tv Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN May 13, 2019 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
president's son does not want to answer. ray ban, mr. trump's hand picked fbi director is being bashed by his boss. he refused to say the trump campaign was improper surveillance. might wray be fired. actress felicity huffman please guilty breaking down in court. will she be sent to prison? we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." this is cnn breaking news. we're following breaking news on the worst losses for u.s. stocks in months. the dow jones industrials closing down a whopping 617 points as worries about an escalating u.s./china trade war weigh heavily on the markets.
tonight president trump is threatening another round of retaliation after china raised tariffs on american goods hitting back at new u.s. tariffs and defined warnings by mr. trump. also breaking, cnn has learned that donald trump jr. is refusing to answer more questions about the 2016 trump tower meeting and the pursuit of a trump tower in moscow. the president's son clearly in a standoff over a new subpoena approved by the republican chairman of the senate republican committee. this hour i'll talk to a democrat on the house intelligence committee and the house oversight committee. our correspondents and analysts are standing by. let's go to our chief white house correspondent, jim acosta. the president spoke out about a multiple range of topics earlier today including the trade war with china. >> that's right, wolf. a trade war with no end in sight. president trump said he's happy with how his trade war is
playing out with china tonight. the president shrugged off china's retaliatory tariffs even after some of his aides as knowledged there could be pain for consumers. as the president praised hungary, he praised russia and lashed out at the mueller investigation. president trump downplayed the impact of beijing's decision to impose retaliatory tariffs that caused big losses on wall street. >> this is a very positive step. i love the position we're in. there can be some retaliation but it can't be very, very substantial by comparison. >> reporter: in a sign of how the trade battle can hit the u.s. heartland the president said he'll be seeking to provide assistance to farmers who are hammered by china tariffs. >> a small portion will be going to our farmers because china
will be retaliating to a certain extent against our farmers. >> reporter: the president tweeted a tweet to beijing. it's a fight that could be costly. >> to some extent i don't disagree with that. again, both sides, both sides will suffer on this. >> reporter: the president is also defending his administration's decision so far to refuse to cooperate with a range of investigations launched by congressional democrats. >> i can tell you there has never been anybody so transparent as the trump administration. >> reporter: over the weekend the president lashed out at his own fbi director christopher wray after he failed to echo his attorney general's concerns. he quoted a conservative activist saying the fbi has no leadership. the director is protecting the same gang that tried to over throw the president through an illegal coup. he laid into former white house counsel don mcgahn after he refused to say he did not commit
obstruction of justice. don mcgahn had a better chance of being fired than mueller. never a big fan. lindsey graham is advising donald trump jr. to ignore a subpoena to testify from the senate intelligence committee. >> if i were donald trump jr.'s lawyer i would tell him you don't need to go back into this environment anymore. i o call it a day. >> reporter: >> the day richard nixon failed to answer that subpoena is the day that he was subject to impeachment because he took a power from congress over the impeachment process away from congress and he became the judge and jury. >> reporter: the president raised eyebrows when he praised hungary's far right leader as he welcomed the prime minister to the oval office. >> people have a lot of respect for this prime minister. you look at some problems that they have in europe that are tremendous because they've done it a different way than the prime minister. >> reporter: it was another example of mr. trump embracing a leader who has bashed immigrants
and ignored freedoms. >> probably like me a little bit controversial but that's okay. that's okay. you've done a good job and you've kept your country safe. >> reporter: the president used the occasion to issue another warning to iran. >> i'm hearing little stories about iran. if they do anything, they will suffer greatly. >> reporter: the president said he will be meeting with china's xi jinping and vladimir putin at the g20 summit. the u.s. will be getting along just fine with moscow. an interesting promise that he made in the oval office, he promised not to use any stolen information from a foreign government in the upcoming 2020 campaign, something the president claimed he did not do in 2016. wolf, we have to provide some context here. the president did certainly welcome that kind of help during the 2016 campaign when he invited the russians to get their hands on hillary clinton's emails. >> jim, thank you. jim acosta at the white house.
