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Report: 4 Republican Senators Oppose GOP Health Plan; Trump Admits He Has No Tapes of Comey; FBI Update on Flint Airport Stabbing of Officer. Sired 3:30-4p ET
Aired June 22, 2017 - 15:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[15:30:00] ALEXIS GLICK, FORMER WALL STREET EXECUTIVE: You completely shut this down by '23 or '24, there's 70 million Americans that rely on the services that Medicaid provides.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Right.
RANA FOROOHAR, GLOBAL BUSINESS COLUMNIST, FINANCIAL TIMES: You know, Medicaid and Medicare are some of the most popular programs. They're programs that work. They're programs that work, they're programs that voters say they want. We should be looking for ways to get more people insured. I think that making Medicare simply go up year by year to insure more people is the way forward. It's simple. It's easy. It's something that we already know works.
BALDWIN: This matters. It affects tens of millions of people. We should get the CBO score maybe by Monday.
GLICK: And no mandate for employers.
BALDWIN: Correct. That's correct.
GLICK: Big deal.
BALDWIN: Some Americans really like, but listen, we'll see if this gets passed. That was four Republicans just even on one side. There could be others saying no. We're all paying close attention to that. Thank you so much. Loved the let's get real piece from you.
Let's back to our other breaking news and this mystery surrounding President Trump and these whole are there, aren't there tapes questions might have finally been put to rest here with today's tweets from the President. CNN's Tom Foreman takes a look back at how this all started and where we go next.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The mystery began with a tweet from President Trump, a warning shortly after he fired his FBI director in early May. James Comey better hope that there are no tapes of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press. Were there tapes? The President would not answer.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: That, I can't talk about. I won't talk about that. All I want is for Comey to be honest and I hope he will be. And I'm sure he will be. I hope.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOREMAN: But reporters kept asking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Thank you very much.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Are there tapes of you and James Comey --
TRUMP: Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Do tapes exist of your conversations with him?
TRUMP: I'll tell you about that in the near future. You're going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: A lot of people are interested as you might imagine.
TRUMP: I'll try to look under the couches.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOREMAN: Those non-answers have not been taken lightly by those investigating the President.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SENATOR CHUCK SCHUMER, MINORITY LEADER, NEW YORK: If there are tapes, the President should turn them over immediately, of course, to destroy them would be a violation of law.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOREMAN: And now comes the latest news. The President tweeting, "with all the recently reporting electronic surveillance, intercepted, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea whether there are tapes or recordings of my conversations with James Comey. But I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings."
In the dispute between the President and his former FBI boss over what was said in their private talks --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I didn't say that.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: So, he lied about that?
TRUMP: Well, I didn't say that. I mean, I will tell you, I didn't say that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOREMAN: Comey had suggested tapes would confirm his version.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES COMEY, FORMER FBI DIRECTOR: Lordy, I hope there are tapes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOREMAN: Now, with that hope apparently dashed, it's back to one man's word against the other's.
BALDWIN: All right, let's talk all of this over with Republican Jeffery Lord, CNN political commentator and American Spectator contributing editor and Jason Kander.
former Missouri secretary of state and former U.S. Senate candidate. Gentlemen, good to see both of you. Jeffery Lord, Jeffery Lord, how do you explain this? And no historic references in previous Presidents are allowed in your response. Go.
JEFFREY LORD, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: All right. Number one, I think to some degree, the President is very sensitive about having been taped. I mean, all of this business about unmasking and surveillance of Trump associates, et cetera, I think certainly has left him with the impression that there was a possibility that people were taping him or electronically surveilling him in some fashion. Number two, I think he had a lot of distrust for director Comey, and wanted to sort of flush this out and see what was really going on. And actually, there's a third possibility here.
