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tv   CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin  CNN  February 28, 2019 11:00am-12:00pm PST

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nternet. internet that puts you in charge. that protects what's important. it handles everything, and reaches everywhere. this is beyond wifi, this is xfi. simple. easy. awesome. xfinity, the future of awesome. you are watching cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. thank you for being here. here you see the president of the united states there addressing troops in alaska during a fuel stop on his way home from vietnam where nuclear talks with north korea collapsed. we'll get into all of that in just a moment, but first for the past few days, michael cohen has been a fixture in washington shuttling between the house and senate while giving congress an
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up close look at his decade working at the top of the trump empire and today that all comes to an end after cohen finishes testifying before the house intelligence committee and while he may be sitting there behind closed doors today, cohen is clearly still top of mind for his former boss who weighed in at his summit in vietnam with kim jong-un. >> he lied a lot, but it was very interesting because he didn't lie about one thing. he said no collusion with the russian hoax and i said, i wonder he didn't just lie about that too like he did about everything else. he lied about so many different things and i was actually impressed that he didn't say, well, i think there was collusion for this reason or that. he didn't say that. no collusion he said and i was a little bit impressed by that. >> joseph is a former federal prosecutor. joe, good to have you on. let's just dive right in. multiple hill committees will split up the various allegations from cohen including inflating
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the president's net worth and cohen said trump won't release his tax return because he's afraid of an audit and possible penalties. candidate trump says he was under audit saying that is why he couldn't give up the documents. so here's the question in your mind, what are the main areas of exposure that the president now faces? >> so, brooke, there's so much to unpack from yesterday, but number one, it's the campaign finance angle. this is no longer a hypothetical, right? michael cohen is going to jail in two months in part because he committed campaign finance fraud. he directly implicated the president in that criminal behavior and what we heard yesterday was further evidence, not hypotheticals, but evidence in terms of testimony and documentation that the president personally directed him to do this and even signed one of the checks. that to me is the most imminent of the many threats that are now swirling around this president. >> i was reading this morning that there was essentially no one smoking gun on anything related to russia, that this
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person heard from cohen, but when you look at all of it together, might it be used, the whole thread, to charge someone, the president, with being a co-conspirator? >> certainly a possibility. if there's any silver lining in yesterday, it's what president trump just picked up on. michael cohen could not help connect the dots with respect to russia collusion which is a very general term. it doesn't even have its own legal significance. that's all i saw as far as the silver lining. i don't see how any objective legal mind could have watched what happened yesterday and not come away saying, this was a really bad day for the president. the only question is, how bad? >> right. who may know is a name who kept coming up is alan weisselberg, the cfo of the trump organization who was granted immunity in the sdny probe and cohen was telling investigators that weisselberg was involved in discussions on how much to pay the hush money and to reimburse
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him. so here is chairman cummins. this is what he said after the hearing about that. >> are you going to talk to alan weisselberg? will you talk to them? >> yeah, we probably will. there are certain areas we've got to be careful with because special counsel and southern district of new york and others have basically said that there are things that they are looking in to. there are a number of areas that we couldn't even get into and didn't get into. this is -- i think that there are still a number of shoes to drop. >> still a number of shoes to drop as part of that, joe. is the money trail the key here? >> yeah. this is exactly what the prosecutors in the southern district of new york right where you're sitting they're really good at this. they have brought major white collar prosecutions whether it's organized crime or narcotics or
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wall street crimes. they're really good at following the money. so that is definitely the biggest concern here. i've said this for a long time. when michael cohen's office was raided last year, that was the biggest danger to this presidency because there's no telling where the evidence could take them. >> in the midst of all of the mudslinging and the partisan finger pointing from yesterday, there were some lawmakers who actually focused on why cohen said he came before congress and one of them was new york democrat alexandria ocasio-cortez. >> to your knowledge, did the president ever provide inflated assets to an insurance company? >> yes. >> who else knows that the president did this? >> alan weisselberg, ron lieberman and matthew cal marry. >> and where would the committee find more information on this? do you think we need to review his financial statements and his tax returns in order to compare them? >> yes, and you'd find it at the trump org.
