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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  September 28, 2018 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT

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despite drink, waking up on the cold tiles of a hotel bathroom floor, the uncertainty, the shame, the thought, i must have somehow brought this on myself, the silence, distrust and invalidation. this is a pivotal moment in america for all of us. this matters. this moment is bigger than politics. it's about mothers and fathers raising boys to become men. what good comes of all of this? what are we going to learn? it's a generational opportunity to better ourselves in how we relate to each other as women and men. this matters the most. "the lead" starts now. this is cnn breaking news. >> welcome to "the lead," i'm jake tapper. we begin with breaking news in the politics lead. a shocking turn of everchnts moments ago. john cornyn confirmed there is an agreement the senate is going to wait a week to vote on
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supreme court nominee, brett kavanaugh, during which period the fbi has a week to investigate these allegations against kavanaugh. this came after the senate judiciary committee this morning voted to send kavanaugh's nomination to the senate floor for a final vote among all 100 senators. but that came with a condition. republican senator jeff flake said his vote came with strings attached. and those strings were the one-week delay and the fbi investigation. flake's move coming after he was confronted by sexual assault survivors minutes after he announced he would vote for kavanaugh this morning. >> look at me when i'm talking to you! you're telling me that my assault doesn't matter! that what happened to me doesn't matter! and that you're going to let people who do these things into power. >> that's just an 11-second excerpt of a nearly five-minute passionate confrontation where senator flake looked, frankly,
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wrecked. moments ago, president trump, who said on wednesday night that if it had been up to him, he would have voted weeks ago on kavanaugh. well, he deferred to the senate. >> well, i'm going to let the senate handle that. they'll make their decisions, and they've been doing a good job. >> bill mattingly on capitol hill for us on all the breaking news. we just heard the chairman, chuck grassley, put it simply that this was all just a gentleman and gentlewoman's agreement. but it sounds as though enough senators are standing with jeff flake that the majority leader, mcmit mitch mcconnell, has no choice but to delay this for with a week. >> reporter: that is why republicans have agreed and put out a statement they have requested the white house request that supplemental background check could go no longer than one week from today. it's the latest hurdle in a nomination that is has contained -- well, about a dozen over the last ten days. for supreme court nomination
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defined by dramatic twists and turns, a significant new potential detour. >> i will only be comfortable moving on the floor until the fbi has done more investigation than they have already. it may not take them a week. i understand that some of these witnesses may not want to discuss anything further. but i think we are -- we owe them due diligence. >> reporter: senator jeff flake telling colleagues he will only support kavanaugh's nomination on the senate floor if those floor votes are delayed, and a one-week fbi probe into assault allegations is commenced. >> the democrats who have been, i think, justifiably uncomfortable moving ahead could publicly, in an effort to bring this country together, say that we would feel better. i'm not expecting them to vote yes. but not to complain that an fbi investigation has not occurred. >> reporter: that pronouncement coming after more than an hour of dramatic and secret
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closed-door talks between flake and the panel's democrats, starting right here as flake departed the hearing room in order to meet with delaware democrat, chris coons, who later praised flake's move. >> it is my hope that we could work together on a bipartisan basis to diligently pursue an fbi investigation within the next week, not for the purpose of delay, but for the purpose of investigating further either allegations made by dr. ford or others with a goal towards demonstrating a bipartisan commitment to diligently investigating these allegations. thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, senator flake. >> reporter: moments later, committee chairman, chuck grassley, called for a vote. >> call the roll. >> reporter: moving to the floor of the senate, along party lines. but the whole affair a stunning turn, given flake just a few hours prior announced he would vote to confirm kavanaugh. and the first floor vote scheduled to take place less than 24 hours away. but in between that statement, those secret conversations and
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the committee vote, this. >> i was sexually assaulted and nobody believed me! i didn't tell anyone, and you're telling all women that they don't matter. that they should just stay quiet, because if they tell you what happened to them, you're going to ignore them. >> reporter: flake, cornered in an elevator, but a woman who said she was a sexual assault survivor, something that made him visibly shaken when he entered the hearing room. and throughout the meeting. >> this country is being ripped apart here. and we've got to make sure that we do due diligence. >> reporter: and jake, that's actually the same message that senator coons said. senator flake had told him behind closed doors. now, it's worth pointing out, this is exactly what republican leaders and committee chairs have been rejecting for weeks. that fbi investigation that democrats have been calling for. but they were simply left with no choice. jake, as you noted, it wasn't just senator flake. it was also senator lisa murkowski, senator collins, senator joe manchin.
