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The President Is Not Backing Off His Unprecedented Order To Have Some Documents Related To This Russian Investigation Declassified; Juli Briskman Made Headlines After This Photo Capturing Her Giving The President's Motorcade The Bird; A Surgeon Who Is Featured On Bravo's Reality Series Online Dating Ritual Of The American Male Is Now Accused Of Drugging And Raping At Least Two Women; Aired 2:30-3p ET
Aired September 19, 2018 - 14:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[14:30:00] BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: Off the top of his head?
JOHN SOLOMON, EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT, THE HILL: Off the top of his head. No to him and verbatim. He was right on all the quotes.
BALDWIN: How about that?
SOLOMON: It is really pretty extraordinary.
BALDWIN: When you interviewed him, I would like to ask anyone who is in front of the President, who has you know, such a chuck of time, we will interview him. Just your observations, how was he? What was his mood?
SOLOMON: You know, I had a chance to meet the Trump a few times over the last few years. And I will say this is -- it felt like he had settled into the White House in a way, that he is more comfortable in the confines of the oval office. Every president says when you get there the first couple of years are pretty overwhelming. I'm sure, Jack can talk about all of his experience in the White House. But at the end of the day, he felt comfortable. He is comfortable in these decisions. He makes no excuses. And he takes an interview where he wants to go. We started with one question, we ended somewhere else. But all of it is very interesting and very insightful into his thinking. I think people -- we just put the transcript up on the hill. It is really great reading. You really get a sense of where the Trump's mind is on a lot of different issues.
BALDWIN: Hope people go check it out. John Solomon, with the news making interview with the president of the United States.
John, thank you so much for taking the time and swing by. Appreciate it.
SOLOMON: Thank you.
BALDWIN: The President is not backing off his unprecedented order to have some documents as we mentioned, you know, related to this Russian investigation declassified. DOJ, FBI, they are now working with national intelligence director Dan Coats to prepare new versions of these documents with huge hunks with redactions.
So let's go to CNN legal analyst Jack Quinn who is a former White House counsel under President Clinton.
So Jack Quinn, welcome back to you. And I'm wondering the way that we have heard from law enforcement is that this is a way to defy Trump by redacting these sections, but then I have also read this is the part of the normal process of declassification. Which is it?
JACK QUINN, FORMER WHITE HOUSE COUNCIL UNDER PRESIDENT CLINTON: I seriously doubt that law enforcement is trying to deliberately defy the President.
Look, I'm quite familiar with the declassification process. As a matter of fact, I'm part of a group of lawyers who has outstanding to the FBI a subpoena trying to getting access to thousands and thousands of pages of investigative materials related to the 9/11 attacks. I represent thousands of family members whose loved ones were killed in the attacks on the United States.
You know those attacks occurred 17 years ago. We just celebrated the 17th anniversary. It has been like pulling teeth to try to get anything other than blank pieces of paper that have been totally redacted.
Now, you know, the declassification process is never simple. But when you think about the contrast here, our case involves an attack on the United States, 17 years ago, the worst terrorist attack in the world in the history of the world I think, certainly in the United States. The Russia investigation by contrast clearly involves an ongoing investigation. That is one of the categories where declassification is most difficult. You never want to reveal sources and methods. You never want to reveal sensitive national security information. But if you have an ongoing investigation, the revelation of facts related to the investigation could jeopardize the successful conclusion of the investigation.
QUINN: And that is what I think that the -- clearly we not only have an investigation going on, we have a special counsel who has been appointed to conduct it. So nobody can dispute the fact that this is an ongoing investigation. And it would be unprecedented to reveal information related to that while the investigation is still going on.
BALDWIN: That being said, this is the president of the United States who is asking for this. I mean, do you think because of everything you just outlined that the FBI or DOJ would really try to slow the roll in, you know, this process whatsoever? Because obviously, I would imagine whenever it does come out with huge chunks of black on these pages, that that would create a standoff between them and the president.
QUINN: It may. I would hope that in the interim they would try to persuade him why this is not in the interest of the United States, you know. And going back to your conversation with John and his unhappiness with the attorney general, that is directly related to what you and I are now talking about. He is unhappy with the FBI, unhappy with his attorney general. It is important to note that the President clearly, whether you are talking about Don McGahn or Jeff Sessions, he believes that all these lawyers who work for the government are his lawyers. And he has had a very hard time separating their role as attorneys for the United States from --
BALDWIN: Versus attorneys for him.
QUINN: Yes. And that has been the source I think of an awful lot of this friction.
[14:35:01] BALDWIN: Yes, we have talked about not understood lines or blurred lines between justice and the executive many times.
