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tv   The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  January 12, 2021 3:00pm-4:00pm PST

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conduct unmatched and warning americans will be shocked by their findings. and the "washington post" is now reporting that the fbi warranted an internal memo of a violent war at the capitol, just one day before the violent attack. also breaking, on the eve of impeaching president trump for a second time, we learned that the senate majority mitch mcconnell is now pleased with the efforts to punish the president, believing impeachment would make it easier to perjuurge him from republican party. one top republican congresswo n congresswoman, liz cheney, just announced she would vote for impeachment, calling the president's conduct a betrayal. but president trump is refusing to take any blame at all for the deadly events he clearly incited. let's go to our senior congressional correspondent manu raju. he's up on capitol hill. manu, i understand there is about to be a moment of silence on capitol hill.
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tell us about that. >> an actual sign of bipartis bipartisanship for the two fallen police officers that really shook the capitol. just moments from now, the house will have a moment of silence for the two police officers, including one who was killed in the result of what happened after wednesday's deadly riot, another one who died over the weekend as officers brian sicknick, was the one who sustained injuries from wednesday's riot. and an officer was pronounced dead from over the weekend. so a sign of bipartisanship here. expect members from both sides to be on the floor recognizing these two fallen officers, wolf, as they prepare for these big momentous debate in the day ahead. >> do we have a sense, manu, of how many house republicans, do you think, might actually break with the president tomorrow and join the democrats in voting in favor of impeachment? >> it remains to be seen, wolf.
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there is expectation that it could be ten, it could be more than ten, potentially up to 20, and one reason why we don't have a very good sense of this yet is because republican leaders have decided they will not pressure their members to fall in line behind the partisansthip. they will not whip their members out and pressure them the way they did in 2019. but already two defections that have occurred, the number 3 republican congresswoman, liz cheney, the republican from wyoming, the daughter of the former vice president dick cheney just announced she will vote to impeach donald trump. she said in a statement, the president of the united states assembled this mob and that the flame of this attack, everything that followed, was his doing. none of this would have happened without the president. the president could have immediately and forcefully intervened to stop the violence. he did not.
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there's never been a greater betrayal by the president of the united states by his office and his ode of the constitution. i will vote to impeach the president. that is a pretty dramatic statement from the number 3 in republican leadership, and wolf, this comes just as we're lerj about concerns mitch mcconnell, the senate majority leader has, about donald trump's conduct. and mcconnell is indicating to his colleagues privately that he believes impeaching donald trump could be a way to push trump out of the party, get rid of trumpism altogether. wolf, he has not said -- >> hold on, manu, for a moment. i want to go to the floor of the house of representatives where there is a moment of silence right now in honor of those fallen police officers .
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>> pursuant to clause 12a-1, the chair declares the congress in recess for a period less than 15 minutes. >> a moment of silence, a dramatic moment indeed in honor of those two police officers who died as a result of what happened in that attack on the u.s. capitol last wednesday. so, manu, let me just get back quickly to mitch mcconnell. he apparently hates -- and that's a strong word -- hates the president of the united states right now. we heard jonathan martin of the "new york times" say it's very possible mitch mcconnell might even vote in favor of convicting president trump in the course of a senate trial after trump is going to be impeached for a second time tomorrow, the first president to be impeached twice, that mitch mcconnell might also
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go in favor. you need 60 votes and that would be a powerful moment. >> if that happened, donald trump would most likely be convicted by the u.s. senate. you need 17 republicans to break ranks. he would bring over a lot of votes, a lot of republicans not certain which way to go. already we expect a handful to vote to convict when it does come to that, but if mitch mcconnell comes that way, that would be a very key indication, and that would mean donald trump would not be able to run for office, hold a public office ever again. but, wolf, that still needs to play out. mr. mcconnell has not said what he will do if he believes the president should be impeached, if he believes he should be convicted and that trial does not begin until the beginnings of the biden presidency, wolf. >> manu, you're on capitol hill. the news is unfolding dramatically right now.
