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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
House Votes To Avoid Shutdown As Deadline Nears. 7-8pm ET
Aired January 18, 2018 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[19:00:11] ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: OutFront next, breaking news, shut down showdown the House seconds away from voting as the president is already blaming everyone but himself for a possible failure.
And the president versus his chief of staff tonight. Source telling CNN Trump is fuming in John Kelly after saying, for Kelly said, the president use -- said evolved on immigration. Can the damage be undone in this most crucial relationship.
Plus bomb shell testimony released the co-founder of the firm hand the Trump-Russia dossier talking about a possible crime between the Trump team and Russians. Details ahead. Let's go out front.
And good evening I'm Erin Burnett. OutFront tonight, breaking, the shut down vote. It is a crucial vote in the House to fund the federal government and keep the United States open for business and that vote is just moments away. This is it a live picture from the floor of the House of Representatives. And this is going to be happening here as I said any seconds. It's a vote on CR, that's a continuing resolution to keep the U.S. government open as the deadline to shut down the entire government is about 24 hours away. If a shutdown happens, make no mistake, President Trump is laying the blame squarely on Democrats.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We'll see what happens. No, if there is a shutdown, again, I really believe the Democrats want a shutdown to get on the subject of tax cuts because they worked so well. They've been so good that I think the Democrats would like to see a shutdown in order to get off the subject.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Democrats make a great scapegoat for the president. The problem is though, of course, that Republicans control all three elected levers of power in Washington and there has never been a government shutdown where one party controls the White House, the Senate and the House.
Now President Trump added a lot of confusion today, by firing off a tweet that certainly seem to go against the Republican plan to fund the government. Trump tweeting, "CHIP should be part of a long-term solution, not a 30-day or short-term extension."
CHIP of course is the Children's Health Insurance Program. Nine million American kids are covered by it. And Trump's slam of CHIP is a big problem, because Republicans added CHIP to the government funding resolution. And they did it in an effort to sweeten the deal to also get Democrats on board. Trump's tweets forcing the number two Republican in the Senate, John Cornyn, to explain the facts to the president' via Twitter, saying, "The current House continuing resolution package has a 6-year extension of CHIP, not 30-day extension."
And when Senator Rubio heard about the president's tweet from CNN, this was his reaction.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: I mean, I would have to go back to the drawing board if that's his view of it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Back to the drawing board. OK. The Confusion forced the White House to issue a statement saying the president does indeed support the Republican resolution to fund CHIP and keep the government open. So did the president really not understand his own party's resolution? Or is he for some reason trying to sabotage members of his own party? Is he rooting for shutdown but he believes would damage Democrats or does he think a shutdown, wherever the blame goes will end up being if good for him? After all, it was only last May when Trump tweeted, "Our country needs a good shutdown."
Phil Mattingly is OutFront tonight on Capitol Hill. And Phil, here seconds away from this crucial vote. What are the chances it passes?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Erin, it was confusing morning, it was a day to find by furious lobbying inside the House Republican conference, top Republican leaders trying to sway their members to come on board recognizing they're not going to any Democratic support.
Erin, I can tell you right now from top sources in the Republican leadership they believe they have the votes. Here's the problem. It's only one chamber. There are two chambers here. And in the United States Senate where this bill will go next, when the House Republicans end up passing it in a short bit, they do not have the votes.
Erin, you know the thresholds quite well. Senate majority leader only controls, in terms of people that are actually there, 50 Republican seats. That means they're going to need at least 10 Democrats, probably more. They don't have them. What does that mean going forward? Erin, I talked to one Republican aide who said we have no end game right now. They don't know how this is going to end game but what they do know is that when this government spending bill gets over to the United States Senate, there's no clear path forward. There's no plan for what happens next. And that means they're going to head to just 24 hours before the government shuts down with no real idea what the end game is. Erin.
BURNETT: Just obviously not a good place to be. All right, Phil, thank you very much. Phil is right there on the scene. We're going to back to him every moment here as this vote start. Because we anticipate we're get this crucial vote out of the House starting seconds from now and we're going to have the final result watching it come in this hour.
In the meantime I want to bring in our panel that we're going to have as we cover this breaking news, Joan Walsh, National Affairs Correspondent for The Nation, Rich Lowry, Editor of the National Review, April Ryan, White House Correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks and our Senior Political Analyst, Mark Preston. Mark, let me start with you, obviously the path forward let's just say shrouded in darkness. But at this moment how crucial is this vote?
[19:05:03] MARK PRESTON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: It's very crucial. I mean, the fact is Republicans have to show some forward motion ahead on this. And as Phil was saying right now, if they're able to get it out of the House of Representatives and over to the Senate then perhaps they can start to shift some of the blame towards the Democratic Party if Democrats in the Senate do not support this when it gets over to that chamber. So that in itself is extremely important.
You also if are you a Republican in the House of Representatives, if you are Paul Ryan, you want to be able to say to the American people we're trying to keep the government open and look, democrats are trying to close it.
