tv Erin Burnett Out Front CNN January 12, 2021 4:00pm-5:00pm PST
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. e"erin burnett outfront" starts 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.
i'll talk to a congressman who spent hours in a secure room with republicans who refused to wear a mask. 's the third one now to test positive for covid. let's go out front. >> good evening. i'm erin burnett. out front, the breaking news. the house on the verge of impeaching the president of the united states and this time republicans are getting on board. congresswoman liz cheney, as i said, the number three republican in the house, says she will vote tomorrow to impeach president donald j. trump condemning trump in no uncertain terms. cheney said the president summoned the mob, lit the flame of this attack. everything that followed was his doing. none of this would have happened without the president. there has never been a greater betrayal by the president of the united states of his office and his oath to the constitution. i will volt to impeach the president. cheney joins republican john katkow who was the first republican saying he was the first to impeach.
republican adam kinzinger as well. there are other republicans indicating where they stand including congressman peter meyer. here he is last night. >> i think it is obvious that the president is no longer qualified to hold that office. >> and also breaking tonight, senate majority leader mitch mcconnell believes impeaching donald trump will make it easier to purge trump from the party. "new york times" reporting he believes he committed impeachable offenses. we are witnessing an extraordinary moment in the history of the united states and this democracy. and these late developments change the calculation on impeachment in a significant way because the house at this hour is paving the way for president trump to be impeached again. it will be the second time. in just about 30 minutes the house will begin the process of
voting. this will be on a resolution that will urge the vice president mike pence to invoke the 25th amendment. if this resolution ultimately passes, it is expected to do so, if pence doesn't act, he is not expected to act, then the house plans to impeach the president for incitement of insurrection. it's a stunning moment. the gravity of what happened last week and the split in the republican party and what had inspired in that riot -- what inspired that riot that left five people dead is still completely lost on the person responsible. >> so if you read my speech, and many people have done it and i've seen it both in the papers and in the media, on television, it's been analyzed and people thought that what i said was totally appropriate. >> no, they aren't and what you said wasn't appropriate. i'll play it again for all of you.
>> mike pence, i hope you're going to stand up for the good of our constitution and for the good of our country, and if you're not, i'm going to be very disappointed in you, i will tell you right now. i'm not hearing good stories. we're going to walk down to the capitol. you'll never take back our country with weakness. you have to show strength and you have to be strong. >> and then today trump again leveling threats as he flew to the southern border. >> be careful what you wish for. the impeachment hoax is a continuation of the greatest and most vicious witch hunt. he literally said today be careful what you wish for after all that has happened. that is just an echo of his first words on the day of the insurrection to the people who chanted hang mike pence and stormed the capitol.
>> we love you. you're very special. you've seen what happens. you see the way others are treated that are so bad and so evil. >> later that night the same sin nistster tone on twitter. the president, quote, these are the things, events that happen when a secret landslide victory so unceremoniously and viciously stripped away from great patriots. as peter meijer told me yesterday, there is no debate on the merits here. trump incited violence after spending months, months whipping his supporters into a frenzy with his great lie. >> we're not going to lose this except if they cheat. >> the democrats are trying to rig this election because it's the only way they're going to win. it will end up being a rigged election. >> the only way we're going to lose this election is if the election is rigged. remember that. >> and that lie turned into a battle cry for some of his supporters who stormed the
capitol in an act of domestic terror. >> the democrats are trying to steal the white house. you can not let them. they don't get to steel it from us. we're bringing our country back. >> we want our country back. >> this is our country. >> this is our house. this is our country. this is our country. >> it literally gives me goose bumps and chills. it can bring tears to your eyes because the facts here are clear. what trump caused is not in doubt. phil mattingly is live out front on capitol hill tonight. you are watching an extraordinary moment in history, literally history in the making because this will be a core part of every history lesson, history textbook from this point on. what is happening tonight inside the republican party. >> to be blunt, you're witnessing the rupture of an american political party in real time. it sounds hyperbolic and it sounds like the predictions people have been making but let's be perfectly clear here,
