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CONNECT THE WORLD
Zuckerberg Apologizes for Breach, Facebook Threat to Democracy, Water Crisis in Cape Town, China's Response to President Trump's Imposition of Tariff on China, Rebel Fighters Leaving Eastern Ghouta, John Dowd Resigns From President's Legal Team. Aired 11-12n ET
Aired March 22, 2018 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MARK ZUCKERBERG, FOUNDER, FACEBOOK: This was a major breach of trust and I'm really sorry that this happened.
BECKY ANDERSON, ANCHOR, CONNECT THE WORLD: A carefully worded apology for a crisis that threatens the spiral out of control. Facebook's chief, Mark
Zuckerberg breaking his silence in an exclusive TV interview with CNN.
This this as I speak to the woman who calls Facebook a threat to democracy, the EU's justice commissioner on this show this hour.
Also, talking tariffs and a potential trade war in just over an hour's time. US President Trump will reveal his next step against China.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... and the question is, how could Cape Town, a city founded because of its water face the dire prospect of running out.
ANDERSON: Water worries in South Africa and what they mean for the region.
Hello and welcome. you're watching "Connect The World.", I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi where the time is as ever, when we start the show 7 o'clock in
For days, Mark Zuckerberg said nothing while lawmakers and investors demanded answers. Well, now the Facebook CEO has finally spoken to CNN
over the Cambridge Analytica scandal and how 15 million Facebook users had their personal information accessed and used without their knowledge.
We have that exclusive interview in just a moment.
First, Drew Griffin takes a closer look at what is this data scandal.
(START VIDEO TAPE)
DREW GRIFFIN, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: The reason Facebook is under fire is the ease with which a researcher was able to use Facebook to harvest the
personal information of tens of millions of Americans, then transfer all that personal information to a data analytics company that would eventually
work for Donald Trump's campaign.
That firm, Cambridge Analytica denies any of its work on the 2016 election used the Facebook data to target voters. But Christopher Wylie, the former
UK-based Cambridge Analytica employee turned whistleblower says that the core of the company's activities was the access Facebook provided.
CHRISTOPHER WYLIE, FORMER CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA EMPLOYEE: So, we went from no data to you know, harvesting all of this data off of Facebook and then
combining it with all the consumer data sets and voter data sets, so you know, we had sort of a -- you know, Steve Bannon and a billionaire
breathing down our necks trying to you know go, "Where's the data? Where's the algorithms? Where's our information weapons?" And that's where Kogan
came along -- Aleksandr Kogan, the Professor at Cambridge.
GRIFFIN: Aleksandr Kogan is the Cambridge University researcher who in 2014 developed an app, a Facebook personality test called "This Is Your
Digital Life." Two hundred seventy thousand people voluntarily took the personality test, but what no one who took the test knew is that Kogan's
app opened the door to all their personal information and to all of those voluntary Facebook responders' friends and their friends and so on. Tens
of millions of people.
Facebook says Kogan misled them, that he was supposed to only use the data for research. Instead, he collected it and sold it, but Kogan doesn't
believe he did anything wrong.
ALEKSANDR KOGAN, CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY RESEARCHER: Because the reality is that our app wasn't special. It was completely commonplace, so there
thousands, if not tens of thousands of apps doing the exact same thing.
GRIFFIN: Now, the Attorneys General of at least three states are demanding answers. Congress demanding Facebook, CEO, Mark Zuckerberg testify. Even
government officials in the UK want executives from Facebook and Cambridge Analytica to explain how a research app led to the exploitation of the
personal data of millions. Drew Griffin, CNN, Atlanta.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
ANDERSON: And to that exclusive now with Mark Zuckerberg. CNN's Laurie Segall, my colleague, sat down with the Facebook CEO. She asked him about
the damage of trust that Facebook users are now feeling. Have a listen.
(START VIDEO TAPE)
LAURIE SEGALL, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Facebook has asked us to share our data, to share our lives on this platform, and has wanted us to be
transparent, and people don't feel like they've received that same amount of transparency. They're wondering what's happening to their data? Can
they trust Facebook?
ZUCKERBERG: Yes, so, one of the most important things that I think we need to do here is make sure that we tell everyone whose data was affected by
one of these rogue apps and we're going to do that. We're going to build a tool where anyone can go and see if their data was a part of this, but...
SEGALL: So, the 15 million people that were impacted, they will be able to tell if they were impacted by this.
ZUCKERBERG: Yes, and we're going to be even concerned on that. So, you know, we may not have all the data in our system today, so anyone...
ZUCKERBERG: ... whose data might have been affected by this, we're going to make sure that we tell. And going forward, when we identify apps that
are similarly doing sketchy things, we're going make sure that we tell people then too. That's definitely something that looking back on this, I
regret that we didn't do at the time.
And I think we got that wrong and we're committed to getting that right going forward.