[15:35:00] Sometimes I think that he likes to troll the media. If you notice, last night, our friend Maggie from the "New York Times," I believe she was in cedar rapids when the President tweeted out that everybody that she talked to was deeply enthusiastic to him. They'd lined up for hours to get there and were very skeptical of the press. And then she also added, not a soul has mentioned Russia. I do think that there's a deep divide out there. The President knows which side he's on, which side the people are on, and I think sometimes he plays to it and I think this might have -- could have been one of those instances.
BALDWIN: OK. Can I just -- Jason, before I get to you, let me follow up on point number two, which is I think maybe along the lines of this idea that Michael Smerconish was floating. Maybe he was floating this trial tweet to see if Comey or there would be some sort of leak to see if the President was recorded?
LORD: In other words, I think that he had a lot of distrust for director Comey and as we now well know, well founded. I mean, because the Comey --
BALDWIN: So, he's worried that maybe Comey was recording.
LORD: That what? I'm sorry.
BALDWIN: He's worried that Comey was recording him.
BALDWIN: Got you. Just wanted to -- we're on the same page. Jason, what do you think?
JASON KANDER, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Yes, I think that the President did a little bit of lying. That's what I think happened. And I think that as my dad would say, the President has a tendency to lie when the truth would help and that's really unfortunate. I don't think you need a one, two, or three. I think it's one or two things here. Either the President had some tapes and now they're gone, or there were never tapes. Either way, the President lied, and the reason that's a big deal --
BALDWIN: Where did the President lie?
KANDER: When he insinuated that he had tapes. I mean, that -- that question --
BALDWIN: That original tweet when he said that James Comey better hope there are no tapes.
KANDER: What is happening here is the President of the United States has no credibility, and that -- whether you voted for him or not, that is a scary thing for the country when the President of the United States, who needs to be able to tell the country things that are important, whether it is about national security or whether it's about something like, I'm not going to cut Medicaid, right, but then he's going to celebrate a bill passed in the house that does and I assume push for a bill passed in the Senate that cuts it as well. Whether it's the big things or little things, all the things he lies about, it's not good for the country when the President can't be trusted.
BALDWIN: Listening to Jason, a chunk of the country thinks that the President was playing games with this country and with a very important investigation. How would you respond to that?
LORD: No, I don't think he's playing games. Look, I think he --
BALDWIN: Why wait 41 days?
LORD: Well, I do think he wanted to find out what was going on with director Comey and as I say, I think with reason, he has a lot of reason to think that somebody could have been taping him, that -- I mean, clearly this whole issue of surveillance and unmasking, et cetera, implies and, you know, that all kinds of people in the Obama administration were, in fact, surveilling his associates at a minimum. So, I think he has --
BALDWIN: I'm listening to you and that may be certainly what the President was thinking but we're also hearing from this White House source close to the President saying that this person believes this is one of the worst things, if not the worst thing that the President has done since being in office.
LORD: I heard that. I'm sort of astonished at that. I really do think that that tends to be sort of an establishment view of just about anything the President does and I can't figure out why that person would be there.
BALDWIN: So, you don't think the President should apologize as has been suggested?
LORD: Oh, no. Are you kidding me? Absolutely not.
KANDER: Well, I mean, if the President said that Jeffrey's name was bill, he'd say, let's hear him out. I don't know what to take from that. The president of the United States told the American people one thing and then waited however many days it's been before he said, that's not true. It seems to happen all the time. That's really bad for the country. It's really bad when the President --
LORD: Except that's not true. I mean, he didn't tell them this. He said, I hope he doesn't have tapes. That's a whole different ball of wax than saying, I know he has tapes. Right?
KANDER: I don't know which ball of wax you're working with but I'm pretty sure that everybody looks at this and says, okay, the President of the United States wanted everybody to believe that he had evidence of what really happened. And by the way, the insinuation that the President of the United States needed to worry about whether or not there were tapes or however -- wherever this conspiracy theory from the folks who are trying to defend this ridiculous action by the President has gone, kind of says that the President of the United States thought that the FBI director had reason to wear a wire in the oval office.
