tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN January 15, 2019 12:00am-1:00am PST
the president of the united states publicly denying that he's ever worked for russia. the president of the united states. that comes as the transcripts of closed-door congressional interviews reveal details of how a half dozen senior fbi officials opened an investigation into whether president trump was following the directions of russia in the aftermath of the firing of fbi director james comey. trump called fbi officials scoundrels and dirty cops. and there's more. we've learned president trump actually took away his interpreter's notes after a july 2017 meeting with vladimir putin in hamburg. and warned the interpreter not to discuss the meeting with anybody in the administration. that's according to a former state department official. the president says meetings with foreign leaders are routine and not a big deal. in fact, it is a very big deal when there are more and more questions being raised about why this president seems to be putting russia's interests ahead of our own. it can be hard to keep track of the developments in the russia investigation. we know that.
it is the cloud that hangs -- that has hung over the white house since before the president took office. many of the president's own actions and statements raise even more questions than answers. so tonight we're devoting the entire hour to trying to get those answers. so let's begin by take a closer look at president trump's relationship with russia's president. here cnn's sarah murray. >> reporter: don, president trump wanted to make sure his meetings with russian president vladimir putin was super secret in 2017. at the same time "the new york times" was asking questions about that infamous trump tower meeting from 2016. was it all a coincidence? a private dinner-time chat between president trump and russian president vladimir putin at the g20 summit in 2017 sparking new questions about what exactly the two men discussed. as trump geared up for meetings with world leaders the white house received an unwelcome inquiry. "the new york times" had learned that donald trump jr., jared
kushner and paul manafort met with a russian lawyer at trump tower in december 2016. trump's lawyer had known of the meeting for weeks but now the "times" was doing a story and needed a comment. that afternoon trump and putin met for two hours. >> it's an honor to be with you. >> reporter: seeming to hit it off even as putin denied meddling in the 2016 election. >> there was a very clear positive chemistry between the two. >> reporter: then secretary of state rex tillerson had been in the room along with translators. but a former state department official tells cnn the president confiscated the american interpreter's notes and insisted the staffer keep the details of the conversation secret. the white house insists that's outrageously inaccurate. that evening in germany trump sought out putin at a dinner for world leaders. the two men spoke for roughly an hour. the meeting, which was eventually confirmed by the white house, wouldn't become public for more than a week. >> no one attended that from trump's side. there was no translator there. there was no adviser there.
it was just trump. for him not to say then afterwards oh, by the way, let me give you a quick debrief on the meeting i had with putin, that's exceptionally unusual. >> reporter: trump's meeting came soon after justice department officials had moved to open a probe into trump for potential obstruction of justice. an investigation that included trying to answer a disturbing question. was trump making moves designed to benefit russia or was he merely an innocent party? there's no indication trump knew at the time that he was under investigation. after trump's double face to face with putin in hamburg, he headed back to the u.s. aboard air force one trump and his advisers hashed out a statement to respond to the "new york times." according to the statement, in donald trump jr.'s name, "we primarily discussed a program about the adoption of russian children in the 2016 meeting with the russian lawyer." days later it came out that the lawyer had actually promised dirt on hillary clinton. as the carefully crafted statement fell apart, trump was still talking up russian adoptions, insisting that's what
he and putin discussed over dessert. >> i actually talked about russian adoption with him, which is interesting because that was a part of the conversation that don had in this meeting. >> reporter: now, among the people who are questioning this interesting timing was andrew weiss. he's a russia expert at the carnegie endowment. but it's not just him. democratic lawmakers are saying now that we know just how secretive president trump was trying to be about these meetings with putin we really need to find more information about what exactly happened. back to you. >> sara murray, thank you very much. appreciate that. let's bring in now susan glasser, renato mariotti and garrett graff, author of threat matrix, inside robert mueller's fbi and the war on global terror. good evening, susan, i'm going to start with you. number one, you have some good information on this. and number two, it's your birthday. happy birthday to you. we appreciate you coming on and being with us. you'll get this tonight because i want to talk about the overlap between the president's meeting with putin at the g20 meeting in 2017 where he confiscated the
interpreter's notes and the "times's" reporting about don jr.'s campaign meeting with the russians. it's concerning, right? >> there's no question it's concerning. again, i keep coming back to first of all it's basically the second anniversary of trump's inauguration in august. if we had known then what we know now about his dealings with russia and the russians extensively, not only before he was president but while he has been president, we would have just been blown away by it. and you pointed out this hamburg meeting, the g20 meeting in which the "post" has reported he ordered the interpreter's notes confiscated. he then subsequently of course had the helsinki one-on-one summit meeting which by the way was according to i think very reliable reports i've heard personally requested by president trump. the russians themselves have said this was not putin's idea, it was trump's idea to have the one-on-one meeting. we still don't know what was discussed there.