let's get a look at donald trump's jr.'s refusal so far to return for questioning before the committee. kara is working it for us. he faces a new subpoena. there are some sensitive subjects he clearly is refusing to discuss. >> yeah, that's right, wolf. we've learned that donald trump jr. is specifically wanting to be asked about the june 2016 meeting at trump tower with the russian lawyer and the plans to potentially develop a trump tower in moscow. what sources tell us is don jr. had agreed to come before the committee on two separate occasions to answer these questions but then he balked. part of the reason he balked we're told is because sources told us he didn't want to have a re-do of the testimony he's already given. he testified before them and two other committees, one in the house and one in the senate. the concern is they want to retread this ground. there's a concern this could be
a perjury trap because they're so focused on this. they were asking him to come in and they wanted to have a follow-up on this but when they got into the nitty-gritty, they wanted to cover 12 topics with no ground rules. >> one scenario you're hearing is maybe he would be willing to answer questions in writing, sort of the way his father did with the mueller investigators. >> yeah, that's right. one issue on the table is that there is a possibility that his lawyers will be open to don jr. answering questions about the trump tower meeting and the plans to develop in moscow but sources tell us that the committee has rejected that as a proposal so they really still are at an impasse. >> what does republican senator richard burr of north carolina, the republican chairman of the senate intelligence committee which issued the subpoena, what is he prepared to do?
>> he's in an interesting position here. he's being not supported by members of his own team. lindsey graham is saying don jr. should not come in. it's a testament of how strong a stance is he going to take on this. the senate intelligence committee is being a bipartisan committee doing a bipartisan investigation on this. he has the support of some there. the question is is he going to continue to push this? will he try to compel donald trump jr. to appear or is this something they're going to continue to negotiate? it doesn't seem like donald trump jr. is going to come back to the hill. the ball is in burr's court. what does he do now? >> if he comes back he could plead the fifth. >> he could come back, plead the fifth. i think his legal team wants to avoid the dog and pony show of it going to capitol hill so there are motivations to try to work something out. they're also pretty far apart at
this moment. if they want to revisit these issues, the mueller report raised some discrepancies in donald trump's previous testimony and that's where you see some democrats wanting him back on the hill to answer questions about that. republicans, including those even in donald trump's jr.'s circle don't think it's wise for him to come back because of the potential he could get caught in perjury. >> if he pleads the fifth, they would play the sound bites of his father saying, if anybody pleads the fifth they would be guilty. thank you for that. joining us now, congressman raja worthy. he serves on the house intelligence and oversight committees. congressman, thank you so much for joining us. let me start with this news on donald trump jr. how can senator burr pursue this and what does it tell you that he's willing to have this fight?
>> he can pursue it aggressively and i think that this move is the right one because there were clear discrepancy's in don trump jr.'s testimony with regard to what he told his father regarding the june 2016 meeting in trump tower, and this is why it's important. from a counter intelligence perspective, if it turns out that he was lying about his discussions with his father about this particular meeting and the russians know that he is lying, that information in itself is called compronaut. it's information that could be used to manipulate don jr., the trump administration and by extension his father. that's why it's so important for senator burr of the senate intelligence committee to pursue this, because this is part of his counter intelligence mission on the committee.