SEGALL: I want to ask about that, because when this came to light, you guys knew this a long time ago, that this data was out there. Why didn't
you tell users? Don't you think users have the right to know that their data is being used for different purposes?
ZUCKERBERG: So, yes and let me tell you what we -- what actions we took. So, in 2015, some journalists from "The Guardian" told us that they had
seen or had some evidence that data that this app developer, Aleksandr Kogan, who built this personality quiz app and a bunch of people used it
and shared data with it had sold that data to Cambridge Analytica and a few other firms.
When we heard that -- and that's against the policies, right? You can't share data in a way that people don't know or don't consent to. We
immediately banned Kogan's app.
And further, we made it so that Kogan and Cambridge Analytica and the other folks with whom he shared the data, we asked for a formal certification
that they had none of the data from anyone in the Facebook community, that they deleted it, if they had it and that they weren't using it and they all
provided that certification.
So, as far as we understood around the time of that episode, there was data out there.
SEGALL: So why didn't Facebook follow up? You know, you say you certified it, I think, why wasn't there more of a follow-up? Why wasn't there an
audit then? Why did it take a big media report to get that proactive approach?
ZUCKERBERG: Well, I mean, I don't know about you, but I am used to when people legally certify that they're going to do something, that they do it.
But I think that this was clearly a mistake, in retrospect.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
ANDERSON: That was Mark Zuckerberg speaking to Laurie Segall, who we will hear from a little later this hour. Right now, CNN's Isa Soares on the
story. She has developments from London and not just London but reaction in Europe to what some are seeing as a mealy-mouthed mea culpa, Isa?
ISA SOARES, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Very much so, Becky. For many people, Zuckerberg simply hasn't gone far enough and we did hear him there say very
quickly he was sorry, but if you listen to the rest of the interview, if you see statement on Facebook, online, Becky, you see that he also is
presenting himself a bit of a -- a bit of being manipulated by the likes or as a victim of manipulation, I should say, by the likes of Professor Kogan
and Cambridge Analytica.
But for many people, the problem is, Becky, that he didn't answer the fundamental questions, which was, he knew back in 2015, as he said in --
just now, "The Guardian" had told him that Cambridge Analytica had this data. Why didn't they do something about it? Why didn't Facebook contact
those 15 million people back then in 2015?
This audit seems to taking a rather long time, and critically, why is he sending -- why is he passing on all this information to apps, Becky? He
doesn't -- Facebook doesn't make money out of this. Facebook makes this bread and butter out of advertising and then critically, why has it taken
him so long to speak out when he knew that this expose was going to come out?
He got the heads up from the likes of "New York Times" and "The Guardian" so you can feel how people feel that they've been hard done by this lack of
Let me show you some comments that people have been tweeting out. Mateo in Italy had this to say. "It's to ask forgiveness than permission, isn't it,
Mark?" And then another tweet, "Mark Zuckerberg's apology rings hollow." Says Eugene. "Facebook has almost single handedly destroyed our
constitutional right to privacy and helped an American dictator steal an election. We need democracy back." And then, from Antonio Tajani, EU
President who we have been speaking to all this week, he said, "Mark Zuckerberg's statement is a step in the right direction, but many questions
remain unanswered. I look forward to him giving further explanations before the elected representative of over 500 million European citizens."
Tajani referring there to -- he's been calling on Mark Zuckerberg to come to Europe and to testify and to answer some of those questions, Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, and he said he would testify before Congress if he thought it was appropriate, and if he was told what the goal was. So again,
suggesting he would, but then he also needed some answers himself.
So, that's Congress in the US and the Europeans asking that he do the same.
Cambridge Analytica is clearly under fire...
ANDERSON: ... but its suspended CEO, I gather, is already looking beyond this. Explain.
SOARES: Very much so. So, he was -- he stepped down or he was pushed out on Tuesday, if you remember, but there's a new company that's been set up,
it's called AmiData, if we can bring up just to show people exactly how we know about this.
This is all public. This is AmiData Limited, so the power players behind Cambridge Analytica, Becky, and its parent company, the SCL Group, they're
the same power players behind AmiData. It was registered last summer.
If you look closely, probably, you would see, you've got Rebekeh and Jennifer Mercer. They are the daughters of billionaire Robert Mercer who
founded Cambridge Analytica and was a donor for the Trump Campaign.
They will register on Tuesday, the day -- next, the former CEO of Cambridge Analytica was taken out. Then we've got Julian Wheatland, who is the
chairman of Cambridge Analytica, parent company SCL and this is what I found most interesting.
There is a Mr. Johnson Ko Chun Shun and he's a Deputy Chairman, Becky of Frontier Services Group.
Now, Frontier is a private security firm chaired by Trump supporter, Eric Prince who is known, many people will have known him for founding the
military group, Blackwater.
And in terms of the nature of the company, will they be doing something very different from Cambridge Analytica, it doesn't seem so. It says it is
data processing, hosting, and related activity.
