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tv   Outnumbered  FOX News  July 12, 2017 9:00am-10:00am PDT

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system, but i don't think that's the right model for us. >> election infrastructure, when you look at what happened in this last election, one may happen going forward, one of the jobs of the fbi is to coordinate with the assistance commission and follow-up on cyber attacks. >> senator, i think the integrity of our elections has to be a very, very top priority. it's at the core of who we are as a country. any threat, whether it's from a nation's estate or a nonstate actor needs to be taken very, very seriously and the fbi has a huge role in that. >> in a broader fashion, russia has backed critical networks. we heard about this in the ukraine and georgia and a lot of
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times, they're using shell companies as their other entities. half of all homes in the u.s. used shell companies. would you we're trying to figure out where the money is going and how you follow the money. i think it was he that sat at the beginning that you are more likely to find a terrorist not with his finger on a bomb, but with his hands on a check. >> i'm not familiar with the particular program that you described, but i can tell you that i strongly agree that following the money is a law enforcement zero one. whether it's for drug trafficking or terrorism, that none of those things happen without money. following the money and working closely with the treasury
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department is an uncommonly affected strategy to use. >> a few other matters, we've seen a staggering rise in hate crimes. in our state, we've had threats against the muslim community, of course, the jewish community, and how would you approach this issue as fbi director? >> i think crimes based on bigotry or prejudice can't be tolerated. i think the fbi has an important rule. one of the most moving cases to me as a line prosecutor was a different kind of hate crime with a serial church arsonist who went all over the country burning down churches and ultimately, one of the churches he burned killed a volunteer firefighter. i think i mentioned that meeting with the mother of the dead firefighter and the roughly 7-year-old daughter of the dead firefighter is a memory i will take with me forever. i've a personal appreciation for
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the importance of prosecuting those crimes. >> very good. if we have a second round, i will ask about human trafficking which is one of my top priorities. i have one other question about terrorists online recruiting. we had a number of instances of that in minnesota and our former u.s. attorney. i've met with the fbi in minnesota on this issue, they've showed me some of the internet targeting that's really designed to focus on people in our state because of the major somali population that we are so proud of the minnesota. could you elaborate on this threat and maybe with the fbi should be doing to counter these types of online recruiting efforts that are going on around the country? >> i think you need to get briefed on the fbi's efforts in that area, especially in the development and technology.
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my basic view is similar to my answer to senator feinstein which was that we have to get earlier in the continuum to prevent clots. that is recruitment, that is logistical planning, that is fundraising to your question about financing, there's a whole range of things. those plots don't happen overnight. they take time to germinate and we need to be in a position. >> before i turn to senator tillis, i would like to give you an update on the schedule. part of this is to give our nominee some time for a break. three more senators will ask questions and then that ten minute break will come. i'm going to be leaving for votes, but i'll be back after that. senator sass will gavel in the committee after we recess for
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the nominee to take a break, so that will be around 1245, so the vote takes a long time, we will continue here. and then senator tillis, you are up next. i'm going to step out for my usual 12:00 news conference with the press back in iowa. i'll be back in 10 minutes. >> what time are we breaking? >> 12:30, but you'll be asking questions at that time, so you will be the one that will recess the committee. >> when is our vote? >> 12:30. you may be just a finishing her questions about that time and then you'll go vote and senator sass is already over there, he'll come back and hopefully will be able -- i'll be back before that happens or somebody else will take over. democrats should plan -- okay.
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>> thank you mr. chairman. >> senator tillis, go ahead. >> thank you. your dad is doing a great job. actually, i appreciate the way the committee is going. and total, you and i had an opportunity to spend 30 minutes together yesterday and you answer a lot of my questions. i won't repeat them here, you answer them satisfactorily. one thing that i think is important to emphasize, i have a law enforcement advisory committee. i meet with people in the state on a frequent basis. one of the things i want to amplify that senator kobe char said was the importance of working with the local, state and local law enforcement agencies to really get the best leverage and the resources to support these investigations.
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one of the things that i think is important, i'm kind of curious to see your own view of it is a what's foundational to making those work are the sharing programs that provide these local agencies with resources as a result of seizures in some cases. do you think that's an effective program it should remain in place? >> i've heard nothing but good things about those arrangements. i'm not an expert in them, it's been years since i focused on that, but certainly, the ability for federal law enforcement to provide all manner of support, whether it's partnering on investigations, training technical support, grants, lots of things that the federal government can do. >> as you get into there, the support for the program is that it will implode and at one one point, it did cause disruptions.
