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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  December 24, 2019 1:00pm-2:00pm PST

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erica hill fills in for jake tapper on "the lead." it starts right now. all the president wants for christmas is a speedy trial. "the lead" starts right now. president trump with some holiday jeers going after so-called dirty cops and house speaker nancy pelosi as he said he'll go along with whatever mitch mcconnell wants for the senate impeachment trial. rudy giuliani unplugged. the president's lawyer claims he knows how not to commit crimes. and has a rather colorful message about his legacy. plus a holiday health scare. travelers at multiple u.s. airports exposed to measles. a warning from officials ahead. welcome to "the lead" on this christmas eve. i'm erica hill in for jake. president trump not even nice speaking to reporters at his
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mar-a-lago resort and railing on impeachment and the fbi role in the russia investigation, going after nancy pelosi for with holding the articles of impeachment from the senate and as boris sanchez reports, the president reiterating he trusts leader mitch mcconnell to do whatever he wants when it comes to the pending trial. >> and merry christmas. >> reporter: immediately after delivering a christmas message thanking u.s. troops for their service, president trump delivering a christmas rant on impeachment. >> they treated us very unfairly. they didn't give us due process, they didn't give us a lawyer, they didn't give us anything and now they come to the senate and they want everything. >> reporter: trump voicing support for mitch mcconnell saying that the senate imagine order leader has the right to do whatever he wants with the impeachment trial. >> we're in a very good position. ultimately that decision is going to be made by mitch mcconnell and he will make it -- he has the right to do whatever
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he wants. he's the heds of the senate. >> reporter: and the president lashing out at nancy pelosi. >> she hates the republican party. she hates all of the people that voted for me and the republican party. and she's desperate to do -- >> reporter: even predicted impeachment will cost democrats control of the house in 2020. >> she got thrown out of speaker once before, she lost like 63 seats. 61 or 63. tremendous. a record-setting number of seats. i think it's going to happen again. >> reporter: and spreading debunked conspiracy theories repeating false claims about the fbi spying on his campaign and suggesting william barr is working to take them down. >> hopefully it is taken care of. the attorney general is working and everybody is working. >> reporter: as the president spends the holiday consumed with political battles, the white house announcing the promotion of a key official who was on the line during trump's famous july
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25th call with president zelensky of ukraine. the new special representative on international telecommunications policy, robert blair, a top aide to mick mulvaney who refused to testify before house impeachment investigators. and erica, president trump while speaking with the troops today told them that he mostly spends his time here at mar-a-lago working and a short time later our cameras captured him on the golf course for the second straight day, at least the second straight day. there is nothing wrong with president trump spending time off relaxing on the golf course. we should remember how critical he was of former president obama when he would golf and how often president trump complained of taxpayers having to foot the bill. >> boris sanchez with the latest from florida. thank you. as we unpack everything we're seeing on this christmas eve, scott, i want to start with you. if senator mcconnell does insist on no witnesses in the senate trial, do you think the president, who said he would
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like to hear from witnesses, he would like a big trial, do you think he'll be okay with that? >> yeah, i do. i think he trusts senator mcconnell. they have a good working relationship. you've heard him say publicly many times that he trusted senator mcconnell to make the right decisions for the senate and i don't think he likes it, the president, i mean, that nancy pelosi is trying to run the senate. this charade about running the house and now she wants to run the other chamber. i don't think the president likes that and he has a strong ally in mitch mcconnell. so whatever mitch mcconnell could come up with, i think the president will be fine with. mcconnell's stated position is let's have the same rules that we had in the clinton impeachment and the democrats won't go along with that so i think we're in unchartered waters here but maybe we'll know more in a couple of weeks. >> let's take a step back. mitch mcconnell, there is no reason to trust him at this point and i think nancy pelosi is wisely trying to ensure some degree of fairness. mitch mcconnell and lindsey graham have essentially said when they signed the oath which is the procedure that happens in
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the senate to say they will be unbiased and consider all of the evidence, that that will be a lie. because they've already said they've made up their minds, they're coordinating with president trump and they're not interested in the evidence or the facts and i'll tell you a number of polls, including one released by law works last week, a majority of americans want to see all of the evidence laid out. so this behavior on the part of the president and mitch mcconnell, americans know what it is. it is about hiding the truth and i think we saw great example of that yesterday in the emails that were released that we saw it was just 90 minutes after the president had that phone call where the omb was already at work with holding the aid. >> it is important to remember that the evidence and the information was laid out over in the house impeachment cho-- in impeachment inquiry and at the end of the day, karen, the american people are still split
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on this. we have a roar shack test. those on the defendant the democrats have wanted to impreach the president. they will -- >> that is not true. but okay. >> ant then on the right i've been open minded i think the call, some of it may have been inappropriate but certainly not worthy of impeachment. people on the right, the republicans, are looking at this and saying there is no there-there. there is no underlying crime and we should not move forward with impeachment. so the key is the senate -- this is hopefully soon will be in the senate's hands to continue what they need to do and put this behind us. for mitch mcconnell's strategy here, let's get this ball -- get this rolling and get this behind us so we could focus on what the american people are concerned with and it is not impeachment. >> that is one of the largest issues we have, though. i think that if we're starting from a point where people understand that something was wrong, that something in that call was inappropriate, we can't even get people to admit that. the fact is we have to have john bolton testify.
