tv CNN Newsroom With Jim Acosta CNN October 17, 2021 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT
-- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com you are live in the "cnn newsroom." i'm jim acosta in washington. it's an important question to ask. what did steve bannon tell then president trump before trump incited a mob to invade the capitol in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election? the house committee investigating this wants to know. this week they'll be sending an aggressive message by moving to hold bannon in criminal contempt for refusing their subpoena to testify instead of complying, bannon claims his conversations with the then president are privileged. a tactic we're told trump instructed bannon and others to deploy. there's one big problem, however, with bannon's excuse. he wasn't part of the trump white house on january 6th. instead he was an informal
adviser, private citizen, meaning whatever conversations he had with trump at the time were likely not protected. ultimately this will almost certainly play out in court. you see, if the full house votes to hold bannon in contempt, speaker nancy pelosi would refer the charges to the department of justice and it will decide whether to prosecute. president biden has made clear what he would like to see happen at that point. >> i hope that the committee goes after them and holds them accountable. >> should they be prosecuted? >> yes. >> now five former trump aides and allies, none have testified. meadows and patel are engaging with the committee, whatever that means. it doesn't mean much obviously. this morning republican committee member adam kinzinger told cnn more subpoenas could be coming, including one for trump himself. >> if we subpoena all of a sudden the former president, we know that's going to become kind of a circus.
that's not normally something we want to do up front. but if he has a piece of information we need, we certainly will. >> joining us now a member of the house select committee investigating january 6th, democratic congressman adam schiff and also the author of the new book "midnight in washington: how we almost lost our democracy and still could." a very thought-provoking read for everybody. congressman, i want to talk to you about your new book. but first this week your committee will begin the process to hold steve bannon in criminal contempt. i can't imagine a scenario where he decides all of a sudden to comply. but legal experts say this could take months if not years to make its way through the legal system. congressman, you have seen this movie before. you know how this game is played. and you know that playbook all too well. but, to be real with the viewers, what are the chances that you will get this opportunity to question steve bannon, do you think? >> i think the chances are actually very good. and if we were going the route
of civil litigation, as we had to do during the last administration because during the last administration, the justice department was essentially serving the needs of donald trump, not representing the public interest. and they were not about to prosecute people for covering up for donald trump. but it's a new world now. we're not going to be choosing to go the civil route. we are right now on tuesday night going to be taking up a criminal contempt report. it'll be taken up subsequently in the house of representatives. it will be sent to the justice department for prosecution. and that is a far swifter, far more serious remedy. and the fact that if the justice de department prosecutes steve bannon, other witnesses will see they will face real consequences including jail time and potentially stiff fines. that is a way of getting people's attention. bannon's an important witness in his own right, but it's also important to send a message that the rule of law is back and
people are going to need to pay attention. >> i asked the former white house counsel for president nixon john dean yesterday what, if anything, we could read into people like bannon not wanting to talk to your committee. i want to play his answer for you. >> i think we have to be careful about what inferences we draw from nonappearance or nontestimony. but i think bannon is up to his eyeballs. i think he's a vital witness. i think he could lead directly to trump or those closest to trump. and i do believe that the indications are that trump is much more involved in this whole thing than we think he was. >> do you agree with that, congressman schiff? i mean, if steve bannon were watching right now, what would you say to him directly in terms of this question of whether he should cooperate? >> he needs to cooperate because we're not fooling around and we will refer him for prosecution, and we will expect the justice department to do so. we'll present it to the grand
jury. but, look, i think the biggest area where we still have so much to learn is around the president's conduct in the days leading up to january 6th on that day itself, steve bannon was one of the president's closest advisers. he was predicting that all hell was going to break loose on january 6th. he clearly has relevant information to share with the committee and we're going to make sure that he does. >> and your committee has said that the former white house chief of staff mark meadows, kash patel are engaging with the committee. after work this evening i hope to engage with a glass of red wine. [ laughter ] congressman, what does that mean engaging with the committee? it doesn't sound like much. >> we are trying to demonstrate that we're going to every length to secure people's testimony without having to prosecute them. but at the end of the day if they're not going to cooperate, we will do exactly what we're doing with steve bannon. we tried to secure jeffrey clark's cooperation. he was unwilling so we