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there is may be a handful cases nationwide. there are questions about how the programs are run, whether those are in fact true, we need to work on that. it could have a chilling effect on what law enforcement will do. can we talk a little bit about going dark section 215, 702 and the importance you think it has for the investigator process? >> yes. of course, it's been years since i dealt with fisa which i did and my tour of duty. section 702 itself was passed after had left government. from everything i've heard from the intelligence community, just like i said earlier, they don't
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have any reason to doubt the intelligence community's assessment of the efforts by russia to interfere with our elections, 702, i have no reason to doubt what i hear and the intelligence committee's assessment of the importance of 702 is a vital tool in our efforts to protect america. i look forward to learning more about that tool and about how it can be strengthened, enhanced, and used effectively and appropriately. everything i've heard suggests to me that that's a tool that needs to be high priority for the country to make sure gets renewed appropriately. >> i think it would be very important, as we discuss it and debate, maybe some safety measures to make sure it's not abused. most of them are already in place. i think it's very important, probably a little bit of time with the director of national intelligence said that people
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will die if we go dark, that's a pretty profound statement from the high-ranking official. we need to look ahead and make sure we preserve those tools for the agency and other intelligence agencies. the other only question that i have, i'm going to yield back some of my time and i apologize i won't be here for the next round because i will be presiding, unless senator sass would like to preside, i know how much you like that. i just want to go back, and i think you've been very direct in answering the questions about russian meddling. i don't think there's anybody in the congress who would doubt that russia meddled in our election. they have for a very long time. the emergence of the cyber domain is basically amplified their ability to do it more quickly and may be on a broader basis.
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assuming that, beyond what's already under investigation, do you have any sense of what more the fbi would do beyond the investigation that director mueller is tasked with that you can conceive you may perceive with? >> there is more that i don't know yet as an outsider sitting before this committee. i look forward to making that a high priority. i will say that an addition to providing all appropriate support to former director mueller's special counsel investigation, there is also a counterintelligence function that the fbi has to play. i'm sure there are things of the fbi, working with its partners in the intelligence community will need to do to protect us going forward, which is sort of a different role than what special counsel miller was doing which is a backwards looking type of thing, but there is a
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synergy between the two. >> you should be very proud that you were nominated for this position, you should be very proud of the demeanor and the kinds of questions and the insight that this committee have given to you that's a true testament that's a quality of your work experience. thank you and congratulations to your family. >> i was referring to the senator from california, but senator franken, i think europe. >> thank you, mr. chair. [laughter] thank you mr. wray for meeting with me. i enjoyed our meeting yesterday. it was a good meeting. i senator tillis asked the kind of question i would want to ask which was what the role going forward of the fbi is distinct
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from former director mueller's special prosecutor would be. you answer that question, but i'm glad you answer that question, saying that part of what the fbi will be doing is working so this doesn't happen again. i think that we've gotta keep our eye on that ball. 2018 will be upon us soon and we don't want this to happen again. before he turned to my questions, i would like to first think senator hatch for his work on the child protection and improvement act and i would think you for your commitment to help us get that bill passed and done. it helps organizations for kids to get background checks, so vulnerable people, this is also
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for people they should be able to effectively screen their workers and their volunteers to make sure that they are trustworthy. thank you for your commitment on that. this is something that we've been trying to get done for a while and i have these groups that are doing unbelievably great work, asking for this and i think you for that. for the record, i think senator graham would have made a great fbi agent. [laughter] i'm glad that he's in the senat senate. that said, i don't know about the article, the january political article that suggested someone in the ukraine wanted to pass some information off to the clinton campaign, but i think i know the answer to this. did the ukraine hack the rnc's
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database, did they hack kellyanne conway, did the clintons want to build a hotel in kiev? i think there's a big difference here and we know what russia did and that's a big deal. thank you for saying that part of your job is to make sure it doesn't happen again. we of course have oversight over the fbi, will you come before us periodically so that we can do our oversight? >> yes, senator. i expect i'll be seeing a fair amount of the committee of confirmed. >> do you think attorney general sessions should come before us
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periodically so we can exercise our oversight? >> senator, i don't speak for the attorney general and his appearances, but i'm sure he values this committee, having been a member of it and we need to appear before it periodically. >> i agree. let me ask you about, when director comey was fired, one of the justifications that was made was that director comey had lost the confidence of rank and file. you've known jim comey for a long time and you've worked alongside him and you know a good number of people at the fbi back from your time of the justice department. is that your experience talking to them? >> obviously i haven't done a scientific sampling of the 36,000 men and women of the fbi. >> why not? sorry, go ahead.