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jim acosta is getting a reaction to these powerful updates. give an update of the president's response. he apparently has no remorse at all for his part in the deadly insurrection. >> that's right, wolf, and things seem to be unraveling quickly with the president and liz cheney who has very serious issues with president trump. president trump, as you know, refuses to take any responsibility for what happened on the capitol. cnn has learned the president's advisers are urging trump to lower his rhetoric as he could even be sued for the violence. trump can absolutely be sued. finally showing his face nearly one week after supporters
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terrorized the capitol, president trump is back to throwing more gasoline on the fire as he gaslights the country. warning that a second impeachment in the house could enrage his followers. >> be careful what you wish for. the impeachment hoax is a continuing of the greatest and most vicious website in our count country. >> reporter: he's not worried that they will take a swipe at him. sources close to trump say to cnn advisers have been urging the president to tone down his language as he could be pr prosecuted for his role in the insurrection. they have been suggesting a de-escalation of rhetoric.
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which is why trump is claiming he doesn't want to see more violence as he steps down from office. >> as far as this is concerned, we want no violence, never violence, we want absolutely no violence. >> but the president is still lying about his role in the siege. you'll never take back our spit with strength. everybody to the tee that tft toelgtly appropriate. >> all mort reason, dem drat say, to impeach him. whaz what trump caused today is a pat logical technique utydewilligen by dictators. trump calls for the aerng. he calls for the divisiveness. >> some republican leaders
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aren't standing in the way, congresswoman liz cheney calling the upcoming vote important for lawmakers. >> we're not going to negotiate with domestic terrorists and that's who these people are. >> to avoid another impeachment, the government had urged pence to invoke the 25th amendment to force trump from power. >> we're trying to tell him the time of the 2020 emergency has arrived t. has come on our do doorsnem. >> do you believe what the president did last week shows that he was able to disable the rang wage of his office or not? >> george, i'm not going to give
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into that here. >> they warned that acts of sedition will not be tolerated. he goes on to state that we defend the constitution. anything to invoke some strong words from the chairman of the joint chiefs. after saying everybody around him gave a speech at the capitol, that's not true. in recent days the president has been ranting and raving. he still holds onto a lie and believes everything was stolen from him. >> one notable difference tonight, wolf, liz cheney, influential house american. his advisers have said to me he
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has no plans on resigning. one has to wonder if the weight is coming down hoord this president, wolf. zds given. it says a lot. they want to release the u.s. constitution and safeguard our country. it speaks volumes that they even had to release a statement like this. >> it shows how dangerous it is. >> a breath of reality indeed. we're also breaking federal news at the capitol. i want to bring in shimon prokupecz. gave us the latest, shimon, on this unprecedented investigation. >> reporter: wolf, it is an unprecedented investigation with every fbi agent and analyst and employee now touching this investigation. the u.s. attorney, the man overseeing this investigation
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today said that what peoppeople shocked by what's uncovered. >> you will be charnged and you will be found. >> reporter: that's the message for the insurrectionists who stormed the capitol january 6. speaking for the first time since the attack, fbi and doj officials announcing over 170 active investigations and possible charges of sedition, currency and felony murder. >> just the gamut of cases and can now have a manhunt they call unprecedented but spare no resources delivering justice. >> we look at this just like a significant counterterrorism or count counterterrorist operation. we're looking at money, travel
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records, disposition, movement, communication records. >> the fbi has a long memory and a broad reach. even if you've left, they will come to your door. >> reporter: the "washington post" reporting a day before the january 6 insurrection a virginia fbi field office issued a dire warning extremists were going to washington for violence and war. despite the warning, the fbi says it shared with its law enforcement partners no preparations were made by the capitol police. >> all that information was shared by our patterns, and have chilling new observations that they fear are more plots across the government. >> they're talking about 4,000
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protest across the country. >> this is an organized group which has a plan. >> reporter: with the inauguration planned for next week, the fbi is warning of chaos and mayhem on a larger scale. quote, armed protests are being planned at all 50 state capitols and at the u.s. capitol. it reminds us of a presidential uprising if the president is removed from office before 1y57b. they said, quote, an unidentified group planning to overthrow offices in the district of columbia and every other state. >> we're an ongoing series of crimes to capital, our online
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stations and president of the united states. >> a public event biden says he's not afraid of. >>, wolf, because of this attack at the capitol, it could further radicalize those who want to do more harm. one oy fishl telling cnn the chatter is off the charts, and that is something that has investigators very informed, i want to bring in congressman adam schiff. congressman, thank you so much for joining us, so much news unfolding right now. the third ranking republican in the house, common. a vote will be asked to impeach
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plump the, no republican support in the house at all. so what does this development mean? >> it means she won't be alone. there will be other republicans influenced by her decision, and these things have a way of gathering momentum. i wouldn't be surprised now to see a considerable number of republicans join in supporting the impeachment resolution and these reports that mitch mcconnell may be open to the impeachment charges as well is a potential earthquake in the senate. >> you're right, the senate majority leader mitch mcconnell says he believes right now that impeaching president trump will make it easier to rid the republican party what they call trumpism. how does that tell you that a --
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he'll be gheeftd house. but thernlt need 17 republicans to vote to convict. what do you think the chances of that are? >>. >> there are senators who even after the attempted insurrection went back to contesting the election all over again, seemingly shameless and not the least bit suspect that they had contributed to in the mayhem in the capitol. one thing interesting to me, wolf, and that is even these republicans that have not come out for impeachment or criticized the president.