[15:40:00] I mean, look, I don't think that's the case. I don't think that's what director Comey did. I don't think anybody thinks that. But if your theory is that the director of the FBI from the very beginning thought that he would need to record the President because the President wouldn't tell the truth, I don't think that's a very successful defense of the President of the United States, and I think it's a sad state of affairs that you have to introduce a crazy conspiracy like that in order to defend his ridiculous actions.
LORD: It's not a crazy conspiracy to say that associates of the President clearly have been followed by people in the Obama administration. I mean, it's one story after another.
KANDER: It's a lie.
BALDWIN: Gentlemen, forgive me. I have to cut this conversation off. Jason, Jeffrey, I appreciate your perspective.
Let's go to Flint, Michigan, in the wake of this airport officer stabbing, which they're investigating.
DANIEL LEMISCH, ACTING U.S. ATTORNEY: And a lieutenant with the Flint Bishop International Airport Police Authority by the name of Jeffery Neville, was stabbed in the neck by a man by the name of Amor Ftouhi. He's a citizen of Canada who was originally from Tunisia. After the stabbing, which happened early yesterday morning, lieutenant Neville was assisted by other citizens, other police officers, workers in the airport that came to his aid and the lieutenant himself fought back against his attacker. We are told that the lieutenant is in stable condition and he is improving. And our thoughts are with him and his family.
Yesterday, at approximately 5:00 p.m., this office charged Mr. Ftouhi with violating 18 United States code section 37 a 1, which is called committing violence at an international airport. That crime, makes it illegal for any person to unlawfully and intentionally use a weapon to perform acts of violence against a person at an airport serving international civil aviation. The acts of violence must cause or be likely to cause serious bodily injury or death. This crime is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. However, if death results, the offense is punishable but up to life in prison or potentially the death penalty. On June 21, yesterday evening, the defendant made his initial appearance before a magistrate judge Stephanie Davis at the United States district courthouse in flint. The defendant was ordered temporarily detained without bond and his next hearing will be on June 28, 2017.
At 2:30 in the afternoon at which time the court will decide whether to give him bond or not. The federal defender's office is currently representing Mr. Ftouhi. The investigation continues to determine the full extent of his planning and his actions and whether he committed other crimes, including a federal terrorism offense. The Canadian authorities have been assisting the United States in this investigation, and we want to extend our thanks to them for all of their cooperation. Yesterday, our attorney general, Jeffery Sessions, issued a statement about this case and about the priority that his administration and the President have for any crimes committed against a uniformed officer or any federal agent in this country, and I'd like to read that to you if I may.
I've just spoken with officials at the FBI about the attack on a police officer in flint, Michigan, that is being investigated as an act of terrorism. President Trump has prioritized the safety of all law enforcement officers, and this department of justice is committed to that goal. I want to assure all of our law enforcement across the nation, any attack on someone who serves and protects our citizens will be investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I am proud of the swift response from the FBI and our federal prosecutors and their partnership with local police and the Canadian authorities. Our prayers are with the officer and his family for a full recovery. Thank you.
DAVE GELIOS, FBI SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE: Good afternoon. My name is Dave Gelios, the special agent in charge of the FBI in the state of Michigan. I appreciate you being out here again today. I just would qualify my brief update here today with the fact that this is still a pending investigation so I'm not going to be able to get into a great deal of detail with respect to the investigation since the attack yesterday morning at about 9:45 a.m. at the Bishop International Airport in Flint. As you all know, I won't recount exactly, but as you all know, we know that subject Ftouhi traveled into the United States legally at Lake Champlain, New York, on June 16. [15:45:00] Preliminarily, based on the information we have this far,
we show him in Michigan as early as June 18. I can't say definitely he wasn't here sooner, but we show activity in Michigan on June 18. As a result of the attack yesterday, we've now conducted over 20 interviews of witnesses and we expect to do additional interviews as we continue to go through the information that we have obtained through a variety of investigative means. We've also executed several search warrants, and those search warrants could lead to other search warrants, and I won't get into the details. I'll get into one specific search we conducted --
BALDWIN: We just wanted to dip in and listen to the FBI there in the wake of that stabbing that is now being investigated as a terrorist act led by the FBI here. It was this 49-year-old man who apparently intentionally targeted this airport police officer at the Flint, Michigan, airport, and so he's now been -- he's been in court. He's charged with violence at an international airport. We're going to watch that and see where that goes with the FBI.
