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Interview with Rep. Adam Schiff; Discussion of Kavanaugh Allegation; Racial Incident Examined; Helping Disaster Victims. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired September 20, 2018 - 22:00   ET




CUOMO: Welcome back. Let's keep going, because Don is off tonight, so we get a bonus second hour of "Cuomo Prime Time."

The big story, Michael Cohen reportedly interviewed for hours by the special counsel. So what did the president's former attorney tell investigators? What could it mean to the probe and to Donald Trump? The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee is here with his take.

We're learning new details also about the negotiations between Dr. Christine Ford's attorney and the Senate Judiciary Committee. Sources say Judge Kavanaugh's accuser is offering a day to appear, along with a red line when it comes to being nowhere near the nominee for the Supreme Court. How will the Republicans respond?

It's been one year since Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, and that place is still struggling. We have Chef Jose Andres. He is helping survivors once again. In Puerto Rico, he did millions of meals. Now he's helping Florence's victims. And he is here tonight to tell us why. It's a busy Thursday night. What do you say? Let's get after it.

Hours upon hours, that is the amount of time the president's former lawyer reportedly spent talking to Robert Mueller's team about Russia and who knows what else. Reports say the special counsel not only probed Cohen about specific matters to the probe, possible collusion, whether anyone from the Trump camp spoke to him about a pardon, and that could just be a sample of topics if they had that much time.

Democrat and Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee Congressman Adam Schiff joins us now. Good to see you, sir.


CUOMO: So let's chew on this a little bit. Manafort was close to Trump, heard a lot of stuff, was at the meeting in Trump Tower. He goes, I think he was with Mueller today. Michael Cohen, sat at the lap of Donald Trump for many years, heard lots of things. He is there now. He doesn't have a cooperation agreement, but he obviously does want to cooperate. What could it mean? SCHIFF: Well, it could mean a great deal. The Trump defense team

probably has a pretty good idea, at least they think, of what Manafort said, but they also have to realize there's a lot that Paul Manafort may not have told them or may not have been candid with them.

They have no idea what Michael Cohen has to say. And Michael Cohen could certainly shed light on the issue of collusion or conspiracy, if they were dangling a pardon, if the president reached out to him to try to get him to align his story with the president on either the hush money payments or something else. He may have evidence of witness tampering or obstruction of justice.

And then again, you know, Michael Cohen may have to say, look, I can't help you on this, but I can tell you about something else that you're not aware of that you should be aware of. And there's 10 years of that that Michael Cohen could share with the special counsel. Bob Mueller may choose to farm that out to the state of New York or the Southern District of New York or anywhere else. But Michael Cohen is in a position to offer a great deal to the special counsel.

CUOMO: If it stays Russia specific, just as a point of speculation, which as you know I'm not a particular fan of, but just to see why people would find this significant, even if Manafort and Cohen say the president knew everything, he directed his son, he told Jared and Manafort go take that meeting, I hope you get some dirt, this will be great, and he told anybody anything you can find, good, he knew about all of it, he's lying when he says he didn't know. Where's the crime?

SCHIFF: Well, Attorney General Mukasey said we don't even know what the crime would be. We do know what the crime would be, because Bob Mueller's told us in the form of several indictments, where he has charged a conspiracy to defraud the United States, and that's...


CUOMO: What does that mean, to the audience?

SCHIFF: What it would mean is a conspiracy to violate campaign finance law. It's a conspiracy to accept foreign assistance when that violates U.S. law. Essentially, a conspiracy to deprive the U.S. government to be able to run a free and fair election without foreign interference.

It would track, I believe, the nature of the conspiracy that he has charged the Russians with, that he's charged others with. So he's given us a pretty good idea of what that charge would look like.

CUOMO: Would that be enough, knowing that -- and even asking his guys to go take a meeting that resulted in not getting any information?

SCHIFF: There would have to, I think, be some meeting of the minds and some overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy...

CUOMO: Congregatio menteri (ph), as they say in the law, a meeting of the minds. You know, the Latin expression, that you'd have to show they had a deal. [22:05:00]

So that would mean that there'd have to be some type of act in furtherance of such a deal. No?

SCHIFF: I would think that's the case. And, of course, you've got -- what's the standard necessary to indict? But for the purposes of the president of the United States, it's more, what's the standard for removal from office?

CUOMO: Right.