So, perhaps, Becky, just a bit of rebranding from the likes of Cambridge Analytica.
ANDERSON: Fascinating. Isa, thank you. There will be more on this a little later in this show, as I said.
Now, US President Donald Trump expected to announce tough new trade tariffs against China in the coming hours, a move that could see tariffs slapped on
$60 billion worth of Chinese goods.
China is pushing back. China's Foreign Ministry warning it will retaliate to protect its interests, suggesting it would put tariffs on US soya beans,
airplanes, cars, and cotton.
And so Matt Rivers, who is in Beijing. Soya beans, cars and cotton -- China sound like it knows exactly what to target, Matt.
MATT RIVERS, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Without question and they definitely know where not only it can hurt American economic interest, but also hit certain
political pressure points that might make their way all the way to the White House.
What we're hearing from Beijing is that they are not in favor of these tariffs, that's not a surprise, they're going to retaliate in some way,
shape, or form if these tariffs do in fact, go forward. That's not surprise.
But what perhaps is a little bit surprising is how the Chinese are now also measuring their tones, given the vast amount of tools that they could use
to hurt the American economy. The Chinese are saying, "We're going to respond in kind, but we don't want a trade war. Trade wars are bad for
everyone, so we're going to try and lower the temperature by not responding too much."
Now, we don't know exactly what the Chinese government is preparing to do, but should they decide that they really want to retaliate, Becky, they
really can. I mean, look at American agricultural exports to China, for example, $12.4 billion worth of soy beans alone, believe it or not, was
exported from the United States to China in 2017 alone, largely from states that voted for Donald Trump in 2016.
Should the Chinese government want to restrict that access, that's going to hurt farmers in the states that voted for Donald Trump. The Chinese
government know that but how far they're willing to retaliate, how much they're willing to risk a potential trade war doesn't seem like they want
to escalate this any more than they have to.
ANDERSON: Yes, it's fascinating isn't it, Matt, and I wonder whether there has been any hint of concessions from the Chinese leadership. After all,
we've seen what looked like relatively good relationship between the US President and the Chinese President.
Donald Trump says that the trade between China and the US is simply unfair. He's looking to do better. We know America First is where he's at. That
was the man that he got elected on. Any concessions likely from the Chinese other than, I mean, rather than this what looks like more tit for
tat than anything sort of much more pervasive at this point.
RIVERS: I think you very well could see some concessions from the Chinese government. It was just a couple of days ago that we heard Premier Li
Keqiang in his annual press conference talk about how they want to open up Chinese markets more to American companies, how they want to level the
playing field, and we've heard from Chinese officials that they know that this trade imbalance between the United States and China that it is around
$400 billion or so is not sustainable...
RIVERS: ... and so they have made certain promises, but it is important to note that we've heard those promises from Chinese officials before. And Li
Keqiang at that press conference didn't give any time frame when he says, "Yes, we're going to open up investment restrictions here in China for
foreign companies and we're allow more foreign investment."
Well, for them to say that, but where's is the timeframe? When is that going to happen and that is what American business owners here in China
that I've spoken to who operate in this market say, "Look, we want this -- we need access to this market, but we're frustrated because the Chinese
government doesn't seem to want to allow that to happen."
We were talking about protectionism as the Chinese government that is the original protectionist government, not the United States.
So, does this change things? Does a harder line policy from the Trump administration force China's hand? Perhaps, but it hasn't so far.
ANDERSON: Fascinating. Thank you, Matt. Matt is in Beijing for you.
Now, buses are rumbling out of eastern Ghouta in Syria today, carrying hundreds of rebel fighters. They have agreed to evacuate their former
stronghold near Damascus after weeks of heavy aerial bombardment that left more than 1,500 people dead.
The Syrian regime with Russia's help is trying to flush out rebel fighters from what is the last remaining number of areas under their control. Both
Syria and Russia agreed to provide safe passage for the fighters and their families.
CNN's Jomana Karadsheh following developments tonight from across the border in Jordan.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Becky, this is the first evacuation deal for eastern Ghouta. As we understand it, this deal was finalized. It
was between the group, Ahrar al-Sham, that's the rebel group that was in control of Harasta, one of the three pockets of eastern Ghouta that
remained under rebel control. They struck this deal with the government finalized on Wednesday.
Under this deal, rebel fighters, their family members, and other civilians who want to leave Harasta are given safe passage out to the northern part
of the country to rebel held areas there.
According to state media, these evacuations started on Thursday. Now, this certainly is going to add more pressure on the other rebel groups that
control the two other pockets of eastern Ghouta. What are they going to do now? Are they also going to reach these kinds of agreements with the
The Syrian regime has been criticized in the past for these evacuation deals that some call surrender deals where they basically besiege areas,
bomb them and starve the population until an agreement is reached to evacuate the fighters and the regime recaptures these areas.