But now, to the CNN exclusive, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg laying out this new mission for the world's most popular social media network, that mission, bringing the world even closer together. It's been a couple of years since he's actually sat down with a journalist for an extensive interview. Here is some of his conversation with our colleague here at CNN, our senior tech correspondent, Laurie Segall.
MARK ZUCKERBERG, CEO FACEBOOK: So, our new mission is to bring the world closer together. And for the last decade, our mission has been to make the world more open and connected. And we've been really focused on these ideas, but now, I just feel like we have a responsibility to do more in the world. I mean, when you look at the world today, you know, giving people a voice and helping people connect are good, and they've made the world better in a lot of ways, but our society is still very divided and that means that it's not just enough to help us simply connect. We need to work to bring the world closer together.
LAURIE SEGALL, CNN SENIOR TECH CORRESPONDENT: We keep hearing we've never been more divided, never been more polarized. Was it the political climate that led to this kind of awakening?
ZUCKERBERG: I think it's really this feeling that simply connecting the world is not enough by itself, but you want to help people stay connected with the people they already know and care about, but you also want to make it so people get access to new people and new perspectives too.
SEGAL: So, let me ask you how you do that, because technology, to a degree, is always promised to help us discover and to help us learn. There's also the question of, like, does it make us more insular and is us information being hijacked and spread, so as you make the future of Facebook, these communities, how do you make sure they remain a place where authenticity and for real discourse. ZUCKERBERG: People are connecting over something that they have in
common and there's a lot of research that shows that if you want to engage on issues that you disagree on, things that society is divided on, the first thing that you need to do is connect over your common humanity. So that can be something as simple as, we both have families or we both like a tv show together or we both like the Chicago Cubs or whatever it is. So, bringing people together and creating these communities is, I think, a lot of what we can do to help create more civil and productive debate on some of the bigger issues as well.
BALDWIN: There she is in Chicago where Mark Zuckerberg addressed that community summit today. Laurie, it's good to see you but you know, on Facebook, they're been confronted with a lot of challenging issues, how to police hate speech without curbing free speech. How does his new mission include some sort of strategy for that?
SEGALL: I think this is a part of it. I actually think this mission is almost a culmination of what he's been talking about. You saw Mark write almost a 6,000-word manifesto talking about the difficulties between hate speech and free speech. We had a blog post last week that came out talking about -- it was called a Hard Questions and putting this out there to the community and asking, and mark said in the interview, an important part of free speech is you need to be able to get pretty close to offensive so these are some real challenges and some hard challenges Facebook is facing. That's part of why, today, I'm surrounded by administrators of some of the largest groups on Facebook. Mark personally invited them all here and one thing he talked about was really trying to build tools to make these a safe place online and everybody got up and started clapping when he talked about tools to help curb bad actors and make these communities safe and a place where people can have a safe place for this type of discussion.
[15:50:00] BALDWIN: I know it's just a piece of this massive conversation. We'll go to cnnmoney.com to watch the whole thing. Laurie Segall, thank you, my friend.
He was just 12 years old when tragedy hit his family. Nearly 20 years later, Prince Harry is opening up about this devastating loss of his mother, how he's keeping princess Diana's causes alive and why he thinks the world still needs the royal family. In this revealing new interview, prince harry tells "Newsweek," we are involved in modernizing the British monarchy. We are not doing this for ourselves but for the greater good of the people. Is there any one of the royal family who wants to be king or queen? I don't think so. But we will carry our duties at the right time." Let me bring in CNN royal commenter Kate Williams in London. Kate, you know, the whole king or queen, I don't think so, how has that landed where you are?