SCHIFF: Does this approach a high crime or misdemeanor? In that context, you actually don't have to prove a crime.

CUOMO: A hundred percent.

SCHIFF: You have to prove something that is incompatible with office.

CUOMO: Gerald Ford then -- when president said an impeachable offense is whatever Congress says it is. Would that rise to the level for you? If you found out that the president knew and directed his people, including his son, to go to that meeting in the hopes of getting that, would that be enough for you?

SCHIFF: If the president knowingly conspired with the Russians, either directly, through his son, or others, yes, I think that would be an impeachable offense if the president is directly involved in this. If the president was obstructing the Russia investigation, that might also be an impeachable offense.

But as you point out, even though something qualifies as a high crime or misdemeanor, you still need to get two-thirds of the Senate to convict. And it really needs to at least at some level be bipartisan. There's only one thing worse than putting the country through the wrenching experience of impeachment, and that's putting the country through the wrenching experience of a failed impeachment.

And so I would think, depending on the strength of what Bob Mueller presents, we're going to have to have a heart-to-heart about what this means. We're going to have to find out whether the Republican members of the Senate and House are willing to stand up and defend the Constitution, or whether it is now party above everything else.

CUOMO: You know, I've been thinking about this and covering it for so long. There is a presumption that this plays to the advantage of the Democrats, that this probe does.

But if it ends after a long time, or at least the perception that it was long -- I would make the case that, by federal investigative standards, this has not been that long. But let's say that's the public perception, and politics is reality very often. And there are no crimes against the president or anyone very close to him that relate to collusion with Russia, and there is nothing that the Democrats see as worth motivating an impeachment, are you worried about the political fallout of false expectations for the Democratic base?

SCHIFF: No. I think we have to follow the facts wherever they lead and be prepared to look at those facts and reach the right conclusion. If the right conclusion is Bob Mueller presents to Congress and he says we found inadequate evidence or here's what we found, we don't think this rises to the level of a chargeable offense -- now, it's not his job to tell us what's an impeachable offense, although there are different models. There's the Ken Starr model. There's the Watergate model.

All we can ask is that both Bob Mueller and the Congress do a thorough job and be able to present the American people with what they found and make a reasoned determination about what the consequences should be. We weren't allowed to do that in the Congress. Every time we went down a certain investigative lane, if it got too close to the president, the Republicans said let's stop right there.

CUOMO: In the House.

SCHIFF: In the house.

CUOMO: I hear you on that. I hear your frustration on that. And I have many times when you've been on. There is an issue of weaponizing investigations. Do you prosecute your political enemies? Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today, talking about Kavanaugh, said if we get the gavel -- well, why should I speak for him? Here's what he said.


WHITEHOUSE: This is such bad practice that even if they were to ram this guy through, as soon as Democrats get gavels, we're going to want to get to the bottom of this.


CUOMO: The idea of Kavanaugh as a sitting Supreme Court justice and you would open -- I know you're not in the Senate, but the Senate would open an investigation into him as a sitting justice, is that politically saleable?

SCHIFF: Well, look, I think what Senator Whitehouse is saying is that we need to figure this out upfront. We don't want a justice of the Supreme Court who is tainted by the question, did this justice commit attempted rape?

If we can resolve that question before he gets a lifetime appointment, that's what we ought to do. And I think what the Republicans are setting up right now is, number one, they hope that Dr. Ford doesn't show up at all. That's the best case for them. Next to that, they hope that they can present just a he said/she said so they can argue to their supporters back home, we believe Kavanaugh. But no one can really know, but we're giving him the benefit of the doubt.

The reality is they don't want to look into it. They don't want to know anything apart from the two accounts of these two witnesses when there are a great many people who could shed light on this, who can corroborate what Dr. Ford has said. I think the...

CUOMO: Or not, right? I mean, on the flip side, as we saw with Anita Hill, when the FBI was asked by then-President Bush to look into it, they came back after a few days and said we can't corroborate it. And that was pretty fresh. They were dealing with pretty fresh incidents there.

It could very well be that you have both testify. Kavanaugh says, I wasn't even at this party, I don't know anything about this. She can't prove otherwise. She can't corroborate in any other way.


If that's the case, and nobody else is brought in, would you fault people for voting for Kavanaugh?

SCHIFF: Well, let's look...