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you have to have mick mulvaney testify. you have to have a full and thorough picture and to my friends scott jennings, merry christmas to you and yours, this is nothing like the bill clinton impeachment. >> that is right. >> the central reason is this -- bill clinton testified under oath. he lied under oath. but he testified under oath. the fact remains that donald trump refuses to and there are are still questions about whether or not the answers he submitted are actually honest and forthright. so if he would like to testify under oath, i think then you have an apples-to-apples comparison. and let me also say this really quickly. >> yeah. >> i think that nancy pelosi should hold the articles of impeachment until we can understand that there will be a full and fair trial. while there are united states senators and mitch mcconnell who is nothing more, let me remind viewers, nothing more than a jury foreman in this, that is what he is, the person who presides is the chief justice, until people want to understand we could get a full and fair
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trial, nancy pelosi needs to make sure that we get that. >> here is one thing that definitely has stood out. one of the key witnesses could be perhaps former national security adviser john bolton. he is on the short list that chuck schumer was asking for. here is what one of his former aides had to say on cnn this morning. take a listen. >> nothing is stopping him from writing an op-ed, giving a speech or appearing on a program like this to explain his views. forgive me for being snarky and blunt but he's steeling a page from omarosa's playbook but arguing i have something important to say but you have to wait to hear it. >> you know, erica, to that point, i just want to correct scott and allison here, number one, this gentleman is exactly right. bolton is one of the people we have not heard from. and there are a number of key witnesses that we didn't hear from in the house and that is because the president is obstructing congress.
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so all of the facts have nol-- e not been laid out and certainly there is no reason other than to try to sell books, john bolton is giving interviews and speeches so he's out and about. why not do your civic duty and come forward and tell the truth. we have colonel vindman at great risk to themselves and mockery by the president of a purple heart winner, a shameful mockery of someone who came forward to tell the truth. others at their own risk came forward to tell the truth. it should not be a hard thing for john bolton to do that. >> let me say thank you, karen for pointing out what i see is a big problem. the facts have not all been laid out. >> you just said me were. you're contradicting yourself. >> and all the more reason why those in the house should not rush forward with articles of impeachment and if they were so solid and so sure of what they had, they would be rushing it over to the senate for them to begin their trial. but they're not certain and they're thought confident in
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what they have. >> here is one thing that is certain. we're out of time for this segment but we'll continue to talk about it. i'll have to stop you all there. but there is much more to come. mitch mcconnell as we talk about all of this, could he have a trick up his sleeve. as he looks to get this impeachment trial started with or without democrats. plus the scary holiday health warning for travelers here in the u.s. is ahead. this holiday season choose the longest lasting aa battery... (music) energizer ultimate lithium backed by science. matched by no one.
