a very vintage donald trump. he looks like he's back on the campaign trail. and he went offscript -- >> he was. >> he was. talking about 2020 and what his slogan is going to be, right? do you see this as a sign of the fact that there are fewer and fewer people around the president now to sort of restrain him, as we know. hope hicks, others who are close to him are leaving or are already out the door. >> you know, it is true that there are fewer senior aides there to box him in and tell him what to do. but let's be honest. this is no different than donald trump was in 2015 or '16 or at the peak of when there were some
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senior aides that restrained him a little bit. so win always think with donald trump, we overemphasize the people around him. trump is trump. he's not going to change due to the people around him. >> as we wrap up really quickly, you remember, rick saccone, the republican, it's really tight. it's a really tight race. some would say surprisingly tight given the fact that republicans normally do well there, although it is a midterm. so it makes you wonder, is that because of rick saccone or is it because the president is losing popularity in that district? just very quickly. >> look, i think this is a district that trump won by over 20 points. the fact that it's now competitive speaks to perhaps the president's own favorability ratings. when doug jones was the victor in that senate election, one of the underlying statistics was that trump's approval rating was pretty evenly split. that was in alabama. he's clearly turning out to be somewhat of a liability to republicans on the ballot,
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especially when hen't st can't n message during these rallies. >> he barely talked about the candidate. >> maybe too on-message. >> ryan, sabrina, thank you so much. great having you on. >> thank you. well, more questions today about that payoff of porn actress, stormy daniels. were ethics rules violated by not disclosing the alleged hush money? we'll discuss, up next. ♪ i thought i was managing my moderate to severe ulcerative colitis. but i realized something was missing... me. the thought of my symptoms returning was keeping me from being there for the people and things i love most. so, i talked to my doctor and learned humira can help get, and keep,uc under control when other medications haven't worked well enough. and it helps people achieve control that lasts so you could experience few or no symptoms. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened; as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. before treatment, get tested for tb.
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office. now, michael cohen says he used his home equity line of credit to make that payment on behalf of his billionaire client and that president trump was never aware that he made it. and whether trump knew is important, because the payment could violate federal law. i want to talk about that possibility with norm eisen. he served as the ethics czar under president obama and ambassador to the czech republic. so let's just start off with big question, big picture here, how might this payment, just days before the election to stormy daniels, violate campaign finance laws and potentially violate federal ethics law? >> pamela, thanks for having me back. there are two big legal issues around this payment. the first is, campaign finance. campaigns are not supposed to receive contributions, including in-kind contributions, of $130,000. and the question is, it's just a question, although the evidence keeps accumulating, was this
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hush payment that was made to stormy daniels and the agreement done to benefit the campaign? was it the same as if an individual gave $130,000 contribution to a campaign. you can't do that! >> but what about if it was done on behalf of trump's attorney to benefit the campaign, but the campaign itself, in terms of the actual candidate, donald trump and others in the campaign were unaware of it. what would that mean then? >> well, it still would be a problem for the attorney, because, look, the same way you or i could not -- there's a campaign contribution limit. and we are not allowed to write a check for $130,000 directly, if that is the way the facts turn out, this is still mysterious, that's a violation by cohen. now, if the campaign was completely unaware, that's another matter, but at a minimum, that's a cohen violation. the question you have to ask, of course, is it credible that donald trump was unaware of this, given the nature of his
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relationship with cohen? the nature of his relationship with stormy, and if trump was aware, of course, the campaign was aware. >> so here's that question. because trump and michael cohen had said, he was left out of this, he was unaware of this. michael cohen said he just did this on his own, essentially. but if the president was unaware of the payment to daniels. but the white house said he won the arbitration, does that make the nda invalid? what does that mane for tean fo? >> well, first of all, when we're taking account of what trump or the white house or mr. cohen says, these are not individuals that have the highest reputation for honestly. mr. trump lied over 2,000 times in his first year. we've never seen anything like that. i take what they say with a drawn of salt. in terms of the nda, the nondisclosure agreement, you know, there's a lot of issues about the validity of that
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nondisclosure agreement. if it's true that trump didn't know about it, then how did his lawyer have the power to bind him? there's a legal ethics rule. you must get your client consent. the whole story doesn't make sense. the most likely account that actually happened is trump knew, cohen paid this money, intending to be paid back by trump, and trump either did or did not pay him back directly or indirectly. that's the most likely narrative, based on this evidence. and that creates the campaign financial problems and it also creates personal ethics issues, if true, for president trump. >> because, he didn't disclose it, right? is that why it would be a violation of federal ethics? >> exactly. trump is caught between a rock and a hard place, pamela. because in running away from this campaign finance violation, which may or may not have occurred, we need to know the facts, he's pled himself into a personal financial disclosure
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violation. president trump is obligated, under federal law, to disclose all sorts of information, and he signed and personally certified a financial disclosure, including assets and liabilities. but he didn't mention this hush agreement, the llc, that owns the hush agreement, a possible loan from mr. cohen. none of that is in there. and the notion that he didn't know about this is kind of silly. come on. have you ever given $130,000 gift to someone you worked with? that's ridiculous! mr. cohen had to taken out a home equity, apparently, he claims. he had to take it out of his home equity line of credit. >> it's hard to believe -- >> and a gift? come on! or at least that there was an understanding that he would be paid back. and we know he tried to reach, according to media reports, he was trying to reach mr. trump during this period when the $130,000 payment was delayed.
