tv Erin Burnett Out Front CNN November 14, 2019 4:00pm-5:00pm PST
for watching. i'm wolf blitzer in "the situation room," follow me on twitter and tweet the show @cnnsitroom. erin burnett out front starts right now. out front next. pelo pelosi accuses trump of bribery and this as the white house braces for more high-stakes testimony hours away, plus alarming new details about trump's call with ambassador gordon sondland, the same call that was overheard by a state department aide, were russian spies listening in, too? and another school shooting. two students murdered today. let's go out front. and good evening. i'm erin burnett. out front tonight, nancy pelosi accusing president trump of bribery. saying trump's actions are worse and bigger than what forced nixon from office. >> what president trump has done on the record in terms of aking
to advantage his foreig power to help him in his own election and the obstruction of information about that, the cover-up makes what nixon did look almost small. the devastating testimony corroborated evidence of bribery uncovered in the inquiry and that the president abused power and violated his oath by threatening to withhold military aid in a white house meeting in exchange for an investigation into his political rival. >> using the word bribery instead of quid pro quo is significant. i mean, those words may mean the same thing to most people, but the reality of it is that the word bribery is in the constitution. the president shall be removed from office on conviction of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors. it is right there making it
clear to the american public that bribery is an impeachable offense. trump himself knows it and he has been tweeting and re-tweeting through the day insisting he never tried to bribe ukraine's president. using that word, as well, and it comes as trump's aides are trying to get ahead of tomorrow's testimony from the former ambassador to ukraine, marie yovanovitch. she testified behind closed doors that she was targeted by trump because she was trying to fight real corruption in ukraine and it was one of the first impeachment witnesses. >> 2018 and 2019, i became increasingly aware of an effort by rudy giuliani and others including his associates lev parnas and igor fruman to run a campaign to smear ambassador yovanovitch. >> former ambassador yovanovitch has been treated poorly caught in kiev and in washington. >> tonight the white house responding and officials suggesting well, the attacks on yovanovitch aren't impeachable,
adding she served at the pleasure of the president. yovanovitch will not be the only one testifying tomorrow. the person who overheard friday asking about the ukraine will be meeting with investigators tomorrow. kaitlan collins is outside the white house. how is the president reacting to all of this? >> reporter: yesterday the president said he hadn't watched a minute of the first public hearing and today he said only normal people who had watched it would shut the impeachment inquiry down after seeing george kent and bill taylor testify and that comes as not only the white house and the republicans are leaning on this defense saying there was nothing new learned yesterday which simply wasn't true, drawing the president closer to the campaign from what we've seen from the other closed-door testimonies so far. the other thing they're relying on is this is only second or third-hand information, but there are questions inside the white house about just how long
a defense like that can last given the fact that gordon sondland will testify next week and he is someone who has spoken with the president directly. putting that aside, the president has been talking about impeachment a lot today and including in a lunch with republican senators today and then, erin, just before trump left the white house to go to the rally he had a very interesting meeting where you could see him with the oval office with attorney general bill barr and pat cipollone having what some described an animated discussion and you could see him through the windows for over half an hour and he came out and exited the white house and instead, erin, of talking with reporters he went straight to marine one and didn't say a word about what that meeting was about. >> out front now, jamie raskin who was on both the oversight and judiciary committees and obviously front and center in the testimony. >> so congressman, speaker
pelosi is using the word bribery specifically and chairman schiff indicating bribery could be an impeachment charge against the president. is this essentially a rebranding of quid pro quo? bribery is now the new word that will be used because it is the word in the constitution? >> well, bribery and extortion are intricately interwoven in what the president did in the ukraine shakedown and essentially he took this $391 million that we voted into security assistance for a besieged foreign ally resisting russian aggression and occupation and said i'll give you this if you comply with all of my demands and all of my conditions. that's bribery or alternatively you can view it as a shakedown, as exercising coercive leverage to extort these conditions from the ukrainian government. in either, ven event, the presi has betrayed his oath of office
