tv Erin Burnett Out Front CNN May 10, 2019 4:00pm-5:00pm PDT
governments have actually paid the ransom demanded. >> thanks very much. thanks very much for watching. to all the mothers, a very happy mother's day. erin burnett outfront starts right now. outfront, next. breaking news. a shocking request. the president asking don mcgahn to declare the president did not obstruct justice. it's an order mcgahn denied in recent weeks. plus is trump's attorney colluding with a foreign government. he plans to pressure a foreign government to investigate joe biden. how does this add up? senator kamala harris in a revealing new interview opening up about being a stepmother and what she calls her modern family. let's go outfront. mpb good evening. an administration official telling cnn moments ago that the white house asked former white
house counsel don mcgahn to state publicly that president trump did not obstruct justice. the new york times reporting that team trump asked mcgahn not once but twice. the request coming after the white house saw the mueller report which said that trump had ordered his white house counsel, don mcgahn, the fire bob mueller. mcgahn turn the president down then and in this request to publicly say that wasn't obstruction of justice. mcgahn is crucial to all of this. he was one of bob mueller's key witnesses. mentioned many ore than 500 tim. more than any other witness many the document. trump oddered mcgahn to fire mueller which is a request the president has publicly denied making. >> i never told don mcgahn to fire mueller. if i wanted to fire mueller, i would have done it myself. >> pamela brown is out front
live outside the white house. what are you learning this hour in. >> we're learning more about the white house reaction to the episodes laid out about don mcgahn and the president's request to him to dismiss the special counsel. we have learned through sources familiar with this matter that the white house reached out to don mcgahn's lawyer william burke asked burke to ask his client to come out and say that the president's directive to fire the special counsel robert mueller was not obstruction of justice and that don mcgahn rebuffed that request. a source familiar said was because bill barr had already come out and said that publicly he didn't obstruct justice. the calculation was made among don mcgahn and his attorney that
it wasn't necessary. the white house was aware that don mcgahn had told the special counsel his more than 30 hours of interviews. it appears the white house wanted mcgahn to come out and publicly say he wanted to help squelch some of the fall out. you'll remember right after the reports release the next day y saying asking why people are taking notes. at that point it became moot for mcgahn to come out and make any sort of statement. it's interesting to note this is coming out now because in effect the white house is getting it out there that the president
didn't obstruct justice. >> as we said, no one is more integral to the mueller report in terms of mentions and times testifying to mueller than don mcgahn. chairman nadler has subpoenaed mcgahn. the president is instructed me. where does this go from here? >> a democrat will want to ask these questions. >> the subpoena has been issued for his appearance by may 21st. earlier he told me if mcgahn does not appear, he will be held in contempt of congress for defying the subpoena. this comes after mcgahn declined to turn over records to the house judiciary committee earlier this week under instructions from the white house that said that those records could breach confidentiality discussions between the white house counsel and the president.
if they were to take this move, they were to do something similar to prevent him from testifying in a public setting, either invoking executive privilege, expect this to be another court fight to get to the bottom of this and hear from a key player, the witness all these actions in first two years of the trump presidency who was ordered, according to the mueller report to fire the special counsel in an parent effort to squelch that investigation. democrats want to hear all of this. we'll see how the democrats do and we'll what mcgahn decides to do as well. >> thank you very much.
what's your reaction to this breaking news. the white house, asked don mcgahn twice in the past month once they saw the mueller report and in one case prior to it becoming public but after the white house saw it, telling don mcgahn to say president trump never ob strucstructed justice mcgahn refused to do so. >> the president said there was no obstruction of justice so the fact he would ask mcgahn to go out there and say that there was no obstruction of justice and hints at what they really believe is the case. we needfully unredacted mueller report. with we need to have mcgahn testify
on capitol hill. >> the president said there's no obstruction. you have more than 800 former prosecutors at the doj saying they think when you look at this, it adds up to obstruction. he's a crucial guy to hear from. >> does this change where you are impeachment? >> i'm so like focused like a laser on the challenge right in front of our face which is are the american people going to have oversight of this president or do we have a system of checks and balances with regard to this executive or not. we have subpoenas out for mr. mcgahn's testimony but today also subpoenas were issued for his tax returns. subpoenas were issued for other folks testimony as well on other issues. none of them have been complied with. now we're seeing republicans start issuing subpoenas in the senate for don junior's
testimony. this is becoming, i hope, a bipartisan concern. >> the house judiciary chairman nadler has threatened thoelo ho him in contempt. he could be disbarred. all sorts of things that would affect his life. congressman nadler said the full house could hold a vote to find multiple people in contempt. other people you plan to hold in contempt noting bar was voted as such by that committee? >> yes. i think that, let's see. we have to see whether folks comply with sue pbpoenas that a outstanding.
let's see if they comply. on the oversight committee, with had mr. karl cline refuse to answer a number of questions. he is also under subpoena. >> if they don't come ply, you go to court if they still don't compply then you move forward with impeach. proceeding. is that still the extra step that needs to comply? >> i'm not there yet. i want the investigation to proceed. one issue that i just want to raise briefly with regard to the tax returns there's a statutory violation in addition to a violation of the subpoena. the main point here is that we
have to have a system of checks and balances. what is behind this refusal to comply with basic requests for information. >> you have a fair point. they say there's 17 of these. you guys want everything in the kitchen sink. how do you make the case to the american people this is not, as the president says, your effort to influence 2020 or relitigate 2016? >> sure. right now not only is he not complying with issues on the mueller report but on a whole host of issues. i know the american people definitely want to be able to have oversight of the president with regard to health care issues. or with regard to immigration
issues. i would say one thing on my house intelligence committee, in another bipartisan request, chairman schiff and devin nunes, the ranking member have come together and now for the second time asked all counter intelligence materials associated with the mueller report. i think stlst a growing dissatisfaction with the president's behavior even among republicans. >> getting them to agree on anything is a miraculous thing. thank you very much. next, is trump's personal attorney already colluding? rudy giuliani says he's pushing a foreign government to dig up dirt on joe biden. what is he thinking?
breaking news. tensions escalating in the middle east. the u.s. sending more patriot missiles to the region tonight. is trump on a collision course? a former congresswoman who voted to impeach richard nixon talks about whether history is repeating itself. she's out front. [music playing] (vo) this is the averys. this is the averys trying the hottest new bistro. wait...and the hottest taqueria? and the hottest...what are those? oh, pierogis? and this is the averys wondering if eating out is eating into saving for their first home. this is jc... (team member) welcome to wells fargo, how may i help? (vo) who's here to help with a free financial health conversation, no strings attached. this is the averys with the support they needed to get back on track. well done guys. (team member) this is wells fargo.
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tonight, the president's attorney going to foreign soil to dig up dirt on his boss's potential 2020 rival joe biden. rudy giuliani tells cnn he's going to ukraine to pressure that government to investigate biden. it's not a secret. he's admitting it. he tells the new york time we're not meddling in an election, we're meddling in an investigation which we have a right to do. there's nothing illegal about it. somebody could say it's impo improper. yes somebody could say that. it's sort of bizarre. you can't make this up. why is rudy giuliani doing it? that information will be very helpful. his client is president trump. who should know better by now. where to even start with this. how about with trump's own hand picked fbi director.
>> if a foreign government offic office offers assistant, what would you ask that campaign to do? >> my view is if any public official or member of any come pain -- campaign is acted by any nation state about influencing or interfering with our election then that's something that the fbi would want to know about. >> they would want to know if an american citizen was calling up a foreign government. that's like a whole other thing, actually, even worse. fbi knows about it because rudy giuliani is not hiding it. he's putting it out there for us all to see. jeffrey harris, former assistant to rudy giuliani. michael warrant, cnn report who are has been covering this story.
jeffrey, is what rudy giuliani is doing, as he says it could be improper, is it even allowed? >> no, it is not allowed. rudy knows that. what i think is going on here is that people like rudy giuliani are emboldened by the fact they think they have teflon on them in the trump administration with an attorney general like barr that they can do what they want and even though it might cause scrutiny in another administration, they sort of feel free to do whatever suits their purpose. >> so, michael, from your reporting, let me just quote rudy giuliani again. we're not meddling in an election. we're meddling in an investigation and he says it will help his client very much. his client being the president. joe biden is part of the story.
