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tv   CNN Newsroom With John Berman and Poppy Harlow  CNN  August 1, 2018 6:00am-7:00am PDT

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top of the hour, i'm poppy harlow in new york, so glad you're with us. moments from now, mueller versus manafort day two. the gloves are off in the virginia courtroom where the campaign chair is accused of hiding millions of dollars to avoid paying taxes. prosecutors are painting paul manafort as a shrewd liar who ran a worldwide scheme to fund his lavish life-style and in a bold move the defense is shifting the blame squarely to mueller's star witness and manafort's former deputy rick gates. let's go to the courthouse outside. joe johns is there with more. this was a very bold move by the defense to pin it all on gates. what do we know? >> that's right rick gates. the lock time deputy of paul
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manafort and it's clear in the attempt by the defense to establish reasonable doubt. in the big picture it's important to say that prosecutors putting on their case now are trying to delve into what they called the extravagant life-style of paul manafo manafort. they say he parked money in offshore banks and evaded taxes. evade it had internal revenue service so today we expect to hear more of the deep dive into how u.s. political consultants of both parties were hired to work for ukraine.
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we expect on the stand today among others daniel rayban. the first witness was another democratic political consultant, tad devine, the chief strategist for the democratic presidential candidate bernie sanders. also on the stand, an fbi agent who is expected to go through the nuts and bolts of what the fbi learned. >> the rocket docket. another big day. joining me now, crime and justice reporter shimon prokupecz and former federal prosecutor in new york's
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southern district, ellie honey. what do you make of the defense strategy? it's the first time we've seen what their strategy will be. it's a bold move to nail to pin this on gates. especially when gates could be, will be, a key witness in the other part of the trial here that manafort is facing in d.c. in charges related to russia. what do you make of it? >> poppy, we've seen the defense strategy and as a former prosecutor i'm underwhelmed. the defense seems to be it was everyone else but me. it was everyone else but paul manafort and i think that will be a hard sell for the jury because the facts are who built the business. who is rick gates' boss.
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who was jetting around the world with the $20,000 watch and ostrich jacket? it was manafort so this idea of blame the cooperator, blame the number two guy is a hard sell, it's not an uncommon approach, it doesn't succeed often and particularly here where you're not -- if you're the prosecutor, you're not having to ask the jury to believe rick gates in a vacuum. there's a lot of documentation and other witnesses who will back him up. >> shimon, on that thread, what we heard from the defense team elaborating on the bank accounts that elie points out, the defense is arguing that's how the oligarchs in ukraine, that's how they mandated it had to be. will that fly? >> not really. it's okay to do business like that as long as you report it and that's what manafort is on trial for.
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he tried to hide the money, not pay taxes on any of it and when it dried up he got loans using -- filing fraudulent information on loans and then went on to live this lavish life-style. what this trial shows us is just how lobbying works, how this political consulting is done outside the u.s. and gives us an inside look. it may not be pretty in many cases and this is work that goes on all the time but the importance is that you report the work you do and the government says manafort hasn't done so. >> when you look at the chances mueller does cooperate, he could he could cooperate up until the case is handed to the jury, what are the chances he might do that? >> low, poppy, but not impossible. there is a strategy that
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manafort may be pursuing which is let's take two bites at the apple. if they win, wonderful, they're acquitted, they walk out but if they lose and they think they have enough to offer you can approach the prosecution team and say okay, you beat us, we're in a the you have spot but now we're ready to come in, if you're going to pull that off, you better have something interesting. >> but will you get as sweet a deal? >> look at the situation manafort will be in if he is to be convict ed. he will get 10, 12 years. so he wouldn't get as good a deal if he came in on day one. >> bob mueller's team have referred cases away from his purview and referred it to the southern district where elie
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used to be a prosecutor. talk to me about these cases. you mentioned how widespread these lobbying efforts with ukraine were and not just among republican consultants. >> no, democrat consultants have come up during the mueller investigation and one we talked about and has been reported on a tony podesta, a democratic lobbyist. also what we've learned is that that investigation. we know tony podesta did not file these registration forms you need to file with the department of justice. it's also relating to work with the ukraine, which is what manafort is on trial for now. this came up during the manafort investigation. it's not clear why there's any violation between tony podesta.
