tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN April 3, 2019 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT
any layer, any delay will breed suspicion. let's be honest, there's not a lot of great reason to trust the people in power, especially right now. and there is precedent for more coming out. the only time we've had a special counsel under janet reno, branch davidian, she had the report go right to the public. redactions, but not much. no matter how this goes if it comes out it will be in a better situation and put us in a better place than the way we're headed right now and headed fast. thank you for watching. d. lemon right now. >> a couple things. i told you -- give you a little bit. >> please. >> don't want to give away too much. she made a point to me and i thought it was accurate. she said members of congress have the highest levels of security. >> security clearance. >> top secret. they see sources and methods all the time. they take an oath not to reveal those sources and methods. so they're pushing back on that whole thing about, you know, not -- about redacting a lot of
it, concerned about there will be pages and pages of this, that's completely redacted and what good does that do for them or anyone? and i get your point on that. and also, again, if you're concerned about sources and methods, this whole thing that you hear, this whole aboutism, let's go back and investigate the investigators and go back the investigate the administration before that and investigate somebody there before that about the fisa and all of these things, all these things have been investigated already. president obama's not the president anymore. the people who were there are not in office anymore. we need to hold accountable the people who are in office. many of those things, all of them have been investigated. most of it has turned out not to have any degree of truth to them at all, that whole thing, uranium, fisa, and all that things, it's just pure and utter madness and hypocrisy on top of it and not serving the american people well at all. >> well, the last part is the
worst, right, is that the people paid for this, we need to get some clarity on it. remember where this all started. it started so counterintelligence investigation, to figure out what the russians did two out of these we haven't done a thing on. the government hasn't changed its structure. they're out there doing the same trolling exercises right now. we've only scratched the surface of getting the social media platforms to have more responsibility to police this. they don't have regulations about it yet and then the politics. here's the truth. if the president wants this to go away it will never go away if it doesn't all come out. >> yeah. i want to move on and ask you about something else. the other conspiracy theory is the whole idea that the mueller investigation started with the dossier. it didn't, it started with the australian ambassador or whatever bragging that he had information on hillary clinton. that's how it actually started. >> true. and, look, the idea that the
dossier was all junk is also not true. >> also not true. >> some of it was corroborated, a lot of -- >> that it was paid for by hillary clinton, but initially by a conservative group. >> the free beacon. >> i wanted to talk to you, i really enjoyed the conversation, i had been fascinated with everything that's happened, the conversation you had with angela rye and with scott jennings regarding joe biden. it's interesting that joe biden is -- and, you know, i give meghan mccain credit for this because she opened my eyes to this as i was watching her the other day. she defends joe biden. says that joe biden is an old school retail politician who likes to get out and, you know, be among the people and touch people. and when you take away -- not that he should be in anybody's face if he's the strong or
straight arm politician then he's no longer joe biden, you've taken away the characteristic that people like about him, he's a man of the people and that he's caring and that he wants to be among the folks. >> right. look, i hear what you're saying. i read it. i see it this way. okay? joe biden is not too old to change. >> right. >> what he's doing he does because he thinks it's effective and helps him to connect. if he is told, or made aware or told directly that what you are doing is not doing that, it's doing the opposite of that, his instinct should tell him to stop. the only thing i didn't get out of that video was if somebody thinks that what you did was wrong, and if they took it negatively, apologize. if that wasn't your intention, just apologize. i know all the experts and big brains around you are telling you not to apologize. show no weakness, which works for trump. doesn't matter what you accuse him, he'll never admit a damn