i believe that ultimately the helsinki meeting, the private meeting, not just the sunny public comments, will come to be a key part of whatever the mueller investigation finds. but to go back quickly to your question about the original g20 meeting and the dictating of the statement the next day, president trump echoes vladimir putin's talking points. for me as a russia watcher that has been the thing that's been so striking. talking about adoption of russian babies is a russian talking point. it's not about adoption of russian babies. it's about lifting sanctions on russia that were imposed on russia in retaliation for which russia banned the adoption of babies by americans. this is a vladimir putin talking point that president trump personally wrote into the statement that was issued on behalf himself and his son about the trump tower meeting. so yes, it's very, very significant. >> basically, co-opting a you russian talking point. listen, garett, so many questions here.
what did president trump and vladimir putin discuss? why are there all these examples of the president trying to conceal was going on? what is going on? >> and that's actually one of the really interesting points in this, which is the main reason heads of state get together to talk is to work up policies and compromises and have discussions that then they bring back to government and implement. one of the reasons you go into these meetings with staff is sort of there's people to follow up on the work afterwards. you know, part of what is just so strange is that donald trump is having these lengthy private meetings and there's no public sign about what is coming out of them. you know, we're not seeing the state department leap into action immediately afterwards to, you know, follow through on this brave new peace plan that
trump and putin have cooked up between the two of them. you know, what we're seeing is that these conversations sort of appear to happen in some sort of black hole or parallel universe where there are no fingerprints left publicly on the u.s. government. and that's troubling in and of itself because you sort of have to imagine that they're not sort of getting together and talking about manchester united's season this year. and in fact, as susan's talking about, one of the things that's weird is that we're continuing to see the president amplify obscure strange russian talking points up to just within the last couple of days we've seen the president talking about sort of this incredible revisionist history of the russian invasion -- the soviet invasion of afghanistan to go after terrorists, which is a view not held by any member of the foreign policy historian or establishment press. >> renato, i want to know why
the big -- i want to ask you the question. the president supposedly took possession of his interpreter's notes following that july 2017 meeting with putin. could that action be part of an obstruction case against the president? >> well, he certainly appears to me like he's trying to obstruct the counterintelligence investigation against him. keep in mind we also learned recently, don, that the fbi has got a counterintelligence investigation to determine whether or not he's working as a russian operative or asset. and here it looks like he's trying to cover up his communications with the russians. i've got to say, don, a lot of times i've been on your program and i've come up with all sorts of potentially innocent explanations for conduct by trump's associates. and i have a lot of trouble explaining any innocent -- giving any innocent reason for this one. it is really hard to explain why the president of the united states would meet with an adversary and then try to hide
the details of that conversation from his own government. i mean, there's really no explanation. and i think you're right that that's something that would be of interest to the fbi both on the counterintelligence side to determine whether or not he's involved with or working with the russians but also as you point out on the criminal side. >> let me ask you about the democrats, renato. because they're weighing whether to subpoena the president's interpreter. but is it possible that mueller has already spoken to this person? because one question now is where are the notes? >> i think it is very possible. i frankly think that mueller should be, if he hasn't already. but i will say as a citizen i want my elected representatives to look into this. i called on twitter for the house to do that. and i was glad to see that adam schiff said that he's going to be subpoenaing the interpreter. because remember, much of what mueller's investigating may not reach the public.