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what we've seen a lot by the mueller investigation is that this lobbying work came up and it's made people in washington, d.c. nervous. it was very lax. you never saw farah violations but now mueller has taken a different position and the fbi has taken a different position. and i want to make another point on whether or not manafort could cooperate. there is something the government wants from paul manafort. we know he was give an sweet deal like rick gates has. he could have done so in this investigation. we know his cooperation but there was something and we don't know what that is that continues to stop paul manafort from cooperating, whether it's fear of someone, whether it's
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something else. he's been in the lobbying world for a lot of people. and that's what concerns him is that he comes in and starts talking about people. his life could be at risk and his family's life could be at risk but there's something that is stopping him from cooperating. >> that's an important point. gentlemen, thank you. shimon, elie, appreciate it. we're also keeping a close eye on the president who's keeping a close eye on this trial, you can bet, officials say he's made it known he wants frequent updates as this mueller trial proceeds, but that is not something you will hear him talk about the president didn't say mueller or manafort or witch-hunt in his rally. that's not what we usually hear. abby phillip is at the white
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house with more. do you know why he didn't wade into this at all yesterday? >> well, poppy, this could be the beginning of the president's attempt to play it cool in public while privately he's doing something entirely different. sources are telling cnn the president behind the scenes is asking for more. he wants updates on what's going on day to day in this trial. the first major case of the special counsel investigation. the president is paying attention to this as his advisers are saying this has nothing to do with this white house, manafort is being tried for things he did before he became the president's campaign chairman. but, again, poppy, president trump has also talked about this special counsel investigation ruining people's lives. and when he says that, he's also referring to paul manafort who was at one time his campaign
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chairman. >> abby, thank you for reporting from the white house for us this morning. ahead, a lot this hour, facebook detection effort to influence the midterms as we're less than 100 days away from voters going to the polls. what's being done to stop it. also president trump takes a cue from candidate trump while taking up his old campaign rally tactic. will it be a winning strategy? and down loads suspended. a judge blocks plans to allow blueprints ford printed guns to be widely available online. this fight is far from over. table: one is cash, the three are fha, one is va. so what can you do? she's saying a whole lotta people want to buy this house. but you got this! rocket mortgage by quicken loans makes the complex simple. understand the details and get approved in as few as eight minutes. by america's largest mortgage lender.
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facebook shut down accounts that were possibly russian linked and organizing across the country. this raises more concerns about russia actively trying to interfere in u.s. elections. on a conference call about this yesterday, facebook ceo sheryl sandberg said "security is an arms race and it's never done. let's go to dylan buyers, a reporter who joins me with more.
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facebook has invested so much money, so much time, so much effort into fighting this but it goes to show that it persists. do they know definitively this is russia? >> they don't know definitively, poppy, it's russia but all signs point to some level of russian involvement. so much activity looks similar to what facebook found after the 2016 election. the difference this time is that facebook is getting ahead of it. they are bringing it to congress's attention ahead of the midterms so that's progress on facebook's front but the larger picture here is exactly what you brought up -- this is a problem they can never fully solve. it's not something that can be prevented, simply something that can be monitored and then called out and like you said, they have invested so much money, so much time and manpower, a staff of 20,000 people monitoring this sort of thing. it's immense but what it shows
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is that this is really the best they can do and as these efforts, these misinformation efforts become more sophisticated it's going to require all that much more effort just to keep up in that arms race. >> and dylan, what was interesting to me, many of the interesting things out of this briefing that facebook staff gave to lawmakers they said finding this suspicious activity was hard they are time around, do you know why? >> facebook anticipated it and lawmakers on capitol hill anticipated it. every election psych it will efforts of russians and other actors are going to become more sophisticated. that's how it works and that's why it's an arms race. so url addresses, vpns easily traced back to russia around the 2016 campaign, now whoever is doing this are taking greater
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steps to hide that. that's why facebook doesn't want to definitively say this is russia because it's not as easily traced. they want congress to assign responsibility for these actions but officials told lawmakers in these private meetings it appears to be russia behind this. >> dylan, thank you for the reporting from los angeles. joining me now is a member of congress hawho is very focus on this, senator ed markey. thank you for being here. >> good morning. >> let's talk about facebook. you had a contentious back-and-forth in april with facebook founder and ceo mark zuckerberg and after that you tweeted "sorry doesn't cut it anymore." given this new development do you believe facebook is doing enough to safeguard our democracy and elections? >> facebook was in denial, it's clear they didn't accept their
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responsibility to ensure that they dealt with the down side of the internet. they were touting all the good things that happened but there's a dickensian quality to the internet, it's the best and worst simultaneously. now, to their credit facebook is deck kated resources toer if it are out those trying to subvert our election process, that's to their credit but it also is a warning to our country in the words of the 1960's movie, the russians are coming again for our elections and we have to be vigilant but that has to start in the white house with the president of the united states stopping his denial of the reality that this is happening. >> in april when mark zuckerberg did testify before your committee and you had this back and forth, you've talked about
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the consent act which you introduced this year. that is legislation that if passed would require companies like facebook to get an opt in from all of us that we would have to opt in for our private information to be used, not set certain privacies, we would have to opt in and you pushed him and he conceded that yes he thinks that's the right principle. do you think facebook with all of this investment, the hiring 20 20,000 people, taking a big hit in their stock price is doing enough now or can they, should they do more? >> there is more to be done on the privacy of individuals. in the consent act we say basically you have a right to know the information is being gathered about you. you have secondly a right to know that that information might be used for purposes that you did not intend and third you
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have a right to say no, you don't want this information to be shared. that has not happened yet. there is no law that is on the books and facebook hasn't stepped up to advocate for such a law to be given as a privacy bill of rights to every single american in this era. so we're still at the dawn of this debate. we're very far from having the laws on the books that reflect the concern every american has about their private information and that's reflected in the decline of facebook's stock. >> do you think facebook is making quite a lot of sacrifices to make things right? i ask you that because we saw last week the stock fell -- it plummeted after you heard mark zuckerberg say on the investor call we're investing so much in
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security that it will significantly impact our profitability. it sounds like it's good they're doing that but they have to do more and that's get behind legislation like this. >> now facebook is beginning a process of making that investment but they need to make the whole platform more secure to give people confidence that their information won't be compromised and they have to make the investment -- which they've begun to do -- to put in the protections to protect our
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system in the country to protect us from invasions by the russians and others that seek through this technology to compromise our democracy. >> the vice president mike pence speaking in new york yesterday pointed his finger back at the obama administration and said that that administration failed to do enough to fend off cyber security attacks. let's listen. >> the last administration all but neglected cyber security even though the digital threats were growing more numerous and dangerous by the day. in 2014, a foreign government hacked into the white house network itself and yet in the face of constant attacks like that the last administration too often chose silence and paralysis over strength and acti action. >> should the obama administration have done more senator? >> well, that's untrue.
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i was the author of the law in 2010 to mandate dramatic increase in the security of the electric grid inside of the united states. i was able to get that passed through the house of representatives. it was killed over here in the senate, which is where i now serve by republican senators at the behest of the electric utility industry of the united states. i had president obama's support for that legislation. it was republican senators which killed it. now we hear crocodile tears, see crocodile tears being shed about their concern. well, right now they have an ability in this straight to put out an across-the-board red alert that they expect every single industry to install the state-of-the-art protections against cyber attacks in our country, they have yet to do it so let's no longer have words, let's have actions because i
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know fromly own personal experience that they killed my bill after it had passed the house of representatives and the electric grid is the single most vulnerable dangerous thing and we know that china and russia and other countries are probing our electric grid everyday. they have not supported legislation that mandates the toughest possible security to be built around it. >> senator, on the issue top of mind for many people this week, the ability to post online plans to print 3d guns. a federal judge has temporarily halted that but this fight is far from over. you have said this would create a new supercharged era of gun violence. my colleague lori segal sat down yesterday with a man named cody wilson, he brought the lawsuit forward and settled with the state department over this one that would have allowed these
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plans to be posted widely on line. here's what he said. >> are you worried the government will reverse its decision? >> i already uploaded the plans. the ship has sailed. it's public domain information. it's irrevocable. people can't take it back. >> he said people are printing this out, you can't turn the ship around now. what's your reaction to that? >> that's not true. a federal judge in washington has already issued a restraining order blocking any further downloading. what we need is for donald trump once again to match his words that he is concerned with some action but we don't expect that to happen because ultimately the nra has this republican-controlled congress in a vice-like grip. after parkland we could pass no legislation. after this revelation about 3d guns being downloaded, we have
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crickets that we're hearing from the republican side in terms of passing legislation to protect against their proliferation. these guns require no background checks. they're undetectable. they're untraceable. they're going to be a gift to every terrorist, every criminal in the united states and around the world because this is the internet. it's global and this white house beginning with secretary pompeo, secretary sessions have given a green light and donald trump is going along with it. he has a chance to issue an executive order to tell his administration to reverse position and he has not done it, we have to say to these people that we won't allow them to do it. we're at the dawn of the era. we have to put the lid on the pandora's box and not allow it to become an epidemic on every single street in our country. >> ed markey, appreciate you
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being here on these important issues. >> thank you. >> we'll get a fact chekt on the nra and where the president stands. the president's wild style on the campaign trail worked the first time. will it work this time around? ahead. you might take something for your heart... or joints. but do you take something for your brain. with an ingredient originally discovered in jellyfish, prevagen has been shown in clinical trials to improve short-term memory. prevagen. healthier brain. better life.
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you are tremendous people. and i will leave now because i am boring you to death. thank you. >> that was the president in florida channeling his 2016 campaign style at that rally. sources tell cnn he plans to ramp up how many of these events he holds over the next couple months. is it a winning strategy? with me are patrick healey, political analyst and kaitlin huey burns, reporter for real clear politics. thank you for being there. moments ago i was going to begin with this but let me bring you breaking news we got from the president. the president just directly directing his attorney general to end the mueller probe, the russia probe. let me read you this tweet from the president "this is a terrible situation and attorney general jeff sessions should stop this rigged witch-hunt right now before it continues to stain our country any further." patrick healey, your read on this, kaitlan collins is tweeting, our reporter, this is
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a first. >> this becomes a big moment for jeff sessions and rod rosenstein, they made pretty clear, especially rod rosenstein, that the mueller probe is legitimate. that it should continue, that robert mueller should be allowed to do his work so the president doesn't see this as interference, he sees it as he can do whatever he wants. he famously talked about how much president obama was protected by his attorney general eric hold er but this president has an unusual view on how to use presidential power with his attorney general and this looks like a pressure tactic. jeff sessions will probably talking to john kelly, the chief of staff and others and has to ask themselves what is do they do in response? do they hunker down or do they need to take action.
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>> when it comes to overseeing the mueller probe, jeff sessions recused himself from all things russia so it's a built confusing because it would be rod rosenstein that has the purview to do that. >> exactly, rooinds is ahead of this investigation and in public comments that rooin comments that rod rosenstein made, he exuded conversation in this investigation and in the way in which it is going. remember, he has been at those announcements, announcing those indictments that have come from this investigation. the question has been why continue to hang him out there? if you were so concerned why wouldn't you make that step in firing jeff sessions? and that would be of course the unraveling on this investigation but also creating a whirlwind of
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political problems if more presiden president. >> for many americans watching this they may think this is nothing new, the president is blasting the mueller probe calling it a witch-hunt, calling out his attorney general. >> well, he is delegitimizing our system of government in terms of approaching presidents who have had either credible allegations or information that needs to be investigated independently of the president's own administration jeff sessions recused himself. rod rosenstein is running this. while folks may look and say oh, president trump is -- the paul manafort trial is under way,
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he's seeing the coverage, it inflames him, he sends out a tweet, that's his style. that isn't quite the right way to see it. the right way to see it is this is a president who is exerting pressure on his justice department as he is for many months but not willing to go the extra step and fire jeff sessio sessions. it creates chaos and uncertainty and where things stand but just delegitimizing or trying to delegitimize the independent counsel. >> and i think kaitlan, it goes beyond trying to delegitimize, it goes to how do you view the justice department, as working for the american people or you. is it about loyalty to you, the president, or loyalty to doing the right thing for the american people? and there's a new tweet that just came in from the president, we're working on getting it up. let me read it to you. he's talking about paul manafort, this is the first time we've heard from him on manafort
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since the trial yesterday. he writes "why didn't the government tell me that he -- manafort -- was under investigation? these old charges have nothing to do with collusion." the government has zero responsibility, kaitlan, to tell the president that the guy who ran his campaign for five months is under investigation, right? >> that's right. what we've heard from this president is he's tried to make the argument well, manafort worked for other republican candidates as well. he wasn't just hired by me. that doesn't, however, negate the fact that manafort is under all of this legal scrutiny right now. >> but him calling out, kaitlan, calling out the justice department and sighing why didn't the justice department tell me? why should the justice department tell him? >> exactly. and as much as they try to say
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paul manafort wasn't part of the campaign, he was the campaign manager, he guided the campaign through that arduous tell gatt process we covered. he was very much a big part of that campaign for several months and we have seen the president denigrate the justice department to the extent that the public responds to in the the way that trump does. we've seen the negative polling as it relates to the justice department and that is a really startling dangerous development. >> final thought, patrick? >> we came into this -- the president is looking at going out on the campaign trail a lot this summer and fall. he is going to beat this like a drum. he is in some ways running against the american government. he's not on the ballot this fall but he is using twitter, he's
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using his language to create uncertainty his own justice department we it's also the justice department raising concerns that intelligence agencies, fbi aren't doing the work in a credible way for the american people and it's corrosive. it has that effect over time and i think this fall president trump's not on the ballot but in a way he's running against these american institutions just trying to whack them over and over to inflame the base to make that you are shy turn out. >> patrick healey and kaitlin, thank you for being here. call it a miracle. how did 103 passengers -- all of them -- survive a fiery plane zplash the crash? the details ahead.
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high winds are the leading suspect in yesterday's crash of an aeromexico plane with 103 people on board, all of them
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miraculously survived. many passengers walked away from the crash, just walked away. it's stunning. this happened just after takeoff from durango in northwestern mexico. laieyla santiago joins me from mexico city. it's remarkable leyla, what have you learned? >> so many people feeling grateful having a sigh of relief after this accident that occurred yesterday. this was a flight from aeromexico, headed here to mexico city and government officials are now pointing the finger at a wind gust. that said, the investigation continues. they're still trying to get more information as to the sequence of events that led up to this. there were 103 people on board. people were injured, at least 49 people hospitalized, including children. also on the plane there were infants so rabbleable to know
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when you see the images of the plane that had billowing smoke and flames once it went down, remarkable, unbelievable to understand that everyone walked away and there were no deaths. there were injuries. the pilot and one other passengers are in critical but stable condition. i've spoke within the u.s. embassy in mexico and they tell me there were u.s. citizens on that plane. we understand that one of them was a reverend from the archdiocese of chicago, confirming he was injured but he is resting and alert. we spoke to another woman who lives in illinois that was on that flight and she said there were two major impacts, the first one she bumped her head, the second she saw flames in the cabin and was just like everyone else trying to get off the plane, we are waiting to hear from the crew members, hopefully the pilot who i'm sure were h o
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heroes getting everyone off this flight without any deaths but still 49 of those passengers that were injured hospitalized and we are waiting to get more information of what led up to the plane going down just seconds after it took off, poppy? >> leyla, thank you so much for your reporting. happening right now, day two of what has been a fiery trial for the president's excampaign manager paul manafort. we're following all of the br k breaking details ahead.