thing. eventual eventually they'll move on to something else. if he didn't mean anything, i know the manu well and hi know s family, they're about integrity of service. nobody's perfect. if you were to apologize, i didn't mean it that way, if you took it that way, then i was wrong, i'm sorry, i've learned better going forward, now i think it's complete. >> listen. the people who have accused him have said non-sexual, it just made them uncomfortable. if that counts for something else, then it changes with the information you had. he said similar in the first response. i'm not one -- i don't believe in -- i don't really believe in boycotts, that everyone should be apologizing. sometimes you explain to people why you did something and that's absolutely good enough. if it's something that's that egregious, i absolutely believe you should apologize. but sometimes, you know, i just don't like the apology tour for
anybody, and i'm talking democrat, republican, whoever. i just -- explain why you did something and move on. >> democrats have created their own bar. >> absolutely. >> got rid of one of their own, god rid of franken, gillibrand's running for president. how is biden different? >> this is different, i said if someone comes forward and says that it was inappropriate somehow touching and that they felt it was sexual, that's a different story. >> i agree. >> because the people -- most of the people they set the bar on there were accusations of actual assault and possible sexual assault and abuse. >> i agree, yes. >> that's a whole different thing. >> yes, 100%. >> we cannot keep categorizing these things the same way. nobody should be touching anybody inappropriately, but it is real -- you know, what's her name? alice stuart said there's a difference between going five miles over the speed limit and 50 miles over. >> good point. joe biden is not al franken, is
not donald trump. the relativism matters. and this can only be about how the democrats decide right now to see it. let's be honest, i'll get beat up for this, this is what the media does, man, it loves people up and it tears them down. you know, joe biden should run, we love joe, uncle joe, as soon as he's a step away from deciding to run, bam. >> bam. >> here it comes. it's like that for everybody. beto o'rourke. he's the man, the white houobam and now they want something. >> it's all platitude. why is he standing on the bar? >> good for all of them, ride the ride, but know that the hill has two sides. >> one thing that i have been screaming at the television about, because you don't know, joe biden -- bernie sanders denies he had anything to do with this, with this joe biden thing. >> as opposed to what? i'm not saying that bernie sanders had anything to do with it, but who would say they did?
>> well, i shouldn't say probably, we don't know who it is, it could be a trump supporter, it could be a republican. >> an additional woman. >> there you go. democrats this -- we don't know. >> they created a standard that's very exacting and i have to tell you, i didn't have any problem with that at the time because the only way culture changes is if you force it to change. our problem is, we can only have this conversation with half the side. the republicans can't talk about this with donald trump as president. >> oh, no? >> look, scott jennings on the show tonight gave a good faith effort, he was like, look, if he grabbed her -- >> you can't use that verb. any supporter of the president used grab as a verb it's going to take people back to the access hollywood tape and the dozen plus women who came forward and said the president assaulted them. they can't talk about it and that's the shame. because this should be something that is consensus, everybody's on the same page. what's that cup say? is your cup nicer than mine?
is that a cnn tonight with don lemon cup? >> i don't need to see my name on everything. >> does that say cuomo? does it say cuomo on both sides of that cup? >> it says cuomo, not lemon, no, it says let's get after it. >> listen, when you're a star, they let you do anything. >> that's what he said. >> grab them. >> that's a shame. i don't have a problem with joe biden having to answer for what he did. he's handling it the right way. he's addressing it. that's what you should do if you're a leader. >> yup. we're going to get ourselves in trouble here. good to see you. >> i think it's good to have this conversation. everybody hides behind things. >> my producers are like we've got to go. >> i'm sorry. >> see you tomorrow. this is -- that went on a long time. good conversation. thanks for joining us. we've got a lot of news tonight. storm clouds gathering again over this white house.
thought it was all over, well maybe not because the latest and this is big that we're learning tonight that some of robert mueller's investigators say their findings are more damaging for the president than the attorney general has revealed. again, this is all -- according to "the new york times." not cnn's reporting, "the new york times." they're reporting that because the a.g. has written the first narrative of mueller's finding, where they're worried americans will have already made up their minds before the full report ever becomes public. when anybody tries to tell you that they know what is in mueller's report, when they try to tell you it's all over, you've got to wonder why. why they want you to think that. all this makes it that much more important for americans to see it for themselves. you have to see it for yourself. we've got a lot more on that tonight. and it comes as the house judiciary committee today approved a subpoena for the unredacted mueller report, the chairman, jerry nadler saying this.
