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Senate GOP Health Care Bill Faces Uncertain Fate; Trump Jr. Admits Meeting with Russian for Dirt on Clinton; Iraqi Prime Minister to Declare Victory in Mosul; Two Tech Leaders Out After Sexual Harassment Complaints. Aired 10:30-11a ET
Aired July 10, 2017 - 10:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:32:12] POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Congress is back at work today. They are focusing on bringing the health care bill, trying to bring it back to life, reviving it.
This morning, President Trump pressing the message, writing, "I can't imagine Congress would dare to leave Washington without a beautiful new health care bill fully approved and ready go."
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Will Mitch McConnell be able to save it? You know, right now anywhere around 10 senators have openly opposed the bill. Senator John McCain, he cast out over the weekend saying the bill will probably be dead.
CNN political reporter MJ Lee joins us right now. Is McCain right?
MJ LEE, CNN NATIONAL POLITICS REPORTER: Well, you know, what's for sure is the July 4th recess did not help Mitch McConnell. We now have, as you pointed out, 10 Senate Republicans who have publicly said that they will not vote for this bill in its current bill, including John Hoeven of North Dakota.
You know, this is exactly why McConnell was so worried about sending his colleagues back to their home states without having to have this vote. They knew that they would -- he knew that they would face a lot of anger from constituents, attack ads, protesters.
Today we have one progressive group that is going up with a seven- figure ad buy attacking folks like Lisa Murkowski, Dean Heller, Susan Collins, Shelley Moore Capito, all key senators who are either wavering on the bill or are very vulnerable next year.
And I think there are two big things to watch in the coming weeks. We have a CBO report that could be coming out and a revised CBO report but reflects the amendment from Senator Ted Cruz.
And second is, how McConnell takes the temperature of his colleagues. So I think the thought that he can move enough of the senators who are in the no column right now to the yes column. Is a vote this month even realistic?
Obviously, you know, McCain saying over the weekend that this bill might be dead and that it might be time to work with Democrats, I think the next few days, we're going to find out is he alone in thinking that or is that just a tip of the iceberg?
HARLOW: The Ted Cruz amendment would allow basically insurance companies to sell unregulated insurance plans that don't include some of these essential benefits that make them cover more but make it more expensive. It seems like McConnell is banking a lot on that one but isn't that just going to infuriate the moderates?
LEE: Well, at the very least we know that McConnell is taking that proposal seriously from Ted Cruz because it has been sent to the CBO. But you're right that this is a proposal that would allow insurance companies to basically put out offers that are not regulated under Obamacare. And this is very concerning to some of the moderate member who already have concerns with the original bill and whether it protects people with pre-existing conditions enough.
They feel like if this provision is added to the bill, then the people who have medical conditions already, that they could be even more negatively impacted. So some of the folks that I'm talking to, look, they say, this Ted Cruz amendment may be being looked at, but this is not going to be something that can actually add the yes votes to the tally that we have right now.
HARLOW: All right. MJ Lee, thank you. Always keeping your eye on the tally, on the numbers, on the votes.
[10:35:02] A stunning revelation from Donald Trump Jr. The president's son admitting that he did have this meeting last summer with a Russian attorney who said that she had information that could help the campaign and dirt on Hillary Clinton.
Let's talk with our CNN political commentators about it. Former White House communications director Jen Psaki and conservative radio host and author, Ben Ferguson.
So, Ben, what do you make of that?
BEN FERGUSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Good morning.
FERGUSON: I think it's a -- I think it's a pretty simple meeting where someone said they had information about your opponent. It's called opposition research. They had a meeting. This is an individual that they met with for that reason. They also talked about adoptions and issues with adoptions that many Americans have been having problems with. So --
BERMAN: First of all -- just so, number one, the adoption issue is not just adoptions, it actually really is a sanctions issue, Russian sanctions, sanctions that the Russian government want lifted there so when we call it just adoption is a little bit euphemistic.
BERMAN: Number two, if it is so simple, and it may be, opposition research is opposition research, why then did Donald Trump Jr. change his story about this not once, but twice? Because he said in March, did I meet with people that are Russians, I'm sure I did, but none that were set, none that I can think of at the moment and certainly none that I was representing the campaign in any way, shape or form?
Now even this morning, he admits he had this meeting as a representative of the campaign so that statement in March was not true. It's not so simple, is it?
FERGUSON: Well, here is what I will say. If you've ever worked on a presidential campaign, you have an awful lot of meetings and awful lot of people after you secure the nomination that want to meet with you. And so I do think, when you're doing 20, 30, 40 meetings a day, and that's not an exaggeration, there's a good chance that you might answer a question simply, about hey, I didn't meet with anybody that was directly with the Russian government.
I didn't meet with him where they walk in and say, hey, I'm with the Russian government. He met with someone who said they had with information, opposition research, directly related to their opponent. It's very normal to take that meeting.
When I have worked on campaigns, I can tell you, there are many people that I met with that I didn't know exactly who they were at that moment because that's the nature of a campaign. When everyone is coming at you and everyone is asking you questions and everyone wants to meet with you, that's pretty normal.
HARLOW: But f you don't know who you are meeting with and you don't know how important it is, you don't pull in the chairman of the campaign right ahead of the convention, and you don't pull Kushner, one of the key people around the president, his son-in-law and someone who is one of the key advisers in the White House right now.
Jen Psaki, though I would -- hold on, hold on, Ben.
BERMAN: Hang on, Ben.
HARLOW: Jen has been waiting very patiently. My mother taught me patience is a virtue.
So, Jen, though all of that said, we just had a Democratic congressman on last block who has been pushing Articles of Impeachment on the president for obstruction of justice, and he said, quote, "I didn't see illegality in this."
JEN PSAKI, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, sure. Let me say, I have done three presidential campaigns. This is not just receiving normal opposition research. They knew -- let's give them the benefit of the doubt. They knew at least she was Russian and she was trying to present information on their political adversary. That is an entirely different category. Let's establish that here. I think it shows a willingness to collude, if not proof of collusion. I don't think we have that, but a willingness to.
From what you just referenced and the congressman that just came up, look, I think this is just another log on the fire. It raises some significant questions. Obviously Mueller is leading the investigation. And it shows us that there was an openness to working with the Russians, to receiving information about them that would be damaging in a political campaign.
Russia is an adversary. It's not just an average Republican operative. And I think that's an important differentiation here.
BERMAN: Susan (INAUDIBLE), though, so, Jen, you know, who writes on a lot of blog and a lot of articles on this and been very critical of the administration and the investigation, says, you know, it is possible you could actually have collusion, actual cooperation at a certain level, between Russians and campaign and not have it be illegal.
PSAKI: Well, look, I think that's for Bob Mueller to determine and his team of high qualified lawyers. As you know, though, decisions about the president's future and the future of his team there's a lot of politics involved in that as well. So at a certain point, Republicans on the Hill are going to have to determine whether they are comfortable with the level of cooperation, collusion, information received, prior knowledge, whatever you want to call it that was clearly happening either during the campaign, at a minimum, during the transition.
FERGUSON: Jen, with all due respect, it is -- you have a lot of people that come with you with opposition research when you are running any campaign, even at the local and state level.
PSAKI: Ben, how many presidential campaigns have you done? I'd love to know. I'd love to know.
FERGUSON: I've been on three different ones, thank you very much. So good try with that one. OK. I have also been a surrogate and worked for the president of the United States of America, George Bush 43, also traveled with him, also did town halls with him on Social Security reform. So don't try to -- you know, one up me on that there. I've been there.
PSAKI: You must have a different bar from who you received information from.
FERGUSON: No. No. Let me finish my point, OK.