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they will move out, thus down there, it is not impeachable. that shows how serious the members of the house and senate tr take that mob attack on our capitol. >> one more thought, congressman, and then i want to get to the series of threats at the capitol. if mike pence and others were to implement the 25th amendment to the constitution and force trump out, would the impeachment resolution and potentially a trial tomorrow afternoon, would that all go away? >> that would be a decision with four and that would go away. i think we'll cross that bridge when we get to it. up until this point, mike pence
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has shown no willingness ability to stand up to this president in any way, and even on certification day, he did his bare minimum constitutional duty. that was a pretty low bar. whether he'll rise to the occasion now is still very much in doubt, but one thing i can tell you is certain, we're going to do our duty in the house, and if he's not gone, we're going to impeach him to protect the count country. third, we're just going to make it worse. al kenzinger from illinois has said he will vote to impeach this president. let's look at the ongoing threat to the u.s. capitol and lawmakers are at the heart of our democracy as we approach
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inauguration day in eight days. >> i know my colleagues are -- i had a briefing today by the fbi about what the threats are, and i tell you, you know,s and in two respects it's disappoint that we have to cater to these threats. i fully plan to attend the inauguration. i'm confident that it will go forward without being sidetracked or veiled, nothing like what i saw. this time we'll be prepared for it, it bheent evacuation -- going to take a long time for us to get through it.
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>> i tell every member of the house and the senate and all the people who work up there, stay safe right now. as i drive around capitol hill and i see the enormous security that's been implemented in the aftermath of the attack on the u.s. capitol last week, it is so, so disheartening and so concerning what's going on. congressman adam schiff, thanks so much for joining us. >> and you stay safe yourself, wolf, because the press obviously have been very much a target of this president and his supporters as well. what a terrible tragedy it is in this country that both our legislators and the members of the press should be threatened by their own presidency. >> on that point, it was very alarming when i heard michael sher sherwin, the acting u.s. attorney here in washington, d.c. at his news conference a couple hours ago or so said these lawmakers not only want to
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target you but specifically want to target the news media as well. i blamed in part the president. he said he were spreading fake news, and now for the attorney in the united states to say there are lawsuits being threats end, it certainly is a strange day. >> i followed a freedom of the press with fellow vice president mike pence. to think now of the danger of freedom of press around the world, and what we have now in spades in this skant tragic turn
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of events. thank you for joining me. we're following all the major breaking stories in the capitol right now. we're going to update you on all of them, right after this. mula d in preservision. if it were my vision, i'd ask my doctor about preservision. it's the most studied eye vitamin brand. if it were my vision, i'd look into preservision. only preservision areds2 contains the exact nutrient formula recommended by the nei to help reduce the risk of moderate to advanced amd progression. i have amd. it is my vision so my plan includes preservision.
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you two are all set. choose the app that fits your investing style. ♪ there's breaking news we're following. cnn has learned that the senate majority, mitch mcconnell, is pleased with tomorrow's vote to impeach president trump as three house republicans now sign on to the unprecedented effort. they say they will vote in favor of impeaching the president of the united states. i want to bring in our chief political analyst gloria borger, our political report either abby
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philip. the number three republican in the house, liz cheney and mitch mcconnell both expressing their displeasure in the house. liz cheney said she will vote to impeach tomorrow. give us the significance of these events. how powerful are they? >> i think they're pretty powerful. mitch mcconnell, who has been an ally of the about the, saw h pr, saw his control disappear, and i don't think he's going to do him any favors. we don't know what he intends to do, whether he'll bring up impeachment conviction any time soon, but we know how he feels. we know that liz cheney has been very critical of the president. in fact, our colleague kevin liptack just pointed out that the president attacked her on
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the speech she gave on the ellipse before the attack on the capitol where he said, we've got to get rid of the weak congresspeople, the ones who aren't any good, the liz cheneys of the world. well, liz cheney came out today and said that he needs to be impeached and that he was the one who incited the riot. i think you've seen now three house republicans do that. i think you're going to see more senators speak out, republicans speak out. they understand that this is a president who may not resign unprompted. and maybe this is their way of saying to him, watch out. if you don't resign, something worse is going to happen to you. >> that's a good point. jamie gangel is with us as well. give us your perspective. >> my phone blew up after the announcement by liz cheney with republican sources, a former white house official saying, quote, thank you, liz. another one said, that was not just a statement to vote to
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impeach, it was a complete condemnation of donald trump's actions. and it's true. if you look at the statement, liz cheney did not mince words. she said, quote, the president summoned this mob, assembled this mob and lit the flame of this attack. there has never been a greater betrayal by a president of the united states of his office or his oath to the constitution. you know, to gloria's point, this may be sending a message to donald trump to try to pressure him to resign. i don't think that donald trump will pay attention to that message, but this certainly is a tipping point for the republican party. when you have liz cheney, part of the house republican leadership, when you have mitch mcconnell indicating that he
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might be willing to convict, which was from the "new york times" reporting by jonathan martin, a message is being sent loud and clear to republican members. you have a hall pass. donald trump is the pass. you can vote to impeach him. >> everybody stand by, because these are really historic moments, very dangerous moments here in the united states as well. i want to bring in the washington, d.c. mayor, muriel bowser, to get some thoughts from her. you're right at the heart of what's going on in our nation's capitol, mayor. one senator briefed today on the inauguration in eight days. that senator warned of a potential violent million militia march on the city. we have no idea how many will come. can you assure d.c. residents, members of congress, everyone, that the lessons have been learned from last week, that everyone will be safe just ahead of next week's historic
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inauguration? >> well, i can assure you, wolf, that there is an unprecedented federal response to this inauguration. the national security specialty event status has been expanded. in fact, the perimeter related to the inauguration is going up in and around d.c. now. at my request the perimeter has been expanded to also include the capitol grounds. the united states secret service is the lead agency in making sure that those events run smoothly, and i know as well that there will be additional national guard troops from various states to make sure that the federal properties are secure in the district. >> on the national guard troops, i take it 15,000, maybe more, national guard troops are already being deployed to the nation's capitol, is that right? >> we have about 6,000 troops on
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the ground now from states nearby the district, maryland and virginia, new jersey, pennsylvania and delaware. we understand that the army will make up to 15,000 available to respond to the request from the capitol, our request, and all of the federal facilities in the district. >> will they be armed? >> the tactics that will be deployed will certainly be up to united states secret service and the army so that those troops are prepared to respond to any number of incidents. >> the fbi acting director for d.c. said today at that news conference that they immediately shared -- his words -- immediately shared intelligence that individuals were planning to come to d.c. on january 6th to commit violence. was that shared with you? you're the mayor of our nation's capitol. are you getting fully briefed on
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all of these ongoing threats? >> well, certainly part of my request to the federal government was that we have a daily briefing with the fbi. i confirmed that, and we have received that. i spoke with the acting attorney general today, and i think what's also important is that the fbi's analysis, our own local analysis, looks at these domestic terror groups, is what they are, not as a group of blustering people who are coming here for a rowdy rally. i think what we saw last week at the capitol was these are trained people, they're armed, and they are seemingly organized and intent on serving donald trump no matter what the means or the consequences.
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>> muriel bowser, you and i have discussed on many occasions the president, what he's doing, what he's not doing. you actually called for him to resign or be removed through the constitution. how worried are you that he'll use his megaphone in his last eight days of presidency to assign his reporters to commit violent acts here in washington? >> i'm worried, wolf, about these eight days, i'm worried about d.c., i'm worried about states around our country. but i'm also worried beyond that. trumpism is not dead, and it won't die on january the 20th. i was very happy to see the very strong remarks of congresswoman liz cheney, because i think republicans need to speak up like she did and not compete to replace trump.
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they need to be better than trump. and to speak to his followers and let them know that our allegiance as americans is to our constitution, to the freedoms that our constitution promises, but not to any single individual. and we are, in my view, in a very dangerous time in our country if we don't have leaders who speak up and do that. >> we heard the department of justice today commit to pursue what they describe as hundreds of criminal cases stemming from last week's deadly assault on the u.s. capitol, everything from trespassing, sedition, murder, conspiracy. how much faith do you put right now in this federal effort that is underway from the fbi and the justice department? >> well, they have a big job. we heard the acting u.s. attorney lay it out. i'm pleased to see that they're looking at very serious crimes.