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basically, every undecided senator that republican leaders need to move to completion, they didn't have because of what senator flake did. and that means for at least a week, even though they will start the process tomorrow on the floor, the senate is going to be frozen in wait for the fbi. >> all right, phil mattingly on capitol hill. with all the latest. and while phil's story was going on, we got a comment -- an official statement from the senate judiciary committee. let me read it. it says the senate judiciary committee will request that the trump administration instruct the fbi to conduct a supplemental fbi background investigation with respect to the nomination of judge brett kavanaugh to be an associate justice in the supreme court. the supplemental background investigation would be limited to current, credible allegations against the nominee and must be completed no later than one week from today. we're trying to find out what current, credible allegations means. my guess, and i'd like to hear what you think, senator. my guess is the allegations made by christine blasey ford, professor ford, and not necessarily allegations made by
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anybody else. but that's just based on the fact that they had a hearing about that one, not the other two. >> well, the fact is that, and this was pointed out by tom tillis yesterday at the hearing. none of the democrats asked questions on the others. they could have. they didn't. because i don't think they saw them as credible allegations. so i certainly don't think chuck grassley and the senate republicans believe those other allegations are credible. and i think that's probably where it's going to be limited to. >> what's your reaction? >> senator flake did the right thing. this nomination was on shaky ground from the beginning. it is very clear that the women who voiced their opinions to him, very passionately in that elevator, got to him. he was uncertain of how he was going to vote all along. he made that clear all along. but that -- between him and his colleague, that he's close to, senator coons, this is what we get. senator flake did the right thing. the investigation should take place and the republicans should have done this a long time ago. >> i've heard the analysis that this is actually a savvy move by
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jeff flake and republicans, even if they were forced to do it and even if you don't like jeff flake, because what it does is it removes a talking point from the democrats, which is why didn't you even just do another fbi investigation? now there will be that, and the likelihood is, and who knows what will happen. but the likelihood is, there won't be anything new that turned up, just based on how these things happen decades after the fact. >> let's not fool ourselves. the goal posts will move when the week is over. and that is what people who object to flake's decision object to. is this -- >> what will they become, do you think? >> it will be they need to be here in public hearing, if it's just the forms from the fbi. that being said, i do think you're right. look, there's a lot of people -- there's a large chunk of this country that believes him and thinks grave injustice has been done. there's a large part of the country that believes her. there's also a huge part of this country that is ambivalent about this, many of whom i've talked to in my personal life said look, they both seemed credible. this is very hard to adjudicate. it was extremely hard to
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adjudicate last week. it remains extremely hard to adjudicate. i'm not sure what the fbi will be able to drill down on. but you give that chunk of people something to hang their hat on, those people include flake and murkowski and collins. so i think the date has to be a hard line that you vote. >> yeah. it's -- they say no longer than one week. meaning a week from today. i want you to take a listen to senator chris coons, a democrat, on the judiciary committee. he's friends with jeff flake. and he's talking about how flake in his view is trying to serve as a role model. >> someone who is willing to take a real political risk and upset many in his party by asking for a pause so that the american people can hear that we are able to work together on some things. that even though he and i are from different parties with different values and different backgrounds, we respect each other and we can work together. >> what do you think? >> i think this is exactly what the senate needs, frankly. i think the damage to that institution was terrific.
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and the damage to the court will be lasting, should judge kavanaugh go through and become justice kavanaugh. i think what senator coons and now senator flake are trying to do is find some way to put this back together. we also have the footage this morning, after senator flake said i'm going to vote to confirm kavanaugh. women confronting him. women who had been victims of sexual violence, confronting him, tearfully. and i don't know jeff flake, but he looked like a man who was shattered and crushed and affected. and listening. he could have shooed them out. he could have had security kick them out. but he listened. and it really looked to me like this is a guy who is taking this very seriously. people like me have criticized him a lot because he gives these windy speeches on the senate floor and votes with trump 95% of the time. this time he's actually acting, not just speaking. and i think it began by listening to those women. and i think all of us would do well to do more of that. >> what's your reaction as a former senator? >> i think that the republican leadership has done an outstanding job in anticipating what was going to come down the tracks here. the reality is that the -- i
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believe the reason the leadership and chairman grassley did not capitulate to the democrats, and hold an fbi hearing is you don't do that until you need to do it. and he didn't need to do it until the votes were cast. and you have to have something you're holding to say, okay, i can give you this. and i do believe that it's the right thing to give. i think -- to mary catherine's point and others hopefully have made this. that is, i think this is a good thing for the process. i think that this is good for judge kavanaugh. i think they were -- the judge was sort of holding back and not answering, you know, because he was confronted. why don't you just ask? turn and ask! and he couldn't, because he needed to keep this arrow in the quiver for the republicans to fire to get the vote they needed. >> i also think -- >> and now they have it. and it's going to be good for him, because now he's going to be able to say, look, the fbi has cleared me. and all these -- it's going to be good for everybody. so i'm actually very happy the way things have gone.