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>> so that was just a sliver of what the congresswoman put forth, no grand speeches, just laser focus. how effective do you think she was in that hearing yesterday? do you think her colleagues should take notes? >> think about some of these high profile congressional hearings we've seen this past year. peter strzok, matt whitaker, we've seen how difficult it can be to use your five minutes effectively and congress people often fall in one of two traps. they spend the entire five minutes making speeches, sometimes they're good, sometimes they're bad but they lose their opportunity. the second problem is they ask questions but they're not good questions. they don't ask follow-ups. they don't lay the pred kalt for any kind of future action. the congresswoman did not fall into either one of those traps and for a freshman that's impressive. she got to the point. she laid the predicate for future action. who should we talk to, what should we look at and what would be productive in congress's
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investigation further and she got some good information which she can now take and say, this is the basis for why we should take further allegations whether it's the bank fraud allegations, possibly fraudulent bank statements, tax returns, whatever else. she did a really nice job. whoever prepped her did a fantastic job. >> good to see you, joe, thank you very much on all of that. let's talk about the democrat who oversaw cohen's hearing. if cohen mentioned your name, expect to hear from his committee one way or another. and some of the names that cohen mentioned, names from trump's inner circle, we have not heard before. chris cillizza is with me and chris, michael cohen may have been the star of the hearing, so to speak, but there were many names he brought up. so who did he talk about? >> yeah. it's fascinating. just when you thought you knew all the players in this massive game, now there's more. let's go through. some we heard before. some we hadn't.
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alan weisselberg is a name we have heard before. he was granted immunity by the southern district of new york to talk about cohen and the laws that cohen broke. so that was in relation to cohen. he started working for donald trump's father is in charge not just of trump, inc.'s finances but also donald trump's personal finances. so this might be the key player here but immunity for cohen. eric, ivanka and donald trump jr., the elvis son and eldest daughter of donald trump were the ones that were cohen's contact on this trump tower/moscow project. that he met with them ten times to brief them on where they were. obviously we know these two, eric and don junior run the trump organization. ivanka a senior official in the white house. moving on. rona graph. this is someone who we know of.
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she even kind of sort of played a little bit of a role in the apprentice, the tv apprentice, this is the gatekeeper to donald trump. been with him for a very long time, secretary, personal assistant, the person that you don't get to donald trump unless you go through her. so, again, she and weisselberg, we have heard of them but not all that much and cohen mentioned them. now to my favorite too. ron lieberman and matthew calamari. they are senior executives in the trump organization. i want to focus on my guy, matthew calamari. when he mentioned calamari's name, the internet went insane. he exists in real life. he was trump's show fer and body guard and like many people in that organization, rose up
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through the ranks, why? because he was unflinchingly loyal to one person, donald trump. so we're going to get -- we're already familiar with this group, get familiar with weisselberg, although i don't know that he'll talk or rhona will talk. we really haven't heard much about either of them just yet. back to you, brooke. >> matthew calamari, yes, that is his name. so you just heard chris run through those -- some of those names. we'll talk to someone with inside knowledge about the trump organization, a woman who was a former executive there and worked with the likes of weisselberg. plus the other major story today, no deal. president trump walking away from the kim jong-un talks and the north koreans moments ago holding a rare news conference. here what they say and one former republican senator calls it rep rehence being. the president giving kim cover on the death of an american citizen. you're watching cnn.