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>> i appreciate your patience with me on that one. all of the people that i've spoken with at the fbi, from senior people strike me as a same fbi that i've always known and loved which is people who are admission focused and believe in what they're doing, who are going to follow the facts and whatever it takes them. they've got their head down, their spirit up and they're charging ahead. is there somebody somewhere who feels differently? that could be, but i haven't met those people recently. >> you to think director comey is a nut job, right? >> that's never been my experience with him. >> okay. i'm glad to hear that. if you are asked in some kind of
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setting by the president to stop an investigation of somebody, aside from saying, when you report that to us? >> i would report it to the deputy attorney general, assuming he wasn't already sitting there with me hearing it. we would have a discussion about what we lawfully and appropriately can share, but i would make sure all the right people knew. >> i want to think senator coburn chart for bringing up hate crimes. this is what former fbi director comey explains about hate crime crimes. he says they're different from other crimes because they strike at the heart of one's identity. they strike at our sense of self, our sense of belonging,
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the end result is loss of trust, loss of dignity, and the worst case, loss of life. in my view, that loss of dignity is a part of what makes hate crimes so pernicious. when an act of violence is motivated by hate against a particular group, properly identifying that act as a hate crime and prosecuting as such can go a long way to restoring that dignity. hate crimes are often unrecorde unrecorded. both my victims and local law enforcement. law does not require state and local police departments to report incidents to the fbi, so there is often little incentive to do that. recently, an investigation by journalists revealed that at least 120 federal agencies are not uploading information.
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even the fbi isn't recording all of the hate crimes, and that is a problem. we need accurate data about the scope of the challenge in order to appropriately -- mr. wray, if the federal government isn't keeping accurate data in its own databases, how can we expect state and local police departments to step up? >> i share your concern about the need for accurate data. i'm not familiar with exactly how the reporting system works or is you are describing, maybe it doesn't work right now. it's something that i would look forward to learning more about and figuring out how it can be done better. >> would you commit to me to
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help address this problem and work to improve reporting by state and local entities of a number of hate crimes that they are dealing with? >> i would commit to taking a hard look at the issue early in my tenure, i would look for ways to work together on the issue. >> thank you very much. mr. wray, i'm very impressed with our meeting. i've been impressed with your testimony here today. you've come here at a hard time, this is under very extra ordinary circumstances, and i thank you for your willingness to take on this job. looking around, i feel that you've had a good hearing today.
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best of luck to you. >> senator kennedy. >> thank you, mr. chairman. mr. wray, you have an a very impressive resume and i agree with senator franken, i think you've done very well today. who interviewed you for this job? >> senator , i was contacted originally by deputy attorney general rosenstein, that was the first inkling i had in any shape, weight, or fashion that was a gleam in anybody's eye. i met shortly thereafter with deputy attorney general rosenstein and attorney sessions together, the two of them. and, as is been public reported, i think it was the day after memorial day, i had a brief meeting at the white house that
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was attended by several people from the white house including the president as well as several people from the department and another similar meeting and i was announced as the intended nominee. >> indulge me a second. for my second question, i have to lay a bit of a foundation. some of my colleagues has alluded to this today, but our country began as a self-reliant likely taxed, debt averse union of states. our country has changed a lot in a couple hundred years. i don't mean this to be a pejorative statement, it can be factual. the power of the united states
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government is breathtaking. i don't think there's a single agency that is more symbolic of that power in the fbi. you can ruin people's lives. hopefully it will that happens, they deserve it. at some point, who did what to whom and the last election is going to be a distant memory. at some point, the investigation of russia's interference in the election will be over. what will remain is the fbi in its reputation. i don't think the fbi as a political body, not their rank and file members. i don't want to believe that,
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and i don't believe that. i worry about the perception that some americans might have. about the fbi. based on some of the testimony that this committee and others have heard. here's what i'm looking for. i want you to be a political. i don't want you to exhaust yourself trying to make political friends appear. i want you to be socrates. i want you to be dirty harry with the bad guys. i want you to tell me how you're going to do that in this environment. >> senator, first, let me say that i have a heightened appreciation for the point that you are and the power of the fbi and what you said about the
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fbi's ability to ruin people's lives. one of the things i did, even as head of the criminal division as i tried to meet with every new hire, and we are talking about over 400 lawyers. every time we had a new hire, i would spend 10-15 minutes one-on-one with that person and one of the points i would try to make is that the decisions that that prosecutor would make and the same thing would be true about fbi agents in space, short of their wedding or a death in their family, the public's interaction with law enforcement is the most meaningful, impactful experiences those people have. prosecutors and agents need to conduct themselves in a way that remembers that and remembers that power and members how much significance they had. it was not just the people they deal with, whether it's targets
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of investigations, witnesses, it doesn't matter. all those people will remember their interaction with law enforcement in a way that law enforcement does this every day. second thing is i come back to the point i made which is the importance of process. the process needs to have integrity. the process needs to be independent. the process needs to be free from favor, free from influence, free from fear, free from partisan politics because of people have confidence in the process, then they can have confidence in the results. sometimes results will be charges, sometimes they will have confidence. >> let me ask you about the process and i appreciate your answer. i think history will demonstrate that the white house has been
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offering their advice to the fbi director for decades. where do you draw the line? if the white house calls you, i'm anxious to know or curious to know how it works internally. if the white house calls you and says, we were reading about a story on medicaid fraud and a particular state and we think you want to look into that. is that appropriate? >> up my to something like that, if you have evidence of a crime that you think the fbi needs to look at, give us the evidence, we'll take a look at it, will make an assessment, we'll play it by the book. just like any witness who is
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supplying information, i would consider the source and i would try to take into account whether or not there was anything else going on. the white house might have information about a crime that needs to be investigated and i would take that seriously just like it would from anybody. >> suppose the attorney general who has a recused himself -- n, suppose the acting attorney general called you and said stop referring to the russian investigation as an investigation and refer to it as a matter. what would you do? >> i think i would need to understand why they thought the description was inaccurate. i tend to be somebody who listens with an open mind and to hear whatever the explanation
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is, but if i disagree with that characterization, i would have to play it by the book. i would call it what it is. >> suppose the reason that you are asked to do that was because matter plays better with the public than investigation. >> than i would try to persuade the person asking me as to why the request was ill considered. >> what if they say do it anyway? >> and i would consult with the appropriate ethics officials and make a judgment about what my next course of action should be. >> what if they said the ethics -- strike that, i don't want to speculate what the ethics people would say. we have an extraordinary crime problem in new orleans. we are rapidly becoming the murder and armed robbery capital of the hemisphere.
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if you are confirmed, and i believe you will be, can i count on you within the limited scarce resources you have, all resources, they are all considered to be scarce. can i count on you to give us some help? we are wrestling with a huge crime problem and we are losing. >> you can come on me to take a hard look and figure out how we can be more effective in new orleans, just like we need to figure out how to be more effective in every city that's targeted by violent crime. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> madam chair, madam ranking member, i was handed a note, and i'm supposed to say, you can say if you'd like, that we will -- it's kind of like senator nunn,
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isn't it? we will stand in recess for 10 minutes. if i had a gavel, i would bang. >> harris: while they stand in recess for 10 minutes, we are alive on "outnumbered" and we will talk on the couch in that time. we are joined by our #oneluckyguy, veteran democratic strategist, zac petkanas. he served as rapid response for hillary clinton's campaign and most recently helped build the dnc's trump war room. you are outnumbered. great to have you. >> zac: i feel it. it's good. >> harris: you had some comments along the way and we've been watching this testimony now from the nominated president. you say this is what we expected, why? >> zac: i think he's facing some very tough questions because he has some very tough
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expectations that he needs to meet. we have an fbi director who was fired by the president after he refused to give a loyalty test, after he refused to call off an investigation into michael flynn. he could be facing some extraordinary pressure. the questions that he's getting right now about whether he's willing to stand up to the president, i think that's pretty significant. >> melissa: i don't have the questions were that tough. he got that one round of questioning from lindsay graham where he was pressed on a lot of ideas about donald, jr., and what donald trump, jr., and the things that happen in the past couple of days, i'm not sure the rest of it was that. you brought up the idea when we were talking about the firm that he has worked for and their connection to russian oil companies, he wasn't asked about that or did i miss that part? >> zac: i'm a little disappointed in the fact that the democrats have not brought
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this up yet,'s because it's a pretty big deal. they represented to state-controlled oil companies that are based in russia that have connections to putin. we don't know whether he was involved or not. there are a number of people i could be put forward in a number of them don't have any interests or potential conflict of interest. >> from both sides of the political aisle, he's been somebody who doesn't make mistakes and gets the job done. they had another sentencing that was belated now with other types of fines, that was in the last half hour or so. that is one of the ways that people may know christopher wray's name.