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>> from his point of view, i think that he believes he's innocent. and i don't think he's scared of an investigation. i think he's scared of the delay. because during the last delay of ten days, much of the media, i think hugely irresponsibly, ran with a bunch of outlandish claims that were not corroborated. it remains the fact that the most credible one has no contemporaneous corroboration. no contemporaneous reports. if they get to the end of the fbi investigation to this, that remains the case, i am uncomfortable with that being the standard for any person. >> i mean, there's a lot to unpack here. so whether or not the judge -- he could have very clearly -- he was asked the question in the committee, would you consent to fbi investigation. he said, the pleasure of the committee. no. just say i commit to it. he has a storm cloud over his head, jake. whether or not he's confirmed or not confirmed, that supreme court will never be the same and it's not just about the policy positions or the positions he may take as a judge on that court. but it will absolutely never be the same, because he cannot get rid of the storm cloud that is
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over his head. >> all right. everyone stick around. we've got a lot more to talk about. we're going to keep talking about this. is this the moment that changed senator jeff flake's mind? plus, imagine having to be the messenger who had to tell president trump what happened on the hill today. >> somebody has got to explain this to trump. so i guess that would be my job. [ laughter ] i had age-related macular degeneration, amd, i wanted to fight back. my doctor and i came up with a plan. it includes preservision. only preservision areds 2 has the exact nutrient formula recommended by the national eye institute to help reduce the risk of progression of moderate to advanced amd. that's why i fight. because it's my vision. preservision. also, in a great-tasting chewable. oh! oh! ♪ ozempic®! ♪ (vo) people with type 2 diabetes are excited about the potential of once-weekly ozempic®. in a study with ozempic®, a majority of adults lowered their blood sugar and reached an a1c of less than seven
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what you are doing is allowing someone who actually violated a woman to sit in the supreme court! this is not tolerable! you have children in your family! think about them! i have two children! i cannot imagine that for the next 50 years, they will have to have someone in the supreme court who has been accused of violating a young girl! what are you doing, sir? >> i was sexually assaulted and nobody believed me! any tell anyone, and you're telling all women that they
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don't matter. they should just stay quiet, because if they tell you what happened to them, you're going to ignore them. that's what happened to me and that's what you're telling all women in america. that they don't matter. they should just keep it to themselves, because if they have told the truth, you're just going to help that man to power anyway. that's what you're telling all of these women. that's what you're telling me right now. look at me when i'm talking to you. you're telling me that my assault doesn't matter! that what happened to me doesn't matter. and that you're going to let people who do these things into power. that's what you're telling me. when you vote for him. don't look away from me. look at me and tell me that it doesn't matter what happened to me! that you let people like that go into the highest court of the land and tell everyone what they can do do their bodies. >> was that the moment that changed everything? just a few hours after being confronted by sexual assault survivors over announcing he planned to vote yes on judge brett kavanaugh's nomination to
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the supreme court, that man you saw in the elevator there, looking utterly devastated, republican senator jeff flake, called for a delay, and an fbi investigation before the full senate vote. a delay that now republicans have agreed to. let's talk about it with the panel. do you think -- we don't know. and we'll hear from flake at some point, i suppose. but he had announced he was voting for kavanaugh. and then that happened. and then came this demand. >> if that's the case, i imagine he will probably say that. i do think as a woman who is more familiar with sexually threatening situations than i would like to be, as many women are, i do think that is not the way that i am called to weigh the facts in this situation. and so that is not how i approach it. i don't think it's a responsible standard for the senate to just use emotion and other people's experiences to adjudicate this. i don't think it's responsible to do it publicly, where i'm
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called to be respectful to both the accuser and the accused. and yet that seems to be the standard, even though we're looking at the facts and i don't see a lot there. in fact, i see refutation of some of the facts. i'm trying to be respectful of everyone without letting the emotion take over, because frankly, that's what this should be about. >> the facts. >> there could be a moment and emotions but this is the way i'm called to deal with it in public. >> and the fact of this was, for millions of americans, upsetting to watch professor ford's testimony, to watch brett kavanaugh. a lot of people rooting for brett kavanaugh and the president among them, et cetera. he's fighting back, et cetera, from the democratic smear machine. but a lot of people seeing their own experiences, rightly or wrongly, in this confrontation. >> that's right, jake. i mean, people were triggered. i mean, even the phone calls to the hotlines were up by almost 150%. people were absolutely