and betrayed our election, because he lured a foreign government into the election to smear one of his rivals. >> so you will be in the room tomorrow for the holmes deposition. according to the ambassador, holmes overheard this conversation between president trump and sondland that took place in the restaurant and according to what holmes will say asked for an update into the investigations in ukraine and then after the call sondland said to the aide that trump cared more about the bidens and the investigations than ukraine. why are we only finding out about this call now? does that bother you? >> well, no. this is how trials work, and this is how evidence comes into being. certain people testify and then other people hear things that remind them of things that they saw and they knew, and i'm not quite sure what the situation was here, but look, all of the evidence points to just one story which is the president deployed giuliani and his team of parnas and fruman to go over
to ukraine to clear the u.s. ambassador out of the way and we'll hear about that tomorrow with ambassador yovanovitch's testimony to apply direct pressure to the ukrainian government to do the political bidding to the president and all of that was about his personal re-election and had nothing to do with the strategic foreign policy objectives of america and much less the defense of democracy and human rights in ukraine. >> i want to ask you about ambassador yovanovitch in a moment, but first on holmes. you're not quite sure what happened there. what kind of questions do you have? what do you want to know from holmes tomorrow? >> well, i would like to know exactly what he heard and how he knew it was the president who was on the phone, and i would like to know exactly what he heard the president say, what were the words? and this is just one more piece of evidence that fits into an entire sequence of events. there's no rival hypothesis out
there about what happened. all of the bricks are adding up to one big wall which says the president tries to exercise coercive control over ukraine or to bribe ukraine in order to do his political bidding. >> so you're talking about these bids adding up to one big wall and multiple sources are saying speaker pelosi were skeptical and that there would be any dramatic shift in public opinion even though they're getting under way. do you share that skepticism or not? >> i'm by nature, a very optimistic person and americans want their government to be involved in good, public policy and to act with honesty and integrity. most americans will be shocked and very upset about what they're seeing. on the other hand there have been big changes and not so much in the basic character and honesty of the american people and in people's access to information. there are people whose only
access to the news is through certain channels like fox news that are not reporting the facts in a disinterested and objective way and that's a real danger for the republic. >> so tomorrow will be the second public impeachment hearing you referenced ambassador yovanovitch. she will testify about an alleged smear campaign which led to trump getting rid of her. trump owns that and he said absolutely, that's what i did and the white house tonight is that the ambassador served at the pleasure of the president. does the president need to give any reason really at all to get rid of an ambassador or -- or is he on more solid footing on this? >> well, i think that just confuses the issue. they're answering the wrong question. no one is saying impeach the president because he removed the ambassador. the question is whether the removal of the ambassador was for reasons to clearing all obstacles to their political and financial schemes in ukraine and that's what took place with ambassador yovanovitch. rudy giuliani and his team
wanted to get rid of her so they could exercise the leverage over president zelensky that they wanted. she was a real corruption fighter. they were on the side of the corruption. they're trying to exploit the corruption and direct the corruption at zelensky so the president could get the favors that he wanted. she got in the way because she was forwarding the real american policy which was to oppose corruption in ukraine and to try to nurture and strengthen democratic institutions there all over europe and all over the world there is a struggle between the tyrants and the despots and putin's team, they're all on the side of corruption and she was opposing them and they wanted to get her out of the way so the president could essentially work his will in ukraine. >> it will be fascinating tomorrow, and at least equally as much as the crucial closed-door one that you will be a part of this. thank you very much, congressman raskin, thank you very much tonight. >> thank you for having me. >> new concerns about president trump's top diplomats and
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breaking news. the white house budget official is set to break ranks and testify in the impeachment inquiry. a lawyer for mark sandy, he's a career omb official says sandy will testify behind closed doors saturday if subpoenas which, of course, is almost certain to happen. sandy will be the first omb