>> this committee requires the full report and the underlying materials because it is our job, not the attorney general's, to determine whether or not president trump has abused his office. and we require the report because one day, one way or another, the country will move on from president trump. we must make it harder for future presidents to behave this way. >> and there's more. if there's anything this president really does not want to hear right now as he battles to keep americans from seeing mueller's report, it is this, okay, cnn, first to report tonight that the chairman of the house ways and means committee is requesting the president's tax returns from the irs for the years 2013 to 2018. the president, who has consistently refused to release his returns says he's not inclined to cooperate. >> until such time as i'm not
under order i would not be inclined to do that. >> let's remember, there's absolutely nothing that bars the president from turning over his returns while under audit, even though he's used that as a smoke screen over and over and over and over. >> when the audit is complete i'll release my returns, i have no problem with it. >> i'm releasing when we're finished with the audit. >> depends on the audit. i will release my tax returns against my lawyer's wishes, when she releases her 33,000 e-mails that have been deleted. i've been under audit for many years because the numbers are big, and i guess when you have a name, you -- you're audited. >> even that has fact checking. i don't have all night. i want you to listen to what the president's former fixer and keeper of secrets, michael cohen, said when he testified before congress. >> so that's an interesting point that basically said he didn't want to release his tax
returns because he might end up in an audit. so could you presume from that statement that he wasn't under audit? >> i presume he's not under audit. >> a lot more on that story too. and in the face of all this, the president doubling down on his favorite strategy, lies, misstatements and what sometimes sounds like just saying whatever pops into his head. i want you to listen to what the president said just yesterday. >> as we went through two years of the mueller investigation, we have -- i mean, not only that, you read the wording, it was proven, who could go through that and get wording where it was no collusion, no nothing. >> remember, the attorney general's letter about mueller's report said he did not establish that anybody on the trump campaign conspired with the russian government. he explicitly did not exonerate
president trump on obstruction, and we're likely to learn a whole lot more about mueller's report in the days and weeks to come, not to mention the multiple congressional investigations and what comes out of the southern district of new york. the american people deserve to know the truth. about all of this. even the president used to think so. >> have a right to see the mueller report? >> i don't mind. i mean, frankly, i told the house if you want, let them see it. let it come out. let people see it. the attorney general, but it wouldn't bother me at all. up to the attorney general, but it wouldn't bother me at all. >> the attorney general said he intends to release the mueller report in full to congress and to the public. do you agree with that decision? do you want the white house to take a look over it for privilege? >> i have great confidence in the attorney general, and if that's what he'd like to do, i have nothing to hide. >> if they do vote out the
authority for subpoenas will the white house fight this. >> well, i think it's ridiculous. we went through two years of the mueller investigation, so there's no collusion, there's no obstruction, and now we're going to start this process all over again, i think it's a disgrace. >> mueller report, as you can see, it's not the end. it's just the beginning. and americans deserve to know the truth. the whole truth. and nothing but the truth. the report that some of robert mueller's investigators see their findings as more damaging for the president than the attorney general revealed raises even more questions tonight and it comes as the house judiciary committee has approved a subpoena for the unredacted report. next, i'm going to talk to a member of the committee about all of that, congresswoman sheila jackson-lee.
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here's our breaking news tonight, "the new york times" reporting that some members of the special counsel robert mueller's team, they believe that their report is more damaging to the president than the attorney general william barr has indicated. so let's discuss now with democratic congresswoman sheila jackson lee, she's a member of the judiciary committee which today approved a subpoena by the way for the unredacted mueller report. congresswoman, thank you so much. first, i have to get your reaction to this "times" report.