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triggered. and as someone who has been sexually assaulted, i cannot say, and have sisters who have been, and this is probably the first time i'm ever saying this. even i was triggered by watching this. triggered in many ways. triggered as a woman. triggered on the race and class side. because as much as i keep hearing people saying that dr. anita hill was treated better, she was not treated better than dr. ford. and even people making those kinds of comparisons is not fair. dr. anita hill was maligned, and she didn't have the benefit of the movements that we have now. now, that's not to say, as a country we should get better and recognize this. but the emotion of everyday people is not the same as the senators. and the fact that senator flake could be moved is not that this is a wild move for him. he wasn't 100% convinced in the first place that he was ever going to vote. but this is no fairytale. so people are not going to be pristine about showing their emotions about what they believe
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to be true. now, what i will agree on is the absolutism now that i'm seeing that just because somebody says that, that it is absolutely correct. that may or may not be true. there is a history in this country, and nowhere should judge kavanaugh -- i know i'm going to get the don't make the comparison. this is not about him. but there is a history in this country of black men being blamed, and that being the standard, just because somebody -- we could look at mateo as an example. that little boy lost his life. there is a history in this country. that being said, we have to understand that the me too movement is bubbling. people need to understand that. i think senator flake was calm, cool and collected in that moment. he did exactly what he should have done in that moment. but the pendulum can go -- can go -- too far. >> yeah. i'm genuinely concerned that the -- that believe all accusers is a slogan and it's something i
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would bring to my friends and family if they brought something to me. but it's not an intellectual or fair judicial or public -- public standard. >> i would agree with that, even though we weren't in a court. but i do agree we have to somehow say, people lie. women lie, men lie. human beings lie. that does not mean dr. ford -- i don't believe she's lying about what happened to her. but we cannot -- she's not -- >> it happens a lot. >> i know. but the way -- i mean, the men -- so they can question -- they brought in a female prosecutor to question dr. ford, to make it look all pristine and nice. but then they were engaging with judge kavanaugh. judge kavanaugh was out of line yesterday. and senator, you and i both -- you served in the u.s. senate. i served in the senate. there is no committee chairman in my senate in ohio that would allow somebody to come and --
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chairman grassley said to senator blumenthal, hurry up, be quick. but then he said to judge kavanaugh, take your time. judge kavanaugh was out of line. >> first off, i think judge kavanaugh's statement was not out of line. >> not his statement. i'm talking about how he kept -- >> he was forced -- to several members of the committee, was out of line. and i communicated that with the white house. >> okay. >> that he -- look, he was -- i can't imagine, but i'll try to imagine the stress and -- i mean, his adrenaline must have been just at all-time levels. but he needed to -- and i think he did as the hearing went on. but i think initially with some of the initial questions with senator whitehouse, senator klobuchar in particular, i think he was -- >> senator blumenthal. >> he was combative when he didn't need to be. >> why. >> he was rude when he didn't need to be. >> why? what do you think? >> because he was prevaricating.
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>> that's what you think. you think he was lying. >> senator whitehouse said that today in the hearing. senator whitehouse asked him about sophomoric terms in his yearbook. >> right. >> he did not tell the truth about what those terms mean. according to reporting from the "new york times," the fbi can now look into that. with senator klobuchar, even more telling him. she was asking him something right at the heart of the matter -- >> have you ever gotten blackout drunk? >> and honestly saying he may not remember when he assaulted dr. ford. that was at the heart of the matter. instead of answering honestly, he attacked her. and he knows he cannot handle the truth. >> can i say -- >> sometimes in the national media, if you're accused of running a gang rape ring and you're innocent of doing that, it might tick you off. >> right. everyone stick around. we've got more. brett kavanaugh's future comes down to these four senators. why their votes are the deciding factors. we're going to go into who they are and how they might vote. stay with us.