the vast majority of house republicans will oppose impeachment. liz cheney the number 3 republican stepping out gives covers for others to join her. the vast majority still in line with the president. the vast majority of the republican base still in line with the president. there are two calculations crucial from congresswoman cheney's perspective and from senate majority leader mccobble. mcconnell has not confirmed he will impeach the president, he does believe the president has committed impeachable offenses. in fact, i'm told he is furious with the president. you can see it on the senate floor when they came back into session after the attack on january 6th. he has not spoken to the president since december 14th. he has tried to subtly move the president away from the president. he's through with the president. what's going on here is the calculation about what's next for the republican party in the post trump era but something you
hit on, erin. the visceral response to those involved on january 6th and in the wake of january 6th between briefings and what they've seen, videos, pictures. the anger has grown more palpable. republicans have consistently stood by his side no matter what he says, does or tweets. that has started to shift. you combine those two things together, the confluence of factors and you are seeing a break in the republican party. where this ends up is an open question. the president will be impeached on wednesday. if mcconnell decides to support the impeachment when it gets to the senate for a trial, there's a very real possibility the president is convicted. it's not a done deal but that is what you're watching with the republican party. >> it is pretty stunning. when you look over in the senate, a lot of unknowns there. it is very possible that you would have the votes to convict there the way things are going.
kaitlyn collins is out front near the white house. caitlyn, now you have liz cheney, the number 3 house republican as phil put it so well, giving cover, right, to anybody who wants to come out and vote for impeachment. has there been a response from trump? >> reporter: nothing from the president so far sips "the new york times" broke this reporting, but remember he's still flying back from texas. he's expected to land any minute so we'll see if the president does put out a statement. so far white house officials who have been on board air force one with the president have said nothing about mccobble's stance or liz cheney coming out saying she will vote to impeach the president. that remains to be seen. all of this is coming and we could be seeing this presidency unraveli ing before our very ey as the president has been so isolated. you have to look at who's been around the president. it's dwindled. people are trying to keep their distance from the president,
erin, but several senior staffers have departures planned. the republicans still talking to the president say they cannot get through to him on what the next steps are that he should take. look at his remarks in texas alone. they had planned scripted remarks at the top where the president was saying things like law enforcement is not part of the maga agenda, but then you saw the president before that talk about this talk of the 25th amendment and say it's a greater threat to joe biden than it is to him because he's been increasingly sensitive to this idea that people like mitch mcconnell and mike pence are going to control the fate of his presidency even though we might be seeing that happen. one thing we should note, the white house is expecting as many as 20 republicans to vote to impeach the president tomorrow. that was the number they had in their heads before liz cheney came out with this statement. whether or not that changes, if it grows remains to be seen, erin. >> caitlyn, thank you very much as this is moving so quickly. literally, the reporting from kaitlyn and phil, we'll keep you up on that and we get new information from house members.
out front democratic congressman steny hoyer, majority whip. let me just ask you, congressman, the number three republican obviously liz cheney says she will vote to impeach trump. do you think this will change the calculus of who votes for impeachment the way you see it? >> i hope it does. i hope that people perceive this not as a partisan act but as an act of principle to say that the actions that were taken are unprecedented in terms of a president not only complaining about policy but urging people to come to the capitol and in effect invade the capitol of the united states so that they can prevent the congressmen of the united states from doing its constitutional duty. i think liz cheney is expressing principle, not partisan views. apparently i have not seen the
statement, but senator mcconnell apparently has said something similar. his wife of course resigned from the cabinet. any fair-minded person who is simply not just voting out of partisan motivation has got to say that the facts and principle demand that this president be held accountable. >> now i've talked to two republican congressmen who agree with that, congressman meijer, congressman kinzinger. they've said the same thing when i have spoken to them. as a majority leader, have you spoken to any republicans who have indicated they feel the same way? >> well, i spoke to liz cheney the night on the 6th -- it probably was the morning of the 7th at that point in time. i've spoken to a couple of other. i'm not going to pinpoint them at this point in time, but i am -- i believe there will be
hopefully a significant number of republicans who will speak out for principle, speak out for the constitution, the protection of democracy and strongly against a president of the united states urging people to undermine our democracy. unheard of. there's no president that there's any analog to in that perspective. so i'm hopeful that a significant number of republicans will stand up for principle. there will be the hard liners who think trump can do no wrong, but in that sense they do not serve history or principle or our constitution. >> so the joint chiefs chairman general mark milli and the joint chiefs of staff sent a message to the entire military that reminded them that their obligation is to support and defend the constitution and reject extremism. it's a pretty extraordinary thing this note went out.