Now, this is all happening at the same time as we're still seeing thousands of civilians leaving eastern Ghouta through the humanitarian corridors that
were established by the Syrian regime and their Russian allies.
According to the United Nations and other aid groups, they say that more than 50,000 people have left Eastern Ghouta in recent days. They say that
those leaving are coming out really terrified, exhausted, malnourished, thirsty, in need of medical care, but most of all, they're really feeling
uncertain about their future. They're really concerned about what the future holds for them and when they arrive, they're put in these temporary
accommodations, these shelters that aid groups say are ill-equipped and overcrowded.
The main concern now for refugee and for these aid groups is that they're expecting tens of thousands more to be escaping the fighting in eastern
Ghouta in the coming days and they're really concerned about the ability to accommodate those fleeing.
In the words of one of those aid groups, the Norwegian Refugee Council, they say they fear the worst is still to come, Becky.
ANDERSON: Jomana Karadsheh, on the story for you. Coming up, we're going to have a lot more of CNN's exclusive interview with the CEO of Facebook.
We will talk to our journalist who sat down with Mark Zuckerberg and that is just ahead.
ANDERSON: You're here with CNN, this is "Connect The World" with me, Becky Anderson. It is 22 minutes past seven, in the UAE, this is our Middle East
broadcasting hub and if you're just joining us, you are very welcome.
Let me get you back to what is our top story this hour, and CNN's exclusive TV interview with Mark Zuckerberg.
The Facebook CEO is speaking out after days of mounting pressure over the Cambridge Analytica data scandal. Now, as lawmakers in the US and Europe
demand answers, Mr. Zuckerberg told us he is happy to testify before Congress.
He said, the short answer is, "I am happy to if it's the right thing to do. What we should try to do is send the person at Facebook who will have the
most knowledge, if that's me, then I am happy to go."
He did follow up by saying, he'd need to know what the goal of any testimony would be.
CNN's Laurie Segall, who sat down with Mark Zuckerberg, joins us now live. She is still in San Francisco. Laurie, good to have you on the show.
An apology of sorts. Let's just start with that. Was he genuine? You sat down with him. You spent time with him. This is the first time we'd seen
him. He'd been conspicuous by his absence. Was this genuine?
SEGALL: Look, I certainly think he's feeling the pressure and I certainly think that -- people at Facebook are taking this incredibly seriously
because they have to. But beyond the business, they're losing consumer trust.
I think when all of us saw that 15 million user number, wondering if our data was inadvertently used for a political campaign, I mean, people just
kind of shaking their heads and saying, "I don't know if I trust Facebook anymore."
And Mark lives and breathes Facebook in a way that you know, you think Mark Zuckerberg, you think Facebook; you think Facebook, you think Mark
Zuckerberg. You know, he genuinely does care.
The problem is, he hasn't really been out there much. He hasn't put himself out there publicly. He's very involved behind the scenes, but he
hasn't spoken out so much so that the whole world was asking, "Where is Mark Zuckerberg?" And he immediately started out this interview with an
I think the question is, he might be sorry, but what next? What are they going to do? And is it going to make a difference?
ANDERSON; So, we've seen a lot of conversation about this today. It is a narrative, doing the rounds around the world, much of which suggested that
was a was a pretty mealy-mouthed mea culpa.
It certainly seems that what he is trying to imply that this was bad actors taking advantage of Facebook, but Laurie, this is Facebook's business
model, isn't it?
Zuckerberg says it isn't selling users' data, but in the simplest of terms, if you will, what exactly is it doing for advertisers, including political
SEGALL: Right, I mean, in short, I said this to him, it's almost as if your business...
SEGALL: ...model is on trial because selling third-party data is your business and a lot of people have predicted for a long time that something
like this could happen. And I mean, it goes beyond that.
You know, I was out here months ago with the Vice President of News Feed when they were talking about "time well spent on the platform." They came
to the conclusion that people weren't spending good time on the platform. They were passively scrolling through videos, that there are studies coming
out that was impacting mental health, and so they were tweaking the algorithm.
This was the news to essentially say, "You know, we're not going to try to optimize for eyeballs and that's going to take a business hit."
So, they did take a hit then. They took a hit now. You know, investors are really, really questioning the inherent value of the company, which is
a big deal, because this company is, you know, one of the most powerful companies in the world.
ANDERSON: Sure. And they're questioning that because we are seeing moves to tax these big tech companies in Europe, in Canada, possibly in North
America, who knows going forward, and great price now about whether these companies can self-regulate.
Shelly Palmer, a tech consultant and commentator you know his work well. He has written his own op-ed titled, "Facebook is having a rough week," and
Laurie, he writes, and I quote, "Mark Zuckerberg is a world leader. He governs a meta-country with approximately two billion citizens. The
citizens of Facebook are the wealthiest people on earth. They pay taxes with their data." "At some point," he says, "The citizens of Facebook are
going to want to have a say in how their tax data is spent. At the moment, the meta-country of Facebook is subject to the laws and regulations of the
physical countries, its physical citizens live in. If Facebook doesn't lead, others will fill the vacuum."
What does happen next?
SEGALL: Well, what a fascinating, you know, and I'm hearing that too. Someone here who is the CEO of a big company said to me, he didn't want me
to put his name out there but he said, "You know, these tech companies, mine included, we are like the modern day democratic institutions," and I
thought to myself, but do we all get a say? We're on the platform. Do we get a say with what happens to our data? Do we know our worth?
And I think, you know, I think looking at what's happened in the last week or so, I think it's clear that the answer is no.
But this is, you know, this is what we signed up for, we think. But you know what? I've got to say, I think the next phase for Facebook is going
to be really fascinating, and you know, the idea of self-regulating -- when I spoke to Mark and I was almost sure he was going to say, "No, regulation
You know, he said, "I think we do need some regulation." He was talking about political ad transparency and that was surprising because, you know,
they haven't always taken that stance. That's a new stance for them.
And I think this is a humbling moment, but you know, we're looking at data and privacy. We're looking at the weaponization of these platforms over
the last year for political gain.
You know, lawmakers are fed up, and I think consumers are fed up, so I do think, you know, it's going to be beyond just tech founders saying I am
going to do a better job or at least sending their lawyers, I would say, to Congress to say "I'm going to do a better job."
You know, I think we're going to start seeing, in this new era where tech companies are incredibly powerful, where they are almost the modern day
democratic institutions, I think we are going to start seeing regulation in many different forms.
Now, what Mark did say to me which I think is noteworthy is he said, you know, there's good regulation and there's bad regulation. I spoke to the
founder of Twitter and Medium, Evan Williams. He said the exact same thing to me. You know, I think people here are becoming more comfortable with
the idea that these platforms are so powerful, they do need some type of regulation.
I think it's going to -- you know, regulation is a big word, I think it's time to figure out the right kind.
ANDERSON; Yes. Fascinating. Well, well done for cracking the nod on what was an exclusive TV interview. It's been massively interesting and useful
for all of us as we try to come to terms with where this story goes next and what happens. Laurie, thank you.
Coming up, I asked the US congresswoman who introduced a data protection act last year, are big tech companies a danger to democracy? That is next.
BRIANNA MARIE KEILAR, ANCHOR, CNN: Did that mean that some people were on their way out? Did that mean that Dowd was going to resign? It seemed as
if there was a pushback on that. We know now that that was very much true, Shimon and this is huge. This is the top lawyer on the President's team
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER, CNN: That's right. Not only is this the top lawyer on the President's team, but this is the person who
the Trump lawyers have given every indication to us who has been communicating with the Mueller team who has this previous relationship with
Mueller and you know, to us -- to those of us who have been covering this are not surprised by this move.
Certainly, we expect there to be other resignations, other shake-ups within the legal team. Some of the members of the legal team took issue with the
President's recent hire of this recent lawyer that was brought on to the team.
You know, John Dowd, this weekend, sort of caused a stir after he made some comments to the "Daily Beast," then walked them back, basically taking
issue with the Mueller investigation, and John Dowd has really been sort of seen as this guy who's been communicating with the President, trying to
keep things calm, trying to keep the President sort of in line, and this is -- though is not a surprise to many of us.
It's certainly is going to create some rifts within the team that's ongoing. There are problems on this legal team. We have said so much. We
have reported on a lot of the various views on how the President should be handling the investigation, the views on whether the President should meet
with Bob Mueller, whether he should be interviewed, questioned by investigators from Bob Mueller's team.
But certainly, you know, we know also that the President has been out there shopping, looking for other people to join his legal team. Some people
hesitant to join the legal team for a variety of reasons. The President is also just not a very easy client. He's not someone who listens to his
lawyers. We've seen that based off of some of the tweets, some of the things he has said publicly to reporters and press conferences and gaggles.
So, all of that certainly creates a lot of problems when you have attorneys who are trying to convey a certain message, try to constrain their clients
from saying things that could potentially hurt themselves.
KEILAR: And that is, I mean, that's clearly the frustration that John Dowd had, right? I mean, he is someone who seems to adhere to a sort of common
sense approach legally. It had been reported that he did not believe that the President should actually sit down with the Special Counsel.
He was clearly worried that this wasn't going to turn out in the right way for the President, although the President has promised that he is going to
sit down with the Special Counsel.
So, Shimon, when you look at that, when you look at someone like John Dowd is out and then you look at a couple of new legal additions, one of them
being Joe Digenova, who has trafficked in a conspiracy theory about the FBI and targeting President Trump, what does that tell you about the direction
of this legal team?
PROKUPECZ: Well, it tells us that you know, maybe the President wants...
