tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN April 9, 2019 12:00am-1:00am PDT
just hours from now the attorney general william barr will face a congressional committee for the first time since he released his four-page letter about the mueller report. the pressure is on to explain why he summed up a report using just a handful of lines from the actual report. democrats on the committee are planning to drill down on that tomorrow. the chairwoman saying this is a quote, in part, even for someone who has done this job before, i would argue it is more suspicious than impressive. attorney general says he'll release a redacted version by the middle of this month and the clock is ticking. it could come any day now. the problem is we don't know how much of the report we'll actually see because the ag is the one mocking the calls on what will be redacted. will law makers press him on what he's going to leave out and why? we're going to find out.
don't know when but stay tuned. good evening, everyone. we'll eventually find out. they'll release it by the end of the month. could come soon but we'll find out how much is going to be redacted. so the attorney general -- is headed to the hill tomorrow. democrats are going to press him about the russia investigation, everything they could. you think we're going to get clues about how much of the report is redacted and why? >> i mean this is previously scheduled budget testimony. i imagine most of the members of the committee would have been willing to post pone the hearing to get to the report and vice versa. and yet it seems we're not expecting him to announce the report tomorrow. and it's interesting to me because it suggests he'd rather get beaten up by democrats on the committee about the timing and the proseby which he's undergoing his review of the mueller report than he would about the substance of the report itself.
what does that tell us in that, in a way is indicative of something. i'm not sure what. it seems he'd rather have a process fight than a substance fight about what's in the mueller report. and they seem to want to make sure the report comes out after the attorney general's testimony. it's already been weeks. i think the information that came out last week to me was quite a bomb shell in indicating there were sumries more or less ready to be released to the public, via the mueller team and the attorney general has chosen not to release them. i imagine that's going to be the top question. >> listen, cnn has obtained an excerpt from the opening chair and the reads like this. i must saw it's extroetdinary to evaluate hundreds of pages of evidence, leakal document findings based on a 22-month long inquiry. and make definitive legal conclusions in less than 48
hours. it is more suspicious than impressive. your conclusion is something we have seen before. we've seen it in your own legal writing. your audition clearly went well. it's not going to be easy for barr tomorrow. >> i can't start without wishing you a hearty congratulations on your engagement. >> congratulations. >> thank you. >> 8:00 on the west coast. >> thank you. the american people want to know about this probably more than my engagement. >> yeah, congratulations. >> look, i think this is going to be in one of those committees where you get a good sense from the democrats of the suspicions they have and the questions they have and that we've been bouncing around for a few weeks now but you don't get a lot of answers.
because barr, i am quite confident is not going to go very far beyond the two letters he's already released. he's going to get beat up for that. but i think he's going to wait until the report is released and he comes back to testify. i think tomorrow is going to be he gets smacked around. democrats, as we just saw the excerpt, raised the important questions that lot of people have. but he is probably unlikely to be very satisfying in what he tells us because the report's not out. the one thing i think he could clear up is whether he had more than 48 hours to make the decision on obstruction of justice. >> they gave it to him early, like a week or two before, right? >> that has been reported but without an on-the-record conformation. it would be important for him to
clear that up. >> let me bring you in. because you say barr could have worked in a bipartisan way to get them as much information as possible, but he didn't. what does that say to you? >> it says to me he was misleading the united states senate when he suggests he was going to have full transparency. i would feel totally misled if i was a member of the united states senate. if you vote to confirm someone based on them saying they're going to be fully transparent, they want to get things out as soon as possible. barr's had this thing now for weeks. he hasn't even released a single full sentence. he could have reached out to some of the congressional leaders, shown the full report to them in a controlled setting and explained the issues. and get as much as it them as soon as possible. and tried to figure out how to get as much aught to them as soon as possible and to the public. the idea there aren't portions he can quote, portions that can