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welcome back. as of right now, it is down to four senators, ultimately, to decide whether or not judge brett kavanaugh will be confirmed as the next supreme court justice. these are the ones who are undecided about whether or not he should be confirmed. two republicans, susan collins of maine, lisa murkowski of alaska, and two democrats, joe manchin of west virginia, and
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heidi heitkamp. here's why their votes matter. republicans hold just a 51-49 majority in the u.s. senate that republicans can only afford to lose one vote and still get a tie, 5050, which vice president mike pence then breaks. if two republicans vote no, the kavanaugh confirmation is over. but they could get help from these two democrats if they vote yes. it is confusing and who knows what's going to happen. of course, there's also jeff flake. but ultimately, i have to say, unless the fbi investigation comes back with something conclusive, he really does sound like somebody who wants to vote for judge kavanaugh. >> well, he's already put out a statement saying he's going to. >> right. >> he voted for him in the committee but has now halted the process for a week. i think that's the safest bet. we don't know what the fbi is going to come back with though. he has clearly showed today he is open to changing if there is new evidence. in this case, new process concerns. >> the judiciary committee gave collins a sworn statement from kavanaugh's friend from high school, mark judge. she questioned why the committee
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didn't get a subpoena and force him to testify under oath. she could get anything she wants, really, from the committee, if she wanted to. do you think mark judge's subpoena -- i mean, sworn testimony to susan collins saying he doesn't remember anything, he never saw brett kavanaugh behave this way, is that going to be enough for her? and how do you think ultimately she's going to go? >> i've known susan for a long time, i've known lisa for a long time. >> murkowski. >> murkowski for a long time. and they are very, very much sticklers for process. they believe that is a very important thing to show the thoroughness of the investigation. for example, health care. last year, one of the reasons lisa murkowski and susan collins didn't vote for it, they had concerns about the process. was it open. and this is a constant issue with them. and it's a legitimate issue. we have to have the appearance,
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as well as the reality, that we have done our job. that we have given people -- given the american people the opportunity to participate in the debate, to -- and in this case, to get all the information, to go through the regular channels, and that we shouldn't be shortcutting things, because it undermines the -- the institution. and i think they're very concerned about that. and they should be concerned about. so look, this was an important thing for the leadership to hold back on. and to be able to offer to senator murkowski, to senator manchin and collins and as well as senator flake. it's important to them and it should be important to them. >> so collins represents a state that is trending democratic, maine. murkowski represents a state that has a democratic governor, or an -- rather an independent governor, and a democratic lieutenant governor. who opposed kavanaugh. their home states might not be as pro kavanaugh as the states as arizona and others. >> right. i mean, it's an -- it's an out
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for them if their states are not super in favor and people aren't knocking on their doors. but they're concerned about process. they get through this. if the facts on the ground haven't changed, it's hard to make an argument, i think, that this meets a standard, that any person, democrat or republican, that it should disqualify them. if it remains the fact that there are no contemporaneous reports and no corroboration of this, and if they talk to the rest of the people at the party and they -- the fbi does, and they reaffirm what they have said, particularly the female friend who says she didn't know -- >> leland kaiser. >> right. i don't see how that meets a standard for anyone. and i swear to you, i would say the same thing who is a democrat in the situation, even if i didn't like their jurisprudence. it's just -- >> senator turner, take a listen to lisa murkowski, the senator from alaska, who is in favor of this delay. just moments ago, talking about her feelings about it. >> senator murkowski, how do you feel about what has been agreed
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to? >> i think it was a good step today. thank you. thank you! >> safe travels. >> having to close your door with the pesky reporters around. but you have murkowski and collins. this, actually, assuming that more information, more damning information, doesn't come out from this fbi investigation, this might make it easier for collins and murkowski to vote yes. because at the end of the day, if there is a delay and nothing comes back, they can say, you know, we went -- we bent over backwards to make sure that professor ford was heard. >> just the pure politics, absolutely. it might make it easier. but then again, it might not. and so that's why this fbi investigation is vitally important. and at some point, you know, i would like to think that the american people would like elected officials to do something that is bigger than their calculus of whether they're going to win that election again. now that might be a bridge too far. asking politicians to do that. but this particular situation, you know, when i heard senator lindsey graham, for example,