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as you were watching michael cohen's testimony, it was the trump executive name you could not miss. >> alan weisselberg, allen weisselberg in the office with me was allen weisselberg. so allen weisselberg is the chief financial officer. >> allen weisselberg as you just heard cohen mention there is the top money man within the trump organization. he handles not only the company's finance but he oversaw
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the president's personal transactions like checks and other dealings. trump reimbursed him for hush money cohen paid to silent the story of stormy daniels. weisselberg has limited immunity in the hush money case but what does that mean for his role regarding the other allegations cohen brought up, ie, trump misusing his charity or filing false information to avoid taxes. all questions people will be exploring. barbra rez is back. how one woman changed the face of construction. she was an executive vice president at the trump organization working for donald trump for 18 years. >> on and off. >> on and off for 18 years. let's run through some of these names. we just talked about allen weisselberg. >> he came from brooklyn and he
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did the billing and the paying the bills. basically, those two functions. like a chief accountant and basically i think that's what he did at trump tower for when he first moved over there and he moved over there in the period between '84 and '87. >> anything about him stand out? >> like i said, he went back to fred in brooklyn. he was not in the inner circle at that time, to be honest with you. he was the kind of guy that would be called into donald's office and say, yes, mr. trump. >> he was a mr. trump. >> he was a mr. trump guy but it looks like that changed. >> that changed and it also changed with matthew calamari who i want to ask you about. all the color on all these different people that you worked with. so this guy matthew, who chris cillizza was just talking about and, yes, that is his real name
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who you used to call -- >> the big squid. >> is now the coo of trump org and this is a name we heard from cohen and at the time he was brought in as -- >> he was working at the open on -- >> the u.s. open, donald was there in the stands and he saw this big guy come and chase some kids that were sitting in seats they didn't belong in and pulled them up by the scruff of their neck and donald was impressed by that. we went over to him and got his number and he came in the next day and said, call this guy, i want to put him on trump tower in charge of security. i don't need somebody like that i said. he just got out of college. hire him, hire him. he's a great guy. so i did. i put him on the staff of the general contractor and he worked for me and he did a good job. he rose to the occasion. he made sure that people were not stealing things to the extent that you can on a construction job. >> all goes back to loyalty, doesn't it? >> eventually it does, yeah.
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he ended up being trump's body guard. >> and now? >> now he's coo. >> what about michael cohen said nothing happens in trump world without trump knowing about it and he brought some of these checks to the hill including checks from the president himself after he had become the president paying him back for the hush money and he also said one of the checks was made out in don junior's name. what do you think of that? >> i don't know what to make of don junior, trump paying his own checks, for something important like that, they would just want him to sign it to have his name on it because that was a big deal. in trump world, trump knew everything. nothing went on without him. that's why this meeting in trump tower with the russians came up, is it possible that donald didn't know? i said, no, it's not possible. everybody reported to donald, even the highest person and i don't think don junior was in
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that, you know, echelon. >> cohen also said that trump threatened people hundreds of times. were you ever threatened? >> cohen actually called me right after i wrote an op ed piece in the daily news. i had just started out. it was not a bad piece. it was kind of nice actually. he started talking words like defamation and libel and i said, gee, michael, i got to go. i have people here and i'll call you back. >> michael cohen was the one doing the threatening. >> cohen, yeah, yeah. as far as trump threatening, i mean, quick funny story is he used to keep a picture of roy cohen in his desk drawer and when we would have meetings with contractors who wanted final payment, threatening to sue was the big deal. he threatened to sue everybody. >> how about this whole conversation that's been going on over whether or not donald trump is racist. cohen said he is recalling an
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incident when obama was president in which trump said black people would never vote for him because they were quote, too stupid. there are no black executives at the trump organization. is -- you've known donald trump off and on for years and years. what's true? >> it's hard for me to say he's racist being that i worked for him all that time. it was a different period of time and words like the n-word were used frequently. they aren't ever used now. >> by donald trump himself? >> i don't remember. i won't say that he did because i don't remember. i remember hearing jokes, always black jokes going back and forth and he told them too. you know the expression, once you go black you never go back. the first time i heard that it was donald and it was a light-heartedness not only about black people and jews and things like that. i remember we were -- >> hang on. i'm still letting that sit for a second. so no one in the room when donald trump or others would make these inappropriate jokes would say, sir, not appropriate.