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the day before the president tweeted out, this is a guy that he wanted, this is the person he felt comfortable with. there are some things in christopher wray's resume that both sides of the political aisle agree upon. regarding the texture, the meeting, the tenor of the meeting between donald trump, jr., and a russian attorney. let's watch a little bit of that because you mentioned -- i got kind of chippy in between. in that exchange. >> do you believe that in light of the don, jr., email and other allegations that this whole thing about trump campaign as a witch hunt? is that a fair description of what we are all dealing with in america? >> senator, i can't speak to the basis of those comments. i can tell you that my experience -- go >> i'm asking you as future fbi director, do you consider this endeavor witch hunt?
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>> i do not consider him to be on a witch hunt. >> thank you. >> could he be independent from the president? these are issues -- >> sandra: he's led up to that many times. the fbi director surely doesn't know me very well. he spoke very firmly on that. in regards to whistleblowers, he said retaliation against whistleblowers is wrong period. there are many moments during this hearing where he had to address questions about the morale as it currently stands today because there is a lot of evidence that things aren't so good there. >> zac: that's something -- >> harris: if they had a thread of walkouts at certain points. there were people who are really upset at the fbi and it got more and more seemingly political. >> zac: what we learned from the testimony under oath of andrew mccabe, as well as the
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conversation and reports within the fbi building, that the consternation of the fbi currently was because of the way that donald trump fired fbi director called me seemingly for political reasons. the consternation that you're talking about currently right now, that that's where it lies. >> previously, it was lying right in the ground of james comey because he got rather political and coming out and making statements. >> zac: no argument here. >> trish: donald trump to be very careful right now. his administration is to be careful right now because despite what christopher wray says, it is a witch hunt. i would say, why not go with someone who is a squeaky clean? why do you need to have the defense attorney for chris christie, why do you need to have a guy who his own firm was doing work for major russian
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energy companies? i would just say, we need to be careful, we need to do everything by the book, we need this to be perceived, because perception means a lot. >> sandra: i'm not going to let perception or optics drive my decision. if there's nothing wrong and there is no there there, he's going to do who is the best person for the job. >> trish: why open yourself to the opportunity? there are other people who could have done this that wouldn't have the same kind of baggage. in his interest -- >> harris: i'm watching everything from a different perspective and the one thing i can tell you that i saw from so many thousand miles away as the white house not getting out and some of this stuff and when i do your own opposition research on yourself and figure out what's
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coming down because you know you're being hunted. you can call it a witch hunt, but they're looking for some intellectual yummy's they can climb on and when i get out ahead of that? >> melissa: one of the things he does have forum is that people said he is not a grandstand or, he's not looking for publicity. he is not the same show both that we saw with our very chatty fbi director. we can see he has a much more style. he was choosing his answers and his linkage very carefully, even as they were trying to drive it in different directions. he was like, no, i have a look at more closely. >> harris: at the heart of all this is whether or not christopher wray would keep some memos like james comey dead. >> certainly, if you're driving
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at a routine conversation and a significant, important conversation and ones that fall in the latter category, i would think it would behoove me to make sure i keep records of that. >> harris: i take that as a "yes" ." don't you see the illegality of that with james comey and why do you think the accountability has not been there for him? >> zac: i don't see the illegality of keeping contemporaneous memos. we have no indication of what he leapt or gave to a friend was in any way illegal or classified information.