CUOMO: On this point. I know there are other things that you may find objectionable about Kavanaugh.


CUOMO: But if she says it was him, but she can't prove it, and she can't corroborate it with anybody else, and that is found as compelling as his denial, because we know she told her therapist, we know she told her husband, we believe, corroborates it in 2012, but what is the standard of whether or not you vote for him or not on the basis of this allegation?

SCHIFF: On the basis of this allegation, I think ultimately you have to go with what you believe, which witness is telling the truth. But I would hate to make the judgment, if I were sitting on that committee, on the basis of these two witnesses' testimony alone, when there may -- very well be other evidence that would tip the scales one way or another.

He says he was never at the party. There may be people at the party who remember that he was there, will testify that he is there. There may be a way to corroborate that he was there.

CUOMO: Or they may say he wasn't there.

SCHIFF: There certainly appears to be a way to corroborate that this isn't something that she invented when he became nominated, because she told people about this years before she had any idea that he might be on the Supreme Court of the United States. So there are witnesses that we know already corroborate her account to some degree.

CUOMO: And there are some who say that it's not true. You know, the person that she put there as a friend of his says it. Is he biased? You could argue he is, he isn't.

SCHIFF: But it's telling, too, that the other person that was in the room, supposedly in the room, is saying I don't have a recollection of this. Now, you'd think that if they were there, they would either recall it did happen or it didn't. But he doesn't want to testify. Now, that is telling. Here you have the victim of this attack who is willing to testify. Here you have a witness who says he is not.

CUOMO: Now, Kavanaugh is also, though. And Judge put -- I don't know why he doesn't want to testify, but he put out a statement saying that he thought this essentially was crazy, that he never saw anything like this. He was pretty strong in his initial...

SCHIFF: He's willing to be strong when he's not under oath. Let him be strong when he's under oath. There may very well be a reason why he doesn't want to risk perjury. So put him to the test. If we're going to ask the victim to testify before the whole country about what was undoubtedly the biggest trauma of her life, then a witness can come before the Senate, as well.

CUOMO: Fair point. Congressman Schiff, thank you very much for being on the show. Appreciate it.

SCHIFF: Thank you.

CUOMO: All right. So we have new information on these negotiations between Judge Kavanaugh's accuser and the Senate Judiciary Committee. What her lawyers want, and then the question of, well, how will it play out? We'll use it as the starting point for "The Great Debate," next.




CUOMO: All right. We have new information to report on the negotiations between Judge Kavanaugh's accuser and the Senate Judiciary Committee. The testimony date might be next Thursday. It's still in negotiation. Ford's lawyers want the committee to subpoena Kavanaugh's friend, Mark Judge. Now, as you may know, he put out a statement denying the allegation from Ford, but said he didn't want to testify.

They also want Christine Ford to testify second after Kavanaugh. They also want the committee to subpoena other witnesses that Ford says could corroborate her story. Now, we hear that those are non-starters for the committee.

But Ford also has some non-starters of her own. She wants her safety assured. As you may have heard reported, there have been death threats. Her family isn't living at home. And she doesn't want to be in the same room as Kavanaugh. So with this new information, let's get to "The Great Debate," Symone Sanders and Amy Kremer.

Symone, what do you make of the conditions and of the probabilities heading into next week?

SANDERS: You know, look, I think Dr. Ford and her attorneys have set forth conditions that I think are absolutely feasible, that the committee should, in fact, take into consideration. It's not crazy for her to ask not to be seated in the same room with the man she says attempted to rape her. It is not crazy to ask that she be allowed to go second. It's not crazy to also ask for additional witnesses to be called, namely, those whom she has named, prior to Judge Kavanaugh being announced as a Supreme Court nominee.

So I think these are things that if the committee says they truly want to treat Dr. Ford fairly, they should take into consideration.

CUOMO: Amy, if you are a sponsor of Kavanaugh, why wouldn't you want to show that you did everything that you could to give this allegation a fair hearing so that he is not stained by suggestion?

KREMER: Well, you know, I think he has denied it. She's claimed it happened. He denied it. I do agree with what Symone said that she doesn't want to be in the same room, that's reasonable. She's had death threats. I understand she wants her safety. We all would want that. Kavanaugh's wife has had death threats, as well. So everybody's safety should be an issue here.

But the fact of the matter is, Chris, that the Senate committee makes the rules and she has no control over that. Her attorneys have no control over that. I think they have bent over backwards to accommodate her. They've said they'll fly to California. They'll...


CUOMO: But how are they bending over backwards if they won't bring in any other witnesses?

KREMER: You know, I don't know exactly what the rules are. But, you know, I...

CUOMO: They can bring in other witnesses.

KREMER: Then let them bring them in. I have no problem with that. The witnesses she keeps putting forward keep turning around and denying what she's saying. I mean, she's had friends post on Facebook that...

CUOMO: Then what do you care if they come out? It only helps your cause.

KREMER: I mean, I -- listen, I have no problem with it. I have no problem with it at all. It's going to -- it's all going to come out and there's not going to be anything there and he's going to be confirmed. All this is, is delay tactics. It's obstruction...


CUOMO: Why are you so sure that nothing's going to come out?

KREMER: Because I truly believe that it's never going to be proven or disproven. We will never know. This is a big circus. And I'm waiting on Gloria Allred to be marched out at any moment now, because she's usually there. I mean, it's ridiculous. You know... SANDERS: So, Chris, I think...

KREMER: ... that we're never going to find out the truth. It happened 35, 36 years ago. The witnesses that she's put forth have denied it. I mean, she can't even tell you what house it happened in, when it happened. I mean, she can't even give you the basic facts, so what example is the FBI going...


CUOMO: Well, she can give basic facts. She has some -- she has gaps, Amy. And to be fair, we don't know what she knows and what she doesn't. She hasn't testified yet. We haven't heard her under questioning.

And I have to tell you, thank God that reasoning that you're using right now doesn't apply to the church scandals, because we would never have any justice of cases that happened long ago if we went on the standard that you're going on.


Many of those cases are only about one person's recollection, and very often they're spotty, because they were kids. And yet somehow we find our way to justice.

Symone, in terms of what the standard will be, if she goes and testifies and is compelling and maybe there's a little bit of corroboration, maybe there isn't, if he is compelling in his denial and says that he wasn't there, how are we supposed to find a satisfactory basis of judgment for moving forward for the senators? What would be acceptable?

SANDERS: So, Chris, first, I'd like to note that there needs to be an investigation. I do believe that's why Dr. Ford through her attorneys has called for an FBI investigation, a nonpartisan investigation...

CUOMO: But they've softened on it. It's...

SANDERS: They have. They have. They have softened. But the fact of the matter is, there are some details that are still out there that are unknown for so many people. And that is why a nonpartisan investigation is important.

Now, understanding that we probably will not get that, I think it's important to note here that Judge Kavanaugh apparently told Senator Orrin Hatch that he wasn't at the party in question, he was not there. How does he know he was at a party that Dr. Ford has never asserted she was at? She never said where the party was. She said she doesn't remember.

So Judge Kavanaugh clearly knows some things that we don't, which is why we need to hear from him in this hearing. I would hope that senators ask him that question.

Judge Kavanaugh has perjured himself, in my opinion, and in others' opinions, many times in his previous hearing. And I just think it's important for Dr. Ford to get her day, for her to have her peace and for her to not be interrogated. She is not on trial here. Judge Kavanaugh is up for a lifetime appointment for the Supreme Court. This is a job interview. This isn't a trial.

KREMER: Can I remind you of something, that Judge Kavanaugh was already on the second highest court of the land, a lifetime appointment, who actually rules on more cases that affect our lives probably than the Supreme Court does, and there's no mention of this. No mention.

SANDERS: Well, that's actually -- that's not true, because the D.C. District Court -- I want to be clear. The D.C. District Court doesn't see a lot of social issue cases, if you will. The one case that Judge Kavanaugh had that...

KREMER: It doesn't matter what kind of case...


SANDERS: Well, Amy, you just said that he saw a lot of cases that affect our lives more than the Supreme Court. So I just want to let you know that that's not true.

KREMER: All laws affect our lives, Symone.

SANDERS: But because Judge Kavanaugh was on the highest court and this still hadn't come out, that's why an investigation is important. That's why we have to take our time and get to the truth.


KREMER: It's all political.

SANDERS: Why are Republicans rushing this? It's only been about 47 days since Justice Kennedy retired.

KREMER: Why did Democrats wait until after these hearings? Why did Democrats wait until two days after the hearings and then a week before we ever knew anything about this? I mean, Judge Kavanaugh...