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that mitch mcconnell has been talking about for a couple weeks. essentially you give the democrats an opportunity to make their case from the house managers, then the white house would have an opportunity to respond and support the president. after that, there would be a vote, essentially, to have the articles of impeachment before them. then you would vote on whether or not to remove the president. and i will tell you that a lot of republicans that we're talking to are saying they could come around to that idea. meanwhile, you have nancy pelosi, the speaker of the house, who is still holding on to the two articles of impeachment right now and chuck schumer the democratic leader in the senate is arguing that he needs to have witnesses negotiated before this senate trial begins. that is where things stand. and i'll tell you, it might be the holidays but that impasse between mcconnell and schumer is going to be sticking around for a couple more days. erica. >> well into 2020. thank you. i want to bring in elliott williams who was counsel to the
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judiciary committee. worked alongside chuck schumer of course. he's now demanding new documents in light of the emails that were released because of a foia request over the weekend. specifically the emails that showed 90 minutes passing between the president's july 25th call with president zelensky and the hold on the aid being communicated to the pentagon. here is the issue, though. as he's asking for witnesses, as he's asking for evidence here, we know of course the administration never responded to i believe it was 71 subpoenas and requested for information. so the question being could these demands play out differently in a senate trial? >> well a little bit differently, erica. because, look, in the senate, the minority just has more power than the minority in the house of representatives. and so, yes, senator schumer can push for votes on some of the controversial issues and it is in hissin se -- his incentive to because there are five
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vulnerable republican senators up for re-election this year and since schumer interest is to put them in a position of having to vote on this question of whether the president and his allies have obstructed this process. and certainly a vote could come up and far more easily than it could have in the house in the prior proceeding. >> and as this does play out differently because it is a trial in the senate with the chief justice john roberts presiding over the trial. could he compel witnesses to testify. >> he really can't. it is a largely ceremonial roll over the proceedings shown by the fact that 51 senators could overrule a ruling of the chief justice if we come to a senate trial. so, look, going back to 1999 rehnquist dressed up like a character from gilbert and sullivan -- he really did and put stripes on his rope. it is a ceremonial role and it is important role laid out in the constitution but he can't dictate the terms of this in the way that both schumer and mcconnell can. >> we'll be watching to see if
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mcconnell and schumer could come up with any agreement first before we get to that next part. elliott, good to see you, happy holidays. the president's lawyer certainly has a lot to say. rudy giuliani's blunt message for those who wonder about the legacy he's leaving. [farmers bell] ♪ (burke) a "rock and wreck." seen it. covered it. at farmers insurance, we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪
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rudy giuliani isn't exactly a guy who shies away from the spotlight. the president's personal attorney giving a wide-ravening head-scratching interview recently defending his ties to ukraine suggesting his cross-examine witnesses at a senate impeachment trial and touted his legacy over bloody
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mary's in manhattan. and it was revealing. as we take a closer look in this interview, giuliani suggested woe love to represent president trump in a senate trial if there were witnesses saying, quote, i'm great at it. it is what i do best as a lawyer. that is what i would be good at. he went on to say i could rip, you know, i hate to sound like a ridiculously boastful lawyer, but cross-examining them would be, i don't know, i could have done it when i was a second year assistant u.s. attorney. they're a bunch of clowns. bakari, as an attorney, how do you think rudy giuliani would do representing donald trump? would you advise it? >> listen, no, i won't advise it first as a lawyer. let me just state the truth. but second i think all of us would say we would pay good money to watch this. rudy giuliani is a step away from imprisoning himself. there is no one else out there talking more trying to get themselves indicted than rudy giuliani. i think he needs a lawyer
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himself other than trying to represent the president of the united states. in fact, i think it is also fair to say that rudy giuliani literally has walked this president to the doorstep of impeachment. i dare say we might not be here but for rudy giuliani and the way that he talks and cav orts around. but i also have to give props to newsy on this piece. it is amazing piece. and the fact that he's so attention starved that he misses the days that he was the mayor of new york that he'll do anything to sit in front of someone and blabber on or sit in front of camera. i just feel if he wasn't such a criminal, i would feel sorry for rudy giuliani. it's -- he's doing a detriment to his client. i could honestly say that as an attorney, on my professional oath and when you look at rudy giuliani, there are a number of people who could do the president better service than him and he is fundamentally doing the president a
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disservice. >> scott, he talked about his appearance on television and said people who think he, being the president, doesn't like me on television. i don't know where they get that from. it is just the opposite. but sources said while the president hasn't dismissed rudy, everybody around mr. trump is saying he doesn't help. has he helped the president, scott? could he help him in a senate trial. >> he has not helped the president at all. and agree with bakari. >> that is a christmas miracle. feliz navvy dad. i love it. >> his insertion is the single worst fact for the president. if you want to investigate somebody that you thought were corrupt there are official u.s. government channels he could use to do that in an appropriate way. but when you send an unappointed elected or minister or ambassador at large maybe on behalf of your campaign and trying to coordinate with
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government officials it muddies the waters and creates bad facts. as a p.r. person, let me give kids at home some advice, on the record, bloody mary's, not a good idea. off the record bloody mary's. >> i will second that advice. day drinking with a reporter is never a good idea. specifically -- and this just goes to show that, it is unfortunate, rudy giuliani was a stellar -- could do some stellar cross-examination. he was a phenomenal mayor. but as a result of this piece and similar news stories, he's gone from virtually america's mayor to dudley moore in arthur if you read this piece. and it is unfortunate. and no, he absolutely should not have anything to do with the impeachment proceedings. he should not be on the field and shouldn't even be in the parking lot and i hope this article even further represents why that does not need to
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happen. >> so, karen, speaking of his legacy, this stood out as well in the piece. in talking about his legacy, he reads his own press and he sees his sources close to him are being weaponized by the conspirators painting a portrait of a man unglued and people have been told to be careful with his legacy and my attitude he said about my legacy is f it. we could figure out what the asterisks mean there. but there is a serious question about what did happen to america's mayor, the man so many people outside of new york got to know in the wake of 9/11 and how does that square with the rudy giuliani we all see today? >> so can i just say, i actually worked for the new york city board of education under the tenure of rudy giuliani as mayor. he is a shifty guy. he is nasty. he does not play by the rules. the stuff that i saw him doing was very corrupt, very inappropriate. and so -- and i'll tell you as a former new yorker, part of this
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slide in terms of his reputation started when he decided he thought he deserved a third term as mayor and i'll tell you, new yorkers said absolutely not. no way. thanks for what you did. we're ready to move on. so i agree with my colleagues here, so you got a four-pete here. and it is sad to see because he did do a great service to new york and our country around 9/11 and now he's just a joke. >> i would say that the four of you are doing a great service for the country today with your christmas miracles. see, people can agree. there could be peace on earth even with people on the different side of the political spectrum. we're not done with you yet. but just ated two candidates fighting for an iowa town that isn't big enough for the two of them. it is the battle between pete buttigieg and joe biden in the final weeks before the first votes of 2020. my way. joint pain, swelling, tenderness... ...much better.
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with the iowa caucus just around the corner, joe biden and mayor pete buttigieg are struggling to dominate the moderate lane. as jeff zeleny reports, that means they're fighting for every
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single voter. >> reporter: when pete buttigieg came to town, sherry shied was sitting there in the front row, listening intently and capturing the moment and as he left she gave him a high five. >> thank you, pete. >> reporter: and smiled with satisfaction. >> so do you walk away from here committed or do you want to see the others first? >> well, joe biden is also in town tonight. and i'm going to go see what he has to say zblrv. >> reporter: two hours later they were there. from up close look at joe biden. she admires and values biden's experience. >> he's been there. so i feel good about that. i'm really happy about that. i liked him. >> but you loved mayor pete. >> i loved mayor pete. what does a guy do? i don't know. i'm really kind of torn a little bit. i got to think about it and sleep on it. i don't though yet. >> reporter: just before christmas, democrats are still shopping for presidential hopefuls in iowa. biden and buttigieg are going
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after the same voters, literally. which brought both of them sunday to the town of perry, about 45 minutes outside of des moines. for democrats searching for a moderate candidate, the choice is stark. a 37-year-old mayor of south bend, indiana, delivering an optimistic message. >> even in this dark and strange time, i have never been more filled with hope. >> reporter: or a former vice president twice his age to offers a dark warning about the consequences of president trump winning a second term. >> if we give him another four years, i believe he will permanently alter the character of the country, at least for several generations. >> reporter: pat mcfearson is torn. >> i think he might be the one. >> reporter: but later impressed by biden's grasp on the world. >> a couple of hours ago you told me that you were going to sign on the dotted line for buttigieg and now you want to think about it longer. >> i'm probably going with mayor pete but there is just so much to be said for being able to hit the ground running on day one and it is going to be a huge