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somebody needs to be held accountable for the death of a united states capitol police officer and certainly for the assaults on the metropolitan police officer. i have 15,000 officers that were injured in mind, body and spirit, and people need to be held accountable for what happened at the capitol. i think the strike force is a good idea to build the very serious case -- the very serious cases that are going to find the conspiracy and the organization behind this. that's going to be important for us to stop the radicalization of young white men across our country. >> mayor muriel bowser, thank you so much for joining us. i know you have a lot going on. these are dangerous moments here in washington, d.c. good luck to you. good luck to everyone trying to keep this city, our nation's
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capitol, safe. thank you very much. there is more breaking news we're following right now. take a look at this. we're learning that the house of representatives is actually debating the rule, calling on mike pence to invoke the 25th amendment to the constitution that would remove president trump from office, and pence would be the acting president during these final eight days. let me get reaction. let me start with andrew mccabe, the former acting fbi director. it's a dangerous moment right now, but what's your reaction when you hear all of this, andrew? >> wolf, it's startling. this is -- put last wednesday's events aside. the inauguration is a massive undertaking that the agencies involved spend about a year preparing for. now on top of that you have an attack on the capitol by thousands of individuals. you've got an fbi and a department of justice that are concentrating on tracking people across the country by the hundreds and running people down. it's a huge piece of work to do
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on top of the very big important business of trying to keep this inauguration safe. i'm sure they're working very hard, but they have a lot of serious things to do. >> you think, abby, there is any real chance that the vice president might actually do this and get a majority of the cabinet? we know several members of the cabinet have quit in recent days, but do you think there is a chance that pence might do this? >> i think at this stage, woc, no. he's made it clear this is not his preference, and despite the resolution that democrats introduced today pressuring him, frankly, to do this, he hasn't responded. now, our colleagues at the white house have reported that pence is explicitly not saying he's absolutely not going to do it, he hasn't released a statement to that effect, but look where we are. we are about seven days until the end of the trump administration. if pence were going to lead this effort, he would have done it by
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now before several members of the cabinet have already resigned, so i think that's highly unlikely. he would much rather, probably, this happen without his involvement whatsoever, whether that is president trump resigning or impeachment and conviction in the assuming, la president and the cabinet don't go ahead and invoke the 25th, the president will be impeached tomorrow in the house, then it goes to the senate where you need a two-thirds vote to convict. mitch mcconnell, the majority leader, soon to be the minority leader, made it clear he's open to impeachment and we heard from jonathan martin of the "new york times," he might even -- this is mcconnell -- might even vote to convict. he absolutely hates the president of the united states right now. give us your thoughts. >> wow, what a difference a year makes. i remember covering the first impeachment of donald trump and having to talk about the idea
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how there was such objestinence let alone reluctance, to impeach the president. now you have them galvanizing the president. those who would be the witnesses would be those in the decision-making seats. they were actually eyewitnesses and firsthand observers. and, of course, the president's statements today have done him no favors. he has lacked contrition. he has not wanted to clarify his words either at or after the insurrection. so he leads them down a path thinking maybe the ultimatum put in place by nancy pelosi might be the best one. but i must say, this idea, what if the words by raskin has been said weeks ago. they could have had a congressional committee standing in place of the cabinet members to work with the vice president
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to actually decide whether to remove the president. they did not work with that committee. they had a base of cabinet members who either resigned or do nothing, and now they're left with this particular choice. it seems that the gop members are now not only going to be led to water, but they just might drink this time. >> gloria, i just want to read the final sentence in the impeachment resolution. it's not been w been officially released. wherefore donald j. trump by such conduct has demonstrated he will remain a threat to national security, democracy and the constitution if allowed to remain in office and has acted in a manner grossly incompatible and self-governance and the rule of law. donald john trump thus warrants impeachment and trial, removal from office, and
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disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the united states. they're calling on the vice president to invoke the 25th amendment to the constitution. i suspect that's not going -- it won't get supported, but i think much more realistically, the resolution to impeach the president, gloria, will be passed and sent to the senate. >> right, and you talk about simple and direct resolution, this is it. it is not complicated at all. it is effectively what liz cheney said, that the president of the united states led an insurrection against his own government. as laura pointed out, the witnesses are the people who are going to be judging him right now on this. they were there. their lives were threatened. they know what happened as even mr. mccarthy told the president when the president suggested to the leader, oh, it was antifa, and mccarthy said, no, it wasn't. i was there.
