tv S.E. Cupp Unfiltered CNN February 16, 2019 3:00pm-4:01pm PST
i can worry about it, or doe. something about it. garlique helps maintain healthy cholesterol naturally, and it's odor-free, and pharmacist recommended. garlique welcome to "unfiltered." a lot of big stories to unpack tonight. there is the fallout from the emergency-national emergency. there is news that the campaign chairman may never see the outside of a jail cell again. i'll talk to the former chairman of d in. c about the democratic in fighting as amazon busts out of new york and the latest details in the jussie smollett case. first, constitution meet crisis. when you hear the word
emergency, a number of things probably come to mind. urgency, for one. a real and imminent threat. danger around the corner. a need to act now, to avert disaster. does this sound like a guy with an emergency? >> i want to do it faster. i didn't need to do this. but i'd rather do it much faster. and i don't have to do it for the election. i have already done a lot of wall for the election. 2020. i just want to get it done faster, that's all. >> by the way, the screams you heard are the president's lawyers who know they'll have to find a way to defend the emergency he just admitted he didn't have to declare in court. so let's be clear about what just happened. the president used an executive action meant for real emergencies that congress literally doesn't have time to vote on. to fund a political vanity project that congress did vote on and already denied him h what
you saw yesterday in the rose garden was a presidential temper tantrum. trump took $6 billion from the united states military. here's how he weighed the seriousness of that decision. >> some of the generals think that this is more important. i was speaking to a couple of them. they think it this is far more important than what they were going to use it for. what were you going to use it for i won't go into detai details. didn't sound too important to me. knock-knock, republicans, anybody home? any republicans in washington have a problem with this? remember conservatism? limited government? you know, the principles. you think at least a few of them would recommend how much executive overreach offended them. it was over the same exact issue. immigration. the other part of this that is baffling, for all of the talk about job creation, the president just killed a bunch of
them. by taking over the purse strings he just rendered the jobs of all 535 members of congress obsolete. if the president can now just override congress on spending, they may as well all pack up and go home. so what will happen nemext week? i tried to ask a republican lawmaker but none that we invite wod come on the show. so here with me tonight is democratic congressman from california. thanks so much for joining me. i appreciate it. >> thank you. good to be with you. >> you're leading an effort to block trump. what does that entail? >> well, up until just last couple of days, the president has said he would go after the civil works program in the army corps of engineers. these are disaster relief programs around the nation, california, texas, puerto rico. and we went after that. we pointed out to anybody that
would care to listen and apatiently a lot of folks did. it would really put the question of the safety of american citizens across the nation up against his vanity wall. he seems to have backed away from. that we introduced legislation that we'll try to move ahead. the other issue is one you laid out so very, very well, the constitutional issue and the third issue is if you're going after the military money, awhat military money are you going after and there is a huge and very important question. >> so the president clearly expects this to end up in the courts. here's a little reminder of how that played yesterday. take a listen. >> they will sue us in the ninth circuit even though it suhouldnt be there and we'll get a bad rule and then another bad ruling and then we'll end up in the supreme court and hopefully we'll get a fair shake. >> so congressman, how do you expect this to go in the courts?
>> i think there is a very fundamental question any could be serconservative, with one th considers himself to be a constitutionalist rather than an an interpretation will say this doesn't work. let's remember that the congress of the united states debated the issue of a border wall in the context of an emergency for over a year, actually 14 months. came to the conclusion that we spend $1.37 billion. and that's it. and limit it. now the president didn't like that. so he said notwithstanding all of the debate and notwithstanding article one section nine, we're going to go ahead -- he'll go ahead and simply appropriate money on his own. cannot do it. it is a fundamental question. congress has to fight back. >> well, i hear a host folks
pointing out that republicans are setting a dangerous precedent for sure. and that the next democratic president will use national emergencies on climate change or gun control, et cetera. but my question, is will democrats oppose that? will the next democrat, you know, democratic president does that, will you oppose it? >> absolutely. i've been in congress a few years and i remember in the fifth grade we were talking about the separation of power, checks and balances. this is fundamental. this is the fundamental point. now if we want to have an imperial president, democrat or republican, good times or bad times, this is how it's done. this is exactly how awe lou one president to call for a phoney bony emergency basically userp the power of congress a the written in the outsest the country. we have to fight back f you're a democrat, republican, you care about the way in which our constitutional government works. this is the fight that we must
have. there are a lot of other fights. the issue of the military construction money, i'm the chairman of the readiness subcommittee and we oversee all of that. and we're going -- no, mr. president, your wall is not more important than family housing, not more important than an installation of an anti-ballistic missile system. or rebuilding the air base in florida or the marine base at camp lejeune. these are all critical issues. finally, there is one other thing that i don't understand what the president is thinking at all. he's going after the department of defense's counter narcotics funding, some $2.5 billion potentially there. this is money that the u.s. military uses to send troops and advisors to colombia to, guess what? stop the trade. and also in central america and work cooperatively with
government there's to stop the drug trade. finally with the u.s. coast guard, it is nonsense. it is so much president trump. give us a break. >> i really appreciate you coming on, congressman. thanks a lot. >> thank you. bye-bye. >> so there might not be much courage among republican lawmakers to oppose this. plenty of conservatives are ang ric angry. one of them joins me. a staff member, tom, i don't even know where to begin. how bad is this? >> it's remarkable. and one thing that is really disspiriting is to see republicans now resorting to what aboutism and obama did it too and this isn't so bad. republicans were once the party of limited government including limited executive power. and to see them con sorting themselves and twisting themselves in pretzels shows you
how much president trump has really captured the party and turned it into something else that is, i think, neither republican nor conservative. >> well, so is this ultimately congress's fault? do you think there was anything they could have done to keep him from doing this? you know, it seems like his mind was made up on this, you know, weeks ago. >> congress has been letting this area slup away for years. i mean we have something like 30 existing national emergencies which itself is ridiculous. congress -- active. you know, at some point, you know, it's almost like the joke from caddie shack. this is another routine emergency. and, you know, 30 emergencies is ridiculous. congress lets this go on. but congress has been letting its powers drift into the executive branch for years, particularly in foreign policy. which is what these other emergencies were about. this is really a remarkable moment where president says i'm
declaring an emergency because i can't get my way and you have to go along with me. >> right. as bhengsed just earlier, trump is raiding the pentagon's budget. i have a friend in the national reserves deployed to the border. what does this mean to our military? >> well, we don't know yet. we don't know what programs and what money the president wants to shift around. so it's not clear where any of of this is coming from. i would even hazard a guess to say the president himself doesn't know because this was an instirvegt. i don't think he understand what's he did. i don't think he understands the nature of the legislation he signed. and so i don't think that conversation has gotten that far. i think it may actually be a relief to some of the republicans in congress that this will be challenged in court. they don't want to have to live with the outcome of what this is going to be. >> right. yeah. kind of lets them off the hook too. >> it's almost like that's
safety valve. we'll let this state of emergency go through. the president will feel like he did something important. the courts will take care of it. again, that's congress kicking the can down the road and republicans uncharacteristically not doing the things they want to do. >> thanks for joining us. >> coming up, the president served up this political mess, how will republicans and democrats make it palatable to the voters? and are democrats on the brink of all but guaranteeing trump a second term with the leftward drift? former dnc chair says maybe. i'll ask him about that. stay right here. hello to the best part of the day. and to the best night ever. these are the primo moments. and they call for italian quality pizza. dough made from scratch daily. sauce...from the original giammarco recipe. say hello to an authentic favorite... times two. every day at marco's, get two medium,
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i didn't know it got more liberal than andrew cuomo and bill diblasio. the two new york lawmakers just got outlefted by the leftiest leftest of the left. congress woman cortez, her opposition to keeping amazon and tens of thousands well paying jobs out of new york city seemed to have worked. we'll talk about amazon's switch in a bist. but the takeover or at the very least it's rise within the democratic party has proven to
be something of a blessing and a curse. on the one hand, progressives are where the energy s it's with aoc and bernie and beto. not with the moderates if you can find any. it is also giving some democratic leaders a real headache. if they thought defending single payer health care was challenging. try defending the sweeping outranlously expensive totally impractical green new deal which promises to do everything but find the lost city of atlantis or trying being a democrat in west virginia when progressives in washington are promising to abolish ice or imagine being a democrat in new york or florida when two progressive congresswomen are tweeting anti-semitic tropess there any real estate left for moderate democrats? let me ask former governor of pennsylvania, former dnc chair ed rendell. welcome, governor. >> welcome. >> you look great. don't worry about it. if you would could me the favor
of looking back at bill clinton's presidency, where i'll remind you, you had work fair, the crime bill, defensive marm act, don't ask, don't tell. i could go on and on. that democratic party is unrecognizable today. it's not just a different century. it's like another epic. it's like the period of the democratic party. is there a place for someone like joe biden anymore in this new democratic party? >> i think the media is making a mistake. i think the media plays up these comments by progressives. i think the media thinks that the democratic party swung way to the left. look' '18 election results of the 41 new congressmen, 45 of them were moderates. they ran in moderate districts. they won in moderate districts. of the seven democratic governors who took republican
states, all seven would be described as democratic left of center centrists. i think the moderate wing of the democratic party, not only still does it exist but it still represents a vast majority of democratic voters. and by the way, they're just as enthusiastic about getting rid of president trump as the most left leaning progressive. the enthusiasm in our party comes from one, two word phrase, donald trump. >> no, i don't disagree with. that it united states your party for sure where it divides our party. i don't degree at all. about ut when you got people, rock stars of the party like beto o'rourke talking about taking down existing border walls, and every democratic candidate we just had noews tody dying for the endorse. in 2020, i mean, it's hard to argue that there is a lot of energy on the far left in your
party. >> there is energy. the question is, is the energy focused on a broader swath of democratic voters? i don't think it s i think if the election were thoeld day with the field as it is today, amy would win the election. and she would win because she's a common sense left of center centrist who has a great record of get things done who is the only democratic performed well during the kavanaugh hearings. i think the media is blowing this up a little bit. here's the danger. the danger is donald trump is smart enough to know he can't win re-election. democrats have to lose it. he has to make the democratic candidate the issue. even if he turns out to be joe biden, donald trump is going to say socialist, socialist, socialist. i said this in an article about two weeks before the state of the union address. what did donald trump say in the state of the union address?
socialist democrats. he's going to take one or two statements out of contest and say socialist, socialists, socialists. >> that's believable to enough people when you have certain candidates talk about socialism. it doesn't make sense with a joe biden. you're right. amy would have the best chance of defeating donald trump. i have said that already. i don't know that she can get through primary. >> i was going say, don't be dismayed. i don't necessity if you are. don't be dismayed by that. we have democratic voters are not represented by the far left. they're represented more by what joe biden is for. by the way, who is going to bring back the democrats that voted for trump in wisconsin and pennsylvania? >> not elizabeth warren. right. i couldn't agree with you more. i agree with you.
i'm just not sure the party is completely sorted out on that. it seems like a lot of democrats, even moderate democrats are rushing to where aoc is on the green new deal and things that i think turn off the vast majority of democratic voters. look, they have come out clearly and said that they weren't for abolishing i.c.e. you can't abolish i.c.e. we need to reform it. you can't abolish it. it's like saying we're going to abolish the police because they act poorly. no, we have to reform them. the green new deal, we're all in favor of the goals that green new deal talks about. about it we have to give voters a plan and it's workable and can be done in ten years. we can't promise people the sky. we can't overpromise and we can't promise things that will cause middle class taxes to go up.
i can see donald trump with a calculator, promise number one, two, three. you no he what that means if you earn $60,000 a year, that means you're going to pay $4,000 more in taxes. >> i think you give him a lot of credit for doing that much work, frankly. >> someone doll it for him. >> i hear you. governor ed rendell, i appreciate you coming on tonight. thanks. my pleasure. all right. next, i'll look at how trump's emergency declaration will play with voters of both parties. billions of mouths.
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above the law." manafort was convicted last year of bank fraud, tax fraud and other financial crimes. he's already spent eight months behind bars. he pleaded guilty to witness tampering. so to recap, there is a very real chance that the man trump hand picked to run his campaign will spend the rest of his living days in prison. we'll be back in two minutes. mucinex cold & flu all-in-one. fights... ...sore throat, fever, cough, sinus pressure, chest congestion, headache, nasal congestion, body pain... all in one. did you really need the caps lock? get tough on cold and flu symptoms. mucinex cold and flu all-in-one. with my bladder leakage, the products i've tried just didn't fit right. they were too loose. it's getting in the way of our camping trips. but with a range of sizes, depend® fit-flex is made for me. with a range of sizes for all body types, depend® fit-flex underwear is guaranteed to be your best fit.
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people that should have stepped up did not step up. they didn't step up. they should have. i'm very disappointed at certain people, march one for not having pushed this faster. >> are you referring to -- >> but i've learned -- >> are you referring to speaker ryan? >> let's not talk about it. >> so there was president trump spiting some excuse and shifting the blame and saying why he didn't get the wall deal when the party controlled both chambers of congress. spin has become a central part of this on going border tug of war on both sides of the aisle. starting all the way back to the campaign when trump said mexico would pay for the wall. right until last month when nancy pelosi said she wouldn't give trump $1 for it. you may notice neither of those proclamations ended up becoming true. here to wade through all of the bull, republican strategist romney campaign spokesperson kevin madden and basil smakel. >> it's a lot of bull.
>> how will republicans spin the bull next week when they have to face their constituents? >> well, look, you know, one thing that i think helped trump prosper is that i think he's realized the base republican voter out there is not as driven by purity of limited government and constitutional -- >> i'm getting that. >> and as a result, they're more driven and what he realizes is they're more driven by advantage wishing their opponents. that is the liberal left. >> one of the ways that trump is going to continue to push this is this is me versus democrats who won't let me fulfill the promise that i made to the american people while building a wall. in large part, congressional republicans are going to follow suit with him and arguing in his favor and defense. >> i did see -- there was one of the stronger statements.
they did a long thread. one of the tweets said, congressman from michigan, by the way, he said a national emergency declaration for a nonemergency is void. a prerememberiquisite is that i requires immediate action in congress and congress doesn't have an opportunity to act. he is attempting to circumvent our constitutional system. will there be others? >> there will be a few but outnumbered by those particularly in the conservative media that do everything they can. he's not as important to donald trump as shawn hannity or lou dobbs. >> obviously. the some of the democrats in the 2020 conversation are swinging way to the left. beto o'rourke says not only would he push back on this new border wall, he would take down the existing wall. are democrats going to overplay this? >> i don't think so. i don't think nancy pelosi is
this. and that's what's really important here. and chuck shumer is not there either. that's what's really important here. so i think that if the presidential candidates, that's what they're going to say. we can expect more like that. i expect her to say similarly. so as long as nancy pelosi and chuck schumer hold it down and bring us a little more to the middle, they've talked about border security and a wall or fence other time. so i think that gives us a bit of cover. but again, as you talked about, as we get deeper and deeper into this presidential campaign cycle, how much does -- how much do the presidential candidates then start to dictate what members of congress are going to be talking about? we're not quite there yet. i expect that's coming. >> to this point, it feels like all the 2020 candidates are reacting to new congressional republicans like cortez. >> yes. >> it's usually the exact opposite. they go out and they're defining the profile the party on campaign trail in iowa and new hampshire. really no longer the case.
>> no. here's a premise i want to lay out before both of you. i heard it all week for weeks, trum health care plan to do this to please his base. i don't buy this. his base is nothing if not loyal. he could justify not doing this. he could blame other people for not doing. this he can even get up at a rally and say he already did it and they believe him. >> i'll tell you, i think it has more to do with the fact that trump is always trying -- he lives in this cycle where he's trying to get positive affirmation from the cable news cycle. he wants to win the next 24 hours of news coverage. and knowing that they were expediting the inevitable with signing this and not have another shutdown, he was going to declare victory no matter what. this is the way he declared victory is declaring this state of emergency. >> cnn polling shows only 3 in 10 americans support trump declaring a national emergency. will he pay a price for this in the polls, do you think, or will
he remain in that steady -- >> i think it remains to see if he'll pay a price if republicans actually side with democrats and say this is useless. it is smart on nancy pelosi's part to force the resolution that the senate has to take up in terms of denouncing this emergency measure. so that's actually smart on her part. it forces republicans to actually take -- make a decision about it. that's the problem here. i don't know if it hurts him at his base at all. but i do think he needs it. i think something about him and the affirmation he gets at those campaign rallies, he seems to feed from that and he needs that. so he's got to stick to it. >> kevin, couldn't he just pretend to build the border wall? >> well, if you listen to what he's saying, we're already building it. >> yes. that's what i mean. >> he already moved away from his declaration that mexico is
going to pay for it. >> yes! >> so, again, his focus will be on always declaring victory and then every time he runs into one of these sort of structural road bumps, he's going to say well, we're already building it and blame the democrats. >> that is one thing that i think trump through his supporters has not really been able to figure out. the process of moving things through the lecture. just how this works. >> obviously. >> how this stuff works. he still has to figure that out. >> and marshalling the big middle one way or another. >> yeah. >> always about the vocal minorities. >> he's a deal maker i thought. i thought. wasn't i told that? yes? no? thanks so much great to have you both. dear great-great-grandfather, you turned a family recipe into a brewing empire before prohibition took it all away. i promised our family i'd find your lost recipe. by tracing our history on ancestry,
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in the fallout from amazon's stunning announcement that they were pulling out of a plan to build a headquarters in new york city. political progressives and community activists helped kill the deal which had congresswoman cortez doing her happy dance. she tweeted, anything is possible. today was the day a group of dedicated every day new yorkers and their neighbors defeated amazon's corporate greed. it's worker exploitation and the power of the richest man in the world. that was a sentiment she doubled down on today during her official inauguration speech in new york. but there was a different reaction from governor andrew cuomo, new york city mayor bill diblasio and senator chuck schumer. as well as congresswoman deloney who represents the district where the hq would have been
built. here's what she said. >> it used to be that we would protest wars. now we're protesting jobs? people are complaining about jobs? i'm a progressive too but i'm prag pragmatic. so how do you solve this problem? here to break it down is the former south carolina democratic representative and cnn commentator sellers. you see what i did there? okay. so here's the cover of "the new york daily news" on friday. they write, "shame on the so-called progressives for rejecting 25,000 high paying jobs and billions of taxes tech business would have brought to the city." in the urge to paint corporate america as evil, are some of these lawmakers putting democrats in a tough spot with voters? >> well, i think it was a shortsighted decision on behalf of the city of new york and those in opposition. i think amazon and governor diblasio -- excuse me, governor
cuomo and diblasio made irors in h errors in how to sell this deal. it's really hard to turn away all of the tax revenue that is brought. there the benefits to the nonprofits. and, you know, for democrats, we turned our backs on the associations in new york. we turned our backs on the individuals who will be building those manufacturing facilities. you think about those $25 an hour jobs for those construction workers and all of the people who are going to be put to work, all the growth that would happen around that and so i think it was shortsighted. i think that we have to sometimes be progressive but also be pragmatic. i don't think anything is wrong with that. >> it wasn't just aoc. elizabeth warren jumped on the g giddy response to the news. but amazon is in millions of households. i don't have to tell you. this you just had twins. i'm sure they're at your house eight times a day. it's really a good idea to villianize a company that is
just so practical and useful and beloved, frankly. >> i mean, on one side we do have corporate greed in the united states of america. we do have fundamental inequalities in this country. we have some economic anxiety in this country. and our billionaires and those individuals who are practicing this greed are leaving the rest of the country behind swrech. i know i'm not from new york. people are going to be looking at us saying why is he talking about this? the fact is i actually worked with amazon and landed an amazon company when i was in the south carolina general assembly in a distribution center here in south carolina. i have seen how amazon changed the dynamics. we gave them tax breaks. the revenues that have been driven to this state -- >> yeah. that's the power lawmakers have. that's it. >> and one major point. i mean, just -- >> quickly. we have to run. >> you know, prem talking about the $3 billion that they were going to get. this is not just a cash payment.
this was an abatement. this can't go anywhere else. >> that's right sfwlchlt . >> we have to do a better job of nur understanding about economics. >> good note for someone i know. we have breaking news on the investigation into the attack on empire actor jussie smollett. that's next. don't go anywhere. billions of mouths.
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tell cnn chicago police believe jussie smollett paid two men to orchestrate the assault. the actor told police that on january 29th two masked men beat him, doused him with a liquid he thought was bleach and put a rope around his neck while shouting racial and homophobic slurs. i want to go to ryan young in chicago for the latest. ryan, what are we learning? >> we were talking to the two law enforcement sources with knowledge of the investigation. they tell cnn that chicago police believe jussie smollett paid the two men to orchestrate the assault. the brothers who were arrested wednesday were released without charges friday after police cited the discovery of new evidence. the sources tell cnn that the two men are now cooperating fully with law enforcement. smollett told thoer smollett authorities he was attacked by two men that were yelling racial and homophobic slurs aun one ataeshg put a rope around his neck and poured an
unknown liquid on him. there are records that showed the two people purchased the rope at an ace hardware store in chicago. cnn's attempts to reach both smollett's representative and attorney were unsuccessful right now. i can tell you police have been working this case. 12 detectives are working this case nonstop. more twists and turns. but, of course, now the focus is on the investigation and how the detectives move this to the next phase. >> thanks, ryan. appreciate it. here to help me break it down further, our cnn legal analyst joey jackson. on the phone is our chief media correspondent. brian, let me start with you. i'm sure, like me, you have been following this over the past week or two as has the country, this story has fascinated us. what is your reaction to this awful, awful news? >> well, now the ball is back in jussie smollett's court. a spokesman for the chicago police department tells me they did reach out to smollett's
attorneys last night after receiving new information from those two men that had been questioned by police. what i was told by the chicago pd is we we need to ask him additional questions. is he going to cooperate with the investigation. those are open questions. because, from the very beginning, there were political con notations from the story, that were undeniable. two attackers. this is maga country. this became part of them and polarizing on day one. i wish it wasn't, but that is the reality. a story that makes it even more troubling. we have to wake to see what smollett is going to say now. >> from inside, how do you think the media -- you know, the media had to cover this and had to cover this, you know, cautiously and responsibly. how do you think, on the whole,
the media has done as a job? >> strong, high quality, tried to be very careful. two hours after the alleged attack, it was a trump supporter attack, with political c connotations. was able to be weaponized in many different ways. they orchestrated this. why? he was afraid he was being rid of, they were going to kill off his character. they denied that was the case. there's still a mystery at the heart of the story. >> thank you so much. joey, what is jussie facing
legally? >> what i see prior to that, just my reaction, prior to being a lawyer, just as a human being. we are in an era where there's so much discord. the political rhetoric is so high and inflamed. you have something like this, which adds to it and adds to the hate when you say people attacked me and did vicious, vile things, there are consequences. the consequences are, you can't file false reports. when you do that, listen, the detectives, you asked brian about the media's response to this, which was responsive. i thought the detectives handled it responsibly, too. at the end of the day -- >> it cost money. >> that's my point. that's why it's a crime. you are diverting resources from things that are real. >> in a city that needs none. >> people who have real harm. victim that is are actual victims.
because of that, it's criminalized. there's a deterrent to prosecuting this. you can't have people make claims like this. look at the people who backed him, supported him, love him. really had his back. it's a major disappointment, i think, to all concerned, but a prosecutable offense. that's why he hired con sell. >> do you imagine chicago pd have concrete evidence he staged this, beyond just the word of the two brothers? >> what i have to believe, and again, i don't want to speculate, but what i'll say based on information and belief -- >> right, right. >> -- police have been working with case. there's been search warrants of the nigerian individuals. they have questioned them and spoken at length to them. they have records. they released them without charges. i would have to believe there's some concrete evidence, in addition to the interviews they
have conducted that leads them to believe, you know what? it ain't so. that's a big disappointment. it's a problem. it's wonderful it did not happen in accordance to what he said. it's disheartening and disappointing that you put out that. >> if you have rahm emanuel and a citizen cast your city in a terrible light and you already have real crime problem -- >> that's right. >> -- how do you handle this? >> it adds fuel to the fire. if there's anything we need right now, it's unity. it's a lack of the discord. it's lack of homo phobic issues and talking about race in a negative way. we are in a day and age where we talk about immigrants. >> and black face. >> 100%. >> there is real pain. >> precisely, this adds to that pain. we are in troubling times.
rahm emanuel, it's time to bring people together and do something about instances like this that shouldn't have happened. >> a bizarre final twist. i'm sure we'll learn much, much more in this story. joey, thank you for helping us sort through this. the 2020 democratic candidates were out on the trail today. one was senator amy klobuchar. she is the latest democrat to enter the 2020 presidential race. monday night, she takes voter's questions and discusses what's at stake for the country's future. that's monday at 10:00 on cnn. tune in for that. cnn newsroom with ana cabrera is next. it's absolute confidence in 30,000 precision parts. or it isn't. it's inspected by mercedes-benz factory-trained technicians.
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or call during business hours. announcer: this is cnn breaking news. we are live in the "cnn newsroom." i'm ana cabrera. the twist in the story involving "empire" actor, jussie smollett. he claimed the attackers beat him, yelled homophobic slurs, putt a rope around his neck and poured an unknown chemical on him. new evidence suggests smollett may have paid the men to stage this attack. let's go to ryan young. what more can you tell us? >> a