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tv   CNN Newsroom With Brianna Keilar  CNN  December 14, 2016 9:00am-10:01am PST

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a might be are minds, explosive around detailed revelations about the extent to which hackers tied to russian intelligence invaded u.s. computer networks in the months leading up to the election.
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we will dig into that in a moment. i want to begin with cnn "money" correspondent laurie segall on the nuts and bolts what's going down about two hours from now. who's going to be there and what do they want to talk about? >> reporter: to about fly on the wall for this meeting would be so interesting especially given the contentious relationship between silicon valley and donald trump and the rett rheto put out there. and elon musk to tesla, facebook, bezos, tim cook, apple, ceos of microsoft, and all entering behind me. trump tower. a photo opportunity. told from a source close to the meeting the focus will be on jobs and the quote was bringing good jobs back to the united states which would be interesting. you've heard donald trump being pretty critical of apple manufactures in china and microsoft and amazon, also
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manufactured quite a bit of goods over in china, but you can imagine that this can go beyond just jobs. i'm also told they want to talk about making the government more efficient, but we could hear things about immigration, tax reform, trade. we'll be able to -- hopefully we'll have more details after the meeting but certainly it will be an interesting group of people to be in the same room at the table with donald trump, brianna. >> certainly will be. and we've seen some of these meeting before. the media wcame to talk to donad trump. a spirited exchange. knowing what's gone on between silicon valley and donald trump, is this going to be a bit of a woodshed moment, do you think? >> reporter: i have a feeling, we'll probably see donald trump tweet about it, his version of it after, but i think this is a moment for the biggest leaders in silicon valley to sit at the table and talk about issues they have to be at table to talk about. regulatory issues.
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a lot at stake for them, too, at the table. that said, it has been contentious. donald trump went after tim cook specifically during the apple versus the fbi, when they wanted apple to open up the iphone of the san bernardino shooter, and accused of antitrust violations and against facebook for immigration policy. having covered silicon valley and tech almost seven years, this is a spirited, interesting innovative group of people walking into trump towers. we'll see exactly the nature of that conversation and how it goes, brianna. >> keep us posted. much more on enormous and explosive revelations showing in great detail the first time how intelligence officials believe russian hackers got deep inside the american presidential election, and they did a lot of work to try to help donald trump, it appears. who knew about it first? who was slow to act on it?
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many didn't think it was very serious and who fell for one of the oldest tricks on the internet handing those hackers everything they needed? it is all spelled out today in a piece in the "new york times," a long and thorough investigation that names names and tracks the damage all the way back to the moment that it began. eric lipton is an investigative reporter for "the times" one of the three journalists pinpointing this moment russian hackers broke into the dnc's e-mail network. eric, thanks for talking to us and tell us from the beginning here, because this was september of last year that an fbi agent picks up the phone, and that's an important detail, and calls the dnc. what happens next? >> that's right. so there is a special agent hawkins from the washington field office of the fbi. the fbi is responsible for notifying different companies or individuals if the government becomes aware they are targeted by a hacker. in this case, the fbi special agent calls the switchboard at
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the dnc and reaches the help desk and the help desk gives them to the i.t. consultant who picks up the phone, it's an fbi agent informing him that the fbi has evidence that the, there are hackers that have compromised the dnc computer system, and that it is a hacker group associated with russia. this is september of 2015. the i.t. consultant at the dnc at first does not believe that he's talking to an fbi agent. because the guy the on the phone. he doesn't want to e-mail, worried if he e-mails him he'll alert russian hackers. for a matter of months, no real action taken to determine if the dnc system was actually compromised. >> to be clear, fascinating people who work and live in washington, d.c., how close the fbi building and dnc headquarters are. a five minute cab ride here, maybe. i want to talk about something we're hearing from donald trump, because he is refusing against
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reason to believe that russia is definitely behind these hackings. what he said on sunday. >> if you look at the story and take a look what they said, there's great confusion. nobody really knows, and hacking is very interesting. once they hack, if you don't catch them in the act you're not going to catch them. they have no idea if it's russia or china or somebody. it could be somebody sitting in a bed someplace. they have no idea. >> so eric, i read the story you and your colleagues put together and it renders that statement ill-informed. at worse, an act of denial. tell us how officials were able to identify these two hackers? they have names for them. cozy bear and fancy bear, yes, those were the monikers used. >> there's an open debate whether or not there was intention of russian actors to try to give the election to
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donald trump and a defeat to hillary clinton. that is debate. there were connections to russia actors on behalf of the russian government. there is unanimous agreement by all of the intelligence agencies in the united states and by almost every member of congress that's spoken publicly about this that that did occur. the only person denying that so far is donald trump. as to how -- the how the actors got there and how they determined that they were associated with russia, for example, the malwear used, put into the computer systems at the dnc, the dccc, another democratic organization that is consistent with the same malwear these same russian actors used in attacking other computer systems that the intelligence agencies previously confirmed they intruded with. other factors are, they targeted parties who they knew the russians were interested in trying to infiltrate and also there was cyrillic in some of the e-mail, in some of the
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manipulation of the documents they took that suggested that these were russian actors, again. there's whoeb there is a whole number of hints. it's overwhelmingly circumstantial. >> you mentioned in the piece operating on moscow business hours. an interesting point there, and you talk about a series of failures. that fbi failure of the special agent who bumbled alerting the dnc. you also talk about sub-par malwear detection at the dnc, and then a clinton campaign i.t. person who when john podesta gets a fishing e-mail basically saying, hey, someone's tried to get into your g-mail account, you need to change your password, but this is really a trick. he e-mails, this is a legitimate e-mail. john needs to change his password immediately. turns out a typo. he meant to say illegitimate. you found this to be a failure on multiple levels, it seems?
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>> a very fateful moment in that moment when john podesta and a staffer access to his e-mail account changed his password. there were a decade worth of podesta e-mails, approximately 60,000 e-mails transferred to these cyber hackers, and that was the reason we then learned about all of hillary clinton's speeches, that we got all of the back and forth between various campaign aides and criticism of even of hillary. it was months worth of embarrassing moments for hillary clinton in the final months of the campaign. and it hurt her. so it's incredible historically to look at the act of an i.t. guy advising podesta on that and the implications of that for history is fascinating, and i spoke with the guy. he feels terrible. he says he made the mistake. says he looked at it and immediately knew it was a fishing attack because he was getting dozens of them and he says he mistyped. some people say that's ridiculous to suggest he mistyped but it's hard for me to believe he didn't recognize that as someone trying to hack into
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podesta's account. >> sure. you detail a number of shortcomings and one also appears to be this -- i guess what some would say dithering on the part of the obama white house. how to deal with this. how to say, yes, this is russia publicly or even address the option of sanctions. what is the responsibility there that lies with the white house for not dealing with this? >> and there are two things the white house really needed to do. first is to publicly attribute the attack to the determined actor. because you need to do that, because it really changes the public's perception of, is this simply some, you know, cyber mistake? was it a, someone that leaked it? but if you publicly attribute his to russia, the whole look, the whole -- american public would treat this thing differently. it would have changed the narrative of it. the second thing, they waited and waited and waited to make that public announcement.
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october 7th, a formal statement by intelligence agencies this was an act associated with the government, and a month before the election. dnc knew april 29th. the core period of the presidential election, it took that long to make that public declaration. the second thing, once you aticket, what attribute, what do you do? how do you tell the russians you can't do this against the united nations and don't do it again. ultimately nothing publicly was done and there is some within the administration that feel that was a mistake. >> and you talk about that in the story. eric lipton, you did this piece in the "new york times" with your colleagues. thanks for coming on. appreciate it. >> thank you. up next, what's in the lease agreement for donald trump's posh new hotel that may force him to sell it before he moves into the white house? ydrogenate.
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house democrats say a federal agency determined donald trump must sell his stake in his luxury washington hotel. it's a hotel just blocks from the white house, brand new. and the president-elect is leasing the property from the government. he was criticized for attending a ribbon-cutting ceremony a week and a half before the election and the criticism over potential conflicts of interest has not stopped. cnn "money" correspondent cristina alesci joining me now on the very latest. what are you hearing? >> reporter: the agency we're talking about a the general services administration and the lease between the gsa and donald trump pap provision in the lease says essentially bars anyone in elected office from being party
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to the lease. now, as we were about to go on-air, the gsa basically says, it doesn't have a position on this provision in the lease. so that seemed to suggest that essentially it is not willing to engage in a long, protracted fight with the president, or the president-elect or when he's in office and increasingly unlikely that the gsa will do anything after donald trump is inaugurated, because he gets to appoint the head of the gsa. yes, that person has to go through a senate confirmation process, but ultimately, the president could fire the head of the gsa. brianna, this is why conflicts are so important to talk about and to report on. because donald trump will have influence obviously over who heads these government agencies and this particular government agency has business with donald trump's business empire. look, ultimately, all of this is going to have to be sorted out. my guess is they come to some sort of compromise that makes
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both sides feel good and that avoids any kind of acrimonious headlines. >> what is this, though? if the gsa is now saying just before you came on-air they don't have a position, and yet we were hearing that they do have a position. what is going on there? >> reporter: what's going on here is the house dems on the oversight committee want to draw attention to conflicts of interest, and they came out with a statement this morning saying, donald trump can be, would be in violation of the term of this lease. which looks like on the face of it, technically, that's true, but you and i know in washington, d.c., there is a lot of gray area, and when you talk about contracts specifically, because i was an m & a reporter a long time, there are ways to negotiate and there is disagreement about the technicalities in these agreements that there may be some kind of way for donald trump to somehow keep ownership
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or transfer it to his children and for this lease to exist, or for it to be okay for a president-elect or a president to have an agreement with the federal government that will help his bottom, help or hurt his bottom line. in and of itself, that's the big question. >> the trump hotel maybe not becoming a holiday inn. i hear what you're saying. cristina alesci in new york. thank you. bringing in my panel, molly ball, and carol lee, white house reporter for the "wall street journal." so the gsa is saying that as cristina reported, they don't necessarily have a position, but it would be 0d, right, for the gsa to end up fighting with the president? i mean, who's going to win here? right? >> that's the problem. as she was saying, gsa is part of the executive branch, the president is in charge of the executive branch. checks and balances have to exist in the other branches because the executive branch is hard for it to hold itself accountable. saying, donald trump can fire
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the head of the gsa, hire a new head of gsa if they make a determination he doesn't like. >> what happens, because we also see the conflicts of interest seem endless, that we're hearing about. donald trump jr., turns out, was actively involved in interviews candidates for the interior position. heard other instances of eric and ivanka being in conversations either with foreign leaders or involved in transition stuff. when does this come to a head? is it something we might see in the courts, do you think? >> potentially, but you know, the trump transition was supposed to get out in front of this, this week. supposed to have a press conference. that's been delayed. so it sounds like they're going to let this play out until right up to the inauguration. and that gives people very little time to really run through exactly what they're doing, right before he takes office, and then is, you know -- the president, and is krooverseg all of these agencies and his
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businesses. they're letting it play out for a while. there is going to be -- congress will be critical, in checks and balances in terms of what a president trump does and the courts. >> a couple of things we know about trump from the campaign. number one, it's a family affair. his business has always been a family business. his campaign run by his family. i don't think we can expect that to change. always kept his family close, son and adult children, closest advisors. number two, trump thinks he can get away with thinks we talk about. doesn't think he's subject to the normal rules, can defy disapproval of officials who say it's never been done this way before and probably thinks he can get away with a lot of stuff that previous politicians have not gotten away with. >> i want to ask you about this russia story while i have you here. donald trump has denied flat out denied what intel officials agree on. which is, russia was behind the hacking of the dnc and other u.s. government entities.
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donald trump, won't he need, and, carol, you can speak to this, someone who's covered the white house for years. at some point isn't he going to need to appeal to the american people and say, look, i have intel backing up what i am telling you i need to do. doesn't this hurt him? >> yeah, it could. it's really remarkable what's happening right now. you have an incoming president who's already at odds with the intelligence community. and the people that are going to brief him every day and are going to -- well, if he chooses to take the briefings every day and giving him evidence to make very critical decisions about national security, and if e he is now challenging the ability of their 13wintelligence, it ras a question, when he presents something to the country, the question, why would we believe -- these are the same people you said we couldn't believe on the russia hacks. so why should we believe them now? it's just raising -- it's
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morale, hurting morale at the cia and other intelligence agencies and it's creating this whole fight before he even takes office that could really come back to bite him. >> speak to that, because this issue of morale is fascinating. some people say, oh, it hurts morale, whatever. but we're talking these are human beings doing very important work, and when they're told essentially what you're doing doesn't matter what can the fallout be from that? >> i mean, the prospect for donald trump is that his own intelligence community declares war on him. we could see all kinds of things. selective leaks and stories put out and information being released if they feel that the president is trying to undermine them, and, you know, donald trump is not someone who really formulates his believed based on evidence. he believes what he wants to believe and ignores facts and evidence that don't agree with his view. he's done that with this hacking story. did it repeatedly throughout the campaign and so you know, i think that we could see a real
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backlash from some of the agencies that feel that they're being undermined. that creates constitutional problems and it certainly creates the prospect for a lot of conflicts in this administration in the years to come. >> we have our work cut out for us. we do. carol lee, molly ball, thank you to both of you. up next, the cease-fire we reported on just 24 hours ago in alep aleppo, syria is now in shambles. the dire situation there, more desperate than ever. start yours with philips sonicare, the no.1 choice of dentists. compared to oral-b 7000, philips sonicare flexcare platinum removes significantly more plaque. this is the sound of sonic technology cleaning deep between teeth. hear the difference? get healthier gums in just 2 weeks vs a manual toothbrush and experience an amazing feel of clean. innovation and you. philips sonicare. save now when you buy philips sonicare.
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generosity is its oyou can handle being a mom for half an hour. i'm in all the way. is that understood? i don't know what she's up to, but it's not good. can't the world be my noodles and butter? get your mind out of the gutter. mornings are for coffee and contemplation. that was a really profound observation. you got a mean case of the detox blues. don't start a war you know you're going to lose. finally you can now find all of netflix in the same place as all your other entertainment. on xfinity x1. breaking news from overseas. in see jahr, a cease-fire supposed to let thousands
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including women and children has fallen apart. there is shooting again. a deal made yesterday and hope tens of thousands of civilians could be evacuated from aleppo, syrian rebels held since the arab spring. today witnesses say the syrian army is crossto taking aleppo back. frederik pleitgen just left aleppo, watching from beirut and tell us who broke the cease-fire and what this means for all of those people trapped in the middle of the fighting. >> reporter: well, it's absolutely devastating for those civilians trapped there in the middle of the fighting. some reports that we're getting is that even by the standards of those rebel enclaves in eastern aleppo, the situation on the ground for the civilians is more catastrophic than it ever has been in the past. there's barely any food. obviously there's almost no medical supplies. you have wounded people in there, sick people in there. we have to keep in mind right now in aleppo the weather is really bad.
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very cold. torrential rain. these are weak people. some of them are wounded and very traumatized people as well and at this point in time simply can't get out. on top of all this don't have aagreement seeing them evacuatesed to other places. instead, full-on fighting again, brianna. the latest we're getting, the fighting is very bad. opposition sources say more than 100 artillery shells have fallen on that district, a very small place and warplanes pounding it as well and reports now apparently the rebels have detonated several car bombs to try and stop the syrian government forces from advancing, because by all accounts, it looks as though now that this deal has fallen apart, the syrian forces and all allied militias seem to want to force a decision on the battlefield. remember, they've been making massive gains before. what's going on, however, is that the countries that brokered this deal in the first play, russia and turkey as well, they are apparently trying to talk,
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trying to get it back on track, but, of course, with every minute that passes and with every shell that continues to be fired, the hope of that happening becomes more bleak, brianna. >> all right. fred pleitgen monitoring the situation in aleppo. thank you. american involvement in syria mostly limited to training and helping local forces in the fight guess isis. a few days ago the pentagon announced a new deployment of u.s. troops to syria nearly doubling the number of american forces authorized to operate in syria. is a reid far fariq zakaria spoke to president obama. >> and -- actually got it done, argue a lot was forced on him. compromises he had to make's end
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of the day he got it done and my guess is the trump question you were asking, it's probably more than anything else about obama care. >> keeping at least parts of it? >> keeping -- >> fareed is with me live from new york. fareed a fascinating interview you did with president obama almost an exit interview where you focused on his legacy. when you asked him about syria, how does he see this crisis as part of his legacy? >> it's interesting. for him syria is in a sense the most troubling, the most complicated, the most, i think he used the word heartbreaking with me when describing it, part of his legacy, because there isn't an answer as far as he's concerned. he hasn't found an answer. he hasn't found a way to use american force that could save these people in some kind of a sustainable way, and what -- when he talked to me about it, he wondered whether part of the problem was the history that the united states had been involved in iraq, that it the
