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Democrats Says Russia Probe Hindered by Partisan Grievances; Mueller Interview with Trump Still in the Works; Man Walks 20 Miles to Work Receives CEO's Personal Car as a Gift. Aired 10:30-11a ET
Aired July 19, 2018 - 10:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:33:18] POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back. New details on the Russia investigation just in to CNN. Some Democrats crying foul after a former Trump aide who agreed to be interviewed has canceled. Manu Raju is following that on the Hill.
What's the story?
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, after the House Intelligence Committee, Republicans pulled the plug on the Russia investigation in March of this year, Democrats on that committee thought they could still do it on their own. Well, they've run into a number of hurdles both significant and both petty.
On the significant side, Congressman Adam Schiff, the top Democrat in the committee, told me that he wants to share transcripts of the witness interviews that have occurred during the Russia investigation with Bob Mueller's team because he believes some of these witnesses may have lied, he believes. There may be evidence of a crime. But he says that he's been denied sharing that information with Devin Nunes, the chairman of the committee, and now Schiff says he is looking at other legal options to provide evidence to Mueller's team.
Now there are also some petty issues as well. But the Democrats have tried to bring people in from around the country, Republicans have refused to let them pay for the cost through the committee's budget. They tried to use free of service transcription services that the House provides for committees. The Republicans have denied them from doing that. They've also tried to have these interviews of their own witnesses come in at the committee's bases, but the committee -- Republicans have not allowed them to do it. Instead they have to do this in Nancy Pelosi's office, have Nancy Pelosi's budget pay for these interviews.
Now it's not unusual, Poppy, for Republican -- for a majority of any party to play hardball with the minority party especially when they try to act unilaterally, but this whole dispute really shows the acrimony that has dominated the House Intelligence Committee for months and months and months, ultimately ending in that report, the party-line report that Republicans put out earlier this year, saying there was no evidence of collusion.
[10:35:09] And Republicans now moving on to investigating what the FBI did in 2016 while Democrats want to still look into what Russia did in 2016 -- Poppy.
HARLOW: In stark contrast to frankly how the Senate Intelligence Committee has handled this stuff.
Manu, before you go, just moments ago, you were on the TV, I don't think you knew you were on live but you were questioning Republican Senator Lindsey Graham. He made so many headlines. But he could not have been more critical of the Trump administration's handling of Putin this week. I mean he said they were naive. He said the president misjudged Vladimir Putin. But this new poll we have out from CBS shows, you know, 68 percent of Republican voters like how the president has handled Putin.
So he may say all this and give it lip service, but are you getting any indication that Republicans are actually going to try to tie the president's hands with policy and with, you know, legislatively on Russia?
RAJU: It's possible, but the Republicans are so divided about this, Poppy. There is some movement on the Senate side to try to put sanctions on Russia that perhaps the White House may not be totally in line with. But there is some talk of some symbolic measures to reaffirm support of the intelligence community's assessment. But there are a lot of House Republicans in particular who are siding with the president. So you're seeing a stark division with them on Capitol Hill.
Even those outspoken voices like Lindsey Graham are sharply critical the way the president handled this week, but still the parties on Capitol Hill are very divided especially a lot of these members come from districts where they have a lot of Trump supporters and are siding with the president right now -- Poppy.
HARLOW: Manu, thanks for the reporting on both fronts. We appreciate it.
So we just heard Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, as you know, being called out, a new poll though as I just mentioned shows he's not really in line with the Republican voting majority in this country on how they think the president handled Putin. We're going to dive into that, next.
[10:41:31] HARLOW: Welcome back once again. In his latest interview, the president insisting he wants to sit down with Bob Mueller for an interview. His lawyers though really keep saying they are not a big fan of that.
With me now, our chief political correspondent, Dana Bash. And Dana, you just spoke as you often do these days with the president's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani. Walk us through this.
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I wanted to just touch base with him given the fact that the president renewed what has been pretty consistent a statement that he says he wants to sit down with Robert Mueller. He has said that all along, that is what his legal team has said that that is his desire which is why the conversations with the president's legal team and Robert Mueller's team have continued.
So what Rudy Giuliani said to me is just that, that while everything has been going on in Helsinki and elsewhere, that team Trump has been in conversations with the Mueller team about trying to find a way to narrow the scope of any potential interview.
Now what Giuliani also said to me, and he was very clear, he said this is me, the president didn't say this specifically to him, but that this is Giuliani's interpretation of the president's current feeling is that he is more apt to agree with his lawyers than he was before about the idea that it is not a good idea to sit down for a wide- ranging interview.
And what do I mean by that? Well, historically we've been talking about the question of collusion. That is something that the president's legal team has said, you know, if you wand you want to ask the president questions about alleged or potential collusion and you want to limit it to that, meaning the time before he was in the White House, maybe that is something that we can make a deal on.
The issue -- one of the many issues that the president's team is very concerned about and very reluctant to allow the president to sit down on, are questions having to do with potential obstruction and, you know, questions that we don't even know that Robert Mueller has potentially in his pocket. So that is basically where things stand, that the conversations continue. And that the president, although he repeated his assertion that he wants to talk, is maybe a little bit because of the climate right now less inclined and less insistent to his own team than he has been in the past.
HARLOW: And I think they know from what the polling shows us that, you know, politically the president has got some cover here, that it seems like nothing he does causes him great loss of support, maybe among Republicans in Congress, yes, at least vocally opposing him, but not among Republican voters, Dana.
BASH: I mean, that number -- those numbers that you're showing really say so much and help really tell the story of what's going on or not going on here in Washington. That 68 percent of Republicans in this new poll out from CBS News say that they thought that the president did a fine job in Helsinki standing next to Vladimir Putin. So when you hear the condemnation from Republicans in Congress and the question -- legitimate question is what are you going to do about it, what actions are you going to take, they are hearing either crickets from their own Republican constituents.
BASH: Or not a rallying cry to do something. So that's --
HARLOW: Well, listen, Dana, quickly on that point, let's listen to Lindsey Graham.
HARLOW: Who just did this moments ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[10:45:01] SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: I think it is imperative that he understand that he is misjudging Putin. I don't think he was prepared as well as he should have been.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARLOW: He is misjudging Putin, he wasn't prepared. But that's Lindsey Graham. What are the Republicans going to do about it?
BASH: They're going to try to force the president to sign another piece of legislation that puts tougher sanctions on Putin. That's probably what he wants ultimately to do but again without the rallying cry from Republican voter.
HARLOW: Voters. Yes.
BASH: Unclear if Lindsey Graham who has long been a critic of Putin, no matter who is on the White House, is going to have enough support do that. We'll see.
HARLOW: We'll see. Dana, thank you for having the important phone calls, bringing the information right to us. Appreciate it.
BASH: Thank you.
HARLOW: Ahead, my favorite story of the day. Of the week. Of the month. An Alabama teen rewarded for going beyond the extra mile for his job. Wait until you see what happened to this guy who walked 20 miles just to get to work.
[10:50:23] HARLOW: All right. Time for my favorite story of the week. This is going to make you smile. An Alabama college student says he is incredibly grateful and also pretty sore after he walked nearly 20 miles to work for his local moving company.
The night before his first day on this new job, Walter Carr's car broke down. He couldn't get a ride. He texted all his friends. No one could take him. So he set out to walk by foot 20 miles, leaving at midnight so that he would be there on time at 7:00 in the morning. He told this woman right here who found him along the way, his story brought tears to her eyes, so she posted it on Facebook.
Well, guess what? Walter's boss, the CEO of the company, heard about this, and what did he do? He gave Walter his car.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)\ LUKE MARKLIN, BELLHOPS CEO: There's decisions in your life that are sometimes big, pretty quickly because they are the right thing to do and this was one of them.