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it was your people. it was maga. i know who was there. so his judges are the people who were threatened. and not only were they threatened, but the constitution was undermined. and so very simple, very direct, nothing complicated here. you don't deserve to be president anymore, and you don't deserve to hold office anymore. >> you know, andrew mccabe, i'm just curious, and i'll get your thoughts. you're the former acting fbi direct director, you were the deputy director of the fbi. we've heard today two major representatives, steven dan twono, a senior fbi agent, michael sherwin, the acting u.s. attorney here in washington, d.c. why didn't we hear from the acting attorney general of the united states, why didn't we hear from the acting deputy director? >> that's a good question, wolf, and i don't know that i have a good answer for you. i think the two gentlemen who
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took the podium today did a fine job of getting us to understand the investigation. but what we didn't understand were the threats we are facing over the next week. that's a message that you have to hear from the top, from director wray, and from the acting attorney general jeff rosen, and they weren't there today. >> it spoke volumes to me, and, i'm sure, a whole bunch of other people, andrew, that this is such a sensitive, historic, dangerous moment here in the united states. and at a time like this, you want to hear from the fbi director and you want to hear from the attorney general in this particular case, because bill bauer resigned in the end of december. you want to hear from the acting attorney general. they were silent, and i don't know what that means, but it was a pretty depressing moment, i thought. >> i agree with you 100%. it was a notable absence. it's been six days since the attack on the capitol, and today
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was the first time we heard anything at all, which is strange, and then to not have those two key leadership figures there was a notable absence. >> i totally agree with that. let me get laura coats to weigh in as well. what did you think? >> i think it's odd because we definitely heard from mr. rosen when we're talking about over the summer, because he and general barr were talking about seditious conspiracy theories and those who hijacked the protest as well who engaged in behavior that no one condones, like looting and the like. so the notion that we're silent on an issue we saw an insurrection is shocking. i must say i'm alone in the office of the attorney of washington, d.c., and they are the ones who would have the jurisdiction primarily, in tandem with other u.s. attorneys who engage in behavior in other
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states, but probably because they're the ones to have immediate jurisdiction, they'll be the ones that have a face from this. the fbi on january 5th out of norfolk was aware that there was a plan and even instructions that were circulating. perhaps that's why they were there to answer the question. but i agree with andrew mccabe wholeheartedly, there was more of a figurehead to being daily removed from the prosecution to speak tout what happened. the former attorney general has now spoken out. why hasn't the current? that is surprising, as is the acting fbi director. >> we're just hearing from a white house official that perhaps 20, maybe even more, republicans tomorrow will vote in favor of impeaching the president of the united states.
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three so far are on the record, but maybe 20 or more. this is what they're bracing forovfor over at the white house. what's your reaction? >> i'm actually not surprised because of the reporting of mitch mcconnell, liz cheney, adam kenzinger. i think we have mitch mcconnell also getting so angry. this is the tipping point. the other thing to keep in mind long term is if mitch mcconnell wants to be done with donald trump, if he is looking at the future of the republican party, if the senate convicts, obviously the house has to vote to impeach tomorrow, but they have the numbers to do that. if the senate votes to convict, they can also vote to keep him from ever running for federal office again.