even if he issues a report, and we heard today the new nominee saying he'll make it public, the details of that meeting could be classified, but it's important for our elected representatives, who are going to evaluate, you know, whether or not, for example, the president should stay in office, for them to have that information and get to the bottom of this for the sake of the country. >> let me ask you something, susan. is president trump giving putin exactly what he wants, given everything that we have seen and learned? >> well, it's interesting. you've seen a certain note of exasperation creep into some of the russian commentary. there was initial jubilation after trump was elected. remember he ran a whole campaign of sucking up to putin inexplicably. we'll presumably find out a lot more about why that was when the report is issued. but russians have somewhat soured on him because american policies have not changed drastically. and of course that's also what you hear from president trump's defenders here inside the united
states when confronted with some of the evidence that we're talking about, the president's continuing public affinity for putin. his mysterious parroting of putin's talking points. the strange and obscure reasons for his private undisclosed meetings. what they tend to do as defenders here in the u.s. is well, basically, never mind, pay no attention to that president behind the curtain and just look at the policy of his administration, never mind the fact that trump himself is often at odds with that policy. and interestingly, you hear a version of this in moscow as well, essentially saying, well, you know, trump left to his own devices would be our best friend but he's really constrained by these evil neo con hawk advisers inside his administration and by the politics of it here in the united states, which they blame on democrats. so in a sense we still see president trump acting in concert with the putin government.
you pointed out trump's latest comments about the fbi, about the investigation. i can't underscore enough how i continue to be amazed and stunned by this. the president of the united states is at war with his own government, with his executive branch, using terms we have never heard from a president. yes, he denied under pressure today that he was acting as an agent of the russian government. it's a statement that will go down i'm sure with richard nixon's "i am not a crook," perhaps with bill clinton's equivocations about what exactly the nature of sex is and is is. >> what is is. right. >> that's what i thought about this morning. but it's still -- let's not lose our sense of shock and dismay that this is how the president is speaking about the rule of law and about the fbi in this country. >> so garrett, we know what the -- what mueller was tasked with, right? the russia -- this investigation
and anything that comes up. any crime that comes up. so i'm just wondering, he's assembling a timeline. we gave a timeline at the top of our show that show all these things that are happening. people surrounded by trump, people who lied about their contacts with russians. assembling this timeline of all these interactions between trump and putin, his campaign and russia. also the trump organization. so then how far back does this go? does it go back into his business dealings from long ago with russia to make some sort of tie-in to now? how far back does it go? >> it goes back as far as is necessary to tell the narrative, whatever that narrative ends up being. it certainly appears that business deals were part of this. we know that from the michael cohen guilty plea, that the trump tower moscow project was under way, that the president while a candidate and while the presumptive nominee for the gop
was out there trying to change the gop's policies to soften them toward russia, trying to compliment vladimir putin on the campaign trail while trying to do business with vladimir putin. at least according to what buzzfeed's reporting is, while trying to give vladimir put uh a $50 million penthouse in trump tower moscow. so this is -- i don't think there's going to end up being a clear line between where the trump business deal ends and where trump's collusion with russia begins because it's donald trump himself who has erased whatever line might have existed between the two. now, that being said, sort of one of the interesting theories that we've seen come out over the last couple days is the idea that sort of the -- benjamin witus at law fair has been writing about this. that the obstruction could be the collusion, that's sort of the way the president has been
the big question about the russia investigation tonight. why did president trump reportedly go to extraordinary lengths to hide details of his meetings with vladimir putin from his own aides? such extraordinary lengths that he took away his interpreter's notes from one meeting and instructed him not to talk to members of the administration. now house democrats are discussing issuing subpoenas to get those notes. joining me now is representative elliot engle, chairman of the house foreign affairs committee. thank you so much for joining us. are you doing okay? >> my pleasure, don. yes. >> first i want to get your response to the president's extraordinary statement today that he is not working for russia, that the "times" reporting it's all a big fat hoax. what do you think of that?
>> well, it makes you scratch your head. i'll tell you that. the president should release all his notes and release all his papers and put this to rest if indeed he's had no affiliation or association with the russians then he could easily put this to rest. you know, we have had a problem obviously with the russians for many years but particularly since they intervened into our presidential election of 2016 on the side of trump. and since that time we've been asking ourselves was there collusion from the trump campaign with the russians to do this? and since that time trump has handled putin with kid gloves. this is a man, putin is, who is the head of the kgb, of the old soviet union. he's always been an adversary of the united states of america. and yet this president seems to put him on a pedestal.
he's attacking leaders of countries that are our allies. but one of our major adversaries he seems to love the guy. so it makes you wonder, it's not just one thing or two things. it's many things. the truth is since the meetings they had in helsinki, we really don't know what went on in helsinki. we don't know what they discussed. we don't know what they did. >> this is perplexing to a lot of people, at least the treatment of vladimir putin by this president. i know you are head of the foreign affairs committee. you're looking into issuing a subpoena. along with the house intel. for interpreters at the president's meeting with vladimir putin one way or another. will congress hear from interpreters, do you think? these interpreters. >> well, we have not made any decision. certainly not in terms of subpoenas. that should be at the end of the process really, not the beginning. we're constituting our committees, our members aren't even all appointed yet. but we are going to be looking at every aspect of this. and i would hope we can get the
information we need without subpoenas but of course the subpoena is always there as a tool that we can use and i like to tell people that it is absolutely our right according to the constitution with the checks and balances for us to investigate the executive branch. that has been done many times before in the history of the united states and we feel it's something we should be doing and should let the american people know what's going on. >> but you know the white house is going to -- they will certainly invoke executive privilege, congressman. do you think that house investigators have the legal authority to get those notes and hear from those interpreters? >> well, i think we have the legal authority to find out the truth and to find out what's going on and to find out what went on regardless of how that happened. they can say executive privilege all they want. the fact is we have a right to know and the american people have a right to know. >> yeah.
in one case the president himself reportedly confiscated the notes from the interpreter after the meeting. do you have any idea what happened to them after that? what happened to those notes? >> i haven't the faintest idea. i frankly didn't even know the notes were confiscated until i heard it from you guys. it just is another thing that we can add to this mysterious trump-putin alliance. it's just crazy. what was on that paper that the president didn't want anybody to see? >> yeah. >> i don't know. >> what would you do if the interpreter in this case, marina gross, if the interpreter just simply refused to testify? >> i don't know. i don't want to put the cart in front of the house. -- horse. i think that i would hope it would not get to that. i think subpoenas should be a last resort. not a first resort. and hopefully we won't have to do the subpoenas. if we're being stonewalled and we're coming to the conclusion there's no other way to get, it
it's something we would sincerely seriously consider. but i want to make it clear no decision's been made yet, it's just one of the tools in our box, and i feel strongly we should use it only as a last resort, but it should be there for possible use. >> are you concerned about the precedent this could set? why would foreign governments be candid in private meetings if their conversations could be recounted to u.s. intelligence or to lawmakers? >> well, usually when the president of the united states has these private meetings, there are people in his cabinet, the secretary of state, the defense secretary, all know what happened. apparently, and again, it's just what i've been hearing, that wasn't the case here. that nobody really knew what they talked about. nobody was in the room and they were not told by the president or anybody else what was talked about. well, if you have a situation like that, don, then people are going to say hey, wait a minute. this doesn't pass the smell test. what's he trying to hide? and i think that's where we are now.
>> congressman engel, thank you for your time. >> my pleasure. thank you. we are going to take a closer look at why the president was forced to deny he worked as a russian agent today. i'm going to talk with someone with intimate knowledge of how russia recruits and controls their assets. that's next. t-mobile knows dancing is better when you include a partner. singing is better when you include a friend. and unlimited is better with a phone included. it's true.
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unstopand it's strengthenedting place, the by xfi pods,gateway. which plug in to extend the wifi even farther, past anything that stands in its way. ...well almost anything. leave no room behind with xfi pods. simple. easy. awesome. click or visit a retail store today. we have some breaking news tonight. president trump has reportedly privately told senior administration officials that he wanted to withdraw from nato. that's according to the "new york times." here to discuss now, former cia officer evan mcmullin, also co-founder and director of the moscow project max bergman. okay. good evening.
never a dull moment, gentlemen. good to have you on. max, let me start with you. just the fact that the president was apparently talking, reportedly talking about pulling out of nato entirely, what would that mean for the alliance and for russia? >> well, that would be exactly what vladimir putin wants. i mean, frankly i would say that's incredibly shocking. but given the news reports over the last week, it's not. you know, nato, the north atlantic treaty organization, it's the greatest military alliance that the world has ever seen. it has brought peace to europe and it's made america significantly stronger. and the country that is sort of most opposed to nato, that views nato as a threat to it is russia. and so that would be simply advancing russia's foreign policy interest, advancing the interest of vladimir putin. and so i mean, to withdraw from that, to just simply walk away, you have to start to wonder why would any american president even consider taking such an
action unless there was something deeper there? >> but evan, is it that surprising? the report is that trump openly complained about european countries not paying their fair share. is that surprising? he complains openly about countries not paying their fair share and stepping up. is it that shocking? >> well, as max said, it's not shocking in this case because the president has made those complaints. and by the way, i would say that to make those complaints could be valid. in fact, if you talk to some european officials, they will tell you in an honest moment that yeah, they need to do more to build up their own defenses and in that way contribute to nato. but as max also said, nato is critical to global security, critical to our own security. it's a mechanism that helps protect the united states, the alliance helps protect the united states. it's in our interest that nato be strong. it's in our interest that we continue to be a key part of nato. so the president takes it one step further, and i think we're
seeing it reflected in this report where he's not only urging our allies in nato to do more to support it but he's also saying, not a surprise, that he would like to pull out of it. he would like to destroy the alliance. if the u.s. were to pull out of nato, it would destroy the alliance in its current form. and that helps russia more than any other country. so it's very bewildering in general but not for this president. >> let's move on now, evan, and i want to talk about the reporting that there was concern that president trump could be a witting or unwitting agent of russia. how would russia go about gaining control of someone like trump? >> well, it's not too terribly difficult in a case like trump. if you're a foreign intelligence officer or an american intelligence officer and you come across a guy like trump, he sort of checks all the boxes that you need checked to assess that he is extremely vulnerable
to manipulation and ultimately control, compromise and control. he's got a giant ego. he lusts for money. he's very greedy. he may not exercise good judgment in his personal life. and he is easily -- he's easily flattered. as i mentioned, he has a huge ego. so all of these things allow him to be manipulated and slowly or quickly, depending on circumstances, compromised. and i think the russians or anyone else or any intelligence service would look at trump or a person like trump and make that assessment. so he is a prime -- he would be a prime target if a foreign intel service thought he could do something for them. >> witting or unwitting. those are the words. they said unwittingly in the reporting of it. max, do most people realize that they're being reeled in by russia or is it more common that they fail to understand what's
actually going on? >> so i think it depends. i think in most cases what the russians try to do is try to exploit their weaknesses as evan pointed out. now, one of the things that we know is between 2008 and 2011 donald trump was in the real estate industry. what happened in the real estate industry? it went bust. and donald trump faced severe acute financial crisis. real crisis for his business. there's a real point of leverage that the russians could go and potentially engage with him. and so i think when we think about this and think about how the russians operate, they would look for people that they could potentially gain influence over. and here with trump as evan mentioned the big ego but also his financial businesses, you know, a clear source of pride for trump being in trouble. i think that's a period, the '08-2011 period we have to look at for trump when his relationship with russia really seemed to blossom, to take off. >> gentlemen, thank you for your time.
i appreciate it. we have lots more to discuss this hour. thank you so much. we have some new reporting just in to cnn that says jerome corsi says his stepson has been subpoenaed to testify before mueller's grand jury. corsi is an associate of roger stone. he has previously said that mueller's team questioned his stepson because of his role in erasing messages from 2016 from corsi's computer. and up next, how senator mitch mcconnell has been shielding and enabling this president. is he donald trump's guardian angel? i am not for colds. i am not for just treating my symptoms... (ah-choo) i am for shortening colds when i'm sick. with zicam. zicam is completely different. unlike most other cold medicines... ...zicam is clinically proven to shorten colds. i am a zifan for zicam. oral or nasal.
in president trump's first few years in office he has pretty much gotten a rubber stamp from the republican-held house and senate. things are very different now in the house, by the way. but some critics blame senate majority leader mitch mcconnell for enabling some of the president's worst impulses. let's discuss now with margaret hoover, scott jennings, and robby mook. good to have all of you on. i appreciate it. so margaret, i'm going to start with you because the "washington post's" greg sargent has a new piece out where he's calling out mitch mcconnell, his failure to challenge the president. there it is. it's up on your screen. here's what he writes. he says, "there is a terrible rhetorical habit of treating gop conduct toward trump as mere passive acquiescence. in fact, this is better seen as an active enabling on one front after another. and we are likely to learn much more about just how damaging this has been soon enough." is it fair to blame mitch mcconnell for the president's behavior? >> no. of course it's not fair to blame anybody's behavior except for
the president. but what's certainly true of mitch mcconnell is he is a master of the senate. he is a master of the institution that he runs. he knows it better and runs it better than anyone since lyndon baines johnson was the president of the senate. and he's enormously effective at it. his critics will decry this, but from his treatment of merrick garland and not bringing a vote on the supreme court nominee from the previous president to how he has navigated the senate throughout the last two years under donald trump. mitch mcconnell often is so effective that greg sargent may be the first to call out, he's so effective he's table to do it and keep his fingerprints off it. he doesn't even bring attention to himself in doing it. for example, in the course of this shutdown mitch mcconnell is absolutely in a position to put pressure on the president but doesn't because -- >> he's not saying anything. everyone's like where is mitch mcconnell?
listen, you made robby mook cough because he can't believe what you're saying about mitch mcconnell. >> we can all agree whether you agree with his tactics or his politics or not, and by the way, we can all also agree as a republican he is supporting a republican president and he's doing it in a way that is most effective. a democrat leader of the senate would do the same thing for a democratic president. >> what say you, robbie? >> i completely disagree. we're celebrating right now the absolute void of morality in the senate. we're celebrating a man who killed the rightful nominee to the supreme court from barack obama. we're celebrating a man who has absolutely abdicated the duty of the united states senate. you want to change this shutdown? you want to end this shutdown? the house has passed a bill. when the house passes a bill for appropriations, the senate passes their own bill, they can amend it, they can change it. the two chambers come together, come to an agreement and send a
bill to the president. all eyes are on the president. but the fact is the senate is doing nothing. and actually, by a wide bipartisan coalition the senate passed a funding bill that looked a heck of a lot like the house version. there's three bodies here. the senate could step up as number two, pass a bill, and we could get this shutdown much more -- much closer to ending. so i don't celebrate what mitch mcconnell's doing. he's eroding and corroding our democracy, and i think it's despicable. >> well, let me ask you, scott, because given what robbie just said, because mitch mcconnell won't even take up the bill on whether robert mueller's investigation should be protected or not. we mentioned merrick garland and on and on. what do you think here? >> i think he first thinks it's unnecessary. second he thinks it might be unconstitutional. and it doesn't have the support of the republicans in the senate.