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intervention had gone badly, americans were triered edtired. listen to what he is specifically on this issue of heartbreak. >> -- discussion about syria, which is obviously, has obviously been at matter breaking as anything that's happened in the world during the course of my presidency, and is one of those things that has kept me up at night a lot. you know, if we had never gone into iraq, if we had stayed focused on afghanistan, gotten in, gotten rid of bin laden and stabilized that country, so that we did not have continuing, enormous obligations, could we assess our ability to do more in syria differently? perhaps. but the idea that under any circumstances we would be in a position to take over syria and do in syria what we had done in
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iraq and then maybe go to yemen and do the same thing there, and maybe go to libya and -- it would be endless. >> so you heard him there, you know, just frustrated, and heartbroken. >> i know. certainly, and one of the other things we're hearing coming out of the white house, fareed, is this, this claim that 75% of all isis fighters are now dead. 12,000 to 15,000 remain battle-ready. president obama, this was his struggle. couldn't eliminate isis during his struggle. so what is donald trump inheriting? >> donald trump is certainly inheriting a much weaker isis. isis lost almost 60% of its territory. mosul it likely to fall probably in the first month or two of his presidency. then the battle will go to raqqah, which is the headquarters of the so-called caliphate. but he will still inherit a very, very difficult,
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complicated syria that i think he feels he has a simple answer to, which is, to hand it over to assad, and, in fact, assad is now doing better and better. the assad forces are likely to take over aleppo, but it won't solve the problem, because assad run what is still in many ways a minority regime in syria. he is an alawite, minority of 15% in syria. maybe has support of some sunnis, clearly i think he does, but there are a large number of people in syria who are in violent positions against the assad regime. saying simply, well, let assad handle it, isn't going to work, and it is out of that context, out of that, that civil war in syria that all of these jihadi forces get formed and out of those bad lands in syria, groups like isis and al nusra have
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formed, so he will still need a syria policy beyond saying, just hand it over to assad, and it will have to be a policy that involves a much more, you know, much more active sense of what it is you're trying to prevent. >> and you write something so interesting where you talk ab t about, you look at this internal strife in syria, and that causes a lot of refugees to flee, and then you have this age of mass migration you describe. you link that to what we are seeing as the rise of populism, not just in the u.s. but around the world. tell us about that. >> absolutely. so if you look at what is happening in syria. you know, we see this tragedy, but we have to remember, it is also exporting large numbers of migrants. you know? 4 million, 5 million people have been displaced in syria. some are coming to europe in huge numbers. you look at a country like austria, which has taken in 1%
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of its national population last year alone. germany you know, almost took a million people, and this is changing the politics of all of these places. and of course, we've been living through a lot of migration anyway. a lot of the migration in europe is coming from africa. some in the united states is coming from mexico and central america, and then you have the syrian migration raising fierce about terrorism. often highly, you know, unjustified by which i mean certainly in the u.s. case, we have a very, very tough vetting system that takes two years. it makes it very difficult for some potential terrorists to get in, but people are emotionally scared. they are unsure about what to do, and that has fueled the rise of right-wing populism all over the western world. it's not as you say, not just trump. it's happened in austria, in france and countries like swede be, eastern europe. whats in syria, david petraeus has a great line, syria doesn't
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play by las vegas rules. what happens in syria doesn't stay in syria. >> you see the aftereffects around the world. zakaria, it's piece. enjoyed reading it. >> thank you. after all of these months, all indications the fed is about to raise interest rates. what it means more the economy and your bottom line, coming up. whoa, whoa, i got this. just gotta get the check. almost there. i can't reach it. if you have alligator arms, you avoid picking up the check. what? it's what you do. i got this. thanks, dennis! if you want to save fifteen percent or more on car insurance, you switch to geico. growwwlph. it's what you do. oh that is good crispy duck.