Let me ask you about this, Jack Quinn. President Trump earlier today when he was leaving the White House on his way down to North and South Carolina, he talked to reporters about Paul Manafort. Paul Manafort's plea deal saying that he is not worried about his former campaign manager's cooperation with the special counsel. Here's what Trump said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If he is honest, and he is, I think that he will tell -- as long as he tells the truth, it is 100 percent. Paul Manafort was with me he for a short period of time. He did a good job. I was, you know, very happy with the job he did. And I will tell you this, I believe that he will tell the truth. And if he tells the truth, no problem.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Ley me just place everyone' attention on this Trump tweet. This was after Manafort was convicted praising him for not flipping. You see the latter part, you know, unlike Michael Cohen, he refused to quote "break, make up stories in order to get a deal. Such respect for a brave man." I'm calling BS. Jack Quinn, are you there?
QUINN: Yes, I'm sorry. Was that a question?
BALDWIN: I guess it wasn't. Just more like listening to the Trump this morning --
QUINN: That's OK. You get to say that.
BALDWIN: I get to say that.
QUINN: I'm just a guest.
BALDWIN: OK. What do you respond.
QUINN: QUINN: Look, I frankly think that this discussion about the possibility of Paul Manafort getting a pardon at this point is totally beside the point.
BALDWIN: You do?
QUINN: He has made a commitment to cooperate. He has made a commitment to turnover tens of millions of dollars of property to the government. He is not never get that back. He has made a commitment not to file what is called the petition of remission. And that is a process that conceivably could include a pardon. He has waved an awful lot of rights and he is still subject to being charged with crimes with respect to which he did not have a plea agreement.
Now, here is the really important thing. The deal that Paul Manafort made was based on, you heard the term a thousand times on your show, a proffer. That is lawyer talk for an offer. And an offer on the part of Paul Manafort to provide certain specific information.
The prosecutor is willing to make a deal granting him leniency conceivably taking his sentence down to next to nothing or could conceivably could be nothing no time in return for his cooperation. That deal was struck on the basis of information not that Paul Manafort might provide next month. It was made on the basis of information that he already provided. He has told the Mueller team what he has, what he can testify to.
BALDWIN: Right. Right, you know.
QUINN: And so the beans have been spilled. And look, Mueller is not in the business here of getting at Paul Manafort. He is in the business of trying to fill in the puzzle pieces to the question, a, what the Russians did to interfere with our election and, b, whether in so doing they had any help from any Americans. If Manafort has information on that, and I think he must --
BALDWIN: They are going to get it.
QUINN: Then they are going to get it. No, they have already gotten it. They know it. And the fact that they made this deal signals to me that Manafort had something to say on that issue of Russia and he's already told the Mueller team what it is.
Jack Quinn, thank you.
QUINN: Thank you.
BALDWIN: Coming up next, she made headlines after this photo capturing her giving the President's motorcade the bird. Hat woman now is running for office. We will talk to her live next.
[14:43:21] BALDWIN: Welcome back.
My next guest is turning a small act of defiance into a bid for public office. Remember this photo? About a year ago Juli Briskman went for a bike ride in Sterling, Virginia when she happened upon the President's motorcade leaving his nearby golf course. And that is when she decided to send him a message with her middle finger. She did not know though as she was doing this that she would be photographed by a Getty photographer. And she certainly didn't know that the photo would get this much attention.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No one has summed up the mood of the country better than a cyclist who went viral last week for giving the President's motorcade the finger.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Maybe she is just saying you are number one. How did they know?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here is a picture of her here. Yes, that is real. We actually got our hands on a photo of that woman from a different angle. Take a look at in. Yes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Days later Briskman lost her job at a government contracting firm. She sued her company for wrongful termination but the suit was dropped. And instead of filing appeal, she has filed a form to run for public office.
Juli Briskman is with me now.
Juli BRISKMAN, FIRED FOR FLIPPING OF THUMB, NOW RUNNING FOR PUBLIC OFFICE: Hi. Thank you so much for having me today, Brooke. I appreciate it.
BALDWIN: You got it. So here you have the news. You are now running on a seat for the Loudoun County board of supervisors on Virginia. I want you to tell me. What was your final straw, you know, in your world that made you say that is it, I'm running.
BRISKMAN: Well, I think I became motivated to effect change the moment that I was fired. I got really motivated. The first thing I did was sign up to volunteer at the polls the next week at the 2017 election. And I got very involved in the Loudoun County Democratic Party. I have been working for Jennifer Wexton since the primary trying to flip that seat in Congress. A very important seat to flip. And I do said the suit was dropped. I actually decided not to appeal the dismissal of my wrongful termination count in that case to run for office.
And it just came a down to a decision for me, where can I be most effective. Can I be more effective fighting through unfriendly courts on one issue which is wrongful termination violating my first amendment rights or can I be more effective sitting on the county board and, you know, all change is local and we need to change things locally before we can change things state and federally.