>> very interesting. senator lindsey graham, who's the chairman of the senate judiciary committee, advisie do trump jr. to ignore this. >> it's free advice so it's worth the price you pay for it. i would not take the advice if i were don trump jr. ignoring subpoenas is not a prudent course of action. i think at this point he should comply with the subpoena, but it points to a bigger issue, wolf, which is what you may have pointed to earlier. donald trump, his father is obstructing not only republicans in the house but republicans is the senate. i'm hoping they stand up for the will of the people to exercise over sight of their president. >> judge will weigh in tomorrow
on the subpoena from your committee. the house oversight committee asked for the president's records. the president has sued to block that subpoena. how do you interpret the judge's decision to fast track this? >> i thought the decision to fast track the hearing i will dus straits the importance of the subpoena, the underlying subpoena for the president's records. i think donald trump's attorneys thought that by intervening or suing the mazar's firm in court they would slow down the process and delay as long as possible their turning over the financial records of donald trump to the oversight committee. i think what the judge's ruling illustrates is that i don't think that delay is necessarily going to be in the cards with regard to a lot of these subpoenas and the enforcement of their subpoenas. >> over the weekend the president really went after the current fbi director christopher
wray and former white house counsel dob n mcgahn. if he is totally exonerated, what do you think is behind the new attacks? >> i think he knows the truth, that he was not totally exonerated by the mueller report, and the fact that he tried to get don mcgahn to say that there was no obstruction and the fact that don mcgahn refused to do so and now to get christopher wray to say that somehow spying was done by the fbi on the trump campaign and that he is refusing to say that illustrates that, you know, the facts can be stubborn and the truth is the truth and i think that donald trump is having a hard time obviously accepting that, but that doesn't mean that everyone in his administration is going to follow his lead with regard to that approach. >> the president is threatening more tariffs on china right now.
how long can the president maintain his tough negotiating posture before the american people start to really feel the effects when they go shopping at walmart or other stores and see price increases on a lot of products? >> it's a good question. i don't know, but this illustrates yet another problem we have, which is that mr. trump is at war with everyone at this point. we have a trade war. we have a -- you know, we're inching towards war with iran which i think you mentioned earlier and we don't have friends. that's the problem in these particular disputes. we have significant concerns with chinese trade practices just as we do with iran. they are both bad actors in these respective spheres, however, we need allies and friends to help enforce multi-lateral agreements to make sure that the chinese come to the table and do the right
thing. because we don't we are paying the price, our consumers are paying the price and farmers in illinois are going to pay the price among others and unfortunately our allies are going to swoop in and get the business from the chinese. >> speaking of iran, the president issued some would say not a very vague warning to iran just after secretary of state mike pompeo met with nato allies, shared the information on the current threat coming from iran. you're a member of the house intelligence committee. have you been briefed on that intelligence, the so-called threats that we're hearing about? >> i have. i can't comment specifically on them. all i can say is that iran is a bad actor in the middle east. there's no doubt about it, however, we need allies and friends to get iran to do the right thing ultimately. when mr. pompeo wanted to convene a meeting of foreign ministers of our allied
countries, he was rebuffed, and what's worse is that it's clear iran is a bad actor, but some of our allies are almost viewing our activity and our behavior on equivalent terms with iran. that's a horrible situation. so we need to figure out a way to avoid taking a maximalist approach to a war, which is what i fear the trump administration is trying to do here, and we have to bring our allies with us in a multi-lateral approach toward iran asap. >> as someone who's been briefed on the latest intelligence by the administration, do you know if these are legitimate threats or if some of the more let's say hawkish members of the trump administration are stoking these tensions? >> again, i can't comment on the specifics, wolf, however, let me say this, the iranians have
fullmented all kinds of violence against us and our interests throughout the middle east and there doesn't seem to be an end to that. in fact, it appears that they are continuing to be aggressive on all fronts. from our standpoint, however, we also need our allies and friends to be with us if we want to step up sanctions, if we want to increase pressure and make sure the iranians at least adhere to their nuclear commitments, which they made, and to try to address the other issues that we're concerned about whether it's ballistic missiles, whether it's increased bad activity to syria and so forth. so i'm just saying that right now we need our friends and allies to be with us. they're not and that's a problem. >> very quickly, i know you can't get into specifics, but are u.s. military personnel, whether in iraq and elsewhere in the region, now being threatened
by iranians or iranian proxies? >> they've always been under threat and i think after we -- i think that you saw that we designated the iranian guard, the revolutionary guard as a terrorist organization. i think they came back and designated -- i thought i saw in one published report all of our troops in the middle east as terrorists and belonging to a terrorist organization, which is a big problem in itself and so we have to obviously protect our troops, make sure we stay strong and -- but we need a united front with our friends and allies now more than ever. >> the u.s. still has 5,000 troops in iraq, 7,000 contractors as well. congressman, thanks so much for joining us. >> thank you. and just ahead is donald trump worried that congress will catch him in a lie? we're going to talk about that, why he's trying to dodge a new senate subpoena. we'll also take you inside
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fisher investments. clearly better money management. we're following multiple breaking stories this hour including the subpoena standoff between donald trump jr. and the republican controlled senate intelligence committee. sources tell cnn trump jr. is balance being at answering more questions about the 2016 trump tower meeting and the moscow trump tower.