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talk about how he voted for, you know, justice keegan and -- >> sotomayor. >> justice sotomayor. well, they weren't accused of rape or attempted rape. let me be clear here. was not. so for him to vote for them was easier than what is being brought to bear here. and let the facts go where they are. >> whoa, whoa, whoa. only one, two or maybe three democrats are going to vote for judge kavanaugh before any of these things came out. >> yeah, purely on their belief and how he would be a judge. >> right. lindsey's point was, unlike you, i don't agree with kay beggan. i don't agree with sotomayor. >> it's not the same. >> it is the same. >> i think he's saying that lindsey graham was saying this before the allegations, regardless of the allegations. >> right. but he brought it up -- >> he's also saying he wouldn't have handled it so cynically as democrats undoubtedly have and did for two months. >> i want to ask -- let me ask
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you, paul, about heidi heitkamp, up for re-election in north dakota and joe manchin up for re-election in west virginia. isn't it an easier thing for them to get to yes after in fbi investigation, because they can bend over backwards and, again, they represent trump states. >> yes. but i believe they already voted for justice gorsuch. >> both of them did, yes. >> joe donnelly today, from indiana said, yeah, i voted for gorsuch. i can't be for this guy. i think that gives them more outs. >> it's harder for donnelly. >> this is my point. it won't for every senator turn on the fbi investigation. lisa murkowski represents alaska. many alaskans have a terrible problem with judge kavanaugh's rulings, separate and apart from sexual assault. joe manchin is running for re-election, he's going to win, on preexisting conditions. the health care bill. if you can persuade him that judge kavanaugh becomes justice
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kavanaugh and takes away people's right to insurance after preexisting -- nothing to do with the fbi. so this gives opposition more time to work these senators on local and state issues. and national issues, separate and apart from whether he under oath at the senate or committed sexual assault 30 years ago. >> what republicans are worried about is a bit cynical. everyone anxiously awaiting president trump's reaction to this new proposed delay. what he said might surprise you. stay with us. you know, i used to be good at this. then you turn 40 and everything goes. tell me about it. you know, it's made me think, i'm closer to my retirement days than i am my college days. hm. i'm thinking... will i have enough? should i change something? well, you're asking the right questions. i just want to know, am i gonna be okay? i know people who specialize in "am i going to be okay." i like that. you may need glasses though. yeah. schedule a complimentary goal planning session today with td ameritrade.
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major developments this hour. the senate will now wait a week before voting on judge brett kavanaugh.
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and republicans have agreed to let the fbi investigate the allegations against president trump's supreme court nominee. he said he's willing to do whatever gop deems necessary to move forward. jeff zeleny, i understand you have breaking news. >> reporter: a white house official told me a few moments ago the president is indeed going to authorize and order the fbi to do a supplemental background investigation. he is indeed following the wishes of the senate judiciary committee here, giving a one-week period of time. so the president is going to sign off on that, i'm told. but it was ten days ago exactly when the president said the fbi doesn't do that kind of thing. tonight he's asking them to do just that. president trump showing unusual restraint today. with judge brett kavanaugh facing a new hurdle in his bruising supreme court confirmation battle. >> i'm going to let the senate handle that. they're going to make their decisions and they've been doing a good job. >> reporter: in the oval office, the president taking a rare
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hands-off approach to new demands from senators. this time republicans, that the fbi reopen its background check on kavanaugh. >> they have to do what they think is right. there's no message whatsoever. they have to do what they think is right. they have to be comfortable with themselves. and i'm sure that's what they are. >> reporter: after accusing democrats all week of dragging their feet -- >> they know it's a big, fat con job. >> reporter: the president suddenly being deferential with arizona republican jeff flake leading the charge and holding the cards on kavanaugh's fate. for more than a week, the president has repeatedly dismissed the need for a new fbi probe. >> they have investigated about six times. >> reporter: but today the president saying he would support an investigation if senate republicans asked him to. >> i will be totally reliant on what senator grassley and the group decides to do. >> reporter: the president, like millions of americans, was watching the gripping testimony of christine blasey ford. >> brett put his hand over my mouth to stop me from yelling. >> reporter: calling the hearing