subpoenaed him. if our engagement doesn't lead to the testimony of these witnesses, then we will also take them up on criminal contempt charges. so, that's the plan, no one is off the table, no remedy is off the table. and we feel a real sense of urgency. >> and i want to ask you about your new book detailing the insurrection because while republicans now downplay what happened that day, you detail in the moment how they acknowledged the threat. this i think is mind blowing. here's an excerpt from the book. you write, you can't let them see you, a republican member said to me, he's right, another republican said. i know these people, i can talk to them, i can talk my way through them. you're in a whole different category. i thought at first i was oddly touched by these gop members and their concern, but by then i had been receiving death threats for years and that feeling soon gave way to another. if these republican members hadn't joined the president in falsely attacking me for four
years, i wouldn't need to be worried about my security, none of us would. history will long remember that republicans did not abandon trump after the insurrection. but take us back to that moment. what was going on there? can you talk about who those republican members were? and why that moment was so important for you and why it's so important to this overall story that you tell in the book. >> well, i wanted to try to bring the reader inside that chamber and show them what it was like to be, you know, told by the capitol police you need to get out your gas masks, i'll tell you if you need to get on the ground and then pretty soon, you need to get out, to hear the thudding of walls and the breaking of windows as these insurrectionists were trying to get in. and i was hanging back. there was a real kind of scrum at the door of the chamber to get out. and i did have these republicans
express their concern, and not just republicans but my democratic colleagues as well over my safety. but what i'm referring to there is initially i was touched, but the feeling soon took place, took its place, and that was anger over the fact that these republicans were pushing out this lie about the election. the folks that were climbing outside the building, climbing on the building and beating police, they really believed the big lie. but these insurrectionists in suits and ties in the chamber, they understood it was a big lie. and to me that was unforgiveable. i will tell you this. as i was walking out of the chamber, i was walking with a different republican member, and he had a pin on, i didn't recognize him and i asked him how long have you been here. he said 72 hours. he was newly elected, and this is what he was going through. it was a harrowing day, and it just infuriates me and alarms me
that even now after we see what those lies have wrought, people like steve scalise can still not bring themselves to tell the truth about the election. and that means we're continuing to be at risk. >> and, i mean, we're showing the video right now, we have the story you were just telling a few moments ago. and yet you still have some of your colleagues on the republican side referring to these insurrectionists as tourists. how do you deal with that? how do you deal with these members on the republican side if they're not willing to just deal with the reality of the situation? how can they get work done? >> one of the things that i write about, which was, you know, such a terrible realization during the senate impeachment trial is that there wasn't any trouble with the remedy of impeachment. but unless the members of congress are willing to give content to those provisions, are
willing to employ concepts of right and wrong and the truth, none of it works. it doesn't matter how brilliant our constitution is. and how do i still work with people who are pulling out one of the foundations of our democracy, the idea that elections decide who will governor us, how do i work with them? well, i have to work with them. i have to work with them on the intelligence committee to get the business of that committee done, but it's tough. >> but, congressman, do you worry though, this concern that if the republicans take control of the house and the senate, they take control of congress after the midterms, that no matter who wins in 2024. if joe biden is re-elected, if another democrat is running, that those republicans in control of the congress, of the house, will not certify those results. do you share that concern? >> i absolutely share that concern. i think if kevin mccarthy is
ever able to go near the speaker's office, he will do whatever donald trump tells him to do no matter how unethical or wrong. the i tell the story in the book about a conversation i had with mccarthy that he would go on to misrepresent to the press. and when i called him on it, his answer was, yeah, i know, adam, but you know how it goes. this was well before donald trump. he was made for a moment like this when the republican party is not whetted to any idea of truth or right and wrong, when you say whatever you need to say, do whatever you need to do, truth isn't truth, you're entitled to your own alternate facts. we can not the allow someone like that to lead in the house, or they will overturn the next election. >> all right, congressman, thank you so much for your time. after five nights in the hospital, former president bill clinton is heading home.
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this is bill clinton giving a thumbs up as he left a california hospital this morning. the former president had spent five nights there for a urinary tract infection that had spread to his bloodstream. cnn national correspondent natasha chen joins me from outside the hospital. natasha, what more are you learning? >> reporter: it took quite a bit of time this morning for secret service, understandably, tomorrow close off the road, to get everything ready back here for him to come out of those doors. but he finally did so just after 8:00 pacific time. and he was able to walk out on his own, but did so slowly, gingerly with his wife secretary hillary clinton on his arm there. she did wave to us first, and the medical team was there to say good-bye. they seemed very grateful.
they shook hands with each doctor and actually gave some hugs at the end. and when someone over here, a reporter yelled across and said, mr. president, how do you feel, he gave a thumbs up then. we know that he was in the hospital here for a total of five nights. a source familiar with the situation told cnn that by that last day yesterday, he was up and around and a little bit annoyed that he was still in the hospital but able to joke around with the staff and take phone calls from people like president biden and vice president kamala harris, the chair of the department of medicine here and the executive director of the hospital said in a statement that his fever and white blood cell count are normalized, and he will return to his home in new york to continue his antibiotics. he is close to landing at home, and that is the iv antibiotics treatment, that's what kept him here for as long as he was here
again on tuesday. that's when he checked in initially, feeling unwell when he and secretary clinton were here in southern california for a private event for their foundation, jim? >> all right, we're glad he's out of the hospital, but we know that he's got some time to recover from all of this. natasha chen, thanks so much. with us now is dr. jonathan reiner, professor and medical physician at george washington university. sepsis is as serious as it gets. bill clinton is 75 years old. he is not the spring chicken that he was when he was president of the united states. he's undergone quadruple bypass surgery to his heart. that happened in 2004. he's had two stents inserted to open an artery in 2010. when you see him walking out of the hospital, considering that medical history, how serious was this? are you concerned? >> i think he's lucky to leave the hospital.
a 75-year-old man can easily die of sepsis. about a quarter of a million americans will die every year from this. when you look at the video of the former president leaving the hospital, you really get a sense for how debilitating a hospital can stay. he was in the icu for five days. it's hard to sleep there. he was sick when he went in. we've learned that he was febrile. his white count was elevated. we haven't heard what his blood pressure was or if he needed any support. you can see how difficult it was for him to walk. mrs. clinton had her arm looped through his. it looked to me like she was really supporting him as he walked very, very slowly through the line of his caregivers towards the car. but i'm glad to see him out of the hospital. one thing i do tell patient that's it takes about two to three times as long to recover from an illness as the illness itself took. so if he was in the hospital for
almost a week, he is going to be getting his strength back for the next three to four weeks. >> well, we wish him the best. i have to agree with you that video there, it is unsettling to see him in that condition. we hope he continues to recover and bounces back from all this. i want to turn now to covid and some of the huge news that we saw in this last week. an fda advisory committee says that anyone who got the johnson & johnson vaccine needs a second dose just after two months. this as a study found that after five months the efficacy against infection is around 3%. i mean, if anybody got a j&j dose more than two months ago, and, again, we don't want to diminish what anybody thinks in terms of the efficacy of these vaccines. but when this panel comes out and says you need a booster two months after your first shot, there must be scores of americans who are well past two
months. are those folks undervaccinated at this point? are they unprotected? what is your sense of it? were you concerned about that when you saw that? >> well, like many other of my colleagues, i've been asking for the fda and the cdc to clarify the status of this particular vaccine for months, it has taken a very long time. we have depended greatly on israeli data to understand the efficacy of our vaccines. that's how bad our tracking has been. and the problem is the israelis didn't use the j&j vaccine. so we've had scant data with which to make these assessments. the v.a. study that you refer to may be an outlier. but what is clear is that the efficacy of that vaccine always was less strong than either of the mrna vaccines. what the cdc committee, the fda
committee's statement about vaccinating folks two months after their last shot states is that this is really a two-dose vaccine. >> but that's not what we were told at the time. >> the hook for marketing this particular vaccine was one and done, you don't want to come back in a few weeks, one and done. now we learn, unfortunately, that with a little bit more data we would have understood that this vaccine is significantly more efficacious if given in a two-dose strategy. it's a very similar drug to the astrazeneca vaccine, which is used all over the world in a two-dose strategy. >> and yesterday i spoke with the nih director dr. frances collins about mixing and matching vaccines. let's talk about that a little bit. here's what he said. >> there was data that suggested if you are going to get a
booster for j&j, maybe getting a moderna or a pfizer booster would actually have some advantages in terms of giving you an even stronger immune response. >> is that what you do? >> i would wait another week right now and see what cdc's advisory committee does with this next week. maybe a week from today i'll tell my grand kids what they ought to do. >> what would you tell the johnson & johnson recipients to do right now? wait for another j&j dose? should they try to go out and get a pfizer or moderna shot? >> i think what will happen, and i have family members that have received this vaccine. i think ultimately they will be getting an mrna vaccine. what we've learned from that mix and match data is that although the j&j boost increases the level of neutralizing antibodies about fourfold, which is good, the addition of an mrna vaccine increases it either 35fold or
over 70fold. so my guess is that we will be boosting most of these folks with an mrna vaccine, and the committee will make a statement about this at the end of this week. so i do think it's worth waiting for. >> doctor, thank you for that expertise. we appreciate it. coming up next, transportation secretary pete buttigieg is defending his decision to take paternitiy leave after being mocked by fox news. >> pete buttigieg has been on leave from his job since august trying to figure out how to breastfeed. no word on how that went. >> buttigieg's response, next. you're live in the "cnn newsroom." from puerto rico when he was 17. with ancestry, being able to put the pieces of the puzzle together... ...it's amazing. it's honestly amazing. regina approaches the all-electric cadillac lyriq. it's a sunny day. nah, a stormy day. classical music plays.