let's dig deep with gloria borger. donald trump jr. worried about being caught in a lie by congress? >> well, i think that's probably a part of it. obviously congress, particularly a republican chairman, would not be calling him back unless they believed that he believed there were certain discrepancies or potential discrepe pan sigs between what jr. testified to before the committee versus what was in the mueller report and we all know that in the mueller report, particularly given michael cohen's testimony, there's a question about whether don jr. told his father about this trump tower meeting. michael cohen says he believes he did but didn't have, you know, any proof of it, and don jr. also told the committee that he was peripherally involved in the trump tower project in moscow, whereas cohen said that he briefed don jr. and ivanka about ten times on it. so if i had to guess, i would be -- i would think those are a couple of the issues that the committee wanted to go back at
him on. >> you know jeffrey toobin, you heard kara say maybe there is one option, maybe he would answer written questions that were posed by the senate intelligence committee. do you think that's enough for chairman burr? >> it might be. chairman burr is not someone who likes to pick fights with the president of the united states and that may be a face-saving compromise for all concerned, but let's just talk about the law. i mean, the law is not that, well, i spoke to you once, i don't have to speak to you again. it is routine for people to be subpoenaed repeatedly to the grand jury or any other proceeding so the idea that because he spoke once he somehow has immunity from being called back, that's simply not true. now this is a political situation more than it is a legal one and burr in particular is going to have to navigate his duties as chairman, and he did agree to the subpoena, but how much he wants to poke at the president and his son, that's
really what -- the stage we're at now. perhaps written questions will be a compromise he can live with. >> that's interesting you have senator lindsey graham, the chairman of the senate judiciary committee had this advice for donald trump jr. yesterday. >> if i were donald trump jr.'s lawyer i would tell him, you don't need to go back into this environment anymore. you've been there for hours and hours and hours and nothing being alleged here changes the outcome of the mueller investigation. i would call it a day. >> pretty incredible statement from the republican chairman of the judiciary committee. >> it is pretty remarkable. this is lindsey graham suggesting that the president's son shouldn't comply with a subpoena issued by his own body of congress, by actually one of his republican colleagues? senator graham knows there's a pretty big difference between sitting down for a couple of hours with staff versus facing members' questioning which is the issue here. it's also a notable that they're
sort of extending this to the president's son. that's not something we would expect them to be negotiating amongst themselves. donald trump jr. is just a private citizen. it's also notable that lindsey graham is talking about an investigation as if it's just a subsidiary of the mueller investigation. that's not the case. congress investigates this. this is a separate investigation for separate purposes. it's entirely possible that the committee would look at what's described in the mueller report including don jr. couldn't be charged. maybe this wasn't criminal actions but maybe it should be. you have to make sure people don't lie to congress or their committee. >> and by the way, donald trump jr. refused to talk to the mueller investigation. >> right. >> so the idea that he's -- like, well he's dealt with the
mueller investigation. he just gave them the back of the hand. what's unclear in the mueller report is whether donald trump jr. took the fifth or on what grounds he refused to participate. but, you know, lindsey graham's a real lawyer. he was an air force prosecutor for many years. he has to know what he just said was legally ridiculous. i mean, you don't have a right to just ignore a subpoena because you don't like it but, you know, that's the environment we're in. >> he was singing a different tune during the clinton impeachment as we all recall so this is a different point of view for him because he's in a different place right now. >> on another sensitive issue, sabrina, the white house is fighting the subpoena for former white house counsel don mcgahn to testify over the weekend. >> the president tweeted, lawer don mcgahn had much more of a chance of being fired their mueller, never a big fan. >> this came as the president