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i guess lock him up for handing over notes. i'm more concerned with the contents of what those notes say. as long as there is no indication was included, i want to know the conversations were between him and president donald trump. it looks like there was obstruction of justice. >> harris: i don't think anybody would disagree with you if he did it contemporaneously. >> zac: he gave you a contemporaneous instance. >> harris: no, he didn't and that's a point. >> melissa: absolutely and also, you're trying to have it both ways. you are saying it's not a work product. you can't have two things together. how is it used in court? how is it official?
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it's taking notes on a meeting he had while he was at work with his boss. >> zac: i agree it's a work product, i'm saying i don't care if he handed on classified materials over. i care about the content of those conversations and i'm very concerned about the conversatio conversation. >> melissa: it's interesting you talk about handing over classified documents and you worked for hillary clinton. >> sandra: by the way, diane feinstein said she is going to support him and thinks he will be independent. >> harris: griffin was saying he could see reasons for that too. they're coming back from a break on the hill and so we want to be in position for that. stay close. ♪
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♪ >> i believe in my core but there's only one right way to do this job and then is with strict
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independence, by the book, playing it straight, faithful to the constitution, faithful to our laws, and faithful to the best practices of the institution. without fear, without favoritis favoritism, . anybody who thinks i would pull punches sure doesn't know me well. >> harris: we are awaiting the confirmation of the man who president trump wants to become the next fbi director. after a short break, they are back on the hill. let's watch. >> you have a fierce commitment to maintaining the integrity of the fbi as an independent agency and that you will conduct yourself as fbi director that is about partisanship. let's move to it if we might. first, how will you ensure that the fbi provides all the resources that special counsel mueller needs to thoroughly conduct and complete the
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investigation is currently in charge of? >> the first thing i would do, if confirmed, is to reach out to former director mueller and elicit his advice about what it is he needs and what he's getting from the fbi. and knowing former director mueller and knowing what a straight talker he is, i have no doubt that if he's not getting what he needs, he would let me know. >> i agree. attorney general sessions praised your selection of the it's the fbi nominee, did you interview with him? >> i interviewed with deputy attorney general rosenstein and attorney general sessions together at the same time. >> did either of them ask you about the conduct of the russian investigation during her interview? >> no. >> attorney general sessions is recused from any and future investigations of matters
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related in any way to the campaigns were president of the united states. including the investigation into russian interference. as i told you when we met before, i'm concerned that attorney general sessions hasn't fully complied with the scope of his recusal. is it appropriate for the attorney general to make public comments on the ongoing investigation, to engage in decisions and funding and staffing? is at an appropriate part of his management role as part of being attorney general? >> it's not for me to speak to the attorney general's decision-making about his own public comments. i would say that if he is recused from an investigation, that means he shouldn't be participating in decision-making about the investigation, but of course, the attorney general has the entire justice department in this investigation is extremely
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investigation, -- extreme important, in my view. i think it's an important role for the attorney general. >> it's not appropriate for the attorney general to participate in investigations related to the trauma campaign. as a person in charge, he is involved in making management decisions. it's exactly those decisions about the access to resources, the scope, the trajectory that i wanted to make sure i got to. will you commit to studying the scope of his recusal and ensuring appropriate procedures are appropriate this case? >> i'm not sure on the authority over his recusal scope.
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what i will commit to you is that i will take a close look shortly upon being confirmed, if confirmed to making sure that special counsel mueller has all the appropriate resources that he would like to have, and my expectation is that i am committed to that support, regardless of any decisions by anybody else. >> if a directive came down from the attorney general about resources that you thought appropriate would not interfere with any way, you'd ask -- >> i would not tolerate any inappropriate influence on special counsel mueller's investigation. at the end of the day, it says investigation. >> we had another conversation last week.
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about an episode during your time of the department of justice where you are prepared to resign. this was over an ongoing, but unauthorized by congress surveillance program. he testified previously that you had not been read into all the details of it and it seemed in some ways, you are going on a got hunch, you following people who you knew were thoroughly ready and who you admired. i'm characterizing roughly what i heard before. in hindsight, you've had time to better understand -- where you write to throw your career aside and be willing to join these folks and would you do that again? >> as to the first part of your question, not for any minute have i regretted my willingness to resign of i've explained at that time.