PROKUPECZ: ... someone who is willing to more state the things that he wants to be said. I think John Dawd and Ty Cobb, who is the other attorney
here, their approach has been to sort of try to keep things peaceful, try to go at it through negotiations.
You know, even Ty Cobb and John Dowd have had differing opinions on whether, at least from our reporting, on how much the President should
cooperate, on whether the President should sit down with the Special Counsel.
Look, you can usually do get these kinds of situations on legal teams when you have so many different lawyers involved in a case like this. You're
going to have varying opinions, but it's very rare that we see it play out like this so publicly.
I mean, there really has been so much intrigue into what's going on with these lawyers, what they're thinking, how they're handling things, but the
key thing here, Brianna, is they have an unbelievable task in trying to manage a client, the President, who just can't be managed.
KEILAR: Very good point. Shimon, thank you so much. If you can stand by for us as we dissect this Breaking News that the top lawyer on the
President's personal legal team to deal with the Mueller probe is now out.
Nia-Malika Henderson, Michael Zeldin with me to talk about the politics and the legal implications of this respectively.
Okay, Michael, this maybe wasn't unexpected, even though we'd been hearing pushback, even from John Dowd himself. "No, no. Everything's copacetic."
Okay, well it's not.
And we saw some legal additions to the team. I think we've even seen this before when it was the Trump campaign that you would see new additions come
in, "Nothing to see here," and then the next thing you knew, the campaign manager was gone.
Okay, so maybe not entirely a surprise that this happened, but how significant is this to you?
MICHAEL ZELDIN, LEGAL ANALYST, CNN: It's going to be clear how significant it is when we keep our eyes on Ty Cobb. If Ty Cobb goes, it means that the
President is shifting his strategy, because Ty Cobb and John Dowd, though they differed a little bit, were cooperation, get this over with, there's
no there, there, and let's put this behind us.
Joe Digenova brings a whole different mindset to this, so if Joe now represents the new theory, we're going to fight, we may not submit
ourselves to an interview. This is a witch hunt. And Dowd and then Ty Cobb are out, then we'll -- then there's a whole new paradigm.
KEILAR: Also, I just want to -- we've just gotten a statement in from Jay Sekulow, who is also a lawyer on the President's team. "John Dowd is a
friend and has been a valuable member of our legal team. We will continue our ongoing representation of the President and our cooperation with the
Office of Special Counsel."
I mean, the question is, what kind of representation, right? And I wonder, for even people who are in the President's team or sorry in his corner, but
maybe worry a little bit about some of his free-wheeling style when it comes to dealing with taking on Robert Mueller lately. We'd seen him
really go after the Special Counsel on Twitter.
NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON, SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER, CNN: Right.
KEILAR: Which was something...
ANDERSON: All right, so, breaking news from our US colleagues that Donald Trump's lead lawyer in the Russia probe has resigned. And with that and
this next story with my next guest, bear with me, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg apologizing for not doing enough to stop a company from
collecting data on tens of millions of users without their knowledge.
This is our lead story today, but in a TV exclusive, he told CNN that Facebook is taking action to make sure it never happens again. Well, the
EU Justice Commissioner says Facebook would dodge tough new EU privacy sanctions.
That's if any violations in the Cambridge Analytica case are proven by regulators in Europe. Why? You ask yourselves? Well, because EU
regulations cannot be applied in this case.
Vera Jourovo told to Bloomberg TV that she's not happy at all about this case. which is not just about data protection breaches, but it's out a
threat to democracy. Big deal. Let's see what a US lawmaker thinks of all of this.
Joining me now is Representative Debbie Dingell. She introduced the Data Protection Act of 2017 in Congress. She is live from Capitol Hill right
now and before we talk, all things Facebook and big data, your response to this Breaking News to Donald Trump's lead lawyer in the Russia probe has
DEBBIE DINGELL, CONGRESSWOMAN FOR MICHIGAN, DEMOCRAT: Well, I can't say that it surprises me. As the previous commentator was talking about, it is
very difficult for anybody to manage President Trump, to know what's going to happen next and I think his lawyers were genuinely concerned. I don't
think that they realized the gravity or that he, the president, understands the gravity of some of the accusations against him and have been trying to
manage it, not have it blow up.
DINGELL: So, clearly, there are going to be different personalities now that are in charge. His lawyer that resigned today, I think was trying to
get him to stop calling for the firing of the Special Prosecutor, which, if the President ever does that, will have the same consequences as that what
happened during Watergate.
ANDERSON: All right. Well, thank you for that and thank you for -- I mean, obviously, Breaking News this hour and we needed to discuss that and
I get your response. I also want to get your response to all of what is going on with regards to Racebook.
Mark Zuckerberg spoke to CNN in the past 24 hours. He said he would be happy to testify before Congress if it's the right thing to do. The
question would be, he says, what is the goal?