[14:45:46] BALDWIN: Sure. And by the way, I want to point out, we actually reached out to your
former employer for some sort of comment. Didn't hear back. But I did want to ask you, as a mom of two teenagers, you know, there are a lot of Trump critics out there who blast the President, his language. They say he acts like a fifth grader. And Juli, aren't you adding to that discourse that you have blasted Trump for?
BRISKMAN: Well, here is the thing. That day I was really frustrated. I was really frustrated. I mean, three-fourths of Puerto Rico didn't have power. He was dismantling the ACA from the inside out. He had just announced that he is going to resin (ph) DACA. So I was very frustrated at that day. And the only thing I had at my disposal that day was my finger.
But, you know, I have been living in Loudoun County for more than 20 years. And like I said I think that I can effect change on a broader scale sitting on the seat of board of supervisors. The discourse in our country has become vitriolic. And, you know, I was frustrated that day. Now when protesting the President, I don't use my finger. I actually have time to make signs. And make a more clear argument as to why that I dissent against this administration.
BALDWIN: Sure, I have read all this, you know, interviews you have done. And I know over and over you are asked, but to do you have any regrets and you always say no. And I'm just wondering since now, you are in the public eye running for office. What if somebody gave you the bird? How would you feel about that?
BRISKMAN: That is a really good question. You know, really giving -- I guess what I want to say is let the person who has never given somebody the bird in bad traffic throw the first stone, first of all. I really couldn't think giving someone the bird is that bad. If somebody wanted to give me the bird or having a conversation about an opposing view, I'm happy to do that.
BALDWIN: Maybe the conversation would be better than the bird, but -- .
BRISKMAN: I think it would be.
BALDWIN: Juli Briskman, appreciate it. Good luck.
BRISKMAN: Thank you. Thanks.
BALDWIN: Coming up next, we will take you back to South Carolina where President Trump touched down moments ago visiting some of the hardest hit areas by hurricane Florence.
Also a stunning arrest in California. Have you heard about this today? A doctor who has actually been featured on reality TV and his girlfriend are now charged with multiple counts of rape, accused of using their quote/unquote "good looks to lure victims." DO not miss this story.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [14:52:33] BALDWIN: Now to this stunning arrest out of California. A surgeon who is featured on Bravo's reality series online dating ritual of the American male is now accused of drugging and raping at least two women. And police in Upscale, New Port beach say the doctor was helped by his girlfriend. Investigators say the couple used their good looks to target their prey.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TONY RACKAUCKAS, ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA DISTRICT ATTORNEY: We have all heard of a wolf dressed in sheep's clothing. Well, a wolf can wear scrubs or doctor's clothing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: Stephanie Elam is following this for us.
And so, you know, we mentioned two victims, but police are saying there could be many, many more than that.
STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Many more than that, Brooke. And they are also saying that there are videos that were on the doctor's phone and they say that there may be more than 1,000 videos where some of the people are shown, some of these women are shown.
Here are the changes that this couple is facing. Rape by using of drugs, oral copulation by anesthesia or controlled substance. They are also saying that they assaulted with intent to commitment sexual offense and possession of controlled substance for sale. And then Robicheaux, the Grant Robicheaux, that is the name of the doctor there, he is also looking at some firearm violations.
Now, what they think happen here is that the girlfriend (INAUDIBLE), was actually the one who would approach women at bars and turned them with their good looks and then get them involved in a situation with them. So they are saying that there was a woman, a 32-year-old woman in April of 2016 who says that she met at a party (ph), they went back to the doctor's apartment. And there, when she was intoxicated, they say, the authorities here alleged that they then went ahead and drugged her and raped her. The next day that woman did go to New Port beach and because of that, the police there -- and she did test for some of these drugs.
So they are saying it happened with this woman, six months later with another woman. And so because of that, they are saying they are probably are more women simply because when you take a look at some of these videos that are on his phone, they are saying that the women do not look like they are actually even able to consent to sexual involvement at that time, Brooke.
BALDWIN: That is disgusting. And I have got nothing more for you beyond that.
Stephanie Elam, stay on that for us.
Moving on, just in, Republican senator Susan Collins one of four women on the key Senate Judiciary Committee, key vote on deciding Judge Brett Kavanaugh's fate is now saying it is unfair to Kavanaugh if Christine Blasey Ford does not testify. We have the new sound and an important new development in all of this. Stand by for that.
[14:59:50] BALDWIN: Welcome back. You are watching CNN on this Wednesday. I'm Brooke Baldwin.
We begin with the highest state's ultimatum facing the woman accusing the President's Supreme Court nominee of both physical and sexual assault. Christine Blasey Ford now must decide whether she will speak on the Senate judiciary committee on the time line Republicans are demanding even though her request is not being met. She is calling for an FBI investigation of her allegations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh.