tv New Day With Alisyn Camerota and John Berman CNN August 20, 2018 5:00am-6:01am PDT
new day. it is monday, august 20th. we can share in it one and all. president trump is railing against the russia probe as a key question looms. what did white house counsel don mcgahn tell robert mueller's investigations, mcgahn's attorney did not give a full account of what mcgahn gave mueller's team. president trump says he's not a rat and insists he allowed mcgahn to be interviewed. rudy giuliani has a new reool take bending argument for what the president should not testify to special counsel. >> i'm not going to be rushed into having him testify so he gets trapped in perjury. when you tell me he should testify because he's going to tell the truth and shouldn't worry, that's so silly, it's somebody's version of the truth not the truth. he didn't have a conversation -- >> truth is truth. i don't mean to go -- >> no, it isn't truth.
truth isn't truth. >> truth isn't truth is what rudy giuliani said over the weekend. moments ago he issued a sort of clarification. let me read this aloud to you. my statement was not meant as a pont fiction on moral theoologist but one referring to the situation where people make contradictory statements, the classic he said/she said puzzle. sometimes further inquiry can reveal the truth other times it doesn't. can i say one thing? >> i don't know. i would never accuse rudy giuliani of professing any moral th theolo theology, i was saying he is trying to create a situation where there is no truth and that fact is not fact. there's a pattern of it over time. >> i hear your point, there has been a pattern of it with this administration, but i heard rudy giuliani saying what he now says he said yesterday, which is that when there's two people in a room and they have a different story, how do you know what truth is? >> evidence.
>> evidence. >> one person's word against another. i understand the jury is stasked with finding the body of evidence but sometimes it's hard to find the absolute truth. >> sometimes there are contemporaneous notes. >> sometimes there are. >> like i'm keeping right now. >> exactly. i see all this. i know what all this is. that's why -- >> rudy giuliani seems like he's on team cam rat ta this morning. >> moral theology. >> it's confusing. michael cohen could learn his legal fate season. prosecutors are in the final stages ever their investigation and could be preparing criminal charges against michael cohen by the end of the month. joining us now with all of her latest reporting and there is a lot of it, is maggie haberman. what is the truth? >> good morning. well, allison, i have to say i agree with you that i think giuliani was trying to say but the problem is he has turned -- they have turned everything into
a version of events where whatever is negative for trump isn't real. that's what they've been talking about for quite some time. i agree with you what he was trying to say if it's a he said/she sa said/she said there's no independent ar bit ar enthe president has told many lies about a variety of topics and jew giuliani saying any number of different statements hasn't helped. >> thank you for stating it so much more co-gently that i have. >> no thanks necessary. >> listen, we've been debating all morning how much of a mad hatter some of these folks' logic can sometimes be. i heard what rudy giuliani was trying to say yesterday and it wasn't the -- hi high brow discussion about truth i felt. in any event, the point of all of this back to your reporting, is don mcgahn, the president's
attorney in the white house. you have reported that he spoke for much longer than anybody knew to robert mueller's team and so you say 30 hours over the past i guess nine months. and is it your reporting -- first let me back up a little bit. first, it is your reporting that he felt compelled to do so. it's quite unusual for an attorney to do that. he could have exercised attorney-client privilege or presidential privilege but i didn't. why did he feel so compelled to talk to robert mueller's people? >> because to your point about what kind of privilege it is, it's executive privilege, he's the lawyer for the white house. he has made clear to donald trump to his chagrin over the course of many months so that's one thing. the other thing is he didn't exercise it because the president -- because the president in his then main lawyer, dowd and ty cobb and the
person dealing with the mueller investigation, took the president at his word when the president said i did nothing wrong. let's let people talk. this will clear this up soon. this will make this go fast. don mcgahn was afraid he was being set up by that, that that was a decision to let him go in and then if things went south, trump would then say look, i just got terrible advice from don mcgahn and that's when i made the decision related to a number of issues such as -- that's how i did what i did. and mcgahn went in and he was quite open about a number of topic, including things that is not clear mueller would have known otherwise. one of the things talked about was the fact that trump had told him to have mueller dismissed last year. and i realize there has been a lot of pushback from people who are not privy to don mcgahn and trump's prior conversations and
insists none of that ever happened. he says it did happen. so that's where why he did what he did and where it becomes a danger aside from the obvious, which is that you have an eye witness now telling all kinds of things to special counsel investigating on a possible obstruction and don't forget, investigating possible collusion between the trump campaign and russia government. don mcgahn was the lawyer for campaign. i don't think that's irrelevant. you end up in a situation where mcgahn has been very deep in a lot of these conversations and is able to sort of shed some light on it and he's been working in the white house this whole time. it's fascinating and very rare. >> it is fascinating. is it your reporting after he then spoke to robert mueller's people came back to the white house and opened the kimono so to speak and disclosed to team trump everything he shared? >> that's the other piece of it, no. his lawyer did not give a full