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task. >> reporter: while he's trailing buttigieg in recent polls, biden is showing that skills from a lifetime in politics also come in handy, to people of all ages. >> go ahead. that is it. you got it. okay. [ applause ] that may be the most intelligent thing you hear all night. >> reporter: pat loved the charisma of buttigieg and worried that biden may be too old but seeing him up close in this moment she changed her mind. >> and i made the comment he might be a little old before but i'm a little old too and i'm in pretty good shape and he looks like he's in dynamic shape. >> so you have quite a decision facing you now. >> i have a terrific decision facing me. and it won't be made lightly. >> reporter: so with the democratic campaign intensifying with attacks swirling about, it is notable that neither of these two campaigns have tangled. they've not said a crossword about one another. of course the -- the biden camp
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realized it could backfire and amy klobuchar does raise questions. all three candidates competing for the same moderate lane here in iowa, now less than six weeks until the caucuses, eric you. >> jeff zeleny, thank you. as we look at all of this, of course outside of iowa, we should point out that joe biden maintaining the front-runner status but this test you could take online and found nearly all americans they've heard of joe biden, but most under the age of 40 cannot identify him when shown him picture. and research has shown that that visual is something that really sticks with voters, karen. how much of a concern should that be for the biden camp? >> i don't think too much. i think we're still very early in the process. i know it doesn't feel like that. remember that the four early states represent only so% of the delegates needed to clinch the
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nomination. while iowa is important and will give us the first sense of where voters are, the truth is that we've got a ways to go and i think what we'll see is exactly what we saw in jeff's piece, a lot more of people kind of trying out -- dating, right. i'm going to try pete. i'm going to try biden. who knows who is coming through next. and so i think we're going to see some movement until, again, as i say, once people start to have the opportunity to vote. >> jeff, focusing on those moderate candidates who are fighting for votes in iowa. there has been this clash between the progressives an the moderates over the so-called purity tests and there is a lot of pushback on both sides, whether it is about medicare for all, the green new deal, fundraising, and some pretty famous now pushback from alexandria ocasio-cortez at a sanders rally. i want to remind you of that moment. take a listen. >> for anyone who accuses us for instituted purity tests, it's
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called having values. it's called giving a damn. >> former president obama recently just last month warned about those purity tests, bakari. so how is fighting over purity tests helping win over voters? >> it's not. and they call it having values and all of these other things that aoc stated but they're called having purity tests and i think you're seeing those backfire with elizabeth warren. this whole wine cave phenomenon, attempting to attack pete buttigieg from the way he raises money is backfiring on her because what we realize is that how did she raise money prior to the time that she began to run for president of the united states. she raised money the same way. and i'm all for overturning citizens united. i'm all for taking money out of politics. what i'm not for is unilateral disarmament and individuals who want to go down that path of
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unilateral disarmament and we could not beat donald trump raising $15, $20 a person and because you take a donation you're not going to sell your sole for the maximum contribution which i believe is $2,600 but we're going to make sure that you could run ads and that you could get your message to voters, paid for canvassers and knock on doors. that is what you are utilizing the resources for i'm not for the purity tests and i think they're an abomination of the process and a red herring. >> and tie this one up. >> i think clearly if you're going to call out someone like pete buttigieg, make sure you haven't done it yourself. with regard to the jeff zeleny piece, this is going to be so exciting, this final stretch when you have two candidates like them with such close on the issues. you have to be out there and connect and get out there and shake hands and take selfies and
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it is great to see the candidates right now. right now pete is doing it a little bit better than the rest but there is a lot of handshaking between thousand and february. >> thank you all. thank you for the christmas miracle. >> merry christmas. up next, travelers don't have to worry about delays this holiday season. officials now warning passengers may have been exposed to a highly contagious illness at multiple major airports. rance-te of a lifetime. it's "progressive on ice." everything you love about car insurance -- the discounts... the rate comparisons... and flo in a boat. ♪ insurance adventure awaits at "progressive on ice." tickets not available now or ever. male anchor: update on the cat who captured our hearts. female anchor: how often should you clean your fridge?