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knowing that they were not shrinking violets, very tough on terror, very thoughtful, intellectually honest people, and people who didn't all agree with each other all the time. when i put all of that together, how they think, how they come out on foreign terror issues, they were willing to resign over much greater knowledge. i was confident then that resigning with them was necessary and the right decisio decision.
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>> i think you've been quoted before as saying you should be willing, it's either unethical, illegal, or unconstitutional. could you explore for me for a few seconds, what were the values that you brought that decision and what values, among those three another's would you make a similar decision if you get pressed to do something that meets one of those three tests suggested by former attorney general? >> the values or prior to that particular decision where the knowledge that it was the appropriate parts of the justice department and the fbi who are doing their jobs, doing their duty to evaluate the legality of the program in question. i thought that knowing the confidence i had in them and their commitment to do their job, that that needed to be
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respected, even to the point of supporting them in it. i'm not sure if i got all of your questions. >> that's more than satisfactory, thank you. acting attorney general sally yates was fired after she refused to defend the travel ba ban. if you are fired or resigned for refusing to carry out a presidential order, would you commit to come to congress to testify about that decision and what drove it? >> i would need to know the circumstances, but i would want to comply with the law and the rules first and foremost. >> and my last minute, if i could return to a question that was raised earlier. i just want to make sure we've gotten this clearly. senator graham asked do you
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about an email to donald trump, jr., offering the trauma campaign very high-level and sensitive information and this is a quote from the email, as part of russia and its government support for mr. trump. chief ethics lawyers were former presidents george w. bush and president obama have said, this is a joint quote, we've worked on political campaigns for mike decades and never heard of an offer like this one. if we had, we would insist on an immediate notification of the fbi. with any normal campaign lawyer or official or even senior volunteer, russian interference in our election happened and may very well happen again. if the campaign staffer or a senator or someone working around them gets an offer of foreign government assistance, do you agree the right thing to do is to promptly notify the fbi? >> i would hope that anyone who is aware of an effort or an
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attempt to interfere with our elections would report that to the appropriate authorities. whether it's somebody in a campaign or somebody anywhere else, especially in the context of cyber type intrusions, the intelligence community depends on people who are receiving the contact from reaching out and cordoning with law enforcement. that's a big, important part of the messaging on that effort. i would think that anybody in that situation would hope that they would bring the issue to the attention of the authorities, assuming they think that something untoward or inappropriate has occurred. >> can you reach any other conclusion from that email, other than something untoward in an appropriate has occurred? >> i haven't read the email, i
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haven't had a chance to read any of the newspaper coverage, it's all happened during a time when i've spent all day going from one senate building to the other and meeting with all of your colleagues. i'm sorry, but i don't know the details of the email. >> i think senator graham has already asked for you to get ready on it and respond. do have a few more minutes or do we need to do another round of questions? >> you can go to more, but not a full round. >> let me simply say to your family, i'm grateful for your willingness to undertake this and you personally, i'm grateful for your willingness to undertake this. as we spoke, i think we are in an absolutely essential moment for the rule of law and respect for institutions of this country. as you heard from senators both republican and democrat, this is an essential confirmation hearing and a critical role,
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because of the pace at which things are moving, because of the challenges and the issues and allegations in front of us, because of the central role the fbi plays in protecting our republic, i'm confident they have the skills, the experience, and the values to be a great fbi director. i appreciate you testifying in front of this committee today. >> i would like to associate myself with the senator from delaware as well, i think this is a critically important time in life, and not just the rule of law, but also the norms around it and i appreciate that. i would like to return to something you said and the opening statement and i'm quoting you, while the fbi has justly earned its reputation as the finest law enforcement agency in the world, its special agents, analysts, and staff operate largely out of public view. they happily differ individual
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recognition because they believe the principles they serve are so much more than themselves. it's beautifully crafted and as someone who has worked with and around the bureau before, 36,000 current employees -- >> i think it's about that. >> it's really thoughtful. without a lot of recognition, often times, and danger and that's life and limb and times at home and thank you for representing that in a way that you obviously there have been some dark times of the bureau in the past, we spoke a little bit today about director hooper and the way he mismanaged that agency 45 years ago. at the of the bureau by white house administrations across both parties. of the kennedy


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