wanted mcgahn to issue a public statement asserting he did not believe the president obstructed justice. mcgahn through an attorney declined that request from the white house, one, because attorney general william barr made that same conclusion and, two, because they felt it was designed to spin the findings of the mueller report. i think when you look at the attacks on the president and rudy giuliani on mcgahn, it's a tactic they go to. someone is perceived to have turned on the president and they try to undermine that person's credibility. and i think the white house looked at mcgahn being a very central figure in the report. really the key person who in many ways blocked the president from actually being able to obstruct justice, certainly declined to fire robert mueller, the attacks are what they're
resorting to. this is not someone who's credible even though we have no reason to believe -- >> because it takes notes. >> a real lawyer. lawyers should never take notes. >> just today, wolf, the supreme court by a vote of 5 to 4,000. steven prior in his dissent said, you know, look what's coming. i think it was quite clear that this was a message that row v wade will be returned. one of donald trump's most enormous successes, particularly for his supporters. he is now -- you know, don mcgahn is now out of the book of life for donald trump, but remember, mcgahn was the architect of perhaps his most lasting try zblump iumphtriumph >> he makes a good point. >> he has. he has gotten a lot. he didn't be go in as a trump
loyalist. he department be come out as a trump loyalist. the question is whether or not don mcgahn is going to fight this fight, whether he's going to be like harriette myers. forcing the house to compel his testimony through subpoenas or is he going to say, look, if congress subpoenas me, i'm not going to spend the rest of the year of my life trying to fight for this president. i'm going in and telling my story and being done. >> the president's tweet is accurate because the president says, never a big fan. he was never a big fan of don mcgahn's, ever, ever, ever. even after don mcgahn got him those two supreme court justices. i think mcgahn has to have a little discussion with himself, as susan said -- >> he's even a smaller fan now that -- >> not a fan at all. >> he was asked by the white house to say that the president never interrupted justice? yeah. >> much more right after this.
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war? >> you never know with donald trump. it's hard to predict what he's going to do. for example, if you remember family separation policy, he was for it until he decided to stop it, funding the special olympics, declining to fund the special olympics. then he got a lot of blow back, then he decided he wanted to fund it. who knows what's going to happen with china policy. he does have trade negotiators. he doesn't seem to have a real understanding of the impact this would have on anyone other than farmers whom he promised a $15 billion subsidy today given the fact that this would affect them negatively and he knows they are a great deal of his support in the middle of the country. but it's very hard to say, wolf, what's going to happen here. we understand and know the decline in the dow over 600 points today, that might affect him. when he was asked about that today he did not directly answer
that question about the stock market. he'd probably blame jerome powell or something. >> you think he understand, sabrina, average families out there have to spend a lot more money on various products when they go to their big supermarkets or elsewhere to buy stuff for their kids? >> this is the challenge with the president. he very explicitly campaigned on a much more protectionist trade agenda which he said was designed to benefit the american worker, but the people who are hurting because of the tariffs he's imposed, not just on china but on canada and other allies in europe are actually having an adverse effect on the american worker. the key constituencies of the president, we should add, as well as the u.s. consumer. now i think the question is whether or not this is going to escalate into a global trade war and there's not a lot of appetite among members of congress for that even though there is more bipartisan support for holding beijing accountable for unfair trade practices. if this does escalate and there's a great negative impact
on the u.s. economy, you might see members of congress get involved. last year they were looking at limiting the president's authority on trade. we'll see if they revisit that. >> this is a president that says trade wars are good and easy to win. they're operating in a reality free zone. the base goes along. this is an example where reality will come down like a ton of bricks that ultimately mexico is not paying for that wall and china is not paying for the tariffs. the american consumer is and that's going to hurt not just the american public m general but it will hurt in places like iowa and other areas. >> most of the economists, jeffrey, you probably took economics 101, i did, they see this as a hidden tax that american consumers are going to have to pay. >> they do, but the republican party used to be the party of free trade and this is just such a perfect example of how donald trump, it is now his party.
