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  House Speaker Pelosi News Conference on Mueller Testimony  CSPAN  July 24, 2019 7:00pm-7:29pm EDT

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>> i think it's going to help us. because everyone sees now that this has been going on for so long. and in all fairness to mueller, this has gone long before mueller, it has gone on before he came down the escalator and i got great numbers, in the beginning, when i was leading and it really took place sometime right after we came down the escalator, the first lady and myself, and i will tell you something i think it is going to have a huge negative impact on 2020 for the democrats. nancy pelosi held a news conference with judiciary
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committee chair jerry nadler, intelligence committee chair adam schiff and oversight committee chair elijah cummings. we discussed today's testimony by former special counsel robert mueller. this is about 30 minutes, thank you. >> live coverage and seeing republican leaders. >> a good evening everyone sorry for the delay, it has been a pretty interesting day, and a historic one as a matter of fact. a day in which former special counsel affirmed in public what the mueller report put forth. it is a crossing of a threshold, in terms of the public awareness. of what happened and how it
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conforms to the wall or not. the president likes to have his poster that said, it took as many days, this that and the other, we have a corresponding, contradictory chart. an investigation by the numbers, $40 million recovered. for the u.s. government remember he said how much it would cost less than that, 37 people and entities charged with crimes, 25 ongoing criminal cases referred, seven convicted including five top trump campaign officials. then he had no illusion. know this or that. 10 instances of obstruction yes. no exoneration. that is some of what we heard today. i want to go to another point, at the same time that we are on
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this path of the mueller investigation to recognize that the mueller investigation was prohibited from looking into the president finance and that is what our committees and jurisdiction have been doing. every legislature in for the good of the american people, we are also investigating so that we have the know to litigate in court and those cases we have won in lower court they've course appealed and we feel strongly about our position and about the position of article 1, the legislative branch having the right to have oversight over every other branch of government but that is important because it means we can get the information to show the american people what the obstruction of justice was really all about. i am very proud of our committee, the judiciary committee and a great chairman, jerry nadler, the intelligence committee, chairman adam schiff,
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we are going to hear from them now but we are also joined by elijah cummings. chair of the government reform and oversight committee. a committee that is running its courts in case as well, so great respect to all three of our chairman then we will take some questions. first i yield for chairman nadler. >> think you, the american people today heard directly about what the special counsel investigation uncovered. as to russia's interference in the 2016 election, and the presidents cooperation with it, and obstruction of justice. mueller made clear that the president is not exonerated. mueller found evidence of obstruction of justice and abuses of power by the president. he said that the president could be indicted for obstruction of justice after he leaves office. mueller found that trump would
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and did benefit from russia's help, and that the campaign welcomed that help. he found multiple instances where all three elements for charging criminal obstruction of justice were met. trying to fire the special counsel. in order to stop the investigation. trying to have people covering up for him for the same purpose, trying to limit or impede or constrict a special counsel's investigation. trying to tamper with witnesses. tamper with witnesses cooperating with investigators. all of these were found with great evidence. president trump went to great lengths to obstruct the special counsel's investigation. anyone else who acted in this way, if they were not the sitting president, would face criminal prosecution. and face indictments, only the office of legal counsel's opinion that you can't indict a sitting president is saving the
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president from indictment. because, all of the elements of these crimes were found with considerable and substantial evidence and the people have now heard this, the presidents chant of no obstruction is nonsense, his chant that he has been totally exonerated is a simple lie. >> first of all i want to thank director mueller for a lifetime of service to the country. from his days as a young marine in vietnam, through his decades of service as a prosecutor and as the director of the fbi, and through his services as a special counsel of this nation, they owe him an enormous debt of gratitude, so director mueller i want to thank you personally for all of your service. today, the director outlined in powerful words, how russia