BURNETT: So Rich, to this point, a blame. We never had a shutdown when one party controls the House, the Senate and White House. How bad would the shutdown be for the GOP? I mean, they're going to try. But it's hard to blame the other party when you control all three levers.
RICH LOWRY, EDITOR, NATIONAL REVIEW: It's an open question. I've always been skeptical it would get to this point where it would be a shutdown but now it looks plausible and Republicans, you're absolutely right, own all three elected branches in Washington. But they don't own 60 votes in the Senate. So in any circumstance they're going to need --
BURNETT: Any Democrats.
LOWRY: -- nine, 10 Democrats to vote for this.
LOWRY: And looks like they're not there plus Republicans are bleeding a few votes from Lindsey Graham and others --
LOWRY: -- which making the hill higher to climb. My general take on shutdowns is they never work but they irritate the public. So we may go through you know, a day or more, you know, a week of this.
LOWRY: But then I think we probably come around again to some form of clean funding bill.
BURNETT: Does, Joan, the president end up benefiting from this? I mean his own tweet in May, government needs a good shutdown.
JOAN WALSH, NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT, THE NATION: You think so. I genuinely believe he thinks it's a good (INAUDIBLE). I think, I don't know that he's hoping for but I think he's fine with it. I think he thinks his brand will transcend. I think he's a little bit delusional. I think he's also it could be a great respite from the ongoing Russia investigation and the break -- the continuous breaking news on that front.
But I just want to say since we've been having this conversation for awhile, there is a bill that can get 60 votes in the Senate. And it is the Durbin-Graham-Menendez-Flake compromise bill that includes funding for the border wall, it cuts back on chain migration, it cuts -- it gets -- it does a way with the visa lottery, an even adds a little bit of movement toward merit-based immigration, which I know is a big thing.
BURNETT: It's not what Republicans want but something in that direction. I mean we'll see. Then you got House, I mean, you know --
BURNETT: --you may still have a shutdown to get that that point as you now we're talking about where we are now. I mean, April, what is the president's goal here?
APRIL RYAN, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT FOR AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORKS: The president's goal is to win, always. But the question is could there be a win in this? And this doesn't look like there will be. This will definitely if there is a shutdown, this will hurt his brand. President talks about the economy and how the economy is been so great.
Well, this one the president is going to own. Because, you know, there's been a great debate since he took office as to whose economy is this really. You know, will this be his economy? Or is it Barack Obama, the residue of Barack Obama's? Well, if indeed, there is a shut down, he owns this. This is his economy.
And, you know, in his tweets he's talking about the military and yes we want to support the military who is out there fighting for our freedoms. But also you have other people who will be furloughed, who will lose their jobs. And this president keeps talking about I'm working to help, you know, people to get raises this, that, the other. That is a big zero. A big goose egg if there is a situation where people are worried about their money coming in and having jobs. So the president is going to own this. And how it's going to play out for him, we have to wait and see.
LOWRY: I don't think we can say that with certainty the president is going to own this. Certainly he's in such a debilitated state.
RYAN: Really? LOWRY: And he had, you know, big (INAUDIBLE) over the past week.
Maybe anything will stick to him. But after tonight there's going to be a bill in the Senate that will avoid a government shutdown and all people have to do --
RYAN: If this president -- if this president --
LOWRY: -- is vote for a spending bill to keep the government open and it will be Democrats overwhelmingly opposing this.
RYAN: All right. I understand --
LOWRY: So I wouldn't assume that the blame game is necessarily there.
RYAN: I understand. I understand what you are saying. But the president, let me explain why I say this president would own it. The president has owned this economy from day one. January 20th, 12:01, he has owned this economy. And there are people from the Obama administration, other economists who has said that this president is coasting on some of the residue of what Barack Obama did. But the president continues to say this is my economy.
So if indeed if there is a government shutdown and how long a government shutdown could last, this is definitely the president owns this almost a year out. This is the president. So I hear what you are saying. I hear your spin. And he is the leader of the majority party in Congress. So this is his. You cannot blame it on Barack Obama like you do with everything else.
BURNETT: OK. Let me just -- I just want to note to everybody the votes have started. There are two votes before this vote and they are going on right now. So we can show you the floor. This is one of them. Motion to recommit with instructions. They're going to go to the next one and they're going to go to this crucial one.
[19:10:10] I just want though to make a point here about maybe what the president is thinking. Because he's been very open, verbose about shut downs before and where he would place the blame and he placed the blame very squarely on the president. Here he is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: And the president in all fairness he's the leader. He's the one that has to get eve one in a room and get it done. I really think the pressure is on Obama to make the deal because he doesn't want this in his resume. They'll be talking about Boehner and Reid (ph). They're going to be talking about President Obama and what a disaster the administration was. So he does have a lot of pressure to get this problem solved. He's got a big problem.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: This was the shutdown that happened in 2013. He then went on to tweet, Obama and Democrats want this shutdown they think it helps electoral prospects for 2014. Rich, don't believe.
BURNETT: Is that his thinking now?
LOWRY: No. I am quite certain the White House doesn't want a shutdown, certainly McConnell and Ryan and the congressional leadership don't want a shutdown.
BURNETT: They may not. But this perhaps a window to the president's thinking.
LOWRY: Well, he'll blame Obama for anything, right? But Trump wants this to get through. He lobbied the House Freedom Caucus today to get this vote through the House. And again there will be a spending bill sitting in the Senate and all people have to do is vote for it and people won't shout down.
BURNETT: And then he can say look it was the Democrats who didn't do it.
WALSH: I know he will do that, Erin, but I think the other reason it's going to be on his shoulders, Rich, is that he has walked around, stumbled around like, you know, the elephant in the room, complicating everything, under mining his own staff, undermining Lindsey Graham, his new friend, undermining John Kelly, his chief of staff about the comments about the border wall and how his views have evolved when we know they've evolved. And so, he looks kind of out of control. And it's a bad look for a president on the brink of a crisis.
PRESTON: Well, a couple things. One is I think we have to clarify the blame game right now. What we're going to see is we're going to see the real hard right and the real hard left go into their corners and place the blame on each other. That is absolutely going to happen.
President Trump is going to be blamed for this because he is the president. But for him it's really could be a short term injury. Because people are going to forget this assuming he runs in 2020.
PRESTON: Who it's really going to hurt though it's going to hurt congressional Republicans who are going to go back right now that are already under water when you look at the congressional ballot right now and where they stand, that is really who is going to face a lot of ire (ph) in this. And perhaps, a couple of Democrats in the Senate if they vote against this and they are facing tough re-elections, but really President Trump doesn't have a long-term problem with this. It's really a problem for House and Senate Republicans.
BURNETT: Which of course, you know, if he looked long-term would be a problem for him. Although who knows, maybe more Democrat House and Senate then he does with the Republican given track record.
OK. All of you stay with me, because as I said we're seconds away getting through that first vote. Hang on a second. And We're going to be on this one. Moments away you can see the capital. That is where House members will be casting those votes. And the White House has been calling around trying to get government agencies ready in case a shutdown happens. As Republican senators pointing fingers at Trump's own team tonight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: There's people in his ear in the White House who are outliers.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Outliers. Plus Democrats accused by Trump of wanting a shutdown. One of them saying if the government shut down people are going to die. What's the truth?
And breaking news this hour in the Russia investigation. A top Democratic says there are serious allegations about the Trump organization and money laundering with Russians.
[19:17:45] BURNETT: Breaking news, live pictures from Capitol Hill. House lawmakers are in the midst of votes. The session is open. The third vote is this crucial one on government shutdown. And as you can see we are in progress. A senior administration official telling CNN now that the White House is already calling agencies to make sure plans are in place in case of a shutdown. Jeff Zeleny is out front at the White House. And Jeff, what more are you learning?
JEF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Erin, we are learning tonight that of course the main, you know, normal course of business are really taking place about what would lead to a government shutdown. We do know the president and White House in the last several days, including today, have been calling agencies to put them through their paces, if you will.
Sadly Washington has been through this drill so many times in recent years, Erin, it is never come to pass at least not since 2013. There is a sense that this is more real tonight. So we do know that the agencies and the White House is asking for little disruption as possible to the public. Obviously, they're very sensitive to any type of blow back here in terms of national parks and other things.
I'm also learning tonight the president is in the residence of the White House, you can see that behind me here, he is watching this vote. They are watching this very carefully. They do believe they have the votes in the House of Representatives. The president was on the phone earlier today with some of his Freedom Caucus supporters. They are going to be with him, we are told.
The Senate is a bigger unknown. We do not know if that vote will happen tonight. The final vote or tomorrow. The White House all hands on deck here, Erin, watching this carefully tonight so see if this vote happens. The reality is even though the president before has talked about a shutdown would be good for politics, they know it would be bad for his politics. So they're going to try and avoid that. We'll see if that happens though because this is pretty high stakes game of chicken tonight with the president and the Senate Democrats, Erin.
BURNETT: Certainly is. All right. Jeff Zeleny, thank you and of course Jeff standing by, Phil Mattingly standing by. This votes began our panel is here with me. And a lot to talk about here.
First, though, April, they are making the calls. They are getting ready. I mean that's a responsible thing to do if you're 24 hours away essentially and really there is no end game here even if it does pass the House.
RYAN: You know, this is what presidential means and he has to do this. And here's the problem though as he's making and watching what's happening on the Hill, and his leadership is making these calls to make sure it's ready, this is something the president doesn't want to do, you know. I'm sure he doesn't.
[19:20:15] Because this again goes back to, you know, this president could not get his own party to pull this off even as they added sweetners when it comes to CHIP. I mean there are a lot of things that are still out there hovering to include, you know, the supplemental for disaster relief. That's one of those things that a hidden variable that could really cause problems financially and then budget caps. There are so many different things that are still out there. And the piece about CHIP about also offering for health centers.
So this president is doing what he has to do (INAUDIBLE). And even if he says, you know, sometimes a shutdown could be a good thing it is never a good thing because the people who voted for him, the forgotten man and any other person who works for the Federal Government, or has some kind of relation to the Federal Government where they are paid, there is a problem here. And politics is personal. And that's as personal as it gets.