SANDERS: Because someone outed Dr. -- someone leaked Dr. Ford's information...

KREMER: Who? The Democrats leaked it. The Democrats leaked it.


SANDERS: We don't know, Amy, who leaked it.

KREMER: When you want to talk about why her -- her -- who -- why we found out who she is, let's look at the Democrats. Why didn't Feinstein come forward when she had this letter long ago? She could have gone to her Democratic -- or her colleagues on the committee and disclosed this to them. And we never had to knew. She could have questioned Kavanaugh privately about it. But she chose

not to do that. Instead, they waited until two days after the hearings were complete and done, and then they released -- leaked this anonymous letter, and a week later, we find out about it.

SANDERS: They didn't leak it. Amy, Amy, you're not being truthful. This is intellectually dishonest...

KREMER: I absolutely am.

SANDERS: ... to assert that -- that you know for a fact Democrats leaked the information. The fact of the matter is, we're here.

KREMER: The journalists have said.

SANDERS: The fact of -- the fact of the matter is, we are here. Dr. Ford was reluctant to come forward, but she did, and the only incentive she has to come forward is to tell the truth. And what has she been met with? Death threats. Folks lambasting her character in the media. Calling her a liar. Trying to bully her into testifying in a hostile hearing.

KREMER: This is the thing.

SANDERS: And so I am...

KREMER: I want to hear from her. Most Americans want to hear from her. But the thing is, the Democrats, they keep moving the goalposts, and when -- when she's not...


SANDERS: No one is moving the goalposts, Amy. Dr. Ford...


KREMER: ... when she was not going to testify, they were going to...


KREMER: Let me finish. When they were -- when she wasn't going to testify, they were calling them sex and silencing...


SANDERS: They are.

KREMER: Then when they say come forward and testify, then it's bullying her. They can't win, I mean, no matter what. You have already -- you have already prosecuted him in public perception. I mean, no matter what is done now, he will never have justice. There is something called due process in this country for all Americans...


SANDERS: Amy, there is no due process when it is not a criminal proceeding. Oh, my goodness. Is that -- I would love if folks like yourself, Amy, believed that that applied for folks across the board and not just folks like Judge Kavanaugh. And that's -- and that's another conversation we can have.

But the fact of the matter here is, Dr. Ford has no -- why would she put herself through this type of tumult? She wants to come forward to tell the truth.

KREMER: Actually, she probably did not intend for it...

SANDERS: She didn't intend for it.

KREMER: ... and the Democrats are putting her through it.

SANDERS: Oh, Amy, Amy, this is not -- this shouldn't be a partisan issue.


KREMER: You're exactly right. You're exactly right.

SANDERS: I hope and pray -- I hope and pray that you never have to experience something like Dr. Ford or something like someone myself has experienced. I hope that you would find the compassion and the grace and the mercy...

KREMER: Symone, you have no idea what I've been through in my life.

SANDERS: I just -- girl, I just said I hope. I didn't tell you that you didn't.

KREMER: Just because I don't get on TV and talk about it doesn't mean I haven't been through it.

SANDERS: Amy, don't feel attacked now. All I'm saying is, you are not affording Dr. Ford the grace I think that you or anyone else that we know would love to be afforded in this situation. So all I'm saying is, the Republicans have been on record in the media, in the newspaper, or on social media, the counsel -- Chuck Grassley's senior counsel has been -- or tweeted, had to delete tweets today, talking about Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation will go forward. And he's the one that Senator Grassley could effectively question Christine Ford.

She's not getting -- she's not getting a fair shake here. And that's all folks like myself are saying. And if the audacity of men, the audacity of men in this country to basically say that Christine Ford needs to just come forward, put up or shut up, the hearing's going to go forward whether she's there or not, that's insensitive, that's sexist. And I think folks need to take a step back here...

CUOMO: Well, look...

SANDERS: ... and push the brakes.

CUOMO: ... there's no question that Christine Ford -- let me put this the right way -- that Christine Ford was being treated like another political agent in this, somebody who's savvy and on equal ground, and she isn't. Assuming she believes in good faith what she says happened to her all those years ago, she's not on equal footing. There are sensitivities that should be applied.