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intervened massively in our election. systematically in a sweeping fashion had during the course of that intervention they made multiple approaches to the trump campaign. and far from shunning that foreign involvement in our election, the trump campaign welcomed it. made full use of it, put it into his communications and messaging strategy, and then lied about it. lied about it to cover it up, lied about it to obstruct the investigation into that very attack on our democracy. part of what i found so powerful about his testimony today, not just when he was asked about the lobby when he was asked about the ethics the morality, the lack of patriotism of this conduct. and perhaps one of the most chilling moments i think in our committee was when he expressed the fear that this becomes the new normal. and of course, i think what is animating that fear, of the director was certainly
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animating it for me. is the fact that even after the nightmare of the last two and half years, the president of the united states will still not forswear receiving foreign help again. that to this point the president still continues to call this russian attack on our democracy a hoax. something that director mueller today directly refuted. something that he still calls a witchhunt of something that director mueller directly refuted today. and so, we go into this next election more vulnerable than we should be. we can't control completely what russia does all that we must do everything we can to harden our election defenses to make sure there are paper trails to make sure that we deter and disrupt any kind of russian intervention but we cannot control that completely but we can control what we do. and he made it clear and in no uncertain terms, that it is up to us whether we act ethically
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and patriotically, whether we refuse to be a party, to a foreign attack on our democracy. and once again i thank him for his service. >> i first want to applaud chairman nadler who, is the head of our judiciary committee and certainly the chairman of the intelligence committee. for what they did today and their committees, what they did was paint a picture for america. one of the most chilling things that i have noticed that i have witnessed, is when a member of a former member of our committee, a republican, went to this town hall meeting. and, got a round of applause in
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a republican district, after he had said that he felt that the president should be impeached but that was not the thing that got me. but really got me was when a lady at the end of the town hall meeting said i didn't know that there was anything negative in the mueller report. about president trump. that says a lot. and to her credit, house speaker made it clear, that we needed to paint a picture. for america. so that they could fully understand what is going on. this is a critical moment in our country's history, do not be fooled. and, it is a moment which people will be talking about and reading about three, 400, 500 years from now. and they are going to ask the
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question, what did you do when we had a president who knew the rules, and knew that our founding fathers had done a great job of creating a constitution and then put in all the guardrails but never anticipate that we would have a president that would just throw away the guardrails. and that is why what happened today is so critical. it was a giant step in making sure that the american people got a picture of all of this and hopefully, will look towards the future and say we are not going to have this. both mr. nadler and mr. schiff said something that is very critical. this is not normal. and we have gotten so, we are
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now getting so used to normal, to this kind of conduct, by president and by the way, of our attorney general, and a republican colleagues. that we, it looks like we will just accept it well, we refuse to accept it. and then, my committee we constantly and i know, schiff and nadler have heard this. people say oh, you just are messing with the president because you do not like him, it is not about that. it is about loving democracy. it is about loving our country. it is about making a difference for generations that are unborn, that is what this is all about and i am begging, i am begging the american people to pay attention to what is going on. because if you want to have a democracy intact. for your children and your children's children. and in generations yet unborn we have got to guard this
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moment, this is our watch. and again i am so very proud of judiciary committee. i am so very very proud of the intelligence committee, because they went in and tried to pull out the facts. so they could paint the picture so the americans could see it and there would not be ladies like the ones at the town hall meeting who said they didn't know that there was something wrong that trump did in this report. and so, again we, the speaker is absolutely right. she told us a little bit earlier, that she wants to gather all the information. and, make sure that we have everything we need to paint that picture, no what did the american people do with it? that's the thing, we will not stand by and fail to give them
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the total picture and i want to thank mr. mueller for coming forward with his service for our country but last but not least it is so interesting that when mueller would make a decision that they liked, it's all, we love you, we love you, you are the greatest thing since ice cream. but then as soon as he says something they don't like oh, you are the worst, you are a bum, come on now. we have to see through that. thank you. >> as we acknowledge the greatness of our chair, jerry nadler and adam schiff i also want to acknowledge the great elijah cummings that is here, with the government and reform committee, he has really won the first case, the major decision, in his research enabled us to take to court and we won the case, the decision was a complete beautiful statement on the ability of congress to have oversight, it