Now, we hear from the Europeans, we know that the -- Facebook would dodge any new privacy sanctions imposed by the EU for a number of reasons, and
one of the lawmakers in Europe effectively says that that is, you know, this company is a threat to democracy.
Do you want to see Mark Zuckerberg, who is Facebook, at the end of the day, testify, and if so, what would or should the goal be? That's his question.
DINGELL: Well, first of all, I don't think it's up to Mark Zuckerberg to decide if it's a good thing for us to hear from him and what the impact
that Facebook is having on our society.
This was a huge data breach, and I think too many people don't understand what we are giving up in terms of privacy. If you talked about what
happened at Facebook, you may think you're going into your settings and saying you want your data private, but if you've got a friend who has got a
weak link, who doesn't believe in privacy, that gives someone else access to your privacy simply because you're their friend.
And I am very concerned. I did introduce legislation, as you said last year that would empower our FTC, which is our agency here, to look at what
these privacy issues are and to start to put some regulation in, but I also don't think that you ask the fox in the hen house to decide what's a good
regulation and what's a bad regulation.
I think too many people in this world are not understanding what they are giving up in terms of privacy. As we go to all these newfangled gadgets
that are in people's homes and you ask all of these questions, are you going have a television that's going to have a higher brand and it's going
track what you like, they're also tracking what's going on in your household. They're tracking many of your personal private habits.
I don't think that anybody's business, and it certainly shouldn't be sold to another company for money. When people say they value your privacy, is
it a monetary value? Or is it a moral value?
ANDERSON: Fascinating. Congresswoman, I want to read you part of an opinion piece written by the journalist, Yasha Levine. He just wrote the
piece, "The Cambridge Analytica Con" for "The Baffler." He writes that we need to look at this in the context of, and I quote, "Our decades-long
complacency over Silicon Valley's business model. The fact is that companies like Facebook and Google," he wrote,"... are the real malicious
actors here. They are vital public communications systems that run on profiling and manipulation for private profit without any regulation or
democratic oversight from the society in which it operates." Agree?
DINGELL: I do agree. I think we have been complacent. I have been talking about this for years, that we don't understand what we are doing
and the privacy that we're giving up and this Silicon Valley sort of -- everybody thinks that they walk on water.
This is the future of our societies and how we are being manipulated, and these are important institutions, and we need to identify and understand
what they are doing. We have to understand it and make sure we are part of their platform and the direction that they are taking.
And that we, everyday people are not being manipulated, but that we know what they are doing.
ANDERSON: Quick question. Do you use Facebook? Briefly? Yes or no?
DINGELL: Oh, you can see me post. I do my own postings on my political personal. I use Facebook every day.
DINGELL: It allows me track what people are thinking. But I do it by -- I don't know by accessing their data. I do it because they comment. I ask
them what do you think? And they tell me and it's a transparent process. This companies don't have an experienced process.
ANDERSON: Okay, we got it. We've heard you and we appreciate you coming on. Thank you for that. I want to get us back our colleagues in the US...
ANDERSON: ... with the breaking news that we heard this hour that Donald Trump's lead lawyer in the Russian probe has resigned. Let's listen in to
-- not listen in, let's get you back to our colleagues who are discussing that in Washington.
KEILAR: ... from Dowd himself about whether there were going to be changes to the legal team and about whether the President was unhappy with the
direction of his legal team. This is speaking volumes here. Dowd had resigned. It is very clear that this is going to shake things up and maybe
even change the direction of the President's legal team's pursuit in how they are responding and reacting to the Special Counsel.
I want to bring in right now, CNN's chief political analyst, Gloria Borger, you actually spoke with John Dowd.
GLORIA BORGER, CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST, CNN: Right. John Dowd, you know said to me, "I love the President and wish him well." I think this is
really reflective of the fact that the Dowd strategy, which has been to hand everything over to Mueller, deal with Mueller in a very professional
way. He and Ty Cobb have said to the President, "Hold back. Mind your manners. Do not attack Mueller." That shifted dramatically, I believe
after they got a list of sorts of the buckets of questions that the President was going to be asked that we reported on last night.
The legal team is in complete disarray. John Dowd, they brought in Joe Degenova who is very aggressive, who believes that there is a conspiracy
within the FBI and the Justice Department to get this President.
And he is more aggressive and I believer and know from my own reporting and Pamela Brown's reporting that John Dowd did not want to be co-counsel in
any way, shape or form with Joe Degenova.
And that his strategy is the strategy the President no longer believes in, and so he is going back to Plan A and Plan A is to attack.
KEILAR: It's very much that John Dowd was fed up with this, but it is also mutual in a way that his approach was not being appreciated?
BORGER: Right. Look, the President felt from our reporting that the strategy. He had listened to the lawyers and the lawyers said, "Hold back.
Hold back. Hold back. This is going to be over." Remember, we were hearing it's going to be over Thanksgiving. It's going to be over at
Christmas. It's going to be over in January.