BURNETT: Right. And even if you get back pay which you -- you pretty much always do in these cases, right, if they closes. The point is you are sending a message that it was fine for you not to get the money at that time for people who are living paycheck to paycheck, right? I mean you are sending a message about what you think about people.
Mark, Senator Diane Feinstein made a very big claim today, OK? She said, "Shutting down the government is a very serious thing. People die. Accidents happen. You don't know. Necessary functions can cease." First of all, Mark, a fact check on that, people die?
PRESTON: Well, I don't know what she means by necessary functions can cease, you know.
BURNETT: Military doesn't. I mean --
PRESTON: Right. In the military, you know, continues on. You know, can a death be tangentially related to the government shutdown? I'm sure you can, you know, you can make that connection if this were to happen. But really I think when you look at a comment like this from Senator Feinstein and you compare (ph) it as well as what we hear from Republicans saying that basically, and President Trump was vague about this. He was at the Pentagon today, basically trying to tell the American people that the military is just going to shut the doors, put the padlock on, and they're not going to work anymore. That is all wrong.
PRESTON: It is very harsh rhetoric. And all they're trying to do right now on both sides --
PRESTON: -- is to try to push the other one into the corner.
BURNETT: Right. The military is going to shut down, people are going to die. I mean let's just, you know, rhetoric like that is what distorts the entire reality and has people get rid of the swamp.
But when we talk about the crucial votes in the Senate, Rich, OK, it isn't just Democrats, right? You got to get to 60 votes and you don't have the Democrats. But you don't have all the Republicans. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, right, he wants the immigration dealt with as well and he is saying members of Trump's own administration are to blame for this whole situation. Here's Senator Graham today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRAHAM: There's people in his ear in the White House who are outliers. They're people on his staff who have been working in the Senate that are well-known to be completely.
DANA BASH, CNN ANCHOR: Who are you talking about, Stephen Miller? I mean name names.
GARAHAM: There are people around the president.
BASH: Am I right? Then you're talking about --
GARAHAM: Who have irrational view of immigration. They always have. And if you follow that lead we'll never get any where.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LOWRY: Well, I think Lindsey is very disappointed because he spent months trying to woo the president in particular on this issue. President basically gave him the ball with Dick Durbin, he said negotiate.
BURNETT: They run with it.
(CROSSTALK) BURNETT: Yes.
LOWRY: But it wasn't a deal he can support or any restriction would rationally support. The amnesty is much larger than the DACA population. Nothing meaningful in chain migration. The visa lottery is repurposed out of things. And the border funding is not for the wall.
So there's just nothing there --
LOWRY: The whole gang of six that Lindsey and Durbin are a part of.
LOWRY: It's all people who -- it's bipartisan but they all have the same view on immigration and have a distays (ph) and disregard for people who disagree with them which Lindsey was expressing in that clip.
BURNETT: OK. So -- but the bottom line here is that you don't have the vote, Joan? It's not just Democrats, but as I'm pointing out here --
BURNETT: -- it isn't only Democrats --
BURNETT: -- obviously the majority is Democrats.
WALSH: They're not even going to get 60 at this point.
BURNETT: Right. Because you don't have all the Republicans.
WALSH: Right. And I think Senator Graham is right. And I think Dana was right to say are you talking about Stephen Miller? Because he is talking about Stephen Miller. I think, you know, we know that Graham felt really sandbagged when he went in there thinking he had a deal and suddenly there were all these anti-immigration hardliners there. I think Stephen Miller has been shown to be, has always been a real immigration zealot (ph).
I just want to response to something that -- that Mark said before gently. I don't think that supporting DACA is hard left position. I think the country overwhelmingly supports DACA. There are lots of other things we can do with immigration reform but it would be really easy to get a clean DACA bill at least through the Senate, I'm not sure about the House.
[19:25:05] PRESTON: You know, Joan, and just to clarify I was saying right there. I wasn't saying the support of DACA was having the hard left go into the corner. What I was saying is that the blame game for the government shutdown is what I was expressing right there. BURNETT: Well, the people die and the military being shutdown, being
Diane Feinstein and Donald Trump pretty much gives you the two dramatic and incorrect takes.
LOWRY: The problem the Feinstein comment is going to have for her is she supports the government shutdown and for Democrats as well, and Republicans --
LOWRY: Republicans (INAUDIBLE) in the past when force shutdowns. When you get division in the party they're used against you and no one likes the shutdown and the pressure builds.
BURNETT: The pressure mounts. All right. So in this interview with Senator Graham, April, I just want to bring in something else that he said, right. So he's being incredibly critical of the president. He's been very flip flopping on the president in general. But then he was asked specifically about whether the president was racist, you know, given the whole s-hole controversy. He said the president is not a racist. Here's the exchange.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GRAHAM: Why don't you ask me is he a racist?
BASH: That was my next question.
GRAHAM: OK, why don't you ask me.