official to testify in the probe. three others from that agency have defied subpoenas. this comes as russia and numerous other countries likely intercepted the ambassador gordon sondland's reported phone call from a restaurant in ukraine. that's the phone call where bill taylor testified that an aide overheard trump discussing a potential probe of the bidens with sondland and you may remember trump says he does not remember that call. out front now, cnn political correspondent, abby philip and republican state senator in nevada, greg brower, joe lockhart who was president clinton's secretary during the impeachment investigation and laura coates. laura, let me start with you with the news omb. three others from the omb designed to do so, it's that the order according to the testimony that we have from transcripts to withhold the aid came from the omb and they said it came from mick mulvaney and directly from the president of the united states. so sandy could be very
important. >> absolutely. it would actually undermine that statement that mick mulvaney said that this happens all of the time. just get over it. this is someone that could actually give information as to what was the foundation for the decision, what were the reasons given to people within the office about the halting of the aid, what was out of order about this and what was the full context, in a way of showing us for the very first time essentially that people are starting to catch on that the cya mode can't last for long and that the idea of somehow being able to thumb your nose at a subpoena would be an indefinite state of affairs and particularly with the opportunity for you to demonstrate to congress that you were not complicit in something and remember the olc opinion only relates to one person and the president of the united states and whether he could, in fact, be indicted. >> what do you make of this of an omb official breaking ranks and again, given that the opb was crucial here and that's where the order came and apparently from the testimony we have and we'll find out more, but from the chief of staff and
from the president himself. >> very significant, potentially. it's the old adage, follow the money. omb controls the money. who at omb did what and what and at whose direction? it's critical to the investigation. >> what does it mean that someone is willing to defy and break ranks? >> it's like the career foreign service people. this is someone who is putting his country ahead of his allegiance to a political figure and just to underscore that, this really puts mick mulvaney in a box because he was very clear in his press conference that what he did was at the direction of the president, and for all of the republicans who were talking about, we need direct linkage. we need direct linkage. this could be direct linkage to mick mull vaughny to the mechanics of moving the money and that would move unless someone intervened and congress appropriated it, it was ready to go and somebody stopped it and this gentleman is likely to say
it's mick mulvaney at the direction of the president. >> and i think it also potentially answers some questions about why the money was actually released and this has become part of the republican talking points that the money was eventually released so it doesn't matter anyway. they got the money that they wanted and there's no quid pro quo if it was going where it was supposed to be going, but at the same time, some of the reporting out there is that it was released in part because the whistle-blower report was sent to congress in the intervening time. so it's going to be a major question for people at omb, what did they know about why that money was released? was it related to the whistle-blower report? was it related perhaps to something else? did they discover that there was no legal basis to withhold the money appropriated by congress or was it released for some other reason and that's a big part of the puzzle that will help democrats undermine if they can, that part of the republican argument. >> so this is obviously going to be crucial and again, laura, we
do anticipate, there's no question about it that sandy will be served with the subpoena and it will appear and that is going to happen on saturday and that is going to be crucial and this comes as we are finding out that the president's on the phone with an ambassador in a public place on a cell phone. just to, you know, make it clear here, laura. this is completely outside the norm, right? >> of course. the idea there may not be a secure channel to talk to the president of the united states. remember, the reason we allow there to be an executive privilege, is we want to have a frank and candid discussion between the president of the united states and members of his cabinet and the people who he appoints and they old offices, why? because we want him to have that without anybody trying to interfere and forgive the pun at this point in time, but what he or she may not say in the future. the idea that you would take away that privilege and to say, you know what? it doesn't matter who could be listening is ridiculous. remember, it also makes the president of the united states vulnerable for a variety of