this is the context here. joe biden is at the head of the democratic polls. he could be the opponent for president trump. rudy giuliani says there's questions about biden's efforts to remove a ukraine prosecutor who years earlier was investigating a ukraine natural gas company connected to biden's son. it sounds complicated but they think there's smelly there or opposition research that they could ask the foreign government to dig up for them. is there any there there? >> i think there's some legitimate questions maybe about hunter biden's role in this company. he comes to be on the board of this company. it's a compensated position. he has no experience in the energy industry and this is in ukraine which was at that point having a political upheaval. a lot of oligarchs running the big companies and his father happen to be presidevice presid the united states. i've been talking to rudy giuliani about this issue for
the past week. one of the frustrating thing s every time i've asked for evidence about whether joe biden himself ever acted improperly or unethically, he can't provide it. i think we should really be approaching sort of the insinuations he's making about joe biden's role in this with healthy dose of skepticism. >> patrick, you heard what the president's fbi director said. not that anyone should be told this. when someone reaches out to you and say i have dirt and they are a foreign government, it is against everything this country stands for. it's against the law. you call the fbi. rudy giuliani is calling them and asking for their help. >> incredible. he's going to ukraine trying to get a meeting with president-elect to lobby him to encourage an investigation. to put political pressure from president-elect on their own investigators to keep something cooking simply because it might
help president trump. not because it's in the interest of truth one way or the other or because this is in america's interest but because it would help his client, president trump. rudy giuliani just looks like a paid political lobbyist going into foreign soil asking a foreign government to help out the political prospects of the president. it's strange folks in the trump administration seem to think this is a good idea and it could be seen as improper. >> even admits that. >> he sees it as proper. >> jeffrey, you know rudy giuliani. what is he thinking? >> that's a very good question. the rudy i never and worked with would never engage in this conduct. he was pretty scrupulous.
he never even approached the line. i really wonder what's happened in intervening years since i worked with him. i really think there is an atmosphere now among the trump loyalists that they really feel there will no breaks on them. they can do what they want. no one will hold them to account. the day will come when this kind may come home to roost. >> michael, what does happen from here? the is rudy giuliani going to go to ukraine and try force the government to open something that happened several years ago to find out what about joe biden? >> i think what rudy giuliani's goal is not necessarily to seek an end -- answer to these questions but just to raise them
and is just to raise them and have people consider maybe something did happen. i think that's the role that rudy giuliani has taken over the last couple of years, particularly in the last year as he's been working as the president's personal lawyer. he's not really offering legal advice in a traditional sense. he's a mix between public relations, going on cable news and defending the president and political attack dog. that's what he's doing here. >> patrick there's this thinking thing about rudy giuliani. he has muddied the waters. the president has seemed to think this works. this confusion, the mud dii mude waters. times like these. >> there has been no collusion between the trump campaign and russians or trump and russians. no collusion. >> is it still the position of you and your client that there was no collusion with the
russians on behalf of the trump campaign? >> correct. >> i never said there was no collusion between the campaign or between people in the campaign. >> i'm sorry. it's chris' face that made me laugh there. >> this is what rudy giuliani does. the guy who was going over to the ukraine to ask the foreign government to dig up dirt. let me sgeet tget into the espi issues. he directly contradicted the president. >> he's a classic muddier. he undercuts himself. he undercuts president trump. in this case he would not be saying i'm going to go over to a foreign government and start meddling in the investigation if he didn't have the blessing of the trump administration. >> he used the word meddling. >> joe biden isn't just an early
fro front-runn front-runner. he is the candidate who a lot of folks see as the most direct threat to an electoral college victory for trump in 2020. they are very worried about him and want to muddy this up as much as they can. >> thank you very much. next, breaking news. the pentagon deploying more missiles tonight as iran warns it can destroy an entire u.s. naval fleet. how dangerous is this escalation? the democrat women running for president open up as being mothers as part of their pitch to voters. >> as a mom, i've got little henry with me. i'm going to fight for people's kit kids as hard as i would fight for my own.
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breaking news. the u.s. sending more missiles to the middle east. the pentagon announcing it's deploying more patriots due to threats from iran. the latest coming from a senior cleric warning a fleet could be destroyed with one missile. this comes as the military says it's fully prepared to carry out any operations. those are two major threats coming from battles escalating over the past week. the president taking a lot of the blame but also bolton. >> it does seem like right now iran policy is in the hands of john bolton. president trump did you want want america involved in endless
wars. doesn't think the u.s. should be the world's policeman. problems encroach on national security. he has surrounded himself with some hawks. the most hawkish of whom and the most notorious of whom is john bolton. the reason why this is so concerning is he's gone on the record so many times add vvocat for strikes, advocating for regime change. there are times he called the libya model giving up his weapons but ending up dead. he had been add voe indicating to stay there. the president said no, i want u.s. troops out of this right away. it doesn't seem to be lost on trump either that some people
are getting very freaked out about escalating things with iran. listen to what president trump said about bolton. >> john is very good. john is has strong views on things but that's okay. i temper john which is pretty amazing. nobody thought that would happen. i'm the one that tempseers him. that's okay. i have john bolton and a little more people dovish than him. ultimately i make the decision. we have heard the trump administration say no, no, the president is willing to talk to iran. >> thank you very much. general, let me start with you. you have here iran saying the
entire u.s. fleet could be destroyed. it's been tested. how dangerous is this es ka lag -- es escalation right now. >> what i say is quote my fellow military analyst when he say we have an arsonist who is lighting a bunch of fires and going in later on with the fire hose and saying i'm the only one that can put it out. this kind of bluster is not -- it's dangerous. i can't say it any other way. these kinds wofrds back and forh with various countries will cause some kind of mishap. we have seen this before throughout history. that's what concerns me the most.