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transportation secretary pete buttigieg is firing back after fox news host tucker carlson criticized his decision to take paternity leave amid the supply chain crisis. here's a reminder of what carlson said on a show. >> pete buttigieg has been on leave from his job since august after adopting a child, paternity leave they call it trying to figure out how to breastfeed. no word on how that went. >> cnn's joe johns is here with me now from the white house. joe, putting tucker's ugly and childish comments to the side, secretary buttigieg is making no apologies. he is saying what he's doing is work. >> right. it's pretty strong pushback from the transportation secretary, quite frankly. it was not just tucker carlson, by the way. it was some other conservatives, mostly conservatives as well, sort of going after him for
taking family leave with newborn twins at a time when the transportation secretary has a lot on his plate to deal with, including, frankly, the supply chain crisis. he did say, by the way, on that, that the supply chain crisis is likely to last into january. but on this issue of family leave, when he did finally push back on all of this, it was a defense not just of himself but also of family leave as a government policy. listen. >> as you might imagine, we're bottlefeeding and doing it at all hours of the day and night. and i'm not going to apologize to tucker carlson or anyone else for taking care of my premature newborn infant twins. the work that we are doing is joyful, fulfilling, wonderful work. it's important work. and it's work that every
american ought to be able to do when they welcome a new child into their family. >> so, pretty clear there from buttigieg that family leave is still part of the build back better plan. president biden, the question is whether it actually stays in after all the negotiating is over up on capitol hill. jim? >> all right, joe johns. and we're obviously happy for the couple there as well taking that time out with their family. all right, joe johns, appreciate that report. in the high-stakes race for the next virginia governor. today former georgia gubernatorial candidate stacey abrams joined mcauliffe on the trail speaking at a grassroots event in fairfax, virginia, just outside washington d.c. that just happened a few moments ago. terry mcauliffe, talk about bringing out the big guns. you could argue that they don't get much bigger than stacey
abrams. that is some fire power that he is bringing, which has become really a national race. >> reporter: it sure has, jim. the message here is that what happens in virginia really has implication for the whole country. that is why we see stacey abrams and other national democratic figures here in the final days of this tight race. she told the crowd here to show america that virginia hasn't taken its foot off of the gas, perhaps no one more influential in the democratic party than abrams who president biden and senate majority leader chuck schumer credit with helping turn georgia blue and get those two senate seats. and so that is why we see that she came here, giving that same message that just because it's an off-year election doesn't mean that you can sort of be asleep, that you still have to be critically engaged. that is what she told the crowd here, and that message well received. take a listen.
>> i'm here from georgia. we don't have an election this year for the governor. but i know what happens here matters across this country. you see, when you decide who is going to lead, you people decide whether they're going to follow. and here in virginia you have the chance to set the stage do. we go in the direction of the future or do we regular regress to a past that is dark and bitter and does not believe in all of us? >> so, jim, you see here this effort to really use national issues to inspire momentum among virginians. jim? >> all right, thank you so much for that report. coming up, he was known as the architect of the holocaust. and now decades later key figures are looking back at the trial of adolf eichmann, the nazi responsible for the murder of millions of jews. a special report, next.
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holocaust survivors. you spoke to a prosecutor and an investigator from the trial of eichmann. tell us about that. just a remarkable story. >> thanks, jim. two of my grandparents were holocaust survivors, lost most of my family to the nazi genocide. so this has always been personal and a passion for me. i had this remarkable opportunity to sit down and interview two of the key players. these men as you'll see in a moment are truly living history. i think their message is so important for history and even now it resonates. let's take a look. ♪ >> 60 years ago the world saw evil. ♪ in 1961, millions of people across the globe watched as adolf eichmann, the notorious nazi official known as the architect of the holocaust, stood trial in jerusalem for crimes against humanity.
they had captured in him in argentina where he'd been living as a fugitive for a decade. >> your grandma is here, she's the fourth from the right. >> right. so the vast majority of the people in this picture did not make it. my father, the son of two holocaust survivors remembers the trial as a turning point. >> you have to understand now everyone knows the holocaust with a capital h. when we grew up, this was not a thing. the holocaust was not a thing. it was a private tragedy, it was a tragedy of the jewish people. so a lot of it wasn't spoken about until eichmann. >> during 1939 to 1945 caused the killing of millions of jews
in his capacity as the person responsible for the execution of the nazi plan for the physical extermination of the jews known as the final solution. >> now 94 years old, was one of the prosecutors who tried eichmann in israel's newly formed court system. >> this was really very, very special moment that here in a jewish state, in a jewish trial we are the representatives of the jewish people, and we can show that the men who murdered millions of people from our society, that was very, very justifiable and very just that we should do that and not leave it to a court of another country. >> it was one of the first televised trials the world had ever seen.