reasons. number one, if we as americans and those who are in a position to need to understand the issues of national security and how the u.s. may be vulnerable and what diplomatic things we've made with foreign leaders and if we don't know that and man a russian intercept does, it does make them vulnerable. we've seen it time and time again from helsinki to previous calls with zelensky where we have ellipses where we have actual transcripts and we are vulnerable to have the gap of information. it's very problematic. >> as a former fbi director when you hear something like this, when he's going around a restaurant having a conversation with the president trump and the president of the united states is speaking loudly enough that you can hear what he has to say, how unusual is this? >> it's unusual and concerning and it reflects very communications security
procedures. there are special phones that are used by government officials for classified or sensitive communications. i can recall being in the car with the fbi director on one occasion where a certain call came in and we had to divert from our route and go to a secure facility just to do the phone call. >> it's not like a phone that says i can pick it up in a restaurant and i'll take the call here. >> it's not even close. let's understand that the adversaries around the world are covering certain people like ambassador sondland no doubt at all times trying to pick up any little things from his conversatio conversations in his meetings and his travel. no doubt. >> president trump said he can't recall the conversation, but you know, this is something that laura is alluding to that then they would be able to hold over his head. >> first of all, that's not a denial. if high believed the conversation never happened is one thing, but to not recall it is another thing all together
and it seems to indicate just the very fact that the president was having a direct conversation with the eu ambassador is unusual according to former ambassadors who say that there is usually a process for this. you usually go through other people who are within your chain of command and not directly to the president. so it suggests that this relationship between president trump and president sondeland is far more direct or far closer than either will ak believe right now. >> to your point, the president has made it clear what he thinks about other people who doesn't recall things. he said of hillary clinton once, i don't want to play the sound bite, but he said, you know, hillary and the top aides told the fbi they can't recall and remember. by the way, if she can't remember, she can't be president. >> there's a tweet for everything with donald trump. the one thing i would add as color here is the single most frustrating thing for president clinton and i remember vice president gore at the same time was having to do these secure
calls. they would -- they would say i'm not going to be doing anything on this call, and they didn't always work, and he'd have a cell phone in his hand and he'd start dialling and someone would take it away because some people are always listening. trump, from the beginning according to reports, has always used a cell phone. my guess is if sondland called trump, he didn't go through the white house operator. he called his cell phone which means everyone was listening. >> thank you all very much. stay with me. next, how did the impeachment hearing play in the battleground state of arizona, right? these must-win states and we were there talking to voters and the latest on the shooting in california. two children are dead tonight in another school shooting. america's most loved pizza.'r hot and fresh, and right to your door. dough made from scratch, every day. sauce from our original recipe. and authentic toppings like crispy, old world pepperoni™. because the italian way is worth celebrating.
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just hours away from the second public hearing in the house impeachment probe, former president bill clinton called into cnn and had this bit of advice for president trump. >> you got hired to do a job. you don't get a -- every day is an opportunity to make something good happen and i would say i've got lawyers and staff people handling this impeachment inquiry and they should just have at it and meanwhile i'm going to work for the american people. that's what i would do. that advice comes after voters are weighing in on the testimony they've heard so far. kyung lau is out front. >> this historic moment. this is true history unfolding. >> the sentiment of a possible
impeachment. >> where there's smoke there's fire. >> amid the breakfast rush. >> i would say it doesn't pass the sniff test, and i say that as an independent, middle of the road guy who could vote for a republican or a democrat. >> that middle ground, independents make up about one-third of arizona voters. >> my entire life i've voted republican. >> every single time. >> every single time up until the last election. >> until donald trump says boyce o'brien, watching to see if it's a party he will return to. >> i am so disappointed in the republican party, it's embarrassing to me to be affiliated with them at this point. i hope that they'll finally develop a backbone and stand up for what's right. >> while there are plenty who have made up their minds from the right -- >> getting -- >> i'm pretty sure i'll vote for him again. >> to the left. >> hey, hey! donald trump has got to go!
>> orange mango! >> it is those in the middle in places like the phoenix suburbs who represent the battleground. >> they insulate him. he doesn't hear any of this. >> carly grew up a mccain republican and then meghan mccain is here. >> she switched parties after trump's election and the lifelong political identity gone, but the maverick senator who left a lasting mark. >> it made me feel proud to be an arizonaan. it made me proud to be a former republican to see him do that was just -- it meant a lot. >> this is what i can't believe and you're their star witness. >> i don't recognize the republican party as it is right now. >> wearing her sentiment. >> as she watches the impeachment hearings with friends. >> my card actually says no matter. >> no party. >> and as the day begins to wrap. i haven't heard anything yet to make me think that this
president is innocent. >> this concludes this portion of the hearing. >> so if you can show me that, i might change my mind. >> independents we spoke with said that they were glad to see this public hearing, that they can watch it live and direct without any sort of filter. they said that they were looking forward to seeing it again tomorrow, but erin, we should also point out i spoke with a lot of other independents who said they didn't have the interest or the time to sit there all day and watch the hearings. erin? >> kyung, thank you very much. look, this is obviously important from the perspective of independents and republicans, obviously, democrats, you know where they are. greg, one woman was moved to tears in kyung's piece saying she did not recognize the republican party anymore. you're a republican and former state senator. do you relate with voters and the gop? and that lady was moved to
tears. >> that's why i was a republican elected official, but what i'm most surprised at is the number of republicans both in congress and just out there in the country who seem to be okay with not knowing all the facts, who seem to be okay with the president directing witnesses who clearly have information relevant to this inquiry directing them to not cooperate and testify. i respect everyone, every republican's decision potentially upon listening to the facts to decide it's not impeachable or the senate and it's not removable conduct and to not get the facts, that surprises me. >> a lot of independents were saying, look, i have other things to do. i have a life, i'm busy and if you're not going to get it now, then you're not going to get it. >> this is a real problem for democrats. and they're actually pretty complicated. the kind of back and forth about
all of the machinations that were going on about various officials. we spent weeks talking about this and digging into the transcripts and talking about all these different witnesses and knowing all these new names. >> and who was who? and how do you even defend someone's credibility if you don't even know who they are and this is a real problem for democrats and one of the reasons why you started to see them and started to think more clearly about disstilling this in a way that was easier to understand and talking about bribery instead of quid pro quo and trying to disstill this for the listener and the watcher because that is exactly the kind of voter and i would say the vast majority of voters in the country. >> laura, the independent voter at the end of the piece, i haven't heard anything yet to think this president is innocent i might change my mind. she's being looking for the burden of proof to be on the
president. do you think there are true independents on this issue at this point? are there really people who just have a true open mind? >> well, i certainly hope that there are people with an open mind, but i suspect that given the information that is coming out i think the people have their own partisan leanings, but here's the thing,ier in. we've had more than one bite at the apple here and this is the part of the day and we're talking about the impeachment and the drafting. should they actually come about and charge the president, guess what? there is a publicized senate hearing, as well and so perhaps the reluctance of some people and not so much that they're open minded right now, but more looking towards the actual trial and at that point i would need to be very, very focused and i would have to have all of the information and right now it's the deliberation of the grand jury when it comes time for my senators to vote on the issue and for us to be armchair jurors, then i'll pay attention. >> that's an interesting point and i wonder if that's how it will play out and we just played a clip of that and he gave some
advice for trump and it was odd to hear him in light of the current antipathy between the clintons and trump, and yet that was his real advice. >> and that's what he would advise anyone, whether it would be a democrat or republican. he's not a person who holds grudges and much to the chagrin of some of the people around him, but his -- his view was he ought to be doing it the way he did it which was don't talk about it. don't pay attention to it. the way you can appear to be presidential is to act like the president and not act like the tweeter in chief. so i think it was a genuine, it's fresh and what's best for the country which in this case just happens to be i think what's best for trump. >> so abby, clinton's advice, ignore it. do your job. have a crack, amazing staff on the impeachment. this is the opposite of everything trump is doing, right? he's talking about it all the time. he is rung the defense and not letting anybody else do it.
trump's not going to take this advice. >> no, and they've tried this before. the white house has thought at various times if there was a muller investigation or other things and they planned all kinds of programming at the white house. >> that's right. infrastructure week. >> ad nauseam and these were things they tried to do to get the president to refocus the job at hant hand and he refuses to do that. yesterday at the hearings, stephanie grisham insisted the president didn't watch any of it and he's busy doing his job and the president sent about 30 tweets in a single day and proceeded to talk at the press conference for quite a bit of the time about the impeachment inquiry. so it's kind of a lost cause at this point. >> thank you all very much. next, police interviewing the relatives of the latest deadly school shooting suspect. what was the motive and the 11th hour, the democratic field of presidential candidates. guess, what everybody? it just got bigger today.