BASH: Do you think that he is a racist?
GRAHAM: Absolutely not. Let me tell one. You could be dark as charcoal, and Lilly White, it doesn't matter. As long as you're not nice to him. It's not the color of your skin that matters, it's not the content of your character, it's whether or not you show him respect and like him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: I mean, let's be clear, April, that's horribly a ringing defense, right?
RYAN: No. Not at all.
BURNETT: It's not the content of your character that matters. It's whether you show him respect.
BURNETT: However, he's very clearly saying he's not a racist.
RYAN: Yes, he was trying to inartfully use Dr. Martin Luther King words from I Have A Dream Speech. He wanted to spoil little children to be judged by the content of their character but not the color of their skin. Now, when it comes to issue of racist, is President Trump racist?
You know, that's a lot to unpack. This whole year a lot of things have happened, things have been said. We've dealt with issues of the confederacy, we've dealt with issues of Charlottesville, we've dealt with Pocahontas. We've dealt with this issue of Nigeria and Haitians and then this s-hole comment. And a lot of other things that have happened. Even, but just a lot of things have happened.
There is a whole -- I mean, everyone to include CNN has done a great job of giving the list visually and the audio. But here's the thing, of course you're going to have Republicans stand by this president. But in 2018, when you are still dealing with some issues that were dealt with 50 years ago in words and comments and phrases and sayings is a problem. And when you have the nation's oldest civil rights organization that's not making this a political issue but an issue of the heart and reality, and the definition is when racial prejudice empower me, that's the definition, and if you look at both and some of the issues that have happened, you would say it begs the question are you a racist. And I don't think Lindsey Graham is in the position to say he's a racist or not.
BURNETT: Right. And of course the president of NAACP came on this show and said it wasn't just what he said was racist, or racist sentiment, it was racist, period.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.
BURNETT: All right. Thanks very much to all of you. And next, we're just moments away from the crucial vote in the House. If the House votes to avert a shutdown, it comes down to the Senate. And as we said, there is absolutely at this point no clear path forward in the Senate. So are we looking at a shutdown government in about 24 hours?
The Top democrat is next. And highly anticipated testimony from top Trump aide Hope Hicks in the Russia probe suddenly abruptly delayed after Steve Bannon refused to answer questions and Cory Lewandowski said he wasn't prepared. Is the White House stonewalling?
[19:32:09] ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: Breaking news, the vote has started. You are looking right now live at the House floor. And as I said, the vote to avoid a government shutdown has begun.
We're going to be watching crucial number. The crucial number for yes is 215 votes. Obviously, anything can change until the final gavel. But that's what we're going to be watching here, and we're going to keep this up on our screen.
House Republicans scrambling to gather enough votes to pass this.
Sunlen Serfaty is OUTFRONT.
And, Sunlen, as this vote begins, what's happening right now?
SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Erin, certainly huge vote for the House tonight, taking place and you see certainly members there sitting in their seats waiting for this big vote. We believe that House Republican leadership does indeed have the votes that they need to get this passed through tonight in the House at least, the first step of a two-step process.
I saw Speaker of the House Paul Ryan walk from his office to the floor smiling, certainly a lot of drama at least on his side. Out and really ironed out in the last hour after he was able to secure the house freedom caucus on board this bill. They had certainly been withholding their votes for most of the day.
We will be watching this vote along with you. The magic number 215 votes that the Republicans need to get this passed. That's accounting for certain vacancies and Steve Scalise for his part is out recovering from surgery. When it gets passed through tonight and believe it's a win, big problem still over in the senate, we believe the Senate will be pushing towards having a procedure vote tonight, a motion to proceed.
A lot fluid here, Erin, a lot still yet to be determined. But we do know, according to Senate Democratic aides, that they believe that they have enough votes in the Senate to block this bill once it comes over to the House, which means that it might be going nowhere fast. And there is certainly a lot less to iron out between House leadership and Senate leadership if they do indeed want to avoid a shutdown before tomorrow night at midnight.
BURNETT: Sunlen, thank you very much. We're going to keep this up and watch this vote as I said, the magic number here that we're looking for, 215 yea votes.
OUTFRONT now, Democratic Senator Ed Markey.
And, Senator, thank you for being with me.
Look, the expectation is, this is going to pass the House. We are very close to that magic number. Then, it's going to come over to the Senate. Will you vote to fund the government and children's health care as laid out in this resolution?
SEN. ED MARKEY (D), MASSACHUSETTS: Well, you know, the Republicans in the House put their bill together that they are voting on right now without having any Democrats in the room. So they know they are engaging in a feudal activity. So they are sending it over to the Senate with expectation that the Democrats in the Senate are going to vote for a bill that they were never included in the negotiation.
So, of course, we are not going to vote for it.
[19:35:01] That's not the way the Constitution intends on Congress to vote. So, we are going to vote no and say to the president, say to the leadership of the House and Senate, Republicans all, let's sit down in a room, work on DACA, work on child health, work on opioid funding, work on all these issues that are still unresolved, so that we can present a package on a bipartisan basis to the American people.
But we are going to need them to finally get it out of their mind that they can do this without cooperating with Democrats.
BURNETT: I just want to say I believe we have crossed the threshold here. People can change their votes, so it's not final until the gavel comes down. But as of right now, it appears the resolution has passed the House, Senator.
I just want to be clear what you are saying, though, is you are willing to have a government shutdown, because you won't get all the things you laid out in the next 24 hours. I'm just stating the obviously, but I just want to make it clear, you are willing to shut down the government for this?
MARKEY: We are unwilling to allow for the Republicans to just sit alone, draft legislation, that governs entire country without any Democrats in the room at all.
We don't want to shut down the government. The Republicans are shutting down the government. They are refusing to discharge their responsibility to ensure that they are working on bipartisan basis. The president is sitting on the sidelines pretending that Barack Obama is president, somehow and criticizing the process by which we create legislation in Congress to pass a budget that funds our country.
So, unless and until they do this, then we are going to say stop right now. Let's find a room. Let's put the leadership of both parties in that room. Let's put the president in the room. We can resolve all of these issues by the end of this weekend with no harm done to anyone.
But please, Mr. President, get off the campaign trail. Stop running around the country campaigning for congressional candidates.
MARKEY: Come back and be the leader. And we will negotiate with you.
BURNETT: So you are saying it can be done quickly, very short shut down over the weekend but it can be done.
I just want to ask you this question. Your Democrat colleague, I don't know if you saw this today, but Senator Feinstein said when the government shut downs, and I quote her: people die, accidents happen. Is she wrong? Or, again, are you willing to vote for a shut down and take that risk that people will die?
MARKEY: Well, again, if the government is shut down beginning tomorrow night, Friday night, over Saturday and Sunday, if everyone goes to the room, we can have this whole deal finished on Monday morning.
BURNETT: I just want to interrupt you. Sorry, Senator, for one second.
It has officially passed, the gavel is down. So, this is going to be -- they're going to trying to head it over in your direction.
I'm sorry. Finish your thought.
MARKEY: Yes, we can resolve this. It's been four and a half months that we've been working on a continuing resolution. C.R. it's called. C.R. under Republican control of the House, Senate and presidency that really means can't resolve.
So, we all understand all the issues after four and a half months. We know we have to do on opioids, on DACA, on child health and --
BURNETT: But why do you have to do it all at once? I mean, they're giving you -- the funding of the government and funding child health care for six years. Which is important to you, I would assume, right? You are not getting everything but you don't have deadline to do immigration by this weekend. You have a deadline to do immigration over the next few months. So, why not take the bird in hand?
MARKEY: Because then, next month, we come back again. This is the budget for the United States of America. We are in the fifth month of 12 months. They refused to sit down.
We can figure out child health. And we can figure out helping the people in Puerto Rico. And we can figure out community health systems and we can figure out DACA.
We all understand the issues completely. But we can't do this month after month. You can't run a business that way. You can't run a family that way. You can't run the government that way.
We all understand the issues. The president, the House, and the Senate are under Republican control.
MARKEY: Here's the problem, Erin. The Republican paradox is that they don't believe in government. But they have to run for office in order to make sure the government doesn't work. And now, we are seeing what the results are, that the Republicans should sit down with themselves, the Freedom Caucus pulls them far to the right, no compromise with Democrats, no compromise --
MARKEY: -- with moderates and what you end up is governmental paralysis that then threatens to shut down the government.
So, we want to avoid this desperately the Democrats. But we want to go to the table. In the Broadway musical Hamilton, the key song is the room where it happens. The room where this will happen will be the president finally inviting Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell into the room, they all sit down, and we can resolve all these issues in two or three days.
But until the president decides he wants to be president, and not just some tweeter on the outside criticizing the process, then it's just going to go on and on with no resolution. [19:40:07] BURNETT: The thing about this is, it just keeps happening
again and again, right? Back in 2013, I was pointing out when the president was blaming Barack Obama and saying they needed a shut down. The shoe was on the other foot.
It was a Democrat in the White House. Of course, President Obama Democrats controlled the House. And there was a threat of a shutdown over Obamacare by Republicans and it happened.
Senator Chuck Schumer said something really important to hear now. This is what he said then.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: Basically, it's sort of like this, someone goes into your house, takes your wife and children hostage, and then says let's negotiate over the price of your house.
You know, we can do the same thing on immigration. We believe strongly in immigration reform. We could say we are shutting down the government. We are not going to raise the debt ceiling until you past immigration reform. It would be governmental chaos.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: OK. Here we are, Senator, Democrats are about to let the government shutdown because they aren't getting immigration reform. It couldn't be more perfect here. Is this hypocrisy at its height?
MARKEY: The president and the Republican leadership in the House and Senate are holding 700,000 young Dreamers hostage to the political paralysis which the Republicans have created.
It is morally wrong to take these 700,000 kids, almost all of them in high school and college graduates, in the military right now, and terrorizing them and their families in order to extract other political concessions from the political process. So, the Republicans just have to accept that they now run all branches of government. And they have a responsibility to be the leaders.
And the president so far has abdicated this responsibility.
BURNETT: All right.
MARKEY: Stop, Mr. President, stop holding these kids hostage. Ninety percent of the American people in the polls CBS conducted this morning said that they want these Dreamers to be protected. Why are you doing this, Mr. President?
Go to the room. Invite in the Democrat leadership.
BURNETT: All right.
MARKEY: We can resolve these issues.
Dick Durbin and Lindsey Graham have already created a framework. Already half a dozen more Republicans in the House -- I mean in the Senate -- who have shined on. That bill can pass but we need the president to give leadership and not just be a copping critic on the outside.
BURNETT: Thank you very much. I appreciate your time, Senator.
And next, a major move by Democrats to punish president for s-hole comments. The man behind this is OUTFRONT.
And breaking news about the president and Russia. Did the Trump organization launder money through Russian nationals? I'll tell you about it.
[19:46:15] BURNETT: Tonight, several House Democrats are moving to formerly censure President Trump after his comments referring to several mostly nonwhite countries as s-hole.
OUTFRONT now, Congressman Jerry Nadler of New York who is leading the charge.
Thank you for being with me, Congressman. I appreciate it.
You've introduced this resolution to censure the president. Just so everyone understands, censure is basically an official statement of disapproval. There's not a punishment or removal from office. It's just an official statement of disapproval.
What is the point you are trying to accomplish?
REP. JERROLD NADLER (D-NY), RANKING MEMBER, JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: Well, what we are trying to accomplish is to express on behalf of the Congress and United States that the president's racism is his personal racism, not the racism of the United States.
Now, we have long known that Donald Trump was racist from the time he was denying apartments to African-American people in Brooklyn, apartments in the 1970s to his taking out a full page ad urging that black and Latino teenagers be executed for crime they were innocent of. To his finding that among the Neo-Nazis who marched in Charlottesville were many fine people.
What is new is that he is now the president of the United States and as such, his views are dangerous, and we have to repudiate them so that the world knows that his racist views are not those of the United States, and it's incumbent on us in Congress to pass a resolution saying that loud and clear.
BURNETT: Obviously, his comment was racist. As to where he is a racist, that's another point of conversation, actually not what the point of our conversation tonight. My point is simply what the goal is of this. I mean, Andrew Jackson --
NADLER: I'm sorry, I can't hear you right no you.
BURNETT: Can you hear me now, Congressman?
NADLER: A little. Go ahead.
BURNETT: OK. Andrew Jackson is the only president to be censored by the Senate. That was back in 1834. Can you hear me now?
BURNETT: OK. So, obviously, you need bipartisan to go ahead and censure the president. Are there any Republicans who are going to vote for this?
NADLER: Well, we hope. We are going to be talking to the Republican leadership of the House. They control access to the floor. And we are hoping they will understand that it is incumbent on them to show that Republicans and Democrats do not go along with the racism of this president. That as united country, we repudiate that racism and we hope that they will do that, and if they will not carry on what they've been doing in other respects of enabling this president terrible behavior.
BURNETT: So, obviously, this isn't the first time you tried this. I don't know if our viewers are aware of that. But back in August, you tried after Trump's remarks about Charlottesville. And I wanted to remind everyone what the president said at that time that sparked your emotion to censure.
Here he is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: But you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides. You had people in that group -- excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures as you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down, to them, of a very, very important statue, and renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: You did have cosponsors on that censorship resolution related to that statement, 125 people. But again, no chance of it actually passing. I guess what you are saying you don't care whether it passes, you just want to be on record?
NADLER: Well, I hope that if this were put on the floor, it would pass. I hope that enough of my Republican colleagues as well as Democrat colleagues would have the decency to vote for resolution repudiating racism. But it's incumbent on the Republican leadership to give us opportunity to vote on that and to show that the president's racism does not represent the American people or the American government.
[19:50:02] BURNETT: And before we go, I know you just voted no on the continuing resolution to keep the government open and fund the child care program, are you okay with the government closing if that doesn't get through the senate?
NADLER: I'm not sure if I heard you. You are asking if the bill could get through the Senate, I don't know.
BURNETT: Well, I asked, are you OK then with the government closing since you obviously voted against it?
NADLER: I'm sorry, I couldn't understand you.
BURNETT: Are you OK with the government closing?
NADLER: Oh, am I OK with the government closing? No, I'm not OK with the government closing.
BURNETT: But you just voted that it could.
NADLER: I did not vote to close any government. I voted against the latest of four continuing resolutions that haven't changed. You know, the Republicans control the House, the Senate and the presidency, and it's incumbent on them to pass legislation that we need.
Now, they are refusing, they put before us a continuing resolution that doesn't deal with the priorities of the American people. The American people, by 85 percent to 95 percent want the children who are brought here, not deported, we want to take care of the Dreamers.
They want to the children's health insurance program to be workable, which means we need funding and the resolution for community health center. Well, we didn't have any funding for community health centers or for disproportionately served hospitals, which means there will be no service for these kids. It didn't deal with the health care for veterans.