WALTER CARR, WALKED 20 MILES TO GET TO WORK: Walk a mile in my shoes, I swear that phrase means a lot to me. I tell people that think something that's too far, I'm just saying just look at this story and be like hey, if Walter can do it, I know I can do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARLOW: Well, Walter Carr and Luke Marklin are with me. Thank you both for being here.
And Walter, as I told you in the break, you are a better person than I. I would not have walked 20 miles to work. But in all seriousness, you say look, walk a mile in my shoes. Why did you want to get there so much?
CARR: It showed to my job how dedicated I am to my team to let them know whatever I say I'm going to do, I'm going to do it to my best capabilities. No challenge or obstacle can hold me back. So I just wanted to show it to my company that I'm dedicated like I said in my interview.
HARLOW: Hey, Luke, I think Walter here is going to have a lot of job offers. How are you going to keep him?
MARKLIN: I think so too and I think he deserves them. You know, I think we -- we're going to do what we can do to keep Walter. He has everything it takes to be a phenomenal person in our company. And I think he's got a long growth trajectory with us. So we're going to make it worth his while to stay. Yes.
HARLOW: You know, Walter, some pretty amazing things happened to you along the way on this 20-mile walk. Some pretty nice police officers stopped to see if you were doing OK, gave you a lift?
CARR: Yes, ma'am. They did. And fed me, too. So I'm thankful for them for stopping.
HARLOW: They fed you?
CARR: They fed me breakfast. They said (INAUDIBLE) my stomach because I had ate at 8:00 that night, they said you probably walked off that food. So we tried to come up with a strategy where to take me or drop me off next so I didn't have to walk too far alone.
CARR: And they took me to what a burger and gave me breakfast and lunch.
HARLOW: You're a student? You're a college student in Alabama. What are you majoring in? I mean, what's your dream job?
CARR: My dream job would be in physical therapy. So that's why I'm going to school for. I'm graduating December with associate degree in sciences.
HARLOW: You know, Luke, this is a -- this is one of those feel-good stories. It's one of those stories we don't get to report on enough. But I mean, in all seriousness, can you tell me what you felt personally when you got the call that your -- you know, your employee on his first day on the job -- I mean, you know, Walter is not making a million bucks a year. He is doing this to help pay his rent and he was willing to walk 20 miles overnight in the dark to get there.
What did it mean to you personally?
MARKLIN: I mean, speechless. Blown away. Just shocked and awe are the words that come to mind. We have built a culture about creating a company in a space that usually lets people down and to create a company with heart and with grit. And I just didn't think that we would -- that someone could take it that far. And it really raised the bar for me and it raised the bar for our company. And we are nothing but grateful and inspired.
HARLOW: I think it teaches us all when we want to complain about work, think again.
Walter, you have a gofundme page in your name. And you've raised -- this morning we just checked in the commercial break, over $71,000. But here is what is even cooler about that. You say after 66 grand anything else goes to charity. What are you going to do with that money?
CARR: With that money it will go to the Birmingham Air Foundation, a program I was into in high school. It helps out students to believe in themselves, listen to their voice and give them the ideas about the school system and how to help the community. So I'll be loving to donate to the Birmingham Air Foundation.
[10:55:08] HARLOW: So other people that want to help out, they should donate to the Birmingham Education Foundation, is that right?
CARR: Yes, ma'am. Birmingham Air Foundation.
CARR: It's a great organization.
HARLOW: Clearly. Walter, I think we can all learn a big lesson from you this morning. Thank you for what you did. Thanks for being here.
Luke, to you, I think a promotion is in order.
MARKLIN: I think so, too. I agree.
HARLOW: All right. A car and a promotion. Gentlemen, thank you very, very, very much. We appreciate it. And thank you all for being with me today. The White House is
considering letting Russia interrogate Americans even though the State Department calls that move absurd. Up next, one of those Americans that could be grilled -- ahead.