why do you think general milli thought tvs important to do this? >> he's a man of principle. i'm not surprised. he made the same statement to me personally a couple of months ago. his oath was to the constitution and to the laws of our country and he is a man of principle, a man of great experience and a man who is not afraid of political repercussions. he is more focused on policy and principle than he is on repercussions. he's a man of courage and a man of conviction and i'm not surprised at that statement, which he has made to me personally. >> yeah. >> but i'm not surprised that he has conveyed that to others. i made a statement just the other day to all of those who work in the federal government that if they're given an order that they think is illegal or wrong, they have an obligation not to pursue that and if not, they will have a legal
responsibility themselves on accountability. >> before we go i want to ask you, a member of congress who was briefed tells us that thousands of armed pro trump extremists are surrounding the capitol ahead of the inaug inauguration. were you briefed as well? is there anything you can tell me? >> i have been briefed. we are taking steps to meet any challenge, which was not the case obviously last wednesday on the 6th. we were unprepared for what was an armed assault by literally i don't know the exact number but thousands of people and this time we are prepared. we're taking every precaution to protect democracy. yes, the capitol building. yes, the members. yes, the staff. obviously. but what we are protecting is democracy, the ability in the face of threats, intimidation and armed insurrection.
armed insurrection and sedition to continue to be the country that can be an example of how democracy ought to work. there are a lot of countries have shown how democracy ought not to work. a lot of countries that have had coups and overthrows of their government but america has never had that and we're not going to have it now. i've urged everybody, all law enforcement, the military and everybody to make sure that we have the resources necessary to confront whatever threat is brought to our door. >> i appreciate your time. thank you very much, congressman hoyer. >> you bet. thank you. out front now, john dean. former nixon counsel and dana bash and michael smerconish of smerconish. liz cheney's decision and mcconnell's comments which i should make clear "the new york times" reported, cnn's
confirmed, you don't find those things out unless mcconnell is okay with people finding that out. he wants that out there. does this change the game? >> first of all the answer is, yes. of course. by definition it changes the game just with liz cheney saying she would vote for impeachment but saying in terms that are so stark and so cutting and biting about the president that it is the worst thing that he could do as president, the kind of act that he had. this is a woman whose father was chief of staff to gerald ford after richard nixon had to resign because of terrible things that he did when he was president. so she has historical perspective here in a very intimate way, so you have that. and then of course you have, as you very rightly pointed out astutely, erin, there's no way that this reporting is out there without mitch mcconnell's blessing.
it's also noteworthy that mitch mcconnell and liz cheney did these things simultaneously almost. my understanding is that they talk and so there is an attempt to give rank and file republicans cover, most immediately tomorrow when there is going to be a vote in the house to say, you know the number three leader in the house took the politically risky move but the principled move from her perspective and did the right thing and so you can do it too. >> so, michael, what do you think the goal is here? obviously it's interesting as dana points out that mitch mcconnell and liz cheney talk. there's also the reality that, you know, mcconnell thought he would never bring this to the floor and convict the president but obviously this opens the door to such a conversation. we're looking at the president right now getting off air force one at joint base andrews returning from his trip to his
border wall today. not saying anything. sort of bowed down there. michael, as we watch him come off, if he says anything, we'll listen in. go ahead. please respond. >> so the answer to your question is retribution. i think that mitch mcconnell believes, and rightfully so, that donald trump cost him his senate majority position by the way he conducted himself in the buildup from november 3rd until the georgia runoff election. you can't, and i said this at the time, you can't simultaneously tell people that this is all a rigged system and the election is rigged and so will the runoff election be rigged and at the same time encourage them to come out and vote in the runoff election. i'm sure mitch mcconnell is licking his wounds that he lost that gig because of the president of the united states. one other thing i would say is i'm sure he's not alone. i tweeted earlier today that if it were a secret ballot in the
senate on conviction, i'll bet the numbers for would be in the 90s. the only reason they won't be higher than whatever they would ultimately be is fear of the base. >> which is pretty incredible. we all understand politics but at this moment when so much is at stake, it's incredible that so many people would vow to that. john, you know this obviously brings back, you know, harkening to nixon. according to cnn sources -- i'm sorry, "the new york times" is reporting house minority leader kevin mccarthy has asked others whether he should call on trump to resign. he's been a loyal trump lieutenant. republicans stepping up and calling on the president to resign obviously is what happened. how would such a thing play out now, john? >> it's a good question. first of all, i don't think that trump would entertain them coming down to tell him anything. i don't think he wants to talk about it. secondly, there's a little
historical myth in the goldwater, scott, john rhoades trip to the white house to tell him it was time to leave. well, that was their intent. when they got to the white house the chief of staff al haig told him, don't tell him to resign. he's already agreed to do so. doing so might make him change his mind. that might be a similar situation today where if somebody went down and told trump that he should resign, it would only brace him and make him more resistant to the idea. >> dana, i'm curious in the house what it would be if it were a blind ballot. u.s. chamber of commerce, we've seen companies suspend all donations, the ceo of the chamber have called trump's actions absolutely unacceptable and completely inexcusable. and then the statement from the organization was i want to be very clear, there are some members who by their actions will have forfeited the support of the u.s. chamber of commerce,
period, full stop. are there republicans, daa, who now realize what this might mean for them? >> more. there are more, but you cannot under estimate the blind loyalty that so many members have to the president, and it is because the people who got them in office are the same trump supporters who listened to the president, who listen to conservative media on this particular issue flatly lie to them over and over. and by this issue i mean the notion that the election was rigged. over and over and over. and these members of congress who the chamber of commerce, they're addressing in that statement, said -- went along with it. went along with the lies and are still going along with the lies. even today. and that is what is so
reprehensible and one other thing i wanted to note, and phil mentioned this earlier in the program, don't under estimate the power of the briefings that these members of congress are getting because with distance you're getting more information. not just the videos that people who are writing have put on social media, but information they were lacking even though they were in the center of it about the genesis of what we saw. that is what's making these lawmakers so much more angry. >> final word, michael. >> the president might be saved by the bell, to use the boxing expression. there's no doubt in my mind that if this had happened six months ago it would be game over. i think that the ukraine phone call pales in comparison. that was confusing. that was difficult to understand. in this case, we've all seen the videos. >> yeah. we all can hear it. thank you all very much. and next the breaking news from
the fbi is now confirming it had intelligence that people were planning to travel to the capitol and was reportedly also alerted that extremists wanted, quote, war. now the fact that there was not enough people there and there was overwhelm, this element of surprise, why? why did that happen? plus, i'll talk to a senator who spent hours in a secure room with others not wearing a mask and now he has coronavirus. and the fbi warns all 50 states are at risk. the attorney general is my guest. alright, i brought in ensure max protein to give you the protein you need with less of the sugar you don't. [grunting noise] i'll take that. woohoo! 30 grams of protein and 1 gram of sugar. ensure max protein. with nutrients to support immune health.