So, I'm not going to vote for a bill that doesn't deal with what the American people want and what the American people need.
BURNETT: All right.
NADLER: And if the Republicans want, want to pass the bill, let them do it with their votes. Let them put in decent things that other people can vote for. And remember, they are repudiating the American people by putting out a bill that doesn't include what the American people, by overwhelming majorities, want.
BURNETT: Right. Although, of course, just to make it clear for our viewers, there is not an immediate deadline on Dreamers. They do have more than a month to deal with that, if they wanted to.
Thank you very much, Congressman. I appreciate your time.
And next, the breaking news, new information about the Russia probe. A top Democrat saying there's serious allegation about money laundering. What are they? Is there anything to it?
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BURNETT: Breaking news tonight in the Russia investigation. Crucial testimony from the co-founder of Fusion GPS, Glenn Simpson. That's the firm behind the controversial dossier on Donald Trump and his possible ties to Russia.
[19:55:03] The Intelligence Committee releasing the transcripts tonight. And the top Democrat on the committee says that they, quote, reveal serious allegations that the Trump Organization may have engaged in money laundering with Russian nationals.
Senior congressional correspondent Manu Raju is OUTFRONT.
And, Manu, what else can you tell us about the testimony itself?
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Glenn Simpson's testimony goes into detail about how it decided to go about hiring and bringing on Christopher Steele, that British -- former British agent who did put together that Russian dossier and how about Steele and the firm Fusion GPS went about investigating what they believe was suspicious activity between people in the Trump world and Russia.
They went into a number of areas in which there were Russian oligarchs and their ties to people in Trump's inner circle, as well as questionable real estate transactions that occurred that, in the eyes of both Simpson and Democrats on the committee could lead to suggestions that there may have been money laundering through Russian nationals via these Trump real estate deals.
Now, these are allegations that were laid out in this lengthy transcript after the committee agreed to release it. Earlier today, Republicans are saying, Erin, that these are just allegations. There's no evidence of wrongdoing, but there's enough here that Democrats say that they should fuel the investigation going forward to look into any possible money ties between Trump and the Russians.
BURNETT: Obviously, a crucial question.
Before you go, Manu, the House Intelligence Committee was supposed to meet with Hope Hicks. That was abruptly postponed. Do you know why?
RAJU: Yes, the reason why is because there were concerns within the committee that perhaps you could pull a Steve Bannon. Bannon, as you recall earlier this week refused to answer questions about the transition period and saying that the White House had not authorized him to speak about those times in order to preserve its use of executive privilege.
Well, the committee was uncertain whether Hope Hicks would do the same thing. So, they have -- tomorrow, Erin, that testimony was abruptly canceled and they are saying it's another effort to derail this investigation, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Manu, thank you very much. And I want to go now to the former ethics lawyer for President George W. Bush, Richard Painter. Richard, if the Trump Organization did engage in money laundering with Russian nationals as is suggested here, if, how much trouble could President Trump be in? And I guess if there's no quid pro quo for helping the campaign, it just happened that there was money laundering at some point, what does that mean right now for the president?
RICHARD PAINTER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE ETHICS LAWYER: Money laundering is a criminal offense. This isn't the first time we've heard this brought up. Steve Bannon apparently referred to the Russian investigation focusing on money laundering in his interviews in the Michael Wolff book.
And also, we see that President Trump is very upset anytime Robert Mueller wants to get near his money, and I think we know why. And I think we know why Robert Mueller wants to do exactly that.
Now, who gets in trouble depends on who engaged in the money laundering, who authorized it if there was money laundering, whether it occurred, whether the statute of limitations has passed or not. But money laundering is a very serious criminal offense when it does occur.
So, we'll find out who, if anybody engaged in money laundering and what the consequences are.
BURNETT: And I guess what I'm trying to understand is, if they find money laundering, but they do not find a quid pro quo or anything that then leads to collusion itself, what does that mean criminally for the president?
PAINTER: Well, you don't need a quid pro quo for money laundering. If there is money laundering, it's violation of criminal statutes whoever engaged in it or authorized it.
BURNETT: So, so a sitting president could be prosecuted for that, separate from Russian collusion?
PAINTER: Oh, absolutely, yes. Money laundering is an offense that takes place with some regularity. It has nothing to do with collusion to -- in federal elections, but it could be related. Relationship, financial relationship with the Russians could involve money laundering, that's what Robert Mueller's going to find out. It's certainly within the proper scope of his investigation.
But we'll find out what money laundering occurred if it did occur. But there need not be any quid pro quo. It need not have anything to do with an election to be a criminal offense.
BURNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much. That obviously makes a lot of questions people would have had here clear.
Richard Painter, as always, thank you.
BURNETT: And the breaking news, the continuing resolution to keep the government open passing the House, now to a completely uncertain -- what's going to happen here in the Senate. The government, of course, could close in 24 hours.
Thank you for joining us. Don't forget, you can watch the show anytime on CNN Go.
Anderson picks up our coverage now with "AC360".