That did not happen, so the President then sees, remember, they are in the middle of negotiating the President's potential testimony. Mueller hands
over to them or talks to them about the kinds of stuff he wants and the President gets upset and says, "This isn't working. This is going to
continue for quite some time. My attorneys have not led me in the right direction."
I should also say that Ty Cobb, who is the White House special counsel agrees with Dowd on that strategy and there's now great question about
whether Ty Cobb stays. I mean, you know Ty Cobb has indicated that he would like to stay through the President's testimony if the President does
But the President, again, is -- made it clear privately that he doesn't like the strategy they were pursuing, so the next person to leave could be
Ty Cobb. We just don't know at this point.
KEILAR: So, as we know that the top lawyer on the team, John Dowd is out.
KEILAR: That Ty Cobb is -- well, let's say his status is sort of unknown or it's really hanging in the balance here and we're waiting to see. Tell
us about some of the things that we had learned just recently that the Special Counsel was going to want to...
KEILAR: Look into?
BORGER: And let me just say one more thing about the lawyers. There is the Marc Kasowitz team. Let's talk about that just before -- which is the
Kasowitz have been very involved and then he kind of stepped back, you'll recall months ago and Kasowitz was always of the thought, "Let's be more
So, Kasowitz has never stepped back totally, but there is a question of whether they've become more involved now that you see Dowd leaving and it
wouldn't surprise me at all if that happened.
And as to the topics of what they want to talk about, they want to talk about you know, the Flynn firing and the Comey firing, obviously. Those
are kind of the bulk of the issues. The other issues are the meeting at Trump Towers. Don Junior's meeting at Trump Tower with the Russians, and
what occurred on Air Force One when the White House issued a very misleading statement about what had occurred at the Trump Tower meeting.
And so, those are pretty big buckets, and what the lawyers did was sort of extrapolate it and then -- among themselves kind of made a list of dozens
of questions or potential areas that the President might be asked.
Those are questions that could lead you to talk about obstruction or potentially collusion, so you see the President getting more and more
BORGER: ...thinking, "You know what? My lawyers were wrong. They led me into a lull that was false," and John Dowd was to blame for that he
believes in a large way, even though, remember last weekend, it was Dowd who tweeted and now we know at the behest of the President that I hope
Mueller you know, ends this case.
KEILER: Gloria Borger, who just spoke with John Dowd, the top lawyer on the President's legal team, who has now resigned. We are going to continue
covering this breaking news after a quick break.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She may have edgy woman's persona, but she's a savvy, self-made multibillionaire. Starting out in local news in the '70s, Oprah
Winfrey auditioned to be a Chicago talk show host.
OPRAH WINFREY, AMERICAN MEDIA PROPRIETOR: My name is Oprah Winfrey.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She got the job and took it national. It remains the highest rated daytime talk show in US history.
She delved into acting, getting an acting nomination for "The Color Purple." By 2003, Winfrey became the first black woman to make Forbes's
World's Richest People List. She launched her own TV channel in 2011 and it doesn't end there.
She has a partnership with Kraft Heinz to create Oprah products, and a stake in Weight Watchers. She has repeatedly said she won't run for
President, but after an impassioned Golden Globe speech and the Me Too Movement, some fans still have HOprah for 2020. And that's Oprah Winfrey
in 60 seconds.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As an actor, you have to face the public all the time. It's a job that give people's fantasies but also creates prejudices.
These prejudices are the scariest things. People judge a person alive or your image and it can affect the characters I play. Therefore, I try not
to showcase my personal life too much. In some ways, I think I may not have the best personality to be an actor. It doesn't matter much when I am
in front of the cameras, but once they go off, I feel embarrassed exposing my private life.
I like being natural, but I am worried there may be a misunderstanding, so that's why I tend to come off a little shy.
Twitter, let's talk about that, I don't do it at all.
I think it's really hard to just look at things as it is these days. I don't trust communication through the internet or social media.
KEILER: Breaking news, the top lawyer on the President's personal legal team is out -- has resigned. John Dowd is gone and I want to bring back
Shimon Prokupecz. You have some new details. What can you tell us?
PROKUPECZ: Yes, Brianna, I just wanted to make the point, just touching off of what Gloria Borger had said to you before the break, it seems that
something has happened since there was this -- we have reported on this face-to-face meeting between the Mueller team and some of Trump's lawyers,
where some of these questions came up about some of what they have been looking at and seems to me, ever since then that something has certainly
shifted here with the strategy on behalf of the President, and also you know, you have to keep in mind, if things were coming to an end as some of
the lawyers, some of the Trump's lawyers have been saying, why the need for lawyers to now start leaving.
And so that to me is also a pretty significant thing here.
KEILAR: All right, we will -- we know that you are going to keep digging with your sources, Shimon Prokupecz. Thank you and we'll have more
breaking news after a quick break.