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>> people didn't do it at that time. everybody joked and -- i'm going to be honest about it. people laughed at it. this was 1981, 82, 83 and that was 40 years ago. they weren't as mean intended back then. it was more or less kind of racism was like accepted. it wasn't like, oh, i hate black people. it's just the way people are and this is the way we talk. >> which we all know is never accepted, but you are full of stories. >> oh, yes, i am. >> barbra res with donald trump, thank you very much. >> my pleasure. president trump once again under fire for embracing a brutal dictator, kim jong-un, erdogan, putin, the saudi crown prince. the president has praised republican senator joins me live and a heated clash over allegations of racism during that michael cohen hearing. this is what we were just talking about when a republican
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used a black woman to stand up and defend the president, but there are some past remarks from that particular congressman that is fueling the flames. we'll be right back. no matter where you are in life or what your dreams entail, a cfp professional is trained, knowledgeable, and committed to financial planning in your best interest. find your certified financial planner™ professional at letsmakeaplan.org. stimulant laxatives forcefully stimulate find yi switched to miralaxal plannefor my constipation. the nerves in your colon. miralax works with the water in your body to unblock your system naturally. and it doesn't cause bloating, cramping, gas, or sudden urgency. miralax. look for the pink cap.
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the president is making a refueling stop at an air force base in alaska after abruptly cutting his meeting with kim jong-un short. president trump says talks fell through after the north korean leader insisted the united states lift all sanctions. that's actually not the only big headline coming out of his trip to vietnam. i'll give you two words. ottio warm br, the american
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college student who was in prisoned for north korea for more than a year and returned home in a coma and died days later. warmbier's parents were guests at the 2018 state of the union address. >> you're powerful witnesses to a menace that threatens our world and your strength truly inspires us all. thank you very much. thank you. tonight we pledge to honor otto's memory with total american resolve. we need only look at the depraved character of the north korean regime to understand the nature of the nuclear threat it could pose to america and to our allies. >> but when the president came face-to-face with kim jong-un in vietnam, he gave him a pass,
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even defending the dictator. >> he felt badly about it. i did speak to him. he knew the case very well but he knew it later and you got a lot of people. big country. lot of people. in those prisons and those camps, you have a lot of people. and some really bad things happened to otto, some really, really bad things. but he tells me, he tells me that he didn't know about it and i will take him at his word. >> republican senator john kennedy of louisiana is with me now. senator, welcome back. >> thanks, brooke. >> otto warmbier, sir, he was a 22-year-old american citizen, how do you defend that comment from president trump? >> i don't know whether kim jong-un knew or not, i don't know that it matters in this sense. kim is responsible for north korea. he's responsible for the prison system. he's responsible for the
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inhumanity in the prison system. whether he knew or not, to me, i don't know how we'll ever know but he's responsible and it's just that simple. he is a barbaric authoritarian. we have given him here an opportunity to come into the 21st century, if he'll give up his nuclear weapons and i hope the gentleman who i've never met has sense enough to accept that. >> whether he knows this or not, senator, this isn't the first time that president trump has a history of believing murderous dictators. roll the tape. >> i have president putin. he just said it's not russia. i will say this, i don't see any reason why it would be. i will tell you that president putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today. >> i hate the crime. i hate what's done.
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i hate the cover-up. and i will tell you this, the crown prince hates it more than i do and they have veemtly denied it. the cia points it both ways, you know, and as i said, maybe he did, maybe he didn't. >> senator kennedy, do you support this backing the president gives these thugs as you call them? >> i wasn't there. when you meet with someone and you try to assess whether they're telling you the truth or not, there's several things you can do. you judge demeanor and credibility. you look at corroboration. i wasn't there. i don't think any of us will ever know -- >> do we need to be there to know what kim jong-un and putin and duterte and mbs to know what they're capable of? >> the question, brooke, was is kim lying to the president?