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at this hour, two teenagers are dead. the suspected shooter clinging to life. this just outside of los angeles where this morning detectives say a 16-year-old boy pulled a gun from his backpack shooting five of his classmates and then himself. sarah sidner is out front in california tonight. i know you just heard from the sheriff. what did we learn? >> reporter: we learned a few things and because of security reasons said that yes, indeed, all of the victims have been released from the hospital who were left in the hospital except for one person who is still in critical condition. it turns out that one person is the suspected shooter himself. we have also learned about the suspected shooter's instagram, his social media and that the day before this happened, just yesterday he posted on instagram or someone from his account
posted saugus, have fun at school tomorrow. that was the day before the shooting. this morning, just before 7:30 in the morning there was chaos at this high school. [ siren ] ? a terrifying day for students in santa claritia, california. >> this is saugus high school. >> two student, a 16-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy were killed and three other students are recovering from gunshot wounds. >> we didn't know how to react. >> at that point i knew it was a gun. >> the shooter, police say, a 16-year-old student began his assault on campus before morning classes around 7:30 a.m. >> detectives have reviewed the video at the scene which clearly show the subject in the quad withdraw a handgun from his backpack, shoot and wound five people and then shoot himself in the head. >> police say the shooter emptied the ammunition from his
weapon, the last shot he used on himself. >> it's a .45 caliber semiautomatic pistol which had no more rounds in it, had no more bullets in it. >> students who did escape the scene said it was surreal and horrifying. >> we heard the one shot and then four after and we just started running, and just all i heard was all these kids running and just screaming and calling their parents. >> some hid, others fled. homeowners living next to the school opened their doors to dozens of students. >> i must have had 20 of them run in my house. i wanted to make sure they were safe. >> parents frantic and emotional rushed to the school as soon as they heard frantically calling their children. >> i'm going to walk to get you. don't move, please. i just -- you just need to be in my arms right now. students say they had gone through active shooter drills, but the reality was nothing like what they had practiced for. >> they didn't train us to actually be scared and we were
panicked we will run. >> the suspected shooter's birthday according to law enforcement was today, and on this day the 16-year-old suspected shooter took the life of a 16-year-old and 14-year-old. there are a lot of folks mourning in this community today,ier sn today, erin? >> thank you, sarah. next, elizabeth warren and some of america's wealthiest businessmen in a war of words with her. are they helping or hurting the 2020 candidate? >> we don't need another fabricator in the white house. >> and jeanne on how trump's tough guy letter to the turkish president was returned to sender. this one grows fuel. ♪ exxonmobil is growing algae for biofuels. that could one day power planes, propel ships, and fuel trucks...
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thought i really need to understand not just the sense whether the electorate is undecided and i think that's very much the case, but whether practically you could make it happen at this point, and that decision we came to fairly -- fairly quickly and we'll be very, very competitive. i'm confident of that. >> out front now, david axelrod, former adviser to president obama and patrick feels he'll be competitive in part because he feels the overall field is pretty here's what he said about joe biden today. >> i think he is an extraordinary public servant, frankly, whose deep, deep personal empathy doesn't always come through this in this campaign. but i think that the instinct that his campaign seems to have to say, you know, to project in effect if we just -- if we just
get rid, if you will, of the incumbent, we can go back to doing what we used to do, misses the moment. >> so david, you're part of deval patrick's first campaign for governor. will he be competitive? and is he right when he comes out directly today saying biden's campaign is, quote, missing the moment? >> well, look, i did work with him in 2006. he started at 3% when he ran for governor of massachusetts and ended up winning a landslide for the nomination and then to get elected. he had a year to do it. he has a short period of time here. he doesn't have a war chest. he doesn't have an organization, and he isn't really a household name. so he's got a lot of work to do. his theory seems to be he can go into new hampshire where he is well-known because he was the governor of massachusetts, do very well there, and then roll into south carolina where 60% of the electorate is african american and do well there.