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a serious measles scare adding to hectic holiday travel. as athena jones reports, airports warning travelers they may have been exposed. >> reporter: this holiday week could come with nun unwanted and dangerous surprise, measles. people infected with the contagious virus traveled through fire airports in recent days and may have exposed others to the disease. just the latest in a string of similar incidents this year. now happening at the busiest time to travel. an unidentified person visited the airport and several other locations around austin, texas, between december 14th and 17th, including a restaurant and grocery store and a target. >> that individual became ill on december 14th. and developed a rash on december 17th. on that same day, december 17th, he boarded a flight from austin to chicago.
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united flight 790 with a connecting flight to virginia. >> reporter: health officials are working to inform people who may have been exposed. >> it is important to remember that measles can be a deadly disease. >> reporter: in chicago health officials are investigating possible measles exposures around the same time at o'hare airport and two restaurants. the state of virginia is investigating possible exposures at the richmond airport and a doctor's office. on december 11th through children with measles visiting from new zealand likely exposed travelers at denver and los angeles international airports. the cdc is contacting passengers who flew on the same planes. the measles virus spreads through coughing and sneezing and could live in the air for up to two hours. symptoms include a high fever, cough, running nose, pink eye and of course a red splotchy rash. on average it takes about two weeks for the rash to develop. and a person is contagious for four days before and after the rash appears. best way to stay safe, receive
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the recommended two doses of the vaccinement it was declared eliminated in the united states nearly 20 years ago but there is an upsurge in cases as vaccine rates have declined. there have been 1200 measle cases in 2019, the highest number in three decades. >> i consider it an irony that you have one of the most contagious viruses known to man juxtaposed against one of the most effective vaccines that we have and yet we don't do and have not done what could be done, namely completely eliminate and eradicate this virus. >> now the cdc said the overall risk of getting a contagious disease on an airplane is low but like any crowded space, planes could create opportunities for transmission. bottom line, get vaccinated. you have a 97% chance of being rowe tected against the measles. >> athena, thank you. from the longest government shutdown ever to the president's
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impeachment, the top political stories of 2019 next. (burke) a "rock and wreck." seen it. covered it. at farmers insurance, we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪
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if your glasses aren't so will we. no we won't. don't forget to use your vision benefits before they're gone. now in-network with vsp. visionworks. see the difference. 2019 started with a stalemate. the government shutdown and dana bash reports it is now ending with another over the impeachment trial. >> it has been quite the year in politics. here are the top nine political stories of 2019. >> it didn't get as many
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headlines as other big political stories but make no mistake about it, the president's success in getting his judges on the bench will have implications for years to come. thanks to senate majority leader mitch mcconnell who is focused like a laser on this. the senate confirmed a record 50 circuit court judges. mcconnell took to twitter boasting that it is already the most in any president's whole first term since 1980. >> constitution of the united states -- >> president trump announced his reelection campaign the day he was inaugurated, a historically early start that his team took advantage of, raising more than $165 million, nearly $100 million in this year alone. >> it is much more efficient two years out to try to find a possible voter or possible donor. it is just a considerable advantage that the other side won't happen v because you can't replace time. >> reporter: control of the big coffers not only his reelection
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campaign but the republican marty contributing to the president's firm grip on the gop which in various ways became even more clearly the party of donald trump in 2019. >> we take back our democracy. >> the democrat's to 20 presidential field took shape early in the year as the most diverse ever. while women and candidates of color running for a single party than ever before. the first openly gay candidate a major contender. >> the top 12 candidates are at their positions -- >> reporter: it was also the biggest. cnn's october debate was the most crowded stage in the history of presidential primaries. >> i want to give a reality check here to elizabeth because no one on this stage wants to protect billionaires, not even the billionaire wants to protect billionaires. we just have different approaches. your idea is not the only idea. >> i think as democrats, we are going to succeed when we dream
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big and fight hard. not when we dream small and quit before we get started. >> reporter: shrinking to seven in december thanks to the polling thresholds. no question defined the democratic primary fight this year more than this. do voters want an ideology revolution or a candidate focused on relief from donald trump. at top of the field, bernie sanders and elizabeth warren are the revolutionaries promising sweeping change and former vice president joe biden and mayor pete buttigieg and senator amy klobuchar say in kremental change is more realistic. nowhere was this more on display on on obamacare. >> 71% of democrats support medicare for all. >> stay tuned for the answer in 2020. >> reporter: 2019 started with a new class of house democrats.