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is just a remarkable decision and now of course the administration is appealing it but i think you to mr. cummings of for your great leadership and where we are going next because as you know, the mueller investigation could not do the president, the personal business, connections and one of those connections could be to the russians and that is what you want to find out. so, as we go to questions, i just want to say, that i do believe that what we saw today, was a very strong manifestation in fact some would even say indictment. of this administrations cone of silence and their cover up. is is about the oath we take to protect and defend the constitution, that some of the actions that the administration may have taken we will see through our investigation, they
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have jeopardized our national security, by strengthening russia's hand and interfering in our elections, undermining democracy that only in our country, but in other countries as well. upsetting our preeminence as a democracy in the world. this is very serious. today, was very important. again, i salute our chairman, all of our six chairmen who have been involved in this. and now we can take questions.>> how about a new person? as a mother of five i yield. >> what you saw today, will a change whether or not you think the house of representatives should launch into more proceedings? >> my position has always been whatever decision we make in that regard will have to be
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done with our strongest possible hand and we still have some outstanding matters in the courts, it is about the congress, the constitution, and the courts. and we are fighting the president in the court.>> i am sure you are expecting more of your members.>> some of your members told us over the course of today that they were expecting imminent action of some kind. >> i don't know why they thought that but they came to me. >> again the lawsuit says we have a number of lawsuits do you want to speak to that jerry? >> the next step, i am not going to talk longer, the next step tomorrow or friday, as we are going into courts to enforce and ask for the grand jury material. and to enforce the subpoena against mr. mcgann. and that is particularly important because the excuses
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and i will not call them reasons, excuses that the white house gives form again not testifying is nonsense. is the same excuses for all of the other witnesses that we bring that we will break the larger. >> what do you need to know, we don't know enough yet. >> the are waiting to hear from the courts so we have our subpoenas in the court for the subpoenas are for information. and when we get that information. >> that will be the telltale sign? >> we have several considerations, it is about what information is there and this isn't endless. understand that, but we have live cases in the courts, we have some that are going forward. that mr. chairman nadler just mentioned. to get the information,
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remembering in watergate, was when they got the information that broke the case, it was not just about changing public opinion, that helps, change public opinion but it is not about me, it is about our country. there is a cone of silence in the white house that is engaged in a massive cover-up and the obstruction of justice. those obstruction of justice charges have been demonstrated today and in the hearing, could be indictable offenses. by anybody else not the president of the united states and the president when he is no longer president. but the actual people i think if we go down that path we could go in the strongest possible way and that is all i am going to say. >> let me say something. and i know chairman and schiff and chairman nadler, wouldn't repeat what i am saying.
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you know, the american people in the last election, even from trump districts, said we want to make the president accountable. the people loved him and like him but they want to make them accountable, and we have been stonewalled. with regard to getting information, access to witnesses. and getting documents. all of them. remember the president said i am not going to give you anything really. and so, again, the speaker is absolutely right, we, we are going to, we are gathering information and we are met with significant force. but we are flying our way through, but all of the information, piece by piece is like a mosaic, paints the picture. >> there is no point in moving
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forward because it republicans control the senate and is going to diana senate is that no longer the issue? >> i have never long said that, if we have a case for impeachment, that's the place we will have to go. the fact that why i would like to be it a strong case, is because it is based on the facts. the facts and the law. that is what matters. not politics, not partisanship, just patriotism. i don't care, i mean i would like to commit the senate to be responsible and honor their oath of office to protect and defend the constitution. to see the challenge that this is to our national security, the russians trying to do to our country. but the stronger our case is, the worse the senate will look. for just letting the president off the hook. >> speaker pelosi, even after the hearing, even after these