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and i don't know. i don't know. -- >> no. the question senator kennedy, is why does the president keep supporting these murderous men? >> i don't know. you'll have to ask him that question to get your answer. i'm just saying it's an interesting discussion. i don't know how we'll ever resolve it, but to me, kim is responsible any way, just as vladimir putin is responsible for the things that his government does as is the ayatollah and iran. >> so why on earth is the president of the united states not defending an american citizen or his family? >> you'll have to ask him that, brooke. i wasn't there. i have heard him defend -- >> mr. trump, if you're watching, come on to cnn. >> maybe he'll call in. >> i think there's a better chance of a lot of things, but mr. trump, call us. you know the number. speaking of mbs, you are very
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vocal about saudi arabia and just this week the senate is pushing the trump administration for a complete report on jamal khashoggi's murder at the same time the president's own son-in-law was in saudi arabia meeting with muhammad bin salman, the man the cia says ordered the killing. any thoughts on that, senator kennedy? >> i'm sorry. i thought you were going to play a tape. brooke, one of the hardest things that a president, any president has to do is deal with an authoritarian government that doesn't share american values, but whose interests are important to us and if we just refuse to deal with any country that doesn't share our western values, the world would be a more dangerous place. now, i've been very critical of the prince, whether he knew it
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or not, he's responsible. >> right. >> but i've also said we couldn't sever ties completely with saudi arabia because it's in our interests, the security interests of the middle east and israel and the united states to have some sort of dialogue. i don't know how you -- saudi arabia's a major player in the middle east. i don't know how -- >> sure. >> -- you can deal with the problems in the middle east without talking to saudi arabia and whether we like it or not, prince muhammad bin salman is in charge. >> let me ask you about switching gears. michael cohen. >> sure. >> michael cohen, the president's former attorney, let me just start with you, senator, on those hush money payments to those women. cohen came to capitol hill yesterday with those checks paying him back, checks signed by president trump, right, so after he took office. unlike your house colleagues on that committee, are you bothered by that? >> you know, i've been asked
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repeatedly brooke since that happened and i think -- i think you're asking the same thing, you know. if mr. cohen's testimony is true, does that erase his problems with the president? >> that's like asking if i murder somebody, am i a murderer? i would fb i murdered somebody. i don't know if michael cohen -- let me just finish my thought. >> sure. >> i have to look at his credibility. we know that in the past he's been convicted. he's lied to the federal elections commission. he's lied to congress. he's lied to banks when he borrowed money. he lied to the irs. >> sure and he's going to prison. >> and he's going to prison. >> let me -- if i may, let me interject. tell me with a straight face -- let's flip the script and said, president hillary clinton, if there were a president hillary clinton and she conspired with her personal lawyer to pay off
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people to keep quiet about her affairs in order to keep it secret from the american people before a presidential election and also detailed tax frauds in her foundation, the republicans, you tell me, senator kennedy, the republicans wouldn't want to talk to her lawyer? really? >> if the shoe were on the other foot and i were asked to judge the veracity of a witness against a president clinton as i am with respect to president trump, i would just say, look, let me look at corroboration but let me look at their background, their character. it's just a fact, brooke. mr. cohen is a convicted liar. to me -- >> you'd be asking those questions? you'd be asking those questions? >> sure, i would, but i think he's an angry man. he's bitter. he's a little unbalanced. i'm not saying he's crazy or as my son might say, i'm not saying he's a bunny baller but he's a little unbalanced --
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>> a bunny bowler? you bring some new vocab to the conversation. >> take a nonsensical approach. would i take his check? and the answer's probably not and i don't think he would -- >> can you tell me why not a single republican defended the substance of the allegations regarding the president? they ripped into him, liar, liar pants on fire, where was the defense of the president? >> the guy doesn't have a good background for veracity, brooke. >> that's not what i'm asking about. i'm asking about the president and the accusations. >> he did -- mr. cohen has presented all that information to the special counsel. i assume he's going to look at it -- >> his signature was on the check, senator kennedy. >> right and the issue is, is that a violation of the federal campaign finance laws and you can argue that one round or flat. they're good arguments on both sides.
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i happen to believe it isn't a violation of the campaign finance laws but a lawyer smarter than me could probably make an argument --? >> why not? >> you have to prove intent and i don't think you can prove it in a case like that. the federal election statutes are primarily meant to be civil. that doesn't mean that you can't have a criminal violation of the fec provisions, but that's just my personal opinion. i'll tell you this, if -- if the special counsel thinks that anybody violated the fec laws in a criminal way, i suspect he'll bring an indictment but i also make this prediction. he's not going to do it solely on the testimony of mr. cohen and have mr. cohen as his only witness. >> of course. of course. >> for obvious reasons. >> to your point for corroboration, absolutely right. senator john kennedy, a pleasure. come back. >> thanks, brooke. >> thank you. coming up, a republican
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lawmaker attempts to prove trump is not a racist sparking this bitter back and forth. >> the fact that someone would actually use a prop, a black woman, in this chamber, in this committee, is alone racist in itself. >> mr. chairman -- >> setting a precedent that the highest -- n my chest. i had a pe blood clot in my lung. i was scared. i had a dvt blood clot. having one really puts you in danger of having another. my doctor and i chose xarelto®. xarelto®. to help keep me protected. xarelto® is a latest-generation blood thinner that's... proven to treat and reduce the risk of dvt or pe blood clots from happening again. in clinical studies, almost 98% of patients on xarelto® did not experience another dvt or pe. xarelto® works differently. warfarin interferes with at least 6 of your body's natural blood-clotting factors. xarelto® is selective, targeting just one critical factor. don't stop taking xarelto® without talking to your doctor,
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as those headlines were coming fast and furious, something else extraordinary happened on capitol hill. in an effort to make the point that there is no way president trump can be racist, republican congressman mark meadows had a woman by the name of lynn patton take the stage. patton is an african-american associate of the trump family who now works for hud that's the department of housing and urban development and congressman meadows went on to say this about her as the daughter of a man born in birmingham, alabama,
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there is no way she would work for an individual who was racist. now, several of meadows democratic colleagues took him to task throughout the rest of the hearing. congressman brenda lawrence called him out, but it was congressman rashida tlaib who went the furtherest. >> just because someone has a person of color, a black person working for them does not mean they aren't racist and it is insensitive that some would even say -- the fact that someone would actually use a prop, a black woman, in this chamber, in this committee, is alone racist in itself. >> i ask that her words when she's referring to an individual member of this body be taken down and stricken from the record. i'm sure she didn't intend to do this, but if anyone knows my record as it relates, it should be you, mr. chairman.
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i would like -- >> hold on. >> i want -- >> i've defended you -- >> mr. meadows! i'm the chair. >> yes, sir, you are. >> thank you. i will clear this up. >> mr. chairman, there's nothing more personal to me than my relationship, my nieces and nephews are people of color. not many people know that. you know that, mr. chairman. and to indicate that i asked someone who is a personal friend of the trump family who is worked for him, who knows this particular individual that she's coming in to be a prop, it's racist to suggest that i ask her to come in here for that reason. >> it was an emotional moment for congressman meadows clearly. he put the chairman in an uncomfortable situation. you're my black friend, tell them i'm not racist.
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congressman talib further explained that moment on cnn. >> i apologize if i was calling him as a racist. this was a teachable moment. i used that moment to say, just fyi, that was not the way to do it and it was not out at all calling him a racist. i'm pretty direct. i would have done that. that's not my intention. it was my intention to educate, to share what i was feeling at that moment just like what he was feeling at that moment of what his reaction was to the comments from mr. cohen. >> here's the thing, i can't believe i have to say this, but having a black friend does not mean you're not racist and yet this line has been used over and over and over again by others including the president. >> i am the least antianti-semitic person you've ever seen in your entire life.
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as far as people, jewish people, so many friends. a daughter who happens to be here right now, a son-in-law and three beautiful grandchildren, i think that you're going to see a lot different united states of america over the next three, four or eight years. i think a lot of good things are happening and you'll see a lot of love. you'll see a lot of love. >> say it again. knowing the israeli prime minister and having jewish family members does not mean you are not anti-semitic, how does one prove that they aren't racist or anti-semitic? for starters, not having to explain yourself after comments like these. >> the more we find out, the more we realize how wrong the direction we're going and so what we're going to do is take back our country, 2012 is the time that we're going to send mr. obama home to kenya or
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wherever it is. we're going to do it. >> and you had some very bad people in that group but you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides. >> you know this, racism, anti-semitism, any kind of hate cannot, should not be tolerated in this country. this isn't, you know, just about having a black friend or jewish or gay or muslim, this isn't about not just hearing but listening to what the other side has to say. we'll discuss all of this and how congressman meadows is now responding today. we'll be right back. with all that usaa offers why go with anybody else? we know their rates are good, we know that they're always going to take care of us. it was an instant savings and i should have changed a long time ago. it was funny because when we would call another insurance company, hey would say "oh we can't beat usaa" we're the webber family. we're the tenney's we're the hayles, and we're usaa members for life. ♪ get your usaa auto insurance quote today.
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continuing on that last conversation. leah, you know, when you were watching the whole congressman mark meadows, lynn patton, rashida talib, those moments, what did you think? >> i mean, brooke, it's incredibly disappointing, but it's also exhausting because we continue to have this, you know -- just faulty conversation. what we saw yesterday was a political stunt in a day full of political stunts that added to the craziness of a situation that was already a circus and so to have this moment that where this black woman is trodded out essentially and stands speechless behind mark meadows and as he gets into this back and forth about my black friend says so much about where we are and why we keep repeating these
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things over and over again and then for it to escalate later on, escalate into something much bigger with congressman tlaib it points to these moments, these moments of political stunt where in this moment mark meadows makes -- made it about himself as opposed to actually listening to the substance of what the congresswoman was trying to say. really, you know, you have to ask yourself, why are we having this conversation over and over again? and, you know, why are we -- why are we continuing to engage in these political stunts that actually detract from the substance of the matter at hand? >> i think you said a keyword which is listening, right, and because of that exchange yesterday, a lot of people have been referencing when a couple
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of years ago the congressman is saying to obama, go back to kenya or wherever you're from and now today he's defending himself saying he doesn't have a racial bone in his body. your response. >> i just saw a statement from someone who said that racism is not or racial is not found in the bones and it's not found in the hearts. it's found in actions and a look at actions. part of what -- part of what thez clips have shown is that mark meadows participated in the birther movement. it was this movement that helped give donald trump his political start. rather than interrogating people on the substance of the issues, on policies, we are focused on these political stunts, racialized, racist, racial stunts that are designed to really delegitimize people.
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one of the things that struck me about the conversation yesterday and kind of all of the -- >> fallout? >> yeah. in fact, mark meadows could have spent his time actually interrogating what michael cohen was saying and what he was presenting in terms of evidence. the veracity of the claims that he was trying to make, but instead we get political circus and we get political stunts and we get the fall back on this very old and tired trope, but my best friends are black. >> my biggest takeaway, this is all about -- it's not about your friends, it's not about what's in your bones, it's about actions and we should all take note of that, each and every one of us. thank you for the conversation. good to see you. next, an apology from the virginia governor's office but this time it's actually from the
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