blow by blow accounting of everything that mcgahn had said. and before mcgahn went in and this is on the white house, they did not ask what he planned to say. john dowd and ty cobb did not seek to find out. >> why not? that seems curious. >> i can't speak to why they did not think that was worth doing but almost every lawyer i have spoken with has been aghast that that is how the process went. >> then, explain to reporting that after your initial reporting about the accounting he gave, more than any of us had known, that the white house seemed to be caught off guard by that. >> well, the white house was not fully aware as you just noted of what exactly was said by mcgahn in the interviews and they really didn't -- there's a
difference between the white house and the lawyers. a lot of people in the white house are just fine not knowing what was said because they don't want to know and don't want to be sucked further into this. trump's lawyers and some advisers did not know. believe they have known -- it is only becoming clear since our story that a lot more went on than they realized or they had been led to believe by mcgahn's lawyer. they are now in a bit of a scramble to figure it out. i'm not sure they are going to. so when rudy giuliani claims, well, john dowd has a pretty good sense -- not on the team anymore, pretty good sense of what was said. giuliani is relying on dowd and dowd based on our reporting does not. >> okay. thank you very much for sharing all of that. next topic, michael cohen, the president's long time personal attorney and fixer, what kind of legal trouble he may be in. you have more specifics. what is he looking at now? >> what prosecutors are looking
at in the southern district of new york, potential bank fraud charge, i am proprieties related to $20 million worth of loans. unclear whether that will also include if they do go ahead that way, kind of a campaign finance violation or if it would be related in terms of how he made the payment to stormy daniels, the porn star who had claimed an affair with president trump who received a hush money payout from michael cohen. they might look at the method that was done as opposed to simply a straight campaign finance violation. i think the other question here is timing and they are discussing whether to get this done by the end of this month. the end of this month is next week. they are looking at the window where we are within 60 days of an election approaching us fast and i think there's a question of whether they want to go dark ahead of the election or get this done now. >> as you know, mike cohen seems
to be signaling publicly that he would be willing to talk to robert mueller's investigators. do we have any sense whether they are going to take them up on that. >> we don't know. it would depend whether he has a deal with the southern district of new york in terms of cooperation. it certainly doesn't seem at the moment as if he does but things are really hard to tell. it's hard to tell when somebody is cooperating with the fbi. i've been reminded of this repeatedly, former prosecutors, that's still true. if he has a cooperation deal with the southern district of new york, which is the courthouse in lower manhattan, fr federal court house, it would be contingent he would supply information to mueller. the question that is not clear, whether mueller's investigators or prosecutors in the southern district think michael cohen has information of value. it isn't just i'll cooperate and you get a deal. you have to be able to offer something of value. >> maggie haberman. thanks for sharing your reporting with us this morning. >> even though maggie says she's
not on team berman. i'm on team maggie. i'm on team maggie because allegedly she's on vacation and all she's doing is like burping out scoop after scoop after scoop. some vacation. she's been on the byline -- >> i'm sure she appreciates that verb. >> despite the fact she has a misguided opinion about you. more than 175 former officials signed a new statement pub pickly condemning the decision to strip the security clearance, officials have already spoken out to say, quote, our signatures blow do not necessarily mean that we conquer with the opinions expressed by former director brennan or way he expressed them. what they do represent however, sour firm belief that the country will be weakened if there is a political litmus test applied before season experts are allowed to share their views. 250 officials have spoken out in
three letters now against the president's decision to retaliate against brennan who has been very vocal still. joining me now is sformer cia intelligence officer david priest who signed a statement on friday, that was the second of the three. i've lost count, more than 250 so far and i suppose and going have decided to speak out. why do you think that is, david? >> that's one of the important things, the sheer number including some people who don't speak out publicly on things like this and have not done so before. the other part of it is the breadth of it, the fact this is so wide. what happened is after some of us saw the letter that the former cia directors and deputy directors had put out on thursday, we wanted to add our voices to that and we signed orn to a similar letter to theirs. what was amazing was what developed organically after that is all of us who signed it started getting besieged by
people calling to us, either former colleagues or people across the wider national security community saying how can i stand up and express the same feeling. so this letter developed to allow that. what's amazing looking at it there's no kidding republicans on this list and no kidding democrats on this list, the vast majority of people on this list are completely nonpartisan, people who i don't even know their party affiliation but served the national security of the united states in the past and said this violation of a longstanding norm of security clearances being outside of politics has to stop. >> let me ask you this. each one of the letters seems to include this type of disclaimer or signatures below do not mean we conquer with opinions expressed by former cia director brennan or way he expressed them. does that mean you are? am i right to infer you are uncomfortable with the wayize chosen to express opinions? >> some people like both of the words he said and the tone he uses.