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hearings the president said he is completely exonerated. despite what mr. mueller said, what have these hearings really said? >> you give me the opportunity to say this and i invite my chairman to close, we want to have the strongest possible case to make a decision as to what path we will go down and that is not endless in terms of time. or endless in terms of the information that we want. but if it comes to a point, where the cone of silence and the obstruction of justice and the cover-up in the white house prevents us from getting the information, that will not prevent us from going forward in fact it is even more grounds to go forward. >> i just want to echo that. you know, martin luther king said something that is important, particularly right now, he said there comes a point when silence becomes
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betrayal. and we refuse to betray generations and generations yet unborn, we are not going to betray them and with acumen letting information, and doing the best we can, again with a force as great i do not know how many lawyers the president has but he's got a lot of them, and they go against every single thing we do. and so, again we are not going to betray america. we are going to do our part to make sure that we have a democracy that is intact.>> united states is a democracy. it must remain a democracy. a democracy ask for the elected officials, with the consent of the people. the people cannot give that consent unless they know the facts. today was a watershed day, in
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telling the facts to the american people. with those facts, we can proceed. and we face a time of great danger, richard nixon said he thought that the treasurer was a dictator, that the president does it, that is not illegal, president trump echoed that yesterday. he said under article 2, i can do anything i want. that is a totalitarian picture, not a democratic picture. the united states must be saved from this. so we have to paint the picture of what is going on, a picture of someone who gladly accepted help from a foreign power interested in subverting our data collection process and that is what it is, subverting our election process and taking the toys that are present to some extent away from the american people that is what the russians attempted to do and that is what the trump campaign welcomed them in doing. the president to engage in
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crime, repeated crimes to cover up these unpatriotic and pictorial actions, this cannot go on. it is up to congress to safeguard the constitution and we will do it. >> as a we mentioned today during the hearing. i think the story of the 2016 election is really a story of disloyalty to country, about greed and about lies. and if there is anything that i think symbolizes those three strands of the 2016 election, it was moscow trump tower, it was this massive real estate project that the president was trying to consummate while he was running for president and concealing it from the country. this i think demonstrated this loyalty to the country. by deceiving the american people about this massive business opportunity he was seeking while he was running
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for president. it is a certainly a vivid example of the greed of people involved with that campaign. and, and ample demonstration of all the lies that permeated the campaign and its aftermath. that to me is the story of the 2016 election we need to make sure that is not the story of the 2020 election. and i will say this on the issue of impeachment, which i have viewed in very much the same way as the speaker, maybe i'm just an old prosecutor, but before i brought the case to indictment i wanted to make sure that i had the strongest evidence possible. i wanted to understand my case, i wanted to be able to make my case, now i try to, i tried an impeachment case about 10 years ago, a corrupt federal judge that was convicted so i have some understanding of what it takes to get a convention in the senate and i have no illusions about getting a conviction in the senate but there are two juries.
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there is the jury which is the senate which decides removal from office and then there is the jury that is the american people. and i most concerned about the jury that is the american people. and before we embark on a course as significant to the country, as the impeachment of a president, i want to make sure that we make that case to the jury the american people. >> i think are distinguished chairman, i am so proud of all of them, following up on the last statement by chairman schiff, we could not imagine how differently would be from each other. they want us to remember that we are one. when we go down this path, we wanted to be as unified for our country, not dividing. and that is why we wanted to be the strongest possible case. lincoln said, president lincoln said, public sentiment is everything. while in order for the public to have the sentiment the public has to know. so, i hope you will be messengers of the truth to the
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public, we think today, was really a milestone. in making that sentiment be more informed, thank you all very much. house minority leader, kevin mccarthy spoke to reporters today, concerning the testimony of a former special counsel robert mueller to both committees today, he was joined by the ranking members of the judiciary committee. and oversight committee. >> today was a historical day, i listened to the speaker, it was a historical day because this is the day that we closed the book of this investigation. it is time that america turned the page. it is time for america to move forward. democrats have to stop wasting time in trying to have a do over of the 2016 presidential election. for more than two years, democrats have obsessed about the mueller investigation, going as far as falsely accusing that they had evidence of collusion.