KATE WILLIAMS, CNN ROYAL COMMENTATOR: Well, it's been an extraordinary interview. It's incredibly frank. We're used to harry being the most outspoken member of the royal family. He's criticized the press. He's talked about their invasion of the life of his girlfriend. He's opened up about how heartbroken he was over his mother and he felt he had to seek counseling. He was very devastated over her death. But this is a new step. This isn't talking about the press. This isn't talking about himself. He's now talking about the monarchy and he basically says, no one would want to be king or queen. None of us want to do it. We have to do it out of duty and what he's implicitly saying is, this job is too big, it is too challenging, there is too much confusion. Why would you want it? And that is pretty much a bombshell I have to say.
BALDWIN: It's huge. He's talking about monarchy but he is also talking about his mom. He talks Monarchy and he basically says, no one would want to be king or queen. None of us want to do it. We have to do it out of duty and what he's implicitly saying is, this a bomb shell I have to say. He talks about his mom, and her very public funeral. Let me just read part of what he said." My mother had just died and I had to walk a long way behind her coffin surrounded by thousands of people watching me while millions more did on television. I don't think any child should be asked to do that under any circumstances. I don't think it would happen today."
I mean, to hear that. We all remember where we were and when we watched the funeral of his mother, so it haunts him.
WILLIAMS: Yes. That's a big, big statement. We all remember it. We were watching the coffin of Diana progress through the streets of London and accompanied by her brother, Charles, Prince Phillip, and by William and Harry. And I really remember very touching little wreath of flowers on the coffin with the cards mommy on it in handwriting. Absolutely heart breaking. And to us, the princes were the epitome of bravery, walking behind their mother that they lost in such tragic circumstances. And we know that William had struggled a bit with this and begged for Charles' support. This is the first time harry spoke. He felt it was too much. Too much to ask a young boy to do that. Recently believed in front of the cameras and so what we have here is an implicit criticism of the courtiers and also the royal family. It's a criticism of his father, Prince Charles, and the queen. And by saying, it's not going -- it wouldn't happen now, he's saying, that wouldn't happen on my watch. There's no way I'd let my child do that. This is criticizing the queen. This is very, very daring.
BALDWIN: Reverberating all the way over here as well. Kate Williams, thank you, live in London. Appreciate it.
Just in, former President Barack Obama weighing in on the Senate Republican health care bill. His message for lawmakers, that's next.
And after six weeks of dancing around this, President Trump today finally reveals that he has no tapes of his conversations with the fired FBI director James Comey. His deputy white house press secretary saying she doesn't think he has regrets, suggesting that. But a senior administration official tells CNN he should. We'll be right back.
[15:55:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) This summer a record 234 million people travel on an airplane. Why not fly to a destination where you can learn about that plane you might have just flown in on? This is the Boeing factory, 30 minutes outside of Seattle where almost every Boeing airplane is made. And, it's open to the public.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Why almost 60 years ago did you allow the public to see what you were doing here?
UNIDENTIFIED MANAGER: Well, they started coming on their own. Where we're standing right now was actually woods and we needed to build our planes right next to the runway, and there's rumors that the biggest planes in the world were being built inside and people got curious. Maybe we could guide these people around.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Today they produce one airplane a day. And you can see 50 of them being built in every stage at one time. Before they get sent to airlines all over the world.
UNIDENTIFIED MANAGER: Right now, if you wanted a 787, I couldn't give it to you until the year 2021, over 1,000 planes are on backlog.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: They can cost more than $300 million, but the most expensive is yet to be built here.
UNIDENTIFIED MANAGER: We see the President land in air force one, that plane came out of here.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: And I know that you guys are in the process of building a new air force one, is that happening here?
UNIDENTIFIED MANAGER: We're not currently building, we are still working on designs, once those are finalized, that will happen in this factory.
BALDWIN: I'm Brooke Baldwin, "The Lead" with Jake Tapper starts now.