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that takes away what donald trump has been teasing about, that he will be back in 2024. there's both the desire to move the republican party on, but there seems to be a growing sentiment that they are willing to do this, wolf. >> since he lost the election, he's gone ahead and raised maybe 200 million, $300 million in campaign contributions, so he's going to have money to do something along those lines. gloria, in the days leading up to richard nixon's resignation as a result of watergate, what really compelled the event president to resign was when all of these republican leaders from the house and the senate, senator barry goldwater, for example, conservative republicans went to the white house and told him, mr. president, it's over. could you envisage a situation
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like that evolving and becoming reality now? >> it's hard. if mitch mcconnell should somehow say, well, i'm going to vote to convict the president, and should he announce that, then i think all bets are off. then i think there would be a bunch of people going to the president saying, you might not be able to survive this. but i don't know if that scenario would ever happen, and i think that's the only way i can envision it. but let me also say one thing about these republicans now who are starting to stand up to the president. liz cheney is somebody who has stood up to the president many times in the past. she has disagreed with him openly, not only on foreign policy, but also on the question of whether to wear a mask, also on the question of whether he has the ability to lock down states during covid, which he says he did not. and let me point out that in her state of wyoming, donald trump
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won with 70% of the vote in her state. so she is standing up to donald trump at some political peril. but she is willing to do it because she believes he has undermined the constitution. >> if you take a look, abby, at the if you take a look at adam kinsinger, i will vote for impeachment. >> abby, maybe 20 republicans, maybe more will vote in favor of impeachment. that is significant. >> that is significant considering they are along partisan lines. no republicans are joining democrats to impeach in the house. this is a change from where republicans have been, but we should remind people that about 140 republicans voted to attempt to overturn the results of the electoral college a week ago
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even after, after the capitol was under siege and rioted by a violent mob. so there is definitely an imbalance in the republican party and the perception, i think, among a majority of republicans is still that president trump is a powerful force and the liz cheney's of the world are speaking up at great risk, frankly, because i think many republicans in the party still back this president and liz cheney herself, even as a member of leadership is attacked by president trump directly and by name repeatedly. she's doing it because it's the right thing to do and there ought to be more to do. there are questions of what this means for the senate as well. with so many republicans in the house speaking up i think there will be much more pressure on senate republicans to do the same. there you see the three republicans who have publicly released statements saying they will vote in favor of impeaching
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the president, representative liz cheney of wyoming, john katko of new york and adam kinzinger. these are breathtaking events we're covering. or just the west side. run payroll in less than five minutes with intuit quickbooks.
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we're also following breaking news in the coronavirus pandemic. the u.s. death toll now tops 379,000 with over 22.7 million confirmed cases. and as vaccine distribution lags behind the trump administration is now making some major changes to try to speed up the rollout.
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cnn's nick watt is in los angeles with details. >> reporter: after four weeks of faultering vaccine rollout, a new phase. >> the next phase has several components. first, we're expanding the froups getting vaccinated. >> reporter: everyone 65 and over can get one and anyone under 65 with a co-morbidity. next -- >> we are releasing the entire supply we have. >> reporter: no more holding back second doses. team biden also planned to release them. next up, where vaccines will now be given. >> stads should move on to pharmacies, community health centers and mass vaccination sites. >> reporter: plans already in place for citi field in new york, dodgers stadium in l.a. also time today for buck passing and trumpian praise for the federal distribution effort. >> which is now successfully delivered to over 14,000
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locations, essentially without a hitch. state restrictions on eligibility have obstructed speed and accessibility of administration. >> reporter: latest data, more than 27 million distributed just over 9 million actually administered. the pace must pick up now. >> as we're seeing the post holiday surge surge. >> reporter: prethanksgiving on average around 1,000 people were reported killed by covid every day in this country. that daily toll has now tripled. >> never been higher. >> reporter: the president hasn't uttered a word in public about covid since december 8th. the domestic terrorists who almost stormed the capitol are almost certainly spreading this virus and the mobilization of the national guard to stifle them? >> this is also probably going to take away from some of the vaccine distribution issues in some of these states where the
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national guard was involved. >> reporter: and this just in. starting two weeks from today anyone flying into this country is going to have to have proof of a negative test. the cdc is worried about these variants popping up in various parts of the world. well, that contagious variant first found in the u.k., it's already here. we've just discovered it's actually been here since before christmas. wolf? >> important developments, indeed. nick watt in l.a. for us. thank you very, very much. finally tonight we share more stories of people who died from the coronavirus. joe mark of ohio was 58 years old. despite being bourne with down's syndrome, he enjoyed a vibrant life and was an avid sports fan. he was the life of the party who enriched the lives of their family. lunia hicks rondo was 68. as a direct care worker she
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worked to help young women who were the victims of abuse for 20 years. she had a giving heart and was the glue for her family. she loved spending time with her younger relatives and would take them to christian camp every year. may they rest in peace and may their memories be a blessing. er"erin burnett outfront" start right now. out front next, breaking news. republicans abandoning president trump like never before. liz cheney the third highest ranking republican in the house said she will vote to impeach trump. mitch mcconnell believes the president committed impeachable offenses. who's next? people will be shocked at what really happened inside the capitol during the riot. talking about hand to hand combat as the fbi confirms it had intelligence that trump supporters were planning to go to washington to wage, quote, war.


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