and if it's true, this is not cnn's reporting. some members of the team feel that mueller's findings are more damaging to the president than the attorney general let on. >> don, i think that's what democrats are saying and particularly that's what the judiciary committee has been saying. as you well know when general barr issued his letter it was framed as the conclusions of the mueller report. his summarization of the actual conclusions, a truth, a narrative, that is unfortunate. and even in the document that director mueller had he indicated that he did not exonerate the president. but within minutes, hours of the mueller report, but more importantly the letter from general barr, the president and his team were celebrating that he'd been exonerated. let me explain just briefly, the mueller report was done by a lawyer, a former fbi director, a
person that works for the doj that's used to dealing in criminal language, meaning in language dealing with criminal indictments. that's the only thing that might have been restrain by barr's letter, meaning that mueller did not do this in a criminal format. he didn't use traditional prosecutorial judgment. but the narrative was that this is a complete exoneration. we didn't believe it and we wanted this full report for the american people. >> you're sounding an awful lot like an attorney, and you are. that's why you're sounding like one. listen, i have to ask you, because according to "the new york times," mueller's team, congresswoman, wrote multiple summaries of the report. but the doj believes they contain sensitive information. so speak a little bit more about this. do you think that congress should have these summaries? >> absolutely. we have the highest level of classification of security classifications, top secret, we
see documents every day that deal with life and death and war and peace. we have very strict procedures. we have to sign a document when we review classified documents that we will not release them. since i've been here in the united states congress i've seen members of congress be held to a penalty for what they believe was released. >> congresswoman, can i ask you something? >> yes. >> you see information, you see congress people see sources and methods before, right? >> absolutely. >> okay. >> and we see it every day. and so for that to be a reason, don, is why today we proceeded with the authority to issue subpoenas because the narrative was completely conflicted by general barr's summary and as well now with this breaking news, knowing that other summaries that could have been utilized were not added to his. >> the white house calls this
overreach, not oversight. the top republican in the committee doug collins says what the ag is doing what the regulations say. nothing will be enough for the democrats. >> well, my good friends have, you know, their talking points. i don't have any talking points. i simply ask for the mueller report to be released. and if you want to know what the special counsel regulations actually say, they say to release the document in the interest of the public, in the interest of the public's ability to know. secondarily, no, i disagree that it's overreach or we'll never be satisfied. we've asked for one set of documents, and that is the mueller report with all the supporting documents and we have five individuals listed who may have had access to those documents, or have access to information necessary for us to further understand the mueller report. there are limits to the subpoena. and, again, as i said we were willing to go with attorney general barr to the federal court to have them participate.
that was done before in other investigations. he has yet to give us any indication that he's willing to compromise, to work with us, to have a federal court intervention. to the president's overreach, absolutely not. what happened is we had two years of complete deadly silence, and it was his attorney general, deputy attorney general rod rosenstein who viewed it crucial and important to appoint a special counsel. that's his appointee. and he thought to do so because he was aghast at some of the actions that might have contributed to an obstruction of justice charge. >> congresswoman, always a pleasure. thank you for your insights. i appreciate it. >> thank you for having me. so what might be going on inside the justice department tonight in the wake of the report that some of mueller's investigators see their findings as more damaging for the president than the attorney general revealed? i'm going to ask a former doj senior official next. when you rent from national...
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we're back with breaking news, "the new york times" reporting tonight that members of the special counsel's team believe that the mueller report is more damaging to the president than the attorney general william barr has revealed. this as a battle between congress and the doj is really heating up right now with the house judiciary committee authorizing a subpoena for the full report, no redactions, the full report. let's bring in now matt axelrod. thank you for joining us on this very important subject. i'm ready to hear if you. you were a senior official at the justice department, give me your reaction to this reporting from the "new york times" tonight. >> yeah, so i think we now have
seen william barr's characterization of the mueller report. and if the "times" reporting is accurate, we have a characterization of the mueller report from one or more members of -- who were close to the mueller investigative team or on the team. but i think what's important is for congress and the american teem to see the report itself. the characterizations are just that, characterizations. and i think for everyone to have sort of confidence and knowledge about what the mueller investigation found we need to see the report. >> so, listen, mueller's team, the special counsel's team has been tight lipped through this entire investigation. what does it say to you that some of the members of the team now are expressing frustration to associates. >> yeah. i mean, i'm of two minds about it, don, on the one hand i think it's unfortunate that information is coming out this way. as you said the members of the team have been incredibly tight
lipped, nothing has leaked for the entire course of the investigation and i think it's unfortunate now that stories like this are appearing. but on the other hand i think what it's reflective of, i would assume, is some real frustration and disagreement with how, if the reporting is accurate, how the attorney general has characterized the principal conclusions of the report. >> and, again, we should always lead with a caveat, if this reporting is -- "the new york times" reporting, very reputable. but they're reportedly expressing their frustration of their associates right now. matt, another question. if multiple summaries were already written why would barr write a letter characterizing the report as the principal conclusions without using any of the summaries that were already written. >> yeah. i believe what the "new york times" is reporting is that there was concern that the summaries that were prepared by the mueller team were themselves
contained information that had to be sort of redacted. it was deemed either classified information, grand jury information, or other sensitive information. but, you know, what strikes me as a little bit odd here is that there weren't conversations between the mueller team and doj leadership as to how this was all going to be handled on the back end. you would expect that, you know, in an ordinary manner, and granted this is no ordinary matter, that there might have been some conversation about how this was going to roll out and if the mueller team intended for one of their summaries to be the summary that got released publicly, or sent to the hill or anything like that, that there be some conversation with doj about that. we of course don't know whether any conversations like that occurred. >> listen. i want to read you something of what the times is reporting now. mr. barr and other justice department officials believe the special counsel's investigators fell short of their task by
declining to decide whether mr. trump illegally obstructed the inquiry according to the two government officials. what do you make of that, matt? >> yeah, so i'm glad you asked. i am reserving judgment until i see the full report, and i think we all should so we can make up our own minds. but i have some doubt as to whether the way the attorney general characterized it in his four-page summary of the principal conclusions is the way mueller intended. in other words, in my time at doj, i worked there for over 12 years, not once in a single case can i recall a prosecutor ever saying, you know, this decision is hard, this is a close call. i'm not going to make a decision, and leaving it up to you, boss. so i suspect, although i don't know because i haven't seen the report, that that is not what happened here and this isn't, of course, any ordinary case. it's one of the most
consequential investigations going on in a long time. and so my sense is that it may be that what the special counsel did on the on instruction question, knowing that doj policy is that you cannot charge a sitting president, even if there was sufficient evidence, he didn't make that determination because it's not his determination to make and he intended, whatever information he developed, to be handed over to congress because that's the proper forum to evaluate what possible remedy there might be. >> mr. axelrod, i appreciate your time, thank you so much. >> thank you. "the new york times" is reporting that some members of the mueller's team worried about americans already having made up their minds about the report based solely on william barr's letter. should we be concerned? w, weeds are lowdown little scoundrels. don't stoop to their level. draw the line with the roundup sure shot wand. it extends with a protective shield and targets weeds more precisely.
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started at the calm these folks down in the break because they were ready to talk. more reaction to tonight's bombshell report that some of mueller's investigators believe their findings were more damaging for president trump than what has been revealed by the attorney general. here they are, margaret hoover and frank bruney. we're coming out of break. let me read some of it. good evening, everyone. frank, i'm reading this from the report. some members of mr. mueller's team are concerned that because mr. barr created the first narrative of the special counsel's findings american's views will have hardened before the investigation's conclusions become public. so it did contain little from the actual report, very few quotes. was this setting the narrative? >> i'm really glad you read that part. that was the part of the story that jumped out to me. my parents always said to me first impressions are the most parent because you can never undo them and they're the most
lasting up withes. our first impressions of this report, based on four pages by the attorney general is hey, it's not so bad and i think we all knew that with nearly 400 pages there were going to be other interpretations to come. but the narrative has been set, this first shot out of the cannon is this one and a lot of americans don't pay the amount of attention, daily, hourly that we do to this. and you're laughing because -- >> it's most. >> so a lot of them heard the first day story and the second day story. they won't hear the 12th day story when we'll get to a much more nuanced and accurate estimation of what's in the report. >> very quickly to add to frank oets's point, what did donald trump do the second the barr summary came out? no collusion, no -- >> he didn't say anything for a while and everyone was like, wow, he's being restrained. >> no collusion, total exoneration, no obstruction. so even though we would obviously say, in the media,
again, yes, no established collusion, no recommendation on obstruction, but not fully exonerated, the truth of the matter is, and frank's right, one of those things fits in a five second sundound bite on a bumper sticker, maybe he'll put no collusion, total exoneration. don't want to rule that one out. but the point is, that's what people -- he will have spent a month minimum repeating that. and for all of our fact checks -- it's frustrating because people say to me, fact check him more. a guy came up to me today and said that. literally, give me your e-mail address, i will send you the pieces i write. you're really asking when you try to correct the facts why doesn't it have more of an impact? >> i said that last night and i was talking to chris, i said it's really exhausting fact checking this president because -- he called it tedium.