you're talking about the president and his decisions. >> i would say so. the president has other people using public information to warn regimes they better do something or else. you have a bunch of people speaking. it's confusing folks when talking about the potential for violence on a very large scale. >> we talk about getting along and beautiful love letters to kim now doing missile tests again. it's been an incredible escalation and deterioration. >> it has. we got to remember that president obama just before trump took office told trump,
look, north korea is your number one national security problem. trump received on day one a very difficult situation. trump had a very good north korea policy pushing the north, pushing moscow, beijing, seoul in directions that were very good. i think this whole idea of trying to entice kim jong-un into good behavior isn't working. we're probably going to see a more hard edge policy going forward. kim is pushing everybody in the wrong directions. >> you have disaster and chaos in venezuela as well. >> let's add a few more like afghanistan. we're still fighting there. there are other parts in the world like the south china sea. what i'm seeing today is there's great spin within the pentagon in terms of dealing with all the
problems that are picking up. you have the four star generals asking for additional resources in different theaters. that's very tough to do. it's very hard to fight in multiple theaters. >> the trade talks between the u.s. and china have ended with no deal. how big of a threat is this? when you think about it, right, all this trade war escalation coming as north korea also escalates its threats against the united states. >> right now the chinese are not the the mood to deal with the
united states. the chinese ruler doesn't believe in the notion of comparative advantage which underlies the whole idea of trade. it's hard to have a trade agreement with someone who doesn't believe in trade. now we face a very dangerous situation. >> thank you both very much. i appreciate your time. next, a former congresswoman who voted to impeach president nixon is out front. does she agree with members of her former committee? >> we talked for a long time about approaching a constitutional crisis. we are now in it. plus senator kamala harris in a revealing new interview talking about being a step mom. >> i have two children that are cole and ella who are here.
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justice john paul stephens weighing in on president trump's stone walling. telling the wall street journal quote, the president is exercising powers that do not really belong to him. i mean, he has to comply with subpoenas and things like that. out front now former democratic congresswoman who served on the house judiciary committee who served during nixon's impeachment. you have a very specific perspective on this. you voted to impeach mecach nix years ago. . you say we're in a constitutional crisis now. why? >> well, here you have a president who is exercising imperial powers. he's trying to engage in what i call the biggest cover up of all. he wants to have the biggest inaugural crowd.
the best president, the most blah, blah. he has the biggest cover up now. he said he will fight every subpoena. he can't do that. i was in congress for eight years. congress is supposed to oversee the executive branch. people have to be able to see the american people. to stand in the way of congress, congress legitimate power to find out what's going on and what's he trying to stop, information that would be embarrassing to him, that would be politically destructive to him and that would undermine the rule of law. >> if you say constitutional crisis, in that you're not alone. the house judiciasew disjudicia
said that, nan scy pelosi. they agree with you. they are not ready to pull the trigger on impeachment. how can democrats not mover forward with impeachment hearings, proceedings? >> this is what i think shthey should do. it stood the test of time. what you need to do is get the facts out first to the american people. they need to see don mcgahn. they need to see donald trump junior. they need to see how many times he will say i don't remember. they need to see jared kushner. >> should they still be fighting this with subpoenas over court. the senate select committee had hearings.
they need the get the facts presented. then you can start, depending on the public response, then you can start the inquiry, which is how redid we did it in the hous. you unseated a house veteran when you came into the house. she honored you on twitter. the first honest shoe leather destroyer. no one saw her coming. queen of kings county. do you see yourself in her? >> i see some similarity. i'm excited a young woman was elected. >> it took 42 years for that
record to be broken. i was very sad about that. we need energy, the excitement. i'm really glad about that. i think it was great she got elected with a grass roots support. that's how i won the political pundits gave me no chase. she was able to raise a little more money. i was idealistic. she wanted to get social informs. we need people like that. i'm not saying everybody has to be that way. >> thank you so much for your time. >> thank you. next, senator kamala harris revealing new details about her personal life including her stepchildren and her relationship with their mother. >> their mother is here who is a dear friend of mine.