many other people have said, because that in itself is different and john brennan is speaking out more publicly than cia directors typically have before and particularly in his tweets that he's taking a very different tone, some people have said, even if you feel that way, as a u.s. citizen entitled to speak those views as former cia director maybe you should back off. >> what do you think? >> that's not the issue here. >> i think there are two separate issues, you state very clearly and eloquently he has the right to do that. >> absolutely. >> that's one argument, another question is, does the manner in which he chooses to exercise that right make you comfortable or not? >> yeah, what he has done and what makes me uncomfortable and others uncomfortable, he has drawn the attention to himself and made it john brennan lightning rod situation. as a matter of strategy, i wouldn't go the same direction. what instead he could do, make the same points but perhaps not as cause tickally.
a lot of people came to us and said i don't like how he said things. but it's irrelevant to me and frankly free speech cases are never people defending thomas jefferson and never people defending gandhi types, the people pushing envelope. to the extent he pushed that envelope, okay, it's irrelevant. the issue isn't john brennan, it is the plitization of security clearances and national security norms. >> let me put up one of the other arguments i've heard, mostly from conservative critics here, scott jennings, withone or friends points out, this is meant to muzzle free speech and stifle john brennan, it's not working because he's still out there talking and talking a lot. he's done interview after interview, written letter after letter since losing his security clearance. >> right, that's a red herring because the government expression of free speech isn't about whether somebody else will then talk about it later. that person or somebody else.
the u.s. government could shut down all of the cable news networks and all of the newspapers in the country tomorrow and there would be new press outlets that would talk about that and claim that is wrong and give all of the people who did that new voices. so you don't necessarily stifle the speech in the future but everybody would admit that that's wrong. the government does not have the ability by the first amendment to stifle free speech. that's what this issue is. it's not whether john brennan can go out and say now i'm getting more attention to this cause. that's not the point of free speech. that's not the point as far as i know of anyone who has signed ocon to these letters. >> this isn't about john brennan. it may be about the rank and file and thousands of others who may see things they want to speak out against. >> that is the other implication here, people currently serving in national security positions aren't signing this letter and they shouldn't. and there's no pride and joy on the part of us who signed this. the people i've talked to who have signed these letters aren't happy to do this. the verb i keep hearing they are
saddened by this, that people feel this is a shame to have to do this. but there is some sense of pride in two things, some people currently serving have spoken out to the people who have signed this letter and said, thank you for saying things we can't say. but what makes me even more proud is i had a discussion with a currently serving officer who came to me and talking about what was going on this weekend and i said, yeah, crazy news this weekend about this stuff. what are you talking about? he had been at work, doing his job most of the weekend with his head down defending the national security of the united states and he didn't need to be distracted by all of this. >> let's hope that continues. david, thanks for being with us. >> great perspective there. meanwhile, let's get to the verdict watch in paul manafort's bank and tax fraud trial. in about an hour jurors will return for a third day of deliberations. jessica schneider is live at the courthouse in alexandria virginia. what are you seeing, jessica? >> reporter: well, allison, the
waiting game continues out here at the federal court. 14 hours of deliberations down and it remains to be seen how much of ready to go. the jury will reconvene at 9:30 this morning. the defense team for paul man ma fort has repeatedly said they believe the longer this jury deliberates the better the odds are for paul manafort. but really the truth out here is that this jury has a lot too consider. they are going over 18 complicated counts including bank and tax fraud. they also have to sift through 388 documents, considering the testimony of 27 witnesses. we didn't hear too much from the jury last week. they sent two notes. one of them saying they had fewer questions for judge, trying to figure out these any indica -- my indicated counts but asking what is reasonable doubt. that was the one question the judge gave an answer to. he basically said look, the prosecutors have to prove their okayed beyond a reasonable doubt. they said it's not beyond all
possible doubt, just reasonable doubt. it remains to be seen if that was clarification for the jury but they will be back at it at 9:30. >> jessica schneider, we're watching this very close lix the midterm elections two months away. national security adviser john bolton warns it's not just russia trying to interfere. so who else is in on it? for them. for all. get unlimited for as low at 30 bucks per line for four lines at t-mobile. over the last 24 hours, you finished preparing him for college. in 24 hours, you'll send him off thinking you've done everything for his well being. but meningitis b progresses quickly and can be fatal, sometimes within 24 hours. while meningitis b is uncommon, about 1 in 10 infected will die. like millions of others, your teen may not be vaccinated against meningitis b. meningitis b strikes quickly. be quick to talk to your teen's doctor
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interference in a different direction, away from russia. his national security adviser john bolton seemed to conqucur we head into the midterms. >> i can say it's a national security concern about chinese meddling, iranian meddling and north korean meddling that we're taking steps to try to prevent it. >> joining us now to talk about all of this and more is former california congresswoman jane harmon who served as ranking member on the intelligence committee and tony blanken, a cnn global affairs analyst. jane, does john bolton have a point we've been so consumed with russian interest feeshs that we have not paid enough attention to china and chinese interference and iranian interference, et cetera. >> well, we have, it's a slam dunk that there has been and is russian interference. we need to pay attention there. should we put some brain cells on other countries?
sure we should. we're learning much better and hardening state election infrastructure. that's a good thing. i commend the department of homeland security for making a big effort there. trump's department of homeland security. but what we're paying attention to sadly is this craziness about security clearances. and that is zapping a lot of energy it seems to me, demoralizing our intelligence community which needs to pay attention to russia and other countries and i think we need to get past this. john brennan, i don't think is helping himself by the excessive rhetoric but his free speech is important to me and important obviously to hundreds of others. >> since you've brought it up, let's go in that direction right now. tony blanken is one of the people who just signed this letter or at least been released to 175 other national security former government officials. so tony, why did you put your signature on this letter? what message did you want to get across? >> the president has the
authority to revoke someone's security clearance but it's an abuse to do it for political purposes. and the president acknowledged that's why he did it. no cause to take away the security clearance other than the fact he's a critic and the president associates him wrongly with the effort to find out if russia was meddling in election and president was involved or campaign was involved. this is a matter of profound principle. it has a huge chilling effect on officials past and present if they can not speak truth to power. so beyond that, it's also i've got to tell you personal. it's about the person. john brennan is a man of extraordinary integrity and character and honor and decency. i sat with him for months in the room as we planned the operation to get osama bin laden. i was a small part of that. john led the effort. he has done more for national security over 35 years than well -- i'll leave it at that. >> tony, hold on one second. if his security clearance is
revoked, what do we lose? put that into plain and simple language? was he using that security clearance? were people calling upon his expertise in this white house? >> so, look, there are two things that are at stake here. one is at least the ability and potential for current officials to seek someone like john brennan's expertise on a particular matter and makes it more complicated if he doesn't have a security clearance. they can always declassify something if they need him in on an issue but it does make it more complicated. i'm more concerned about the chilling effect he has and the fact that again it's an absolute abuse of authority to revoke this security clearance, revoke authority to have one for political purposes. because the president didn't like what he was saying, not because he was doing anything wrong. >> go ahead, jen? >> allison, i want to add two more points. by the way, i love being on the show with tony. two more points, number one, we had two massive intelligence failures, one was on 9/11 and one was on the national
intelligence estimate on weapons of mass destruction in iraq, which turned out to be wrong. after that i was one in congress who co-led the effort to reform the intelligence process, creating the director of national intelligence and new way of doing national intelligence estimates. that relies on outside input, people critique what our intelligence officials are putting in these estimates, they sort of red team it, they do like book critiques and a lot of those people are on this list to lose their clearances. that makes absolutely no sense. the other point is we rely on liaison relationships with other countries. many of them warn us about possible intelligence attacks. the cart ridge bomb attack coming our way was warned to us by middle east intelligence services. if they have no confidence that the people who work in our intelligence services are speaking truth to power but instead are political appoint
ees, they are not going to warn us and we're going to lose our eyes and ears that are so critical to protecting this country. >> tony, do you think john brennan has any legal recourse? do you think -- he doesn't sound like he's going to let this stand. >> the reason he might not let it stand less about john and more about exactly what jane just talked about, making sure that the president can't continue to do this. the president has threatened to take away other people's security clearances and threatened to spreads the chilling effect he's already had and that will have all of the pernicious effects jane outlined so eloquently. whether he has a recourse or not is unclear. the president does have in effect absolute authority when it comes to these clearances. normally there's a process. normally the agency that holds the clearance reviews it and the clearance that is taken away has an ability to appeal. at the end of the day it's up to the president. but the fact that he has the authority doesn't mean he's allowed to abuse it and that's what the president has done. jane harmon and tony blanken, you're right, jane, it is a great combo.