And we'll hope that those are adhered to, because they're not on equal footing. There's no question about that. But you two were. Symone and Amy, this is a hard conversation, but it's important to have. Thank you for doing it with us tonight.

KREMER: Thank you.

SANDERS: Thank you.

CUOMO: There's a state assembly candidate in Wisconsin. This is another tough story. So she's out knocking on doors for her campaign. She's trying to get the vote out. All of a sudden, the cops show up. Why? They were called on her. Was it because she was, I don't know, campaigning while black? Shelia Stubbs is that candidate. She joins us next.




CUOMO: Shelia Stubbs, an African-American candidate for the Wisconsin State Assembly, was canvassing for votes with her 71-year-old mother and her 8-year-old daughter in a mostly white neighborhood in Madison. Somebody called the cops on her. A neighbor thought they were part of a drug deal.

Let's go one on one with Shelia Stubbs.

Sorry to meet you this way, Shelia Stubbs. Obviously, we're not going to play around with what the suggestion was, but what does this incident mean to you?

STUBBS: This incident was unacceptable. This incident has been outrageous to me. I was embarrassed. I was humiliated. And it tells me that racism still exists and implicit bias is something that we all need to be a part of. And it's unacceptable. And I was racially profiled and stereotyped with my mother and my daughter.

CUOMO: Implicit bias? This looks more like explicit bias. When the cops showed up, how did they treat you?

STUBBS: Well, when I initially had the contact with her, I walked her and asked her what was wrong. She was behind my car. And she said, well, there was an incident. And I said, well, what happened? And she said, well, someone decided to call the cops on you. And I said, for what? And she said because they think you're a drug dealer. And I said, a drug dealer? Really? They think I'm a drug dealer? What have I done? What does a drug dealer look like?

And she said, well, why are you here? So I pointed to my nametag and I said I'm a candidate running for state assembly. My name is Shelia Stubbs. And then I went along to show her my campaign lit. And I said, so here's my photo, that's me. And then she said, you're knocking on doors in the neighborhood. How do you know what doors to knock on? And I said because I have a walk list. And she said, can I see it? And I said, yes, you can see it. And I showed it to her. And then she said, oh, I'm really sorry that this happened to you.

And my 8-year-old daughter was in the back seat. She looked at me and she said, Mommy, why don't they believe us? Why don't we belong here? And I said to my daughter we belong wherever we choose to go.

CUOMO: Did you believe the officer handled it the right way?

STUBBS: I had some concerns with the officer's approach, because I felt I needed to show her three different ways validation. It certainly could have been worse. But, again, I think that I should not have had to prove why I was there. What if I didn't have a walk list? I was a candidate.

CUOMO: Did you ever find out who made the phone call?

STUBBS: No. It was not available for me. The officer said that this person called through 911. And I specifically asked her if I could speak with this caller to assure them that I was only in the neighborhood knocking on the doors as the candidate for state assembly. I was one week out from my election, have been getting literature out to candidates for many months and knocked on thousands of doors.

And she said, I'm sorry, I'll have to go through dispatch and I will relay your message to them. I said they owe me an apology, my family and I. Outcomes could have been differently.

CUOMO: How was it going when you were knocking on doors in that neighborhood? What kind of responses were you getting?

STUBBS: Great responses. People were glad I stopped by, because I was in a four-way primary. And it was a lot of work. And so they were so glad to see me. And when that happened, I didn't go back to doors the rest of the evening. I did not do doors for 24 hours.


STUBBS: It was -- it was awful. Because I felt so degraded. I felt so humiliated. I felt insulted. My daughter was asking questions. Also the officer had approached my mom by saying, why are you there? So my family, we needed to get it together.

My husband's a pastor. I'm a pastor. So we prayed. I cried. I just could not go out to another door. I was scared. I was afraid of what was going to happen, if someone else was going to call the cops on me.


So I needed to get myself together. So our team, team Stubbs, decided to pull me away for doors for 24 hours. CUOMO: What'd your mom tell you about it?

STUBBS: My mom said when the officer came up she said, why are you here? And my mom said she should have greeted her. And my mom said, I can go where I want to. So my mom did not have a great encounter herself with the officer. And my mom told the officer, we were on this street because I'm running for state assembly. But we felt as if, though, the officer did not believe us. Even after my mom said it and I said it three times. Why? Why was that the case?

CUOMO: What do you want the people to -- what do you want the person who made the phone call to know about you?

STUBBS: First and foremost, I'm not a drug dealer. I'm a wonderful person. I'm a mom. I was a teacher. I'm an elected official. And I deserve to go where I choose to go.

And what you did, you put me and my family in a position, the outcomes could have been differently. I couldn't express how I truly felt from perception. I watched neighbors come out of their house. I watched neighbors peep out their windows. I was degraded. I was degraded and humiliated. How dare you do that to my family? It's unacceptable. And now I'm your state representative. And it's work that needs to be done.

CUOMO: Well, look, I do not see a silver lining in a situation like this. What happened was wrong. That list of things that you described yourself as, you're also someone who rose above a bad situation. And you won. And there is no winning in a situation like what happened to you. You made it through that. You won your race. And now you can lead the way that you think is best. And that's a reward in and of itself.

But Shelia Stubbs, I'm sorry I had to meet you this way, but it's important that these stories get out, that we highlight what is wrong and we highlight what is right. So, thank you for joining me tonight.

STUBBS: Thank you. God bless you. God bless the state of Wisconsin. God bless the United States. And it was God, the reason I won this race. I give him all the praise, the glory, and the victory. Thank you, sir.

CUOMO: You be well. I'll speak to you soon.

So the White House is bragging about Trump's historic recovery effort in Puerto Rico, still. But one year after Hurricane Maria, that island is still struggling. Chef Jose Andres was on the ground helping to feed survivors. Now he's helping hurricane survivors in the Carolinas. He's joining us to talk the truth about Puerto Rico and how we need to get better.



[22:41:56] CUOMO: All right. Tonight, thousands of people are still in danger in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. You're looking at new video from our friends at FEMA rescuing people in the Carolinas. You will see once again we see the best of us out in the dark dealing with the worst of us.

The death toll was raised tonight to 41 in both of those states, and Virginia, about 73,000 homes and businesses in North Carolina still without power. Rivers are rising. The threat of more flooding remains high in both of the Carolinas. Rescues like the one you're seeing right now are happening every day. People are working to full capacity and then some to get people out of danger.

The need is going to be great, and we will stay on it. And please stay connected to your brothers and sisters in the South.

Now, we've seen a lot of devastation in the Carolinas the last few days from this hurricane, and it's easy to forget because you get compassion fatigue. You want to deal with the latest one. But you have to remember what's happened before. A year ago today, Hurricane Maria began tearing Puerto Rico apart. We lost nearly 3,000 of our fellow Americans.

Renowned Chef Jose Andres went to Puerto Rico. He served more than 3.5 million free meals. He's the author of the new book "We Fed an Island," and he's been on the ground again as the tragedy of Florence unfolds.

Chef, welcome to "Prime Time." I'm happy to call you a friend. And your efforts make you someone special.

ANDRES: Thank you for having me.

CUOMO: You just got off a plane from the Carolinas.

ANDRES: An hour ago.

CUOMO: And how do you find the situation there?

ANDRES: Yes, it's still a lot of things that everybody needs to take care of. But let me tell you, I think the lessons learned from Maria, I see everybody ready to take care of the people of the Carolinas.

I saw thousands of power trucks fixing the system, the grid, hours after the hurricane passed. Quite frankly, I'm very impressed with the governor. I'm very impressed with FEMA, with the big NGOs, like Red Cross or Salvation Army. The game I saw in Carolinas has nothing to do with the same game I saw in Puerto Rico a year ago.

CUOMO: Why was it different, do you think? Do you think we just learned or do you think it shows if it happens on the mainland it matters more than it happens on the island?

ANDRES: Actually, I'm not going to lie to you. If you're a Republican or Democrat, you should support elections every single year, because sometimes it feels like because we are about to have elections, everybody responds.

Quite frankly, we have the most amazing country in the history of mankind, the most prepared men on the military, on the private sector. If America wants to take care of something, America makes it happen.


In Puerto Rico, it's like we forgot about it. Even if the devastation was a Hurricane 4 and we were not prepared, I don't blame anybody for not being prepared. What I guess I can be asking is why we didn't even adapt, why we didn't react.

In North Carolina, which is the area I've been for the last seven, eight days, what I see is people ready to take care of Americans in need, by the second. And this, quite frankly, I'm very happy to see. But unfortunately, this happened because 3,000-plus deaths in Puerto Rico. What we need to make sure is that we learned a lesson so this will never, ever happen again in America.