i call it exhausting. margaret, the report says that members of mueller's team are frustrated because they said there were already summaries that were written. >> right. >> and barr did not use them. isn't that the whole reason why democrats are demanding unredacted, fully transparent, hand it over immediately? >> depends which democrats. some democrats are hounding this because for political reasons. and the real argument, and this is a fair one, is the american people paid for this investigation. and ought to know what's in the report. and certainly there is, i think, a reasonable degree to which some information can be redacted, probably should be redacted for national security purposes, to secure the identities of people who are innocent, that's entirely reasonable. but we'll know what's reasonable when we see it. it's like the joke about pornography, i guess, you know it when you see it. so there are 400 pages in this report and it's certainly understandable, believable that
there are details in the report that might be and feel and give texture to not just a more nuanced but maybe a more incriminating idea of the president's posture and his approach to the investigation. >> that's why i was always surprised that he's saying -- and everyone's saying let the whole thing. >> he said the same thing about his tax returns, didn't he? >> hold on, how do you think republicans on the hill are going to react to this? this is new tonight. we haven't heard much. >> the story itself really doesn't have a lot of details. there's nobody on the record so they'll probably hashtag fake news it. >> yeah. >> the failing "new york times." >> that's the whole problem, we live in such a partisan environment, right, that until we see as much of the report or the whole report, it's going to be interpretation versus interpretation. it's going to be that's "the new york times," you can't trust them, or that's the summary from barr, you can't trust him. that's why we have to see as much of it as possible because otherwise it's a battle of
interpretations. >> one thing we do know, to pick up on margaret's point, one thing we do know is that mueller found evidence on both sides of the obstruction -- no obstruction. that's literally in there. >> she said that in the break. >> that's in there. >> that's the important part and we have an election coming up, yeah. >> there's going to be some evidence that -- unfortunately i'm kind of with frank, i wrote a piece a while back what if the mueller report doesn't change anything? we all looked to it as the mueller report, it's going to decide everything. we're going to know -- >> you did. i didn't. i did not. >> many people thought this would be the neutral arbiter we need to clear donald trump -- but more and more likely it's not going to be. you will find, assuming most of it comes out, you will find things where donald trump acted in ways that may not have been clearly illegal, but are ways that you would not want a president to act. >> the way he's been acting for two years. >> people are going to seize on that. and the other people say, well,
he didn't charge him so who cares? it's very frustrating day in and day out. >> people are going to say well -- other folks are saying it didn't clear him. one as to look at the people around him and what they have been charged with. what mama always said, birds of a feather, block together, so you wonder why that is. but again -- >> and there's some bad birds. >> do people out there actually think, even if the report was incriminating, that that was going to remove a sitting president from office? it is not going to happen. do you know what it takes to remove a president? he -- i mean, he probably could shoot somebody. >> in this environment -- >> not 53 republican senators. >> it takes a much different republican party than we have and some really bad birds are flocking with this peacock. >> everybody stay with me. the chairman of the house ways and means committee is formally requesting the president's tax returns. will he get them?