thank you both for being on qult new day" xbl you're great too. >> you're so great. >> aren't i great? >> you are so great. i'm glad you've finally come around to this. >> only book to people who say you're great from now on. jane harmon, back again after the break. no, don mcgahn cooperating extensively with the mueller investigation. what does this mean? we're going to speak to a former watergate special prosecutor to get some perspective next. consumption of very acidic foods can wear away your enamel. once they start wearing down, your tooth is going to look yellower, more dull. i recommend pronamel toothpaste because it helps protect and strengthen your enamel. it's going to make them more resistant to the acid erosion so that your teeth are not bothering you and you feel good about your smile. it's pro enamel. it's good for your enamel. it's a positive thing.
the "new york times" reports that don mcgahn is extensively cooperating with special counsel robert mueller's russia investigation but a source tells cnn is that the white house does not know what mckban told mueller's team. joining me now, a cnn legal analyst, counselor, thanks so much for being with us. when you read the headlines over this weekend i'm sure there was a moment of deja vu going back some 40 years. what is the significance to you that the white house counsel isn't just answering questions but 30 hours worth of questioning from the special counsel? >> what he says reportedly is
that when asked to cooperate and give testimony, he's done so truthfully. and i think that has caught the trump administration by surprise. here's an area where mr. trump apparently made the decision to let him go forward and something that is quite unusual. and it's something to the extent that it's a bone headed idea, that he can't blame his designated whipping boy the attorney general jeff sessions for. this is on trump. >> this was not a decision made bit attorney general or even the special counsel here. this was ty cobb and john dowd who were running the legal operation for the president, letting this happen. now, i will say the controversy here happens to be over transparency, which is usually something we welcome here. i don't think it's controversial per se that don mcgahn answered
question. i think what's being reported is it's unusual that it was done so without a fight over executive privilege and unusual that the president's current legal team, the political operation is still not or aware of as saturday, how much don mcgahn said. >> apparently there was no complete debriefing which was an option for the president. and i think less than attorney-client privilege because mcgahn doesn't represent donald trump individually, would be a question of executive privilege that could have been asserted. however, what this highlights is if you don't tell the truth to your legal representatives there can be huge ramifications down the road in terms of that coming back to haunt you. and that appears to be one of the problems -- one of the many problems that mr. trump has.
they are all of his own making this week. another is the extraordinary lengths to which he's gone to try to put his thumb on the scale while the jury is deliberating the fate of his former campaign manager. >> you're talking about the paul manafort situation. the jury has done two full days of deliberations and the president has made public comments criticizing the trial basically. >> unprecedented, john. never in the history. of at least modern times has a president so blatantly tried to intervene in the deliberations of the jury and conduct of a trial talking about how sad it is that this man who is accused of hiding $60 million in income for which he paid no taxes and violated a bunch of other laws regarding disclosure, how sad is that? i mean, does it shine a light on
the fact that the president trump has yet to disclose his own tax returns? and the list goes on and on. i mean -- >> let me ask you this. one other thing that's happened and remember president trump is a guy who fired james comey and attacking robert mueller and removed the security clearance of john brennan, the list goes on and on, he's now saying i know you are but what am i but accusing robert mueller of mccarthyism. >> oh, my god. >> you call that -- >> that is the most eye krironis he have no sense of history whatsoever? his idol was roy cohn, his mentor, handmaiden of joe mccarthy who is kplis it in all of the dirty business that mccarthy did forever besmirching
the name in hs tri and now revokes mccarthyism and famous for saying in the white house, was my roy cohn. i can hear the echo of cohn saying -- mccarthy was my guy, enough already with mccarthy. >> you're laughing and think it's funny but is there something unsettling about this or that should bother the american people when the president is talking about an investigation and an investigator in robert mueller who let me remind people, we really haven't heard from in more than a year. joe mccarthy was never quiet for a week let alone a year. >> there's everything unsettling about it, john, including rudy giuliani's undocumented attack on mueller for leaking. they have not leaked at the special counsel's office. they have been absolutely careful about their responsibility, not to leak
information. this is a textbookcase of projection where somebody takes their own misgivings and bad acts and projects them on someone else. mueller is a complete boy scout as far as conducting an honest and fair investigation is concerned. there's no evidence whatsoever that they are violating their responsibility not to leak. on the other hand giuliani leak all the time. >> thanks so much for being with us. appreciate your insight. >> an update on a crime story. we could learn why colorado prosecutors believe that chris watts, who you see there killed his pregnant wife and daughters when he is formally charged with the crime today. we have a live report for you next.
so you have, your headphones, chair, new laptop, 24/7 tech support. yep, thanks guys. i think he might need some support. yes. start them off right, with the school supplies they need at low prices all summer long. like these for only $2 or less at office depot officemax. what might seem like a small cough can be a big bad problem for your grandchildren. babies too young to be vaccinated against whooping cough are the most at risk for severe illness. help prevent this! talk to your doctor or pharmacist today about getting vaccinated against whooping cough.
k k kaylee harttongung has the late >> reporter: the biggest question looming has been why. it was last monday they seemingly vanished from their home. tuesday chris watts gave an interview to many local media outlets that some characterized as unemotional when he pled for them to return home. wednesday arrested and thursday the three victims bodies found on property of a petroleum company where chris watts worked. over the course of the investigation to this point, authorities shared very few details with us in part because a judge has sealed court documents related to the case including the arrest affidavit. with chris watts we expect formally charged by the district attorney, many more of these shocking details are expected to come to light. allison, she shared so much of her family's life on social media. as is the case for all of us, it
did not paint a complete picture of life in watts' household. >> the story is insane. we'll come to you for more details as soon as you have them, thank you very much for that reporting. next to an update for you, what's happening with the parents separated from their children at the border? the aclu gives us a status report on their effort to reunite kids. unlimited ways to be you. unlimited ways share with others. unlimited ways to live for the moment. all for as low as 30 bucks a line. unlimited for you. for them. for all. get unlimited for as low at 30 bucks per line for four lines at t-mobile. over the last 24 hours, you finished preparing him for college. in 24 hours, you'll send him off thinking you've done everything for his well being. but meningitis b progresses quickly and can be fatal,
sometimes within 24 hours. while meningitis b is uncommon, about 1 in 10 infected will die. like millions of others, your teen may not be vaccinated against meningitis b. meningitis b strikes quickly. be quick to talk to your teen's doctor about a meningitis b vaccine. mom: okay we need to get all your school supplies today. school... grade... done. done. hit the snooze button and get low prices on school supplies all summer long.
a federal judge urged the trump administration and aclu to work together to reunite immigrant parents and children who were separated at the border. lee galarnt is the lead attorney for aclu and representing the separated families. thank you for being here. can you give us a status report how many parents are still separated from their children? >> yeah, over 500. we believe about 560 are still separated. some of the parents are in the u.s. we haven't been able to find those parents.
the bulk of them are overseas. we're frantically trying to reach them. we've gotten phone numbers for many of them. some of the phone numbers are not working and some of the parents appear to be in hiding. we'll continue to do everything we can do but one of the fundamental disagreements we have with the government is they are refusing to allow any of these parents to come back to the u.s. to help children asylum hearings. we also believe that some of these parents may have been misled or co-hearersed into acc removal thinking that was the only way to see their children. that's an issue that may have to go back to the judge, whether some of the parents can come back to the u.s. >> i want to ask about that. we've had various surrogates on who have suggested that same thing, that these parents voluntarily gave up parental rights and left the country and left their children behind. do you have evidence that that was not the case and these parents were misled into signing whatever they had to sign? >> we have talked to a number of
parents who were either confused or misled into signing forms, we hope that if we present that evidence to the government they will allow these parents to come back. the other issue is that these children are here and they are very young and they are going to now have to go through asylum proceedings by themselves. that's not the was it's supposed to work. a parent is supposed to assist the child. so for all of those reasons, we think it's clear that the parents need to be brought back here if they want to. >> has the white house washed their hands of this responsibility? is this now solely in your lap? >> i don't think so because only because the federal judge said they can't wash their hands of it. there was a period a week or two ago where they were trying to wash their hands of it, let the aclu deal with this. the judge said absolutely not, it's your mess, you separated the children and enacted this butal and unconstitutional policy, you better help the aclu
find these parents. we'll see how much work the government actually does in light of that court order. we will go back to the judge if we don't think we're getting proper cooperation from the government but right now we're hoping that the judge's order sticks with the government and that it makes it clear to them they need to help us. >> can you just help us understand the needle in a haystalk quality challenge that you're dealing with. what information do you have to try to reunite parents who may not speak english and children who may be too young to know an address? >> right, it's extremely difficult. fortunately we've now gotten phone numbers for many of the people from the government. it's come very late and we think that those phone numbers should have been turned over months ago so this process could have started. but the problem is that some of the phone numbers appear to be inoperative and some of the parents not answering, their phones may have been old numbers and may be in hiding. so we will need more people on
the ground and that's what we're doing, getting more ngos in central america to try and track parents down. it's going to be extremely difficult. some of the parents only speak in indigenous language, not easy to get translators. this is a difficult task but i remain hopeful as i've told you before that we'll get it done. >> yes, we appreciate your optimism and all of the work that the aclu is doing to do this. what are you asking for from the trump administration? what would help you? what do you need today? >> i think updated phone numbers, anything they may have -- addresses and what language they speak, what region they speak and what -- anything about their relatives. as much information as possible. we also hope that the administration will try to track these parents down. we've asked them to do psas, other types of actions in country, we'll see. i think it's going to be sort of basic detective work but the phone numbers are obviously the
best because we don't want to send people into various areas of honduras and guatemala, possibly dangerous areas, driving around for hours and hours looking for people. if we can get phone numbers and e-mail addresses, that's what we want. we'll do whatever we have to do and we have people on the ground in central america ready to go all over those countries looking for the parents. >> thanks for the update. we'll have you back to give us yet another update as you try to perform this herculean task. thanks for being here. >> we have a big one, one of the stranger stories of the day, a woman falls overboard and treads water for ten hours and somehow survives. what went on here? that's next. natural healthy looking teeth are white. natural enamel,
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a speechwriter who spoke at the conference attended by white nationalists left the white house. reached out about darren beatty, the white house asked us to hold off on reporting the story for several days last week. by saturday the e-mail address was no longer active. he has confirmed he did speak at this conference but he says his speech was not objectionable. >> oh, brother. moving on, italian officials releasing new video of the moment when a bridge collapsed in genoa last week. it's terrifying.
you can see cars driving before a cloud of dust and falling concrete consumed the screen. 43 people died in this collapse. authorities are still searching for missing people. no cause yet released. >> a remarkable rescue at sea, a british woman fell off a cruise ship and had to tread water for ten hours before she was saved by the crowation coast guard. traveled to venice on saturday and rescued and we're seeing the moments after the rescue about 60 miles from shore. she told reporters eloquently, she is very lucky to be alive. >> i thought you were going to give me an update. i knew all of that. >> she's still alive and fell in. >> how could she -- she was climbing clearly of her own accord up that -- i would think there's like an air lift or there was something -- all she had was a little life preserving thrown to her.
where's the life raft? >> she's clearly fit. can tread water for hours. >> what did she look like before the ten hours. that is so remarkable. i'm going to follow this every day of how she survived. >> with bad balance apparently. >> we'll find out why she fell overboard as well. time for cnn newsroom with poppy harlow. see you tomorrow. good monday morning, hope you had a great weekend. this morning president trump not letting up on his attacks on the special counsel and the investigation, accusing his team of trying to impact the election that was mueller's team of course. this follows a weekend of attacks on the russia probe after the "new york times" broke the big story that white house counsel don mcgahn has spoken to the investigators for over 30 hours of interviews, three different interviews. cnn has learned the president' lawyers don't know exactly what mcgan said