>> translator: i was about 17 when the nazis took over in july 1942 my parents and my sister were taken onto a train. we did not know where at the time. but later found out it was the belzieg extermination camp. the last time i saw them was on my birthday. it was july 26th, 1942, and i saw them for 15 minutes. >> like my grandmother, michael goldman gilad now 96 years old lost most of his family to the holocaust. he survived the horrors of multiple concentration camps including auschwitz. and he survived the infamous death march. little did goldman gilad know he would go on to pay a pivotal role as an investigator in the trial of adolf eichmann. >> translator: i was in my investigation room. and when he entered the room i saw a poor, frightened person shaking.
and in comparison to eichmann in his ss uniform, this ubermoench, i couldn't believe that it was the person responsible for the death of my parents. but when he opened his mouth, i cannot forget this. when he opened his mouth, i saw the doors of the crematorium open. >> after months of the prosecution presenting its case, eichmann finally took the stand in his own defense. under cross-examination, despite being confronted with documents that showed his direct involvement, eichmann repeatedly claimed he was just following orders. >> i am not beating about the bush. i was also one of those receiving orders and not giving orders. >> he lied through and through. he was acting, he was acting all the time. >> september 1939, the accused
committed acts of expelling, uprooting and exterminating the population in coordination with -- >> finally in december 1961, the trial was over, and the verdict was in. the court found eichmann guilty and sentenced him to death. >> here was a man who was appointed to be in charge of causing the carrying out of the murder of millions of people. so if any person deserves it, it was him. >> after eichmann had excused all of his legal appeals, he was hanged just a few minutes past midnight on june 1st, 1962. 60 years later with the number of living witnesses to the nazi campaign of terror shrinking by the day, the risk of holocaust distortion and denial is a threat that makes the lessons of the eichmann trial more relevant today than ever. >> jews will not replace us! >> the fight against hate based
on race, religion, ethnicity, sex, is a battle that's still being fought. white supremacy and racial hatred remain serious threats, and they're on the rise. >> translator: with the death of eichmann, the murderous ideology of nationalist socialism was not scattered. it's still existing here and there in the form of hatred, hatred that is dangerous. and we must be on guard so that catastrophes do not repeat themselves. hatred can cause catastrophes and bring an end to this world, to this planet. and we must educate the new generations not to hate and to avoid such hatred. otherwise our struggle against evil will be in vain. >> i am part of one of those new
generations. 60 years ago, gabriel bach and michael gilad stood up and fought for justice, for their own families and for millions of others. both of these men truly are living history, and they stood for justice 60 years ago, and i think they still stand for justice today. >> elie, these stories are so important because, you know, we can't forget what happened, and we can't forget that there was this remarkable trial that took place and your family's place in this larger story. but i want to ask you about something that has come up in recent days. you did this piece before the audio came out of a school administrator in texas saying classroom libraries should include, quote, opposing views of the holocaust. that is the perfect example of why documentaries like yours should be shown to the public because people are forgetting these lessons of the past. >> and both of these men
stressed to me that they feel it's so important that people remember those lessons and take them into the future. there is a rising tide of hol can you see denialism. somewhere between a quarter and half the people think the holocaust was fabricated or a myth. the 96-year-old investigator you see in that piece, he still has his auschwitz, his prisoner tattoo. so anyone who questions whether this was real, i would ask you to watch the full version of this piece. it's as real as that tattoo on michael goldman's forearm. >> anyone who questions that, they should have their head examined. but thank you for what you do but for doing this documentary, putting this together and your family's contribution to it and of the larger story that has to be told, has to be engrained in our younger generations so they don't forget the past. >> thanks, jim. now here's julia chatterley with your "before the bell"
report. >> hi, jim. wow, you're paying more for everything and that sticker shock won't be easing any time soon. consumer prices rose 5.4% in september from a year ago. that's actually a 13-year high. food, rent, and energy costs all surged. inflation is the watch word, especially for wall street as a flood of companies deliver their quarterly results. johnson & johnson, proctor & gamble and tesla are among the big names reporting this week. the threat of persistent inflation also raises the stakes for the federal reserve. the central bank is expecting to begin reducing its emergency covid support as soon as next month. the first hike in interest rates likely comes next year as the fed tries to keep inflation from spiraling. in new york, i'm julia
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