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♪ so you can achieve what you're working for. ♪ a major move by house democrats likely to spark a giant battle with the white house. chairman of the powerful house ways and means committee make ago formal request to the irs to see president trump's tax returns from 2013 to 2018. back with me, chris solissa and frank bruney. they're saying they want six years. are they going to be obtain these, do you think? >> this is a political move that will trigger a legal fight. this is based on a 1924 provision in irs tax code that was basically put there to try to mitigate the executive power
over the legislative branch. to really create more sharing of power. in that 1924 law it says that if the ways and means committee chairman, richard neal, requests them of the treasury department, he can request any american's they' that the secretary of the treasury shall turn it over. now, the issue is well is this a legitimate above board investigation, or are democrats just trying to score political points and that's going to come down i think -- trump is not turning these over. steve mnuchin is not going to be like -- it's just not going to happen. it will become a legal fight, and then it's a question of what court does it end up in, and how do they feel about it? >> you mentioned mnuchin, let's listen. >> based upon the request we'll examine it, and we will follow the law. >> thank you. >> i would expect that we would -- i'm not aware if there's ever been a request for an elected official's tax return, but we will follow the law, and we will protect the
president as we would protect any individual taxpayer under their rights. >> the president is not in the individual taxpayer. i mean, what do you guys think of that response? >> thanslatiranslation we will this to smithereens, and he'll be long out of the white house before this gets resolved. i have about as much hope of laying eyes on his tax returns of getting a really good shot of big foot. >> some have seen pictures of big foot. >> right next to the lock ness monster. >> i don't see this happening anytime in the future, there is one part in the letter to the irs commission in which he says and i really hope this would get answered though it won't, is has he ever been under audit during this period. you remember that donald trump's answer --
>> michael cohen in his testimony says he doesn't believe that the president is under audit. when we find out if the democrats if they're successful? >> look, here's the thing about the tax returns. i think the president has probably gotten very solid legal advice from his different legal teams that he can continue to say i can't give them away. i'm so sorry knowing full well that he is never going to be forced to overturn them, knowing full well they'll probably win if they have to go to court and knowing full well they're going to go to court because democrats won the house of representatives. what we need to do as americans, if we believe there is a sacred precedent, we need to pass a law. you need to pass it through the house of representatives and congress and get the next president to sign it. frankly we should do that and we've done it before when sacred precedents have been broken. when the two term rule of governance from washington's two terms in office was broken by
franklin delano roosevelt, when we decided nepotism in the executive branch, not the white house, just appointing your brother as attorney general wasn't acceptable anymore we passed a law. we don't do that anymore. that's how we make our country better. >> there's no nepotism. >> there's no nepotism at least in executive agencies. >> this has been a red line with the president forever. go on and make your point. >> i was going to say we're talking about this as a political move by democrats but can we not lose sight of the fact that democrats are in the moral right here. we as americans deserve to see our president's tax returns. we will never know whom he owes, where he's getting his money from and where the conflicts of interest are. >> and if he's compromised. >> he doesn't want us to see those very things why. >> that's important. i think so many people, the pushback i always hear, what do you care how rich he is. most people the common sense is well, he might be a little less rich but he's still very rich. all you reporters are out to get him.
that's not really the point. i'll grant, donald trump is a billionaire. even people who are critical of him say the guy is worth probably less than he says but he's not worth s-- who does he owe money to? >> how did he obtain his wealth. >> there's a lot in there, despite his assurances that the financial forms he files say more than the tax returns, folks, they don't. ask any tax attorney, any accountant, they will tell you. >> chris, they are too his tax return is to a four page summary as to a. >> i just want to get to this reporting. she points it out, that could potentially include financial statements to bank or underlying loan documents, closing statements for purchases of sale of real estate and on and on and on. we don't know what's in there, and a lot could be revealed. >> a lot could be revealed.
the senate select intelligence, the senate select committee on intelligence has also obtained several financial documents as well. we all are talking about the mueller report, but their report will be coming out in the next few months as well. that will have a degree of disclosure and transparency on the president's finances as well, which will shed light on this conversation. >> we do know one thing when it comes to the president's finances. we know that he doesn't tell the truth, right? and so that's why -- >> what? >> oh, i'm sorry. i shattered your innocence don lemon. that's why we need to see documents. >> i didn't even get to oranges and oranges. sorry. >> we're 20/20. >> great tease for the future. >> thank you, guys. appreciate it. the "new york times" is reporting that some of robert mueller's investigators think their report is far more damaging for the president than the attorneys general has made it out to be. congressman denny heck reacts next. . when i'm not sharing ideas with my colleagues i'm defending my kingdom.
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this is cnn tonight, i'm don lemon. here's our breaking news, the explosive report tonight in the "new york times" saying that some investigators on special counsel robert mueller's team believer their findings are more damaging for president trump than what's been revealed by the attorney general. we're going to talk a lot more about this coming up. i'm going to ask a member of the house intel committee to weigh in on it. that news coming against the ba backdrop of multiple investigations of president trump. federal prosecutors in new york looking into the president's activities with an assist from michael cohen, his former lawyer. then there's the house oversight committee. they're investigating the president's finances. the committee's chairman now saying an accounting firm that worked for trump will turn over financial documents once a subpoena is issued. and there's also an investigation into the finances of president trump's inaugural committee. the house intelligence committee seeking documents from one of the top