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tonight in the fight for 2020 ahead of mother's day this weekend, kamala harris is opening up about her relationship with her stepchildren who she says call her mamala. kyung lah has a look at how they are redefining motherhood and talking about it on the trail. >> thank you all. >> reporter: in the heart of west virginia, senator elizabeth warren joined by her son. >> by the way, the guy over in the blue shirt, that's my son, alex. >> reporter: her experience as a mother, part of her pitch to voters. >> child care never stopped being an issue. for me like for so many working parents today, it was this weight i had to carry around every single day. and it never let up. >> reporter: the motherhood identity, once viewed as an albatross, in 2020 is getting a makeover with a record number of
women running for president. senator kamala harris, married to doug emhoff, father of two children from a previous marriage, ella and cole. >> and i, therefore, have two children that are cole and ella who are here. they named me their mamala and their mother. yes, and their mother, kristen is here, who is a dear friend of mine. and we have a real modern family. >> reporter: the portrait of a modern candidate. in a personal essay in honor of mother's day, harris writes about the heartache of missing her stepdaughter's graduation for the 2017 james comey testimony before the senate intelligence committee. >> i am not perfect, our kids are not perfect, my husband is not perfect and i don't think that the american people want perfect. >> reporter: senator amy klobuchar as a cnn town hall explained how getting kicked out of the hospital 24 hours after giving birth to her daughter, who was born with a condition that made her unable to swallow,
made her fight back and become a lawmaker. >> that was when i got hooked on public service, because i could see that you could make a difference. >> reporter: to even joke about motherhood means backlash in 2020. beto o'rourke quipped about barely helping his wife with the kids, prompting this public apology. >> not only will i not say that again, but i'll be much more thoughtful going forward. >> really looking toward to getting a chance to say hello. >> reporter: today amy o'rourke is on the trail. she's doing the driving. >> i've got little henry with me. >> reporter: senator kirsten gillibrand brings her children on the trail. her mom status, a credential as a candidate. >> i'm going to fight for people's kids as hard as i would fight for my own. i'm going to fight for their families and their communities. >> reporter: the mom candidates as well as many of the dad candidates do not have any public events on sunday. erin, the kamala harris campaign says that she is going to take a
rare day off on the campaign trail so that she can spend mother's day as mamala. >> thank you very much. next, jeanne moos on trump's love for a beautiful letter. >> i did get last night a very beautiful letter. well, he just wrote me a beautiful letter. uty. herhood. 's not thet but i'd rather be here with my little man than anywhere with migraine. "i am here." and i aim to say that more. aimovig... a preventive treatment for migraine in adults... reduces the number of monthly migraine days. for some, that number can be cut in half or more. the most common side effects are pain, redness or swelling at the injection site and constipation. aim to be there more. talk to your doctor about aimovig. (music throughout)
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a get your questions answered by awesome experts store. it's a now there's one store that connects your life like never before store. the xfinity store is here. and it's simple, easy, awesome. tonight trump's obsession with beautiful things, especially love letters. here's jeanne. >> reporter: we know president trump is big on getting letters, and northbou wonder, since this happening. >> i did get last night a very beautiful letter from president xi. well, he just wrote me a beautiful letter. >> reporter: that crazy trump, stacking up love letters like nobody else can. this latest one from china's president xi sparked memories. another beautiful letter to keep
his alongside kim's? that would be kim jong-un. >> he wrote me beautiful letters. and they're great letters. we fell in love. >> reporter: and tho the love affair has hit a rocky patch, the president could always re-read old letters from kim. >> he wrote me two of the most beautiful letters. it's a beautiful piece of art. >> reporter: an envelope this enormous could cause dehydration just from licking it. someone photo shopped it to make it bigger. wow, that letter really makes trump's hands look tiny. and there was that beauty from japan's prime minister nominating president trump for the nobel prize. >> it's the most beautiful five-page letter. >> reporter: the common wisdom that the pen is mightier than the sword, but to president trump it's more beautiful. with so much beauty in letters, no wonder the president doesn't email. >> it's a beautiful letter. we appreciate it.
>> reporter: jeanne moos, cnn. >> and then we fell in love, okay? >> reporter: new york. >> it's beautiful. thanks for joining us. don't forget you can watch the show any time anywhere, just go to cnn go. have a great weekend. "ac 360" starts right now. good evening, we begin tonight with breaking news. an administration official revealing that the white house asked former white house counsel don mcgahn to say publicly that president trump did not obstruct justice and mcgahn refused. a source familiar with the president said he was upset with mcgahn's reversal. the story was first reported in "the wall street journal." the white house made the request to mcgahn at least twice in the last month. mcgahn was a key witness for robert mueller. he was mentioned in the report more than 500 times. according to the mueller report, president trump sought to have mcgahn fire mueller. mcgahn refused to do that as well but the president denied that ever happened. jo