you hadn't heard a peep of protests from the republicans who used to embrace free trade and hate tariffs but the world is different now an it's donald trump's party. as the president likes to say, we'll see what happens. >> this was the party of no red ink. >> stand by. there's more breaking news we're following here in "the situation room." the actress felicity huffman breaks down in tears as she enters her plea in the college admission scandal. a way to create energy from household trash. it not only saves about 80% in carbon emissions... it helps reduce landfill waste. that's why bp is partnering with a california company: fulcrum bioenergy. to turn garbage into jet fuel. because we can't let any good ideas go to waste. at bp, we see possibilities everywhere. to help the world keep advancing.
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there's more breaking news we're following. an emotional court appearance just a little while ago by the actress felicity huffman, one of the most high profile figures caught up in the college admissions scandal. our national correspondent erica hill has details for us. erica, what happened? >> reporter: she actually broke down in tears in court. prosecutors are recommending she spend 4 months behind bars and pay a $20 million fine. >> felicity huffman gripping her brother's hand as she enters boston's federal court house. she paid $15,000 to a fake charity to boost her daughter's s.a.t. score. she didn't know the scam's master mind was paying others to doctor the test but, quote,
everything else they said i did i did. the criminal complaint includes emails and phone calls with huffman and the scam's mastermind, william rick singer outlining plans for her daughter to take the test at a specific location with an administrator singer had bribed. her score jumped nearly 400 points from an earlier test she took. in a statement last month the actress expressing regret. i am ashamed at the pain i have 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. her approach a sharp coop trast to fellow actress lori loughlin who pleaded not guilty to mail fraud and money laundering conspiracy. the couple is accused of paying
half a million dollars to get their daughters into usc as recruits for the crew team despite neither participating in the sport. loughlin who's been friendly with photographers and fans since the scandal broke is reportedly very concerned about the damage to her reputation. dropped by the hallmark channel days after the scandal broke, her daughter, olivia jade a freshman at usc lost endorsement deals. >> i have two major projects coming out. >> reporter: earlier this month two high level crisis management execs told cnn they were approached by the couple for help improving their image. it's killing loughlin that her squeaky clean reputation has done a total 180. neither took the couple on as clients. >> the fact that she's been focused on her career will not look well for the judge. they want to see defendants who are really focused, who understand the gravity of what this all means.
>> loughlin's publicist tells cnn there is no crisis pr team being brought in. of the 33 parents charged in operation varsity blues, devin sloane is pleading guilty also in court today. the l.a. businessman allegedly paid singer $250,000 to get his son into usc as a water polo recruit though he didn't play the sport. usc fired head coach after news that the scandal broke. he has pleaded not guilty to racket teari racketeering conspiracy. >> cnn identifying two students who received target letters. one was sent to the daughter of augustin jonadis. his daughter hasn't been charged. lucy sau received a letter. neither she nor her daughter,
wolf, have been charged. >> erica hill reporting for us. thanks very much. by the way, stay with cnn for more on the presidential race as well. the former vice president joe biden making his first 2020 campaign trip to new hampshire. looking at live pictures of him addressing a crowd in manchester. we'll be right back. introducing the first-of-its-kind lexus ux and ux f sport. also available in hybrid all-wheel-drive. lease the 2019 ux 200 for $329 a month for 36 months. experience amazing at your lexus dealer.