be released or somehow there's a security risk that makes it so that nancy pelosi or jerry nadler, some congressional leader can't see this is hard to believe. and he has a constitutional duty to provide this to the house of representatives. they're being wise by they're giving him time so that way a court will be easier to give them access. but it shouldn't be that way. he should be working with the other side. because this is a moment unamerican history and he should be viewing it that way instead of a partisan issue. >> what is in it for barr to mislead the public, especially considering where he is with his career. he was attorney general for for george h.w. bush. he was an establishment guy. is his legacy on the line with the mueller report? >> i think his actions over the last few weeks are going to be under enormous scrutiny and if it is found or people determine he has misled the amarcon
-- american public, it's going to be a big part of his political record. and that makes it all the more astonishing. >> you said in the bottom line conclusions, maybe because they did leave one up to him and what he was doing was leaving up to the congress. you can talk about that. i'm just wondering maybe he's right on the can conclusions. it's the other things people may look unfavorably upon if this is their president. >> i think you're right. iage both sides are going to have a different narrative about the attorney general conduct here. in one way. we learned with james comey. he maybe more concerned about the criticism he's about to get
from the right. and from president trumps allies. trump's allies than he is from the people who are looking at this from the point of view about the political material about president trump's in there. you've already seen some of this showing up. and i strongly suspect they're actually going to criticize barr for somehow not being a faithful enough water carrier for the president. >> democrats have been united in demanding the pull release of the report. the public wants to see it too. 84% say make it public. do you think any of that matters to barr? >> it's pretty amazing in american politics to get 84% of americans to agree on a political question. that is amazing. i haven't seen that number until you just showed it. what was the question, don?
>> twill matter to barr? that the american people. that's a big number. >> i think so. he is a political actor. everyone in an administration is aware of public opinion on the big issues that they have to decide. he said he's going to release the report, right? so that poll the democrats, like nadler, sending all these letters and putting the daily pressure on him, that has to weigh on him in terms of the decision making and redactions and how much to show. whatever he redakts, there is going to be a fight from the overwhelming majority of people up on the hill and from the media who want the whole thing out there. so he has to be aware his redactions have to be on solid, factual and legal grounds because they're going to be challenged.
>> do you think democrats are asking. didn't you say something. we shouldn't see or members of congress shouldn't see some of the things in the report? >> i think members of congress should see the whole thing. i don't think the public should see classified material or certain grand jury information. >> you think democrats will be satisfied with a version that is redacted? he's indicating he has to do it. >> if nancy pelosi and jerry nadler get on a stage and say they've seen what's under the redactions they're fine with it, democrats will be fine with it. that's what needs to happen. >> thank you all. >> bernie sanders is sounding an awful lot like bht it comes to his tax returns. what are they trying to hide? (client's voice) remember that degree you got in taxation?
to respond for the demands tax returns. bernie sanders saying in february he'd release them sooner rather than later. let's talk about all of this going on. the author of "everything trump touches dies." hello, everyone. rick, if there's one thing bernie sanders and donald trump have in common it is a reluctance to release their taxes despite repeatedly pledging to do so. watch this. >> i with will release my tax returns and that's against my lawyers, they say don't do it. >> yeah, we will. it's all done and it's a question of dotting the is and crossing the ts. >> i want to release them but not while i'm under the audit. when the audit's finished, i'll release my tax returns. >> april 15th is coming and that will be the tenth year and we will make them all public.