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this morning, a website that promises downloadable blueprints for functional plastic guns made with 3-d printers is itself not functional today. that's after a judge's ruling late last night in seattle. the judge put a temporary hold on a settlement between a texas group called defense disturbed and the trump administration that would have allowed these gun plans to be posted widely and distributed online starting today. our senior political analyst and anchor, john avlon, is with me now. so nothing to worry about here? >> not quite. but let's cut through the spin to get some stats and facts. so yesterday, immediately after a reality checked the dangers of the 3-d printed guns, president trump tweeted this -- i'm looking into 3-d plastic guns being sold to the public. already spoke to the nra. doesn't seem to make much sense. so, great. president was going to do something. then several hours later we found out what he actually did. which is echo the nra by invoking a 30-year-old law. now deputy press secretary told reporters, quote, in the united states it is currently illegal to own or make a plastic gun of
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any kind. that's an example of the art of the dodge and it misses the point. the problem isn't that plastic guns are illegal. it is that thanks to a trump administration settlement, plans for the 3-d printing of guns were being put up on the web after the obama administration stopped it. in that settlement the trump administration specifically said 3-d printing instructions for guns were now available for, quote, public release, ie unlimited distribution in any form. which caused the texas group you just referenced, defense distributed -- the age of the downloadable gun formally begins. it should come as no surprise the president's stance now echoes the nra who also pointed to, and praised, the reagan era undetectable firearms act. wh the nra said it strongly opposes any effort to expand the law and
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the nra's already on record calling the printable guns innovation. while the president deserves credit for recognizing that his own administration settlement was about to lead to a policy that, quote, doesn't make much sense, which is put being it mildly. under pressure, the administration ran right back to the nra for approval of its position. if it weren't for the late night actions of a judge this policy would have gone forward despite the president's tweet. but the good news is that public pressure brought by the press and a handful of states stopped this nonsensable policy from slipping through the cracks. at least for now. >> important reality check this morning. at least for now. do you know why after the obama administration fighting so hard against this why the trump state department just a few months ago completely reversed course? if the president tweets it doesn't seem to make sense, why did his own state department do it. >> the president might not know everything his state department
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is doing but they take cues, tone comes from the top. the fact that not only did they settle it but paid the companies $40 n4 40,000 of taxpayer money. >> our money. >> cnn spoke with the man at the head of all this. we'll hear from him next and his argument. thank you. our next hour begins now. a place with 24-hour fvalet servicee and a boutique salon a place with all day arts and crafts it even has a day spa a place that's so much like home,
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top of the hour, 10:00 a.m. eastern. i'm poppy harlow in new york. we begin with breaking news. the president directly calling just moments ago on attorney general jeff sessions to end the russia investigation. that is the same attorney general who recused himself from all russia-related matters and also this morning, the president seems to be calling on the justice department to be loyal to him, brabove all others, askg why the department did not tell him that his former campaign chair was under investigation. that's paul manafort. despite paul manafort having that key role running the campaign for five months, the president is continuing this morning to distance himself from him, all of this as manafort's trial enters day two. we are on top of all of this. to the white house with abby philip. a direct call to the attorney general to end the russia probe. what do you know? >> reporter: that's right, poppy. this is a significant moment for from the making the subtext of all of his attacks on attorney general jeff sessions


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