CUOMO: You hear the president question that number of how many are dead. You hear the president say we did a great job, people say we did great in Puerto Rico, it's amazing what we did. How do you take that?

ANDRES: I only take that as one thing. I think any leader, especially the president of the United States, 51 percent of leadership is empathy. Nobody's blaming you for the deaths personally, but if you're in charge, you are in charge. You need to praise others when they do a good job, but you should be taking the responsibility when things don't go as planned.

Probably we saw the numbers in North Carolina, this was only a hurricane 2, and we are seeing the number 41. Who can believe that when the president went there, a hurricane 4, that it was a hurricane like we've never seen before, it was only 16 deaths? Or then when the number increased to 64.

Long story short, we need to be accountable. We need to understand. We were supposed to be sending people to Puerto Rico to be counting the deaths every day, now a year later. So the response has been amazing in North Carolina, but I do believe that Puerto Rico, everybody learned a lesson.

CUOMO: A year later, you have people without roofs, you have improper water supply, you have people who don't have power, and yes, Puerto Rico is an island with lots of struggles and a power grid that was in bad shape before and local government that is not as effective as it should be.

But what does it mean to you that despite all the death and all of the criticism, that country -- that country -- that territory of America, those Americans, that island is still not getting what they say they need?

ANDRES: First, I'm going to say one thing. Puerto Rico is open and ready to take tourists. If we want to help Puerto Rico, people of America, people of the world, show up. Puerto Rico needs you. That's the best way we can be helping them.

But at the same time, I do believe -- and I've been saying this for months -- Puerto Rico needs a Marshall Plan. I don't mind to call it the Trump Plan. We need a plan. A Republican plan. I don't care the name. Puerto Rico is part of America. Puerto Rico has a lot to offer to America.

We need to make sure that we end the Jones Act, that somehow is in a very unfair way taxing Puerto Rico in ways that we've never seen in America. To bring anything to Haiti or to any other island in the Caribbean is cheaper than to bring it into Puerto Rico. Offshore they are in debt. Offshore they're not doing well. But there's many things that Washington, Congress, and Senate should be doing to be taking care of the 3.5 million Americans in Puerto Rico.

CUOMO: Those are our brothers and sisters. They're Americans. And you know what? If they want, they can come here and they can vote. And the politicians have to know that, too.

"We Fed an Island." Jose Andres. Best-seller, New York Times, you didn't even have time to promote it. You were down there feeding people. It's still a best-seller. Thank you for what you do for the rest of us.

ANDRES: Thank you.

CUOMO: All right. So, some of the very troops who fought for this country, the veterans that we all say we love and will do anything for, well, guess what, they need us. They're fighting a move by the government. They say their families are going to be hurt. What is it? What can you do? Next.




CUOMO: All right. You say you care about the troops, right? Listen up.

Veteran groups are calling on the Department of Defense to stop major changes that are coming to the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. The new policy is set to take effect next year. What would it do? It would limit the ability of troops to transfer their G.I. Bill benefits to their family members.

The outcry triggered the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, the IAVA, to launch a petition on So far, it has more than 55,000 signatures. It's been delivered to Defense Secretary Mattis, and supporters are awaiting a response. All right? If you want, go there. It's up to you.

There is a bittersweet event here on CNN this Sunday. It's going to be the premiere of the 12th and final season of Anthony Bourdain's "Parts Unknown." Here's a taste. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOURDAIN: "Nairobi" means "cool water" in Maasai. It's the capital of Kenya, with 6.5 million people living in the metro area. It grew up around a British railroad depot during the colonial era, halfway between other British interests in Uganda and the coastal port of Mombasa.

I will admit, full geared, frankly, a lovely sense of been here, done that (ph). It's not a good look for me, I know, but there's a mischievous curiosity tucked away in some poisonous part of my brain that's dying to see how Kamau handles the heat, the spice, the crowds, the overwhelming rush of a whole new world, because that's what it is first time. This ain't Berkeley.


CUOMO: What a dynamic duo there. The final season of "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" premieres this Sunday at 9:00 p.m. Eastern here on CNN.

All right, thank you for watching. What do you say? Do you want to get after it again tomorrow? We'll be here at 9:00 Eastern, of course, on CNN. Have a great night.