i'm delighted to do that. proud to do that. hey, mr. trump, you do the same thing. >> so what are they trying to hide? >> i think it's simple. i think donald trump doesn't want people to know he's not rich as he says he is and bernie sanders doesn't want people to know he's more rich than he says he is. they're in a political hypocrisy. in bernie's case, it's rich with irony because he's giving donald trump a weapon to cut off his head. if he becomes the democratic nominee. >> that's a good assessment. >> maybe bernie sanders wants people to think he's one with the people and he may make more money, be more well off than people think he is. i don't know it that will make ha difference. listen, it doesn't mock a difference on the other side with trump that he's not as rich
that he says he is and his people buy it. did president trump set a precedent that bernie sanders or anybody else can follow? >> no. we have po to separate the two things. and number one, bernie is now the frontrunner in the democratic primary. he is no longer the candidate who is trying to take on the establishment. he's not protest candidate. so i think talts part of of why this issue has come back again. obviously democrats are trying to see trumps tax returns. and the fact that frankly in 2016 throughout the primary he kept kicking the can down the road with the issue and bet became a thing where he should release the returns and get the issue of af the table. that's very different than donald trump. yes, there's hypocrisy to both of it but with trump we're actually talking about potential laws being broken. we're not just talking about
maybe him over inflating his own earnings. >> although that can be illegal depending on the circumstances. >> yes, it can. we know for example he maw be getting rich off of being president because he didn't divest as he said he would do. and we heard from his former attorney that he, at times, would over value for one purpose and undervalue for another purpose. we know there are a ton of lawsuits ongoing. with regard to president trump, in addition to a, he said he would do it and b, it is a long-standing tradition that he's broken and there may be defrauding of the american taxpayer, public and breaking of other laws. i think we should keep the two a little distinct. >> there's a big difference. >> one has been president for two years and the other is still a candidate and still did not win last time.
not the president. if me gets closer to the nomination, democrats should put just as much pressure on him to release his tax returns as they did with president trump. although it would be different, business, but who knows. i've been watching the talking points about protect private citizens and that doesn't play either. it's important to note there's no irs. no irs rule which prevents the president from releasing his tax returns, even if he were under audit. why keep hiding behind that? >> i dont know. i think the president -- that's the reason he laid out and he stuck with it. i don't know that it's a valid reason. i don't know it's invalid. that's what he decided to go with. if i were running for president, i'd probably release mine. i think if i was taken the position as trump, i suppose i'd keep fighting as well.
sanders, i think the democratic primary constituency is going to be more disdainful of it than the republican primary constituency was for trump in 2016. i think for the trump folks, he's got several lines of inquiry. congressional investigations and other legal issues that may wind up forcing these things into the public anyway. you may need to get this out on your own terms as opposed to someone else's. we're going to find out donald trump's a pretty wealthy guy and in real estate you take advantage of a lot of stuff normal people don't. and for sanders we're going to find out he's rich with a bunch of houses and that doesn't square with his talking points either. >> donald trump is lying. it is a lie to say that because you're under audit from the irs and somehow you can't then show your tax returns. and it is it the way of donald
trump to keep leaning into the lies because once he's invested in a particular lie, he keeps repeating it over and over and and over again. it's likely that most americans don't realize and not thinking about kwl or not that matters. what they will care about, and i believe this is where 2 it will become an issue in the egeneral election. if you have defrauded the american people. he bragged about the fact he's so smart he doesn't pay taxes. what that says is you don't think you have to play by the same rules as the rest of us. this year people are going to find out -- most middle class and lower income americans are not going to get back as much money in their own tax returns as president trump told them they would. so it's going to matter. >> nick mulvaney is the acting chief of staff.
i want to play this for rick. he talks about requesting the president's tax returns. listen. >> to be clear you believe democrats will never see the president's tax returns? >> no, never. nor should they. that's an issue that was litigated during the election. voters knew the president could have given his tax returns and he didn't and they elected him anyway. which of course drives the democrats crazy. they just want the attention on the issue because they don't want to talk to us about policy. >> is that a legitimate excuse? it's already been litigated? >> the argument that's litigated during the election. it makes no difference where it stood as an issue in the election. the fact is the law allows the congressional committee to request these documents and steve mnuchin's got decision to make. is he going to basically hold himself in contempt of congress to get the president's tax
returns? and i think we probably will. but he's mistaken that matters at all whether it was an issue in the campaign. it's a matter of law and the rule of law still does count in this country. there used to be this thing where we had these norms and institutional value wheres presidential candidates gave their tax returns to the american people to have a look at. his reasons for probably nefarious, probably embarrassing to another degree. but bernie sanders is not helping by hiding his tax returns and playing insane games with donald trump. but i think mule veiny is fundamentally wrong. and we'll end up seeing the returns at some point. whether it's through the current situation in congress. or whether new york state is going to request his state tax returns
which largely parallel the federal tax returns. given the new york tax code. >> i got to tell you. we've got three cnn presidential town halls. live from washington this week. first up is senator kirsten gillibrand, moderated by erin burnett. and wednesday with jay insly and i'm going to moderate the town hall with julian castro. on thursday. three nights three town halls. all begins tomorrow night at 10:00 eastern on cnn. and i'll be here after tomorrow night at 11:00. and coming up next who is burning black churches in louisiana and why? i'm going to talk to official try to get some answers. that's next. when we started our business
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joining me now. the mayor. pastor freddy jacky of the senior pastor at st. john's baptist church. we're happy you're here. thank you so much, both of you, to discuss this. so going to start with you. three churches burn, ten days. your church has not bun attacked. but are people afraid? >> they're not afraid. they're just concerned, knowing it could have easily been other churches, including this one. so for the most part we're remaining prayerful until something is given in terms of a result. >> do you feel the community is being targeted? >> i feel all three of the churches are in our district, which the seventh district. at first we thought it might an electrical problem. and then when the second church burning occurred, i realized it was our sister church also.
and in a rural area. and two days later the third occurred. it leaves me to think we're being targeted. >> let's talk about the investigation. police are working around the clock to get to the bottom of this. what can you tell us? >> they're in the infancy in the investigation. >> as you said churches burn in two days. -- ten days. but they're working collectively with the governor's office and local officials here, the fire chief and the police chief, who is also a member of the seventh district. we talk each and every day about the upcomings and the briefings that's going on. but to say we have any specifics right now, it's still too soon to say that. >> it's a bit premature. i understand that. in a statement the naacp said
the spike in church burnings in southern states is a reflection of the embolden racial rhetoric and tension spreading across the country. we don't know the cause of the fires. explain to the public why the burning of churches has so much significance, especially in the south. >> i can't say for one reason or another that actual burning was a racist act. or a hate crime. until we can determine who caused them, who's behind them, i don't think we can rightfully or truthfully say it was either or. we need think before we can generate what it is targeted by. >> listen i thunk i conveyed that. i'm wondering the significance of church burnings and why people get alarmed because of the history in the south, churches would be burned many times by the clan and other
folks. and people who just racist. who burned down black churches. i want to play a video. this is his plea to whoever is it behind the acts of violence. listen to him. >> if you participated in this, you have sucomeb to evil, powers and principalities are controlling your life. i encourage you to look deep into your heart and step away from the darkness that has enveloped you and turn yourself in because you will be caught. >> mayor, do you think his plea has any chance of working? >> you would hope so, don. his words does have some strength to it. this individual or individuals who are participated in these heinous crimes they have committed, the relevance to --
the impact on the people in the surrounding communities and especially the congregation, it's hurtful and there may be some fear that is being exhibited by those part of the churches that have been impacted. at the same time but what is in the dark will come to light and these individuals will. there's going to be that day where that mistake is made and when that mistake is made. all the local law enforcement agencies and those working nationally and through the governor office and the state. local law enforcement agencies and those through the government's office, they're going to gather up and let justice take its place after that. >> you say it is a blessing that no one has been hurt. i'm sure you'll continue to have services as police are on the hunt for whoever is responsible. >> yes, don. we will continue.