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very compelling. >> she looks like a very fine woman to me. very fine woman. it was an incredible moment i think in the history of our country. but certainly she was a very credible witness. >> reporter: so the president also, though, says today he is standing firmly behind judge kavanaugh. and when he was asked if he's making any type of a backup plan at all for any type of second nominee, should this fail, the president said this, jake. he was very clear. he said, not even a little bit. not even a little bit. but we do know, of course, he has a list of people ready to go. but the white house is standing by judge kavanaugh on this. but, jake, this is not what they expected. they expected a triumphant day here, going into that weekend vote. now another week of uncertainty. jake? >> jeff zeleny with the breaking news there. and it is really remarkable how much things have changed. now there's going to be an fbi investigation. now there's going to be a one-week delay. in fact, it was just yesterday, it feels like three years ago, that senator chris coons of
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delaware, asked judge kavanaugh, could you -- i mean, what's the worst thing that happens if we wait a week and do an fbi investigation? take a listen. >> when you say a week delay, do you know how long the last ten days have been? for us? >> probably an eternity. but in the judge thomas confirmation -- >> across every day -- every day has been a lifetime. >> every day has been a lifetime. and he didn't want an fbi background check, although he said he would do whatever the committee wanted. now, a week delay and an fbi investigation. >> yeah. i mean, the worst that could happen to him is that more unsubstantiated claims of running, say, a gang rape ring when you're 14 come out and are uncorroborated or nonetheless trumpeted everywhere. that's woucould happen to him a his family, which is why he was hesitant about it. but, look, i do think this -- this has the potential, if it -- like i said, i think the line has to be bright. if people are concerned about
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process, the process should end at the date they have designated. because an open-ended thing i don't think gets us anywhere. >> seven days -- >> at the end of the seven days, we might have a slightly better answer. >> and i just got breaking news. senator jeff flake just said that the fbi report could change his mind. obviously, we don't know what the fbi report will say. >> it will change everybody's mind. >> it's entirely theoretical. >> it seems so functionary. again, not to say that people don't lie. but just the whole -- the gang rape. we just can't play with that. that has happened to women. it continues to happen to women. and especially when you're poor, whether you're white, black, yellow or brown. that kind of stuff happens. so i don't want to play with the gang rape stuff, even though to be accused of that and to have not have done it -- >> ten times. >> but let's not just play with the gang rape thing. >> i'm not playing with that. >> i'm saying it on both sides. >> okay. >> that is serious. so we can't play with that.
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but at the same time here, the whole notion of this -- again, deep-seated sexism and not believing women and the power structures in this country that have suppressed a woman's ability to be able to tell her story generation after generation. so all of this is being triggered. some of it may be unfair to judge kavanaugh. but the fact that the fbi needs to get in there and investigate is absolutely important. >> are you surprised at the measured tone that president trump took today, praising professor ford, saying the week delay is fine? >> astonished. >> invasion of the body snatchers. >> yes. >> but this is how we've gone through the looking glass. donald trump, right, who is a wild man, was measured and respectful and especially respectful to dr. ford. brett kavanaugh, who is the polished prep school boy, who everybody thought was going to be just -- and tells you he's a saint, just ask him. he came unhinged. he was the one -- he was more
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trumpian than trump. so we have completely gone through the looking glass. >> to nina's point. she said the senate republicans and the president believed her to be a credible person and actually did give her the opportunity. so when i hear these -- >> not give -- >> when i heard these women going after senator flake, they gave this woman the opportunity to present her case. and it's not like we disregarded -- >> giving. they should be doing their job. >> they are doing their job. and when -- >> middle of the summer. >> credible accusation, which they believe this was a credible accusation. the opportunity was afforded for dr. ford to give that testimony, and to speak whenever they want. they gave her the opportunity not. they gave her the opportunity to go out. and this was something that was i think really strange. >> to go out, you mean for chairman -- >> grassley to go out and talk to her in california. >> she didn't seem to know that the committee had given her the offer to have that privately done in los angeles. >> so let's -- >> that -- wait a minute.