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series on the explosion of anti-jewish violence in this country. we saw it just weeks ago in the deadly attack on poway, california. and just months ago in the slaughter at the tree of life synagogue in pittsburgh. a new report shows assaults against jewish people more than doubled here in the united states last year. our national correspondent sarah snider joining. you're exploring the rise of anti-semitism in the united states. tell our viewers what you've learned. >> it's really dire, wolf. i mean, experts who track hate point to a potential reason for the explosion in the number of violence and violent acts against jews. they say there's a misguided message being sent out by white supremacists who are saying it's time to act now to save the white race, and they are doing so with deadly violence even against synagogues. >> an orthodox jew beaten in the streets of brooklyn, another
sucker punched in new york. in los angeles a driver targets in his car, and shooters attacking american synagogues during services with an intent to kill jews. pittsburgh last october. poway in april killing one worshipper. the director threat against american jews as victims of vandalism, assault and even murder is at alarming levels. >> we're talking the highest level of incidents we've seen. >> reporter: for a third year in a row the anti-defamation league says anti-semitic incidents in america rose to near historic highs. each of the 1,879 dots a physical manifestation of hate in 2018. >> the threat of today is one we haven't seen in this country in
recent memory. >> reporter: he's spent more than a decade working to fight extremism and radicalization at the department of homeland security. the growing threat he says is homegrown and overwhelming far right and white. >> there's this concept within white supremacist circles of accelerationism. that means the individuals feel the white race is in danger and they need to act now. >> the evidence of the growing threat is plain to see. synagogues now pockmarked with bullet holes. >> i was centimeters away from death. i still feel the power of the bullets flying. >> reporter: the rabbi came to poway, california, in the 1980s with a dream to build a safe oasis for the jewish community. but his sense of security was shattered in seconds. at what point did you see a gunman walk into your synagogue?
>> it's so hard to go back. it's unimaginable. standing there feet spread apart in the aiming position right at me. >> reporter: the first blast marking the door and wall, hit and killed congregate lorry kay and then the rabbi was hit. >> she says grandfather you're bleeding. >> you didn't even know you were hit. >> i looked at her face and she was traumatized. these are pictures you see -- that's when you see those images, not 2019 in the united states of america. >> 8-year-old and her uncle were
also injured during the shooting at the synagogue. the 19-year-old white male suspect wrote of killing jews in an open letter before the attack. i feel no remorse. i only wish i'd killed more. his says his inspiration came from the slaughter of 15 muslims at two mosques in christchurch, new zealand, and a massacre at a synagogue both of which were perpetrated by white supremacists. >> there's swastikas spray painted at our schools. just last hanukkah a family had swastikas spray painted on their house. >> reporter: how do you see poway? >> when i hear this isn't poway, that's a slap in the face to people who have experienced the big tree, the hatred, the racism, the anti-semitism.
there's another element, and to ignore it is so disrespectful to those who have experienced it. >> reporter: all but four states saw incidents of anti-semitism last year. down from 2017 where all 50 states had incidents for the first time ever. the most deadly at the hands of far right wing extremists. >> white supremacy and white nationalism is a real and persistent threat. law enforcement at the federal, state and local level need to take this much more seriously. >> reporter: if it isn't, he says, the deadly trend will continue. >> you don't feel safe again. if this can happen to us, i -- >> now, the fbi association has urged congress and the white house to help with this threat by changing the u.s. code to include domestic terrorism regardless of target or weapon.
right now that does not exist. wolf? >> pretty awful situation. thanks for that report. i know you got two more reports coming up here in the situation room to continue to follow-up on this explosion of anti-semitism. sarah, thanks very much for that report. i'm wolf blitzer in the situation room. erin burnett out front starts right now. out front next, breaking news. donald trump, jr. stone walls, refusing to answer questions about two very specific topics. what are they, and what is he hiding? plus president trump threatening to hit china with even more tariffs and what could this mean for trump country? a farmer about to lose tens of thousands of dollars because of tariffs is my guest. plus breaking news the man who oversaw the russia investigation, rod rosenstein, about to break his silence this hour about the investigation. let's go out front this hour. out front this evening, breaking news. new