and then he's in the game. but there is a lot of steps between here and there. >> so, you know, this comes as you have this sort of battle going on the more progressive edge of the field, right? elizabeth warren, and she has been embracing this war with the ultra wealthy. she ran out on cnbc. it slams some billionaires, including hedge fund manager cooper. here he is. >> we don't need another fabricator in the white house. your attacks are directed to the wrong person and the wrong issues. >> and lloyd blankfein tweeted vilification of people as a member of a group may be good for her campaign, not the country. maybe tribalism is in her dna, which is obviously a bit of a shock there, but look, she loves this, david. she thinks this is great. she is selling mugs to keep billionaire tiers. is this battle a win for her or is this a risk for her?
>> look, i think she is welcoming these comments because she is in a battle right now for dominance of the left with bernie sanders. and this is a high profile fight. it began over this wealth tax that she has proposed which actually polls very well, even with many republicans. these are not sympathetic figures, not to take anything away from them, but they're not very sympathetic figures in the general public. so, yeah, i think she was trying to provoke a fight, provoke the response she got, and she feels she'll profit, certainly within the democratic electorate or her portion of it. >> yeah, i mean, certainly they are fighting back. and as you can see from these comments, they're not able to resist. and she is embracing him. all right. thank you so much i appreciate, david. >> see you. sure. and next, take it back. jeanne on the letter the turkish president returned to the sender, the sender being donald
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return to sender. here is jeanne. >> reporter: have you ever written someone what you thought was a great letter and then they give it back to you? me neither. that's what happened to president trump. >> i saw this letter, and i thought it was a joke. >> so weird we had to check with the white house to make sure it's real. >> reporter: oh, it was real. president trump sent it last month to the president of turkey. >> don't be a tough guy. don't be a fool. i'll call you later. sincerely, donald trump. >> reporter: at the time the bbc reported turkish president erdogan threw the letter into a trash bin. but if he did, someone fished it out, because when erdogan visited the white house wednesday and a reporter brought up the letter -- >> "we gave back the letter we have received". >> reporter: twice the turkish president made it clear that on
that very afternoon -- >> this letter was represented to mr. president. >> reporter: the letter was re-presented? that's a nice way of saying it's. he could have said "return to sender, address unknown ♪ >> reporter: president trump often talks of receiving -- >> i had a very beautiful letter from president xi. >> he wrote me a beautiful letter. >> he wrote me beautiful letters. >> reporter: but to have his own beautiful letter given back? president trump nodded and almost smiled when turkey's president told reporters. the two leaders seemed friendly. president trump calling himself -- >> a big fan of the president. >> translator: i would like to thank my dear friend trump. >> reporter: the missive has been dubbed -- >> don't be a tough guy -- >> reporter: -- letter. >> from jfk to khrushchev during the kahn missile crisis. >> even hillary clinton shared that joke. forget postage.
trump's letter was returned for insufficient diplomatic finesse. jeanne moos, cnn -- ♪ i write i'm sorry but my letter keeps coming back ♪ >> reporter: -- new york. >> that was public humiliation. thanks for joining us. anderson starts now. good evening. we just learned about a new witness coming forward in the ukraine affair, this time from the white house. that's our breaking news. and it comes on the eve of testimony from another witness. he was reportedly there at a restaurant in ukraine while eu ambassador gordon sondland talked by cell phone to president trump. he'll be interviewed behind closed doors tomorrow by house lawmakers. also tomorrow in a very public hearing, testimony from the former ambassador to ukraine whom president trump had called, quote, bad news. those are the exact words he used to describe marie yovanovitch. "bad news" he called her during his july 25th phone conversation with ukraine's president before saying, quote, well, she