PSAKI: Any campaign I have worked on have never received information from a foreign adversary.
FERGUSON: Let me finish my point.
[10:40:05] BERMAN: Ben first quickly, then Jen final word.
FERGUSON: Let me finish my point.
The obsession with the word collusion, when you have a meeting with an individual that says they have opposition research has gotten to the point where it's irresponsible because it's more about trying to fit it into a narrative than looking at the facts here.
When you look at Hillary Clinton, for example, you can argue that there was collusion with the DNC to make sure that Bernie Sanders could not win. Does anyone talk about that collusion?
BERMAN: We want to keep it on the Russians. Want to keep this on the Russians.
FERGUSON: It's the same exact thing that you're talking about here. But you will say, oh, no, doesn't fit the narrative.
BERMAN: Jen, last word. Jen, last word.
PSAKI: Ben. Ben, I'm not sure why -- I doubt you're speaking on behalf of every Republican. I think most Republicans wouldn't say that it's acceptable to receive information from a foreign adversary and use it against your political opponent. That's the point I'm making.
FERGUSON: This isn't a government person.
PSAKI: This shouldn't be a political issue. Also on your point on this the DNC and a presidential campaign work together, just like the RNC and a Republican campaign. That's entirely different, I think. But your comparison there is offensive to the American public.
HARLOW: I would also just note --
FERGUSON: It's not offensive.
HARLOW: You guys can continue this, we have to go. But I would just note that there are some real disclosures we see here. Jared Kushner was in that meeting.
HARLOW: He needed to disclose this on -- I believe in his SF-86 form, he didn't. And this isn't the first time he hasn't disclose those things. That is a big question mark for me.
BERMAN: Indeed. And she was a Russian lawyer, working for or on behalf of the Russian government, we don't know. Might be worthy of an investigation.
HARLOW: Thank you, guys, very much.
PSAKI: It is, indeed. Thank you.
BERMAN: All right. Next we're going to go to Iraq where after eight months of brutal fighting against ISIS, the Iraqi prime minister says they are close to victory in Mosul.
We'll take you to the front lines.
[10:46:03] BERMAN: This morning, the prime minister of Iraq says that victory is just a few yards away in Mosul. Mosul is the biggest city that was in ISIS hands, the second largest city in all of Iraq.
HARLOW: And soldiers are still battling for those last few pockets of ISIS resistance in Mosul. Some ISIS fighters are using civilians in their own homes as human shields.
Let's go straight to Irbil, Iraq. We find our Nick Paton Walsh there, our senior international correspondent.
Nick, you just returned from Mosul. You've seen this firsthand.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is literally a matter of buildings, Poppy. We've just come back from being 100 yards, maybe, from the river that marks the backhand of ISIS territory in Mosul. And it is extraordinary. You see still the intensity of the fighting there. American air strikes coming and shaking the boating we were in, covering us in rubble.
We saw ISIS fighters, it seems, coming out of the rubble, surrendering themselves being taken prisoner by those Iraqi Special Forces. That's how desperate it's got for them really at this point. They are down to dozens of buildings, a very small amount of territory are still in their hands. And this final fight appears to have delayed the final announcement by Iraq's prime minister, Haider al-Abadi. That victory is here in Mosul.
It doesn't stop them from coming up, still touring the streets. Meeting with other Christians of the city, they feel a threatened minority, telling everyone to go to work. Everyone is still dancing in the streets, frankly, last night. Celebrations already started despite that sort of final moments of rubber stamping the fact they've declared victory. But they've still declared the city liberated in this words.
And this potentially is a very historic moment for Iraq. Yes, there will be pockets of ISIS across the country and other towns, too. But the fact they've lost the biggest populations that they had, the second biggest city of their country, so close to losing it. Their final territory here marks symbolically a very, very heavy blow for the group. They're now on their back foot in this self-declared -- capital of their self-declared caliphate, Raqqa, across the border in Syria. But really here in Iraq, they've suffered a substantial defeat -- John, Poppy.
BERMAN: Some important milestone, but still a lot of work to do.
Nick Paton Walsh for us in Irbil. Nick, fantastic work, thanks so much.
HARLOW: Thank you.
BERMAN: We have a lot of new developments and news going on right now. We'll be right back.
[10:52:12] BERMAN: All right. Two resignations in two weeks. Accusation of sexual harassment caused a pair of Silicon Valley leaders their jobs including the head of Uber.
HARLOW: That's right. It's a watershed moment right now in Silicon Valley. You've got dozens of women now coming forward with these allegations of harassment and sexism. A Silicon Valley entrepreneur sat down with our CNN senior technology correspondent Laurie Segall and told her about her experience with a powerful investor who she says crossed the line.
CHERYL YEOH, CEO, CHERYL YEOH AND COMPANY: Came over after dinner and, you know, started out pretty normal, you know, just jamming on ideas. And they had brought whiskey over and it was in my apartment. So I thought, you know, sure, I'll drink. Right? But Dave kept pouring whiskey into my cup and before I even finished it, he kept pouring it. We're in a conversation I couldn't keep track of how many drinks I had.
All of a sudden people were tired and they ordered their Ubers and they wanted to leave. So when everyone left, Dave was there, he didn't leave. You OK? You drunk? You can crash on my couch, or I have a guest room. And he followed me into my room and that's when he started propositioning me, suggesting that we sleep together. And I was like, no, no. Like, you know, what are you doing? I have a boyfriend, remember? And this is not OK.
So I told him, you know, I think you have to leave. I was leading him out, showing him the door, pretty close to the door, he pushed me and pushed himself on to me and started kissing me. And I kept saying no, and I remember him saying, just one night only, please just one time. I just can't forget those words.
LAURIE SEGALL, CNN SENIOR TECHNOLOGY CORRESPONDENT: What was going through your head?
YEOH: He knows I have a boyfriend. He has a wife. He had kids. Like, oh, my god, like what do I do? What if he uses more force on me? So I was pretty shocked and didn't quite know what to do beyond just pushing him away. I felt like I couldn't speak up because we had this deal that we were going to do to bring an accelerator to Southeast Asia.
SEGALL: You were worried that if you said anything that, you know, the money that he was going to commit and the role that he was supposed to play, that would go away?
YEOH: Mm-hmm. So that's where I think it's a problem because there was a huge power dynamic at play here. If you go on record in terms of there are career repercussions, some people are fundraising at the time. They don't want to jeopardize their ability to fund these.
SEGALL: How do you feel now?
YEOH: Yes. I think there's more closure. But I still felt like this needed to be told. There's a difference between making an off-color joke or sexist comment to actually sexually assaulting someone without consent, right, touching or kissing someone without permission.
[10:55:06] The gory details is what matters and what would make a difference.
SEGALL: I reached out to Dave McClure who she said this incident happened. He didn't comment. He did write a blog post before her story came out titled, "I'm Sorry, I'm a Creep," acknowledging some of the bad behavior. But if you look at the larger context of this, it's almost becoming inexcusable for this behavior to happen behind the scenes. It's been happening for a very long time.
You're beginning to see -- it's a watershed moment in Silicon Valley because you're beginning to see all of these stories begin to pour out. I have spoken to about seven women who all have similar stories. And you're seeing repercussions. You're seeing people lose their jobs, you know, because of this behavior.
HARLOW: So think about how much these women have lost as a result, having to go through it.
HARLOW: Not being able to get funding.
HARLOW: Just the trauma that they have endured. I'm glad you're bringing then to light. Yu, Laurie.
BERMAN: All right. Thanks, Laurie.
Donald Trump Jr., the president's oldest son, acknowledging he met a Russian lawyer who claimed to have information that could have helped his father's campaign. We have new developments. Stay with us.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. I'm Kate Bolduan.