we'll have regular services. the churches effected have relocated to other areas where they will continue to have their sunday services. and any other need they have in terms of a space, the sisters churches have offered the use of their facilities for those purposes to be serve the families mouth be accommodated. >> joining us from my home state. louisiana. best of luck. thank you for keeping us updated. >> and congratulations to you too, sir. >> my fellow louisianan, thank you so much. hope to see you soon. i want to bring you james galliano. what is going here? they stopped short of calling this a hate crime but did say suspicious elements were found in each case here. what do you think? >> i think first all of the pastor nailed it.
we have to be cautious. we've got to follow the evidence. obviously you see something luke this, it's a history in the deep south. and these were three churches on very close area down there. now before they can be linked together and i think it's important they're taking a look at this because they've got the resources and obviously the history of looking into crimes of violence that are targeting something like a historically black church. >> they're all over 100 years old. >> early 19th century. absolutely. they'll be looking for any type of accelerant and what things could be found at one crime scene and linked to the other. if there's a pattern and a serial arsonist. that's what they're looking for. >> to say they're a suspicious element, we don't know but --
usually. if there's an electrical fire you can tell early on. >> that's what the arson investigation is go doing. look, was this a trade wire, cord? because that wasn't the case and they've bun pretty clear to say there's suspicious elements. that says foul play is involved. >> that can happen especially when you're retrofitting buildings, structures that have been up for a while? >> absolutely. but three in ten days in one county. >> arson investigations take a while, right? >> they can. evidence gets destroyed. that's the issue. you've got to piece it together when a lot of the evidence would have been burned up in the fire. folks that are doing this, especially the tobacco of alcohol and firearms, they'll get to the bottom of of this and bring them to justice. and congratulations. >> thank you, sur. i really appreciate that.
about sometimes among progressives in the united states, maybe it's true here as well. is a certain kind of fridgeidity, where we say i'm sorry. this is how it's going to be and then we start sometimes creating what's called a circular firing squad. where you start shooting at your allies because one of them is straying from purity. on the issues. and when that happens, typically the overall effort and movement weakens. >> so will the ever expanding 2020 field listen to the former president? let's discuss now. thank you, gents. so i want to start with you. he was basically telling democrats don't mess this up.
he must be concerned. >> yeah. there's every possibility they could mess it up. but i think he is stating a legitimate concern but i would push back on what he said. yes, you don't want people creating a circular firing squad and attacking each other in a personal way. and you dont want the noman so impeded and hammered that he or she cannot compete, which is almost what happened to hillary clinton in 2016. at the same time they can't always agree. you have to have rigorous debate. they have to separate them selves and show who they are as individuals. i don't think there's anything wrong with setting some litmus tests but you have to figure out which one you're going to believe in. they have litmus tests about abortion or lgbtq rights or jobs
and health care. all of those things are litmus tests too. i think what people are saying is we don't want to create anymore that may not fit our standards. >> you know the president very well. when he says shooting at each other over ideological purity, what does he want to see them do? do you agree with what keith said? >> i do. i've heard the president over to make this point approximately 12,000 times. this is somewhat to candidates and also to the democratic voters. which is we are in this to get something done. and we should push as hard for the cause we care about. it's not to tweet. but it is to work with in the process when you get into office. and that may require getting something via compromise or in multiple steps. and sometimes progress happens in fits and starts. a robust debate is very important. in this primary.
it's not just okay. it's necessary to have having a strong nominee. we can't be in the world -- it is important that debate happens in a way unwhich the candidates don't burn bridges that make it hard for the party. to come together in the fall. >> remember thal shalt not speak ill of any republicans. after surviving a particularly nasty primary. do you think democrats need to take a page from the republican play book. especially when you have a field of this large. remember, it was 18 people or 17? >> we have 18 candidates currently. >> they all -- hate is a strong word. they disliked donald trump. the moment he became the nominee, everybody fell in line. >> some people didn't really fall in line. eventually they did. now the entire republican party seems to be behind him, even
people like mitt romney today saying things defending him. there's two different stages of this campaign. this is what i want democrats to be smart about. primary is when you fight hard. for what you believe and values. general election is when the party comes together and we fight against the other party. we don't fight against ourselves. this is what happened to us in 2016. we don't want the same mistake. we almost -- remember after obama won, there were a lot of hillary clinton supporters who were reluctant to vote for obama. that will happen every process. you can't eat our own when it comes to the general election. we can fight now. but come together next fall. >> i want to get your opinion on an opinion piece. opinion piece on cnn.com by a former obama advisor. the goal post for campaigning has shifted suns baum obama's era, grappling with a party that may not nominate him today.