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i don't know if anybody has talked about this. one of the things that really bath bothered me from yesterday, her lawyers did not tell her the truth, that the committee had given them the opportunity to go out there. because she seemed to be shocked. oh, i didn't know. >> that's troubling too. >> very troubling. and so is the diane feinstein, who hired these lawyers. >> oh, no, no. she did not hire -- >> she recommended edwards katz. >> the lawyers clearly withheld information from their client about the ability to keep this -- >> that's separate from this. >> but that's a serious issue. >> separate. >> you conceded your point about years of women not coming forward with good reason. and also, a person who looks a certain way and lived a certain life, because he looks that part, should not be karma retribution. >> that's not what's happening. >> for some it is. >> now that the white house has ordered the investigation, what might that look like? we're going to talk to a former
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ron! soh really? going on at schwab. thank you clients? well jd power did just rank them highest in investor satisfaction
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with full service brokerage firms...again. and online equity trades are only $4.95... i mean you can't have low cost and be full service. it's impossible. it's like having your cake and eating it too. ask your broker if they offer award-winning full service and low costs. how am i going to explain this? if you don't like their answer, ask again at schwab. schwab, a modern approach to wealth management. we are following breaking news. the white house official says president trump will order the fbi investigation of allegations against supreme court nominee, brett kavanaugh. key republican senator, jeff flake, of arizona who set this all in motion says that fbi report could theoretically change his mind from yay to nay on kavanaugh. let's bring in intelligence adviser, phil mudd, to talk about this. phil, what could the fbi investigate that might have any sort of consequence? >> i think there's one substantial question that we missed. the focus so far, obviously, has
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been on trying to get information about what happened at that house party 30-something years ago. clearly, that's something that will come up in the investigation. and that's what the white house is going to charge the fbi with doing. but let me give you a different perspective. you walk in -- you're the fbi, to do interviews of people who were there. you're also going to ask about environment. what were people like, and specifically in high school and college, what was judge kavanaugh like? what were his drinking proclivities. you're figugoing to ask about h treatment of women and drugs. bottom line, jake. i think there is a possibility -- i'm not saying this will happen, but in any case i witnessed, you get a story from friends those 30-something years ago that doesn't correspond with the lifestyle story, that's lack of candor, something you can see well beyond the assault allegations. >> we got a statement in from judge brett kavanaugh that says, quote, throughout this process i've been interviewed by the fbi, done a number of background calls directly with the senate and yesterday answered questions
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under oath. i've done everything they have requested, and will continue to cooperate, unquote. so he will answer any questions if the fbi has any questions for him. but you're basically saying that the fbi investigation, even if they are told just investigate this one assault charge, find out if the allegation is true, if there is anything more we can find out, the fbi might say, well, we didn't find anything on that. but we did find out that he was not forthcoming in his testimony before the senate on x, y and z. and they could still go down that road, even though they're told only investigate the allegation? >> i don't think the two were separate. if you walk into a room, let's say with people who knew him in college or high school, and you say there are allegations about how we treated women, and those people start to say, well, a lot of us don't remember, because the entire environment was a beer-fueled environment. everybody was drinking 15 beers, and judge kavanaugh was, i don't think the two issues are separate. i could clearly see the investigation heading down towards how confident are we we
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can understand what happened in those rooms, because everybody, including judge kavanaugh, had way too much to drink. and this doesn't correspond to what we heard judge kavanaugh say. i'm not accusing him. i'm just saying, this would be a standard investigative question i would ask. >> is one week enough to investigate any of this? >> i don't think it is. for some simple reasons. look, you're not just talking about interviewing a bunch of people. you've got to find them first, obviously. and in cases like this, if it gets he said/she said with a lot of witnesses, you've got to reinterview. four people say one thing, one person says another. i want to go back around to them and say, why did you say something so profoundly different? you call chris wray, the fbi director. he's not going to say a month, i think two weeks, three weeks. but a week sounds really fast to me. >> phil, kavanaugh's high school friend, mike judge's lawyer says judge will cooperate. all we have seen is a sworn statement about the allegation. is there anything the fbi could learn from him they didn't get from the statement? >> oh, heck, yeah. you learn a lot about what people say and what they don't
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say. this is why time and multiple interviews is important. if he chooses not to say things about what happens or what happened or what he remembered happened years ago, and people in his circle contradict him, he's in trouble. so it's not just what he says, it's what he doesn't say. be careful. . >> and what about changing stories? is it possible? does it happen in investigations somebody submits a sworn statement and then they later investigate it and contradict it? >> oh, constantly. we lost cia applicants constantly for changing stories. you say you didn't smoke marijuana in college? six of your college friends say you did. we didn't care if you smoked. we cared about lack of candor and if you said you didn't and five friends said you did, you're not getting a security clearance. you're out. >> all right. phil mudd, thank you so much. that's all the time we have. be sure to tune into cnn sunday morning for "state of the union." i'll have amy klobuchar. starts at 9:00 a.m. and noon. our coverage on cnn continues right now.
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happening now, breaking news. dramatic delay. undecided senators force an extraordinary delay in a final confirmation vote for brett kavanaugh. with the judiciary committee now asking the white house to instruct the fbi to investigate allegations against the supreme court nominee. the president's reaction. after the president tells senators to do whatever they feel is necessary, a white house official now says the president will order and authorize an fbi background investigation. key witness. kavanaugh's boyhood friend, mark judge, at the center of the latest allegations, now says through a lawyer he will cooperate with a law enforcement investigation, answering any and all questions. and tearing us apart. senator jeff flake and other key lawmakers say the bitterly contentious confirmation fight is tearing the country

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