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you're getting ready to buy a car or home or if you have a credit card or savings account pay close attention to this. the federal reserve is expected to raise a key interest rate today. cnn "money" correspondent alison kosik is joins us from the new york stock exchange. tell us what this could mean. everyone should have their eye
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on this, alison? >> looking to take out a loan, meaning borrow money, it's going to get more expensive. the areas where you'll see the costs go up. take out a new mortgage, or a new home equity line of credit, you're going to see those costs go up. if you carry a car loan, or if you carry a balance on your credit card, you're going to see rising rates there as well. here's what's interesting. if you've been paying attention like i have lately, i've seen rates already move up ahead of the formal announcement of an expected interest rate rise. happening in about two hours because the markets have already been expecting this move to happen because the fed has been hinting since the summertime that it's been happening, and yet part of the reason is because you've seen an improvement in some big areas of the economy. you look at unemployment rate at 4.6%. at a nine-year low. seeing an average of 180,000 jobs being created every month. look at gdp. up with the third quarter at
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3.2%. also seeing prices rising, but still below the fed's target 2% target rate and the fed once again has been dropping hints about this rate hike happening. so no surprises me on wall street. >> what are you seeing there? keeping an eye on the dow, flirting with the milestone of 20,000 points? >> within 20,000. the 20,000 is within fitting distance. many people on the floor here today telling me they don't see it getting here, 20,000 mark, today. but interesting, look at the bigger picture. putting it this way, we are in the middle of a santa claus rally happening since the day after election day and dressed up as donald trump. what you're seeing happen at the dow, ever so closer to that 20,000 mark, is the expectation that a donald trump administration will boost the economy, because of lower taxes, less regulation, and expected
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stimulus, expected to pass congress. these are pro-growth measures that could wind of you an economy. you're seeing the fed trying to get ahead of this, a possible heating of the economy, and be more proactive than reactive. brian brianne? >> alison kosik breaking it down on wall street. appreciate it. up next, what the trump transition team did that sent shock waves through the energy department. we'll have that.
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well, any new president is tanked right away with fimi wit thousands of government jobs and inherits millions of workers not going anywhere. career civil servants who do the actual day-to-day business of government. it took a while, looking at those workers to and in some cases stepping on toes. a lengthy letter to the energy department asking for specific information on staffers who worked on claimant change. one question asks, in part, for a list of all employees or contractors who attended any inneragency working group on the social cost of carbon meeting. another is a list of employees or contractors who attended meeting of the top decision-making panel of the u.n. convention on climate change going back five years. this week the department refused those requests, and now top
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democrats on two house committees want answers of their own. from trump's staff. soon thereafter, one trump official said the survey was not authorized and the person who sent it has been "properly counseled." joined by former new mexico governor bill richardson, someone who has worn many hats, but i know you have been looking at this, sir, and you have concerns. tell us about them. >> well, i'm a former energy secretary, and the people that run the energy department are the career civil servants, not political appointees showing the trump transition effort, two things. one, totally undisciplined and secondly, a bunch of climate deniers trying to exercise their political views on a transition process that should be non-partisan. so it's very troubling. yeah, the new person is, is to be counseled, the person that
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violated transition documentation, but it shows that it's at an out of control process. the problem, though, is that trump himself, the appointees of president-elect trump at epa, at now possibly interior are a bunch of climate deniers and that's the transition staff, they're full of those, and this is very unfortunate, because the issues of climate change should be determined by science. they should be determined by national security, and not by political ideology and that's the climate change deniers. >> is it unusual, once you left the clinton administration, obviously kept an eye on the george w. bush administration. is it that unusual for an administration to want to see civil servants seeing eye to eye with them on the position of climate change? >> well, the civil service
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employees, they will support the policy of the incoming president and energy secretary. but this appeared to be a witch-hunt, this effort by the transition team. name the officials that attended climate change meetings. the contractors. in other words, they're sending a message that they want those officials to be looked at, punished or discarded when it comes to policy. whatever the policy of the energy department is, you have to have the career people, the civil servants, the member and women that work very hard there to help you implement policy, and you're discouraging that by appearing to witch-hunt. >> i want to talk about this questionnaire but first ask who we think will be the incoming energy secretary. rick perry. someone, both southwestern governors, you two, and someone you've worked with in the past. you know him. tell us about him, because it
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sounds like you guys actually get on pretty well, yet you still have concerns about him? >> well, we get along well. we work together as governors, adjoining states on water, on energy, on immigration. he's a good guy. my worry is that he will be co-opted by the climate deniers. the energy department is not just oil and gas drilling. it's mainly national security, the national laboratories, science, nuclear weapons. a lot of relationships with russia. so it isn't just oil and gas drilling and fracking. what i worry about is that the climate deniers will get to govern perry, say, you've got to dismantle the renewab ablable e what president obama started and push the resources at the department of energy. that's what worries me. on the whole, it's a good appointment.