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shared here in washington with the officials, including with the capitol police, erin. it talked about some of the threats that were being discussed online including discussions of an appearance that someone knew about tunnels at the capitol. i'll tell you -- i'll read you just a part of what the online discussion was. it said, quote -- i'm sorry. it said be ready to fight. congress needs to hear glass breaking, doors being kicked in, get violent. stop calling this a march or a rally or a protest. go there ready for war. we get our president or we die. that's the language, the stark language that was being discussed in this online forum. we're told there were a number of reports that were similar. dozens of reports came from around the country people discussing some of these types of things online. they knew there was a possibility people who were known to be violent could be coming to the rally. the question is why didn't the capital police have better
preparation for that event that day? that is still the unanswered question. >> it is unbelievable because we're learning about these instances of hand to hand combat going on inside the capitol. just these absolutely unbelievable things to imagine were happening in this country. and i know, evan, you're getting new details about the pipe bombs which we had heard about early on that day. you're getting information about those that were planted at the dnc and rnc. >> right. this is a big focus for the fbi and the prosecutors. they're trying to understand whether this was part of something bigger, right? whether this was an effort to divert law enforcement so that people can storm the capitol, whether this was a -- an effort when people left the building to blow them up. again, this is all still under investigation trying urgently to try to figure out who these people were behind this. it goes to the larger question. prosecutors, fbi investigators
dedicated specifically to the question of whether or not there was some kind of command and control, some kind of plan that was put into action that day and, again, that's very much at the top of the list of investigation -- of investigative targets for the prosecutors. >> evan, thank you. also breaking tonight, the justice department announcing that it has charged more than 70 cases so nar related to the unsur rektion. i say so far because they say, quote, it is just the tip of the iceberg. it comes as these troubling questions evan raises are being asked about the response and about the potential role of some law enforcement and military members. alex marqhardt is out front and some of the video is disturbing. >> this way. >> reporter: the violent insurrection at the capitol has put the military in the spotlight. some officers were violently beaten by the mob, crushed, even
killed, others moved aside as the attackers tried to break through a door. one capitol hill officer in a selfie with a rioter. according to congressman tim ryan, that officer and a different one who appeared to direct some in the mob have been suspended. a congressional aide tells cnn at least 17 others are under investigation. but this video posted on the day of the insurrection highlights the difficulty of figuring out what exactly happened. a capitol police officer is seen in a red make america great again hat. it's unclear whether he's showing his allegiance or trying to avoid becoming a target for the mob. he asks for help getting fellow officers out of the building. >> if you can help me distract these people. >> then the man he's speaking to agrees and appears to flash a badge. >> i can help. i can help. >> also unclear whether that man, possibly a police officer, is a protester or undercover. moments later, the two men helped this line of riot police
leave the capitol building. officers around the country are also being investigated. >> if any spd employee participated directly in assaulting the u.s. capitol, i will terminate them. >> so far the activities of at least 14 police officers from seattle to new york are being looked into for possible rolls in the insurrection. seven of them are transit police officers from philadelphia. >> that's certainly a person's right to participate in a first amendment activity but it's not a right to attack the capitol. we'll see what the investigation brings forth. >> what experts have seen has them worried there may be larger numbers of well-trained current or former law enforcement and military in the crowds. >> what we're seeing again and again is men and some women with a military bearing wearing the right gear, care yrying it in t right way. >> the rioter shot and killed trying climb through the door
was an air force veteran. larry brock is a retired lieutenant colonel in the air force reserves. he's been charged. before his arrest he told "the new yorker" magazine he assumed he was allowed in the building. >> one civilian, judicial system is done. the military judicial system should be involved skbl we asked the u.s. capitol police about that officer specifically who was in that red maga hat. they did not comment on him exactly, but we did just get a response back. they said they are actively reviewing open source material to find out whether any of their officers violated any regulations saying they're being investigated and could face disciplinary action including termination. so being fired. they do note that several of their officers, we have reported that there are two of them, that they have been suspended. so far, erin, no law enforcement that we know of has either been