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a record number of women sworn in and many more firsts. the first muslim american women, the first native american women and the first female house speaker in history reclaimed the gavel. >> i'm particularly proud to be a woman speaker of the house of this congress which marks the 100th year of women having the right to vote. >> reporter: speaking of nancy pelosi, going head-to-head with president trump is one of the 2019 story lines. starting with the longest government shutdown in u.s. history -- >> federal workers will not be receiving paychecks. the president is in sensitive to that. he thinks maybe they could just ask their father more more money but they can't. >> the state of the union speech has been canceled by nancy pelosi because she doesn't want to hear the truth. >> reporter: in october, a clash over the president deciding to
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pull troops out of syria ended in a pelosi walkout and the president tweeted what he called an unhinged meltdown and she owned the image making it her social media cover photo. >> article one is adopted. >> reporter: the year ended with the speaker reluctantly leading the house and making trump only the third president in history to be impeached. >> i pray for the president all the time. >> reporter: after nearly two years, robert mueller concludes his russia investigation with a 448-page report. on the key question of collusion, mueller's probe did not establish that members of the trump campaign conspired or coordinated with the russian government in the election interference activities. it noted ten instances where the president may have obstructed justice, writing, while this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him. much to the outrage of
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democrats, attorney general william barr tried to play it as exoneration. >> the evidence developed by the special counsel is not sufficient to establish that the president committed an obstruction of justice offense. >> reporter: democrats were hoping mueller would clear it up. but his nearly seven-hour testimony, slow moving and drama free, did not. and then a whistle-blower complaint that trump urged the ukraine president to investigate joe biden and his son hunter in exchange for nearly $400 million in u.s. military aid. >> that call was perfect. >> reporter: moderate vulnerable house democrats who had resisted impeachment before changed their minds and called for an inquiry. and the speaker announced the house would do just that. >> the actions taken to date by the president have seriously violated the constitution. >> reporter: a day later the white house released a rough transcript of the july conversation. in it was what democrats would
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focus their impeachment inquiry on, a quid pro quo. it would make its way through the house intelligence committee with closed-door witness testimonies followed by several days of notable public testimony. >> was there a quid pro quo? as i testified previously, with regard to the requested white house call and the white house meeting, the answer is yes. >> reporter: former trump russia adviser fiona hill called out the team for carrying out a domestic political errand and sent a warning. >> russian security services and proxies have repeated their interference in the 2020 election. we're running out of time to stop them. >> reporter: republicans attack the process, side stepping the facts. >> you can't make your case against the president because nothing happened. >> reporter: democrats drafted two articles of impeachment, abuse of power and obstruction of congress. which passed the committee and later the full house on party
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line votes. the year ending with donald j. trump, the third president in history to be impeached. so how does it all end? you're going to wait until 2020. dana bash, cnn, washington. >> thank you for joining us. from our cnn family to yours, happy holidays. welcome to this "360" special, "the stephen colbert interview." he's been a familiar face in comedy, of course, for more than a decade, starting off in improv then becoming a regular correspondent the "daily show" with jon stewart then came "the colbert report." a satirical nightly talk show. in 2015 stephen colbert inherited the coveted late night spot on cbs where david letterman reigned for more than 20 years. all eyes and pressure were on colbert as he stopped playing a character and started being himself. after the 2016 election, stephen colbert really hit his stride as his show tried to make sense of the often nonsensica