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you know, you have to ask yourself, was that a cold call out of the blue? or did trump know about it all the time? >> there's a lot -- it seems that there are a lot more layers of this onion to be unpeeled. we'll see how it all shakes out. thank you so much, ambassador. do appreciate it. >> thanks, pamela. well, coming up on this sunday, hundreds of diners in a small english town now being told they should wash their belongings because they may have been exposed to a deadly nerve agent. can you imagine? we'll be right back. st and easy to analyze and take action? how about some of the lowest options fees? are you raising your hand? good then it's time for power e*trade the platform, price and service that gives you the edge you need. alright one quick game of rock, paper, scissors. 1, 2, 3, go. e*trade. the original place to invest online.
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well, new frightening details now from the uk, where a russian man and his daughter were poisoned last weekend. british officials are telling everyone who went into this restaurant or a nearby pub in salisbury, england, last sunday and monday to scrub their clothes and everything they had with them. that warning is for about 500 people. well, they found traces of a rare and dangerous nerve agent in both places. i want to bring in cnn's bill black. he is in salisbury about 90 miles southwest of london. so, phil, is this warning out of an abundance of caution or are the people who went into that restaurant and pub in real danger? >> reporter: yeah, the authorities here, pamela, say they are being very cautious. but there is a risk, although it is a small one and a long-term one. what they're concerned about, a small amounts of this nerve agent on people's clothing, on their belongings, and them being exposed to it, in these small amounts, but over a long period
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of time. so what they're suggesting is that people wash their clothes, their belongings, as best they can. and they think that will take care of the situation entirely. but they're concerned about this, as you touched on there, because they found this nerve agent and what they described as trace contamination in the restaurant behind me, that's why it's still closed, and a pub around the corner, as well. and you're talking about hundreds of people that may have been exposed to this. these were all the people that were there, sunday afternoon last week. this also tells us that the nerve agent that was used in targeting the russian man, sergei skripal and his daughter, yulia, suggests it's a slow-acting nerve agent. so these two went for lunch, went for a drink, over several hours before making their way to a park bench behind the building here and that's where they eventually collapsed. that's where they were found really being violently ill as a result of the nerve agent. and so i thinklooking for a
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slow-acting nerve agent, not one that kicks in quickly after exposure. >> so frightening. and to think that this is a chemical weapon right there in england being used. phil black, thank you so much. well, a middle school teacher in florida secretly running a white supremacist-themed podcast. how she's explaining herself, that's next. this is something that i'm really passionate about- i really want to help. i was on my way out of this life. there are patients out there that don't have a lot of time. finally, it was like the sun rose again and i was going to start fighting back now. when those patients come to me and say, "you saved my life...." my life was saved by a two week old targeted therapy drug. that's what really drives me to- to save lives. the markets change... at t. rowe price... our disciplined approach remains. global markets may be uncertain... but you can feel confident in our investment experience
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v volitich had one job, teaching social studies these middle school students at this florida high school. on her off time, she had another passion, sharing white supremacist ideals and anti-semitic conspiracy theories on a public social media website, including her own podcast under the russian pseudonym, tiana dolokov. >> so many other researchers have looked into this. and that's just the way it is. there are races that are higher iqs than others. >> reporter: she also shared her views on twitter under the same pseu pseudonym. you know america's education system is designed to enable victimization when teachers are forced to learn about institutional racism and prove it's real when it isn't. after the myriad of tweets and comments were first reported by "the huffington post," the publication found what they found with the citrus county school district.
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the district has removed volitich from the classroom pending an investigation. in a statement through her attorney, she denies being racist saying her comments online were all political satire and an attempt to get more follower er followers. none of the statements have any truth to them nor are my political beliefs injected into hi teachings of social studies curriculum. but she did admit at least one parent complained about her political bias in class. >> i've had a couple of instances where parents were concerned. i had one at the beginning of this year who e-mailed the principal over my head and basically told them, i'm worried that your teacher is injecting political bias into her teaching. and the principal came to me and was like, i'm not worried, should i be worried? and i'm like no. and she believed me and she backed off. >> another parent, meredith p k
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blakely said her daughter attended miss volitich's class. >> i'm outraged that people city sti still think this way. >> reporter: her daughter remembered a comment that made a student uncomfortable. >> she believed she heard a statement from a teacher that during segregation they had separate water fountains and the teacher alluded in the teacher's opinion, it would be okay if that was the way it was. >> but blakely strongly believes in due process and will wait to see what happens with the teacher before she passes judgment on whether or not that teacher should be fired. she did say, though, that this is a wake-up call to parents, that they should teach their strong values in the home, as well, and she says she's teaching her daughter about inclusion and acceptance. >> and our thanks to sara sidner for that. well, next week, we reveal our first cnn hero of 2018. but before we do, an update on
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2017's hero of the year. amy wright of wilmington, north carolina, was honored for opening a coffee shop that employees people with disabilities. now she has expanded her mission and here's a quick update from anderson cooper. >> the 2017 cnn hero of the year is amy wright! >> oh, my gosh! i cannot believe this is happening! >> an incredible night, but two months later, amy has opened a second coffee shop, this one in charleston, south carolina. for most of these 17 new employees, this is their first job. >> people with intellectual disabilities aren't valued and so this coffee shop has created a place where people see their valu value. >> and amy has some major expansion plans. watch anderson's full update or nominate someone that you think should be a cnn hero right now at we'll be right back. does this map show the
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well, austin, texas, ground zero right now. it's where all things entertainment converge into one big happening called southwest by southwest. it's a super conference and festival that often determines what will be seen, listening to, doing, in the near future. and of course, our cnn senior tech correspondent, laurie segall, is there. laurie, much of what south by southwest is focusing on this year is the power and the promise of technology, plus its downside, though. how is the downside being addressed there? >> reporter: you know, it's interesting, right before i came on with you, pamela, i realized,
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this is my tenth year coming to south by southwest. i started coming when companies like twitter were launching here and there was so much optimism around there. and now you have people really nervous, and panels where tech executives are being called out. they're raising their hand and saying, do you have too much power? what are you doing? that's really something people are talking about. you had elon musk come and do a panel. and he was talking about the dangers of artificial intelligence, saying, we have to pay attention to this. hollywood is paying attention, which is very interesting. you have the creators of "west world," who actually came here. and "west world" is a show about robots essentially overtaking human beings. and i ask them, who's in control, man or machine? that's a question we're all asking. take a listen. >> we lost control quite some time ago. and i think the last year has been a fairly stark ill train station of that. we've struggled this from the beginning. but the idea now that, you know, we've built systems that are so subtle and able to be manipulated so subtly that it's hard to even -- you've got a
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congressional inquiry now to try to figure out what happened with the election, what's happening social media in general. it's already being gamed to a point. we don't even understand how to fix it. so the illusion that we have any control over these systems is long gone. we elected quite some time ago to not have the conversation. >> you have a massively influential show. there aren't many people that look like you in these roles. . a and i know that everyone is starving for a role model and an example in this era of me too and time's up but way, way long before that. do you feel the pressure of it? >> you know, i think i feel the pressure of wanting to do something that's good. as a woman, i think you have a little bit more pressure. i think you know that to get that chance, it's sometimes heard and if you mess it up, you can't give that chance to eothe people. >> it's interesting, a lot of these panels, you hear a lot of
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talk of the me too movement, how it pushes forward, a lot of people in technology being asked about this. and i don't want to say tech is bad. there was so much promise here. i was speaking to an entrepreneur who's helping build out technology for a baby camera that would be able to detect postpartum depression in moms by looking at movements. there's really some interesting innovation here. but it's a time we have to step back and ask about the power and the peril and what we can do and how we can hold our tech companies accountable at this very sensitive moment, pamela. >> laurie siegel, thank you so much. it is 5:00 eastern. you are live in the "cnn newsroom." and i'm pamela brown in washington. and tonight, in for ana cabrera. where president trump unloading on twitter. the president tweeting that his lawyers, quote, have shown conclusive that there was


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