charged or arrested. erin. >> thank you very much. so i want to go to a former fbi advisor and terror official. phil, let's start with these warnings. evan is saying they got one the day before about an online threat that said congress needs to hear glass breaking, get them ready for war. we get our president or die. it's not a protest, it's a rally. it's a war. he said there were dozens of other similar things coming in from across the country. they're sharing maps of the tunnels under capitol hill according to the washington post. all of that was submitted before this happened. what's your reaction to that? the fbi had this and still there was clearly no preparation for it. >> this makes me nervous and uncomfortable. look, there's a couple of pieces of this. first, there's the intelligence piece and the policy piece. the intelligence piece, when you get all of this chaos, erin, you
have to step back and ask good questions. when did they get it? we have some good idea of that. when did they pass it along? we have some idea of that. here is what i would ask, did they pass it along through a standard process, lower level officials or was there a conversation where somebody in metropolitan police or capitol police was engaged? i want to know the answer to that. the policy question is equally and i think more significant. once this information was received and by the way i don't think you need intelligence to say if the president is going to address a mob of thousands of people including qanon supporters near congress, i don't think you need intelligence to say we need to be worried. when the capitol police see that, we know they requested assistance. what happened on the policy side? one thing finally that makes me really nervous, especially since we have a handful of people dead, the fbi was there today. metropolitan police department,
secret service, capitol police, national guard. it sounded to me, i served four and a half years on the bureau, it sounded like the fbi was trying to say this is how we did it right. why weren't the other people on the podium to explain their perspective? because i'm guessing the capitol police might have a different perspective, erin. >> very fair. quickly before we go. u.s. attorney michael sherwin talking about what happened in the capitol. he said there was open handed combat going on between -- you know, with capitol hill police and metropolitan police and these rioters. he said people will be shocked at some of the egregious contact that happened. what do you make of that? >> two pieces of this very quickly. the first is the fbi will want to get out along with other law enforcement to deal with this quickly. the second is there's a lot of people, a lot of footage, a lot
of complicated charges, including sedition charges. there's no reason to rush to judgment on people they can't find or they can't charge now. i would bet that there's going to be a ton more charges coming down the road and some of them will be a lot uglier than tresp trespassing, erin. >> thanks very much, phil. i want to show you live pictures of the house of representatives. they are voting live. this is live. this starts with a resolution which calls vice president mike pence to invoke the 25th amendment. that would remove trump from office. then it says if pence does not do that, the house will vote tomorrow to impeach the president. out front now brad snider of illinois. you announced today that you have now gotten coronavirus and i want to talk to you about that. you're the third lawmaker to test positive following the capitol riot. you were hunkered down in a secure room with republicans, many of whom refused to wear masks. i do want to talk about that,
congressman, of course. i do know you're going to be voting for impeachment by proxy. you're obviously not going to go in. you're in quarantine. are you concerned that this impeachment in any way could distract president biden and his agenda when he takes office because that's only eight days away and you're starting a process here that will need to go through the senate? >> thanks, erin. good to be with you tonight. i am covid positive. so far asymptomatic. i consider myself very fortunate. i know so many people around the country are suffering. we've got to go back and the reporting you just presented, what happened on january 6th was an assault on our nation. this wasn't an attack on the capitol building, it was an attack on the government, our constitution, on our democratic republic. we therefore have to hold people to account. the genesis of what happened starts with the president of the united states. he was calling for people to come to washington. he had organized the event, the
gathering by the white house that afternoon and he gave instructions to go to the capitol and to go in a very strong way. there was no question he incited this attack and people's lives were put at risk and sadly five people lost their life. we have to hold the president in account. he showed us he is unfit for office and he needs to be removed for office. the easiest thing would be to do the right thing and resign. short of that the vice president can incite the 25th amendment. that's what we're calling on. if that doesn't happen, we have no choisz except move to the next step which is impeachment. for the sake of our constitution, government, children, country's future, we have to do this. >> now you have republicans on board. i don't know if you heard congressman kinzinger and it's up to 25. as you said, i'm glad you're
asymptomatic, it is good to hear that. you are the third lawmaker who spent five hours in that secure room, wasn't huge room, and tested positive for coronavirus. the capitol attending physician sent a note out saying you and others may have been exposed to someone in the room who was infected. unclear who that person was. obviously i know there are people in that room who were refusing to wear masks. i wanted to play you some video of it, congressman . so they refused to that i can those masks and you were in there for hours. what was it like? >> it was -- it was tense. it was unfortunate.