and it's being used to dung people close to him, joe bide whoon can't seem to stop touching peepl and cracking jokes about it and kamala harris, whose record as a prosecutor, supporting three strikes laws, has called into question her ability to confront racism in the cruminal justice world. what do you think of that analysis? >> we have to separate what actual voters believe. what will drive their decision in the fall. the massive amount of hysteria. some of these may end up being issues for the candidates. kamala harris is doing quite well. she's firm lain the top tier of the democratic primary. which is very impressive. for someone who's been on the national political stage for a few years. it's not yet clear that concerns
some may have as her role as a prosecutor dash i thunk as stake holders in the party and voters, people should have the opportunity to change and evolve over time. it is relevant what a candidate believed or did five years ago. or ten years ago. the question is what do they believe now and how do they tell the story of how they made the journey from then until now? and all the concerns people have about vice president biden, he's still doing quite well. so this is going to play itself out over time. it's not clear what's happening on twitter is what's going to happen in the primary election. >> that's got to be the last word. i appreciate it. actress pleading guilty in the college admissions scandal and apologizing in a new statement. that's next. (danny) let me get this straight.
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admitted to paying $15,000 to pay a fake charity who ran a college prep business to coordinate cheating for her daughter. on sats. she faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. but in exchange for the plea federal prosecutors will recommend incarceration at a low end of the sentencing range, a $20,000 fine, and 12 months of supervised release. shortly after the announcement huffman released a statement taking complete responsibility for her actions. she wrote this. i am pleading guilty to the charge brought against me. by the united states attorney office. i am in full acceptance of my guilt. i accept full responsibility for my actions and will accept the consequences that stem from those actions. i am ashamed of the pain i've caused my daughter, my family, my friends, my colleagues and the educational community. i want to apologize to them and especially i want to apologize
to the students who work hard every day to get into college. and to their parents who make tremendous sacrifices to support their children and do so honestly. my daughter knew absolutely nothing about my actions, and in my misguided and profoundly wrong way i have betrayed her. this transgression toward her and the public i will carry for the rest of my life. my desire to help my daughter is no excuse to break the law or engage in dishonesty. now, i want to be clear here. there's absolutely no excuse for huffman's actions. okay? but she appears to be owning up to it. and she's apologizing. and that's a lot more than i can say for others. or that others can say as well. some other defendants aren't showing any signs of taking responsibility. and honestly that includes actress lori loughlin and her husband.
fashion designer. they allegedly paid a half million dollars to get their two daughters designated as recruits to the u.s. sea crew team even though they didn't actually row crew. but the charges didn't stop loughlin from signing autographs, posing for photos with fans when arriving in boston ahead of her court hearing. wasn't a good look. wanting the best for your children, that's fine. most parents do. but committing crimes to get what you want for your children, whether they deserve it or not, whether they want it or not, that's wrong. and that's a lesson the parents in this college admissions scandal need to learn. thanks for watching, everyone. and thank you for the well wishes. i appreciate it. our coverage continues. these folks, they don't have time to go to the post office they have businesses to grow customers to care for lives to get home to they use stamps.com
virginia captures its first ever men's basketball title in an overtime thriller. democrats plan to grill attorney general bill barr about the mueller report in a capitol hill hearing just hours from now. israelis are voting right now as long time prime minister benjamin netanyahu's reign hangs in the balance. i'm ready to solve these problems, i'm running for president of the united states. >> a new democratic candidate just joined the 2020 race