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you need a good political presence with energy, with sharp elbows a megafone and perry has that but hope not co-opted by all the climate deniers that president-elect trump seems to be appointing. epa, now i hear somebody at interior. congressman from montana, a climate denier. this is very troubling for science, for national security, for american energy policy, and national security policy. >> and back to this questionnaire where someone from the trump transition team was asking the department of energy which they refused to do, to identify folks who had been at climate meetings. the folks that believe in the science of climate change and effects of man on that. so this morning one of the transition team members described this questionnaire as an intellectual curiosity exercise. listen to what he told our chris cuomo. >> some of the stuff that you're reading and some of the stuff i'm reading is very ideologically based about the
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climate. we don't want it to be that way. if you're asking me, do we want clean air and clean water? yes, safer, better environment for future generations of americans and the world, of course we want that and are working super hard here at trump to youer to make sure that that happens, chris. >> you said, secretary, that civil servants will execute the policy of whoever is obviously in the white house, or in the department of energy. but if a civil servant completely does not believe what their boss believes, how do they really work for an administration like that? >> well, what they do is, through internal deliberations they try to -- there are a lot of good scientists at the department of energy, at the national labs. they express their views, but in the end, the policy of the president and the secretary of energy is followed.
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so do you those deliberations when you disagree internally. you do them diplomatically, and you do them quo ietly. what this questionnaire was done, and it was not sent to other departments. wasn't sent to the department of state. list the people that make russia policy, the contractors. the political appointee, the career employees. so this is unprecedented, but there's a bunch of climate deniers, anti-environmentalists, in the trump administration. it's obvious, in the transition team, and it shows an undisciplined process that violates the standards, i believe, of the civil service of men and women that work in the career federal service in the pentagon, in the state department, in the health department and all of the agencies that are doing their jobs, and following the president's lead, but when you try to intimidate them way questionnaire, a witch-hunt, this is unfortunate.
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i'm glad they backed off but it shows troubling trends, they did say it wasn't authorized. trying to get to the bottom who sent it, though. govern governor, ambassador you secretary richardson, thanks for joining us. happening now, prosecution and defense both rest in the charlesen massacre trial. dramatic details coming up. with total accumulation of up to three feet. roads will be shut down indefinitely. and schools are closed. campbell's soups go great with a cold and a nice red. made for real, real life. [and her new business: i do, to jeanetgo. jeanette was excellent at marrying people. but had trouble getting paid. not a good time, jeanette. even worse. now i'm uncomfortable. but here's the good news, jeanette got quickbooks. send that invoice, jeanette. looks like they viewed it. and, ta-da! paid twice as fast. oh, she's an efficient officiant. way to grow, jeanette.
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the video you're about to see is so upsetting because we know what happened later. dylann roof is on trial, both sides rested cases. closing arguments beginning tomorrow morning. roof went to bible study june 17th last year. the group welcomed him in. gave him a sheet of bible verses he stayed with them at least 15 minutes before he shot and killed nine members of charleston's emanuel a & e church. and all meant to show he planned his attack and has already confessed. nick valencia joins me now. give us the latest what's been happening? >> reporter: that video is very difficult to watch, brianna, especially knowing what happens after that. we know today the prosecution and defense, both rested their cases, and the prosecution, book-ending their case, starting with the survivor of that church
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shooting last june in charleston, the woman kept alive by dylann roof to recount what happened. the prosecution went to great length to show dylann roof as a coldhearted killer, showing no remorse since, highlighting his manifester and website, appearing to show adoration towards white supremacy, hatred towards blacks and highlight add sheet seemingly cut into a triangle to fashion itself after a ku klux klan hood. i was in the courtroom last week. dylann roof emotionless, expressionless, hands classped n his lap hearing recounts of the survivors of what happened. expecting to get closing arguments sometime tomorrow morning. brianna? >> we know you'll be looking and
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reporting on that. nick valencia, thank you, as the story continues. thank you so much for watching "newsroom." "wolf" starts right now. hello. i'm wolf blitzer. it's 1:00 p.m. here in washington. 8:00 p.m. in aleppo, syria. 9:00 p.m. in mosul, iraq. wherever you're watching from around the world, thanks very much for joining us. >> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. we're following two major stories this hour. breaking news out of syria first. artillery shells are raining down on aleppo as regime forces are on the brink of taking the city. buses are waiting outside the evacuation point to carry civilians, men, women and children, to safety, but the cease-fire to allow them to be eva eevacuated collapsed. an estimated


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