i said this in my statement today. masks should not be a political statement. masks are public health policy. it's common decency out of respect for your neighbors, co-workers, staff that support us. put on a mask and keep us safe. unfortunately these people in their arrogance and contempt for those around them chose to make a statement. their statement was we don't care about you, if you get sick that's your problem, not mine. like i said, i'm asymptomatic. my colleague from new jersey, she's 75 years old, a cancer survivor. i heard she's in the hospital. i wish her a full recovery. my colleague from washington has had surgery a couple of weeks ago, had a knee replacement. i wish her full recovery. everyone affected by this virus understands the stakes. if you've seen the reports from around the country of the grief that this pandemic is causing. it's not hard to put on a mask or be respectful.
it's a sense of decency. >> obviously there are people in that room are extremely sick. i appreciate your time. >> thank you. next an alarming admission from michigan's attorney general. not safe saying the state is ready for armed protests. more republicans are abandoning trump for inciting a deadly riot. but what will those who won't abandon, the hard core supporters, what do they think?
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and complexity of the attack. far from a few people who got wrapped up in the moment. size and complexity. it comes after the fbi's chilling warning that armed protests are being planned at all 50 state capitols. michigan's capitol, lansing, the mayor is asking governor gretchen whitmer to activate the national guard. glad to have you back on again, attorney general. i am not glad about the circumstances. let me ask you about what you're learning at this time. fbi's given this warning. how sure are you that these protests could be violent? >> well, i think you could certainly say that michigan is ground zero for those who are wishing to take over a state government. michigan certainly is a soft target. actually received a -- an email
from a facebook representative who monitors traffic that is geared towards some of this antigovernment activity and she said i'm worried about michigan so if that tells you anything. >> wow. so, you know, after the riot last week in washington, the capitol commission banned open carry firearms in the state capitol building. you're still allowed to carry a concealed weapon if you have a license. you tweeted today in part, attorney general, my job is not to provide state employees, residents, other people with a false sense of security. i repeat the michigan capitol is not safe. this is a very strong statement to make and in light of what i just said the fbi is saying the size and complexity of what happened to washington, right? far from a few thousand people who got together. size, complexity, prior planning all now very clear. how worried are you about what you're seeing? >> i'm exceedingly worried.
when you say that you can only carry concealed if you have a license, we don't have anybody to even check if you do have a license. we have no metal detectors. if you were to brianne explosve device into the capitol, multiple weapons as long as they're underneath a coat or a jacket or in a bag, no one would ever know about it. and, you know, it's going to be a free-for-all in there. we just don't have adequate security when we don't know what kind of weapons are being brought into the building when the legislature is meeting when they are scheduled for three days next week. according to our open meetings act, it has to be accessible and open to the public. so if you're going to not have any sort of checks on whether or not people are bringing in bombs or people are bringing in guns, i think you're really leaving our lawmakers susceptible and they're sitting ducks. >> i mean, this is unbelievable thing to say that they're sitting ducks. when you say ground zero, people
obviously -- i hope everyone remembers the threats, the death threats, kidnapping threats against your governor, gretchen whitmer and then they entered the capitol to protest coronavirus restrictions during some of the lockdown in april. you had last month armed protesters gathering around the home of the do you think all of this was just a prelude to what we saw in the nation's capitol last week? >> yeah, i think it's safe to call it a dry run. i think people from around the country saw what happened in michigan and how easy it was to take over a state capitol building. we're very lucky there weren't -- there wasn't a mass shooting of some sort or some other insurcident because the s organizations that actually occupied the state capitol last april, were the same individuals, many of them, who were involved in this plot to
kidnap and execute the governor and one of the alternative plans was to take over the state capitol and to either have a bombing or to take hostages and then start executing people at the state capitol. so what's to prevent that from happen thing time if you allow the public to come in as law would dictate but have no means to know what they're bringing in with them. i would remind people that when you're talking about allowing concealed weapons, the virginia tech shooting, which was in 2007, i mean, that individual had only two semiautomatic pistols on him and he still managed to kill 32 people in a short period of time. so banning long guns is not the solution. it doesn't mean we won't have a massacre. >> attorney general, thank you. hope people hear those calls and those warnings. next, the president was in texas. his supporter there is are ready for battle, and i don't use that
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letter to nancy pelosi saying he does not support invoking the 25th amendment. it gives him until tomorrow to do it. he's made it clear he won't. that means the house will vote tomorrow morning on impeaching president trump. while his supporters disappearing within washington, though, and across this country, it is important to note that trump's base, his diehard supporters around this country still believe and they are not letting up. ed lais "outfront". >> reporter: a self-described trump train of supporters line the streets where the president landed in the rio grande valley. this is a crowd of true believers. >> best president ever! woo! >> reporter: ryan wolf says he's a stay at home father of three children. he brought a ballistic vest, a knife and a baton to protect fellow trump supporters. why is this necessary?