so what mcconnell has laid out is a strategy since he became the leader to try to get as much support inside of his own conference for legislation to move before he actually moves it. he did it on the criminal justice bill. they didn't have enough republicans to support it. they amended it a little bit. they tweaked it. they got some changes. then he moved it and it passed in overwhelming fashion. that's the hallmark of a good leader, trying to build consensus in our own majority conference before you go out throwing things out on the fluor. as it relates to the shutdown, mitch mcconnell isn't in the same position he was in during the obama years. what we need are donald trump and chuck schumer to have a meeting. we need seven democrat votes and a presidential signature. mcconnell's not a senate democrat and he's not president of the united states. i know he doesn't want the government to be shut down but this right now is between trump and schumer and pelosi. mcconnell will rally the republicans but we've got to get seven democrats to go along with those republicans if we're to end this shutdown. >> robbie, i see your outrage. i'll raise you a commercial break and you will get the first word on the other side.
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back now. so robby, i promised you the first response, but it's not necessarily what you want to respond to because while i have you here i need you to talk about this. you're the person who probably wasn't surprised by this weekend's developments as hillary clinton wasn't surprised too. remember this moment from the 2016 campaign. watch this. >> look, from everything i see has no respect for this person. >> well, that's because he'd rather have a puppet as president of the united states. >> no puppet. you're the puppet. >> it's pretty clear you won't admit that the russians have engaged in cyber attacks against
the united states, that you encouraged espionage against our people, that you are willing to spout the putin line, sign-up for his wish list, break up nato, do whatever he wants to do and that you continue to get help from him because he has a very clear favorite in this race. >> ah, the good old days. and then she tweeted this today. like i said, a puppet. all this is shocking. were the warning signs there, robby? >> yeah, 100%. and they were there a long time before election day. if you look at the very first article reported on the dnc getting hacked it said it was russians who did it. carter page who donald trump proclaimed back in march of 2016 was one of his foreign policy advisers, went over to moskow in july, it was reported at that time that he was spouting anti-american talking points
from putin. the republicans changed their platform at the republican national committee to make the language more favorable to putin. donald trump questions the legitimacy of nato in the summer, and of course michael flynn. you know, we've made a lot about him beginning to work with mueller. he was appearing on russian propaganda television regularly. he was at a dinner with vladimir putin. i mean, the list -- i could keep listing this on and on. donald trump, jr. said how their business was largely funded with russian money. i think it was staring us in the face all the time, it's just hard to believe. but i think in today's world when we see it, we need to start believing it. >> go ahead. >> it's -- i don't disagree with anything robby just categorized. it's all open source fact at this point. i think it's not hard to believe. it's been an object of great concern to many of us for a long
time in addition to just the general ascendance of these regimes that mitt romney called out as early as 2012 as an ascendant threat to the republic. we have seen it. so i mean, thank goodness it's so much of a threat that we have a special counsel investigation investigating those ties and they will hopefully come to a conclusion in a way that will shed light and transparency on this for all americans. >> scott, i'll give you the last word here. what do you make of this? does it concern you when you think of all the coincidences and things that say not true, and all the people being prosecuted or going to jail because of this? >> yeah, of course i'm concerned. i don't want a hostile foreign power like the russians to meddle in our elections. i want this mueller report to come out, i want to know precisely what they did, and what we're going to do to stop it in the future.
i want to know we have a government to stand up to them once this report comes out and we have chapter and verse on what they did to us. russia is not our friend, and i cringe every time somebody something pro-russia anti-nato. i hate it. i don't like it. >> should the president make the report public so that all americans know? >> i think -- all this time and all this money and this thing is not made public. that is insane. how could we not make it -- >> what did you say robby? >> well, i was just saying those notes that the interpreter took in his meeting with putin, i think we should make those public too. >> thank you all. i appreciate it. and thanks for watching. our coverage continues.
i never worked for russia. and you know that answer better than anybody. >> the president had his say and today william bahr rr faces congress after it was revealed he shared criticism of the mueller probe. will work for food. unpaid federal workers with little recourse as the government shutdown enters day 25. no committee assignments for congressman steve king, remarks condoning racism have some prominent republicans suggesting it is time for him