>> well, sir, we have seen the marchers attack children and families and women. i'm not going to tolerate that. >> reporter: wolf and others don't blame trump for last week's riot at the u.s. capitol, the conspiracy theories are running ramped. >> foreign intelligence or militant groups insighegtincite conflict. >> i think it was antifa or black lives matter started the problems. >> reporter: of course, none of that is true. >> good morning marine one! >> reporter: the false yet unwavering belief that the 2020 presidential election was riddled with wide spread fraud. >> this was a stolen election. it will -- there will be a price sooner or later. >> nobody has actually looked at the evidence. there is definitely evidence towards that.
nobody wants to look at it. >> reporter: joann will never see joe biden as a legitimate president and still has hopes of seeing trump remain in office. >> i want my president trump standing up there being inaugurated as the next -- as an extended president of the united states. >> reporter: in this crowd, though, we found noelle cantu. he's a retired border patrol agent and lifelong conservative. we ended our talk on a question that revealed the danger of republicans lying about the 2020 election. president trump the election was stolen from him over and over and over. what if in the end you've been lied to this entire time? >> i will definitely be very upset because if my party is going to lie to me and this is what they're telling me and i find out later that it was nothing but lies, i don't think that i will ever vote again. >> reporter: and erin, what is really striking after spending the day talking to trump
supporters is this divide as we see more and more republicans in washington turning on president trump. it is just not happening here on the ground among his supporters and that divide is really viking to see, erin? >> it really is. thank you. that was really remarkable and important for everyone to see. i want to bring in john avalon, i want to give you a chance to react to that, right? you can say whatever percentage of the population trump's diehard base will be but it's going to be there and when you hear what they still believe, it is, it is pretty stunning and pretty important for people to understand that someone has to change those views. >> yeah, and they have been fed lies by their president. their president has lied to them. and i say their president because they're convinced they will follow him anywhere regardless of facts. lies have created this
situation, this attack on the capitol. that's what happens. and they will be confronted eventually by that fact over time. joe biden is going to have a chance to reset but it won't heal all divisions over time because of the hard core supporters and militia figures who have bought into all these conspiracy theories but that is what donald trump has done to our country. it will be his legacy and one the republican party will need to deal with for a long time to come because of it. >> what do you make of that man at the end, the former border patrol agent that said if i found out i was lied to, i'll never vote again. what do you make of that? because obviously, the truth is out there. how do you get that truth to some of those supporters who would then change their minds? >> well, first, he has been lied to. and that truth will come out over time. as the fever breaks with the new presidency as more information comes out about this president's
misrule but that's the real danger because one of the down stream effects of lying all the time from the oval office is a decrease in trust and a feature, not a bug for those folks who want to hold on to power and that's the danger for democracy we need to confront. >> thanks very much and thanks to all of you. anderson starts now. good evening. if you've been wondering what it would be like when the plug is pulled on donald trump, that certainly hasn't happened yet but more republicans seem willing to at least consider it with house democrats preparing an alta may tum, including mitch mcconnell and liz cheney of wyoming. remember, it was yesterday house republican leader kevin mccarthy was telling his members that the president had indeed shouldered some of the blame for the insurrection he incited. the republican membership is telling them to vote in their